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Saturday, December 31, 2005

Happy New Year Everyone!!!

From my house to yours...
May each and every one of you have a very nice and SAFE New Year...
(Be careful out there tonight and be sure to eat a lot of Black Eyed Peas tomorrow... Ham too... Ohhh God... Hot Apple Cobbler Pie with a scoop of ice cream on top-- Now we’re talking!!!)
HAPPY NEW YEAR my friends!!!!!!

AubreyJ.........

>> Oh Yeah... Our friend Amy Proctor put together a Salute to Our Troops. Be sure to check it out... It is really very well done and just might put a tear in your eye...
Click ‘HERE’ to go and check it out at her Blog...)

President’s Weekly Radio Address

“2005 has been a year of strong progress toward a freer, more peaceful world and a more prosperous America. This year we watched the Iraqi people defy the terrorists and suicide bombers and hold three successful elections, voting to choose the only constitutional, democratic government in the Arab world. We also saw the people of Afghanistan elect a democratic parliament in a nation that only a few years ago was ruled by the Taliban.”
President George W. Bush
Weekly Radio Address
December 31, 2005
Read more of the President’s Address at
The White House

DoD Identifies Army Casualty

No. 1342-05 December 31, 2005
DoD Identifies Army Casualty

The Department of Defense announced today the death of a soldier who was supporting Operation Iraqi Freedom.
Pfc. George A. Lutz, II, 25, of Virginia Beach, Va., died in Fallujah, Iraq, on Dec. 29, when his dismounted patrol was attacked by enemy forces using small arms fire. Lutz was assigned to the Army's 9th Psychological Operations Battalion, 4th Psychologial Operations Group, U.S. Army Civil Affairs and Psychological Operations Command, Fort Bragg, N.C.
For further information related to this release, contact Army Public Affairs at (703) 692-2000.

Friday, December 30, 2005

Assad could have prevented the murder of Rafik Hariri

Syrian President Bashar Assad could have prevented the murder of the former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri... so says former Syrian Vice President Abed al-Halim Khadem......
Read more on topic at:
>> The Jerusalem Post
Former Syrian VP: Dangerous things were said to Hariri

National Security Agency Leak Probe Opens

"The fact is that Al Qaeda's playbook is not printed on page one... And when America's is, it has serious ramifications."
Trent Duffy- White House spokesman
December 30, 2005

Read more on topic at:
>> FoxNews.com......
Justice Department Opens NSA Leak Probe

Baghdad Grows... Insurgency Weakens

"When I fly around Baghdad these days, I see the city expanding in large numbers of houses being built on the edges of the city in nearly every direction."
Army Maj. Gen. William G. Webster Jr.
Commander of Multinational Division Baghdad

December 30, 2005
Read more on topic by Gerry J. Gilmore at DoD...

Baghdad Grows While Insurgency Weakens, U. S. General Says

DoD Identifies Army Casualty

1340-05 December 30, 2005
DoD Identifies Army Casualty

The Department of Defense announced today the death of a soldier, who was supporting Operation Iraqi Freedom.
Spc. Aaron M. Forbes, 24, of Oak Island, N.C., died in Baghdad, Iraq, on Dec. 28, when an improvised explosive device detonated near his HMMWV during combat operations. Forbes was assigned to the 1st Battalion, 67th Armored Regiment, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division, Fort Hood, Texas.
For further information related to this release, contact Army Public Affairs at (703) 692-2000.

Thursday, December 29, 2005

Photo for the Day- December 29, 2005

U.S. Army Lt. Col. Scott Wuestner, right, of Command Task Force Thunder passes the colors to Iraqi Lt. Col. Salahaddin Abdul Somad Hogar of the 3rd Battalion, 3rd Brigade, 2nd Iraqi Army Division, during a change of responsibility ceremony in Makhmur, Iraq, Dec. 27, 2005. Wuestner is the commander of the 4-11th Field Artillery. (Courtesy 0fDoD)
DoD photo by......
Spc. Clydell Kinchen, U.S. Army.
AubreyJ says: I for one just love seeing these kinds of photos...

No nuclear talks with Iran

Russia's Security Council said Thursday it had not held any nuclear negotiations with Iran, denying Western media reports...
Read in full at
RIA Novosti...
No nuclear talks with Iran - official

DoD Identifies Army Casulaty

No. 1399-05 December 29, 2005
DoD Identifies Army Casulaty

The Department of Defense announced today the death of a soldier, who was supporting Operation Enduring Freedom.
1st Sgt. Tobias C. Meister, 30
, of Jenks, Okla., died south of Asadabad, Afghanistan on Dec. 28, when an improvised explosive device detonated near his HMMWV during combat patrol operations. Meister was assigned to the Army Reserve's 321st Civil Affairs Brigade, San Antonio, Texas.
For further information related to this release, contact Army Public Affairs at (703) 692-2000.

Breaking News from American Forces Press Service

Acting Deputy Defense Secretary Gordon England has relinquished his post as Navy secretary, Pentagon officials announced.
Details will follow shortly from the American Forces Press Service.

UPDATE...
>> Acting Deputy Defense Secretary Relinquishes Top Navy Post
Acting Deputy Defense Secretary Gordon England has relinquished his post as secretary of the Navy, Defense Department officials announced today.

He will continue to serve as acting deputy secretary of defense, officials said.
England has served as Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld's deputy since May, when former Deputy Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz left the Pentagon to head up the World Bank.

Over two terms as Navy secretary, England served a total of 48 months. His terms were separated by his service as the first deputy secretary of the Homeland Security Department. For the past eight months, he has served in both the Navy post and as acting deputy secretary of defense.

"It has been a profound honor to serve with the magnificent men and women of the United States Navy and Marine Corps," England said in a statement issued by the Pentagon. "I am most privileged to be able to continue serving our armed forces as the deputy to Secretary Rumsfeld.”

Navy Undersecretary Dionel M. Aviles will serve as acting Navy secretary effective today. Donald Winter, who was confirmed by the Senate, last month, will be sworn in as the 74th secretary of the Navy on Jan. 3.
(Above courtesy of DoD - American Forces Press Service)

Iraq: Water Purification and Bottling Plant opens - Tal Afar Water Network Completed

>> 'Army Water' Makes Debut in Balad, Baghdad
You can call it "Army water" or "No-name water," but whatever you call it, servicemembers here will stay hydrated while keeping soldiers and civilian truckers safer. Bottled water is a mainstay of life in this theater, and the 3rd Corps Support Command has opened a Water Purification and Bottling Plant at the massive logistical area here.
Read more on topic
HERE.
>> Tal Afar Sees Progress with Water Network Completed
Workers have completed the water network in Tal Afar, Iraq... This was an $85,000 project that improved the water supply of 115 homes. "This project is unique, because the work was awarded to a state-owned contractor," said Bill Hood, senior construction manager, USACE Gulf Region North. "It was an opportunity to promote goodwill between the (local) director of water and the USACE by using a local contractor. The final outcome is we received a quality product at lower-than-normal prices."
Read more on topic
HERE.
(Above taken from DoD - American Forces Press Service news releases)

Iraq: U.N. views elections as transparent and credible

A U.N. official announced on Wednesday that he believed the results of the December 15th Iraqi parliamentary election appeared valid. He also said that demands by some groups for a new vote were unjustified...
Read more on topic at:
>> TheDay.com......
Iraq Vote Results Valid

DoD Identifies Army Casualty

No. 6313-05 December 29, 2005
DoD Identifies Army Casualty

The Department of Defense announced today the death of a soldier, who was supporting Operation Enduring Freedom.
Pfc. Jason D. Hasenauer, 21, of Hilton, N.Y., died near Kandahar, Afghanistan, on Dec. 28, when his HMMWV accidentally rolled over during patrol operations. Hasenauer was assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 504th Parachute Infantry Regiment, 82nd Airborne Division, Fort Bragg, N.C.
The incident is under investigation.
For further information related to this release, contact Army Public Affairs at (703) 692-2000.

