Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Get Your Guns

Hat tip to Iggy over at Pat Dollard...

Iggy's initial post was addressing the media coverage of alleged Terrorists attempting to attack Ft. Huachuca, AZ. I happen to work at Ft. Huachuca and although the media story was debunked, the threat is actually there. Our borders are wide open because our government refuses to grant the Border patrol the ability to properly do their job.

Also we seem to be extremely reluctant, as a nation, to confront the reality that our border is a combat zone down here. Seems we have no problem with helping the Iraqi citizens exercise their right to protect themselves, but we as Americans are not allowed to do that. See what happens if some "poor" illegal drug smuggler gets shot by an American citizen protecting his property...I refer you to the Barnetts who own a ranch down on the border here...they didn't even shoot anyone, just threatened trespassers and were taken to court by the ACLU and had to pay damages to these folks...ridiculous.

Although the initial post caused alot of kneejerk reactions of the frightened, "we gotta do something!" variety. Maybe we need to do just that just to wake people up. The only problem I see is that most of the commenters I've seen over at Pat Dollard are right wing conservative like myself and we're preaching to the choir. My hope is that someone actually reads the post by Iggy that NEEDS to see it.

I stand by my conviction that there are plenty of conservatives on the border that will take action if necessary. Contrary to some of the opinions of people that don't live here that just see the results of an open border and all the debate over illegals.

If you've followed any of my blogs on illegal immigration, you know my stance already. I won't reiterate myself here.

However the even bigger threat tour open borders is the related Video that Iggy posted concerning LP/OPs that the drug cartels set up in this country as lookouts for their trafficking and smuggling of drugs, guns and people into...and out of the country.

For those of you out there that haven't a clue about what I'm talking about...and for some of you who do, pick up a copy of The Reaper's Line by Lee Morgan, a former border officer. It may open your eyes a bit. Also check out American Freedom Riders for more information about illegal immigration and the cases of Ramos and Compean, Border patrol agents that were imprisoned for doing their job. Also the story of Gary Brugman, a Veteran and former border patrol agent sthat lost everything, wife, kids and his job, went to prison for 2 years and is trying to survive...because he did his job...just like Ramos and Compean. I urge you to go to this site and do some exploring there is a wealth of information here regarding the injustices perpetrated by our own gov't against our border agents. Truly appalling stuff.

The fact is folks...the border is a warzone and the public doesn't even realize it.

So...I'm with Iggy....Get your guns!

Tribute to the Patriot Weapon of Choice...

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Through A Glass, Darkly


Just a little something...

This is a poem written by General George Patton.

An amazing warrior and innovator. General Patton saw the transformation of the Old Horse Cavalry to mechanized units and was instrumental in adding Armored vehicles to our battlefields...

To read more about General Patton, go here


THROUGH A GLASS, DARKLY

by Gen. George S. Patton, Jr.


Through the travail of the ages,

Midst the pomp and toil of war,

Have I fought and strove and perished

Countless times upon this star


In the form of many people

In all panoplies of timeHave

I seen the luring vision

Of the Victory Maid, sublime.


I have battled for fresh mammoth,

I have warred for pastures new,

I have listed to the whispers

When the race trek instinct grew.


I have known the call to battle

In each changeless changing shape

From the high souled voice of conscience

To the beastly lust for rape.


I have sinned and I have suffered,

Played the hero and the knave;

Fought for belly, shame, or country,

And for each have found a grave.


I cannot name my battles

For the visions are not clear,

Yet, I see the twisted faces

And I feel the rending spear.


Perhaps I stabbed our Savior

In His sacred helpless side.

Yet, I've called His name in blessing

When after times I died.


In the dimness of the shadows

Where we hairy heathens warred,

I can taste in thought the lifeblood;

We used teeth before the sword.


While in later clearer vision

I can sense the coppery sweat,

Feel the pikes grow wet and slippery

When our Phalanx, Cyrus met.


Hear the rattle of the harness

Where the Persian darts bounced clear,

See their chariots wheel in panic

From the Hoplite's leveled spear.


