Northwestern Wildcats "Honor" Wounded Warriors With Controversial/Bloody Uniforms
Posted By Blackfive
Eh, not really a big deal to me, but there is some controversy brewing up over the Northwestern University deal to wear different uniforms in their next game to support the Wounded Warrior Project. I just wonder who over at WWP decided that the blood effect was a good idea...seems REALLY kind of off to me - especially in College sports.
...Ace termed it Shutdown Theater, I believe. That's an appropriate moniker but doesn't address the profound bullshit that is happening. From one of the B5 authors:
Everything from blocking off scenic parking overlooks to forcing businesses to close simply because the business was on federal property, to closing down lifesaving web pages like the Amber Alert yet keeping Michelle's "Drink Water" web page up and running to that absolutely imbecilic idea that thinking closing the WW2 memorial top Honor Flight vets would be a good idea. The same way that religious ideology extremism in the Taliban manifested itself in the destruction of those beautiful statues, the political ideology extremism in this Obama administration manifests itself in these petty, childish and hurtful moves.
The Unbearable Lightness of Being a Warrior Princess....
Posted By Deebow
UPDATE: link to the original essay here (my opinion remains unchanged).
I try not to spend my time poop-hammering veterans that don't need it. Everyone's experience is different, and the fact that you served is 99 percent of all I need to hear.
But that being said, I, along with my combat MOS/Combat Service brothers and sisters, am a bit of an elitist. The guys that have spent their time living in places with light, noise and litter discipline with Death not only tuggin at their elbow, but tying off on it with a swiss seat are more likely to be the people that I tend to bond with. People who have seen the elephant are my people.
Long days in the Finance Office at Camp Phoenix or scheduling aircraft maintenance at Bagram are likely to get me shoveling a mountain of well deserved poo-poo on you.
So I don't feel bad for what I am about to do.....
Obama Adminstration Specifically Denied Exception to Permit Veterans to Attend WWII Memorial
Before we go any further, let us note once again how contrived it is to shut down entryways to a wide open space out in the middle of a park.
This is not a building, like a museum, that has doors and staffers and guides. This is f#cking scenery.
And yet the erected artificial barriers to block people from walking through outdoor scenery.
Also, here's a twitter photo of the NEW barricades being put into place at about 0800
Due to the government shutdown, National Park Service police put up barriers preventing access. According to Leo Shane III, White House and Veterans Affairs reporter for Stars and Stripes, the veterans knocked over those barriers.
Not that I haven't had a sickening feeling from politicians in both parties whose spine has an elemental consistency that ranges somewhere between gelatin and mannecoti since about 2008 (ish), but the blood pressure machine was about to spontaneously combust after I saw this about the testimony of the parents of Sean Smith and Tyrone Woods and then read this list of the people who walked out that hearing.
And one name stuck out to me because her hackitude is epic; Rep. Tammy Duckworth.
I have searched for a way to say this, but I can think of no other way: You madam, are an epic POS.
You, Representative Duckworth, of all the people who sat on that esteemed panel, should be acutely aware of what must have been running through the minds of Tyrone and Sean as they waited on the ground for a rescue force while enduring hostile fire. A rescue force, that it turns out, the President in Name only was of no mind to send, because he had something pressing in the morning and he wanted to get his rest.
You, having endured being grievously wounded and fighting to land an aircraft that was falling out of the sky in hostile territory probably can tell the story of how the minutes felt like hours until you saw a QRF that had IR "U.S." tabs on the chest plates of their IBAs coming to secure your aircraft, help treat you and your crew for your wounds, and evacuate all of you to safety at the risk of their lives so that you could be treated and returned to your families.
I bet you are glad that the QRF did their duty November 12, 2004 huh? Couldn't be bothered to do yours though right? Didn't you want to hear how those men and those families deserved the same response you received? For you to walk out on those families and not even give them the common courtesy to listen to their story speaks to the epic hackery that is your career in politics and speaks volumes of your (in)ability as a leader.
You have insulted those families by refusing to hear their concerns, as elected representatives are duty bound to do. "Leave No Man Behind" evidently means nothing to you, along with your oath to protect and defend the Constitution.
