Monday morning mixed bag (and of course, Open Thread)

Victorian posy of pansiesIt turns out that a long-time friend of mine is related by marriage to Matt Axelson, who died during Operation Redwings.  As you recall, Marcus Luttrell memorialized Operation Redwings in Lone Survivor: The Eyewitness Account of Operation Redwing and the Lost Heroes of SEAL Team 10.  A movie based upon the book opened this past weekend.

My friend heard from her relative some months ago that the movie — which family members got to preview — is really good.  Not only is the box office reflecting the movie’s quality, the movie is also driving the Left nuts for daring to be an American movie that shows our military as the good guys and the Taliban as the bad guys.

Incidentally, I do not include Jake Tapper in my scorn for the media.  There’s been a kerfuffle about him asking Luttrell whether the latter felt a sense of lives wasted when he looked back on that event.  I thought that was a legitimate question in light of the way that Obama, repeating Vietnam, has deliberately lost the war for Americans.

I will not be seeing the movie.  I found the book disturbing enough, without having actors graphically replay it on the big screen.  Not only am I too cowardly to fight, I’m too cowardly even to watch a fake version of a real fight.

Go here for more on the Left’s strident opposition to a factually accurate movie that is American-friendly and Taliban-unfriendly.

***

Although I didn’t blog about it, I didn’t miss the fact that Ariel Sharon, after spending so many years in a coma, finally died.  He was a fierce warrior, always fighting on behalf of his beloved Israel.  I think his gamble with Gaza was a failure, but that failure certainly could have resulted because Sharon was struck down before he could optimize that gamble.  Bibi is good, but he’s never had Sharon’s ferocity nor do Israelis trust Bibi the way they did Sharon. When all is said and done, Ariel Sharon was a larger-than-life, frequently heroic figure who never acted without considering Israel’s welfare.

I’ve also stayed away from commenting on Obama’s tepid response to Sharon’s passing.  However, Keith Koffler did such a good write-up about Obama’s praising Sharon with faint damns that I must pass it on to you.

I’m not surprised at Obama’s dry eyes, of course.  Obama always wears his heart on his sleeve when people die.  Maggie Thatcher, who stared down communism and saved England’s economy?  Eh.  Hugh Chavez, whose hardcore socialism impoverished his country and began the work of turning it into a police state?  Obama wept.  Chris Kyle, who bravely and effectively served his country in war and in peace?  His name never passed Obama’s lips.  Whitney Houston, a drugged-out singer who wasted a God-given talent?  Obama and the missus were beside themselves.  When I look at Obama and Mooch-elle, I always want to copy Groucho Marx by singing “Whatever you’re for, I’m against it!”

***

In Mexico, the drug cartels and the police forces are brothers in arms.  The citizens suffer terribly — except in Michoacan, where a vigilante army has risen up and is battling both cartels and corrupt police.

Or maybe not.  It’s entirely possible that the vigilantes are merely hired guns for a rival cartel.

I tend to believe that counter narrative.  Why?  Because violent, drug-ridden Mexico has some of the strictest gun-control laws on the books.  If these vigilantes have guns, they didn’t get them legally.  The only guns are in the hands of the government and the drug-runners.

Imagine, just for a moment, how different it would be for honest citizens in Mexico if they had a Second Amendment….

***

My friend at To Put It Bluntly has written a post examining the hypocrisy behind the California Supreme Court’s decision to allow an illegal alien to get a law license in California.  It’s not just that this guy has sworn to uphold the laws of the United States and the State of California, despite the fact that he is the living embodiment of their violation.  It’s also that the tactic the Supreme Court used to arrive at its PC conclusion reveals just how much the government has its thumb on the scale when it comes to deciding who can and cannot work.  Too often, in modern America, the pursuit of happiness doesn’t include a right to honest employment without permission from the government.

***

If you’re at all curious as to just how bad John Kerry is when it comes to the Middle East and Israel’s security, he’s this bad.  And if you want to know just how badly Obama dropped the ball on Iran’s nuclear ambitions, he dropped it this badly.  (Alternatively, if you believe as I do that Obama has deliberately decided to pivot away from Israel and towards Iran, he did a great job pivoting.)

***

And for your reading pleasure, leadership buzz words in the Marines.

 

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  • Mike Devx

    Jake Tapper asked the comment/question of Mr. Luttrell in a way that was ignorant:
    “It seemed senseless. I don’t mean to disrespect in any way but it seemed senseless, all of these wonderful people who were killed for an op that went wrong.”
     
    Read the link to see how wonderfully Mr. Luttrell answered the “question”.  In the book, he agonized over the terrible cost in lives of the failed operation.   In the interview with Tapper, he glossed over an important fact: It was the destructive Rules Of Engagement that in great part led to the disaster.  As bad as it sounds to many of not in the military, once they’d been discovered, the correct action was to kill the three herders and then immediately withdraw.  It’s highly likely that none of the four would have died, and also highly likely that under the resulting exfiltration, none of the dead in the helicopter would have died (All 14 (?) died in the attempted emergency rescue, remember).
     
    There have got to be different rules of engagement for ops forces dropped behind the lines, in enemy territory.  These four soldiers were certain they would be judged guilty and put in prison if they killed the three herders.   They let them go… and the horror began, as a result.
     

    • http://bookwormroom.com Bookworm

      I stand corrected, Mike.  I read the book years ago and had forgotten about that Rules of Engagement debate they had before making their fatal decision.  I’m still inclined to give Tapper a pass, if only because, in a totally, horribly biased media world, he’s a decent man — and he’s got a bully pulpit at ABC (it’s ABC, right?).  The MSM may be collapsing, but the last presidential elections have shown it’s still a force to be reckoned with, and decent journalists (barring a few slip-ups) are still to be cherished.

