Monday, May 30, 2016

Close call


How Americans treat their wounded warriors

Specialist Christopher Garrett was a combat engineer with the U.S. Army’s 10th Mountain Division when he was deployed to Afghanistan, but a one-night mission changed everything.
Independent Journal Review spoke to his wife, Brittany, who explained what happened:
“He was shot through the lower abdomen, and the bullet exited his right butt cheek. He took the bullet while on a night mission in Afghanistan.”
After being treated for his injuries, he received a medical retirement and was classified as 100% disabled. Despite his disability and the pain it caused him, Brittany said that- once or twice a week – Christopher still went out and mowed their lawn, struggling with the push mower.
And then a complete stranger changed their lives.



Jurassic Park pays a visit to a Florida golf course.


  • The monster gator is a regular at Buffalo Creek Golf Course in Palmetto, Florida

  • 'He doesn't bother anybody and they don't bother him,' a staffer said, and when asked,
  • players estimate the gator to be between 15 and 16 feet long (and golfers are certainly good at estimating distances). 

  • But, if you got close enough, you can bet he'd consider eating you right up.  I wonder how fast he can run/waddle?  Let's not find out.

  • Wow! Why didn't anyone tell me of this?


    While the villagers watched, Agnes offered herself as sacrifice to the mud god.


    See the same place as it appears now vs in WWII

    Too cool for school.  Click on each picture to see the change.

    Memorial Day

    In a cemetery about six miles from the Dutch city of Maastricht lie buried 8,301 American soldiers who died in "Operation Market Garden" in the battles to liberate the Netherlands in the fall and winter of 1944–5. Every one of the men buried in the cemetery, as well as those in the Canadian and British military cemeteries, has been adopted by a Dutch family who tend the grave and keep alive the memory of the soldier they have adopted. It is the custom to keep a portrait of "their" foreign soldier in a place of honour in their home. Annually on "Liberation Day", Memorial Services are held for the men who died to liberate the Netherlands. The day concludes with a concert, at which "Il Silenzio" has always been the concluding piece.



    Each year the soldiers of the Third United States Infantry Regiment ("The Old Guard") take part in the ceremony called "Flags In." Just before Memorial Day, each grave in Arlington National Cemetery is decorated with a small American flag.
    The flags remain in place until the conclusion of the Memorial Day Weekend when they are all removed. It is the only time during the year when American flags are permitted at all gravesites in the Cemetery. 


    Some of my own family memories - my dad's uncle - World War I.



    Still have the envelope from the War Department it came in.


    And of course, Reagan's Memorial Day speech that puts it all into perspective.  Thanks to this guy for finding it.





    Sunday, May 29, 2016

    The Imperial Japanese were a very dangerous adversary.


    Late-war Japanese tanks and their maximum gun depression:
    • Type 1 medium tank Chi-he: -15 degrees.
    • Type 2 I gun tank Ho-I, 57 mm tan gun version: -15 degrees.
    • Type 4 medium tank Chi-to: -10 degrees.
    • Type 5 medium tank Chi-ri: -10 degrees.
    Most late-war Japanese tanks had outstanding gun depression values, as they were designed primarily to defend the Japanese home islands from Allied invasion. The somewhat hilly terrain of Japan could then be utilized as an advantage. The same feature can also be found on post-war Japanese tank designs such as the Type 61 and Type 74.

    Just a cool shot


    I miss the space shuttle.

    Big crack on the Red Planet.


    Running across the image center, though, is one the largest canyons in the Solar System. Named Valles Marineris, the grand valley extends over 3,000 kilometers long, spans as much as 600 kilometers across, and delves as much as 8 kilometers deep. By comparison, the Earth's Grand Canyon in Arizona, USA is 800 kilometers long, 30 kilometers across, and 1.8 kilometers deep. The origin of the Valles Marineris remains unknown, although a leading hypothesis holds that it started as a crack billions of years ago as the planet cooled. Several geologic processes have been identified in the canyon. The featured mosaic was created from over 100 images of Mars taken by Viking Orbiters in the 1970s. Tomorrow, Mars and Earth will pass the closest in 11 years, resulting in the red planet being quite noticeable toward the southeast after sunset.

    Via APOD

    My attitude today.


    Daughter catches dinner


    Near Bishop, Ca.

    Kids this age are the best....

    I know Father's day is June 19th - I'm just finding this fun stuff early

    Dads saving the day - some pretty impressive reflexes here.

    Spot the dad in this photo


    Friday, May 27, 2016

    Caucasian Biosphere Reserve, Russia



    Yes, do.


    A legendary leap


    The quirkiness of this pleases me.


    More Spacex goodness

    Big ship's little buddy


    x2


    Freckles, they are good.


    A Royal Marine Commando


    Don't cut your tongue with that, mate.



    Afrikaner Commando


    Arrogant politicians compromise counterterrorism operations.


    From the article:
    A retired senior State Department military adviser claims that Hillary Clinton’s “sloppy communications with her senior staff” when she was secretary of state may have compromised at least two counterterrorism operations.
    Bill Johnson, who was the State Department’s political adviser to the special operations section of the U.S. Pacific Command, or PACOM, in 2010 and 2011, says secret plans to eliminate the leader of a Filipino Islamist separatist group and intercept Chinese-made weapons components being smuggled into Iraq were repeatedly foiled.
    Johnson says he and his team eliminated the possibility of other security leaks before settling on the unprotected telephone calls of the secretary of state and her aides as the likely source.
    Johnson's target in the Philippines was Umbra Jumdail, also known as Dr. Abu, the founder of the Muslim militant group Abu Sayyaf, which the State Department officially designated a terrorist organization in 1997. U.S. advisers were assisting Filipino military units.  
    “We had good intel. We knew where he was,” says Johnson, who worked in U.S. Air Force special operations with Army Green Beret and Navy SEAL units for more than 25 years before joining the State Department in 1999. “He would be gone three hours before, sometimes as little as a half-hour before” the counterterrorism teams moved in. “We knew he was getting tipped off somehow. We just didn’t know why.”
    They began to investigate. The U.S. team advising the Filipino forces swapped out one local counterterrorism unit it was working with for another in an effort to locate the source of the leaks, Johnson says. But Dr. Abu still managed to elude them. The reason, he believes: unsecure chatter between Washington and the U.S. Embassy in Manila.
    “Anyone can just sit outside the embassy and listen,” with off-the-shelf eavesdropping devices, he says. “We suspected the leaks [came from] somewhere at State at the time.”
    As a dramatic solution, the Special Operations Command stopped giving advance warning to senior State Department officials about raids, Johnson says. Whatever the cause, the leaks stopped. In February 2012, Dr. Abu and two other senior militants were eventually killed in what was described as “a U.S.-backed airstrike.”
    Read the article for the second, even worse example of high level security leaks by politicians who do know better compromising our efforts to stop the bad guys.
    Some folk need to spend serious time behind bars for this.

    I wonder where this lovely beast is now?


    Class


    Friday Open Road