Thursday, August 25, 2005

Mosul 2005

In case you haven't already, read Michael Yon's description of a car chase through Mosul's streets, continued on foot through its mazes, concluding in a wild shootout in a dusty alley. Yon has action photos of close quarters combat, which if they didn't exist, would render any account of the actual sang froid of both American troops and the enemy open to disbelief. See for yourself. Men shot firing back on the way down. An enemy fighter who'll pull your helmet down over your eyes, with four rounds already in him, like some lethal member of the Three Stooges. A Command Sergeant Major straight out of central casting engaging the enemy so closely that he went hand-to-hand; wins -- and then comes out dragging his quarry still wearing his Oakleys -- mad that someone had left toothmarks on his wristwatch. It brought to mind Osama Bin Laden's taunting assessment of his American enemy.

But your most disgraceful case was in Somalia; where -- after vigorous propaganda about the power of the USA and its post cold war leadership of the new world order -- you moved tens of thousands of international force, including twenty eight thousands American solders into Somalia. However, when tens of your solders were killed in minor battles and one American Pilot was dragged in the streets of Mogadishu you left the area carrying disappointment, humiliation, defeat and your dead with you. Clinton appeared in front of the whole world threatening and promising revenge , but these threats were merely a preparation for withdrawal. You have been disgraced by Allah and you withdrew; the extent of your impotence and weaknesses became very clear. It was a pleasure for the "heart" of every Muslim and a remedy to the "chests" of believing nations to see you defeated in the three Islamic cities of Beirut , Aden and Mogadishu.

American troops seem to be OK, so what part of it did Osama get wrong? Maybe he kept reading the papers, because without people like Michael Yon it would all have gone down the Memory Hole.


One part Yon saved from the memory hole was the fact that the man who shot LTC Kurilla, Khalid Jasim Nohe, as pointed out by Desert Rat in comments, had earlier been caught only to be released.


Blogger Karridine said...

Fierce and free, disciplined and tough (with the newk exceptions), Kurilla DOES show the American fighter's spirit!

But note Yon's assertion of Kurilla's "conviction" of emerging freedom, while taking the pulse of the city. We have history, and conviction.

There is little else for proof.

8/25/2005 05:39:00 PM  
Blogger wretchardthecat said...

As an aside, Yon gets the title of his post from Stephen Pressfield's Gates of Fire, with himself somewhat in the role of the man who goes to tell the world of what must never be forgotten. Pressfield tells a grand story. Friendship. Losing first love to find it again -- and then walking away -- by the wave-pounded shores of the sea -- to face what threatens to enslave it. Something I think Yon, Kurilla and even the terrorist in his own way would understand,.

In Pressfield's book the worst of all possible fates is to go through the world without living, trying not to exist. One cynic described liberalism as "idealism without conviction"; no wonder Osama thought there was nothing to stop him. Surprise, surprise.

8/25/2005 06:03:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

Remember the 'Bionic Runner' from the last episode? Wonder if he got treated worse then the Opfor member that shot the LTC

this excerpted from Yon's work

"...The terrorist turned out to be one Khalid Jasim Nohe, who had first been captured by US forces (2-8 FA) on 21 December, the same day a large bomb exploded in the dining facility on this base and killed 22 people.

That December day, Khalid Jasim Nohe and two compatriots tried to evade US soldiers from 2-8 FA, but the soldiers managed to stop the fleeing car. Then one of the suspects tried to wrestle a weapon from a soldier before all three were detained. They were armed with a sniper rifle, an AK, pistols, a silencer, explosives and other weapons, and had in their possession photographs of US bases, including a map of this base.

That was in December.

About two weeks ago, word came that Nohe's case had been dismissed by a judge on 7 August. The Coalition was livid. According to American officers, solid cases are continually dismissed without apparent cause. Whatever the reason, the result was that less than two weeks after his release from Abu Ghraib, Nohe was back in Mosul shooting at American soldiers.

LTC Kurilla repeatedly told me of--and I repeatedly wrote about--terrorists who get released only to cause more trouble. Kurilla talked about it almost daily. Apparently, the vigor of his protests had made him an opponent of some in the Army's Detention Facilities chain of command, but had otherwise not changed the policy. And now Kurilla lay shot and in surgery in the same operating room with one of the catch-and-release-terrorists he and other soldiers had been warning everyone about. ..."

The Mosul Police could not have done worse with the 'Bionic Runner' than we did with Khalid Jasim Nohe.

Time to toughen up or come home, or preferably, both.

8/25/2005 06:17:00 PM  
Blogger wretchardthecat said...

desert rat,

Even at the high end, prisoners go in one door at Guantanamo and leave by another, sometimes to strike again. But some will complain that the Khalid Jasim Nohes don't get enough due process. Gulag. American barbarians, and so forth.

Which is why, were it not for specifics such as are supplied by people like Yon, or pointed out by posters like you, the whole thing would pass unnoticed into the Memory Hole. As it stands the whole thing is an indictment of the accusation. It's a testament to the lie that 'we're just as much against terrorists as you are'.

Now soldiers can't fight this informational battle. If Yon gets into trouble for picking up a rifle, soldiers get into trouble for picking up a keyboard. So even though it isn't as exciting, the process of getting at the truth, sifting fact from fiction, engaging in analysis and getting the word out is important. Unless the physical efforts of men are turned into ideas their sacrifice will be in vain.

8/25/2005 06:33:00 PM  
Blogger NahnCee said...

What will the reaction be to the two young soldiers who froze up? One of them was being mentored to take over his own group -- is that likely to happen now? In the real world, do soldiers who behave this way once get a second chance, or are they firmly shuttled aside and ignored as being too dangerous to be around?

8/25/2005 06:46:00 PM  
Blogger al fin said...

Perhaps it is time for more summary executions after perfunctory interrogations, as a new policy. This revolving door policy for murdering terrorists is getting too many good men killed.

8/25/2005 07:06:00 PM  
Blogger sam said...

Wonder how long Kurilla is out for? Or if he'll ever be back. Wonder who takes over for him? What an incredible loss. On the ground partially incapacitated in front of the terrorists for what, at least 5 minutes? With no support from the 2 rookies?Superhuman. Someone looking out for that guy. The shame the rookies must be feeling right now...

Seeing as that was the rookies first encounter I would imagine they get a 2nd chance. Failing that someone from Deuce 4 should enlist Mike.

8/25/2005 07:16:00 PM  
Blogger wretchardthecat said...

The problem with releasing terrorists who have been caught in the act because they cannot be convicted under civilian due process exacerbates the problem of the "Ace Factor". I can't find the online reference to it, but air combat statistics show that the vast majority of aerial kills are accounted for by a small number of people, the so-called "aces".

If you read Yon's account, you will see how the "aces" stand out. Khalid Jasim Nohe is clearly an ace. So is Yon. Look at his pics. No shake. Personally I probably couldn't even find the shutter at a moment like that. Look at Kurilla and that Sergeant Major. Aces and the rest were simply not there. But it is also statistically true that new arrivals to the battlefield tend to rise to another plane after their first combat. Chances are that the rookies will be alright. Hence, a lot of effort is spent getting them over the hump after which their prospects of survival improve dramatically. But I digress.

The point is that releasing an experienced enemy combatant is to release an enemy ace, almost by definition. From an operations research point of view this is the most destructive thing you can do to your own side. The solution is to create some kind of long-term detention system. But that's what Guantanamo Bay was supposed to be and the Left is slowly but surely dismantling it. The consequences were predictable, but it took an embedded blogger to highlight it. The Memory Hole would have swallowed the data.

8/25/2005 07:24:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

By my reading it was the Iraqi judges that released the Terrorist.

So, eventually, all the prisoners are turned over to the Iraqi Courts, or so it seems. Well, rest assured that Khalid Jasim Nohe will not have woman's panties placed on his head, in fact no one will be allowed laugh at his current disability, except US.
The LTC could lose his leg, at worse. Khalid Jasim Nohe will find Allah's allocated Fruit Basket, eventually. The Virgins being beyond his present and future capacity.
Praise be to allah

8/25/2005 07:29:00 PM  
Blogger wretchardthecat said...

One other thing. I described the "cliff" function evident in IED attacks. Seventy five percent of IEDs attacks produce no casualties at all. Twenty five percent are deadly. It doesn't shade off like some continuous function, but looks like a discrete distribution.

Maybe that's because we are really looking at two distributions. The attacks by the unwashed and the enemy aces. I wouldn't be surprised to find if a small number of enemy fighters account for the vast majority of American casualties. I would be unsurprised to learn that at least some of these have already been in custody then later released.

8/25/2005 07:30:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

Used to instruct Guats and Hondos in mechanical ambushes at the School of the Americas and US troops at the Jungle Warfare School @ Fort Sherman, CZ.

Det cord and Claymores were the usual tools of choice, for training 'light infantry'. Some people love to work with demo while others are deathly afraid of it.
Covering Avenues of Approach and Secondary explosives placement for follow on charges are pretty standard fare, even for the most elementary training.

Instigate the ambush mechanically, light weapons fire at the ambushed force, attempting to get the survivors to "rush the ambushers"
Set off the secondary claymores to stymie the counter attack. Det cord lightly covered in the bar ditches of the road, injuring any Opfor laying on it, in the cover of the ditch.

8/25/2005 07:55:00 PM  
Blogger Jeff Kouba said...

I looked at some of the details in Yon's account here. Can anyone shed some light on the east Mosul situation?

8/25/2005 08:27:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

I posted this in previous thread, heard on hewitt when relative of the Major called in.
Just heard Major Mark Bieger in Yon piece is from Phoenix!
...been there about 9 months, maybe you'll get to see him soon.

I cannot imagine anything being more demoralizing than the legal/pc cloud hanging over everyone.
We've gone way beyond reason and decency.

8/25/2005 08:29:00 PM  
Blogger Charles said...

I loved Michael Yon's post. I read it this morning the second time he put it up after some initial corrections and this evening posted it over at freerepublic.

But I am struck by the lengths to which the US soldiers go to even the playing field to their own detriment. Would the Jihadistas be impressed by mercy? Wouldn't they rather think that a sign of weakness since they are so merciless to themselves.

By way of constrast consider the post at 365 and a wake up The author describes patrolling in a1 Abrams Tank. Everything is quiet around the tank because no one wants to come out to play.
We spent most of the morning patrolling one of most fearsome roads in sector without hearing a single shot. For a few hours that contested piece of road was as quiet and still as a mountain lake, the insurgents knew that tangling with the Abrams was a sure path to the next life. Standing there in the turret, surrounded by tons of thick armor I could understand why so many tankers are loathe to dismount their vehicles. Inside those overpowered fortresses you don’t protect terrain – you dominate it. The M1 leaves the insurgents utterly impotent; all they can do is crawl into a corner and wait for you to leave. And that is the essence of power – defeating the enemy without ever firing a shot.

Of course in both cases it can be said that "the enemy is rendered impotent"The point of this piece different from that of Yon's piece.

8/25/2005 08:30:00 PM  
Blogger wretchardthecat said...


Thanks for this link. The guys running that blog are thinking like analysts, unafraid to connect dots, show up contradictions, infer what must be true or very probable and ready to doubt. It's funny about their interest in the Pressfield book. It is flowery but good. I'd read it in the corner of the house so no one could see me cry.

8/25/2005 08:36:00 PM  
Blogger Jeff Kouba said...


Then I'll say thank you to you! The link I posted about dissecting Gates of Fire was from my blog.

I am no analyst, no intel guy, I haven't been in the service. Just have a dear relative serving in Iraq, and these things interest me.

