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RAPID RESPONSE (Archives)...Daily Commentary on News of the Day
This is a new section.  It will offer fresh, quick reactions by myself to news and events of the day, day by day, in this rapid-fire world of ours.  Of course, as in military campaigns, a rapid response in one direction may occasionally have to be followed by a "strategic withdrawal" in another direction.  Charge that to "the fog of war", and to the necessary flexibility any mental or military campaign must maintain to be effective.  But the mission will always be the same: common sense, based upon facts and "real politick", supported by a visceral sense of Justice and a commitment to be pro-active.  That's all I promise.
GS

Click here to return to the current Rapid Response list


MONDAY through SUNDAY
, September 15 through 30, 2007
GS

FRIDAY through SUNDAY, September 14 through 16, 2007
GS

WEDNESDAY and THURSDAY, September 12 and 13, 2007

The following letter was sent to me as attributed to Jay Leno. If he disavows it, I'll take the credit.  GS
The other day I was reading Newsweek magazine and came across some poll
data I found rather hard to believe.  It must be true given the source,
right?

The Newsweek poll alleges that 67 percent of Americans are unhappy with the 
direction the country is headed and 69 percent of the country is unhappy 
with the performance of the president.  In essence 2/3s of the citizenry 
just ain't happy and want a change.
So being the knuckle dragger I am, I started thinking, ''What we are so
unhappy about?''

Is it that we have electricity and running water 24 hours a day, 7 days a
week?  Is our unhappiness the result of having air conditioning in the
summer and heating in the winter?  Could it be that 95.4 percent of these
unhappy folks have a job?  Maybe it is the ability to walk into a grocery
store at any time and see more food in moments than Darfur has seen in
the last year?

Maybe it is the ability to drive from the Pacific Ocean to the Atlantic
Ocean without having to present identification papers as we move through
each state?   Or possibly the hundreds of clean and safe motels we  would
find along the way that can provide temporary shelter? I guess having
thousands of restaurants with varying cuisine from around the world is just 
not good enough.  Or could it be that when we wreck our car, emergency 
workers show up and provide services to  help all and even send a 
helicopter to take you to the hospital. 
Perhaps you are one of the 70 percent of Americans who own a home.  You 
may be upset with knowing that in the unfortunate case of a fire, a group of 
trained firefighters will appear in moments and use top notch equipment to 
extinguish the flames thus saving you, your family and your belongings. 
 
Or if, while at home watching one of your many flat screen TVs, a burglar 
or prowler intrudes , an officer equipped with a gun and a bullet-proof vest 
will come to defend you and your family against attack or loss.  This all in 
the backdrop of a neighborhood free of bombs or militias raping and 
pillaging the residents. Neighborhoods where 90 percent of teenagers own 
cell phones and computers.
How about the complete religious, social and political freedoms we enjoy
that are the envy of everyone in the world?  Maybe that is what has 67
percent of you folks unhappy.

Fact is, we are the largest group of ungrateful, spoiled brats the world has 
ever seen.  No wonder the world loves the U.S.,  yet has a great disdain for 
its citizens.  They see us for what  we are.  The most blessed people in the 
world who do nothing but complain about what we don't have , and what we 
hate about the country instead of thanking the good Lord we live here.
I know, I know.  What about the president who took us into war and has
no plan to get us out?  The president who has a measly 31 percent approval
rating?   Is this the same president who guided the nation in the dark days 
after 9/11?  The president that cut taxes to bring an economy out of 
recession?   Could this be the same guy who has been called every name in 
the book for succeeding in keeping all the spoiled ungrateful brats safe 
from terrorist attacks?
The commander in chief of an all-volunteer army that is out there 
defending you and me? Did you hear how bad the President is on the news  
or talk show?
Did this news affect you so much, make you so unhappy you couldn't take a
look around for yourself and see all the good things and be glad?

Think about  it......are you upset at the President because he actually
caused you personal pain OR is it because the "Media" told you he was
failing to kiss your sorry ungrateful behind every day.

Make no mistake about it.  The troops in Iraq and Afghanistan have
volunteered to serve, and in many cases may have died for your freedom.
There is currently no draft in this country.  They didn't have to go.