See the goal grow monthly longer,

Reaching for the walls of Tyre.

Hear the crash of tons of granite,

Smell the quenchless eastern fire.


Still more clearly as a Roman,

Can I see the Legion close,

As our third rank moved in forward

And the short sword found our foes.


Once again I feel the anguish

Of that blistering treeless plain

When the Parthian showered death bolts,

And our discipline was in vain.


I remember all the suffering

Of those arrows in my neck.

Yet, I stabbed a grinning savage

As I died upon my back.


Once again I smell the heat sparks

When my Flemish plate gave way

And the lance ripped through my entrails

As on Crecy's field I lay.


In the windless, blinding stillness

Of the glittering tropic sea

I can see the bubbles rising

Where we set the captives free.


Midst the spume of half a tempest

I have heard the bulwarks go

When the crashing, point blank round shot

Sent destruction to our foe.


I have fought with gun and cutlass

On the red and slippery deck

With all Hell aflame within me

And a rope around my neck.


And still later as a General

Have I galloped with Murat

When we laughed at death and numbers

Trusting in the Emperor's Star.


Till at last our star faded,

And we shouted to our doom

Where the sunken road of Ohein

Closed us in it's quivering gloom.


So but now with Tanks a'clatter

Have I waddled on the foe

Belching death at twenty paces,

By the star shell's ghastly glow.


So as through a glass, and darkly

The age long strife I see

Where I fought in many guises,

Many names, but always me.


And I see not in my blindness

What the objects were I wrought,

But as God rules o'er our bickerings

It was through His will I fought.


So forever in the future,

Shall I battle as of yore,

Dying to be born a fighter,

But to die again, once more.

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Who is Islamic Rage Boy?


I was over at GOV earlier and came across this story from Dymphna...

Have you ever wondered who the real Rage Boy is? Well, Patrick French from The Daily Mail
travelled to Kashmir to find out. It shows us a different side of Rage boy, Shakeel Ahmad Bhat, His is an interesting story that is not what I personally would have expected to hear.




Just as a teaser...this is the other Face of Rage Boy...

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Why Is America Doomed?

I've been doing alot of reading over at Islam Watch
I came across this piece written recently by Iranian Born Amil Imani. It sums up for me alot of what I've been thinking myself recently and it seems many others out here in the blogosphere as well. This is a great site for those of you that want to see Islam throught the eyes of Apostates. From the people who were born into the "Religion of Peace".

So...why is America doomed?...
Some excerpts from Amil Imani's essay...

Because we are our own worst enemy. Because it is going to take more than 9/11 to wake us up. Because our politicians don’t have the stomach to tell the truth. Because we have lost our will to call a spade a spade. Because we are ignoring the most important element of intelligence ― understanding the mindset and dedication of our enemies ― and because being politically correct has become our norm.

America is doomed to failure in this war of ideology, an ideology that would turn a loving mother into a “launching pad of death.” We are doomed unless we stand up and identify the real enemy: Islam itself.
History has shown time and again that you can kick the truth, bend the truth, gag the truth, hide the truth, but you can never kill the truth. Truth has a bad habit of hanging around until everyone can see it.

It is urgent that we confront Islamism on all fronts. All free people must demand that their governments, at all levels, abandon the practice of political correctness and act to safeguard liberty against the truly deadly assault of Islamism on the rest of the World.


Amil Imani is an Iranian born, pro-democracy activist who resides in the United States of America. He is a poet, writer, literary translator, novelist and an essayist who has been writing and speaking out for the struggling people of his native land, Iran. Amil Imani's Home Page: www.amilimani.com
.

I encourage you to investigate this site. There are many articles by many authors here and so far what I've read myself has been quite eye-opening.

Enjoy!

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

US Warriors Become Citizens


Hat tip to Gazing at the Flag

I ran across this little piece of inspiration over at Gazing at the Flag's blog.
And I am in complete agreement with them...I can think of noone more desrving of citizenship than those who have sworn to uphold and to defend our constitution before they gain the rights of full citizenship...
True Patriots every one.