I've been reading your site for a long time, and am an admirer.

8/25/2005 08:49:00 PM  
Blogger exhelodrvr1 said...

Don't be too harsh on the two who didn't react in the desired manner. From all I have heard/read (no personal experience) that is an extremely common reaction for individuals in their first situation like that, and does not indicate at all what kind of soldier they will turn into.

8/25/2005 08:50:00 PM  
Blogger Marcus Aurelius said...

When teaching I sometimes found it hard to make my judgements stick. I would fail a student only to find him the next level in the next term. I do not recall the corrections ever being stopped but someone was "helping".

A top level administrator was sacked because he tried to eject a student from the University because he was unable to pass our program in four years of trying. I was able to get "stones" to pass with extra attention (proper help) and encouragement. If a student couldn't pass in one go they were pitiful, if a student was there for years on end trying to escape our program then...

We are not just rying to change a system of government but a culture, an outlook on life as well.

It is hard to say. The judge may have known the now nutless wonder's brother or cousin, or may have hailed from the same tribe or some other tenuous connection.

8/25/2005 08:53:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

The enemy may be impotent when the M1 cruises by, but being in hiding is not the same as being defeated.
So while the enemy did not engage the M1, they were by no means defeated without a shot.
That is one of the problems of using Conventional Force to combat an Insurgency. The Tankers think they won the day and successfully completed the mission. The Opfor survives and prepares, waiting for a HUMVEE or dismounted infantry or an Iraqi police patrol, unaffected by the combat power of the M1 back in the motor pool.

8/25/2005 08:54:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

I cannot tell a lie, Trish, so cannot fulfill your request, just join you in disgust and revulsion.

8/25/2005 09:19:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Rational ROE would then be kill all terrorists on sight, as they are a threat to your safety for the rest of their lives when there is no justice.

8/25/2005 09:21:00 PM  
Blogger Charles said...

Peace Like A River:Dissecting Gates of Fire

Last detail I'd like to look at, Yon says this:

When Kurilla woke in recovery a few hours after surgery, he called CSM Prosser and asked for a Bible and the book: Gates of Fire. Kurilla gives a copy of Gates of Fire to every new officer and orders them to read it. He had given me a copy and told me to read it. In my book, there is a marked passage, which I thought rather flowery. But I have it beside me on the table by the map of Iraq.

"I would be the one. The one to go back and speak. A pain beyond all previous now seized me. Sweet life itself, even the desperately sought chance to tell the tale, suddenly seemed unendurable alongside the pain of having to take leave of these whom I had come so to love."

The book, Gates of Fire, is written by Steven Pressfield.

(This link to Amazon came through GMT Games, a game company with which I have no affiliation, other than as a customer.)

Why might Kurilla, a leader of men, find special meaning in this book?

The book is fiction, a historical novel, but describes the famous battle of Thermopylae in 480 B.C. In a narrow mountain pass, 300 Spartans,led by Leonidas, and their allies held back a massive Persian invasion force. This force was wiped out.

It is a brilliant novel. Kurilla must have been touched by the account of Leonidas, and his difficult task of leading men in this perilous situation, one fraught with mortal danger.

In the book, Leonidas says this:

"You are the commanders, your men will look to you and act as you do. Let no officer keep to himself or his brother officers, but circulate daylong among his men. Let them see you and see you unafraid. Where there is work to do, turn your hand to it first; the men will follow."

Kurilla was that kind of man. He was the first man down that alley.

It is instructive that Yon highlighted the passage he did. The passage is taken from Chapter One. The words are from a character named Xeones. Xeones is the narrator of the novel. He survives the battle, and lives to tell the tale of what happened in that mountain pass.

Yon is that person as well. He sees himself as the one who will witness battle and return to tell others about it. He is the one who brings back to us tales of unbelievable courage. Without him, we would know very little of the courage of the men who put their lives on the line for us. God bless Yon, and God bless our Armed Forces.

Today, there is a famous monument at the site of the battle, and an epitaph on the monument says this:

Go tell the Spartans, stranger passing by,
that here, obedient to their laws, we lie

Yes, Michael, go tell all of us of the courage of those who serve to defend us.

8/25/2005 09:26:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Iraqi Judges, from what I understand, Trish.

8/25/2005 09:31:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

I had a friend who was there when you were, as a Doc.
He said while he held other's lives in his hands, he had no qualms about putting his safety in the hands of a Marine Lieutenant.
Like you say, that 2nd should never lead those troops, if any.

8/25/2005 09:35:00 PM  
Blogger NahnCee said...

Please tell me that Iraqis are not in a position to free Iraqis

One wonders how much Iraqi judges make ... since there seems to be quite a lot of free money floating around -- from left-over Saddam's stash, from trouble-making Iranians, and from fanatical Saudi's.

And if this terrorist *is* an ace, who would be willing to pay how much to bail him out.

Hell, he's probably on CBS's payroll!

8/25/2005 09:42:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Iraq on brink of meltdown.

In what appeared to be an attempt to inflame sectarian tensions, the bodies of 37 Shia soldiers, killed with a single bullet to the head, were found in a shallow river south of Baghdad, the latest of several such grim discoveries. Police said they had been stripped to their underwear.

The constitutional vacuum drew in another opponent of federalism, the firebrand Shia cleric Moqtada al-Sadr, who was responsible for two uprisings in the south last summer but who has since been quiet.
At least 12 people were killed as his Mahdi Army militia clashed with members of the Iranian-linked Badr Brigade in six cities and a Baghdad suburb. Sadr has now formed common cause with the Sunnis, fearing that federalism will play into the hands of Iran.

The Badr Brigade is the armed wing of the Supreme Council for Islamic Revolution in Iraq, which dominated the elections. It wants the southern states to become a semi-autonomous region with partial control over its revenues and security.

The speed of the violence underlined that even a "defeated" militia such as Sadr's still has a formidable arsenal and that the security forces are nowhere to be seen when the fighting starts.

8/25/2005 10:18:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Unholy, to be precise.

8/25/2005 10:19:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

That bullet whizzing by the Lt's head was unfortunate in the extreme.

8/25/2005 10:21:00 PM  
Blogger buddy larsen said...

hey, Charles, that 9:26 gave me the're writing some stuff, man.

8/25/2005 10:23:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

I think that's Jeff's stuff, Bud.

8/25/2005 10:26:00 PM  
Blogger buddy larsen said...

Oops, sorry Jeff.

Andrew--Stephen Crane made a whole novel out of that freeze moment--The Red Badge of Courage--stood up the hair on the neck of many a generation of American kids. With more to come, if the schools still allow it on the premises.

8/25/2005 10:39:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

as you say the Badr Corps is "the armed wing of the Supreme Council for Islamic Revolution in Iraq, which dominated the elections."
So why have these armed and semi-trained militiamen not been inducted into the ISF?.
Now they are the armed wing of the Governing Political Party, with NO secular Iraqi Government oversight. No direct or even indirect US funding and no control, even through purse strings.
These militias should have been Federalized two years ago, not left to roam their cities as psuedo security men.
Another botched counter Insurgency move by whomever made that decision.
Last year all the reports were that Sadr was a front man for the Iranians, now he sides with the Sunni. Are the Iranians going to back an even larger Sunni Insurgency, using the Constitutional Crisis the Sunni manufacture to rally further civilian support.
My hope was that we would offer enough enticements to the Sunni leadership that they would 'roll over'. If that proves to be a false hope, and the Iranians begin to use the Sunnis as Proxies, well Sally bar the door, cause this dance is just starting.

8/25/2005 10:52:00 PM  
Blogger Charles said...

Buddy Larsen said...
hey, Charles, that 9:26 gave me the're writing some stuff, man.

10:23 PM
ummm yeah that jeff from "Peace Like a River" There's a couple links on the post to his site. Good writing. Great reference to Thermopoli. Sobering thoughts.

8/25/2005 11:05:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Glad you made that post, 'Rat, 'cause I had trouble believing what I was reading, as I had the same expectation as you, namely that the Sadr/Iran connection was what we had to fear:
Now I have no idea what NOT to fear, if that report is true.

8/26/2005 12:13:00 AM  
Blogger Red River said...

The freeze is to be expected. After the first few engagments you loosen up. Full speed live fire MOUT helps a lot. Those two guys will be ok.

If you've hunted pigs in the brush at close quarters with a newby, its the same thing. Pigs running in all directions and people firing everywhere. Newby just stands there while the pigs hide behind him. Heh.

Yon may need to come home. The stress is showing on him and the Chaplain's reaction tells a lot.

While I might have picked up the rifle, I most certainly would have put my Sergeant's boot in the LT's ass first.

The 5.56 round has to be replaced. The 6.8 or 7.62 is better. Better yet, reissue the .45 carbine for CQB.

If CSM Presser had had a .45 - either a 1911 or a 45 Carbine, the Eunuch would be wrapped in linen by now.

8/26/2005 12:17:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Just listening to Yoni talking to Hugh:
Said he would have thanked Mike for saving his men.
Also said given that they are letting them go, the only thing to do is kill them.
Hugh disagrees.
I disagree w/a policy that regularly gets our men killed unnecessarily.
Better a murderous terrorist than a heroic GI.
Sometimes the "high ground" is immoral.

8/26/2005 01:06:00 AM  
Blogger Abakan said...

I've finished the day with a few alcoholic beverages, so I'm in the mood for a different point of view.

Would it be safe to say that this battle ended in a safe house for insurgents? Details...

A writer grabs a gun? A moment of celebration and a moment to consider something much more important.

We gave a farmer back his gun and not shooting him was praised as an act of good judgement.

We don't shoot people solely because they flee.

Why would the "Gates of Fire" have any importance at all?

Some would think that all of this represents chaos, spontaneous reaction to uncontrollable and mysterious actions.

At the lowest levels closest to the action our fighting forces are dealing with the simple and the complex with an efficiency that is frightening to some, and a source of pride for others.

I'm proud, and a bit more optimistic tonight.

We wait for a constitution and a vote. When we succeed I will owe it all to a Republican, Christian, cowboy, born with a silver spoon in his mouth, and a small group of neocons.

I'll give credit where credit is due even though I'm an atheist and a Democrat.

I feel good.

8/26/2005 01:15:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Hugh's next caller was a Sgt with the 35th Infantry here in Hawaii.
He hadn't heard or read the story yet, but mentioned a Sgt there was a former roommate, Hugh asked "what's his name?"
Sarge replies,
"Prosser" !
Hugh mentions a little about the hand to hand action, Sarge says,
"That's my guy!"
...think he'll be reading the whole piece!

8/26/2005 01:22:00 AM  
Blogger Abakan said...

Desert Rat said,

"So why have these armed and semi-trained militiamen not been inducted into the ISF?.
Now they are the armed wing of the Governing Political Party, with NO secular Iraqi Government oversight. No direct or even indirect US funding and no control, even through purse strings."

The answer is rather simple. It is because their allegience may shift according to the political wind. You should know this already.

The guys shaping policy and working behind the scenes to create the 'wind' aren't fools or ignorant.

They could still fail, but to reduce their decisions to incompetence, is doing them a great injustice.

8/26/2005 01:29:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Ugly Scene - Cleric Urges an End to Clashes

8/26/2005 02:11:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Captain Ed,
"Does this demonstrate why we need detention facilities like Guantanamo Bay and should remain firm that terrorists don't get released -- ever?
Unlawful combatants need to remain imprisoned for life. Otherwise, we wind up fighting them again, and even worse, they wound and kill America's finest as soon as they get free. Patton once said that he didn't like tactical withdrawals because he didn't like paying for the same real estate twice. We need to change our way of thinking to a war footing and understand that when we let these lunatics go free, we're paying for the same real estate twice or more, and the price we pay are commanders like Lt. Col. Kurilla."

