“Back-cloth” “Mural” and Reflections of the making of Inaugural Day, 20 January 2017
Excerpt from a letter home, from Samara, Iraq, Nov. 2003:
………. “One saying that helps me out here is as follows: ‘People sleep peaceably in their beds at night only because rough men stand ready to do violence on their behalf.’
…………….I love you all very much and I miss you.
A mother’s journal entry excerpt, 21 August 2006:
Emerson called again last night ….It is crunch time. E’s feeling it.
War is stiff. Serious and as sobering as death. Emerson was talking and telling us, last night he [sic] to write his will. That is all pretty thought provoking. As is preparing for war. When it is you going; when it is your flesh and blood going.
….our times to add are so limited [now] … this war is grave … once more as war’s burden moves in and rest on one … once more … “Jesus, Lover of my soul … please hear the voice of my tears. Hear, hear….”
(The last thing E did last night, in talking to me, was …say, basically, “this war is serious shit. I’m going to need prayers, lots of them. I don’t want to die over there, but I must go there not caring [if I do die there ….] ….”
“Friend … hear, Oh God, Hear, Oh God …”
Life is fragile.
God alone, day by day, moment by moment gives it, if it is to be had and known. For E’s future, for my own, I can only (and do) trust in His mercy, in His goodness. In His promise of “Fear not, only believe,” [and] “I will be with him in trouble.”
I can only take hold of those promises. Hope in them. I want E’s eternal home to be a place of no tears and [no] sorrow ….
In Jesus Name, I am yearning to be there.
There is no doubt, heading into war [back to Iraq] this time… is worse… “Jesus, Help. Save. Spare…Mercy, move in. I pray, Grace, stand on the scenes of [these] lives ….Lead. Save. Please, be the God you are, in Jesus Name.”
“And I will bless them that bless thee, and curse him that curseth thee: and in thee shall all families of the earth be blessed.” (Genesis 12:3, KJV)
And because of God’s immutable faithfulness to that promise, thus honoring that inveterate principle, the United States of America, since her inception, any day she has known the blessings and favor of God Almighty, it has been for that precise reason.
“What is happening?….What’s the trouble in this busy, happy city? Bodies! Lying everywhere, slain ….your leaders ….they surrender without resistance. The people slip away but they are captured, too. Let me alone to weep. Don’t try to comfort me—let me cry for my people as I watch them being destroyed. Oh, what a day of crushing trouble! What a day of confusion and terror from the Lord God of heaven’s armies! The walls of Jerusalem are breached and the cry of death echoes from the mountainsides. Elamites are the archers; Syrians drive the chariots; the men of Kir hold up the shields. They fill your choicest valleys and crowd against your gates.
“God has removed his protecting care. You run to the armory for your weapons! You inspect the walls of Jerusalem to see what needs repair!” (Isaiah 22: 1 – 9, Living Bible Paraphrased)
“They give useless medicine for my people’s grievous wounds, for they assure them all is well when that isn’t so at all!”
….my heart is broken. Listen to the weeping of my people all across the land. (Ibid, Jeremiah 8: 11, 18, in order.)
“I weep for the hurt of my people! …. Is there no medicine in Gilead?” (vs. 21.)
“Oh that my eyes were a fountain of tears; I would weep forever; I would sob day and night for the slain of my people!” (Ibid, 9:1.)….For death has crept in through your windows into your homes….”(vs. 21.)
….I cannot stop my crying, for my people have been run through with the sword and lie mortally wounded on the ground. If I go out in the fields, there lie the bodies of those the sword has killed….And yet the prophets and the priest alike have made it their business to travel through the whole country, reassuring everyone that all was well, speaking of things they know nothing about.” (Ibid, 14: 17, 18, in that order.)
“Who will feel sorry for you, Jerusalem? Who will weep for you? Who will even bother to ask how your are?” (Ibid, 15: 5.)
Enter, Nehemiah, son of Hecaliah:
Nehemiah 1Living Bible (TLB)
1 The autobiography of Nehemiah, the son of Hecaliah:
In December of the twentieth year of the reign of King Artaxerxes of Persia,[a] when I was at the palace at Shushan, 2 one of my fellow Jews named Hanani came to visit me with some men who had arrived from Judah. I took the opportunity to inquire about how things were going in Jerusalem.
