General => Climbing NOT (Bitch & moan, Politics) => Topic started by: Admin Al on June 17, 2008, 08:14:36 AM

Title: You could have heard a pin drop.
Post by: Admin Al on June 17, 2008, 08:14:36 AM
When in England at a fairly large conference, Colin Powell was asked by
the Archbishop of Canterbury if our plans for Iraq were just an example
of empire building by George Bush.  He answered by saying, 'Over the
years, the United States has sent many of its fine young men and women
into great peril to fight for freedom beyond our borders.  The only
amount of land we have ever asked for in return is enough to bury those
that did not return.' 

You could have heard a pin drop.

* ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~*

Then there was a conference in France where a number of
international engineers were taking part, including French and American.
  During a break one of the French engineers came back into the room
saying 'Have you heard the latest dumb stunt Bush has done?  He has sent
an aircraft carrier to Indonesia to help the tsunami victims. What does
he intended to do, bomb them?'  A Boeing engineer stood up and replied
quietly, 'Our carriers have three hospitals on board that can
treat several hundred people; they are nuclear powered and can
supply emergency electrical power to shore facilities; they have
three cafeterias with the capacity to feed 3,000 people three meals a
day, they can produce several thousand gallons of fresh water from
sea water each day, and they carry half a dozen helicopters for use
in transporting victims and injured to and from their flight deck.
We have eleven such ships; how many does France have?'

You could have heard a pin drop.


A U.S. Navy Admiral was attending a naval conference that
included Admirals from the U.S., English, Canadian, Australian and
French Navies.  At a cocktail reception, he found himself standing with
a large group of officers that included personnel from most of those
countries.  Everyone was chatting away in English as they sipped their
drinks but a French admiral suddenly complained that, 'whereas Europeans
learn many languages, Americans learn only English.'  He then asked,
'Why is it that we always have to speak English in these conferences
rather than speaking French?'  Without hesitating, the American Admiral
replied 'Maybe it's because  the Brits, Canadians, Aussies and Americans
arranged it so you  wouldn't have to speak German.'

You could have heard a pin drop.


A group of Americans, retired teachers, recently went to France on
a tour.  Robert Whiting, an elderly gentleman of 83, arrived in Paris
by plane.  At French Customs, he took a few minutes to locate his
passport in his carry on.  'You have been to France before, monsieur?'
the customs officer asked sarcastically.  Mr. Whiting admitted that he
had been to France previously.  'Then you should know enough to have
your passport ready.'  The American said, 'The last time I was here,
I didn't have to show it.'  'Impossible.  Americans always have to
show your passports on arrival in France!'  The American senior gave
the Frenchman a long hard look.  Then he quietly explained.  'Well, when
I came ashore at Omaha Beach on D-Day in 1944 to help liberate
this country, I couldn't find any Frenchmen to show it to.'

You could have heard a pin drop.


What Is A Veteran?  A Veteran -- whether active duty, discharged,
retired, or reserve -- is someone who, at one point in his life, wrote a
blank check made payable to 'The United States of America', for an
amount up to and including his life.  That is honor, and there are way
too many people in this country today who no longer understand that fact.
Title: Re: You could have heard a pin drop.
Post by: triclmbr on June 17, 2008, 08:23:32 PM
Thanks Al those are great... 

As a veteran myself, I certainly appreciate the last statement. Thank you.
Title: Re: You could have heard a pin drop.
Post by: Lee on June 17, 2008, 09:16:24 PM
Thanks Al that made my day, Semper Fi, Joe
Title: Re: You could have heard a pin drop.
Post by: Admin Al on June 18, 2008, 04:08:30 PM
ditto Joe
Title: Re: You could have heard a pin drop.
Post by: SCUD on June 20, 2008, 08:52:31 AM
Excellent post Al. A breath of fresh air from the usual diatribe.
Title: Re: You could have heard a pin drop.
Post by: Admin Al on June 20, 2008, 12:54:03 PM
...A breath of fresh air from the usual diatribe.


