Sunday, November 11, 2018

Navy Secetary Richard Spencer’s 2018 Veterans Day Message

Below is Navy Secretary Richard V. Spencer's Veterans Day message.
One hundred years ago, the guns fell silent across Europe on the 11th hour, of the 11th day, of the 11th month, of 1918. The armistice, which ended World War One, finally ended the most horrific warfare the world had ever seen and the world began its slow march to recovery that continues to this day.
We remember this war on November 11th and we remember the toll it took on nations across Europe and in every corner of the globe, but here in the United States we also use this day as an opportunity to remember those brave young Americans who left their homes and families to fight as the popular song went “Over There” they laid their lives on the line to people they’d never ever seen in far-off countries they’d never been and they made the critical difference, which helped bring the fighting to a close.
This was not the first time American troops had gone overseas to the aid of another nation nor would it be the last.
Throughout the 20th century and into the 21st, it was American Sailors, Marines, Soldiers, Airmen and Coast Guardsmen who stepped forward to defend the freedom in World War Two, Korea, Vietnam, the Gulf, Afghanistan, Iraq and many other challenges around the globe. And so on November 11th, we honor them as well.
The 11th day of the 11th month marks not just the anniversary of one war where American troops made the difference, but a day to remember all of the generations of warriors that came before them and after we know this is Veterans Day.
And this Veterans Day, I hope you’ll join me in thanking someone who served whether mother, father, brother, sister, aunt, uncle, neighbor or friend, and also remember those who still keep the watch and stand guard for freedom on this very day. Take a moment not only to thank them, but ask them to share with you why they chose to defend global safety and security.
We owe them a debt that can never fully be repaid, but which always must be remembered.

On This Day In History World War 1 Ended

As notes, on this day in 1918 World War 1 ended.

At the 11th hour on the 11th day of the 11th month of 1918, the Great War ends. At 5 a.m. that morning, Germany, bereft of manpower and supplies and faced with imminent invasion, signed an armistice agreement with the Allies in a railroad car outside CompiƩgne, France. The First World War left nine million soldiers dead and 21 million wounded, with Germany, Russia, Austria-Hungary, France, and Great Britain each losing nearly a million or more lives. In addition, at least five million civilians died from disease, starvation, or exposure.

You can read the rest of the piece via the below link:

Saturday, November 10, 2018

A Birthday Challenge For The Marine Corps

Happy birthday to the U. S. Marine Corps from an old, former sailor.

Gary Anderson, a retired Marine Corps colonel, looks back at Marine Corps history and it’s future in a piece in the Washington Times.

Starting an organization in a bar is a risky proposition, and one of two things can happen. First, it might degenerate into a drunken brawl — the alternative is that you will end up with a very interesting organization. In the case of the U.S. Marine Corps, the second happened.

When it began recruiting at Tunn Tavern in Philadelphia following a 1775 act of the Continental Congress, the Marine Corps consisted of a few hundred qualified riflemen designated to act as shipboard policemen, provide the nucleus for boarding parties and provide snipers to fire at the crews of opposing ships. It would have taken a very prescient visionary in 1775 to envision an organization of nearly 200,000 with its own air force. Despite its present size and prestige, the Marine Corps has been on the endangered species list a number of times approaching its 243d birthday on Nov. 10. This year, its existence is not in question, but its core mission may be.

… The Marine Corps‘ official motto is Semper Fidelis (always faithful), but its unofficial motto has always been “we do windows.” That attitude has served the Corps and its nation well.

You can read the rest of the piece via the below link:

Note: In the above released photo U.S. Marine Sgt. Bryan Early, a squad leader assigned to 1st Battalion, 9th Marine Regiment, leads his squad of Marines in Afghanistan in 2013. The photo was taken by Cpl Austin Long. 

