Friday, August 31, 2007

Louisiana Guv Blanco (DEMOCRAT) Testifies Nursing Home Patients Are On Their Own In Disasters!

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Evacuation was 'individual responsibility,' Blanco testifies
By Paul Rioux
Times Picayune

August 29, 2007

ST. FRANCISVILLE -- Taking the witness stand Tuesday in the St. Rita's nursing home trial, Gov. Kathleen Blanco said she did everything she could to sound the alarm as Hurricane Katrina bore down on southeast Louisiana two years ago today, but that the government must ultimately rely on the "individual responsibility" of its residents to heed those warnings.

In three hours of testimony, the governor defended her response to Katrina in what amounted to a mini-trial within the trial as attorneys for Sal and Mabel Mangano argued that the government was largely responsible for the deaths of 35 elderly residents who drowned at the couple's nursing home in St. Bernard Parish.

Blanco said she declared a state of emergency three days before Katrina's landfall and held frequent news conferences to alert the public. "My message was very, very simple," the governor said. "I wanted people to understand that this is potentially the biggest storm we will ever deal with, and I urged people over and over to protect themselves and their families by evacuating."

After the unprincipled pounding that President Bush took for the Federal Government's role in the Katrina disaster, it's amazing that the same people who point fingers at Bush still shrug off any local or state responsibility.

Those of us who recall the disaster vividly also recall the news stories about the failure of Louisiana's Governor to allow the Federal Government to take over evacuation and initial recovery efforts. I refer anyone needing a refresher course on the Blame Bush Game to review the Mike's America archives from that period.

Both Governor Blanco and New Orleans Mayor Nagin failed in their most basic responsibilities to implement any kind of effective evacuation plan even for their most vulnerable residents. But to suggest that nursing home patients have to fend for themselves is a new low, even for Democrats!

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Thursday, August 30, 2007

Quick Takes for Thursday August 30

No quote of the week this week. A rare joke instead:

Working people frequently ask retired people what they do to make their days interesting. Well, for example, the other day I went downtown and went into a shop. I was only there for about 5 minutes and when I came out there was a cop writing out a parking ticket.

I went up to him and said, "Come on, man, how about giving a retired person a break"? He ignored me and continued writing the ticket. So I called him a "Nazi".
He glared at me and started writing another ticket for having worn tires. So I called him a "Doughnut eating Gestapo". He finished the second ticket and put in on the windshield with the first.

Then he started writing a third ticket. This went on for about 20 minutes. The more I abused him, the more tickets he wrote.

Personally, I didn't care. I came downtown on the bus and the car that he was putting the tickets on had a bumper sticker that said "Hillary in '08."
I try to have a little fun each day now that I'm retired. It's important to my health.....

Hillary to Return SOME Tainted Campaign Money

It all depends on what the meaning of the word "return" is!

In the wake of the latest Clinton funny money scandal, Hillary Clinton's campaign has said it will give to charity the $23,000 that fugitive Norman Hsu gave to the campaign. It's unclear whether Hillary would eithe return or donate to charity the money given in bundles of campaign cash put together by Hsu including the palooza pile of Paw bucks Hsu collected from the family of a California mail carrier. It was the sudden, huge contributions from this middle class family which sparked the initial inquiries.

More questions continue to be raised regarding the timing of the release of Senator Craig's June 11 arrest on disorderly conduct and possible Clinton connections to Chinese communist agents.

President Bush Celebrates Katrina Rebuilding

For the second anniversary of the Hurricane Katrina disaster President Bush returned to New Orleans and Mississippi to get a first hand look at the progress.

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President George W. Bush helps hang a flag outside the new home of Gen White, Wednesday, Aug. 29, 2007, at a new housing development in New Orleans, during President Bush’s visit to New Orleans and the Gulf Coast region on the second anniversary of Hurricane Katrina. U.S. Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Alphonso Jackson is seen at left. White House photo by Shealah Craighead

Federal Contributions to Katrina Victims Larger than Marshall Plan for Reconstruction of Postwar Europe

Katrina collects a bundle
By Audrey Hudson and Sean Lengell
Washington Times
August 30, 2007

The flow of federal dollars to the Gulf Coast two years after Hurricanes Katrina and Rita devastated the region already exceeds what the U.S. spent on the Marshall Plan to rebuild Europe after World War II.

President Bush and Congress have committed more than $127 billion in resources and tax relief for the region — significantly more than inflation-adjusted $107.6 billion directed to 16 countries in Europe between 1947 and 1951.

"We dumped billions into Europe, but it was prepared to deal with it and used it to create a viable new economy," said Fred L. Smith Jr., president of the Competitive Enterprise Institute.

"At the moment, Louisiana's economy is very regulated and politicized; it's like pushing stones uphill while molasses flows downhill," Mr. Smith said. "The challenge is to make sure aid to Louisiana is matched or surpassed by their own self-help efforts, the need to incentivize and liberalize its economy and political rules."
Meanwhile, fraud continues to be a major obstacle to greater progress!

Illegal Alien with Tuberculosis to be Deported

Another strong reason for sound immigration control is to protect the public health. History buffs will recall that one of the primary purposes of Ellis Island was to prevent spread of communicable diseases from immigrants. That system no longer exists and now we're paying the price.
Teen Jailed Over TB to Face Deportation
Associated Press
Aug 30, 2007

LAWRENCEVILLE, Ga. (AP) - Officials started taking steps to deport a Mexican teenager who was jailed after refusing treatment for tuberculosis.

Francisco Santos, 17, has acknowledged to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents that he is in the country illegally, Gwinnett County Sheriff Butch Conway said Wednesday.

County health officials jailed Santos last week after he refused treatment for an active, contagious case of tuberculosis and threatened to travel to Mexico, a move that could expose more people to the potentially fatal disease. Santos, who lives in Duluth, has since started taking medicine, but he will remain jailed at least until a Sept. 5 hearing.

Conway said Santos' condition and age could further complicate a deportation process that can take months. Because he is a minor, officials would have to make sure he has family in Mexico or that the Mexican government would take a role.

Four people who had been living with Santos have also tested positive for tuberculosis, health officials said Wednesday.
The problem is compounded by the fact that many of these illegals share overcrowded dwellings where disease is more easily passed along.

More Good News from Iraq

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Thanks Imam Wordsmith for graphic finds!

Shi'ite leader declares cease-fire
By David R. Sands
Washington Times
August 30, 2007

Anti-American Iraqi Shi'ite cleric Muqtada al-Sadr yesterday ordered a six-month "freeze" of activities by his Mahdi Army militia, a force accused of attacking U.S.-led coalition forces and operating "death squads" targeting the country's Sunni Arab minority.

U.S. officials greeted the announcement with caution, but the move could provide a significant boost for the security "surge" now under way in Baghdad and other parts of the country. Aides to Sheik al-Sadr confirmed the young cleric's order included a ban on all attacks on U.S. and coalition forces in the country.
So Mokie Al Sadr, who fled to Iran when the surge began is now trying to take the heat off? Hmm... wonder if it has anything to do with President Bush targeting Iranian agents in Iraq?

Bush to American Legion: U.S. Military Authorized to Confront Iran's "Murderous Activities" in Iraq

It's another in a series of speeches on this important topic that deserves to be read in full
President Bush Addresses the 89th Annual National Convention of the American Legion
Reno, Nevada
White House transcript
August 28, 2007

...Shia extremists, backed by Iran, are training Iraqis to carry out attacks on our forces and the Iraqi people. Members of the Qods Force of Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps are supplying extremist groups with funding and weapons, including sophisticated IEDs. And with the assistance of Hezbollah, they've provided training for these violent forces inside of Iraq. Recently, coalition forces seized 240-millimeter rockets that had been manufactured in Iran this year and that had been provided to Iraqi extremist groups by Iranian agents. The attacks on our bases and our troops by Iranian-supplied munitions have increased in the last few months -- despite pledges by Iran to help stabilize the security situation in Iraq.

