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Sunday, July 29, 2007


You may recall a previous post on Operation Fresh Air. Well! The organizers of that nifty event and members of a local neighborhood had an Operation Fresh Air II last week. About thirty-five folks - vets and family members - who are currently staying at Walter Reed Army Medical Center, came down for a little fishing, a burger, a hot dog, some fun and games, and, of course, a little fresh air.

For those of you who had donated through Soldiers’ Angels to add a few extras to these events, a few funds were used for OP Fresh Air II. However, almost all of the event was sponsored by a group of neighbors from a subdivision right near Leesylvania State Park where the event was held. I got to drop in and hang out. Fun crowd!

In addition to the fishing, there was music provided by a live band (young men from the neighborhood), and there were crafts, face painting, and a piƱata for the kids. I was really impressed with the thought and attention given to entertaining the children of these wounded vets. It can’t be easy living away from home for what is often an indefinite amount of time. And while it is clear that they enjoy the time with their moms and dads, an evening of silliness with other kids in the woods by the water is pretty special. Not to mention a nice break for mom and dad.

Well done, neighbors!

Monday, July 23, 2007

An Al Qaeda Job Promotion Process Worth Supporting

It requires a little Coalition help, but I'd say it's a winner:

On July 17, Coalition forces captured three more al Qaeda operatives in Mosul, one "who is believed to have been promoted within the organization after recent Coalition operations created numerous vacancies in the terrorist leadership structure."

Read the whole thing here and keep track of this and other nifty war news items at The Fourth Rail . And support these journalistic efforts by making a tax-deductible donation HERE.

Or adopt a Soldier today :-)

Sunday, July 22, 2007

Christmas in July: Update on Holiday Project for 20,000 Soldiers!

Remember that Holiday Project for those 20,000 soldiers? Well there's still plenty to do to get the stocking items collected and cards written.

From Diane's July 7th inventory...top priority items to be collected:

Status on complete list of items is available HERE.

TO DO: How about planning a letter writing and lip balm/choc candy/hot cocoa collection event for August?

TO DO: Sam's Club delivery - scratch that. You can't order the things Diane and Co need on-line. However, Sam's always has Swiss Miss cocoa for ~$5 for 60 packets! Not a bad deal, huh? I should know - I bought 500+ packets there for my holiday shipment to a Navy ship last year :-) They usually have a great assortment of chocolate candies, too. Georgians! Time to shop! :-)

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Not for Profit News

I haven’t quite wrapped my brain around the full significance of an email I received this morning. Bottom line? My most important source of news on the “global war on terror” (more recently dubbed the Long War), is now the product of a newly-minted, non-profit organization: Public Media Inc (PMI).

Someone who isn’t aiming for corporate growth or TV ratings is providing daily, in-depth reporting on major events in the war in Iraq, the war in Afghanistan, and the turmoil bubbling and erupting in Pakistan. When there isn’t a major event, there’s still a weekly report on Iraq and news round-ups on the war-on-terror (or the Long War) in places like Lebanon, The Philippines, Thailand, Yemen, Iran, Morocco, the United Kingdom, and, yes, the US.

Who’s behind this comprehensive reporting? Bill Roggio.

And now he’s doubling down and making a commitment to continue to provide this kind of invaluable reporting. He’s obviously decided that he can’t do it on his own, the embedding and the reporting (hard to do both well, continuously!), or with his current small crew. So he’s formed a non-profit

A non-profit, so he can give us a gift. Day in, day out.

I’ve read numerous entries on Hugh Hewitt’s blog over the last year on the eroding profitability of major news outlets like the New York Times, The LA Times, and other major newspapers.

I’ve never subscribed to any of these major newspapers. The last newspaper subscription I had was to The Christian Science Monitor.

I’ve donated to my favorite Long War blogs over the last year: The Mudville Gazette (by Greyhawk & Mrs. G), Michael Yon: Online Magazine, and The Fourth Rail (by Bill Roggio), and I will continue to do so.

Now, though, I will take additional pleasure in my next donation to PMI as it will be supporting not only the web reports that I read daily, but sponsoring multiple embedded journalists reporting from the front lines in places like Iraq and The Philippines. And it will add an entry to my itemized deductions for 2007. Gotta love that.

To top it all off, I’m trying to figure out just how envious I am of a current Princeton ROTC student who apparently will be embedding with General David Petraeus as one of PMI’s first embeds. Sure beats my summer jobs in college…

If you needed a nudge to consider donating to PMI, or Michael Yon, or Greyhawk, maybe this will do the trick. Before the Fourth of July, I had been contemplating a blog post encouraging you to provide financial support for these independent bloggers. Supporting independents on Independence Day, you know? Anyway, that post didn’t happen and now I’ve had to do a re-write, but…

As I rode the bus to work this morning, I tried to imagine what it would have been like if we’d fought the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan without blogs.

Makes you wonder what we’d know, doesn’t it?

When I got home from work today, there was a letter in my mailbox from one of the soldiers’ I’ve adopted through Soldiers’ Angels. He’s serving near Ramadi in Iraq, and, thanks to Bill and the rest, I have a small clue what it’s like for him and the others as they fight for our way of life on the other side of the world. Oh, and a clue as to the progress they’re making. Had you heard about that? Bill, Michael Yon, or Greyhawk’s Mrs. G can fill you in.

Made a donation yet? Support all three if you’re able.

Sunday, July 1, 2007


Not socks! The 10,000th email message to our RCT-6 Marines and their buddies in Iraq has arrived. (HT Grim at Blackfive)

Knew you could do it!

And once again, if you've been lollygagging, they are still aiming for 20,000 messages.

They're doing hot, sweaty, and dangerous work - wouldn't you like to say hello and thanks?

I thought so.

If you haven't surfed over to see what they're up to, go now and check out their blog.