Staff Sgt. Jason Rogers, of the United States Marine Corps, was killed in combat earlier this month in Afghanistan. A heartbreaking YouTube video of the funeral procession in Brandon, Mississippi (located in Rankin County) has been posted:
An absolutely must watch video today -- Corporal William Lottering, USMC by way of South Africa, gives a tour of the schoolhouse in Garmsir, Afghanistan. The headmaster of the school fled the school and didn't come back to teach until the Marines arrived and started providing security. When the Marines arrived, their were just over a hundred students. Now they're educatiing 366 kids. Most are between eight and 12, but some trying to learn to read and write are as old as 22.
In the past four years, administrations of both parties have had to surge ground troops to war theaters in order to make success possible in missions central to the national security of the United States. Just last week, the Obama administration announced an additional 1,400 Marines would be deployed to southern Afghanistan to help secure the progress the surge has achieved there.
There’s been some hyperventilating among conservatives about the effects on the military of repealing Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell. It’s going to be amazingly difficult to implement, some say. It could well be the end of the U.S. military as a feared fighting force. It’s just another step in the decline of the West.
At today's Senate hearing, three of the four service chiefs expressed opposition to repealing the Don't Ask, Don't Tell (DADT) policy on gays in the military. "My recommendation is that we should not implement repeal at this time," said Marine Corps commandant General James F. Amos (watch his opening statement here).
Excerpts of remarks by Marine Lt. Gen. John F. Kelly to the Semper Fi Society of St. Louis, November 13, 2010. His son, Marine 1st Lt. Robert Michael Kelly, 29, was killed in action November 9, 2010, in Sangin, in southern Afghanistan, while leading his platoon on a combat patrol.
TWS pays tribute not only to all our veterans but to those now in the midst of the fight--here, for example, is an article about the Marine battalion (mentioned yesterday here) facing a fierce fight in northern Helmand:
CAMP PENDLETON — Maj. Gen. Richard P. Mills, commander of U.S. and NATO forces in southwestern Afghanistan, said Wednesday that Camp Pendleton’s 3rd Battalion, 5th Marine Regiment drew one of the toughest assignments in Marine Corps history when it was sent in October to Sangin, a strategic crossroads town in Helmand province.
President Barack Obama's July 2011 date to start withdrawing troops from Afghanistan has given a morale boost to Taliban insurgents, who believe they can wait out NATO forces, the top U.S. Marine said on Tuesday.
But General James Conway, who is retiring this fall as commandant of the Marine Corps, said he believed Marines would not be in a position to withdraw from the fight in southern Afghanistan for years.
I was not a great Marine. I never saw combat. I got a lot more from the Marines than the Marines got from me. But I believe fervently that this nation today needs the values of the Marine Corps as much as the nation needs the Marine Corps.
Musa Qala District, Northern Helmand Province, Afghanistan A dozen Marines streamed from Patrol Base Griffin about two hours after dawn on Thursday, July 1, descending a rocky gravel slope leading straight into the village of Karamanda. The Americans were joined by two Afghan police officers, two Afghan soldiers, an interpreter, and a black bomb-sniffing dog named Bandit. The men walked in rigid single-file “Ranger formation,” each mimicking the footsteps of the person to his front to minimize the chance of stepping on a pressure plate IED. They moved in relative silence broken by greetings to villagers, occasional commands, and the odd joke. “Frankie,” a young Afghan interpreter from Kabul, began to tunelessly sing a song.
“Don’t quit your day job, Frankie,” needled First Lieutenant Robert Paulus, Charlie Company Executive Officer and the patrol’s leader. Frankie grunted.
“You know what that means?” asked Paulus.
“Don’t. Quit. Your. Day. Job,” enunciated Paulus. “It means you’re a much better linguist than you are a singer.” Frankie grunted again, and resumed singing.
The Scrapbook rounds up some of the best quotations from Marine General James Mattis, who was selected this week to head CENTCOM:
The Scrapbook applauds President Obama and Defense Secretary Robert Gates for the selection of Marine General James Mattis to head Central Command. Victor Davis Hanson writes that “Mattis is a proven battlefield commander, a sophisticated student of history, and unshakable in his nerve and purpose.”
One year ago today, approximately 2,000 Marines from the 2nd Marine Expeditionary Brigade loaded into dozens of U.S. Army helicopters from the 101st Airborne Division or manned guns in a ground convoy vehicle to begin “Operation Khanjari,” moving into the heart of insurgent-controlled territory in Helmand Province, Afghanistan.