I don't know how many of you are horsemen. Equus magazine will be familiar to those who are.
This month it carries a piece on a new effort by The Old Guard to help soldiers maimed in the service to become horsemen, too. It will surprise no one here to learn that the Caisson Platoon is behind this effort, which uses theraputic riding to help soldiers who have lost limbs in combat.
There are a number of benefits to riding horseback in terms of strength, balance, and confidence. Our wounded soldiers could not be better served.
Noli Me Tangere! A bold motto, given its history, but good and brave men guard it.
Matt has linked to pieces from Jules Crittenden of the Boston Herald before and after the last one I pinged him with a question. I knew a Pete Crittenden from 1st Group Okinawa, and lo and behold he and Jules are brothers. So here is some good stuff from a quality writer with a good pedigree.
The war in Lebanon must not end short of its logical conclusion. Its logical conclusion is not the successful use of human shields by Hezbollah to hamstring the Israeli Defense Forces. Its logical conclusion is the destruction of Hezbollah as a military and political force that will always remain a threat to peace and stability of the region.
Hezbollah has gotten a pass from the international community at Qana, as it did when it targeted UN peacekeepers for death by placing Hezbollah fighting positions within meters of the doomed UN observation post, as it has in numerous other tragedies in recent weeks. Israel has received widespread condemnation for firing on a town that Hezbollah cynically used as a base to launch missiles.
Via Seamus, words from a Marine First Sergeant in Fallujah:
...We had a Marine get hit square in the
chest by a sniper shot the other day but he was able to get up and run for
cover. Yes they knock you down for some reason but the ballistic protection does
its job. Stopped it cold of course the Marine has a big bruise in the middle of
his chest but he is great shape. The sniper you ask, he ran into a mosque to
hide because he knows we don’t go into them. Why don’t we go into them you ask?
Because we would be insensitive, there’s that word again, to them if we did. We
are we sensitive to them, even after a known shooter, ran into it? Because there
are a few people back home, who are not getting shot by snipers, who are upset
and are throwing tantrums about us being insensitive. Why are they not here you
ask? We’ll I guess they are to busy burning our flag. We did call the local
police, so we could be sensitive, who had 6 guys search the entire place in
about, um 30 seconds and came out and said they found nothing. Now how do you
suppose he got out when we had the place surrounded?...
Things that make you go "Hhhhmm..."
And the good First Sergeant says a few IED planters had accidents:
...Anyways to the North of our building we heard a big explosion, the building shook a little, and a large flash of light flew through the darkness about 22:30 that night. It was an insurgent placing a very large artillery IED in the street and it suddenly went off. Oops, now I don’t want to be insensitive here to this guy but I never had anyone blow themselves up during Americantology before [edit note: Marines using audio technology to blast music]. I can’t begin to tell you how upset we were here with the whole thing, trying to be more sensitive an all. I would like to think he heard it playing but since it only can only be heard by Americans and dogs that wasn’t the reason. But maybe that was the reason, he couldn’t hear it and he knew we were playing it. Everybody wants to come to the greatest country in the world and stand under the statue of liberty as that flag waves. So we finished our night and went to grab a few hours of rack out time, those that weren’t on post that is. We were out about 0430 again when we heard another large boom in the north again. See we go out before all the civilians get up to sweep streets for IED’s or to get bad guys so that we cut down on casualties to the civilians. But who would have guessed it, it happened again about 0430, no I was not playing Americantology at that time, another couple of guys planting IED’s blew them selves up. The police went out and picked them up, for a while, and then everyone went on as usual because that is the usual...
I asked a few of the soldiers how they felt about this war, a war that
had begun with an attack on American soil. How did it feel being
Canadian leading the fight? The answers were nearly all the same, "It's
time that someone else steps up. The United States shouldn't have to
carry the fight alone. We may be Canadians, but the attack was an
attack on our common values and beliefs. The attack of 9-11 was an
attack on all of us."
Tim Oren of Due Dilligence sends these posts about the Canadians in the fight in Afghanistan. The writing and the combat photography are amazing but some caution is warranted for as it is about actual combat in Afghanistan:
Bookmark Scott Kesterson's reporting on the fighting in Afghanistan. Scott is a freelance photo-journalist. Here is part of a message he sends to his readers:
...The operations here in Afghanistan, as I have commented on so many
times, began with the attacks on September 11, 2001. Yet, the
operations of the past days that I was part of were led by Canadians.
