Never in History Have Generals Revolted Against a War Like They are About IRAQ.
"I (insert name), having been appointed a (insert rank) in the U.S. Army under the conditions indicated in this document, do accept such appointment and do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic, that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; and that I will well and faithfully discharge the duties of the office on which I am about to enter, so help me God."
Unlike the enlisted folks
, officers only swear an allegiance to the Constitution.
posted by augustweed
on Sep 26, 2007 -
"Hey look at this shiny trinket, I think I'll pick it up and see what it---OH GOD MY FACE." A Pentagon group has
encouraged some U.S. military snipers in Iraq to target suspected insurgents by scattering pieces of "bait," such as detonation cords, plastic explosives and ammunition, and then killing Iraqis who pick up the items, according to military court documents.
posted by null terminated
on Sep 24, 2007 -
The killing of Jamie Dean.
"Police in rural Maryland staged a military stakeout and shot a troubled Army vet. As his family plans to sue, they are asking how a soldier being treated for PTSD could be shipped to Iraq."
posted by homunculus
on Sep 4, 2007 -
The numbers are classified, the dollars are classified, but there's no doubt that the number of "Green Badgers
" are catching up to, and sometimes surpassing, that of "Blue Badgers
" in some of the US's most sensitive national security positions. Bob Baer
is talking about it. Others
have been, too. R.J. Hillhouse has been writing a blog for roughly six months now on the phenomenon: The Spy Who Billed Me
posted by Emperor SnooKloze
on Jul 8, 2007 -
Reaping What We Sow? Right now, White House lawyers are working up new rules that will govern what CIA interrogators can do to prisoners in secret. Those rules will set the standard not only for the CIA but also for what kind of treatment captured American soldiers can expect from their captors, now and in future wars. Before the president once again approves a policy of official cruelty, he should reflect on that.Charles C. Krulak was commandant of the Marine Corps from 1995 to 1999. Joseph P. Hoar was commander in chief of U.S. Central Command from 1991 to 1994. (Washington Post)
Some other opinions. (youtube) Thoughtful commentary. More.
posted by spitbull
on May 17, 2007 -
Soldiers may no longer use MySpace to communicate with family.
The Defense Department will begin "worldwide" blocking access, as of today, to YouTube
, Hi5, Pandora
, and Photobucket
on its computers and networks, according to a memo sent Friday by Gen. B.B. Bell, the U.S. Forces Korea commander. Note that most soldiers deployed in war zones don't have access to any network outside of the military network.
posted by dejah420
on May 14, 2007 -
Embrace the Suck.
Intensive military activity creates an incubator for slang. By bringing together people from geographically diverse backgrounds, putting them into stressful circumstances, and teaching them a new language of jargon and acronym
, the armed forces create fertile ground for new idioms - many of which return home in civvies when the conflicts are over. In the Civil War
, World War I
and World War II
, in Korea
and in Viet Nam
, servicepeople created or popularized now-familiar terms like shoddy, hotshot, cooties, tailspin, fleabag, face time, joystick, SNAFU, FUBAR, flaky, gung ho, no sweat, flame-out,
and many, many others
Now, the GWOT
brings us a new generation
. Military columnist Austin Bay
has published an early collection of neologisms from Gulf War II
. On NPR, Bay explains what The Suck is
, how to identify a fobbit
, and why Marines look down on the attitude of Semper I
posted by Miko
on Mar 31, 2007 -
"I thought, 'Why don't we just raid the place?' "
--the newest and only currently viable way to check up on how the billions and billions we're spending on reconstruction in Iraq is being spent--fake raids by the US military, making it seem like the recipients aren't receiving aid from us, and in fact are being targeted by us.
posted by amberglow
on Mar 23, 2007 -
Vet Kills Himself After VA Turns Him Away
Marine veteran Jonathan Schulze survived the war in Iraq but almost two years after he came home, it ended up killing him, reports The Early Show co-anchor Harry Smith.
He had one of the toughest jobs in the war: taming the insurgent hotbed of Ramadi in 2004.
posted by Postroad
on Mar 15, 2007 -
The private war of women soldiers.
