My Take on Iraq War 20 Year Anniversary

Editor’s Note: it is my fault this post was delayed, the Chief did his part.

Today, 3/20/2023 is a day of reflection, as it marks the 20-year anniversary of the US invading Iraq.  When looking back, I was a high school sophomore at the time.  Our nation had gotten attacked on 9/11, our mission was to find those in charge, and eliminate them from earth.  In hindsight, what happened on this date set the US back as a world superpower.

US Bases in Iraq following invasion

I was all for the invasion, you do not dare invade the US and live to tell the tale.  We as a people, myself included, were gassed up by George W Bush, Dick Cheney, and Donald Rumsfeld saying we had intelligence on who did this.  First it was radical Muslims, then jihadists, etc.  John Bolton was another one of the cheerleaders for invading Iraq.   But the worst was Colin Powell, yep, the “decorated” general who aspired to be President.  He went in front of United Nations and gave a speech citing an intelligence document that Iraq had nuclear weapons and was hiding them.  We had to move now.

Move we did.  Even though Britain and Germany questioned the validity of this document, it didn’t matter.  We invoked the article of NATO and had the backing of the largest alliance with us.  We invaded Iraq.  I was fully in support, at least for a while.

U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell delivers his address to the UN Security Council February 5, 2003 in New York City.

Then it turned out there were no weapons.  None.  Powell lied.  Even though we rolled through Iraq and killed Saddam Hussein the worst was yet to come.  Bush termed out of office and new President Barack Obama was sworn in, Colin Powell ditched the GOP for the Dems and basically kept the same job in the White House.  Some liars get promoted or ignored, I still remember the democrats saying Bush, Cheney, and Rumsfeld were war criminals, somehow Powell escaped that title.  Just keep in mind the vote to go to war was 268-161 or something like that.  Those in favor included John Kerry, Joe Biden, and Hillary Clinton mind you.

Iraq quickly became a quagmire, who would have thought right?  We lost over 5,000 servicemen, and likely thousands of civilian contractors.  Untold are the stories of our young people who came back stateside scarred for life from what they saw.  Terrorists and those with nothing to lose do not fight fair.  Roadside bombs, IED’s, and knife attacks leave a lasting horror story. 

We did not free the Iraqi people, we just put different groups in charge of different zones.  In essence it is a lawless nation now.  Any mission we claim to have won, was pointless.  Sure, we rid the world of a horrible man (that we kept in power for many years before turning on him), but is the situation any better?  Bottom line is many in Iraq hate the US and all it stands for.  We showed our collective rear end to the world.  We feel we can just bomb any nation and rebuild it to look like ours.  It will never work in this part of the globe.  How many lives need to be lost and dollars squandered just to win a pyrrhic victory?

This reminds me so much of the situation of Russia invading Ukraine, even if Russia ultimately succeeds, Ukraine does not want to be occupied by Russia so violence and fighting will always be a thing.  Never underestimate a country’s people who do not want to be under another country’s rule.  It is for that reason I oppose our “helping” of Ukraine. 

The Chief

Bet You Never Heard About the Terror Attack in California last Month

No Really. It just wasn’t covered by the big city media because it happened in the “fly-over” part of California. At least three California government facilities received multiple letters postmarked from a country in the former Soviet Union containing white powder. At least one tested positive for Ricin.

I did an Internet search and found little on the attack. Just a few scattered echoes of the same press release reproduced in news outlets on both sides of the Oregon/California border. This is a typical report.

On July 23rd envelopes arrived at Pelican Bay State Prison that, after a screening process, were found to contain a suspicious substance.
The area where the envelopes were opened was quarantined and “a coordinated investigation with local, state and federal law enforcement as well as public health officials was initiated.”

The substance was sent to a lab and was determined to be ricin.

Three people who came into contact with the envelopes were taken to the hospital for medical evaluation and then later released.