What has resulted is a bonding of US and Canadian forces never before
seen. They are not just our neighbor to the north, they have proven
themselves to be fighters and soldiers worthy of the highest honors
that the US Army offers its own.
On our first morning of being attacked, I found myself holding back
tears as I filmed Canadians fighting a fight that began on American
soil. In interviews that followed, I discovered the depth of commitment
that these soldiers held in their hearts, as they expressed their
belief in purpose and shared their emotions, at times with tears. Two
countries, each proud of their roots and history, unified across the
border that distinguishes each of us...
I lived until 2002 in a small southern village near Mardshajund that is inhabited by a majority of Shias like me. After Israel left Lebanon, it did not take long for Hezbollah to have its say in other towns. Received as successful resistance fighters and armed to the teeth, they stored rockets in bunkers in our town as well. The social work of the Party of God consisted in building a school and a residence over these bunkers! A local sheikh explained to me laughing that the Jews would lose in any event because the rockets would either be fired at them or if they attacked the rockets depots, they would be condemned by world opinion on account of the dead civilians. These people do not care about the Lebanese population, they use them as shields, and, once dead, as propaganda. As long as they continue existing there, there will be no tranquility and peace.
Dr. Mounir Herzallah Berlin-Wedding
OK let me get this straight Hezbollah, who does so much charitable work, builds a piece of terrorism infrastructure and then puts a school on top of it.
After thousands of rockets fired into Israel from these Hezbollah hideouts among their own people, the Israelis document that there are rockets being fired from just behind a structure in Qana. These rockets fly purposely toward Israeli civilians killing and wounding innocents. The Israelis then drop leaflets warning the populace that because rockets are coming from their houses they will be forced to destroy those houses to safeguard their own people.
To all citizens south of the Litani River
Due to the terror activities being carried out against the State of Israel from within your villages and homes, the IDF is forced to respond immediately against these activities, even within your villages. For your safety! We call upon you to evacuate your villages and move north of the Litani River.
Then when the inevitable attack comes the bodies of children are paraded around by the Hezbollah to a pack of media jackals all too willing to capture the horror and beam it around the internets. And now it seems the building collapsed 7 or 8 hours after the attacks and it leads one (me) to wonder whether the same Hezbollah folks who stopped people trying to leave are now herding them into death traps to be used as propaganda, seems like their MO to me.
Yet in the face of unprovoked attacks on Israel, a deliberate look to see where the attacks were coming from, a warning to residents that an attack was coming and a targeted strike that hit the building where the rocket attacks emanated from, somehow it is the Israelis who are being demonized. How about the terrorists who fire unaimed rockets from schoolyards, and hiding in UN positions, forcing civilians to serve as cannon fodder, why are they ignored?
No cease fire, no peace until Hezbollah is crushed. Any other outcome leaves a breeding ground for the hate that causes the use of children as a weapon. Evil bastards.
It has long been known that Jooos are the root of all evil and obviously, therefore, forthwith, henceforth, all wars too. Well now at least one of the Levantine leviathans is copping to it. Now first you have to understand that in addition to his Jewitude this one is particularly egregious.
I mean he is the Caliph of Catblogging FFS. And I realize I did this too, once, but mine was to see if Matty would kick me off Blackfive, he didn't and all have paid for his weakness. But this war-mongering master of the Middle East also acts like baseball and the excremental Houston Astros are worthy of attention, Damnable Hebrew. Why don't you stick to usury, desangrifying Christian babies and war?! Anyhow he begins to repent, or not, here.
Well, thanks CNN.
Thank you for telling the world that Mel Gibson was out driving drunk, got in an altercation with the arresting officers, and didn't make any berserk anti-Semitic comments at all.
Now if you'll excuse me, I'm a very busy man. I'm responsible for all the wars in the world, you know.
Well, I started young, an apprentice manager of the Pepsi-Coke Cola Wars of the 80's and worked my way up the ranks.
Then, I consulted with the Iran-Iraq Wars. You know, because sending Shia Persians against Sunni Arabs was a great way to thin the enemy herd.
