Saturday, January 19, 2008

January 29, 2008 - Tuesday
WHAT’S THE COST OF LIFE? - ’DEFINE NECESSITY’ Current mood: hopeful Category: Life

I know we all think we have the definition of necessity nailed down, but search your hearts as you read/look above and then ask yourself if its time to rethink it. Thank you on behalf of all of us that are trying to make the world a better place any way we are able to.

It takes so little to help the millions starving worldwide. Even the change you throw on top of the dresser or in a jar could provide so much to so many. Make good use of it. This is just one of many places to start.

I personally do not want to see anymore heart wrenching pictures like the one on the bottom above, but to ignore them would be to ignore the help many need. I'm asking all of you to start somewhere. Deb

The following was borrowed from the awesome MySpace located here:

What's the cost of life?

I have known this photo for some time, it makes me sad and scared at the same time seeing the little kid suffering of hunger, while the vulture awaits aside. I learned that the photo was taken in Southern Sudan, in 1993 by the South African photo journalist Kevin Carter (the Manics pay tribute to him with a song), who was awarded an Pulitzer for it in 1994. He committed suicide shortly after that, haunted by the horrific images from Sudan.Sudan is still a hot topic today, mainly because of the Darfur crisis. The international community to date fails to solve the problem and stop the genocide of innocent population in the western Sudan, something that points out that the human race still have to go a long way until it becomes a real human society. There are estimated 450.000 people killed since the beginning of the fights in 2003 and the number is rapidly growing. Hm, I bet that if the so-called civilized world has real interest in solving the problem, it can be done. Those people out there need help, need solution. I mean, come on people, there are people dying every day down there in horrific manner. And not just that, AFRICA needs help and the western world, especially, owe it to her. Centuries of exploitation and stealing the wealth of the African countries obligates the West to help. Or it will be as it was until now - the rich will send some money in support, make some concerts, make some movies and talk about it at the saloons, while enjoying comfort. And on Sunday they will go to church and be perfectly happy with them selves. While hell is loose on Earth. It is just so two-faced and unfair. Was Kevin Carter right? I hope not...

Friday, January 18, 2008

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AMERICA - Where has our spirit gone?

January 18, 2008 - Friday

Category: News and Politics

The picture above and all text as noted below my post are borrowed from Ro's blog because I couldn't have said it better myself. I will never forget seeing the actual shooting on TV of the poor innocent that this photo holds captive for eternity; I was 14.

When I was 19 I joined the Army and was sent to Germany (women weren't allowed in combat then, but many nurses did get close and many were killed). Its as close to Vietnam and the front lines as I could get.

I saw the horrid aftermath up close and personally when I worked at the Veteran's hospital in Los Angeles after my discharge. I saw the remnants of what used to be strong, healthy, sane young men check in at my desk, their vacant eyes showed empty souls as they shuffled towards me in army issue trench coats hanging on their skeletal frames. The only way I knew one had been a POW and one had not was from their charts, otherwise their demeaner, their scars, their hopelessness were the same.

This administration has lied about and sanitized the current war to the point where too few pay attention anymore.


We lost close to 60,000 men and women in Nam and countless innocent civilians. We've now lost over 3,000 men and women in Iraq and hundreds of thousands of innocent civilians have been killed and displaced....they are now refugees running for the nearest border, hoping they'll be let in.

And the selective news we're being fed is that Iran is now after us and we MUST defend ourselves. Dear God, I ask, when will it end? I haven't heard from God yet on that one but I can tell you with all certainty that it will not end until we stand up and make it end, like we did before. Deb


The following was posted on Rosie's blog this morning (
Posted by ro on January 17th, 2008 at 11:01 pm in life, in the news

At six, I saw the flag draped coffins, but it didn't quite connect. These are our soldiers, the newscasters said. Our Sons, our brothers, our heroes.

I learned the Pledge of Allegiance, with upturned eyes and hand over heart – a first grade prelude to the American Dream. One Nation Under God. . .with Liberty & Justice for All.

