Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Sheehan; the Gentleman

An update to my post from 19MAR.






A lesson for all in this sad tale.

78 comments:

C-dore 14 said...

Unfortunately, and as is often the case with retractions and clarifications, this letter will receive nowhere near the attention that the initial statement did. 

Theodore said...

You are correct C-dore 14, but it seems enough to satisfy the Dutch powers-that-be. From a 110 vs 40 majority in parliament to the Pink army.

Cdr. Salamander, my compliments for your tasteful presentation of the letter.

Anthony Mirvish said...

The good general has just demonstrated a lot more class than the people (in the MSM and Congress especially) who scrupuously misquoted him two weeks ago.

sobersubmrnr said...

Here's a thought. Maybe General Sheehan did recollect correctly and he's just doing this to calm the storm. As for suing him...for what? Slander? The legal standard for a plaintiff to win a slander case is very high and if they did that, all sorts of conservative groups, veteran's organizations and private individuals would come to Gen. Sheehan's aid. I think they should go for it anyway and let's see some subpoenas.

Outlaw Mike said...

Lesson? What lesson? That there is something like graciously caving in under pressure?

I am no military man CDR, but you don't have to be one to know what happened. Personally, I am AB-SO-LU-TE-LY sure Van Den Breemen said 'something'. Yeah, 'something'. Otherwise Sheehan wouldn't have brought it up.

I am sorry for gay members of the military, but this is NOT about them alone. You repeal DADT, and you open a Pandora's Box. INCLUDING army unions.

A final remark CDR. I personally know a decent fella, a former US sailor who served on the Mahan (DDG 42?). He wrote me that he believes that there are probably a lot of gay members of the US military who are actually quite satisfied with the current regulation! This because it gives them a degree of 'protection'. But of course he said, they 'can't state their satisfaction with the DADT policy because doing so would be outing themselves'.

Meanwhile, AQ and Taliban operatives are rolling over persian carpets and pissing their djellabas.

Theodore said...

<span>Sobersubmrnr, I'm rather convinced that there is no way General Van den Breemen can ever have been suggesting that the sexual orientation of "individual soldiers" and "corporals and sergeants" could ever have been an issue in this... 
That does not say anything about (Lt.) Colonels, you see? Look, a word intended to mean "person lacking any male virtue at all" can have been misunderstood as "falling in love with persons of the same gender". 
 
He's just doing this to calm the storm? They, I would think, it rather seems the Generals did at least some of the brainstorming together, what else do you think they have talked about in a week like that? Tulips? </span>

Andrewdb said...

That's suppose to be an apology?

While I agree with his comments about poor RoE - it reads like he is sorry he got caught.  He doesn't sound the least bit sorry for saying what he said - and he fails to apology to the Dutch gay servicemembers he maligned.  The Navy Times article says it was released by the Dutch MoD, not the Gen.  He is too proud to admit he was wrong.  That doesn't make him much of a gentleman in my book. 

Byron said...

BZ to the General for the apology. Was no doubt in my mind that he was a less than honorable man.

MaryR said...

Sheehan graciously acknowledged and apologized, specifically mentioning the situation. Took the bullet, did not dodge it. Wouldn't we like more of that?

Theodore said...

Outlaw Mike, I am not absolutely sure, but absolutely willing to assume that Van den Breemen did say SOMETHING, something rather politically incorrect and not liked at all by "gay right" activists, I am also willing to believe that somebody who had a leading role in cooperation of the oldest MC's in the worlds, will know some expressions. I am also quite willing to assume that Van den Breemen did not refer to the actual sexual preference of the person(s) intended, but rather to other vices/lack of virtues. And there can have been a li'l  misunderstanding with General Sheehan being unfamiliar about the many  queer things of the Netherlands.

Combat NFO said...

OM,

DADT gives current gay service members no protection against anything.  Gay service members can't even say that they're being targeted for violence or discrimination because they're gay, as that would be an admission that they are.... gay.

Pandora's Box of Army Unions?  How exactly is that any more or less problematic than dual military marriages now?  The only thing it would change is to bring gay relationships out of the shadows, where they can be treated just like heterosexual relationships.  You are aware the there are marriages where both of the people are in the service, right?

UltimaRatioRegis said...

