Day by Day

Saturday, December 31, 2005

Leftist Bias In The Main Stream Media

(Click on Day by Day to enlarge it)

When Fred Adler interviewed me on 100.5 FM, The Tide, it became one of the most enjoyable experiences I have had as a conservative on the North Coast. Fred doesn't believe there is leftist bias in the media, and challenged my assertion that there is. I thought that Fred had read my letter to the Independent Coast Observer more closely than he let on, since I had extensively covered the issue previously here and here.

Actually, many people in this area think the media has right-wing bias, and point out the Fox network. And the....and the.... Well, anyway, they point at Fox. At the same time, when I say ABC, CBS, NBC, CNN, PBS, Time Warner, Newsweek, San Francisco Chronicle, New York Times, Washington Post, Los Angeles Times (and go on, and on, and on...) they say they can't be leftists, they're part of the corporate culture of the United States, and anything that has a Board of Directors is, by their definition, right wing.

My approach to the issue is to gather as much facts as I can, and give them a "smell test." To that end, please follow this link to a collection of the "best" left-wing stinkers of 2005. If you don't have to hold your nose, you too are a leftist. A caution to right wingers - they are really bad, and don't say I didn't warn you.

The Angels Levin And "Liberty Limited"


From Ronnie Polaneczky, writing for the Philadelphia Daily News, "here's a Yule story that ought to be a movie.

And now, in time for the holidays, I bring you the best Christmas story you never heard.

It started last Christmas, when Bennett and Vivian Levin were overwhelmed by sadness while listening to radio reports of injured American troops.

"We have to let them know we care," Vivian told Bennett.

So they organized a trip to bring soldiers from Walter Reed Army Medical Center and Bethesda Naval Hospital to the annual Army-Navy football game in Philly, on Dec. 3.

The cool part is, they created their own train line to do it."

For the rest of the story, click here.

Friday, December 30, 2005

Upholding The Pajamas Media Image?


As Dan Rather sank in a sea of forged documents, the bloggers who sunk him were derisively called "a bunch of right-wing nuts sitting at their computers in pajamas." The bunch of right wingers immediately turned the pajamas slur into a salute, and formed the Pajamas Media.

I would like to be a member of the Pajamas Media, but I lack the uniform. I probably had PJs when I was little, but I outgrew them a long time - a very long time - ago, and never replaced them.

Not long ago I was faced with the need to wear pajamas at a Pajamas Birthday Party for the grandkids. In desperation I borrowed a robe.

What do you think? Is the robe a suitable substitute for pajamas, or is it too formal? Would a longer one help? If I bought PJs but never wore them, would I be acting like a Democrat, trying to exploit a technicality?

As in all things, image is important, and I want to do my part to uphold standards. Please advise.

Thursday, December 22, 2005

It's Legal If It Is Not Against The Law

Concerning the National Security Agency intercepts of international communications without warrants, the able constitutional lawyers and scholars at the Power Line Blog conclude:

"There are, of course, liberal law professors who would like the law to be different from what it is. They are free to develop theories according to which the Supreme Court, should it someday address this issue directly, would rule as they wish. But the administration is entitled to rely on the law as it currently exists. And there is simply no question about the fact that under the Constitution and all controlling precedents, the NSA intercept program is legal."

Unlike the Democrats, we believe in following the law as it is, not as they would wish it to be. For an excellent (and exhaustive) analysis, and the last word on this issue, go to this link to the article in Power Line. Be prepared to stay awhile, but when you are finished, you will know that the Democrats are not going anywhere with this "scandal." It is amazing that Democrats get all excited about President Bush doing something that Presidents Clinton and Carter did with impunity, and that the Democratic congressional leaders knew about all along.

To find out more on the legality of the NSA program.

And go here for the U. S. Department of Justice response.

And the affable Tony Snow adds his wisdom and insight.

As does Bill Bennett. Have I left out any useful commentators? Nope.

Those who want facts instead of misinformed opinions will come away satiated, and the rest will still be Democrats.

If the best minds on the Democrat side would leave the Democrats and join this group, the average IQ of both groups would fall.