That year, NBC cameras focused on a Saigon prisoner standing in the street, his hands tied behind his back, his face twisted in fear. There was an outstretched arm, a gun, another face devoid of feeling as he pulled the trigger. There was blood, as red as the stripes on our flag.

Shell shock reverberated across the continents. We were not indivisible by then.

Three years earlier, a young Morley Safer took Americans to Cam Ne. People watched, horrified, as renegade-heroes set fire to straw roofs. CBS was there, capturing the images as reality and history both. Weeping mothers held their babies close, children screamed, fathers begged. Desperation and fear was thicker than the smoke.

Lyndon Johnson was angered by Safer's report. As Star Spangled denials were being written & rehearsed by the Department of Defense, Johnson accused CBS of shitting on the American Flag.

Flags wave higher and hearts are prouder, it seems, when the gory details are kept under lock & key, and selected truths are plucked from days of glory.

Lyndon demanded his glory days, and the rose-colored filter of censorship. But no - fearless networks and intrepid journalists opted for reality.

It really was the land of the free and the home of the brave. America.


In the 70's - millions showed up in Washington, DC & San Francisco demanding an end to the war. Their demonstrations filled the airwaves and the front page of every newspaper.

And it worked, the boys would come home – but it would take four more years.

"And in that time when men decide and feel safe to call the war insane, take one moment to embrace those gentle heroes you left behind. - Major Michael Davis O'Donnell (KIA)."

Those gentle heroes – those bright-eyed youths, brave women, and courageous fathers – are memorialized on a long black wall. The death toll math still hurts. 58,195 heroic American sons forever young, forever mourned.

There is no memorial for the 300,000 wounded. And the 2-5 million left dead in Asia are forgotten ghosts, invisible and intangible.

In 2004, the flag-draped coffins of slain American soldiers made the news, and the Bush administration cried foul. The Department of Defense rushed to end the leaks of "sensitive" information. The propaganda machine was revved up, and the conglomerations were hushed up. Journalism was a thing to be chewed up and spit out, cowered into compliance.

Bush decided. No flag draped coffins, no children running from a spray of bullets, no piercing shrapnel, or screaming widows. Instead, yellow ribbons for all. A fight for freedom in a place that never challenged ours. A kiss on the cheek for the royal leader of the oil-rich Saudis, whose Madrassas teach death to Americans and suicide bombings as sacred scripture.

The news?

Most of the news, even as it appears to be from right, left and center, is pressed from the same cookie cutter.

In a land of 300 million, about 60 corporations rule the major media, and 6 of them rule more than the rest – giant conglomerates of light bulbs, toothpaste, washing machines, news, politics and war.

A bloodless war evokes support. A toppling statue saves the people. A dirty & shamed Hussein, later hung from the gallows, is a cheap substitute - a metaphorical Bin Laden.

The Iraq war - "a flawed policy wrapped in an illusion", Senator Murtha said.

In September 2004, CBS – the once-spirited news enterprise that allowed Morley Safer to bring the realties of war into the public consciousness – delayed telling the public the truth about the Niger forgeries. Using their journalistic license to revoke the right of the public to be informed, they delayed the truth for the sake of a Presidential election. Americans would not know that Bush lied to them about WMD's and yellow cake uraniam until after the election.

They would not know they were voting for torture, or hypocrisy.

"It's a no-brainer for me," Cheney said of water-boarding torture and the breaking of treaties. As the CIA was pushing gasping men into the water, Lynndie England was serving 521 days in prison. The difference was in rank, who gave the orders, and who inflicted the pain.

64% of Americans now stand against Bush, but it's a quiet revolution. There has been no March Against Death, no million-strong outcries from the change-the-world crowd, and no stirring speeches by political revolutionaries – at least none that make the 5:00 news. The beginning and end to salvation, it seems, is the ballot box.

In 2007, the streets are business-as-usual. The dissenters are scattered wide. Blogs are the new picket signs, read in solitude. There's anger, but it's restrained. As the yellow ribbons fade, there's also a can't-be-bothered numbness, a strange complacency with the numbers of dead-missing-wounded, and the purposeful lies that helped killed them.

Enter apathy.

You can't change the world.