Envelopes containing Ricin arrive at Pelican Bay State Prison

Oh, Pelican Bay State Prison in on the north coast of California off highway 101 near Crescent City. Centinela State Prison is just north of the Mexican border in the very southern part of California. I saw no media reports from any southern California media outlets on this incident.

However, the incident did make it into the Wikipedia article on Ricin which can be found here.

Concerning Ricin

Ricinus communis, is a highly potent toxin. A dose of purified ricin powder the size of a few grains of table salt can kill an adult human. The median lethal dose (LD50) of ricin is around 22 micrograms per kilogram of body weight if the exposure is from injection or inhalation (2 milligrams for an average adult).

However, there is more.

In addition to previously published reports, at least one other facility near Ione, California (50 miles from Sacramento) also received suspicious letters with white powder. The letters have been addressed to both prison staff and particular inmates at the prisons. The Department of Corrections has implemented statewide training and special precautions to people interacting with the mail.

Terror attacks in rural places don’t matter. Because this happened in “flyover country” you never heard about it until now.

School Shootings: What Will It Take?

Following the recent school shooting in Florida, many folks are asking, “what it will take to end such senseless violence?” I wish to address this question but not in the way that the George Soros types are expecting.

• First, the shooter was not a current student.
• Second, all of the non-violent, touchy-feely stuff like “See something, say something” was followed.
Months Before Massacre, Cops Told of Cruz Threats With Weapon
• Third, did you know there was an officer on the campus when the shooting started and he did nothing but hide until it was over?

Sheriff Scott Israel during a press conference Thursday said video showed Peterson arriving at the west side of the building where the shooting took place. Peterson, Israel said, took up a position but “never went in.”

Peterson was armed and in uniform during the shooting, but never entered the building despite “clearly” knowing a shooting was happening, Israel said.

The sheriff said he believes Peterson remained outside of the building for four minutes, while the shooting in total lasted six minutes. Israel said the officer never fired his weapon.

Deputy assigned to Florida school ‘never went in’ during shooting, sheriff says

Unless Tom Cruz really wants to setup the Pre-crime Unit from his movie Minority Report, nothing of substance could have been to the gunman prior to walking on the campus with his guns. (And no, you can’t lock people up because you think they’re crazy, the U.S. Supreme Court killed that idea in the 1980’s. What do you think caused the epidemic of homeless people?)

Sorry but Pre-Crime Unit is Science Fiction

What should have happened is that the cop on campus or some teacher “packin’ heat” should have ended this thing before it ever got started. If the coach that died shielding students had been able to use deadly force, then the tragedy could have been avoided entirely. But Liberals would rather that we all were defenseless sheep rather than potential deterrents to crime.

Calling 911 Won’t Save You
If you think that calling 911 during an active shooter event will save you then you are a fool. Never has a call to 911 prevented an active shooter situation. The police take too long to arrive to be of any good and will wait outside until they know they have superior numbers before entering the building. This time is measured in hours not minutes.  Here are a few random examples

Orlando Florida School Shooting: June 2016
Delay in Orlando police response to massacre examined

Las Vegas Shooting: October 2017
Don’t believe me, look at the Las Vegas shooting. Cops waited an hour after the last shot was fired before entering the suspect’s hotel room.
Here’s a timeline of the Las Vegas shooting — with the crucial detail police left out last time

Parkland Florida: February 2018
In this instance, the shooter left the school with a group of students and before law enforcement was ready to enter the building.

Authorities said the alleged gunman, Nikolas Cruz, stopped at a WalMart, a Subway restaurant and a McDonald’s immediately after carrying out the second-deadliest mass shooting at a public school in US history.