Friday, November 9, 2018

Putin And Russian Election Interference? Perhaps Americans Should Be More Concerned About Crooked Politicans And Good, Ole American Voter Fraud

American intelligence officials have warned of Russia’s efforts to influence our elections, but perhaps there is a greater threat in our home-grown crooked election officials and election fraud.

We need better oversight of our election process, especially where one party has an overwhelming majority and influence. We also need to have voter ID laws enacted. 

We need ID to do the most mundane of transactions in America, yet we allow people without proper ID to elect our leaders. How many non-citizens voted this time? How many dead people?

Now the results of the mid-term elections are in, but they are being disputed and lawsuits and recounts are going forward. A center of this storm is Broward County, Florida.

Kaitlyn Schallhorn at offers a piece on the controversy surrounding the county’s supervisor of elections.

Broward County Supervisor of Elections Brenda Snipes is at the center of the explosive Florida ballot-counting battle, with the state's Senate and gubernatorial elections on the line — but it's hardly her first voting controversy.

“She has had a horrible history … and all of a sudden they’re finding votes out of nowhere," President Trump, referring to Snipes, told reporters Friday.

Outgoing Florida Gov. Rick Scott, the GOP Senate nominee locked in a tight and bitter battle for the lead against incumbent Democratic Sen. Bill Nelson, accused Democrats of conducting a coordinated effort to "steal" elections in a campaign of possibly "rampant fraud," in a lawsuit Thursday.

Razor-thin margins in Florida's bitter Senate and gubernatorial races are raising the specter of possible recounts, potentially prolonging two of the most closely watched contests of the nation's midterm elections. A recount is mandatory if the winning candidate's margin is less than 0.5 percentage points when the first unofficial count is verified Saturday by Florida's secretary of state, according to state law.

In an emergency complaint, Scott accused Snipes of being "unwilling to disclose records revealing how many electors voted, how many ballots have been canvassed and how many ballots remain to be canvassed," and charged that the uncertainty "raises substantial concerns about the validity of the election process."

You can read the rest of the piece via the below link: 

A Little Night Music: Ron Carter's 'The Shadow Of Your Smile'

Ron Carter, a jazz double bassist, offers a nice version of Johnny Mandel's classic song, 'The Shadow of Your Smile."

You can listen to the song via the below link:

Thursday, November 8, 2018

The Spy Who Was Left Behind: Russia, The United States, And The True Story Of The Betrayal And Assassination Of A CIA Agent

Veteran journalist and author Joseph C. Goulden offers a good review in the Washington Times of Michael Pullara’s The Spy Who Was Left Behind: Russia, the United States, and the Betrayal and assassination of a CIA Agent. 

The 1993 murder was a mystery from the start. A single rifle shot to the head killed Fred Woodruff, CIA branch chief in the former Soviet Republic of Georgia, as he rode in a car on a remote mountain road.

The driver was the body guard for Eduard Shevardnadze, formerly foreign minister under Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev. Once the USSR dissolved, he became chair of Georgia’s governing State Council.

Woodruff was in Georgia to help Shevardnadze form a protective security force. The country was suffering political and social turmoil, with crime syndicates running the equivalent of a shadow government. And the Soviets were trying to regain control of Georgia.

Author Michael Pullara, a Houston attorney, became interested in the murder because he had known the Woodruff family as a boy in the small town of Searcy, Arkansas.

Early press reports blamed the killing on a Georgian soldier, Anzor Sharmaidze, 19, who was angered when the car carrying Woodruff ignored his wave for help with his own broken-down car.

Although Sharmaidze claimed he was tortured into falsely confessing, a judge found him guilty and sentenced him to six years in prison.

A veteran trial lawyer, Mr. Pullara doubted that the full truth was told. The military had fuzzed the truth about the death of his father In Vietnam, thus he was no stranger to official fibbing.

He wanted to know more. As he writes, “I wondered what I can do with a law license, a passport and a credit card.” Thus began an odyssey for the truth that consumed almost 20 years. 

You can read the rest of the review via the below link: