Thursday, October 14, 2004



In the movie, PATTON, starring, former Marine, George C. Scott, Patton remarks to the effect that Eisenhower has stolen his jacket--speaking of the Ike Jacket. I can find no specific information relating to the above on the Internet. In fact, the following webpage on the origin and history of the "Ike Jacket," although making some mention of Patton does not credit him with any part in its design, origin, etc.


The following information, however, may indicate support for the remark of Patton from the movie. Possibly, Patton's remark related to the following information.

"General George 'Blood and Guts' Patton knew the importance of good-looking uniforms. In 1940, he designed a uniform for tankers that consisted of green pants, a double-breasted green jacket with gold buttons and a gold helmet. The Army rejected it, but the original model is on permanent display at Fort Knox.

"The W.W. II Ike jacket was named after Dwight D. Eisenhower, copied off the British Battle Dress jacket, and was designed for tankers."

Although Patton himself was a distant cousin of Marine General Lewis B. Puller, I find no mention anywhere that the two ever met.The Ike Jacket is not to be confused with a somewhat similar jacket used by the Marine Corps during WW II, and for sometime thereafter--it was known in the Corps as the "Battle Jacket, and, in its early years of WW II, it was also called the Vandegrift Jacket."

The Patton Society Page--Extensive Information on Patton...

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Marines Sites & Forums

By R.W. "Dick" Gaines
Gny Sgt USMC (Ret.)
Semper Fidelis
GyG's G&A Sites & Forums is an informational site and not for profit. Copyrighted material provided soley for education, study, research, and discussion, etc. Full credit to source shown when available.

Monday, October 11, 2004

LtCol Harold G. Schrier USMC (Ret.) deceased

1 October, 2004

Who is 1/Lt Harold G. Schrier, USMC? Those who recognize his name will likely remember only that he was the officer who led the patrol up Mount Suribachi on Iwo Jima to raise our flag there in 1945. Yet his achievements and career ranks right up there with many better known Marine heroes of the Corps, both Old Corps and new. Having researched some elusive facts regarding this Marine, I have decided to record them here for the benefit of Marines, and others, with an interest in such matters.

It was 1/Lt Harold G. Schrier, USMC, Executive Officer of Easy Company, 2d Battalion, 28th Marines, 5th Marine Division, who was chosen to lead the 40-man combat patrol up Mount Suribachi on the morning of 23 February 1945. And it was this patrol from Easy Comapny that first raised our flag over soverign territory of Japan that day, at approximately 1020 (the given time varies according to which account is used)that morning.

No American died during the final assault on Mount Suribachi. Later...Why, Schrier wondered, had they declined to defend the mountaintop? Attacking from the tunnels, after the flag went up, the Japanese were easy targets. But earlier, the American patrol had been vulnerable, virtually helpless, woefully outnumbered. "We'd have been real dead ducks," Schrier admitted. "They could've killed us all."20

Leatherneck magazine photographer, S/Sgt Lou Lowery, accompanied Schrier's patrol, and he took a series of photos of the patrol's ascent up Suribachi and the flag raising.

Later that day, Associated Press photographer Joe Rosenthal came upon the flag that Schrier's patrol had raised..."he finally saw the flag, too, high above him, a tiny thing, waving bravely from the top of a very tall pole. At the base knelt an officer with a triangle of red, white, and blue under one arm...the plan, he soon learned, was to take down the old flag, pole and all. Simultaneously, the big flag would go up in its stead, tied to a pipe a detail was now dragging toward the spot. It was Lieutenant Schrier's idea to do it that way, in a sort of ad hoc ceremony that would keep the Stars and Stripes flying despite the change in banners. Having once planted the American flag atop Suribachi, the young officer was determined never to see it come down again...The shutter clicked, Joe Rosenthal had his picture.14"

"...on February 24 when Schrier was notified, "Request you designate one member group of flag raisers report aboard Eldorado (AGC 11) early morning 25 February.Purpose news broadcast.

Schrier sent his second in command of the original patrol--PltSgt Ernest Ivy "Boots" Thomas. At 0430 the next morning, Thomas found himself aboard the ship in the presence of Admiral Turner and General "Howlin' Mad" Smith. He was then interviewed by Don Pryor of CBS, who, microphone in hand, introduced him as "a modest but tough 20-year old fighting man from Tallahassee," leader of the Marine platoon that captured Suribachi, "the first American in history who has ever raised Old Glory over a part of the Japanese Empire."

A stunned pause. "No, Mr. Pryor," Thomas interjected, "I don't want to give that impression. The honor belongs to every man in my platoon. Three of us actually raised the flag--Lieutenant Harold G. Schrier, our company executive officer, Sergeant H.O. Hansen of Boston, and myself. But the rest of the men had just as big a part in it as we did."

Thomas continued to point out that although he felt "mighty proud," he did not consider himself a hero, or that he had done anything that the others hadn't also done."
(PltSgt Thomas, speaking to the media and Navy/Marine Corps top brass just a couple days after the flag raising on Iwo Jima!)
(The above information taken from the Marling/Wetenhall book)
Iwo Jima, Monuments, Memories, and the American Hero, Marling and Wetenhall, Harvard University Press, 1991

Further informtion is scarce regarding 1/Lt Harold G. Schrier USMC. He never wrote a book, nor did anyone ever write a book about him. There are, however, numerous books indicating some information about his Marine Corps career, but for the most part these are in reference to his part regarding the Iwo Jima flag raising, such as the quotes shown above. So I requested information about him from HQMC and they provided me some information that was published (that is, typed on four 8x11 sheets, photocopied), dated 24 October, 1952. This writing is not signed nor does it indicate the name of the writer. It also bears the handwritten annotations "LtCol Retired" and "died 6-3-71".

In regard to the following HQMC information on LtCol Schrier, the following clarifying remarks of my own are provided.

1. It states that Schrier was a former Marine Raider. That would be the 2d Marine Raider Battalion--"Carlson's Raiders"--commanded by LtCol Evans F. Carlson USMCR. (The XO of 2d Raiders was Maj James "Jimmy" Roosevelt, the president's (FDR) son.

2. It also states that Schrier served at Midway. That would have been with Dog Company, 2d Raider Bn. (Companies C&D, 2d Raider Bn were detached for Midway service prior to Carlson's Guadalcanal campaign.

3. It states that Schrier completed "boot" training in January, 1937. This squares with the Marling/Wetenhall book which indicates he entered the Marine Corps in 1936.

Marine Major Harold George Schrier, winner of the Navy Cross and Silver Star Medal for heroism at Iwo Jima, has fought in five World War II campaigns and in Korea in his 16 years as a Marine Corps officer and enlisted man. The former Marine Raider is presently serving as Office in Charge of the Marine Corps Recruiting Station, Birmingham, Alabama.

Major Schrier (then a lieutenant) earned the Navy Cross for extraordinary heroism as leader of a 40-man patrol which fought its way to the top of Mt. Suribachi on February 23, 1945. Despite enemy small arms and artillery fire the patrol successfully made the grueling climb to the top, where Major Schrier directed his men in raising the first American flag to fly over any land in the inner defenses of the Japanese Empire.

He was awarded the Silver Star Medal for gallantry in action on the night of March 24, 1945, during a fanatical Japanese attack. The citation states in part:
“Lieutenant Schrier unhesitatingly exposed himself to the onrushing enemy and by his personal example and shouted encouragement rallied his small force and led it to a counter-attack which destroyed forth-six of the enemy and caused the survivors to withdraw in disorder.”

The major earned the Legion of Merit during the New Georgia campaign, for meritorious conduct while serving with a reconnaissance party on enemy-held Vandunu before the invasion of that island. He and the party made their way to the island by canoe and spent two days scouting enemy positions and troop concentrations. When the rest of the group left the island he remained on it for nine days to signal to the approaching invasion ships and guide troops to the beach.

In addition to Iwo Jima and New Georgia he participated in the Midway, Guadalcanal and Bougainville campaigns of World War II. In the Korean fighting he earned the Bronze Star Medal for meritorious service in August and September, 1950, as Adjutant of the First Provisional Marine Brigade, and the Purple Heart Medal for wounds received in action during the breakout from the Chosin reservoir.

The major was born at Corder, MO, on October 17, 1916 and attended high school at Lexington, MO. He enlisted in thte Marine Corps on November 12, 1936.

Completing “boot” training at San Diego, California, in January 1937, he was ordered to China, where he served with the American Embassy guard at Peiping and with units at Tientsin and Shanghai. He returned to the States in August, 1940 to become a drill instructor at San Diego.

With the formation of Marine Raider Battalions in the early months of 1942, Major Schrier volunteered for that service. He was assigned to the Second Raider Battalion and embarked with the unit for the Pacific theater in April, 1942. After the Midway and Guadalcanal campaigns he was commissioned in the field on February 28, 1943, remaining with the Second Raider Battalion through the New Georgia and Bougainville operations.

Returning to the States in February, 1944, the major served as an infantry instructor at Camp Pendelton, California, until that July, when he joined the newly-formed Fifth Marine Division as executive officer of Company “E,”
Second Battalion, 28th Marine Regiment. He returned to the Pacific theater with “E” Company in September, 1944, and in February, 1945, during the Iwo Jima campaign, was named commander of Company “D.”