They are able to refuse to go and end up with either a ''general''
discharge, an ''other than honorable'' discharge or, worst case scenario, 
a ''dishonorable'' discharge after a few days in the brig.
So why then the flat-out discontentment in the minds of 69 percent of
Americans?  Say what you want but I blame it on the media.  If it bleeds 
it leads and they specialize in bad news.  Everybody will watch a car crash 
with blood and guts.  How many will watch kids selling lemonade at the 
corner?  The media knows this and media outlets are for-profit 
corporations.
They offer what sells , and when criticized, try to defend their actions by 
"justifying" them in one way or another. Just ask why they tried to allow a 
murderer like O.J. Simpson to write a book about how he didn't kill his 
wife, but if he did he would have done it this way......Insane!
Stop buying the negativism you are fed everyday by the media. Shut off the
TV, burn Newsweek, and use the New York Times for the bottom of your bird
cage.  Then start being grateful for all we have as a country. There is
exponentially more good than bad.

We are among the most blessed peoples on Earth and should thank God several 
times a day, or at least be thankful and appreciative."
"With hurricanes, tornadoes, fires out of control, mud slides, flooding,
severe thunderstorms tearing up the country from one end to another, and
with the threat of bird flu and terrorist attacks, "Are we sure this is a
good time to take God out of the Pledge of Allegiance?

MONDAY and TUESDAY
, September 10 and 11, 2007

NEVER FORGET.

SUN
DAY, September 9, 2007
GS

MONDAY through SATURDAY, September 3 through 8, 2007

GS

SUNDAY, September 2, 2007

Here is the first exhibit for the historical review of the Bush - Rumsfeld - Iraq debacle that is beginning...a debacle clearly predicted in this section from the Summer of 2003.  GS

Second British general slams U.S. policy in postwar Iraq
By Adrian Croft Sun Sep 2, 12:22 PM ET

LONDON (Reuters) - U.S. plans for handling Iraq after the 2003 invasion were "fatally flawed," a retired British general said, adding that the U.S. administration had refused to listen to British concerns about postwar planning.

Major General Tim Cross said he had talked to former Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld before the invasion about the need to have international support and enough troops on the ground to reconstruct Iraq.

"He didn't want to hear that message. The U.S. had already convinced themselves that Iraq would emerge reasonably quickly as a stable democracy," Cross told the Sunday Mirror.

"Anybody who tried to tell them anything that challenged that idea -- they simply shut it out," Cross, the most senior British officer involved in planning post-war Iraq, added.

His comments echoed those of General Mike Jackson, head of the British army during the invasion, who was quoted by The Daily Telegraph on Saturday as describing Rumsfeld's approach as "intellectually bankrupt."

The unusually outspoken comments by former top military men follow weeks of commentary, mainly in the U.S. press, suggesting British forces have failed in southern Iraq and are set to flee.

Defense analyst Charles Heyman told Reuters the criticism was surfacing "because everybody realizes this is now a failed policy and they are all casting around for scapegoats."

"Why didn't someone resign at the time and say this is foolish and foolhardy?" he said.

He said the recriminations were not helpful to future military and diplomatic relations between Washington and London, which have traditionally boasted of a "special relationship."

PULLOUT FROM BASRA

British troops are expected to pull out of their last base in Basra city in the next few days to concentrate their presence in an airbase outside the city.

This is part of a plan to hand over control of the province to Iraqi security forces by the end of 2007 and pave the way for an eventual pullout of all British forces.

But the departure of Prime Minister Tony Blair in June to be succeeded by Gordon Brown has raised speculation that Britain could speed up the withdrawal of British forces.

Blair had staked his personal reputation on standing "shoulder-to-shoulder" with the United States.

Heyman said it would be very difficult for the British to withdraw entirely from the airbase as they were needed to protect supply routes and, if necessary, the oil fields.

He said he expected quite large numbers of British troops still to be there six months from now.

William Hague, foreign affairs spokesman for Britain's opposition Conservatives, said on Sunday the generals' concerns strengthened the case for Britain to hold a full-scale inquiry into the origins and conduct of the Iraq war.

The British government has successfully resisted previous opposition calls for an inquiry while British troops are operating in Iraq though it has not ruled one out in the future.

Hague, whose Conservatives supported the Iraq war, said "very crucial mistakes have been made."

Planners "clearly underestimated ... the number of troops that would be needed for an effective occupation force in Iraq (and) they clearly made a mistake in the immediate disbandment of the Iraqi army," he told Sky News.

Rumsfeld resigned last year after becoming a focal point for criticism of the U.S. administration's handling of the unpopular Iraq war.

SATURDAY, September 1, 2007
GS


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