Some say Iran's leaders are not aware of what members of their own regime are doing. Others say Iran's leaders are actively seeking to provoke the West. Either way, they cannot escape responsibility for aiding attacks against coalition forces and the murder of innocent Iraqis. The Iranian regime must halt these actions. And until it does, I will take actions necessary to protect our troops. I have authorized our military commanders in Iraq to confront Tehran's murderous activities.
We've conducted operations against Iranian agents supplying lethal munitions to extremist groups. We've targeted Shia death squads and their supply networks.
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President Bush hugs veteran at American Legion in Reno. If only the lefties could feel the love!

Latest GOP Presdidential Straw Poll

Has Fred Thompson waited too long to get in?

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Clinton "Experience" in Fundraising Raises New Questions

Another Chinese Funny Money Scandal?

In a recent memo, Mark Penn, Chief Strategist to the Hillary for President campaign touted the candidate's "experience" most of which was based on her time in the White House as First Lady.
While reminiscing about the glory days of the former Clinton Administration might sell to some Democrats who would prefer to return to an era where we stuck our heads in the sand, some of us have other recollections of that period of history.

Even Democrats recall that not all was sweetness and light during the Clinton years. In a campaign appearance, presidential candidate John Edwards said: "The American people deserve to know that their presidency is not for sale, the Lincoln bedroom is not for rent."

Edwards brought it all back again. The renting of the Lincoln Bedroom (guest list here, those White House "Coffees" (list here)which improperly used the White House for fundraising.

But worse than that, we're reminded of what the Washington Post called "The Exploits of Charlie Trie." You remember Charlie don't you? He was the owner of a Chinese Restaurant in Little Rock, Arkansas who all of a sudden found himself in possession of large bags of money orders which he delivered to the DNC for various Clinton campaign and legal defense purposes. Trie, John Huang and Johnny Chung, were responsible for raising $2.2 million – or 79 percent – of the $2.8 million in questionable or illegal contributions returned by the DNC in 1998. Ties to Chinese Communists became clear as the scandal unfolded.

The Washington Post has the Senate Governmental Affairs Committee's report: "Investigation on Illegal or Improper Activities in Connection With The 1996 Federal Election Campaigns" if you want to freshen up your recall on just what Clinton "experience" means.

Take the Clinton "Experience" Quiz

The Washington Post also has this fun and interactive game where you connect the names and photos of participants in the Clinton campaign financing saga with their role in the story. What role did GOP presidential candidate Fred Thompson play?

New Clinton-Chinese Funny Money Scandal?

What is it with the Clintons that the stink of corruption just keeps following them around? Just when Hillary Clinton is touting her experience as the wife of a former President another curious link to funny money fundraising involving persons of Chinese descent emerges.

This time, it's not a Chinese restaurant in Little Rock, but the owners of a gift shop in California living in a very modest house near San Francisco (photo right).

All of a sudden, every member of the Paw family, who voted only "sporadically," began making very large campaign contributions to Democrats and to Hillary Clinton in 2004.

And a wealthy New York businessman by the name of Norman Hsu, who at one point also listed this modest home as his residence, is one of Hillary Clinton's biggest contributors.

It's important to note that campaign financing laws make it a crime to reimburse someone for making a contribution with the intention of disguising the real contributor or seeking to get around contribution limits.

With hundreds of Democrat-led Congressional investigations daily demanding accountability from Bush officials I'm wondering when that same standard will be applied to the "experience" of Hillary Clinton. I'm not holding my breath!

UPDATE: Fundraising King Hsu a fugitive from justice!

The Los Angeles Times reports today that "For the last 15 years, California authorities have been trying to figure out what happened to a businessman named Norman Hsu, who pleaded no contest to grand theft, agreed to serve up to three years in prison and then seemed to vanish."

Why do criminals seem to gravitate towards the Clintons?

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at PhotobucketI'm reminded of the photo of Hillary Clinton and Jorge Cabrera, a convicted drug smuggler, who gave the right amount of cash and got this photo at a White House Christmas party as his reward.

Clearly Cabrera didn't give enough, or he would have gotten a pardon like fugitive Marc Rich.

Johnny Chung, (photo below with fellow Chinese political enthusiasts) also didn't give enough apparently. He was convicted for illegal contributions to the Clintons.

Chung once said: ""I see the White House is like a subway -- you have to put in coins to open the gates." He was talking about the $50,000 he gave Hillary Clinton's top aide while seeking VIP treatment at the White House.

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Watch for the next Hsu Shoe to drop!

Like many of the previous Clinton fundraising scandals, how long will it be before a link is discovered between Hsu and the Chinese government? We all know the Chinese buy the cheapest products available, even those tainted by poison.

Monday, August 27, 2007

Bill Moyers Attack Machine Continues to Dog Rove And Fox News

And Bill Moyers is being subsidized at PBS with tax payer money!

By now you might have heard the vicious attack Bill Moyers of PBS launched against Karl Rove. This report comes from the Public Broadcast System Ombudsman, Michael Getler:

The Ombudsman Column
The Gift That Keeps on Giving
By Michael Getler
August 24, 2007

...Moyers, of course, produces informative and often powerful public affairs programs and has a large and loyal following. But he also draws fire from others for his approach to some issues and that, for the most part, is what keeps an ombudsman busy.

So, here we go again. Last Friday, Aug. 17, Moyers ended his program with what can only be described (by me) as an editorial. Here's the transcript of how Moyers bid farewell to White House political strategist Karl Rove:
BILL MOYERS: There is, of course, more to be said. What struck me about my fellow Texan, Karl Rove, is that he knew how to win elections as if they were divine interventions. You may think God summoned Billy Graham to Florida on the eve of the 2000 election to endorse George W. Bush just in the nick of time, but if it did happen that way, the good lord was speaking in a Texas accent.

Karl Rove figured out a long time ago that the way to take an intellectually incurious draft-averse naughty playboy in a flight jacket with chewing tobacco in his back pocket and make him governor of Texas, was to sell him as God's anointed in a state where preachers and televangelists outnumber even oil derricks and jack rabbits. Using church pews as precincts Rove turned religion into a weapon of political combat — a battering-ram, aimed at the devil's minions, especially at gay people.

It's so easy, as Karl knew, to scapegoat people you outnumber, and if God is love, as rumor has it, Rove knew that, in politics, you better bet on fear and loathing. Never mind that in stroking the basest bigotry of true believers you coarsen both politics and religion.

At the same time he was recruiting an army of the lord for the born-again Bush, Rove was also shaking down corporations for campaign cash. Crony capitalism became a biblical injunction. Greed and God won four elections in a row — twice in the lone star state and twice again in the nation at large. But the result has been to leave Texas under the thumb of big money with huge holes ripped in its social contract, and the U.S. government in shambles — paralyzed, polarized, and mired in war, debt and corruption.

Rove himself is deeply enmeshed in some of the scandals being investigated as we speak, including those missing emails that could tell us who turned the attorney general of the United States into a partisan sock-puppet. Rove is riding out of Dodge City as the posse rides in. At his press conference this week he asked God to bless the president and the country, even as reports were circulating that he himself had confessed to friends his own agnosticism; he wished he could believe, but he cannot. That kind of intellectual honesty is to be admired, but you have to wonder how all those folks on the Christian right must feel discovering they were used for partisan reasons by a skeptic, a secular manipulator. On his last play of the game all Karl Rove had to offer them was a Hail-Mary pass, while telling himself there's no one there to catch it.

One long angry and vicious attack directed at Karl Rove, President Bush, conservatives and Christians. And all being produced with taxpayer money!

And of course the same liberals who say "how dare you question my patriotism" even though no one has, seem perfectly willing to attack someone for their personal religious beliefs.

Ombudsman Getler goes on to describe the simple process by which he debunked Moyer's phony, personal attack against Rove's religious beliefs. Any person desiring to maintain their intellectual integrity would have had just as easy a time discovering the truth, or avoiding making a statement without any evidence to support it. But as we've learned from liberal commenters here at Mike's America, intellectual integrity never gets in their way if they can help it.

Fox News Asks Rove to Respond. Moyers Attacks Again!