In July, 1945, Major Schrier returned to the States. He served briefly at San Diego until October, 1945, and from then until December, 1946, was stationed at the Marine Barracks, Naval Ammunition Depot, Seal Beach, California. He embarked again for overseas duty in January, 1947, with his assignment as executive officer of the Marine Barracks, Samar, Philippine Islands, In August, 1947, he was assigned to the Marine Barracks, U.S. Fleet activities Yokosuka, Japan, where he served as post operations and training officer and commander of the Second Guard Company.

Returning again to the States in March, 1949, the Major was stationed with the First Marine Division at Camp Pendleton, California. While there he had additional duties as a technical advisor during the making of the movie, “Sands of Iwo Jima.”

With the outbreak of the Korean fighting Major Schrier embarked for Korea with the First Marine Brigade in July, 1950. He was brigade adjutant during the Pusan perimeter fighting and from September to December, 1950, commanded a company of the Fifth Marine Regiment in the Inchon-Seoul and Chosin reservoir campaigns. He returned to the States in January, 1951, when he was assigned to this present duties. He was promoted to his present rank in May, 1951.

In addition to the Navy Cross, Silver Star Medal, Legion of Merit, and Bronze Star and Purple Heart Medals, the major’s medals and decorations include the Presidential Unit Citation with three bronze stars; the Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal; the China Service Medal; the American Defense Service Medal with Base Clasp; the Asiatic-Pacific Theater Campaign Medal with one silver star in lieu of five bronze stars; the American Theater Campaign Medal; the World War II Victory Medal; the Korean Service Medal with three bronze stars; and the United Nations Service Medal.

Major Schrier and his wife, Edna, reside at 5319 Terrace J., Birmingham, Alabama.
A brother, Arnold E. Schrier, lives at 521 East Devon Street, Independence, MO.
24 October, 1952

R.W. Gaines, GySgt USMC (Ret.)
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Wednesday, July 14, 2004


An Open Letter To Clint Eastwood

I see by recent news articles that you are to be involved in a new film regarding the raising of our flag on Iwo Jima on February 23, 1945. I have wondered if this is going to be yet another of the usual party line accounts, or if this one will finally be an in-depth full story and truth of that event in our history.

Since it is you involved this time, I expect the latter could be the case, and I think it's worth a shot to attempt to bring the following information to your attention in hopes that the story of Marine Ray Jacobs, and others, might finally be brought to the attention of the American public in a way that is worthy of both the event and the men themselves.

Jacobs is one of the known remaining survivors, along with Chuck Lindberg, of Lt. Schrier's 40-man combat patrol up Suribachi that day to raise our colors over the Japanese homeland. I am referring here to the earlier first (so-called) flag raising--not the later raising of a replacement flag that was photographed by Joe Rosenthal (and was also shot by Sgt Bill Genaust on motion-picture film as well)--and which quickly, and incorrectly, became famous as the Iwo Jima flag raising well-known to all. The actual flag raising was photographed earlier that same day by Marine S/Sgt Lou Lowery, and is not nearly so well-known. Even today, nearly sixty years after the battle for Iwo Jima, a number of facts are still in question, and the emphasis of the flag raising itself remains on the replacement flag and not the original flag raised.

Jacobs' own recent Eyewitness Account and photos describing the flag raising, as well as other information, may be viewed here...
Eyewitness Account...

Ray Jacobs may be reached at the following E-Mail address...

Hoping this finds its way to your eyes. Thank you for your kind attention.

(From Ray Jacobs

Fri, 13 Aug 2004 15:49:22 -0700

To bring you up to date..About two months ago I contacted James Ebert,a Forensic Photo Analyst.I asked him to examine the Lou Lowery pictures taken during the first flag raising on Iwo Jima and to compare them with pictures of me taken in and around the same time period.

Ebert is the same analyst who proved to Colonel Dave Severance that Gerald Zeihme was pictured in Joe Rosenthal's so called "Gung Ho" picture of the group of Marines and Corpsmen waving around the flag on Mt.Suribachi.

His has unassailable credentials in this field.

Attached you will find his report to me in the form of a letter.You may use the letter as you wish.

Thanks for your patience.

Semper Fi,Ray



(505) 344-2345
Facsimile (505) 344-2444

August 9, 2004

Raymond Jacobs
1432 Mt. Diablo Circle
South Lake Tahoe, CA 96150

Dear Ray:

Thank you for trusting me with your photographs, which I have spent some time analyzing. As you know, I am a forensic photogrammetrist and have considerable experience in making and evaluating identifications of individuals depicted in photographs, video, and other sorts of images. In making comparisons of individuals in such images, I use digital image processing to optimize the visibility of facial and other details, to examine them closely, and sometimes also use digital imaging and mapping techniques to make comparative measurements.

When you first sent me copies of the photographs taken by Sgt. Lou Lowery on February 23, 1945 at the first flag raising atop Mt. Suribachi on Iwo Jima, and other photographs of you taken at various times, I explained to you in some detail my professional “philosophy” regarding the identification of individuals in photographs. Identifications and comparisons of individuals depicted in images are sometimes difficult or impossible for a number of reasons. Many different people look very much the same, and conversely, a single “known” individual can look quite different in photographs taken even a short time apart. Differences in the resolution and the conditions under which photographs were taken often make comparisons difficult too, and in my experience high quality, original negatives or photo prints, especially for older photos, are almost never available.

When I make comparisons of individuals in photographs and other images, I always look first for “unique” identifying patterns, such things as patterns of freckles or moles, distinctive scars, broken or crooked teeth, or other things that would be exceedingly unlikely to occur in two separate individuals. I did not find any such unique patterns in the photographs you sent me. As you suggested to me, the young Ray Jacobs didn’t have any such facial “defects,” but even if he had they might very well have been undetectable because of the quality and resolution of the photographs, particularly the Lowery photographs you obtained from Leatherneck Magazine, which upon close inspection I have concluded are some sort of photomechanical or at least multi-generational photo copies.

Given images like that, what I would do to illustrate that the radioman on Mt. Suribachi in the Lowery pictures is you would be just what you already did in your “Eyewitness Account” book: to scale and juxtapose comparable photos known to be you next to the Lowery pictures and note the similarities. And the similarities between the “known” Ray Jacobs in the photos you sent me, and the radioman in Lowery’s Mt. Suribachi photos, are striking.

Just as important, however, is the lack of dissimilarities, which brings me to the culmination of my professional philosophy regarding identifications of individuals from photographs. First, I do not think any suggestion of a “positive identification” can or should be made based on any single type of physical evidence, be it photographic comparisons, fingerprints, bite marks, or whatever, particularly in any legal case. In cases such as the identification of Ray Jacobs as the radioman on Mt. Suribachi, however, a second line of reasoning is, I think, more germane: whether, given the physical evidence that is available – i.e. the photographs – there is any reason to believe that the radioman is not Ray Jacobs.

And based on the photographic evidence I have seen, there isn’t. One way to state my conclusion is that if I were given the photos you sent, and the Lowery photos, and asked to try to illustrate that the radioman was not Ray Jacobs, I could not do so. Another way to state this conclusion is that, based on my experience in the identification of individuals in photographs, and on my examination of the photos you sent that we know are you, when I look at the radioman in the Lowery photographs I am looking at Ray Jacobs.

I also need to comment here in regard to the Lowery photo of the radioman from behind, looking out to sea, and the markings on his canteen cover. Given the data I have, a chemical photo print sent to me by Colonel Dave E. Severance, USMC (Ret), and a digital version of the same image sent by Colonel W. G. Ford, USMC (Ret), the editor of Leatherneck Magazine, I can easily conclude that the radioman is the same individual as that depicted in the other Lowery photos, but I cannot decipher the name on the canteen cover. When one can’t unambiguously read printing or writing in a photo, image processing techniques will not “magically” recover details that aren’t inherent in the image. In such a case everyone, including me, is reduced to simply guessing. And when I do this, I see what looks to me like seven characters, spelling out something like “Cachall,” or “Gachall,” or perhaps “Gabrial.”

In a number of past forensic cases in which objects or details were just too “fuzzy” in a photograph to allow unambiguous identification, I have used an essentially reverse technique of making an image of an exemplar object and intentionally blurring and otherwise distorting the image of the exemplar to make it comparable to the fuzzy image. If the printing on the radioman’s canteen cover were stencilled and the same kind of stencil could be located, such a reverse imaging technique might be used to further contentions of what the printing said. Based on the photographic data I have examined, however, it wouldn’t change my opinion that the radioman shown in the Lowery photos taken on Mt. Suribachi is Ray Jacobs.


James I. Ebert, PhD
Certified Photogrammetrist (ASPRS)
Fellow, American Academy of Forensic Sciences
Clint's Double Take
Eastwood directs two films on the battle of Iwo Jima: one from the
U.S. side, the other from the Japanese

Sometime this month in Chicago, Clint Eastwood will complete principal
photography on his latest movie, Flags of Our Fathers. It's the 26th
feature film he has directed since he made Play Misty for Me in 1971.
And just as he has done before (The Bridges of Madison County, Mystic
River), he is basing it on a best-selling book. But this movie is
different from all the others that he or anyone else has directed, for
Flags is only half the story he wants to tell.

The book, by James Bradley and Ron Powers, recounts the ultimately
tragic tale of six young U.S. Marines who happened to raise a huge
American flag atop Mount Suribachi in the midst of the great battle
for Iwo Jima during World War II, of how an Associated Press
photographer squeezed off what he thought was a routine shot of them
doing so that became an iconic image, of what happened to some of
those kids (only three survived the next few days of battle) when they
were hustled home to be heedlessly exploited by the U.S. government to
raise civilian morale and, incidentally, sell billions of dollars'
worth of war bonds. That story, rich in darkly ambiguous nuance, would
have been more than enough to preoccupy Eastwood's attention for a
couple of years.

