Category Archives: GWOT

Newer Images of 9/11

Published on YouTube September 7, 2011 and shot by a volunteer firefighter.

Also, a tribute from Lex on Heather Lee Smith, a friend of one of our Lexicans

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Filed under GWOT, History, Terrorism

Hard to read

By lex, on September 11th, 2007

Long, and heartrending. Difficult.

But necessary:

At fifteen seconds after 9:41 A.M., on September 11, 2001, a photographer named Richard Drew took a picture of a man falling through the sky — falling through time as well as through space. The picture went all around the world, and then disappeared, as if we willed it away. One of the most famous photographs in human history became an unmarked grave, and the man buried inside its frame — the Falling Man — became the Unknown Soldier in a war whose end we have not yet seen. Richard Drew’s photograph is all we know of him, and yet all we know of him becomes a measure of what we know of ourselves. The picture is his cenotaph, and like the monuments dedicated to the memory of unknown soliders everywhere, it asks that we look at it, and make one simple acknowledgment.

That we have known who the Falling Man is all along.

There are no pictures. But you should nevertheless bear witness, you owe it to yourself.

After all, the Falling Man is you.

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Filed under Best of Neptunus Lex, by lex, Carroll "Lex" LeFon, Carroll LeFon, GWOT, Lex, Politics and Culture, Terrorism

2 Dates Etched In My Memory

Are November 22, 1963 and September 11th, 2001. I can tell you exactly where I was on both of those dates and what I was doing. On the morning of September 12th, I was walking my dog as normal and I could sense that something was different. It took me a moment, but I realized it was the sky.

It was the absolute quietness of the sky. Not a plane could be seen or heard. The FAA had grounded all civilian air traffic the day before.

Two years later, I visited Manhattan for the first time in my life. Stayed at a little hotel at midtown run by Catholic nuns.

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Filed under GWOT, In Memoriam

By the numbers

By lex, on June 2nd, 2008

As promised in their political campaign last year, Oz packs it for combat forces ashore, taking 550 diggers – men you’d want alongside in a fight – along with. We’ll miss ‘em:

Australian troops ended their main combat mission in Iraq on Sunday, handing over their responsibilities in southern Iraq to U.S. forces.

An estimated 550 Australian troops, who served in a training and backup role to Iraqi forces in the provinces of Dhi Qar and Muthanna, made the transfer in a ceremony at Camp Talil outside Nasiriya, said Capt. Chris Ford, a British military spokesman in southern Iraq.

In the Af, a 44-year old British brigadier claims 7000 Taliban heads over the last two years, along with a great many senior leadership in recent months:

The new “precise, surgical” tactics have killed scores of insurgent leaders and made it extremely difficult for Pakistan-based Taliban leaders to prosecute the campaign, according to Brig Mark Carleton-Smith.

In the past two years an estimated 7,000 Taliban have been killed, the majority in southern and eastern Afghanistan. But it is the “very effective targeted decapitation operations” that have removed “several echelons of commanders”.

Some of those strikes were executed by SOF, including the SBS raid on Mullah Dadullah. Others have been executed by the Brits using American-made MQ-9 Reapers. Hundreds of which occupy the airspace over Iraq and Afghanistan over the course of a day.

We may or may not be able to win the war on terror just by killing bad guys. From Tom Rick’s Inbox (WaPo):

The numbers here, sent to me at my request by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers in Iraq, pretty much speak for themselves. This chart shows a major improvement in the safety of driving around Iraq with the U.S. Army. In January 2007, about 1 in 5 convoys in Iraq was attacked. By the end of last year, that ratio had fallen to 1 in 33. By April, it was just 1 in 100…

Al-Qaeda in Iraq ** has come under severe and prolonged attack over the last 12 months, with many of its leaders killed or captured. Finally, the redeployment of U.S. troops out into the Iraqi population, along with a rise in the quality of Iraqi forces, has helped produce better intelligence on the people carrying out roadside bombings.

It’s a good start.

** 08-21-2018 Original link gone; replacement found – Ed.


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Filed under Best of Neptunus Lex, Carroll "Lex" LeFon, Carroll LeFon, GWOT, Iraq, Neptunus Lex

Call Him John

By lex, on July 5th, 2011

An AP report on the man who hunted Osama bin Laden ** through eight years and three CIA directors:

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Cross-Border Violence

By lex, on June 3rd, 2011

In a “chickens home to roost” event, a large number of Taliban militants crossed from Afghanistan into Pakistan to engage in a firefight with local security forces, leaving at least 28 of the latter dead:

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Filed under Afghanistan, Best of Neptunus Lex, by lex, Carroll "Lex" LeFon, Carroll LeFon, GWOT

Once Proud

By lex, on May 21st, 2011

Absence makes the heart grow fond in Iraq, where some citizens – including Shiites who were ruthlessly tyrannized under the ancien regime – are starting to miss Saddam Hussein:

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Filed under Afghanistan, Best of Neptunus Lex, by lex, Carroll "Lex" LeFon, Carroll LeFon, GWOT, Iraq, Lex, Neptunus Lex