DoD Identifies Army Casualties

No. 1335-05 December 28, 2005
DoD Identifies Army Casualties

The Department of Defense announced today the deaths of two soldiers who were supporting Operation Iraqi Freedom. They died in Baghdad, Iraq, on Dec. 27, when an improvised explosive device detonated near their dismounted patrol. Both soldiers were assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 8th Infantry Regiment, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division, Fort Hood, Texas.

Killed were:
Spc. Lance S. Sage, 26
, of Hempstead , N.Y.
Pvt. Joshua M. Morberg, 20, of Sparks , Nev.
For further information related to this release, contact Army Public Affairs at (703) 692-2000.

Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Americans Can Make Emergency Preparedness Their New Year’s Resolution

On December 31, 2005, nearly half of all adults in this country will make at least one New Year’s resolution. The U.S. Department of Homeland Security encourages Americans to make a resolution that is both important and easy to keep, preparing for emergencies.

“As 2006 approaches, we continue to look for innovative ways to empower families and businesses to prepare for emergencies,” said Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff. “In this time when Americans are making resolutions to better their lives, the message of preparedness is truly fitting. Making an emergency plan for their home or business is just one of the simple steps individuals can take to help ensure that they are as prepared as possible if an emergency occurs.”


More on Resolve to Be Ready on at READY.GOV >>
(Above courtesy of The U.S. Department of Homeland Security)
AubreyJ says: Now that makes a lot of sense for everyone!!! Your safety is always in your hands first... Be prepared......

Israel Attacks Gaza Fighters

The Israeli military attacked Palestinian fighters launching rockets from the northern Gaza Strip after telling residents to leave by nightfall...
Read more on topic at
Bloomberg.com......

Israel Attacks Gaza Fighters After Telling Residents to Flee

DoD Identifies Army Casualty

No. 1334-05 December 28, 2005
DoD Identifies Army Casualty

Sgt. Dominic R. Coles, 25, of Jesup, Ga., died in Baghdad, Iraq, on Dec. 26, when his HMMWV came under attack during combat operations by enemy forces using small arms fire, rocket-propelled grenades and mortars. Coles was assigned to the 5th Engineer Battalion, Fort Leonard Wood, Mo.
For further information related to this release, contact Army Public Affairs at (703) 692-2000.

DoD Identifies Army Casualties

No. 1333-05 December 28, 2005
DoD Identifies Army Casualties

The Department of Defense announced today the death of two soldiers, who were supporting Operation Iraqi Freedom. They died in Baghdad, Iraq on Dec. 26, when their Apache helicopter collided with another military aircraft in mid-air and then crashed. Both soldiers were assigned to the 1st Battalion, 4th Aviation Regiment, Aviation Brigade, 4th Infantry Division, Fort Hood, Texas.

Killed were:
Chief Warrant Officer Richard M. Salter, 44, of Cypress, Texas.
Chief Warrant Officer Isaias E. Santos, 28, of Ancon, Panama.
The incident is under investigation.
For further information related to this release, contact Army Public Affairs at (703) 692-2000.

DoD Identifies Army Casualty

1332-05 December 28, 2005
DoD Identifies Army Casualty

The Department of Defense announced today the death of a soldier who was supporting Operation Iraqi Freedom.
Spc. Dane O. Carver, 20, of Freeport, Mich., died in Khalidiyah, Iraq on Dec. 26, when his HMMWV came under attack by enemy forces using small arms fire. Carver was assigned to the Army National Guard's 1st Battalion, 125th Infantry Regiment, Saginaw, Mich.
For further information related to this release, contact Army Public Affairs at (703) 692-2000.

America Supports You: Wounded Veterans Get Holiday Boost

The Coalition to Salute America's Heroes has made the holidays brighter for 1,000 global war on terrorism veterans.

The veterans received $500 gift checks that coalition founder and president Roger Chapin calls a small expression of the deep gratitude the coalition's supporters feel for the veterans' tremendous sacrifices. Each of the veterans receiving the checks is classified as being 30 percent or more disabled.

"Given the terrible financial hardships so many disabled vets are facing, I only wish we could do more over this holiday season," Chapin said. American Legion members personally delivered some of the checks, he added.

"The Coalition to Salute America's Heroes has shown its commitment to our injured heroes and their families in many ways," said George Schaefer, chief of the Defense Department's state liaison office and Military Severely Injured Program in the Office of the deputy undersecretary of defense for military communities and family policy. This financial support will be especially appreciated during the holiday season. "

Donations to help provide emergency financial assistance can be made via the Coalition's Web Site, or by calling (888) 44-SALUTE toll-free.

In addition to the holiday gift checks, the coalition continues to work with the DoD in providing emergency financial assistance to disabled servicemen and women, officials said.

"Sadly, a great many wives have had to give up their jobs to become caregivers to their disabled husbands. Many families have lost (a significant portion) of their incomes, resulting in utility cut-offs, car repossessions and home evictions," Chapin said. "Being able to provide emergency financial assistance is especially important to the coalition and the DoD."

The Coalition to Salute America's Heroes is a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization that offers programs benefiting wounded global war on terrorism veterans in a wide variety of needs.

Wounded Hero Emergency Financial Relief provides urgent financial assistance to disabled veterans; Homes for Wounded Heroes offers nearly cost-free, new or renovated disability-adapted homes; Hire a Hero helps prepare and place motivated, qualified veterans in quality jobs; Family Support Network helps relieve financial and emotional burdens facing heroes and their families; and the Road to Recovery Conference and Tribute is an all-expense paid educational and service events for wounded servicemembers and their families.
(Above courtesy of DoD – Written by Samantha L. Quigley - American Forces Press Service)

Tuesday, December 27, 2005

Israeli Jets attack Palestinian Militant Base in Lebanon

Israeli jets launched an attacked on a Palestinian militant group's training base in southern Lebanon near Beirut early Wednesday morning... just hours after an Israeli border town was hit by rocket fire from Lebanon...
Read more on topic at:
>> ABCNews.com......
DEC 28th- Israeli planes hit Lebanon after rocket strike on town

DEC 27th- Israeli Jets Hit Militant Base in Lebanon
>> CNN.com...
DEC 27th-
Israel hits militant camp in Lebanon

US Sanctions Chinese and other Companies

Today the Bush administration announced new sanctions against state-owned Chinese companies that it accused of aiding Iran's missile and chemical programs...
Read more on topic at:
>> NYTimes.com......

U.S. to Punish 9 Companies Said to Help Iran on Arms
>> BusinessWeek.com...
State Dept. sanctions 9 foreign companies

Municipal Workers find Grave dating to Saddam's Rule

Municipal workers in the city of Karbala found remains believed to have been from a mass grave dating back to 1991, when Saddam Hussein's regime put down a Shiite uprising in the south......
Read more on topic at:
>> Gazettetimes.com
Iraqis Find Grave Dating to Saddam's Rule

DoD Identifies Army Casualty

No. 1329-05 December 27, 2005
DoD Identifies Army Casualty

The Department of Defense announced today the death of a soldier who was supporting Operation Iraqi Freedom.
Spc. Sergio Gudino, 22, of Pomona, Calif., died in Baghdad, Iraq, on Dec. 25, when an improvised explosive device detonated near his M1A1 tank during combat operations. Gudino was assigned to the 1st Battalion, 64th Armor Regiment, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 3rd Infantry Division, Fort Stewart, Ga.
For further information related to this release, contact Army Public Affairs at (703) 692-2000.