If he didn't have legions of young Muslims kidnapped from their families to tend his herd of feline freeloaders, he would suffocate beneath the dung. I think that exposing the machinations of the puppet masters is a vital service and I hope some disinterested group like the UN will help us resist the power these less than 50 million reprobates wield in our world.
Finally --- An Honest News Story -- Without The Bias
Posted By Subsunk
I can't say it any better: (Jimbo and Froggy, here's your post, Men)
Marine sniper metes out swift death in Iraq's most dangerous neighborhood
RAMADI, Iraq (AP) — He was 5 when he first fired an M-16, his father holding him to brace against the recoil. At 17 he enlisted in the Marine Corps, spurred by the memory of Sept. 11.
Now, 21-year-old Galen Wilson has 20 confirmed kills in four months in Iraq — and another 40 shots that probably killed insurgents. One afternoon the lance corporal downed a man hauling a grenade launcher 5½ football fields away.
Wilson is the designated marksman in a company of Marines based in downtown Ramadi, watching over what Marines call the most dangerous neighborhood in the most dangerous city in the world.
On Friday, Beth*A sent me via email an interesting interview transcript. Along with President Bush’s and Prime Minister Blair’spress conference transcripts, I can’t think of a better explanation of why we must fight, and why we must win.
..... One of the guests was Pierre Rehov, a French filmmaker who has filmed six documentaries on the intifada by going undercover in the Palestinian areas. Pierre's upcoming film, "Suicide Killers," is based on interviews that he conducted with the families of suicide bombers and would-be bombers in an attempt to find out why they do it. Pierre agreed to a request for a Q&A interview here about his work on the new film.
Q - Why is this film especially important?
A - People don't understand the devastating culture behind this unbelievable phenomenon. My film is not politically correct because it addresses the real problem, showing the real face of Islam. It points the finger against a culture of hatred in which the uneducated are brainwashed to a level where their only solution in life becomes to kill themselves and kill others in the name of a God whose word, as transmitted by other men, has become their only certitude.
Q - What insights did you gain from making this film? What do you know that other experts do not know?
A - I came to the conclusion that we are facing a neurosis at the level of an entire civilization. Most neuroses have in common a dramatic event, generally linked to an unacceptable sexual behavior. In this case, we are talking of kids living all their lives in pure frustration, with no opportunity to experience sex, love, tenderness or even understanding from the opposite sex. The separation between men and women in Islam is absolute. So is contempt toward women, who are totally dominated by men. This leads to a situation of pure anxiety, in which normal behavior is not possible. It is no coincidence that suicide killers are mostly young men dominated subconsciously by an overwhelming libido that they not only cannot satisfy but are afraid of, as if it is the work of the devil.
Since Islam describes heaven as a place where everything on Earth will finally be allowed, and promises 72 virgins to those frustrated kids, killing others and killing themselves to reach this redemption becomes their only solution.
Q - What was it like to interview would-be suicide bombers, their families and survivors of suicide bombings?
A - It was a fascinating and a terrifying experience. You are dealing with seemingly normal people with very nice manners who have their own logic, which to a certain extent can make sense since they are so convinced that what they say is true. It is like dealing with pure craziness, like interviewing people in an asylum, since what they say, is for them, the absolute truth. I hear a mother saying "Thank God, my son is dead." Her son had became a shaheed, a martyr, which for her was a greater source of pride than if he had became an engineer, a doctor or a winner of the Nobel Prize.
This system of values works completely backwards since their interpretation of Islam worships death much more than life. You are facing people whose only dream, only achievement goal is to fulfill what they believe to be their destiny, namely to be a Shaheed or the family of a shaheed.
They don't see the innocent being killed, they only see the impure that they have to destroy......
