Category Archives: Afghan war

Gold Star Army widow releases video of President Trump’s condolence phone call

Rep. Frederica Wilson (D-FL) set off a media frenzy this week, claiming she had overheard President Trump make a heartless comment to the widow of slain U.S. Army Sgt. La David Johnson, that the soldier “knew what he signed up for.”

White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders did not deny that the president made the comments when she was asked about them during an afternoon press briefing on Wednesday (Oct. 18), but said that his words were well-intentioned and “taken very far out of context.”

Yesterday (Oct. 19), an emotional White House Chief of Staff (retired Marine Corps) General John Kelly made an impromptu appearance at the White House press briefing. He described how the U.S. military treats, with great dignity, the bodies of  military members slain overseas, how the families of slain soldiers are informed, and that he was “stunned” and “broken hearted” by Congresswoman Wilson’s negative description of President Trump’s call to the widow of Sgt. Johnson.

General Kelly himself had lost a son, 29-year-old First Lieutenant Robert Kelly, in Afghanistan in 2010. He said that “typically,” it’s the company commander — as well as the Secretary of Defense and the President of the United States — who writes a letter of condolence to the family.

As for phone calls, while all presidents write letters, only “some presidents have elected to call,” and that “there’s no perfect way” to make that very difficult phone call.

Kelly said when President Trump asked him about making the phone call, his first recommendation was “not do it because it’s not the phone call that the family members are looking forward to.” Trump then asked Kelly what previous presidents had said to the families of slain soldiers. Kelly said:

“I said I could tell you that President Obama — who was my commander in chief when I was on active duty — did not call my family. That was not a criticism. That was just to simply say I don’t believe President Obama called. That’s not a negative thing. I don’t believe President Bush called in all cases. I don’t believe any president, particularly when the casualty rates are very, very high, that presidents call. I believe they all write.”

Kelly said that Trump decided to make phone calls to the families of four soldiers killed earlier this month, and asked what he should say. Kelly told Trump what his best friend and casualty officer Joe Dumphy had said when he delivered the news of Robert Kelly’s death:

He was doing exactly what he wanted to when he was killed. He knew what he was getting into by joining the Marines, that one percent. He knew what the possibilities were because we’re at war. And when he died . . . he was surrounded by the best men on this Earth — his friends.”

In other words, what President Trump said to the widow of Sgt. Johnson was precisely what the casualty officer had said to General Kelly about his slain son.

Today, Natasha De Alencar, a Gold Star widow of Staff Sgt. Mark De Alencar, a member of the 7th Special Forces group who was fatally shot in Afghanistan on April 8, 2017, released the transcript and video of the phone call she’d received from President Trump on April 12.

In the video of the 4-minute phone call obtained by CNN, President Trump is heard saying how sorry he was about the “whole situation”. Trump said about Sgt. De Alencar:

“He’s an unbelievable hero and you know all the people that served with him are saying how incredible he was. If you’re around Washington, you come over and see me in the Oval Office.”

Natasha De Alencar told the Washington Post of President Trump’s call:

“At that moment when my world was upside down and me and my kids didn’t know which way we were going, it felt like I was talking to just another regular human. It was a moment of niceness that we needed because we were going through hell.”

To Congresswoman Frederica Wilson:

Go fornicate yourself!

~Eowyn

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Higher education: Chelsea Manning named visiting “fellow” at Harvard

bradley manning

Harvard: Enabling a convicted traitor

I’m sure students will look forward to the lecture on turning a penis into a vagina!

From Yahoo: Chelsea Manning will be joining Harvard University as a visiting fellow at the John F. Kennedy School of Government, according to the school’s website.

Manning will speak on issues of LGBTQ identity in the military, Institute of Politics Fellows co-chairs Emily Hall and Jason Ge wrote in an announcement posted Wednesday.

“We welcome the breadth of thought-provoking viewpoints on race, gender, politics and the media,” Bill Delahunt, IOP acting director, said in the announcement.

Manning, a former Army intelligence analyst, was convicted in 2013 for leaking a huge cache of classified and sensitive documents. She was sentenced to 35 years in prison after a military judge found her guilty of six Espionage Act violations and multiple other charges relating to the dissemination of more than 700,000 classified military and State Department documents to WikiLeaks.

Manning was acquitted on the most serious charge of aiding the enemy.