But we did once, before our hearts grew numb, before our eyes were averted, before we acquiesced. Before we let ourselves be blinded by the banner of patriotism, and the expedience of false pretense. Now we have let the world change in unspeakable ways. American bodies pile up, invisible, intangible. The ghosts of Abu Ghraib and Guantanamo Bay have no names. Our leader wants to invade Iran, he wants covert operations in Pakistan. Even Europe is now named as a terrorist threat.

What will come first - WW3 or a real American Revolution?

Sunday, January 13, 2008

121 Veterans Linked to Killings

Email this Story Jan 13, 9:08 AM (ET)

NEW YORK (AP) - At least 121 Iraq and Afghanistan war veterans have committed a killing or been charged in one in the United States after returning from combat, The New York Times reported Sunday.

The newspaper said it also logged 349 homicides involving all active-duty military personnel and new veterans in the six years since military action began in Afghanistan, and later Iraq. That represents an 89-percent increase over the previous six-year period, the newspaper said.

About three-quarters of those homicides involved Iraq and Afghanistan war veterans, the newspaper said. The report did not illuminate the exact relationship between those cases and the 121 killings also mentioned in the report.

The newspaper said its research involved searching local news reports, examining police, court and military records and interviewing defendants, their lawyers and families, victims' families and military and law enforcement officials.

Defense Department representatives did not immediately respond to a telephone message early Sunday. The Times said the military agency declined to comment, saying it could not reproduce the paper's research.

A military spokesman, Lt. Col. Les Melnyk, questioned the report's premise and research methods, the newspaper said. He said it aggregated crimes ranging from involuntary manslaughter to murder, and he suggested the apparent increase in homicides involving military personnel and veterans in the wartime period might reflect only "an increase in awareness of military service by reporters since 9/11."

Neither the Pentagon nor the federal Justice Department track such killings, generally prosecuted in state civilian courts, according to the Times.

The 121 killings ranged from shootings and stabbings to bathtub drownings and fatal car crashes resulting from drunken driving, the newspaper said. All but one of those implicated was male.

About a third of the victims were girlfriends or relatives, including a 2-year-old girl slain by her 20-year-old father while he was recovering from wounds sustained in Iraq.

A quarter of the victims were military personnel. One was stabbed and set afire by fellow soldiers a day after they all returned from Iraq.
Information from: The New York Times

Attack Highlights U.N. Problems In Darfur

Incident points to peacekeepers' lack of resources, critics say
By Colum Lynch
The Washington Post
updated 1:03 a.m. PT, Sun., Jan. 13, 2008

UNITED NATIONS - A U.N.-African Union peacekeeping force faced the first major challenge to its authority in Darfur, Sudan, this week, enduring more than 10 minutes of hostile fire from Sudanese forces without responding with a single shot.

The assault Tuesday evening against a clearly marked supply convoy of more than 20 trucks and armored personnel vehicles left a Sudanese driver critically wounded and prompted a formal protest from U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon. It also gave the U.N.-backed force a humiliating defeat during the critical first weeks of its mission in Darfur.

The United Nations' chief peacekeeping official, Jean-Marie Guehenno, vowed to "repel" future attacks against U.N. and African Union personnel. But other U.N. officials said the force's Nigerian commander, Gen. Martin Luther Agwai, lacks the firepower to respond forcefully to a larger and better-equipped Sudanese military.

The incident marked a setback to U.S.-backed efforts to end nearly five years of violence in Darfur through the deployment of more than 26,000 peacekeepers, mostly Africans. The mission replaced 7,000 African Union peacekeepers who had largely retreated to their barracks amid armed attacks.

So far the new force has about 9,000 peacekeepers, most of whom are African Union troops who simply replaced their green berets with blue U.N. berets.
The United States, the United Nations and other key powers had reason to believe an attack such as Tuesday's was coming. In September, an armed group assaulted an African Union base, killing 10 soldiers near the town of Haskanita. Since then, U.N. leaders have warned of the risk of failure from entering the Darfur conflict without adequate resources to repel an attack. But requests for vital equipment -- including 24 transport and attack helicopters -- have gone unanswered.

