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The Home Fight - Countering Defeatist Opinion

Fort Hood's 9/11

- by Ralph Peters

On Thursday afternoon [November 5th, 2009], a radicalized Muslim US Army officer shouting "Allahu Akbar!" committed the worst act of terror on American soil since 9/11. And no one wants to call it an act of terror or associate it with Islam.

What cowards we are. Political correctness killed those patriotic Americans at Ft. Hood as surely as the Islamist gunman did. And the media treat it like a case of non-denominational shoplifting.

This was a terrorist act. When an extremist plans and executes a murderous plot against our unarmed soldiers to protest our efforts to counter Islamist fanatics, it’s an act of terror. Period.


Click to read more.


War, Hell and Civilian Juries

- by Kyle-Anne Shiver with Steve Russell

...I have a definite sense that judging any soldier's actions in combat is a type of hallowed ground upon which I, as a civilian who's never been to war, would have grave reservations about, if asked to tread upon it.

... Asking civilians to make these judgments, never having been to war, seems to be pushing citizens to be something most of us are not, and could not partake of in good conscience.


Click to read more.


Summer Soldiers by Any Other Name

- by Kyle-Anne Shiver with Steve Russell

"We must view as shameful any act by any American that emboldens and encourages the enemies we fight in the field. That is what is happening with the current efforts by anti-war activists purporting to show our soldiers as nothing more than criminals with guns terrorizing a helpless people. To look at it, one would think the enemy himself is scripting the testimony of the Iraq Veterans Against the War."

- Lt. Col. (ret) Steve Russell, May 15, 2008

American patriots should have known better, I suppose, than to think that the Winter Soldiers would have enough pride not to show their faces in public again after their March tomfoolery in Silver Spring, MD.

The American public is not being fooled, in my opinion.

But the Iraq Veterans Against the War (IVAW), aka Winter Soldiers, have now found a willing audience in Congress, that is sure to fawn over them with all the theatrics of a Soviet-style show trial.


Click to read more.

On the Edge?

- by Steve Russell

IN THE LAST several weeks I have learned a great deal about myself, thanks to all the wonderful media reports about serving and returning war veterans. For example, I have learned that I might want to kill my wife because of the trauma of war. Or, if I have no beef with my family, that I might go after my neighbors instead. Or if there are no other handy targets for my aggression, I might go after myself.

While waiting to appear on a talk show, I learned that combat veterans are "all a little bit on the edge." One brilliant commentator even suggested that combat soldiers and private security contractors tend to be the types of individuals that have a propensity to harm others and commit acts of violence.

As if I was not sufficiently depressed after absorbing these diatribes (perhaps it was just those suicidal tendencies), I also learned...


Click to read more.


We Will Not abandon You

- by Steve Russell

Note: This article was published in over 150 Newspapers nationwide


The lack of support shown by national lawmakers to give troops the support needed to achieve their mission has become egregious.  Americans wag at political assertions of troop support as the mission is obstructed.  Every day, it seems as if another public official has claimed that victory in Iraq is impossible.  This would come as quite a shock to the fighting soldiers.  They know better.  They also know that such proclamations are made solely for political gain, and are perhaps most welcomed by the enemies they fight. 

It is past the time for national lawmakers to abandon their political investment in defeat. We must reassure our fighting men and women that they aren’t fighting alone.

What can the average American do to back up our troops when our national lawmakers will not?  This is a question I get asked frequently.  The answer is, “take it to the states.” Several states have already stepped forward with resolutions that promise to “not abandon our service men and women in this time of war and pledge full support of them and their efforts to secure victory."


Click to read more.


A Surge in Denial

- by Steve Russell

'War is just like boxing," said Gen. George Patton. "When you get your opponent on the ropes, you must keep punching the hell out of him and not let him recover."