After President Barack Obama commuted her sentence before leaving office, Manning has worked to re-brand herself as an activist for queer and transgender rights. She also speaks on topics related to artificial intelligence through op-ed columns for The New York Times and The Guardian, according to Harvard’s website.

Harvard’s IOP also announced three other visiting fellows: former White House press secretary Sean Spicer, CNN political commentator Robby Mook and Kansas City Mayor Sylvester “Sly” James Jr.

DCG

Marine veteran amputee reaches summit of Mount Kilimanjaro

kionte storey and jake rath

Jake Rath (l) and Marine Kionte Storey (r)/Photo courtesy of Jake Rath

Hoorah!

From Fox News: Waking up around midnight on Aug. 25, Marine Cpl. Kionte Storey began his final trek up Mount Kilimanjaro, the culmination of months of rigorous training that led him to the top of Africa’s highest peak.

With every step he took, the 29-year-old veteran climbed higher than he ever had before. At 10:45 a.m. local time, Storey made it to the summit, 19,341 feet up – a feat made more outstanding by the fact he achieved it with a prosthetic leg.

The view, he said, was simply “amazing.”

“You look down and you are above the clouds,” he told Fox News on Tuesday. “I keep saying it was the closest thing to getting to heaven, and then the sun comes out and you can see everything.”

The trip to Africa was part of a campaign by the Bob Woodruff and Steven & Alexandra Cohen foundations called #Give2Veterans.

For the journey, Storey was joined by Jake Rath, 25, of the Steven & Alexandra Cohen Foundation, who documented the entire trip with a DSLR camera and 360-degree photo.

“The photos don’t do it justice,” he said, adding that seeing the night sky with only miles and miles of stars was breathtaking.

“To see the mountain in the starlight, thousands of stars, that was an amazing sight to see,” he added. “I was amazed by Africa.”

Storey, who joined the Marines in 2007, lost his right leg below the knee after stepping on an IED while deployed to Afghanistan in 2010. Part of his physical and mental recovery after the injury included training at Paralympic camps and hiking.

In 2013, he became the first African-American and first amputee to reach the summit of Antarctica’s Mount Vinson. “I didn’t know how my body was going to respond [in Africa],” Storey said. “My leg did well all the way up – it did a lot better than I expected.”

Both men said they had to pace themselves while on the climb, not trying to rush and give their bodies time to acclimate. Trekking through the different terrains – from jungle to savannas and finally glacier-covered stone peaks – made for a more interesting climb.

“We both trained a good amount – we were fit. The hardest was the mental challenge,” Rath said. “For each step you take, it’s the highest step you have taken.”

Through #Give2Veterans, the Steven & Alexandra Cohen Foundation is giving away up to $500,000 to help veterans. The foundation will give the Bob Woodruff Foundation $1 every time a social media post is shared using the hashtag. The campaign ends on Sept. 30.

The California native said the final push to the top of Kilimanjaro was the make-or-break moment for them because it was the point in the journey when they started questioning everything.

“You start asking yourself ‘why’ – ‘why am I doing this when I could be doing better things?,’” he said. “And then I started to think about the whys and I remembered my friends serving overseas who aren’t alive. I started thinking about amputees and showing them through my experience that anything is possible.

He added: “For us know that we were doing it for something bigger than ourselves, [we thought], ‘we are getting to the summit and that’s it.’ That’s how big our reason was for getting to the summit.”

DCG

GAG: Vogue promotes a traitor and transgender

bradley manning

Pro-tip for transgender men: hide your manly hands!

We certainly know Vogue’s stance on American traitors. Try not to lose your lunch reading through this absolute baloney about a convicted traitor.

From Yahoo: Chelsea Manning — the transgender Army private imprisoned in 2013 for leaking classified information, whose sentence was commuted by former President Barack Obama — has been making a splash, albeit a gradual one, since her release from a military prison in May. She began posting flirty Instagrams on her first day in the free world and has now made a quick ascent with her public profile, to the pages of Vogue.

“Guess this is what freedom looks like,” Manning wrote in her Thursday Instagram post, which features a photo of herself posing on an empty beach in a red one-piece Norma Kamali swimsuit.

