Saturday, March 21, 2009

An Anniversary Approaches . . .

Oscar Wilde said,
Most modern calendars mar the sweet simplicity of our lives by reminding us that each day that passes is the anniversary of some perfectly uninteresting event.
All Americans should find the event we commemorate on Saturday to be of the greatest possible interest and of the utmost critical importance to the future of our country.

Because it is.

(Click to enlarge.)
This is a national demonstration coming to our own communities, to which you are invited to bring your old shoes for decorating packaging and mailing.

In Sozadee:
In Tokyo:In St. Paul


  1. The actual 6th year anniversary of the Iraq War is March 19th but most of the events nationwide are being held on Saturday, March 21st. The wars and occupations in Iraq and Afghanistan greatly exceed the length of time spent fighting WWII and are still are far from being over. One of our banners is pointed but true: "IRAQNAM--Stay the Curse".

  2. Good post Coleen!

    Though it pains me to say this, we are no longer a world class power who can presume to order a Pax-Americana like Neo-Cons presumed. After eight years of Bush and Cheney our once-great USA is now merely a 'first-among-equals nation. We can no longer presume to fight wars on two fronts. Like all other countries, we have to make guns vs. butter decisions. Get used to it, my fellow Americans.

  3. The fight in Iraq destroyed the Soviet Union's economy and made Osama Bin Laden a legend. The fight in Iraq broke the U.S. economy. By increasing the numbers of soldiers to fight Afghanistan, President Obama is putting the U.S. in danger of worsening our economy, not to mention the death of our brave soldiers. We've missed our chance there. We should bring the soldiers home.

  4. We are still a world power Vigil. Just ask all of those collapsing global economic markets. Secondly, while I despise war there are times when we need to take care of our interests.

    Because of Bush and his neo cons Afghanistan was left to languish in favor of Iraq and it will soon be back in the hands of al Qaeda and the Taliban if we let that happen. We need to put together an international coalition and prevent that from happening. If we do not we will pay a high price indeed.

    Keep in mind this is written by someone who has seen war and I guarantee I hate it but I also understand that sometimes it is necessary for one to defend one's self. This is one of those times. Unlike Iraq, Afghanistan in the hands of terrorists poses a real threat to this nation and its people.

  5. There are no degrees of separation between me and MacDaddy, especially when he says of Afghanistan,

    "We've missed our chance there. We should bring the soldiers home."

    That nails the case closed in my book.

  6. To MadMike, whose national service I respect, I say the best response is to quote one of Coleen's Banners:


    As many Americans now realize, the USA is poised on the precipice of relearning what we were taught (eventually) in Vietnam, relearning what the Soviets were taught (eventually) in Afghanistan before us, and relearning eventually by pursuing our own Operation Enduring Freedom again in Afghanistan. And BTW, we have a slim fraction of the number of boots the commies had on the turf and a multiple (many times over) of their logistical problems when they failed.

    Mike and other intellectually honest ConservaDems inspire me. I want to live long enough for them to come to these pages and say,

    Yes, Vigil, you were right, I was wrong. We should have bailed from both occupations in Obama's first year.

    They will come and say that next year, two years from now, on the 10th anniversary of America's unprovoked aggression which we commemorate on Saturday. But they will admit it was a costly decision not to staunch the bleeding of our troops and the leaking of our treasury into the twin toilets of BushenCheney's imperial fantasy.

    If necessary, I will 'get religion' if that's what I have to do to live long enough to hear their confession.

  7. Great response Vigil, but as I have said before and will say now, much to everyone's chagrin no doubt:

    There is absolutely no reasonable comparison to Vietnam and Iraq. The two wars are as different as day and night both operationally and ideologically. The Vietnam conflict was fought for 11 years against France between 1946-1957 and 18 years against the U.S. between 1957-1975. Exact dates are sketchy.

    Finally the Vietnam war was never a quiet war. Men and women, soldiers and civilians, were being killed every day. Over 58K American serviceman and women lost their lives.

    As to the Afghanistan conflict I am quite confident that we have learned from its history with the U.S.S.R. how not to fight in this theater of operations.