My bet is that you don't know this, but when you are a leader, you can't just take the easy ones, you have to take the hard ones too. And sometimes, you have to do the hardest thing and take the lead when you are in the wrong and make something right, that in this case, has your political party's fingerprints all over it.
But evidently, that is just a bridge too far for you because your allegiance to your party trumps your humanity, integrity and common sense. You dishonor your service to this country as a member of the US Army and as a Congresswoman and your dereliction of duty is noted.
I would like to know if anyone has seen my unicorn? It must be around here somewhere. Hang on.... I got it. I know where it went. It must be the same place the Anti-War Left has been hanging out, because I can't find either of these these mythical beasts anywhere.
Wasn't it awesome when the Anti-war Left actually had the courage of their convictions to protest both LBJ and Nixon instead of just protesting a Republican president who went to war in a Middle Eastern country based upon a brutal dictator suppressing his own people, using and possessing chemical weapons, using them on innocent people, using "hard intelligence" about WMD and terrorism as justification and getting approval from Congress and making his case to the American people.
But no word yet on the march to Washington by the mythical Anti-War Left against a Democrat President who wants to start a war in a Middle Eastern country based upon a brutal dictator suppressing his own people, using and possessing chemical weapons, using them on innocent people and using "hard intelligence" about WMD and terrorism as justification and trying to get approval from Congress and making his case to the American people.
What about it Anti-War Left? Gonna get your march on? Cat got your tongue? I know, it must be hard to criticize the President you voted for based upon his ability to stop the seas from rising and heal the planet, what with everyone who speaks out against his policies being called a racist for just opposing him on principle.
And it was nice to see that Code Pink got their act together enough to show up to protest both this Secretary of State when he was giving his statements to both houses of Congress, and the first black woman to hold the post as well when she was talking abou the last great Persian Excursion. Must have been hard to protest a fellow traveler who was for it before he was against it, especially since many in this administration spent the last administration talking about how bombing dudes with WMDs was wrong and immoral, and getting the help of Code Pink in their government funded publicity stunts.
"It is for me, but not for thee" I guess....
And why in the world has the smartest president EVAH! decided that we should become AL-Qaeda's Air Force in their hour of need? This fight between the "Crips and Bloods" of the Middle East is best left to them, so that we can reduce the number of people we are going to drop some more Tomahawk missiles on to a more reasonable number after a winner is decided. I mean, really, who would not want to watch Hezbollah and Al-Qaeda shoot each other in the face?
But if our plan is to launch some missiles so that we can hopefully hasten the downfall of the Assad regime, so that Al-Qaeda can get their hands on a country with WMD, then Bravo! Mr. Nobel Peace Prize winner, your plan is working perfectly. It is not lost on many of us the irony of a Nobel Peace Prize winner bombing a country further into the Stone Age.
The Russians and the Chinese know the Preezy of the United Steezy is a scared punk who is trying desperately not to look spineless after talking about "red lines" and then spending these many months not rushing to judgment over Assad high jumping them. I mean, Arabs killing each other without WMD involvement is all kinds of copasetic with him, and destabilizing an entire region and flipping the bird to our only ally in the region are just a serendipitious benefit of what this administration does.
"Red Lines" mean something, and the hypocrisy over the issue of dictators who have WMD and use them on their people would be laughable at this point, except those on the Democrat side of the fence fail to see it, so that just makes it sad that anyone with two functioning brain cells would vote to have any of the current players in this administration run anything more complicated than the Fry Station at Mickey D's.
This collection of mental midgets and their RINO enablers have no idea what words like "Commander's Intent" mean; let alone simple words like "Objective," "End State," or even "Victory."
Can you imagine what the rough draft of that Commander's Intent statement looks like?
Commander's Intent:To destroy Syria's ability to use WMDs (Oh wait, that sounds too aggressive). To hinder Syria's ability to fight off Al-Qaeda (hang on, can't talk about Al-Qaeda, people might think they are not "on the run" like I told the Media everyone). To harass and hinder Assad's lines of communication (wait, harassment is something I should check with HR about). To look strong in the face of adversity and confirm our belief in red lines and how they should not be crossed. (looks like a winner).