General Sheehan was gracious enough to claim his recollections "inaccurately reflected" the Dutch General's "thinking".  A man whose job it has been for 35 years to glean commander's intent and to understand verbal and written orders usually doesn't have such lapses. 

One has to wonder what General van den Breemen would have been facing had he admitted to the comments General Sheehan "mistakenly" attributed to him.  Persecution?  Prosecution?  Dutch "hate speech" laws are an extreme suppression of free speech (see: Fitna) for the purpose of political correctness.  Could General van den Breemen have faced charges under those laws had he admitted to his comments? Is that the situation that led to General Sheehan's admission of "incorrectly recalling" the conversation?

"Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances."

What an extraordinary sentence....  too bad Europe doesn't borrow it.

Theodore said...

I guess Outlaw Mike is talking about trade unions. I cannot see the relationship, the other way round, say, a Union of Navy Officers, demanding the right to be free to ask, to be free to be told, to be free from false claims of homosexuality and to be free to run a navy rather than some socialised church play ground... that makes sense.

ewok40k said...

Accepting and apologising for your mistakes is a sign of greatness.

Byron said...

I grossly mis-spoke: I meant to say that there was no doubt that he was an honorable man. Everyone else here needs to take a chill pill and quit reading between the Generals lines. He said it, I accept it at face value, and I personally do not assign any moral values that commenters here are trying to read between the lines in his statement.

Give your personal agendas a rest, folks. Your axes are already sharp.

Theodore said...

<span>URR, I guess you have been fooled by the lag time of comments before they appear. I don't think that General Van den Breemen said anything which could bring him personally in trouble, it rather makes a difference whether you are talking about propaganda by an attention grabbing politician, trying to prohibit the free exercise of a religion (!), and yes, that is unconstitutional in the Netherlands too, or just about a marine general talking to another using salty talk.   
 
It's election time in the Netherlands, and Sheehan's statements are/were feeding a sentiment that the ones who forced the withdrawal from Uruzgan had been right, Sheehan's knowledge of the Dutch military does not seem to be sufficient to avoid political blunders, when talking about it. Now, from a Dutch point of view Sheehan's statements portrayed the US(military) as a bunch of stupid liars and bigots, with no respect for the concept that all men are created equal, just talking about how it was perceived, and thus it hurt the existing support for the Netherlands to do its part. The letter seems to have been written to calm the anti-American storm in the Netherlands. It makes quite clear that General Sheehan had no intention to insult  "individual soldiers" and "corporals and sergeants", which reduces the number of insulted to a great degree, and thus the base to create anti-American sentiment to be used (or given in to) in the Dutch elections. Keeping a friendly country as friendly as possible seems to me the least a marine could do.</span>

UltimaRatioRegis said...

Phib,

Can you delete the duplicates?  THX

UltimaRatioRegis said...

Anti-American storm?  Perhaps to calm the "anti-American storm", those holding such sentiments should travel out to Margraten and spend some time memorizing the nearly 20,000 names of American servicemen who were killed or missing during the fighting to liberate Holland.  That might temper their anti-American attitutes.  The number of American casualties, by the way, is far greater than the Dutch themselves suffered in 1940. 

General Sheehan's knowledge of what a good fighting force is and what it is not is sufficient to lead men in battle.  His Marines fought.  The Dutch in this case did not.  Is there any other real indicator needed?

MR T's Haircut said...

The dead of Srebrenica are still dead.  Dutch Troops were in a position of responsibility.  Europe's shame remains.

JimmyMac said...

The General hit the nail on the head with respect to ROE - "...developed by a political system...".  All ROE is driven by "political" considerations.  Like it or not, it's true.  I find his reality refreshing and recommend it to all bloggers.

Theodore said...

Most of the men resting at Margraten did not die fighting to liberate Holland, but died fighting to defeat Germany, there is a difference. Yankees claiming the Allied victory, is rather seen as a form of bigotry, you see Margraten is deep down the south, far from Holland, most Dutch people ALMOST NEVER see the grave of a US-soldier, but DO feel the "They Fell for Our Freedom"-feeling at the graves of other Allies, you are claiming honour for the USA which is not hers alone to claim. You really haven't got any idea what overblown, imperialist, uncivilized impression Margraten gives to people who are already "prejudiced against Yankees". Bad suggestion, never try to let the dead do your work for you. Margraten is too much propaganda of the United States of America, to make the Dutch feel themselves comfortable, that much national pride and glory tends to offend them as they associate unlimited patriotism and nationalism with nazism, that said, you should not think the Dutch do not appreciate the boys beneath the grass, but the architecture however... (Bringing up WW II dead against a party led by a Cohen may not be a good idea either...)  
 
