While the President Honors the Enemy, Americans Honor Americans

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President Barack Obama has visited the Peace Memorial Park at Hiroshima, but Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has no intention of reciprocating with a visit to Pearl Harbor, Hawaii.

The U.S. president said he visited Hiroshima to “honor all WWII dead.” All, Mr. President? Kamikaze’s? Nazi’s? Pearl Harbor bombers? Bataan Death March Imperial Japanese? Murderous SS troops who massacred defenseless American POW’s? All Mr. President?

On the 40th anniversary of the bombing of Hiroshima, President Ronald Reagan said: “We must never forget what nuclear weapons wrought upon Hiroshima and Nagasaki, yet we must also remain mindful that our maintenance of a strong nuclear deterrent has for four decades ensured the security of the United States and the freedom of our allies in Asia and Europe.”

Nearly 22 years ago, Emperor Akihito visited a war dead cemetery just a few miles from Pearl Harbor on a stopover on his way to North America. His original itinerary included a visit to the memorial at the site of the capsized U.S.S. Arizona, still entombing 1,100 sailors, but protests from right wing Japanese altered his plans. The right wingers claimed Japan was provoked by a United States’ embargo at the time.

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No sitting American president should ever visit Hiroshima or Nagasaki, until or unless a sitting Japanese Prime Minister or Emperor visits Pearl Harbor. Apologies aside, showing up is an act of support and sympathy.

Embargo or not, a true act of war such as the killing of 2,400 people at dawn on a Sunday should rate a full and sincere apology. If not, stay far away from even the slightest perception of sympathy for those who caused over 100,000 U.S. casualties in the Pacific after the sneak attack on December 7, 1941.

Absent the nuclear attacks by the U.S. on Imperial Japan in the summer of 1945 it is estimated that over one million Americans would have lost their lives fighting conventionally to subdue the Japanese. The Imperial Japanese had already mobilized women and children in its defense.

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In war, right and wrong can be overcome by what is necessary. Survival is necessary.

Apologies without sincere repentance are mere political gestures. Obama may have gotten away with both. After laying a wreath at the Peace Park and “honoring all war dead,” he lamented nuclear weapons, the very things that have secured relative peace and prosperity in Europe and Japan for over 70 years.

The President’s biggest mistakes have been withdrawing from victories and stability, only to find himself in a quagmire not seen since the Vietnam War. Iraq and Afghanistan were pacified and peaceful before draw downs and withdrawals were ordered by the President.

Now we find ourselves still losing heroes in pointless and ineffective military missions that dishonor theirs and the lives and ground lost previously.

All WWII dead, Mr. President? On this Memorial Day weekend? Not on your life.

 

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One Nation, Under God, Except in Florida

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Atheists and liberal anti-Christians are at it again, this time successfully supporting legislation in the Sunshine State to make it unlawful to force a student in the public schools there to stand at attention or say the Pledge of Allegiance.

A previous law required only that students stand at attention during the pledge if they didn’t want to recite it. Now they may sit.

It’s a shame that every school in Florida can’t have a wounded veteran appear in a wheel chair in front of the students and then tell them about how he or she CANNOT stand to honor the flag that represents the reason they sacrificed their ABILITY to stand for it.

It’s a shame that legislators in Florida no longer hold dear the values that created this nation and made it free in the first place.

Communists and socialists and atheists will tell you it’s bad to swear oaths and make pledges, but in an instant would turn around and have you promise your individuality and creativity away with state sponsored dogma limiting your ambitions and directing your energies to the “common” good.

No individuality or capitalism in their small mental world of what’s good and what’s bad. That translates to “no incentive” to excel or invent a better way.

I remember a friend in elementary school, Danny, who would not say the pledge. His religion forbade him from celebrating or pledging allegiance to anything. We respected and liked Danny, who would just stay home rather than be exposed to holiday parties in class. No Christmas or Halloween or Easter. We felt sorry for him, too.

What’s more than just passing legislation that says students no longer have to stand for the pledge, atheist groups are threatening lawsuits against any person who violates the law. Every student has now become an informant for the overseers: another Communist ploy that conjures memories of the child murderers of the Cambodian Khmer Rouge who would round up teachers and kill them.

I had a teacher colleague of mine from my New York City teaching days get a one year suspension for refusing to take down a poster with the Ten Commandments on it. It was in his classroom along with posters with the religious edicts from other religions on them.

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Back then we had many known and even proud Communist Party U.S.A. members among the faculty. C.P.U.S.A. headquarters was just a few blocks away on 23rd Street, Manhattan, disguised as a bookshop. They ratted out my friend and forced the principal to write him up and then get him suspended.

My friend argued that since he had come to the portion of his ESL (English as a Second Language) history class where they discussed world religions that it would be OK to post the Ten Commandments. Not so fast, the atheists said! And they got their way.

Of course the charges had nothing to do with the myth of “separation of church and state,” but everything to do with insubordination, one of the few deadly sins in the tenured teacher world. My friend was eventually fired.

The myth of “separation of church and state” is perpetuated by Pagan, utilitarian, humanist atheists and liberal progressives. Too many descriptors? Too few probably, but operatively, Pagans do whatever feels good; utilitarian’s believe that if it’s useful to them it is good; and humanists feel that they should be able to do whatever they want as long as it doesn’t hurt another politically correct minion (it’s OK to hurt those who believe in the Judeo/Christian ethic).

Contrast that with Judeo/Christians and most other law abiding, respectful Americans, practicing religions or not, who believe in the Golden Rule, Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness.

Here you have the classic dichotomy that represents our current Great Cultural Struggle.