“How are they getting along—,” I asked, “the Jews who returned to Jerusalem from their exile here?”
3 “Well,” they replied, “things are not good; the wall of Jerusalem is still torn down, and the gates are burned.”
4 When I heard this, I sat down and cried. In fact, I refused to eat for several days, for I spent the time in prayer to the God of heaven.
… four months later, as I was serving the king his wine he asked me, “Why so sad? You aren’t sick, are you? You look like a man with deep troubles.” (For until then I had always been cheerful when I was with him.) I was badly frightened, 3 but I replied, “Sir,[a] why shouldn’t I be sad? For the city where my ancestors are buried is in ruins, and the gates have been burned down.”
4 “Well, what should be done?” the king asked.
….“If it please Your Majesty and if you look upon me with your royal favor, send me to Judah to rebuild the city of my fathers!” (ibid, 2:1-4)
And the narrative there goes on stating, three days after Nehemiah’s arrival to the city, stealing “out during the night,” he and a few of his most trustworthy confidants went so to survey the extent of “the broken walls and burned gates,” for he had then yet to tell a soul of what “God had put into [his] … heart.”
Then , with that task done, he approached the city officials, “the political and religious leaders.” Told them with candor, “You know full well the tragedy of our city; it lies in ruins and its gates are burned. Let us rebuild the wall of Jerusalem and rid ourselves of this disgrace!” (Ibid, vs. 17.)
From there we now move to yet another note-worthy case of a common-man voicing his rue for noted “disgrace,” “broken walls and burned gates.”
9 March 2016: interview conducted by CNN’s 360, Anderson Cooper; Cooper asks Trump, “Do you think Islam is at war with the west?” Trump answered, “I think Islam hates us.”
To that Trump adds, “There is something -- there is something there that is a tremendous hatred there. There's a tremendous hatred. We have to get to the bottom of it. There's an unbelievable hatred of us.”
In that statement, and others of like-kind, of then candidate for the Nomination of the 2016 Republican Nominee for the Presidency of the United States of America, then candidate, Donald J. Trump, gave light to the fact of the constancy, in his soul, in his mind, of a disquietude that troubled him.
Disquietude secondary to witnessing the now-all-too-common in our nation and elsewhere carnage that results by the works of the hands of Muslim “believers.” Peace breached. The concept of “safety” obliterated. And though lives, limbs, and billions have been spent, supposedly, addressing the driving force behind this carnage, to date, that carnage remains on the rise.
Such constancy of willingness to be gripped by such distress of heart, soul, and mind at knowing that something is that flat should not be the Hebrew Scripture often relates; in this instance, does so with this poignant lament—that of the Jews in Babylonian captivity:
By the rivers of Babylon, there we sat down, yea, we wept when we remembered Zion.
We hanged our harps upon the willows in the midst thereof.
For there they that carried us away captive required of us a song; and they that wasted us required of us mirth, saying, Sing us one of the songs of Zion.
How shall we sing the Lord’s song in a strange land?
If I forget thee, O Jerusalem, let my right hand forget her cunning.
If I do not remember thee, let my tongue cleave to the roof of my mouth; if I prefer not Jerusalem above my chiefest joy.
If I fail to love her more than my highest joy, let me never sing again.” (KJV, Psalms 137: 5 -6.)
Zion, the name of the Mount in Jerusalem, “rising north of the city high above the plains for all to see.” Representative of the city of Jerusalem itself, thus, the chronicled passion and the love for such an object lesson for all of love, of passion in which God Almighty was and is well pleased.
It is of that city, as recorded in the 48th chapter of the Book of Psalms, the inhabitants thereof are instructed, “O people of Judah….Go inspect the city! Walk around and count her many towers! Note her walls and tour her palaces, so that you can tell your children.” (LBP)
The tacit command therein is this: should you find any breaches, weaknesses, or flaws during the above commanded inspection, fix them. Repair the breaches, fortify points deemed vulnerable, and eliminate the flaws. Only then will you have a worthwhile wall of defense and thus a like-kind city of Zion of which to tell your children.
