Saturday, December 29, 2007
While on the topic is everyone aware that we have at least four different versions of the M16 in service currently. The M16A2, M16A3, M4, M4A1 now SOCOM has adopted the SCAR-L and SCAR-H. Plus the addition of the SASS Knight SR-25 also know as the XM110. Stop the freaking bus here. The Army is going to issue the M4 to frontline units the Marine Corps is issuing the M4 on an as need basis but is sticking with the A3 model with an ACOG scope. Ok I understand the need for a modular weapon and in fact encourage that but we need one weapons system here. The Pentagon brass are not going to change weapons unless a weapon is clearly superior to the M16/M4 series. Now SOCOM goes out and does their testing and signs a contract for the SCAR series. Who is going to support this in the field if the regular forces are using a different weapons system?
The military was on the verge of putting the XM-8 into production. Then this happened....
Following several complains about non-competitive procurement of the XM8 system from Heckler-Koch USA, US Army first opened the bidding for contract to other companies, and then, in the July 2005, suddenly suspended the entire OICW Increment 1 program to re-think the entire set of requirements for the possible replacement of current M16 rifles and M4 carbines. These requirements will be re-viewed as Joint Services effort. At the present time, it seems that development of HK XM8 is suspended; it may be resumed if XM8 suit the new US Joint Service Requirements for a new assault rifle system; or, it may not. We will watch this process closely and update this article when new information will be available. Owe and this cost us 31 million dollars!
What the hell. Our troops need the best weapons available period if there are issues with M4/M16 which there are in the current theaters of operations then get us a new rifle.
Oh and another point FN makes 70 percent of our militaries current weapons. SAW, M240, Mk 48 Mod 0. and parts for the M16/M4 and if the SCAR goes through those as well. It looks as if US companies cannot produce small arms anymore.
Monday, December 24, 2007
Sunday, December 23, 2007
Osama shut up and and bail what a great article. It seems the taliban have their own version of Bagdad Bob.
Another hole appeared in the Al Qaeda/ Taliban boat. The water is up around Osama’s knees, Zawahiri launched a new Q and A website (www.liars_r_us.com?), the Taliban voted in a “new” leader, relegated Omar to deputy and still the water is rising. Read the rest
Iran educates children to seek martydom.
You know I teach my kids how to play catch, fish, whatever these monsters teach their children to strap explosives to their back to kill the infidel. This is the money quote "Victory is not guaranteed, according to the books. It's either victory or collective martyrdom," said Dr. Arnon Groiss." Isnt this what Hitler wanted when he ordered götterdämmerung at the end of WW2.
I want our children to grow up and I want their children to grow up and the most aggresive thing we do to each other is on the playing field not the battlefield. Instead I am afraid my brother, friends and kids may have to fight them. What a waste.....
Friday, December 21, 2007
In 2002 Osama bin Laden in his "letter to the American people"
1. The first thing that we are calling you to is islam.
Well according the to quran he has to do that to follow the words of MO. Here are the three choices we get. Fight in the name of allah and in the way of allah. Fight against those who disbelieve in allah. Make a holy war....When you meet your enemies who are polytheists, invite them to three courses of action. If they respond to any one of these, you also accept it and withhold yourself from doing them any harm. Invite them to accept islam; if they respond to you, accept it from them and desist from fighting against them....If they refuse to accept islam, demand from the the Jizya(the poll-tax on non muslims). If they agree to pay, accept if from them and hold off your hands. If they refuse to pay the tax, seek allah's help and fight them.
Sura 9:5 Once the Sacred Months are past, (and they refuse to make peace) you may kill the idol worshipers when you encounter them, punish them, and resist every move they make. If they repent and observe the Contact Prayers (Salat) and give the obligatory charity (Zakat), you shall let them go. GOD is Forgiver, Most Merciful.
OK so you think I am cherry picking well no I am no.
Imam Jala al-Din Muhammad ibn Ahmad al-Mahalli (1389-1459) and Jalal al-Din (1445-1505) asserts that the ninth sura "was send down when security was removed by the sword" Say that the 9th Sura abrogates no fewer than 124 more peaceful and tolerant verses of the quran. Another commentator Isma'il bin Amr Kathir al Dimashqi (1301-1372) declared that sura 9:5 abrogated every agreement of peace between the prophet and any idolater, every treaty, and every term...No idolater had any more treaty of promise of safety since surah bara'ah (the ninth) sura was revealed.
Here is how the muslems are expected to fight.
sura 47:4 If you encounter (in war) those who disbelieve, you may strike the necks. If you take them as captives you may set them free or ransom them, until the war ends. Had GOD willed, He could have granted you victory, without war. But He thus tests you by one another. As for those who get killed in the cause of GOD, He will never put their sacrifice to waste
Interesting stats in Stars and Stripes from a few days ago, sorry I could not find the link.According to US Army Human Resources Command there are 515,000 Active Duty Soldiers.200,000 have one combat tour.70,000 have two combat tours.15,000 have three or more tours.59.5% of enlisted personnel have deployed.62% of officers have deployed.40.6% of the Active Duty Army has not deployed to Iraq or Afghanistan. They break down this way.1.6% are non-deployable due to medical conditions, legal status, or family problems.8.7% are in Initial Entry Training.10.8% are units scheduled to deploy.10% are in units deployed in other operational circumstances, i.e. Korea.0.6% are Drill Sergeants and Recruiters.27% are in health care. Taking care of our wounded warriors.7.2% have been identified for assignment to deploying units.To me the most interesting number is the number with three or more deployments. Reading screeds on the internet one might think most Soldiers were heading for their third or fourth deployment. Not true.Good information if you are talking about the state of the Army with people.
Wednesday, December 19, 2007
Read the rest
More from the Mad Mullah
Taliban supreme leader Mullah Omar vowed Tuesday to keep fighting throughout the winter and attack Afghan and international troops who drove his forces from a southern town last week."(as reported by Hong Kong service of the independent French press agency Agence France-Presse)
Torture Site and Large Weapons Cache found.
18 Dec 2007PR# 2007-735
Insurgents killed during attack in Paktika
KABUL, Afghanistan – ISAF units conducted an air strike in the Urgun District, Paktika Province, in southeastern Afghanistan yesterday killing several insurgents.
Taliban extremists fired several rockets in the vicinity of the city of Urgun, with the closet landing within one kilometer (.62 miles) of downtown Urgun. Most of the rockets landed in the vicinity of a nearby village causing fear and panic, but no deaths.
ISAF forces searched the area and observed five militants preparing to fire additional rockets. After positively identifying the militants and ensuring that there was no danger to the surrounding villages, an ISAF ground commander approved the use of precision munitions.
“ISAF ground and air forces communicated closely to ensure there were no Afghan civilians in danger during the strike,” said Major Christine Nelson-Chung, a spokeswoman for ISAF
Tuesday, December 18, 2007
JDAM strike in Helmand Province. Looks like the Taliban stronghold where 2500 taliban are ready to launch frontal assaults is folding.
Basra Given over to the Iraqis
Mortar Threat taken out
Special Groups Leader Captured
Violence Decline slowing Wa Post
Monday, December 17, 2007
Sunday, 16 December 2007
It is the holiday season and we all have received this most welcome present: the U.S. National Intelligence Estimate about Iran’s nuclear problem. Since 2003 the mullahs running Iran have, on their own and through their own goodwill, have ceased all activities aimed at acquiring the bomb, so says the report.
