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Welcome Home, Soldier

"Regardless of political stance, no one can deny the joy felt upon seeing your loved ones return home safely -- WelcomeHomeBlog.com is a site celebrating that amazing feeling. Visit daily for heartwarming stories, videos and pictures of members of our courageous armed forces returning home to their families and friends..."
posted by zizzle on Dec 1, 2010 - 5 comments

Alice's Restaurant

This song is called Alice's Restaurant, and it's about Alice, and the restaurant, but Alice's Restaurant is not the name of the restaurant; that's just the name of the song, and that's why I call the song Alice's Restaurant. [more inside]
posted by Miko on Nov 24, 2010 - 164 comments

Thanks for your service, killer.

War veteran barred from college campus for frank words on killing. After publishing essay on addiction to war, Charles Whittington must obtain psychological evaluation before returning to classes
posted by fixedgear on Nov 24, 2010 - 115 comments

An Army of Green

I played with them like most boys, but I had no idea there are formal gaming rules for plastic army men.
posted by Chinese Jet Pilot on Nov 23, 2010 - 43 comments

The Mexican Suitcase

The International Center of Photography is exhibiting photographs online from the Mexican Suitcase, a cache of photographs taken during the Spanish Civil War, hidden, and rediscovered in 2008.
posted by Fiasco da Gama on Nov 23, 2010 - 4 comments

A G.I.'s WWII Memoir

Robert F. Gallagher served in the United States Army's 815th Anti-Aircraft Artillery Battalion (Third Army) in the European Theater during WWII. He has posted his memoir online: "Scratch One Messerschmitt," told from numerous photos he took during the war and the detailed notes he made shortly afterwards. [more inside]
posted by zarq on Nov 23, 2010 - 7 comments

Tanks in Afghanistan

The U.S. military is sending a contingent of heavily armored battle tanks to Afghanistan for the first time in the nine-year war... Although the officer acknowledged that the use of tanks this many years into the war could be seen as a sign of desperation by some Afghans and Americans, he said they will provide the Marines with an important new tool in missions to flush out pockets of insurgent fighters. [more inside]
posted by Joe Beese on Nov 19, 2010 - 92 comments

PanzerBlitz

PanzerBlitz is a tactical-scale board wargame of armoured combat set in the Eastern Front of the Second World War. The game is notable for being the first true board-based tactical-level, commercially available conflict simulation (wargame). It also pioneered concepts such as isomorphic mapboards and open-ended design, in which multiple unit counters were provided from which players could fashion their own free-form combat situations rather than simply replaying pre-structured scenarios. (related)
posted by Joe Beese on Nov 11, 2010 - 35 comments

Lest we forget

"A pious, peaceful man, York had fought his country's enemy only after great deliberation and had to be convinced that war was sometimes necessary."1 On this day let us remember Sergeant York.
1 Celluloid Soldiers: The Warner Bros. Campaign Against Nazism By Michael E. Birdwell.
posted by unliteral on Nov 11, 2010 - 14 comments

Garfield hates the troops

A comic strip has caused a political uproar by making a bold, controversial statement on Veteran's Day, considered by some to be an insult to our nation's fighting men and women. The strip that has spit on the work of our country's bravest veterans is, as you would expect, that anti-American bastion of subversive vitriolic societal commentary, Garfield.
posted by XQUZYPHYR on Nov 11, 2010 - 146 comments

Disunion @ the NYTimes

Disunion One-hundred-and-fifty years ago, Americans went to war with themselves. Disunion revisits and reconsiders America's most perilous period -- using contemporary accounts, diaries, images and historical assessments to follow the Civil War as it unfolded. Updated every Monday.
posted by OmieWise on Nov 2, 2010 - 39 comments

The USS Gerald R. Ford

In 2015, if all goes well, the USS Gerald R. Ford, the most powerful warship ever built, will begin service in the U.S. Navy - retiring the venerable Enterprise (CVN-65). Though displacing the same 100,000 tons as her Nimitz-class counterparts, increased automation will let her operate with hundreds fewer crewmembers. Capable of launching 90 planes, including the F-35C Lightning II, on 220 sorties a day, she will defend herself against anti-ship missiles with the Raytheon RIM-162 ESSM. [more inside]
posted by Joe Beese on Oct 30, 2010 - 138 comments

The Battle of Stalingrad

In the scale of its intensity, its destructiveness and its horror, Stalingrad has no parallel. It engaged the full strength of the two biggest armies in Europe and could fit into no lesser framework than that of a life-and-death conflict which encompasses the earth. - The New York Times, February 4, 1943 [more inside]
posted by Joe Beese on Oct 27, 2010 - 61 comments

Meet the new boss.

