Yesterday Joshua Fueston was buried in Bellingham, Washington. Isabelle Dills (Bellingham Herald) reports his "flag-draped coffin" was carried in the procession on "an antique fire truck" because "Fueston had wanted to become a firefighter." Lena Sun (Washington Post) reported last week that the 19-year-old appeared to intentionally take his own life by stepping in front of a train September 13th. Isabelle Dills notes he was an Iraq War veteran and that, "Fueston announced his intentions on his Facebook page twice on Friday, Sept. 11, and once on Saturday, Sept. 12. In the postings, he wrote about being treated at Walter Reed Army Medical Center and that he was upset about an injury that prevented him from returning to his fellow soldiers overseas. Worried friends attempted to get hold of Fueston after his postings."
His funeral came a day after the VA released a report on suicide prevention which Kimberly Hefling (AP) states "appears" to suggest improvements. There is none. There's nothing journalistically wrong with the report Hefling filed and she's one of the few reporters consistently covering veterans' issues; however, I'm just not in the mood this morning. I'm not in the mood for a lazy press (I'm not referring to Hefling, I'm referring to the press body) which can't get off it's collective ass to do much of anything. The VA, for example, farmed out (outsourced) work on their suicide hotlines. The numbers on that project do not add up. That was obvious months ago in a Congressional hearing. Why hasn't the press followed up on that or anything else? Are we really going to wait until 2010 to find out, oops, those figures were inflated. (The figures are inflated. The VA has LIED to Congress regarding that program, putting forth 'optimistic' numbers which are incorrect and which they knew were incorrect. And by outsourcing the project, they believe they've hidden the problem because the 'progress' on the project is in private hands and the VA circumvents -- or thinks they can -- open records requests with that excuse.)
Yesterday's snapshot covered the latest song-and-dance before Congress by the VA. You can click here for some of Kimberly Hefling's coverage of the hearing. And here's another AP story on the VA that's news . . . if you slept repeatedly through Congressional hearings. ("Slept repeatedly through" refers to the press. Not the public. I'll get depressed over the public's apathy when they're aware of the problem -- as the press is -- and makes the decision to ignore it -- as the press does.)
The Olympian notes ceremonies for fallen soldiers at Fort Lewis. The first one this morning at ten is for Sgt Andrew H. McConnel and 1st Lt David T. Wright who were killed while serving in Afghanistan on September 14th and the second, beginning at 2:30 this afternoon, is for Staff Sgt Todd W. Selge and Spc Jordan M. Shay who were killed while serving in Iraq on September 3rd. Scott Fontaine (News Tribune) reports on a ceremony yesterday for "1,000 soldiers from Fort Lewis" who "will be spread across Iraq and work largely in the shadows, collecting and analyzing an array of intelligence."
No, the Iraq War is not ending but Aging Socialite sure loves letting 'people' pimp that lie at her Cat Litter Box. Take the very ugly Chris Weigant who terms Iraq "The Forgotten War" and, just when you think he might have something worth saying, you grasp he's Just Another Whore on the Obama Train. The problem with "forgotten" Iraq is that Barry's not using it well. See, he can announce in 2010 that "70,000 troops from Iraq" will be removed and that would -- get that Arianna let's this s**t go up at her site -- mitigate criticism of Barry O on Afghanistan. Golly, Chris, can you get your tongue out of Barack's ass long enough to add? Over 130,000 US troops are currently in Iraq. You really think dropping down to 60,000 will silence any of the (relatively small number of) voices speaking out? If Barry O can just do this, Chris Weigant types with one hand while searching for his cock with the other (keep looking, it's got be there somewhere), "This will change the entire discussion about troops and about Afghanistan . . . This muddies the waters, no matter where you stand on Afghanistan." Little Chrissy insists that there is a timeline for withdrawal . . . and that Bully Boy Bush supplied it.
Chris Weigant is another dumb ass who needs to sit his ass down and stop trying to talk about concepts he has no grasp of. Really. This nonsense of "I read me my paper and I know me about da law" needs to end right damn now. Chris, like so many other would-be gas bags (gas bags have to be better looking than Chris is to get on TV), doesn't know s**t and I have no more sympathy for these little liars who think they can break down contract law and only reveal their rank stupidity. The SOFA does not mandate that US troops leave. The SOFA covers the US presence for three years. The way the UN mandate covered the US presence yearly. The UN mandate expired each year. Didn't mean US forces left. Just meant it had to be renewed for them to remain in Iraq.
Little Whore Chris jizzes on himself and, no doubt, eats it up as he feels he has the 'answer'. Remove a little over half the US troops from Iraq (he says nothing about contractors but whores rarely do) and that will clamp down on criticism of the Afghanistan War. Yes, some people are that stupid and, yes, some people are that pathetic. Chris Weigant is patholigical. The lives of Afghans and Iraqis does not mean s**t to him. His only concern is how to help Democrats win seats in 2010 and Barry, in 2012, keep the White House. Shame on him and shame on Arianna for allowing that s**t to go up at her site. The only thing the Social Climber had going for her was that she remained consistent on the Iraq War. Now she's allowed that to be watered down.
Little known fact, Arianna emerges in the public eye in the eighties and most people assume that's when she first tried to be a social climber. No. In the early seventies, she was hitting the couches of Mike and Merv. And a friend wrote a very telling and hilarious letter about her. The friend was on a panel with 'feminist' Arianna that addressed women's equality. No, Arianna wasn't for it.
While Chrissy passes out from self-pleasure, Missy Ryan tries to address reality in "A year on, the question remains: Is the war in iraq over?" (Reuters):
On Aug. 19, almost 100 people were killed at the Foreign and Finance Ministries in two huge truck bombings. People were cut down at their desks or on their way to work.
The question remains, 14 months after Dean’s blog, whether or not the Iraq war is over. What will that mean? Is the war over when the world’s attention shifts to another conflict hundreds of miles away? Is the war over when U.S. casualties plummet and it’s suddenly safer for them in Amara than in some American cities? Will national elections in January cement the positive trajectory of the past 18 months, or will they re-ignite violence and undermine hopes for a secure, stable Iraq?
I don’t have a good answer to those questions. I know it would be hard to tell the families of those killed on Aug. 19 -- dubbed "Bloody Wednesday" by Iraqis – or the 126,000 U.S. troops still stationed here that the war is over.
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