DoD Identifies Army Casualty

No. 1328-05 December 27, 2005
DoD Identifies Army Casualty

The Department of Defense announced today the death of a soldier who was supporting Operation Iraqi Freedom.
Spc. Anthony O. Cardinal, 20, of Muskegon, Mich., died in Baghdad, Iraq, on Dec. 25, when an improvised explosive device detonated near his HMMWV during combat operations. Cardinal was assigned to the 3rd Squadron, 7th Cavalry Regiment, 2nd Brigade, 3rd Infantry Division, Fort Stewart, Ga.
For further information related to this release, contact Army Public Affairs at (703) 692-2000.

One of Saudi Arabia's most wanted terror suspects captured

One of Saudi Arabia's most wanted terror suspects killed five policemen in drive-by shootings Tuesday before security forces wounded and captured him...
Read in full at Forbes.com......
Saudi Suspect Kills 5 Police, Then Caught

Photo for the Day- December 27, 2005

U.S. Navy Rear Adm. Michael LeFever, center, commander of Disaster Assistance Center Pakistan, shares Christmas dinner with Pakistani officials in Shinkiari, Pakistan, Dec. 25, 2005. U.S. military personnel are in Pakistan to aid victims of the devastating earthquake that struck the region Oct. 8, 2005.
DoD photo by......
Airman 1st Class Geneva Stone, USAF.

Monday, December 26, 2005

Colin Powell Sounds Off on Domestic Surveillance

Colin Powell said Sunday that he believes domestic surveillance of Americans is necessary in the War on Terror and saw nothing wrong with the eavesdropping...
Read more on topic at:
>> AxcessNews.com......
Colin Powell Defends US Domestic Spying Surveillance

“Taking hostages and threatening to kill them brings no honor to Islam, Muslims or to the people of Iraq.”

Iraq- December 22, 2005

Muslim groups around the world are calling for the release of four hostages captured in Baghdad, Iraq.

On Nov. 29, a video attributed to the Swords of Righteousness Brigade was aired on Al Jazeera television. In the piece, this previously-unheard-of group displayed four hostages, Tom Fox of Clearbrook, Virginia, Norman Kember of London, England, James Loney of Toronto, Ontario, Canada, and Harmeet Singh Sooden, a former resident of Montreal, Canada who until recently attended college in Auckland, New Zealand. The terrorists accused the men... members of an anti-war group called The Christian Peacemaker Teams... of being spies, and threatened to kill them unless all Iraqi prisoners are released from Iraqi and American detention facilities by Dec. 8. The deadline was then extended by two days to Dec. 10. The hostages’ condition is presently unknown.

Since the original clip was broadcast, numerous religious organizations have voiced their opposition of this criminal action. The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) held a news conference at its national headquarters in Washington, D.C., stating, in part, “Taking hostages and threatening to kill them brings no honor to Islam, Muslims or to the people of Iraq.” The Montreal-based Canadian Islamic Congress made a public appeal for the hostages’ release and sent an envoy to Baghdad. The Islamic Society of North America (ISNA) Canada proclaimed, “Taking hostages and threatening to kill them only triggers dishonor to Islam and Muslims around the globe. It is regrettable to note that these actions have been manufactured in the name of Islam, while the Qur'an has clearly stated that ‘whoever slays a soul, unless it be for manslaughter or for mischief in the land, it is as though he slew all men; and whoever keeps it alive, it is as though he kept alive all men.’ (5:32).”

Even radical cleric Abu Qatada, held in custody in England for suspected ties to terrorism, made a statement from his cell, begging, “I urge you to release the four prisoners in Iraq. This is a merciful act according to the principles of Islam.”
(Above courtesy of CENTCOM - What Extremists Are Saying)
Read more on topic at:
TimesOnline.co.uk...

>> Iraq radio plea and prayers for British hostage

One Year Today – The Indian Ocean Tsunami

It was one year today that the Indian Ocean Tsunami killed more than 200,000 people in 12 countries in one of the worst natural disasters in modern day history...
Read more on topic at:
>> CNEWS......
World marks one year since tsunami
>>Carthagepress.com...
World Reflects on Fury of Asia Tsunami

Sunday, December 25, 2005

MERRY CHRISTMAS
EVERYONE

White House photo by... Shealah Craighead

DoD Identifies Army Casualty

No. 1326-05 December 25, 2005
DoD Identifies Army Casualty

The Department of Defense announced today the death of a soldier who was supporting Operation Iraqi Freedom.
Sgt. Myla L. Maravillosa, 24, of Wahiawa, Hawaii, died in Kirkuk, Iraq, on Dec. 24, of injuries sustained earlier that day in Al Hawijah, Iraq, when her HMMWV was attacked by enemy forces using rocket-propelled grenades. Maravillosa was assigned to the Army Reserve's 203rd Military Intelligence Battalion, Aberdeen Proving Ground, Md.
For further information related to this release, contact Army Public Affairs at (703) 692-2000.

DoD Identifies Army Casualty

No. 1325-05 December 25, 2005
DoD Identifies Army Casualty
The Department of Defense announced today the death of a soldier who was supporting Operation Iraqi Freedom.
Master Sgt. Joseph J. Andres, Jr., 34, of Seven Hills, Ohio, died in Balad, Iraq, on Dec. 24, of injuries sustained earlier that day in Baqubah, Iraq, when he was attacked by enemy forces during combat operations. Andres was assigned to the U.S. Army Special Operations Command, Fort Bragg, N.C.
For further information related to this release, contact Army Public Affairs at (703) 692-2000.

DoD Identifies Army Casualties

No. 1324-05 December 25, 2005
DoD Identifies Army Casualties

The Department of Defense announced today the deaths of two soldiers who were supporting Operation Iraqi Freedom. They died in Baghdad, Iraq, on Dec. 23, when an improvised explosive device detonated near their HMMWV. Both soldiers were assigned to the Army Reserve's 351st Civil Affairs Command, Mountain View, Calif.

Killed were:
Sgt. Regina C. Reali, 25, of Freso, Calif.
Spc. Cheyenne C. Willey, 36, of Fremont, Calif.
For further information related to this release, contact Army Public Affairs at (703) 692-2000.

Saturday, December 24, 2005

DoD Identifies Army Casualties

No. 1323-05 December 24, 2005
DoD Identifies Army Casualties

The Department of Defense announced today the deaths of two soldiers who were supporting Operation Iraqi Freedom. They died in Baghdad, Iraq, on Dec. 22, when an improvised explosive device detonated near their position during a dismounted patrol. Both soldiers were assigned to the 1st Battalion, 502nd Infantry Regiment, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division, Fort Campbell, Ky.

Killed were:
1st Lt. Benjamin T. Britt, 24,
of Wheeler, Texas.
Spc. William Lopez-Feliciano, 33, of Quebradillas, Puerto Rico.
For further information related to this release, contact Army Public Affairs at (703) 692-2000.

The Evildoers we fight... stop for no day.
God bless all of those who serve...
Who have served...
And those who gave their all for this great country of ours.
God bless each and every one of them...
And their families, friends
and loved ones…
AubreyJ.........