8/26/2005 02:26:00 AM  
Blogger Abakan said...

I have to admit that I find watching the Belmont Club reaction to the idea of a soldier wrestling with a terrorist "hand to hand" with rapt attention to details about wrist watches and teeth marks a bit amusing. I'm not saying that I find the life and death struggle between two men amusing just the general reaction here to such a struggle. Add to that the almost mystical quality attached to this same soldiers appreciation for a novel called "Gates of Fire" which is about the Battle of Thermopylae.
I guess that's why I love this forum.

Have you ever been in a fight?
Have you read the Art of War or Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance? What is your scariest moment?

8/26/2005 04:30:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...


Yes, read Sun Tzu's "Art of War a number of times, as well as Musashhi's "A Book of the Five Rings" which is, I think superior for the individual soldier. Still have copies of both.
Been in more than a few fights, mostly fist, but a couple, three were gun fights. Scariest moment occurred while flying in a Shithook helicopter.

The Battle of Thermopylae is a story of self sacrifice for a cause greater than one's self, which is at the core of being a soldier. Granted most modern soldiers do not sacrifice as much as the Spartans did, at Thermopylae.

To rush through a door, not sure of what is on the other side, firing as you move is an exciting and scary thing. The danger, the unknowns that lurk beyond the doorway, gives a stomach churn and adrenaline rush unlike any other.

There is danger outside the wire, and that is what some, not all or even most, soldiers live and/or die for.

I know that this can be hard for civilians, those that have never served, to understand, sometimes.

8/26/2005 06:21:00 AM  
Blogger NahnCee said...

Ditto, trish. I think you have just hit upon the breaking point for me in how/when do we pull out: when not only the Iraqi Bad Guys are trying to kill us, but the Iraqi Good Guys are, too.

And if the Iraqi's don't take it any more seriously than that, then why the hell should we???

8/26/2005 06:27:00 AM  
Blogger RWE said...

This sort of combat brings to mind that famous picture of the Vietnam War, with the South Vietnamese Chief of Intelligence shooting a captured enemy fighter in the head.
That picture convined many that the South Vietnamese were not worth saving. It did not go down the Memory Hole but remains, floating on the edge of consciousness in the anti-war crowd.
What has gone down the Memory Hole is that execution took place among the chaos of the Tet Offensive, and that the enemy agent that was summarily put to death had just been captured in the act of blowing up a school bus full of children.
In my mind, shooting that piece of walking filth in the head showed remarkable strength and compassion.
Under the same circumstances I would have shot him in a place a lot lower and let him die a bit more slowly.

8/26/2005 06:40:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

nahncee & trish

It is Iraq
It is an Iraqi challenge
There is an Iraqi solution, we just have to force them to take responsibility for themselves.

If you read the "Authorization for Use of Force" you will see that we have accomplished ALL the Goals set forth in it.

Authorization for Use of Force

Moving the Goal Posts is done by both sides in the Politics of this Conflict.

At this point using 130,000 US troops as sugar to attract flies, and to then not kill the flies we attract is counter productive.

We have been following the wrong course in Iraq for almost two years. The past and current Commanders have had their opportunities and done poorly.

Baghdad's Airport Road is symbolic in that we have occupied Baghdad for well over two years and it is still not secured for travel.
That is a microcosm of a failure of Command that is really of monumental proportions.

8/26/2005 06:47:00 AM  
Blogger T said...

This is like someone saying a school bully isn't very tough, then the bully goes and beats up some kids 5 years younger and half his size, and says, "see I'm tough!".

On the whole you can't say the US is winning anything in Iraq. The resistance is really kicking their ass. If not for the noble resistance of everyday Iraqis sick of occupation, Iraq would be the neo-liberal playground that Cheney hoped it would be, oil would be flowing at full capacity, and the US military would have built bases across the country which they could use to threaten neighbouring countries. Considering the US isn't even remotely close to any of those goals, it's pretty clear they're losing badly to basically a bunch of angry kids with rusted old guns and makeshift bombs. If the resistance had apache warcopters, stealth bombers, body armour, etc. the US would really be in trouble.

8/26/2005 06:58:00 AM  
Blogger RWE said...

"If the resistance had apache warcopters, stealth bombers, body armour, etc. the US would really be in trouble."
Yes, we would really be in trouble.
But only with the antiwar crowd and the U.N.
Because the terrorists and ALL of the nations that gave them all of that stuff would ALL be dead.
6 Aug 1945.
That is how we handle the big bullys.
What an idiot.

8/26/2005 07:03:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

with regards'The answer is rather simple. It is because their allegience may shift according to the political wind. You should know this already.

The guys shaping policy and working behind the scenes to create the 'wind' aren't fools or ignorant.

They could still fail, but to reduce their decisions to incompetence, is doing them a great injustice"

To leave 50,000 armed and organized militiamen outside the Government Security Force is incompetent. That Force should have been disbanded or co-opted, years ago. We did neither.

As Mao wrote "Little Red Book"
'Political Power Grows Out of the Barrel of a Gun'. In a state of flux, such as Iraq, combat power must remain a monopoly of the State.

That we allowed others, in Iraq, to maintain combat power, outside the State's control is, was and will continue to be a sign that the decision makers are incompetent.

8/26/2005 07:06:00 AM  
Blogger Rick Ballard said...

Perhaps a review of the process (as we can glean it from Yon's accounts) might be in order prior to fixing the blame on the perfidious Iraqis.

1. Taken into custody

A. Status determination by US personnel

i. determined to be a bystander through preliminary field interrogation - released

ii. determined to be a bad guy - complete field interrogation and immediate action based upon information gathered

iii. disposition - returned to base for further interrogation and then turned over to Army Detention Facilities for further processing.

2. Army Detention Facilities

A. Assumes responsibility for prisoner

i. receives prisoner and field evaluation - I believe that this is the process point at which Col. Kurila believes that significant errors are being made

ii. continues interrogation and makes a disposition decision concerning the "level of danger" the prisoner poses

a. Retains prisoner for further interrogation

b. Delivers prisoner to Iraqi authorities for charge and trial - one of the factors in this story is that Col. Kurila's RTO was testifying in court against a couple of other mutts taken two months previously

Col. Kurila's ire was reserved for Army Detention Facilities - the same folks responsible for Abu Ghraib.

Perhaps justice was suborned through the Iraqi Criminal Court system - but the evidence is not in this piece.

8/26/2005 07:35:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Where did you learn that?
Here is my post after yours at Tigherhawks.
There is no proof that the majority of protesters love America.
Desert Rat loves America, I love America, but a majority of "anti war activists" define themselves as America Haters then protest when anyone complains about their lack of patriotism.
Most are so ignorant as to be beneath contempt, but they still lend aid and comfort.

8/26/2005 08:02:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

That 2nd lieutenant looked like he was moving foreward until a bullet hit the wall within 18 inches of his head!
Can't blame ANYONE for ducking from that, esp a newby.

8/26/2005 08:05:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

And God would not have made perfectly good aircraft only to have men jump out of them.

8/26/2005 08:09:00 AM  
Blogger T said...

OK, the US has killed what, 100,000+ people in Iraq? I'm calling for Iraqis to fight this violence and I'm a bad guy?

This has nothing to do with being Muslim and your comment to that effect shows how much of a hateful racist you are. Islam is a bullshit religion almost as bad as Christianity. I see people as humans, unlike you lot who see Americans, then everyone else. There are things called humans rights, you lot don't believe in that. You believe only morons who self-labotomize and echo the US government are worthy of rights.

People have a right to fight repression and occupation. That's what Iraqis are doing by attacking and often killing American soldiers. If you think these soldiers are "children", you should probably support their withdrawal from Iraq. I don't want American soldiers to die, so I support withdrawal. If they stay there though, I fully support the resistance's right to fight them with everything they've got, not only soldiers but any foreign profit-takers who want to help with the neo-liberalization agenda. Iraqi collaboraters are fair game too.

Funny how you theo-cons mock anti-war types as being timid pacifists, yet the idea of someone daring to resist the violent American Empire with violence of it's own sickens you and you call for complete pacifism.

Such hypocrisy. Of course most people on this site are now utterly terrified of me, and simply ignore my impalations of their logical contradictions, what else can you do I guess? Clearly calling me names, like everyone rallied to do when I first appeared here didn't faze me.

There's nothing more scary to thoughtless idealists who simply absorb their opinions from the authorities as some honest debate. I offered it up, everyone on this site, especially the author of the articles, tucked their tails between their legs and ran and hid.

8/26/2005 08:10:00 AM  
Blogger Jeff Kouba said...

Charles and Buddy, thanks for your kind words. I see Hugh Hewitt has now linked to it as well.

Tlear - That's a great point about not letting the enemy build up their experience pool. In Yon's piece, it's too bad Prosser wasn't able to fully throttle the guy into Paradise.

8/26/2005 08:16:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Maybe you could defend yourself against a following comment at Tigerhawk's.
As in,
You are not calling for an immediate pullout, right?
I am calling for an immediate cessation of sacrificing American lives for insanities such as almost took Kurilla's life.
PC justice is sometimes worse than no justice at all.

8/26/2005 08:20:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Gay, or Otherwise.

8/26/2005 08:22:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Moti, I am not a theocon, I am a member of the violent American Empire.

8/26/2005 08:24:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

"Of course most people on this site are now utterly terrified of me, and simply ignore my impalations of their logical contradictions, what else can you do I guess? "
I am terrified because I thought I knew English, but I was obviously mistaken since I have no idea what an impalation is.

8/26/2005 08:28:00 AM  
Blogger Rick Ballard said...


I think he's trying to parlay Idiot Of The Month into Idiot Of The Year. You have to admit he's up against some stiff competition.

Wrt - how do I know?

Yon's reports supplied everthing up to the handover from base to Army Detention Facilities. Here is a precis on what's going on after the handover.

Just dot connecting.

8/26/2005 08:49:00 AM  
Blogger Annoy Mouse said...

Oh how times, they is a changing...

“In a future war involving U.S. soldiers what would a TV reporter do if he learned the enemy troops with which he was traveling were about to launch a surprise attack on an American unit? That's just the question Harvard University professor Charles Ogletree Jr, as moderator of PBS' Ethics in America series, posed to ABC anchor Peter Jennings and 60 Minutes correspondent Mike Wallace. Both agreed getting ambush footage for the evening news would come before warning the U.S. troops.
For the March 7 installment on battlefield ethics Ogletree set up a theoretical war between the North Kosanese and the U.S.-supported South Kosanese. At first Jennings responded: "If I was with a North Kosanese unit that came upon Americans, I think I personally would do what I could to warn the Americans."
Wallace countered that other reporters, including himself, "would regard it simply as another story that they are there to cover." Jennings' position bewildered Wallace: "I'm a little bit of a loss to understand why, because you are an American, you would not have covered that story."
"Don't you have a higher duty as an American citizen to do all you can to save the lives of soldiers rather than this journalistic ethic of reporting fact?" Ogletree asked. Without hesitating Wallace responded: "No, you don't have higher duty... you're a reporter." This convinces Jennings, who concedes, "I think he's right too, I chickened out."
Ogletree turns to Brent Scrowcroft, now the National Security Adviser, who argues "you're Americans first, and you're journalists second." Wallace is mystified by the concept, wondering "what in the world is wrong with photographing this attack by North Kosanese on American soldiers?" Retired General William Westmoreland then points out that "it would be repugnant to the American listening public to see on film an ambush of an American platoon by our national enemy."
A few minutes later Ogletree notes the "venomous reaction" from George Connell, a Marine Corps Colonel. "I feel utter contempt. Two days later they're both walking off my hilltop, they're two hundred yards away and they get ambushed. And they're lying there wounded. And they're going to expect I'm going to send Marines up there to get them. They're just journalists, they're not Americans."
Wallace and Jennings agree, "it's a fair reaction." The discussion concludes as Connell says: "But I'll do it. And that's what makes me so contemptuous of them. And Marines will die, going to get a couple of journalists."

