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January 25, 2012     The Florala News
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PAGE 4 THE FLORALA NEWS- WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 25, 2012 Comments Letter to the Editor The Florala News' editorial section is intended to provide our readers and citizens as complete an opportunity to express themselves with as few re- strictions as possible. Profanity, direct or implied, and attacks on one's per- son rather than on actions or deeds are not acceptable. Publication on this page in NO WAY REFLECTS AGREEMENT OR ENDORSEMENT BY THIS NEWSPAPER. Facebook, Facebook, Facebook. I sometimes shake my head in wonderment at the number of people that I encoun- ter on a daily basis that make me, well, shake my head. Don't get me wrong, I love the thing, but if I have to read one more post about whose birthday someone shares or their list of accomplishments for the day, along with many other things that have no substance whatsoever, I'd rather just invent a website showing grass growing, because ulti- mately that's more interesting to me than the former. Facebook is a wondrous, wondrous thing. I really am glad that it is out there, cradling in its precious walls the countless pictures and thoughts of the millions of people around the world that have their own special place to call '%ome." I rarely upload a new status on there, but when I do, [ try my best to make it something to make someone else think, laugh or see another point of view previously unseen. I rarely "check-in" because I know there are people out there who don't really care where I am every moment of the day and quite frankly, I don't want Facebook to be my persona] GPS. I have one of those on my phone, thank you very much. Every now and again, I come across something that someone has posted that I don't agree.with. I usually steer clear of saying anything to said person, but sometimes my stubbornness gets the better of me and I just have to open my big mouth. In typed form of course. Case in point, this weekend I saw something a "friend" had posted on her page regarding the recent, how shall I say it... um, Marines incident. It was a link to an email written by Rep. Allen West (R-FL), a former Army lieuten- ant colonel, titled, "Shut Your Mouth, War Is Hell." Ac- cording to the website, the weeklystandard.com, Rep. West sent them the email and gave permission to print it on the website. Basically he said, "The Marines were wrong" give them their punishment, make them do this and that, and "As for everyone else, unless you have been shot at by the Taliban, shut your mouth, war is hell." I think the majority of common sense Americans know that war is hell without stepping onto the battle field, but thanks for offering that news flash, Rep. West. I made a comment under her post offering my opinion on the matter (which I cannot quote now because she has since "un-friended" me). Nothing major, just a sentence or two, no cursing or yelling, just throwing in my two cents. Now, some people may say she didn't ask for my opinion, but if you post something on a social, public forum, you better be prepared for all you get. Good or bad. So, I made my point, and a few others did after me, and I believed that would be the end of it. Nope. I was wrong. Sometime after all this, maybe the next day, she posted the same story again and tagged me in it so that I would get a notification from Facebook of her posting. She said "Sorry Michelle, you're WRONG on this one," and told me to read the whole article, which I did the FIRST time I read it. I don't make comments on something I haven't read all the way through. I'm not an idiot. I simply made another com- ment saying, "I did read the whole article. And don't say I'm wrong. I have my opinion and you have yours." SURELY, I thought THAT would be the end of it. Nope. Wrong again. At this point, because I was specifically tagged in this post, MY friends chimed in 'and backed me up simply for having another opinion, one of which is a Marine and served our country during wartime. I'm pretty sure he has a right to say something on that subject. After asking her if she was or had been a Marine, to which she had replied she was not nor never had been, he informed her that Rep. West "was relieved of his command after illegally arresting, detaining, and threatening a Civilian Iraqi Police Officer." That '%e chose to retire rather than face full investigation." He was simply saying it was not nice to tell me I was wrong in my beliefs based on the "specious remarks of a self-ag- grandizing politico." CROSSWORD Letter to the Editor Editor, I saw something very