Monday, June 30, 2008

I am a M**tha F*****!

By now, you all know the story of Lt Col Jeffrey Chessani facing serious charges based on a Time story in which Congressman John Murtha made unfounded allegations against eight Marines, one of whom was Lt Col. Chessani. Lt. Col Chessani had his honour and reputation called into question because Murtha said that in a town called Haditha in Iraq, civilians were killed by US Marines "in cold blood". This event was in November 2005, and it has been a long and sad road to June 17, 2008 when a military judge, Col. Steven Folsom dismissed charges against Lt. Col. Jeffrey Chessani after defense attorneys raised concerns that a four-star general overseeing the prosecution was improperly influenced by an investigator probing the November 2005 shootings by a Marine unit in Haditha.

"...The charges were dismissed without prejudice, meaning they can be refiled, but Folsom barred Marine Forces Central Command from future involvement in the case.

The judge gave the prosecution 72 hours to file a notice of intent to appeal. The prosecutors did not make themselves available for comment... [here]

Like everyone else I have been so outraged at the cavalier treatment these brave Marines have all faced. Of the eight charged, seven have already had all charges dismissed.


(pictures courtesy of Defend Our Marines)

This case is not in the headlines right now, but I am still outraged. I have thought what positive action we can take. And I have come up with a plan. No, it is not a novel idea, and certainly not unique. But, I am now officially a "M**tha F*****. So far, Congressman Murtha STILL has offered no apology to ANY of these Marines. All over YouTube are videos of his declaring over and over again what criminals these servicemen were.

As time has proved, sufficiently for military judges and for the rest of us believing in truth and justice, Murtha was way out of line. He owes these Marines way more than an apology. I figure it is long overdue that all of us do at least these three things:

One, we can contact Congressman Murtha and tell him - politely I suppose - what we feel about his actions, and demand he do the right thing; the right thing in this instance begins with a public apology.

The contact information for this 'public servant' is:

via email on the government website here:

Call him at his office (the one paid for by YOU, the taxpayer)

800-289-2642 from Western PA (or) 814-535-2642 (or) 202-225-2065

You think a fax would help? Here's that number:

814-539-6229 -- District

202-225-5709 -- Washington

And if you feel the urge to write him an actual letter? Something he can hold in his dirty hands?

647 Main St, Suite 401
Johnstown, PA 15901

Two, you can contribute to Lt Col Chessani's legal defence funds. He is represented by the Thomas More Law Centre.

Chessani’s civilian attorney, Brian Rooney, said later that the case was far from over:

“It’s almost as if you’re looking into the abyss,” he said. “We don’t know what is going to happen [here]

Lt Col Chessani is considering suing Murtha - and he should. Also, in my opinion, Time Magazine and the "reporter" should be held accountable. 'Accountable' in this case means they must pay BIG money for all they have put the Lt. Col. - and his other Marines - through. That takes money. The Thomas More Law Centre site is here.

In this war, more than ever, we have witnessed the lack of integrity from the mainstream media. They seemingly "can't handle the truth." What has become really evident in this whole debacle, specifically, is the fact that Time and the 'reporter' rushed to print with lies, with total disregard for not only the truth of the matter, but also what borders on treason for printing such propoganda fed to them by disreputable sources in a time when the country IS at war. They MUST pay, even though we all know that no amount of money will ever compensate any of these Marines and their families for what they have endured by domestic enemies!

The Haditha Marines' familes have been dragged through hell, because of the despicable, irresponsible behaviour of Murtha, and Time and their employee. The families have created many sites detailing their journeys, and to read any of them is to feel their pain. Here's a couple to check out:

Both well worth reading, if you have a strong stomach.

Last, but by no means least, we need to get political. Murtha has proved he is nothing but the lowest form of political animal, so it is time to enter that area too. Murtha has proved in the past he is severely lacking in integrity but this time he has gone waaaaaaaaay too far. THIS time, even former Marines disgustedly disown this "ex-Marine".

"[Chessani's] Attorney Brian Rooney believes that Murtha made his "cold blood" statement for political gain:

In my opinion, it's clear it was done during the election cycle, it was done to bolster himself in the party," the attorney said. "He was vying for a leadership position, and if he had to throw some Marines under the bus to do so, that was the cost of power for him."[here]

Lt. Colonel William Russell is a decorated combat veteran who has served in Desert Storm, the Iraq War, and the Pentagon on 9/11.

He's a Republican, and he came home to run against Jack Murtha in November but they kicked him off the ballot [here]

That William Russell is on the ballot at all is a miracle. I think it would be poetic justice at its finest for this Lt. Col to whoop Murtha in the upcoming elections. And he can do it, if Americans help him, vote for him. Check out his site and see what YOU can do. Murtha MUST go!

So, what are you waiting for? Join me as a "M**tha F***** and let's get rid of Murtha.

Semper Fi, Marines!

Sunday, June 29, 2008


I found the following at Soldiers' Angels Germany site, and HAD to share it with you. You want the details, head over to SAG. THIS picture says it all, doesn't it?

Music and Me

Confession time. Until today I had never actually listened to ANY George Carlin. Then, today I heard a piece of his played on the radio that WAS music to me. The way he plays with our language in the first 4.33 minutes of this YouTube recording, just sang to me. I have heard that he was an innovator in the comedy world, but to THIS wordsmith who has always loved to play with words, THIS is clever. And then later in the same day, I heard snippets of an old interview Carlin did. He said "Words are my passion." I had noooooooooo idea, but I do

I have no idea what the rest of this recording is, so will leave the decision to you as to whether you listen past the first 4.33 minutes. Enjoy!

Every Day Heroes

This is a series I have been doing for a long while on my "home" milblog Tanker Bros.

Every day in the sandbox, our men and women are doing incredible jobs. Most times, the public never hears about them. To me, they are definitely heroes, and this series is my ongoing salute to some of the individuals who risk it all for us. They truly ARE "Every Day Heroes."

Meet Sergeant Crystal Johnson:

Sergeant Crystal C. Johnson

Automatic weapons fire, IEDs, and injuries would not be enough to stop a young Army corporal from giving life-saving first aid while defending herself and her comrades. September 2006 would change the life of then-Corporal Crystal C. Johnson of the United States Army.