Read the rest
Old stuff but excellent
Saturday, December 15, 2007
The Democratic-led Congress authorized more Iraq war spending on Friday, sending President George W. Bush a defense bill requiring no change in strategy after failing again to impose a timetable for U.S. troop withdrawals.
The defense policy bill, approved 90-3 by the U.S. Senate, also expanded the size of the U.S. Army and set conditions on the Bush administration’s plan to build a missile defense system in Europe.
The measure already had passed the House of Representatives and now goes to Bush, who is expected to sign it into law. It authorizes Pentagon programs expected to cost $506.9 billion during fiscal 2008, which began in October.
Maybe they are finally seeing the light and noticing we are winning the war. Nah that would be too much to ask for. Dummys
Problem is the good southerns like this guy because he is one of them. Liking does not a good president make. Besides a good chunk of my family is mormon and I have no problems with them or Mitt. A candidate Christian affiliation is not important just as long as they are not a ROPer.
Thursday, December 13, 2007
Washington– With plummeting approval ratings and no legislative accomplishments to point to, Nancy Pelosi is melting down in the final days of the first session of the 110th Congress. Military success on the ground in Iraq also seems to be agitating the San Francisco Speaker who appears to be despondent over the fact that General Petraeus’ surge is working.
In a press conference today, Pelosi’s frustration manifested itself:
“The grassroots are justifiably disappointed, and I am too, that we could not do something to end this war. The assumption that I made, that the Republicans would soon see the light and listen to their constituents, was not an accurate one.”
“They like this war. They want this war to continue…” Pelosi’s desperation continues to grow as the clock appears to be running out on the Democrats. Their failure to address the nation’s problems like rising prices, the seemingly inevitable return of the alternative minimum tax, and their gross abdication of their responsibility to our troops in the field have left the Americans restless and angry at their incompetence.
Will Nancy Pelosi apologize before the House for her Pete Stark-like remarks? The American people and America’s men and women in uniform are waiting.
Tuesday, December 11, 2007
KALSU — An insurgent safehouse in
Arab Jabour was rendered useless, Dec.
4, by two joint direct attack ammunition
Although dropped by an Air Force
F-16 Falcon jet, the operation was
a combined effort conducted on the
ground by Soldiers of the 1st Battalion,
30th Infantry Regiment, 2nd Brigade
Combat Team, 3rd Infantry Division,
Fort Stewart, Ga., and members of a
Concerned Local Citizens (CLC) group
in the area.
The chain of events began Dec. 2,
when the CLCs conducted a daylight
search of a suspected insurgent base of
The citizens, led by Salah Mubarak,
conducted the mission after they experienced
a number of attacks around
the abandoned building, said Capt. Eric
Melloh, from Hunstville, Texas, commander,
Company A, 1-30th Inf. Regt.
Tired of the violence, local residents
including Mubarak’s cousin, who
owned the structure, took proactive
measures to stop the attacks.
SEVERAL MILITANTS KILLED, 10 DETAINED, TWO WOUNDED CIVILIANS FOUND AFTER HELMAND OPERATION
BAGRAM AIRFIELD, Afghanistan – Afghan and Coalition forces conducted an operation Sunday targeting insurgent networks in Helmand Province in which several militants were killed, 10 other militants were detained, and two civilians were wounded.
The combined force of Afghan and Coalition members conducted a search of compounds in the Musa Qaleh district targeting people associated with an insurgent weapons facilitator believed to have been killed in an earlier Coalition forces’ precision strike in the area.
The combined force detained 10 people suspected of having links to insurgent weapons facilitation networks. The detainees will be questioned regarding their involvement in weapons facilitation operations as well as other extremist activities.
Afghan and Coalition forces came under small-arms fire from several militants on one of the compounds while conducting their search of the area. Using a combination of accurate, conventional munitions and small-arms, the combined force returned fire, killing the militants.
Afghan and Coalition forces also performed an assessment of the precision munitions strike, finding several deceased militants at the impact site. Two teen-aged males were also found during the assessment who had sustained injuries during the course of the precision munitions strike.
Afghan and Coalition forces transported the wounded boys to a medical facility for treatment.
“Our thoughts and prayers go out to the wounded for a speedy recovery,” said Army Maj. Chris Belcher, Combined Joint Task Force 82 spokesman. “Afghan and Coalition forces make every effort to prevent injuries or deaths to civilians not taking part in hostilities. It is unfortunate when militant forces put innocent civilians at risk by conducting extremist operations in their midst.”
In other words they murfed some bad guys. The British are all about firepower and training. As much as I am not liking the British government right now HRM Army, Marines, Air Force are doing the forebear proud. This is about a professional army and the Brits have a long tradition of this.
Monday, December 10, 2007
Ministry spokesman Gen. Mohammad Zahir Azimi said Afghan, British and U.S. forces had "completely captured" Musa Qala, a town in the opium poppy growing belt of northern Helmand province. He said fighting is continuing around Musa Qala.
Afghan and international troops have stepped up operations around Musa Qala since early November, and fighting in the area has intensified in the last several days as forces advanced on the town.
Residents in Musa Qala told The Associated Press that Taliban militants fled the town's center Monday. A British military spokesman, Lt. Col. Richard Eaton, said he could not confirm that the Taliban had left the town's center but said he would not be surprised.
"This is what happens. We have had a number of operations in the past where once the Taliban realize they are overmatched, they tend to leave," Eaton said. "I wouldn't be surprised if that is the case here. Ultimately our aim is to take Musa Qala, and if we take Musa Qala without a big fight, that's fantastic."
Taliban militants overran Musa Qala in February, four months after British troops left the town following a contentious peace agreement that gave security responsibilities to Afghan elders.
So the great Taliban offensive never shows up. Classic insurgancey show up where goverment is thin. Fade when overwhelming force shows up.
Sunday, December 9, 2007
BAGRAM AIRFIELD, Afghanistan – Afghan National Security Forces and Coalition soldiers pushed back Taliban insurgents from Now Zad, Helmand Province, Dec. 5.
The combined force was conducting a reconnaissance patrol in Now Zad when Taliban insurgents attempted to ambush the patrol from established fighting positions. The enemy fired on the ANSF using small arms, rocket and mortar fire. The ANSF immediately returned small-arms and machine-gun fire, putting the enemy on the defensive.
The enemy moved to secondary positions in an attempt to flank friendly forces, as the battle escalated. ANSF identified the new enemy fighting positions and engaged with small arms, machine gun fire and precision air strikes.
The insurgents attempted to hide among the civilian population by moving into their homes.
“The enemy attempted to take advantage of the historic Afghan hospitality by using civilian homes as fighting positions,” the ANSF commander said. “Fortunately, the residents recognized the Taliban were abusing their hospitality and wanted no part of it.”
The Afghan civilians prevented them from using the compounds and its inhabitants as human shields. Tthe enemy executed a disorderly retreat and the ANSF continued to clear the village to ensure no insurgents remained.
