5 years, 5 months ago
First, let me mention that if you haven’t read First Sergeant John Bernard’s view on the circumstances surrounding his son’s death in Afghanistan, you must drop by and spend a minute with a fine man. I have had the opportunity to discuss this and other issues with him, and while I can be pessimistic at times, it’s men like Joshua Bernard who make me have faith that all is not lost with America. And it’s men like John Bernard who raise men like Joshua.
Take note that this issue isn’t closed for me. The AP has made certain claims regarding what they said to Mr. Bernard and what they didn’t. I also have some detractors who have questioned what I claimed in Publishing the Marine Photo: Remember the Words of Christ (Then again, I have had some serious, well-meaning and hard nosed questions flow in from friends as well). I am corresponding with certain military public relations contacts to ascertain just what the formal agreements stipulated. I will eventually publish a followup to this article that clarifies my original post (and where I possibly further hammer the AP for their decision). Stay tuned.
Second, take a few minutes and read a letter from a narcissistic, self-important person who objected to a funeral procession for a fallen Soldier. Then read the Sheriff’s response. My only objection is that the procession wasn’t slower, with a horse-drawn carriage (h/t Blackfive).
Third, read the Reuters blog on the U.S. Air Force turning it’s pilots into “drone jockeys.” I support the Air Force supporting the counterinsurgency campaigns in which we find ourselves, but this is turning a bit creepy. This is faddish, and sooner or later we need to return to the notion of pilots flying aircraft that can perform the roles of fighter and fighter-bomber. Conventional warfare is not gone forever, and control over the skies is necessary for both conventional war and hybrid warfare / counterinsurgency.
Fourth, roadside bombs took the lives of four U.S. troopers recently in Iraq. The danger has not passed in Iraq, and the longer we avoid confronting Iran as the root of all problems in the Middle East, the longer there will be instability. I fully expect, however, the Obama administration to pander to the radical Mullahs.
Fifth, our friend Myra MacDonald is talking about a thaw in relations between India and Pakistan (and also here). Myra follows Pakistan very closely and is well informed, but frankly I have grave doubts as to the intent. I’ll believe the gestures develop into something substantive when I see it. Even Myra waxes negative by the end of her analysis.
Sixth, if you haven’t tackled the rules of engagement articles this week, they are must-reading.
Finally, I am spending much time training my new Doberman, the historic U.S. Marine Corps dog.
Internet sites say that you can’t teach this breed properly to walk on a lead (heel) before six months. Wrong. I have her doing it now, and she is only three months old and I have had her eleven days. Give me six months and I will have her discussing the history of dogs in the military.
But questions remain. Do I have incisional gastropexy done? It isn’t cheap, and it’s also not a painless recovery for the dog. Dobermans are a large breed, subject to this problem along with other large breeds. I’m open to input.