The “Good” War

So you would have fought during World War II but not Nam, Korea or Iraq and Afghanistan.

What was the actual outcome of World War II?
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Why did we fight World War II?

Why did Japan attack Pearl Harbor?

Britain and France declared war on Germany because Germany invaded Poland. That was the pretense at any rate.

Japan attacked Pearl Harbor after America had engaged in a systematic effort to deny the Empire of Japan the resources necessary to build their Nation and Empire.

By the end of World War II, Poland and all of Eastern Europe was in the hands of a greater evil than Hitler could ever have hoped to represent. That evil being the Soviet Union.

Soviet Communism which later morphed into Maoist Communism took China.

Communism also swept through Southeast Asia.

The end result of World War II was that the West fought Japan and Germany in order to hand over their Empires to the Soviet Union.

World War II was a direct cause of the Korean War, the Vietnam War, the Cold War and attributed to the rise of Saudi Arabia.

Saudi Arabia is the cause of 90% of the Islamic Fundamentalism on this Globe. Islamic Fundamentalism is the root of Islamic Terrorism.

If there were no Saudi Arabia, there would exist no taliban, no ISIS, no al Qaeda, no Khorasan and so on and so forth.

Fundamentalist Shi’a Iran can also be traced to poor decision making based on the the Cold War anti-Communist paranoia that haunted the West from 1945 through the end of the Soviet Union circa 1991.

The Arab-Israeli Conflict can be traced back to World Wars 1 and 2.

World War II also gave us the CIA and the NSA via Cold War paranoia.

You can research any and all of this with a simple google search.

I’m not seeing how World War II was “the good war.” It was an asinine war prompted by the American Banking conglomeration.

World War II was not the good war. It was a war like any other only on a global scale. It put the globe to the flame and destroyed millions of lives and billions of dollars of property.

America profited from the outcome immensely which drove our recovery out of the Great Depression and into the boom years of the 50s and 60s.

It was as much an elective war for the United States of America as Polk’s Mexican War or LBJ’s Vietnam War or Bush’s Iraq War or Obama’s wars in Yemen, Pakistan and Somalia.

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Insignia of The Old Guard and Other Unique Army Units

I was incredibly lucky in my assignments in the Army.  I served in some unique organizations.

The Multinational Force and Observers (MFO) in Sinai, Egypt.

United Nations Command Security Forces–Joint Security Area in Panmunjom, Republic of Korea.

A Company (CinC Guard), 3rd United States Infantry Regiment (The Old Guard) at Fort McNair, Washington, District of Columbia and Fort Myer, Virginia.

While I was stationed at The Old Guard, I was also fortunate enough to attend the Jungle Warfare Training Center in Panama.  It was closed down shortly thereafter.

All interesting assignments that were outside of the US Army norm.  Unique experiences for which I’m thankful.

Only a couple more places that I wish I had been able to talk DA into assigning me.

1.  The Berlin Brigade — during the Cold War

2.  Honduras

They seem like they would have been equally unique assignments.

A “Visit” to North Korea

Technically, I’ve been to North Korea.  I’ve never been to a city there, but, I’ve stepped foot across no man’s land into North Korea while stationed at Camp BonifasFile:CampBonifas1.jpg in the Republic of Korea as part of the United Nations Command Security Forces-Joint Security Area (UNCSF-JSA). While there, I was allowed to go over to the North Korean side of Pan Mun Jom a couple of times. I, also, snuck across a couple of times in the DMZ.

Not very far mind you. Technically, the North Korean Guards could shoot you if they spotted you crossing the DMZ. They would point their rifles at us all the time. There were a couple of areas on the North side of the DMZ that were over grown with shrubs, trees and high grass. We used to go up there and take our pics just to say; “I’ve been to North Korea.”