On Sunday, August 19, Karl Rove appeared as Chris Wallace's guest on Fox News Sunday (transcript). When asked about Moyer's description of his faith, Rove told Wallace: "

Fox News Sunday
August 19, 2007

ROVE: I'm a Christian. I go to church. I'm an Episcopalian. I think he may have taken a comment that I made where I was talking about how — I have had colleagues at the White House — Mike Gerson, Pete Wayner (ph), Leslie Drune (ph), Josh Bolten and others — who I'm really impressed about how their faith has informed their lives and made them really better people.And it took a comment where I acknowledged my shortcomings in living up to the beliefs of my faith and contrasted it with how these extraordinary people have made their faith a part of their fiber.And somehow or another he goes from taking it from me being an Episcopalian wishing I was a better Christian to somehow making me into a agnostic. You know, Mr. Moyers ought to do a little bit better research before he does another drive-by slander.
When faced with a more complete set of facts, a wiser person might remain silent. Someone with integrity might apologize for the error. But Moyers, Like most liberals, when caught making an error laden smear against a conservative, his impulse is to attack again.

Moyers did just that. The following video is from Fox News Sunday, August 26 with Chris Wallace reading a letter Moyer's sent in response to Rove's interview the previous week:

Wallace responds that Moyers failed to follow basic journalism "101" methods which would have saved Moyers the personal embarrassment he seems so intent on calling attention to.

And of course in leftie land, any response to a Democrat smear attack is denounced as an attack. And the Wallace response is no exception.

How corrupting it is to be able to say or do anything, then when anyone dares criticize you, you simply insist that the person responding to your attack is the one attacking.

Further proof, not that any was needed, of how deranged these lefties have become!

Saturday, August 25, 2007

Three Undeniable Truths About U.S. Efforts in Iraq

The bottom line is that the surge is working!

Whether it's the reports of U.S. generals on the ground in Iraq, or pro-Victory adherents in the United States or even former anti-war Democrat politicians who have recently returned from Iraq, three undeniable truths have emerged:

One: Civilian and U.S. troop deaths are down.

Two: Former Sunni opponents are now on our side.

Three: Al Queda is being destroyed.

It seems every day there is more evidence coming from a variety of sources to support those three conclusions. Two of the latest:
Our troops have earned more time
By Brian Baird, US Congressman (D-WA)
Seattle Times
August 24, 2007

...As a Democrat who voted against the war from the outset and who has been frankly critical of the administration and the post-invasion strategy, I am convinced by the evidence that the situation has at long last begun to change substantially for the better. I believe Iraq could have a positive future. Our diplomatic and military leaders in Iraq, their current strategy, and most importantly, our troops and the Iraqi people themselves, deserve our continued support and more time to succeed.
Knowing all this, how can someone who opposed the war now call for continuing the new directions that have been taken in Iraq? The answer is that the people, strategies and facts on the ground have changed for the better and those changes justify changing our position on what should be done.
Our soldiers are reclaiming ground and capturing or killing high-priority targets on a daily basis. Sheiks and tribal groups are uniting to fight against the extremists and have virtually eliminated al-Qaida from certain areas. The Iraqi military and police are making progress in their training, taking more responsibility for bringing the fight to the insurgents and realizing important victories. Businesses and factories that were once closed are being reopened and people are working again. The infrastructure is gradually being repaired and markets are returning to life.
[T]o walk away now from the recent gains would be to lose all the progress that has been purchased at such a dear price in lives and dollars. As one soldier said to me, "We have lost so many good people and invested so much, It just doesn't make sense to quit now when we're finally making progress. I want to go home as much as anyone else, but I want this mission to succeed and I'm willing to do what it takes. I just want to know the people back home know we're making progress and support us."

From a strategic perspective, if we leave now, Iraq is likely to break into even worse sectarian conflict. The extremist regime in Iran will expand its influence in Iraq and elsewhere in the region. Terrorist organizations, the people who cut off the heads of civilians, stone women to death, and preach hatred and intolerance, will be emboldened by our departure. In the ensuing chaos, the courageous Iraqi civilians, soldiers and political leaders who have counted on us will be left to the slaughter. No American who cares about human rights, security and our moral standing in the world can be comfortable letting these things happen.

Our citizens should know that this belief is shared by virtually every national leader in the Middle East. There is also near-unanimity among Iraq's neighbors and regional leaders that partition of Iraq is not an option.
Progress is being made and there is real reason for hope. It would be a tragic waste and lasting strategic blunder to let the hard-fought and important gains slip away, leaving chaos behind to haunt us and our allies for many years to come.
In press appearances, Congressman Baird has also echoed the sentiments of the New York Times Baghdad Bureau Chief John F. Burns who earlier said that talk of withdrawal would make political reconciliation more difficult.
Senator Warners Bad Withdrawal Symptoms
By Ralph Peters, Reporting from Fallujah, Iraq
New York Post
August 25, 2007

...Out here in Anbar Province, al Qaeda did what religion-driven extremists always do eventually - they over-reached, setting the bar so high that nonfanatics couldn't measure up (nor did they want to). The terrorists responded with a campaign of slaughter against their fellow Muslims.

Now the Sunni Arabs who were fighting so bitterly against us are fighting beside us to destroy al Qaeda in Iraq. And the terrorists are going down.

Out here in Anbar Province - long the most troubled in Iraq - the change has come so swiftly and thoroughly that it's dazzling. Marines who were under fire routinely just months ago are now directing their former enemies in battle.

Although this trend has been reported, our battlefield leaders here agree that the magnitude of the shift hasn't registered back home: Al Qaeda is on the verge of a humiliating, devastating strategic defeat - rejected by their fellow Sunni Muslims.

If we don't quit, this will not only be a huge practical win - it'll be the information victory we've been aching for.

No matter what the Middle Eastern media might say, everyone in the Arab and greater Sunni Muslim world will know that al Qaeda was driven out of Iraq by a combination of Muslims and Americans.

Think that would help al Qaeda's recruitment efforts? Even now, the terrorists have to resort to lies about their prospective missions to gain recruits.

With the sixth anniversary of 9/11 approaching, how dare we throw away so great a potential victory over those who attacked our country?

Forget the anti-war nonsense you hear. The truth is that our troops want to continue this struggle. I know. I'm here. And I'm listening to what they have to say. They're confident as never before that we're on the right path.

Should we rob them of their victory now and enhance al Qaeda by giving them a free win? How can we even contemplate quitting now?

I've been sitting down with Iraqis, too - including former enemies. They don't want us to leave. They finally cracked the code. They need us. And although they've got a range of their own goals (not all of them tending toward Jeffersonian democracy), they're unified in their hatred of al Qaeda.

Yesterday I listened as an American officer sought to restrain Iraqi security forces from attacking one of al Qaeda's last strongholds prematurely - the local rage toward al Qaeda goes deeper than any column could communicate.

If our former enemies are willing to kill our enduring enemies, why abandon them?

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Do We Listen to Soldiers Who Have Earned the Right to be Heard?

We're told by the left that pro-defeat activisit Cindy Sheehan, whose son Casey was killed in Iraq after twice volunteering for the Army, has "absolute moral authority" to oppose the Iraq War.

And in that absurd "Chicken Hawk" argument, we're told that pro-victory activists who have not served in the military should have no say in discussing the issue of Iraq.

So now, one wonders how long it will be before the pro-defeat crowd, many of whom are nothing more than parasites on the freedom won by others, will dismiss the statements of these Iraq vets, all of whom have suffered greivous wounds in Iraq and the statements of surviving family members of those who died in Iraq.

The following is one of four ads currently being run on radio and television by Freedoms Watch:

See the remaining ads at Freedoms Watch. They are available at You Tube and you are encouraged to post them on your own web page.

If you don't have a web page, or you'd just like to help more, please consider making a donation to Freedoms Watch. They're working on an online contribution link, so please check it often.

Thanks Wake Up America for highlighting this worthy effort!

Iraqi Hero Dies to Save American Troops/ Civilians

“Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends."
Iraqi Killed Saving U.S. Troops
August 23, 2007

An Iraqi man saved the lives of four U.S. Soldiers and eight civilians when he intercepted a suicide bomber during a Concerned Citizens meeting in the town of al-Arafia Aug. 18.

The incident occurred while Soldiers from 3rd Squadron, 1st Cavalry Regiment, were talking with members of the al-Arafia Concerned Citizens, a volunteer community group, at a member’s house.