But when Eastwood tried to buy the rights, he discovered that Steven
Spielberg already had them, and so he moved on instead to Million
Dollar Baby. Then, backstage at the 2004 Academy Awards (at which his
Mystic River was a multiple nominee), Eastwood encountered Spielberg,
and before the evening was out, they agreed to a Flags co-production,
with Eastwood directing. Shortly thereafter, the project began to
elicit an uncommon, almost obsessive, interest from its director. He
has not often attempted fact-based movies, and he had never undertaken
one that contained such huge combat scenes. He began to read more
widely and deeply on the subject. And he began talking to both
American and Japanese veterans of Iwo Jima, which remains the
bloodiest engagement in Marine Corps history and the one for which the
most Congressional Medals of Honor were awarded (27). As for the
Japanese, only about 200 out of 22,000 defending soldiers survived. At
some point in his research, Eastwood realized that he had to find a
way to tell both sides of the story--"not in the Tora! Tora! Tora!
way, where you cut back and forth between the two sides," he says,
"but as separate films."

So, beginning next February, Eastwood will start shooting the
companion movie, tentatively called Lamps Before the Wind, scheduled
for simultaneous release with Flags next fall. Typically, Eastwood
(who is an old friend of this writer's) is not able to articulate
fully his rationale for this ambitious enterprise: "I don't
know--sometimes you get a feeling about something. You have a
premonition that you can get something decent out of it," he says.
"You just have to trust your gut." He asked Paul Haggis, who wrote
Flags, if he would like to write the Japanese version as well. The
writer of Million Dollar Baby and director of Crash, Haggis was
overbooked but thought an aspiring young Japanese-American
screenwriter, Iris Yama****a, who had helped him research Flags, might
be able to do it. She met with Eastwood, and once again his gut spoke;
he gave her the job and liked her first draft so much that he bought
it. It was she who insisted on giving him a few rewrites she thought
her script still needed.

Taken together, the two screenplays show that the battle of Iwo
Jima--and by implication, the whole war in the Pacific--was not just a
clash of arms but a clash of cultures. The Japanese officer class,
imbued with the quasi-religious fervor of their Bushido code, believed
that surrender was dishonor, that they were all obliged to die in
defense of their small island. That, of course, was not true of the
attacking Americans. As Eastwood puts it, "They knew they were going
into harm's way, but you can't tell an American he's absolutely fated
to die. He will work hard to get the job done, but he'll also work
hard to stay alive." And to protect his comrades-in-arms. As Haggis'
script puts it, the Americans "may have fought for their country, but
they died for their friends, for the man in front, for the man beside

Yama****a's script is much more relentlessly cruel. In essence, the
Japanese officers compelled the bravery (and suicide) of their troops
at gunpoint. Only the Japanese commander, Lieut. General Tadamichi
Kuribayashi (a mysterious historical figure who fascinates Eastwood),
and a fictional conscript, Saigo, whose fate Yama****a intertwines
with his commanding officer's, demonstrate anything like humanity as a
Westerner might understand it. The lieutenant general, educated in
part in the U.S., is respectful of its national spirit (and industrial
might) and believes that a live soldier, capable of carrying on the
fight, is infinitely more valuable than a dead one enjoying an
honorable afterlife. Thanks to his preservationist tactics, a battle
that was supposed to last five days consumed almost 40, though honor
demanded his suicide in the end. Saigo, who, as Eastwood says, "wants
what most human beings want" (a peaceful life with friends and
family), meets an unexpected fate.

The Japanese film derives much of its strength from its claustrophobic
confinement to a horrendous time and place. Haggis' work gains its
power from its confident range. The screenplay starts with the
Americans on the beaches and the protagonists raising the flag. It
follows them on their vulgar war-bond tour (they were obliged to
re-enact the flag raising on a papier-mâché Suribachi at Soldier
Field in Chicago) and then traces their postwar descent into
dream-tossed anonymity. You could argue that the Japanese were the
lucky ones: their government and religion foreordained their fate, and
they had no choice but to endure it. Chance played more capriciously
with the Americans, who liked to think they were in charge of their
destinies. Yet Flag's protagonists end up knowing that they were
blessed by nothing more than a photo op--and knowing that the true,
unacknowledged heroes were the men left behind to fight and die on Iwo
Jima's black sands. The film follows three survivors: Ira Hayes
(played by Adam Beach), Rene Gagnon (Jesse Bradford) and John Bradley
(Ryan Phillippe), the co-author's father. To put it mildly, their
lives do not continue on a heroic trajectory. At one point Bradley,
forever assailed by nightmares that he never discusses, wishes that
"there hadn't been a flag on the end of that pole."

The inscrutability of fate has always been a major Eastwoodian
subtext. But now, as he approaches his 76th birthday, he has begun to
take it personally. "There are so many people who are as good or
better than me who aren't working," he says of his career, "while I
still am. I can't explain that, but luck has to play a part." Here's
hoping his luck holds.

7,000 Marines died at Iwo Jima in February and March 1945, the
bloodiest event in U.S. Marine Corps history. By making a film from
their killers' perspective, Dirty Harry dishonors them, WWII veterans,
America, and himself. As aging actor past his prime, I guess he never
heard the phrase "death before dishonor."

I should think Eastwood's "gut" feeling should tell him that it would
be all well and good to also tell the story from the Japanese point of
view, but I am confounded that such sensitivity would not include
first telling the truth, the real story, about Old Glory on Suribachi!

I know that all Marines are well informed, having taken it upon
themselves to delve into and beyond the usual party line history
topics, and are well aware that Rosenthal's photo and the
corresponding information on the so-called Iwo Flag Raising, is only,
in actuality, the raising of a "replacement flag" some time later on
the same day that the actual flag raising occurred. Yet, the actual
flag raising event is given short shrift, briefly mentioned only,
reduced to a mere footnote, or maybe not mentioned at all in writings
regarding this historic event.

Semper Fidelis
Dick Gaines

Source: GyG's OSMT Forum

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Sunday, July 11, 2004


Source: E-Mail
(GyG'sMailbag: Via Marine Richard Roberts)

Obituary for a Patriot: Maj. Gen George S. Patton Dies at 80
by Scott Stanley, Jr.

George Smith Patton III was a senior at West Point when his famous
father was killed in a bizarre December 1945 road accident in Germany.
When Westbrook Pegler and other journalists approached Bea Patton for
confirmation from her husband's papers that Gen. Dwight Eisenhower had
carried on a notorious affair with his British driver Kaye Summersby, she
refused, explaining that she did not believe loose talk and, besides, her
son was a career officer. He was indeed, and a very good one. The younger
Patton first saw action in Korea and later served three tours in Vietnam,
where he was awarded a Purple Heart and two Distinguished Service Crosses.
As a colonel he commanded the 11th Armored Cavalry Regiment in Vietnam and
rose to the rank of major general when he was about to be named commander
of U.S. armored forces in Germany. It was 1980, Jimmy Carter was
president, and when the Soviets objected to so able a son of their old
enemy being given such a command, Carter flinched and Patton retired in

At the family home in Hamilton, Mass., with his wife Joanne, Patton
turned his hand in retirement to the unlikely profession of "tomato
farmer" at Green Meadow Farm, the family estate, and delighted to sell his
produce at a roadside stand. Patton's friend, Lt. Gen. Charley Brown, told
the story of a ragtag National Guard tank convoy that had stopped to buy
cold cider at the Patton stand and returned to headquarters that evening
to report an encounter with a crazy old farmer who chewed them out for the
shabby state of their equipment, their dress, and their demeanor.

"And get this," a National Guard private confided to the colonel in
charge of the armory, "the crazy old son of a bitch thought he was Gen.
George S. Patton."

He was indeed, every inch of him, and when the turncoat John F. Kerry
ran for the U.S. Senate, Patton called a press conference, declared Kerry
to be "soft on communism," and said that by providing propaganda for the
enemy during the Vietnam War, Kerry "gave aid and comfort to the enemy and
probably caused some of my guys to get killed."

How George would have loved it that today the New York Times gave
exactly twice as much space to the obituary of lifelong communist
propagandist Agnes Cunningham as it did to his. No doubt that would have
amused him as much as his retirement business cards, printed in green ink,
that read: "George S. Patton, Farmer."

Funeral services will be held Wednesday, July 7, at 10 a.m. in St.
John's Episcopal Church, Beverly Farms, Mass.; his burial service will
take place at Arlington National Cemetery on Friday, Aug. 27, at 11 a.m.


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By R.W. "Dick" Gaines
Gny Sgt USMC (Ret.)
Semper Fidelis
GyG's G&A Sites & Forums is an informational site and not for profit. Copyrighted material provided soley for education, study, research, and discussion, etc. Full credit to source shown when available.

Monday, June 28, 2004


(From GyG'sMailbag)

Letter to the Terrorists
in Iraq
Date: Mon, 28 Jun 2004 08:37:43 EDT
Subject: [ReconMarines] From:
Date: Mon, 28 Jun 2004 08:37:43 EDT
Subject: [ReconMarines] Letter to the Terrorists
in Iraq

This letter is for Abu Musab al-Zarqawi,
''Islamic Response,'' and
the rest of the so-called "insurgents" in Iraq.
I obviously do not
have an e-mail address for these vermin, so I am
forwarding this
letter to my entire address book in the hope you
good people will
forward it to as many people as possible, and
that eventually through
the miracle of the internet it somehow ends up in
the hands of the
intended recipients. Thank you all for your

To the terrorists currently operating in Iraq:

I see that you have captured a U. S. Marine,
and that you plan to
cut off his head if your demands are not met.
Big mistake. Before
you carry out your threat I suggest you read up
on Marine Corps
history. The Japanese tried the same thing on
Makin Island and in a
few other places during World War Two, and came
to regret it. Go
ahead and read about what then happened to the
mighty Imperial Army
on Tarawa, Iwo Jima and Okinawa. They paid full
price for what they
did, and you will too.

You look at America and you see a soft
target, and to a large
extent you are right. Our country is filled with
a lot of spoiled
people who drive BMWs, sip decaf lattes and watch
ridiculous reality
TV shows. They are for the most part decent,
hard working citizens,
but they are soft. When you cut off Nick Berg's
head those people
gasped, and you got the media coverage you
sought, and then those
people went back to their lives. This time it is
different. We also
have a warrior culture in this country, and they
are called Marines.
It is a brotherhood forged in the fire of many
wars, and the bond
between us is stronger than blood. While it is
true that this
country has produced nitwits like Michael Moore,
Howard Dean and Jane
Fonda who can be easily manipulated by your
gruesome tactics, we have
also produced men like Jason Dunham, Brian
Chontosh and Joseph
Perez. If you don't recognize those names you
should. They are all
Marines who distinguished themselves fighting to
liberate Iraq, and
there will be many more just like them coming for

Before the current politically correct
climate enveloped our
culture one of the recruiting slogans of our band
of brothers
was "The Marine Corps Builds Men." You will soon
find out just how
true that is. You, on the other hand, are
nothing but a bunch of
women. If you were men you would show your faces,
and take us on in a
fair fight. Instead, you are cowards who hide
behind masks and
decapitate helpless victims. If you truly
represented the interest
of the Iraqi people you would not be ambushing
those who come to your
country to repair your power plants, or sabotage
the oil pipelines
which fuel the Iraqi economy. Your agenda is
hate, plain and simple.

When you raise that sword over your head I
want you to remember
one thing. Corporal Wassef Ali Hassoun is not
alone as he kneels
before you. Every Marine who has ever worn the
uniform is there with
him, and when you strike him you are striking all
of us. If you
think the Marines were tough on you when they
were cleaning out
Fallujah a few weeks ago you haven't seen
anything yet. If you want
to know what it feels like to have the Wrath of
God called down upon
you then go ahead and do it. We are not Turkish
truck drivers, or
Pakistani laborers, or independent contractors
hoping to find work in
your country. We are the United States Marines,
and we will be
coming for you.

Andy Bufalo
MSgt USMC (Ret)

This is...
Gunny G's...
Marines Sites & Forums

By R.W. "Dick" Gaines
Gny Sgt USMC (Ret.)
Semper Fidelis
GyG's G&A Sites & Forums is an informational site and not for profit. Copyrighted material provided soley for education, study, research, and discussion, etc. Full credit to source shown when available.

Saturday, June 26, 2004


Source: GyG'sMailbag...

Salty Language
Salty Language by Col James W. Hammond Jr., USMC (Ret)

In the (not so) old Corps, the first time a "boot" referred to a vertical partition as a "wall" or said that he had spilled something on the "floor," he incurred the unmitigated wrath of the nearest drill instructor. To gain the attention of the miscreant, the DI would smash his swagger stick on the top of the boot's pith helmet accompanied by a very loud bit of enduring advice, "That's 'bulkhead' [or 'deck']. If you draw the pay, you speak the language!"

Marines are "Soldiers of the Sea," and it is right and proper that conversation be sprinkled with nautical expressions. In "The Leatherneck," his introduction to "Fix Bayonets," the late Colonel John W. Thompson Jr., USMC (Ret) described the many men making up the 4th Marine Brigade about to see action at Belleau Wood in June 1918: "And there were also a number of diverse people who ran curiously to type, with drilled shoulders and a bone-deep sunburn, a tolerant scorn of nearly everything on earth. Their speech was flavored with Navy words, and words culled from all the folk who live on the seas and ports where our war-ships go." He was describing Marine professionals who, like all professionals, have a language peculiar unto themselves.

A language is a living and evolving thing. As we go to more strange and distant climes, some foreign words creep in. Some are transitory and don't survive. Marines still go to the "head" to "pump bilges," although there was a generation or two who went to the benjo for the same thing. I've always liked the story of the world-traveler Marine sitting in a bar in Athens who politely summoned the waiter and ordered a beer with "Garcon, iddy-wa, una botella de cerveza bitte."

But over the years I have detected not just a lessening of the use of nautical terms among the naval services, but almost a complete lack of them. This is more than 25 years ago when my son came home from the United States Naval Academy his Plebe Christmas. He had been raised on "deck," "bulkhead," "overhead," "ladder," "galley," etc. He called his Boy Scout equipment "782 gear," but he was no longer using those descriptive terms because they weren't in use at the Academy.

After he graduated, I spent a dozen years in Annapolis on the staff of the Alumni Association of my alma mater. I was appalled at the lubberly-ness of the staff, faculty and midshipmen at the Academy. Fortunately, the Marines on duty there kept the tradition of nautical language alive. It must be paying off because every year the allotted "boat spaces" for Marines on graduation are oversubscribed.

But I am not concerned with Navy per se, but rather our Corps of Marines. I equate it to the reply an old gunnery sergeant gave to the lady who upon hearing the legend that the quatrefoil on the cover of Marine Officers' frame caps stems from days of sail when Marines in the "fighting tops" could identify their officers on deck by the chalked cross on their caps and not fire on them, asked, "What about the Navy Officers?" "Who cared?" snapped the gunny."

Language is both spoken and written. "The Marines' Hymn" says, "We are proud to claim the title of United States Marines." There are Army officers and soldiers, Navy officers and sailors, Air Force officers and airmen, but we are all Marines. That is why Marine is always written with a capital "M."

We must be careful not to allow our own professional culture to be corrupted by the words of other services. The Army says 1600 (sixteen hundred) hours. We say 1600 (sixteen hundred). It is a small but subtle difference. Many years ago at a large East Coast Marine base, an over zealous "police sergeant" neatly painted on the "deck" in front of a regimental headquarters building: "NO PARKING AFTER 1600 HOURS." The commanding general, or "CG," came by and saw the offending sign. He dashed into headquarters, burst in the office of the commanding officer, or "CO," and began holding "school-of-the-boat" (the most basic instruction one can give to the landlubber) on the colonel.

He said, "In the Army, it's 1600 hours; in the Navy, it's 8 bells; in the Air Force, I think it is 'when Mickey's big hand is on 12 and his little hand is on 4,' but in the Corps, it is 1600. Get that abomination corrected immediately!"

Most Marines knew the motto of our Corps before they went to boot camp, or they probably wouldn't have gone. It is "semper fidelis" - always faithful. Shortened to "semper fi," it is a bond of respectful recognition between and among Marines. One Marine greets another with it. When they part company, each says to the other, "Semper fi." Informal memos or e-mails between Marines usually are signed "Semper fi" or just S/F. But there used to be a darker side. Used by Marines to members of the other services or civilians, "Semper fi, Mac," said with a sneer, had a sinister connotation. It could mean anything from "I got mine; the hell with you!" to "I did fine; how did you do?" An old "China Hand" once told me that on payday night in Shanghai cabarets, it meant, "You buy the fifth; my girl is drunk already!" I much prefer the version denoting mutual respect among a "band of brothers" than the cynical version.

Some words and phrases have found their way into common American usage through the Marine Corps. Some are of foreign origin. "We have fought in every clime and place." Others were Marine-coined.

The best example of a Marine-coined word in widespread use is "gizmo." "Gung-ho" is of Chinese origin, via Col. Evans F. Carlson of the World War II Carlson's Raiders. Going back several campaigns, we find that "boondocks" comes from the Tagalog "bundok" or mountain jungles of the Philippines. "Honcho" came back from Korea and Japan.

Another word that is sacred to our Corps is "Doc" - the corpsman who wear our uniform, joins with and cares for us in combat. Many years ago I had a "Stateside" battalion during the time that doctors were drafted for two years of service. My battalion surgeon (billet title since he wasn't really a "cutter") came to me with a complaint. The young Marines were addressing him as "Doc." Since he was a professional man, he felt he deserved the respect of being addressed as "Doctor." I told him that evidently he was not ready to be addressed as "Doc" inasmuch as that is the highest honor that a Marine can bestow upon a "squid."

The language door swings both ways. We have allowed civilian language to corrupt our pure nautical expression. While a landlubber may refer to a ship as "it," a true "soldier of the sea" knows that a ship is a "she." Likewise, it is a real nautical bust, both orally and in writing, to precede the name of a ship with a definite article. A ship is a distinct personality, and referring to the Lexington is as improper as referring to me as the Hammond. She is Lexington. Many readers will argue that the definite article is used in professional naval publications, and I invite their attention to the fact that those journals have professional editors and writers, not naval professionals. Finally, one serves in not on a ship. If it is the latter, you are in deep trouble. To a precise reader or listener it conjures up the vision of your sitting on the keel of a capsized vessel.

