GI SPECIAL 2#C6
Is Coming Home
WON A BATTLE THAT OTHERS SAID SHE COULD NOT WIN
SGT. TONY LAMPIN, A MEDICALLY UNFIT SOLDIER FORCED INTO IRAQ,
IS COMING HOME
Brandie Lampin, (USMC ret’d)
Wednesday, October 27, 2004 12:55 PM
Sgt. Lampin is Coming Home
As of Oct. 19th
me to inform me that the command of the 115th Field Hospital
has come to the decision to send my husband, Sgt. Tony Lampin,
When he told me this, I broke
down in tears of joy and got on my knees to thank God for his
gift. I asked Tony if the reason for him to be sent home was
because of what I have been doing and he said some of it, but
some of it was because of the doctors making a written, and
verbal statement that since there is nothing else they can do
for him, that he should be sent home.
My reply to
that is this: In my heart, a great deal of it was because of
my long fight for his return, but the command, and the U.S.
Army will not admit to that, so I will more than happy to take
50% of the reason.
I would just like to say thank
you to the Senators and Congressmen/women who I have contacted
and looked into my husbands’ case, to the supporters who
called, emailed, and snail mailed me giving me their full
Thank you to
the Soldiers who posted their comments about my husband.
Special, thank you so much for posting my letters. You are
part of the reason why Tony is being sent home.
MOST OF ALL,
I WOULD LIKE TO THANK GOD FOR HIS WONDERFUL GIFT TO MY
CHILDREN AND I. WE ARE IN GREAT DEBT TO YOU LORD!
Today, Oct. 27th Tony called me
from Germany letting me know that he will be home soon but did
not know exactly when.
readers of GI Special, be looking for another post by me
with pictures of our reunion. It was a long battle, and
like I said before; "Though the Command will never admit to
it, I won the battle and it just proves that it can be
Now that my
mission to bring my husband home was accomplished, I would
like to say that I am not going to stop in the aid to bring
others like my husband home. I will continue helping with
advise, writing letters, and making phones calls. If anyone
should need my help, please email me or snail mail me. I will
be more than happy to help in any way that I can.
God Bless America,
God Bless you all.
165 Eubanks Rd.
FOR MORE ABOUT
SGT. LAMPIN CHECK OUT TRAVELING SOLDIER
truth - about the occupation, the cuts to veterans’
benefits, or the dangers of depleted uranium - is the first
reason Traveling Soldier is necessary. But we want to do
more than tell the truth; we want to report on the
resistance - whether it's in the streets of Baghdad, New
York, or inside the armed forces. Our goal is for Traveling
Soldier to become the thread that ties working-class people
inside the armed services together. We want this newsletter
to be a weapon to help you organize resistance within the
armed forces. If you like what you've read, we hope that
you'll join with us in building a network of active duty
And join with
Iraq War vets in the call to end the occupation and bring
our troops home now! (www.ivaw.net)
Motorcycle Bomber Kills U.S. Soldier
October 27, 2004 HEADQUARTERS
UNITED STATES CENTRAL COMMAND Release Number: 04-10-24C
LSA ANACONDA, BALAD, Iraq –
A 13th Corps Support Command soldier is dead and one is
injured as the result of a suspected motorcycle bomb attack on
their convoy near Sindiayah around 9:30 a.m. on
Oct. 27. The injured soldier was taken to the Air Force
Theater Hospital here.
ALL HOME NOW
A US soldier carries a rocket he
removed from close to the wreckage of a car bomb along a road
north of the city of Baquba. (AFP/Ali Yussef)
Knocked Out On Airport Road
2004-10-27 Middle East Online
An armoured US vehicle was hit
by a bomb along the highway to Baghdad's international
airport, a military spokeswoman said.
fighting vehicle lost one of its tracks but it was recovered,"
said the spokeswoman, adding that there had been no US
casualties in the blast.
Killed In Anbar
October 27, 2004
Cpl. Brian Oliveira, 22, of
Raynham, Mass., died Oct. 25 from injuries received in Al
Anbar Province, Iraq.
Oliveira was assigned to 3rd
Battalion, 1st Marine Regiment, 1st Marine Division, I Marine
Expeditionary Force, Camp Pendleton, Calif.
VALLEY OF DEATH RODE THE 800
BAGHDAD, Iraq —
Nearly 800 British forces began leaving their bases in
southern Iraq on Wednesday, heading north toward Baghdad. [As
the camel falls to its knees, more knives are drawn.]
(Army Times Daily News Roundup 10.27.04)
David Staub, Vets For Peace: 10.27.04: Guerrillas have proved
historically smarter than mechanized forces that would put
them down. They can feint and move more quickly. They can
leave Fallujah and attack from outside. It is unlikely that
this heavy attack will defeat the resistance so much as spread
it and increase it more.