8/26/2005 08:50:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

okay doug, I did as you asked.
tigerhawk may never be the same

8/26/2005 09:01:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Great post at Tiger's, why don't you repost relevant parts here?
Did you notice Kurilla was in the Panama business, not to mention Desert I, Bosnia, Kosovo, whatever, whata guy.

8/26/2005 09:03:00 AM  
Blogger buddy larsen said...

IOTM, your confusion is easily explained: The people here want the West to win the war that Radical Islam declared on it sometime back in the 70s.

You, on the other hand, want the other side to win.

Therefore, there is little point in arguing with you.

As far as anyone being afraid of you, this is the internet--nobody can hurt anybody.

Maybe if you showed up in my hometown and set off an IED, that'd be different. Then I would fear you and have to attack you--much as the better countries of the West are now doing to the terrorists, in response to the tens of thousands of terror murders committed against us over the last few decades.

If you really want me to fear you, you'll have to come down to Dripping Springs, Texas, and ask anyone where the Larsen place is out in the Henly area. Then drop by and introduce yourself, and maybe then if you've got the drop on me, I'll fear you. Until then, sorry, pal, you're just another arrangement of silly little sentences.

8/26/2005 09:13:00 AM  
Blogger Jeff Kouba said...

Doug, thanks for mentioning Kurilla's resume. I hadn't heard that.

It ties in well with Tlear's point about building up experience. The US military has built up a great deal of experience over the years, fighting in a myriad of situations and environments.

8/26/2005 09:19:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

rick link is interesting

"...Other profiling information provided by Brandenburg shows that 96 percent of those in the detention camps are Iraqis and about 60 percent are either from Baghdad or Anbar provinces -- two areas where much of the insurgency has been concentrated. ..."

As of 15 May 05, "... the detainee population surpassed 11,350 last week ..."

So only 454 "Foreign Fighters" are in Custody. Extrapulate that number or percentage to the entire Opfor and we see aQ Iraq is a very minor player in the Insurgency.

Obviously having 130,000 troops to fight that small percentage of aQ is counter productive.
How many of the total Insurgent Force are fighting US just because we are there?
Pretty high, I'd think.
How many are fighting because they do not want to live in a Shia dominated Iraq?
Again, pretty high.
How many are already engaged in an Iraqi Civil War?
Again, a sizable number.

The numbers do not lie.
It is an Iraqi on Iraqi fight. Best we remove ourselves from it, as much as possible.

8/26/2005 09:20:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

and to satisfy doug's request

From Tigerhawk's blog

"... I am discussing how to best achieve our continuing Goals.
Those Goals that are articulated in the Authorization for Use of Force have been achieved. Iraq's Government is no longer a threat to US or the oil producing States in the region. There is an emerging democracy.

The Idea that we should continue to deploy 130,000 troops to battle car bombs, land mines and satchel charges is counter productive.

This insurgency will not be defeated by a larger US occupation. To garrison the country adequately enough to quell the insurgents, by sheer numbers, would take over 500,000 troops, based on post WWII experiences. We do not have a Force Structure capable of delivering that size of a Police/ Constabulary Force.

The best past example of a counter insurgency victory is El Salvador. With aprox. 54 uniformed personnel and a 'few' hired contractors the Opposing Forces were defeated in both El Salvador and the entire Region.

In Iraq we should:
1. Preposition equipment in the Western desert airbases
2. Garrison those bases with a Division size Army unit, similar to Korea.
3. Deploy Special Forces type liaisons at the Battalion or preferably Company level of the Iraqi Security Forces. The troops would act as advisors and Forward Air Controllers. Aprox 5 to 10,000 US troops spread across the ISF
4. Maintain an Air Wing, both fixed wing and rotary, for ground support operations at the Western Airbases
5. Improve Iraqi troop training by embedding those advisors described in #3 early in the training cycle and leaving those advisors with the ISF units that they trained as the units deploy to action stations within Iraq.

While not an all inclusive plan these 5 steps would bring US closer to Victory than staying the course. ..."

8/26/2005 09:26:00 AM  
Blogger Rick Ballard said...

Desert Rat,

I second Doug's thought on posting your proposal here. If not on this thread then on another. My only objection is that 'division' is no longer a correct unit deployment title. I'd say six Stryker brigades on a tighter rotation.

I believe that you will see that draw down beginning after the referendum on the constitution and subsequent elections.

8/26/2005 09:33:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

I've been saying that for months, now.
The challenge is in what we leave behind, that is where Victory will be measured.

The troop levels have become a Political Barometer for support of Bush.

They should be determined by Tactics, not Politics. The Tactics we have followed to this point have been partially successful, but not without without fault.

As we move forward our Action Plan had better improve, or Victory will, once again in my life time, slip away from US.

8/26/2005 09:42:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

"As we move forward our Action Plan had better improve, or Victory will, once again in my life time, slip away from US"
And I, for more years than you, are tired of that,
Only yesterday my wife talked to a Viet Vet that mentioned nothing since WWII has been simply concluded w/VICTORY.

Being a conspiracy nutjob, I think that neatly corresponds w/ the lifetime of the United Nations.

8/26/2005 09:53:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

I am,
Although Buddy would contend my schizoid selves ARE.

8/26/2005 09:54:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

I are, therefore I IOTM?

8/26/2005 09:54:00 AM  
Blogger buddy larsen said...

This is long, so I'll delete it later, but it's from an email, and is an advance on an article appearing tomorrow, so if I'm going to add this to rat's argument--out of respect, not out of full agreement--here 'tis, for awhile (message is in the provenance--who is saying this):


In the new issue of The Weekly Standard:

-Irwin M. Stelzer on the economics of war:

"We will accept nothing less than total victory over the terrorists and their hateful ideology," President Bush told the Veterans of Foreign Wars last week. But, as they say both on the streets of New York and the ranches of Texas, talk is cheap. We now have a choice--in the vernacular, it is to put up or shut up.

That choice can no longer safely be postponed. We can tailor our national security policies to the economic resources we are willing to commit to those policies, or we can commit sufficient resources to allow us successfully to implement the policies the president has decided are in the national interest. Put differently, if we want to continue to speak loudly, we will have to buy a big, expensive stick. If, instead, we decide that all we care to spend will buy only a tiny twig, we will have to speak more softly.

The first alternative, which we might call neo-realism (some will call it neo-isolationism) is both practicable and not without appeal. Here is what it would entail. Abandon the idea that we can only be secure if we spread democracy to the peoples of the world, all of whom we assume are yearning to breath free. Even if they are, it is up to them to work out the means for attaining that goal, just as many of the countries of Eastern Europe did, without Iraq-style interventions on our part. We are not prepared to spend the blood and treasure to help them.

Abandon also the idea that we can participate in the real-world global economy by pretending that world markets are organized in a way that allows us to achieve Adam Smith-like efficiencies by espousing free trade. We are playing against a stacked deck, as recent experience with China shows.

First, currency manipulation guarantees China an advantage over and above the natural comparative advantage provided by its relatively low wages. Second, disregard for property rights allows the Chinese government and other economic actors to steal American technology and intellectual property. Remember: The Chinese government feels it has made a commendable display of virtue by promising to stop using pirated software sometime in 2007--and that is the government that is supposed to prevent what passes for the country's private sector from engaging in such thievery. More important, the advantage China gains from distorting the patterns of trade provides the funds it is using to expand its military presence in the Asia-Pacific region, fund military exercises with Russia, and extend the reach of its fighter fleet, nuclear submarines, and aircraft carriers.

So if we are to tailor our policies to fit our unwillingness to shore up our military power in the world, we have to abandon our long-held and, it can be argued, myopic view that more-or-less rigid adherence to free trade serves our geopolitical interests. True, we will sacrifice some of the efficiencies that have brought us a plethora of consumer goods at prices so low that they have offset the devastating impact of high oil prices on consumer budgets. But we will have traded cheap T-shirts for greater control over our monetary policy, and put something of a strain on the resources China is devoting to its military build-up. . . .

Log on to on Saturday, August 27, to read rest, along with the entire new issue.

8/26/2005 10:18:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Doug Santo,
As usual, cogent post, but I would disagree re, criticism of policy to this extent:
Thank you, poster Martin for doing my work:
Martin said,
Absolutely unforgivable! The catch and release. That happens to thieves and rapist in America, but I didn't think it would happen to Murderers and terrorists in a war zone. What are they thinking?
And what are WE thinking when child molesters have more rights than children?

8/26/2005 10:44:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Just last week, I was reading something at Amazon, and came across a Book about the coming liquidation of the USA, or some such, by China.
His credibility was reduced somewhat by the fact that he had written a very similar book about Japan some years earlier!

8/26/2005 10:50:00 AM  
Blogger Rick Ballard said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

8/26/2005 10:52:00 AM  
Blogger Rick Ballard said...

Doug Santo,

Hear, hear.

VDH has a very cogent piece that bookends nicely with Tigerhawk's.

Now, lessee, which poster here most deserves the David Duke Award?

Hmmm. Tough call.

"Mr. Schicklgruber is here for his appointment, Mr. Djugashvili."


You'll like this one. (if memory serves)

8/26/2005 10:59:00 AM  
Blogger John Aristides said...

It may be true that benefits accrue in the short run with trade protections, and it is probably correct that such practice creates benefits in the medium and long term, too.

But what are the opportunity costs? If we set up the game of "global trade", where the choices are cooperate (adhere to principles of free and fair trade) or defect (dog-eat-dog approach with no adherence to fundamental rules or ethics), America has a significant interest in maximizing the number of players who cooperate. There are many reasons for this interest, from national security to market strategies, but I think it is inarguable that America is better off with most countries cooperating in Global Free Trade and its underlying ethical construct.

On the other hand, cooperation may never be an equilibrium. The global incentive structure may inevitably skew towards an "exiter" strategy and rampant defection, but it is not obvious, at least not to me, that this is the case. From where I sit, if we can stimulate incentives to cooperate and diminish incentives to defect, it should not be impossible to create a more or less Free Trade World.

And so I'll make three big assumptions that argue against trade protection in the short and medium term. One, such protection provides a disincentive for cooperation and an incentive for others to defect. Two, our strength can get us through a rising great power's birthing pains, so we should not worry too much about China. And three, if we hold firm, the end state equilibrium of Global Commerce will be cooperation and adherence to fundamental rules of trade, where players agree to pursue free trade in spirit if not always by the letter.

I just think that our long-term interest in an orderly and stable free trade arena outweighs our short-term interest in halting China's military and shoring up the Yuan.

8/26/2005 11:00:00 AM  
Blogger Abakan said...

Desert Rat said,

"To leave 50,000 armed and organized militiamen outside the Government Security Force is incompetent. That Force should have been disbanded or co-opted, years ago. We did neither."

Taking away their arms in a country where arms are easier to get than bottled water seems to be a huge waste of time.

Taking away their organization would have been taking away any means to control them.

