Carronade The Yankee Sailor Carronade

The Sea is a choosy mistress. She takes the men that come to her and weighs them and measures them. The ones she adores, she keeps; the ones she hates, she destroys. The rest she casts back to land. I count myself among the adored, for I am Her willing Captive.

I've relocated to a new Yankee Sailor.

Thursday, July 28, 2005

I'm Back!

Three items of good news, first, I'm back; second, I've finished my final two courses for my master's degree; and third, my relief reported aboard! The bad news is that he's leaving again for two months of schools, so it's just been a tease for the last two weeks. I'll be blogging regularly again starting tomorrow.

Tuesday, July 12, 2005

Duty Calls

Off the ship wargaming all week. Probably won't get much blogging done.

Friday, July 08, 2005

Daily Read Board - 08JUL05

United States

Terror in the heart of London - Terrorists ripped into the heart of the British capital in a series of apparently coordinated explosions during yesterday's morning rush hour, killing at least 37 and injuring hundreds while bringing chaos to the city's subways, bus systems and car-jammed streets.

Threat level increased to 'high' for U.S. mass transit - Machine-gun-toting police officers accompanied by bomb-sniffing dogs swept through the Washington area's Metro stations, trains and buses yesterday, after Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff raised the terrorist threat-level on mass transit systems to Code Orange, or high.


Death Toll From London Blasts Rises - The death toll rose to 50 Friday morning as London police escalated what authorities described as the most extensive criminal investigation in British history to track down the perpetrators of Thursday's assault on the city's transportation system.

Pakistan arrest offered hints, no details on planned hits - The recent arrest of an al Qaeda terrorist in Pakistan provided some clues that terrorists were planning attacks on trains and buses, but there were no specific warnings of the bombings in London yesterday, U.S. officials said.

Muslim council condemns 'evil deeds' in Britain - LONDON -- Muslim leaders in Britain yesterday were swift to condemn a series of deadly bomb blasts in London and they appealed to Britons not to single out their community for reprisals.

Attacks strengthen Londoners' resolve - LONDON -- London's financial district was a sea of pinstripe suits yesterday as workers tried to get home in a city crippled by bombings, all the while vowing one thing: to not change a single habit in response to the attacks.

Abducted Egyptian ambassador killed - Terrorists in Iraq killed Egypt's ambassador yesterday, five days after he was kidnapped from a Baghdad street, Egyptian officials announced at the United Nations and in Cairo.

Thursday, July 07, 2005

Bravo Zulu to the Washington Monthly

Well done to Kevin Drum at the Washington Monthly for resisting the temptation to immediately turn the sad events in London into a political football.

Not surprisingly, Kos and Atrios were unable to resist their baser, partisan urges.

Daily Read Board - 07JUL05

United States

Forces in Iraq detain 5 men thought to be Americans - The U.S.-led coalition has detained five men thought to be American citizens on suspicion of insurgent activities in Iraq and is determining whether they will come under the Iraqi or American justice system, or be released.


Four Blasts Hit London, Killing at Least 2 - LONDON (AP) - Three explosions rocked the London subway and one tore open a packed double-decker bus during the morning rush hour Thursday. The blasts killed at least two people and reportedly injured more than 90 in what a shaken Prime Minister Tony Blair called a series of "barbaric" terrorist attacks.

Blair Calls Subway and Bus Blasts a Terror Attack; at Least 2 Killed - The explosions ripped apart a double decker bus and caused officials to close and evacuate the entire subway system.

Report: Islamic Group Claims London Blasts - CAIRO, Egypt (AP) - A group calling itself "The Secret Organization of al-Qaida in Europe" has posted a claim of responsibility for the series of blasts in London, saying they were in retaliation for Britain's involvement in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Israeli Official Denies Pre-Attack Warning - JERUSALEM (AP) - Israel was not warned about possible terror attacks in London before a series of blasts ripped through the city, Foreign Minister Silvan Shalom said Thursday.