How did this departure from salty language occur? I alluded to the traumatic change to the nautical nature of the Naval Academy, at least in my observation. Emphasis was more on turning out graduates who could go on for advanced degrees. "Techies" and their bastardization of English for computer talk followed. This was compounded by flooding the faculty with academics holding advanced degrees from campuses of the '60s. This sizeable group of civilians avoided being part of the naval culture. Over the past quarter century, the leadership of half the naval service has eroded much of the base of salty-language usage. If those at the top don't lead the way, it is a military axiom that those below won't follow.

But how did the decline of the use of salty language creep into our Corps? Drill instructors still drill into recruits the use of "deck," "bulkhead," "ladder," etc., although perhaps with a less emphatic way of getting their attention then in the (not so) old Corps.

For one thing, more Marines are married these days, and many live ashore among the civilian community. These Marines try to blend into the civilian community rather than flaunt their pride of being a Marine. Their use of salty language becomes one of the first casualties.

Even today it is a matter of pride to sport a regulation haircut, spit-shined shoes, proper civilian attire and, of course, salty language. It is gratifying when some stranger at a cocktail party says, "You sound like you're a Marine."

Another reason for the decline of salty language is that many young Marines are "cool." Nautical talk is not cool, computer talk and jive talk are. Unlike the Navy with its many technicians, "every Marine is a rifleman" and has the privilege of displaying pride in the language of his profession. It is a privilege not available to others.

How can we restore this eroding tradition? Like everything else in the Corps, it begins at the top. Senior officers should use salty language at every opportunity and hold school-of-the-boat on their subordinates who don't. Top staff noncommissioned officers should do likewise.

Tradition is not something that can be ordered. It must have solid roots to survive. Marines should want to show that they are a different breed and be willing to demonstrate their uniqueness at every opportunity whether among other Marines or among civilians. That's what it is about personal pride in being a Marine.

More than 50 years ago, during the Cherry Blossom Pageant in Washington, DC, 10 junior officers from the Army, Air Force, Navy, Coast Guard and Marine Corps were detailed as escorts for princesses from 48 states and the territories of Alaska and Hawaii. Most of the Marines were strangers to each other.

At the end of the ceremonies a musical tribute to the gallant escorts of the lovely princesses was announced. The band struck up a medley of "The Caisson Song," "The Air Force Song," "Anchors Aweigh" and "Semper Paratus." At the first note of "The Marines' Hymn," 10 Marine lieutenants scattered among the audience were on their feet as 20 heels clicked as one. An officer from another service paid them a high compliment. In a stage whisper audible to all, he said, "Those s.o.b.s!" That's what it is all about - exhibiting your pride in your Corps every time you can.

About 30 years ago there was the tale of an old Sergeant Major who retired and had a nice job, although he was putting in long hours. He had another problem as well, or at least his boss and co-workers thought so. He still said "deck," "bulkhead," "overhead," etc. The boss made him an appointment with the company psychiatrist. The sergeant major arrived, and the doctor, who was of the Freudian school, directed him to lie on the couch.

Doctor: "Do you lead an active sex life?" SgtMaj: "Sure!" Doctor: "Tel me about it." SgtMaj: " What do you want to know?" Doctor: "Your last affair, when was it?" SgtMaj: "About 1950?" Doctor: "You call that active?" SgtMaj: looking at his watch: "It's only 2115 now!"

Draw the pay; speak the language.

Semper fi.

[Col Hammond enlisted in the Corps in 1946, was appointed to the Naval Academy in 1947 and was commissioned as an infantry officer in 1951. He commanded an infantry platoon and company, an artillery battery and battalion, an infantry battalion (2/4) in combat (RVN). He was wounded in action during the Korean War and twice wounded in the Vietnam War. He is the author of more than 50 professional articles in a wide variety of professional publications, including Marine Corps Gazette, Naval Institute Proceedings, The Hook and others. He was managing editor and then editor-publisher for Gazette from 1964 to 1966 and in retirement was editor of the U. S. Naval Academy Alumni Association's monthly magazine, Shipmate. He has written two books: "Poison Gas - The Myths Versus Reality" and "The Treaty Navy - The Story of the U. S. Naval Service Between the World Wars". Colonel and Mrs. Hammond make their home in Reno, but can be found in Annapolis during football season.]

This is...
Gunny G's...
Marines Sites & Forums

By R.W. "Dick" Gaines
Gny Sgt USMC (Ret.)
Semper Fidelis
GyG's G&A Sites & Forums is an informational site and not for profit. Copyrighted material provided soley for education, study, research, and discussion, etc. Full credit to source shown when available.

Thursday, June 17, 2004


(From Maj Howard Bell)

Wed, 16 Jun 2004 21:57:45 -0500
From: "Howard Bell" View Contact Details
Subject: Asleep at the wheel
A little bit of history Regardless of how you vote and
what you believe, we should all read this and really
let it sink in. As it says, this is NOT a political
speech. It is something that we should all know and
(and probably do) but don't let the overall impact
register. But, put together like this, it is very

U.S. Navy Capt. Ouimette is the XO at NAS, Pensacola.
Here is a copy of the speech he gave last month.
It is
an accurate account of why we are in so much trouble
today and why this action is so necessary.


That's what we think we heard on the 11th of September
2001 and maybe it was, but I think it should have been
"Get Out of Bed!" In fact, I think the alarm clock has
been buzzing since 1979 and we have continued to hit
the snooze button and roll over for a few more minutes
of peaceful sleep since then.

It was a cool fall day in November 1979 in a country
going through a religious and political upheaval when
a group of Iranian students attacked and seized the
American Embassy in Tehran. This seizure was an
outright attack on American soil; it was an attack
that held the world's most powerful country hostage and
paralyzed a Presidency. The attack on this sovereign U.
S. embassy set the stage for events to follow for the
next 23 years.

America was still reeling from the aftermath of the
Vietnam experience and had a serious threat from the
Soviet Union when then, President Carter, had to do
something. He chose to conduct a clandestine raid in
the desert. The ill-fated mission ended in ruin, but
stood as a symbol of America's inability to deal with

America's military had been decimated and
downsized/right sized since the end of the Vietnam War.
A poorly trained, poorly equipped and poorly organized
military was called on to execute a complex mission
that was doomed from the start.

Shortly after the Tehran experience, Americans began
to be kidnapped and killed throughout the Middle East.
America could do little to protect her citizens living
and working abroad. The attacks against US soil

In April of 1983 a large vehicle packed with high
explosives was driven into the US Embassy compound in
Beirut. When it explodes, it kills 63 people. The
alarm went off again and America hit the Snooze Button
once more.

Then just six short months later a large truck heavily
laden down with over 2500 pounds of TNT smashed
through the main gate of the US Marine Corps
headquarters in Beirut and 241 US servicemen are
killed. America mourns her dead and hit the Snooze
Button once more.

Two months later in December 1983, another truck
loaded with explosives is driven into the US Embassy in
Kuwait, and America continues her slumber.

The following year, in September 1984, another van was
driven into the gates of the US Embassy in Beirut and
America slept.

Soon the terrorism spreads to Europe. In April 1985 a
bomb explodes in a restaurant frequented by US
soldiers in Madrid.

Then in August a Volkswagen loaded with explosives is
driven into the main gate of the US Air Force Base at
Rhein-Main, 22 are killed and the snooze alarm is
buzzing louder and louder as US interests are
continually attacked.

Fifty-nine days later a cruise ship, the Achille Lauro
is hijacked and we watched as an American in a
wheelchair is singled out of the passenger list and

The terrorists then shift their tactics to bombing
civilian airliners when they bomb TWA Flight 840 in
April of 1986 that killed 4 and the most tragic
bombing, Pan Am Flight 103 over Lockerbie, Scotland in
1988, killing 259.

America wants to treat these terrorist acts as crimes;
in fact we are still trying to bring these people to
trial. These are acts of war.

The wake up alarm is getting louder and louder The
terrorists decide to bring the fight to America. In
January 1993, two CIA agents are shot and killed as
they enter CIA headquarters in Langley, Virginia.

The following month, February 1993, a group of
terrorists are arrested after a rented van packed with
explosives is driven into the underground parking
garage of the World Trade Center in New York City. Six
people are killed and over 1000 are injured. Still
this is a crime and not an act of war?

The Snooze alarm is depressed again. Then in November
1995 a car bomb explodes at a US military complex in
Riyadh, Saudi Arabia killing seven service men and

A few months later in June of 1996, another truck bomb
explodes only 35 yards from the US military compound
in Dhahran, Saudi Arabia. It destroys the Khobar
Towers, a US Air Force barracks, killing 19 and
injuring over 500. The terrorists are getting braver
and smarter as they see that America does not respond

They move to coordinate their attacks in a
simultaneous attack on two US embassies in Kenya and
Tanzania. These attacks were planned with precision.
They kill 224. America responds with cruise missile
attacks and goes back to sleep.

The USS Cole was docked in the port of Aden, Yemen for
refueling on 12 October 2000, when a small craft
pulled along side the ship and exploded killing 17 US
Navy Sailors. Attacking a US War Ship is an act of
war, but we sent the FBI to investigate the crime and
went back to sleep.

And of course you know the events of 11 September 2001.
Most Americans think this was the first attack against
US soil or in America. How wrong they are. America has
been under a constant attack since 1979 and we chose
to hit the snooze alarm and roll over and go back to

In the news lately we have seen lots of finger
pointing from every high officials in government over
what they knew and what they didn't know. But if
you've read the papers and paid a little attention I
think you can see exactly what they knew. You don't
have to be in the FBI or CIA or on the National
Security Council to see the pattern that has been
developing since 1979.

