HAVE A PLAN TO KILL EVERYONE YOU MEET!
FALLUJAH — A sign on the door leading out of India Company’s Combat Operations Center says “Have a Plan to Kill Everyone You Meet.” For a fraction of second I thought it might be some kind of joke. But I was with the Marine Corps in Fallujah, and it wasn’t a joke.
I asked Captain Stewart Glenn if he could explain and perhaps elaborate a bit on what, exactly, that sign is about. “It’s pretty straightforward,” he said rather bluntly. “It means exactly what it says.”
Welcome to counterinsurgency.
A sign outside Lieutenant Nathan Bibler’s Joint Security Station in the slums of Fallujah makes the point a little more clearly, and delicately. “Look at everyone as though they are trying to kill you, but you cannot treat them that way.”
THE “G” BLOGS…by GyG
Also known as Gunny G’s
Globe and Anchor Sites/Forums/Blogs….
WHO DOES NOT HAVE AN OPINION ON RON PAUL???
And here’s one that is at least more interesting and factual than most you will read…It’s from Gunny 419
In the past five days, I’ve gotten at least three calls from the camp followers in Ron Paul’s revolutionary guard. Each one (always in a squeeky, pre-pubescent voice) begs me to caucus for Dr. Paul. I tell each caller that I solidly agree with Dr. Paul’s campaign and his message. However, I will not caucus for him.
The media already did a bang-up job of ignoring Paul’s grass roots fund-raising. They simply ignored it. If it isn’t reported…it never happened. Paul firmly trounced McCain in Iowa polls and the Des Moines Register (referred to by locals as “The Des Moines Red-Star”) gleefully endorsed the hapless, sad-sack McCain. The local television bimbettes would rather re-hash breathless pronouncements of; “And today, yah sure, Obama, Romney, Hillary, and Giuliani all promised to give us FREE HEALTH CARE! Ooohhhhh, yah sure, you betcha.” Afterward, they admonish viewers to ‘stay tuned’ for footage of a roller-blading squirrel ‘…you’ll only see here’. Their wide-eyes suggest that the squirrel will be produced from inside their knickers.The media would ignore Paul even if he climbed onto a Kleenex-constructed parade float in a black-faced parody of Obama sodomizing Hillary (shudder) as he farts the “Star Spangled Banner” and shoots bottle rockets out of his own ass to the tempo of the music. If Paul triumphed at the Iowa caucus to the third spot…the mainstream media would simply limit their reporting to first and second place only.
I might be able to hold my breath, cross my fingers, and pinkie-swear to be a Republican in order to caucus for Ron Paul. I’d even whip out “Willie, the One-eyed Trouser Trout” to prove my religious affiliation.Caucus for Ron Paul?
To do so is to waste my time because any success by Ron Paul will be ignored, marginalized, and dismissed by journalism majors possessing IQs numerically equivalent to the farenheit temperature of a March morning in Des Moines?
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THE “G” BLOGS…by GyG
Also known as Gunny G’s
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The Essence of Liberty: Part 213
Dr. Jimmy T. (Gunny) LaBaume
A Summary of Gutzman, Kevin R.C. The Politically Incorrect Guide™ to the Constitution
(The book is available from the Ludwig von Mises Institute at http://www.mises.org)
Chapter 4: Judges: Power-Hungry from the Beginning
The Constitution does not have much to say about the courts. Article III only states that “Judicial power…shall be vested in one supreme Court, and in such inferior Courts as the Congress may from time to time…establish.” It goes on to list several types of jurisdiction that Congress may grant and to describe the Supreme Court’s original jurisdiction. (It also grants federal judges “good behavior” tenure.)
However, the first Congress was dominated by Federalists. Consequently, the Judiciary Act of 1789 established a three-tiered federal court system—district courts, appellate courts and the supreme court. This, of course, was in violation of the pledge made during the ratification debates that the federal government would try to get along without any federal courts and that trials would be left to the state courts.
The act also included two sections that would become highly significant. Although of questionable constitutionality, Section 25 said that federal law could be appealed from state supreme courts to the federal Supreme Court.
Another provision said that, in suits between litigants that were from different states, the law of the state where the federal court sat would be the law that would govern. Thus, in effect, matters were left to the states and not the federal government. Once again the Founders came down on the side of federalism.