The glamour shot, taken by none other than Annie Leibovitz, is from her profile in the September issue, in which the 29-year-old New York City resident attends a Lambda Literary Awards party, visits the home of legendary drag queen Flawless Sabrina, and talks about her awkward childhood and tense adolescence, as well as being an “adrenaline junkie” and a Marc Jacobs fan, coming to terms with her transgender identity, and surviving prison.

“There are people who have really put their lives on the line for something, and they come out on the other side of it. You can feel that with her,” Laura Poitras, executive producer of a documentary being made about Manning, said of her subject to Vogue. “Now that she’s free, what is she going to do with her freedom?” She added, “When I first met Ed Snowden in Hong Kong, he had the same sort of eerie power.”

Manning said she’s not quite sure how she’ll harness her power yet, and the Vogue story notes she had been interested in running for political office before transitioning. On whether it’s something she’s still thinking about, she noted, “I’m certainly not going to say no, and I’m certainly not going to say yes. My goal is to use these next six months to figure out where I want to go.”

These days, in addition to regularly posting Instagram pics of herself — whether in a power suit, a fuchsia sheath dress, or a swipe of bold purple lipstick — Manning noted she has been playing video games, teaching herself the programming language Rust, working on her memoir, and just starting to think about dating, declaring, “I’m not planning to be single!”

Finally, she said about her aspirations and where she’s at right now, “I have these values that I can connect with: responsibility, compassion. Those are really foundational for me. Do and say and be who you are because, no matter what happens, you are loved unconditionally.” Manning said she wishes she’d learned that lesson earlier: “Unconditional love. It is OK to be who I am.”

DCG

Bacha Bazi: Muslim man-boy pedophilia

Homosexuality is abjured and supposedly illegal in Muslim countries, but a form of homosexuality called bacha bazi is a common “cultural” practice, which, of course, points to their hypocrisy.

But bacha bazi isn’t just a homosexual practice, it is pederasty (sex between an adult male and an adolescent boy) and outright pedophilia, when the boys are prepubescent. Even worse, bacha bazi is really a form of boy-prostitution and often coerced.

From Wikipedia:

Bacha bazi is a form of pederasty which has been prevalent in Central Asia since antiquity…. Visiting Turkestan in 1872 to 1873, Eugene Schuyler observed that, “here boys and youths specially trained take the place of the dancing-girls of other countries….” [T]he dances “were by no means indecent, though they were often very lascivious.” …

Bacha bāzī (…literally “boy play”…) is a slang term in Afghanistan for a wide variety of activities involving sexual relations between older men and younger adolescent men, or boys, that sometimes includes child sexual abuse. The practitioner is commonly called bacha Baz (meaning “pedophile” in Dari)…. It may include to some extent child pornography, sexual slavery, and child prostitution in which prepubescent boys are sold to wealthy or powerful men for entertainment and sexual activities. Bacha bazi…is currently reported in various parts of Afghanistan. Force and coercion are common, and security officials state they are unable to end such practices because many of the men involved in bacha bazi-related activities are powerful and well-armed warlords…

A controversy arose after allegations surfaced that US government forces in Afghanistan…deliberately ignored bacha bazi. The US military justified this by claiming the abuse was largely the responsibility of the “local Afghan government.”

Do you still wonder why the Left in America and the West have made a tacit alliance with Islam?

See:

H/t maziel

~Eowyn

Canada to apologize and give $8m to youngest Guantanamo Bay prisoner who pleaded guilty to murdering US soldier

omar khadr

Killer Omar Khadr: Laughing all the way to the bank

I swear, up is down and down is up in this world.

From Daily Mail: The Canadian government will apologize to former Guantanamo Bay inmate Omar Khadr and pay him around $8m (Canadian $10m) to compensate him for the abuse he suffered in detention, two sources familiar with the matter said on Tuesday.

A Canadian citizen, Khadr, now 30, was captured in Afghanistan in 2002 at age 15 after a firefight with U.S. soldiers. He pleaded guilty to killing a US army medic and became the youngest inmate held at the US military prison in Cuba. Khadr later recanted and his lawyers said he had been grossly mistreated.

The Canadian Supreme Court ruled in 2010 that Canada breached his rights by sending intelligence agents to interrogate him and by sharing the results with the United States. (According to ABC News, the abuse included sleep deprivation during interrogations.)

Khadr spent a decade in Guantanamo before being returned to Canada in 2012 to serve the rest of his sentence. He was released on bail in 2015 and lives in Edmonton, Alberta.

