Tuesday, November 21, 2006


The assassination of Lebanon's Pierre Amine Gemayel

The following unedited statement was just issued by my friend, Dr. Walid Phares, a senior fellow at the Foundation for the Defense of Democracies (FDD) and a columnist at World Defense Review:

"The terrorist assassination of Minister Pierre Gemayel in Beirut is another war crime against the democratically elected Government and Parliament of Lebanon, and another strike in the Terror War waged by the Syrian regime and its allies against the Cedars Revolution and Lebanon 's democracy. Hence, the response should be at the hands of the international community, starting from the United Nations' Security Council to the various countries worldwide concerned with democracy and human rights.

"Pierre Amin Gemayel was elected a member of parliament in June 2005 after the withdrawal of Syrian troops from Lebanon in April of that same year. He was one of the leaders of the Cedars Revolution and the minister of industry in the Seniora Government. Gemayel was an active advocate against the Syrian occupation of Lebanon , for the implementation of UNSCR 1559 and calling for the disarming of all militias, including Hezbollah. The young leader has been calling for the resignation of pro-Syrian President Emile Lahoud and for prosecuting the assassins of former Prime Minister Rafiq Hariri. In short, Pierre A. Gemayel was one of the pillars of the political resistance to the Syrian and Iranian regimes in Lebanon . He and his colleagues were calling for the disarming of Hezbollah and the inclusion of moderate Shiite leaders in the political process.

"Hezbollah and the Syrian-Iranian axis have considered the last legislative elections in the US and the formation of the Baker Commission as a signal to wage terror campaigns to crumble the political process in Iraq and the cabinet in Lebanon . This week, secretary general of Hezbollah Hassan Nasrallah and his allies were preparing to wage an urban uprising against the Government. But the supporters of the Cedars Revolution said they will take the streets again.

"Hence, as we witnessed today in Beirut , the 'Terror arm' of the Syro-Iranian camp moved forward to strike the Government instead.

"1) Killing three ministers would paralyze the functioning of the cabinet per internal regulations. The assassination of Pierre Gemayel is a step in the campaign to "empty the cabinet" of its members.

"2) This assassination aims at intimidating civil society from mobilizing against the pro-Syrian campaign.

"In response, the international community should act swiftly in defense of Lebanon 's population under the UN chapter 7, by voting a new resolution to reinforce the UNIFIL in Lebanon and endow it with a deterrence and security mandate to protect civil society from violence as was the case in East Timor and Kosovo.

"The Cedars Revolution real and strategic response to the Terror War waged against Lebanon 's civil society should be to press for the removal of Emile Lahoud from the Presidency and disband his security operatives."

Tony Badran, a research fellow at FDD, says:

"A few days ago, another Lebanese leader warned that the Syrians might kill ministers in order to force the dissolving of the government after the resignation of the Shiite ministers.

"The Syrians have one overriding objective: the scuttling of the international tribunal into the assassination of Hariri in which Syria was implicated. The U.N. is meeting today to adopt it and send it back to the Lebanese gov. to be ratified.

"The noise and chatter about 'engaging' Syria has emboldened Syria to mount an offensive in Lebanon , interpreting what it sees as U.S. weakness as a license to kill and redominate Lebanon.

"The Syrians have told a recent British delegate that cooperation on Lebanon is out of the question. The Syrians are set to redominate Lebanon . "

Saturday, November 18, 2006


Congaree River Bridge - Columbia, S.C.

Also known as the Gervais Street Bridge
I don't know how many times - probably about a zillion - I've photographed this bridge over the years.

Did so again today before the 52-7 whippin' we (Carolina) gave Middle Tennessee State.


[Visit W. Thomas Smith Jr.'s official website at uswriter.com]

Thursday, November 16, 2006


"The T"

Who is this?
Think you know?
Be the first to contact me here with the correct answer, and we'll post your name and tell everybody what a smart guy or gal you are.

Sorry, no hints (or have I already given you one?). This is too easy.

UPDATE: Folks, no: This is NOT some Russian general. He is NOT a pirate captain. And he is NOT Alexander Hamilton.
This is too easy, and I've given you a hint.
OK, one more - "T" is for a particular battle maneuver.


Importance of a 5-Point Harness Carseat

Here is a must see video posted at YouTube by a mom who lost her precious little three-year-old son, Kyle David Miller, in an accident because of a faulty seatbelt.
Absolutely hearbreaking. If you can get through this video without shedding a tear - or a bucket of them - you are a better person than me.
Here 'tis
PLEASE, if you have little ones, strap them in with a five-point harness carseat.