“The ANSF and the citizens of Now Zad both demonstrated their resolve to eliminate the Taliban menace in northern Helmand Province,” said Army Maj. Chris Belcher, Combined Joint Task Force-82 spokesman. “Continued collaboration like we saw today is the key to bringing peace and stability to this country.”
There is also a fight brewing in Musa Qula as we type this. It is not in the news as it NATO and ANA operation. This is where the ISAF signed a peace treaty with local elders and the Talib moved in and took over and declared a victory over the crusaders. This is the same province that the local Talib commander says he has over 2500 fighter including 900 foreign fighters ready to launch frontal assaults and take over the whole province by winter.
From ISAF(ie NATO)
ANA, ISAF launch operation in Musa Qala
KABUL, Afghanistan – Troops from the Afghan National Army supported by ISAF Forces have been conducting operations in the north of Helmand since the beginning of November.
An operation to retake the town of Musa Qala has started today, Dec. 7. In order to assist the Afghan National Army, ISAF Forces have launched an insertion of troops by helicopter on the edge of the town. This operation will continue for the next few days.
More information will be given as it becomes available.
This is a continuation of the attack on Musa Quala please pray for the families in this holiday season.
ISAF soldier killed, one injured in southern Afghanistan
KABUL, Afghanistan – An ISAF soldier has been killed and another was injured in an explosion in southern Afghanistan today.
“We extend our deepest condolences to the family and friends of those who have died or been injured today while working to ensure a more stable future for the people of Afghanistan,” said Wing Commander Antony McCord, Regional Command South spokesperson.
Keep an eye out for Afghanistan as we start the winning in Iraq we are going to have to re-focus on Afghanistan especially with the worsening security situation in Pakistan. Our brave allies have done a great job in holding down Afghanistan. But do they have the stomach to increase forces to finish this or is it going to be up to Uncle Sam to bring in the forces with the invitation of the Afghan gov't of course to bring in the striking power to force the Talib back over the border and let the reconstruction begin behind them.
This is from CJTF-82 website
“Mujahidin” The Biggest Terrorist Lie.
The quote “If you are going to tell a lie, tell a big one.” is usually attributed to Adolf Hitler, his “Propaganda Minister” Joseph Goebbels also said “If you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it, people will come to believe it.” The Al Qaeda/Taliban propaganda machine has repeated one so often it has become part of our vernacular. The article below, recently posted to a terrorist website, demonstrates this quite well.
"Destroying nine cars belonging to an enemy convoy in the Qarabagh District in Ghazni Province”
“(Al-Hafiz/ Muhammad Yusuf)--At 1100 today [29 November], the mujahidin of the Islamic Emirate [of Afghanistan] attacked a logistics convoy of the foreign forces while it was passing through the Askarkot area of the Qarabagh District in Ghazni Province on the Kabul-Kandahar highway. As reported, during the one-hour attack, six supply trucks and three police SIRV [as received] cars were targeted by an RPG, completely destroying them. The convoy was then forced back. So far, the incinerated trucks and vehicles are still on the roadside. The attack was undertaken through an ambush. Praise be to God, none of the mujahidin was wounded. Since this morning and as of the preparation of this report, the Kabul-Kandahar highway has been blocked before the enemy vehicles and convoys. The day before yesterday, an enemy logistics convoy was also attacked in this area, incinerating 12 enemy trucks”
The heroic battle described above isn’t quite accurate. There were 6 trucks burned in the “one hour attack”, the logistics convoy was hired by Coalition Forces and consisted of Afghan civilian truck drivers and security guards. These men risk daily insurgent attacks as they attempt to earn a living and feed their families by transporting food, water, medical supplies and other items for the Coalition and the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan. There had been an ambush of the same type a few miles away the previous day but only one truck was disabled and the insurgents did not have time to steal the cargo or destroy the truck. The usual tactics for these ambushes are to spread them out over 10 to 15 miles, as trucks are hit and disabled they “fall out” of the convoy, the few security vehicles stay with the convoy where they can protect the majority of the trucks. These convoys are a favorite target of the insurgents; the security guards manage to safeguard most of the trucks until they reach a Police Station or can call for help on a cell phone. In the meantime, the insurgents can terrorize and sometimes murder the innocent truck drivers and steal as much as possible before igniting the remaining cargo and the truck and running away.
The greatest lie in the article is one most westerners would not even recognize. “Praise be to God, none of the Mujahidin was wounded.” Coming from the same root word as Jihad which means “struggle”, literally translated Mujahidin means “struggler” or “one who struggles” in the Jihad, the “Holy Struggle”. The word brings to mind images of heroes, Audie Murphy, General Patton, any member of “the Greatest Generation”. The Mujahidin are Afghanistan’s “Greatest Generation”, the men Ronald Regan once praised as “Freedom Fighters”, men the caliber of Ahmad Shah Masoud “the Lion of Panjshir”, Ishmael Khan and Hamid Karzai, men who brought freedom, education, equality and progress to Afghanistan. Not men who attack the weak and unarmed, not thieves and “handlers” of suicide bombers who twist the words of God and convince heavily drugged young men and women to kill themselves and as many innocent women and children as they can. The Arabic language offers a term much more accurately describing the men who conduct these crimes. Munafiq (mona-fick) is defined as a “hypocrite, one whose outward appearance is Islam but whose inner reality is disbelief.” According to Sahih Bukhari, the Prophet said, “Whoever has the following four (characteristics) will be a pure hypocrite and whoever has one of the following four characteristics will have one characteristic of hypocrisy unless and until he gives it up. 1) Whenever he is entrusted, he betrays. 2) Whenever he speaks, he tells a lie. 3) Whenever he makes a covenant, he proves treacherous. 4) Whenever he quarrels, he behaves in a very imprudent, evil and insulting manner.” The Quran has hundreds of “ayat” or verses discussing “munafiqun”, referring to them as more dangerous to Muslims than the worst non-Muslim enemies of Islam. The Quran states, “The hypocrites will be in the lowest depths of the Fire: no helper wilt thou find for them.” (Quran 4:145) “Even lower than the worst non-Muslim enemies of Islam,” that accurately describes the way the wives of the truck drivers, the families of the men and women and the parents of the children who are brutally slain by the “munafiq” Taliban and Al Qaeda terrorists feel about them.
Saturday, December 8, 2007
Thursday, December 6, 2007
by M. Zuhdi JasserMiddle East QuarterlyWinter 2008
On November 20, 2006, airline officials in Minneapolis removed six imams from U.S. Airways flight 300 to Phoenix after their behavior raised the suspicion of fellow travelers. The imams decried the incident as racist and evidence of discrimination. On March 12, 2007, they filed suit against the airline, airport, and fellow passengers. Some of the imams' claims are exaggerated; many are false. In reality, the incident was a tactical move to support the imams' claim to leadership over the American Muslim community. Indeed, the "flying imams" case, Ahmed Shqeirat et al. vs. U.S. Airways, appears to mark just the latest front in the war between Islamists and mainstream, pluralistic American Muslims.