Civilian Casualties Skyrocket:
And 700-800 Wounded
10.26.04 MARY ANN FERGUS ,
At least 170
contract workers -- 52 of them from Halliburton -- have died
since U.S. troops invaded Iraq in March 2003, according to
Iraq Coalition Casualty Count, a Web site that tracks
coalition deaths. The Pentagon doesn't
track the number of civilians working in Iraq or their
Houston is home to
Halliburton, KBR and, therefore, the civilian war labor
business. Each week, the
company sends 350 to 400 workers to Iraq.
Regime Traitors Pass Death Sentence On U.S. POWs In Iraq
October 25, 2004 Sam Hamod,
Today’s Alternative News
America made another disastrous mistake that is going to put
American troops in mortal danger every time they are captured.
It wasn’t enough that the American troops,
who were the “foreign invaders” in Afghanistan, were seen by
our government as the legitimate troops of Afghanistan, while
Afghans and other Muslims who fought the Americans were said
to be “terrorists” and not allowed legal rights of the Geneva
Now, as of
today, October 25, 2004, America has once against twisted
history by saying that our illegal invasion troops are the
legitimate troops in Iraq and that all Iraqis who resist or
those Arabs or Muslims who come to fight against our illegal
occupation do not have the protection of the Geneva
Conventions! What madness is this.
This means, that whatever the
Ashcroft/Bush/Rumsfeld cabal says takes the place of
also means that if our soldiers are captured, then the people
who capture them in Afghanistan, Iraq or anywhere else in the
Muslim world, will be seen as “foreign combatants” and not
given Geneva Conventions either. It will become an eye for an
eye situation, with rancor, hatred and more
warfare that may become
[In the U.S.
Civil War, the Union leadership never contemplated anything
this idiotic against the Confederates, whom they considered
guilty of treason. It takes the scum running this government
to put captured U.S. troops in a position where their summary
execution is justified by refusing the other side the rights
of warriors. The enemy is not the Iraqis. As if any further
proof were needed, the enemy is the corporate class that has
seized the U.S. government for their own wealth, power and
privilege, and use the armed forces to profit themselves and
advance their Imperial dreams. The guns are pointing in the
wrong direction. Enough. Payback is overdue. T]
What do you think? Comments
from service men and women, and veterans, are especially
welcome. Send to firstname.lastname@example.org. Name, I.D.,
withheld on request. Replies confidential.
Fight Command And Win:
Forbidden To Use Anthrax Vaccine On Any Soldier Anywhere Who
Refuses To Take It:
Program Is Unlawful, Judge Rules
October 27, 2004 By Deborah
Funk, Army Times staff writer
judge has again halted the Pentagon’s mandatory anthrax
vaccination program, declaring it illegal without the informed
consent of service members or a presidential waiver of
The ruling, handed down
Wednesday by Judge Emmet Sullivan of the U.S. District Court
for the District of Columbia, says the Food and Drug
Administration failed to follow its own procedures in
approving the vaccine as protection against anthrax used as a
As things stands now, he said,
the vaccine is not properly approved for that specific purpose
and as such is an investigational new drug.
“Unless and until” FDA properly
classifies the vaccine as safe and effective for use against
Sullivan said, “the involuntary anthrax vaccination program,
as applied to all persons, is rendered illegal absent informed
consent or a presidential waiver.”
Sullivan said that in the years
since 1985, the FDA failed to provide a “meaningful
opportunity” for public comment on its proposed rule regarding
the vaccine, as required by its own regulations, Sullivan
“This failure … violates the Administrative Procedures Act,”
and thus renders the vaccine’s use against inhalation anthrax
illegal, Sullivan said.
a long fight … it’s not over yet, but right now we feel
vindicated,” said attorney John J. “Lou” Michels Jr.,
one of the attorneys
representing six anonymous service members and
civilians subject to the military’s mandatory vaccination
policy who sued the government.
Although the lawsuit focused on
only six people, Sullivan said his injunction applies to
everyone subject to the mandatory anthrax vaccination program.
Do you have
a friend or relative in the service? Forward this E-MAIL
along, or send us the address if you wish and we’ll send it
Whether in Iraq or stuck on a base in the USA, this is extra
important for your service friend, too often cut off from
access to encouraging news of growing resistance to the war,
at home and in Iraq.
Send requests to address up top.
Shorten Combat Tours
October 27, 2004 Associated
The Army will not shorten
combat tours in Iraq next year from 12 months to six or nine
months, as some had hoped, because that would undermine the
war effort, the Army's top general said Tuesday.
Gen. Peter Schoomaker, the Army
chief of staff, told a group of reporters that he would prefer
shorter combat tours in Iraq but believes
that cannot happen as long as
the U.S. military is required to maintain roughly the 135,000
troops there now to fight the insurgency.
and Marine Corps are preparing to maintain that level at
least through the end of next year.
rule was adopted for both active-duty and reserve units, and a
few units have been ordered to stay even longer.
