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December 06, 2004
The Heroes of India Company
Filed in: Current Affairs, Video, War on Terror

FOX News' Greg Palkot was embedded with India Company Marines in Fallujah - beginning with the initial assault through their post action gathering.

In an incredible documentary aired last night, we saw first hand the dangerous house-to-house combat that characterized this urban battle - in a microcosm of what many, many other American companies were doing in other parts of the city at the same time.

These Marines took no joy in killing - often through an interpreter verbally offering their enemy a chance to surrender - such chance seldom taken. Only after such negotiations failed did our Marines oblige the enemies' wish to die.

And what did these brave soldiers think of while they executed their mission? They mostly thought of you and me. Their fervent and foremost belief is that the price they pay is for American freedom. They fight on the enemies' doorstep instead of fighting on ours.

Doesn't this acutely expose those who disagree with these Marines as to why they carry out their missions - but say that they support the troops? How can you support the troops without believing what they believe?

India Company Fallujah PoemIn the after action meeting, a young Marine reads his poem (click on the picture to the left for a video clip - requires MS media player):

What is the price of freedom?
A Marine knows all to well.
It can be just the average hitch,
Or in the bowels of hell.
The cost we know is staggering,
And each man pays his price.
Some with just a few short years,
Some pay with their life.
Each time I see our flag unfurled,
I thank God I'm standing there.
And know whatever price is paid,
I willingly paid my share.

During this mission, three of the soldiers in India Company, along with 51 other US servicemen in Fallujah, laid the ultimate sacrifice on the altar of freedom.

Jpblecksmith Lieutenant JP Blecksmith could throw the football sixty yards in high school but had Ivy League level SAT scores - terrorists shot him in the back. Get to know JP Blecksmith a little better here.

He counted you as a friend worthy of his sacrifice.

Shanekielion Just a few hours before Lance Corporal Shane Kielion was killed in this action, his wife gave birth to Shane Junior. Get to know Shane Kielion a little better here.

He, too, counted you as a friend worthy of his sacrifice.

Antoinesmith Lance Corporal Antoine Smith played the viola in high school and being in the Marine Corps helped him overcome a speech impediment. The Orlando Sentinel has removed their story so I reproduce it here so you can get to know him a little better:

(Orlando Sentinel) At Dr. Phillips High School, Antoine Smith might have been remembered only as the quiet kid with the slight stutter who played viola in the school orchestra.

But days after graduating in May 2001, Smith joined the Marine Corps. And when he returned to the Orange County school to visit a year later, he was like a different young man.

"He was in his Marine uniform," said Jennifer Erickson, who taught Smith in the orchestra his senior year. "He had this big smile on his face, and he didn't stutter anymore. He had so much heart, so much pride. I think Antoine had really found what he wanted to do."

But this week, Erickson and her colleagues learned that the proud young Marine Lance Corporal would never return to visit again.

Smith, 22, died Monday in combat in Iraq, one of more than 50 U.S. troops killed since early November in fighting to oust insurgents from the rebel stronghold of Fallujah.

It might seem unlikely for a shy young musician to become a rifleman with the 5th Marine Regiment. But those who knew Smith said it was no mystery.

"He would work hard for what he wanted," said Paul Waters, an Orlando businessman who befriended Smith. "And he wanted to be a Marine."

Waters met Smith when they sat next to each other one day at First Baptist Church of Orlando. They shared a pew for the next seven years, and Waters became a friend and mentor to Smith.

Smith was an only child, and his mother, who raised him alone, sometimes had to struggle to make ends meet, Waters said.

Smith grew up in a small duplex in a west Orlando neighborhood where many young men fall into trouble with drugs and crime.

But Smith's mother, Deborah, worked hard to make sure Antoine stayed on the right path, said Anne Parrette, his orchestra teacher for his first three years at Dr. Phillips who often gave him rides to and from home for concerts and rehearsals.

"She worked her schedule so that she was home when he got home from school," Parrette said. "She was at all the performances, and she would always chaperone, even though she didn't have a car. He was her whole life."

Friends said Deborah smith was too distraught to talk Thursday.

Smith began playing the viola in middle school, and he had to work hard to do well, Erickson said.

"Some kids are naturally talented," Erickson said. "He wasn't one of the students who it came easy to. But he worked very hard at it."