"Hundreds of the leaked war logs reflect the fertile imagination of the torturer faced with the entirely helpless victim – bound, gagged, blindfolded and isolated – who is whipped by men in uniforms using wire cables, metal rods, rubber hoses, wooden stakes, TV antennae, plastic water pipes, engine fan belts or chains." [more inside]
posted by notion on Oct 22, 2010 - 168 comments

A Year At War

A Year at War: One Battalion's Wrenching Deployment to Afghanistan: "Some 30,000 American soldiers are taking part in the Afghanistan surge. Here are the stories of the men and women of First Battalion, 87th Infantry of the 10th Mountain Division" out of Fort Drum, NY., based in Kunduz Province, Afghanistan. Over the next year, The New York Times will follow their journey, chronicling the battalion’s part in the surge in northern Afghanistan and the impact of war on individual soldiers and their families back home. (First link is an interactive feature containing images and autoplaying video, and requires flash. Second link is a standard-style article.) [more inside]
posted by zarq on Oct 21, 2010 - 28 comments

Off-Road Kalashnikov

"It’s the vehicular equivalent of the AK-47. It’s ubiquitous to insurgent warfare. And actually, recently, also counterinsurgent warfare. It kicks the hell out of the Humvee." It may suck to drive, but the tough and agile Toyota Hilux is the insurgent's vehicle of choice in Afghanistan. U.S. Special Forces prefer the comparable American-built Toyota Tacoma.
posted by Chinese Jet Pilot on Oct 21, 2010 - 83 comments

NATO: bin Laden in Pakistan

Osama bin Laden and his deputy Ayman al-Zawahiri are believed to be hiding close to each other in houses in northwest Pakistan, but are not together, a senior NATO official said. ... al Qaeda's top leadership is believed to be living in relative comfort, protected by locals and some members of the Pakistani intelligence services... The official would not discuss how the coalition has come to know any of this information, but he has access to some of the most sensitive information in the NATO alliance. [more inside]
posted by Joe Beese on Oct 18, 2010 - 107 comments

An Apartment-Sized Time Capsule

For 70 years the Parisian apartment had been left uninhabited, under lock and key, the rent faithfully paid but no hint of what was inside.
posted by Heliochrome85 on Oct 14, 2010 - 65 comments

End this war Mr. Obama!!!

Last Wednesday, October 6, a panel of speakers from a variety of political positions met antiwar activists at the First Unitarian Universalist Church in San Francisco to discuss how to build a consensus to end the war in Afghanistan. The speakers included Daniel Ellsberg of Pentagon Papers fame, Antiwar.com’s Angela Keaton, Republican congressional candidate John Dennis, labor leader Michael Eisenscher, and radio talk show host Karel. The moderator was Jeff Johnson of PeacePundit.com, and included remarks by Unitarian Church leaders Dolores Perez Priem, Sandra Schwartz, Jeremiah Halliday, and Louis Vitale, and Anthony Gregory of the Independent Institute. (via) Daniel Ellsberg - part I - part II - part III [more inside]
posted by AElfwine Evenstar on Oct 10, 2010 - 12 comments

The bizarre, sad tale of Togo's fake national team

Since the attack on the Togolese national team in Angola (previously), soccer in Togo has descended into a freefall. In a strange turn of events, a fake national team recently represented the country in a tournament in Bahrain. The soccer loving people of Togo were outraged when the truth about the situation came out.
posted by reenum on Oct 8, 2010 - 4 comments

Just because a war is kinda pointless doesn't mean it can't be won, I guess.

Casualties in Afghanistan decreasing?! After a push into Taliban-controlled territory resulted in 103 Coalition casualties in June, casualties have fallen steadily and significantly, to 59 casualties last month -- lower than in September last year. October also is on track for lower casualty levels than in the year prior. With secret talks between Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Taliban intermediaries, reports of significant security gains based on tips from informers, improved ANA training and military capability, and a chaotic, bustling Kabul trying to cope with rapid growth, could the country be on the path to gradual stabilization?
posted by markkraft on Oct 6, 2010 - 43 comments

Landmark of the Resistance

Lebanon has one tourist attraction that's making money, the Hezbollah financed "Landmark of the Resistance", a theme park commemorating multiple wars with Israel.
posted by mikoroshi on Oct 2, 2010 - 38 comments

