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Showing posts from February, 2008

On This Date

In 1945, US Marines raised the Flag on Mount Suribachi, Iwo Jima.

Twice, actually.

The first flag was raised about 4 hours before the second, more famous, flag-raising.Marine Corps photographer Sergeant Lou Lowery captured this first flag-raising on film just as the enemy hurled a grenade in his direction.

Dodging the grenade, Lowery hurled his body over the edge of the crater and tumbled 50 feet. His camera lens was shattered, but he and his film were safe.

The 1st Flag-Raisers:
1st Lt Harold Schrier, Sgt Ernest Thomas, Sgt Hank Hansen, PFC Louis Charlo, PFC James Michaels, Raymond Jacobs, and Cpl Charles W. Lindberg (the last surviving member of all 12 men. Update: Cpl Lindberg died June 24, 2007)

Both flags are seen in this photo.

The original flag (foreground) is being taken down as the second flag is raised.

The 2nd Flag-raising, photographed by Joe Rosenthal (the famous picture) was carried out by:
Ira Hayes, Franklin Sousley, Michael Strank, John Bradley, Rene Gagnon, Harlon Block


Not Forgotten: Col William R Higgins

February 17, 2008 will be 20 years since Colonel William R. Higgins last breathed free.Prisoner of War or Hostage?

"February 17, 1988, USMC Lt Colonel William "Rich' Higgins, Commander of UN Group Lebanon, peace-keepers, was captured by Hezbollah extremists.

He was not considered to be a Prisoner of War.A year and a half after being taken, images of Col. Higgins' hanged body were seen on television. During those 18 months of captivity, Col. Higgins was 'interrogated' and tortured.

He was still not considered to be a Prisoner of War.Two years later, December 1991, Col. Higgins' remains were dumped on a Beirut Street. Even after burial at the National Veteran's Cemetery at Quantico, Col. Higgins was not considered to have been a Prisoner of War."

Because Colonel Higgins' country always considered him a "hostage" and never a "prisoner of war," there were never any demands of international rules of treatment, no Red …

Justice At Last

Imad Mughniyeh, the deputy head of Hezbollah is dead, killed by a car bomb.

May Imad Mughniyeh's victims rest in peace at last:

63 people, including 17 Americans killed in the US Embassy car bombing, Beirut, 1983;

241 US servicemen, including 220 Marines, killed in their barracks by a truck bomb, Beirut 1983;

58 French Army paratroopers killed in a simultaneous bombing;

24 people killed outside the US Embassy annex, Beirut, 1984;

US CIA Station Chief William Buckley, abducted tortured and murdered, Lebanon, 1985;

US Navy diver Robert Stethem,
murdered aboard hijacked TWA flight #847, 1985;

USMC Col William "Rich" Higgins,
abducted, tortured and murdered in Lebanon, 1988;

29 people killed in the bombing of the ISraeli embassy in Buenos Aires, 1992;

85 people killed in the bombing of a Jewsih community center in Buenos Aires, 1994;

19 US servicemen killed in the Khobar Towers bombing, Saudi Arabia, 1996

UPDATE: Battleground Berkeley II

It's True.
Money does talk.
Berkeley Backs Off on Banning Marines
As six Republican senators devised a plan to yank $2.3 million in federal funding for Berkeley programs (the Semper Fi Act of 2008), the mayor of the famously liberal city apologized Wednesday for his hard stance against a Marine recruiting center.

... At their Tuesday council meeting, leaders will discuss scrapping a letter that might be perceived as targeting the center or the Marines.The letter said that the recruiting center was not welcome on Shattuck Avenue and that the Marines were uninvited and unwelcome intruders.

So, before the $2 million was in jeopardy, it was appropriate to call the US Marines 'intruders'?

... Bates said the city didn't mean to offend anyone in the armed forces and the focus should have been on the war not the troops.

"There's really no correlation between federal funds for schools, water ferries and police communications systems and the council's actions, for God…

UPDATE: Battleground Berkeley

There is at least one good man left in Washington.

US Senator Jim DeMint, R-SC, says the City of Berkeley no longer deserves federal money.
DeMint was angry after the Berkeley City Council voted to tell the U.S. Marine Corps to remove its recruiting station from the city's downtown. "This is a slap in the face to all brave service men and women and their families. The First Amendment gives the City of Berkeley the right to be idiotic, but from now on they should do it with their own money." "If the city can’t show respect for the Marines that have fought, bled and died for their freedom, Berkeley should not be receiving special taxpayer-funded handouts." The latest from Senator DeMint's website:

Berkeley, California is probably a very nice place to live, but the recent action of their City Council has consequences. To spit in the eyes of the United States Marine Corps will not stand. We shouldn’t allow cities to play silly games at our troops’ expense — during a …

Happy Birthday, USO!

The United Services Organization - a private, nonprofit organization whose mission is to support the troops by providing morale, welfare and recreation-type services to our men and women in uniform -is 67 years young today.

Thank you, to the volunteers, donors, and entertainers
who support the USO
and our men and women in uniform!