The President is right on when he says we are engaged
in a war. I think we have been in a war for the past
23 years and it will continue until we as a people
decide enough is enough.

America needs to "Get out of Bed" and act decisively
now. America has been changed forever. We have to be
ready to pay the price and make the sacrifice to
ensure our way of life continues. We cannot afford to
keep hitting the snooze button again and again and
roll over and go back to sleep.

After the attack on Pearl Harbor, Admiral Yamamoto
said " seems all we have done is awakened a
sleeping giant." This is the message we need to
disseminate to terrorists around the world.

Support Our Troops and support President Bush for
having the courage, political or militarily, to
address what so many who preceded him didn't have the
backbone to do both Democrat and Republican. This is
not a political thing to be hashed over in an election
year this is an AMERICAN thing. This is about our
Freedom and the Freedom of our children in years to
This is...
Gunny G's...
Marines Sites & Forums

By R.W. "Dick" Gaines
GySgt USMC (Ret.)
Semper Fidelis
GyG's G&A Sites & Forums is an informational site and not for profit. Copyrighted material provided soley for education, study, research, and discussion, etc. Full credit to source shown when available.

Wednesday, June 16, 2004

JOHN BROWNING'S .45 AUTO, by Marine Richard Roberts

Date: Sun, 25 Apr 2004 10:08:27 -0700

I wrote this story about 7 years ago.

I tried very hard to obtain a 45 Auto while in
Marine Advanced Infantry
training in 1943. They were just about
impossible to obtain in those war
Finally one of my mother’s friends, a carpet
dealer in Hunting Park, Ca.
presented me with one just before I shipped
out. He also placed a condition
on it. I was to return it to him when I
returned with a complete history how
I used it.
I carried it all through the Pacific War in
many good times and a few bad;
it had served me faithfully.
Whenever we had a shakedown, the Officer would
always take my word on how I
obtained it.
I used it on Okinawa more than on Siapan and
Tarawa. I did a lot of guard
duty on water holes at night. The Japs got just
as thirty as we did. The
Engineers issued me a Thompson for patrol duty.
Got a few good licks with it
Was cleaning out a cave one time. I shot that
Jap square through the helmet
with my .45. Broke all the bones in his head
just like sake of marbles. We
had a saying in those days “If God wanted a
foxhole gun, he’d pick a Colt
.45 Auto.”
When I returned home from the Pacific, I
returned the .45 with a handwritten
letter of its history with me. Of course I
added a few things as Bill was a
salesman and he would enjoy bragging rights.
Bill then took me right down to the gun dealer
and presented me a brand new
.45, target grade.
To bad our government still don’t issue it. But
our politics wanted those
Italian bases, so we ended up with a Baretta
9mm. Guise they forgot why we
adopted a .45. It was to put down those Mad
Muslims. Well, it seems we have
more mad Muslims now than before.
When we finally arrived in Tiensen China after
two years in the Pacific war,
I had made a set of silver grips for it. Cost
me $50.00 A fortune for a buck
private in those days. One months pay.
It had a beautiful Chinese dragon carved on one
side with the Marine emblem
and the First Division crest carved in the
other side. My old foxhole gun
finally got all dressed up as a reward for its
years of faithful duty,
service and of course, my vanity.
I watched the Chinese craftsmen work on my
silver grips. We use engraving
blocks in the West to hold the object while we
were working on. In the
Orient they have a leather pad they put their
work on and hold the job with
their toes. The cutting tool has a wooden heel
and is held in their left
hand and bops it with their ball of their right
hand and uses their feet and
toes to manipulate the work. While we use a
straight cutting tool with a
chasing hammer and an engraving block to hold
the work and of course, get to
site on a stool. Interesting comparisons.
The biggest tourist attraction for Marines in
those days was not the Great
Wall of China, but the American Embassy in
Peking. In particular the old
Marine Barracks.
Whenever we did visit the Great Wall, there was
an old Marine Tradition.
“You weren’t a real China Marine till you
pissed on the Great Wall.”
In 1941 there was a young Marine stationed
there by the name of Bob Carlson.
When war broke out they, the Embassy felt very
isolated and frustrated. They
tried constantly to radio for instructions on
their next step on what to do?
To no avail, The U.S. had closed down the radio
receiver on them. No more
Bob never gave me the details on the final
surrender but he ended up in
Japan in a POW camp.
He got the job of making Jap signature stamps
out of bamboo. If memory
serves, the Japs called them “chops”.
Bob pretty well served out the war doing this.
An interesting side note to this story is that
when the Japs took roll call
on the prisoners, they would have alphabetical
sections and numbers. Like in
“B” row and then their number in that row. As
the POWs called out their
numbers in Japanese, the one that called out “
B29 “ always got a few good
licks with a bamboo pole from the guards if
there was a B29 raid at that
particular time.
When the Air Force dropped that giant Jap birth
control pill, a Jap guard
kept running through their barracks calling
out,” Ichi bomb, and ichi bomb.”
I hope I remember the Jap word for “one “ I
hope this is right.
I meant Bob in a GI apprenticeship job after
the war. We were cutting and
polishing a die for the “Hop-Along Cassidy cap
pistol. All you young Boots
out there, you must have played with this cap
pistol at one time or another.
It had to have a perfect finish to it so to
“Pop Out” of the die after the
injection casting. Any flaw in the cutting
would cause a “Hang Up”.
About this time I got tired of the job of
polishing out dies so went to work
for a manufacturing jeweler. I would do their
engraving and they would teach
me diamond setting. They also made me a bill
collector, which I didn’t like
very much at all. I guess my size was supposed
to intimidate people.
Couldn’t intimidate Roy Weatherbe. Just as I
was hitting him up for work
done and not paid for, he said” How do you
expect me to pay you, look they
are hauling off my chronograph for
non-payment.” About that time John Wayne
bought 49 percent off the biz from Roy. And Roy
of course, came out smelling
like a rose. Roy was a terrific salesman and
good enough to have invented
the expression “He really could literally sell
ice cubes to Eskimos”.
Weatherbe asked me “Why don’t you spend more
time on my job’s? Did you know
that last one you engraved went to the Shaw of
Iran?” I said “ROY, why don’t
you pay more money, I have instructions to work
on your stuff only for 8
hours, that’s $35.00 [I got $20.00 per day
then. Not bad wages for the
times] so if you want more detail, I’ll put
more time on it, you just only
have to pay a better price !”
Roy Weatherbe was actually a great person. He
even let me test group his
rifles in his basement range. His theory was
all wet on no rifling for the
first 5 inches, but he had the best stock maker
in the world doing his stock
work. Just beautiful wood and craftsmanship.
I could never get better than 5 minutes of
angle from his rifles. [Bench
rest] While Winchester guaranteed 2 minutes of
angel with their Model 70,
bolt action. Remmington 40X single shot
guarantied [Marine Sniper Rifle] one
minute of angle. After that it was the “Nut
behind the buttplate”
My next really big and interesting job was to
set the diamonds in Sheriff
Eugene Biscaluz police badge. All his cronies
donated the diamonds. There
was a 5-carat diamond in the center and
one-carat diamond in each star
point. The badge was made of 18Kt gold and the
center was of platinum. Of
course Sheriff Gene never had to pay a dime on
this. He was Los Angeles
County Sheriff for over 25 years.
Bob and I would go out on Saturdays and
practice our 45 cal shooting at the
Long Beach Police Pistol Rang. We shared in
purchasing expense of buying
hand-loading equipment for our 45s.
We got very good at target shooting after a
short time and the Long Beach
Police invited us to join their pistol team. We
naturally jumped at the
chance cause it meant free ammo,rang ,and entry
We both bought the High Standard 22 rim fire
target grade auto’s and shot
our 45s in the center fire and 45 cal National
Match Course’s. We became
master’s in a very short time. The Long Beach
Police sponsored our team in
the entire local NRA registered [Southern Cal.]
competitions. They
especially liked us to beat hell out of the Los
Angeles Police Team. I
continued on in various marksmanship types
shooting events for the next 30
years are so.
Just before I moved to the Puget Sound area,
Bob died a tragic death of
cancer. He was only 30 years old.
It was a great privilege on for me to have
counted this fine Marine as one
of my very great friends. I will never forget
More later, maybe.

Semper Fi RR

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Monday, June 07, 2004


Two Marine Corps

by William S. Lind
by William S. Lind

Since sometime before Caesar was a lance corporal, the United States Marine Corps’ greatest fear has been becoming "a second land army." It has long believed that if the country perceived it had two armies, it would require one to go away, and that one would be the Marine Corps. It is therefore ironic that the United States now finds itself with not one, but two Marine Corps, and the final result may be that both disappear.

Almost any Marine knows the two Marine Corps of which I speak. One is the heir of the maneuver warfare movement of the 1970s and 80s, of Al Gray and Warfighting, of free play training, officer education focused on how to think, not what to do, of the belief that the highest goal of all Marines is winning in combat with the smallest possible losses. This is the Marine Corps that led the advance to Baghdad in the first phase of the ongoing war in Iraq. It is also the Marine Corps that recently "fought smart" in Fallujah by not taking the city.