Copyright ©2004, FlyoverPress.com
Jimmy T. LaBaume, PhD, ChFC is a full professor teaching economics and statistics in the School of Agricultural and Natural Resource Sciences, Sul Ross State University, Alpine, TX. He does not speak for Sul Ross State University. Sul Ross State University does not think for him.
Dr. LaBaume has lived in Mexico and spent extended periods of time in South and Central America as a researcher, consultant and educator.
“Gunny” LaBaume is a decorated veteran of the Vietnam War and Desert Storm. His Marine Corps career spanned some 35 years intermittently from 1962 until 1997 when he refused to re-enlist with less than 2 years to go to a good retirement. In his own words, he “simply got tired of living a life of crime.”
He is also currently the publisher and managing editor of FlyoverPress.com, a daily e-source of news not seen or heard anywhere on the mainstream media. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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Ron Paul: Mr. Republican
by Llewellyn H. Rockwell, Jr.
by Llewellyn H. Rockwell, Jr.
A relentless theme in the commentary on Ron Paul is that he is not really a Republican, mainly because he dissents from the party on foreign policy. People now associate the Republican Party with crazed war-mongering, massive military spending, and relentless conflict-seeking, to the point even of a messianic global crusade on behalf of American imperial control.
This is madness, and Ron Paul does dissent. But is he really departing from Republican tradition? In the 1990s, the GOP opposed Clinton’s wars in Somalia and Serbia. It denounced nation building as an extension of the domestic planning state. But those were short-lived moments. The party reverted to its war-mongering self after Bush came to power.
So for a genuinely non-interventionist policy within the Republican Party we need to go back further to the last of the great statesmen of mid-20th century America: Senator Robert Taft of Ohio, also known as Mr. Republican. His 1951 book A Foreign Policy for Americans was a huge seller and exercised vast influence.
These were highly confusing times when Republicans were sure that FDR’s wartime alliance with Russia, and especially Yalta’s empowerment of Stalin in Europe, were grave errors. So on one hand, they wanted to show that Russia was not a force for good in the world, and, in fact, represented a threat to liberty as grave as that of Nazi Germany. On the other hand, they strongly suspected that Truman was “triangulating” the issue of the Russian threat to Europe as a way of stealing a Republican issue for Democratic policy advantage. They were aghast at the flip-flop on the issue and feared playing into the hands of a new form of Democratic nationalism.
So Taft, in this book, is walking a fine line: warning against the Russian threat as a way of scoring anti-FDR points but also being careful not to exaggerate it in a way that would bolster the Truman plot to use the fear of Communism to extend the American empire. More on the complexities here can be found in Rothbard’s seminal work, Betrayal of the American Right, which everyone who seeks to understand this period in American political history must certainly read.
Hence, what is striking about this Taft book is not so much the specific policy recommendations but the principles that underlie what Taft considered to be the true Republican foreign policy.
I offer, then, words from the first Mr. Republican on the true principles of a Republican foreign policy:
The truth is that no nation can be constantly prepared to undertake a full-scale war at any moment and still hope to maintain any of the other purposes in which people are interested and for which nations are founded.
In the first place, it requires a complete surrender of liberty and the turning over to the central government of power to control in detail the lives of the people and all of their activities.
While in time of war people are willing to surrender those liberties in order to protect the ultimate liberty of the entire country, they do so on the theory that it is a limited surrender and one which they hope will soon be over, perhaps within a few months, certainly within a few years. But an indefinite surrender of liberty such as would be required by an all-out war program in time of peace might mean the final and complete destruction of those liberties which it is the very purpose of the preparation to protect.
Furthermore, the destruction of that liberty in the long run will put an end to the constant progress which has characterized this country during its 160 years of life, a progress due more than anything else to the freedom of men to think their own thoughts, live their own lives, and run their own affairs.
It would require a complete surrender of all of our material and humanitarian aims to increase the standard of living of our people and of the people of our allies. All of those standards of living would have to be reduced, because even the most optimistic do not feel that we can have all the guns we want and all the butter we want at the same time.
It would be impossible to conduct any such all-out program without inflation. In World War II, in spite of complete controls, we saw an increase in prices, apparently permanent, of about 70 per cent, a depreciation of the dollar to sixty cents. I doubt if any government spending program calling for half the national income could be undertaken which would not involve an increase in prices of at least 10 per cent every year and a corresponding depreciation in the value of the dollar.