Cav Double Fucked:
Not Going Home In January After All
Oct 26 Tom Squitieri, USA TODAY
Concerned that they won't get
enough new troops from allies to help provide security for
Iraqi elections in January, Pentagon (news - web sites)
officials are considering
increasing the current U.S. force by delaying the departures
of some U.S. troops now in Iraq and accelerating
the deployment of others scheduled to go there next year.
option, the Defense officials said, is to delay the
departure from Iraq of the 1st Cavalry Division, which is
set to begin leaving in January.
More Off To
The Empires’ Slaughterhouse:
Guard And Reserve Mobilized For War Up 2,332
2004 U.S. Department of Defense
This week, the Army and Air
Force announced an increase in the number of reservists on
active duty in support of the partial mobilization, while the
Navy, Marines and Coast Guard had a decrease.
The net collective result is
2,332 more reservists mobilized than last week.
A cumulative roster of all
National Guard and Reserve personnel, who are currently
mobilized can be found at
Soldier’s Mom Condemns The War
10.21.04 By Teri Willis Allison,
Tomdispatch.com. Teri Wills Allison, a massage therapist and
a member of
Military Families Speak Out, lives near Austin, Texas with
her husband. She is the
mother of two grown children, the oldest of whom is a soldier
deployed to Iraq.
"My son is
involved in a deadly situation that should never have been."
I am not a
pacifist. I am a mother. By nature, the two are
incompatible, for even a cottontail rabbit will fight to
protect her young. Violent action may well be necessary in
defense of one's family or home (and that definition of home
can easily be extended to community and beyond); but violence,
no matter how warranted, always takes a heavy toll.
And violence taken to the
extreme – war – exacts the most extreme costs.
A just war there may be, but
there is no such thing as a good war. And the burdens of an
unjust war are insufferable.
something about the costs of an unjust war, for my son, Nick –
an infantryman in the U.S. Army – is fighting one in Iraq.
I don't speak for my son. I couldn't even
if I wanted to, for all I hear through the Mom Filter is: "I'm
fine, Mom, don't worry, I'm fine, everything is fine, fine,
fine, we're fine, just fine." But I can tell you what some of
the costs are as I live and breathe them.
minor stuff: my constant feelings of dread and despair; the
sweeping rage that alternates with petrifying fear; the
torrents of tears that accompany a maddening sense of
helplessness and vulnerability.
My son is
involved in a deadly situation that should never have been. I
feel like a mother lion in a cage, my grown cub in danger, and
all I can do is throw myself furiously against the bars ...
impotent to protect him. My tolerance for bullshit is zero,
and I've snapped off more heads in the last several months
than in all my 48 years combined.
For the first
time in my life, and with great amazement and sorrow, I feel
what can only be described as hatred. It
took me a long time to admit it, but there it is.
I loathe the hubris, the
callousness, and the lies of those in the Bush administration
who led us into this war. Truth be told, I even loathe the
fallible and very human purveyors of those lies. I
feel no satisfaction in this admission, only sadness and
recognition. And hope that – given time – I can do better. I
never wanted to hate anyone.
Xanax helps a bit. At least it
holds the debilitating panic attacks somewhat at bay, so I can
fake it through one more day. A friend in the same situation
relies on a six-pack of beer every night; another has drifted
into a la-la land of denial. Nice.
Then there is
the wedge that's been driven between part of my extended
family and me. They don't see this war as one based on lies.
They've become evangelical believers in a
false faith, swallowing Bush's fear mongering, his
chicken-hawk posturing and strutting, and cheering his "bring
'em on" attitude as a sign of strength and resoluteness.
Perhaps life is just easier that way.
These are the
same people who have known my son since he was a baby, who
have held him and loved him and played with him, who have
bought him birthday presents and taken him fishing. I don't
know them anymore.
But enough of my whining.
My son is alive and in one
piece, unlike the 1,102 dead and 7,782 severely wounded
American soldiers; which equals 8,884 blood soaked uniforms,
and doesn't even count the estimated 20,000 troops – not
publicly reported by the Department of Defense – medevaced out
of Iraq for "non-combat related injuries."
death, every injury burns like a knife in my gut, for these
are all America's sons and daughters. And I know I'm not
immune to that knock on my door either.
And what of the Iraqi people?
How many casualties have they suffered? How many tens of
thousands dead and wounded? How many Iraqi mothers have wept,
weep now, for their lost children? I fear we will never know,
for though the Pentagon has begun – almost gleefully –
counting Iraqi insurgent deaths, there is little chance of
getting an accurate verification of civilian casualties. You
know, "collateral damage."
Yes, my son
is alive and, as far as I know, well. I wish I could say the
same for some of his friends.