U.S. Marine to receive Medal of Honor

"Where do we get such men?"
Corporal Jason Dunham will receive the Medal of Honor (posthumously) - the highest national award for battlefield heroism - for his actions in Iraq near the Syrian border on April 14, 2004.
Jason, a 22-year-old New York-native, was leading a patrol from his unit, Kilo Company, 3rd Battalion, 7th Marines, when he received a message that another Marine unit had been ambushed. Responding to the attack site, Jason's men encountered several cars full of insurgents trying to escape. When Jason approached one of the cars, an insurgent fighter jumped out and grabbed the young Marine by the throat.
According to this week's cover story in Marine Corps Times, written by Gidget Fuentes (with my friend, Beth Zimmerman, and John Hoellwarth contributing), "The corporal engaged the insurgent in hand-to-hand combat."
As he was struggling with the enemy, Jason shouted to his Marines, "No. No. No. Watch his hand."
As the fight continued between the two men, the guerrilla dropped a grenade. The pin had been pulled and the arming spoon released. Jason then jumped on the grenade, using his helmet and body to smother the blast. Shrapnel ripped through his skull.

Eight days later, Jason died at the Naval Hospital in Bethesda, Maryland.

His mom and dad were by his side.

God bless Cpl. Jason Dunham and his family.
Semper Fi,

[Visit W. Thomas Smith Jr.'s official website at uswriter.com]

Sunday, November 12, 2006


Mountain Warfare Training

This is a somewhat grainy snapshot of yours truly - as 1st squad leader of 1st Platoon, Charlie Company, 1st Battalion, 5th Marines - navigating somewhere deep in the High Sierras about 22-years-ago. We were just before shipping out to Okinawa.
The Marine Corps Birthday this past Friday (November 10, 2006) followed by Veterans Day on Saturday, spurred me to pull out some old pics.

Semper Fi,
P.S. Oh yeah, check out today's Accuracy in Media.

[Visit W. Thomas Smith Jr.'s official website at uswriter.com]

Saturday, November 11, 2006


Happy Marine Corps Birthday and Happy Veterans Day!

So my friend and part-time publicist, Marcia Goldman, just informed me that Blogger Paul Gebel, an all-around cool guy and an active-duty Naval officer currently serving on the ground in Iraq, says I don't "spend too much time" on my blog.
What can I say? He's right, and his comments spurred me to do a quick update.
Anyway, Happy Veterans Day everyone, especially to guys like Paul who are out there on the wire keeping the wolf away from the door (as we Marines like to say).
Speaking of Marines, we're getting tons of feedback on our Marine Corps Birthday (November 10, 1775) piece, published yesterday at Townhall.com. Thanks to all who've republished it (like my dear friends at Family Security Matters) and linked to it - including Michelle Malkin, who often so graciously links to our stories, also LaShawn Barber, Mary Katherine Ham (Now, TELL ME those three aren't only great writers, but great looking women to boot!), and Bill Ardolino over at INDC Journal - as well as those who have flooded my inbox with well wishes.
And speaking of Veterans Day, check out our latest at National Review Online, which was republished by CBS News and others.
Still receiving tons of mail on that.
Here's why: We talk about the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs launching a brand new initiative aimed at getting all veterans to wear their military decorations on Veterans Day as a way of expressing both national patriotism and loyalty to our currently serving soldiers and sailors. God bless them all.
Semper Fi,
P.S. The picture above is of Marines during a break in the fighting on Bougainville, 1944.

[Visit W. Thomas Smith Jr.'s official website at uswriter.com]


Col. Ripley on Oliver North's 'War Stories,' tomorrow night

This Sunday night, Col. John W. Ripley (USMC, ret.) will be the focus of Oliver North's 'War Stories' at 8 pm (EST) on FOX News.
A little background: Col. Ripley, the legendary U.S. Marine combat commander (he also commanded British Royal Marine Commandos in combat) single-handedly blew up the Dong Ha bridge in Vietnam, thus blunting the largest North Vietnamese Army offensive (the 1972 Easter Offensive).
Yes, that's Col. Ripley inspecting the Marine guard detachment at Annapolis.
Here's more about him here, here, here, and here.
Before we hang up, let me point you to some other recent stories: One here at World Defense Review about a brand new Maritime Homeland Defense Force and a few here at Family Security Matters, including a piece about the hunting-miltary connection (Yes, including my just-turned-18 nephew Michael Paul Fowler, the proud owner of a brand-new Remington 870 12-gauge pump-action shotgun. It's just like his uncle's 12-g, who bought his when he was 16-years-old.) also here and here. And then we have a republished piece about 'smart soldiers' at Accuracy in Media.
Semper Fi,

[Visit W. Thomas Smith Jr.'s official website at uswriter.com]

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?