Today in Iraq, the enemy is on the ropes. Our Air Force has pummeled Al Qaeda with 40,000 pounds of bombs. Soldiers and Marines have reduced northern Al Qaeda safe havens to rubble. Contractors are delivering tons of supplies and securing our diplomats. One-time insurgent strongholds are returning to peace.

One would expect aspiring political leaders not only to laud our troops for their great work - which all of them go through the motions of doing - but also to admit that a total pullout on a predetermined schedule might be just a tad premature.

Instead, the 2008 candidates for President on the Democratic side stubbornly deny the possible troop victory that's finally in our sights in a grotesque swap for political victory.

They're basically rooting for our defeat over there - which has me rooting, harder than ever, for their defeat here.

Click to read more.


2007 - A Year for Victory

- by Steve Russell


In this last year, we have seen a major shift in the battle for public opinion on the war.  At this time last year, Saddam Hussein's execution was but a week old, capping with good news a year that was marked mostly with bad.  Public opinion at home was decidedly negative about the war and sentiments began to turn even against the troops.  Now, a year later, victories on the battlefield have run parallel with supporting victories on the home front. 

When the founders of Vets for Victory began our fight  a little more than fifteen months ago, we knew the task would be tough.  Unlike fighting enemies on the battlefield, targeting public opinion is difficult to change even when it is clearly identified. Still, we knew our message was true and that our credentials as veterans of this war would give us a foot in the door to make our case.  And make it we did...

Click to read more.


Cowboys from Blackwater? Try Cowboys from Congress - by Steve Russell


Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Since September's now-famous Baghdad shootout that led to the deaths of 17 Iraqis, numerous critics have assailed contractors with Blackwater USA, as well as security contractors in general, by labeling them as reckless cowboys.

But leading the chorus denouncing contractors has been a different posse of "cowboys," this one composed of reckless members of Congress. Their careless rhetoric and soldier funding ambushes amount to the very same thing they accuse Blackwater of doing -- shooting first, and asking questions later.

Click to read more.


Demonizing Blackwater Proxy for Troop Withdrawal

- by Steve Russell




....An honest debate about the wisdom of contracting out key functions is certainly healthy, but the debate over Blackwater and its peers should not stand as a proxy for the overall war debate.

The truth, which few members of Congress are willing to admit, is that Blackwater employees are doing some of the most difficult work in Iraq. And, they are doing a great job keeping Americans safe.

Blackwater’s 1,000 contractors protect key State Department diplomats — prized targets for insurgents. They have never lost a person they were assigned to protect, yet 30 Blackwater contractors have given their lives in executing their mission, and hundreds more have been seriously injured. And no one, of course, can forget the haunting images of the Blackwater contractors who were hanged from a bridge in Fallujah in 2004.


Click to read more.


Related - Rockethead: meet a real contractor

Related - Gates: Contracting needs will be met (Guardian)



Remarks at Florida State University

– by Steve Russell


Should we be in Iraq?This is perhaps the most contentious question of our day.  Some have argued passionately that we were not justified in attacking Iraq.  Further, they contend that not only was the war a mistake, but that it resulted from carefully planned lies that hid secret motives.  When viewed from this filter, all policy and decisions to support this war are for naught, given the belief that it is useless to pursue an unjust cause to begin with.

Here are a half a dozen of the most popular claims as to why we should not be there:

Click to read more.


Make No Apologies

– by Steve Russell


What shall we say?  What more can we give to our nation than the type of sacrifice we have already given?  What words can we the soldiers use to convince Americans at home that the biggest mistakes being made in this war are on the home front, not the battlefront?  What will be the value of temporary civilian comforts and the illusion of national safety when a giant shadow of Islamic terrorism is casting itself onto our shores?  What will be the meaning of the rhetoric and the political debate when we sift through the rubble of a workplace, a shopping mall or public transit—digging out American bodies targeted for no other reason than because of our way of life and who we are as a people?  It is a scene that every soldier who has witnessed it abroad will fight with all his might to keep away—but we never thought that our own people would betray our efforts.  Click to read more.