One young man who was involved
in heavy fighting during the invasion is now so debilitated by
post-traumatic stress disorder that he routinely has
flashbacks in which he smells burning flesh; he can't close
his eyes without seeing people's heads squashed like frogs in
the middle of the road, or dead and dying women and children,
burned, bleeding and dismembered.
Sometimes he hears the sounds of
battle raging around him, and he has been hospitalized twice
for suicidal tendencies. When he was home on leave, this
27-year-old man would crawl into his mother's room at night
and sob in her lap for hours.
Instead of getting treatment
for PTSD, he has just received a "less than honorable"
discharge from the Army. The rest of his unit
redeploys to Iraq in February.
Another friend of Nick's was
horrifically wounded when his Humvee stopped on an IED. He
didn't even have time to instinctively raise his arm and
protect his face. Shrapnel ripped through his right eye,
obliterating it to gooey shreds, and penetrated his brain. He
has been in a coma since March. His mother spends every day
with him in the hospital; his wife is devastated, and their
1-year-old daughter doesn't know her daddy.
son's friend is a fighter and so is making steady,
incremental progress toward consciousness. He has a long
hard struggle ahead of him, one that he need never have
faced – and his family has had to fight every step of the
way to get him the treatment he needs. So much for
supporting the troops.
I go visit him every week and it
breaks my heart to see the burned faces, the missing limbs,
the limps, the vacant stares one encounters in an acute-care
military hospital. In front of the hospital there is a cannon,
and every afternoon they blast that sucker off. You should see
all the poor guys hit the pavement.
Though many requests have been
made to discontinue the practice for the sake of the returning
wounded, the general in charge refuses. Boom.
Then there is Nick's 24-year-old
Kurdish friend, the college-educated son of teachers,
multilingual and highly intelligent. He works as a translator
for the U.S. Army for $600 a month and lives on base, where he
is relatively safe. (Translators for private contractors, also
living on base, make $7200 a month).
He wants to
travel to the States to continue his education, but no visas
are now being issued from Iraq. Once the army is through with
him, will they just send him back into the streets, a virtual
dead man for having worked with the Americans?
My son places a high premium on loyalty to family and
friends, and he has been raised to walk his talk. This must be
a harsh and embittering lesson on just how unprincipled the
rest of the world can be. My heart aches for his Iraqi friend
as well as for him.
A year ago in
January, when Nick left for Iraq, I granted myself permission
to be stark raving mad for the length of his deployment. By
god, I've done a good job of it, without apology or excuse.
And I dare say there are at least 139,999 other moms who have
done the same – though taking troop rotations into
consideration to maintain that magical number of 140,000 in
the sand could put the number of crazed military moms as high
as 300,000, maybe more. Right now, you might want to be
careful about cutting in line in front of a middle-aged woman.
there are military moms who view the war in Iraq through
different ideological lenses than mine. Sometimes I envy
them. God, how much easier it must be to believe one's son
or daughter is fighting for a just and noble cause! But no
matter how hard I scrutinize the invasion and occupation of
Iraq, all I see are lies, corruption, and greed fueled by a
powerful addiction to oil. Real soldiers get blown to
tatters in their "Hummers," so that well-heeled American
suburbanites can play in theirs.
For my family
and me, the costs of this war are real and not abstract. By
day, I fight my demons of dreaded possibility, beat them back
into the shadows, into the dark recesses of my mind. Every
night, they hiss and whisper a vile prognosis of gloom and
desolation. I order the voices into silence, but too often
they laugh at and mock my commands.
I wonder if George Bush ever
hears these voices.
And I wonder, too ... just how
much are we willing to pay for a gallon of gas?
Are We Doing?”
The Return Of
The Thousand Yard Stare
Know It Well)
October 26, 2004 By Rick Jervis,
Chicago Tribune staff reporter
Marines were stabilized or sent to the morgue, the talk
among the staff wasn't about the injuries but of the
Marines' glazed expressions.
had the same look in their eyes: this far-off stare," Worth
said. "I'd never seen it before."
when I hear on the news that it's going to get worse: How
much worse can it get?" he said. "It's frustrating to see
guys come in, day in, day out, with those injuries. You
ask, `Jeez, what are we doing?'"
The injured never stop coming,
and their wounds tell the story of the war.
A surge in head injuries attests
to an increase in roadside bombs, which spray shrapnel under
the lips of Kevlar helmets.
Severe burns reveal insurgents
are frosting homemade bombs with jellied gasoline.
An Army helicopter filled
with wounded Marines is a sign that car bombs, which pack a
bigger explosive punch, are rising.
The staff of the Army's 31st
Combat Support Hospital in Baghdad watches the war through its
streams of patients. Its
three intensive care units and 70 beds often overflow.
The luckier soldiers suffer dime-sized shrapnel wounds.
