Former President of France Chirac to Face Embezzlement Charges

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Former French President ChiracIn today’s Washington Post we read that Former President of France, Jacques Chirac has been charged with embezzlement of public funds and will go on trial soon. Many high powered politicos in France have already stood trial and been sentenced.

If only it would happen here.

Oh la la! The wonderful things we can still learn from our republic’s initial mentors, first allies and military and naval protectors, the French!  Could it happen here? Mon Dieux!  Would that not be beautiful and ever so satisfying?  Here is the story.

     

In this story, the President of the USA, Barack Obama is going to meet with the Joint Chiefs to look for a way to send fewer troops than the 40,000 troopers that General MacChrystal requested. That story is here.

Why are sending any troops at all?  This is a Muslim religious war across the entire Muslim world which has very little to do with us.  I would have thought we would have realized that by now.

How about no troops at all and we leave Afghanistan to the Afghanis? Has anybody up there in the Puzzle Palace at the Pentagon thought about that?

In this story we read that in the last three months over 1,000 American troops have been wounded in battle in Afghanistan. That story is here.

What are they fighting for exactly? What do you tell their families when they ask what the reason for their sacrifice is? What do you say?  "I don’t know." Is that what we say?  That is insufficient reason to send young Americans to die and I suspect that it is criminal. 

We need to know exactly why they were sent to western Asia and who gained from it financially.  We owe them at least that much.  Would you not say?

In an important aspect of American law for veterans, the White House and Congress have just agreed on a strengthened shield law for reporters who refuse to divulge their sources. That story is here.

We veterans would not have found out about the backlog at the Department of Veterans Affairs unless reporters who broke the story were shielded from prosecution. The Bush Administration was claiming that the secret was a national defense issue! The more we know, the more free we are as a people and the less we can be manipulated.

If it was not for the Fourth Estate in this country we would still be reading mostly about Veterans Day picnics and VFW/American Legion/D.A.V. awards to the same Senators and Congressmen that were screwing us over. 

An unfettered press that has no fear of the government is our only hope as veterans for eventual justice relative to our issues.  The government is not inclined to investigate and correct itself without media disclosure.  Ever.

In this very interesting and informative article concerning African Americans who are practicing Muslims, we learn a great deal about American born U.S. citizens who accept Islam as the cornerstone of their life. I recommend reading it to any veteran or active duty service man or woman. It puts a lot of things in the proper context. The story is here.

In today’s New York Times we have a story about the incarcerated and convicted Bernard Madoff who tells us that he can not understand why the SEC did not catch him in his crimes sooner! The story is here.

This is important to us as veterans not only because many of us have lost money with the financial crash of the Fall of 2008 but because it shows like nothing else can the incredible sociopathic thinking of our national "leaders" in finance.  I think that our leaders in government are just as criminal in their unbalanced thinking, at least when it comes to many of the issues that touch us everyday as veterans.

Here is the story of President Chirac of France facing criminal trial from the New York Time’s point of view. And here is the reporter protection law story from the Times.

Here is the story of the recent death in a raid by the FBI of a Muslim imam in Detroit. The Muslim community there is grieving and asking questions.

Bob Herbert in an editorial warns us of the dangers of unrest among Young Turks fresh out of college when there is no work. This is a cultural shift that does not bode well for any of us. Fresh, bright, eager young people that have no work are a very real social problem. That Op Ed piece is here.

And from the Associated Press we have this disconcerting story. It seems that in Afghanistan, President Karzai’s opponent Abdullah Abdullah has now refused to take part in the runoff election next week. He says that the system is too flawed and corrupt to be trusted. This does not bode well for us either. The story is here.

Here is the same story from BBC News.

Here is a story from the BBC concerning the most senior British officer killed to date in Afghanistan, Lt Col Rupert Thorneloe. He repeatedly warned his superiors that there was a shortage of helicopters in the combat theatre.

And in other overseas news, the Jamestown Foundation has reported that the Eurasian Daily Monitor is reporting that Russia is re-commissioning two mothballed nuclear powered cruisers to give its Navy a more global reach. The story is here.

Get informed, stay informed, get involved, stay involved.  An informed veteran is a comfort to his friends and a danger to his adversaries.

CWO3 Tom Barnes, USCG (Ret.)

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