Bush insults those making the supreme sacrifice.

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Bob Hubbard

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Ok, if he wasn't AWOL, what was he? I've seen no information to contradict the claim.

I agree with the privacy issues, and wasn't aware that there were letters being sent. I agree, best not to politisize their sacrifices.

:asian:
 

ABN

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Originally posted by Touch'O'Death
Oh yeah, the old we can't talk about it but trust us he's not right for the job.

Like I said, if that many fellow senior officers raise questions concerning your integrity and you have a record that is spotty, it's bound to raise some questions. Others have also raised questions concerning his actions while NATO commander and prior. check out

http://www.zpub.com/un/clark.html

You can also check out http://www.counterpunch.org/clark.html

and
http://www.drudgereport.com/clark.htm

and finally:
http://www.msnbc.com/news/969047.asp?cp1=1

These are a few different articles from various orgs of varying political stripes. It's a rather multi-partisan prism through which to see Clark.

Something else of interest. When John Kerry, Bob Dole, and John McCain announced that they were running, guys from their old units flocked around them to endorse them. Why hasn't the same thing happened to Clark? There's something to be said for the fact that the men you led won't back you up...there's got to be a reason for it, and it's not political.

Regards,

andy
 
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pknox

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Originally posted by ABN
Something else of interest. When John Kerry, Bob Dole, and John McCain announced that they were running, guys from their old units flocked around them to endorse them. Why hasn't the same thing happened to Clark? There's something to be said for the fact that the men you led won't back you up...there's got to be a reason for it, and it's not political.

Excellent point. While that does indeed raise a red flag in my eyes as well, I wouldn't definitively say it's not political. I would go so far as to say it "may very well not be political", or even that it's "not likely", but it's hard to guess at other people's motives, and often dangerous to assume we know the reasons behind their actions. If some of these people are still in the military, or associated with it in some way, they may simply have too much to lose by speaking up - especially if what they say is perceived as going against the current administration.
 

hardheadjarhead

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Originally posted by ABN
You'd be amazed at how politicized the upper echelons of the military became after the Clinton administration moved into power.

Hmmm. My recollection is that the military didn't need Clinton to become politicized.

Political game play starts out at the company level and extends all the way to the Pentagon. I saw two excellent captains (and good friends from when I was in the FMF) take hits and get "shot out of the saddle" (read career ruined) because of the machinations of one particularly ruthless colonel. This was duing the Reagan years.

The game was always there. There is political shuffling and infighting under Rumsfeld. People get sacked if it turns out they've aligned with the wrong guy. It goes with the territory.

Ugly stuff. I hate it.

Regards,


Steve Scott
 
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rmcrobertson

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Yeah, I agree. It's always remarkable, when people claim that Bill Clinton invented things like politics...same old nonsense as calling lefties, "politically correct," as though a) lefties didn't invent the phrase, "politically correct," as a criticism of holier-than-thou lefties, and b) centrists, conservatives and right-wingers had no politics.

It's worth taking a gander at Bruce Catton's books on the Civil War--guys like Hooker and McClelland and Ben Butler didn't get where they were without politicians. Or look at Dugout Doug MacArthur, who referred to himself in the third person, got us into all sorts of trouble in Korea, and finally got thrown out for insubordination. Or Alexander Haig (who continued a proud tradition of loopiness and incompetence begun by his famous WWI namesake), or...

It wouldn't surprise me a bit to find out that Gen. Clark's a little--well--let's just say less-than-heroic. It's one of the reasons I wouldn't vote for him. However, one kinda nice thing we can say about old Bill is that at least HE was embarassed by his perfectly-legal draft-ducking when he dealt with the military. More than can be said for Dubya, with his--let's just say, "spotty," Texas ANG record--and his landing on carriers, then his staff lying for no reason about the banners.

I heard an interresting argument the other day, though, about why it is that Democrats look like idiots riding in tanks, etc., and Republicans usually don't...the claim was that flag-waving comes natural to one party, and the other is always thinking--as I do--that they really shouldn't be doing this.