Truly Democrats are the Hypocrisy Party.

Sunday, December 18, 2005




Seasons Greetings
December 14, 2005

Thanksgiving lingers into Christmas with us more each year as our Christmas letter resists being composed. Alice and I are more appreciative each year for our life together on this beautiful northern California coast, yet increasingly I am at a real loss for words to express our “thankfulness.” It’s not that I don’t have a lot of words at my disposal. Maybe I have too many. After 63 years, my words all have “tried and true” meanings, many of which don’t seem to fit as well as they used to.

Now, many of our friends and relatives are struggling with illness or injury. We are particularly thankful that they, like us, have lived in the most freedom and in the most prosperous times mankind has ever known. We wish them the best, especially in this sweet time of year.

We began this year with a trip to Thailand just a month after the Tsunami. We were in Bangkok two weeks, then took the Orient Express through Malaysia to Singapore for a couple of days, and returned to Thailand. We had planned a week in Phuket, but changed to Chiang Mai. For once I lost weight on a vacation, 6.6 pounds to be exact. I had help from a lot of fine folk at Bumrungrad Hospital in Bangkok. Alice luxuriated – daily massages, Oriental Express opulence, Singapore Zoo night safari, The Four Seasons in Chiang Mai, Monk Chat, elephant bare-neck riding – and I had fun, too.

We came back to Alice’s Reseda High Reunion (45 years) in beautiful downtown Burbank. After the reunion, I came home and Alice stayed in Canoga Park to help hostess a gala 90th birthday party for Ella Kittleson.

Alice then embarked on the Great Addition project to our house. We now have a 900 square-foot deck on the south side, an 800 square-foot sunroom with Endless Pool on the west side, and concrete retaining walls lining the driveway. It’s all finished except for some carpet, tile, and cabinet work, more plants all over the place, and decorative rock facing on the retaining walls. In other words, there’s still a lot more work to do.

We didn’t run for reelection to the School Board, so last week was the last meeting of our four-years in office. It was interesting and enjoyable, and we are proud we contributed to education improvements. Now others get a chance, and Alice will have more time for her first passion, her book club. I continue to indulge my passion, being a political “lightning rod” here, mostly through letters to our local paper. I have posted the letters, and other writings, on http://strongasanoxandnearlyassmart.blogspot.com/, my blog. I also enjoyed being interviewed for an hour on our local radio by a liberal friend, and will gladly share an audio tape of the show when he gives me a copy.

Next big trip - The Galapagos Islands and Ecuador in Jan-Feb, our first time to South America. Before we leave we will continue our perpetual Honeymoon with a week at the Donatello Hotel in San Francisco.

We wish you all a Merry Christmas, and a Happy Chanukah too.

Michael, Alice, and sweet little Buddy

Merry Christmas
Happy Chanukah

Buddy took the timed picture of us with him on the new deck by the redwood trees.

Saturday, December 17, 2005

What Price Security?

In the San Francisco Chronicle today, an article about Iraqi expatriates voting in California ended with a statement by Salam Hassan, a 30-year-old UC Berkeley student who arrived from Baghdad seven months ago. He said he was happy to vote and pleased Hussein was gone, but has grave concerns about his future in a homeland he called a worsening "war zone."

"When you finish, you have to give my life back. I don't need a theory about democracy," he said. "I want direct results that are in touch with my life. Give me food. Give me security. Give me work."

Salam, I hate to tell you this, but if someone is giving you your life back, and giving you food, security, and work, they own you. That was Saddam, Salam.

The “theory about democracy” you dismiss is the framework for getting your life back, also known as freedom. You need freedom if you want to choose your work, and thereby earn both your food and your security.

An example of freedom squandered for security follows.

We delivered food and gift boxes to families on a Native American reservation this morning. The reservation itself is in a beautiful setting - if Four Seasons saw it, they would eat their hearts out. Nestled in rolling hills, overlooking a river valley, the Pacific Ocean and a lighthouse are not far off. Tourists come from all over, and especially from the San Francisco Bay area less than 200 miles south.