The airport episode appeared pre-planned, the American equivalent of the manufactured Danish cartoon controversy, in which Danish Islamists, who hoped to benefit from polarization, exaggerated victimization and sought a pretext for crisis. The six imams, five of whom hailed from the Phoenix area, were returning from a North American Imams Federation conference. Three drew attention to themselves when they conducted prayers at the departure gate rather than in the airport chapel or quietly in their seats. However, they drew no response. On the plane, however, they aroused passenger suspicion with loud Arabic conversations, requests for apparently unnecessary seat-belt extenders—which can be used as weapons—and a post-boarding seating switch. Other passengers expressed their worries to the crew, who had them removed. After this incident, Omar Shahin, president of the North American Imams Federation and a prominent Phoenix imam, told the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR, an Islamist advocacy group) and its attorneys, "Security at the airport isn't our problem; it's their problem."
On March 12, 2007, the imams, CAIR, and attorney Omar Mohammedi, a former president of CAIR's New York chapter, filed suit not only against the airline and the Minneapolis Metropolitan Airports Commission but also against the anonymous "John Doe" passengers who alerted the crew to the imams' suspicious behavior.
The involvement of CAIR, an organization that has received significant Saudi financing, injected impressive machinery and resources into the case. Omar Shahin explained, "Since minute one of this incident, I contacted [CAIR communications director] Ibrahim Hooper and [CAIR executive director] Brother Nihad Awad, and we arranged everything … Everything's being coordinated with CAIR." The group underwrote the cost of any litigation.
CAIR used its national network of imams and press connections to draw attention to the case. Tactically, though, the decision to litigate against ordinary passengers was a misstep. It drew critical commentary from the mainstream press. The Arizona Republic dubbed it "intimidation by lawsuit," and many individuals and organizations, including our own American Islamic Forum for Democracy, offered assistance to the passengers forced into court. While Mohammedi amended his suit to target only John Does whom he deemed "racist" or who had made false accusations, the discovery process would still require suspect passengers to retain counsel. Congress stepped in and, in late July, passed legislation protecting passengers from similar future lawsuits. The Becket Fund for Religious Liberty then filed an amicus brief with the court on August 1, 2007, asking the court to remove the John Does from the suit and denouncing the imams' "attempt to hijack the court as legal terrorism." Under this barrage of criticism, the imams dropped their lawsuit against the passengers on August 23, 2007, although they are proceeding with the rest of their suit against the airline, its employees, and the Metropolitan Airports Commission.
My Experience with the Phoenix Imams
I have known three of the plaintiffs in the U.S. Airways suit for almost a decade. Soon after settling in Arizona in 1999, I became involved in the local Muslim community. Before moving to Scottsdale, I usually attended Friday congregational prayer services at the Islamic Community Center of Tempe, Arizona. Often, Ahmed Shqeirat, now the primary plaintiff, delivered sermons at the mosque where he has long been imam. I was struck by the political nature of his sermons. He repeatedly criticized both U.S. domestic and foreign policy and often exaggerated Muslim victimization. He advocated political unification of Muslims internationally and blamed the United States, Israel, and the West for perceived slights. He called for the political empowerment of Muslims in American society.
After hearing several sermons, I spoke and wrote to him to express my dismay at his emphasis of political over spiritual topics. He responded that "secularism is Godlessness" and asserted a right to "speak about political injustice." The concept of purely spiritual Islam and creation of an intellectual environment welcoming to all Muslims regardless of political persuasion was anathema to him.
To give one example of his abuse of pulpit, during a Friday sermon in April 2004, he displayed an image, which CAIR had distributed, of an American soldier in Iraq with two young Iraqi boys. In the photo, the soldier held a sign saying, "Lcpl Boudreaux killed my dad, then he knocked up my sister." Shqeirat neither made any attempt to verify the image's authenticity nor to determine, if real, whether it was representative. Nor, when he was asked, could he explain how such a display related to Islamic theology or spirituality. The goal of using faith identity to divide society highlights the incompatibility of Islamism with traditions of American culture and society.
I had similar concerns regarding the sermons of Marwan Saadeddin, another plaintiff, whose sermons I heard in the Phoenix Valley. Following the U.S. Air 300 incident, Saadeddin spun the incident to the media and transformed it into a parable of victimization during a Friday sermon at a Phoenix Valley mosque. During the sermon, I heard him say, "I'd rather be dead than removed from an airplane in handcuffs." Such is the political and fanatical ranting of one of Arizona's leading imams. As is common among Islamist preachers, he substituted politics for theology and spirituality.
I also know Omar Shahin, another imam plaintiff. He resides in the Phoenix area and has been the head of the Valley Imam Council of Phoenix, the former imam of the Islamic Center of Tucson, a teacher with the Arizona Cultural Academy, and the imam of the Islamic Center of the East Valley. His hyperbole is typical of the Phoenix-area Islamists. He called the day of his eviction from the U.S. Air flight "the worst day of [his] life," a statement far more forceful than any he issued after the 9-11 terrorist attacks in New York and Washington, the March 11, 2004 train bombings in Madrid, the July 7, 2005 London bus and Underground bombings, or in response to any Al-Qaeda video seeking to justify the murder of Americans and noncombatants in the name of religion. Indeed, he blamed the 9-11 attacks not on Muslim terrorists but on the CIA and FBI.
There should also be concern regarding the involvement of some of the imams with Islamic charities shuttered because of their terror financing. Shahin was the Arizona representative of Kindhearts and the Holy Land Foundation, both of which the U.S. Treasury Department shut down because of their involvement with Hamas. Saadeddin dismissed Hamas connections as any reason for concern, recently stating that, "Hamas has nothing to do with [the] United States. Talk about Al-Qaeda only, because this is where they hit America ... [If] America consider[s] it—the foreign policy of America consider[s] Hamas—as a terrorist. That's their business."
Rally and Counter-rally
Had the Islamist imams only apologized for terrorism, it would be bad enough. But they have also sought to undercut the efforts of local Muslims to advocate against and condemn publicly terrorism conducted in the name of Islam. On November 9, 2001, I published my first commentary, arguing that the vast core of American Muslims were loyal to the flag and U.S. Constitution and that radical spokesmen did not represent the core community. This article led to the formation of the American Islamic Forum for Democracy (AIFD).
In Phoenix in 2004, AIFD organized the first Muslim rally against terrorism. We first engaged the Arizona Interfaith Movement, a statewide inclusive interfaith leadership organization, to support Muslims willing to take this stance. We then approached the Valley Imam Council, which represents nearly all of the local Phoenix mosques and their imams. At the time, Shahin chaired the council. We made it clear that the rally would be apolitical and that the only purpose was to make clear, unambiguous statements about Islamic morality and ethics, including unequivocal statements that there is never any justification for suicide, terrorism (the intentional targeting of noncombatants), and homicide bombing.
Rather than support such goals, Shahin, Shqeirat, and Saadeddin directed the Valley Council of Imams to withdraw support. They used their pulpits instead to criticize the rally and its organizers. Citing the Arab-Israeli conflict, they objected to the idea that terrorism is always forbidden. The local CAIR chapter also withdrew. Once the Valley Council of Imams pulled out, the Interfaith Movement also withdrew support for fear that the rally would not advance harmony.
AIFD proceeded alone. The April 25, 2004 "Standing with Muslims against Terrorism" rally was then held without the public support of any local imams or any of the known Islamist organizations. The rally was a success. Four hundred people attended, perhaps half of whom were Muslims. All major local networks covered it. When the media asked local imams about their refusal to participate, they responded by criticizing the rally's apolitical nature and said they would only attend rallies in which they could argue that U.S. foreign policy was a major cause of terrorism. They also objected to any linkage of Muslims with terrorism in the rally name.