The fact that Bella Pelosi has a 5 year old grandson with a greater intellect and understanding of foreign affairs than she has was among the most unsurprising things I have encountered this year. Even he understood that becoming decisively engaged in this region of the world was a bad idea. I was even less surprised when she wasn't able to make the case to him. I guess her plan is to vote on the resolution and then read it.
Liberal Trolls are going to hate me (more), but that doesn't leave me sleepless, because liberal trolls aren't scary people. I don't give two poops in a pocket if Assad kills his own people or kills Al-Qaeda while he eats halal goat and sings the chorus of "There is Nothing Like A Dame" because when there are two groups of people deciding they want to kill each other, and you don't like either one of them and they certainly don't like you; you don't offer charity to either of them in the form of Close Air Support and weapons so you can look "strong." You pop some corn, order a pizza and watch the show.
It will not all of a sudden be a world that includes all of the warm fuzzy's in the title once the Tomahawk missiles and Mark 82 Rockeyes stop raining down, it will be much messier, much more complicated and galactically more dangerous.
It will not be another Iraq. It will be much worse. This is a bell that cannot be un-rung. It is dangerous ground Mr. President, and your hubris is showing...
Leading from Behind isn't and Campaigning is easy, it is the governing that is hard; but I bet you knew that already....
You know, some days I just wonder why. Why bother. Here I am working on losing weight, getting in shape, getting my blood pressure down to the point of being almost too low, and what happens? You Feckless Underdeveloped Chronic Knicker-wearing Taffies And Rejected Donut Suckers start posting photos with anti-Syria-war signs covering your flabby pox-marked faces. You are guaranteeing I will fail my blood pressure tests for the next twenty years.
First, let me join in with Doc's excellent take down at TAH, and the follow-up post by Jonn. Both make exellent points, and I will simply add that if you are a serving member of the military and do something like this, get the frack out. I sincerely and fully hope that your NCOs/Senior NCOs take you out back for some much needed "counselling" and that applies to officers too. You clearly don't get the concepts of service, and need some long and thorough remedial instruction. If you serve and did this, I tend to think you are at the bottom rungs of being a ten percenter and a well-known dou-che and shitebird in your unit.
Second, I've been looking over the photos and like some of our readers, have to agree that some of these dou-ches are fakes. No NCO, much less a senior NCO, would let anyone out in uniforms that fracked up. None are quite up to "Soup Sandwhich" levels, but there is enough wrong that civilians are noticing and commenting.
Third, given similarities of wording and other issues, I and others are smelling something and it's making us wonder if this is not a false-flag operation that got started and sucked in some idiots. There are those out there who would love to do someting like that for a variety of reasons. One such reason that really bothers me is that there are those out there who for political reasons want to damage/destroy the military. I plan to touch on that more soon, but this is a great way to make some cheap and immediate political points while planting seeds of distrust/setting the stage for eroding confidence in the military.
Short and sweet: The uniform is not a prop for any position/issue. Feel free to voice your opinion in civvy, when in uniform shut up and soldier. You swore an oath, and your personal feelings do not remove you from obeying lawful orders (more on that soon too I hope, and really hoping we can get TSO out of his chain-mail bikini and off of WoW long enough to post).
Several of you have sent links and shared with me on Facebook, so I'm posting here to help get the word out. These are photos of two suspects in the Spokane area who beat and killed a WWII veteran. They apparently did so without provocation and without an obvious reason (which suggests one in and of itself) as robbery was (apparently) not involved.
Share these photos. Spread them far and wide. Leave them no place to hide.
UPDATE II: Both are now in custody, and people who were aiding the second perp in avoiding capture were arrested too. Delbert Belton is a name you should know, and the two who did this deserve nothing other than swift justice and to be forgotten.
Senior Officer Email: The Problem with Army Leadership at the Division Level
Posted By Blackfive
Received this email from an Active Duty Army Officer (combat arms, OIF and OEF) concerned about leadership issues and how we are dealing with problems within the troops. Since we've been critical of senior leadership, thought I'd post this with his permission.