It Will Never Fly

– by Steve Russell

The most talkative bird in the world is the parrot.  But he is a poor flyer.  - Wilbur Wright

America is a nation 300 million strong.  Our capacity, resources, and ingenuity are based in the great heritage and tradition of those who sacrificed to make us great.  Each generation of Americans inherits a responsibility to protect this legacy from those that would see it falter and fade.  Do we then really suppose that a mere 10,000 insurgents  equipped with little more than man-dresses and flip-flops can hold America and its heritage hostage while terrorizing us into submission?  Click to read more.


The Iraq Study Group - What's the Big Idea?

– by Steve Russell

Speak to me as to thy thinkings,

As thou dost ruminate, and give thy worst of thoughts

The worst of words - William Shakespeare

Words are powerful tools.  As a speaker and writer, I choose my words deliberately to deliver my thoughts or connect ideas.  Even when I do not choose my words well, they still provide insight into my thinking.  Perhaps that is why I find the Iraq Study Group Report a fascinating exercise in carefully chosen words attempting to mask the authors’ collective belief that America cannot win in Iraq.  Take, for example, the word ‘victory.’  In the entire 160-page document, the word is used only three times.  In each case, it is used to describe how Al Qaeda could achieve it.  Nowhere is the word ‘victory’ used in conjunction with US efforts in Iraq.  Other similar words, such as ‘success,’ are found only in association with phrases like ‘nothing can guarantee it,’ or it ‘depends on the unity of the American people,’ or that requires it includes the active participation or reconciliation of our enemies.  Herein lies the problem.  How effective can a ‘strategy’ for a ‘new approach’ in Iraq be, when founded upon a pessimistic view of victory?  Click to read more.

Celebrating the Anti-Hero – by Steve Russell

Decorations are for the puropose of raising the fighting value of troops; therefore they must be awarded promptly....Discipline can only be obtained when all officers are imbued with the sense of their awful obligation to their men and to their country that they cannot tolerate negligence.  Officers who fail to correct errors or to praise excellence are valueless in peace and dangerous misfits in war. – General George S. Patton, Jr

How long are we to accept the complete failure to embrace true heroes in this war?  To most Americans, every soldier is a hero.  In a general sense, that is somewhat true—but not entirely.  Americans cannot be blamed fully for the failure to comprehend genuine battlefield heroics.  They rely on our military institutions for understanding.  That seems to be the failure of our Army.

Some generals and field officers—the rank where one controls the recognition of valorous acts—dismiss such issues pathetically with, “Well, he was just doing his job.  All of our soldiers are making sacrifices and are doing a great job.”  So we miss yet another great opportunity to achieve victory in the war on terror.  Such a statement forfeits opportunity and speaks of a dangerous failure to recognize, even in our military culture, what is noble; what is just; and what is true.  We must think on these things. Click to read more.

The only thing that matters – by Steve Russell

With public Sentiment, nothing can fail; without it nothing can succeed. – Abraham Lincoln

When I returned home from yet another war, I was shocked at the views of Iraq as expressed by large numbers of Americans. Even today I reflect on how much harder it is for soldiers to bear these burdens without public support. And the added stress on the soldiers’ families as they are fed a steady diet of disillusionment and defeatism while their loved ones fight, or even die, is reprehensible. Many today hold the view that because of the tragedies of combat and the suffering that soldiers face, America should not take up the effort. Some reason that our lives are the only thing that matters. I do not hold this view. When I commanded an Infantry battalion in Iraq I told my men that I believed that if God intended for us to die in Iraq, then it would happen. If not, then there was nothing the enemy could do to make it so. And I emphasized to them while we may face difficulty, we cannot be defeated in this war. Click to read more.

Us and Them – by Steve Russell

We cannot deprecate good because it is American and embrace evil out of respect to different culture. Piloting airplanes into civilian workplaces is evil. Attacking all of your neighbors while killing hundreds of thousands of your own people is evil and invites intervention of justice—whether by global partners or single nations.