"I was about 12 feet away when the bomber came around the corner," said Staff Sgt. Sean Kane, of Los Altos, Calif., acting platoon sergeant of Troop B, 3-1 Cav. "I was about to engage when he jumped in front of us and intercepted the bomber as he ran toward us. As he pushed him away, the bomb went off."

The citizen’s actions saved the lives of four U.S. Soldiers and eight civilians.

Kane felt the loss personally because he had met and interacted with his rescuer many times before the incident.

"He was high-spirited and really believed what the group (Concerned Citizens) was doing," Kane said. "I have no doubt the bomber was trying to kill American Soldiers. It was very calculated the way the bomber tried to do it. If he hadn’t intercepted him, there is no telling how bad it could have been."

Kane believes the citizen is a hero.

"He could have run behind us or away from us, but he made the decision to sacrifice himself to protect everyone. Having talked with his father, I was told that even if he would have known the outcome before hand, he wouldn’t have acted differently."

Capt. Brian Gilbert, of Boise, Idaho, the commander of Company D, 1st Battalion, 15th Infantry Regiment, currently attached to 3-1 Cavalry, echoed Kane’s sentiment.

"I spoke with the father," Gilbert said. "He said he has no remorse in his son’s death because he died saving American Soldiers."

Later that night, the Concerned Citizens group contacted the local National Police director, Lt. Col. Samir, with the location of the al-Qaeda cell believed to be responsible for the attack. The National Police immediately conducted a raid that resulted in four arrests.

Despite the citizen’s death, Gilbert is encouraged by the cooperation between citizens and the Iraqi National Police.

"The effort of the Concerned Citizens group has made the area much safer," he said. "They are proud of who they are and their area, and want to get rid of the terrorists in their area."

Gilbert also praised the Iraqi National Police’s role in eliminating insurgents in the area.

"The cooperation between them and the Concerned Citizens has been key," Gilbert said. "The NP has done a great job of responding to the tips they have been given by the group."

Gilbert said he believes the area is improving because of the efforts of local citizens. The death, while unfortunate, demonstrated how close many in the area have become with the American Soldiers operating there.

"I consider many in the town friends, and I know they feel the same," Gilbert said. "This is a tough situation, but we’ll move on and try to prevent things like this from happening again. I’ve talked with his family and told them how brave their son was. This is a huge loss for everyone involved."

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Busy Bush "Vacation"

If this is a vacation, what is work like?

President Bush started his annual summer "vacation" meeting with the new French President, the pro-American Nicolas Sarkozy, who dropped over from his own vacation in nearby New Hampshire to visit with the Bush family at their Kennebunkport, Maine retreat.

Yesterday, President Bush was in Canada, where the "most pro-American leader in the Western world," Prime Minister Stephen Harper hosted a summit with the U.S. and Mexico.

Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper (C) stands with US President George W. Bush (L) and Mexican President Mexican President Felipe Calderon following a joint press conference 21 August 2007 at the Security and Prosperity Partnership (SPP) summit in Montebello, Quebec. AFP PHOTO/Mandel NGAN

Later that day he stopped by Minneapolis, Minnesota to check on the progress of recovery from the bridge disaster.

President George W. Bush is joined by Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty, U.S. Senator Amy Klobuchar, Minneapolis Mayor R.T. Rybak and other federal, state and local officials, at a briefing Tuesday, Aug. 21, 2007 at the Minneapolis/St. Paul Air Reserve Station, on the recovery efforts at the I-35W bridge collapse site and the flash flooding in southeastern Minnesota. White House photo by Chris Greenberg

And now today, he was off to the Veterans of Foreign Wars convention in Kansas City, Missouri. It's a long speech, but in a day when the issues confronting us truly are grave, affecting the life of each and every American, the very least we can do is read and consider the President's words. This speech is loaded with the historical context that is often too lacking in discussion on Iraq and the current war on terror. The audio is here. A pared down excerpt follows:

President Bush Attends Veterans of Foreign Wars National Convention, Discusses War on Terror
Kansas City, Missouri
White House transcript
August 22, 2007

...I stand before you as a wartime President. I wish I didn't have to say that, but an enemy that attacked us on September the 11th, 2001, declared war on the United States of America. And war is what we're engaged in. The struggle has been called a clash of civilizations. In truth, it's a struggle for civilization. We fight for a free way of life against a new barbarism -- an ideology whose followers have killed thousands on American soil, and seek to kill again on even a greater scale.

We fight for the possibility that decent men and women across the broader Middle East can realize their destiny -- and raise up societies based on freedom and justice and personal dignity. And as long as I'm Commander-in-Chief we will fight to win. (Applause.) I'm confident that we will prevail. I'm confident we'll prevail because we have the greatest force for human liberation the world has ever known -- the men and women of the United States Armed Forces. (Applause.)

For those of you who wear the uniform, nothing makes me more proud to say that I am your Commander-in-Chief. Thank you for volunteering in the service of the United States of America. (Applause.)
Thank you all for letting me come by. I want to open today's speech with a story that begins on a sunny morning, when thousands of Americans were murdered in a surprise attack -- and our nation was propelled into a conflict that would take us to every corner of the globe.

The enemy who attacked us despises freedom, and harbors resentment at the slights he believes America and Western nations have inflicted on his people. He fights to establish his rule over an entire region. And over time, he turns to a strategy of suicide attacks destined to create so much carnage that the American people will tire of the violence and give up the fight.

If this story sounds familiar, it is -- except for one thing. The enemy I have just described is not al Qaeda, and the attack is not 9/11, and the empire is not the radical caliphate envisioned by Osama bin Laden. Instead, what I've described is the war machine of Imperial Japan in the 1940s, its surprise attack on Pearl Harbor, and its attempt to impose its empire throughout East Asia.

Ultimately, the United States prevailed in World War II, and we have fought two more land wars in Asia. And many in this hall were veterans of those campaigns. Yet even the most optimistic among you probably would not have foreseen that the Japanese would transform themselves into one of America's strongest and most steadfast allies, or that the South Koreans would recover from enemy invasion to raise up one of the world's most powerful economies, or that Asia would pull itself out of poverty and hopelessness as it embraced markets and freedom.

The lesson from Asia's development is that the heart's desire for liberty will not be denied. Once people even get a small taste of liberty, they're not going to rest until they're free. Today's dynamic and hopeful Asia -- a region that brings us countless benefits -- would not have been possible without America's presence and perseverance. It would not have been possible without the veterans in this hall today. And I thank you for your service. (Applause.)

There are many differences between the wars we fought in the Far East and the war on terror we're fighting today. But one important similarity is at their core they're ideological struggles. The militarists of Japan and the communists in Korea and Vietnam were driven by a merciless vision for the proper ordering of humanity. They killed Americans because we stood in the way of their attempt to force their ideology on others. Today, the names and places have changed, but the fundamental character of the struggle has not changed. Like our enemies in the past, the terrorists who wage war in Iraq and Afghanistan and other places seek to spread a political vision of their own -- a harsh plan for life that crushes freedom, tolerance, and dissent.

Like our enemies in the past, they kill Americans because we stand in their way of imposing this ideology across a vital region of the world. This enemy is dangerous; this enemy is determined; and this enemy will be defeated. (Applause.)

We're still in the early hours of the current ideological struggle, but we do know how the others ended -- and that knowledge helps guide our efforts today. The ideals and interests that led America to help the Japanese turn defeat into democracy are the same that lead us to remain engaged in Afghanistan and Iraq.

The defense strategy that refused to hand the South Koreans over to a totalitarian neighbor helped raise up a Asian Tiger that is the model for developing countries across the world, including the Middle East. The result of American sacrifice and perseverance in Asia is a freer, more prosperous and stable continent whose people want to live in peace with America, not attack America.

At the outset of World War II there were only two democracies in the Far East -- Australia and New Zealand. Today most of the nations in Asia are free, and its democracies reflect the diversity of the region. Some of these nations have constitutional monarchies, some have parliaments, and some have presidents. Some are Christian, some are Muslim, some are Hindu, and some are Buddhist. Yet for all the differences, the free nations of Asia all share one thing in common: Their governments derive their authority from the consent of the governed, and they desire to live in peace with their neighbors.