Many have lost limbs or eyes. Others need skulls
reconstructed, their brains so bruised they don't recognize
non-stop," said Maj. Patrick McAndrew, evening nurse
supervisor. "The things I've seen here I've never seen
before. . . . It's more lethal now than it's ever been."
Since the war started in March
2003, more than 8,000 U.S.
troops have been wounded--roughly seven for every
half of the wounds have occurred in the last six months.
The 31st Combat Support Hospital
is in the former Ibn Sina Hospital, a private hospital built
by Saddam Hussein for the exclusive use of his family and
closest friends. It's located inside the heavily fortified
Green Zone and admits about 10 patients a day, though that
number changes according to insurgent activity, officials
Many of the staff of 200 have
worked at military hospitals in the United States, treating
car wreck victims or heart attack patients, and are making
their combat debut. Besides adjusting to the harsher wounds
caused by rocket-propelled grenades and land mines,
staffers have to live and work
through the steady stream of mortars and rockets lobbed at
them in the Green Zone.
"It's tough," said Maj. Patricia
Born, a clinical staff nurse.
"When people go to the
hospital and they're at the end of their lives and they're
dying, that's one thing. But seeing all these young people
dying is a lot different."
The No. 1 cause of injuries to
U.S. troops in Iraq are roadside bombs.
The roadside bombs shred and
shatter the arms and legs of troops, said Capt. Maxwell
Hernandez, a critical care nurse at the hospital.
The upward projectiles also
fire chunks of shrapnel under Kevlar helmets, causing head
wounds, he said.
The force of the bombs also
cause unusual blunt trauma, he said.
Two weeks ago, the shock wave
from an IED caused a lung concussion in a soldier, making the
lungs bleed and preventing oxygen from properly entering the
bloodstream, Hernandez said. The soldier died a week later.
I've ever seen that," said Hernandez, who works as a nurse at
the Beaumont Army Medical Center in El Paso, Texas.
On a recent afternoon, Kevin
Worth, a critical-care nurse in one of the ICUs, enjoyed the
quiet of a near-empty ward, following a frantic 80-hour week,
On one of those days, a Black
Hawk helicopter deposited eight wounded Marines whose Baghdad
checkpoint had been hit by a car bomb, he said.
One was dead on arrival, two
others died in the emergency room, and one walked in with
brain matter leaking from his left eye, he said.
"It was like a scene out of a
horror movie," Worth said. "They just kept coming out of the
back of the helicopter. . . . Stuff like that really sticks
Marines were stabilized or sent to the morgue, the talk
among the staff wasn't about the injuries but of the
Marines' glazed expressions.
had the same look in their eyes: this far-off stare," Worth
said. "I'd never seen it before."
One of the few people occupying
an ICU bed in Worth's ward that recent quiet afternoon was
Cpl. Donny Daughenbaugh, a 23-year-old Marine with Echo
Company of the 2nd Battalion, 24th Marines based in
Mahmoudiya, south of Baghdad. Daughenbaugh was on a night
foot patrol through Mahmoudiya on Oct. 12 with his platoon
when a car sped past, screeched to a stop and opened fire with
an AK-47, he said.
A bullet hit him in the face.
"I felt my face get hot,"
Daughenbaugh said through clenched teeth, his jaw wired shut.
"There was so much blood. I knew I was shot. I'm trying to
radio in, tell them I'm hit. But I can't hear myself. It
doesn't sound like me at all. So I just raised my hand."
The bullet had barreled in
through his left cheekbone and lodged between his skull base
and his top vertebra, fracturing the jawbone and missing vital
nerves and the brain by millimeters, hospital officials said.
A metal plate repaired his jaw, but the bullet was left in
place, too close to the brain stem to move. He will recover,
As the U.S.
military tries to outpace the enemy, insurgents also are
quickly adapting to U.S. initiatives and altering their modes
of attacks, hospital officials said.
In March and April, when battles
flared in insurgent hotbeds such as Najaf, most of the wounds
were from gunfire, mortars and rocket-propelled grenades,
officials said. But as
rebels learned that U.S. body armor and helmets protected
soldiers from those attacks, they stepped up IED attacks, they
said. When the military added more armor to their Humvees,
insurgents used more car bombs, officials said.
Lately, hospital officials have
noticed a sharp increase in attacks on lower extremities and
head wounds, indicating more roadside bombs.
There also has been an
increase in severely burned victims, pointing to roadside
bombs laced with jellied gasoline, said Col. Jack Chiles,
chief of physicians.
"They're getting very good,"
Chiles said. "It's like a virus. They're very sneaky, very
The 31st hospital is the area's
only center that has a neurological team able to take CT scans
and perform head surgeries on the premises. The team of
eight--two neurosurgeons, two neurologists, two scrub
technicians, a circulating nurse and anesthesiologist--is
headed by Lt. Col. Jeff Poffenbarger, a former Green Beret and
chief of neurosurgery at the Brooke Army Medical Center at Ft.