Such was the love for that city God, He who lives on High, implanted in the heart of his people Israel.
So much so, it was of that city, of that passion for that city and for those walls, the psalmist David stated in prayer, “your people love every stone in her walls and feel sympathy for every grain of dust in her streets.” (Book of Psalms 102:14, LBP)
Why the stated “sympathy”?
Because intermingle in the dust on the streets of Zion were the grains of that which formerly was the wall that protected and defended her.
Therefore, with such consciousness, such passion, such righteous sorrow born from it, God was well pleased.
And I assert, in Trump’s noted, as spoken to above, taking to heart the losses in and of our nation to the “religion of Islam” and the adherents thereto, in that also God is well pleased.
Be it knowingly or unaware, in Trump’s above cited statements, and others kin to them, he was speaking to truth stated in, “You can’t heal a wound by saying it’s not there!” (Jeremiah 6: 14, LBP) Moreover, he was making it clear, he wanted healed, that wound—our undeniable unhealed wound.
Additionally, in Trump’s clearly declared disdain of the cost of this war juxtaposed with the gains we have made in it tabled, he clearly articulated, if we shared his disgust of the above wrongs, disgrace, and waste, if we would support him in his run for the office of the Presidency, he would end such wrongs, disgraces, and waste. With God’s help, by His Grace, heal “the wound.”
In large part, for that stance taken, imperfect candidate, Donald J. Trump, became our 45th imperfect president.
Here follows, snap shots of the stated wrongs, disgraces, and waste spoken of above:
Samarra, Iraq, home of present leader of IS, Abu Du’a, Ibrahim bin ‘Awad bin Ibrahim al-Badri ar-Radawi al-Husseini as-Samara’i,” more commonly known in ranks outside those of the jihadi, “Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi al-Qurashi al-Husseini, Emir of the State of Islam in Iraq and Syria”:
Early Fall, 2003:
Samarra is not good. The make up of the men is a much bigger, thicker, stronger person than what we faced in Balad. They were very belligerent. These guys wanted to fight all of the time. There was always a struggle with them. There were always a lot of men working out in the gym they had. I didn’t see anybody else in any other place I was in while in Iraq where people actually worked out and lifted weights.
(Court Transcripts of United States v. 1LT Jack M. Saville; Testimony provided therein of Lieutenant Colonel Nathan Sassaman, US Army.
Those facts not surprising, given, the inhabitants of the Samarra area are, as we will shortly show, well-known as being those who live by the “Salafiya Aqeeda.” The creed of the early Muslims, thus hold fast to the teaching of the Qur’an and to the traditions of the so-called “prophet of Islam.”
[“Aqeeda is Salafiya”: in brief, creed of the early generation of the Muslims.]
Thus, hold fast to, “And make ready against them all you can of power….” (Surah Al-Anfal 8:60), as ibn Kathir expounds on, stating, “Allah commands Muslims to prepare for war against disbelievers, as much as possible, according to affordability and availability.”
Historian and Master of Art in Arabic & Islamic Studied, writer and commentator on current affairs in the Middle East and the background concerning such, Peiter Van Ostaeyen , in his piece, “Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi – a Short Biography of the ISIS Sheikh,” Van Ostaeyen provides additional info for us on the make-up of the “as-Samara’i”.
There he provides, of the now IS leader and the tribe and area from which has hails, as follows:
- the full nom de guerre of the Sheikh and his official title: Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi al-Qurashi al-Husseini, Emir of the State of Islam in Iraq and Syria
- his name: Abu Du’a, Ibrahim bin ‘Awad bin Ibrahim al-Badri ar-Radawi al-Husseini as-Samara’i
- al-Baghdadi is, as was to be expected, highly educated. According to the text he has a Master’s degree and PhD in Islamic Studies (poetry, history, genealogy,…) at the Islamic University of Baghdad and was a renowned Professor and Preacher on these matters.
- it is claimed that beacause [sic]of his major impact on his clan and followers in Diyala, Samara (Iraq), he hereby became one of the most prominent strategists of al-Qaeda in this area.