Then too, there's the way folks like John Kerry, Bob Kerrey, and that Georgia Congressmaan--was it Max Cleland? ex-Vet's Affairs head? in a wheelchair, lost both legs and an arm in war--get assaulted by Republicans and nut-cases...
 

ABN

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Originally posted by hardheadjarhead
Hmmm. My recollection is that the military didn't need Clinton to become politicized.

Political game play starts out at the company level and extends all the way to the Pentagon. I saw two excellent captains (and good friends from when I was in the FMF) take hits and get "shot out of the saddle" (read career ruined) because of the machinations of one particularly ruthless colonel. This was duing the Reagan years.

The game was always there. There is political shuffling and infighting under Rumsfeld. People get sacked if it turns out they've aligned with the wrong guy. It goes with the territory.

Ugly stuff. I hate it.

Regards,


Steve Scott


Steve you are absolutely right. The reasons I used the Clinton presidency as a benchmark are:

1. This was an administration that attempted to force feed sociological changes to the military in the interest of political expediency (i.e Clinton's attempt to remove the ban on homosexuals which was diluted into the even more ridiculous don't ask don't tell policy.) and not in the interests of society and the country as a whole (Truman's integration of the armed forces).

2. This also coincides with the time period that I enlisted (1992) so it's from that period on that I have had personal experience with the military as a member and have seen, and/or been subject to, or affected by the various changes that have occured.

RMC, excellent reference to the Civil War and the Union's (and to a much lesser extent the Confederacy's) problem with political generals. Catons books are incredible and I recommend that anyone who can visit at least one Civil War battlefield in their lifetime (Antietam and Gettysburg are quite moving) The more I see of politics though, the more I wonder why anyone with a professional military background would want to get involved in anything involving an election. Then again what the hell do I know, I'm just an NCO who still likes to break things....


regards,

andy
 
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rmcrobertson

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Harry Truman force-fed sweeping social change to the military, too, precisely in order to step up changes in American society, when he ordered integration.

Americans have ALWAYS started many social changes in the military. For example, the sad fact is that today, the military is FAR more egalitarian in terms of gender, race and class than any other aspect of American society--certainly it's fairer even than the educational system...

We're just arguing over which changes we want, and which we don't. It's disingenous and ideological to pretend that the OTHER side is playing these games, and WE would never do that, perish forbid...
 

ABN

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Originally posted by rmcrobertson
. Americans have ALWAYS started many social changes in the military. For example, the sad fact is that today, the military is FAR more egalitarian in terms of gender, race and class than any other aspect of American society--certainly it's fairer even than the educational system...


You reminded me of something I heard while watching a very large Hispanic Drill SGT give shock treatment to a bunch of new recruits fresh off the cattle car at Benning, it was something like "Here we practice affirmative action. When I tell you to do something, you answer in the affirmative and get into action..."

Every political party and administration has an agenda, some more popular that others. Some do immense harm some do immense good. Somehow though, we manage to live through them and hoepfully continue to grow as a nation.
 

michaeledward

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You'd be amazed at how politicized the upper echelons of the military became after the Clinton administration moved into power.

Let me say this, about that. ...

... but first a few words from your sponsor ... I am a very left liberal. I mean way over there. Most people think I am a nut. I voted for Nader in the last election, and I live in New Hampshire, where every Gore vote was important. (I think it was less than a 2000 voter difference between Gore and Bush) .... OK .... that's enough of a disclaimer.

When you listen to the right wing media ... Imus (center-right), O'Reilly (right-right), Limbaugh (right-right-right), Jay Severins (right-right-right- He's local Boston) , they want to blame everything on Bill Clinton. Hell, today, Bill O'Reilly was linking together the Michael Jackson Neverland Ranch search and arrest warrants to Bill and Hillary Clinton (connected via a private investigator).

Now, this is not to say that there are not some places where it would be legitimate to hold Bill Clinton accountable kinda like holding Ronald Reagan accountable for Iran-Contra but, let's be clear about our arguements.