In his last year at Dr. Phillips, Smith won the orchestra award for the most improved senior musician, Erickson said. She wants to establish a memorial award in Smith's name for music students who display Smith's "dedication, perseverance and great love of music."

Smith, who was stationed at Camp Pendleton in Southern California, returned home to visit about six weeks ago, just before he was sent to Iraq, Waters said. It was Smith's first deployment to Iraq.

Like many recruits, Smith struggled at first in the military, Waters said. It was hard being away from home and difficult adjusting to the strict discipline and austere conditions.

"He had the usual G.I. complaints," Waters said.

But on his last visit home, it was clear Smith was flourishing, Waters said.

"I saw a lot of maturing. He gained a great deal of confidence in the Marine Corps," Waters said. "I think he was looking at it as a career."

Word of the young Marine's death was a bitter blow, Waters said. He has tried to think not of Smith's death, but of how lucky he was to know the young man.

"You look at where he came from, and what he did," Waters said. "I was very proud of him."

Antoine Smith counted you as a friend worthy of his sacrifice as well.

Many other soldiers were wounded in the Fallujah operation - 22 of them from India Company.

I am, at once, filled with pride and humbled by these volunteer citizen soldiers. How precious they render each act of our daily lives. Though I am too old in body to fight beside them so far away, I will fight each day to see that their sacrifices are cherished and that their honor will increase and that our memory of them will not fade.

God bless our men and women who serve our country in the armed services.

UPDATE: Many thanks to The Commissioner: Hugh Hewitt for linking to this post. Please do what you can to increase the honor these men deserve and support the memorial work being done for those of India Company and all other's that serve this nation. I, too, think that it would be great for FOX to re-air this documentary in a prime time slot. Send FOX emails.

UPDATE: For Hugh Hewitt readers - if you have read 'If it's not close, they can't cheat' by Hugh, or if you just want a practicum on what happens when it is close, you'll want to check out my posts on the agony of the gubernatorial race here in Washington state: A very, very long summary post since election day, or a shorter post with links focused on the count and the recount from November 16th. If you only have time for one or two posts, check out the ballot on this post, and/or the video parody here. We're starting a manual state-wide recount Wednesday which is going to feature, believe it or not, the printing out of computer based votes onto 8.5" x 11" paper for hand counting! Hugh, it's close and they are cheating!


Pulled by Emcee on December 6, 2004 at 11:57 AM
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December 04, 2004
Run Kofi Run
Filed in: Current Affairs, Politics, UN Oil For Food - Oil For Fraud, Video

Will Annan Resign?In a scene reminiscent of recent corporate scandals or political investigations - Kofi Annan is pursued by the MSM (well it's FOX but good enough) as he is hustled from house to limo by his entourage. Click on the image to the left for a short video. (Requires MS Media player.) Note the 'UN:Blood Money' overlay.

This is a good sign. The broader MSM is being forced to come out and defend Annan so stay tuned for ridiculous statements from flunkies seeking to save the sinking ship.

But brave patriots Senator Norm Coleman (who has openly called for Annan's resignation) and stalwart journalist Claudia Rosett (who continues to expose the nightmare) are on the case.

George Bush used a phrase during the campaign about his opponent - and a paraphrase is appropriate here: Kofi Annan, you can run but you cannot hide!

Click here for a summary of my posts on the OFF scandal - and find out, if you don't already know, that it is also a GWOT story.

UPDATE: Powerline links to a 'Genghis' Kojo story - read my posts to see that it's NOT just Cotecna - it's also Air Harbour Technologies (AHT).


Pulled by Emcee on December 4, 2004 at 10:18 AM
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November 25, 2004
WA Governor's Race: For your viewing pleasure
Filed in: Current Affairs, Politics, Video, WA Governor's Race

Christine GreGORE (it appears that the Kerry option is out) is *shrilly* and repeatedly calling for every vote to be counted, again and again, and again - apparently forgetting that every vote has been counted twice - and that at least some votes have been newly 'manufactured' out of thin air.

She sounds remarkably like Dean Logan, who, unfortunately is in charge of counting all the votes.

Please let me beg your pardon, but when we look at the evidence of what has been happening what we hear instead is "every ballot counts for GreGORE" - and some of them, at least, are blank.