"If in this particular situation we had helicopters capable of flying at night and quickly reinforcing a convoy under attack, of course we would have been in a completely different situation," Guehenno said. "We would have been in a position to deter."

Sudan imposes hurdlesSudan, meanwhile, has imposed technical hurdles for the mission, including the recent rejection of a unit of Nordic engineers, according to U.N. officials. The Sudanese authorities continue to haggle over the force's right to wear the U.N. blue helmets, recruit non-African troops and travel in Darfur without government approval.

Zalmay Khalilzad, the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, has accused the Sudanese government of "dragging its feet" in an attempt to ensure that the U.N.-backed force remains incapable of protecting civilians in Darfur.
But Khalilzad also conceded that inadequately equipping the force has placed the credibility of the United Nations and its political patrons, including the United States, at stake. "We need to take stock of this and consider steps that incentivize the government of Sudan to cooperate," he said.

Former Algerian diplomat Lakhdar Brahimi conducted a major review of U.N. peacekeeping in 2000, in which he concluded that peacekeepers should not enter war zones without consent from key belligerents or without a political settlement that the United Nations could implement. Where the United Nations does serve, he added, it must equip its troops to respond to armed "spoilers."
Those lessons have yielded some success in
Sierra Leone, Liberia, Congo and Haiti, where the United Nations recovered from setbacks by engaging in offensive military operations to put down challenges from rebels and armed gangs.

Ill-prepared force faces live battle zoneBut in Darfur, an ill-prepared peacekeeping force has entered a live battle zone involving combatants from the Sudanese army, neighboring Chad and a major Darfurian rebel group. Guehenno said: "There is a combination of factors that may lead to the greatest risk to the United Nations since the 1990s. We have a war ongoing, maybe low intensity, but a war ongoing, especially in West Darfur."

Sudan's U.N. ambassador, Abdalmahmood Abdalhaleem Mohamad, initially denied that Sudan played a role in the attack, saying it was carried out by the Chadian government and local Darfurian rebels. "There is a big lie here," he said. "We have no relationship at all whatever with that attack."

But U.N. officials said a Sudanese commander has admitted that his force fired on the U.N. convoy. Sudan's Defense Ministry acknowledged Thursday that its troops carried out the attack, but it said the U.N.-backed force shared responsibility for the "mistake" because it had failed to alert Sudanese authorities that it was traveling in the area. The United Nations maintains that it provided adequate notice.

© 2008 The Washington Post CompanyURL:

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Its the 1,716th day since Bush declared an end to "Operation Iraqi Freedom". That just about says it all sometimes, in so many ways.

Tuesday, January 08, 2008

Random Thoughts

January 5, 2008 - Saturday

Just had a Seinfeld moment and have to ask:

Why, if Barack Obama, is HALF black because he has a black father from Kenya, and HALF white because his white mother is from Kansas, is he referred to as possibly 'the first black President in history'?

Why does the black part of his biological makeup dominate over the white?

Why is he not referred to as a 'mixed race' or 'half and half' (besides the fact that it may be Politically Incorrect)? This inquiring mind just wants to know.

Bhutto's assassination was horrifying. Her 19 year old son, with such innocence in his young face, steps up to fill her shoes, alongside her husband/his father. I pray they succeed against the bad odds of hate and violence.

Kenya killings are as heartbreaking as the continual growing numbers of innocents killed in Darfur/Chad. Hundreds of thousands have fled Iraq.............where do all the misplaced/uprooted go to even find food and shelter. Peace right now may not even be on their mental agenda as they all struggle laboriously and heroically to merely survive day to day. God has put such a burden on my heart for all these innocent people, most of whom are victims of genocide/racial cleansing. I wish there was something more I could do besides send money or bring a voice to it on my blogs. Were I in better health and Ryan was on his own, I would go there and be as hands on as I could be. To even be able to hold the hand of one dying would be the greatest gift.

Other random thoughts this morning as I do my breathing treatment:

I like Mike (Huckabee). I like what Ron Paul has to say on the issues. I won't be voting for either.