Veterans Day - November 11, 2007 -
Our Warriors Become CitizensIn the largest naturalization ceremony in Iraq, 178 foreign-born members of our military received their oath of citizenship at LSA Anaconda from Secretary of Homeland Security, Michael Chertoff. “I can’t think of people who are more deserving of citizenship then those who are fighting to defend the country even before they are citizens. They understand that freedoms don’t come free and they are willing to make sacrifices even before they reap the benefits of citizenship,” said Chertoff.Emilio T. Gonz├ílez, director, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, himself an Army veteran, presented each recent citizen with a certificate of naturalization. Brig. Gen. Gregory E. Couch, 316th ESC Commanding General, congratulated each new American veteran-citizen. Naturalized service members also received a U.S. flag from the 316th ESC senior enlisted leader, Command Sgt. Maj. Stacey E. Davis.According to USCIS, nearly 40,000 troops are not American citizens. Many foreign-born men and women have pledged commitment to the U.S. Constitution by serving in the military and are availing themselves of a July 2002 executive order making members of the Armed Forces immediately eligible to apply for citizenship. Approximately 4,000 service members have earned U.S. citizenship while serving abroad since 2004.


HOOAH!!

Beer Activist Alert


As a lover of all things beer, I felt the need to post this for those of you out there that share my passion...


All Georgia breweries need your help. We recently received notice that the Georgia Department of Revenue has decided to change the rules that apply to tours at breweries in Georgia. The new proposal calls for a limit of a 2oz pour of each beer style on the tour with a maximum limit of only 16oz. The 16oz pour is only possible if we have eight different styles of beer to offer on the tour. If a brewery only has four beers available to taste, then only 8oz can be poured at the tour.
It is the belief of the Georgia breweries, and our wholesalers, that the proposed rule change would effectively kill the tours. Since the breweries have spent significant sums of money on tasting rooms for the purposes of conducting tours this investment would be lost. In addition it would cause the layoff of employees who now operate as tour guides and could cause serious harm to the bottom line of all breweries. The tours are our main marketing tool and by losing the ability to continue tours as they are currently structured, we would lose customers, lose sales, and find it much more difficult to continue in business.


Here is the link Where you can find out more about this disturbing situation.

Friday, November 9, 2007

The Enemy at the Gates...and the Enemy Within...

We're at war….
No matter which way you look at it, we are in a cultural/ideological war with a stubborn and patient enemy. Let's not forget totalitarian and bloodthirsty enemy.

I've got a lot of friends that claim they are liberals and democrats…that's fine. I have a problem with the fact that they haven't truly educated themselves as to what exactly that means. I hear some of my best friends call George Bush a Fascist…look up fascist and rethink your accusation. And although I do not tout any party line…my beliefs and values more closely coincide with that of the Republican Party. For one…at least they understand the core rights and values and what it means to stand up to tyranny and the rights of free people. Despite our wanting to believe that we can solve all problems with diplomacy…it's simply not true. It would be nice, but it's not realistic people.

Let's try and get real here. The war did not start when we invaded Iraq and toppled the regime of Saddam Hussein. It didn't start when we went into Afghanistan and toppled the Taliban regime that supported the Al-Qaeda terrorist group. For that matter, it didn't even start on 9/11. This is a war that has been going on for around 1400 years. But for many of us Americans that are blissfully ignorant of our own history as well as that of the world, the war really began for us on 9/11. The fact that Islam has been at war with the world for 14 centuries seems to elude us. Probably because for most of our lives for many generations, it was not an immediate threat, so we ignored it. Or we simply were unaware of it.

So let's take a look at our enemy, shall we?
We have an enemy that advocates murder of innocent people. Enslavement of non-muslims. The unanimous acceptance of Sha'ria law….and all that that entails, women as property, all non-muslims as second class citizens…or worse. All the lovely things that western civilization stands for and has brought to us is anathema to them. How would any one of you like to be forced to cover your head in public at all times. How about being forced to grow a beard. Not to mention, praying 5 times a day, bowing on a prayer mat.