Along the way to this freer and more hopeful Asia, there were a lot of doubters. Many times in the decades that followed World War II, American policy in Asia was dismissed as hopeless and naive. And when we listen to criticism of the difficult work our generation is undertaking in the Middle East today, we can hear the echoes of the same arguments made about the Far East years ago.

In the aftermath of Japan's surrender, many thought it naive to help the Japanese transform themselves into a democracy. Then as now, the critics argued that some people were simply not fit for freedom.

Some said Japanese culture was inherently incompatible with democracy. Joseph Grew, a former United States ambassador to Japan who served as Harry Truman's Under Secretary of State, told the President flatly that -- and I quote -- "democracy in Japan would never work." He wasn't alone in that belief. A lot of Americans believed that -- and so did the Japanese -- a lot of Japanese believed the same thing: democracy simply wouldn't work.

Others critics said that Americans were imposing their ideals on the Japanese. For example, Japan's Vice Prime Minister asserted that allowing Japanese women to vote would "retard the progress of Japanese politics."

It's interesting what General MacArthur wrote in his memoirs. He wrote, "There was much criticism of my support for the enfranchisement of women. Many Americans, as well as many other so-called experts, expressed the view that Japanese women were too steeped in the tradition of subservience to their husbands to act with any degree of political independence." That's what General MacArthur observed. In the end, Japanese women were given the vote; 39 women won parliamentary seats in Japan's first free election. Today, Japan's minister of defense is a woman, and just last month, a record number of women were elected to Japan's Upper House. Other critics argued that democracy -- (applause.)

There are other critics, believe it or not, that argue that democracy could not succeed in Japan because the national religion -- Shinto -- was too fanatical and rooted in the Emperor. Senator Richard Russell denounced the Japanese faith, and said that if we did not put the Emperor on trial, "any steps we may take to create democracy are doomed to failure." The State Department's man in Tokyo put it bluntly: "The Emperor system must disappear if Japan is ever really to be democratic."

Those who said Shinto was incompatible with democracy were mistaken, and fortunately, Americans and Japanese leaders recognized it at the time, because instead of suppressing the Shinto faith, American authorities worked with the Japanese to institute religious freedom for all faiths. Instead of abolishing the imperial throne, Americans and Japanese worked together to find a place for the Emperor in the democratic political system.
You know, the experts sometimes get it wrong. An interesting observation, one historian put it -- he said, "Had these erstwhile experts" -- he was talking about people criticizing the efforts to help Japan realize the blessings of a free society -- he said, "Had these erstwhile experts had their way, the very notion of inducing a democratic revolution would have died of ridicule at an early stage."

Instead, I think it's important to look at what happened. A democratic Japan has brought peace and prosperity to its people. Its foreign trade and investment have helped jump-start the economies of others in the region. The alliance between our two nations is the lynchpin for freedom and stability throughout the Pacific. And I want you to listen carefully to this final point: Japan has transformed from America's enemy in the ideological struggle of the 20th century to one of America's strongest allies in the ideological struggle of the 21st century. (Applause.)

Critics also complained when America intervened to save South Korea from communist invasion. Then as now, the critics argued that the war was futile, that we should never have sent our troops in, or they argued that America's intervention was divisive here at home.
Throughout the war, the Republicans really never had a clear position. They never could decide whether they wanted the United States to withdraw from the war in Korea, or expand the war to the Chinese mainland. Others complained that our troops weren't getting the support from the government. One Republican senator said, the effort was just "bluff and bluster." He rejected calls to come together in a time of war, on the grounds that "we will not allow the cloak of national unity to be wrapped around horrible blunders."
Many of these criticisms were offered as reasons for abandoning our commitments in Korea. And while it's true the Korean War had its share of challenges, the United States never broke its word.

Today, we see the result of a sacrifice of people in this room in the stark contrast of life on the Korean Peninsula. Without Americans' intervention during the war and our willingness to stick with the South Koreans after the war, millions of South Koreans would now be living under a brutal and repressive regime. The Soviets and Chinese communists would have learned the lesson that aggression pays. The world would be facing a more dangerous situation. The world would be less peaceful.

Instead, South Korea is a strong, democratic ally of the United States of America. South Korean troops are serving side-by-side with American forces in Afghanistan and in Iraq. And America can count on the free people of South Korea to be lasting partners in the ideological struggle we're facing in the beginning of the 21st century. (Applause.)
Finally, there's Vietnam. This is a complex and painful subject for many Americans. The tragedy of Vietnam is too large to be contained in one speech. So I'm going to limit myself to one argument that has particular significance today. Then as now, people argued the real problem was America's presence and that if we would just withdraw, the killing would end.
In 1972, one antiwar senator put it this way: "What earthly difference does it make to nomadic tribes or uneducated subsistence farmers in Vietnam or Cambodia or Laos, whether they have a military dictator, a royal prince or a socialist commissar in some distant capital that they've never seen and may never heard of?" A columnist for The New York Times wrote in a similar vein in 1975, just as Cambodia and Vietnam were falling to the communists: "It's difficult to imagine," he said, "how their lives could be anything but better with the Americans gone." A headline on that story, date Phnom Penh, summed up the argument: "Indochina without Americans: For Most a Better Life."

The world would learn just how costly these misimpressions would be. In Cambodia, the Khmer Rouge began a murderous rule in which hundreds of thousands of Cambodians died by starvation and torture and execution. In Vietnam, former allies of the United States and government workers and intellectuals and businessmen were sent off to prison camps, where tens of thousands perished. Hundreds of thousands more fled the country on rickety boats, many of them going to their graves in the South China Sea.

Three decades later, there is a legitimate debate about how we got into the Vietnam War and how we left. There's no debate in my mind that the veterans from Vietnam deserve the high praise of the United States of America. (Applause.) Whatever your position is on that debate, one unmistakable legacy of Vietnam is that the price of America's withdrawal was paid by millions of innocent citizens whose agonies would add to our vocabulary new terms like "boat people," "re-education camps," and "killing fields."

There was another price to our withdrawal from Vietnam, and we can hear it in the words of the enemy we face in today's struggle -- those who came to our soil and killed thousands of citizens on September the 11th, 2001. In an interview with a Pakistani newspaper after the 9/11 attacks, Osama bin Laden declared that "the American people had risen against their government's war in Vietnam. And they must do the same today."

His number two man, Zawahiri, has also invoked Vietnam. In a letter to al Qaeda's chief of operations in Iraq, Zawahiri pointed to "the aftermath of the collapse of the American power in Vietnam and how they ran and left their agents."
We must remember the words of the enemy. We must listen to what they say. Bin Laden has declared that "the war [in Iraq] is for you or us to win. If we win it, it means your disgrace and defeat forever." Iraq is one of several fronts in the war on terror -- but it's the central front -- it's the central front for the enemy that attacked us and wants to attack us again. And it's the central front for the United States and to withdraw without getting the job done would be devastating. (Applause.)
Recently, two men who were on the opposite sides of the debate over the Vietnam War came together to write an article. One was a member of President Nixon's foreign policy team, and the other was a fierce critic of the Nixon administration's policies. Together they wrote that the consequences of an American defeat in Iraq would be disastrous.

Here's what they said: "Defeat would produce an explosion of euphoria among all the forces of Islamist extremism, throwing the entire Middle East into even greater upheaval. The likely human and strategic costs are appalling to contemplate. Perhaps that is why so much of the current debate seeks to ignore these consequences." I believe these men are right.

In Iraq, our moral obligations and our strategic interests are one.
recognize that history cannot predict the future with absolute certainty. I understand that. But history does remind us that there are lessons applicable to our time. And we can learn something from history. In Asia, we saw freedom triumph over violent ideologies after the sacrifice of tens of thousands of American lives -- and that freedom has yielded peace for generations.

The American military graveyards across Europe attest to the terrible human cost in the fight against Nazism. They also attest to the triumph of a continent that today is whole, free, and at peace. The advance of freedom in these lands should give us confidence that the hard work we are doing in the Middle East can have the same results we've seen in Asia and elsewhere -- if we show the same perseverance and the same sense of purpose.