The North Koreans (in the Guard Towers, not those in PMJ) would point their rifles at us all the time even when we were on the RoK side of the DMZ. They (and we) were authorized to shoot at anyone in the two klik (or mile?) no man’s land within the DMZ. I think the DMZ is like 6 miles or kliks across. I remember the first time that I saw a rifle OBVIOUSLY pointed at me. I was at “The Bridge of No Return” re-enlisting. US Flag and everything. Standing there at the mid point with my right hand raised reciting the oath of re-enlistment and out of the corner of my eye I could see a NK sniper pointing his rifle square at my head. I swear the guy even winked at me.  It could have been the sun in my eye.  Who knows.  The memory is from ages ago.

Back then the US had soldiers patrolling inside the DMZ.  We had maps of minefields on hand for our side and known MFs for their side. I actually kept one of these maps and have it in my storage room back in Kentucky. It delineates all major and minor positions as well as minefields and known incursion sites and incident sites, known trails as well as the defensive perimeters and positions around PMJ, Bonifas, Liberty Bell, OP Oellette, Barrett QRF Facility and Freedom Village. We used to drive around up there as kind of a joy ride/patrol. They encouraged us to go out as a show of force. Mostly just for that….for show. I was actually able to take my (ex)wife up to Freedom Village and pretty close to the DMZ. She was pretty excited about it.

I was up there when Kim Il Sung passed. The NKs pulled everything up on line as if they were massing for an attack. They pulled out of the Armistice. We were preparing mentally to die when that went down. Making peace with our maker so to speak. We didn’t know what was going to happen. Clinton sent Carter in and Carter sold us down the river and Clinton was hailed as a hero and peacemaker. When in reality all it did was give NK the potential and tools to go Nuke on the World.

While there I learned about the “Axe Murder incident.”  One of the Korean guys who worked for me was the man that drove the truck over Bonifas and Barrett to stop the NK Guards from further mutiliating their bodies. He risked his life. It was huge. Meeting a real life hero. He was also a Vietnam War vet. Korea sent one Brigade over there for a time. I think they were pulled out because they were so brutal.  US Soldiers who were stationed at the DMZ during the incident and a few other times were authorized to wear the 2ID Patch as a Combat Patch. It was odd seeing old guys running around with that Combat Patch.

I’ve heard that when the US patrolled the DMZ, that occasionally US troops would meet up with NK troops and sometimes they’d actually interact in a positive manner. That said, if either sides troops are caught on the opposite side patrolling, deadly force was authorized. To my knowledge, the US was caught up in firefights as late as ’92 when we pulled the majority of our troops out of the DMZ.

In Pan Mun Jom, the NK soldiers and US and RoK troops interact on a limited basis. Mostly eye contact and smiles, though.

Every once in a while, a NK trooper will defect by running across to the RoK side. When that happens, it usually results in a firefight. The NK Officers will order their men to shoot the defector. The RoK and US soldiers will try to get him under their protections as soon as possible. To my knowledge, no RoK Soldier has ever defected to the North in Pan Mun Jom. No US soldier has ever defected via that route either. Though, I seem to recall a US Navy Seaman defecting to NK in the 80s or early 90s. I may be mis-remembering.

It was fascinating being up there. That said, when I crossed Freedom Bridge out of the DMZ for the final time…it was as if a great weight was lifted off of my shoulders. I hadn’t realized that it was so stressful while I was there, but, as we crossed Freedom Bridge and we stopped for one last look back and to throw our coins into the Han River, a feeling of intense relief that I had survived that year flooded through me. It was immense. Intense. Indescribable.

Below is a photo of the North Korea Flag which flies just beyond the DMZ.

The world's tallest flagpole in the North Korean village Kijong-dong

While I was there, Soldier of Fortune magazine had a 1,000,000 USD reward for a piece of the flag…and proof, of course.

