Tuesday November 11, 2014
"It Is Not A
Question of Who Is Right Or Wrong But What Is Right Or Wrong
Updated 1205 PDT
Call anytime(888) 283-5051
Please Listen to Geoff's Audio Books
(and tell ten people to tell ten people to tell ten people?)
History of Veterans Day
World War I – known at the time as “The Great War” - officially ended
when the Treaty of Versailles was signed on June 28, 1919, in the Palace
of Versailles outside the town of Versailles, France. However, fighting
ceased seven months earlier when an armistice, or temporary cessation
of hostilities, between the Allied nations and Germany went into effect
on the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month. For that
reason, November 11, 1918, is generally regarded as the end of “the war
to end all wars.”
In November 1919, President Wilson proclaimed November 11 as the first
commemoration of Armistice Day with the following words: "To us in
America, the reflections of Armistice Day will be filled with solemn
pride in the heroism of those who died in the country’s service and with
gratitude for the victory, both because of the thing from which it has
freed us and because of the opportunity it has given America to show her
sympathy with peace and justice in the councils of the nations…"
Obama and Putin are odd couple at Beijing summit
A few brief encounters between Barack Obama and Vladimir Putin during an
Asia-Pacific summit in China on Tuesday spoke volumes about the chilly
state of relations between the United States and Russia.
With the two men crossing paths twice this week, first in Beijing and
later at a G20 summit in Brisbane, Australia, there was little chance
they could avoid interacting on the international stage – and with the
eyes of the world press and fellow leaders upon them.
Obama and Putin have never had anything close to personal chemistry, and
with tensions high especially over Russia’s role in the conflict in
Ukraine, there was little warmth on display in their contacts at the
Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) forum.
Putin aims to cement China links as ties with west fray
Putin met China’s president Xi Jinping on Sunday, a memorandum of
understanding for a second massive gas supply deal caught most of the
For the Russian
president, the deal may be less appealing for its commercial benefits
than its ability to advance a larger strategic goal of cementing ties
with its eastern neighbour.
Russian officials and security analysts, Moscow’s worst stand-off with
the west since the end of the cold war has convinced Mr Putin’s
government that it must moor its security interests to China because
the Euro-Atlantic security architecture is broken beyond repair.
Valerie Jarrett Keeps White House 'Enemies List'
growing for the dismissal of Valerie Jarrett, one of President Barack
Obama's most trusted and longest serving advisers, while a new report
claims she has been keeping a secret enemies list of those who may have
questioned the president.
"Valerie Jarrett is not above keeping a s** list — or as hers was
titled, a 'least constructive' list," said a profile in the New
Republic by Noam Scheiber.
"One progressive activist recalls Jarrett holding the document during a
meeting and noticing her own name on it, along with the names of others
in the room. 'It was kind of an honor,' the activist told me.
"This was not out of character for Jarrett. The woman who once resisted
[Rahm] Emanuel's commandment against rewarding bad behavior has often
gone out of her way to suppress dissent among ideological allies and
others who question the president."
The revelation will likely add fuel to the fire among those calling for
Jarrett's departure, particularly in the aftermath of a disastrous
election which often prompts the shake-up of top brass in an
Valerie Jarrett is now scapegoat-in-chief
The media have identified the problem with the Obama presidency and want her tarred and feathered.
Or just fired. Or sidelined. Or made an ambassador to some faraway land.
Her name is
Valerie Jarrett. White House aide and longtime Chicago pal of Barack
and Michelle Obama has been a target roughly from the day she stepped
foot in Washington.
But now, in the
wake of the Democrats’ midterm wipeout, the press is really unloading
on her. She has become the scapegoat-in-chief.
Doctor, Cured of Ebola, Released With Cheers, Hugs
Spencer, the last remaining U.S. patient with Ebola, was released from
Bellevue Hospital in New York City Tuesday with plenty of hugs and
Spencer, 33, was infected with Ebola while working with Medecins Sans Frontieres (MSF or Doctors Without Borders) in Guinea.