Sis and I one Christmas Eve Night

Sis and I one Christmas Eve Night
by AubreyJ
December, 2002

There was a cold wintery breeze blowing that Christmas Eve Night
Outside it was snowing but coming down light
My sis and I were excited as our bedtime grew near
Because it wouldn't be to long till Santa got here

Now big brother and sister rushed us to our beds
With good night kisses on each of our foreheads
To our separate rooms our parents came to say
Go to sleep tonight fast… Santa is surely on the way

Now sis and I had this night all planned out
For Santa we would see and that there was no doubt
We had just come from Mamaw's earlier in the night
With two Walkie-Talkies and a plan that was just right

Our plan went like this and awake we must stay
If Santa was to be seen and all those toys in his sleigh
Now if I should hear something outside in the night
Or if sis should hear something in the living room to her right
On our Walkie-Talkie we would let the other know
That Santa had come… Slip out of your room slow

Was Santa that Jolly
Was Rudolf's nose red and bright
Well one thing was certain
We should know it this night

As the night passed on by and everyone was in bed
Sis and I waited for that little man in red
Sis talked to me quietly and I did the same
What was Santa Claus bringing us... A doll, a train

Then all of a sudden a noise we could hear
Could it be Santa and all his reindeer
On our Walkie-Talkies the warning went out
I heard it on the roof, in the living room, no doubt

That's when my dog Happy jumped up in my bed
It hadn't been Santa but mom and dad instead
They came in our rooms and asleep we did play
But that didn't work and the Walkie-Talkies went away
.
Well that was it… Our plan hadn't worked
So we cried ourselves to sleep and after all of that work
We just knew that our plan would have surely been right
That we would have finally got to see Santa in the middle of the night

Early that Christmas morning Happy's barking and growling we could hear
Big brother and dad were hollering… No Happy, that's Santa in here
Little bells were ringing as Santa dragged Happy through the house
Happy had Santa by the pants leg and was thrashing and growling about

Into the living room sis and I ran so fast
Could it be we would finally see Santa Claus at last?
As we entered the room our eyes got big and wide
There was candy from the Christmas tree to the door going outside
And in the front doorway a red pants leg did lay
Big brother had caught Happy and said Santa got out of here OK

Poor dad just stood there looking so sad
Said boy I can tell you Santa sure did get mad
But don’t you kids worry Santa must love you a lot
For look at what he brought you and that dumb dog he did not

With all of this said, from outside we could hear
Bells just a ringing with holiday cheer
Big sister said she heard Santa… It was all so clear
He shouted, "Jay… Lock that dog up before I get back here next year!"


"Thanks for the cookies and milk…
MERRY CHRISTMAS"
** A True Story in the Eyes of a Child, (ME) back in the 50's... **
Wishing everyone a very... Merry Christmas!!!

The Christmas Spirit returned to Bethlehem on Saturday

The Christmas spirit returned to Bethlehem on Saturday as hundreds of pilgrims from around the world packed the town of Jesus' birth for Christmas Eve celebrations...
Read more at SeattlePI.com...
Christmas spirit returns to Bethlehem

A Message to the Troops- 1943

Following is an ad that Let Freedom Ring placed on the op-ed page of the Washington Times... December 22, 2005.
.
It is a slightly abbreviated version of President Roosevelt's address to the troops and the nation on Christmas Eve, 1943.
.
Its message is oddly pertinent today.
.
Address of President
Franklin Delano Roosevelt
Broadcast from Hyde Park , New York
Christmas Eve, 1943


My Friends:

…Some of our men overseas are now spending their third
Christmas far from home. To them and to all others overseas or
soon to go overseas, I can give assurance that it is the purpose of
their Government to win this war and to bring them home at the
earliest possible date.

The American people … know that this is a tough and destructive
war. War entails that. There is no easy road to victory.

I think I see a tendency in some of our people here to assume a
quick ending of the war… And, perhaps as a result of this false
reasoning, I think I discern an effort to resume or even encourage
an outbreak of partisan thinking and talking. I hope I am wrong…

Tonight, on Christmas Eve, all men and women everywhere who
love Christmas are thinking of that ancient town and of the star of
faith that shone there more than nineteen centuries ago.

On behalf of the American people … I send this Christmas
message to you who are in our armed forces:
In our hearts are prayers for you and for all your comrades in arms
who fight to rid the world of evil.

God bless all of you who fight our battles on this Christmas Eve.
God bless us all. Keep us strong in our faith that we fight for a
better day for human kind – here and everywhere.

Presented in the Public Interest by

NORAD Observes 50th Anniversary of Tracking Santa

The North American Aerospace Defense Command is observing its 50th anniversary of tracking Santa Claus on his annual rounds, NORAD officials said here.

The tradition of tracking Santa began in 1955, when a local Sears, Roebuck and Co. store ran a newspaper ad urging children to make a phone call on Christmas Eve and talk to Santa Claus. As fate would have it, the phone number was misprinted and, instead of reaching Santa, youngsters found themselves talking with Air Force Col. Harry Shoup of the Continental Air Defense Command at Cheyenne Mountain.

Rather than hanging up, Shoup and his troops answered every child's call that night with a report of Santa's location. CONAD personnel kept up the practice until 1958, when NORAD was formed and took over Santa-tracking duties. NORAD has continued the Santa tracking tradition for several reasons, according to Air Force Master Sgt. John Tomassi, co-director of Santa-tracking operations.

"I think in the initial stages, back in the '50s and '60s, it was just a novelty kind of thing," he said. "A lot of people - children and their families - do this tracking Santa as a tradition in their family. We've recognized now that people have taken this program as a tradition, and what we can do is educate them.

"We do track Santa," he continued. "However, we do provide for the defense of the North American aerospace also. We use the satellites to track Santa, we use the radar, we use jet fighters, but all of those exact same things are what we use to monitor the aerospace of North America. "

While youngsters are tracking Santa's flight, they may also learn a thing or two about the world around them, Tomassi said.

"We think of it as a geography lesson," said he explained, "because the different places that Santa visits or sightings that we have, a lot of people haven't heard of. If we can get some children to go and look at a map to find out where Timbuktu is, or where India is, or Pakistan, or wherever, then we feel all the better for that. "

Last Christmas Eve, volunteers at Cheyenne Mountain answered nearly 55,000 phone calls and 35,000 e-mails from children around the world. During December 2004, the NORAD Tracks Santa Web site had 912 million hits from 181 countries. This year, about 500 volunteers - most of them U. S. and Canadian military personnel and their families - will report for telephone-answering duty on Christmas Eve. But already, youngsters are sending messages to Santa via the NORAD Tracks Santa Web site.

"E-mails are arriving from India and Ireland and all over the world already from children with their wish lists who want to talk to Santa," Tomassi said. "We receive, on average, 200 e-mails a day.”

NORAD Tracks Santa volunteers will answer calls from 2 a. m. MST Dec. 24 to 2 a. m. MST Dec. 25 at (877) HiNORAD -- (877) 446-6723 -- toll-free in the United States; or at (719) 474-2111
(Above courtesy of DoD - By Sgt. 1st Class Gail Braymen, USA Special to American Forces Press Service)

For NORAD Tracks Santa 2005 Website... Click HERE
Merry Christmas Everyone...
AubreyJ.........

Friday, December 23, 2005

Iraq Force Adjustments Announced

The Department of Defense announced today a decision to not deploy portions of the 1st Brigade, 1st Infantry Division, based at Fort Riley, Kansas to Iraq, and to modify the deployment orders of the 2nd Brigade, 1st Armored Division, based in Baumholder, Germany, to remain in Kuwait as a call-forward force.

This decision will result in a reduction of U.S. force levels of approximately two combat brigade-equivalents, or about 7,000 troops, in Iraq. This will bring the number of U.S. combat brigades in Iraq from 17 to 15. The size and composition of the U.S. force in Iraq will continue to fluctuate as commanders continue to shift focus from combat operations to training and supporting the Iraqi Security Forces (ISF). This will include increases in the number of U.S. forces involved in transition teams, intelligence support and logistics, to assist the ISF in continuing to assume responsibility for the security of their country. The effect of these adjustments will likely reduce the forces in Iraq by the spring of 2006 below the 138,000 baseline.

This decision follows the demonstrated capabilities of Iraqi Security Forces in establishing primary security conditions in the recent Iraqi elections. Continued success in the handover of security responsibilities is making this U.S. force adjustment possible.

Elements of the 1st Brigade, 1st Infantry Division will deploy to conduct missions such as providing security forces and conducting transition training for Iraqi Security Forces. U.S. and Coalition forces will continue to work with the Iraqi government to help strengthen the Iraqi security-related Ministries, and train professional Iraqi security forces.