Title: Re: You could have heard a pin drop.
Post by: jrathfon on June 24, 2008, 06:17:20 PM
Title: Re: You could have heard a pin drop.
Post by: Admin Al on June 25, 2008, 01:08:52 AM

good one, however the gist of the statement seems to be correct, isn't it?

Title: Re: You could have heard a pin drop.
Post by: jrathfon on June 25, 2008, 11:21:05 AM
Yup, Colin Powell said as much, it's just paraphrased, the full text is linked on the snopes page.  In the snopes forum there is a thread on that circulating email.  Basically Colin said as much, but the posters point out that the intent of the email was "french bashing", which I am all for.  Interestingly they pointed out that emails like this one never take into account Quebec and the fact that somewhere around 50% of Canada speaks French.

I for one do appreciate the veteran plug at the end.  I had a "support our troops" magnet ripped off my truck.  I think people don't understand the difference between "support our troops" and "support a false war for capitalism".  I disagree with the war, that doesn't mean I don't appreciate what our troops do for us.  They get sent where the government tells them to go, they have no control over that.  I especially appreciate them being there, cause that means I won't get drafted!
Title: Re: You could have heard a pin drop.
Post by: bag11s on July 01, 2008, 10:48:19 PM
Discounting a few minor periods of isolationism, the United States has pursued a nonstop program of frightful militarized aggression around the world from the moment of its inception. Fundamentally based on the global European expansion of the sixteenth & seventeenth centuries and with an institutionalized guiding principle of entitlement often supported by delusions of manifest destiny (too shameful to put into words) the resolute vector of US foreign policy has been the pursuit of dominance over global resources.

Do not forget that during the nineteenth century, the US military- at the behest of the nation,s burgeoning European population and as directed by their elected civilian leaders- promulgated ruthless decades of war against the Native American tribes. This tremendous land grab led to the accretion of hundreds of thousands of square miles of prime temperate territory from sea to shining sea.

In addition, 19th century American private & naval control of the Atlantic Triangle trade in agricultural resources, slaves, and manufactured products led to the rise of a bourgeois elite awash in wealth, not to mention a present day awash in lingering racial inequalities, poverty, and intractable national guilt.

Twentieth century American militarized expansionism on a global stage can be said to have started in 1898 with the armed annexation of the Philippines, Guam, and Puerto Rico. A steady slate of sometimes vicious US military backed coup d,etats around the world ensued, including the establishment of puppet regimes in various banana Republics in the Americas.

US public disgust of the horrors of senseless mechanized warfare during WWI (essentially a major European conflict) led to an exhausted interwar isolationist period.

WWII ushered in the end of the European & Japanese superpowers, to be replaced by the American and Russian versions. Proxy wars ensued all over the globe as these two nations vied for economic control, ideological domination, natural resource control, and control over human and intellectual resources. Nationalist and rebel movements in the failed European colonies became the battlefield surrogates in this cold, cold conflict. American and Russian arms and direct military training via thousands of both nations, military personnel spread to the most remote reaches of human occupation.

These proxy wars and their progeny have raged for fifty years, with many lingering hotspots still smoldering. American and Russian automatic weapons and landmines kill thousands world-wide every year. Many brutal conflicts in Africa became entrenched long-term quagmires as the opposing factions exploited the munificent supplies of arms pouring into these countries.

Meantime, the US and Russia embarked on a string of toe-to-toe belligerent military adventures- in Korea, Viet Nam, Afghanistan, and Iraq. Collateral destabilizing spillover to adjacent nations has created some of the worst conflicts as witnessed in the destruction of Cambodia by the Khmer Rouge.
Post WWII, in the Middle East the CIA staged complex coups in Iran in the forties, involving the Shah, and in the fifties, forged a strong military security pact with the Saudis. These tactics were part of an attempt to wrest control of this region from the Iranians, British, and Russians to secure hegemony over the world,s major energy reserves.