Almost everyone on the reservation would qualify for Christmas charity packages. Most of the houses are unkempt, poorly maintained and surrounded by junk. The inhabitants have free housing, and support provided by government and by Indian gaming.

With a few notable exceptions, they are among the most miserable of Americans.They have the unbearable burden of being taken care of by a benevolent government. Better for them it should be malevolent, because then they would leave or revolt, or America would throw the tyrant out.
The Indians are all Democrats, and follow leaders who tell them that they are truly poor and unfortunate, but just think how much worse it would be if the Democrats weren't looking out for them.

Are you taking notes, Salam?

Friday, December 16, 2005

Brainwashed By The Main Stream Media

In his National Review Online article, Lancing the Boil, Victor Davis Hanson says many of us live in an "alternate" universe, when good is bad, up is down, and America is universally hated.

"For some time, a large number of Americans have lived in an alternate universe where everything is supposedly going to hell. If you get up in the morning to read the New York Times or Washington Post, watch John Murtha or Howard Dean on the morning talk shows, listen to National Public Radio at noon, and go to bed reading Newsweek it surely seems that the administration is incommunicado (cf. “the bubble”), the war is lost (“unwinnable”), the Great Depression is back (“jobless recovery”), and America about as popular as Nazi Germany abroad (“alone and isolated”).

But in the real adult world, the economy is red-hot, not mired in joblessness or relegating millions to poverty. Unemployment is low, so are interest rates. Growth is high, as is consumer spending and confidence. Our Katrina was hardly as lethal as the Tsunami or Pakistani earthquake. Thousands of Arabs are not rioting in Dearborn. American elderly don’t roast and die in the thousands in their apartments as was true in France. Nor do American cities, like some in China, lose their entire water supply to a toxic spill. Americans did not just vote to reject their own Constitution as in some European countries."

Read his whole article by clicking on his name linked above.

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

The Truth On The Ground In Iraq


The middle level officers and NCO's serving in Iraq don't agree with the Main Stream Media and popular assessment of how the war is going. They should know - they have been there, and many are going back. They have a lot more on the line than the politicians and pundits spouting the conventional wisdom that shapes the news from thousands of miles away.

"Although we hate leaving our families behind, many of us would rather go back to Iraq a hundred times than abandon the Iraqi people."

Follow this link for The Truth on the Ground.

And ask yourself, why can't the Democrats figure this out? Could it be that success in Iraq is the nightmare that makes them wake up screaming?

Europe - Thy Name is Cowardice

EUROPE - THY NAME IS COWARDICE (Commentary by Mathias Dapfner CEO, Axel Springer, AG)

"A few days ago Henry Broder wrote in Welt am Sonntag, "Europe - your family name is appeasement." It's a phrase you can't get out of your head because it's so terribly true.
Appeasement cost millions of Jews and non-Jews their lives as England and France, allies at the time, negotiated and hesitated too long before they noticed that Hitler had to be fought, not bound to toothless agreements."

This is the introduction to a remarkably candid assessment of Europe's policy of Muslim appeasement, and includes praise for the leadership of Presidents Ronald Reagan and George W. Bush, who I think will both live in history among the greatest leaders of all time. Click on this link to get the full story carried in Die Welt.

Sunday, December 11, 2005

Hoist With His Own Petard

ICO Editor

Please go here and watch the Retreat and Defeat video.

Democrats are screaming foul, that Republicans are representing Democratic leaders unfairly by showing them speaking their own words.

I must admit, it is a low blow anytime you show Howard Dean, speaking his mind, to anyone who is not a committed Dean follower - is there any Dean follower who is not "committed"?

Democratic Senator Joe Lieberman just got back from another trip to Iraq and says the Democrats are making a big mistake, the equivalent of trying to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory. Suddenly the Democrats don't like one of their most respected leaders anymore.

North Dakota Democrat Rep. Earl Pomeroy says: "My words to Howard Dean are simple - shut up."

My words to Howard Dean (and Nancy Pelosi and John Kerry) are also simple, and much more polite: Please don't shut up.

Dean backtracked on his statements somewhat, saying his assertion that the United States cannot win the war was reported "a little out of context."