The 2nd Brigade, 1st Armored Division has already deployed to Kuwait and will remain there available as a call-forward force for the commander, U.S. Central Command to support operations in Iraq. The decision on the length of the brigade's deployment will be based on the situation in Iraq. The deployment continues the U.S. commitment to Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF), yet provides the U.S. Central Command with flexibility in order to adjust to the conditions in Iraq.

U.S. troop numbers may continue to fluctuate in response to conditions and requirements as assessed by U.S. commanders. Commanders will continue to assess the situation on the ground for future force-level adjustments. We will continually adjust our military posture as conditions evolve and Iraqi capabilities grow.

(Above taken from a DoD Press Release No. 1320-05 - December 23, 2005)
>> Read more on topic below:
Khalilzad, Casey Release Joint Statement on Troop Reduction

Palestinian rockets fire from Gaza

Israel threatened a harsh response to Palestinian rocket fire from Gaza after five soldiers were hurt and a ground attack has not been ruled out...
Read more on topic at:
>> 9NEWS.com
Israel threatens harsh response, possible invasion to stop rocket fire from Gaza
>> DEBKAfile
Palestinian Missile Attacks on Ashkelon Portend Environmental Catastrophe

Baghdad Rocket Factory Discovered - Iraqi Soldiers Discover Weapons Caches, Detain Terror Suspects

More news from Iraq... Soldiers of the 3rd Squadron, 7th Cavalry, discovered a Rocket Factory and captured three suspected terrorists in two separate operations.

A local citizen identified an eastern Baghdad home being used to make improvised rocket launchers. Soldiers raided the home Dec. 22 and discovered 15 rocket launchers were in the process of being built. One 57 mm rocket was completed and ready to fire. No one was in the home when it was raided.

"It is encouraging that the Iraqi citizens are continuing to choose the side of the new government over the terrorists," said Army Col. Joseph DiSalvo, commander of coalition forces in eastern Baghdad. "The Iraqi citizens know that providing information against the terrorists to coalition or Iraqi security forces will help to improve the security situation in their neighborhoods.”

All equipment in the home was seized and Iraqi security forces continue searching for the homeowners, officials said.

On Dec. 21, a patrol from the same unit captured three terrorists as they were emplacing a fake roadside bomb in eastern Baghdad.

At about 6 p. m. , the patrol observed a civilian vehicle dropping cement blocks in the median of a major thoroughfare. The patrol intercepted the suspicious vehicle and detained three suspected terrorists.

Additional elements of 3rd Squadron, 7th Cavalry, secured the site surrounding the suspicious items and an explosive ordnance disposal team investigated the objects and found them to be hoax roadside bombs.

"These suspected terrorists were not placing cement blocks in the road for any other reason then to terrorize and intimidate the population," said Maj. Paul Reese, operations officer for 2nd Brigade, 3rd Infantry Division. Anyone found guilty of emplacing a hoax roadside bomb is a terrorist - make no mistake about it. The good people of Iraq are disgusted by these types of games. "

Hoax roadside bombs are commonly used by terrorists to check how Iraqi security and coalition forces will react, officials explained. Coalition military officials today announced the capture of media emir and an administrator, both members of the radical Islamist group Ansar al-Sunna, during raids on suspected terrorist safe houses near Mosul.

Muhammad al-Sufi, also known as Abu Naba, an Ansar al-Sunna media emir in Mosul was captured Nov. 23, and Adnan al-Badrani, known as Abu Hudayfah, an Ansar al-Sunna administrator, was captured Dec. 5, officials said.

Abu Naba produced propaganda fliers and compact discs focusing on military operations, anti-voting messages, Jihad messages and prayers, officials said. He also facilitated videos of attacks on Iraqi and coalition forces to be posted to the Internet. He purchased cameras used to film violent acts including bombings, kidnappings and executions.

He also helped produce the final video products and delivered the videos to other Ansar al-Sunna leaders for posting on the Internet, officials said.

Based on information Abu Naba and other detained terrorists provided to coalition forces, Abu Hudayfah was identified and captured. He allegedly was in charge of logistics and support for Ansar al-Sunna in Mosul. In the skies over Iraq, coalition aircraft flew 34 close-air-support missions Dec. 22 in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom. U. S. Air Force F-15s provided close-air support to coalition troops in contact with insurgents near Samarra. The F-15s used a precision-guided munition to destroy an insurgent bunker.

Near Balad, U. S. Air Force F-16s provided close-air support to coalition troops in contact with insurgents. The F-16s struck two enemy positions with precision-guided munitions. Other U. S. Air Force F-16s also provided close-air support to coalition troops in contact with insurgents near Bayji, Kirkuk and Tikrit. Eleven U. S. Air Force and U. S. Navy intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance aircraft flew missions in support of operations in Iraq. Also, British Royal Air Force fighter aircraft performed in a nontraditional ISR role with their electro-optical and infrared sensors.

Also in the news out of Iraq:
Iraqi Soldiers Discover Weapons Caches, Detain Terror Suspects

Iraqi army troops discovered several weapons caches and took suspected terrorists into custody Dec. 22 as they continue to take on more responsibility for their nation's security, military officials reported today.

Troops from the 3rd Battalion, 1st Brigade, 1st Iraqi Intervention Force, discovered a cache of 12 anti-tank mines, two 82 mm mortar rounds and one 120 mm mortar round, and another containing two 130 mm artillery rounds, an 82 mm mortar round, three rocket-propelled grenade boosters, two anti-tank mines and two 120 mm mortar rounds, officials said.

An explosives team destroyed both caches in place.

Elsewhere in Iraq, troops from the 3rd Battalion, 1st Brigade, 7th Iraqi Army Division, discovered a weapons cache while patrolling along the north shore of the Euphrates River north of Ramadi. The patrol discovered a mortar tube and base plate, as well as an outboard motor. A further search yielded a cache of seven 60 mm mortar rounds.

When an explosives team was called to destroy the cache, an improvised explosive device was discovered 200 meters from the cache, officials said. Both the cache and the IED were safely destroyed.

In Khalidiyah, troops from the 2nd Battalion, 3rd Brigade, 1st Iraqi Intervention Force, were manning a vehicle checkpoint when they stopped the men's vehicle and discovered two 82 mm mortar tubes in the back of the truck. The tubes were seized and the suspects were detained pending further investigation.

Troops from the 3rd Battalion, 1st Brigade, 4th Iraqi Army Division, also detained a man suspected of involvement in insurgent activities west of Balad.
(Above taken from DoD - American Forces Press Service and compiled from MNF-I... U. S. Central Command Air Forces Forward... Multinational Security Transition Command... and by Task Force Baghdad news releases.)

Thursday, December 22, 2005

Photo for the Day- December 22, 2005

The guided missile submarine USS Ohio (SSGN 726) is gently pushed to the pier by a tugboat as it returns to Puget Sound Naval Shipyard and Intermediate Maintenance Facility in Bremerton, Wash., Dec. 19, 2005, after completing sea trials. Ohio is the first ballistic missile submarine to complete conversion to the new class of guided missile submarines. The submarine will also have the additional capability to transport and support Navy special operations forces. (Courtesy of DoD)
DoD photo by Rick Chaffee, U.S. Navy

DoD Identifies Army Casualties

No. 1319-05 December 22, 2005
DoD Identifies Army Casualties

The Department of Defense announced today the death of two soldiers who were supporting Operation Iraqi Freedom. They died in Taji, Iraq on Dec. 20, when an improvised explosive device detonated near their HMMWV during combat operations. Both soldiers were assigned to the 1st Battalion 15th Infantry Regiment, 3rd Brigade, 3rd Infantry Division, Fort Benning, Ga.