As a practical exercise it would take a large force and I'm not sure at all it would be worth such energy.

8/26/2005 11:08:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

Doug Santo
We had our options and opted out of
1. Maintaining a Military that can field a 500,000 man force
2. A humiliating defeat of the Iraqis in the Sunni Region

Now, as we move forward, there are other options to choose from. It is not time rest on our laurels, it is not time to praise our Commanders and it is not time to be satified with Staying the Course.
It is time, however, time to stop moving the Goal Posts.

Our troops WILL start withdrawing in the Spring. How we do that and what we leave behind in our wake is all important to honoring the sacrifices already made and those yet to come.

Given the LOW number of Foreign Terrorists in Iraq they are no reason to stay.
In all other Countries, Foreign Terrorists are cause for concern to the National or Federal as well as Local Police. In Countries were the Military and Police are seperate it is the Police, not the Military, that are the PRIMARY enforcement agency against FOREIGN Terrorists.
Why should it be different in Iraq?
I have read estimates, by Rumsfeld if I recall, of 50,000 Opfor.
22% of it, or 11,000+/- is incarcerated. Of that number only 454 are Foreigners. Extrapulated from this there are, maybe 2,500 Foreign Fighters in the entire Iraqi Insurgency.

2,500 enemy, dispersed in a population of 25 million.

The capture of those 2,500 Foreign Fighters is, without a doubt, not the job the 4th ID or the 4/2 is trained for.

The rest of the Insurgency is part of an Iraqi Civil War and/or part of an anti US occupation effort.

The larger our footprint the larger the target the Insurgents have to shoot at. It gets US no closer to Victory..

8/26/2005 11:14:00 AM  
Blogger Red River said...

I think IOTM has beaten-wife syndrome.

"He is just misunderstood." becomes "They are just like us."

And "Its all my fault, if only I had.." becomes "Its all the USA's fault, if only the USA would.."

The Psychology is the same, just a transferral from individual relationships to political relationships.

8/26/2005 11:22:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

you say
"Taking away their arms in a country where arms are easier to get than bottled water seems to be a huge waste of time."

If it was easy we'd send you.
If the effort required in securing a Democratic Iraqi State seems to be a 'waste of time', Why pray tell are we still there?

"Taking away their organization would have been taking away any means to control them."

If they were disarmed there would be NO NEED to 'control' them.
If they had been integrated into the ISF they would be part of the State, which their Party dominates, not loose cannons on a Ship of State.

"As a practical exercise it would take a large force..."

We have a 'Large Force' there. Over 130,000 troops, that is why they are there.

"and I'm not sure at all it would be worth such energy"

It is worth $82 BILLION a Year.
There is a lot of energy in that $82 BILLION, I think we'd all like to see SUCCESS in establishing a Democratic Government in Iraq.
That cannot be done when armed militias roam the streets, a law unto themselves.

8/26/2005 11:28:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

So abakan
We cannot disarm the Iraqis, we cannot secure the Airport Road, we cannot secure Baghdad, Mosul or the Euphrates River Valley?
Why not?
Why not Victory.
Why settle for Staying the Course, when the Course has proven faulty?

We still want to make Port, now more than ever, it is time to tack

8/26/2005 11:38:00 AM  
Blogger Abakan said...

Desert Rat,

I know you aren't that fond of cut and paste, and I know it eats bandwith so let's try this in the free and clear.

Are you saying that you think disarming them is possible even though arms are more plentiful than bottled water?

Taking away their arms once or thousands of times is an attempt to control them. The question is would that be an efficient measure of control?

8/26/2005 11:42:00 AM  
Blogger Annoy Mouse said...

The US stands as the largest consumer market in the world. As we shed off manufacturing capabilities countries like China will take up the slack. The US is producing less and less of what it consumes. If we limited access to US markets like every other country in the world does, then there would be greater incentive for US manufacturers to produce every day consumer items. Our national idea of liberal trade policies means to open our markets to others and let others use various forms of protection to shield their fragile industries from us and others. This is not a balance of trade. In the end, those who advocate the US as a service economy will find that we have evolved into a society of hair dressers and phone sanitizers with an army of 130k troops ready to deploy.

8/26/2005 11:58:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

The most effective thing to have done with the militias, both Shia and Kurdish would have been to integrate them into the ISF. Either as individuals or complete units.
They would then be part of the Iraqi State, both accountable to it and taking an "ownership" position in it.
Nationalizing the militias not continuing to localize them would have been and still is a better course.
Yes, if the Militias are neither needed or wanted by the National Government than ANY and ALL efforts required should be used to continually disarm them. They are Insurgents waiting to happen, or the trigger to an expanded Iraqi Civil War.
In either case a direct threat to the new Democratic Government's ability to maintain the 'monopoly of force' required to rule.

8/26/2005 11:58:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

As GWB used to be paraphrased
"you're either with US or the Terrorists"

Same goes for Iraqi Militias

8/26/2005 12:04:00 PM  
Blogger Rick Ballard said...


How did Nohe get in front of an Iraqi judge? Yon makes it clear (and the WaPo article further explicates) what the process coonsists of. American forces do not turn suspected terrorists over to the Iraqis directly from the field.

You might note that I in no way exonerated the judge, I said that the facts provided do not justify the assumptions being made. Judges release guilty men every damn day because "knowing" something is not even in the same ballpark as "proving" something. The Coalition can be mad as hell at the judge and the judge can still be right according to rules of jurispudence. If you don't believe me, talk to a cop.

A system failure is not the same as systemic failure.

8/26/2005 12:22:00 PM  
Blogger T said...

Nathan, first of all, congratulations on actually trying to engage what I've said instead of adding a nomination in my favour for the idiot of the year award, which somehow magically disproves everything I say based on popular opinion, rather than statements.

What you've said is not my position whatsoever. Imperialists often get caught up in the false dichotomy of "invade everyone" and isolation.

I also mentioned human rights, which implies an over-riding global standard, not the subjective morality which you talk about. I find it strange you'd use relative morality in an accusational sense, since that's the basis of US foreign policy. We do it, we're liberators and democrats, they do it, they're terrorists and war criminals. US foreign policy is either dedicated to amoralism, or to complete logical contradiction.

To see Iraq as a threat to the US is just plain silly. One minute you're bragging about how powerful the US military is, the next you think some two-bit dictator whose military consists of a bunch of guys with peashooters ready to surrendor or switch sides at the first opportunity as a threat. Iraq wasn't a threat to you or the safety of the US. Iraq was a threat to American economic and political hegemony. Saddam Hussein was resisting neo-liberalism, he wasn't open to Iraq being run by US corporations. Second of all he ended up becomming politically unfriendly to the US in a very strategic area. If you commit both of those faults, you're a threat to American Empire, of course never a threat to any average american. The American Empire is not you, just because you live there doesn't mean you're part of it. The American Empire is as much opposed to the interests of common americans like you as it is to the interests of foreign governments who stand in the way of it's dominance. You have an identity problem. See my essay A Theory of Power Worship on my site for an explanation of that problem.

I've got no problem whatsoever with humanitarian intervention. The problem is that people think that's why the US is intervening in these places. They couldn't care less about human rights or democracy, as evidenced by their attacks on democratically elected leaders in Haiti and Venezuela, and support for ridiculous dictators in Saudi Arabia. The US is interested in securing political and economic dominance. Authoritarianism always runs counter to human rights. If Iceland overthrew Bush and then occupied the country, would you argue that Americans have no moral right to defend themselves against such occupation and repression by a foreign government? The fact that Bush is a murderous tyrant wouldn't justify occupation. Or would you be the pacifist in this case? Selling out your fellow americans to collaborate with the occupiers?

cjr, the idea that the resistance is only Sunni or only Ba'athists is silly and just plain not representative of facts. One of the biggest resistance groups is led by teh Shiite Muqtada al-Sadr.

Buddy Larsen: Iraq had no radical islam. Now it does. THe US occupation/invasion of Iraq has nothing to do with religion, you sound like Bin Laden.

james: clearly those elements are not noble nor are they part of the resistance. People like al-Zarqaqi are opportunists, he sees no difference between a shiite and an american. His problem isn't occupation of Iraq by the US, it's that HE wants to control Iraq. Most of the other resistance groups have put hits out on him. Why you think I'd support him or any of the non-political criminal opportunists makes no sense.

8/26/2005 12:25:00 PM  
Blogger Jack said...

I knew that title sounded familiar.

I actually stole it from my ex-girlfriend, whose class was reading it. If I remember, Hackworth was quoted on the back recommending it.

Funny, because the Professor is an old drug experimenting hippy.

8/26/2005 01:16:00 PM  
Blogger Lanny Nugen said...

Good job Ferdinand,

When I heard someone hiding behind the skirt of lady liberty and calling soldier who put their life in the line of fire every day coward, I know immediately

1) That person has never ever expose himself in any danger except when crossing the street, driving a car in freeway or arguing with his wife.

2) That person if is a veteran, he is a desk top veteran.

3) And the probability that he is a leftist liberal is about 99%.

Soldiers who put their life on the line, don't call their comrade coward because they will instantly recall the moment and the feeling of life & death flashing in their face in first battle. They know the fear and it's real. They got pissed because that SOB couldn't move fast enough (10 seconds into an intense battle seems like an hour) to cover them but they won't be mad. We might tease them as "the freaking chicken who got me almost killed" but we won't delve into it the next minute. We don't even call them coward, but we call leftist liberal coward all the time whose only courage is found behind the skirt of lady liberty.

8/26/2005 01:19:00 PM  
Blogger Jack said...


I'm not terrified of you any more than I'm terrified of the guy standing outside Borders screaming obscenities, nonsense, and asking for money.

On some level I respect you because you call a spade a spade. You don't pretend to support the troops, while opposing the mission. You don't pretend to be a patriot of the West, while decrying its every action. You understand the logical conclusions of your ideology. Fine, at least you have the intellectual courage to take a position.

But it ain't mine. Your sophistry is the bringer of death and repression. You're an apologist for madmen, authoritarians, and murderous ideologies and you're just too stupid to see it, and well beyond rescue. You're not worth getting involved with, merely a looking glass into the ignorance we're fighting.

8/26/2005 01:34:00 PM  
Blogger Jack said...

...and I will now go back to ignoring and mocking you. You arrogant imbecile.

8/26/2005 01:36:00 PM  
Blogger buddy larsen said...

Hey, Lan Nguyen, go here and read the letter by Art Fougner of Flushing, N.Y. (you'll enjoy it, if 'enjoy' is the right word, which it isn't quite).

8/26/2005 01:40:00 PM  
Blogger buddy larsen said...

11max, go see Kim du Toit, and type in search [ 5.56 vs 7.62 ] see what happens...maybe nothing...but if it hits, it'll be colorful.

8/26/2005 02:19:00 PM  
Blogger ex-democrat said...

Lan N - nothing could be more frightening than arguing with my ex-wife.

8/26/2005 02:29:00 PM  
Blogger Lanny Nugen said...

You mean someone just trying to teach leftist liberals having Alzheimer about basic comprehension, again?

8/26/2005 02:44:00 PM  
Blogger buddy larsen said...

Ha! Try mine.

8/26/2005 02:45:00 PM  
Blogger Lanny Nugen said...

I know the feeling. The reason I have only one wife is I don't argue with her.

8/26/2005 02:48:00 PM  
Blogger buddy larsen said...

Right, Lan--that's about the size of it. I wish them one educational encounter, at some point in life, with those folks you barely escaped from. Straight talk from someone who fought the NVA is mighty sobering, for everyone but the drunks.