The Canadian government and Khadr’s lawyers reached the compensation deal, said the sources, who asked to remain anonymous given the sensitivity. Canada has reached a series of expensive settlements with citizens imprisoned abroad who alleged Ottawa was complicit in their mistreatment.

Khadr had sued Ottawa for around $15m (Canadian $20) on grounds of violating his human rights. News of the settlement was first reported by the Globe and Mail newspaper.

Khadr was taken to Afghanistan by his father, a senior al Qaeda member, who apprenticed the boy to a group of bomb makers who opened fire when U.S. troops went to their compound. The father was killed in a battle with Pakistani forces in 2003.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, in Ireland for a visit, said the judicial process should be ending soon but declined further comment.

Spokespeople for Trudeau and Justice Minister Jody Wilson-Raybould did not immediately respond to requests for comment. Nor did Khadr’s lawyers. The U.S. Embassy was closed for the July 4 U.S. holiday.

‘It is the right decision in light of the callous and unlawful treatment meted out to Mr. Khadr with the complicity of Canadian officials,’ said Ihsaan Gardee, executive director of the National Council of Canadian Muslims.

DCG

Mexico is world’s second most deadly country, after Syria

Two days ago, I posted about the shocking violent protests and massive looting across Mexico over a 20% gas price hike, which took place four months ago in January, but which went unnoticed by our media although Mexico is America’s southern neighbor.

Here’s a video of the looting of a Mexican Walmart:

A police officer was killed on January 4 while trying to prevent robberies at a gas station in Mexico City; three people were killed amidst looting in the eastern state of Veracruz on January 5.

Now we have statistics confirming our perception of Mexico as a lawless, dangerous country.

Marc Champion reports for Bloomberg, May 9, 2017, that according to the annual Armed Conflict Survey by the International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS), Mexico has surpassed Iraq and Afghanistan to become the world’s second-most deadly conflict zone after Syria.

In 2016, the world’s five deadliest countries are:

  1. Syria, with 50,000 fatalities.
  2. Mexico, 23,000 fatalities.
  3. Iraq, 17,000 fatalities.
  4. Afghanistan, 16,000 fatalities.
  5. Yemen, 7,000 fatalities.

What distinguishes Mexico from Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan is this:

Mexico’s violence is not from war, but from the deadly activities of the country’s criminal cartels.

Yesterday, at the Armed Conflict Survey’s launch in London, IISS director general John Chipman said Mexico’s level of bloodshed was all the more surprising because “Mexico is a conflict marked by the absence of artillery, tanks or combat aviation.” Virtually all of Mexico’s deaths were caused by small arms. The largest number of fatalities occurred in Mexican states that have become “key battlegrounds for control between competing, increasingly fragmented cartels,” with violence flaring as gangs try to clear areas of rivals so they can monopolize drug trafficking routes.

The Middle East in general and Syria in particular remained the most lethal regions on earth, with the nearly six-year-old-Syrian conflict claiming a further 50,000 lives. That brings the total number of deaths in Syria’s civil and proxy war to an estimated 290,000, almost three times the number killed in Bosnia in the early 1990s.

Overall, the number of people killed in armed conflicts around the world fell slightly last year to 157,000, from 167,000 in 2015. Nevertheless, the figure is high compared with the previous decade, while the number of civilians displaced by war continued to rise — which means more refugees.

Chipman and the report’s authors are not optimistic about the prospects for reducing these levels of violence for a number of reasons:

  1. Conflicts are becoming more urban, with siege warfare increasingly common, especially so in Syria.
  2. As new conflicts emerge, old ones tend not to get resolved but rather subside into a “simmering” state, capable of boiling over again at any moment. Examples are the low-level simmering war in Eastern Ukraine, and Turkey’s more than three-decade-old battle with the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), which exploded again last year into an urbanized insurgency that killed 3,000 people.
  3. Although the Islamic State terrorist organization lost a quarter of its territory and a higher proportion of its fighters last year, the toll on civilians is likely to increase as the group returns to more traditional insurgent tactics.
  4. The main tool of the international community to try to reduce bloodshed — the $8 billion-a-year United Nations peace-keeping forces — are increasingly overstretched and ineffectual. The UN is also by its nature too politically riven to carry out effective military operations.

President Trump, Build That Wall!

~Eowyn