Somebody like James Megellas could probably have defused the military side of the problem easily, on his own, much better than a million dead soldiers,but not as efficient and as quickly as this letter. It could have been spin doctored, but it suggests a much better insight in Dutch sensitivities, than General Sheehan has shown before, he makes clear who was his source, seems to exchange some pleasantries, says sorry to a fellow marine general for not having his views on a topic perfectly, indicates that he was not blaming the troops (but seems to reserve the option to defend himself that it was all the fault of queer officers, which may not be politically correct but you cannot get a lot of Dutchies angry about that) and he wishes his fellow general happy Easter.   
 
 It's simply BRILLIANT, not going too much in detail, not giving his DADT point away, not being overblown, just human. Now, I''m not saying that General Sheehan is not sincere, but as the Generals had contact, this letter is clearly just what was needed, an unofficial, sincere, friendly document.   

UltimaRatioRegis said...

I find your characterization of American efforts to liberate Holland despicable.  I should not be surprised, as many on the continent share your ill-mannered, ungrateful, revisionist claptrap. 

A charge of bigotry from a person in a nation that actively assisted in the rounding up and deportation of its Jewish citizens in direct collaboration with Nazi Germany rings more than hollow.

To call an American cemetery "propaganda" reveals just how little you appreciate those lives spent to liberate all of Europe, Holland included, when a good measure of the collective refused to stand up and fight the Germans at all or until it was too late. 

Unlimited patriotism equates to Naziism?  Such is a convenient and pathetic excuse for ingratitude toward a nation and Army that fought for you when you declined to stand ready to fight for yourselves.

You should be ashamed of your remarks, but clearly you are not.  Should be ashamed of what happened in Bosnia, but clearly are not.

Byron said...

Theodore, your skirt is showing. Since that is an America phrase, ask someone what it means.

Theodore said...

"Perhaps to calm the "anti-American storm", those holding such sentiments should travel out to Margraten and spend some time memorizing the nearly 20,000 names of American servicemen who were killed or missing during the fighting to liberate Holland."

This was your idea, it was your idea to use Margraten, to change sentiments about the current US of A, caused by a marine general born in 1940, who managed to insult the Dutch military, the Dutch military unions, the homosexual people of the world and the highest Dutch marine corps officer ever all in one go, without trying, and then I remembered Margraten, and just tried to point out why that would not work, and tried to describe the impression it would make on Dutch people who had already a prejudice against the USA, not on me. Have you been at Groesbeek?

Holland is just a part of the Netherlands, and the American forces involved in liberating that part tended to be Canadian. Yes, US forces have liberated large parts of the Netherlands (as did the Polish, not as large, but still), but most of the country was liberated by Canadians, (the US forces were mostly defeating Germany by then). OK, I may have been a bit of a smart ass with that, sorry, but Margraten is just overkill, it is too much USA.

And no, unlimited patriotism is equated with nazism, do understand that the Dutch ARE as a rule already sort of ashamed, not of their country, but ashamed of being proud of their country, of loving their country, of saying that their country is better than the country of somebody else. It is a bit realism, a dash of calvinism, having a royal family, a bit of trying to get along with everybody and more. It's not that the Dutch do not love their country, in their culture it is just a bit indecent to say so, an "oath of allegiance" just does not fit. The USA goes in honouring the fallen soldiers just a bit too far, it's too big too massive, it's painful for Dutch sensitivities to see so much dedication to a country (any country) in a cemetery. Cultural differences, that's all.

ewok40k said...

Thing is the same army that failed at Srebrenica so miserably is doing great in AFG now. If at all its sexual composition changed, there are more gays now, but nobody cares - at least in Holland.
And look at the yearly Market-Garden commemorations, the Dutch in their majority remember allied sacrifices and are thankful.

Theodore said...

Maybe, but in my opinion URR's slip was showing the moment he suggested to use Margraten, where the bones of many US-soldiers wait for the youngest day in the style their country judges appropriate, that's good, no problem with that, they deserved it. However trying to use that cemetery as an anti-dote to a storm of "Anti-American" sentiments, as propaganda, is both highly disrespectful to the fallen and failing to identify the problem. It is a cemetery for US-citizens, it does not cater to people with a Dutch cultural background, who are more used to Commonwealth styles,it could as easily strengthen, rather than weaken anti-US sentiments. 

I was talking about a storm of sentiments, as in "there are a lot of them", not that they were strong, which may cause people to vote differently, not about raving maniacs hating the USA.  

cdrsalamander said...

Fair.  I am trying to be nice.

Outlaw Mike said...

Combat NFO, Theodore, no, I meant what I said. But I used 'army union' because in Europe, when people say 'army', they generally mean the armed forces even if the branch involved is actually the navy or the air force.

I am embarrassed to give here the link to the Belgian armed forces' biggest union, VSOA-Defensie: http://www.vsoa-defensie.be/home.php?lang=nl

Not only do they block operations when they consider the risk too great that a trooper might break a toenail or something, but they are also populated with military ignoramuses and generally a hindrance to necessary reforms.

Combat NFO, to make my point clear: what I meant is, this DADT thing is just a topic among topics. No matter how good the arguments could possibly be for repealing THIS policy (and personally, I am not in favor), IF you do it, then the next day some smartass will want something else. Amongst others, yes, unions for military personnel.

GBS said...

The Dutch gay service members he maligned?  Do you mean the one's handcuffed to the fence?

Theodore said...

Well, I am in principle in favour of military personel having the right to unionize, but that one is bad.

C-dore 14 said...

Theodore, I'm curious, what element of national defense do you think would be enhanced by permitting military personnel to unionize?

Theodore said...

On, the other hand it is quite clear that General Shehan did solve this Dutch issue. I was rather shocked that URR thought that long dead soldiers in the most undutch part of the country, in a cemetery in a very foreign style, would be a good arguement to convince the Dutch voter that the current US population, and especially the current government of the USA is trustworthy. There are much better ways, stories and places to do that, even Arlington. Somebody who claims that action against a propaganda movie of a politician trying to prohibit the free exercise of a religion suggests that that jurisdiction would not function in the spirit of "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances." did not strike me as very understanding, so I overdid it a bit on purpose and a lot by accident, I am sorry about that.  

Theodore said...

Well, back in 1883 the Dutch navy officers unionized (in something which was and is not just a union, but it functions as one too) in reaction to the sinking of the Adder, a union taking care of the interests of the military personel, like proper maintenance of ships and planes and such(with budget cuts you never know what a politician could come up with), and there are small things, little perks, the Dutch military police union (well association technically, est 1907) is rather incensed about the cancellation of the "little things money" for service travel exceding four hours or something like that. Unions can serve to unite the "little soldiers" and speak for its members.
A military union should function as an extra, more or less independent control system of some aspects, a defense system against attacks by politicians and helping to keep the working conditions and wages acceptable at least. Its powers and influence should stay limited,no strikes, no interference with operations, and it should stay aware it exists serve the interests of military personnel and help them to do their job, not to interfere with the job. As such it may function both to make people feel more secure  and as the xth control system, depending on the state of the military it can have the importance of,say, a chessclub or it can be an important way for the military personnel to improve the military... the last option might perhaps seem feasible in very small banana republics. I believe in the liberty to unionize and to found chess clubs, but one should stay reasonable, neither unions nor chess clubs should be able to hamper the military's job. (and look, unions offer a great job oppurtunity for people who, returned sane but unfit for active service from a war or so).

OnceAMarine said...

Theodore writes: ".....would be a good arguement to convince the Dutch voter that the current US population, and especially the current government of the USA is trustworthy."

Theodore, with all due respect to you and the good CDR ( an avowed fan of the Dutch), who gives a rat's ass what the Dutch voter thinks?  In less than 50 years the Netherlands will cease to exist as we know it, for the Dutch have already surrendered their birthright to the Left's holy trinity of "Diversity, Multiculturalism, and Tolerance.  I have stated here before that the Dutch (and most of Europe) have been engaged in cultural suicide for over a decade.  They have allowed themselves to be overrun with muslim immigrants who have refused to assimilate.  So the Dutch do what many tolerant post-modern, post-religious societies in Europe do - they appease.  They have accepted shari'a, they have curtailed political speech, and they allow the Islamists to frame all debate.  The shame of Srebrenica?  How about the further shame of cowardly surrendering your country without engaging the enemy?  So again I ask, who really gives a rat's ass what the Dutch voter thinks?

UltimaRatioRegis said...

<span>Theodore,  
 
You might want to tell the hundreds of thousands of surviving family members who lost American servicemen in liberating Holland and Europe that those young men are "long dead".  Of course, if you consider such ancient history, then it is easy to let that whole era be "bygones", including the unwillingness to prepare for war, and the complicity in rounding up the Jews.   
 
Your socialist self-deluding "peace at any price" attitudes and criticism of the nation to whom you owe your very existence not so many years ago is "propaganda".  The cemetery needs no explanation.  Unless you have a time machine, can go back, resurrect all of those American and allied boys from those graves and replace them with young Dutch boys.  That just might be the elixir to make you appreciate the freedom that you enjoy, but seem so eager to give away in the name of Progressive Sociialism.  A freedom that was bought and paid for by someone else, and handed to you, because that is what Americans do.</span>

Theodore said...

What the Dutch voter thinks will determine will be in control of the Dutch military for a period up to four years, and that will be of great influence on if, when, how and what military support from the Netherlands is to be got, and that is important enough to write a letter for.

The Netherlands as you have known it is scheduled to stop to exist 10-10-10, the highest mountain wil be higher, the coast line will be longer, the southernmost point will be southerner and the westernmost point will be westerner, the number of native plants and animals will grow, and I hope capital punishment for treason will have been abolished in time, it is already unconstitutional, but it looks so old fashioned... I wonder about Venezuelan news, though.

OnceAMarine said...

<p><span><span>Theodore, here is a timeless quote that much of Europe has evidently forgot:</span></span>
</p><p><span><span>War is an ugly thing, but not the ugliest of things. The decayed and degraded state of moral and patriotic feeling which thinks that nothing is worth war is much worse. The person who has nothing for which he is willing to fight, nothing which is more important than his own personal safety, is a miserable creature and has no chance of being free unless made and kept so by the exertions of better men than himself.
John Stuart Mill (1806 - 1873)</span></span></p>

Anthony Mirvish said...

Many of the US soldiers who fought in WWII saw no contradiction between fighting to defeat Germany - a direct threat to our country - and liberating those countries already conquered by it.  This theme runs through many a memoir of the veterans of the war. 

It is probably true that post-war many Europeans came to equate nationalism/patriotism with elements of fascism, however that conclusion is hardly correct and smacks more of a morally dubious (and sanctimonious) "plague on both your houses" approach than anything else.  The latter's primary purpose is to let those who hold it avoid issues they ought to face.  Europe in particular is caving into Islamic and PC pressures on multiple fronts rather than defending the values upon which its own civilization rests.  Dress it up as much as one wants in post-modern values, but it is still a surrender.

Anthony Mirvish said...

Many of the US soldiers who fought in WWII saw no contradiction between fighting to defeat Germany - a direct threat to our country - and liberating those countries already conquered by it.  This theme runs through many a memoir of the veterans of the war. 

It is probably true that post-war many Europeans came to equate nationalism/patriotism with elements of fascism, however that conclusion is hardly correct and smacks more of a morally dubious (and sanctimonious) "plague on both your houses" approach than anything else.  The latter's primary purpose is to let those who hold it avoid issues they ought to face.  Europe in particular is caving into Islamic and PC pressures on multiple fronts rather than defending the values upon which its own civilization rests.  Dress it up as much as one wants in post-modern values, but it is still a surrender.

OnceAMarine said...

Once again Theodore, who cares?  The military support from the Netherlands...well, nice to have a few extra hands but when you get right down to it it is the American who does most of the fighting and most of the dieing.  Yep, we imperialists have covered Europe's six for generations and all we have ever taken is enough land to bury our dead.  So keep strumming that fiddle while Rome burns, fair winds and following seas.

Andrewdb said...

That doesn't sound much different thatn the Reserve Officers Association (ROA) or the Association of the United States Army (AUSA).

C-dore 14 said...

Theodore, Not sure that the system you suggest is any improvement on the one that currently exists.  There are numerous avenues, such as Commander's Call, Request Mast, and the IG, by which the "little soldiers" can have their concerns heard and when all else fails they can write their congressman.  As someone who has answered a congressional inquiry or two over my career, I can confirm that approach gets immediate attention.  Likewise, there are numerous professional associations, such as MOAA and AUSA, that lobby fairly effectively on behalf of service people on pay and benefit issues without all the labor vs. management baggage that comes with being called a union.

The last time I remember unionization of military personnel being actively discussed was at the tail end of the Vietnam War when the military draft was still functioning.  Even at that time its advocates tended to be folks who were draftees or who had enlisted to avoid being drafted into the Army.  What little momentum there was ended in '73.  

Andrewdb said...

Because I am weak and can't resist, I am going to post this link just for you, URR.

L/Cpl James Wharton, of the Blues and Royals (Prince William and Prince Harry are officers in that Regiment), celebrated his civil partnership to Mr. Thom McCaffery (the son of a Regimental Sergeant Major) at the warrant and non-commissioned officers' mess at the Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment's Knightsbridge barracks in London last weekend.  The couple plan a honeymoon in San Francisco.

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/a-very-modern-military-partnership-1928748.html

UltimaRatioRegis said...

Thanks, Andrew.  I am sure the Horse Guards and the Sgt Maj are so proud. 

"Mounted" Regiment?  Apparently.

Wonder if LCpl Wharton's nickname is "Bugger"...

Theodore said...

Oh, I would never claim that the US-military NEEDED a union, or would have a use for it, but if people want to found a thing which is at best only the Xth, backup safety system, they should be free to do so, but it may make one wonder why they would be willing to do so. On the other hand it would have been nice for the European military unions to have some military brethren in the union bussiness in the States too. Before General Sheehan wrote this accepted apology, one of the chairmen of the Dutch unions said something on the line of still looking what to do, because he had no counterpart  in the States. I guess he is very glad with the General's apology too. 

Andrewdb said...

Well, the article says "The entire regiment has been really supportive," he [L/Cpl Wharton] said. "When I went to ask the Squadron Leader, Major Nana Twumasi-Ankrah, for permission to get married, he just said 'This is fantastic, congratulations'."

The RSM is quoted as saying "We are just over the moon. All we ever wanted for Thom, as any parent, is to see him happy."

Best is the following:  

"The Household Cavalry has a fine tradition of leading from the front, so it is unsurprising that we continue to represent the face of the modern Army," added his commanding officer, Lt-Col Crispin Lockhart MBE. "We recognise and value individuals from diverse backgrounds who bring fresh ideas, knowledge, experience and talent to the regimental family."

I suspect the Lt-Col will go far in the modern British Army, being able to work the word "diverse" into that statement.

Combat NFO said...

Why would we not support our troops?  If the military supports and pays more to married heterosexual couples, why should they not pay dependents pay to homosexual couples?  Your unfounded assertions really need to be grounded.  The slippery slope argument is bunk, I mean if we don't impose the death penalty for speeding, what's next running stop signs?  Sexual Assault?  Murder?  Sad argument OM, and frankly if you weren't aware that people in the military marry each other, you're kinda out of touch.

Theodore said...

Anthony, you are right, there is no contradiction between defeating Germany and liberating Europe in it, but if John died on Sicily, I would not say that he died liberating France. Defeating Germany was liberating Europe, only a pity that Stalin was not very liberal about the part he got. It's just that Margraten is much closer to Germany than to the part of the Netherlands called Holland, and not many of the ones interred at Margraten tried, this close to the main course, to liberate that little part of Europe, called Holland that was a job mainly left to the Canadians. Many Dutchmen don't care, others will act the same way as a Highlander described as "from England", for about the same reasons... 

About that surrender, do you mean that Dutchbat should have participated in the battle on the Serbian side? Just asking.

MR T's Haircut said...

How apropro .... san fran... maybe they can tour Speakers house?

really 2nd time I have heard of this unit and 1 out of 2 had the ghey attached to the reason.... nice... see Diversity will work!