8/26/2005 03:04:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

thanks for the Iraqi Court post
All the more reason to put more Iraqis out there on the front line, now.

Kurilla's patrol should have had a least a platoon of Iraqi with them.
How less will the Iraqis learn?

They can and do and did freeze just like the Spec 4 and young LT. Not cowards, just inexperienced.
To a degree, they were not well led or advised. Why no anti personel or stun grenades? Where was the Platoon Sgt, checking both the 'new guys' combat loads?
Lessons learned, all around.

The Iraqis coming out of 8 or 16 weeks training will fare no better nor, hopefully, worse then our 'new guys'. But they will need OJT just as much, if not more then our own 2nd Lt.

8/26/2005 03:37:00 PM  
Blogger exhelodrvr1 said...

The M16 and it's variants (of which the M4 is one) are generally considered to be somewhat underpowered.

8/26/2005 03:47:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

5.56mm high velocity, low mass projectile. Not renowned for it's "Stopping Power"

Of intermediate range, firing up to 400 meters with acceptable accuracy from a M16, probably less with M4

Debate has continued on the viability of the 5.56mm round since it's introduction in the early 60's as the standardized US ammo.

It replaced the venerable 7.62mm Nato round, which had in it's time replaced the 30-06 round utilized combat rifles in WWI.

Each generation of replacement rounds being less powerful the the generation prior.

8/26/2005 03:58:00 PM  
Blogger Mr.Atos said...

Your latest two posts inspired my own extended consideration of the significance of events as relayed by Mr. Yon.

Michael Yon has offered us a rare and educational view of the daily actions of our white blood cells for intense consideration as we act to maintain the condition of the body...

... lest it collapse before the infestation of a fatal malignancy.

8/26/2005 03:58:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Hewitt got to talk to Yon for 10 min. If he doesn't put it up at Radioblogger I'll try to figure out a way to make it available, I presently don't have an FTP account.
Yon says they haven't been hit by an IED in nearly two weeks, and it used to be TWICE a DAY.
...says we are NOT getting an accurate picture of the amount of improvement:
Big surprise from the seditious MSM, huh?

8/26/2005 04:06:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

Actually abakan, on reflection they are not Insurgents waiting to happen.
If an order by the Government to disarm and disband was disobeyed, the militias would be, by definition, Insurgents.

Your definiton of victory, as I recall, was always a viable democratic Iraqi state that could defend itself.
Well no such viable state can allow an independent armed force to operate within it's borders. It is an ipso facto assualt on the Governments Soveriegnty.
As long as there are armed non ISF militias we will have not succeeded, by my understanding of your previously held standards.

8/26/2005 04:12:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Rat - What was the rationale for the 5.56 at the time?
I remember reading about damage done due to velocity of bullet, and tumbling inside, etc. but obviously it has important limitations. Did they make a smaller version of the 14 (shorter barrel, stock, etc) and if not, why not?
Doubt if that guy on the floor would have been in very good shape with 3 or 4 7.62s.
How did they ever bring guys down with the M-1 Carbine? Weighed about as much as a pellet gun as I recall.
What was the relative size/velocity on that?

8/26/2005 04:21:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Haven't read all the posts, but are C4 and Aba aware that "Journalist" Yon is ex Green Beret?
I know Aba's posts last night read like he had not read Yon's accounts.
BTW C4, YON has NO PROBLEM w/2nd Lt as it was his FIRST time out.
Some problem w/other guy who had been there longer.
Did you notice the Picture of the strike on the wall right next to his head, C4?

8/26/2005 04:28:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

It seems 'bionic runners' mother does know best.
"They'll hold you a little while and let you go" paraphrases Moma to a T.
Three hots & a cot. Showers & A/C No harsh interrigation, no panties on the head or nudie photos.
Be part of the Force that blew up a US Mess Hall - Six months Confinement and release. That's HARD time though.
Misfire your IED, well no harm done. Old 'bionic runner' may get 30 days, he did not even carry a weapon. Well, that's after he dropped the detonator, and ran.

Khalid Jasim Nohe well, he'll have a media spotlight on him now. It'll be harsh on him now, maybe 18 months, considering there are no prior murders on his rap sheet, and he was just defending himself, those pesky Americans started it, anyway, you know, Judge.

8/26/2005 04:28:00 PM  
Blogger ex-democrat said...

C4 - re Kerry. what i hold against him is his attempt to appear like a war hero - not the fact that he wasn't one.

8/26/2005 04:30:00 PM  
Blogger ex-democrat said...

doug - C4 would have caught that one with his teeth

8/26/2005 04:31:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

"Those two guys will be thought of as cowards in the unit. They will either be surrounded by proven courage-givers until they redeem themselves, or they will be gone because they have lost the confidence of their men"
Yon reports just the opposite from Mosul, but what would he know, just another journalist.

8/26/2005 04:32:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Then you know what would have happened to that right hand too, don't you, ex dem?
Strange Love Indeed.

8/26/2005 04:33:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Ex dem,
Prior to Kerry, and to a slightly lesser extent McCain, Vets were almost universally known for their quiet humility.
Kerry did for that
what Bill did for Schoolgirls and Oral Sex.

8/26/2005 04:36:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

"considering there are no prior murders on his rap sheet"
Yeah, just caught running around Mosul after 22 were killed w/a bunch of terrorist knick knacks in hand.
In a sane world it would have been a 45 for him then and there.

8/26/2005 04:40:00 PM  
Blogger exhelodrvr1 said...

Weight of the weapon and the ammunition were both positives in the M-16 vs the M-14 (which it replaces.)

8/26/2005 04:41:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

ex Helo, and at "normal" range, it is closer to 7.62 in killing ability?
Notice you have no comment on M-1, you youngsters just don't remember well!

8/26/2005 04:46:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

The 5.56mm round
The round spins so fast it explodes in the body. Not really
It is a self cleaning round. Not at all.
Hydrostatic shock blows of limbs. Sometimes it may, there are anecdotal stories to that affect.

You can carry more rounds.
That, I think, is the real reason.
Studies from Korea are reported to have shown that the amount of 'aimed' small arms fire was much less than was previously thought. That most enemy small arms casualties were caused more by chance than by design. The idea being that the more rounds that could be sent down range the higher the probability that someone would be hit.
The secondary idea, I think, is that the round causes more WIA than KIA. It takes no one to deal with a body, but a casualty ties up a lot of Opfor resources. medics, drugs, doctors, transportation, etc.

8/26/2005 04:47:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Lan Nguyen said...
I know the feeling. The reason I have only one wife is I don't argue with her. 2:48 PM
At least ex dem is a SURVIVOR.
Some of us with only one wife are still dumb enough to live VERY dangerously.

8/26/2005 04:50:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

The M1 Carbine with 30 caliber ammo
Next to worthless as a combat weapon, but looks cool in the folding stock version.
The round was really a pistol round, much like the 9mm the Germans utilized in their pistols and machine pistols.
Our M3 submachine gun was a better weapon, than the Carbine, in that it fired the 45ACP round, which if it happened to hit something, would knock it down. Hard to aim and a really flimsy looking extending stock. The M3 was still in inventory in the early 80's.

8/26/2005 04:54:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

"More WIA than KIA.""
So, does CBS arm their stringers w 5.56 ammo?

8/26/2005 04:58:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Rat, I just learned something about Korea I didn't know:
Someone said Rhee released 50,000 POWs behind our lines resulting in 5,000 US Casualties!

8/26/2005 05:02:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

The Soviets followed US into the smaller caliber round with their AK74 model, which also was chambered for a 5.56mm bullet, but the cartridge was shaped differently. The US and Soviet ammo was NOT interchangable

8/26/2005 05:03:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

Never heard that one before, doug

Keep your friends close and your enemies closer.
Don Corleone, Godfather

Maybe there is only one revolution, the good guys against the bad, problem is, who's who?
Dalworth- The Professionals

8/26/2005 05:07:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Yon expects to be leaving in a couple of weeks, a little time "off" then hopes to go to Afghanistan.

8/26/2005 05:15:00 PM  
Blogger Lanny Nugen said...

You are freaking hard on them. I was 5 years into it and I have seen them all. They are basically 2 greenies

1) just transfer and not belong in the unit, yet. Some soldiers will overcome their fear to help each other when they feel that they're belonged.

2) No experience in firefight, yet. The LT was not running away. He aimed the gun at the door. His mind is blank, no doubt and frozen. That's fear and duty in conflict. Most will take sometimes to get into it. Some will never. Not all is natural into it. It takes time.

3) They were ambushed so psychological factor is even harder on greenies.

Now about my "favorite Kerry". He has been around there for a while. He's belonged, I am sure. When a soldier with reasonable experience, belonging to the unit and run-away at firefights (I've seen plenty of them too), I would be careful with that SOB as my backup. As a matter of fact, I would tell him to stay put at the base to be the chief mess hall monitor. I just leave at it if he leaves it at it. I wouldn't degrade that man neither if anyone asks my opinion about the men serving under my command. However, if that SOB coming back home, lying to his teeth about who he was not, stab in the back of those fine soldiers to further his political gain, the sacred loyalty to each other of front line soldiers are no longer binding. It's my obligation to tell the world that SOB is a coward, a traitor, a back stabber, a political whore standing in a low light corner with full make-up awaiting the unsuspecting customers. As the matter of fact the Swiftboat vet did just that. And he still has 59 millions customers. What do you know?

We soldiers at the front line don't look down to others despite the mistakes they make at the front line. Trust and loyalty to each others within the frame work of liberty and moral, because after the first shot being fired, we fight for each others. Isn't that just simple?

8/26/2005 06:23:00 PM  
Blogger exhelodrvr1 said...

I used to collect military rifles; so I am very familiar with the M-1 (although I never had one personally). THe greatest infantry weapon of WWII.

8/26/2005 07:01:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

"A political whore standing in a low light corner with full make-up awaiting the unsuspecting customers."
God, that's good, lan,
it it just so...

8/26/2005 07:04:00 PM  
Blogger J. Random American said...

A few observations and questions:

1) With the Iraqi judges letting terrorists go, I have to wonder if the Baathists or others aren't influencing these decisions with blackmail or bribes. Perhaps they are fighting on a level we aren't even aware of. We have armored vests to protect us from their bullets. They can't afford the armor, but they can protect their most important people by having them surrender to our forces (who won't shoot people surrendering) and then lean on the judge later to get free from the legal system we respect. If we bury our heads in the sand over Iraqi corruption, we may be missing an important area of combat.

2) Maybe we didn't turn the bionic runner over to the Iraqi police because we had a way to get the information we needed that was as good or better, but also humane. Perhaps our guys can't explain this to the Iraqi's (or Yon to us) because of the need for secrecy. For all we know, there could be thousands of caught and released terrorists that, unbeknownst to them, carry implanted bugs or are tracked by stealthy UAVs back to their workshops and caches. Maybe we fighting them on a level they don't comprehend.

3) What is the real name of the operation where LTC Kurilla was injured? Mr. Yon gives it as "Lancer Fury" but a google only turns up an operation from 2004. Niether of these articles gives the name of a current operation in Mosul:

8/26/2005 07:07:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Wow, I didn't know that, sure was easy to handle.
They still had a ton of them at Ft MacCarther in the '60's and a couple other places, but I forget which.

8/26/2005 07:07:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

They seemed to be kind of thrown together compared to the M-14.

8/26/2005 07:09:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Quality wise.