“The suspect crossed fields and ran west along with others who were fleeing and tried to mix in with the group that were running away, fearing for their lives,” Broward Country Sheriff Scott Israel told reporters.
Florida Shooting Suspect Visited McDonald’s, Subway After Killing: Police

No news story directly addresses when police entered the school but they were setting up a command post for an active shooter situation about an hour after said shooter arrived on campus via Uber and a half hour after he had fled the campus.
Florida school shooting timeline


Schools aren’t the Only Soft Targets
I happen to work for the State of California. Where I work is supposed to be a “gun free zone”. Even if I had a conceal carry permit, I still wouldn’t be allowed to bring a firearm to work. If I did, I could be prosecuted by the State. While he’s really busy filing lawsuits against President Trump and the United States government, Xavier Becerra would gladly take time out of his schedule to bury me in a deep hole for daring to defend myself and coworkers against bad guys.

Nevertheless, we have mandatory training for active shooter situations. We are supposed to run, hide, or fight back; in that order. Let’s examine these instructions.

Option 1 Run
We are supposed to outrun a bullet or at least the guy with the gun; after all we are trained to do that. Yeah, right! If this is such a great idea then answer me this, “So how many state workers have you seen in the Olympics?” None. Most State workers feel fortunate if they can run to the breakroom fast enough to catch a donut because someone is celebrating their promotion.

Option 2 Hide
I work on the second floor of a building with two stairwells as access points. If two guys each took a set of stairs or disabled the back door before acting then everyone here would be trapped in the building. We have a few conference rooms built of metal studs and sheetrock in an otherwise open floor plan. A bullet would easily travel the whole distance across the room until it strikes a solid object which would likely be a person. Only if the gunman was interested in a quick hit and run would you have hope of surviving.

Option 3 Fight Back
Picture this, a bad guy brandishing his semi-automatic loaded with a clip of hollow point bullets versus me throwing my tape dispenser and stapler while yelling loudly to intimidate a guy with murder in his heart. That outcome seems rather stacked against me seeing another sunrise.

The State wants me to be happy that I’m a target. After all they are giving me a paycheck in exchange for workplace free of violence.

But if this is such a great policy why do they get metal detectors, armed California Highway Patrol guards, and armed drivers who are sworn officers?

Elected Officials have guns nearby for protection but not us

Beslan has been called Russia’s 9/11. Over 330 people died in a school siege that you’ve probably never heard of. Here’s the short version. On the first day of school, over two dozen terrorists descended on an elementary school in a town of 35 thousand people. They took over 1,100 people hostage. They herded them all into the school gymnasium. They placed explosives on all the doors, confiscated all cell phones, and then executed the men and boys that they felt might have the physical ability to fight back. Three days later the Russian Army raided the school.

A documentary called Beslan: Three days in September is well worth viewing. I saw this years ago on Netflix but it is no longer available from them. In fact, I can’t find it for sale anywhere; however, it is available via streaming from CBS News. It is on their page for the news program, 48 Hours.

Streaming Beslan: Three days in September
Click here to Stream Video

Further reading
Wikipedia Article Beslan school Shooting

IMDB: Beslan: Three days in September

I think it will take a similar incident in our country to make meaningful changes in our public debate. As always the debate is do we begin to defend ourselves or cede freedom to the central government in exchange for the illusion of safety?

Las Vegas Shooter

I have waited a while to mention this topic in hopes that facts would make for a better discussion but the number of Facts-capital “F” are frankly very few.

We know the following:
• The attack was premeditated
• The guy modified legally purchased weapons
• He had a laptop, a hammer, and many guns
• A chart for shooting that calculated for gravity acting on a bullet over distance was in the room
• It took 72 minutes from the first shots until the police breached the door where they found the man already dead of an apparently self-inflicted gunshot.

One last fact, the man was a perfectly rational Liberal. Why?
• He didn’t attend church
• Was not a militia member
• Was not a Trump supporter
• Was not a Republican

If any of the above was true, we would still be hearing about it.

Oh, he was a millionaire and registered to vote Democrat in Florida.

The autopsy showed that he had a “normal” brain.

Liberals—who deny the existence of evil—are mystified how to explain away this whole incident because it doesn’t fit their way of looking at the world. However, not allowing a crisis to go to waste, they began demanding that their god (government) take better care of them by demanding more stringent laws on law abiding citizens.