- As a zealous fighter and preacher he reached top tier al-Qaeda in Iraq in 2010
- he started out with his own group Jaysh Ahl as-Sunna, active in Samara, Diyala and Baghdad
His Name and Lineage : Abu Dua, Ibrahim bin Awad bin Ibrahim Al-Badri Al-Radawi Al-Husseini Al-Samarra’i. He is descendant from the tribes of Al-Sada Al-Asharaf Al-Badriyin (Al-Bu’Badri) Al-Radawiya Al-Husayniyya Al-Hāšimiyyah Al-Qurayshiya Al-Nizariya Al-Adnaniya.
It is known that Dr. Ibrahim Awad is from the most prominent figures of Al-Salafiya Al-Jihadiya and one of its most famous theorists in Diyala and in the city of Samarra in the mosque of Imam Ahmed ibn Hanbal rahimahullah. He is a man from a religious family. His brothers and uncles include preachers and professors of Arabic language, rhetoric and logic. Their Aqeeda is Salafiya….
In reading the above excerpts on “al-Baghdadi,” we note, he was one of the most prominent and influential figures in the Al-Qeada movement in “Diyala and in the city of Samarra” areas, first, because that area is known for its adherence to the creed of this well-known-in-that-area religious family, whose, as mentioned above, “Aqeeda is Salafiya.” Add to that, given al-Baghadadi’s education in and devotion to such, coupled with his personality and the family and tribe from which he came, hence his stated prominence.
Speaking to the Salafiya Aqeeda, thus, the Samara’i Aqeeda — the creed of their brothers who executed the “blessed” 9/11 operations — IS’s on-line Magazine, Rumihay, Issue 2, in the Section titled, “Brutality and Severity towards the Kuffar,” prelude to numerous references to the brutal and severe actions of the early Muslims, the following:
Allah sent His Messenger, Muhammad, as a messenger to the creation and so he openly called the people to the path of truth and guidance. Whoever accepted was encompassed with this mercy, and whoever opposed it and resisted was fought and dealt with using severe brutality until this enemy submitted to the command of Allah. The Prophet’s Sirah contains the best evidence of this. (P. 22.)
Indeed, the said Sirah does, as does, the same of those brought up in the shadow of “Allah’s Messenger.” Take for example, that of Kalid bin al-Walid. Focusing therein on the account of what became known as “The episode of the River of Blood.”
The longer story told shortened here is, the battle between the Muslim and the Arab-Christian-reinforced Persian troops raged, and, “the imperial army, though losing heavily in men, would not yield before the assaults of the Muslims.”
(Akram, LT. General A. I., The Sword of Allah, Khalid bin Al-Waleed, His Life and Campaigns, Adam Publishers and Distributors, New Delhi, India; Edition: 2011; ISBN: 81-7435-521-9; P. 259.)
Therefore, with “The Muslims—tired, angry, and frustrated,” the record relates, “Khalid raised his hands in supplication,” prayed to “Allah” the following prayer: “O Lord! If you give us victory, I shall see that no enemy warrior is left alive until their river runs with their blood!” (ibid.)
Thus, the narrative goes, “The Muslims renewed their assault with great fury…Allah gave them victory.” And “As the Persian army fled,” Khalid commanded his cavalry to pursue it. Ordering, “Do not kill them,” but rather, “Bring them back alive.” (Ibid.)
Thus, the narrative relates, the Persians and Arabs, separated now, “isolated from one another, surrounded, overpowered,” were “disarmed and driven back to the battlefield like flocks of sheep…. Herded to the river.” (Ibid, P. 260.)
“And every man was beheaded in the river,” reads the account, “their killing in the river went on the rest of the day and part of the next. Every vanquished warrior who fell into the victor’s hands was decapitated.” (Ibid.)
These are men of the Salafiya Aqeeda mentioned above, these are the heroes, and the examples, of the as-Samara’i.
Clearly, foreign forces going in to fight against such men should do so with a tender touch. Kid gloves.
Many fools believed that; many fools in high-places both preached and practiced that. Still do. LTC. Nate Sassaman was no such fool.
LTC. Sassaman’s testimony continues:
1-66 had a horrible time trying to control this place. They had two FOB's and they were getting mortared regularly. When they would go in and patrol the city, they were attacked. They were losing men and had a fair amount of people wounded to the point where the boss said we were going to augment it with some infantry. They had such a tough time that they were run out of the city. They lost control.