The Gangster Prince of Liberia

Adam Higginbotham wrote an interesting article in 2007 about Chuckie Taylor's reign of terror in Liberia. (Note: PDF link) [more inside]
posted by reenum on Sep 27, 2010 - 9 comments

Art of War

Soldier-Artists in Vietnam. Flack jackets, pistols, iodine pills, insect lotion, sketch pads wrapped in plastic bags... Jim Pollock was a member of the Vietnam Combat Artist Program and this is his story (click through the links within the links to learn more).
posted by amyms on Sep 25, 2010 - 7 comments

Foyle's War

History and mystery wonderfully blended. Although doubtless well-known to UK Mefites, I was only recently directed to this marvelous and engaging TV series featuring Michael Kitchen as Detective Chief Superintendent Christopher Foyle. It's a refreshing change from American fare, entirely adult, with crisp dialogue and meticulous attention to detail and historic accuracy. Speaking as a Yank weary of plasticity, it's also wonderful to see actors with real faces. The series can be seen on Youtube in pieces that can be viewed fairly seamlessly: Series One: The German Woman, The White Feather, Lesson in Murder, Eagle Day. Series Two: Fifty Ships, Among the Few, War Games, The Funk Hole. Series Three: The French Drop, Enemy Fire, They Fought in the Fields, War of Nerves. Series Four: Invasion, Bad Blood. Series Five: Bleak Midwinter, Casualties of War. Series Six: Plan of Attack, Broken Souls, All Clear. [more inside]
posted by kinnakeet on Sep 19, 2010 - 25 comments

US soldiers "killed Afghan civilians for sport and collected fingers as trophies"

The Guardian reports allegations that a group of US soldiers in Afghanistan killed civilians for sport and collected their fingers as trophies. [more inside]
posted by Zarkonnen on Sep 9, 2010 - 87 comments

The Power of Music

A 90-year-old WWII vet recounts a remarkable experience. (SLYT)
posted by gman on Sep 5, 2010 - 27 comments

A Chaplain and an Atheist Go to War

A Chaplain and an Atheist Go to War
posted by JeffL on Sep 4, 2010 - 76 comments

iPod, iPhone, iDal.

"Every input in agriculture is a war chemical. Every agrichemical is a war chemical." Physicist Vandana Shiva on monoculture, agricultural imperialism, and protests in Delhi conscribed to the hours of 9-5. [more inside]
posted by simulacra on Sep 3, 2010 - 14 comments

Like Punk'd But With Real Bombs

Combat operations in Iraq are over! Except, the AP says "our content should not refer to the end of combat in Iraq, or the end of U.S. military involvement." Meanwhile, in Iraq, a new show has been airing since Ramadan that has been described as "Punk’d, Iraqi-Style, at a Checkpoint." You can watch 14-minutes of the show (in Arabic, no English subtitles), here.
posted by PostIronyIsNotaMyth on Sep 3, 2010 - 28 comments

"Australia would not send forces here; that's impossible."

Death of a Nation – East Timor. [more inside]
posted by cthuljew on Aug 28, 2010 - 12 comments

Jackanory time

Web of stories - "There are few things more interesting or more pleasurable than to watch someone tell a good story. And one story always leads to another."
posted by unliteral on Aug 24, 2010 - 5 comments

Rape as a tool of war in eastern DR Congo

Rape used as a tool of war: 200 women gang-raped near Congo base U.N. says. UN Chief outraged, FWIW. All links to news articles, but not for the weak of stomach.
posted by allkindsoftime on Aug 24, 2010 - 54 comments

Omar Khadr

The Memory Hole: The real tragedy of the Omar Khadr trial.
posted by homunculus on Aug 13, 2010 - 35 comments

Lint In My Pocket - American Civil War poetry

S Thomas Summers teaches writing and literature, and writes poetry about the American Civil War. Some of my favorites. Hat tip: The Atlantic.
posted by Joe in Australia on Aug 12, 2010 - 1 comment

"He liked a cigarette, he liked a bottle of beer - he drank a bottle of beer like any man "

World War II was a time that called for many things from many different people. However, one Polish soldier stepped above and beyond the call of his nature. He carried ammunition, he helped his squad members get better at wrestling, and he drank and smoked with the rest of them - Wojtek, the soldier bear. [more inside]
posted by lizarrd on Aug 12, 2010 - 48 comments

Blogging The War, Seventy Years Later

Martin Cherett is blogging the Second World War, daily, seventy years on.
posted by Fiasco da Gama on Aug 5, 2010 - 23 comments

Trying to "out-terrorize the terrorists"

Soldiers involved in the "Collateral Murder" video have come forward to tell their story. [more inside]
posted by jjoye on Aug 3, 2010 - 30 comments

One of the more persistent economic fallacies of our day.

