Tuesday, June 20, 2006

I'm in Washington

I had 5 days off with the family; sorry I didn't take the time to post a Do Not Disturb sign like Andi. I've been busy getting settled into some spartan conditions and just got connected to the internet today. I would like to meet some of the locals here in the SEA-TAC area specifically some of you who may have knowledge of the local shooting ranges. I do have transportation so drop me a line if you want to get together.


Friday, June 09, 2006

Roughneck Nine One

If you look to the right you will see an image and link to Frank Antenori's campain page. I have worked with Frank and was suprised when I heard he was running for Congress. He has also written a book about his experiences in Iraq. I have not read it yet but it looks like a good read. Pick up your copy of Roughneck Nine One today.

I know, I'm suggesting a book I haven't read but in my defense I'm currently reading 1776 and I have The Thirteen Gun Salute sitting on the desk waiting with seven more in the series waiting and I also have another must buy/read in Hunting the Jackal. If you don't like this excuse I'll quote the 77 year old Billy Waugh, "You wanna fight?"


Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Murder or Propaganda?

With so many condemning a number of Marines of committing mass murder the level heads are suggesting that we wait for an official investigation. Those who make these allegations are doing so based on a few short clips of video and biased comments made by and through politically and financially motivated sources. Anyone who is not a witness to the incident that makes any claim of guilt today is doing so based on desire and not fact and I question their allegiance for so readily turning against those who stand between them and those who wish to kill them.

The following explanation of the “wedding party” incident of 1 July, ’02 is given as an example of why we should withhold judgment based on media reports.

Although I was in Afghanistan on 1 July ’02 I was not anywhere near Deh Rawod, the location of the “wedding party” incident. I did share a room with an Air Force TAC-P (close air support caller) who maintained contact with the other TAC-P’s in the country. I also talked, face to face, with the navigator of the AC-130 gunship involved in the incident. I heard the details of the incident through both sources and they both explained them from their different perspective and both stories matched.

On the Evening of 30 June, U.S. forces prepared for an operation in the area which required helicopter support. Over previous weeks any aircraft flying in the area received ground fire from both small arms and anti-aircraft guns. This time they coordinated for support from an AC-130 gunship to eliminate the anti-aircraft guns before the helicopters flew through the area. When the gunship arrived they first checked in with a TAC-P on the ground who gave them the exact location of six anti-aircraft guns they had identified from the ground.

Just as the TAC-P was transmitting the last of the coordinates one of the guns opened fire on the gunship and the TAC-P relayed the information with the comment, “one of them is opening fire now.” The gunship navigator saw the incoming fire and confirmed the location. Even Hanoi Jane can distinguish the difference between aimed fire from a ZSU and indiscriminate celebratory fire from a few AK-47’s The gunship eliminated all six anti-aircraft guns.

The first official fact finding mission to the town made a number of discoveries that were only reported in the Stars & Stripes. These include recent wall graffiti depicting people shooting at aircraft, ZSU sized bullet casings that locals claimed fell from the sky (AC-130 gunships retain all brass inside the aircraft) and no bride or groom.

The navigator acknowledged that the video tape (all AC-130 missions are taped) confirmed that the Afghan claim of 48 dead was likely correct but there were no miss-guided bombs or shells. Were there women and children killed and wounded? Yes, but can you claim non-combatant status when you live in a house with an anti-aircraft gun on the roof?

I do not know why the U.S. Government has never released all the facts from this incident even when it continues to be trumpeted as an example of U.S. atrocities. The incident was reported directly to Pres. Karzai by an individual with known anti-U.S. sentiments with the express intent of damaging our reputation.

The Haditha incident may be murder and it may be terrorist propaganda, we do not know. If it is propaganda, it wouldn’t be the first time the media was a terrorist trumpet in the war against terrorism, but if it is murder, it will be the first time any unit has committed mass murder in the war on terrorism.


Pray for winds

In typical army fashion, my training schedule has been changed and they have scheduled an airborne operation for 15 July. If the winds are high on the 15th then I can be on the range in the afternoon, otherwise, I’ll have to make sure we include a night shoot.

I still need some locals to check out some ranges in the area. Do we want a rifle range, pistol or both, indoor or outdoor, BBQ at the range or restaurant/pub? Post up and let me know what is available and what you want.


Friday, June 02, 2006

How do you support the troops?

Some friends put magnets on their cars, some hate mongering demon worshipers from Westboro protest, I enlisted/reenlisted, but these Marines know how to do it right.

!Warning! grab some tissue.

Hat tip: (1VB)SARmedic

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