Abiding in the shadow

Afghan Soldier Captured

This is an American soldier in grave danger. Let us pray for him and for his family, for his sweetheart back home, for his friends and loved ones. These sorts of things rarely end well when dealing with the evil which we struggle against over there, but we must not give up hope, if only for his sake. We must honor and appreciate those fighting for us – and especially those who have sacrificed so much.

For those of you who have forgotten about the war in the last six months, since the protests have largely subsided and the daily body counts are no longer published in the papers – let this be a cold and harsh reminder of what this nation’s sons and daughters are facing out there. For those who do not forget – keep them in your prayers, and offer extra supplication for Private First Class Bowe Bergdahl, of Idaho, and for his family.

Psalm 91

He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High
will abide in the shadow of the Almighty.

I will say to the LORD, “My refuge and my fortress,
my God, in whom I trust.”

For he will deliver you from the snare of the fowler
and from the deadly pestilence.

He will cover you with his pinions,
and under his wings you will find refuge;
his faithfulness is a shield and buckler.

You will not fear the terror of the night,
nor the arrow that flies by day,

nor the pestilence that stalks in darkness,
nor the destruction that wastes at noonday.

A thousand may fall at your side,
ten thousand at your right hand,
but it will not come near you.

You will only look with your eyes
and see the recompense of the wicked.

Because you have made the LORD your dwelling place—
the Most High, who is my refuge—

no evil shall be allowed to befall you,
no plague come near your tent.

For he will command his angels concerning you
to guard you in all your ways.

On their hands they will bear you up,
lest you strike your foot against a stone.

You will tread on the lion and the adder;
the young lion and the serpent you will trample underfoot.

“Because he holds fast to me in love, I will deliver him;
I will protect him, because he knows my name.

When he calls to me, I will answer him;
I will be with him in trouble;
I will rescue him and honor him.

With long life I will satisfy him
and show him my salvation.”

h/t: Ace

Memorial Day

Today, the country celebrates Memorial Day. For many, this is another BBQ-and-Beer holiday, a day to be spent enjoying the company of friends and family, grilling burgers, watching basketball and enjoying the day off of work. But there is more to this day than a break from the daily grind, and there is more to think about than whether or not the Nuggets can tie up the series tonight.

Memorial Day was instituted in 1868 as a day to honor those who died in the Civil War by decorating their graves with flowers and other adornments, something nearly every American was able to do, because in nearly every city and town there lay at least a few bodies of those fallen during the five-year war. Everyone knew someone who had died, everyone knew someone who had been left fatherless or widowed. And in acknowledgment of this painful fact, the original order for this day included this particularly poignant statement:

Let us, then, at the time appointed, gather around their sacred remains, and garland the passionless mounds above them with choicest flowers of springtime; let us raise above them the dear old flag they saved; let us in this solemn presence renew our pledge to aid and assist those whom they have left among us a sacred charge upon the Nation’s gratitude—the soldier’s and sailor’s widow and orphan.

So it is not only a day to remember those who have fallen in defense of our country and our freedom, but also to remember those they left behind. We not only owe those who we have lost our fondness and gratitude, but we owe their families our support and affirmation. So on this day, as you enjoy the company of those you love, remember those who cannot do the same, because those whom they love have given their lives for this great nation. Honor the fallen, but remember those still struggling to stand. And if you don’t know someone personally who is in that position, then perhaps give a little to a charity that will.

Soldiers’ Angels

Fisher House

Obama’s cabinet selections made official, also, the war is cool now

Nothing surprising, but it’s official now:

President-elect Obama officially announced his national security team today, naming Hillary Clinton, a top rival for the Democratic nomination with whom he sparred on foreign policy, as his Secretary of State.

Obama also retained Defense Secretary Robert Gates at the Pentagon, named former Marine Commandant and NATO Supreme Allied Commander retired Gen. James L. Jones as his national security adviser, Arizona Gov. Janet Napolitano Secretary of Homeland Security and campaign foreign policy adviser and Africa expert Susan Rice as ambassador to the United Nations.

Additionally, Obama officially named Eric Holder attorney general.

I previously talked about the disaster Napolitano would be in this position, it looks like now we’ll get to see if I was right. The other really notable name on this list is Eric Holder – the same guy who was instrumental in the shady Clinton pardon of Mark Rich, the billionare tax evader who makes oil deals with terrorists. Holder also helped out with the strongly-opposed pardoning of 16 FALN terrorists who were responsible for at least 120 bombings on American soil which caused “6 deaths and the permanent maiming of dozens of others, including law enforcement officials,” according to Congress. The idea that such a man could be appointed to an office that requires him to enforce the laws he so blatantly disregards is so absurd it would take a Clinton to think of it. Yes, it appears we’re headed for Clinton’s third term – this time with even more Kool-aid and no economic wave to ride.

So instead they’re setting up to give Obama all the credit for the victory in Iraq. He hasn’t done anything yet, and we’ve already won, but somehow it will remain a hopeless quagmire until sometime around January 21st, at which point NBC will acknowledge what we already know by announcing a victory in Iraq. But they’ll redirect all the praise to the newly-appointed Messiah figure they’ve propped up for themselves and try to slather onto his cardboard image a bit of legitimacy. It will be desperate, and it won’t be pretty, but then again… what have they done lately that was?

h/t: Ace

This is awesome.

No, seriously, it is.

TIKRIT, Iraq – Eighteen females in northern Iraq who were associated with Al-Qaeda in Iraq suicide bombing cells turned themselves into Coalition forces on Nov. 26.

The females were persuaded by their mullahs and fathers to cease their training in suicide operations and reconcile.

Today, these women took the first step in reconciliation by turning themselves in and signing a reconciliation pledge.

Great news, on two points: first, that these women who have been treated as slaves and property are finding the strength to rise up and say no to the terrorists pressuring them into this, indicating a real change in the attitude over there. Second, that the women were convinced by their mullahs and fathers. This is out of Tikrit, Saddam Hussein’s hometown. These would be devout Shi’ites, religious leaders, who are actively decrying this terrorism for the first time that we’ve really seen over there. That alone is incredible. These women also bring with them valuable information on insurgent cells. I wish them all the best in their new lives as they move forward as – for the first time – free women.

h/t: Michael Ledeen at PJM


Because I forgot to post this on 11/22, like the putz I am…

Despite what you have (or haven’t) heard on TV, we’ve won, folks. Those friends of mine who have been over there can all attest to how much it’s calmed down, and I anticipate we can look forward to having (the majority of) our troops home probably in the next couple of years.

So here’s to the rough men like General Petraeus, who have led our troops to this victory. Here’s to the few politicians who had the guts to stick with this and see this out – this was one of the few things McCain did right. Yes, there’s still plenty of concern to be had about Iran, North Korea, and Pakistan (among others)… and here’s to hoping that those in power handle it well. In the meantime, though, we can have our spirits somewhat bolstered by the realization that victory is possible, and real, and in Iraq, realized – something that even just two years ago seemed a distant dream.