(When Nancy Pelosi saw herself she probably thought: "That's not me. Only Barbara Boxer could be that stupid.") (CORRECTION: It was Barbara Boxer, not Nancy Pelosi. I can't tell those two Smurfettes apart. Barbara Boxer is that stupid! In fact, so is Nancy Pelosi.)

So watch the video yourself. Then I think you will agree that Howard Dean reports his own statements "a little out of context."

It's a neat trick, one that only the Democrats seem to have mastered - protesting furiously the unfairness of having yourself shown making ridiculous statements.

They probably think there's a law against anyone showing them making fools of themselves.

Friday, December 09, 2005

I Gave Up

I sent "United Nations Uber Alles" to the ICO twice the past two weeks, but it doesn't look like it is going to be published. This is unusual, especially if you saw what was published. One letter was particularly strange, about suspected spraying of some mysterious substance on us, with the delivery system masked as contrails of high flying jet aircraft. We do have some very strange people up here.

I met David Skibbins today, a frequent ICO contributor with whom I always find significant disagreement. He was our Rotary guest speaker. Seemed to be a very intelligent, nice fellow. A "psychological cheerleader," and a mystery writer. I had a nice chat with him, and bared my soul that I wanted to be a writer too. He encouraged me. He encourages people to identify their life's ambition, and then pursue it. If they follow his advice and do it, then he is well worth his $350 a month for three half-hour sessions. Maybe he is even if they don't grab their psychological "brass ring."

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

A Son Reports The Real War In Iraq

Welcome, Live Journal friends!

Здравствуйте! Как поживаете?

Спасибо за то, что посещать мой blog.

I enjoy visitors and hope you'll leave a comment.

You should really go to things I wrote, rather than just to this item I copied and posted. Here's an index I started to my political posts - Link to Political Posts. And to my non-political ones - this is an INDEX to them, and they cover growing up in a small town on the northern California coast, my over two decades in the Air Force, Alice's very successful business, & Etc. The & Etc. stuff is the most fun.

I think you will enjoy the humor, and maybe the conservative politics too. Or just hit "home" at the bottom of this post, and check out my latest.

I would love to have you browse around.

Major Mike

A friend sent me the following email. A father, of whom I know nothing, passes on what his son told him while on leave from Iraq. I can vouch for nothing, except that it has a ring of truth to it that you don't get from the Main Stream Media war reporters, who write like they are seeing the war from a far off place, and don't know an M16 from an F111. As an example, read the ludicrous reports of white phosphorus use in Fallujah, and how it carmelizes the skin without burning the covering clothing. And a bunch of so-called reporters passed it on as news! Can you believe it?!


The son's letter has also been posted in its entirety on the very good and very entertaining Atlas Shrugs, which is in the running for best new blog this year.


Anyway, this is his son's report:


Hello to all my fellow gunners, military buffs, veterans and interested guys. A couple of weekends ago I got to spend time with my son Jordan, who was on his first leave since returning from Iraq. He is well (a little thin), and already bored. He will be returning to Iraq for a second tour in early '06 and has already re-enlisted early for 4 more years. He loves the Marine Corps and is actually looking forward to returning to Iraq.

Jordan spent 7 months at "Camp Blue Diamond" in Ramadi. Aka: Fort Apache. He saw and did a lot and the following is what he told me about weapons, equipment, tactics and other miscellaneous info which may be of interest to you. Nothing is by any means classified.
No politics here, just a Marine with a bird's eye view's opinions:

1) The M-16 rifle: Thumbs down. Chronic jamming problems with the talcum powder like sand over there. The sand is everywhere. Jordan says you feel filthy 2 minutes after coming out of the shower. The M-4 carbine version is more popular because it's lighter and shorter, but it has jamming problems also. They like the ability to mount the various optical gun sights and weapons lights on the picanttiny rails, but the weapon itself is not great in a desert environment. They all hate the 5.56mm (.223) round. Poor penetration on the cinderblock structure common over there and even torso hits can't be reliably counted on to put the enemy down.

Fun fact: Random autopsies on dead insurgents show a high level of opiate use.

