This is one of the advantages of being out of Gaza, on the other side of the wall. They no longer have thousands of virtual hostages in the personae(?) of their settlers. Now they have a free hand, and can get as nasty as the Palestinians deserve.
This blanket of fire, covering hundreds of square miles, is the rarest phenomenon of them all. It was spotted in the USA on the Washington-Idaho border around midday.
To create a rainbow of fire, clouds must be at least 20,000 ft high and the ice crystals within them align horizontally instead of their usual vertical position. The sun also needs to be at least 58 degrees above the horizon.
Dr Jonathan Fox, of the US National Weather Service in Spokane, Washington, said: 'It was even more spectacular than the Northern Lights. I feel lucky to have seen it because it only forms in very rare situations. This is the first one I've ever seen. It was a breathtaking sight and it hung around for about an hour.'
Ten years ago today, acting under direct orders from senior Iranian government leaders, the Saudi Hezbollah detonated a 25,000-pound TNT bomb that killed 19 U.S. airmen in their dormitory at Khobar Towers in Dhahran, Saudi Arabia. The blast wave destroyed Building 131 and grievously wounded hundreds of additional Air Force personnel. It also killed an unknown number of Saudi civilians in a nearby park.
The 19 Americans murdered were members of the 4,404th Wing, who were risking their lives to enforce the no-fly zone over southern Iraq. This was a U.N.-mandated mission after the 1991 Gulf War to stop Saddam Hussein from killing his Shiite people. The Khobar victims, along with the courageous families and friends who mourn them this weekend in Washington, deserve our respect and honor. More importantly, they must be remembered, because American justice has still been denied.
Although a federal grand jury handed up indictments in June 2001--days before I left as FBI director and a week before some of the charges against 14 of the terrorists would have lapsed because of the statute of limitations--two of the primary leaders of the attack, Ahmed Ibrahim al-Mughassil and Abdel Hussein Mohamed al-Nasser, are living comfortably in Iran with about as much to fear from America as Osama bin Laden had prior to Sept. 11 (to wit, U.S. marshals showing up to serve warrants for their arrests).
If we don't use our B-2's soon on Iran, then they should be chopped up and made into carbon fiber golf clubs. What the heck are they for but to annihilate our enemies?
Oh, and all you Clinton lovers out there? Remember this one. If you voted for the guy, or resisted his conviction on impeachment, it's on you.
I didn't really believe that anyone actually held this view until I received this comment from Frederick to an old post, Damning Numbers:
If our laws would allow the illegals to enter legally through the checkpoints, then those that attempt to bypass that would easily be caught. The ambitious here to work have a moral right to be here. The current immigration law is unconstitutional, as a quota system, it violates natural rights. There are almost no work visas available that allow any migrants especially of the numbers of Mexican worker/migrants, Central American, South American migrants, that are willing to work and there are only few B1 visas that allow engineers or high tech worker immigrant/visitors. Why should we and do we have moral right to continue to violate Jefferson's principle of Expatriation and free migration? This country is based on freedom and capitalism.
Imagine what this country would be like if we allowed anybody and everybody to immigrate? Simply amazing.
The Marine Corps Gunnery Sergeant in the picture is Michael Burghard, part of the Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) Team that is supporting 2nd Brigade 28th Infantry Division (Pennsylvania Army National Guard). I heard the below story first hand last Saturday during a video teleconference between his Brigade Commander and the 28th Infantry Division Commander. I thought that others should hear it as well, as I think it demonstrates the true spirit of most of our troops on the ground (from my experience).
Leading the fight is Gunnery Sgt Michael Burghardt, known as "Iron Mike" or just "Gunny". He is on his third tour in Iraq. He had become a legend in the bomb disposal world after winning the Bronze Star for disabling 64 IEDs and destroying 1,548 pieces of ordnance during his second tour. Then, on September 19, he got blown up. He had arrived at a chaotic scene after a bomb had killed four US soldiers. He chose not to wear the bulky bomb protection suit. "You can't react to any sniper fire and you get tunnel-vision," he explains. So, protected by just a helmet and standard-issue flak jacket, he began what bomb disposal officers term "the longest walk", stepping gingerly into a 5ft deep and 8ft wide crater.
The earth shifted slightly and he saw a Senao base station with a wire leading from it. He cut the wire and used his 7 inch knife to probe the ground. "I found a piece of red detonating cord between my legs," he says. "That's when I knew I was screwed."