So what is their beef? Why do they hate us? What makes us right and them wrong? These are the kinds of questions that well-meaning Americans have asked in pursuit of answers to our current war on terror. While the questions are worth asking, they are not the main point. If the neighborhood in which one lives were to be overrun by thugs and miscreants, having a homeowners meeting to better understand the criminal viewpoint so that the neighborhood can be more accommodating and reduce crime is absurd. We would demand better police protection. We could justify the increased risk to our law enforcers and they would gladly shoulder it to protect the innocent. We would take a stand. Click to read more.

The real question – by Steve Russell

War is an ugly thing, but not the ugliest of things. The decayed and degraded state of a moral and patriotic feeling which thinks that nothing is worth war is much worse. A man who has nothing for which he is willing to fight—nothing he cares about more than his own safety—is a miserable creature who has no chance of being free, unless made and kept so by the exertions of better men than himself. – John Stuart Mill

Should we be in Iraq? This is perhaps the most contentious question of our day. But the real question is not whether we should be engaged in a war on Iraq. The real question is whether Iraq presented a threat to the United States of America, and if so, then was our response appropriate? Will we have the national will to face down these threats now that we have committed to overthrowing Saddam’s regime?

Some have argued passionately that we were not justified in attacking Iraq.  Further, they contend that not only was the war a mistake, but that it resulted from carefully planned lies that hid secret motives.  When viewed through this filter, all policy questions and future decisions about whether to support this war change dramatically because they are viewed from the perspective that it is useless to pursue a cause that was unjust to begin with.  Still, none of this addresses the real question.   Did Iraq present a major threat to the security of the United States of America and her interests? Click to read more.

Don't You Guys Get It? – by Steve Russell

And I see not in my blindness
What the objects were I wrought,
But as God rules o’er our bickerings
It was through His will I fought. - General George S. Patton, Jr.

Veteran’s Day. A nice public gathering for veterans. The school bands were great. The student poems were thoughtful. The efforts of all were appreciated. I gave my remarks in uniform and as a veteran, took pride to be numbered among America’s veterans. The remarks were well received and many expressed their feelings and gratitude or related stories of their relatives’ sacrifice and service. Click to read more.

Our Mission

Our mission is simple—to engage and change public sentiment to achieve victory in the war on terror. We will accomplish this by raising the soldier’s voice in the national debate on this war and provide accurate information from those that have had the most at stake—the soldier. Ours is a voice of experience, not academics or theory or postulation. We deserve to be listened to, not pandered to or pitied.

Without the commitment of the American people, our use of military power will falter in Iraq and Afghanistan. Our other instruments of national power, such as diplomatic or economic or information, will scarcely gain a foothold without solid commitment. Real victory will come when, as at times past, Americans hold to their ideals, rally as a nation, face the dangers threatening our way of life, and stand firm until victory is achieved. When our enemies see this commitment, they will lose their initiative and begin their march to defeat. We are the United States of America. We should never apologize for being who we are. Click to read more.


Don't just read. Watch, listen and read more comments made in the media.  Click to see videos and articles.



Their Commitment, Our Commitment

- by Scott Rutter


As our legislative bodies debate and determine the fate of service members in Iraq and Afghanistan, it is easy to depersonalize the discussion. “They” need more body armor, “they” need fewer rotations and more rest, “they” are separated from their families.

The fact is, “they” are everyday people who share many of the common dreams and aspirations of millions of Americans who benefit from the protections they provide for our freedom. Many times, though, the scars of war are deep, often psychological, and it is easy to write them off once “they” have returned home.


Click to read more.