For a long time, Americans have enjoyed a grossly improper percentage of global resource consumption and have taken an incredible ride. The rising Chinese, Indian, Islamic, and Third World economies are going to continue to consume an ever rapidly increasing slice of the pie. American control over, and exploitation of, global resources is waning. Maybe we are also learning that the cost of open ended multi-year military operations is devastating to our national economy, and to our individual household economies.

American military policy during the Bush years has been an unmitigated disaster. Jingoistic in the extreme, the policy is so short sighted as to be laughable, if it were not really happening. I hate being lied to by our government in order to justify American military aggression.

Approximately 90,000 documented civilian deaths in Iraq since this war began. These are men, women, and children, families in fact- not so different from our own.

What we have required our military to do in Iraq is immoral and is not right.

Title: Re: You could have heard a pin drop.
Post by: triclmbr on July 02, 2008, 06:35:47 AM

What we have required our military to do in Iraq is immoral and is not right.

Maybe you should "walk a mile in their shoes"  I spent two tours in Iraq and I can assure you that nothing I did was in any way immoral.
Title: Re: You could have heard a pin drop.
Post by: Admin Al on July 02, 2008, 08:40:31 AM
"What we have required our military to do in Iraq is immoral and is not right. "

I don't altogether disagree with this. most wars are driven from the top down. in this case it was/is a politically driven thing by the Bush administration that I disagree with. HOWEVER I feel about our president and his administration, I have nothing but the UTMOST respect for the men and women that are doing the heavy lifting. they deserve our support. we should never allow what happened to the Vietnam vets happen here.

Title: Re: You could have heard a pin drop.
Post by: Pharmboy on July 02, 2008, 10:39:56 AM
I've been very involved with a local American Legion Post since 1991.  During that time I have gotten to know a lot of combat vets from WWII through to some of our returning vets.  There is a very sad and disturbing similarity between the Vietnam Vets and those returning now.  I don't think I can describe it clearly, but there is something in their eyes that is different from other vets.  The closest way to describe my observation is that they look "haunted".
Title: Re: You could have heard a pin drop.
Post by: Lee on July 03, 2008, 06:40:41 PM
I see where you are coming from bag11, America doesn't have the best past but to say what he troops are doing over in Iraq might be a stretch.  I did a tour in Fallujah with the Marines two years ago and we never did anything like what you describe.  Despite how bad it got and how many of us got killed and injured, we never had a breach in discipline that led to any war crimes or anything immoral.  I have hundreds of friends who echo the same story.  I find it disturbing to find how the media in America focuses so intensely on any thing bad that happens over there and then completely glosses over the incredible successes that we've made in the last year.  We are succeeding and what hurts me the most as a vet is the phony support that we get at home.  Yeah everyone is proud of me, but not of what I've done.  True there have been a lot of civilian deaths in Iraq and in my experience almost all of them were due to IEDs going off near crowds of children, foriegn insurgents killing families and beheading police officers.  Don't be fooled into thinking that the people that I fought over there were local boys fighting off the American Imperialists, they were well trained foriegn fighters who will take any chance to kill an infidel, period, despite how many little Iraqi children they kill.  Most media sources make it seem that we are the ones causing all these casualties which is so far from the truth.  I can only speak for the Marine Corps, but we are so well trained and disciplined and we follow the ROE's.  The insurgents DON'T.  I blame a lot of the casualties on our being split here in America.  Our military is still very strong but we have become very weak back home and we are going to pay for it, the extremists eat this up.  None of what you've written is new to me, I've read Zinn and Chomsky, too.  Then recently I read "Infidel" and "America Alone" and I'm starting to see things a lot differently.  I am going to remain in the reserves and I look forward to my next deployment.  We can continue to disagree with how we ended up in Iraq, but we are there and there is only one acceptible way out and it is NOT early withdrawel.  That aside everyone please have a nice and safe 4th of July, and please forgive my misspellings(I'm just a dumb grunt)  Joe
Title: Re: You could have heard a pin drop.
Post by: DLottmann on July 03, 2008, 07:32:35 PM
well said Joe, ooh rah.

Happy 4th everyone.