In a convoy of 17 moving through southeastern Iraq, Johnson was the driver in the lead vehicle. Suddenly the calm of an Iraqi night was broken by the deafening sound of an explosively formed penetrator – the most dangerous kind of improvised explosive device. In the chaos, Johnson brought her mangled and flaming truck to a halt as the convoy became the target of an ambush. Dazed, Johnson had to be pulled out the flaming cab by a fellow soldier, Specialist Truesdell, but she quickly regained her composure. Discovering their convoy commander had been slain in the blast, Johnson took control of the situation.

With the burning vehicle illuminating the desert night, Johnson and Truesdell reached into the flames and struggled to extricate their badly wounded translator. They just got him out alive as spare ammunition caught fire and began exploding in all directions.

The danger was not over. Unseen insurgents began firing at the marooned convoy, with rounds striking dangerously close. Truesdell began laying down suppressive fire with their only operational M16 and Johnson performed life-saving first aid on the gravely wounded man. As reinforcements arrived, Johnson refused treatment until all others were treated first, aiding many of the wounded with her own skills.

Johnson, so moved by this episode and her own reactions under such severe conditions, extended her deployment and became a fully qualified Army medic. The September 12th incident would earn her a Purple Heart and an Army Commendation Medal with Valor, a more than promising start to a career of protecting and preserving human life.

Find other links to stories about this amazing young hero here.

Thank you for your service, Sgt. Johnson.

Cross-posted at Soldiers' Angel NY, and Tanker Bros

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Constitutional Void at California OC for Military

Cops and Criminals in Orange County, California. (..but I repeat myself…)

If you exercise your constitutional rights in Orange County Civil Courts, specifically the Lamoreaux Justice Center; and your female-and military; the likelihood of liberty, honor, due processes and dignity are drastically reduced to zero.

Female soldiers with children who find themselves having to enter the enclave of the Lamoreaux Justice Civil Courts Center to file and submit forms for their child custody cases, or attend pre-trials and hearings, or any assortment of business one would normally conduct in a typical Civil Court House; are suspiciously being cornered, threatened, detained, arrested for trespassing(?), beaten, molested, put in isolation, and arrested without warrants that are later produced and changed to “fit” the “need.” Then the cycle repeats as many times as the courts, judges, referee’s and officer’s of the court find folly in doing so.

However, it doesn’t stop with the Lamoreaux Justice Center. The OC Jail-Santa Ana shares in the brutality. OC officers there enjoy beating female military soldiers as well; “wishing they had done more,” according to an audio recording of one such incident. Did I mention that they have a lovely show called “Jail” that air’s locally for Orange County, California; on Channel 13 at 9 pm PST. The makers/producers of COPS filmed a few episodes out of the IRC.

As the cases drag out and the female soldiers continue to exercise their constitutional rights the enormity of the battle grows so much that, a soldier is often left feeling isolated. It is no longer a simplistic case of a singular issue IE: regaining custody, a hearing for a child’s offense, or shared custody within a divorce, etc. It becomes the SOLDIER against the SYSTEMS.

The irony is most military personnel live paycheck to paycheck, and affording a private attorney costs thousands. JAG is not available in civil cases such as these; they have defining boundaries for representation. The Civil Courts at Lamoreaux not only expect, but demand that if you do not have a private attorney right there with you, then by default you will “contract” with their system and be represented by their hand-picked crop of public defenders. In this system though, it also means you have just signed over all of your rights, and you will follow to the letter everything handed to you.

You have been assimilated. CPS gets a share in the profits, the county gets a share in the profits, and your public defender makes sure the outcome is slanted to benefit the Court and County, and less for the defendant. (Who signs his paycheck??-- THE COUNTY)

This is not a conspiracy theory. I wish it was I truly do.

Recall Sheriff Corona who was recently indicted. Of all the elected positions in the county-- one would expect that the highest law office in the county, and those that serve in it would be as close to squeaky clean as possible, and/or at the very least demonstrate the highest level of moral and personal character, plus a respect for the laws that they are sworn to enforce. MUCH LIKE THE MILITARY. Not only has this office been rocked by criminal activity, but Corona is gone, and it appears it has NOT made a difference in their MORAL character, their respect for the people they serve, or the laws that they are SWORN to enforce.
Four months ago, I honestly thought it was a sequence of events that perhaps did not align properly and there was going to be some perfectly decent explanation for all of it. That was until today, when yet another female soldier made contact.

Two known female soldiers are being abused by the Courts and system of OC. How many more does it take before someone pays attention?

Does another Chamberlain death accident have to occur? You know the one: Theo Lacy jail guards relying on inmates to enforce order while they watched TV, slept, played card, and video games, read girlie magazines, and engaged in cell phone text chats and conversations.

The ordered suspensions include the three jailers, jail guard Kevin Taylor, Deputy Jason Chapluk, and Special Officer Phillip Le all on duty when John Derek Chamberlain was tortured, sodomized and beaten to death by fellow inmates. The beating took place within a short distance of the guards and by design just out of the view of the jail camera monitoring system.

RICO anyone?

How about Joshua Dominic Wilson, 20, a defensive back for semi-pro football team the Southern California Smash. He was beaten because of an outstanding traffic ticket, and because he couldn’t hold his arms up high enough to appease an officer. He was handcuffed, outnumbered and unable to see because of the pepper spray, he was punched and kicked so severely they fractured his nose in three places, ripped his lip, busted his eye socket and ribs, pounded his jaw, cut his leg and bruised his shoulder.
Next, they hog-tied him, twisting his legs behind his back. The motion/hold aggravated an old knee injury, and he pleaded, “Please stop! Please stop!” But the deputies only pushed harder. Finally they threw him in a cell, made him wash up for his “interview” and threatened him and told him they were going to press charges against him for assaulting them. (?)

So many more…..

I have cross-posted this from -The Poison Pen- .