1-66 Armor failed in their mission to secure the city and set it up for civil infrastructure projects. They moved out to a base 16 miles outside of the city. That's when Lieutenant Saville showed up. They had an extremely difficult mission because that was a place that experienced success against American forces. This was mid-October. I sent a company up there from 28 September to 14 October and they were attacked everyday they were in the city. In addition to that, they conducted an operation where they cleared an industrial area and were able to fill what were the equivalent of five 18- wheelers full of mortars and RPG's to include American equipment, uniforms and food supplies. This was a great sign for us because it told us not only were they killing and hijacking American food, equipment and arms, but they were taking it and using it against us.
From the same LTC, these excerpts, from the Prologue of his book, Warrior King:
March 13 2004
….When I look back on my time in Iraq, I feel a sense of pride at what we accomplished (sometimes against almost insurmountable odds) and at the professionalism and courage we brought to our jobs. I also feel sad—for any number of reasons. I’m sad for the men and women who have lost their lives over there, for the soldiers who have been wounded, and for the families whose lives have been destroyed back home. I’m sad for the marriages that have been broken under the stress of separation. I’m sad for the Iraqi people and for the children who became casualties of war. I’m also sad for the American Military, to which I gave twenty years of my life, primarily because I think we made serious mistakes in Iraq—strategic and philosophical mistakes at the highest levels of military and political command, the effects of which trickled down inevitably and tragically to the battlefield, resulting in casualties and the failure to accomplish and complete what should have been an overwhelming victory….
(SASSAMAN, NATHAN, LT.COL. [RET], with Joe Layden, WARRIOR KING, THE TRIUMP AND BETRAYAL OF AN AMERICAN COMMANDER IN IRAQ, , ST. Martin’s Press, New York, First Edition, 2008; ISBN-13:978-0-312-37712-2, ISBN-10: 0-312-37712-6; Prologue.)
LTC. Sassaman’s above prologue continues:
I discovered too late we were not really a nation at war in Iraq; too often, in fact, we weren’t even an army at war. We were a handful of battalions at war, led by an even smaller group of officers (and I include myself here) silly and naïve [sic] enough to think that winning was a legitimate option … [per Sassaman, as in original text] or that it mattered in the least.
Sassaman further states, “there were countless days,” in which, “there seemed to be no coherent objective.” He tells of how, all too commanding, was the army’s desperate and costly desire and “resolve” “to project its image as a fair and just organization that was fighting a fair fight, when in fact,” affirms Sassaman, “there was nothing fair about the war in Iraq.”
“American soldiers were being killed and wounded at an alarming rate so that the army could fight ‘fair.’”
And why was that so? For the same damned reason, as we will read of shortly herein, that our “leaders,” in selecting a name for operations in this so-called “War on Terror,” did so guided by the yearning to refrain, as much as possible, from upsetting or offending the Muslims.
And for such reasons, guided by such unforgivable stupidity and such betrayal of our troops and to the oath they took and declared they were willing to fight and, if need be, die for; Sassaman argued to his superior, Colonel Fred Rudesheim, “Sir….Because you are holding back, we can’t win this thing.” (Ibid, P. 160.)
“People are going to get hurt,” Sassaman argued.
He states, there forward, kissing his Army career farewell, “I gave orders based on instinct and experience, rather than consideration for the chain of command.” Clearly, men that gave orders in consideration for the chain of command, in this war, climbed upward on that ladder. Men such as Sassaman, many, in short, fell from it.
Thus, Sassaman states, “I had crossed a line, and I knew it, but I didn’t care.” He states, “ By now, it was apparent that in my one year of combat duty, as a battalion commander, I was going to be working for a man who did not believe in fighting.”
He states, of Rudeshiem, he “felt that we should be prosecuting the war with a policy of appeasement—where we paid people to stop attacking us, instead of just eliminating the attackers. I couldn’t do that.” And therefore, early on in this war, this Warrior became one “unfit” for such a “fight.” Thus a casualty of this war.