This would mean the destruction of savings and life insurance policies. It would mean a constant race between prices and wages. It would mean hardship for millions, and doubt and uncertainty for many millions more. It would mean constant domestic turmoil and disagreement.
Finally, it would interfere with the very production which is the great basis of the strength of the United States and to which not only our own people but all of our allies look for ultimate victory if there should be a war with Russia.
The truth is, also, that the most foresighted person could not set up a preparation that would protect us against every conceivable contingency. One or two Pearl Harbors might lay us open to a dangerous attack. We have to choose those measures which will give us the most complete protection within our reasonable economic capacity.
In short, there is a definite limit to what a government can spend in time of peace and still maintain a free economy, without inflation and with at least some elements of progress in standards of living and in education, welfare, housing, health, and other activities in which the people are vitally interested.
The question which we have to determine, and which apparently nobody in the Administration has really thought through, is the point at which we reach the economic limitation in time of peace on government expenditures and a military program. After that we must choose between the various measures contributing to our defense, to determine which are of first importance and which can be ignored without serious danger. (pp. 69–70)
An unwise and overambitious foreign policy, and particularly the effort to do more than we are able to do, is the one thing which might in the end destroy our armies and prove a real threat to the liberty of the people of the United States….
And when I say liberty I do not simply mean what is referred to as “free enterprise.” I mean liberty of the individual to think his own thoughts and live his own life as he desires to think and to live; the liberty of the family to decide how they wish to live, what they want to eat for breakfast and for dinner, and how they wish to spend their time; liberty of a man to develop his ideas and get other people to teach those ideas, if he can convince them that they have some value to the world; liberty of every local community to decide how its children shall be educated, how its local services shall be run, and who its local leaders shall be; liberty of a man to choose his own occupation; and liberty of a man to run his own business as he thinks it ought to be run, as long as he does not interfere with the right of other people to do the same thing.
We cannot overestimate the value of this liberty of ideas and liberty of action. It is not that you or I or some industrial genius is free; it is that millions of people are free to work out their own ideas and the country is free to choose between them and adopt those which offer the most progress. I have been through hundreds of industrial plants in the last two or three years, and in every plant I find that the people running that plant feel that they have something in the way of methods or ideas or machinery that no other plant has. I have met men said to be the best machinists in the industry who have built special machines for a particular purpose in which that company is interested.
Thousands of wholly free and independent thinkers are working out these ideas and have the right and ability to try them out without getting the approval of some government bureau. You can imagine the difference between the progress under such a system and one in which the government ran every plant in the country as it runs the post offices today. There would be one idea for a hundred that are now developed. If any plant employee had an idea for progress and wrote to Washington, he probably would get back a letter referring him to Regulation No. 5201 (c), which tells him exactly how this particular thing should be done, and has been done for the past fifty years.
It is clear to me that the great progress made in this country, the tremendous production of our people, the productivity per man of our workmen have grown out of this liberty and the freedom to develop ideas. We have the highest standard of living, because we produce more per person than any other country in the world.
After the American Revolution and the French Revolution the whole world became convinced that liberty was the key to progress and happiness for the peoples of the world, and this theory was accepted, even in those countries where there was, in fact, no liberty. People left Europe and came to this country, not so much because of the economic conditions as because they sought a liberty which they could not find at home. But gradually this philosophy has been replaced by the idea that happiness can only be conferred upon the people by the grace of an efficient government. Only the government, it is said, has the expert knowledge necessary for the people’s welfare; only the government has the power to carry out the grandiose plans so necessary in a complicated world.
Those who accept the principle of socialism, of government direction, and of government bureaucracy have a hard time battling against the ideology of communism. Our labor union leaders cannot effectively fight communism, as such, because they favor a socialist control that comes very close to communism in the actual measures which are to be undertaken. Even our statesmen seem to be handicapped in the same way.
Thus, Secretary Acheson only a year ago stated: “To say that the main motive of American foreign policy was to halt the spread of communism was putting the cart before the horse. The United States was interested in stopping communism chiefly because it had become a subtle instrument of Soviet imperialism.”