The team performs about one
emergency craniotomy a day, though they once performed six in
24 hours, Poffenbarger said. The procedure peels back the
scalp and exposes the brain to stem the bleeding and bring
down the swelling. The skull, sometimes shattered, is
reconstructed, often using Titanium plates and screws, he
Unlike in the U.S., where the
survival rate from emergency craniotomies is about 5 percent,
Poffenbarger's team is saving about 33 percent of its
patients, though all of them incur some form of brain damage,
including slurred speech and blindness, he said.
encouraged by his team's survival rate, Poffenbarger said the
extent of the injuries he deals with daily affects him.
Sometimes he has to pull baseball-sized shrapnel from the eye
sockets of soldiers, he said, or reconstruct a skull that has
been shattered like an eggshell.
"This is raw,
dirty, gut-checking business," said Poffenbarger after a
recent shift, his brown Army boots streaked with blood.
"These are 19- and 20-year-old Americans. And they're really
badly injured. It's something that really stays with you."
McAndrew, the evening nurse
supervisor, said he also gets rattled by the injuries he sees
coming through the trauma center. To combat the stress, he
tries to work out each day at the hospital gym and stays away
from violent movies, preferring Chris Farley comedies.
when I hear on the news that it's going to get worse: How
much worse can it get?" he said. "It's frustrating to see
guys come in, day in, day out, with those injuries. You ask,
`Jeez, what are we doing?'"
Troops Pay Is Double What U.S. Troops Get
24 October 2004 By Ian Williams,
In These Times
The U.S. Army pay scale is about
half that of the British, which is why there is a major crisis
in military recruitment.
Site Asking Donations to Buy Soldiers Beer
October 18, 2004 By Vince
Crawley, Army Times staff writer
do, don’t buy them a beer.
In a brouhaha
over brew, military authorities have told a band of beer
buddies in Iraq that their Web site,
violated federal regulations that prohibit service members
from soliciting donations.
being shut down in the first week in October, the site soberly
touted itself as “The Web site where you cannot buy us a
The site’s former operator,
Staff Sgt. Dale Rogers of the 2nd Brigade, 2nd Infantry
Division, had said he was receiving a few hundred dollars per
month and used the money to buy a few rounds — of the
nonkinetic kind — for unit members taking leave from the
But before being closed, the
site itself did address his run-in with military authorities
that resulted in a last call for cyber suds. Though clearly
miffed, he stopped short of escalating the situation into a
“No, you cannot buy us a beer!
Don’t buy us beer! The legal folks said you can’t,” Rogers
wrote in one of the last incarnations of the Web site, posted
the first weekend of October. Through late September, the site
had developed something of a cult following with its
tongue-in-cheek request for patriotic beer money.
Army Sgt. 1st Class Brian
Sutton, a spokesman for the 2nd Brigade, said Rogers was asked
to shut down the site “because it was not in keeping with the
standards under which our soldiers are required to operate.”
command learned about this Web site last month, [it] asked him
to shut it down,” said the statement from Sutton.
“I’m sure Sgt. Rogers was using the money as he
said he was on his Web site. His ethics are not in question
here. He has served honorably and faithfully in the Army.
The command is simply
interested in seeing that this site is run legally, and as of
now it is not a legal site.”
Sutton noted that “Sgt. Rogers
has been incredibly cooperative on this issue because he
understands what we are trying to achieve. He has voluntarily
decided to shut down the site completely.”
Before closing the site, Rogers
said his effort was a way to boost morale for troops in
combat, who can’t drink alcohol while in Iraq.
he tried complying with the order by transferring Web-site
ownership to his nonmilitary brother. In a Sept. 28 note,
Rogers said the move was “due to legal pukes who say a
soldier cannot solicit beer donations to increase the morale
of his fellow soldiers. What a crock! But I am a soldier
and I have to comply. I have ceased and desisted.”
A few days later, the site
ruefully announced it was no longer accepting donations.
Still, site visitors are invited to a post-tour beer bash at
Fort Carson, Colo., where the unit is due to rotate next year
after the troops finish their Iraq stint.
growing public attention had caused the beer-deprived troops
to tone down some of their content. A
recent viewing showed there were still several photographs of
buxom young women in barrooms back home, interspersed with
plenty of snaps of soldiers drinking while off duty.
But gone was the image of a grunt licking his assault rifle,
replaced by a more politically correct snapshot of Rogers
posing with a young Iraqi boy.
site’s guest book had dozens of entries from people around the
world offering a few words of encouragement and not a few
snide remarks about military lawyers.
This prompted one military
lawyer to add his own thoughts on the subject of chilled beer.
“Rules is [sic] rules, and they
don’t allow solicitation, period,” wrote the site visitor, who
described himself as an Army captain and a military lawyer
based in Germany.
want to blame anyone, don’t blame the lawyers, blame the
congressmen that wrote the law. Our job is to
tell you what the law says, even if we personally disagree
with the law.”