Killed were:
1st Lt. Michael J. Cleary, 24, of Dallas, Pa.
Spc. Richard Junior D. Naputi, 24, of Talofofo, Guam.
For further information related to this release, contact Army Public Affairs at (703) 692-2000.

Taken on a different role in Iraq

U. S. Forces to Take on Different Role in Iraq, Officials Say
As Iraqi security forces grow and develop increased combat capabilities, U. S. forces will shift from a focus on combat operations to a focus on supporting the Iraqis as they take the lead in operations, two Defense Department officials said at a Pentagon news briefing today.

American units already are partnering with Iraqi units, helping them with training, logistics, and other combat support operations, said Marine Lt. Gen. James T. Conway, operations director on the Joint Staff. This partnering will continue, with an increased focus on developing the Iraqis' combat support capabilities so they eventually will be able to function independently, he said.

Transition teams that assist Iraqi units will increasingly be made up of senior noncommissioned officers and officers who are more technically oriented and can provide the Iraqis with specific training, Conway said.

"They also are assigned responsibilities for the continued maturation and professionalism of the Iraqis, so that as they become more and more capable, we are then able to bring our units home," he said.

As the Iraqis develop these capabilities, more U. S. engineer and logistics units will deploy instead of combat units to help the Iraqi units function, said Larry Di Rita, principal deputy undersecretary of defense for public affairs.

The Iraqi units, meanwhile, will take on more routine combat duties, such as cordon-and-knock operations, patrols and sweeps, Conway said. The first example of this new Iraqi-U. S. relationship was during the operations in Tal Afar in November, he said, when Iraqi troops outnumbered coalition troops and took the lead in operations.
(Above courtesy of DoD - American Forces Press Service and written by Sgt. Sara Wood, USA)
>> Another good read today at DoD by Gerry J. Gilmore...
‘Iraqi Security Forces Gaining in Quality, General Says’

Iraq: Saddam’s Trial Continues

Funny how out of all the things that have been going on these last few days in Saddam’s Trial... most all the MSM lead their stories out with Headlines mostly about Saddam’s torture claims against the US...
AubreyJ.........

Read more on trial at:
>> HeraldNewsDaily.com...
"Liars," Saddam tells White House
>> CasperStarTribune.net...
Saddam: U.S. Denials of Torture Are 'Lies'
>> TimesOnline.co.uk...
Saddam stands by torture claim
AND THE LIST GOES ON and ON and ON......
Now the two reads below is how the news should be reported...
>> Star-Telegram.com...
Saddam's half brother was a torturer, witnesses testify
>> TheAge.com...
I lost 7 brothers: Saddam witness
And last of all...
Saddam Hussein's trial has adjourned until January 24th...
>> TheCourierMail.com.au...
Saddam trial adjourned

Osama Bin Laden – Dead or Alive???

Is Osama Bin Laden dead or alive???
With not a peep out of him in over a year now... many again ask this question......
And so the debate continues............
AubreyJ.........
Read more on topic at:
>>NineMSN.com...

Bin Laden's year of silence
>> RFERL.org...
Rumsfeld Admits Bin Laden's Location Unknown

Senate Renews Patriot Act for six more months

Senators finally strike a deal that will fully reauthorize the Patriot Act in its current form for six more months...
Read more on topic at:

>> Fox News ‘Senate Renews Patriot Act’

UN reform among top priorities for 2006, so says Kofi Annan

Outlining his top priorities for 2006, his last year as United Nations Secretary-General, Kofi Annan said today that alongside efforts to promote peace and combat poverty and disease, he was determined to follow through on his wide-ranging agenda of reform and renewal of the world body.
Read in full at:
>> UN NEWS CENTRE...
UN reform among top priorities for 2006, Annan tells year-end press conference
AubreyJ says: We’ll SEE............

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Photos for the Day- December 21, 2005

With his mother, Carol Bullene, looking on, President George W. Bush grasps the hand of U.S. Navy Hospitalman Apprentice Tony Bullene of Watertown, S.D., after presenting him with a Purple Heart Wednesday, Dec. 21, 2005, at the National Naval Medical Center in Bethesda, Md.
As Laura Bush looks on, President George W. Bush hugs Candy Pierson of Auburndale, Fla., after her son, Marine Cpl Jordan S. Pierson, was presented the Purple Heart for injuries suffered while serving in Iraq. The ceremony took place Wednesday, Dec. 21, 2005, at the National Naval Medical Center in Bethesda, Md. Also in the room are Cpl. Pierson's fiancée, Kirstin Martin, right, and cousin Tiffany Pierson.
President George W. Bush shakes the hand of Marine Cpl. Andrew L. Tinsley of Annapolis, Md., Wednesday, Dec. 21, 2005, after Cpl Tinsley was presented the Purple Heart during a visit by the President and Laura Bush to the National Naval Medical Center in Bethesda, Md.
All White House photos by Paul Morse

Talks with Iran on Nuclear Plans Resume

Talks with Iran on Nuclear Plans Resumed today– When will they get it.... Talking will this bunch will never work... Time for talks is over... It’s demand time. The clock is ticking...
AubreyJ.........

Anyway... read more on TALKS at The New York Times...
Talks with Iran on Nuclear Plans Resume; Little Progress Is Seen

Iraq: Saddam Hussein's trial resumes

Iraq: Wednesday, December 21, 2005
After a two-week break, Saddam Hussein's trial resumed today with the chief judge's refusal to allow the defendants to continue the outbursts that has caused chaos in the Baghdad courtroom today... as in the past......

(Will update as needed - Latest on top - Some links may auto update)
Read more on topic at:

>>The Independent...
Saddam claims he was tortured in captivity
>> Science Daily
Graphic testimony as Saddam trial resumes

>> Bloomberg.com...
Hussein Judge Clamps Down on Outbursts as Baghdad Trial Resumes

Iraq: Insurgents Killed, Detained in Raids

Task Force Baghdad soldiers on patrol today discovered a large cache of munitions in northeastern Baghdad. The soldiers -- from A Troop, 1st Squadron, 75th Cavalry Regiment -- found 27 rocket-propelled grenade rounds, three 82 mm mortar rounds, 13 armor-piercing RPG launchers, 28 propellant chargers, 10,000 rounds of AK-47 ammunition, and 400 4. 5 mm rounds. All munitions were turned over to an explosive ordnance disposal team for.

In other developments, at least nine terrorists were killed and 16 terror suspects were captured in two separate incidents in southern Baghdad Dec. 19-20.
In the first incident, two vehicles were seen fleeing the scene of a raid Dec. 19. One group pulled a bound hostage from the vehicle and killed him. A U. S. warplane flying in support of operations in the area engaged and killed the terrorists.

The warplane then switched targets, engaging the other vehicle, which resulted in at least four terrorist deaths and four detainees. Soldiers from 3rd Squadron, 3rd Armored Cavalry Regiment, transported three of the detainees to a military internment facility for further questioning. One wounded detainee was evacuated to a military hospital.

In a separate incident in northern Babil, 12 suspected terrorists were detained and an unknown number of weapons and medical supplies were confiscated during an early morning raid Dec. 20.

In other news, Operation Moonlight concluded Dec. 20. Moonlight was the first brigade-level operation conducted by Iraqi army soldiers in Anbar province. Five Iraqi army companies from 1st Brigade, 1st Iraqi Army Division, led the operation and were supported by a company of U. S. Marines from Regimental Combat Team 2.

The operation netted a weapons cache and demonstrated the Iraqi soldiers' ability to gather intelligence, plan, execute and exercise command and control during a large-scale operation, officials said.

The Iraqi soldiers, with U. S. Marines acting as observers, cleared an area east of Ubaydi along the northern and southern banks of the Euphrates River. The area directly to the west was cleared last month during Operation Steel Curtain.

