Well any doubts as to the victor in the Rib Challenge were erased completely when we dove into the TankerBabe's dry rub ribs. She is proclaimed the official BBQ Chef of the Freefly and over the summer we will determine who gets the title of official BBQ Chef of Blackfive. So the challenge is re-lit and any other BBQ gurus bring it on. Kev selflessly has volunteered to eat as much as he can.
Why haven't I been hearing raves across the internets about Austin Bay's new project, the Arena. WOW! it is brilliant. I just watched the episode of Consequences about scenarios after a rapid US withdrawal from Iraq. It is a 21 minute very slickly produced video and synced slideshow that is tremendously informative. It should be required viewing for all high school students, who would benefit greatly from the clue they would never get from their teachers or our media.
I need to find out more about this project and what else they will be doing because this is the kind of information that will help us win the global counterinsurgency.
There is a flurry of frenzied activity going on behind the quiet, cultured facade here at Blackfive. The new logo is out, t-shirts are for sale, videos are flying left and right, and now I can announce that I work here. Tomorrow I am full time as the Executive Producer of Blackfive TV. That is a high-falutin' title and what it really means is we will have real pros doing the cameras and editing instead of me. Woo Hoo!. I suck as an editor, videographer and soundman.
We have a number of sponsors, advertisers and others who are making this possible and we are actively seeking more. You are our audience so think about anyone who would want to market to you. If you can point us to s specific person who has responsibility for marketing or advertising please point them in my direction. We are launching the filming of a tribute to the men who died in Afghanistan on Op Redwing, tentative title "The Men of Murphy's Ridge". Lone Survivor tells the tale of that battle, we want to tell the stories of the men who lived before that day.
We will start off in Denver for several days including the 4th of July to film with the Dietz family and friends of Danny. The Traveling Vietnam Wall will be in town and we will be throwing a fiesta at the combined fireworks/wall event. BBQ, Dead Tangos In HiDef, T-shirts me, Kev & the BBQ Queen the righteous Tanker Babe. Oh and she dominated the rib challenge. Her ribs made me and Kevan cry like we were at a Disney movie. Mmmmmmmmm.
What does this change mean for Blackfive, I don't know for sure. We now are selling things and raising money, but we will donate good chunks of it to the charities we have always supported. We have expenses, but in short order we should have them covered by advertisers and sponsors completely. We are working out the details, but essentially we are making it up as we go along. Suggestions and comments are always encouraged, you all are the reason we have these opportunities. I will continue to update over the weekend and then have some kind of comprehensive post for Monday. Now I need to go take the dry rack of Tanker Babe's ribs and the homemade beans out to warm up for the Freefly in a couple of hours. This is livin'! Shot on the cam in my laptop.
One thing that we noticed was that LTG Speakes pointed out that, during the 1990s, investment in developing combat systems was minimal. The result was that the expertise in engineering, computer technology, and other spheres was simply not there when we went back for it. FCS has had to invest enough to allow the industry to restart itself -- far more expensive than maintaining an existing capacity.
The result was what Rumsfeld called "going to war with the Army you have," an army that -- you may remember -- at one point had to urge soldiers to buy their own kit, including body armor, to make up its shortfalls.
A certain candidate favosr eliminating, slowing or cutting back all current investments in future capacity. Some things he opposes outright -- for example, missile defense and space control (oddly, his chief military advisor, Gen. McPeak, was a strong supporter of space control -- is Obama actually listening to his chief advisor?). Other things he just want to delay or pare back, including the FCS. The result would be not just a weakening of America's actual defense in the moment, but a weakening of her capacity to strengthen herself at need. The failure to invest has two costs: not only do you have worn out equipment, but you don't have the experts on hand to help build better things to face current challenges.
Wolf remarked that this was very much like the Army he'd known in the Carter years, 1977-9. We'd like to ask veterans of that era to write in with their stories, the best of which we will publish here. What was it like to belong to such an Army, or Navy, or Marine Corps or Air Force?