With this point of view I emphatically disagree. I believe that we should battle the principles of communism and socialism and convince the world that true happiness lies in the establishment of a system of liberty, that communism and socialism are the very antithesis of liberalism, and that only a nation conceived in liberty can hope to bring real happiness to its people or to the world. (pp. 155–117)
Robert Taft understood that freedom at home was tied to seeking peace abroad and avoiding entangling alliances that lead to war. Would that today’s Republicans would listen to him – and to Ron Paul.
December 19, 2007
Copyright © 2007 LewRockwell.com
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January 2, 2008
Gays And The Military
Where do GOP candidates stand?
By Elaine Donnelly
The first of two installments.
If there is a conflict between equal opportunity and military necessity, which one should have priority? The non-partisan Center for Military Readiness asked all presidential candidates to state their views on this and related military/social issues that affect discipline and morale.
In 1992, candidate Bill Clinton downplayed his intent to lift the ban on homosexuals in the military. Mr. Clinton failed, but his administrative “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy/regulations moved the agenda half-way.During a June 2007 presidential debate, Sen. Hillary Clinton, New York Democrat, admitted that “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” was supposed to be a “transitional policy” toward full acceptance of professed homosexuals in the military. Where do Republicans stand on this and other military personnel issues?
Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee responded well to the CMR survey, indicating that he would assign priority to military necessity. Mr. Huckabee would restore compliance with regulations and law regarding women in or near direct ground combat, and opposes Selective Service registration of young women, female sailors serving on submarines, the still-unratified CEDAW Treaty, tax-funded feminist power bases in the Pentagon and problematic family policies that increase single parenthood.
Mr. Huckabee also endorses the 1993 law banning homosexuals from the military, but with contradictions. In a transcribed interview with Associated Press editors reported April 24, 2007, Mr. Huckabee said, “I’m not sure that being homosexual should automatically disqualify a person from the military. If a person can do his or her job, you know that’s not for me the biggest issue.”
This statement fails to recognize that the military differs from civilian occupations. Discipline and morale are essential, and the law states that homosexuals are not eligible to serve. When asked about Mr. Huckabee’s incongruous statement to AP, his campaign said he still supports the 1993 law. He and other Republicans also endorse “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,” without explaining what they mean.
On the one hand we have the law that Congress passed with bipartisan veto-proof majorities, “Section 654, Title 10,” which could have been named the “Military Personnel Eligibility Act of 1993.” The statute codified pre-Clinton Defense Department regulations stating that “homosexuality is incompatible with military service,” and the courts have declared it constitutional several times.
We also have Mr. Clinton’s “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” enforcement regulations, inconsistent with the law, which invite homosexuals to serve if they do not say they are homosexual. Presidents are obliged to enforce laws, but not their predecessors’ administrative policies. If the next president faithfully enforces the law, while dropping Mr. Clinton’s convoluted “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy, homosexuals would be deterred from enlisting in the military. They could still serve America in many ways, but the number of homosexual discharges would plummet.
The campaigns of former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney said they do not answer surveys, leaving questions about positions taken previously. In December 1999, for example, the New York Times reported that Mr. Giuliani, who was expected to run against then-Senate candidate Hillary Clinton, agreed with her support for professed homosexuals in the military.
In 1994, then-Senate candidate Mitt Romney secured the endorsement of the Massachusetts Log Cabin Republicans by signing a letter supporting “gays and lesbians being able to serve openly and honestly in our nation’s military.” When CNN’s Anderson Cooper confronted Mr. Romney with that statement in November 2007, Mr. Romney answered in terms of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.” “I didn’t think it would work,” Mr. Romney said. “I thought that was a policy, when I heard about it, I laughed. … It’s been there now for, what, 15 years? It seems to have worked.” We still do not know Mr. Romney’s position on the 1993 law, which codified pre-Clinton regulations stating that “homosexuality is incompatible with military service.”
Sen. John McCain, Arizona Republican, voted for the 1993 law, but his campaign only provided an April 2007 letter from his Senate office to an activist for homosexuals in the military. The letter mislabeled the law “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,” and indicated support for that policy. Former Tennessee Sen. Fred Thompson sent a statement endorsing the proper purpose of the military, but reflecting the same contradiction. Mr. Thompson’s statement says he supports both current law and Defense Department policies regarding homosexuals in the military, and “sees no reason to alter this approach, especially during times of conflict and global instability.”