Hmmm…

And yet we preach tolerance of an intolerant ideology. How about stoning a woman to death for being raped to protect the honor of her family since she is considered dirty and essentially the one at fault. I don't suppose any of you liberal leftist folks would like to see that happen. Just a hunch…

Now, when 9/11 happened, we as a country united against this threat because for the first time since WWII, we as a country had been wounded…our own country bled. We were shocked, we were horrified that such thing could possibly happen. What happened?
The answer is simple. We lost interest as soon as we no longer felt threatened. We went back to our banal lives and forgot a lesson we so desperately need not to forget. Complacency and arrogance is what brought this catastrophe on us in the first place.

I will admit that I am not very happy with some of President Bush's recent decisions. I do, however, feel that he did what he felt was best for the security of our country. We can look back with clearer vision than we did then and criticize all we want. We can call it an illegal war, we can blur the reality by focusing on one aspect of a larger conflict. But if you believe that Al-Qaeda is the only enemy, you are sadly mistaken. There are numerous extremist groups all over the globe. These extremist groups have also been working to convince the "average" muslim to take the Jihad to the infidels. And they have been quite successful. And what is worse? We have the so-called "moderate" muslims that refuse to stand up to the extremists…and in many cases praise them and help to fund them as well.

Now, do you really believe that American Imperialism is the reason for this? If so you are deluded.

Here's a great anecdote…

When in England at a fairly large conference, Colin Powell was asked by the Archbishop of Canterbury if our plans for Iraq were just an example of 'empire building' by George Bush. He answered by saying, "Over the years, the United States has sent many of its fine young men and women into great peril to fight for freedom beyond our borders. The only amount of land we have ever asked for in return is enough to bury those that did not return." It became very quiet in the room.

The Federal Government is charged with protecting our interests at home AND abroad. Lest we forget, without the tireless vigilance of our intelligence agencies and those of our allies, it is quite likely more attacks would have happened. Now we play at politics in our government and ignore the realities to advance the power of one party over another.
We are at war people…what do you all not understand about this? This is not just about Iraq or Iran or Pakistan…This is a Global War. A war that was declared on us. Yes, make no mistake, the war was declared on us and we didn't realize it until we were attacked on 9/11. And we seem to have either simply lost our resolve or in our "have it your way right away" society have gotten distracted and forgotten why we really went to war in the first place. I'm not going to get into some ridiculous bi-partisan, mud-slinging argument over this one. The fact is we were outraged and wounded. We responded as America should respond and then we simply fell to attacking each other in our attempt to self-destruct.
The world community is a fluid, fickle and ever changing place. To be successful we need to adapt to situations as they confront us. The situation in Iraq is a perfect example of this. We won the war against Saddam Hussein's regime. We had a decisive victory, but so many of us forget that. What we also forget is the reality of war. War is ugly, war is hell. Our civilization has rules of engagement and rules of battlefield etiquette and rules governing the treatment of the people we've beaten. And how innocent civilians should be treated as well. We destroyed a lot of the infrastructure when we went into Iraq and we also dismantled the military. Had we left when the Hussein regime was vanquished, we would have become worse pariahs than we are now because of what would have happened if we'd left the Iraqis to their own devices. Fact: The strong will always dominate the weak. Period. The hardline fundamentalists would have subjugated the weak and the tribes would have slaughtered each other in larger numbers than they are now…and Al-Qaeda would have taken advantage of the situation…like they tried to do and been granted yet another stronghold. Al-qaeda has suffered defeat after defeat in Iraq because of the atrocities they've committed on the populace. Why do you suppose the militia groups have turned on them and are fighting ALONGSIDE our troops there? Is it because we are the Great Satan? No…they know our ROE and they know the mettle of our troops. We've proven to be honorable and reliable…the military that is. They don't trust our Government any more than most of us do…do you blame them?
Iraq is more than just an isolated battleground it is a strategic position and when we are successful (my optimism) We will have a very important ally in a very volatile region that influences every corner of the globe. We cannot stick our heads in the sand…we cannot ignore the threat of the middle east. Not just our economy, but the world economy is dependent on the flow of oil form that region. Nothing is simple. You may be inclined to call me on the fact that Iraq is predominantly muslim and this began as a post that is vehemently anti-islam.