We must state, Rudeshiem’s belief and practice--as was and is the same of many of our “leaders”—spoken to above is perfectly in line with the actions of the vanquished in face of the followers of Qur’an and sunnah. For, “Allah,” the god of the alleged “Prophet of Islam,” he commands, “Fight against those who believe not in Allah … nor forbid that which has been forbidden by Allah and His Messenger, and those who acknowledge not the religion of truth among the People of the Scripture, until they pay the Jizyah with willing submission, and feel themselves subdued.” (Surah At-Tawbah 9:29)
Clearly, Rudeshiem and others who shared and practiced his above cited belief, were among those who, in face of Islam and its adherents, felt themselves subdued, and therefore, all to happily rendered their jizyah payment, as Sassaman stated, thereby paying “people to stop attacking us, instead of just eliminating the attackers.”
That is why we lost this war. Long and short of it.
As Sassaman writes, in the war, “At heart, I was still a ten-year old boy who couldn’t stand getting his but kicked…” He states, he flat “couldn’t gear it back… [per Sassaman] couldn’t just settle” for happily, while forking over funds to the said “but” kickers, absorb that licking. For Sassaman, as it was for many of our Warriors, “it was a fight to the death.”
But not so for men of same mind and cloth of Rudeshiem.
As Sassaman states, “Fred was not unique in his perspective. Far from it. General David Patraeus…. He believed in a softer, gentler approach.” As Sassaman states, thus the order the war followed, from early on, was one, as mentioned above, of a “policy of appeasement.” (Ibid, P. 162.)
We move forward.
As fools pursued their fool-headed pipe-dream spoken to above, aiming to reshape the Mid-East by empowering an imaginary “Moderate Muslim,” who followed a fictitious moderate Islam, paying them to hold their fire from us, here follows a snap shot of the cost of such unforgivable stupidity; it was 20 May 2005:
…the Company C sniper team really did their job…..
The Iraqi went down as if poleaxed….he wouldn’t be getting back up.
The other two Iraqis dropped their 152 mm shells as if the things were on fire ….Within minutes, a blocking squad from Company C’s First Platoon nabbed the runner. Another squad pulled the third man from the back seat of the Opel.
The squadron commander, Lieutenant Colonel Bill Simril, put out the word to all 2-11 Calvary troopers: “Yesterday, we sent a strong message to the insurgents trying to operate in our AO [area of operations]. Set up IEDs and we will hunt you down.”
For three days, hostile activity ceased …. One good shot made a difference. But on the afternoon of May 23 … the insurgents evened it up.
…the road flashed white and it all went black, a smashing, grinding, hammering, throaty crash, lighting and thunder at ground level …. A massive dirt column vomited up, engulfing the Humvee completely.
…the brown grit rained down and the savage air cleared, the armored truck materialized, a ghostly outline wholly engulfed in flames. It was all burning, the turret, the tires, the tan-painted metal, and the Kevlar armor, a licking, roaring furnace. There were four soldiers in there, four Mississippi Guardsmen. But you couldn’t see them at all. Tongues of fire barred the way. Heat waves shimmered off the stricken Humvee. Oily black smoke boiled up, swirling around the scene, shrouding the horror.
(BOLGER, DANIEL P., WHY WE LOST, A GENERAL’S INSIDE ACCOUNT OF THE IRAQ AND AFGHANISTAN WARS, An Eamon Dolan Book, 2014; ISBN978-0-544-37048-7; P. 416, 417, 418, respectively.)
The narrative of this horror goes to tell how the men in other vehicles attempted to approach the burning truck but “the fierce heat and shooting flames drove them back.” Ammunition on board the truck then began to pop and “cook off.” “ The JP-8 fuel, formulated to burn rather than explode, fed the towering pyre.” As such, every effort made or attempted, “It wasn’t enough.” (Ibid, P. 418.)
And thus Bolger asserts and ask, “Four lives sacrificed—to what end?” He cites:
Great War veteran Wilfred Owen, before the Germans got him, wrote a verse starkly contrary to the beliefs of the ancient Romans, finding little dulce et decorum about dying in the cruel, searing grip of modern explosives. We dare not ask lightly for our soldiers and their families to endure such unspeakable agonies. (Ibid, P. 419.)