I am familiar with one of these stories, and yes, I have researched and read all the other cases Poison pen mentions. We WILL be following up on this. This is absolutely no way to treat ANY of our troops. Seems to me, something is VERY rotten in the OC 'justice' department.

Stay tuned.

POV - Leaving the Wire

Those of you who know me in the 'real' world, know that one of the reasons I became a journalist - that I write - is to give others a voice. Everyone has a unique point of view(POV), and I plan to continue here a series I began on Tanker Bros blog. Read on:

Leaving the Wire

A professional soldier doing what he is called to do

Is hard to comprehend unless you are one of the few.

Some draftees felt the momentary flash of that desire

To save the world, help people, set an enemy on fire.

There is a young soldier, an old timer in that world,

Who is in the middle of a rush, fighting, all a-whirl,

Doing things he trained for, despite danger and all.

He lives a motto, to be all that he can, to stand tall.

Weeks without much word, left my heart disturbed.

It is hard to describe being the parent of a believer.

He has seen the results of our soldiers’ work, knows

They can succeed, making a difference if left alone.

The electronic age is enlightening but ignorance is ok.

There was an e-mail that turned on a bright light today.

He shared his ambition, his goal and a step in his plan.

I cannot ask him to back off; I must be more than dad.

When the warrior leaves the wire he enters his realm.

He is the captain and the battleship; he has the helm.

They who trained him well created someone to defend

The defenseless of the world, badly in need of a friend.

There is feeling ignited in him when leaving the wire.

Every nerve, every sense, every fiber is transformed.

He leans forward with eagerness, ready, embracing

Any action that unfolds when protecting this nation.

He is very ready, with his skin tingling; his eyes seek

Any sign of opposition and danger within their reach.

Excited, he would quiver but that is misunderstood.

Adrenalin and pride demand he prove he is that good.

Leaving the wire leaves a soldier wired, invigorated.

Outside the wire a soldier is challenged, motivated.

Inside the wire a soldier is just another garrison grunt.

Outside he is the king of the jungle, alert, on the hunt.

Leaving the safety a life changes, expands, demands

That he be prepared for anything in the air or on land.

It is hard to tell how a fear of death makes him alive.

His task is to break things, win, protect, and survive.

He stands beneath a flag flown over other heroes too.

Soldiers do not want to kill but do what they must do.

Inside that wire is his country, outside are invaders.

Home must be held, his heart and soul do not waiver.

I do not want him to prove that he is alive by dieing.

I pray he walks with care, his job not caution-defying.

He has a wife and son he loves, but he has a mission.

We all pray for his success and want him here, living.

I can see a white-knuckled grip on his ready weapon.

His mind does an inventory as he searches the horizon.

I read his mind as he hopes his men are as ready as he.

There is no question; the task is to keep all people free.

Has he taught them enough?

Are they tough enough?

Can he handle losing one of his own?

Are they with him, in that warrior’s zone?

Leaving the wire is, is for him, going home.

It is his world, a place he understands, he alone.

Others like him know what he knows, are linked

To him with a bond others do not understand.

They are not savages, war-mongers, haters of men.

No, they are the opposite; they love humanity.

They want people everywhere to have freedom,

Choice, joy, a chance; those things are the things

They defend

When they leave the wire.

Mike Mullins, 6/24/08

author of Vietnam in Verse, poetry for beer drinkers...Dco. 3/7 Inf., 199th Light Infantry Bde.
book available, Barnes&, and POW print available via e-mail and book to c.d. coming

Thank YOU, Mike.

Friday, June 27, 2008

And another PSA!!!

"Not Wallet"

No commentary from me is necessary.;)

Thanks Janet!

"From the Frontlines"


That's a whole lot of support for the troops


By popular demand! Well, actually, because I WANT to share GOOD NEWS!

Iraqi army shows great growth in year

WASHINGTON (Army News Service, Jun. 26, 2008) -- The Iraqi army has grown by 60 percent in the last year, and stands now at nearly 180,000 soldiers. The army is also now training its own soldiers, and its effectiveness in combat has allowed it to concentrate more on improving logistics and supply chains.

Brig. Gen. Steven L. Salazar said that during the last year, the Iraqi army has built up internal momentum and has taken the reins for themselves on many soldier training functions.

"More and more the Iraqis are doing training for themselves now," Salazar said....

A soldier from the 2nd Battalion, 31st Brigade, 8th Iraqi Army Division, talks with a Sons of Iraq member during Operation Gunslinger Prowl I, a combined Iraqi and Multi-National Division - Baghdad mission focused at ridding the Taji Qada, northwest of Baghdad, of illegal weapons and improvised-explosive devices June 19. The Iraqi army, now nearly 180,000 soldiers, has grown 60 percent in the last year. The army is growing in both capacity and capability. Photo by Sgt. Brad Willeford

And that just ONE B*N*S*N which you can read here.

One Picture......

Hook, line and sinker!
Photo by Courtesy photo
June 21, 2008

Sgt. 1st Class Douglas W. Anderson, Headquarters, Headquarters Company, 1st Battalion, 153rd Infantry Regiment hooked this fish at Camp Slayer, Iraq, June 1. He tried luring the fish with turkey sausage, but the line kept snapping. Finally after six lines broke, he used a 30-pound trilene with half of a bagel for bait and reeled the behemoth into shore. The fish was 5 feet, 10 inches long and weighed 105 pounds. [source]

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Because - YES! We CAN!

A few days ago, I published a piece called "A REAL Army Wife speaks".. You can find that here.

Later, I posted the series of video ads and counter-ads. They are all under one minute in length, so if you haven't seen them yet, you can go here and here.

In the comments of one of these pieces, it was said that all we need now is the thousands of other military wives/mothers to speak up. Well, another one has. Mrs Hooah writes on Knee Deep in the Hooah! here. She has the creds, trust me. And yes, before any of you get your knickers in a knot, she IS writing as an individual, for herself - because she CAN! - and NOT a mouthpiece for any government agency. She also has a few words to say about the current climate in American politics as they relate to our military. She has given me permission to publish her latest and it IS a must-read (as are the! Read on:

Sockin’ it to the military moms!