interesting on the news from Do- than the other night. Chief White from Slocomb said that they have put a sign up outside the police station that says, "Wanted." It flashes and if your name comes up on it, that means you owe old fines and other things that are connect- ed with the police department. This sign brings up people's names and what they are Wanted for. With a sign put up like this, it might really scare people to do what they are supposed to do. This is neat. Barbara Sue Dennis Florala Military President Barack Obama's vision for modernizing the U.S. military is little more than an exercise in "back to the future." Consider: Back in 2001, the armed forces were nearly a decade into positing what 21st-century warfare would en- taft. These considerations were based on notions set forth by the individual (military) services. They also considered how the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) could be struc- tured to meet strategic challenges beyond 2015. Each service posited a future according to its strategic and operational missions. In early 2001, as the newly elect- ed Bush administration took hold, Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld seemed determined to cut ground forces, eager instead to bolster the power-projection capabilities inherent in air and sea power. The Army countered that all but a handful of nations relied on ground forces for security. That being the cas, high-tech weapons like the F-22 Raptor and expensive naval forces, while essential to meeting high- end threats, would not be particularly useful in addressing challenges posed by potential second-tier threats emerging in North Korea, Iran, Syria, and evident in Saddam Hts- sein's Iraq. September 11, 2001 muted all such arguments. Over the remainder of the decade, the War on Terror put excessive demands on ground forces. The Air Force and the Navy became supporting services in a war where the Army and the Marine Corps bore the "heavy lifting." Indeed, the development and acquisition of high-tech systems like the F-22 Raptor and the F-35 Lighting II went into eclipse or steep reductions. Other Cold War "legacy" systems like the stealthy Comanche helicopter and the Crusader Gun Sys- tem were cancelled, and rightly so given the nature of the threat emanating from al Qaeda, the Taliban, and associ- ated groups. The Obama administration, partly reacting to budget- ary realities largely resulting from its profligate economic- stimulus spending and partly from ideological inclinations, is determined to reduce the DoD budget by $400 billion over the next decade. The reality is that the vision laid out by President Obama accords very much with where we were a decade ago. The Rumsfeld vision was to reduce the Army, which in January2001 numbered about 480,000, by two or more divisions. The new restructuring would lead to a lean- er and more flexible military. The bottom line was that U.S. technological superiority would provide a more efficient ap- proach to future warfare than depending on manpower-in- tensive formations of soldiers. Even a decade ago, this was not a new argument. Operating in the irradiated afterglow of Hiroshima and Modernization: Back to the Future Nagasaki 55 years earlier, the Truman.administration held that U.S. technological advantage in "air atomic" warfare capabilities obviated the need for large ground forces, which are expensive to maintain. In 1950, obsolescent Russian tanks and massive formations of North Korean and Chi- nese troops brought reality back into focus along the 38th parallel. Lessons from Korea went unheeded. In 1954, the new Republican administration of Dwight Eisenhower opted to depend on "massive retaliation" based on U.S. superiority in nuclear weapons. The Army was again reduced in strength. As the 1950s merged into the 1960s, agair/, the U.S. advan- tage in high-tech weaponry, while deterring Soviet aggres- sion, didn't prevent the emergence of challenges from the lower end of the spectrum, this time in Southeast Asia. The pendulum swung back with the Kennedy administration's focus on "flexible response." The Army was back and off to Vietnam The Obama administration's vision for the future closely mirrors that emerging from the early days of its immedi- ate predecessor. Nevertheless, as Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta has readily admitted, there are risks involved. What DoD needs is radical restructuring, which probably would result in added efficiencies. However, when dealing with national security, the bottom line is effectiveness and not efficiency. In those terms, the administration's vision for the future is nothing new. An American military