In a world where the terrorists are willing to act on their twisted beliefs with sickening acts of barbarism, we must put faith in the timeless truths about human nature that have made us free.
The greatest weapon in the arsenal of democracy is the desire for liberty written into the human heart by our Creator. So long as we remain true to our ideals, we will defeat the extremists in Iraq and Afghanistan. We will help those countries' peoples stand up functioning democracies in the heart of the broader Middle East. And when that hard work is done and the critics of today recede from memory, the cause of freedom will be stronger, a vital region will be brighter, and the American people will be safer.
I don't think I have heard a better, fuller, more comprehensive explanation of why Iraq is important than the words above.

Pretty good for a man who is supposed to be on vacation!

God Hates Mexico and Loves Bush?

Bush hater said Hurricane Dean was God's punishment for Bush and Texas!

On August 17th, The Feldman Blog said:

It’s coming.

Hurricane Dean, soon to be up graded to a full blown Category 5 hurricane, is taking aim at Texas…the state that gave us George W. Bush. In fact,this could be a second punishing blow to the Tex-assians. Flash flooding from Tropical Storm Erin has already swept away people in the San Antonio area.

While forecasters try to explain why mother nature seems bent on unleashing her fury on the Long Star state, the bigger question to ponder is–is this weather so foul ,God’s retribution for giving onto the world George W?? (Think that last line got me on some FBI/CIA watch list?)

It is something to seriously consider. The Bible is filled with accounts of divine retribution and if there is one thing God ought to be pissed about ,(or at least embarrased about) it’s Baby Bush….and maybe that the iPhone’s battery is all but impossible to replace when it wears out in a year or so.

Keeping with this religious theme…if it is true that man is created in God’s image, the thought that the almighty might look like George W is enough to convert someone to Satan.
What an ass. And a STUPID ass to boot!

Of course Hurricane Dean totally missed Texas. It was the third strongest storm ever recorded as it hit the Yucatan Peninsula of Mexico as a full force Category 5 storm. It's now sputtering out in the interior of Mexico hundreds of miles from the border with Texas.

How does someone get so clearly poisoned by hate that they would suggest the sight of "George W is enough to convert someone to Satan?"

Something tells me this fool was already well on his way to the dark side before Bush came along!

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

This Just In: Seattle Ferries Beware!

This item of particular mention for our Seattle readers:
FBI manhunt for two suspicious men on Washington ferries
August 21, 2007
Seattle, Washington - The Seattle FBI has published a photo of two men who "exhibited unusual behavior" on Washington state ferries in an attempt to identify the pair.

"They seemed to have undue interest in the layout and the workings of the ferry and the ferry terminal," said Seattle FBI Special Agent Robbie Burroughs.

FBI spokeswoman Robbie Burroughs said the men have been reported by passengers and, while their behavior may have been innocuous, investigators would like to talk to the men.
Anyone riding Seattle Ferries should beware!

Quick Takes for Tuesday August 21

Catching up on a host of procrastinated posts!

Quotes That Come in Handy

“A lie gets halfway around the world before the truth has a chance to get its pants on.”
Winston Churchill

"War is an ugly thing, but not the ugliest of things. The decayed and degraded state of moral and patriotic feeling which thinks that nothing is worth war is much worse. The person who has nothing for which he is willing to fight, nothing which is more important than his own personal safety, is a miserable creature and has no chance of being free unless made and kept so by the exertions of better men than himself. "
John Stuart Mill

"The most important and serious issue today for the whole world is this Third World War, which the Crusader-Zionist coalition began against the Islamic nation. It is raging in the land of the two rivers. The world's millstone and pillar is in Baghdad, the capital of the caliphate....The Whole World Is Watching This War And The Two Adversaries; The Islamic Nation, On The One Hand, And The United States And Its Allies On The Other. It Is Either Victory And Glory Or Misery And Humiliation."
Osama bin Laden 12/28/2004

Dem Campaign Gems

While not memorable or useful in the same sense as the quotes above, these little nuggets from two spouses in the Democrat presidential nominating campaign are illuminating:

"We can't make John black, we can't make him a woman."
Elizabeth Edwards, cancer-stricken spouse of candidate John Edwards said in an interview in August."

"If you can't run your own house, you can't run the White House." Michelle Obama told a campaign audience in Iowa. While not mentioning Hillary Clinton by name, the implication to the Clinton scandals is clear.

Hail Hillary: Surge is "Working"

In a sure sign that Hillary Clinton sees her nomination as the Democrat candidate for President as inevitable, she ignored the catfight her rivals spouses tried to start with her and demonstrated the unique Clinton skill of speaking out of both sides of her mouth simultaneously.

Hillary, who was FOR the surge, before she was AGAINST it now seems to be FOR it again now that it's working. Echoing her other recent public statements, when asked about the Surge in Iraq she told attendees at the Veterans of Foreign Wars convention in Kansas City, Missouri : "It's working."

And she's repeated again that despite her desire to end the war, as posted at her web site, she continues to support an indefinite U.S. presence in Iraq.

Meanwhile, Hillary's been making hay running against the Bush Administration in her newest ad about people who are "invisible" to Bush (here at You Tube).

In the ad she parades the usual list of Democrat victims in desperate need of Federal help, without which life isn't worth living.

Lots of people have been having fun with this one. If you haven't heard the audio that our favorite radio talk show host added to the video, look here. It seems lots of people are invisible to Mrs. Clinton. The White House Travel Office employees she had fired, Juanita Broadderick, Paula Jones, Jennifer Flowers, Monica Lewinsky and MORE.... All invisible to Hillary.

In another of those interminable Democrat debates, Hillary was asked at a Sunday Iowa debate how she intended to counter the Republicans: " I have been fighting against these people for longer than anybody else up here." So apparently, "fighting" is a better way to address the concerns of the "invisible" than working with Republicans?

Watch any Democrat Town Hall style meeting on C-Span and you'll see and endless parade of victims complaining about poor education, health care, etc. Republicans are always blamed for whatever the victim of the day is talking about. And yet, trillions of taxpayer dollars have been spent on a massive bureaucracy and transfers of wealth to address every one of the issues Hillary's "invisible" voter has, and the problems still persist?

Seems to me that after so many years of Democrat promises their legacy of delivering, even when they control both Houses of Congress AND the White House is weak. Will we ever have an "exit strategy" for the War on Poverty or are a perpetual victim class more important to Democrats running for office?

One final hit from the VFW convention: Hillary said she wanted to restore America's image abroad. "People have to root for America," she said. "They have to want to be on our side."

Let's take a fuller look at that in the next item shall we?

French Foreign Minister in Iraq: New Page in U.S. Relations

Ten days ago, President Bush welcomed new French President Nicolas Sarkozy, who was vacationing in nearby New Hampshire, to stop by the Bush family retreat in Kennebunkport, Maine. President Sarkozy pledged to restore the historic friendship between the French and America.

In a clear sign that this "new tone" in relations between France and the United States is more substantial than mere symbolism, French Foreign Minister, Bernard Kouchner, made a surprise visit to Iraq last Sunday (shown right with Iraq's foreign minister, Hoshyar Zebari ).

As co-founder of the Nobel prize-winning Medecins Sans Frontieres (Doctors without Borders) Kouchner, regarded as center left in French politics, supported U.S. actions to remove Saddam Hussein (BBC bio here)

In Paris the foreign ministry said, Kouchner was in ''Iraq to express a message of solidarity from France to the Iraqi people and to listen to representatives from all communities." and to "turn the page" and look to the future.

"Everyone knows that the Americans cannot bring this country out of difficulty all alone," he told France's RTL radio from Baghdad.

"Now we are turning the page. There is a new perspective. We want to talk about the future. Democracy, integrity, sovereignty, reconciliation, and stopping the killings. That's my deep aim," Kouchner said after meeting with Iraq's foreign minister, Hosyhar Zebari.

In a hint of where France might engage in Iraq, Foreign Minister Kouchner visited the UN's Headquarters in Baghdad, which was the site of a horrific bombing that killed UN special envoy Sergio Vieira de Mello and 19 other people. The two men were personal friends.

Bush Leadership: America Respected, Admired & Validated Abroad

Muse again on the statement of Hillary Clinton: "People have to root for America," she said. "They have to want to be on our side."

Like the perennial victim trot at every Democrat Town Hall meeting, implying America isn't respected in the world and needs allies is a constant Democrat campaign staple.