“Today I am
healthy and no longer infectious,” Spencer told a cheering crowd
gathered in the lobby of the landmark hospital where he was treated for
Democrats Won't Ram Through Obama AG Pick?
is now expected to wait for Republicans to take control of the Senate
instead of trying to push through his attorney general nominee in a
Democrat-dominated lame-duck session, The Hill reported Tuesday.
from both sides of the aisle cited a crowded agenda that includes many
issues Democrats want to pass before the end of this session of
Congress in December. One key issue is an overhaul of the National
That goal is a
priority for Vermont Democrat Sen. Patrick Leahy, chairman of the
Judiciary Committee who said the committee would have no time to
consider the nomination of Brooklyn U.S. Attorney Loretta Lynch if it
took up a bill to limit the NSA’s domestic spying activities.
Palestinian leader accuses Israel of religious war
president on Tuesday accused Israel of provoking a "religious war" as
new violence between the sides broke out in the West Bank, leaving a
Palestinian man dead, amid mounting concerns that the long-running
conflict is entering a new and dangerous phase.
blamed the latest tensions on a series of visits by Jewish worshippers
to Jerusalem's most sensitive holy site. The visits to the contested
site have helped fan strife in a region already on edge following last
summer's bloody war in the Gaza Strip and the earlier failure of U.S.
Secretary of State John Kerry's Mideast peace efforts.
IRS Didn't Even Look for Lerner's Missing Emails
President Tom Fitton has accused the IRS of stonewalling after the
agency admitted it has failed to search for Lois Lerner’s missing
emails related to the targeting of President Barack Obama’s "enemies
revealed in U.S. District Court in Washington, D.C., last week that it
had not searched in its standard computer systems for the emails linked
to IRS scrutinizing of tea party groups seeking tax exempt status,
according to Judicial Watch
came in an IRS legal brief opposing Judicial Watch’s request under the
Freedom of Information Act that a federal court judge allow discovery
into how "lost and/or destroyed" departmental records could be
retrieved, the watchdog group reported.
Russia to Build Two More Nuclear Reactors for Iran
Tuesday a contract to build two nuclear reactors in Iran and announced
plans for a total of nine, less than two weeks before a deadline on for
deal on the country's disputed atomic program.
A series of
agreements signed during a visit to Moscow by Iran's nuclear program
chief Ali Akbar Salehi includes a contract for two new reactors at the
existing Russian-built Bushehr plant.
foresee increasing the total number of Russian-built reactors in the
country to nine as well as possibly transferring some sensitive
technology relating to the production of fuel rod components.
Obama so aloof, Dems forced to talk to media for updates?
and his White House are evidently so dedicated to their go-it-alone
approach to governing that some Democratic senators have been forced to
call up MSNBC talking heads to get the inside scoop on White House
network’s “Morning Joe,” both show host Joe Scarborough and “Meet the
Press” moderator Chuck Todd said they had received calls from
Democratic senators to get updates on Mr. Obama’s plans, The Washington
Free Beacon reported.
“I actually had
a senator, and it happens quite a few times where senators will call us
saying, what are you hearing over at the White House?” said Mr.
Scarborough, a former Republican congressman. “What are they thinking
on this bill? I’ll go, are you kidding me?”
Mr. Todd, promoting his new book on the Obama presidency — aptly titled “The Stranger” — added, “I’ve had those conversations.”
The greater sacrifices that underlie Veterans Day
A weakened military invites the deaths of more Amerian troops in future wars
who, on some previous Veterans Day, ever thanked me or my brothers and
sisters in uniform for our service, then please accept this thank you
in return for voting last Tuesday. That stunning turnaround vexed
President Obama, but provided new hope to those who worried that the
damage done to the nation’s security was becoming irreparable.
So, is Mr.
Obama really serious about working with the new Republican leadership
in Congress? Or might this president have something else up his sleeve,
a grand strategic bargain to help secure his badly tattered “legacy” in
Medal of Honor is the highest award for valor in action
enemy force which can be bestowed upon an individual serving
Armed Services of the United States.
to its recipient by the President of the
United States of America in the name of Congress.
first award of the Medal of Honor was made March 25, 1863 to
JACOB PARROTT.The last award of the Medal of Honor was made
September 15, 2011
to Sergeant DAKOTA MEYER.
then there have been: •
3458 recipients of the Medal of Honor.