So, in the holiday spirit, I present to you a gift of my own creation that serves two pruposes: 1) To show how committed Christine and Dean are to counting every vote - as many times as it takes to win, and 2) To give some emotional teeth to my statistical assertions. If you watch this video four times - you will hear Dean Logan say "Every vote counts" about the number of times that a 'vote' occurred during the recount in King County as a result of human intention rather than the untampered mathematical result that occurred in the rest of the state. And as you'll see during each viewing - that includes him saying it eleven times in one third of a second. Curious? Go see the video (requires MS Media Player) by clicking on the picture:

Every Vote Counts

Happy Thanksgiving Holiday everyone.

UPDATE: Digital Brown Pajamas has a great synopsis on the Washington Govenor's race here.


Pulled by Emcee on November 25, 2004 at 03:35 AM
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November 24, 2004
Domestic (British) Terror: Meanwhile ...
Filed in: Current Affairs, Domestic Terror, Video

On planet earth, I asked in a post yesterday what our MSM and the BBC would do with the incredible announcement from ITV that MI-6 and other British intelligence and security services had foiled a "911" style plot - hijackers planning to take control of multiple aircraft and crash them into Canary Wharf and the Heathrow Airport. That's what they said - they stopped something that might have been as devastating.

On planet earth, there were many stories that reflected on the horror of Ground Zero and the other events of that fateful day and focused on the incredible success that the brave men and women in the British services have achieved.

Wtcplanapproach2_1 Wtcexplosion_1

Wtctrapped_1 Wtcruins_1

SaddamcapturePictures of captured terrorists - past and present were shown on all the mainstream media broadcasts. The BBC wire submitted several stories on some of the personal heroics of the enforcement personnel and interviewed dozens of citizens that expressed their thanks for the avoidance of the nightmare and the fact that they would sleep easier knowing they were being looked after so well.

Terrorcap2_1 A number of government officials were interviewed and anonymously released a few more bits of information about the operation and congratulated their colleagues on a superb job well done.

Meanwhile, since last night, a universal bifurcation occurred and a Philip K. Dick'sian parallel universe was born - if you are reading this blog entry, you are now on the planet Arxeniodysfun (pronounced like the ex-talk show host - but not related in any way - and the first part of the word dysfunctional - related in every way).

In this parallel world that we find ourselves in, the BBC did not post a single news wire story on the incredible events even though they seem to be happy to so report when Iran (yes Vern, that's Iran) is able to avoid terror attacks. Late in the day they posted an oblique story about Prime Minister Blair denying that the government was scaremongering.

In the parallel United States, MSNBC jumped quickly to communicate to the world that the story was actually a British government plot to take further civil liberties from the British people and generally expand its power. Even the Queen is a participant in this plot! MSNBC quoted multiple sources (all Muslim clerics apparently) that found this plot quite controversial.

Don't believe me?

Britishterrorallmadeup_0001 Here's the video (click on the picture to the left: requires Ms Media Player) - just in case you haven't realized that you woke up in a new universe this morning.

It's the only explanation that we can come up with. Otherwise - I mean if we are still on planet earth - we have just seen another example of egregious journalistic fraud on par with the Rathergate scandal. What reputable news organization would take a story of success against terror and, without any evidence of any kind, make it into an accusation of government conspiracy against its population?

Cnnbritishplot_0001_1 There's just no other explanation. See, MSNBC isn't the only one - CNN (click on the picture to the left for video: requires Ms Media Player) put on nearly the same story, except this time it was "some quwahhrters" that knew of the sinister plot by the British government. Those quarters were apparently several mosques in London along with the leftist Democrats (they have them there too). Note that the entire video is captioned with "British Terror Plot?" so we are certain to understand that it is in question. Most of the time in this clip is spent hand-wringing over new security measures that just might catch more terrorists, but they don't fail to quash the story that the British might have actually foiled the bad guys.

Friends In The Bullpen do get some more information behind the success here. Comments to this Captain's Quarters post are interesting. This Australian article perhaps provides some underlying detail on one real suspect (along with token hand-wringing) - wonder how the British arranged that? Think the British were able to obtain any information from these guys?

See my summary of posts on the MSM and domestic terrorism here.

UPDATE: Friend ACE points out that it doesn't much matter what despicable terror evidence there is anywhere the "World Press Yawns."


Pulled by Emcee on November 24, 2004 at 12:51 AM
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