The tap may have run dry, but
Rogers and company say they still get a big morale boost when
they hear from folks back home.
“Now, about the only thing you
can do is write us a letter or send us a care package — but,
hey, that’s a lot!” Rogers writes. “We are soldiers currently
serving in Iraq. So ‘mail call’ is a highly motivating part of
the day — almost as motivating as drinking a beer.”
Resistance Attacks In September Are Hugely More Effective Than
October 27, 2004 Associated
said in August there were a
record 645 attacks against "public or state
institutions," that killed
147 and wounded 385.
the number of attacks dropped to 120, but
the number of casualties remained high:
193 dead and 385 injured.
(For more see
the article “Iraq’s opposition to occupation: ‘All our people
are resisting’ by Eric Ruder at
Munitions Going To Arm Resistance:
To Police In Guardsmen Slayings
[Washington Times, October 27,
2004, Pg. 13]
The U.S. military has been
spray-painting shell casings of ammunition given to various
Iraqi security units. The reason--to help identify who might
be responsible for the series of fatal attacks against newly
trained Iraqi guardsmen and police.
Spent shells found at a site
where 17 national guardsmen were executed were painted red,
identifying them as ammo earmarked for the Iraqi police force.
THE TROOPS HOME NOW!
Officials, Iraqis Reject Silly Bush "Terrorism" Bullshit
[San Francisco Chronicle,
October 27, 2004, Pg. 9]
with U.S. officials and Iraqis in Baghdad say the insurgency
is part of a growing, intensely nationalistic resistance
determined to remove U.S. forces and their Iraqi allies.
Forces Refuse Demands To Get Out Of Cities During Iraq
[London Financial Times, October
U.S. forces will
probably be "out of immediate sight" in several parts of Iraq
during parliamentary elections scheduled for January.
American commanders refuse to
comply with a demand by opposition groups that they withdraw
from some towns during the vote.
HELP RECRUIT MORE RESISTANCE FIGHTERS TO KILL U.S. TROOPS
Mercenaries, working as
translators, question Iraqis insurgents lying handcuffed on
the floor, as soldiers with the 2-17 Field Artillery Regiment
Alpha Company raid their home in Ramadi, 100 kms west of
Removes Prisoners From Iraq
Oct 24, 2004 ABC News
Oct 24, 2004 —The CIA
has secretly moved as many as a dozen unidentified prisoners
out of Iraq in the last six months, a possible violation of
international treaties, The Washington Post reported.
The detainees were removed
without notification to the International Red Cross,
congressional oversight committees, the Defense Department or
CIA investigators, the newspaper said in Sunday editions,
citing unidentified government officials.
Iraqis can be taken out of the
country for a "brief but not indefinite period," and that
"illegal aliens" can be removed permanently under "local
immigration law," the Post quoted the memo as saying.
The transfers could violate the
Geneva Conventions, which do not allow "individual or mass
forcible transfers, as well as deportations of protected
persons from occupied territory."
Lies About Falluja
27 -10-2004 SyriaTimes
The U.S. military said it
carried out a "precision strike" at 3 a.m. (0000 Gmt) on a
Zarqawi safe in Falluja, killing one of his aides.
It did not name the man or
state his nationality.
Residents said one house was
destroyed and three damaged in the strike.
It was the
second time in a few days the military claimed it had
eliminated a Zarqawi associate without identifying him. On
Saturday it alleged it captured a "senior leader" of the
group in a raid in southern Falluja.
“U.S. Troops Will Pay The Price”
Oct 19 By Michael Georgy
"Bush should just retire. He has given me nothing but
headaches. He removed Saddam and gave us many other big
problems. America needs a new leader," said Abbas
"Now Iraq has huge problems.
I like Kerry but I really
don't think much will change here even if Iraqis could vote in
Majeed, 40, a factory manager in Baghdad, "They just want to
control Iraq and keep it unstable because that will be an
excuse to stay here."
Abdullah al-Abaichee, 15, a
student in rebel-held Falluja:
“If Bush wins it will be the biggest brutal aggression in
Iraq. The reaction from the resistance will be fierce. It
will be an arena of conflict and Iraqis and US troops will pay
Dogs” Serving In Occupation Police Force
2004-10-27 By Deborah Haynes,
Middle East Online
force is haunted by "ghosts" who receive money but never come
to work and slackers who make an appearance but are hopeless
or corrupt, officials have said.
that there are more personnel on the payroll than are actually
on the ground. When the chief of police says he has 200 men
but only really has 150 personnel he receives extra money,"
Dutch Colonel Cees de Jong said in a recent
across the country are padded out with names of dead
personnel, retirees, "brothers, sisters, aunts, uncles, cats
and dogs" inserted by serving policemen who pocket the extra
cash, said a second police training source.