The comment about timing, which echoes similar statements made by Mr. Romney and Mr. Giuliani, is puzzling because liberals are the only ones trying to repeal the 1993 law. When the current conflict subsides, should homosexual activists succeed? Voters should ask, and Republicans should tell.
Elaine Donnelly is president of the Center for Military Readiness. The CMR 2008 Presidential Candidate Survey is posted at www.cmrlink.org.
January 2, 2008
Mental Toll Of War Hitting Female Servicemembers
On front lines, women face trauma like never before
By Andrea Stone, USA Today
MENLO PARK, Calif. — Master Sgt. Cindy Rathbun knew something was wrong three weeks after she arrived in Iraq in September 2006. Her blond hair began “coming out in clumps,” she says.
The Air Force personnel specialist, in the military for 25 years, had volunteered for her first combat zone job at Baghdad’s Camp Victory. She lived behind barbed wire and blast walls, but the war was never far.
“There were firefights all the time,” Rathbun says slowly, her voice flat. “There were car bombs. Boom! You see the smoke. The ground would shake.”
As the mother of three grown children prepared to fly home last February, she took a medic aside. Holding a zip-lock bag of hair, she asked whether this was normal. “He said it sometimes happens,” she says. “It’s the body’s way of displaying stress when we can’t express it emotionally.”
Numb, angry, verging on paranoia, Rathbun checked herself into a residential treatment center for female servicemembers suffering the mental wounds of war. Last month, she and seven others became the first all-Iraq-war-veteran class of the Women’s Trauma Recovery Program here. The oldest of 12 residential centers run by the Department of Veterans Affairs, it is part of a rapidly growing network of 60- to 90-day programs for female warriors who, until the Iraq insurgency, had mostly been shielded from the horrors of war.
Many who seek help are haunted by another demon that can exacerbate their battlefield stress: military sexual trauma, or MST. For Rathbun, 43, of Yuba City, Calif., the war brought back to the surface a long-buried secret: She says she was raped by a military superior when she was a young airman.
Shell shock. Battle fatigue. Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). The military’s mental toll of war has historically hit men. But more women are joining these ranks.
More than 182,000 women have served in Iraq, Afghanistan and the surrounding region — about 11% of U.S. troops deployed, the Pentagon says.
That dwarfs the 7,500 who served mostly as nurses in the Vietnam War and the nearly 41,000 women deployed during the brief Persian Gulf War.
Although some of those women suffered PTSD, few saw actual fighting or were subjected to the stress of multiple deployments.
In Iraq, “there are no lines, so anybody that deploys is in a war zone,” Rathbun says. “Females are combat veterans as well as guys.”
Darrah Westrup has treated hundreds of women since she founded the Menlo Park program in 1992. Only during the past year, though, have large numbers with war-zone trauma sought help. Many learned only recently that there are specialized VA mental-health programs for women.
Those who come, Westrup says, often have seen the most gruesome aspects of war. “Women are talking about dismembered bodies, seeing their buddies blown up in front of them,” she says. “They are trying to reconcile, ‘I have killed people.’ “
The ‘equal opportunity war’
Women are barred from ground jobs in infantry, armor and artillery units and are technically confined to support roles. But those jobs include some of the most dangerous: driving supply convoys, guarding checkpoints and searching women as part of neighborhood patrols.
Iraq is “an equal opportunity war” in which attacks come not only from enemy fighters, but also from roadside bombs and mortars, says Patricia Resick, director of the Women’s Health Sciences Division of the VA’s National Center for PTSD in Boston.
More than 100 female servicemembers have died and nearly 570 have been wounded in Iraq and Afghanistan, the Pentagon says. More than 4,200 men have died and nearly 30,000 have been wounded.
The ranks of psychologically wounded from this war are far larger. In 2006, nearly 3,800 women diagnosed with PTSD were treated by the VA. They accounted for 14% of a total 27,000 recent veterans treated for PTSD last year.
In June, the Defense Department’s Mental Health Task Force reported that the number of women suffering from trauma might be higher than reported. It cited “a potential barrier” for women needing mental-health treatment as “their need to show the emotional strength expected of military members.”
The report also said that after leaving the military, “many women no longer see themselves as veterans” and might not associate psychological symptoms with their time in the war zone.