2) The M243 SAW (squad assault weapon): .223 cal. Drum fed light machine gun. Big thumbs down. Universally considered a piece of shit. Chronic jamming problems, most of which require partial disassembly. (that's fun in the middle of a firefight).

3) The M9 Beretta 9mm: Mixed bag. Good gun, performs well in desert environment; but they all hate the 9mm cartridge. The use of handguns forself-defense is actually fairly common. Same old story on the 9mm: Bad guys hit multiple times and still in the fight.

4) Mossberg 12ga. Military shotgun: Works well, used frequently for clearing houses to good effect.

5) The M240 Machine Gun: 7.62 Nato (.308) cal. belt fed machine gun, developed to replace the old M-60 (what a beautiful weapon that was!!). Thumbs up. Accurate, reliable, and the 7.62 round puts them down. Originally developed as a vehicle mounted weapon, more and more are being dismounted and taken into the field by infantry. The 7.62 round chews up the structure over there.

6) The M2 .50 cal heavy machine gun: Thumbs way, way up. "Ma deuce" is still worth her considerable weight in gold. The ultimate fight stopper, puts their dicks in the dirt every time. The most coveted weapon in-theater.

7) The .45 pistol: Thumbs up. Still the best pistol round out there. Everybody authorized to carry a sidearm is trying to get their hands on one. With few exceptions, can reliably be expected to put 'em down with a torso hit. The special ops guys (who are doing most of the pistol work) use the HK military model and supposedly love it. The old government model .45's are being re-issued en masse.

8) The M-14: Thumbs up. They are being re-issued in bulk, mostly in a modified version to special ops guys. Modifications include lightweight Kevlar stocks and low power red dot or ACOG sights. Very reliable in the sandy environment and they love the 7.62 round.

9) The Barrett .50 cal sniper rifle: Thumbs way up. Spectacular range and accuracy and hits like a freight train. Used frequently to take out vehicle suicide bombers (we actually stop a lot of them) and barricaded enemy. Definitely here to stay.

10) The M24 sniper rifle: Thumbs up. Mostly in .308 but some in 300 win mag. Heavily modified Remington 700's. Great performance. Snipers have been used heavily to great effect. Rumor has it that a marine sniper on his third tour in Anbar province has actually exceeded Carlos Hathcock's record for confirmed kills with OVER 100.

11) The new body armor: Thumbs up. Relatively light at approx. 6 lbs. and can reliably be expected to soak up small shrapnel and even will stop an AK-47 round. The bad news: Hot as shit to wear, almost unbearable in the summer heat (which averages over 120 degrees). Also, the enemy now goes for head shots whenever possible. All the bullshit about the "old" body armor making our guys vulnerable to the IED's was a non-starter. The IED explosions are enormous and body armor doesn't make any difference at all in most cases.

12) Night Vision and Infrared Equipment: Thumbs way up. Spectacular performance. Our guys see in the dark and own the night, period. Very little enemy action after evening prayers. More and more enemy being whacked at night during movement by our hunter-killer teams. We've all seen the videos.

13) Lights: Thumbs up. Most of the weapon mounted and personal lights are Surefire's, and the troops love 'em. Invaluable for night urban operations. Jordan carried a $34 Surefire G2 on a neck lanyard and loved it. I can't help but notice that most of the good fighting weapons and ordnance are 50 or more years old!!!!!!!!! With all our technology, it's the WWII and Vietnam era weapons that everybody wants!!!! The infantry fighting is frequent, up close and brutal. No quarter is given or shown.

Bad guy weapons:

1) Mostly AK47's The entire country is an arsenal. Works better in the desert than the M16 and the .308 Russian round kills reliably. PKM belt fed light machine guns are also common and effective. Luckily, the enemy mostly shoots like shit. Undisciplined "spray and pray" type fire. However, they are seeing more and more precision weapons, especially sniper rifles. (Iran, again)

Fun fact: Captured enemy have apparently marveled at the marksmanship of our guys and how hard they fight. They are apparently told in Jihad school that the Americans rely solely on technology, and can be easily beaten in close quarters combat for their lack of toughness. Let's just say they know better now.