8/26/2005 07:09:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

"Perhaps our guys can't explain this to the Iraqi's (or Yon to us) because of the need for secrecy."
I doubt Yon would make up a story about Kurilla complaining about it if it were not true.
Maybe even Lt Col Kurilla isn't in on the secret?

8/26/2005 07:12:00 PM  
Blogger sam said...

U.S. commander: Iraq violence could worsen:

Asked why the U.S. military has been unable thus far to defeat the insurgents, Taluto said progress is being made and it is not widely recognized that U.S. troops stop many attacks before they can be executed. On the other hand, he said, it also is true that the insurgents have become part of the fabric of Iraqi life.

"They are intrinsic, and so it seems like they can act with impunity," Taluto said. "And then they do escalate their activities, so they surge and so on and so forth."

8/26/2005 07:14:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

"“This fight was not about me,” Thune said just after the vote. “This whole decision was about the merits. It had nothing to do with the politics.”
John Thune,
Whatever, just nice to have you back on board, John.
How much do you think he's been damaged by this?
Might have turned into a pretty bitter guy if he had lost.
I was watching election returns in early morning on the reservations when he lost the first time, and could tell long before the "experts" keeping normal hours figured out that election was stolen.
Even sent the evidence to Rich Lowry who wrote about it a lot but never gave me a hat tip.

8/26/2005 07:29:00 PM  
Blogger J. Random American said...

Sorry, here are the links again:



8/26/2005 07:31:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Red River 11:22 AM,
Maybe Moti IS a beaten wife, in which case perhaps you owe her an appology, or at least a short note of condolence and understanding.

8/26/2005 07:56:00 PM  
Blogger sam said...

Shiites submitting draft constitution:

The charter will allow any number of provinces to combine and form a federal state with broader powers. The Sunnis have demanded a limit of three provinces, the number the Kurds have in their self-ruled region in the north. The Sunnis have publicly accepted the continued existence of the Kurdish regional administration but within its current boundaries.

“Don't follow constitutions of the infidels,” influential Sunni cleric Sheik Mahmoud al-Sumaidaei told the congregation Friday at Baghdad's Umm al-Qura mosque. “We don't want a constitution that brings the curse of separation and division to this country.”

8/26/2005 07:58:00 PM  
Blogger sam said...

Iraqi charter and the insurgency:

This week's talks to try and draw up a new constitution represent a crucial stage in US efforts to end insurgency and to bring the troops back home.

The plan is for Iraqi Security Forces to work closely alongside US or British battalions to gain experience. Ten man transition teams are also being embedded within Iraqi formations to help the US keep an eye on progress and also ensure operational contacts in areas like calling in close air support.

Figures from the Brookings Institution in Washington show an insurgency that is far from exhausted.

The history books show that insurgencies are almost always defeated by a combination of military and political strategies and the hope will be to draw into politics and away from violence those providing active or passive support to the Sunni aspect of the insurgency.

8/26/2005 08:09:00 PM  
Blogger sam said...

Charges dropped against 'Raging Grannies':

Charges have been dropped against the "Raging Grannies," five women accused of trespassing after they tried to enlist at a military recruitment center to protest the war in Iraq, a city prosecutor said.

The five women tried to enlist on July 13, saying they wanted to go to Iraq so their children and grandchildren could come home. Recruiters called police.

8/26/2005 08:11:00 PM  
Blogger Rick Ballard said...


His next at bat is in '10. The only thing that will be remembered is that he stood up, fought and won.

8/26/2005 08:32:00 PM  
Blogger ex-democrat said...

sam's minutemen:

8/26/2005 08:37:00 PM  
Blogger Karridine said...

to quote Wretchard:"So even though it isn't as exciting, the process of getting at the truth, sifting fact from fiction, engaging in analysis and getting the word out is important. Unless the physical efforts of men are turned into ideas their sacrifice will be in vain."

It is THIS PROCESS, this sifting, analytical, synthesizing and broadcasting, that I SUPPORT daily, hourly when I can, and morally with every breath I take!

Its the least I can do, in support of America, troops and freedom.

8/26/2005 08:52:00 PM  
Blogger buddy larsen said...

"People with friends or relatives serving in Iraq are more likely than others to have a positive view of a generally unpopular war, an AP- Ipsos poll found."

8/26/2005 09:34:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

there was the M1 Garand and the M1 Carbine.

Helo is right about the M1 Garand it is still available from Springfield Armory in either 7.62mm or 30-06 caliber. The Garand is a totally different weapon than the M1 Carbine

"...The M1 Garand was the weapon of choice for infantry. The M1 Carbine, half the weight and with a less powerful cartridge, was the weapon of choice for support troops, and others not primarily involved in infantry combat. It was designed to meet combat needs less demanding than the M1 Rifle, but more than can be met by the M1911A1 pistol. It was more convenient to use than the M1, and less intrusive to their other duties, while still much more effective than hand guns. ..."

m1 & M1 Carbine

8/26/2005 09:35:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Yeah, I was also thinking w/the party/administration as far as becoming VP material.

8/26/2005 09:39:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Although SD is a little short on Electoral Votes!

8/26/2005 09:40:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

More on your Carbine, doug
"...The following additional information is courtesy of:
R. E. Sullivan, Colonel, USMC ('43/'67) (Ret.), Sun, 28 Nov 1999

The most unattractive feature of the M-1 Carbine as we had them in WW II and up through at least part of 1948 was the leaf type sight. There was no windage adjustment at all, and I've fired record on the range with those things, on say target 20, but had to hold in the left side of the bull on target 18. Then in '48 we got a modification that put a ramp type sight for elevation and an actual movable peep for lateral movement. Now those were worth taking to the dance. One thing about bullets, impact, weight, muzzle velocity etc. that afficionados of weapons take so seriously: My experience, on many battlefields, is that if you get a head shot or a pentrating wound to the body cavity, it takes the spirit of the bayonet plumb out of the individual you're shooting at. ..."

8/26/2005 09:41:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Thanks for that:
It did work fine for non-Infantry AIT!

8/26/2005 09:42:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

Don't be givein' JD's spot to no fella from Nebraska, doug.
Don't need Cornhuskers in Navy Housing, thank you very much.

8/26/2005 09:44:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

That poor innocent Iraqi caught in the firefight sure still had some spirit after the crotch shot!

8/26/2005 09:45:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

You have to promise 80% of the Ten Percent Illegal Vote to get to the dance.
The Gov will make sure they don't have to have Photo Id's, so you should be able to sneak them in.

8/26/2005 09:48:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Can JD Give a Rousing Speech in Mexican?

8/26/2005 09:48:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Some dufus in CA was saying we need em all to pick the crops, which is hogwash, of course, since there are ways to do it legally.
Also does not address facts like Australia has mechanized much of their wine production that we have not.
Probably most of the innovations came from UC Davis in the 70's, but who needs it when you can exploit labor and govt/citizens?

Long ago at one of Wretch's links there was an article about research in row-crop mechanization in the Salinas Valley, but again, probably not economic against illegal/taxpayer subsidized labor.

8/26/2005 09:54:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

CSM Prosser shot the guy in the wrong head, the USMC colonel was speaking of the two eyed unit that rests upon the neck and shoulders.
Regardless, now Khalid Jasim Nohe needs bionic balls.

8/26/2005 09:55:00 PM  
Blogger Lanny Nugen said...

Update from Michael Yon interviewed with Hugh Hewitt

HH: Now, Michael Yon, two parts of your story excited a lot of comment, they all did, and admiration for Sgt. Lama and Lt. Col. Kurilla, and all the men of the Deuce 4. But here are the two things I'd like you to talk about, and one, you picked up a weapon and a major chewed you out, and most people don't understand why he chewed you out. Number two, two soldiers froze, I guess a 1st Lieutenant and a young guy there. What's happened to them? Is that unusual to see happen?

MY: First of all, that needs to be taken into context. Let me talk about the Major, for startes, Mike Lawrence. He's a great guy. And he didn't really chew me out. He was just very specific that that's against the rules. And he's right. But he was very professional about it, and I actually like that guy. You know, it wasn't like he was know, doing anything that he shouldn't. He actually needed to investigate it, because you don't want journalists coming out here, or writers, and picking up weapons and starting to fire them. Secondly, when it comes to the soldiers who froze, now, the first one, he was not a 1st Lieutenant. He was a 2nd Lieutenant. He's only been in Iraq for three weeks. He had never been in a firefight, and the guys here do know how to take that into context. And I actually felt sorry for the guy. That's why I didn't put his name in the dispatch, because I think he's a good guy. He was actually calm. You know, right after the firefight, when people were telling him what to do, he was immediately doing it. He just didn't know what to do. And you know, it was his first shootout. The commander got shot. You know, it's to be expected. The other soldier, they're giving him a little bit more of a hard time, because he's been here for a while. But that's...sometimes, it's pretty scary. And you know, guys can hesitate, and I think that 2nd Lieutenant, though, he's going to fine. In fact, I was talking with some of the officers about it. They were like, you know, it's too bad that that happened on his first day out, but that's the way the world shook out. But they're giving him a chance. They're going to put him back out. He's already been running missions again.

8/26/2005 09:57:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

Si, el tiena la lingua bien basta

8/26/2005 09:58:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

or is it "basta bien"?

8/26/2005 10:01:00 PM  
Blogger Charles said...

U.S. Destroys Alleged Terror Lair
Friday, August 26, 2005,2933,167109,00.html

BAGHDAD, Iraq — U.S. warplanes launched multiple airstrikes Friday against a suspected "terrorist safe house" in the western Anbar province (search), destroying the building where up to 50 militants were believed to be hiding, the U.S. military said.

Coalition ground forces were alerted by local residents that a number of members of the terror group Al Qaeda in Iraq had gathered in an abandoned building northeast of Husaybah, near the Syrian border about 200 miles west of Baghdad.

The group is led by Abu Musab Al-Zarqawi (search), the second most-wanted terrorist on the U.S. list after Al Qaeda leader Usama bin Laden (search).

"Iraqi citizens reported that approximately 50 terrorists were in the building at the time of the airstrike" which occurred at 4:40 p.m., the statement said.

The "known terrorist safe house" was destroyed by Marine F-18D Hornets (search) using a combination of precision-guided bombs and rockets, it said. There were no immediate reports of the number of casualties inflicted by the attack.

8/26/2005 10:04:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

In Korea, the Marines made considerable use of the M2 in the early campaigns, particularly at Inchon and Seoul. However, the weapon became very unreliable in the artic temperatures of the Chosin Reservoir battle. The frigid conditions seemed to weaken its smaller and lighter components and cause them to fail to function. The M1 Garand rifle worked reasonably well, however, particularly with the alcohol-based hair-tonic the Marines found most effective as a lubricant at that time.

8/26/2005 10:06:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

He can have some Virtual Virgins.
...or the Kerry Kind Lan Described.

8/26/2005 10:08:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Where do you think he got that nick:
No He?

8/26/2005 10:10:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

"Iraqi citizens reported that approximately 50 terrorists were in the building at the time of the airstrike" which occurred at 4:40 p.m., the statement said."
They should equip the Hornet w/some kind of stun ordenance, so we could capture them, clean them up and get them fed right, and release them.

8/26/2005 10:14:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

I wonder if the detainees are gaining wieght in Iraq, like they do in Gitmo. Most likely they are pumping iron and practicing karate in the detention center's exercise yard. Have to provide recreational activities for the detainees, you know.
Imams in twice a week for the spiritual growth and religious training of the detainees.
Small unit tactics are taught on Tuesdays & Thursdays.

8/26/2005 10:40:00 PM  
Blogger ex-democrat said...

but, alas, no ball games for khalid.

