Almost Friday. Roger (The Rocket) Clemens will be playing with our Astros this season after all. His son is in the minor league team associated with the Astros so that apparently was the major factor in his decision to play one more year. The father/son bonding thing at work.
Speaking of honoring your child, I read that Cindy Sheehan, on the speaking circuit overseas, was unable to attend to the placing of a headstone on her son's grave. SPC Casey Sheehan, 1st Battelion, 82nd Field Artillery Regiment, 1st Cavalry Division, Ft. Hood, Tx, died more than 783 days before the headstone was placed on the grave. Cindy's quote? "It is important for the rest of Casey's family to have one." The rest of Casey's family? Remember the Vanity Fair magazine photo of Cindy laying on Casey's grave? Maybe a headstone would get in the way of any future photo shoots exploiting the final resting place of her son.
Casey Sheehan's birthday was Memorial Day.
A current hot topic among the community of journalists in this country is the alleged incident in Haditha, Iraq. It appears that some Marines overreacted to the insurgent dominance in this farming town of 90,000 people along the Euphrates River. It is a three hour drive north from Baghdad and run by the Taliban. Just like other areas that have been Taliban controlled in the past, they decide who lives and dies, who is paid what salary, the dress code of citizens, and what they watch and listen to. These insurgents are not freedom's best friend. They have the most to lose in a democracy.
I make note of these facts about Haditha for a little background. Parents do not object to their children watching videos of beheadings instead of cartoons. One young, blonde member of the US sniper team was ambushed and killed last August 1. He was paraded in town before he was executed. This young man is said to be on one of the videos. The locals do not rise up against the insurgents out of fear and do not trust that the coalition will remain long enough to bring the bad guys to justice.
So, when an incident happens in a place like Haditha, instead of waiting for the reports to come out with the facts of record, we are subjected to a foaming at the mouth media rubbing their hands in glee that something truly horrific may have happened. It is further proof that the media truly is rooting for failure on the part of the military. They chose to make it the story of choice over Memorial Day weekend. Not stories of true heroes in battle, not stories of proud families of military members, no, the alleged incident in Haditha by a few Marines. I actually heard the comparison to My Lai beginning to work into interviews. That is truly beneath contempt.
My Lai was a tragic event during the Vietnamese War when an entire village was burned and 500 plus people were killed by US soldiers. It is hard to imagine but it happened. People old enough to know better enjoy comparing Iraq to Vietnam, but saying it over and over doesn't make it so. Two very different countries, two different times, two different wars. This comparison is particulary disgusting when made by politicans voting in favor of the initial Iraq invasion and now that things are tough they have lost the courage of their conviction.
The report will be public soon. If the alleged facts bear out, those responsible will be punished. In the meantime, it would be nice if people were presumed innocent until proven otherwise. I think that is one of the tenets of freedom we are trying to give the Iraqis, isn't it?
"Congressmen who willfully take actions during wartime that damage morale and undermine the military are saboteurs and should be arrested, exiled, or hanged." - Abraham Lincoln