And yet, does that campaign theme recognize the reality of the last few years? The French example is just ONE of many. Just two months ago, President Bush concluded a European tour which ended in a euphoric visit to Albania. Only a Democrat could forget the statement of the Albanain Prime Minster:
"Among us is the greatest and most distinguished guest we have ever had in all times, the President of the United States of America, the leading country of the free world, George W. Bush."

Courtyard Council of MinistersTirana, Albania June 10, 2007

In a post on that visit, I remarked on this incredible image:

Leaders of the G8 sit on a canopied bench after meeting with Junior G8 Student Leaders Thursday, June 7, 2007, in Heiligendamm, Germany. From left, and under their respective country flags, are: Prime Minister Shinzo Abe of Japan; Prime Minister Stephen Harper of Canada; President Nicolas Sarkozy of France; Chancellor Angela Merkel of Germany, President George W. Bush of the United States; Prime Minister Tony Blair of the United Kingdom; Prime Minister Romano Prodi of Italy, and Jose Manuel Barroso, President of the European Commission. White House photo by Eric Draper

Go right down that row! Most of these leaders have been elected or re-elected in the last few years on a platform of more conservative, more pro-American policies. That's quite an achievement!

More Democrat Latecomers to Surge Success

And as the change in attitudes towards the U.S by formerly difficult allies like France continues to improve, the attitudes of previously defeatist Democrats, and Republican Iraq doubters also continues to soften:
Statement of Senator Carl Levin, Chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee, and Senator John Warner, Former Chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee

We completed a very productive two-day visit to Iraq on August 18. We came to Iraq to assess the progress being achieved by “the surge,” whose purpose is to provide Iraqi politicians with the “breathing space” to achieve political reconciliation and to evaluate the extent to which they are taking advantage of the opportunity.
We have seen indications that the surge of additional brigades to Baghdad and its immediate vicinity and the revitalized counter-insurgency strategy being employed have produced tangible results in making several areas of the capital more secure. We are also encouraged by continuing positive results -- in al Anbar Province, from the recent decisions of some of the Sunni tribes to turn against al Qaeda and cooperate with coalition force efforts to kill or capture its adherents.
We note the continuing improvement in the ability and willingness of the Iraqi Army to conduct combat operations against the insurgents.
Reid, Pelosi Continue to Be Fleeced by Left "Supporters"

As Congressional poll approval numbers continue to plummet, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Leader Reid continue to walk the tightrope between their radical defeatist supporters and the new reality emerging in Iraq.

Even their best friends on the left are turning on them as evidenced in this ad from the ACLU regarding their position on the terrorist monitoring law recently updated by Congress to allow the Bush Administration to track the communications of terrorists overseas.

Saturday, August 18, 2007

"She Called"

Pure Inspiration!

Thanks to Grizzly Mama for finding this inspirational gem. I'm not much for spoken rap, but there's something about the inspirational, unifying message here that strikes me as something you might hear in one of our SC old-Southern African American churches.

But the author/artist isn't a Southern Preacher but a Staff Sergeant in the U.S. Marine Corps and stationed at Cherry Point Marine Corps Air Station in North Carolina.

The video, which appeared anonymously on You Tube has caught fire and developed a nationwide following.

This IS a must see:

In an interview with Black Five, we learn that the author/artist is SSGT Lawrence E. Dean II who describes that the inspiration came from his Grandmother and it was initially she who called to ask why he would fight.

SSGT Dean reminds us that when we were attacked, we put aside (briefly) our differences on race and political issues and that unity is what motivates him to fight to defend all our rights to be free and disagree.

SSGT Dean delivered another rendition of "She Called" in front of a local war memorial (NC?) and introduces his performance with further explanation. In it he describes how the September 11th attacks weren't just something that happened to people in New York, or at the Pentagon or a field in Pennsylvania. It happened to all Americans regardless of race or political affiliation.

She called...
Lyrics posted at Bad Ass Marine

Blacks, Whites...wait
African Americans and Caucasians, Asians, excuse me.
Vietnamese, Filipinos, Koreans and Jamaicans or
Haitians, waitin' Hispanics y'all.

Please be patient
Mexican, Puerto Ricans, Venezuelan, Cuban, Dominican, Panamanian Democrats
I beg your pardon, you partied with the late, great Reagan?
Republican, Independent, Christian, Catholic,
Methodist, Baptist, 7th Day Adventist, 5 Percenters,
Hindu, Sunii Muslim, Brothers and Sisters who never seen the New York city
skyline when the twin towers still existed.
But still She called.

From the bowels of Ground Zero she sent this 911 distress signal.
Because She was in desperate need of a hero,
and didn't have time to decipher what to call 'em,
so she called 'em all Her children.
The children of the stars and bars who needed to know nothing more than the fact that she called.
The fact that someone attempted to harm us
this daughter who covered us all with her loving arms.
And now these arms are sprawled across New York City streets.
A smoke filled lung, a silt covered faced,
and a solitary tear poured out of her cheek.
Her singed garments carpets Pennsylvania Avenue and the Pentagon was under her feet.
As she began to talk, she began to cough up small particles of debris
and said, "I am America, and I'm calling on the land of the free."
So they answered.

All personal differences set to the side
because right now there was no time to decide which state building the Confederate flag should fly over,
and which trimester the embryo is considered alive,
or on our monetary units, and which God we should confide.
You see, someone attempted to choke the voice
of the one who gave us the right for choice,
and now she was callin.
And somebody had to answer.
Who was going to answer?

So they did.
Stern faces and chiseled chins.
Devoted women and disciplined men,
who rose from the ashes like a phoenix
and said "don't worry, we'll stand in your defense."
They tightened up their bootlaces
and said goodbye to loved ones, family and friends.
They tried to bombard them with the "hold on", "wait-a-minute's", and "what-if's".
And "Daddy, where you goin?".
And, "Mommy, why you leavin?".
And they merely kissed them on their foreheads and said "Don't worry, I have my reasons.
You see, to this country I pledged my allegiance
to defend it against all enemies foreign and domestic.
So as long as I'm breathin, I'll run though hell-fire,
meet the enemy on the front lines,
look him directly in his face,
stare directly in his eyes and scream,

And if by chance death is my fate,
pin my medals upon my chest,
and throw Old Glory on my grave.
But, don't y'all cry for me.
You see, my Father's prepared a place.
I'll be a part of his Holy army standing a watch at the Pearly Gates.
Because freedom was never free.
POW's, and fallen soldiers
all paid the ultimate sacrifice
along side veterans who put themselves in harms way.
Risking their lives and limbs just to hold up democracy's weight,
but still standing on them broken appendages anytime the National Anthem was played.
You see, these were the brave warriors that gave me the right
to say that I'm Black. Or white.


African American or Caucasian,
I'm Asian, excuse me.
I'm Vietnamese, Filipinos, Korean, or Jamaican.
I'm Haitian, Hispanic

Y'all, Please be patient.
I'm Mexican, Puerto Rican, Venezuelan, Cuban,
Dominican, Panamanian, Democrat
I beg your pardon, you see I partied with the late, great Reagan.
I'm Republican, Independent, Christian, Catholic,
Methodist, Baptist, 7th Day Adventist, 5 Percenters,
Hindu, Sunii Muslim,

Brothers and Sisters We're just Americans.
So with that I say
"Thank You" to the Army, Navy, Air Force, and Marines,
for preserving my rights
to live and die for this life
and paying the ultimate price for me to be...FREE!

Can I get an "AMEN?"

Friday, August 17, 2007

Let's All Call God "Allah" Maybe the Muzzies Will Like Us

The spirit of appeasement and stupidity is alive and well!

Bishop urges Christians to call God 'Allah'
Catholic leader believes it would help ease tensions between religions
WorldNet Daily
August 15, 2007

Catholic churches in the Netherlands should use the name Allah for God to ease tensions between Muslims and Christians, says a Dutch bishop.

Tiny Muskens, the bishop of Breda, told the Dutch TV program "Network" Monday night he believes God doesn't mind what he is called, Radio Netherlands Worldwide reported.

The Almighty is above such "discussion and bickering," he insisted.

Muskens points to Indonesia, where he served 30 years ago, as an example for Dutch churches. Christians in the Middle East also use the term Allah for God.