8/26/2005 10:52:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

no pocket pool or cream the guy with the balls for Khalid Jasim Nohe
That is now an accurate name for Khalid... Nohe, cause he ain't a he no mo'. Welcome to an eunuchs world, Nohe

8/26/2005 11:00:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

Do you think the detainees will get to vote in the October and December elections?. I mean they aren't convicted of anything, yet.
Even if they are convicted they should be allowed to participate in the elections. More the better, I always say. Spread the Joy, a lot like the "Vote early, Vote often" mantra that was utilized in Chicago's illustrious past.

8/26/2005 11:12:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

Now when he dies and heads off to Paradise, Nohe can guard the virgins in allah's Celestial Harem. That is, after all, an eunuches duty.

8/26/2005 11:16:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Look at the upside Trish:
When the Paratroops get sick of it and quit, they'll have a resume to take to the Penitentiary and get a good job taking care of multiple violent sex offenders that are cycling through the system and back out on the street for some more meat.

8/26/2005 11:59:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

If those 700 paratroops all went out on a field exercise at once, maybe we could have our first Fuel Air Weapon Accident while they are away.
Maybe leave someone like the leash girl back to take some pictures from down the block, and then some close up Obscene BBQ shots to make sure Fuel Air Accidents get put on the Panty Torture Parade List of Proscribed Activities.
Wouldn't want a repeat of anything THAT effective.

8/27/2005 12:07:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Boy you read some real scumbags, Trish.

8/27/2005 12:24:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

That guy reminds me what Fred Barnes said recently about why Cheney or someone has no comment on things like Able Danger:
If he did, the more than half the people working in the CIA that are anti-Bush would mysteriously start leaking things accidentally to the NY Times and WaPO.
He said: "In other words, he's screwed"
After the Fuel Air Accident they should blame it on the CIA and fire everyone and start over.

8/27/2005 12:28:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Larry C. Johnson is CEO and co-founder of BERG Associates, LLC, an international business-consulting firm that helps corporations and governments manage threats posed by terrorism and money laundering. Mr. Johnson works with US military commands in scripting terrorism exercises, briefs foreign governments on a regular basis on terrorist trends, and conducts undercover investigations on product counterfeiting and smuggling.
Mr. Johnson, who worked previously with the Central Intelligence Agency and U.S. State Department’s Office of Counter Terrorism, is a recognized expert in the fields of terrorism, aviation security, crisis and risk management.
Mr. Johnson has analyzed terrorist incidents for a variety of media including the Jim Lehrer News Hour, National Public Radio, ABC's Nightline, NBC's Today Show, the New York Times, CNN, Fox News, and the BBC. Mr. Johnson has authored several articles for publications, including Security Management Magazine, the New York Times, and The Los Angeles Times. He has lectured on terrorism and aviation security around the world, including the Center for Research and Strategic Studies at the Ecole Polytechnique in Paris, France. He represented the U.S. Government at the July 1996 OSCE Terrorism Conference in Vienna, Austria.
From 1989 until October 1993, Larry Johnson served as a Deputy Director in the U.S. State Department’s Office of Counter Terrorism.
I'd shorten it to:
"Larry C. Johnson, Left Wing Seditionist."

8/27/2005 12:31:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

He taught at The American University’s School of International Service (1979-1983) while working on a Ph.D. in political science. He has a M.S. degree in Community Development from the University of Missouri (1978), where he also received his B.S. degree in Sociology, graduating Cum Laude and Phi Beta Kappa in 1976.
All Star Sociology Student, tho.

8/27/2005 12:33:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Larry C. Johnson at work:

"I was following Jon Stewart's lead and referring to Robert Novak as a "douchebag". Today a friend of mine, a female, who recently left the CIA offered the following analysis. God, our country misses her talent.
(Oh Yeah! and her "Truthteller" husband Joe Yellowcake.)

"I for one question whether it is proper to liken Novak to a (largely feminine) hygiene product whose purpose is to make one fresh and clean. This whole affair has made me feel anything but fresh and clean. Even calling him a douchebag seems to imply some useful purpose.

One online encyclopedia does mention that "unclean douching equipment may also introduce undesirable foreign bodies..."

8/27/2005 12:39:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

He worked with the Captain Also?
What does he say about him?

8/27/2005 12:41:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Yeah, I figure one reason Weldon has kind of a reputation also, is that when you are the only one talking about important subjects when everyone else is in CYA mode, backed up by career CYA Artists and "Leak Strategy Specialists," etc, and you've been doing it for a decade, it's hard to be one of the boys.

8/27/2005 12:52:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Barnes' answer is the first thing that has satisfied my curiosity at all about the complete silence of Bush Admin about KNOWN Clinton screwups.
That and Rush's more obvious answer that it is typical Inside Washington Behavior.

8/27/2005 12:55:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

The Captain's been in 22 years:
How long has your husband?

8/27/2005 12:56:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

I read a blog ripping Weldon for handing out pork projects to his daughter, a "Consulting Firm," or some such.
Looked as if it was true.
Harry Reid has something like 5 sons all on the take in Nevada!

8/27/2005 01:03:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Biography for W. Patrick Lang
blah blah
...He is an analyst consultant for many television and radio broadcasts, among them the Jim Lehrer “Newshour.”
There should be a law that says you can't be a Govt Consultant/Contractor and also a "media analyst/consultant" for the fifth column.

8/27/2005 01:08:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Tough duty this old man could no longer handle.
Hopefully it's not out in the field?

8/27/2005 01:10:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Something I read said Kurilla is 49, ...I'm still puzzeled since I think he "only" has 18 years active.
...but if true, he's in damned good shape for 49 years!
Or was.
How come your husband gets to avoid police rules and Kurilla didn't?

8/27/2005 01:13:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Bill Gay? First I'd heard.

8/27/2005 01:19:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Hope he's got a good digital Camera for the Grandkids.
Yon says he's bought about $15,000 worth of equipment so far, and after this incident, hopes to get enough for some night vision stuff at around 12,000 ?

8/27/2005 01:22:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

I want to try something w/Yon's pics, back later.

8/27/2005 01:23:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Aug 25
Soldiers from 1st Battalion, 24th Infantry Regiment captured two of the terrorists.

Responding to reports of a drive-by shooting at the market in Haswah, Iraqi police captured the shooters Aug. 25. Police were told that a white Opel car carrying four passengers fired on civilians in the market causing a small fire, which was extinguished by the fire department while police chased the suspect vehicle. The police apprehended three suspects, but the driver fled the scene.

. American Forces Press Service .

White Opel, Black Opel, both in marketplaces, same day, far as I can tell Haswah is about 50 - 100mi south of Mosul. (assuming it is "Hasan Awah")

Not sure if there is some connection/mistaken reporting, etc here.
Operation Lancer Fury

8/27/2005 02:09:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Yeah, she and Robert Redford.
Ingraham was dining in a Forest Wonderland of Fruits called Olema, CA. w/her Gay brother when they spotted Redford.
Were going to ignore, but Redford, who had invited her to book deal earlier, acknowledged them.
She sent him a Birthday Champaigne with a note that said something about left and right and Go Bush!

He refused to acknowledge after that.
Long story short, the Pelosi connection is that she said Redford had overdone it on the eyes, and appeared Chinese!

8/27/2005 02:15:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

full 'battle rattle.'
Yeah, how the heck do they run down bionic runners with all that?

8/27/2005 02:20:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

" 39-year-old Tacoma resident"
That makes more sense, all around.

8/27/2005 02:24:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

PFC Nils Thompson .
PFC Nils Thompson had just celebrated his 19th birthday the day before. Nils was deeply religious, and would go to Catholic and Protestant services. He was a great kid and everybody liked him; but we were in downtown Mosul searching for the sniper that killed him, and had to stay focused.
There weren't many clues. The best we could piece together was that a sniper came in a car, used an SVD rifle, and hit Thompson in the head while he stood in air-guard on the Stryker.
We headed back to base, and over to the Combat Support Hospital. Going to the CSH is much different when we lose a soldier outright like Nils Thompson. When soldiers die on the battlefield, they are still brought to the CSH, but their buddies don’t wait around in the waiting room. Usually the commander comes in and pays his respects, then the men come in, pay respects and leave.

I walked in behind LTC Kurilla. The room was silent, chilly, and bright. There was only Nils, the Commander, and me. Nils' hands and face were pale, and there was a stained gauze bandage wrapped around his head, and a green wool blanket covering the rest of him. The Commander put his hand on Nils’ shoulder and closed his eyes. I could see he was praying. I closed my eyes and said a prayer. And then we left without a word.

Chaplain Wilson was there in the hallway with some Deuce Four officers. He’s a great Chaplain, sometimes going out on the battlefield. The men respect Chaplain Wilson, and he somehow made things feel a little better.

The other men had not arrived yet, so I went out to sit alone in the waiting room. SGT Peckham came and sat on the floor beside me but I didn’t have much to say. I hope he didn’t think I was being rude, but I was thinking about Thompson and all the fighting he’d seen in the five months since he first arrived here. I was thinking how he just turned 19 yesterday. He’s gone.

Thompson’s platoon walked in and some of them nodded to me as they walked by, heading back to the room where their friend lay. They spent a few minutes, but I didn’t go because that’s a time when soldiers should be with soldiers.

A few minutes later, in a heavy silence, we all walked out, loaded the Strykers, and went back to work, battling for Mosul.

8/27/2005 02:37:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Everest is a piece of cake now, not just figure of speech, either:
Catered meals and all.
Become quite the dump for the detritus of the upper crust goin up. if your talkin equipment like Hillary's Uncle twice removed namesake, that's a different matter.
Speaking of high altitude displays of wealth, since we spare no expense rehabing these victimized Iraqi Citizens, if they deck this poor man out with a deluxe pair of glittering Bionic Balls, will he be,
Nohe in the Sky with Diamonds?

8/27/2005 06:14:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Nohe's Rocket

8/27/2005 06:53:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

Iraq for Iraqis
Sooner the better

8/27/2005 07:07:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Different Perspective on 2nd Lt

8/27/2005 07:17:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

(Be sure to clik lower right corner to expand)

8/27/2005 07:18:00 AM  
Blogger al fin said...

The muslim terrorists and Sunni arab criminals who are killing coalition troops in random snipings and IED attacks seem to believe they will get off scot-free, with no retribution. What they fail to realize is that in the world of the descendants of the celts and other ancient european tribes, blood feud still applies. Blood feud is only suppressed when citizens believe that the rule of law is ascendant. Clearly that is not the case in Iraq, and the other cesspool regions these muslims come from.

Relatives of coalition casualties living in coalition countries are civilised and patient. But I suspect they will have their revenge. And I fear there will be collateral damage. I fervently hope that the people of Iraq, and other muslim people who are in a position to do so, will take these criminals and fanatics in hand, and deal with them themselves.

8/27/2005 07:21:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

wonder if that's a richocet off the ground from that puff in front?

...the sound on site would be attention getting plus.

8/27/2005 07:21:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

old abakan did the cut and run again.
I was all set to argue that the independent Iraqi Militias constitute a threat to the new Iraqi Government.
After I gave him one dose of his own "Cut & Paste" medicine, he begged a cease fire on that tactic and never came back to the debate.

When and if he returns the we will still be focusing on the "monopoly of power" that creates Sovereignty and Security for a Nation State's Government. Especially a newly formed DEMOCRATICLY ELECTED Government.

8/27/2005 08:38:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

It's not a War on Cut & Paste,
no it's really a
Struggle Against Plagiarism

8/27/2005 08:44:00 AM  

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