Well, let's address this. Every one of us on this planet that belong to the Human species have one trait in common; imperfection. We as a race have so very many flaws and I believe all of us have at least a modicum of goodness somewhere in ourselves. Some of us tip the scale to one side or the other more sharply than the average person. I honestly believe that simply because you were brought up a certain way, does not mean you have to take what you've been taught at face value. I also know that due to our natures the more we deny ourselves the things we naturally desire, the more likely we are to show our imperfection. The average person, man or woman desires the same basic things. We want to live a prosperous life and to provide for our families. We want stability and order in our societies. We also want to be able to indulge in things we enjoy doing without being told how we can do it…Iraqis love smoking…something prohibited in a strict Islamic society. We can sit here and debate how Christianity and Judaism are better than Islam…as far as I'm concerned both are better, but Islam is so central to the culture of the middle east that you can't just take it out of the equation. I have read blogs on all sides of the fence from all sorts of bloggers to include jihadists and casual Muslims. There are plenty of muslims that really don't subscribe to the violent nature of their religion or the strict rules governing dress and behavior that are clearly delineated in the Qu'ran. So what does that tell us? That the average working joe is pretty much the same the world over.
When the average working joe takes charge and gains the freedom to pursue a better quality of life, unsubjugated, you see a more enlightened and casual populace..more religiously tolerant. So…an educated, worldly, tolerant people can cause a revolution in their own religion. Christianity did it. And let's not get startd on the atrocities of the inquisition or other "religiously" motivated atrocities. Because if you want to duke it out between Islam and Christianity, I will do it…but I really don't feel it's necessary.
First of all, I'm a Pagan…of sorts. I was brought up as a Christian and I believe that the core beliefs I was taught have made me a better person for it. But as my own man, I've studied many religions…to include Islam and quite frankly as a free man, it is my right o choose my religion. And so I have. My relationship with the divine is a personal one and I can tell you that I do not call myself a Christian because to emulate Christ is an exercise in futility…for me anyway. I am too human to ever attain a modicum of the piousness of Christ. That being said…I think I'm a better "Christian" than a lot of supposed Christians out there including some I know. So don't think I'm some bible thumping zealot. I am as far from a zealot as you can get when it comes to religion. I simply see the inherent violence and oppression in the religious teachings of Islam and I reject them utterly. They are the imperialists...not us. They seek to impose their tyranny on Europe, Arabia, Africa and Asia. Do you think restoring the Caliphate is the endgame? Not a chance. Islam is about submission to Allah. We've already become a target because we are a strong nation of free people and not slaves. There are some terms you may or may not be familiar with… I think you all know what Jihad is so I won't bother with that except to explain that there are other aspects to this war than the obvious violent war. There is the da'wah or the attempts to infiltrate society and slowly and methodically institute Islam into all aspects of a society. Part of this is also Taqiyyah and that is the practice of deception against the infidels to further the goals of Islam…in other words, Lie.

So for all you complacent, socialist wussies out there…do some research…wake up and smell the coffee. Our petty political squabbles only serve the purposes of the enemy. If you really believe in America and the Constitution, think about what it really means to be an American and think about what our founding fathers endured to give us the freedoms we have. #1 stop trying to dismantle the constitution, #2 stop kneejerk legislation….it only serves to take away more rights from us and pushes us closer to the big brother situation all you leftists claim GWB is bringing on with the "illegal wiretapping" and surveillance of suspected terrorist activities here and overseas. I'm not fond of the patriot act on principle. But I'm also not fond of Gun Control…and personally I find the latter more of a danger to our freedom than the former.