Social engineering abounds in these troubled times with gays openly serving in the military, transgenders pooping and showering wherever they please, legalized gay marriage, and the nation’s first openly gay Secretary of the Army. It’s an end to “live and let live;” it’s open season on the Judeo/Christian values that founded and perpetuated our society.

The Constitution provides the answer to the question of whether or not there is such a thing as the separation of church and state. You have the Establishment Clause:  Congress shall make no law respecting the establishment of religion – which means no state sponsored religion forced on the People. The Puritans and other original colonists from Old World Europe left to establish religious freedom, not to make a theocracy.

And then you have the Free Expression Clause: Congress shall make no law . . . prohibiting the free expression [of religion]. Nowhere does the Constitution say anything about separation of church and state.

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In fact, above every Federal Court bench “In God We Trust” can be found in gold shiny letters. On our currency you’ll find the same, on coin and paper. A taxpayer-funded chaplain recites an invocation in Congress before each session. “One nation, under God,” is in our Pledge.

We are a nation of believers. The Pledge and the “Star Spangled Banner,” our national anthem, are tools of our patriotism. They help to bring us together in a country where the founders wanted government out of our religion, but NEVER intended for religion to be out of our government.

According to our founding document there are many references to a deity. Many founders were religious if not Christian. And those who weren’t respected those who were. They wanted a free nation, not one in which the non-religious set upon the religious with pen, paper and intimidation.

I say, shame on the Florida legislature, shame on the atheists bullying educators and children, and shame on the United States of America for allowing it to happen. What’s next, banning the crucifixes on Christian churches?

It would be wonderful if Florida legislator’s would reverse their decision, but like the Boy Scouts of America, who changed their philosophy of not allowing openly gay boys or leaders to join because they could no longer bear the financial burden of fighting LGBT zealots in court, I fear the legislators in Florida have succumbed to the same foul sources of anti-establishment fanaticism.

I hope and pray that the youth of Florida rise up and stand for and then say the Pledge. And while they do, looking at the Stars and Stripes, remember those who fought and/or died for the rights of others not to say or stand for it.

Osama bin Laden, 5 Years Gone

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It was five years ago that we learned Osama bin Laden had been killed by Navy SEALs in an overnight raid to his compound in Pakistan.

Before the year was out President Barack Obama withdrew all U.S. military forces from Iraq without a Status of Forces agreement that would have secured the peace in that tortured country.

A few years later, in 2013, Obama unilaterally declared “The Global War on Terror is over,” after announcing an end to U.S. combat operations in Afghanistan.

Now, just weeks after the death of a United States Marine in a fire base in Afghanistan, Obama has announced 250 more troops to Iraq and Syria. The fire base by the way was not part of the official count of troops in Iraq. The administration hadn’t said anything about the fire base or the Marine artillery units set up there to support a mainly Iraqi assault on nearby Islamic State held territory.

Days later, during the assault, and before engaging the enemy, Iraqi forces withdrew in a panic, leaving U.S. advisors with no one to advise there.

Meanwhile, things in Syria are getting worse. What to do?

Send in 250 more troops. What kind? No one is saying beyond that some of them are Special Forces.

Those of us with military backgrounds know that for every combat troop it takes from 5-7 support troops to keep that soldier at the tip of the spear fed, clothed, paid, accounted for, lead and supplied with ammo, INTEL, COMMO, security and transportation. In other words, there are not 250 more Boy Scouts camping in the desert.

What is our objective in Iraq and Syria? What end state is desired?

I’m not big on numbers or time, so I’m not asking how many troops or when we’ll be out. I’m results driven. I want to know the end game.

Military folks like to plan from the end. Where do you want me to be and when do you want me to be there? The rest is nuts and bolts, but commanders are supposed to communicate their intent to their subordinates, who carry out the mission.

Soldiers don’t like it when you don’t tell them details about the mission. The American Army has frustrated opponents since the Revolutionary War. We don’t play by conventional rules. We are creative on the battlefield. We fight, we win.

However, when your boss says it’s day when it’s night, it’s hard to trust whatever else follows.

 

The announced death of Osama bin Laden was an emotional thing for me to hear. Staying up late, unable to sleep when after 10 p.m. on May 1, 2011, I saw on social media announcements that the President had scheduled a hasty news conference.

I listened and watched, rapt and in shock.

Strange feelings of sadness and relief crept over me. It’s as if I didn’t know how to react.

After a few minutes the news began to sink in, bin Laden was dead.

I became euphoric after a while, remembering all the things in my life that had changed since 9/11/2001. I lost my job, I was deployed for about 2 ½ years over five years, and my relationship with family members, friends and colleagues had all changed as well, and none for the better.

I was angry at bin Laden for all of this, and for putting me in harm’s way at the U.S. military detention facility at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, for six months, and then in Iraq for nearly a year. It was all his fault, and I was very happy that he was dead.

Or was he?

Why didn’t they show us official pictures of the dead body they say belonged to the evil terrorist?

Thrown overboard? In the sea? Why?

Were they hiding him? Did he actually survive?

Did they tranquilize him and then spirit him away to an undisclosed location to see how much information they could get from him? Why martyr him?

I still carry some of those thoughts.

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After Saddam Hussein’s sons were killed we saw gruesome photos of them. We saw photos of Khalid Sheik Mohammed and Saddam Hussein after they were captured. Why nothing on bin Laden.

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It bothers me there is no closure, visually, to this person who caused so much death, destruction and heartache.

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Five years gone, but still alive in a soldier’s memory. All of it. From the bloody devastation of 9/11, to the deployments, to the raid, to today. Nothing has changed for the better. In fact things are worse now and not getting better.