The other Marine Corps’ highest goal is programs, money and bureaucratic success "inside the Beltway." Its priorities are absurdities such as the MV-22 "Albatross" and reviving the 1990s "Sea Worm" project under the label "distributed operations," which are referred to openly at Quantico as "putting lipstick on a pig." This Marine Corps is anti-intellectual, sees the First Generation culture of order as sacred, believes that sufficient rank justifies any idiot and regards politics, not combat, as the "real world."

Regrettably, in the war between these two Marine Corps, the second one is winning. I recently encountered a horrifying example of its success at the Marine Corps Command & Staff School at Quantico. At the end of this academic year, the Command & Staff faculty simply got rid of 250 copies of Martin van Creveld’s superb book, Fighting Power. This book, which lays out the fundamentaldifference between the Second Generation U.S. Army in World War II and the Third Generation Wehrmacht, is one of the seven books of "the canon," the readings that take you from the First Generation into the Fourth. It should be required reading for every Marine Corps and Army officer.

When I asked someone associated with Command & Staff how such a thing could be done, he replied that the faculty has decided it "doesn’t like" van Creveld. This is similar to a band of Hottentots deciding they "don’t like" Queen Victoria. Martin van Creveld is perhaps the most perceptive military historian now writing. But in the end, the books went; future generations of students at Command & Staff won’t have them.

A friend who attended the last Marine Corps General Officers’ conference reported the same division between the two Marine Corps. The officers from the field, he said, had completely different concerns from those stationed in Washington. They were ships passing in the night. But it is the interests of the Washington Marine Corps, not those in the field, that determine Marine Corps policy. And that policy is affected little, if at all, by the two wars in which Marines are now fighting.

Throughout my years as a Senate staffer, the Marine Corps’ clout on Capitol Hill was envied by the other services. The Marine Corps then had little money and not much interest in programs. Its message to Congress and to the American public was, "We’re not like the other services. We aren’t about money and stuff. We’re about war." That message brought the Corps unrivalled public and political support.

In the mid-1990s, the Marine Corps changed its message and, without realizing what it was doing, abandoned its successful grand strategy for survival. The new message became, "We are just like the other services. We too are now about money and programs." And that new message is what now dominates Headquarters Marine Corps and Quantico. Thinking about war is out; money and stuff is in. In effect, the Marine Corps has sat down at the highest-stakes poker game in the world, American defense politics, with 25 cents in its pocket. It simply cannot compete with the Army, Navy or Air Force at buying Congressional and public support. But it is determined to try.

If the dumb (and increasingly corrupt) "Washington" Marine Corps finally triumphs over the smart, Warfighting Marine Corps, in the end both will disappear. And that will be a shame, because the smart Marine Corps, Al Gray’s Marine Corps, really had something going. It was on its way to becoming the first American Third Generation armed service.

Maybe Martin van Creveld’s next book should be The Rise and Decline of the United States Marine Corps.

June 5, 2004

William Lind [send him mail] is Director of the Center for Cultural Conservatism at the Free Congress Foundation.

Copyright © 2004 William S. Lind

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Sunday, June 06, 2004


This weekend (June 2004) marks the 60th anniversary of the Normandy invasion of WW II. There has been much ado in the media and so forth regarding the massive Normandy "amphibious invasion," Ike's brilliant planning and execution, courage, heroism, etc.--and rightfully so.The Normandy invasion is often regarded as the largest amphibious operation in history; some have even compared the amphibious landings in the Pacific as miniscule in comparison.

In perusing the book, Soldiers Of The Sea-The United States Marine Corps, 1775-1962, by Robert Debs Heinl, Jr., Colonel, USMC (The National Aviation Publishing Company of America, Baltimore, Maryland, 1991, page 513), I find an interesting remark by the author regarding the above.

"Under atomic attack, the World war II amphibious assault was finished. Normandy (more a ferrying operation than a true oceanic amphibious assault in any case) and Okinawa would never be repeated."

Of course, there was another amphibious landing, at Inchon in 1950.

Although Col. Heinl's mention of Normandy, above, is not much more than an aside comment and not the main thrust of his point regarding amphibious assault in general, his remark does, I think, sum up and define the major difference between the Normandy Invasion and Marine Corps amphibious operations in the Pacific. And he does so in a very few words, and in a more correct light than is usually perceived.

I like Colonel Heinl's insights into historical Marine Corps topics as he is always most thorough, and he delves into areas usually left untouched by other writers. Then, too, Heinl's book sports a photo by S/Sgt Lou Lowery (Leatherneck magazine) of the Iwo Jima Flag Raising; not the Joe Rosenthal version, mind you, but the first flag raising that preceeded the "replacemnet flag" raising some time later, which was captured on motion-picture film by Sgt Genaust, and photographed by Rosenthal. But, then, this is an area of special interest to me.

And also, part of the book title says it all, and immediately gains my attention--"...1775-1962," for it was those years that I find as most significant, and interesting for me.

Semper Fidelis
Richard Gaines
GySgt USMC (Ret.)
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Saturday, June 05, 2004


From : George B. Clark
Sent : Saturday, June 5, 2004 8:56 AM
To : <"Undisclosed-Recipient:, ">
Subject : Fw: The Soon-to-Be Forgotten Generation

| | | Inbox
Attachment : image001.gif (< 0.01 MB), image002.jpg (0.03 MB)

Hate to bore you, but Pacific War veterans will certainly be pleased with the following. At least one academic has his head screwed on properly.

----- Original Message -----
From: Dale Wilson
To: Dale Wilson
Sent: Friday, June 04, 2004 4:34 PM
Subject: The Soon-to-Be Forgotten Generation

Aloha, Friends!

Yale prof David Gelertner takes members of my generation to task for offering "too much, too late" in honor of its WWII forbearers. I'm afraid I must agree with him.


Too Much, Too Late
Baby boomers heap insincere praise on the "greatest generation."

Friday, June 4, 2004 12:01 a.m.

My political credo is simple and many people share it: I am against phonies. A cultural establishment that (on the whole) doesn't give a damn about World War II or its veterans thinks it can undo a half-century of indifference verging on contempt by repeating a silly phrase ("the greatest generation") like a magic spell while deploying fulsome praise like carpet bombing.

The campaign is especially intense among members of the 1960s generation who once chose to treat all present and former soldiers like dirt and are willing at long last to risk some friendly words about World War II veterans, now that most are safely underground and guaranteed not to talk back, enjoy their celebrity or start acting like they own the joint. A quick glance at the famous Hemingway B.S. detector shows the needle pegged at Maximum, where it's been all week, from Memorial Day through the D-Day anniversary run-up.

When I was in junior high school long ago, a touring arts program visited schools in New York state. One performance consisted of a celebrated actress reciting Emily Dickinson's poetry onstage for 90 minutes or so. I defy any audience to listen attentively to 90 minutes of Dickinson without showing the strain, and my school definitely wasn't having any.

A few minutes into the show, the auditorium was alive with student chatter, so loud a buzz you could barely hear the performance. Being a poetry-lover, I devoted myself to setting an example of rapt attention for, maybe, five minutes, at which point I threw in the towel and joined the mass murmur.

The actress manfully completed her performance. When it was over we gave her a stupendous ovation. We were glad it was finished and (more important) knew perfectly well that we had behaved like pigs and intended to make up for it by clapping and roaring and shouting. But the performer wasn't having any. She gave us a cold curtsy and left the stage and would not return for a second bow.

I have always admired her for that: a more memorable declaration than anything Dickinson ever wrote. And today's endless ovation for World War II vets doesn't change the fact that this nation has behaved boorishly, with colossal disrespect. If we cared about that war, the men who won it and the ideas it suggests, we would teach our children (at least) four topics:

• The major battles of the war. When I was a child in the 1960s, names like Corregidor and Iwo Jima were still sacred, and pronounced everywhere with respect. Writing in the 1960s about the battle of Midway, Samuel Eliot Morison stepped out of character to plead with his readers: "Threescore young aviators . . . met flaming death that day in reversing the verdict of battle. Think of them, reader, every Fourth of June. They and their comrades who survived changed the whole course of the Pacific War." Today the Battle of Midway has become niche-market nostalgia material, and most children (and many adults) have never heard of it. Thus we honor "the greatest generation." (And if I hear that phrase one more time I will surely puke.)

• The bestiality of the Japanese. The Japanese army saw captive soldiers as cowards, lower than lice. If we forget this we dishonor the thousands who were tortured and murdered, and put ourselves in danger of believing the soul-corroding lie that all cultures are equally bad or good. Some Americans nowadays seem to think America's behavior during the war was worse than Japan's--we did intern many loyal Americans of Japanese descent. That was unforgivable--and unspeakably trivial compared to Japan's unique achievement, mass murder one atrocity at a time.

In "The Other Nuremberg," Arnold Brackman cites (for instance) "the case of Lucas Doctolero, crucified, nails driven through hands, feet and skull"; "the case of a blind woman who was dragged from her home November 17, 1943, stripped naked, and hanged"; "five Filipinos thrown into a latrine and buried alive." In the Japanese-occupied Philippines alone, at least 131,028 civilians and Allied prisoners of war were murdered. The Japanese committed crimes against Allied POWs and Asians that would be hard still, today, for a respectable newspaper even to describe. Mr. Brackman's 1987 book must be read by everyone who cares about World War II and its veterans, or the human race.

• The attitude of American intellectuals. Before Pearl Harbor but long after the character of Hitlerism was clear--after the Nuremberg laws, the Kristallnacht pogrom, the establishment of Dachau and the Gestapo--American intellectuals tended to be dead against the U.S. joining Britain's war on Hitler.