Jimbo is right to say that Obama is wrong for a dangerous world. Let's talk about exactly why he is wrong for it. The key clue comes from listening to some of his supporters talk about why they don't want Senator Jim Webb to serve as Obama's Vice President. I supported Webb for the Senate, and would have no problem supporting him for President -- but to them, he is a bad choice.
Through the duration of the war in Iraq I've identified key
indicators of important trends in the conflict on this web site. These
indicators take the form of discrete events of variable duration, the trends
are larger scale and longer term, and generally identifiable to the
observer only as a series of events. The key to understanding what's happening in Iraq
is to be able to identify a trend by it's indicators (and conversely to
be able to determine which events are part of a trend) and to recognize
which trends or events matter (in long or short term) and which don't.
Identifying events and trends (or even distinguishing events from brief
trends) is exceptionally difficult without the benefit of hindsight and
demonstrably challenging even after the fact. And any attempt at
forecasting - extending those trends into the future - compounds that
challenge by an unknown degree, and at some point is an exercise in
Those who attempt to accomplish any of those tasks without constant
monitoring of the situation or first hand experience therein do so at a
distinct disadvantage. Identifying trends from outside Iraq can be
impossible - the observer is dependent upon reports from others (from
traditional and new media, if no other contact are available), and must
be aware of the bias of those few reporters whose work reaches the
outside world. If I've had any success at all in the attempt (and I
will humbly demonstrate shortly I've had some success, at
least) much of that is due to my lack of those disadvantages that
burden so many others. Further, while those of a certain partisan
stripe might find my conclusions more appealing than others, another
key to understanding is to be able to view the scene without partisan
prejudice of any sort - at least as far as that is humanly possible -
separate facts from feelings, and limit motives to truth over a desired
One thing that no longer surprises me in the least is the amazing array of talents to be found in our readers. Towards that end, if you are an illustrator or artist, please drop me a line using the e-mail to be found over there on the right if you might be interested in some possible work. Not saying it is connected to anything here, but would love to talk with you.
This is a collection of the collective wisdom of Senator Obama and the Democratic leadership he would share power and decision-making authority with. It scares me and it should you as well. They claim the right uses fear as a tool, well the brilliance of the left rightly deserves our fear.
Regarding her recent trip to Iraq, she was asked if she had seen any evidence that the "Surge" was working. Of course on a moron can't see the significant improvements.
Did she give the credit to Prime Minister Maliki? General Patraeus? The US military? The US trained Iraqi Army? Nope, nope, nope and nope.
Again, here is what this total POS said:
Whatever the military success, and progress that may have been made, the surge didn't accomplish its goal. And some of the success of the surge is that the goodwill of the Iranians - they decided in Basra when the fighting would end, they negotiated that cessation of hostilities - the Iranians.
The "Goodwill" of the Iranians?
I thinks it's time for a swig from the little brown jug of reality for San Fran Nan.
The Iranians are killing our troops you idiotic dolt! The cease fire in Basra that was supposedly negotiated by the Iranians collapsed like a card table. That was when Maliki and the (US Trained) boys went in and kicked their asses!
No Iranian negotiations brought peace to Basra. It was sustained targeting and killing of Iranian backed terrorists. You see Ms. Pelosi, PM Maliki and General Patraeus have discovered that a dead Tango is significantly less threatening than a live one.
The Iranians have done nothing less than overtly foment violence across the Middle East you miserable surrender monkey.
Assuming the "Surge" was in place in June of last year; 605 Americans have died to help this thing work. Of course all of those deaths were for nothing until the Iranians stepped in to bring peace? The reality is that a vast majority of these Americans were killed by the damn Iranians!
This is beyond pathetic Ms. Pelosi. It is clear that you hate President Bush but you now have demonstrated how much you loathe America.
In spite of all your efforts Dingbat, we didn't lose. Now shut your festering piehole and let your betters finish what they're doing!
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.