Realizing he had been sucked into a trap, Sgt Burghardt, 35, yelled at everyone to stay back. At that moment, an insurgent, probably watching through binoculars, pressed a button on his mobile phone to detonate the secondary device below the sergeant's feet. "A chill went up the back of my neck and then the bomb exploded," he recalls. "As I was in the air I remember thinking, 'I don't believe they got me.' I was just ticked off they were able to do it. Then I was lying on the road, not able to feel anything from the waist down."
His colleagues cut off his trousers to see how badly he was hurt. None could believe his legs were still there. "My dad's a Vietnam vet who's paralyzed from the waist down," says Sgt Burghardt. "I was lying there thinking I didn't want to be in a wheelchair next to my dad and for him to see me like that. They ! started to cut away my pants and I felt a real sharp pain and blood trickling down. Then I wiggled my toes and I thought, 'Good, I'm in business.' "As a stretcher was brought over, adrenaline and anger kicked in. "I decided to walk to the helicopter. I wasn't going to let my team-mates see me being carried away on a stretcher." He stood and gave the insurgents who had blown him up a one-fingered salute. "I flipped them one. It was like, 'OK, I lost that round but I'll be back next week'."
Copies of a photograph depicting his defiance, taken by Jeff Bundy for the Omaha World-Herald, adorn the walls of homes across America and that of Col John Gronski, the brigade commander in Ramadi, who has hailed the image as an exemplar of the warrior spirit. Sgt Burghardt's injuries - burns and wounds to his legs and buttocks - kept him off duty for nearly a month and could have earned him a ticket home. But, like his father - who was awarded a Bronze Star and three Purple Hearts for being wounded in action in Vietnam - he stayed in Ramadi to engage in the battle against insurgents who are forever coming up with more ingenious ways of killing Americans.
Do not walk behind me, for I may not lead. Do not walk ahead of me, for I may not follow. Do not walk beside me either. Just pretty much leave me alone. The journey of a thousand miles will probably include a broken fan belt and leaky tire. It's always darkest before dawn. So if you're going to steal your neighbor's newspaper, that's the time to do it. Always remember that you're unique. Just like everyone else. Never test the depth of the water with both feet. If you think nobody cares if you're alive, try missing a couple of car payments. Before you criticize someone, you should walk a mile in their shoes. That way, when you criticize them, you're a mile away and you have their shoes. If at first you don't succeed, skydiving is not for you. Give a man a fish and he will eat for a day. Teach him how to fish, and he will sit in a boat and drink beer all day. If you lend someone $20 and never see that person again, it was worth it. If you tell the truth, you don't have to remember anything. Some days you're the bug; some days you’re the windshield. Everyone seems normal until you get to know them. The quickest way to double your money is to fold it in half and put it back in your pocket. A closed mouth gathers no foot. Duct tape is like 'The Force'. It has a light side and a dark side, and it holds the universe together. Generally speaking, you aren't learning much when your lips are moving. Experience is something you don't get until just after you need it. Never miss a good chance to shut up. Never, under any circumstances, take a sleeping pill and a laxative on the same night.
Hummingbird Finally, my first hummingbirds. Saw them on a fire bush in Crystal Beach, FL. My rental's neighbor's yard is all xeriscaped, which is ugly to me but just fine with the little hummers. At first, I thought they were the biggest hornets I'd ever seen.
Flamingo! One of these dudes flew right over my house. I couldn't believe it. And please don't tell me it was a roseated spoonbill because it was a frickin' flamingo, dude! Huge and pink and right there above me. I was like so freaking out, you know?
Falcon! Don't see these guys too often. Wish we did. Bet the morning doves don't.
Black Skimmer These beauties are getting scarce, but one flew by yesterday at low tide on the hunt for minnows.
Dead sea turtle cool, but smelly
Reddish Egret These have been hanging out around the pool quite a bit lately. Must be a new group of adolesent birds -- the youngsters like to hunt where the water is clear, and it takes them a day to figure out there are not now and never will be fish in the swimming pool no matter how clear the water.
Brown Pelican I saw a flock of about 200 of these at Disappearing Island yesterday, just south of Anclote Island on the west coast of FL. Good to see such a large flock.
Wood Pecker They've developed a sudden interest in the orange tree, which just went into bloom.