"You Just Can't Beat John McCain"
Who Said The Surge Will Fail?

McCain's character, coddled pacifists & a funny

The kingpin over at my old stomping grounds Pajamas Media, Roger L. Simon, joins me in noting that character matters and that is what John McCain showed in Vietnam.

At first I agreed with Rick Moran and many others that this is essentially a sideshow.  But let’s review the meat of what Clark said: “Well, I don’t think riding in a fighter plane and getting shot down is a qualification to be president.”

Undoubtedly not.  But what is arguably a serious qualification for president is McCain’s behavior, his steadfastness, for five years in a North Vietnamese prison camp.  It has overtones of The Bridge on the River Kwai. Although not as  overtly heroic as the film, McCain showed character traits under extreme pressure - dealing with torture, standing with his men, etc., - that demonstrate superior leadership capability. What befits a president more than that?

Reader Jake points out some coddling of pacifists at Summerfest in Milwaukee.

At the request of Summerfest officials, the U.S. Army on Tuesday removed a virtual urban warfare game that allowed fest-goers as young as 13 to hop into a Humvee simulator and fire machine guns at life-size people on a computer screen.

We’re determining it’s probably not something that we want to have shown at Summerfest,” John Boler, vice president of sales and marketing, said before the decision was made to request removal of the game, called Virtual Army Experience.

The game drew criticism from Peace Action Wisconsin, which called it “totally inappropriate and offensive.”

“War games should NOT be presented as entertainment,” the group wrote in a press release. “War is NOT a game. Summerfest is meant to bring people together for a good time in peace, not to present opportunities to practice shooting people.”

Actually whiny left wing buttheads, Summerfest is meant to bring people together in BEER and BRATS, no mention at all of peace. And finally a little light humor.

Retired Green Beret shoots intruder, gets court martial
  January 29, 2008 at 9:04 am
  BREVARD, Jan. 19, 2008 - Retired Army Green Beret James T. (Smokey) Taylor got his court   martial this weekend and came away feeling pretty good about it. Taylor, at   age 79, is one of the oldest members of Chapter XXXIII (The Larry Thorne   Chapter) of the Special Forces Association.He was placed on trial by fellow   Chapter XXXIII members under the charge of “failing to use a weapon of   sufficient caliber” in the shooting of an intruder at his home in   Knoxville , TN , in November.

The court martial, of course, was very much tongue in cheek. The event itself   was deadly serious. Taylor   had been awakened in the early morning hours of November 5, 2007,when an   intruder broke into his home. He investigated the noises with one of his many   weapons in hand. “It was just after Halloween, on Monday morning at   4:30,” Taylor   said. I heard this commotion at the door and grabbed my fishing gun, a little   .22 revolver, to see what was going on. I got to the front door and this   fellow had ripped my security door out of its frame. He said,   ‘you’re going to have to kill me. I’m coming   in.’”
  When a warning to leave went unheeded, Taylor   brought his .22 caliber pistol to bear and shot him right between the eyes.   “I was about four feet away from him when I shot,” Taylor said.   “Looking back now, I’m glad he didn’t die, but that boy had   the hardest head I’ve ever seen. The bullet bounced right off.”   The impact knocked the would-be thief down momentarily. He crawled out of the   house then got up and ran down the street. Taylor   dialed 911 and Knoxville   police apprehended the wounded man about 200 yards away, hiding in a   hedgerow.
  Complicating the case, as well as the court martial, the offender was   released on bail but failed to appear for his court date. Knoxville police said the man was homeless.   They did not know his whereabouts or why he had been given bail. The charges   brought against Taylor   by his fellow Green Berets were considered to be serious. He is a retired   Special Forces Weapons Sergeant with extensive combat experience during the   wars in Korea and Vietnam .   “Charges were brought against him under the premise that he should have   saved the county and taxpayers the expense of a trial,” said Chapter   XXXIII President Bill Long of Asheville    , NC .
  The trial was held at the Hampton Inn in Brevard, part of the group’s   regularly scheduled quarterly meeting. Long appointed a judge, Bert Bates, a   defense counsel, Jim Hash, and a prosecutor, Charlie Ponds. All are retired   Special Forces non-commissioned officers with extensive combat and weapons   experience. Ponds outlined the case against Taylor   , emphasizing that the citizens of Knox    County were going to be   burdened with significant costs to again apprehend, and then prosecute and   defend the would-be burglar.
  “Proper choice of a larger caliber gun would have spared the citizens   this financial burden,” Ponds said, “while removing one bad guy   from the streets for good. He could have used a .45 or .38. The .22 just   wasn’t big enough to get the job done. Hash disagreed. He said Taylor had done the   right thing in choosing to arm himself with a 22. “If he’d used a   .45 or something like that the round would have gone right through the perp,   the wall, the neighbor’s wall and possibly injured some innocent child   asleep in its bed. I believe the evidence shows that Smokey Taylor exercised   excellent judgment in his choice of weapons. He clearly remains to this day   an excellent weapons man.”
  Hash then floated a theory as to why the bullet bounced off the perp’s   forehead. “He was victimized by old ammunition,” he said,   “just as he was in Korea   and again in Vietnam   , when his units were issued ammo left over from World War II.” Taylor said nothing in   his own defense, choosing instead to allow his peers to debate the matter.   The jury, consisting of all the members of the Chapter, discussed the merits   of choosing a larger caliber weapon as well as the obvious benefits to   society of permanently deleting the intruder so he would never again threaten   any private citizen. The other side of the coin, that of accidentally causing   injury to a completely innocent citizen if a more powerful gun had been used,   also gained considerable support.
  Following testimony from both sides, Judge Bates determined the charges   should be dismissed. The decision was met with a round of applause. In fact,   there was strong sentiment expressed that Taylor should receive an award for not only   choosing wisely in picking up the 22, but for the accuracy of his aim under   difficult and dangerous conditions. After the trial Taylor said the ammunition was indeed old   and added the new information that the perp had soiled his pants as he   crawled out the door. “I would have had an even worse mess to clean up   if it had gone through his forehead,” Taylor said. “It was good for both of   us that it didn’t.” Meanwhile, back in Knox County   , the word is out: Don’t go messing with Smokey Taylor. He just bought   a whole bunch of fresh ammo.
  Tribune Editor Bill Fishburne is a member of the Larry Thorne Chapter XXXIII   of the Special Forces Association. Hat tip Oswald Bastable’s Ranting.