Today is the first day I won’t be able to wish him a “Happy Birthday” over the phone via FaceTime, or the Stone-Age method of actually calling. It’s been a very strange experience. We had the standard father-son relationship with hunting trips when we could, talked about life during down times, and of course all things aviation/Navy related. We shared stories and asked what was different and how he did this or I did that. I had hoped to take him in a helicopter for one of his birthdays or as a Christmas gift to show him what flying really is! Joking of course, I just had to give him and his jet buddies a playful jab. As I continue to learn more about what goes into being an aviator, ground jobs and working with other military branches, I find myself wanting to pick up the phone to call him for guidance or just to complain about the day and hear “how it used to be in my time”. I’ll never forget the expertise and words of wisdom he imparted on me in regards to family, friends, and work. I hope to some day be half the man he was. I would like to end with my father’s favorite quote, modified slightly, from Gladiator, “If you find yourself alone, flying in CAVU skies with the sun on your face, do not be troubled. For you are in Elysium, and you’re already dead!” Happy Birthday Old Man! *Raises a pint of Guinness and a shot of Jameson*
Friday November 9th is my dad’s birthday and in honor of it my mom would like to get a group together of anyone and everyone who is in San Diego and wants to get a beer (Guinness, of course). The plan is Shakespeare’s Pub on 3701 India St.
San Diego, CA 92103 around 5:30PM and planning to stay until 7 or 8PM. We would love it if whoever can swing it can come by, although we understand not everyone lives in San Diego so we aren’t expecting much.
Also, each of us kids plans on posting a little something on the blog for his birthday so we’re hoping you guys might check that out when the time comes.
Thanks always- Kat
05-23-20 I thought I had gotten all we could get from the Wayback Machine, but I came across a couple more. As to what the “kids” planned on posting, just as 8 years ago, wait and see 😉
And of course the meet at Shakespeare’s was 8 years ago, not this November 9th, although maybe we should have another one in honor of Hizzoner?
Down in Nicaragua, ex-Sandanista Daniel Ortega has won through the ballot box that which he last gained through the gun: The Nicaraguan presidency.
There were a number of people quite happy about the news. Some, like dKos diarist “Rojas” apparently because Ortegas victory was seen as a slap in the face of the Bush administration – this means that the election is an unadulterated good, regardless of other considerations: What hurts Bush helps Rojas, somehow.
As a memo to those who couldn’t get behind Mr. Bush’s Middle Eastern Adventure because 1) they couldn’t grok this whole preventative war concept, or 2) or because that, notwithstanding all of those solid-gold toilets being installed atop the bones of tens of thousands of dead Iraqi children in Saddam’s “Palaces for Me” program, they thought it would be better to “give sanctions a chance” some more, or maybe because 3) Cowboy George was being all butch and unilateral and everything, there is this:
“We are in dire need of you,” al-Qaida in Iraq’s leader said in a chilling audio message released Thursday. “The field of jihad can satisfy your scientific ambitions, and the large American bases (in Iraq) are good places to test your unconventional weapons, whether biological or dirty, as they call them.”
The fugitive terror chief said experts in the fields of “chemistry, physics, electronics, media and all other sciences — especially nuclear scientists and explosives experts” should join his group’s jihad, or holy war, against the West.
I guess you could frame that as “chilling,” if you were so inclined. To me, chilling would be a request for these specialists to go ahead and stay home, that all billets were filled. Don’t call us, we’ll call you.
In the perverse logic of the jihad, al Masri also boasted that 4000 al Qaeda fighters had been killed in Iraq. Which you have to admit is passing strange, given that Iraq is seen by so many people as a “distraction” from the war on terror.
Victor David Hanson gets depressed thinking on Oriana Fallaci, the Pope, and the times we live in:
So, yes, we know the asymmetrical rules: a state run-paper in Cairo or the West Bank, a lunatic Iranian mullah, a grand mufti from this or that mosque, can all rail about infidels, “pigs and apes”, in language reminiscent of the Third Reich—and meet with approval in the Middle East and silence in the West. But for a Westerner, a Tony Blair, George Bush, or Pope Benedict to even hint that something has gone terribly wrong with modern Islam, is to endure immediate furor and worse. In short, no modern ideology, no religious sect of the present age demands so much of others, so little of itself.
Speaking to a crowd at the American Legion Convention in Salt Lake City on Tuesday, SECDEF made what would seem to most of us a set of fairly innocuous remarks on the nature of the war we’re in – even drawing some of the same historical analogies such as would be familiar to those who frequent the milblogs. But joining in the on-going scalp hunt, this is how the AP chose to frame those remarks *:
It’s hard for me as a born and bred, high speed, low drag, strike fighter guy to admit this, but if I was a ground pounder? In a pinch? In a relatively permissive surface-to-air threat environment? I maybe wouldn’t want a Hornet on call. I’d maybe ask for an AC-130, if one was available.
I mean, a 2000 pound bomb leaves an impression, no doubt about it. A couple of them even more so. But one or two big thumps, bad guys die in clumps, but then the air goes home.
Back when the NYT first outed the Bush administration’s legal use of international banking transaction records – thereby rendering the tactic useless – many of us thought that they had finally crossed the line. Others disagreed, saying words to the effect of, there, there, settle down, keep in mind who the bad guys really are – hint: his last name starts with B-U-S-H. And also ends there.
Even while conceding arguendo that the program had helped catch terrorists, these folks said that the people had a right to know if their massive transfers of funds to terrorist organizations was somehow being sniffed out.
Alert reader Jason sends along a link to this series of pictures– maybe someone who reads Russian can tell us where – that I found fascinating.
As a career strike fighter pilot, I couldn’t help but look at the entry way with professional interest. Nestled up against the face of a hillside, well bunkered – it would be a very hard target to successfully hit.
And once you’ve clicked the link, check out the blast hatches within the underground tunnels: Built tough.