Brat posted an ad put out by the same liberal, divisive, group that accused our good General of being a betrayer. The ad shows a woman holding her baby, and she tells Senator McCain that when he says ‘we will stay in Iraq for 100 years if that is what it takes to win’, then he can’t count on her baby.

The ad is pure tripe. If you don’t get caught up in the “warm fuzzies” the ad is constructed to give (actually I figured out later it was a bowl of chili that caused mine…) you will feel insulted that these people think you are stupid enough to be scared that anyone is asking you to hand over your baby. I have said it before, and I will say it again… a wild dingo is a greater risk to your babies than the US Military. They don’t want your little ones. Calm down!

I can honestly say, whole heartedly, as a military mother, that no one came to my home and ripped my babies from my arms. I can also assure you all that I did not take them to recruiter’s station and beg them to take them off my hands. No matter what the ad says, my sons’ decisions to join the military were their own. There is a concept in our Country called “freedom.” Freedom allows young men and women 18 years and older to make their own decisions. Sometimes young adults can sign on before their 18th birthday if their parents agree to it. Babies grow into full grown, voting, legal adults. They make decisions and no matter how much their mother may agree or disagree, there is no legal recourse for her to stop him from doing what he wants to do within the realm of the law.

Making decisions for oneself is also called “self determination.” It’s quite a wonderful concept, and something that my adult children practice everyday. I do not tell them what they can and can’t do. I do not tell them what career paths to take. I do not tell them who to vote for. I do not tell them what to eat. They are adults and are perfectly free to make their own decisions in life. I trust them. I trust their abilities to make good decisions. I can trust them because I did my job when they were little and under my care.

Sentaor Obama and Senator McCain, listen up; as a military mother times two, I love my sons who are soldiers more than life itself. I have never met a single military mother who is happy, thrilled or at peace that her son or daughter is serving during a time of war, and I am no exception. I do, however, respect the adult decisions of my children, and I support them 100%. Now, if you want to come to my home and take my baby, you can’t have her! She’s only four and I most certainly do have authority over the decisions made in her life. However, if my grown children sign up to serve this great Country and defend our Constitution, I will love and support them — and fully acknowledge that this is their decision to make, on their own.

Now, as far as taking innocent ground hogs off the streets and recruiting them at a terribly young age… well, the picture speaks for itself....


And, oh yes! This is crossposted here and here and here - so far! lol

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

"From the Frontlines"

UPDATE!!! From the Campaign Store here:

This message printed in English and Arabic

A limited-edition Move America Forward tin containing bags of the historic "Candy Diplomacy" Jelly Belly jelly beans. The specially printed packages of Jelly Belly candy are identical to the packages that Move America Forward is providing to our troops in care packages (per their request) for them to hand out to the children of Iraq and Afghanistan - as a means of diplomacy to strengthen bonds between the people of these war-torn nations and the United States.

Check out that page for more custom-made packages and go to Move America Forward here for MORE details on more guests participating.

Week in, week out, those of us in the troop support community send care packages to our troops - no matter where they are stationed. Every day, someone is sending a care package to a soldier, a sailor, an airman, or a Marine.

This Thursday, June 26, 2008, a telethon is being hosted by the pro-troop group Move America Forward. This telethon's aim is to send the largest shipment of care packages - EVER! - to our troops. This grand finale will be live-streamed and many famous names are going to be there as their contribution to making sure that THIS July 4th is one our troops will never forget.

Melanie Morgan of MAF, and Michelle Malkin are hosting the telethon, and just some of the people planning to be part of this history in the making are:

And, of course, you will have to go over to NewsBlaze for the "who, what, why.." etc..Go here.

Be a part of history in the making!
Move America Forward

Mooooooooooooooooooove on!

Yet annother response to those 30 second ads.

Former Air Force Major Eric Egland is running for Congress in the 4th Congressional District in California. He is married to Ania Egland. Here is Ania's :30 second video response:

The blurb on this one says:

Ania Egland grew up under communism and is the wife of Eric Egland who served in Iraq and Afghanistan. She is also the mother of two boys and is expecting another child next month (note the belly :).

Thanks to CJ for heads up on this one.

Trikes for Troops

Rick White - a software engineer out in Colorado, is riding a tricycle Wednesday to raise money for Soldiers' AngelsValour IT program. He has raised almost $11,000 to date, and has a little comments section on his website.

On June 25th Rick is teaming up with SA to take part in Colorado's Bike to Work Day to raise money for the Valour-IT programme. You may remember I wrote about this programme during the annual bloggers' fundraising effort to raise money to buy the voice activated laptops which make a huge difference to our wounded heroes. To remind yourself, (lol) read that post here.

Rick has a website set up for this latest endeavour:

Rick White - www.trikeforthetroops.comThe New Trike

Rick White and his new trike

You can find his site Trikes for Troops here. Last year he raised $3,500, which he used to send care packages to the troops. Already this year he has raised almost $11,000., which will buy more than a few laptops.

Check out Rick's website, and even if you can't make a donation, feel free to leave a message of support.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

A gem.....

This is an video type thingie (tech that most of us have seen in still picture form a few times, BUT this presentation is awesome. Should be viewed by everyone who doesn't "get" it..

I couldn't find an embed code, so am giving you the link that was sent to me.

Watch here.

H/T to Cindy

Monday, June 23, 2008

A real army wife speaks!

A real army wife's response to Obama

Army wives. For a huge part of the American population, "Army Wives" is the name of a prime time show on television. Unless you are connected to the military, as a viewer you will have no idea how accurate the portrayal of Army life really is.

However, REAL army wives - oh, you know those who LIVE the military life, day in, day out - are very aware of the inaccuracies, of the absurdities of what is portrayed. And yes, most army wives are very politically aware.

Brenda Freeman is one such army wife, and she is one pissed off wife. Freeman, who has been an army wife for 35 years as her husband has fought for the US, has a dose of her own reality she is dishing out. Freeman sent me the following:

I watch a bit of television. Most all of it is History Channel, Science Channel, Discovery Channel, and so forth. Brain Food I call it. I do not like reality TV of ANY kind, or soap operas. Last time I checked, an Opera was comprised of musical talent and a stage, neither of which Soaps contain.