No terrorists were encountered during the operation; however, one Iraqi soldier received minor injuries from a roadside bomb attack. The soldier was treated at the scene and returned to duty. No Iraqi civilian casualties were reported.

Troops from the 1st Battalion, 1st Brigade, 4th Iraqi Army Division found and cleared a cache Dec. 20. Troops found about 100 57 mm rounds, officials said. The site was secured for later destruction.

Elsewhere, two civilians were wounded in East Baghdad Dec. 20 when a roadside bomb struck their vehicle. Elements of the Iraqi 2nd Public Order Battalion were on the scene and secured the site. Iraqi security forces evacuated the wounded to a local hospital. An explosive ordnance disposal team investigated and determined the roadside bomb was a 125 mm artillery shell.

Also, U. S. forces completed a year-long project to rid an old Saddam Hussein regime ammunition dump north of Baghdad of its stores Dec. 16. The ammunition dump, known as Area Echo, housed tons of ordnance stockpiled by Saddam's military. The area contained everything from small-caliber ammunition, mortars and artillery shells to larger weapons such as 1,000-pound bombs, and surface to air missiles.

Soldiers of 3rd Brigade, 1st Armored Division, were tasked with management of Area Echo and worked with contractors and explosive ordnance disposal teams to clear the compound of all munitions. The munitions were deactivated and the empty casings were de-milled by a contracting company. Nearly 20,000 tons of munitions were destroyed in the area.

In the air war over Iraq, coalition aircraft flew 46 close-air-support missions Dec. 20 for Operation Iraqi Freedom. U. S. Air Force F-16s and Navy F-14s provided close-air support to coalition troops in contact with terrorists near Balad. The F-16s strafed an enemy location and the F-14s strafed insurgents preparing an improvised explosive device.

Other U. S. Navy F-14s and F/A-18s provided close-air support to coalition troops in contact with terrorists near Balad, Ramadi and Rawah.

In addition, 11 U. S. Air Force, U. S. Navy, and Royal Australian Air Force intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance aircraft flew missions in support of operations in Iraq. Also, U. S. Air Force fighter aircraft performed in a nontraditional ISR role with their electro-optical and infrared sensors.
(Above courtesy of DoD – by American Forces Press Service - Compiled from Multinational Force Iraq, Multinational Security Transition Command Iraq, Task Force Baghdad and U. S. Central Command Air Forces Forward news releases.)

DoD Identifies Army Casualty

No. 1316-05 December 21, 2005
DoD Identifies Army Casualty

The Department of Defense announced today the death of a soldier who was supporting Operation Iraqi Freedom.
Staff Sgt. Johnnie V. Mason, 32, of Rio Vista, Texas, died in Al Mahmudiyah, Iraq on Dec. 19, when an improvised explosive device detonated near his HMMWV. Mason was assigned to the 717th Ordnance Company, 184th Ordnance Battalion, 52nd Ordnance Group (Explosive Ordnance Detachment), Fort Campbell, Ky.
For further information related to this release, contact Army Public Affairs at (703) 692-2000.

DoD Identifies Marine Casualty

No. 1315-05 December 21, 2005
DoD Identifies Marine Casualty

The Department of Defense announced today the death of a Marine who was supporting Operation Iraqi Freedom.
Lance Cpl. Samuel Tapia, 20, of San Benito, Texas, died Dec. 18 from small-arms fire while conducting combat operations in Ar Ramadi, Iraq.
He was assigned to 3rd Battalion, 7th Marine Regiment, 1st Marine Division, I Marine Expeditionary Force, Twentynine Palms, Calif. During Operation Iraqi Freedom, his unit was attached to 2nd Marine Division, II Marine Expeditionary Force (Forward).
Media with questions about this Marine can call the Twentynine Palms Public Affairs Office at (760) 830-6213/5472.

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Photo for the Day- December 20, 2005

Thousands of Christmas wreaths are nestled against headstones in Section 27 at Arlington National Cemetery in Arlington, Va., Dec. 15, 2005. Hundreds of volunteers gathered at Arlington to place more than five thousand donated Christmas wreaths on head stones in the cemetery. The 14th annual wreath laying event is a result of Worcester Wreath Company owner Morrill Worcester's boyhood dream of doing something to honor those laid to rest in the National Cemetery. (Courtesy of DoD)
DoD photo by Master Sgt. Jim Varhegyi,USAF

DoD Identifies Marine Corps Casualty

No. 1310-05 December 20, 2005
DoD Identifies Marine Corps Casualty

The Department of Defense announced today the death of a Marine who was supporting Operation Iraqi Freedom.
Cpl. Adam R. Fales, 21, of Cullman , Ala. , died Dec. 16 from a non-hostile gunshot wound in Fallujah, Iraq. He was assigned to Combat Service Support Detachment-21, 2nd Marine Logistics Group, II Marine Expeditionary Force, Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point, N.C.
The incident is under investigation.
Media with questions about this Marine can call the 2nd MLG Public Affairs Office at (910)-451-3538.

Monday's Press Conference by the President

President George W. Bush emphasizes a point as he responds to a reporter's question Monday, Dec. 19, 2005, during a news conference in the East Room of the White House.
White House photo by Kimberlee Hewitt
(Courtesy of the White House)

View Webcast of Presidents Press Conference, in full- HERE
(Need Realplayer to view – Webcast courtesy of The White House)
Read Press Conference in full at...
The White House
Found this good read today on topic at...
Amh.com.au......
‘Bush accuses leak instigators of helping enemy’

2006 'Year of Police' for Iraq

Great read today at DoD by Jim Garamone - American Forces Press Service
Click it out- ‘Ambassador Says 2006 to Be 'Year of Police' for Iraq’

President Bush calls Sharon's after his release from a Jerusalem Hospital

In a get-well phone call today... President Bush told Prime Minister Ariel Sharon to eat less, work less and exercise more...
Read more on topic at:
>> Haaretz.com '
Bush to Sharon: Exercise, diet and work less hours'

US to cut troop level in Afghan and possibly Iraq too

** U.S. Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld has signed orders that will reduce the number of American troops in Afghanistan down to 16,000...
** Also... a possible reduction could very well bring the number of U.S. troops in Iraq to about 129,000 from a baseline of 138,000. There are approximately 150,000 U.S. troops there now due to the military’s increased support and backup of the last two elections just held in Iraq...
Read more on topic at:
>> abcNEWS.com...
US to cut troop level in Afghanistan - report
>> washingtonpost.com
‘U.S. Plans Downsizing in Iraq, Afghanistan’

Monday, December 19, 2005

Bin Laden has not been heard from for near a year now...

Bin Laden has not been heard of since a Dec 27, 2004 audiotape in which he anointed Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, Iraq's most wanted man, as al-Qaida's leader in the war-torn country. This has given rise to some speculation that he might just be dead...
Read more on topic at Japan Today...
Mystery surrounds bin Laden's year of silence

First Afghan Parliament in 32 years opens

Afghanistan: The inauguration, which passed peacefully despite Taliban threats, was greeted with tears of emotion despite widespread disappointment at a parliament filled with factional leaders blamed for serious human rights abuses. President Hamid Karzai thanked God for giving Afghanistan the chance to take control of its destiny again after swearing in the 249 members of the Wolesi Jirga, or lower house, and 102 members of the upper house, or Meshrano Jirga...
Read in full at the Daily Times...

First Afghan parliament in 32 years: New Afghanistan is indestructible: Karzai

DoD Identifies Army Casualty

No. 1307-05 December 19, 2005
DoD Identifies Army Casualty

The Department of Defense announced today the death of a soldier who was supporting Operation Iraqi Freedom.
Sgt. Timothy R. Boyce, 29, of North Salt Lake, Utah, died at Landstuhl Regional Medical Center in Landstuhl, Germany, on Dec. 15, of a non-combat related cause. Boyce was assigned to the Maintenance Troop, Support Squadron, 3rd Armored Cavalry Regiment, Fort Carson, Colo.
For further information related to this release, contact Army Public Affairs at (703) 692-2000.