based on European-style'eco- nomic and quasi-socialist political models will result in the same rapid decline in world leadership suffered by Britain, France, and even Russia during the last century. The result of the United States' retreat from the world stage will fos- ter the rise of a global hegemon willing to fill that vacuum, be it China or an unholy alliance of rogue states like Iran, Syria, Venezuela, and North Korea. Those are the threats, and they are real. Dr. Earl Tilford is a military historian and fellow for the Middle East & terrorism with The Center for Vision & Values at Grove City College. A retired Air Force intelligence officer, Dr. Tilford earned his PhD in American and Europe- an military history at George Washington University. From 1993 to 2001, he served as Director of Research at the U.S. Army's Strategic Studies Institute. In 2001, he left Govern- ment service for a professorship at Grove City College, where he taught courses in military history, national security, and international and domestic terrorism and counter-terror- ism. After his remarks, she unbelievably said, 'ou, sir, are a big disgrace to your Marines, then. And to your country (You are supposed to be loyal to your brothers)...What a sad, sad reflection on your past." And then told him, in an- other post right after, "ps - you are not a Marine - Marines have ba--s." Now, I found that completely disrespectful. She claims to be supporting the troops by her opinions on the Marines incident, yet blatantly disrespects one right out in the open. She then took the time to post something directly on my wall asking, "What happened to you? How could you loose your grip that bad?" One opinion, one DIFFERENCE of opinion, and suddenly I've lost my grip?? Come on. Like I said earlier, she has since taken me off her friends list which is just fine with me. She never posted anything with substance and anyone who immaturely acts like that is not worth calling a friend. Like I posted on Facebook yes- terday, 'Ya know, if I un-friended everyone I had a differ- ence of opinion with on Facebook, I'd have a lot less friends. Some people need to grow up." I have disagreed with many folks, but it's not worth losing real friends. Opinions are opinions and we all have them. I'd rather it be like that someone taking the opinion of someone else and making it their own because they don't have the brain power to think for themselves. i .... i/:iiiii ] 3 27 m m 59 32 34 VolunteerMatch.org Where volunteering begins, StatoPoint Media THEME: HOLLYWOOD LEGENDS ACROSS 1. Large, imposing house 6. "Lake" in France 9. *"Que ," sang Doris Day 13. Unwritten exams 14. Spermatozoa counterparts 15. *Hollywood legend quality? 16. Laker great 17. Judge on "Dancing with the Stars" 18. L on clothes 19. *"The Big Sleep" leading lady 21. *He played "Spartacus" 23. Before, old English 24. Ancient Greeks' harp 25. Cattle prod 28. "For" in Spanish 30. *"Louie, I think this is the beginning of a beautiful friend- ship," in "Casablanca," e.g. 35. Port of Yemen 37. Comedy Central's 1990s animated series "Dr. , Pro- fessional Therapist" 39. Country snnger Tucker 40. Irritate 41. of parsley 43. *What Perkins did in the shower in "Psycho" 44. Accord or comport with 46. Yugoslavian communist 47. Location of Dante's nine circles 48. *Eastwood's Josey Wales, e.g. 50. 2009 Daniel Day-Lewis musical 52. Charlotte of "Facts of Life" fame 53. First, second or third nn baseball 55. Follow ems 57. *Last name of two female legends 61. *He called for Stella 64. Relating to axis 65. Second person of "be" 67. "Unbearable Lightness of 69. Pulitzer winner Cather 70. Decorate cake ,: 71. Dam 72. Flower holder 73. Once around 74. Undo DOWN 1 *Garland to Minnelli 2. United Emirates 3. Hindu serpent deity 4. New York is famous for it 5. Protective embankment 6. Be lazy or idle 7. Maria 8. *Canadian funny man 9. Ore smelting by-product 10. Basketball great "The Pearl" Monroe 11. Capital of Latvia 12. Greek god of war 15. Like a native speaker 20. Accidental holes 22. Mine deposit 24. Soldier's bathroom 25. *Famous for her low, husky voice 26. *"Farewell" from Catherine Deneuve 27. Blue and white pottery style 29. Wholly engrossed 31. 100m 32. Prefix for "among" 33. African antelope 34. *He said "Frankly, my dear, I don't give a damn." 36. A Broadway legend, given name 38. Tubular pasta 42. One who's doomed 45. Singular of tabulae 49. It engulfed the world in the 1940s 51. Render capable 54. Escargot 56. Express contempt 57. Hems and 58. Sign of escape 59. Arrange in a stack 60. Healing ointment 61. Road Runner sound 62. Cher or Celine Dion? 63. Dollar bills 66. AV manufacturer 68. " whiz!" last week's solution