2) The RPG: Probably the infantry weapon most feared by our guys. Simple, reliable and as common as dog shit. The enemy responded to our up-armored humvees by aiming at the windshields, often at point blank range. Still killing a lot of our guys.

3) The IED: The biggest killer of all. Can be anything from old Soviet anti-armor mines to jury rigged artillery shells. A lot found in Jordan's area were in abandoned cars. The enemy would take 2 or 3 155mm artillery shells and wire them together. Most were detonated by cell phone, and the explosions are enormous. You're not safe in any vehicle, even an M1 tank. Driving is by far the most dangerous thing our guys do over there. Lately, they are much more sophisticated "shape charges" (Iranian) specifically designed to penetrate armor. Fact: Most of the ready made IED's are supplied by Iran, who is also providing terrorists (Hezbollah types) to train the insurgents in their use and tactics. That's why the attacks have been so deadly lately. Their concealment methods are ingenious, the latest being shape charges in Styrofoam containers spray painted to look like the cinderblocks that litter all Iraqi roads. We find about 40% before they detonate, and the bomb disposal guys are unsung heroes of this war.

4) Mortars and rockets: Very prevalent. The soviet era 122mm rockets (with an 18km range) are becoming more prevalent. One of Jordan's NCO's lost a leg to one. These weapons cause a lot of damage "inside the wire". Jordan's base was hit almost daily his entire time there by mortar and rocket fire, often at night to disrupt sleep patterns and cause fatigue (It did). More of a psychological weapon than anything else. The enemy mortar teams would jump out of vehicles, fire a few rounds, and then haul ass in a matter of seconds.

5) Bad guy technology: Simple yet effective. Most communication is by cell and satellite phones, and also by email on laptops. They use handheld GPS units for navigation and "Google earth" for overhead views of our positions. Their weapons are good, if not fancy, and prevalent. Their explosives and bomb technology is TOP OF THE LINE. Night vision is rare. They are very careless with their equipment and the captured GPS units and laptops are treasure troves of Intel when captured.

Who are the bad guys?: Most of the carnage is caused by the Zarqawi Al Qaeda group. They operate mostly in Anbar province (Fallujah and Ramadi). These are mostly "foreigners", non-Iraqi Sunni Arab Jihadists from all over the Muslim world (and Europe). Most enter Iraq through Syria (with, of course, the knowledge and complicity of the Syrian govt.) , and then travel down the "rat line" which is the trail of towns along the Euphrates River that we've been hitting hard for the last few months. Some are virtually untrained young Jihadists that often end up as suicide bombers or in "sacrifice squads".Most, however, are hard core terrorists from all the usual suspects (Al Qaeda, Hezbollah, Hamas etc.) These are the guys running around murdering civilians en masse and cutting heads off. The Chechens (many of whom are Caucasian), are supposedly the most ruthless and the best fighters. (they have been fighting the Russians for years). In the Baghdad area and south, most of the insurgents are Iranian inspired (and led) Iraqi Shiites. The Iranian Shiia have been very adept at infiltrating the Iraqi local govt.'s, the police forces and the Army. The have had a massive spy and agitator network there since the Iran-Iraq war in the early 80's. Most of the Saddam loyalists were killed, captured or gave up long ago.

Bad Guy Tactics: When they are engaged on an infantry level they get their asses kicked every time. Brave, but stupid. Suicidal Banzai-type charges were very common earlier in the war and still occur. They will literally sacrifice 8-10 man teams in suicide squads by sending them screaming and firing Ak's andRPG's directly at our bases just to probe the defenses. They get mowed down like grass every time. (see the M2 and M240 above). Jordan's base was hit like this often. When engaged, they have a tendency to flee to the same building, probably for what they think will be a glorious last stand. Instead, we call in air and that's the end of that more often than not. These hole-ups are referred to as Alpha Whiskey Romeo's (Allah's Waiting Room). We have the laser guided ground-air thing down to a science. The fast mover's, mostly Marine F-18's, are taking an ever increasing toll on the enemy. When caught out in the open, the helicopter gunships and AC-130 Spectre gunships cut them to ribbons with cannon and rocket fire, especially at night. Interestingly, artillery is hardly used at all.