Yet Rachel Kimerling, a psychologist here, sees the signs: “Driving is so treacherous with the (roadside bombs) in Iraq, they come back and report seeing a paper cup in the mall parking lot and swerving around as if it were life or death.”
Many women become overly protective. Even the innocent pop of a biscuit tube on a kitchen counter can speed the heart, Rathbun says. When young soldiers left Camp Victory and didn’t return, she thought of her 21-year-old son. “Women are protective, nurturing. I couldn’t do either,” she says. “I couldn’t prevent them from dying.”
For some, combat trauma is complicated and intensified by rape or other sexual abuse, often by comrades they’ve trained and fought beside. The VA says 20% of women seeking its care since 2002 showed symptoms of military sexual trauma, compared with 1.1% of male veterans.
Like Rathbun, many say they were preyed upon by men higher in the chain of command, crimes military women call “rape by rank.” Rathbun says some women in Iraq risked dehydration by refusing to drink liquids late in the day for fear of being raped while walking to latrines after dark.
Recent allegations that civilian female employees of contractor KBR were raped in Iraq have renewed attention on war-zone sexual assaults. VA research on Gulf War veterans found higher rates of sexual assault and harassment than in the peacetime military.
The Defense Department’s 2-year-old Sexual Assault Prevention and Response Office says there were 201 sexual assaults in 2006 within the U.S. Central Command, which includes Iraq and Afghanistan. That’s up from 167 in 2005, when the Pentagon began a policy that allows victims to get medical help without launching a criminal investigation.
Kay Whitley, who heads the office, says “restricted reporting” is expected to boost the numbers of cases as more women grow bolder in stepping forward. There is no way to know whether sexual-assault rates are higher in combat areas because “women back-burner assaults,” she says. “There may be more (assaults) over there, and they may be waiting to report it until they get home.”
USA TODAY does not identify victims of alleged sexual assault except in cases in which the victim makes the allegation public.
For military women, abuse by fellow soldiers is “an unnecessary betrayal,” Westrup says, noting women often are more scarred by sexual violence than combat. “Most go over understanding the nature of war.”
PTSD and MST “will exacerbate the other,” Kimerling says. “It erodes the social support you have to cope with the ongoing stress of serving in a war zone.”
Natara Garavoy, another psychologist here, says there can be added stress for those who are the only woman in a unit. “They don’t want to stand out,” she says, adding that some try to appear unattractive to ward off male soldiers who might not see another American woman for months.
Whatever their trauma, military women often hesitate to report problems. That’s partly because of the military’s ingrained emphasis on unit cohesion and the unspoken taboo against telling on a fellow soldier. It also stems from the fear of reinforcing stereotypes that theirs is the weaker sex.
“Women do have to prove themselves more,” says VA spokeswoman Kerri Childress, a Vietnam-era Navy veteran. “They have to work really, really hard to look tough.”
All that pressure must go somewhere, Resick says. Men with PTSD often are angry and act out aggressively. Women often turn inward and become depressed, she says. Both men and women “try not to deal with it” and often take years to seek counseling, Resick says.
Even so, men started applying to the 41-bed program for males here soon after the war began.
Applications for its 10-bed women’s program picked up recently, Westrup says.
Seventeen percent of female veterans use VA health services, compared with 11% of men.
“We may be seeing the tip of the iceberg,” Kimerling says, adding that more women are likely to seek help as they return home with unresolved trauma.
Facing the need to get help
Lauren Bess was a model sailor who rose fast to master helmsman. Driving a Navy fast-combat-support ship in round-the-clock replenishment operations in the Persian Gulf before and during the Iraq war, she was “constantly stressed” by frequent “general quarters” calls to battle and going days without sleep, she says.
As her ship sailed home to Bremerton, Wash., in August 2003, she says, she began getting in trouble for shirking her duties. She constantly felt anxious.
“I was breaking down,” she says.
Bess, now 26, began drinking and stayed away from friends. Her downward spiral cratered the night she overdosed on prescription drugs and woke up in a hospital.
Feeling “like I was failing life,” Bess was put on limited duty and sent to a base in Florida for treatment. During a hurricane, she says, she was raped by a fellow sailor in a deserted barracks.
She says she feared her career would be ruined if she reported the attack, so she said nothing and never filed a criminal complaint.