    Sorry Vigil but I don't think you will be hearing my confession anytime soon, although I did finally cave on the occupation question. This is an entirely different conflict and it is being fought for much different reasons.

  8. Any peace that may come in Afghanistan is likely to be a temporary one (as the one in Iraq is likely to be, too). And it'll probably only come via US making some dastardly deals with some dastardly devils (never mind the fact that most of Al Qaeda is presently in northwest Pakistan). 17,000 more troops into the middle of that grinder? Not exactly the way to go, in my opinion.

  9. I am so pleased to see Coleen is keeping up the good fight (even though she and I do not always agree).

    Way too many people have been so distracted by the economic crisis to properly notice Barack Obama's amazing decision to keep 50,000 troops in Iraq.

    While Saturday's protests might be large (probably not), they would be GIGANTIC if a President McCain had proposed an indefiate stationing of 50,000 troops in Iraq!!!

    If something is wrong, it shouldn't matter who the President is, Obama or McCain. And protest is still one of the HIGHEST forms of PATRIOTISM!!

  10. There were a lot of people who noticed Obama's decision to keep troops in Iraq Wizard. He did just as he said he would do during his campaign. The Democratic congress squeaked a little bit but then thought better of it. Taking on a president whose approval ratings reached almost 75% at times would have been foolish. I am confident he has good and sound military advice unlike his predecessor who relied on Karl Rove, Rumsfeld and the devil himself, Dick Cheney.

  11. Madmike: You say the war in Afghanistan is different and there is no comparison. Well, like the Vietnam war, we went to a distant land, tried to deal with a people whose culture and language we do know and destroy their main crop (poppy) in the process.

    Like Vietnam, we don't know well the terrain. For Vietnam it was the jungle. For Afghanistan, it's the rugged hills, mountains and caves. Ben Laden became a legend for killing Russians soldiers who, like Americans, weren't equipped to deal with the terrain.

    But the main thing is that they don't even want us there. They don't want our hearts and minds; they just want to sell us and Europe heroin.

    I don't think we've learned the lesson of Vietnam at all. And that includes the Obama administration.

  12. A good statement Daddy. And I'm sure you agree with me that the perilous logistical challenges faced by the USA and NATO in Talibinistan are worse than those we had in Vietnam and the Russians had in Afghanistan - by a quantum jump. This is indeed a nowheres war. I'm confident that if Obama didn't have his hands full fixing Bush's economy, he would have pulled the off switch on this clusterfook.

  13. Vigilante: I agree. In a practical sense, what happens is that American soldiers march up a steep, winding road that goes high into the mountains. The Taliban can see them coming all the way. One or two things happen. Either they step on bombs and get blown up or they get picked off one by one. The U.S. can send planes to spot them, but it doesn't work. They're used to hiding from planes.

    By the way, Obama is trying to get other European countries, especially Britain, to provide this coalition to fight the Taliban, but so far, these countries aren't interested. If we can't remember how they kicked the Soviet Union's ass, or draw lessons from Vietnam, they can.

  14. Because of Bush and his neo cons Afghanistan was left to languish in favor of Iraq and it will soon be back in the hands of al Qaeda and the Taliban if we let that happen.

    We ALREADY let it happen. The Taliban is the de facto government in power just to the east in the frontier provinces of Pakistan. We can't win it; about the best we can do is isolate them, and slow them down by whatever means we have available.

    Russia could be a huge help to us in that quest now; they have just as many reasons to blunt the Taliban as we have. It is for 100% certain that NATO cannot do the job.

  15. If my detractors will notice I stressed an "international coalition" needs to be put together to put out the growing fire that is Afghanistan.

    Finally, as to the impossible comparison between Vietnam and Afghanistan I could write volumes, literally volumes as to the many differences. I just don't have the time for that. Fun discussion though....

  16. Here's a You-tube of our March. I was towards the back with the jazz saxophonist and trumpet player. They were pretty tired tho' by the time the film was taken as they had marched like old marching band days about 2 miles playing the whole way.