What the future holds

Wounded vets take snow sports to their hearts

- by Dana Dugan


On Dollar Mountain in Sun Valley last Friday, along with young children snowplowing down the sunny, groomed slopes, there were several grown men skiing too. A below-the-knee amputee, U.S. Army Ret. Major Ed Pulido, of Oklahoma City, determinedly struggled with his one ski. He said he'd been inspired to try the sport after seeing paralympians ski two years ago in Sun Valley.

Pulido and six other wounded veterans were here as a part of the Wood River Ability Program's winter ski camp. They were accompanied on their trip from Brooke Army Medical Center in San Antonio, Texas, by Nancy and Bob Wickman of Texas—who work with both Operation Comfort and Red River Valley Fighter Pilots Association—and Nibya Contreras, a Marine liaison, as well as some family members and instructors.


Click to read more.


A History of Modern Terror

- by John Reitzell

The history of man is the history of terrorism. From his early cave days, man has sought to extort, steal, or otherwise gain something from other men by means of terror.

Webster defines terrorism as: "the systematic use of violence, terror and intimidation to achieve an end;" and terror as "violence promoted by a group to achieve or maintain supremacy."

For whatever reasons (and an entire treatise could be written just on reasons) men have terrorized other men or groups in societies since time began. So, placing a date on the beginning of "modern" terror might tend to bound the process of analyzing it a bit too much. Since we find ourselves embroiled with Islamic Fundamentalist terrorists; I will recognize that Baader-Meinhof, Shining Path, M 19, the IRA, ASALA, FLN, the Red Brigade, et. al., exist and pose a threat; but I will focus on events and terrorist acts primarily that lead to the events of 9-11-01 and beyond.


Click to read more.


Terrorist Groups Links and Information

The purpose of these links is to provide the analyst with research tools that educates all the different lists of terrorist groups’ official names, un-official names, and aliases.  These are some of the most reputable and informative resources currently on the web:

Air University Library: Terrorist and Insurgent Organizations (2003)

Asia Terrorism Database (2005)

Centre for Defence Information (2005)

Council on Foreign Relations: Terrorist Groups (2004)

CRS Reports for Congress: Foreign Terrorist Organizations (2004)

FAS Intelligence Resource Program: Liberation Movements, Terrorist Organizations, Substance Cartels, and Other Para-State Entities

International Policy Institute for Counter-Terrorism: Terrorist Organizations (2003)

MIPT Terrorism Knowledge Base (2005)

Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness Canada: Listed Entities (2002)

U.S. Department of Homeland Security: Terrorist Organization Reference Guide (2004)

U.S. Department of State: Country Reports on Terrorism


Critical Steps on the Road to Victory

- by Steve Russell

Let us have faith that right makes might, and in that faith, let us to the end, dare to do our duty as we understand it. - Abraham Lincoln

Can we win?  Ask a soldier.  If four doctors all said that your life could be saved by surgery yet everyone in your neighborhood said you are going to die, who would you believe?

Victory rarely comes easy.  Robert E. Lee said that from the rear, even victory looks like defeat.  In a time of constant anxiety, opponents of the war offer no solutions other than what is essentially quitting followed by a legacy of defeat.  As Americans, we owe it to our fallen and to ourselves as a nation to do better.

Often I am asked, what can be done to turn this war around.  Here are some current practical ways to lead us toward victory that I have shared publicly:

Click to read more.


Combat Calculus

Will 21,000 more troops make a difference?

– by Scott E. Rutter


The United States was founded on the doctrine of human sanctity. Each and every human life has value. Thus, in war our military and the world, in the form of the Geneva Conventions, developed certain rules of engagement that dictate fundamental battlefield actions. If warring parties uphold these rules of engagement, the preservation of human dignity is maintained, despite the bloodshed and destruction inherent in any war. What was not considered in this equation is a situation in which the enemy fails to act in accordance with these rules. In this situation, is the opposing party required to follow the rules? Can our society stomach a brutal torture and killing of an American soldier broadcast on the major news channels? Do we risk losing because we will only fight by the rules? In the minds of military planners and leaders, we must make these calculations and live with the consequences. Click to read more.