UltimaRatioRegis said...

Yeah, but he also used the phrase "from the front", which seems N/A in this particular coupling.

Theodore said...

Oh, I agree, I don't vote for parties who believe that the state should carry the sword invain. Just mind to share the glory with your lesser allies, if you are lucky enough to have some.

UltimaRatioRegis said...

Er, no, Theodore.  The Dutch should have participated in the battle by fighting against the people that perpetrated the massacre of 8,000 civilians.  Since you mention it.  Even if it killed them. That they didn't is the shame and the cowardice.  That they decide to invoke the "anti-American storm" about General Sheehan's remarks is to cover that shame and cowardice. 

Theodore said...

Who cares? General Sheehan, I would say and probably with some reason. By the way, there were  some bases too, and the Dutch involvement in Korea, rather some money went to the weapon industry, you are welcome, but hyperboles should be used with care, some people might mistake them for factual statements and that leads to things similar to the regrettable hearing incident.

Malachy Marine said...

To assume only does one thing... it makes an ASS out of U and ME. Try to avoid it, if you can.

C-dore 14 said...

URR, This article provided what we used to call a "target rich environment" WRT opportunity for snide comments.  From reading it, however, it seems that the retired Sgt/Maj is very supportive.  

I don't think I'll pass the article to my son-in-law, the Gunny.  

OnceAMarine said...

Glory?  Are you kidding me?  The burden of war falls heaviest on those who have to fight, that is why we pray for peace as we prepare for war.  But at the same time we understand that peace at any cost is not peace - it is slavery.  This Nation, with all her faults, has always understood this since our founding and we have always produced exceptional men who know what is right and are willing to fight and die to see it done.  Glory has nothing to do with it. 

OnceAMarine said...

Thanks for the words of caution, but again Teddy, who gives a rat's ass?  Hyperboles should be used with care?  Some people might mistake them for blah,blah,blah?  I'd laugh out loud if it weren't so pathetic - are you so emasculated, do you hold your manhood so cheap, that speech and free expression frighten you?  Teddy my friend, you need to come on over - perhaps spend a little time in Texas ;)

Outlaw Mike said...

Really? Then I'm proud to be out of touch.

Mark my words, you end up with pansies.

Theodore said...

OK, I said glory, I should have used "credit" or so. Small difference if one is cynical enough.  

Theodore said...

Oh come on, history is rather clear that a Dutch peacekeeping mission on the Balkan is one of those things people make up FUBAR variants for, but be real,way less than one million people killed, that's great progress, we still ain't sure how many people died the first time but that seem to have been about 16 million, that's progress, if being brave enough to get a peronal monument carries that cost, the brave thing would be to behave like a coward.  

Theodore said...

Free expression?

Are you willing to fight for the freedom to use the name of the Dam Buster dog?

That's free expression.

I was just trying to be nice, my tribe are the masters of understatement, so let  me rephrase: "Your statements might be slightly corrected, sir".  (deep under)

UltimaRatioRegis said...

C-dore,

Someone throws me a batting practice fastball, I'm hacking.  Besides, what else is the SgtMaj gonna say?

"Aw, bleedin' 'ell!  Me son's a poofter!"

Theodore said...

URR, hasn't your nanny taught you that it is very naughty to call people "socialists", as they are nasty people with no guidance, no mission, no instruction manual and no reason to be trusted?

UltimaRatioRegis said...

"<span>the brave thing would be to behave like a coward"</span>

Doctor, I believe we have found the disease.  Nothing worse than war, not even slavery.  Well, then.  Should enough other Dutchmen feel as you do, cowards and slaves you shall be.  You will hear it shouted from a minaret near you.

UltimaRatioRegis said...

No nanny for me.  Parents taught me the only thing worse than calling someone a socialist is BEING a socialist....

Theodore said...

See, we agree :) .

Theodore said...

You still don't get it, I try to make clear to you there is nothing worse than Peace Keeping.

sobersubmrnr said...

<span> "The entire regiment has been really supportive," </span>

Or else.

UltimaRatioRegis said...