“Yet we did,” states Bolger. Yet we did. And Bolger ask, “For all this pain, what resulted?”
He answers, speaking to the so-called “Success of the Surge,” which, supposedly—at least in minds of fools—justified and made worthwhile all our cost in so-called “OIF,” it “did not save the Iraq campaign. It was too late for that. But it gave America space to withdraw on our own terms, and provided Iraq, however ungrateful, a chance to chart a course as a responsible nation-state. (Ibid. P. 431.)
Yet the mindful note, thus Bolger states, the surge done, the “success” thereof claimed, “Al-Qaeda in Iraq, unrepentant Sunni rejectionist, surly Sadrists and Iranian handlers all kept their pieces on the board. (Ibid, P. 256.)
From the 2005 horror cited above, we step forward: late 2006, at this point in the so-called “Operation Iraqi Freedom,” troop strength in Iraq over 120,000, over 3000 U.S. Troops killed, thousands more severely maimed, to say nothing of the millions spent, this noted “depletion” of the enemy forces, devotees to “Allah”:
Our platoon had just finished a joint operation in Baqubah, and we were returning to FOB Warhorse. The air was dry, and the temperature had already risen past 100 degrees. We rolled back toward the base along the main road connecting Baqubah to the rest of Diyala Province, and just outside the city limits, al-Qaida had left us a gruesome sign.
Decapitated heads lined the highway. They were the heads of Iraq Police, national policemen whom al-Qaida killed for working alongside Coalition Forces. Flies filled the air around them. Al-Qaida insurgents wanted us to know, and they wanted the people of Baqubah to know, that they had no intention of ceding power. They wanted us to know who really ran the town, and they wanted us to see that we could not protect the men who had volunteered to fight with us.
(Meehan, Shannon P., with Roger Thompson, Beyond Duty, Life on the Frontline In Iraq, Polity Press, Malden, MA, 2009; ISBN-13: 978-0-7456-4672-5; pp. 37 -38.)
Part of the reason for such “progress” at that stage and cost of the war, that spoken to above, so too, in-line with that, that which the following excerpt speaks to:
I went outside and surveyed the area….Across the street from the target house, a tall mosque stood quite in the darkness….the mosque … begged to be searched. Speaking, through the interpreter, our informant had told us the JAM kept weapons inside, but the military had long ago decided to respect the sacredness of the mosque, and we had all been trained not to enter them. I stared at it … and wondered how many weapons were inside.
Next to it rose another house. I decided that …. If we couldn’t search the mosque, we would search the house next door to it, and turning to my men, this is what I instructed them we would do….I radioed the plan, and I walked toward the mosque and the neighboring house with four of my men….
….the mosque…not thirty yards ahead of us. I could see more details on the building, Islamic designs etched into stone….
Without a sign, without a sound, without even the slightest indication that we were being stalked, rapid flashes of machine-gun fire lit up from the edge of the mosque roof, and we were under a hail of bullets. Multiple machine-gun nests on the mosque roof opened up on us. We hadn’t seen them. We hadn’t heard them. Not a sound. Not a whisper, just the sudden screeching of machine-gun ripping off rounds at us…. we instinctively dove for cover.
….We returned fore but we were pinned hard to our positions. We could hardly move without exposing ourselves to fire. When I heard the first explosion from a hand-grenade, and the ground rumbled beneath me, I know we were in trouble. They had the high ground…. They were keeping us pinned with machine-guns and were going to use the grenades to force us to move, exposing us to their fire.
Roberts radioed for help. He requested support from … the Air Weapons Team. We continued to try to return fire on the enemy, but their positions were high on the mosque….
….I heard a man behind me yell, “Man Down, Man Down!”….I could not see who it was….I could see the lights of my Humvee to the rear, and occasionally now, I could see the flashes from their guns light up. They opened up on the mosque, unloading on the high towers where the enemy nest were perched….I heard the sound of choppers descending down on us.
For a moment, all I could hear was their blades whipping the dark sky. The machine guns on the roof fell silent, evidently having noticed the incoming birds. The choppers had orders to fire only on targets that they could clearly identify as hostile, and so when the enemy ceased fire, the choppers could not engage them…. We had to subdue the mosque fire.