Rebels in Iraq Threaten to Kill Diplomat - Al Qaeda in Iraq says that it will execute an Egyptian diplomat who was kidnapped in Baghdad four days ago, calling him a traitor to Islam.

Iraqi diplomat slams U.N. for misuse of funds - NEW YORK -- Charging that the United Nations is treating various Iraqi accounts as a source of "easy money," Iraq's U.N. Ambassador Samir Sumaidaie said his country is trying to recover money deposited in various U.N.-administered accounts and reduce payments to others.

Shiite Morality Is Taking Hold in Iraq Oil Port - The once libertine oil port of Basra is steadily being transformed into a mini-theocracy under Shiite rule.

Taliban Threatens to Kill U.S. Commando - KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) - A purported Taliban spokesman reiterated a claim Thursday that his group is holding a missing U.S. Navy SEAL and said insurgent leaders had decided to kill him.

Syria may have its own terrorists - Syria's recent clashes with militants have raised the prospect that the country -- under U.S. pressure to keep terrorists out of Iraq -- might be facing a resurgence of Islamic extremists within its own borders.

Wednesday, July 06, 2005

Some Joy in America's Loss

The IOC has spoken, and London will host the 2012 summer Olympics. Losing out were Paris and New York.

I have to admit I feel a small twinge of glee that the grandstanding of a certain Senator from New York who appears to have started an early presidential campaign failed to sway the IOC. New York would have done a fine job I'm sure, but the Senator's loss in any argument is perversely satisfying. Alas, all she touches does not turn to gold.

I reserve the most joy, however, for the defeat of the Hereditary Enemy, France, in her bid to host the games. Perhaps Monsieur le Prime Minister underestimated the IOC's fondness for haggis.

Hat tip: Wizbang.

The False Logic of the Left & the "Chickenhawk Debate"

I've tried to avoid commenting on the "chickenhawk debate" because of the adequacy of other blogger's efforts to refute the argument and point out that it's a poorly disguised tactic to silence actual debate, but there's one angle I haven't seen anyone else cover.

For the uninitiated, the latest invective hurled by opponents of the war in Iraq to silence supporters is the accusation that supporters, particularly high-profile supporters, are "chickenhawks" because they haven't enlisted in the service themselves, or forced their children to join up for the cause.

There are a number of reasons why this argument doesn't work, besides the obvious point that you can't force anyone old enough to enlist to make their beds or cut the lawn, much less enlist in the military. Christopher Hitchens did a fair job of exposing these flaws in Slate recently, so I won't rehash them here.

The flaw that was immediatly apparent to me, that no one else seems to be noticing, is how inconsistent this argument is with the traditional logic of Liberalism. We're told again and again, "don't knock it until you try it", with respect to behaviors like recreational drug use and every variety of deviant sexual behavior, but the Liberals don't seem to be taking their own medicine when it comes to spreading democracy.

Logic, unfortunatly for most at the far extreme of both the Right and Left, is a two way street. If it's true that you cannot support something without having a tangible, personal stake in the outcome, it's also true that you cannot oppose it either. So, to apply their own logic, when the Left starts enlisting en masse to pay their entrance fee to join the debate, I'll start giving real consideration to their opinions.

To get the full background start here or here and follow the links through the whole sordid history.

Trackbacked to Outside the Beltway and Mudville Gazette.

Daily Read Board - 06JUL05

United States

Military Expands Its Domestic Security Role - Pentagon's efforts to work with civilian agencies in comprehensive plan to defend U.S. homeland is criticized by civil liberties groups.

Legal limbo shadows civilians in war zone - The record number of civilians hired to work in war zones since September 11 is sparking heated debate over just how far the United States can go to achieve what some are calling "the civilianization of the battlefield."

James Stockdale Dies at 81 - The retired Navy vice admiral, teacher and Medal of Honor winner who later ran for vice president, died July 5.


Foreign envoys attacked in Iraq - Al Qaeda's wing in Iraq claimed responsibility yesterday for the kidnapping Saturday of Egypt's top diplomat in the country, as insurgents mounted new attacks against Arab and Muslim envoys in Baghdad.

Iraqis Say Security Forces Use Torture - BAGHDAD, Iraq (AP) - As she tells it, security forces put her in solitary confinement for days on end, whipped her with electric cables and accused her of having sex with a stranger.

Syria seen stepping up aid to Iraq-bound insurgents - Syrians are increasing assistance to foreign fighters preparing to enter Iraq and kill civilians and U.S. troops, despite months of pressure on Damascus from Washington to crack down on the jihadists.

Syria May Face Problem With Extremists - DAMASCUS, Syria (AP) - Syria's recent clashes with militants have raised the prospect that the country - under U.S. pressure to keep insurgents out of Iraq - might also be facing a resurgence of Islamic extremists within its own borders.

Al-Zarqawi Denounces Iraq Army As Enemies - BAGHDAD, Iraq (AP) - The reputed leader of al-Qaida in Iraq said the Iraqi army is as great an enemy as the Americans and announced the formation of a new terror command to fight Iraq's biggest Shiite militia, in an audiotape found Wednesday on the Internet.

Central Asians Call on U.S. to Set a Timetable for Closing Bases - Russia, China and four Central Asian states called for the U.S. to set a deadline for withdrawing from military bases in Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan.

U.S., France Differ on Approach to Iran - WASHINGTON (AP) - Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and her French counterpart tried to present a united front Tuesday against any Iranian ambitions for a nuclear weapon, but it was clear that Europeans and the United States still see the problem differently.

Annan Makes Plea For Troops in Haiti - UNITED NATIONS, June 29 -- United Nations Secretary General Kofi Annan asked the United States this week to consider sending troops to Haiti to support a U.N. peacekeeping mission beset by mounting armed challenges to its authority, according to senior U.N. officials.

Afghans slam U.S. for hit on civilians - The Afghan government sharply criticized the U.S. military in a rare rebuff yesterday for killing up to 17 civilians in an air strike and ordered an immediate inquiry.

Egypt's Opposition Leaps to Action - Ever since May 25, when a mob sympathetic to President Hosni Mubarak beat up a group of protesters, advocacy groups that promise change -- as in change of president -- have been springing to life.

Help From France Key In Covert Operations - France has been working with the U.S. to identify and capture the vast majority of committed jihadists who have been targeted outside Iraq and Afghanistan.

9/11 Findings Back Battlefield Decisions

A recently published report from the National Institute of Standards and Technology on the behavior of occupants of the World Trade Center has significant implications for battlefield decision makers. The report, titled Occupant Behavior, Egress, and Emergency Communications found that of the people that were in the WTC on September 11, the ones that took the advice of emergency services personnel and stayed put to wait for help were far less likely to have survived the attack.

This is no fault of New York's fine first responders. The NYC emergency services switchboards were set up for failure, in essence, and to their credit did the best they could having found themselves in a situation that no one had ever faced before, and lacking reliable guidance or lessons upon which to draw.

For those of us in uniform, there is an axiom that applies: the first report is always wrong. Emergency services personnel no doubt had an incomplete and contradictory picture of the actual situation at the WTC, and fell back on their training and advised callers to "wait for help." This proved disastrous, but it was the right answer given all the uncertainty.

For those of you in the field that are unit level leaders, however, the lesson is this: you probably have a better grasp on your situation than anyone else, so don't rely too heavily on upper echelons to make the call for you. When lives are on the line, and victory may hang on the timeliness of the decision, evaluate what you know and make the call. An imperfect plan executed immediatly is always better than an ideal plan executed too late.

And for the upper echelons out there that may be reading, train your subordinates well and trust them to make good, on the spot decisions.

I salute Chapomatic for the tipper.

Open posted to Mudville Gazette and Outside the Beltway.

Tuesday, July 05, 2005

Daily Read Board - 05JUL05

United States

Pentagon Weighs Strategy Change to Deter Terror - The Pentagon's most senior planners are challenging the longstanding strategy that requires the armed forces to be prepared to fight two major wars at a time.