"There has been a disjoint since
the war. Many of the provinces have had a degree of
independence and that link between the interior ministry and
the province has been severed," one police training source
Haitian police force two women
to lie on the sidewalk as they question them about whether
they know any who support former President Jean- Bertrand
Aristide in the pro-Aristide slum of Bel-Air in
Port-au-Prince, Haiti, Oct.24, 2004. It was part of
'Operation Clean Sweep.' (AP Photo/Ariana Cubillos)
Collaborators Follow The Iraq Fashion, Hide Their Faces
Haitian police near poster of
ousted President Jean-Bertrand Aristide in Bel-Air in
Port-au-Prince, Haiti, Oct.24, 2004. It was part of 'Operation
Clean Sweep' when scores of occupation troops and Haitian
police moved into the Bel Air neighborhood that is a
stronghold of militant Aristide loyalists. (AP Photo/Ariana
POLITICIANS AT WORK
“You Want The
Truth? You Can’t Handle The Truth.”
“We have our
little differences, but on one thing we agree 100%. If
Americans have to die in Iraq to keep the Empire going, tough
shit. We got so many unemployed back here they’ll never be
missed. And since somebody has to die for corporate profits
and Empire, it sure won’t be our kids. They have other
priorities. College. Parties. Getting ready to manage the
family fortunes when then get a bit older.
being an American leader means.
it, some people are just more important than others, and
without a rich, privileged, elite ruling class telling them
what to do, how could the common scum survive? It’s just a
division of labor: some die for the Empire, and our class has
to take on the terrible responsibility for managing it.
That’s us. That’s what we do. And remember, which ever one
of us wins, we win either way.
you already know that, don’t you? And you’ll take it and like
it, won’t you? You chumps just keep on playing our game every
four years, don’t you?
“What are you
going to do, rebel? What a silly idea!”
presidential debate. JIM BOURG/REUTERS
Endorses Bush For President
October 19, 2004 TEHRAN, Iran
The head of
Iran's security council said Tuesday the re-election of
President George W. Bush would be in Tehran's best interests,
despite the administration's axis of evil label, accusations
Iran harbours al-Qaida terrorists and threats of sanctions
over the country's nuclear ambitions.
Historically, Democrats have
harmed Iran more than Republicans, said Hasan Rowhani, head of
the Supreme National Security Council, Iran's top security
"We haven't seen anything good
from Democrats," Rowhani told state-run television in remarks
that, for the first time in recent decades, saw Iran openly
supporting one U.S. presidential candidate over another.
Though Iran generally does not
publicly wade into U.S. presidential politics, it has a
history of preferring Republicans over Democrats, who tend to
press human rights issues.
"We do not desire to see
Democrats take over," Rowhani said when asked if Iran is
supporting Democratic Senator John Kerry against Bush.
The Bush campaign said "No
thanks." “It's not an endorsement we'll be accepting anytime
soon," Bush campaign spokesman Scott Stanzel said.
Account Deficit Woes
October 27, 2004 By Mike Swanson
Just a few
days ago the US Treasury reported that the net capital inflows
from the rest of the world into the United States fell for the
6th month in a row. Private from abroad fell to $34.7 billion
in August and from $72.9 billion in July. Asian central banks
made up for the shortfall. If they hadn’t, the current
account deficit would have exploded.
Times quoted Ashraf Laidi, a currency analyst at MG
Financial Group as saying, "foreign central banks saved the
dollar from disaster. The stability of the bond market is at
the mercy of Asian purchases of US Treasuries."
The current account deficit has
grown so large the foreign investment coming into the United
States is no longer creating economic growth. Although
the United States is taking in 80% of the world’s surplus
savings it is all being used to finance the deficits.
According to Stephen Roach, the
head economist of Morgan Stanley, the deficits are growing so
large that by the end of the year America’s indebtedness to
other countries will reach 28% of GDP.
bring the US indebtedness to a level of 300% of exports.
Argentina and Brazil were at 400% right before they collapsed
in the 1990’s.
August, foreign investors were net sellers of US equities. It
was the intervention by foreign central banks that prevented a
run on the dollar. We may be starting to see the first signs
of a brewing crisis. If the current trend
continues then the US financial markets will eventually come
under intense pressure, the dollar will continue to drop, and
investors from all over the world will flock into gold.
October 27, 2004 Associated
— A bomb hit a U.S.
military convoy in southeastern Afghanistan on Wednesday,
injuring three American troops and an Afghan soldier, the
exploded near the injured soldiers’ Humvee
near Qalat, the capital of Zabul province, a U.S. military
Two of the soldiers were
evacuated to Kandahar Air Base for treatment. One had
shrapnel injuries and one had a possible concussion. Both
were in stable condition, the statement said.
The third American and a soldier
from the Afghan National Army were treated at the scene for
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