Two weeks later, CAIR-Arizona held a counter "Muslim Americans for Human Rights and Dignity" rally in which they failed to condemn explicitly terrorism and terrorists by name. The rally drew only seventy-five people. The failure of CAIR and the local imams to rally much support shows the falsehood of their claim to represent the mainstream Muslim community. Many Muslims recognize the problem posed by terrorists justifying their actions in Islam. To deny the association of Muslims with terrorism—as Islamist organizations like CAIR do—is counterproductive. The Islamist strategy of picking and choosing whom they identify as a Muslim depending on the situation is disingenuous. To deny that the Fort Dix terrorist attack plotters were not real Muslims, as CAIR-Arizona chairman (and U.S. Airways employee) Mohammed El-Sharkawy did, sidesteps the problem. And to argue that only scholars can determine who is and who is not a true Muslim not only appropriates God's duty but also diminishes the egalitarian nature of traditional Islam that accepts no intermediaries between the individual and God.
Creating intermediaries in order to claim false mandate remains the root of the imams' strategy. Organizations such as the National American Imams Federation and the Assembly of American Muslim Jurists exist to impose hierarchy and, from that self-appointed hierarchy, to establish the mandate to speak on behalf of the entire Muslim community. The Islamic Society of North America, an un-indicted coconspirator in the United States of America vs. Holy Land Foundation et al. terrorism financing trial, formed a Leadership Development Center to train and indoctrinate imams. On March 7, 2007, it announced a leadership certifying program for imams in conjunction with the National American Imams Federation.
Establishing false leadership claims is also one reason why both CAIR and various Islamist imams attempt to partner with U.S. law enforcement. On CNN's Paula Zahn Now, Shahin said, "If you go back to our background, I am personally the chairperson for the police advisory board. I did a presentation for the FBI agent in Phoenix. I did [a] presentation with CAIR-Arizona to Yuma Air Force Base for more than 600 Marines." For many imams, participation in such programs bestows or recognizes legitimacy. This is wrong on two counts, however. First, it again conflates policy work with religious legitimacy and, second, groups often exaggerate their partnerships. One Homeland Security official said, "It is not uncommon for that particular organization [CAIR] to issue a press release attempting to overstate their interaction with the department." Within the mosque, however, congregants rarely question self-appointed Islamist spokesmen about the basis of their authority or legitimacy to represent attendees. Their inflated associations outside the mosque feed their own efforts to legitimize control and tribalization. And government and media acceptance of claims of victimization stops many non-Muslims from questioning the ideological motivations behind the religious rhetoric that many of these groups employ.
For moderate, traditional Islam to reassert itself against well-funded Islamist organizations, though, it is necessary to examine how political ideology pollutes spirituality. CAIR's involvement in the flying imam suit is problematic. Many Muslims have seen the call by Nihad Awad, executive director of CAIR's national office, for Muslims to report their victimization to CAIR. "Reporting to an organization like CAIR is important, because it is empowering. It is empowering to the Muslims themselves who report; it is empowering to the organization, and it is important to the status of Muslims within the United States," he told an audience at the All Dulles (Virginia) Area Muslim Society, urging them to inflate the Muslim component of the FBI's annual hate crime statistics to compare better to figures on anti-Jewish violence. In 2005, for example, the FBI catalogued 848 anti-Semitic hate crimes, 128 anti-Islamic hate crimes, and 115 anti-Christian hate crimes. In essence, therefore, CAIR's focus on victimization and minority politics is motivated by political Islam. The imams' victimization routine creates a self-fulfilling prophecy that CAIR can use to bolster its own claims to be a civil rights organization. It would be as if firefighters committed arson in order to bolster their position inside a community. That CAIR seeks to create facts to justify its political and foreign policy positions also shows the rigidity of its top-down approach to the community it claims to represent.
The Struggle for American Islam
While the press may focus on the flying imams case, for American Muslims, the battle is broader. On one side are the imams represented by CAIR, the Islamic Society for North America, and the North American Imams Federation, all of which lean toward an Islamist view supporting greater interplay between religion and politics and the primacy of sectarian identity. On the other side are Muslims embracing Western secular democracy. The two are mutually exclusive in their interpretation of religious hierarchy, the interplay between theology and contemporary politics, individuality, and tolerance.
Responsibility for the victory of traditional, tolerant, and pluralistic interpretations of Islam lies with Muslims and Muslims alone. The intellectual marginalization of Islamists is the duty of Muslims who value the principles upon which the United States was built and now stands. This requires recognizing the primacy of the Constitution in political life, even if Muslims turn to the Qur'an in their spiritual life. Islamists, though, insist that regardless of temporal government, the Qur'an should be the central guiding document for legislation and interpretation. Islamists believe the Qur'an is the only source of law while non-Islamists believe it is just one source.
Perhaps this was the reason why the Prophet Muhammad and his companions sought to avoid creation of the same religious intermediary class that today CAIR, the Islamic Society of North America, and the North American Imams Federation presume to fill.
Within the United States today, most Muslim organizations—CAIR, the North American Imams' Federation, the Assembly of Muslim Jurists of America, the Muslim Students' Association, the Islamic Society of North America, the Muslim Public Affairs Council, the Muslim American Society, the Islamic Circle of North America, and the Center for the Study of Islam and Democracy—embrace the Islamist approach. Many imams affiliate themselves with these organizations, fundraise on their behalf, and parrot the political agenda of these organizations. The flying imams lawsuit is just one more example of the synergy between the North American Imams Federation and CAIR.
A few small organizations—the American Islamic Forum for Democracy, the American Islamic Congress, the Islamic Supreme Council of America, the Center for Eurasian Policy, and the Center for Islamic Pluralism—are moderate and support a separation between spirituality and temporal politics. They are underrepresented in terms of resources and organization. Still, it is this nascent anti-Islamist movement upon which the Muslim fight to embrace American pluralism and freedom depends. It is also essential for interfaith relations. Many Americans are hungry to hear from Muslims who are not apologists for terror, who are ready to lead the fight against militant Islamism, who respect the division between mosque and state, and who do not seek to use their religion as a vehicle to change the American political landscape.
The struggle of these two trends to define Islam in America will last generations. It will require development of a new Islamic ideology, one born from the founding ideology of the United States. This will require not only renewed ijtihad (interpretation) but also the confidence of American Muslims to overcome Islamist and radical Wahhabist attempts to label any effort to separate religion and government as bid‘a (illegitimate invention). While the transnational umma (Muslim community) might engage itself in issues regarding theology, charity, socialization, and worship, U.S. politics should be blind to faith. For any American citizen or resident, the concept of loyalty to umma should be subordinate to loyalty to state and allegiance to the U.S. Constitution.