Today there are 85 Living Recipients of the
Medal of Honor.
BENAVIDEZ, ROY P.
Rank: Master Sergeant
Organization: U.S. Army
Company: Detachment B-56
Division: 5th Special Forces Group
BENAVIDEZ, ROY P.
Master Sergeant (then Staff Sergeant) Roy P. Benavidez
United States Army, who distinguished himself by a series of daring and
extremely valorous actions on 2 May 1968 while assigned to Detachment
B56, 5th Special Forces Group (Airborne), 1st Special Forces, Republic
of Vietnam. On the morning of 2 May 1968, a 12-man Special Forces
Reconnaissance Team was inserted by helicopters in a dense jungle area
west of Loc Ninh, Vietnam to gather intelligence information about
confirmed large-scale enemy activity. This area was controlled and
routinely patrolled by the North Vietnamese Army. After a short period
of time on the ground, the team met heavy enemy resistance, and
requested emergency extraction. Three helicopters attempted extraction,
but were unable to land due to intense enemy small arms and
anti-aircraft fire. Sergeant Benavidez was at the Forward Operating
Base in Loc Ninh monitoring the operation by radio when these
helicopters returned to off-load wounded crewmembers and to assess
aircraft damage. Sergeant Benavidez voluntarily boarded a returning
aircraft to assist in another extraction attempt. Realizing that all
the team members were either dead or wounded and unable to move to the
pickup zone, he directed the aircraft to a nearby clearing where he
jumped from the hovering helicopter, and ran approximately 75 meters
under withering small arms fire to the crippled team. Prior to reaching
the team's position he was wounded in his right leg, face, and head.
Despite these painful injuries, he took charge, repositioning the team
members and directing their fire to facilitate the landing of an
extraction aircraft, and the loading of wounded and dead team members.
He then threw smoke canisters to direct the aircraft to the team's
position. Despite his severe wounds and under intense enemy fire, he
carried and dragged half of the wounded team members to the awaiting
aircraft. He then provided protective fire by running alongside the
aircraft as it moved to pick up the remaining team members. As the
enemy's fire intensified, he hurried to recover the body and classified
documents on the dead team leader. When he reached the leader's body,
Sergeant Benavidez was severely wounded by small arms fire in the
abdomen and grenade fragments in his back. At nearly the same moment,
the aircraft pilot was mortally wounded, and his helicopter crashed.
Although in extremely critical condition due to his multiple wounds,
Sergeant Benavidez secured the classified documents and made his way
back to the wreckage, where he aided the wounded out of the overturned
aircraft, and gathered the stunned survivors into a defensive
perimeter. Under increasing enemy automatic weapons and grenade fire,
he moved around the perimeter distributing water and ammunition to his
weary men, reinstilling in them a will to live and fight. Facing a
buildup of enemy opposition with a beleaguered team, Sergeant Benavidez
mustered his strength, began calling in tactical air strikes and
directed the fire from supporting gunships to suppress the enemy's fire
and so permit another extraction attempt. He was wounded again in his
thigh by small arms fire while administering first aid to a wounded
team member just before another extraction helicopter was able to land.
His indomitable spirit kept him going as he began to ferry his comrades
to the craft. On his second trip with the wounded, he was clubbed from
additional wounds to his head and arms before killing his adversary. He
then continued under devastating fire to carry the wounded to the
helicopter. Upon reaching the aircraft, he spotted and killed two enemy
soldiers who were rushing the craft from an angle that prevented the
aircraft door gunner from firing upon them. With little strength
remaining, he made one last trip to the perimeter to ensure that all
classified material had been collected or destroyed, and to bring in
the remaining wounded. Only then, in extremely serious condition from
numerous wounds and loss of blood, did he allow himself to be pulled
into the extraction aircraft. Sergeant Benavidez' gallant choice to
join voluntarily his comrades who were in critical straits, to expose
himself constantly to withering enemy fire, and his refusal to be
stopped despite numerous severe wounds, saved the lives of at least
eight men. His fearless personal leadership, tenacious devotion to
duty, and extremely valorous actions in the face of overwhelming odds
were in keeping with the highest traditions of the military service,
and reflect the utmost credit on him and the United States Army.