Who Are We Really At War With?

– by Scott E. Rutter

The most fundamental element in raising an Army is money. By extension, the United States has the most powerful Armed Forces in the world. We can claim that we are the smartest and the most organized. We can claim that our democracy fosters the decisions that portend strength in the Armed Forces. But, at the very foundation, our nation’s military strength is based on our capitalist society grounded in the continued pursuit of monetary wealth. Period.

It is interesting to speculate on the reasons that we really went to War with Saddam Hussein. Some would argue it was because of WMD’s, in retribution for 9/11, to quash the terrorists, or to kill a brutal dictator. All of these are valid reasons, and all were part of the mix when the U.S. made that decision in 2003. But, in selecting Iraq, the President made an interesting choice. This decision will prove to be pivotal and vital in the history of mankind. Click to read more.

Losing Sight of the Big Picture – by Scott E. Rutter

An Open Letter to the President of the United States

Dear President Bush:

As we sit today at a crossroads in our War on Terror, I felt it was my civic duty to provide to you some of my own perspective on our path forward. I am honored to have this opportunity and I hope that what I have to say will have some impact on your decisions in the coming weeks.

In January 2003, I was tasked with commanding Task Force 2-7 Infantry, one of the key units in the initial phase of the Iraq component of the War on Terror. At that time, public sentiment for military action was very high and I can recall clearly enormously positive news reports on our soldiers and their brave and honorable sacrifice. Click to read more.

I Pledge Allegiance to Iraq – by Scott E. Rutter

Training Iraqi soldiers requires more than just weapons and equipment. In our rush to change direction, let’s not overlook the fundamentals.

The strength and soundness of our military is based on the willingness of our soldiers to put this country above their own self interests. Those who volunteer to wear our nation’s uniform, recite the following oath: Click to read more.

America Remembers Flt 93 – by Scott E. Rutter

The child of a victim wanted to hug the actor that portrayed his father. A well-known Hollywood actor ranted that this is an exploitation of the events of 9/11 and inappropriate timing.

The movie United Flight 93 elicits a wide range of emotions and opinions and deals with a vital topic that is of national significance. Although it has been only five short years, it is time for America to begin the process of preservation. Integral to our history and our national development as a democratic nation, we must find a way to remember and honor the innocent victims of this attack and the men and women that have served to protect and defend this country, many making the ultimate sacrifice. Click to read more.

Fighting for ROTC – by Scott E. Rutter

Having spoken at many college campuses nationwide in the last two years, it often shocks me how many administrations and faculty are ardently against our War on Terror. While their positions are problematic, the underlying issue is the failure to permit the free and dynamic expression of thoughts and speech that is the foundation of this nation. In particular, many campuses have banned or tried to ban ROTC programs. With heads buried in the academic sand, the ability of the armed forces to attract the best and brightest is severely hampered by these actions. Does the administration of these universities think that members of the armed forces should only be obtained from poor communities that lack adequate opportunities? Do they believe that the terrorists will just ‘go away’ if we don’t address this issue? Do they think their universities are impervious to attack by terrorists or other enemies and the lives of their students are not worth protecting? Click to read more.

The War on America

- by Medal of Honor Recipient Col. Bud Day


My Dear Fellow Americans:

For the last few weeks, the “Liberal’s War on America” has gone badly.

* MoveOn, the New York Times, and Senators who accused Gen. Petraeus of being a traitor and a liar have been exposed and repudiated;

* The media’s attempted flim-flam to portray Iran’s Terrorist Dictator as a “Statesman,” tripped on Columbia University’s red carpet;

* The brave combat Marines whom Congressman Murtha and the press eagerly charged with “cold-blooded murders” in Iraq are being found innocent, acquitted one by one.

The “War” is not going well … the “War On America,” that is.

Click to read more.