Shari‘a (Islamic law) might guide Muslim individuals as they choose in their homes, but it should not be invoked in government. Faith will still inspire Muslim behavior and actions, as it does with followers of other religions, but it should not be articulated in government. The embrace and exposure of Islamist agendas will repel most Muslims. It is no surprise that despite its claims to represent American Muslims, CAIR's membership has plummeted 90 percent since 9-11, a claim it first refuted as a "hit piece" before confirming it in an amicus brief to the Dallas federal court hearing in the Holy Land Foundation case. A recent Pew Research Center poll showed that a plurality of Muslims believes mosques should remain apolitical, a finding which suggests the majority may oppose theocracy and Islamism. The finding is also significant when put in the context of the fact that many Muslims came to the United States from autocratic societies where the mosque was often the only haven for political speech. That so many now desire apolitical sermons suggests that they have come to understand and appreciate the freedoms of U.S. society.
A Manifesto to Defeat Islamism
In 1964, Sayyid Qutb, the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood's leading theoretician, published Ma‘alim fi al-Tariq (Milestones) in which he laid out steps to achieve an Islamic state and defeat the West. He described a generational process to ensure the victory of Islamism over Western liberal society. Liberal and traditional Muslims have yet to wage an effective counter-jihad against their Islamist brethren. There does not yet exist a liberal Muslim intellectual work equivalent to Milestones to lay the groundwork to defeat Islamism and ensure the creation of integrationist, tolerant American Muslim institutions.
A starting point to counter the Qutb construct would be for Muslim leaders to acknowledge ten points:
An Islamic narrative should not constrain universal human principles.
Mosques should support the separation of church and state, even as they take stands on social or political issues.
The affirmation of an egalitarian approach to faith beyond the constraints of simple tolerance. Tolerance implies superiority while pluralism implies equality.
Recognition that if government enacts the literal laws of God rather than natural or human law, then government becomes God and abrogates religion and the personal nature of the relationship with God.
Separation of mosque and state to include the abrogation of all blasphemy and apostasy laws.
Empowerment of women's liberation and advocacy for equality as is currently absent in many Muslim-majority, misogynistic cultures.
Ijtihad negating the need for Muslims active in politics today to bring theology into the political debate. Nowhere in the Qur'an does God tell Muslims to mix politics and religion or instruct by what document governments should be guided.
Creation of movements and organizations that are specifically opposed to such radical or terrorism-supporting groups as Al-Qaeda, Hamas, Hezbollah, Hizb ut-Tahrir, Jamaat al-Islamiya, and Al-Muhajiroun, to name a few, rather than simply being against undefined, generic notions of terrorism.
Public identification without apologetics of leaders and governments of Muslim majority countries who are dictators and despots and are, as such, anti-liberty and anti-pluralism. Muslims enjoying freedom in the West have yet to create mass movements to liberate their motherlands from dictatorship and theocracy and to move these toward secular democracies founded on individual liberties for all based in natural law.
Establishment of classical liberal Muslim institutions and think-tanks to articulate, disseminate, and educate concerning the above principles. The idea that individual liberty and freedom need not be mutually exclusive with Muslim theology must be taught to Muslim youth.
Countering Islamism and combating Islamist terrorism should be a greater public responsibility for the organized American Muslim community than the obsession with civil rights and victimization in which current Islamist organizations engage. Americans living in fear for their security are looking to moderate, traditional Muslims to lead this fight. The credibility of the Muslim community suffers because groups such as CAIR, ISNA, and the North American Imams Federation deny the interplay between Islamism and terrorism.
Non-Muslims also have a role. Both the U.S. government and mainstream media often give Islamists and their organizations exclusive voice to speak on behalf of American Muslims, which creates a cycle of apparent, if not real, empowerment. Seldom do they turn to non-Islamists and anti-Islamists who may represent far more American Muslims. The recent refusal of PBS to air the ABG Films, Inc. documentary Islam v. Islamists is a prime example of the manner in which media producers and executives shield Islamists from criticism.
The imams and clerics who push for Islamist societies are none other than politicians who cloak themselves in religious jargon. It is naïve to treat these clerics as simple activists or consider their civil rights discourse at face value. Until moderate Muslims challenge their actions, terror networks and their ideologies will flourish. Freedom and liberty are prerequisites to bring an individual close to God through religious practice free from coercion. If some imams fear that individuals will lose faith without coercive direction, then they misunderstand both Islam and liberty.
As lawyers argue the merits of the flying imams' case in a Minneapolis courtroom, a silver lining is apparent: Excessive litigation on their part has eroded support for Islamist organizations such as CAIR, ISNA, and the National American Imams Federation, both nationally and also within the Muslim community. Their loss could be the moderates' and liberals' opportunity to create a new American Muslim narrative.
M. Zuhdi Jasser, a former U.S. Navy lieutenant commander, is chairman of the board of the American Islamic Forum for Democracy (www.aifdemocracy.org).
Tuesday, December 4, 2007
Let me make myself crystal clear on this one. These whackos need a sense of humor in a big big way. Jeez a teddy bear named Mohamed. I have a buddy named Mohamed....Anyway what do we do kowtow bow out apologize. I cannot blame the poor teacher in this but why was Her Majesty's govt beating the crap out of these people diplomatically. (see look) I proposed a diplomatic solution
An Air Force EC-130J Commando Solo prepares to land at an air base in southwest Asia. The EC-130J conducts information operations, civil affairs broadcasts in a.m., f.m., HF, TV, and military communications bands in support of Operations Enduring and Iraqi Freedom. U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Tia Schroeder.
Our kids are the same.
A young Iraqi girl walks down a stairway inside a house behind U.S. Army Sgt. Steven Saddler, from 3rd Platoon, Bravo Company, 1st Battalion, 15th Infantry Regiment, 3rd Heavy Brigade Combat Team, 3rd Infantry Division, as he speaks with a concerned local citizen in Al Ja'ara, Iraq, Nov. 21, 2007. U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Timothy Kingston.
U.S. Army Maj., Frank Acosta, attached to the 2nd Division Military Transition Team patrols in Mosul, Iraq, Nov. 19, 2007. U.S. Army photo by Spc. Kieran Cuddihy.
A U.S. Army Soldier interacts with an Iraqi child during a routine patrol in Mufriq, Iraq. The Soldier is from 1st Battalion, 38th Infantry Regiment, 4th Brigade Combat Team, 2nd Infantry Division. U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Shawn Weismiller.
A U.S. Army Soldier from Company D, 1st Battalion, 30th Infantry Regiment, 2nd Brigade, 3rd Infantry Division, secures the area from the roof top of a school in Al Buaytha, Iraq. The Brigade was holding a monthly combined medical engagement in a local school to assess the health of the local residents. Photo by Spc. Angelica Golindano, Joint Combat Camera Center
WASHINGTON — The government of
Iraq appreciates the efforts and sacrifices
of U.S. servicemembers engaged in the
country’s fight against insurgents, and it
desires a continued American troop presence
as Iraqi security forces improve in
numbers and capability, an Iraqi government
spokesman said Nov. 28.
The U.S.-Iraq Declaration of Principles
for Friendship and Cooperation signed by
President Bush and Iraqi Prime Minister
Nouri al-Maliki during a Nov. 26 videoconference
signifies American recognition
of Iraq’s sovereignty and also of the
United States’ continued commitment of
support for Iraq, Ali al-Dabbagh said during
a conference call with online “bloggers”
The declaration “is a shared statement of
intent that establishes common principles
to frame our future relationship,” Dabbagh
explained, noting the document moves
the two countries further along the path to
normalized bilateral relations.