However, I do keep track of nonsensical programs that try to mimic military life or military drama. I mostly do this to pick it apart, and either blog it to death, and write nasty grams, or send posts on their web sites through the roof pointing out all of their flaws and oversights and errors. Hey, I get my kicks occasionally. (shrug)

So... the latest on my list is Army Wives. It is on Lifetime Channel. Yea yea yea so what. The point is, I watched it all season last year, and it was "ok" with a few things wrong here and there, I overlooked them.

This year is off to an odd start, and I have sent only ONE email complaining that an American Soldier would NOT blow himself up in defiance of a problem - regardless of PTSD, he would shoot a M**F**ker first, "one and done" type deal. HADJI's and terrorists are the chicken Shiites that blow themselves up! Get the SCRIPT RIGHT dumb asses! I hate writers sometimes -

But last night I was pissed. No, pissed doesn't begin to describe my mood. It was beyond pissed. I can't even find a word for it still.

BETRAYED fits....

To see what Brenda is soooooooooooooo pissed off about, you have to go here to NewsBlaze. And yes, is up on my first 'home' Tanker Bros blog, too...:) Trust me, you don't want to miss the real goods, from a REAL army wife. And no, is probably not what you think!

"Your mission.......

...should you decide to accept." Actually, two missions, both from posts at BlackFive!


OMV Letters From Home....Support YOUR Marines!!

Posted By Maj Pain


What would you say to the warrior in the picture above if you could chat with him? You might say "Thanks for protecting us", or "We support you", if you were somewhere in passing. But what if you were sitting down, sharing your feelings over dinner? Then what would you say to him? Think about it, because you now have that opportunity.

We have a large group of Marines currently located in a remote area of Iraq. Mail might arrive once a week if the fates are with them, and water is obtained from a well on site. These are your Marines, living on the edge of the empire, alone and determined to succeed. ...

To read the rest of this one go here.

And there IS more...;) The second mission (or second part of the same is this:

Help Wounded Vets Get Mobile!

Posted By Blackfive

Major Dan Gade was someone you should know a few years ago - if you recall, he was someone who was not supposed to make it. And his story is one of those occasions where I started to believe in miracles. And I know you all had a lot to do with it...

Major Dan Gade needs your help to raise awareness about the importance of the Segway:

As many of you know, I was seriously wounded in Iraq in 2005, and lost my right leg. I am not alone: the war has produced more than 800 amputees of various degrees of severity, and many more with burns, joint fusions, and other issues resulting in decreased mobility. For many of us, the solution to our mobility issues- the thing that enables us to get around our college campuses, places of work and worship, golf courses, and other locations, is the Segway. A Segway is to a person with a mobility problem as a guide dog is to a person who is blind. ...

I have omitted a whole swath of this story. It really IS a must read. And then the reason for the request for your help. Your help on this one will take but a few minutes of your time, and could make a HUGE difference in the lives of some our most precious veterans. Go here to read all Major Gade has to say, and please do what you can. Goooooooooooo!

Thank you.

Things that make you.....

....want to vomit:

John McCain is up on the air with TV ads in a bunch of key states and Obama isn't. There's a big vacuum to fill. Luckily, we've got a secret weapon. Our new Iraq ad is the most effective ad we've ever put together. This isn't your average political ad--it lays out the truth about McCain's Iraq policy in a personal and compelling way. We just got the results back and polling shows that voters found it to be more persuasive than any other ad we've tested before.

Brought to you by the delusionists at There follows a very convenient way to contribute They even have a special chart to make it easy for you to contribute your dollars to their ad campaign. No! I will not give you the link.....;)

Then, in another contribution to the political debate, I had this sent to me:

This was sent in by our good friend Howie (some may also know him as John Howell who wrote quite a few Reader’s Posts at our old website format, also a Marine veteran) and was made by Tommy Chandler & Crew over at Chandler’s Watch in response to the “John McCain Wants To Kill My Baby” ad from…heh heh…[but I got it courtesy of Pat Dollard here]

Semper Fi. Ooh-rah, Marines!

And for a great commentary on this whole sorry mess, go to
Wake up America here.'Nuff

(H/T to Terri for the idea for this

"Can We Say Overwhelming, Preening, Elitist, ILLEGAL Arrogance?"

By now you all have heard about Obama's latest stunt. I was going to write about it myself, but so many others have done a great job. see-dubya's piece on Michelle Malkin here titled "The Obamessiah’s deep humility shines through in his new seal" is a must-read, as are the readers' comments. My personal favourite take on Obama's latest arrogance is Miss Beth's. Yes, the title above IS what she uses as her header. Miss Beth:

Today, in my stroll through my daily reads, I ran across not one, not two, , not three, but FOUR articles at Real Clear Politics regarding the utter arrogance of Obama and his latest idiocy.

Good grief, I feel dirty even thinking the man's name--ugh. He becomes more distasteful on a minute-by-minute basis and it's getting to the point whenever I hear his name, the very next thing to cross my mind is, "Oh God, NOW what!"

Yes, he's that bad. And getting worse.

The first headline was this: "Oops! Obama's Faux Presidential Podium" at The Purple People Vote. KMorrison notes the illegality of the picture with this:

Whoever, except as authorized under regulations promulgated by the President and published in the Federal Register, knowingly manufactures, reproduces, sells, or purchases for resale, either separately or appended to any article manufactured or sold, any likeness of the seals of the President or Vice President, or any substantial part thereof, except for manufacture or sale of the article for the official use of the Government of the United States, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than six months, or both.
What picture? What was this little tidbit? I schlepped on over to see and found this picture:

What the hey? The next headline at RCP was this: "John McCain: Obama Seal-Progressive Fascism's Cautionary Icon" at Hickeysite and Pat Hickey had this to write about it on his site:...

If you know anything about Miss Beth at all, you know there is much more. Miss Beth nails it, as usual. To me, it is mindboggling how far this candidate for leader of the free world is able to go before America stands up and yells "NO MORE". And no, despite whatever you may read or hear either from him or his msm sycophants, Obama IS not President of the United States yet. Go here NOW - and read this latest idiocy.