Post Script:  I wrote this a long time ago.  The events herein occurred a long time ago.  Early 90s.  Memories from 20 years ago are now pretty hazy.  That said, I know that the NK guards in the towers on the DMZ would trail us with their rifles as we drove around the DMZ.  As for the re-enlistment scene that I describe, that may have been the over active imagination of a 23 year old.  But I know for a fact that the United States violated the Armistice agreement by keeping prohibited weapons close to and inside the DMZ.  Why would I expect that the North Koreans did anything different.   Also, I was there when Kim Il Sung died.  Kim Jong Il famously pulled out of the Armistice for a time and pulled massive amounts of Armor and Arty up onto the DMZ.  We thought we were dead.  Those of us at Camp Bonifas and Camp ‘Liberty Bell.  The KATUSA’s spent all day kissing and hugging each other good bye.

Here I am re-enlisting at the Bridge of No Return:

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And a few more photos of what I think is me in Freedom Village:

 

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The first picture below was taken from inside of one of the buildings at Panmunjom.  The second, I’m not sure.

 

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The Media: How Do They Get It So Wrong? ALL THE TIME!

Camp Phoenix, on the outskirts of Kabul, is run by US forces, with some NATO member nations maintaining a presence there.

It is also a base for the Afghan army, which is being trained by international forces in the hope it can take over the responsibility for fighting the Taliban insurgency.

The camp occasionally comes under attack, mostly from rocket and mortar fire, though without casualties.

Camp Phoenix has never been mortared.  It’s never been rocketed.  Not while I was there.  Not while I was at Camp Eggers and not in the past 3 years.  I’d know.  I lived at Camp Phoenix for one year.  I lived on Camp Eggers for a year as well and visited Phoenix frequently.  I’ve been to Camp Phoenix several times over the past 3 years as well.  I have friends at Camp Phoenix right now.  One who has been there for 3 years.

Camp Phoenix has never been a training base for Afghans either.  Not the ANA or the ANP.  There are two Camps about ten miles down the road called Camp Blackhorse and the Kabul Military Training Complex (KMTC).  Afghans are trained there.  Afghans are trained at Darulaman and there are 2 or three ANP training bases within and around Kabul on which ANP are trained.

I see this happening all the time.  The Associated Press (AP) picks up a story written by some idiot who never leaves the safe confines of his hotel room or villa in Shahr-e Naw or Wazir Akhbar Khan.  These morons report as if they are on the scene.  They mix up place and location.  They hack together stories based on second hand information and pawn it off on the public as gospel truth.  The guy who wrote this story should be fired.  He printed a hand full of lies and sent it in as if he had actually visited the places about which he wrote.  A bunch of older hacks will probably award this poltroon a  Pulitzer and they’ll all sit around in a smoke filled chamber and congratulate each other on their bravery and literary brilliance.

I’ve seen this kind of irresponsible writing of lies and half truths all over the globe.  Korea when Kim Il Sung died.  When Qandahar was attacked.  In Kabul after various attacks.  In Herat after suicide bombings.  From whom do these morons obtain their “facts?”  Dr. Suess?  The Brothers Grimm?  Hanna- Barbera?  Does anyone back home in America fact check or edit their hotel room ramblings?

I read the newspaper and online journals and I often wonder if these folks are even in country.  What happened to reporting from the front?  These guys are reporting from the whorehouse or from the tea parlor.  They’re definitely NOT on the scene.  Not here in Afghanistan.  I can assure you of that.

Getting Scammed Around the World

 

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Today, I sat down and was hit with a distant memory from 2004. It was my first time in Bangkok. 2nd or 3rd night. I was drinking it up at Bedsupper Club. I walked outside and as it was closing and asked a couple of people if there were any after hours bars. Someone mentioned Spice Club. So I walked out to the parking lot and asked a Tuk Tuk to take me there.

Well, old Dude took me for a ride. Charged me 100 Thai baht (3 USD) and deposited me exactly one hundred feet down the road from where I started.

To get there though, he drove up past Q Bar around to Soi 5 down to Sukhumvit and back up Soi 11.

I didn’t really figure it out until about 3 months later when I partied at BSC again but this time with some friends. BSC closed. One of the gals said; “Let’s go to Spice!” I said; “Cool. Let’s do it.” and started to get a Tuk Tuk. The chic looked at me like I was an idiot and was like come on you lazy moron.