Get a grip people. And before you start repeating bulls**t rhetoric you hear on TV from some politician or journalist, do your f**kin' homework. Make informed decisions and opinions. Educate yourself…your blind regurgitation and ignorance of the facts only hurts us as a people. We need to see the reality and come together instead of bickering like a bunch of kids at recess. Grow up, face reality and take action, demand answers, instead of worrying about your damn welfare check or whether or not the Gov't is going to give you free room and board, go get a job. Don't be a part of the problem.

There was a President of ours…I believe he was a democrat too…If memory serves me right, his most famous quote was this…

"Ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country".

President John F. Kennedy said that folks…think about what that means. Do you want to let the enemy through the gates, or will you stand up and defend these gates at all costs.

As for me…well…

I'll die with my boots on.

Just my 2 cents.

Christians and Muslims work together to restore and open a Christian Church in Baghdad

I was over at Michael Yon's site this morning and saw this ...

I won't bother posting the picture which is the property of Mr. Yon. I respect that and rather than attempt ot get permission from him...I'll just sedn you there to read the story and see the picture proof of religious reconciliation in Baghdad. It's a wonderful story and I highly recommend it to anyone who bothers to read this blog.

Enjoy folks...there is still hope.

Free Speech?

Hat tip to Ronbo over at Freedom fighter's Journal...

Samina Malik has written some pretty graphic and inciteful poetry....



I am offended by this...naturally since I'm not a muslim and I also do not condone this sort of thing...however...I have to agree with Ronbo on this one....

In the words of Voltaire, "I may disagree with everything you say, but I'll defend to the death your right to say it."
That's what separates us from them.....

Sunday, November 4, 2007

Friday at the Pentagon...

I'm honestly not sure where my stepmom got this....but it is very moving...

God Bless them All!!!!!!


And Thank you Ruth!




Friday Mornings at the Pentagon

By JOSEPH L. GALLOWAY

McClatchy

Newspapers




Over the last 12 months, 1,042 soldiers,

Marines, sailors and Air Force personnel have given their lives in the terrible
duty that is war. Thousands more have come home on stretchers, horribly wounded
and facing months or years in military hospitals.


This week, I'm turning my space over to a good

friend and former roommate, Army Lt. Col. Robert Bateman, who recently
completed a yearlong tour of duty in Iraq and is now back at the
Pentagon.


Here's Lt. Col. Bateman's account of a

little-known ceremony that fills the halls of the Army corridor of the Pentagon
with cheers, applause and many tears every Friday morning. It first appeared on
May 17 on the Weblog of media critic and pundit Eric Alterman at the Media
Matters for America Website.


It is 110 yards from the "E" ring tothe "A" ring of the Pentagon. This section of the Pentagon is newlyrenovated; the floors shine, the hallway is broad, and the lighting is bright.At this instant the entire length of the corridor is packed with officers, afew sergeants and some civilians, all crammed tightly three and four deep against the walls. There are thousands here.
This hallway, more than any other,


is the

`Army' hallway. The G3 offices line one side, G2 the other, G8 is around the
corner. All Army. Moderate conversations flow in a low buzz. Friends who
may not have seen each other for a few weeks, or a few years, spot each other,
cross the way and renew.


Everyone shifts to ensure an open path remains

down the center. The air conditioning system was not designed for this press of
b

This clapping is low, sustained, hearty.
odies in this area. The temperature is rising already. Nobody cares.
"10:36 hours: The clapping starts at the E-Ring. That is the outermost of
the five rings of the Pentagon and it is closest to the entrance to the building.
It is applause with a deep emotion
behind it as it moves forward in a wave down the length of the hallway.


A steady rolling wave of sound it is, moving

at the pace of the soldier in the wheelchair who marks the forward edge with
his presence. He is the first. He is missing the greater part of one leg, and
some of his wounds are still suppurating. By his age I expect that he is a
private, or perhaps a private first class.