I think using the name 'Clinton' is incendiary, and it is designed to be. Similarly, using the name 'Reagan' seems to have taken on a meaning of high patriotic beliefs.

Thanks for letting me rant.

Mike
 

hardheadjarhead

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Hell, today, Bill O'Reilly was linking together the Michael Jackson Neverland Ranch search and arrest warrants to Bill and Hillary Clinton (connected via a private investigator).

<groan!>

I agree. Anytime anybody criticizes this administration somebody pipes up, "Hey, when Bill Clinton was in office....!"

Bill Clinton ISN'T in office. Bush IS. Bill Clinton, at present, is powerless to do anything about anything. Bush is not. I rather admire Bush for sticking to his guns amidst much criticism. He doesn't lay any of this on Clinton. I can't say the same for the political pundits who are his advocates.

I'm not defending Clinton here. I have my problems with Clinton. Its Clinton's fault my back went out in 1993. If it weren't for him, I'd be leaner. I can directly attribute fourteen of my character faults to his dishonesty and incompetency as President. He was an awful role model for me as an adult male...I can't seem to stay away from cigars.

Regards,


Steve
 

ABN

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Originally posted by hardheadjarhead
[BBush is not. I rather admire Bush for sticking to his guns amidst much criticism. [/B]

As I drift further OT, did anyone see/hear Bush's speech in the UK? It was interesting to see him put the UN on the spot and compare it to the old League of Nations. It was also interesting to see 16,000 police officers standing by to deal with 200 protesters.

andy
 

Touch Of Death

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Originally posted by hardheadjarhead
<groan!>

I agree. Anytime anybody criticizes this administration somebody pipes up, "Hey, when Bill Clinton was in office....!"

Bill Clinton ISN'T in office. Bush IS. Bill Clinton, at present, is powerless to do anything about anything. Bush is not. I rather admire Bush for sticking to his guns amidst much criticism. He doesn't lay any of this on Clinton. I can't say the same for the political pundits who are his advocates.

I'm not defending Clinton here. I have my problems with Clinton. Its Clinton's fault my back went out in 1993. If it weren't for him, I'd be leaner. I can directly attribute fourteen of my character faults to his dishonesty and incompetency as President. He was an awful role model for me as an adult male...I can't seem to stay away from cigars.

Regards,


Steve
Ha Ha, I've been thinking about taking them up. Chicks dig a Humidor. Some more than others.:rofl:
 
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Bob Hubbard

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CNN report on how casulties are handled. It adds a different perspective on my initial posting, plus confirms some things I believe others have stated.

http://www.cnn.com/2003/US/11/28/sprj.irq.dreaded.visit.ap/index.html
How families learn of military deaths in Iraq
'I knew they weren't coming to recruit anyone'
Friday, November 28, 2003 Posted: 10:32 PM EST (0332 GMT)

WASHINGTON (AP) -- Catherine Perusse remembers the chilling call she and husband Ted got one recent Tuesday. The military phoned to tell them their son, Robert T. Benson, of Spokane, Washington, had been badly wounded in Iraq and transferred to a hospital in Kuwait. Surgery had gone "as planned."

That's the last thing the family heard until 20 hours later when they were told he was dead.

"We were just very frustrated to have a 20-hour time period with a very brief message about his status," says Perusse, Benson's stepmother. "You would consider five minutes a terrible time to wait to hear about your child."

There is no good way to tell someone their husband, wife, son or daughter has been killed in action.

Still, as the bodies of U.S. servicemen come home from Iraq, some families are disquieted by the military's handling of this heartbreaking news.

Their grief has been compounded by the slow pace of getting word, or the lack of detail when they do find out.

Even in this world of rapid communications, some families complain that they hit barriers when trying to get in touch with someone who may have information about their loved ones.

Lisa Perez's brother died in July and she still doesn't have all her questions answered.

An officer notified Perez and her mother that 24-year-old Pfc. Wilfredo Perez Jr. and two other soldiers were killed in a grenade attack in July while guarding a children's hospital in Iraq. But when the officer came by to tell them the news, he took their Social Security numbers and was out the door in 10 minutes.