    • http://ymarsakar.wordpress.com Ymarsakar

      “These four soldiers were certain they would be judged guilty and put in prison if they killed the three herders.   They let them go… and the horror began, as a result.”
       
      The more human option would have simply been to break their legs and arms. That way they can’t operate radios nor run to a place to call in mortar strikes, until the team has left.
       
      In a world ruled by American top down authority and hierarchy, generally humanism gives way to bureacracy. And that means someone will pay the price down the chain, whether it is enemy civilians and militia personnel, or our own personnel. Someone will pay, but it will never be the Left ruling at the top that pays.
       
      Any more than the rulers at the IRS are paying for… anything.

  • SADIE

    The only bit of news you missed is Lois Lerner took the Fifth and fled because of incompetence!
    WASHINGTON — The Federal Bureau of Investigation doesn’t plan to file criminal charges over the Internal Revenue Service’s heightened scrutiny of conservative groups, according to law-enforcement officials, a move that likely will only intensify debate over the politically charged scandal.
    The officials said investigators didn’t find the kind of political bias or “enemy hunting” that would amount to a violation of criminal law. Instead, what emerged during the probe was evidence of a mismanaged bureaucracy enforcing rules about tax-exemption applications it didn’t understand, according to the law-enforcement officials.

  • lee

    I have a feeling that the Hollywood version of Lone Survivor leaves one with the sense that it was all just a waste, and that that is a specific point HOLLYWOOD was trying to make. I read The Cat Scratching Post blog and he said he felt that way after watching it.

  • lee

    The link here doesn’t work:
    If you’re at all curious as to just how bad John Kerry is when it comes to the Middle East and Israel’s security, he’s this bad

    • lee

      Now, it seems to be working!

      • http://bookwormroom.com Bookworm

        Great.  Commentary was having link problems when I went there earlier yesterday, but they seem to have fixed those problems now.

  • http://OgBlog.net Earl

    “Imagine, just for a moment, how different it would be for honest citizens in Mexico if they had a Second Amendment….”
     
    I know what it would be like…..it would be like black people v. the KKK when they had guns and the help of the National Rifle Association.  http://www.thegatewaypundit.com/2012/12/sorry-libs-nra-was-there-to-help-blacks-defend-themselves-from-kkk-democrats-not-the-other-way-around/
     
    THAT is what it would be like!!

  • beefrank

    Matthew’s mother, Donna Axelson, was on Fox News this morning talking about her son, viewing the movie and involvement with the film. The interview evoked both sorrow and anger as I thought of her brave son, the family and current political situation. 

    • http://bookwormroom.com Bookworm

      Many years ago, I had the honor of meeting Donna Axelson.  (It was just a “hello” meeting, nothing more.)  She was and is a beautiful lady who has obviously faced her sorrows with grace and courage.

  • http://ymarsakar.wordpress.com Ymarsakar

    I read a novel in which the Japanese provided their view of American foreign policy. It was not pretty. In fact it triggered a lot of my anti-Leftist reflexive loathing for anti-Americans too. Over time, though, I decided to just trust the Japanese author’s point of view and realism.
    And over time, I came to know about what the Left did in Vietnam, how they killed Diem, the Bay of Pigs, and so on. To the rest of the world, much of American policy does indeed look like a hypocritical sense of justice spouted off by cowards. Because most of those policies were begun by Democrats and failed by Democrats. To the rest of the world, there is no difference between a Democrat, an anti patriotic anti American American, or a Republican patriot. I then started blaming the Left for most of the world’s anti American perspectives, which is true in more ways than one.
    However, recently, a different form of acceptance for anti-Americanism came up under Obama. This is where the only option you are given as a patriot is to pull a Von Stauffenberg. Your nation’s leadership is controlled by evil people and the only way to stop the sins of evil from killing everyone in your nation is to either turn rebel, traitor, or dissident. Then there’s the non gold standard rate of inflation people use to empower themselves, which started around the FDR administration. That was used to fund military expansion and is the result of why Europe is a bunch of parasites right now. Much of what we spent in the Cold War against Russia, was only because Russia wouldn’t have become a Soviet superpower without American gold and funding. Even if we didn’t know about stuff like this, the rest of the world does know about it, in a fashion.
    AQ is coming back in Iraq, well funded and better armed. Meanwhile, Obama regime was selling weapons to AQ in Libya and probably Syria as well. Coincidence? Are Americans not fighting the exact same problem that Americans created? What kind of foreign policy would you call this, exactly. Stupid? Hypocritical? Counter productive? Airheaded sense of justice backed up by cowardice?
    America moves in, sells a bunch of military stuff to a nation, and puts that nation into debt, either reliant on the political or military advantages of good relations with America. A domestic industry is not allowed to create US military machines, it has to be imported. Eventually, when the nation tries to break away from US policies, it’s met by the US State Department. Given the way the IRS works on Americans, I wouldn’t want to deal with the US State Department on uneven relations from a foreign stand point.
    If you try your best to save your nation, you’ll have a Jimmy Carter forcing Rhodesia to fall apart. If you try your best to liberate your nation of Cuba from the commies that Americans funded for several years in WWII, JFK will make sure you die without the air support you were promised. If you try to defend the nation of Iraq against foreign terrorists, Obama will make sure those foreign terrorists are armed with weapons bought using American money.
     
    From a certain perspective, the Japanese author’s rendition of American foreign policy is actually more accurate than what most patriotic citizens of America would normally hear about.