My take on this is why not have permanent basing we have in Germany, Japan, Korea for over 50 years is only appropriate. One friend in the middle east good two better.
5 Guard brigades alerted for deploymentBy Michelle Tan - Staff writerPosted : Tuesday Dec 4, 2007 10:20:41 ESTFive Army National Guard brigades have been alerted for deployment in thesummer of 2009 to support Operations Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom,the Defense Department announced Monday.The announcement affects about 15,000 soldiers, and is part of the regularrotation of forces.The brigades alerted for duty in Iraq are:• 32nd Brigade Combat Team, Wisconsin National Guard• 41st BCT, Oregon National Guard• 155th BCT, Mississippi National GuardThese 8,000 soldiers will conduct a security force mission and they will beassigned tasks to ensure freedom of movement and continuity of operationsin theater. Those tasks include base defense and route security in Iraq andKuwait.The brigades alerted for duty in Afghanistan are:• 48th Infantry Brigade Combat Team, Georgia National Guard• 53rd IBCT, Florida National GuardThe 48th IBCT will deploy to train Afghan National Security Forces, whilethe 53rd IBCT will assume battle space in Afghanistan and perform fullspectrum operations. About 7,000 soldiers belong to these two brigades.All five brigades are not scheduled to deploy until summer 2009, but theyare being alerted for duty now to give them time to prepare for thedeployment.Eight other Guard brigades were alerted for duty on Oct. 19. Seven brigadeswill deploy to Iraq, and the eighth to Afghanistan. That alert affectedmore than 21,000 soldiers, and they are scheduled to begin deploying insummer 2008 in rotations that will continue into early 2009.In April, more than 12,000 other soldiers from four Guard brigades werealerted for duty, and those soldiers will begin deploying in December inrotations to continue into 2008.The active Army, stretched by the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, already has18 brigade combat teams in Iraq and two in Afghanistan. However, plansannounced by President Bush and his top military commanders call for thenumber of BCTs in Iraq to fall to 15 next year as the “surge” of five BCTscomes to an end.The demand for troops in Iraq and Afghanistan exceeds the supply, making itcritical to use the Guard and Reserve to meet the needs of commanders intheater, but a Pentagon announcement in January calls for Guard and Reservetroops to be mobilized for no more than 12 months at a time, which meanssoldiers must complete as much individual and small-unit training aspossible before they leave for their mobilization stations.
My brother Kev does not want to get tagged again but if he does wants Afghanistan with an Arty mission as his unit did security operations the first round through.
Friday, November 30, 2007
Please check Michael Yon's piece on Men of Valor part3
He also has in interesting article by Joe Galloway of we were soldiers once fame. I will warn you if you are fan of this adminstration you will not like it.
Tuesday, November 27, 2007
From the COIN field manual urban terrorists try to
- Sow Disorder (check)
- Incite sectarian violence ( not yet but I promise the immams are preaching this)
- Weaken the gov't they have not yet but how long before the people of Paris shout out to their new gov't this has to stop
- Intimidate the population (check)
- Kill govt leaders. Well they may not be leaders but they are making a heck of a try on police men.
From what I can gather two 'youths' on a stolen motorcycle ran a red light hit a police car and after the policemen tried to revive them expired. Then rumors where spread that the police fled the scene the rioting began. Well Let me tell you folks they have escelated quite allot now that the youths are using shotguns with buck shot.
The French better grow a set and fast.
Concealed and usually from a long distance away, the members of the 506th Expeditionary Security Forces Squadron’s Close Precision Engagement Team (CPET), also known as the Tiger Team, observes, provides intelligence, and, if necessary, neutralizes threats.
The Tiger Teams consist of Air Force security forces counter-snipers whose expert marksmanship and ability to practically stay invisible allow them to sneak up to an enemy undetected.
“A large part of our job here is reconnaissance for the Army and sometimes agents with the Air Force Office of Special Investigations (OSI) detachment here,” said Staff Sgt. Curtis Huffman, CPET non-commissioned officer in charge.
“When they have a mission outside of the wire, we’ll set up near that location about an hour or more before they get out there. Concealed and out of sight, we are able to observe the area and give them real-time intel before they even arrive,” Huffman said.
Through direct communication with the mission commander, the sharpshooters let the team know how many people there are in the area, their exact location, if there are any weapons, or if the people seem to be hiding anything. That way, they know exactly what to expect before arriving at the location.
“Close precision engagement provides us with the ability to see into the future,” said Special Agent Christopher Church, OSI Detachment 2410 commander. “They provide us with a situational awareness that we would not have without them. Having them watch over us during missions makes an enormous difference.”
The sharpshooters’ skills also help save lives during counter-improvised explosive device (IED) and counter-indirect fire (IDF) operations.
“We respond to routes that get hit by IED a lot or an area that is known for launching IDF (attacks),” said Huffman, who is deployed from Eielson Air Force Base, Alaska. “We’ll set up somewhere concealed along that route or that area, where we can watch people setting stuff up so we can get them before they can hurt our guys. We could be there from (24) to (72) hours.”
CPET members also respond to their own comrades. If security forces members on patrol or on a post perceive suspicious activities in the area, they can call on the team to come out and, using their trained eyes, optics and night-vision capability, determine if there is an actual threat.
Each sniper team consists of two people – the spotter and the shooter. The spotter’s responsibility is to determine things like the distance to the target, wind direction and then provide the shooter with corrections, which are adjustments on the rifle.
“Spotters do all the mathematical equations for range estimation, windage, everything from start to end,” said Airman 1st Class Matt Leeper, CPET member, also deployed from Eielson. “The spotter definitely has the more difficult job. Your spotter has to be quick and accurate when giving the corrections. There is no time for the shooter to think twice. Your spotter is always right.”
The Air Force has about (350) trained sharpshooters. To become a counter-sniper, one has to be a security forces member, have proven marksmanship abilities and accomplish three weeks of training at Camp Robinson, Ark.
“The school is physically and mentally very challenging,” Leeper said. “You are learning from the first day you get there. The first few days are in a classroom, and then you are on the range shooting.”
This is where the students are introduced to the M-24 sniper rifle, the military version of a Remington Seven Hundred.
“The trigger squeeze on this weapon is a lot lighter than the M-4, and it also has a lot more kick,” Leeper said. “Your shoulder gets roughed up at school, where we fire more than (100) rounds a day.”
Though shooting is only a small part of their job at Kirkuk, it’s often the most important aspect.
“Only about (5) percent of our job is taking that shot, and the other (95) percent is intelligence gathering,” he said. “But when you are in a situation where you have to neutralize a threat, you can’t really think about anything except you have positive ID on that target, they have a weapon or you know they are placing an IED. You put that target in your crosshairs, you imagine it’s just a blank target at your school house and you pull the trigger. You don’t have time to think about anything else.”
The counter-snipers accomplish many missions at Kirkuk, but they find the most rewarding thing is being able to watch over soldiers or OSI agents.
“This is the reason why I joined,” Leeper said. “When we are out there giving them info and providing cover, I feel like I’m doing my job. I don’t feel like I deserve a medal -- nothing like that. This is what my job is and what I joined to do. I joined to come to Iraq, and I went through sniper school to be an asset to the Air Force.”