Captains, majors, lieutenant colonels and colonels
meet his gaze and







nod as they applaud, soldier to soldier. Three years
ago when I described one of these events, those lining the hallways were
somewhat different. The applause a little wilder, perhaps in private guilt for
not having shared in the burden .. yet.













Now almost everyone lining the hallway is,
like the man in the wheel-chair, also a combat veteran. This steadies the
applause, but I think deepens the sentiment. We have all been there now. The
soldier's chair is pushed by, I believe, a full colonel. "Behind him, and
stretching the length from Rings E to A, come more of his peers, each private,
corporal, or sergeant assisted as need be by a field grade officer.













11:00 hours: Twenty-four minutes of steady
applause. My hands hurt, and I laugh to myself at how stupid that sounds in my
own head. My hands hurt. Please! Shut up and clap. For twenty-four minutes,
soldier after soldier has come down this hallway - 20, 25, 30. Fifty-three legs
come with them, and perhaps only 52 hands or arms, but down this hall came 30
solid hearts.. They pass down this corridor of officers and applause, and then
meet for a private lunch, at which they are the guests of honor, hosted by the
generals. Some are wheeled along. Some insist upon getting out of their chairs,
to march as best they can with their chin held up, down this hallway, through
this most unique audience. Some are catching handshakes and smiling like a
politician at a Fourth of July parade. More than a couple of them seem
amazed and are smiling shyly.













There are families with them as well: the
18-year-old war-bride pushing her 19-year-old husband's wheelchair and not
quite understanding why her husband is so affected by this, the boy she grew up
with, now a man, who had never shed a tear is crying; the older immigrant
Latino parents who have, perhaps more than their wounded mid-20s son, an
appreciation for the emotion given on their son's behalf. No man in that
hallway, walking or clapping, is ashamed by the silent tears on more than a few
cheeks. An Airborne Ranger wipes his eyes only to better see. A couple of
the officers in this crowd have themselves been a part of this parade in the
past.













These are our men, broken in body they may be,
but they are our







brothers, and we welcome them home. This parade has
gone on, every single Friday, all year long, for more than four years.













Did you know that?













The media hasn't yet told the story. [and never will]

Friday, November 2, 2007

Hugo Chavez and his vision...

Ok, if you've read my blog, you know how I feel about mister Chavez. But I've been doing some more reading and research and here's the situation...

Chavez is trying to amend the Venezuelan constitution to effectively make himself a dictator. Abolishing term limits for one. What I was unaware of is how complex the political situation is there in Venezuela. With the oil revenues coming in, He holds a powerful asset and he is still popular although not nearly as popular as I felt I was led to believe. There are protest groups that are making alot of noise down there. Namely student organizations and...the Roman Catholic Church. Another little tidbit of info that I was also unaware of until this morning is that Venezuela has a LARGE Italian expatriate population...hmmm.

Chavez is likely to succeed with his power grab, at least in the short term, but my opinion on his staying power is that he won't be there too long...it may take a few years, but I suspect his regime will be overthrown.

The Crime rate in Venezuela is very high and the security there is atrocious. The Mayor of Caracas brought in a former Police commissioner from NYC to help bring down the crime rate. Hired a whole schlew of new cops and there was actually a positive effect in that the crime rate did go down noticeably in a relatively short time....but Chavez decided that such a powerful police force that was not firmly in his pocket was a threat to him and he effectively dismantled them and disarmed them too, they can only carry handguns. They're no longer have the firepower to deal with the serious criminal element in the city anymore. Chavez, of course has installed his loyalists in all areas that are critical and that does not necessarily mean they're all that competent, but that they will do what he wants them to. As a result, Caracas is back to being just as violent as ever.

So, although I still consider him a threat, he's not as scary as I thought he was. He is a petty dictator with grandiose designs, but I doubt he'll see much past a few years of tyranny in his country...I don't think his arm will be as far reaching as I once believed.

Just thought I'd share my thoughts on this...

Thursday, November 1, 2007

Phony Soldiers and Patriotism

This is a great article by Orson Scott Card.
I agree with him...