On the Iraqi War Effort
I never thought that the Navy
would ever launch the
cruise missiles in anger. When I left the submarine
force 25 years ago, the Tomahawk was hardly mentioned, but its deterrent
power was coming to light. Unlike the huge continental missile, its
damage is limited but its accuracy is without contention. During the
Persian Gulf Crisis, it could deliver its small payload without the
huge mushroom cloud, that Doom's day sign of Armageddon.
You might not completely agree
with Bush but his conduct and the operations appear very diplomatic.
of the Tomahawk 91 is probably the biggest reason that we are willing
to take it to Baghdad again. The weapons of war have changed during
the last 60 years, since military application discovered nuclear power.
Atomic, Biological, and Chemical (ABC) warfare has brought fears never
seen before: the unknown and the unseen.
Introduced in hot pursuit of Yamashita, the traumatic
shock of Napalm bomb failed in Northern Luzon, the area where I grew
up. It took the giant atomic bomb to finally secure Japan and potentially
save thousands of liberators. We may never have to see atomic bomb strike
#3 after Nagasaki, but the gorish outcome of the Napalm bomb is now
the curse of limited conflict.
There are also new dogs of war: dolphins are
deployed to search for mines, which are now more sophisticated than
You might not completely agree with Bush but his
conduct and the operations appear very diplomatic.
Tanks are heading north so fast that if they were on the New Jersy Turnpike,
the State Police would be issuing speeding tickets. The electronic eyes
over Baghdad could issue summons for all the cars operating with busted
tail lights at night or scan license plates better than the E-Z pass,
all via satellite. If the Iraqis could score a lucky hit
into the sky, Sadam probably could claim a small victory and give up
just to save his face.
News from Kitty Hawk Battle Group
Lt. Cmdr. Mark Johnson, a pilot returning to the USS
Kitty Hawk from a mission over southern Iraq, said it
appeared that Iraqi forces were withdrawing in front
of advancing U.S. forces. He could see columns of Marines moving but
``there was nobody coming south to meet them.''
Time and again, he said, he was told to ignore targets
like missile launch sites because U.S. troops had
passed without any opposition. The ground campaign appeared to be moving
faster than planned. Units reached locations in Iraq 24 hours ahead
of their expected arrival time, according to several reporters attached
to those units.
(It is important to note that this is the
wherein war correspondents joined the forward unit and are witnessing
the battle firsthand.)
In a large conference in England, Colin Powell was
asked by the Archbishop of Canterbury if our plans for Iraq were just
an example of empire building by George Bush. He answered by saying that,
"Over the years, the United States has sent many of its fine young
men and women into great peril to fight for freedom beyond our borders.
The only amount of land we have ever asked for in return is enough to
bury those that did not return." It became very quiet in the room.
The largest oversea US Military Cemetery is located in the Philippines.
It is where United States started
flexing it muscles in the beginning of the 20th
century. The early soldiers were rugged veterans of
the Indian War and the new nation made some early
mistakes. There were early ugly chapters in the
Philippine-American War for which the US is not too proud. She never forgot
however that when she fought, she fought hard for independence against
foreign power. Still, at times was reluctant to wage war, and her isolationist
instinct discouraged imperial expansion. Always the last one to enter
the last two great world wars, her great generation won, liberated the
world and was very generous to her enemy.
The faces of the US Armed forces has changed, there are lot more ethnic
minorities and women. They appear to be from the United Nations rather
than United States. But what made this Middle East conflict different
is that these military professionals are all volunteers. According to
the American Battle Monuments Commission there are 26,255 Yankees dead
from World War I buried in 4 cemeteries
in France. There are 30,426 American dead from World War II buried in
6 cemeteries in France. These 56,681 brave American heroes died in their
youth to liberate a country which is now guilty of ungrateful behavior
in the 21st century. I remember when George Bush's election was hanging
on his slim lead during the Florida recount. Had not for the very heavy
military absentee ballot in his favor, he would have been overtaken by
hanging chads. It is only fitting that his biggest supporters would now
carry on the fight. Peace on earth.