[UPDATE: From the Oh!Bama camp of flip flops comes word of what is probably the fastest flip flop - so far - over at Wake Up America. Go check this out here.]

From my Inbox

This is going to be a new irregular feature here. I have the greatest sources, who always send me stuff I find interesting. Often, the piece raises questions or gives opinions, that should give us all pause (or paws? never for thought. You all know I have opinions, but when someone else says something about an issue far more eloquently than I could, I have to share with you. Beats a gazillion 'forwards' don't you think?????? Read on for today's gem:

Subject: The media is the enemy - most days

This hasn't been around the internet at all. This isn't something you saw 2 years ago or 6 months ago, etc. Real people in real time. The following was forwarded to me by a friend, a Marine Corps Major, recently returned from multiple tours in Iraq.

Subject: ABC slanted news

Got this from a friend who's niece is stationed in Iraq .... read and listen... It's getting worse. My niece, K*****, stationed at Baluud , Iraq was assigned, with others of her detachment, to be escort/guard/watcher for Martha Raddatz of ABC News as she covered John McCain's recent trip to Iraq . K***** and her Captain stood directly behind Raddatz as she queried GI's walking past.

They kept count of the GI's and you should remember these numbers. She asked 60 GI's who they planned to vote for
in November, 54 said John McCain, 4 for Obama and 2 for Hillary. K***** called home and told her Mom and Dad to watch ABC news the next night because she was standing directly behind Raddatz and maybe they'd see her on TV. Mom and Dad of course, called and emailed all the kinfolk to watch the newscast and maybe see K*****. Well, of course, we all watched and what we saw wasn't a glimpse of K*****, but got a hell'uva view of skewed news. After a dissertation on McCain's trip and speech, ABC showed 5 GI's being asked by Raddatz how they were going to vote in November; 3 for Obama and 2 for Clinton . No mention of the 54 for McCain.

Moral of this story: Do not believe ANY Audio, Video, Text, or Graphics that ANY Media matter expels. It's all garbage !

Believe ONLY what you witness at an event or happening, then question how they rigged it for slanting! Whatever happened to truth in advertising!?

America, wake up, please!

There's a shocker!!!! Not so much, of course, as we all know. Pay attention!

H/T to Mike.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

"Keep your head down, and helmet ON!"

"Keep your head down and your helmet on!"

Many of us in the troop support arena often tell our own troops that saying. Head down and helmet on seems to make perfect sense both for our heroes, and for those of us who love them. Now there is news that keeping your helmet on may be causing more than a BIG headache. Dr. Robert Meaders is a retired Captain in the US Navy, Medical Corps. Retired he may be, but Dr. Meaders is far from enjoying a relaxing retirement; he is a man with a mission. Operation Helmet is Dr. Meader's ongoing effort to support our troops. The ongoing mandate of Operation Helmet is to replace the government issued (GI) helmet liners that our troops wear.

Read more here. (Yes, I wrote it, and yes, that IS NewsBlaze!

NOT in the msm!

Some of you know, I like to keep an eye out for news you will never find in the msm. Today, I want to share with you a piece that our pal CJ wrote:

It Takes An Army

June 22nd, 2008 (9:42 am) by CJ-

Iraq’s military is progressing by leaps and bounds. With the surge producing the best possible environment for the government to plant their feet in the sand and put their shoulder to the wheel of progress, a lot is being done to ensure that the nation can defend itself. We all know that a military needs more than just combat troops. There is a saying, at least in the Army, that it takes ten support Soldiers for one combat arms Soldier to be effective. That Soldier has to be armed, fed, rested, paid, etc. The Iraqi military is quickly accomplishing that piece on its own.

Almost 200 students graduated from an advanced intelligence course at the Iraqi Military Intelligence Academy in Taji, June 18. Each had completed the four-week Basic Military Intelligence Course and a five-week specialty course. Eight of the students were the first to graduate from the new geospatial and mapping course. Having the Iraqi’s gather their own intelligence is much more efficient and effective than we could ever provide. Most of our intelligence collection comes from technical means. Sure, we have some human interaction (a lot actually), but it’s impossible for an American to melt into the environment and “one of them.” Iraqis are more capable of blending in which will lead to more accurate and timely intelligence that will passed on to the warfighter...

Go read the rest here.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Music and Me

Because we all need comfort food for the heart and soul... THIS is mine :)

B*N*S*N (kinda, sorta....)

My long time readers - all 2 of you... .lol - are familiar with the weekly B*N*S*N. Today, I am cheating, BUT only because my friend Mrs Hooah! has already done a GREAT job in listing a few of the good news stories out of the GWOT. So, because I can, I am going to send you over to HER site. While you are there, check out all the other great posts she has. She sometimes really IS Knee Deep in the Shi'ite! Go, here, now!

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Haji 6

My friend Dawn wrote a poem and entered in a contest for BIG prizes. I know you all voted once. She needs your vote again, please!

Pleeeeeeeeeeease go here and vote. I gave her a "10". Just sayin'...

Thank you...

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Music and Me!

I have always loved music. Betcha didn't know that, did you? lol Music has ALWAYS fed my soul. In all our lives, music reflects who we are, touches us, maybe even shapes us.

I decided that every week I am going to share a song that has had meaning in my life. I may share the significance - or I may not!

THIS one is for SJP, Minou, MG and HP - with love! They each know why....;) Listen...listen!


For my Minou

For my Minou. Fly, my sweet girl, FLY! "And in my heart you will remain, forever young."

(Thanks M*A)


Saturday, June 14, 2008


I am an American Soldier.

I am a Warrior and a member of a team. I serve the people of the United States and live the Army Values.

I will always place the mission first.

I will never accept defeat.

I will never quit.

I will never leave a fallen comrade.

I am disciplined, physically and mentally tough, trained and proficient in my warrior tasks and drills. I always maintain my arms, my equipment and myself.

I am an expert and I am a professional.

I stand ready to deploy, engage, and destroy the enemies of the United States of America in close combat.