The Broken Window Fallacy. [SLYT] [more inside]
posted by tybeet on Jul 31, 2010 - 44 comments

Classified war docs published

The New York Times, The Guardian, and Der Spiegel have been given access to approximately 92,000 classified Afghanistan war documents provided to WikiLeaks.
posted by lackutrol on Jul 25, 2010 - 186 comments

The Future of Border Defense: Robot Sentries

The Korean DMZ (pdf) / PLZ has been a hot tourist attraction for years, featuring must-see sites like the Third Infiltration Tunnel, Dora Observatory, the Dora Mountain Train Station, the Freedom Bridge and the Imjingak Tourist Site, complete with its statue of Harry Truman. And now, South Korea's border with North Korea -- the most heavily militarized border on Earth, -- will be patrolled by killer robots. [more inside]
posted by zarq on Jul 15, 2010 - 50 comments

So can we finally drop all those cheap jokes about Italian soldiers?

He was considered a shoo in for an equestrian medal in in the ’36 Olympics but went to war instead. He led the last cavalry charge against artillery and tanks of the British army. Known as Commandante Diavolo, he waged guerrilla warfare in Eritrea alongside his beautiful and heavily armed lover Khadija, daughter of an Ethiopian Muslim chieftain. He served as a diplomat for thirty years and more than once saved lives during military coups. He retired to Ireland (for the horses, of course) where he rode and hunted fox well into his nineties. Please pause for a moment for the passing of Amedeo Guillat, the most decorated soldier of the Italian army. [more inside]
posted by IndigoJones on Jul 10, 2010 - 27 comments

Murders in Mexico

Statistical Analysis and Visualization of the Drug War in Mexico
posted by daksya on Jul 7, 2010 - 22 comments

Michael Steele finished eating own feet, now moving up to legs and torso

Was Obama's decision to invade Afghanistan a mistake? Michael Steele, chair of the RNC seems to think so. Republicans and Democrats alike are irked and confused by his comments.
posted by justkevin on Jul 3, 2010 - 128 comments

History repeats

The Karzai government is crumbling before our eyes, and if we delude ourselves that this is not the case, we could yet face a replay of 1842. Why the Taliban is winning in Afghanistan - William Dalrymple. (1)
A long in- depth article with historical overtones, which leads to the question: Why Are We in Afghanistan? (2006);(2008); (2010)
posted by adamvasco on Jun 29, 2010 - 86 comments

All you need is love

Mass wedding for former Tamil fighters Fifty-three couples of former Tamil Tiger rebels were married Sunday ... at a rehabilitation camp near the northern town of Vavuniya. [more inside]
posted by kliuless on Jun 13, 2010 - 7 comments

Iraq and Afghanistan War Casualties

CNN.com's 'Home and Away' initiative honors the lives of U.S. and coalition troops who have died in Iraq and Afghanistan. The extensive data visualization project tells the story of where and how the lives of these troops began and ended. The project is a sobering look at the human cost of two wars in the Middle East, and as such is restrained with a sober palette of blacks, whites and greys. [via] [more inside]
posted by netbros on Jun 11, 2010 - 32 comments

Star forts from above

Star forts from above (Google Maps links): Alba Iulia, Arad Fortress, Almeida, Bourtrange, Coevorden, Estremoz, Goryōkaku, Naarden, Neuf Brisach, Nicosia, Palmanova, Retranchement, Terezín, Willemstad. More.
posted by nthdegx on Jun 8, 2010 - 47 comments

"A Minute With Venus... A Year With Mercury!"

"During World War I, the [US] Army lost 7 million person-days and discharged more than 10,000 men because they were ailing from STDs. Once Penicillin kicked in in the mid-1940s, such infections were treatable. But as a matter of national security, the military started distributing condoms and aggressively marketing prophylactics to the troops in the early 20th century." [more inside]
posted by zarq on Jun 1, 2010 - 45 comments

These bastards let your brother die

Robert Heinlein really, really didn't like early Science Fiction fandom.
posted by Artw on May 28, 2010 - 129 comments

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