Today's students learn (sometimes) about right-wing isolationists like Charles Lindbergh and the America Firsters. They are less likely to read documents like this, which appeared in Partisan Review (the U.S. intelligentsia's No. 1 favorite mag) in fall 1939, signed by John Dewey, William Carlos Williams, Meyer Schapiro and many more of the era's leading lights. "The last war showed only too clearly that we can have no faith in imperialist crusades to bring freedom to any people. Our entry into the war, under the slogan of 'Stop Hitler!' would actually result in the immediate introduction of totalitarianism over here. . . . The American masses can best help [the German people] by fighting at home to keep their own liberties." The intelligentsia acted on its convictions. "By one means or another," Diana Trilling later wrote of this period, "most of the intellectuals of our acquaintance evaded the draft."

Why rake up these Profiles in Disgrace? Because in the Iraq War era they have a painfully familiar ring.

• The veterans' neglected voice. World War II produced an extraordinary literature of first-person soldier narratives--most of them out of print or unknown. Books like George MacDonald Fraser's "Quartered Safe Out Here," Philip Ardery's "Bomber Pilot," James Fahey's "Pacific War Diary." If we were serious about commemorating the war, we would do something serious. The Library of America includes two volumes on "Reporting World War II," but where are the soldiers' memoirs versus the reporters'? If we were serious, we would have every grade school in the nation introduce itself to local veterans and invite them over. We'd use software to record these informal talks and weave them into a National Second World War Narrative in cyberspace. That would be a monument worth having.

Speaking of which: I am privileged to know a gentleman who enlisted in the Army as an aviation cadet in 1942, served in combat as a navigator in a B-24, was shot down and interned in Switzerland, escaped, and flew in the air transport command for the rest of the war. He became a scientist and had a long, distinguished career. Among his friends he is a celebrated raconteur, and his prose is strong and charming. He wrote up his World War II experiences, and no one--no magazine, no book publisher--will take them on. My suggestions have all bombed out.

If you're interested, give me a call. But I'm not holding my breath. The country is too busy toasting the "greatest generation" to pay attention to its actual members.

Mr. Gelernter is a contributing editor of The Weekly Standard and professor of computer science at Yale.

Copyright © 2004 Dow Jones & Company, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

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Friday, June 04, 2004


June 04, 2004, 8:51 a.m.
Rivalry at Normandy
U.S. Marines barred from the June 6, 1944 landings.

By W. Thomas Smith Jr.

Sixty-years-ago, along a 60-mile stretch of France's Normandy coastline, a combined force of American, British, and Canadian soldiers began streaming ashore as German artillery, mortar, machine-gun, and rifle fire ripped into their ranks. The mission of the Allied force was to kick down the door of Nazi Germany's Fortress Europe, and then launch a drive toward the heart of Adolf Hitler's Third Reich.

Overseen by American Gen. Dwight D. "Ike" Eisenhower, the operation was — and remains to this day — the largest amphibious assault in history.

Since then, the question has often been raised as to why the U.S. Marine Corps did not play a leading role in the landings. After all, the Corps's raison d'être was amphibious warfare. Marines had been perfecting the art of the amphibious assault since the 1920's, and between 1942 and 1944, they had put their skills to practical use at places like Guadalcanal, Makin, Bougainville, and Tarawa, in the Pacific.

In the Atlantic, Marines had trained Army forces for seaborne landings prior to the North African campaign in 1942, and then made landings during the same. Marines trained Army forces for the Sicilian-Italian landings in 1943. Marine Corps amphibious experts were on Ike's staff. And most Normandy-bound Army units were in fact instructed by Marines prior to the 1944 invasion.

So why didn't U.S. Marines storm the French coast with their Army counterparts?

First, the Marine Corps was then — as it has always been — much smaller than the Army. During World War II, the Corps swelled to a force comprising six divisions, whereas the Army expanded to 89 divisions. The Corps' resources were stretched thin, and much of its efforts were focused on the fighting in the Pacific.

Second, a deep-seeded rivalry between the Army and Marines was in full bloom: Its origins stretching back to World War I; the defining period of the modern Marine Corps.

Following the 1918 Battle of Belleau Wood (France), in which Marines played a leading role, newspapers in the U.S. credited much of the success of the American Expeditionary Force to the Marines. This occurred at the expense of deserving Army units even when referring to actions in which Marines did not participate.

In one instance, a number of newspapers covering the fighting at the Marne River bridges at Chateau-Thierry (a few days prior to the Battle of Belleau Wood) published headlines that read "Germans stopped at Chateau-Thierry with help of God and a few Marines." The headlines contributed to the Corps' already legendary reputation, and the Army was justifiably incensed. The Germans in fact had been stopped at Chateau-Thierry by the U.S. Army's 7th machinegun battalion.

Army leaders — including Generals George C. Marshall, Eisenhower, and Omar N. Bradley — were determined not to be upstaged by Marines, again. Thus, when America entered World War II in late 1941, the Marine Corps was deliberately excluded from large-scale participation in the European theater. And when the largest amphibious operation in history was launched, it was for all intents and purposes an Army show.

In the wee hours of June 6, 1944, paratroopers from the American 82nd, 101st, and British 6th Airborne divisions began jumping over France. Hours later, the first assault waves of the initial 175,000-man seaborne force began hitting the Normandy beaches at the Bay of Seine. Five beaches comprised the landing areas: Sword, Juno, and Gold Beaches were struck by Lt. Gen. Miles Christopher Dempsey's Second British Army. Omaha and Utah Beaches were stormed by Gen. Bradley's First U.S. Army.

Between Omaha and Utah, 225 men of the U.S. 2nd Ranger Battalion were tasked with scaling the 100-foot cliffs of Pointe du Hoc. There, five 155-millimeter guns were emplaced in reinforced concrete bunkers. As such the position encompassed "the most dangerous battery in France." It had to be knocked out to protect the landings.

When the Rangers began suffering heavy losses, brief consideration was given to sending-in the Marines from one of the offshore ships' detachments.

Those slated to go were leathernecks from the 84-man Marine Detachment aboard the battleship U.S.S. Texas. On the morning of June 7 (D-plus-one), the Texas's Marines began making last minute preparations: Wiping down weapons, distributing grenades, waterproofing field packs, and sharpening K-Bar fighting knives. Others were on the mess decks eating the traditional pre-landing breakfast of steak and eggs: A fact that concerned the Navy's medical corpsmen who feared they would be treating stomach wounds later in the day. Those anxious to go ashore, watched the ongoing action from the ship's railings.

In his book, Spearheading D-Day, Jonathan Gawne writes, "Most of these Marines had no combat experience and had only been in the Corps for a few months [the same could have been said of many of the soldiers who had just landed]. One of them [the Marines] commented: 'This is going to be the biggest slaughter since Custer got his at the Little Big Horn.'"

At the last minute, word was passed down through the Army chain of command that no Marines would be allowed to go ashore, not even riding shotgun on landing craft ferrying Army troops or supplies. Rumors quickly spread that the Army leadership feared a repeat of the media gaffes in 1918. They did not want to see headlines that read, Marines save Rangers at Normandy. Consequently, the Marines were ordered to "stand down."

Though little-known outside of special-operations circles, Marines did however play a few combat roles in the invasion.

Prior-to, during, and after the landings, Marines assigned to the Office of Strategic Services (OSS) — the predecessor to the Central Intelligence Agency — planned and led sabotage and resistance operations with the French underground against the occupying Germans. On D-Day, Marines helped pave the way for British and American pathfinders and paratroopers who dropped behind enemy lines. Additionally, a handful of Marine Corps observers were attached to Army landing forces.

Offshore, Marines were positioned high in the superstructures of American warships in the English Channel. From their lofty perches, the riflemen fired at and detonated floating mines as the ships moved in close to "bombardment stations" along the French coastline. It was reminiscent of the Old Corps during the age of sail when sharp-shooting Marines climbed the masts and riggings and battled enemy crews from the "fighting tops."

Normandy was indeed big, but the war itself was far bigger. There was enough action in both the Atlantic and Pacific theaters for everyone, and everyone got to play. But that failed to stanch the growing interservice rivalry between the Army and Marines.

The day before the invasion of Normandy, a restless Army Lt. Gen. George S. Patton Jr. addressed his troops (the shorter, less-profane version of that address was made famous by actor George C. Scott, who ironically was a former U.S. Marine).

Publicly, Patton was full of fire and an unsated desire to kill the enemy. Privately, he was disappointed. Neither he nor his 1st U.S. Army Group — a skeleton host formed to deceive the Germans into believing that the Americans would land at Pas de Calais — were going to participate in the landings. But unbeknownst to the general, the coming weeks would see Eisenhower bring Patton off the sidelines, give him command of the U.S. Third Army, and then hurl that force against the reconstituted German defenses beyond the Normandy beachhead. In that capacity, Patton was destined to make headlines of his own.

Outlining his colorful albeit controversial vision of the future, Patton said, "The quicker we clean up this g**damned mess, the quicker we can take a little jaunt against the purple pissing Japs and clean out their nest, too. Before the g**damned Marines get all of the credit."

— A former U.S. Marine infantry leader and paratrooper, W. Thomas Smith Jr. is a freelance journalist whose work has appeared in a variety of national and international publications. His third book, Alpha Bravo Delta Guide to American Airborne Forces, has just been published.

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