U.S. seen prodding allies in terror war - SAN ANTONIO -- The top foreign-affairs adviser to the Department of Homeland Security says the United States must do more to spark action among its foreign allies in fighting the global war on terrorism in their own countries.

White House Renews Contact With N. Korea - WASHINGTON (AP) - The United States has resumed contact with North Korea, but the talks at a security conference in New York have not produced a decision to reopen negotiations on Pyongyang's nuclear weapons program, the State Department said Friday

Army re-enlistments up despite lack of recruits - FORT BRAGG, N.C. (AP) -- Sgt. Jonathan Jacobs joined the Army to get away from his part-time jobs as a telemarketer and a cargo handler. He ended up in Iraq, but that didn't stop the 24-year-old 82nd Airborne Division paratrooper from signing up in March for another hitch, even though that could mean another tour in the Middle East.


Iraqi Clerics Plan Edict On Sunnis' Role - Senior clerics of Iraq's disaffected Sunni Muslim minority will soon issue a decree calling on followers of the faith to vote in upcoming elections and help write a new constitution, a prominent Sunni leader said Monday.

Iraqi: No talks with killers - Iraqi Prime Minister Ibrahim al-Jaafari has ruled out talks with any terrorist or insurgent group that has the blood of Iraqi citizens on its hands.

Iraqi barbers face unkindest cut of all, targeting by terrorists - Baghdadis headed to the barbershop are going more often to the Shi'ite neighborhood of Sadr City than to mixed neighborhoods, where they could be shot by Sunni radicals who charge that clean shaven men want to look like U.S. soldiers.

Top Egyptian Diplomat in Baghdad Is Kidnapped - The kidnapping came as the American and Iraqi governments are vigorously pressing Arab nations to send ambassadors to Iraq.

Bahrain's Top Diplomat Shot in Baghdad - BAGHDAD, Iraq -- Bahrain's top envoy to Iraq was wounded Tuesday in the second attack against an Arab diplomat here in a week. A major Sunni Arab group called on Sunnis to take part in future elections, action that could diminish the insurgency.

Gunmen fire on Pakistan envoy in Iraq - BAGHDAD (Reuters) - Gunmen fired on a convoy carrying Pakistan's envoy to Iraq on Tuesday in the third attack on a senior diplomat in three days, police sources said.

Saturday, July 02, 2005

Back Home

After spending almost seven of the last eight weeks at sea, and with this being a long holiday weekend with family swarming in from all over, posting will be light. I will probably get the read board up each day, but it may not be 'til evening.

Friday, July 01, 2005

Daily Read Board - 01JUL05

United States

Justice O'Connor retires - Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor announced her retirement from the high court today, kicking off what promises to be an acrimonious summer confirmation fight over her successor.

House OKs cash for veterans - Democrats celebrated a rare Capitol Hill victory on military affairs yesterday, crowing over having forced House Republicans to rush to pass an emergency spending bill for a $1 billion shortfall in veterans health care coverage.

Army gives warning of lack of recruits - The Army, already likely to miss its recruiting goal this year, may have even more trouble filling its ranks next year, the service's chief of staff said yesterday.


U.S. demands Iran answers - The Bush administration yesterday demanded that Iran answer questions about President-elect Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's role as a possible ringleader of the 1979 seizure of the U.S. Embassy in Tehran.

Abbas Invites Hamas to Join His Cabinet - RAMALLAH, West Bank (AP) - Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas has invited the Hamas militant group to join his Cabinet to help oversee the smooth handover of the Gaza Strip after Israel withdraws, a Hamas official said Friday.

Red Cross Worker Killed in Haiti - GENEVA (AP) - A worker for the International Committee of the Red Cross was kidnapped and killed in Haiti, the humanitarian agency said Friday. Joel Cauvin, a Haitian, was abducted Wednesday evening and found dead near his home Thursday, the ICRC said.

Oh, no!

NO, NO, NOOOOOO....! It must be razor blades!



I've recoverd my cool.

If they really want to keep this...this...





old ship, then they should team up with Battleship Cove.