Theodore,

Your audience on this porch includes several who have done "peacekeeping".  While I agree witht that sentiment, there are more than a few things worse than peacekeeping.  One is an unwillingness to cultivate and maintain a warfighting capability and a martial spirit in one's military.

sobersubmrnr said...

On a somewhat related topic, lookie what I have here...from on of Sal's *ahem* favorite people.

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/03/05/opinion/05mcpeak.html

He got it right...and it's in the NYT of all places!  :-D

Theodore said...

Well, I was keeping it short but I had planned to write that there is nothing worse than Peacekeeping ON the Balkan BY the Dutch WHEN Socialists have found their way in the Dutch government again. 

OnceAMarine said...

Theodore,
All members of the armed forces of this nation swear an oath to support and defend the Constitution of the United States, the first Amendment of which states "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances."  It is pretty self-explanatory, and we are sworn to defend this principle - which we have for over two centuries.

As far as the name of Commander Guy Gibson's dog - it was what it was.  the 617 RAF Squadron did some amazing things - and the name of a dog is inconsequential and doesn't detract from their accomplishments.  History is sometimes controversial, but the facts are the facts and shouldn't be revised in an effort to assuage our sensibilities as we view those facts from our modern perspective.  As I'm sure you know, Commander Gibson is buried in Steenbergen and Gibsonstraat is named in his honor.  I sincerely hope that the "tolerance crowd" haven't yet changed the name.

And finally, you do not have to try to be nice.  Though I categorically disagree with most of your statements on this topic, I do not find you disagreeable in the least.  You have not taken refuge in name-calling, made no personal attacks, and have stated your positions quite clearly.  In short, you have engaged in a contentious debate without becoming contentious - and for that I salute you.

Anthony Mirvish said...

Theodore,

The main point is that the western Allied soldiers in WWII were not just fighting for "my country right or wrong" reasons, and they recognized this.  So did their governments.  Stalin's troops, on the other hand, were mostly fighting for Mother Russia and revenge.  But, even many of them saw themselves as fighting in a greater cause against an evil enemy.  The difference in what happened in the parts of Europe "liberated" by the Soviets, reflects the fact that the Soviet government was fighting for communism.

With respect to Srbrenicia, I agree with URR's comments:  the troops were there to protect civilians and should have done just that.

The surrender in question to which I was referring was a more on-going cultural surrender.

UltimaRatioRegis said...

On that, you may be right.  One seldom wins battles by showing one's throat to the wolf.

Theodore said...

I know, I know, I was being a bit too much of a smartass again, using "liberating" more as an euphemism for stealing.

 They should have been there to protect civilians, but I'm not sure they had been told they could try.

And what do you mean with cultural surrender? Islam is winning ground, but hardly the combined secular and christian forces are not being beaten... Bible Belts are useful things. ,

Therapist1 said...

Anyone know how many of those service personnel were gay?

Combat NFO said...

Words marked.  There are thousands of gay people in the military.  Your lack of respect for those that serve is noted, along with your words.

UltimaRatioRegis said...

Oh cut the crap, CNFO.  What OM is referring to is an emasculation of the US Military, for much the same reasons the Dutch turned into tapioca.  Deliberately de-emphasize the aggressive nature of the type A male personality that is so crucial to the spirit of a fighting force, and you weaken the entire structure. Maybe you need to climb down and hump a mortar plate for a bit.

Back in 1996, I had a Lance Corporal and a Corporal I put in for Marine of the Quarter and NCO of the Quarter, respectively.  The LCpl was an FO in a Sgt billet who took two PFCs onto the hill for a 15-day FIREX and taught them to be reliable and competent FOs.  While still performing the FO job himself.  The Cpl was a section chief, in a SSgt billet, with half his crew right out of school.  By the third day his crew was performing so well that they became the base piece for the battery and got praise from the Chief of Smoke, who hated everybody.

The winners of MOQ and NCOQ were two females in the admin shop, a LCpl and Sgt doing admin in garrison while the rest of us were in the field executing 24-hr ops.  The award happened to coincide with Women's History Month.  The speech was all about how admin was a critically important function and how these two Marines worked long hours in the S1 and were an inspiration to everyone.

What impact does that have on the FO and the Section Chief?  And the rest of the Marines who see an exceptional job well done ignored? 

I put both Marines in for NAMs, but admin lost both submissions.