1. The same people who approved "morality waivers" to make retention goals are now in charge and wondering why we have so many DUIs, Suicides, and Sex Assaults
2. Seeking treatment for mental health issues is a long-term plan, you're never "cured" and the DOD has absolutely no way to balance keeping the soldier in the force (trained/schooled/promoted) and getting him the treatment he needs.
3. We write policies telling our subordinates to do things that we will not do (cough *counselling subordinates* cough) and we don't punish units for failing.
Case in point: IG inspections.
Generally, these don't exist anymore. Subordinate units get "Staff Assistance Visits" to check that they are doing the things the higher staff is interested in, but not necessarily the way the Army says they will be done (for example, using DTMS to schedule training.)
If a unit has an SAV and fails it completely, the end result is that they will be reinspected, at a later date, to be determined. Usually, that later date is after the people on both staffs have moved on, so what was broken before is still broken. Lather, rinse, repeat. So for failing to pass inspection, a unit has no penalty... what is the motivation to apply resources to the problem to fix it?
We write policies outlining "good order and discipline" telling our soldiers how to behave, but we have no means within those policies to ensure they are being followed, and no penalty for not following the directives. We might, natuarlly, punish a soldier who does not uphold the standards published, but we don't punish that soldier's leaders for failing to influence them to behave within standards. Platoon leaders don't get an ass chewing if their platoons fail muster inspection, Platoon Sergeants don't get shit-canned unless their personal behavior is outside the lines of good order and discipline, and only then if it's for an egregious error like a DUI or raping the CG's cat. Company, Battalion, and Brigade commanders don't get relieved for the failures of their units, they are the cream of the crop in terms of Army officers, (supposedly) and so of course these things can't be indicative of lax standards of discipline on their part. We chase shadows trying to figure out why we have major and minor discipline problems spreading through our formations like a cancer (or more appropriately, like syphillis) when the answer is plain to the casual observer: we have these problems at the rate we have now because we tolerate them. We tolerate the command climates that permit these things to happen. We don't look at undisciplined soldiers as a leadership failure, we see it as an individual soldier problem. We do not look at leaders and hold them responsible for the actions of their troops.
When was the last time the CG walked through the barracks, at night, on a weekend, and asked troops "when is the last time your battalion and brigade commander came through here after hours to check on you?"
I guaran-damned-tee you if it happend once, there'd be brigade, battalion, and company level leaders in the barracks every weekend. Even better, what if he straight relieved the company commander/1SG of the barracks he was most displeased with, and reprimanded the Battalion commander?
What if the CG found PFC Ghettoblaster at the PX with his pants around his ass, hat on backwards, etc. (violating appropriate dress policy) and held him there until his chain of command arrived, and the CG held the Team leader, Squad leader, and Platoon Leader, Platoon Sergeant, and 1SG responsible for PFC Ghettoblaster's failure to understand and adhere to the standard? What if he posted them at the PX until they were relieved by the chain of command of the next PFC Ghettoblaster found in the PX? Bet there's be a lot less underwear showing at the PX. (And yes, this would work if the person violating the policy was a dependednt, too. The only modification being the chain of command explaining why their soldier hasn't explained the standards of dress to his dependents.)
I'm not suggesting that an O8 spend his days making uniform corrections at the PX, or walking through the Barracks every weekend. The CG only needs to do these things once--that's all the influence he needs to apply to the problem to reinforce that it is important to him--and will energize his subordinate commanders to fix the problem.
Apply this methodology to "fixing" the sex assault problem in the Army:
CG gathers BN and BDE commanders--again, the theoretical cream of the crop--and tells them "this division has a problem with sexual assault. The next sexual assault that happens, I will relieve the chain of command from battalion down to fire team. What are your recommendations to fix the problem?" They might come up with some hair-brained ideas, but they may just hit upon a decent solution--now that they have skin in the game.
We don't relieve leaders except for their personal failings--we no longer hold them accountble for the failures of their units. There is no multiple wave relief, either, for exceptionally bad failings, we might relieve one leader (usually a Captain or LT) but a LTC? Not happening. A COL? nope.
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.