In April 2005, she was given an administrative discharge under honorable conditions.
“In the military, they train you that your brother is there always for you,” says Bess, her head down, her hands shaking. “The person who hurt me was someone who was there for me.”
Bess moved home to Lodi, Calif., and tried to work through her problems, but it was “rough, really hard.” She finally entered the 90-day residential program here.
“Coming here was the first hope for me to get back to a new life,” she says. Bess hopes that by speaking out, she’ll encourage other women to get help.
Tucked in a corner of a VA campus here, the red-tile-roofed center is reached through a vine-covered walkway. Patients sleep two to a room in hospital beds brightened by stuffed animals and patchwork quilts donated by volunteers.
In a day room down the hall hang other quilts left by women who’ve passed through the program. One is appliquéd with military service patches. A Native American dream catcher is stitched to a quilt hanging next to it, a memento to snare the nightmares of war. In another corner hangs a pink quilt that reads, “Powder Puff Girls — Go Girls Go.”
“They make me feel that I’m not alone,” Rathbun says.
Starting with a military-style wake-up at 6 a.m., the women spend most of their time in group therapy. They learn communication skills, stress management and ways to short-circuit self-defeating behavior.
The most grueling moments come during “exposure therapy,” when the women recount the details of their trauma. The idea: to face fears head-on so they can become desensitized to the pain.
Easier was a trust-building exercise Rathbun and Bess performed. Melissa Puckett, a recreational therapist, asked the women to stand on a wooden board and, while grasping attached ropes, move across a room to pick up objects on the floor.
The two blushed as they fumbled to reach and grab a toy rubber crab. The exercise forced them to work as a team, or else fall off the board.
“You have to trust,” Bess says after finishing.
“How long since you trusted somebody?” Puckett asks.
“Ages,” Bess replies.
After more than two decades, Rathbun says she’s finally coming to terms with the rape that she never officially reported.
Last month, she told her husband, Larry, the Air Force veteran she married two years ago.
Nearly a year after being “sucked out of a vortex” in Iraq, Rathbun is on the mend. She knows there are thousands of other women who need help.
“We went over there and did a job, but it affects you,” she says. “There’s going to be a flood when we drawdown in Iraq.”
“Fair & Balanced” Network Limits Choice
“Fair and Balanced” Fox News is all out promoting a liberal Republican like Rudy Guiliani who is anti gun, pro-gay rights, and pro-abortion, a Manchurian candidate like John McCain a proponent of illegal immigration, a flip-flopper like Mitt Romney, and a phony preacher like Mike Huckabee a proponent of never ending taxes yet, they blackball Ron Paul and Alan Keyes, said a police officer in New York who supports Ron Paul……
by NWV News
“FAIR & BALANCED” NETWORK LIMITS CHOICE
By Jim Kouri
Posted 1:00 AM Eastern
January 2, 2007
Fox News Channel’s exclusion of Texas Congressman Ron Paul from an upcoming Republican presidential debate is creating a ripple effect throughout the country, especially on the Internet.
This important Fox debate is scheduled for January 6 in New Hampshire, less than one day after two back to back Republican and Democratic debates are being held at the same location sponsored by ABC News and the Internet’s Facebook.com.
According to Ron Paul supporters, rallies will be held, letters to newspaper editors written, boycotts of Fox sponsors initiated, and telephone calls to Fox News’ headquarters, located in the News Corp building in Manhattan, to voice complaints regarding the shabby treatment of candidates such as Rep. Ron Paul and his fellow Republican, Ambassador Alan Keyes. Keyes has been practically ignored by the news reporters covering the presidential races in both major political parties.
“The fact that, in 2004, windbags such as Rev. Al Sharpton were included in all of the Democrat presidential debates should tell Americans — especially those calling themselves conservatives — that Fox is no different than the rest of the liberal-left news media,” claims former NYPD detective and US Marine Sid Francis, himself an African-American.
“Why is the news media so quick to accept contrary viewpoints from leftists, but demand conservatives tow ‘the partyline?’” said Det. Francis.
Also, there is talk among Rep. Paul’s workers and volunteers of contacting all shareholders of the company that owns the Fox News Channel — Rupert Murdock’s News Corp — and they are advising stockholders to “dump their shares.”