"Last year, Col. Janis Karpinski caused a stir by publicly reporting that in 2003, three female soldiers had died of dehydration in Iraq, which can get up to 126 degrees in the summer, because they refused to drink liquids late in the day. They were afraid of being raped by male soldiers if they walked to the latrines after dark."
posted by Sticherbeast
on Mar 8, 2007 -
Confessions of an Army Torturer
"...as an army interrogator, he tortured detainees for information he admits they rarely had. Since leaving Iraq he’s taken this story public, doing battle on national television against the war’s architects for giving him the orders he regrets he obeyed...
posted by Postroad
on Mar 3, 2007 -
Born to War
is a series of paintings of American women killed in Iraq. The combination of the increasing role of women in the American military and the blurring of lines between combat and non-combat roles in Iraq have made this the first war in which female US soldiers have died in direct combat. The focus on a smaller number of women provides a more approachable view of casualties than more general sites like Iraq Body Count
and raises some interesting questions about the role of women in the US military.
posted by scottreynen
on Feb 23, 2007 -
An interesting project
from the latest Vectors Journal. "Legend has it that Paglen, who has been called the Fox Mulder of cultural geography, was personally instrumental in provoking the military to extend the perimeter around Area 51 by several miles in an attempt to thwart one of his counter-surveillance efforts" [via]
posted by tellurian
on Feb 16, 2007 -
The President's call for a troop surge
in Iraq will likely be a headache for military recruiters, who have already had to relax standards
to (barely) meet their quotas. But just how desperate are they for warm bodies? Radar prank called recruiting stations around the country disguised as a veritable Breakfast Club
of misfit would-be soldiers, all dramatically unqualified or unattractive for service in some way. The resulting transcripts are hysterically funny
(the writer poses as a flamboyantly gay man, a mama's boy, a martial arts freak, a junkie, an IBS sufferer and a lobotomy patient). The recruiters turn out not to be quite as sleazy as you might imagine, but the conversations are priceless.
posted by P-Soque
on Jan 30, 2007 -
Twenty-one years ago today
a plane crashed in Gander, Newfoundland. The flight carried American soldiers
heading home for the holidays, returning from a mission in the Sinai
. Called the worst aviation disaster on Canadian soil,
the crash killed the 248 soldiers and 8 crew members aboard
. On December 16th, mere days after the crash, President Ronald Reagan gave a speech
at Ft. Campbell, Kentucky, to comfort the victims' families.
As time passed, however, some of the families demanded answers from the US Government regarding the circumstances of the crash. In 1989, Robin Tallon, member of congress from South Carolina, assisted the families' by bringing the matter before Congress
- and also sending a letter to then-Secretary of Defense Dick Cheney (scroll down page). In 1992, a Time Magazine article
addressed forensic evidence which supported the idea of an on-board explosion prior to impact, as well as the flight's connections to Iran Contra
and the terrorist group Islamic Jihad. This article also discusses the book
written on the crash by Les Filotas, a dissenting member of the air safety board. The question was brought forth again in 1993, with a bill
introduced requesting that a commission be formed to further investigate the circumstances of the crash.
As with any disaster with unanswered questions, conspiracy theories abound
To this day, many of the questions surrounding Flight 1285 remain unanswered
. While the crash may never be fully explained, one certainty remains - for the families whose loved ones never came home for Christmas, the twelfth day of the twelfth month
will never be forgotten
posted by SassHat
on Dec 12, 2006 -
Wierd tanks: Tank design has pretty much come to the point where all tanks are alike. They are mostly 60 ton machines with single turret with a 120-125 mm main gun. A number of different approaches has been tried through history, tough. One is the the heavy multiturreted Soviet T-35
from the 30s. Another take is the Swedish S-tank
from the 60s, which did away with the turret altogether. A bit more conventional, but pretty much a one-nation tailor-made design is the Israeli Merkava
, which is balanced heavily in favour of crew survivability with the engine in front and the ability to carry along a few infantrymen. The strangest of the bunch is the Russian WWI Czar tank
, but just a tad impractical, standing 9 meters tall.
posted by Harald74
on Nov 21, 2006 -