That is so hideous. Most sexual assaults in the military do not result in punishment. Most women who make complaints are faced with a command that is either unwilling or unable to help them. They are pressured to drop it for 'the good' -- the same 'good' that allows Prude Cucolo (who apparently never got laid in his life or at least not in the right way) to issue his order.
As with the Senate over the weekend, women's rights and women's needs are always sacrificed for 'the good'. The 'greater' 'good'. Women are the majority in the US and it's hard to think of any other majority that would be so targeted but, look around, a huge number of women are enabling the targeting with their silences as well as with their actions. And to do my part not to be silent, let's note that Cucolo's poor sex life probably has nothing to do with any woman (or man) he might be with. By the way he speaks, there's a strong indication he's a one-thrust Tony. What? That's it? Really? It's over? Really? Honey, there are pills for that. Get a prescription.
Meanwhile Ray Locker, Tom Vanden Brook and Ken Dilanian (USA Today) report on the 'mentor program' (easy money for generals who retire) and how you can be pulled off the tax payer dole for objecting to official policy publicly:
In an investigation published last month, USA TODAY reported that the military employs at least 158 senior mentors, about 80% of whom also have connections to various defense contractors. The revelations prompted Defense Secretary Robert Gates to order a Pentagon review last week. The Senate Armed Services Committee also has begun an investigation, led by Sen. Claire McCaskill, D-Mo.
Sanchez was the U.S. commander in Iraq in April 2004 when a scandal erupted over the treatment of Iraqi detainees by troops at the Abu Ghraib prison. After his Iraq service, Sanchez led the Army's V Corps, based in Germany, though Sanchez has said Abu Ghraib effectively ended his career. In an Oct. 12, 2007, speech in Washington, about a year after he began working as a military mentor, Sanchez blamed the Bush administration for what he called the "nightmare" then unfolding in Iraq.
"There has been a glaring, unfortunate display of incompetence in strategic leadership among our national leaders," Sanchez said. "They have unquestionably been derelict in the performance of their duty. In my profession, these types of leaders would be immediately relieved or court-martialed."
Shortly thereafter, Sanchez was dismissed as a senior mentor, though the decision was never announced. USA TODAY learned of his firing from an April 29, 2008, e-mail from a Joint Forces Command official to four colleagues. The newspaper obtained the e-mail through a request under the federal Freedom of Information Act.
In other news, the Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life has issued a new report entitled "Global Restrictions on Religion" and Iraq finds itself among the top scorers when it comes to social hostilities. [Note: Do not e-mail saying, "Iraq is number one! You should have noted that." It's not. There are outlets reporting -- one example here -- that and they haven't read the study. Iraq is the first country listed under the "Very High" category; however, this note of caution is being ignored by some outlets: "The Pew Forum has not attached numerical rankings to the countries because there are numerous tie scores and the differences between the scores of countries that are close to each other on this table are not necessarily meaningful."] While scoring with other countries as "Very High" when it comes to Social restrictions, it makes the "High" list for government restrictions.
Pamela E. Walck (Savannah Now) reports on Sgt 1st Class Erick Carlson's breakfast of hash browns and scrambled eggs ("It will be his last meal on American soil for months.") as he prepares for his third deployment in Iraq. Mike Clary (Sun-Sentinel) reports on the 1st Battallion of Florida's National Guard's 124th Infantry Regiment's preparation for deploying to Iraq. This includes Sgt Jetaune Kelly who "will miss [daughter] Kemora's second birthday" and Sgt Maj Michael Naugle who will miss "his daughter Kimberly's graduation" from high school. Anamarie Root, wife of 1st Sgt James Root, states, "Most people don't know what it's like to feel that loneliness, the anxiety of having someone deployed."
Scott Fontaine, of McClatchy's News Tribune, is back in Iraq. He reports (here for McClatchy, here for News Tribune):
The man sat crossed-legged on a floor cushion, sipped tea and explained his woes to the soldiers from Fort Lewis. As an Iraqi policeman on the American payroll, he has killed plenty of enemy fighters – and now his enemies are taking revenge.
Al-Qaida in Iraq killed his mother, brother and uncle. The man started the habit of checking under his car each morning. One day last month, he discovered a magnetically attached bomb.
"They are targeting me," he told members of a Fort Lewis Stryker platoon. "The bomb was meant for me and my kids."
Lt. Chris Fradin, a platoon leader with the 4th Battalion, 9th Infantry Regiment, asked the policeman for specific details and took notes. A local sheikh earlier had given Fradin names of men who might have planted the bomb. The policeman provided his own list of possible suspects.
Courage to Resist announces:
Cliff Cornell to be relased early
Successful clemency effort funded by Courage to Resist supporters.
By Courage to Resist. December 21, 2009
Iraq War resister Cliff Cornell was granted a 30 day reduction to his one year jail sentence this week. The Commanding General of Fort Stewart, Georgia knocked off the month in response to a clemency request filed by Cliff’s civilian attorney James Branum of Oklahoma. Cliff is now expected to be released on or about January 16, 2010.
Yesterday's snapshot noted an excerpt from Ron Jacobs' "From Just Cause to Just War" (Dissident Voice) and we'll do so again:
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