Fun fact: The enemy death toll is supposedly between 45-50 thousand. That is why we're seeing less and less infantry attacks and more IED, suicide bomber shit.The new strategy is simple: attrition. The insurgent tactic most frustrating is their use of civilian non-combatants as cover. They know we do all we can to avoid civilian casualties and therefore schools, hospitals and (especially) Mosques are locations where they meet, stage for attacks, cache weapons and ammo and flee to when engaged. They have absolutely no regard whatsoever for civilian casualties. They will terrorize locals and murder without hesitation anyone believed to be sympathetic to the Americans or the new Iraqi govt. Kidnapping of family members (especially children) is common to influence people they are trying to influence but cant reach, such as local govt. officials, clerics, tribal leaders, etc.).

The first thing our guys are told is "don't get captured". They know that if captured they will be tortured and beheaded on the internet. Zarqawi openly offers bounties for anyone who brings him a live American serviceman. This motivates the criminal element who otherwise don't give a shit about the war. A lot of the beheading victims were actually kidnapped by common criminals and sold to Zarqawi. As such, for our guys, every fight is to the death. Surrender is not an option. The Iraqi's are a mixed bag. Some fight well, others aren't worth a shit. Most do okay with American support. Finding leaders is hard, but they are getting better. It is widely viewed that Zarqawi's use of suicide bombers, en masse, against the civilian population was a serious tactical mistake. Many Iraqi's were galvanized and the caliber of recruits in the Army and the police forces went up, along with their motivation. It also led to an exponential increase in good intel because the Iraqi's are sick of the insurgent attacks against civilians. The Kurds are solidly pro-Americanand fearless fighters.

According to Jordan, morale among our guys is very high. They not only believe they are winning, but that they are winning decisively. They are stunned and dismayed by what they see in the American press, whom they almost universally view as against them. The embedded reporters are despised and distrusted. They are inflicting casualties at a rate of 20-1 and then see shit like "Are we losing in Iraq" on TV and the print media. For the most part, they are satisfied with their equipment, food and leadership. Bottom line though, and they all say this, there are not enough guys there to drive the final stake through the heart of the insurgency, primarily because there aren't enough troops in-theater to shut down the borders with Iran and Syria. The Iranians and the Syrians just can't stand the thought of Iraq being an American ally (with, of course, permanent US bases there).

Thursday, December 01, 2005

United Nations Uber Alles

ICO Editor

While enjoying Thanksgiving with Alice’s daughters and families in Walnut Creek, I just have to take a minute and thank David Skibbins for his suggestion to turn the fate of the Iraqis over to the United Nations. I can’t think of any other organization that has demonstrated time and time again to be utterly incapable of such a responsibility, and I thank Mr. Skibbins for presenting me the opportunity to point this out.

Not long ago I mentioned that 800,000 Rwandans were slaughtered on Bill Clinton’s watch. I now add that before, during, and after the slaughter the United Nations had the responsibility for “peacekeeping” in Rwanda.

The United Nations also had peacekeeping responsibility in Yugoslavia, while 260,000 were slaughtered. More than ten years later, troops are still stationed to keep the peace, and meaningful elections haven’t been held yet.

UN peacekeepers have raped and sexually exploited women and children that they are supposed to be protecting.

The UN hasn’t done much to stop the genocide in Sudan, either.

The United Nations demonstrated corruption and incompetence of the highest degree in establishing and conducting the “Oil-for-Food” (OFF) program. This pet Kofi Annan program enabled Saddam to bribe officials in France, Germany, Russia, and to reward corrupt politicians like George Galloway in the UK. In return, Saddam amassed a fortune in kickbacks that he used to pay for smuggled armaments and to build lavish palaces for himself and his cronies. While Saddam milked OFF, the Iraqi children starved and died from diseases that could have been prevented if the UN had done its job honestly and competently.

Mr. Skibbins wants us to pay the UN what we owe. I see no reason to pay the UN for doing nothing except abuse their responsibilities, especially since they seem to be able to collect much more dishonestly.

The UN puts the Mafia to shame.