Duvalle leveled his M-4 at the top of the mosque. Attached to the front of his rifle he had mounted a grenade launcher, and, carefully directing his fire, he sent six grenades in the nests….We continued to fire into the upper reaches of the mosque, but the helicopters radioed back to us that the enemy had been eliminated….
I stared at the mosque. We had been attacked from it, and I knew more weapons were in it. Our protocol, however, did not allow us to enter it. We could not chase down any of the men who attacked us from it, and we could not search it for more weapons, despite the fact that it had functioned as a virtual enemy fortress.
My chest was heaving. I was furious that I could not raid the mosque….
(Ibid, P.P, 165 -169.)
Lt. Meehan goes on to state of that day’s experience, though the above assault on he and his men was proceeding by a successful arrest of a “the leader of JAM in Diyala,” notwithstanding that success, he states, “I felt uneasy returning back to base. I celebrated our capture, certainly, but I couldn’t remove from my head the images of the machine-gun fire lighting up from the edge of the mosque.” (Ibid, P. 170.)
He states, “It scared me. It reduced me.” (Ibid.)
Such were the gifts we gave to and laid at the altar of Islam. Given our “protocol” to regard the “sanctity” of all things Islamic, our guiding “principle” in this war, to, to the best of our ability therein, refrain from offending Muslims, such were the victories we refused allowing our warriors.
Fast-forwarding now, over countless accounts of many a horrific cost we have absorbed, both here at home and abroad, as we held to the protocol of pretending Islam is something other than what it is, therefore, the followers of it something other than just that; we arrive at the following “Author’s Note”:
I am a United States Army general, and I lost the Global War on Terrorism. It’s like Alcoholics Anonymous; step one is admitting you have a problem. Well, I have a problem. So do my peers. And thanks to our problem, now all of America has a problem, to wit: two lost campaigns and a war gone awry.
We should have known this one was going to go bad when we couldn’t even settle on a name. In the wake of the horrific al-Qaeda attacks on September 11, 2001, we tried out various labels. The guys in the Pentagon basement at first offered Operation Infinite Justice, which sounded fine, both almighty and righteous. Then various handwringers noted that it might upset the Muslims. These were presumably different kinds of followers of Islam that the nineteen zealots who had just slaughtered thousands of our fellow citizens. Well, better incoherent than insensitive, I guess.
So we settled on Operation Enduring Freedom ….a long way from Korean War operations like Killer and Ripper. You didn’t have to guess what those names meant.
….next …ill-named war drew the title Operation Iraqi Freedom….
What went right involved the men and women who fought….
What went wrong squandered the bravery, sweat, and blood of these fine Americans. Our primary failing in this war involved generalship…. strategy and operational art translates to “the big picture” (your goal) and “the plan” (how you get there). We got both wrong….We have been trained and educated all our lives on how to fight and win. This was our war to lose, and we did.
We should have known better….Master Sun put it simply: “Know the enemy and know yourself; in a hundred battles you will never be in peril.” We failed on both counts….As generals, we did not know the enemy—never pinned him down….
….Time after time ….We failed to question our flawed understanding of our foe or ourselves….
(BOLGER, Excerpts from Author’s Note.)
Hence this statement:
"The entire COIN strategy is a fraud perpetuated on the American people," says Douglas Macgregor, a retired colonel and leading critic of counterinsurgency who attended West Point with McChrystal. "The idea that we are going to spend a trillion dollars to reshape the culture of the Islamic world is utter nonsense.”
In concluding this post, to our own peril, Mr. President Trump, we ignore, make insignificant the details stated and spoken to in this write-up. Our nation, Sir, as does our world, begs for a leader with the wisdom, with the will, with the courage to deal fact-based with Islam and the adherents to it.
Are you, Sir, that man?
I pray you are, Sir.
And therefore, that never will you be found in the long line of, in the face of Islam, fools and cowards, some who proceeded you, others to your left, to your right, who “command,” who practice willful ignorance on Islam, willful blindness to the doctrines thereof, and costly fool-headed pretense concerning the realities of the adherents thereto.
May God bless you, Sir. May he guide you and your administration, ever-girding you with courage, wisdom, and protection as you follow Him.