(Story by USAF Staff Sgt. Markus M. Maier, U.S. Central Command Air Forces Combat Correspondent Team)
Navy Adm. Michael G. Mullen specifically chose the venue to highlight the need to reach out to people around the world. He said the United States recognizes how important it is to work with other nations and non-governmental agencies to reduce the uncertainty of an uncertain world.
Mullen said Army Chief of Staff Gen. George W. Casey Jr. is correct when he talks about the world entering an era of “persistent conflict.” He said he would add to that phrase that the world also is entering an era of “persistent engagement.”
“We need to recognize both, because while this long war on extremists is generational – it will take many, many years – we also need to recognize opportunities to engage other partners’ militaries and other agencies from around the world,” he said. “We also need to get at the root causes of terrorism and mitigate them.”
The American military is learning that last lesson. “I talked to a lot of our operational commanders in Iraq recently, and they will tell you that they have learned more about civic projects – electrical power, water, sewage treatment systems, schools and hospitals – than they ever dreamed of,” Mullen said. “And they are seeing terrific success in that regard.”
While that is a testament to the troops, the counterinsurgency strategy and the surge, it also is “a testament to partnership and engagement to local leaders,” he said.
The U.S. effort in the Horn of Africa, the humanitarian voyages of the hospital ships Comfort and Mercy and the outreach efforts by U.S. Southern Command leaders are more examples of this engagement philosophy. And the new U.S. Africa Command will rely on this philosophy as the backbone for its mission, he said. “If we’ve learned anything since 9/11, it’s that no one can do it alone anymore; We need partners,” Mullen said.
The admiral said he is concerned that the U.S. military has “left strategic deterrence behind when we left the Cold War behind. And the work of deterrence is as vital now as it was then.”
“I’m concerned that while there certainly needs to be a focus on the here and now, it’s not the only areas we should focus on,” he continued. “It’s incumbent on all of us who lead to get above the here and now, and look to the future.”
The conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan weigh heavily on the Americans, but Mullen warned that the nation must not be myopic. “There is more to the Middle East than those two countries, and there is more to the world than the Middle East,” he said.
Mullen said he is working on that setting as his top priority to develop a military strategy that is focused on bringing stability to the Middle East.
“Consider the situation in Pakistan today,” he said, noting the state of emergency declared by President Perves Musharraf. “Pakistan has been a strong ally, and we wish to see these emergency measures end soon. The situation is stable from a military perspective, but we are watchful, as we must be, because the stakes are very high and the security there affects regional security, and regional security affects global security.”
Mullen said he has the same concern about Iran. Iranian leaders’ actions and rhetoric have been destabilizing not only in Iraq, but in the region, he said. “I think we would all like to see Iran take a constructive and responsible role,” Mullen said. “It is too soon to tell if, in fact, they are living up to their pledge to do so.”
U.S. military thinkers need to take a close look at global strategic risk. “We must be ready for who and what comes after Iraq and Afghanistan,” he said. “With everything going on all over the world, what missions should our military be prepared to undertake and where? How do we retain all the great combat experience we are gaining on the ground without losing our need to be ready for conventional warfare as well? How do we keep the strategic and operational reserve power of our Guard and reserves?”
These questions need to be answered, and how they are answered will affect security around the world, he said.
The Asia-Pacific region also is of particular concern, said Mullen, who just returned from visiting South Korea and Japan.
“Significant security concerns persist there, with the threat of ballistic missiles from North Korea and the tensions over the Taiwan Straits,” he said. “What are we doing to defend our vital national interests in the Asian-Pacific region?”
A peaceful, productive rise of China would be a good thing for everyone, the admiral said. “How do we help ensure that outcome and improve the military-to-military relationships we have?”
The key to American military strategy is engagement and dialogue, he said.
“We must tap into that approach,” the chairman told the audience. “We must realize and preserve our strengths in the U.S. military while understanding and improving the things in which we are not quite as strong: cultural awareness, language proficiency, civil affairs. It really is the world we’re living in.”
Monday, November 26, 2007
While the U.S. and our allies would smoke them in a conventional fight even with Iran's massive build up of Russian weapons including double didgit SAMs, MiG-29s etc. The Iranians have shown a talen for unconventional warfare these are the same people who do not mind killing kids to kill one U.S. soldier and during the Iran v Iraq war would walk arm in arm and swamp Iraqi defense in human waves.
Just something to ponder.
Anyone that thinks we are not at war with Iran is a durn fool.
1. Embassy take over 1979
2. Bombing the Marine Barracks 1983
3. The Tanker War 1984-1987
4. The capture of several US soldiers in Iraq.
5. Now they blow up more civilians in Iraq.
All you pointed heads that think that this is going away sadly wrong. I think we should talk directly to Iran. Saying hey we can be great friends or at least ignore each other in peace or we are going to rip off your arms and beat you with them.
Better yet send him to Angola state prison in LA he will be most welcome down on D block.
OK well then now we are talking. I thought we were the evil storm trooping thugs? Maybe not huh...
As my friend Kev says 'no matter how good your officers are without good NCOs your unit sucks'
Yes from a third party source but still the drug guys will do anything for money and or guns and the islamists will sleep with anyone to further islam.
Sunday, November 25, 2007
I also have an uberti .45colt / .45 acp that I am very happy with yes I know is a single action wheel gun but hey.
Ok here we go deer hunters dont just shoot the couple weeks before the season starts. Be intimately familar with you weapon. Shoot at least once a month that way your skills stay sharp and you will know about a malfunction before it goes click in the deer woods.
Shoot at known ranges and unknown ranges.
Shoot off hand, sitting, kneeling from your stand if you sit in a chair practice shooting from a chair.
Get some snap caps work on your trigger pull at home and practice working the bolt from a shooting position. I recently had to modify mine because of a shoulder surgery.
Again practice practice. There are a million pistols schools if you are so inclined. Also remember that you dont need the newest 1911 with all the latest gizmos use what you are comfortable with. I am actually in the market for a plain .45 I may have a little work done on it but I am not going to spend $1,000 on any pistol.
Tactical Rifle as a graduate of USMC marksmanship school there are things they teach now they did not then. I think a good AR15 with a 18 inch barrel and good scope can do you justice. Again there are a million and 12 schools for those so inclined.
Again practice practice.
Friday, November 23, 2007
When your former allies who are tired of their children and families being killed turn on you. The best thing to do is threaten to cut their heads off yeah that works.
1. My lovely bride and my wonderful children.
2. My father who is a warrior, a teacher and still my role model.
3. The current warriors in my life Kev, TK, thanks more than I can tell you.
4. The men who have been warriors who are an influence on my life.
5. All the mil-bloggers who I draw my insperation from.
6. The fact I did not die this year like some dumb a@# told me I was going to.
7. Thanks for all the warriors who are allowing me to sleep to soundly at night.
8. My entire family and friends we had quite a year huh. I love you
THANK YOU ALL
CAIR welcomed a ruling today by a federal judge in Minnesota that rejected almost all of the arguments made by U.S. Airways and the Metropolitan Airports Commission in the case of six imams removed from a flight last year in Minneapolis, then arrested and denied further service.
Ahh yes the flying Imams. If the courts do not allow people protection under the law for doing the right thing the we are doomed.