A friend’s daughter was at the concert that night as were some others that I am aware of. It is tragic but sadly more things like this will happen. Evil flourishes in a world that turns its back on God. Welcome to another judgment day.

Ebola is the Zombie Apocalypse

OK; actually, Ebola is The Strain meets the Zombie Apocalypse.

The Strain, by Guillermo del Toro and Chuck Hogan, tells the story of an employee from the Center for Disease Control, fighting against all odds to stop a plague that nobody believes can happen. One of his chief obstacles in preventing the spread of the disease is the director of the CDC—who is personally benefitting from the misery of others—and thus won’t do his job. The director’s political power is more important than doing the right thing.

Lest you think this type of ‘politics over public health’ only happens in the 2009 novel, here is Obama’s CDC Director,

Dr. Tom Frieden, director of the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), said during a telephone press briefing Wednesday that you cannot get Ebola by sitting next to someone on a bus, but that infected or exposed persons should not ride public transportation because they could transmit the disease to someone else.

My nephew works in the hospital in Dallas which seems to be ground zero for this disease in the United States. I am not happy with what is going on.

Matt Drudge sums it up well on his website

The second nurse to get Ebola called CDC several times to be sure it was OK to fly on commercial airliner

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said that Vinson called the agency several times before flying, saying that she had a fever with a temperature of 99.5 degrees. But because her fever wasn’t 100.4 degrees or higher, she didn’t officially fall into the group of “high risk” and was allowed to fly.

Officials in the U.S. have been trying to calm fears over the Ebola crisis, but time and again events have overtaken their assurances.

In August, before the first U.S. infection, CDC Director Dr. Tom Frieden said: “We’re confident that we have the facilities here to isolate patients, not only at the highly advanced ones like the one at Emory, but really at virtually every major hospital in the U.S.”

What training? Nurses had none

The statement, which was played in its entirety on CNN on Wednesday morning, also reports that Ebola training at the hospital was “optional,” “nurses have been left to train each other,” and that nurses who interacted with Duncan simply continued treating other patients.

According to the statement, “there was no advanced preparedness on what to do with the patient. There was no protocol, there was no system. The nurses were asked to call the Infectious Disease Department. The Infectious Disease Department did not have clear policies to provide either.”
The union added that “advanced preparation that had been done by the hospital primarily consisted of e-mailing us about one optional lecture or seminar on Ebola.  There was no mandate for nurses to attend training or what nurses had to do in the event of arrival of a patient with Ebola-like symptoms.”  And “there was no hands-on training on the use of personal protective equipment for Ebola, no training on the symptoms to look for, no training on what questions to ask.”

Yeah, nurses treated the Ebola patient with no protective gear and then treated other patients. Oh, don’t forget that the hospital discharged the guy with Ebola and he returned a few days later when he was re-admitted and later died.

Memo to healthcare workings, treat this as a radiological accident (or dirty bomb attack) and your protective gear will be more in line with what you need to use.

Ok so what happens when ISIS decides to purposely shoot-up some people with this disease and dispatch them to Western countries to hang-out in shopping malls? The economic panic would be about the same as the Zombie Apocalypse. Economic chaos, government collapses, and general lawlessness. It may not result in the world of Mad Max but it could get quite far in that direction.

The end result is less personal freedom and more government control.

Oh, we are still issuing 100 Visas a day to people in the hardest hit African countries so they can travel to the United States. On the plus side, at least Aids is not the only disease with civil rights now.

Isis 1970’s v 2014

When I was a kid, this was the face of Isis.


Today, this is the face of ISIS: Jahadi John

Who in this country thinks a few drone strikes will stop these guys?

Isn’t he wearing the same outfit that they want all women to wear?

How will Obama screw up this threat to civilization?