She turned and started walking down the street. I followed. When I saw Spice, I remembered the tuk tuk ride from earlier. I just started laughing. Everyone was looking at me like I was crazy. So I told them the story. And they all laughed at me.

Luckily, though, the first time that I went to the Grand Palace, I’d read lonely planet and been warned about the touts and “it’s closed today, let us take you to thirty gem stores and 14 tailors” so we can get gas coupons and what not.

I did ride around with a tuk tuk guy for free once or twice. He drove me around the city for free. I saw everything and every once in a while, we walked into a Tailor shop or a Gem Store and I acted interested and promised to return the next day with my credit cards because I was “fearful of carrying them with me in the big bad city of Bangkok.”

It was actually a fun day and the tuk tuk driver was a cool old guy. I’ve got his pic somewhere. Nice old dude.

I’ve done some weird things in Bangkok.

Still looking for that damn two story after hours bar with the big tree trunk and a circular platform around it in the middle of the dance floor. I’d love to party there again. Been there three or four times, but, each time too drunk or tired to remember the name of the joint.


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In Sanjaree, right outside Camp Hovey in the north of the ROK. There are several of what we called “Drinky Bars.” These bars are strikingly similar to the bars of NaNa, Soi Cowboy, Pattaya and Patpong. You walk in. Girls surround you. Ply you with drinks and try to get you to by them “Lady Drinks.” Usually, some kidn of fruit juice. Some of these bars have dancers on stages or platforms. Some pool tables. What they all have is SEX for SALE.

I did two tours in Korea. A little over two years on station.

It never failed to amaze me that guys would frequent these establishments and actually FALL IN LOVE with the girls from whom they and every other Tom, Dick and Harry were purchasing sex. Boom Boom.

These bar owners. Mamasans. They’d bring girls in from the country side. Poor girls with little to no education. After bringing them, these girls would have a “bar debt” to the Mamasan. The money for room and board. New clothes and make up. Food and whatever else Mamasan and the bar provided for their survival/livelihood until they were established and taking in customers.

One girl. Amazingly pretty. She had an excellent scam going. Before she was found out, she scammed three different guys. She would get some poor soul. A sucker. To fall in love with her. They’d start “dating” while she was working at the bar. She’d be “working” all the while. Raking in the dough, but, telling him that she was only serving drinks and what not.

So she got the first one. The first sucker. She got him hemmed up. They made marriage plans. Old Dude would start supporting her while she was supposedly not “working” at the bar and just serving drinks. The guy would pay the bar debt for her. Somewhere between 3 and 5 thousand dollars. They’d start the VISA process.

Once everything was paid off. Bar debt, etc. And old girl had soaked the poor sucker out of his hard earned money, it would usually be time for GI Joe Loverboy to PCS back stateside.

At this point, the gal would disappear. All of the money with her. Up in smoke. She’d make some excuse about going home to see her family before she went to the land of the Big PX or whatever.

Loverboy would be sitting at the Airport waiting for the love of his life who would, of course, never show up. She having absconded with all of his money.

This gal was able to do this three times before she was caught. I’m sure she wasn’t the first or the last to run the scam.

Broken hearted GI Joe on the airplane headed back to America sobbing. The gal and Mamasan splitting his money.

After the guy PCS’d, the girl would come back to work for the same bar. Find a new sucker and do it again.

Beautiful scam.

The hell of it is that you’d think that only dumb farm boys from Kentucky or West Virginia would fall for this kind of scam.

Nope!

Two of this gals victims were Officers. One was a Major. I guess education doesn’t help in matters of the heart.

Bunch of numb-nuts, if you ask me.

The same kind of scam that happens in lower Sukhumvit to naive farang (foriegners) happens all over the world. Same scams in Panama as well. I saw similar scams and set ups there as well. And I laughed at the suckers there too.

It’s amazing. The ingenuity and artfulness of the deceit of some of these characters.