I am a guardian of freedom and the American way of life.

I am an American Soldier.


And... in honour of Flag Day, Don sent me an awesome Toby Keith video link. Because the embed is "disabled by request", you really should go watch "Courtesy Of The Red, White And Blue (The Angry American)" here.


Friday, June 13, 2008

Canada: Refuge for deserters?

I think most of you know how I feel about the American servicemen and women who flee to Canada. In these times of a VOLUNTEER military, I have a hard time understanding why anyone would sign up to join the military in a time of war, and then decide they didn't really want to go to war; they didn't realise what they would be doing when they joined the war-time military. ;) Despite estimates of up to 300 Americans hiding out north of the US borders, a mere handful feel strongly enough to go public with their principles. I came across an interesting piece on the BBC site, and decided it is worth sharing.

First up, Corey Glass:


In 2002, I joined the Indiana National Guard. When I joined, I was told I would only be in combat if there were troops occupying the United States.

Corey Glass
I should have been in New Orleans after Katrina, not in Iraq
Corey Glass

I signed up to defend people and do humanitarian work filling sandbags if there was a hurricane. I had no conception I would be deployed to fight on foreign shores.

But in 2005, I was deployed with my unit to Camp Anaconda near Balad, Iraq. My job in Iraq was in military intelligence.

Through this job I had access to a lot of information about what was happening on the ground in Iraq. I realised innocent people were being killed unjustly and I tried to quit the military while in Iraq. My commander told me I was stressed out and needed R&R, because I was doing a job I was not trained to do....[yes, there is more!]

Jonathan Kay from Canada's conservative National Post newspaper says deserters should be sent home:


Should Corey Glass have enlisted in the US National Guard back in 2002? Probably not. From what I saw and heard of his 21 May press conference in Toronto, my first impression was that this pale, lanky 25-year-old should be playing synth in a Gothic emo band - not kicking down doors in Iraq.

But for whatever reason, Glass did sign up for military service. There's no draft in the United States - as there was in the Vietnam era: No one forced him to put on a uniform. Why should Canadians help this deserter go back on his freely given word?

America's fair-weather soldiers shouldn't be permitted to make a mockery of a Canadian refugee system that was originally designed to protect migrants fleeing assassination and torture.

During his 21 May appearance, Glass said he was "morally obligated" to desert the US military rather than return to fight an "unjust war" in Iraq.

At the same press conference, anti-war activist Jane Orion Smith argued that Glass is legally entitled to asylum in Canada because the applicable UN standard covers conscientious objectors involved in military actions that are "condemned by the international community".

Even if this label could fairly be applied to the 2003 liberation of Iraq (a premise I would dispute), it definitely did not apply to the Iraq conflict in 2005, which is when Glass deserted.

By that time, the UN Security Council had already passed Resolutions 1483 (recognising the United States and Britain as "occupying powers" under international law) and 1546 (endorsing the creation of an Iraqi Interim Government)....[yes, there IS more!]

Do I need to tell you whose logic I agree with? I didn't think so! Go read the rest of both these arguments on the BBC here.



Security Matters? Not so much!

Out of England comes a disturbing story of top level secret documents being left on a train. Keith Vaz MP, chairman of the powerful Home Affairs select committee told the BBC: "Such confidential documents should be locked away...they should not be read on trains...."[more here]

Ya think? Apparently the Metropolitan Police is investigating. These documents are described as a security breach:

One, on Iraq's security forces, was commissioned by the Ministry of Defence. According to the BBC's security correspondent, Frank Gardner, it included a top-secret and in some places "damning" assessment of Iraq's security forces,

The other document, reportedly entitled 'Al-Qaeda Vulnerabilities', was commissioned jointly by the Foreign Office and the Home Office....[here]

There IS more, and you can read that here.


Soldiers' Angels PSA

"Heroes Waiting for Adoption : 376"

www.soldiersangels. org

Just sayin'!!!


Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Take Pride

From CJ, comes details of a company with a great way of supporting the Wounded Warrior Project. In a column on, CJ describes a company Take Pride:

TakePride is a grassroots effort started by young artists and former members of the military to re-define what it means to support the troops by using art, style and the stories of real-life Americans at war. Their line of contemporary t-shirts has received more nationwide media attention and motivated more young Americans to be involved in this cause than any other symbol of support. TakePride donates a minimum of 20 percent of its profits to the Wounded Warrior Project.

My favorite shirts are the “1776″ and “a boy, a bear, & a Soldier” t-shirts. Today they launched the “a boy, a bear, & a Soldier” t-shirt - inspired by an amazing story told by Mike Geary, a 23-year-old Army Sergeant stationed in Iraq.

In 2005, when he was 20-years-old, Mike’s life, and the life of every member of his squad, was saved by a young Iraqi child. At the time, Mike was serving his first tour in Iraq, running combat patrols in Tikrit. A day after handing out stuffed animals to Iraqi children gathered in front of his base, Mike was traveling down a nearby highway when he noticed one of the young boys from the previous day standing with his hand raised in the middle of the road directly ahead of his Humvee convoy....

To find out what happened next, and to find the link to Take Pride go here.

Be sure and click on the pictures of the different shirts. Each one has the story of the inspiration behind each design. Not only raising funds for a great cause, but honouring some specific heroes too. Very cool!


File under: Never "ass"ume!

Some of you may remember the story a while back of the guy who wrote his local newspaper complaining about the planes that flew over his house too early in the morning. Turned out of course that the planes were military, on a very important mission. I wrote about that on Tanker Bros at the time, disclosing that the complainer was in fact a military man himself, who felt really chagrined upon learning the facts. Ooops!

Today I have another gem to file under 'Never "ass"ume', sent to me by a long time reader and friend. Read on:

Subject: letter from Mr. Keillor

.The disturbing roar of hollow patriotism
By Garrison Keillor
May 28, 2008
Three hundred thousand bikers spent Memorial Day
weekend roaring around Washington in tribute to our war dead, and I stood on Constitution Avenue on Sunday afternoon watching a river of them go by, waiting for a gap in the procession so I could cross over to the Mall and look at pictures. The street had been closed off for them and they motored on by, some flying the Stars and Stripes and the black MIA-POW flag, honking, revving their engines, an endless celebration of internal combustion.