Ron Paul stated to members of the media: “They are scared of me and don’t want my message to get out, but it will.”
“They are propagandists for this war and I challenge them on the notion that they are conservative,” said Rep. Paul.
“Congressman Paul is doing better than many other Republican candidates, yet he’s the one being excluded from an important political event. Even the Democrat Party hasn’t blackballed Rep. Dennis Kucinich, who many believe is a distraction at best, a clown at worst,” claims political strategist Mike Baker.
“What is Fox [News Channel] afraid of? Why not allow a man who set a record for single-day campaign fundraising to participate in a debate with other so-called conservatives?” adds Baker.
Ron Paul told Boston Herald reporter James Pindell that the decision to exclude him from a debate on Fox News the weekend before the New Hampshire Primary is proof that the network “is scared” of him.
“They are scared of me and don’t want my message to get out, but it will,” Paul said in an interview at a political stop at a New Hampshire diner. “They are propagandists for this war and I challenge them on the notion that they are conservative.”
“Given Ron Paul’s support in New Hampshire and his recent historic fundraising success, it is outrageous that Dr. Paul would be excluded,” said Ron Paul’s campaign chairman Kent Snyder.
“Dr. Paul has consistently polled higher in New Hampshire than some of the other candidates who have been invited.” Snyder continued, “Paul supporters should know that we are continuing to make inquiries with Fox News as to why they have apparently excluded Dr. Paul from this event.”
NewsWithViews.com attempted to contact Fox News Channel’s executive producer in charge of the Republican Presidential Debate, Marty Ryan. However, Mr. Ryan did not respond to requests for information about Ron Paul’s exclusion from the debate.
NewsWithViews.com also contacted Fox public relations manager Irena Briganti about Rep. Paul’s impending absence from the January 6 debate. One person from Fox News’ Manhattan headquarters stated the event is “not a debate, but a forum.” However, she failed to explain the difference.
“Fair and Balanced” Fox News is all out promoting a liberal Republican like Rudy Guiliani who is anti gun, pro-gay rights, and pro-abortion, a Manchurian candidate like John McCain a proponent of illegal immigration, a flip-flopper like Mitt Romney, and a phony preacher like Mike Huckabee a politician that never meet a tax he didn’t like, they blackball Ron Paul and Alan Keyes, said a police officer in New York who supports Ron Paul.
According to CNN.com, ABC and Fox News Channel are limiting the number of Republican candidates invited to debates this weekend just before the New Hampshire primary. Fox News claims it has limited space in its studio, which leaves Rep. Ron Paul out of the weekend debate, according to the AP/CNN story.
“They must think we’re all morons if they expect us to believe that a multi-billion dollar corporation like Fox can’t accommodate all legitimate presidential candidates. I think Fox’s executives are in for a shock,” added Mike Baker.
Fox invited five GOP candidates to a forum with Chris Wallace scheduled for its mobile studio in New Hampshire this Sunday. Former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani, former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, Sen. John McCain of Arizona, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney and former Sen. Fred Thompson of Tennessee received invites, leaving Paul of Texas and Rep. Duncan Hunter of California on the sidelines, according to Fox News Channel’s biggest competitor, Cable News Network (CNN).
“This proves that Fox News is neither Fair or Balanced. Fox News wants to limit the people’s choices. Does Fox News think the people are stupid and can’t come to a sensible conclusion on whom to vote for? Is this why they are keeping Ron Paul and Alan Keyes from the debates? Or, is there something else? Like an agenda perhaps?” said the veteran New York City cop.
“Fox News will decide on who the Republican candidate will be and CNN will decide who the Democratic candidate will be. By blackballing those two fine men (Ron Paul & Alan Keyes) proves to me that the whole thing is rigged from the get-go. At the end you will have two choices, Tweedly Dee and Tweedly Dumb, promoting the same globalist’s agenda” the police veteran added.
Police Times Magazine — which is published by the American Federation of Police — recently praised Congressman Ron Paul for his legislative assistance to the law enforcement community. For instance, Rep. Paul introduced a bill (HR 3304) that would provide top-notch body armor for US police officers.
AFP president Dennis Wise said,” I would like to applaud [Rep.Ron] Paul for his support and forward thinking in trying to help make law enforcement officers across our nation safer each day.”
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