"He handled his business and that was it," says Perez, 25, of Ridgewood, New York.

'We don't deal in rumors, we deal in the facts as we know them'
The military does its best to get notification out to families as swiftly as possible -- within 24 hours ideally -- on what it does know about the circumstances surrounding death and injury.

That's often no easy task in a complex war so far away.

"We don't deal in rumors, we deal in the facts as we know them, and we are as honest with family members as we possibly can be," John Molino, deputy undersecretary of defense for military, community and family policy.

Each branch of the armed forces does the notifying when its service member dies or is wounded.

A notification officer and a chaplain go to the spouse's home, or if single, to the parents' home.

Sometimes, an organization commander will go, too. They bring with them a manila envelop with the casualty report.

Additional relatives get a visit if the death was caused by hostile action or by a terrorist attack.

Molino says in that first visit, mainly the family wants "just a quiet moment."

Perusse wanted more than that after the initial word her stepson was wounded. Benson was shot in the head at a checkpoint in Baghdad.

She found the lack of communication between the family and the military frustrating -- time zone differences seemed to hamper their ability to be in the know faster.

"You'd think if we could talk to the moon, we should have been able to talk to Kuwait."

Despite all that, she and other family members know it is not easy for the military, either.

"The Army has been wonderful," she says, "and treated us and our son with great respect."

Sympathy, compensation to survivors
Relatives dread nothing more than the unexpected drop-in by a military officer while a family member is on duty overseas.

John Johnson, the father of Specialist Darius T. Jennings, knew the instant he saw an officer and chaplain's car pull up to his house in Cordova, South Carolina, that something bad had happened to his son.

"I knew they weren't coming to recruit anyone," he says. Jennings, 22, was killed when the helicopter he was riding in was shot down in Al Fallujah, Iraq.

Johnson was standing in his driveway when he saw them. "I know it's my son, but tell me how it happened," he recalled telling them. They went into the house. '"Is this the right address?"' they asked, just to be absolutely sure. "They grabbed my wife's hand and told her that her son was killed in a helicopter attack."

"I feel that the Army...they did what they could," he said.

More than 435 U.S. service members have died since the beginning of military operations in Iraq -- about 300 of them since President Bush declared May 1 that major combat operations had ended.

The president has sent a letter to families of each fallen soldier, visited some of the injured ones in hospitals and met with groups of families.

Recently, Bush visited Fort Carson military base in Colorado. Fort Carson has lost 32 soldiers in Iraq, and Bush was meeting privately with nearly 100 relatives of the victims. Four of the victims were among the 16 soldiers killed November 2 when a helicopter was shot down in the dangerous Sunni Triangle near Fallujah, Iraq.

A casualty assistance officer follows up at a prearranged time with the family a day or two after they've been notified of the death.

The officer gives families details on compensation to survivors: a death gratuity of $12,000; reimbursement of up to $6,900 for burial expenses; the soldier's unpaid pay and allowances; a monthly check for the surviving spouse until remarriage and surviving children until they reach a certain age; and Social Security benefits.

A letter from the commander follows.

The casualty assistance officer tries to cater to the family's immediate needs. Burial logistics are discussed.

Members who die while on active duty are eligible for burial at Arlington National Cemetery in Virginia, where the nation buries many of its war dead. But many families choose to have their loved ones buried in their hometown.
 

Makalakumu

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I can't wait until next November! Lets have a recal!!!! We gotta be able to dig up a buffed up actor and washed up professional wrestler somewhere!!!! :rolleyes:

With all of the radical things our president is pushing right now, I think that we may be looking back on these times in the future and wonder what the hell we were thinking. It's nearly impossible to convince conservatives of this though. The propaganda has too strong of a lock. Unfortunately it may be one of those situations where you just hold on and try to live with it.

PS - I have an unemployment form on my fridge with a magnetic picture of Bush on it. Nice reminder. Jobless recovery!!!!!!!
 
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