I would love to see an Obama/Edwards ticket. I would love to see Hillary disappear from life in Washington period.

I'm not a Democrat or a Republican, but I don't consider myself an Independent either. I think those of us that feel this way should be able to call ourselves Bipartisan and vote however and for whomever we want.

We're in the 1700th something day since Bush declared a success (and end) to Operation Iraqi Freedom. If this didn't make me so deeply sad for our country and the one we invaded I would try to laugh.

Dear son is in bed sleeping after getting up and taking care of feeding Baby and letting her out. When I am done with my treatment I want to do my devotions and maybe start a new Bible study. I feel like having a quiet and peaceful day so I shall. After I've spent time with my Lord I shall snuggle under a cozy quilt in my recliner and contemplate more about life in general.

More snow on the way...........can barely see the asphalt of the roads in most spots and still it comes. I like when everything is clean and white. I'd rather live with snow than rain and with cold than hot!

I'm getting hungry and that's a great (and too infrequent) thing. It showed I gained 3 pounds at the doctor's day before yesterday and I'm up to 93.4 pounds. I'd like to keep the momentum going and actually get back up to 100 or more and STAY THERE, or of course, keep gaining!!!!

Peace!! It's not just a's a goal; it's something all peoples must strive for or it will never be more than a word, an unfulfilled dream!

It I go!!

Peace to all

Saturday, April 02, 2005

Blogging...I got the music in me

I really like blogging. The only thing I have a hard time with is narrowing down WHAT I want to blog. The other day I had soooooooo many thoughts running through my head. They were fiercely competing with each other and in the end I didn't blog at all. I do remember the one in the lead was music and how much emotion it invokes in a person. I've recently downloaded kazagold where I can get a lifetime of all the free downloads on just about anything I want so I can burn CDs. Uh oh!! A monster was created for sure.

I spent several hours Sunday downloading and listening to Bob Dylan, Janis Joplin, Pure Praire League, America, Bob Seger, Country Joe McDonald, Waylin & Willie.........all the tunes I've missed hearing because my album collection of 500 has been in storage for too many years to remember. It was very good for my soul to be with old friends too long parted. When one of Bob Dylan's songs was playing rather LOUDLY, my son came in and listened to a few of the lyrics and stated: "Wow Mom, your music was radical in the old days"!! ROFLOL!!! Uh yup son, back a piece we sure did know a thing or two!! The song was also a great one for dancing and before I knew it we were boogying in my quilt room with good old Bob!!

Visit if there's a music monster in you waiting to be released. 2-15-09 Update: Do not sign up with kazaagold, kazagold, or any that sound familiar. It worked for a short while and then things just got totally messed up. My computer tech recommended using limewire, either the free one, or the least expensive option to download.

Friday, April 01, 2005

Goodbye David

My son came home from school yesterday looking like he'd just lost his best friend. He did lose one of them; his deaf friend David. He told me that they'd caught David smoking pot and the police took him away in handcuffs from school. Now Ryan had told me that David smoked cigarettes and that he and the rest of the guys were trying to tell David that just wasn't cool, but Ry had no idea he also smoked pot.

He came home today and the news was even worse than we thought and David is still in juvy. They searched his locker and found a bag of pot, but that wasn't the worst thing. They also found a letter that he'd written that was in his binder saying how he was gonna kill his parents. His current foster parents are the High School Coach and his wife. I guess David has tendencies towards violence and he's been in this kind of trouble before. Now we're told that David has to go back to his foster parents in Wyoming and we'll never see him again. I was just stupified and I got all choked up.

He was always such a sweet and funny kid when he was here. It just breaks my heart to see such a young life go down the drain, and the reason I think it will is because if he's going back to the foster home in Wyoming, why did they let him come here in the first place........because they couldn't handle him? Is he getting the obvious mental help he needs? I'm full of questions yet I have no answers. For some reason this one just really rocked me. Whenever I close my eyes I see David's beautiful eyes and face full of laughter and teasing me in sign. I feel so helpless to do anything earthly for I pray. Goodbye David, may God be with you. We'll never forget you.