From the Archives
American Fairness to a Fault — a Deadly One
Tuesday, 10 Nov 2009 02:28 PM
American’s tragic flaw is our unbridled fairness, which has been
corrupted ever more by the cancer of political correctness to the point
we put ourselves at risk rather than create even the perception of
Sometime after the VOLAR (all volunteer) Army, the military veered from
the “yes sir, yes sir, three bags full” blind adherence to all orders to
the concept of refusing “unlawful orders” and that was ostensibly a
However, the uniformed services do not set or get to pick and choose
foreign policy. The civilian leadership sets foreign policy, and the
U.S. military enforces it — with a big, honking combined arms stick.
Retired Lt. Col. Ralph Peters has been one of the rare pundits with the
courage to target the “culture of political correctness” in leadership
of the military. In at least two interviews on Fox, Peters (correctly)
blamed the culture of political correctness for the Army’s diffidence in
taking action against Nidal Malik Hasan in the wake of knowledge of the
Many mechanisms exist for dealing with matters of deep conscience — all
without killing those one might think disagree with in principle.
However, it is not prejudice to discriminate based on threat facts in
evidence. Refusal to act judiciously for fear of a tainted perception is
just plain dumb.
Notwithstanding the articulated fears of the Army chief of staff and the
secretary of Homeland Security, officials made an epic mistake in
handling suspicions about Hasan. A mistake founded on political
correctness and sustained by diffidence that cost the lives of
Reportedly, U.S. intelligence agencies were aware (months ago) that
Hasan was attempting to make contact with people associated with
al-Qaida. He spoke openly to too many people about his angst and
misdirected sympathies. He was apparently a poster child for suspicion,
and the Army failed bigtime to intervene.
“It is not known whether the intelligence agencies informed the Army
that one of its officers was seeking to connect with suspected al-Qaida
figures," the officials said.
But you damnbetcha they SHOULD have done so.
Investigators want to know whether Hasan maintained contact with a
radical mosque leader from Virginia, Anwar al Awlaki, who now lives in
Yemen and runs a Web site that promotes jihad around the world against
the United States.
In a recent blog posting titled "Nidal Hassan Did the Right Thing,"
Awlaki calls Hasan a "hero" and a "man of conscience who could not bear
living the contradiction of being a Muslim and serving in an army that
is fighting against his own people."
Increasingly we are told people who knew or worked with Hasan say he
seemed to become gradually more radical in his condemnation of the war
in Iraq and Afghanistan. Subordinates and superiors had a responsibility
to flag the inappropriate rhetoric, and they apparently did not.
The fear to speak out is a symptom of the PC disease fueled by
recriminations and implied threats of discrimination — a fear that
indirectly resulted in mayhem.
Sen. Joseph Lieberman said, "If Hasan was showing signs, saying to
people that he had become an Islamist extremist, the U.S. Army has to
have a zero tolerance," and despite the echo of shutting the barn door
after the horse got out, he is right.
Army Chief of Staff Gen. George Casey Jr. is concerned that speculation
about the religious beliefs of Hasan could “cause a backlash against
some of our Muslim soldiers.” He’s right, but such a backlash would be a
direct result of the failure of command — not prejudice.
When confronted about whether he thought the Army “dropped the ball” in
not responding to warning signs, Casey replied that the Army needs to be
careful not to jump to conclusions based on early tidbits of
Sen. Lindsey Graham, R.-S.C., and Sen. Jack Reed, D-R.I., both of whom
are veterans, took pains to say that Muslims have served honorably in
the military and at risk to their lives.
“At the end of the day, this is not about his religion — the fact that
this man was a Muslim,” Graham said on CBS’ “Face the Nation.”
But, hey, it is (kinda/sorta) about religion (when the FBI says 10
percent of American Mosques preach jihad) — at least from a risk