Former Paratrooper and Army Officer, "Blackfive" started this blog upon learning of the valorous sacrifice of a friend that was not reported by the journalist whose life he saved. Email: blackfive AT gmail DOT com
Retired Special Operations Master Sergeant, Jim Hanson ("Uncle Jimbo") is now focused on writing about the military, politics, intelligence operations and foreign policy. Email: jimbo AT unclejimbo DOT com
Writer, photographer, and raconteur C. Blake Powers is the Laughing Wolf. He is independent in politics and covers topics including journalism, military, weapons, preparedness, space, science, cooking, food and wine, product and book reviews, and even spirituality. Email: wolf1 AT laughingwolf DOT net Laughing Wolf's Amazon Wish List
Bill Paisley, otherwise known as Pinch, is a 22 year (ongoing) active and
reserve naval aviator. He blogs over at www.instapinch.com on a veritable
cornucopia of various and sundry items and will bring a tactical naval
aviator's perspective to Blackfive. Readers be warned: any comments of or
about the F-14 Tomcat will be reverential and spoken in low, hushed tones.
Email: wpaisley AT comcast DOT net
Mr. Wolf has over 26 years in the Army, Army NG, and USAR. He’s Airborne with 5 years as an NCO, before becoming an officer. Mr. Wolf has had 4 company commands. Signal Corp is his basic branch, and Public Affairs is his functional area. He recently served 22 straight months in Kuwait and Iraq, in Intel, PA, and senior staff of MNF-I. Mr. Wolf is now an IT executive. He is currently working on a book on media and the Iraq war. Functional gearhead.
In Iraq, he received the moniker of Mr. Wolf after the Harvey Kietel character in Pulp Fiction, when "challenges" arose, they called on Mr. Wolf...
Email: TheDOTMrDOTWolfAT gmail DOT com
Deebow is a Staff Sergeant and a Military Police Squad Leader in the Army National Guard. In a previous life, he served in the US Navy. He has over 19 years of experience in both the Maritime and Land Warfare; including deployments to Southwest Asia, Thailand, the South Pacific, South America and Egypt. He has served as a Military Police Team Leader and Protective Services Team Leader and he has served on assignments with the US State Department, US Air Force Security Police, US Army Criminal Investigation Division, and the US Drug Enforcement Administration. He recently spent time in Afghanistan working with, training and fighting alongside Afghan Soldiers and is now focused on putting his 4 year Political Science degree to work by writing about foreign policy, military security policy and politics.
McQ has 28 years active and reserve service. Retired. Infantry officer. Airborne and Ranger. Consider my 3 years with the 82nd as the most fun I ever had with my clothes on. Interests include military issues and policy and veteran's affairs.
Email: mcq51 -at - bellsouth -dot- net
Tantor is a former USAF navigator/weapon system officer (WSO) in F-4E Phantoms who served in the US, Asia, and Europe. He is now a curmudgeonly computer geek in Washington, DC, picking the taxpayers pocket. His avocations are current events, aviation, history, and conservative politics.
Twenty-three years of Active and Reserve service in the US Army in SF (18B), Infantry and SOF Signal jobs with operational deployments to Bosnia and Africa. Since retiring he's worked as Senior Defense Analyst on SOF and Irregular Warfare projects and currently ensconced in the emerging world of Cyberspace.
Major Pain --
A Marine who began his blog in Iraq and reflects back on what he learned there and in Afghanistan. To the point opinions, ideas and thoughts on military, political and the media from One Marine’s View. Email: onemarinesview AT yahoo DOT com
Uber Pig was an Infantryman from late 1991 until early 1996, serving with Second Ranger Battalion, I Corps, and then 25th Infantry Division. At the time, the Army discriminated against enlisted soldiers who wanted use the "Green to Gold" program to become officers, so he left to attend Stanford University. There, he became expert in detecting, avoiding, and surviving L-shaped ambushes, before dropping out to be as entrepreneurial as he could be. He is now the founder of a software startup serving the insurance and construction industries, and splits time between Lake Tahoe, Boonville, and San Francisco, CA.
Uber Pig writes for Blackfive a) because he's the proud brother of an enlisted Civil Affairs Reservist who currently serves in Iraq, b) because he looks unkindly on people who make it harder for the military in general, and for his brother in particular, to succeed at their missions and come home in victory, and c) because the Blackfive readers and commenters help keep him sane.
COB6 spent 24 years in the active duty Army that included 5 combat tours with service in the 1st Ranger Battalion and 1st Special Forces Group . COB6 was enlisted (E-7) and took the OCS route to a commission. COB6 retired a few years back as a field grade Infantry officer.
Currently COB6 has a son in the 82nd Airborne that just returned from his third tour and has a newly commissioned daughter in the 4th Infantry Division.