"Someone like me has prayed to Allah yang maha kuasa (Almighty God) for eight years in Indonesia and other priests for 20 or 30 years," Muskens said. "In the heart of the Eucharist, God is called Allah over there, so why can't we start doing that together?"

Muskens thinks it could take another 100 years, but eventually the name Allah will be used by Dutch churches, promoting rapprochement between the two religions, he said, according to Radio Netherlands.
And the result of this appeasement by Christians in Indonesia? Thousands have been murdered by Islamic terrorists, who also burn their villages and churches. It must have been very confusing for God with the Christians praying to Allah as they were being killed and muzzies were shouting "Allah" as they severed the Christians heads from their bodies.

If you can stomach it, view the horror this appeasement brings for yourself (WARNING: GRAPHIC IMAGE).

The Only Appeasement that Muslims Recognize is Conversion to Islam!

Islamic fanatics have been clear and consistent in their propaganda directed at the West. We either convert to Islam, submit to being ruled by Muslims under Sharia Law or be killed. Bin Laden made that message quite clear in his 2002 letter to the American People.

And when they say convert to Islam, they mean to the radical interpretation. It's not enough to be a Muslim and pray pointing towards Mecca five times a day. Look at the nightmare the Taliban inflicted on the Muslim people of Afghanistan if you want a taste of what living under radical Islam would be like.

Women are treated like property and subjected to genital mutilation to remove any sexual pleasure. Honor killings of female family members who refuse to marry according to their families (the males) wishes or who commit adultery. Men must grow beards and no one may listen to music, watch movies or use the internet. Anyone who converts from Islam to another religion will be killed.

Calling God "Allah" won't stop the madness of the Islamists. It will just encourage them to even greater acts of evil and barbarism.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Will Democrats Try and Steal "Bush's Victory?"

Will Democrats be FOR Victory after they were AGAINST it?

April 20, Senate Leader Harry Reid announced that "This war is lost."

And on June 3, Democrat Presidential candidate Hillary Clinton told the debate audience at Saint Anselm College, New Hampshire: "The Iraq War is Bush's war."

Those views were amplified and supported by every negative story coming out of Iraq the mainstream "news" media could find.

And now, one month before General Petraeus issues his report on the surge, the news and political dynamic is shifting. And the shift is being engineered by the very same "news" media that said we can't win just months before.

The first hint of this change was the astounding July 30th op-ed by Democrats O'Hanlon and Pollack in the New York Times. Their theme, "A War We Just Might Win" was echoed by other Democrat opponents of the war. Muslim Congressman Keith Ellison observed the change himself in once violent Ramadi. Democrat Whip, Senator Dick Durbin, who two years ago compared the actions of our troops in Guantanamo to Nazis, also found military progress in Iraq on a trip a week ago.

At the same time, the drumbeat from the liberal pundit class has been pounding out the message that we can't leave immediately from Iraq, no matter who the President is. And that same message is now being worked into Democrat presidential candidate's campaign positions.

Defeatists can put the following in their pipe and smoke it!

Hope and Despair in Divided Iraq
By Ullrich Fichtner in Iraq
Der Spiegel
August 10, 2007

When describing Iraq, the word "peace" is seldom used. Truth be told, the Americans have restored order to many parts of the county.
The Iraq war came within a hair of returning to Ramadi in early July. The attackers had already gathered four kilometers (about 2.5 miles) south of the city, on the banks of the Nasr canal. Between 40 and 50 men dressed in light uniforms were armed like soldiers and prepared to commit a series of suicide bombings. They had already strapped explosive vests to their bodies and loaded thousands of kilograms of explosives, missiles and grenades onto two old Mercedes trucks. But their plan was foiled when Iraqis intent on preserving peace in Ramadi betrayed them to the Americans.
Since June, Ramadi residents have only known the war from televison. Indeed, US military officials at the Baghdad headquarters of Operation Iraqi Freedom often have trouble believing their eyes when they read the reports coming in from their units in Ramadi these days. Exploded car bombs: zero. Detonated roadside bombs: zero. Rocket fire: zero. Grenade fire: zero. Shots from rifles and pistols: zero. Weapons caches discovered: dozens. Terrorists arrested: many.

An Irritating Contraction

Ramadi is an irritating contradiction of almost everything the world thinks it knows about Iraq -- it is proof that the US military is more successful than the world wants to believe. Ramadi demonstrates that large parts of Iraq -- not just Anbar Province, but also many other rural areas along the Tigris and Euphrates Rivers -- are essentially pacified today. This is news the world doesn't hear: Ramadi, long a hotbed of unrest, a city that once formed the southwestern tip of the notorious "Sunni Triangle," is now telling a different story, a story of Americans who came here as liberators, became hated occupiers and are now the protectors of Iraqi reconstruction.
Democrats Doing Triple Flip Flop

Hillary Clinton, who was for sending more troops to Iraq before she was against the surge pledged at her official campaign web site that she would take aggressive steps to end the war in Iraq. Yet Hillary and the entire top tier of Democrat presidential candidates have begun making statements which run counter to any immediate end of the war.

We might be witnessing a unique triple flip flop by every major Democrat and their media allies. First they were for more troops, then against the idea when Bush proposed it and now for the surge when it is shown to be working.

You can laugh all you want about Democrats political opportunism and indecisiveness, but we all remember who quickly it was that Democrats who insisted Iraq was an "imminent threat" (full rundown here) flipped to denying the Iraq War was anything but a mistake. And there is no denying they've ridden that lame jackass with some success.

Will Democrat Kook Base be So Forgiving?

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At a June appearance in Washington by Hillary Rodham Clinton, Rae Abileah protested American involvement in Iraq. NY Times Photo.

In the past, Democrats knew they can count on their media allies to ignore the laughable contradictions and weakness implied by ever shifting Democrat policy positions. And of course the extreme left which has hijacked the Democrat Party was a willing accomplice to the charade as long as it supported their demand to undermine and weaken the United States military.

But with Democrat presidential candidates openly declaring that if elected they will not immediately pull U.S. troops out of Iraq one wonders if the left wing kooks will continue to go along for for the ride?
Hillary poses as the militarist to win votes
by Robert Scheer, Creators Syndicate
San Francisco Chronicle
Wednesday, August 15, 2007

WHAT IN the world was Sen. Hillary Clinton thinking when she attacked Sen. Barack Obama for ruling out the use of nuclear weapons in going after Osama bin Laden? And why aren't her supporters more concerned about yet another egregious example of Clinton's consistent backing for the mindless militarism that is dragging this nation to ruin? So what that she is pro-choice and a woman if the price of proving her capacity to be commander in chief is that we end up with an American version of Margaret Thatcher?
Given her sorry record of cheerleading the emergence of a new military-industrial complex, do we not have a right, indeed an obligation, to question Clinton's commitment to creating a more peaceful world? Don't say that we weren't warned if a President Hillary Clinton further imperils our world, as she has clearly positioned herself as the leading hawk in the Democratic field.
Great, so forget the hope that a woman president might prove to be more enlightened than macho men in the matter of peacemaking, and instead rest assured that Hillary would have the cojones to "push the button" that would kill us all. Once again, the old Clintonian tactic of triangulation: positioning oneself politically instead of taking a position of integrity.
With Cindy Sheehan turning on House Democrats and vowing to run a largely symbolic campaign against House Speaker Nancy Pelosi it's no wonder that Congressman James Clyburn, Democrat Whip in the House of Represenatatives declared that a succesful surge "would be a problem" for Democrats.

While the 2006 election, which handed both the House and Senate to Democrats had more to do with Democrat's successful strategy to exploit Mark Foley or former Senator Allen's "macaca" comment; in several key districts it would be impossible to ignore that a virulent "get out of Iraq now" feeling drove defeatist Democrats to the polls.

Hillary Clinton can't win the White House without the left wing kook base. Many Democrat Congressional candidates would also be imperiled if the kooks stayed home in key districts.
So, you see the dangerous position that embracing the surge and VICTORY in Iraq brings to Democrats.

And voters will need to ask themselves one question before casting their ballot in 2008: If VICTORY is a good thing, which party has been for VICTORY all along?

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