Missing 777 Mystery

While it sounds like something from a Tom Clancy novel, Malaysia Airlines flight 370, a fully loaded Boeing 777 has been missing for about a week.
It is clear by now that it left the designated flight path.
No ransom claims have been issued.
No debris has been found.
No black boxes or transponders have broadcasted.

So what happened?

I think the passengers and crew are likely dead. But what of the aircraft itself? Is someone weaponizing it? I think the proper identification of the hijackers is crucial to identifying likely targets. What happens next could make 9/11 look like a picnic.

Is my idea a conspiracy or just a caution? I think we will know soon.

US Out of Iraq

This week, Barry Obama was claiming mission accomplished. From his perspective, we are out of that unpopular war in Iraq.

Since when is unilateral surrender and retreat considered victory?

Jerry Ford made a similar claim when I was in elementary school. Millions died or were enslaved as a result this retreat of America military power. I fear Obama is following the same path. Only this time, the combatants have access to thermonuclear weapons.

Barry’s Mission Accomplished is really Mission Aborted.

Remember 9-11

This photo is from a make-shift memorial created after the terror attacks on September 11, 2001 near Dunsmuir, CA.

This email was circulated in the wake of the 9-11 attacks.

What a difference a Day makes….

On Monday we emailed jokes.
On Tuesday we did not.

On Monday we thought that we were secure.
On Tuesday we learned better.

On Monday we were talking about heroes as being athletes .
On Tuesday we relearned who our heroes are.

On Monday we were irritated that our rebate checks had not arrived.
On Tuesday we gave money away to people we had never met.

On Monday there were people fighting against praying in schools.
On Tuesday you would have been hard pressed to find a school where someone was not praying.

On Monday people argued with their kids about picking up their room.
On Tuesday the same people could not get home fast enough to hug their kids.

On Monday people were upset that they had to wait 6 minutes in a fast food drive through line.
On Tuesday people didn’t care about waiting up to 6 hours to give blood for the dying.

On Monday we waved our flags signifying our cultural diversity.
On Tuesday we waved only the American flag.

On Monday there were people trying to separate each other by race, sex, color and creed.
On Tuesday they were all holding hands.

On Monday we men or women, black or white, old or young, rich or poor, gay or straight, Christian or non-Christian.
On Tuesday we were Americans.

On Monday politicians argued about budget surpluses.
On Tuesday grief stricken they sang “God Bless America.”

On Monday the President was going to Florida to read to children.
On Tuesday he returned to Washington to protect our children.

On Monday we had families.
On Tuesday we had orphans.

On Monday people went to work as usual.
On Tuesday they died.

On Monday people were fighting the 10 commandments on government property.
On Tuesday the same people all said ‘God help us all’ while thinking ‘Thou shall not kill’.

It is sadly ironic how it takes horrific events to place things into perspective, but it has. The lessons learned this week, the things we have taken for granted, the things that have been forgotten or overlooked, hopefully will never be forgotten again.

24th Century Terrorist Group Killed Osama bin Laden?

According to German television, Osama bin Laden was taken out by a 24th Century terrorist group called the Marquis. This amazing story was first carried by and then reported by CNET (a wholly owned subsidiary of CBS news). German TV reported that bin Laden was killed by Special Forces from an elite military group with this logo.

TrekMovie carried the following analysis of the story. (Mick Locher is the reporter on German channel N24.)

Locher didn’t seem to notice (or care) that the skull in question was from a Klingon and included a bolted-on eyepatch. He and N24 also appear undeterred by the emblem’s inclusion of a phaser, 3 Klingon bat’leth swords and the word “Maquis.” The original Maquis were a French resistance guerrilla group who (ironically) fought against German occupation in World War II. That group inspired the name for the Maquis seen in Star Trek: The Next Generation and Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, who fought against Cardassia in former Federation colonies.

I have no reason to believe that anyone at N24 was waterboarded for this unfortunate Google search. However, one can only imagine that the real Navy SEALs might just chuckle if they heard that they were all, in fact, extra-terrestrial beings. And, um, terrorists.