Report to Congress on the Situation in Iraq

- by General David H. Petraeus

Mr. Chairmen, Ranking Members, Members of the Committees, thank you for the opportunity to provide my assessment of the security situation in Iraq and to discuss the recommendations I recently provided to my chain of command for the way forward.

At the outset, I would like to note that this is my testimony. Although I have briefed my assessment and recommendations to my chain of command, I wrote this testimony myself. It has not been cleared by, nor shared with, anyone in the Pentagon, the White House, or Congress.

As a bottom line up front, the military objectives of the surge are, in large measure, being met. In recent months, in the face of tough enemies and the brutal summer heat of Iraq, Coalition and Iraqi Security Forces have achieved progress in the security arena. Though the improvements have been uneven across Iraq, the overall number of security incidents in Iraq has declined in 8 of the past 12 weeks, with the numbers of incidents in the last two weeks at the lowest levels seen since June 2006.


Click to read the full Petraeus Report.


'We're Going to Win this Fight'

- President Bush's remarks to Veterans



The challenge before us is hard, but America can meet it. And the conflict has come at a cost, on behalf of a cause that is right and essential to the American people. It's a noble cause. It is a just cause. It is a necessary cause. I wouldn't have asked the young men and women of our military to go in harm's way if I didn't think success in Iraq was necessary for the security of the United States of America.

I know it can be difficult to see sometimes, but what happens on the streets of Baghdad and in the neighborhoods of Anbar has a direct impact on the safety of Americans here at home. And that is why we're in this fight. And that's why we'll stay in the fight, and that is why we're going to win this fight.

Click to read the President's remarks to the VFW.

Click to read the President's remarks to the American Legion.

Understanding Current Operations in Iraq

- by David Kilcullen

I’ve spent much of the last six weeks out on the ground, working with
Iraqi and U.S. combat units, civilian reconstruction teams, Iraqi administrators and tribal and community leaders. I’ve been away from e-mail a lot, but I’d like to make up for that now by providing colleagues with a basic understanding of what’s happening, right now, in Iraq.

This post is not about whether current ops are “working” — for us, here
on the ground, time will tell, though some observers elsewhere seem to
have already made up their minds (on the basis of what evidence, I’m
not really sure). But for professional counterinsurgency operators, the thing to understand at this point is the intention and concept behind current ops in Iraq : if you grasp this, you can tell for yourself how the operations are going, without relying on armchair pundits. So in the interests of self-education (and cutting out the commentariat middlemen—sorry, guys) here is a field perspective on current operations.

Click to read entire article.

General Petraeus' Message to Troops - 15 March 07

– by General David H. Petraeus

Operation Fardh al Qanoon - the Iraqi name for the operation to improve security in Baghdad - is in its early stages.  Success will take months, not days or weeks, and there undoubtedly are many tough days ahead.  Nonetheless, because of your hard work with our Iraqi partners, some encouraging signs are already emerging: sectarian murders are down and sectarian displacement appears to have slowed or even stopped, with increasing numbers of families returning to their homes.  It already appears that the Joint Security Stations and Combat Outposts you are establishing are making their presence felt and helping restore a sense of hope to the Iraqi people, block-by-block.....Click to read more.

General Petraeus' Message to Troops - 10 February 07

– by General David H. Petraeus

We serve in Iraq at a critical time.  The war here will soon enter its fifth year.  A decisive moment approaches.  Shoulder-to-shoulder with our Iraqi comradess, we will conduct a pivotal campaign to improve security for the Iraqi people.  The stakes could not be higher.....Click to read more.

The Ultimate Sacrifice

CPL Velez of C Company, 1-22 Infantry, bids farewell to fellow soldiers SPC James Powell of B Company and SPC D J Wheeler of C Company. Photo taken in October 2003 by EPA’s Stefan Zaklin. The Donald L. Wheeler, Jr, VFW Post in Jackson, Michigan is named after DJ. LTC Russell attended the dedication in June 2006 and gave remarks.





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