Photo for the Day- December 19, 2005



Vice President Dick Cheney participates in a rally for the troops at Bagram Air Base, Afghanistan......
December 19, 2005.
(Courtesy of DoD)
White House photo by David Bohrer

Headlines and Reads about President’s Speech last night

Got to love those Headlines and Reads about the President’s Speech last night
>> Don't despair: Bush admits mistakes
>> Prez: We're winning Iraq war
>> Bush 'comes clean'
>> Bush Rejects `Defeatism' in Iraq as Spying Controversy Grows
>> Bush's New Rhetoric on the War
AubreyJ.........

Sunday, December 18, 2005

President Bush is to address the Nation Tonight

President Bush is to address the Nation Tonight, at 8:00pm CST from the Oval Office. Main focus is to be on Iraq... Yet I would also think he is probably going to give the MSM and those in the Senate a good old out to the woodshed lashing also... I also get a gut feeling that a surprise or two will be coming from the President tonight also...
Stay Tuned!!!
AubreyJ.........


Update: President Bush’s speech went well tonight I think...
But again, most of his critics will only be talking about all the things they wish he had said... what to them he did not say... and so on...

My friends... you can only say so much in a little over 16 minutes and in that time tonight... I think the President said a mouthful...

Most of America was listening to him tonight... I’ll say that again... Most of
America was listening ‘To HIM’ -- not to all the MSM afterwards... who keep trying to tell them what THEY, (the MSM,) think he just said or should have said...

Israel PM Sharon Rushed to Hospital

Sunday evening, December 18, 2005-
Prime Minister Ariel Sharon
, who will be 78 in February, was rushed to the Hadassah Ein Karem Hospital in southern Jerusalem this evening reportedly from suffering a light stroke...
Read more on topic below:
(Will update as more info comes in- most recent on top – some links may auto update...)
>> TimesOnline.com.uk...
Sharon 'stable and joking' in hospital after minor stroke

>> Israel.JPost.com...
PM Sharon suffers light stroke, rushed to hospital

Vice President Dick Cheney Makes a Surprise Visit to Iraq

You go Mr. VP!!!
Iraq: Sunday December 18, 2005
Under heavy security, Vice President Dick Cheney was found touring the country today. His visit was so shrouded in secrecy that the Iraq's prime minister even said he was surprised when he showed up for a meeting with the U.S. ambassador only to see the Vice President waiting to greet him instead.

“...As the ISF gains strength and experience and as the political process advances, we'll be able to decrease troop levels without losing our capacity to defeat the terrorists. And on behalf of the President, I assure you, any decisions about troop levels will be driven by the conditions on the ground and the judgment of our commanders, not by artificial timelines set by politicians in Washington, D.C.”
Vice President Dick Cheney
Al-Asad Air Base, Iraq
December 18, 2005

Read more on the VP’s visit below:
>> FoxNews.com
‘Cheney Makes Surprise Visit to Iraq’
>> ABC NewsOnline ‘Cheney makes surprise Iraq visit’
>> DoD ‘Cheney Visits Iraq, Officials Laud Historic Vote’

Iraqi Citizens Support Ongoing Anti-Terror Ops

As Iraq progresses militarily and democratically, citizens there are stepping forward to inform indigenous and coalition forces of terrorist operations and covert weapons caches, Multinational Force Iraq officials reported today. Iraqi citizens sometimes even are apprehending suspected terrorists themselves, officials noted.

For example, on Dec. 17, a group of Iraqi citizens near Kirkuk, in northern Iraq, captured two suspected terrorists who were observed digging up a weapons cache. The citizens reportedly subdued the suspects and called the Kirkuk Joint Coordination Center, which then relayed the information to a nearby patrol. The combined Iraqi and U. S. patrol responded and secured more than 20 artillery rounds, while detaining the terrorist suspects for questioning, officials said.

Also on Dec. 17, another group of Kirkuk residents flagged down a U. S. Air Force patrol and led the airmen to a small weapons cache. The airmen reportedly found two mortar rounds, two rocket-propelled grenade warheads and several anti-aircraft artillery rounds. An explosive ordnance disposal team destroyed the weapons in a controlled detonation, officials said.

A tip from a local citizen in the Tissa Nissan area of Baghdad Dec. 16 led a group of soldiers from the 1st Battalion, 64th Armor Brigade, to a large, buried mortar cache of seven 60 mm mortar rounds. The soldiers reviewed the site and reportedly discovered another suspicious site, which had 19 60 mm mortar rounds. An explosive ordnance disposal team destroyed the ammunition, officials said.

Iraqi soldiers, too, are stepping forward to take the lead, officials said. Iraqi army troops from the 3rd Battalion, 1st Brigade, 1st Iraqi Intervention Force, reportedly found and cleared two weapons caches near Husaybah Dec. 17.

The first cache, northwest of the city, held six 40 mm rounds, three AK-47s, a single assault rifle and assorted small arms ammunition, officials said. The second cache of 50 82 mm fuses was found in a water tank, northeast of town. The ordnance was collected and slated for subsequent destruction, officials said.

Elsewhere in Iraq, on Dec. 15, soldiers with the Task Force Band of Brothers discovered a large cache of improvised explosive device components near Hawijah. The components reportedly were found by a pair of scout helicopters from the 101st Airborne Division.

The helicopter pilots spotted suspicious activity by several individuals, officials said. They then relayed the suspects' location to a nearby patrol from the division's 1st Brigade Combat Team. The patrol found a weapons cache buried in several 55-gallon drums.

The cache consisted of 414 two-way radios, 48 circuit boards, and more than 100 timing devices -- all of which are used to manufacture IEDs. The cache also included small amounts of AK-47 ammunition, detonation cord, batteries and several bomb-making manuals, officials said.

This was the second time in less than a month that 1st Brigade Combat Team has uncovered a major cache in its area. The team discovered more than 4,200 mortar rounds in a single cache Nov. 27 near Kirkuk, officials said.

Meanwhile, at several locations near Tikrit on Dec. 17, soldiers from the 101st Combat Aviation Brigade detained 15 suspected terrorists as part of Operation Eagle Watch.

The 101st soldiers reportedly were conducting an area reconnaissance near Forward Operating Base Speicher, when they observed the terrorist suspects at two separate sites. Unit UH-60 Blackhawk helicopters swooped down to investigate. They found several AK-47 rifles, two sniper rifles, an RPK Soviet machine gun, and hundreds of rounds of ammunition, officials said.

The contraband was confiscated from the suspects, who then were taken to a nearby detention facility for questioning.
(Above courtesy of DoD – by American Forces Press Service and compiled from various MNF-I news releases)

Saturday, December 17, 2005

Senate refuses to extend Patriot Act – MSM goes Wild!!!

The MSM seems to be doing backflips over the Senate refusing to extend expiring portions of the Patriot Act.

They’re putting out reads like... “GOP SUFFERS BLOW AS SENATE BLOCKS PATRIOT ACT EXTENSION...” or how about-- “THE US Senate inflicted a MAJOR DEFEAT on George Bush...”
But the most irresponsible of all is-- “Spying Scandal Draws Heat”

Heck... they love it!!!

Anything to take the Bush Administration down... ANYTHING!!!! The HELL with our Country... The hell with the lives of Americans and our TROOPS... JUST GET BUSH AT ANY COST...
Gang...
it’s time to vote with your wallet and remote... And 2006 WITH YOUR VOTES!!!!
Had enough of the Left and the MSM??????
I sure the HELL HAVE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
AubreyJ.........