A patriotic bike rally is sort of like a patriotic toilet-papering or
patriotic graffiti; the patriotism somehow gets lost in the sheer
irritation of the thing. Somehow a person associates Memorial Day with long moments of silence when you summon up mental images of pilots revving up B-24s and infantrymen crouched behind piles of rubble steeling themselves for the next push.

You don't quite see the connection between that and these fat men with ponytails on Harleys. After hearing a few thousand bikes go by, you think maybe we could airlift these gentlemen to Baghdad to show their support of the troops in a more tangible way. It took 20 minutes until a gap appeared and then a mob of us pedestrians flooded across the street and the parade of bikes had to stop for us, and on we went to show our patriotism by, in my case, hiking around the National Gallery, which, after you've watched a few thousand Harleys pass, seems like an outpost of civilization.

There stood Renoir's ballerina in pale blue chiffon and Monet's children in the garden of sunflowers. And Mary Cassatt's "The Boating Party," which I stood and stared at for a long time. A lady in a white bonnet sits in a green sailboat, holding a contented baby in pink, as a man rows the boat toward a distant shore. (Perhaps the boat is becalmed.) The man wears a navy blue shirt, he is preoccupied with his rowing, and the lady looks wan and mildly anxious, as well a mother should be. The baby is looking dreamily over the gunwales. Is the man a hired hand or is he the husband and father?

A work of art can lift you up from the mishmash of life, the weight of the unintelligible world, and vulgarity squats on you like an enormous toad and won't get off. You stroll down past the World War II Memorial, which looks like something ordered out of a catalog, a bland insult to the memory of all who served, and thousands of motorcycles roar by disturbing the Sabbath, and it depresses you for hours.

If anyone cared about the war dead, they could go read David Halberstam's The Coldest Winter or Stephen Ambrose's Citizen Soldiers or any of a hundred other books, and they would get a vision of what it was like to face death for your country, but the bikers riding in formation are more interested in being seen than in learning anything. They are grown men playing soldier, making a great hullabaloo without exposing themselves to danger, other than getting drunk and falling off a bike.

No wonder the Current Occupant welcomed them with open arms at the White House, put on a black leather vest, and gave a manly speech about how he'd just "choppered in" and saw the horde "cranking up their machines," and he thanked them for being so patriotic. They are his kind of guys, full of bluster, giving off noxious fumes, and when they leave town, nobody misses them.

Meanwhile, the man pulls at the oars, the lady wonders if this trip was a good idea or if some disaster is at hand, and the child lolls on her lap, dazed by the sun. They started this trip in 1894 and haven't advanced an inch; meanwhile, half the people who ever stood and watched them have reached that distant shore and the rest of us are getting closer every day.

I am the boatman and maybe you are, too - it is quiet on the water, we lean on the oars, and we are suspended in time, united with every other man, woman and child who ever voyaged afar.

Tsk! Tsk! It seems this guy is quite a well-known radio commentator, and regular op/ed writer. No I had never heard of him, but if you go here, you can find a lot more op/eds written by him. Be sure to read some of the "Letters to the Editor" responses on this piece.;) Hmmmmmm..Maybe the bigger the "ass"umptions, the bigger the .......oh never mind! You all KNOW I would have a few (or words in response to this one, BUT I don't need to. A veteran replies to this far more eloquently than I EVER could. Quite apart from all the other vets who have stood up in response to this ill-informed op/ed, this was within the same email to me as Keillor's piece. No, no name was attached to this reply, but the sentiments are shared by many, and eloquent. Read on:

This is my response
Mr. Keillor
I can tell by your letter you are an educated man, much more then I. I can also tell you have never spent much time in a uniform or at a VA hospital. As I have both . In 1968 I laid on the side of a hill bleeding waiting to be helicoptered out in Viet Nam. A lot longer then the time you waited on Constitution Ave that Sunday . By the way we will be there next year on Sunday, maybe you should rest that day and go on Monday.

So I will make a deal with you . I will educate you on us 'PUDGY Ponytail fat men on Harleys, and you can enlighten me on RENOIR OR MONET .Question were they fat with long hair ,just asking .

I am a Viet Nam veteran. I stood on the [WALL] protecting your rights. So I am ready and have the right to address statements made about my special day. I have made over 24 trips to my WALL. I have gonewith veterans, non vets and even took a reporter once . None were Pudgy or had ponytails or were fat. We make that trip to let the world know that we have not forgotten our POW from all wars. Yes, we ride bikes, and yes they are loud. If the noise or people bother you why not do like I do on the 4th of july, can not handle fireworks, Stay home that day. GIVE US OUR DAY! Now some comments tell me you have not a clue. You keep talking about the fat men with ponytails, Clean your glasses , our fellow veterans are not all fat with ponytails . A lot are female, they smell pretty good, but watch them they have been known to make noise with their bikes also.

You talk about airlifting these gentlemen to Badhdad , does that mean the PUDGY FAT MEN WITH PONYTAILS CAN NOT GO? LET me explain something to you: most of us would jump at a chance to fight for our country again. I myself had asked to go back when we went into IRAQ . Age and a 70% rating has stopped me.

You talk about if we cared about our war dead. HOW DARE YOU make a comment like that . I for one have shed blood for you . I have stood on the wall protecting your rights even though I do not agree. We come to our Memorials to honor our brothers and sisters who have given the most that they could.

Walk with me to panel 27w and I will show you why I am there.
You talk about reading books [the coldest winter, citizen soldiers] and, we are more interested making noise then getting a vision of what its like to face death for our country. ARE YOU ON DRUGS? Some of us Viet Nam vets are the focus of many books. We have faced death many a day in Nam. We do not play soldier, sir. WE ARE SOLDIERS, and WE are the reason you are free.

Last but not least. I have met a lot of great VETERANS, men and women, ALL heroes. And SIR YOU COULD NOT SHINE THEIR SHOES.

I think that says it all, don't you?

H/T to Gail for this one.:)