Taking NATO To The Woodshed

On his way out the door, retiring U.S. Secretary of Defense Robert Gates lets it fly.

Gates Says NATO Could Face ‘Irrelevance’ in the Future

American Defense Secretary Robert Gates has told NATO members that they need to do more — and spend more — to support the alliance.

ROBERT GATES: “The blunt reality is that there will be dwindling appetite and patience in the US Congress — and in the American body politic writ large — to expend increasingly precious funds on behalf of nations that are apparently unwilling to devote the necessary resources or make the necessary changes to be serious and capable partners in their own defense.”

On Friday, Mr. Gates gave his last policy speech before he retires as defense secretary on June thirtieth. He spoke in Brussels, Belgium, at the headquarters of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization. NATO was created in nineteen forty-nine to defend western Europe against the Soviet Union.

See also:
Transcript of Defense Secretary Gates’s Speech on NATO’s Future
Gates rebukes European allies in farewell speech
‘Collective Military Irrelevance’
After Gates’ Blunt Warning, What’s Next for NATO?
US warns Europe over NATO future
Libya, Europe and the future of NATO
NATO’S future at risk, warns Pentagon chief
Gates offers grim account of NATO’s Libya efforts
Gates slams NATO allies over share of combat burden
Where Gates criticizes, Obama celebrates
How long will the U.S. find NATO relevant and affordable?

Just how worthless is NATO? They’ve been battling third rate military power Libya for three months now, NATO’s running out of ammunition, and Moammar Gadhafi is still there. What would NATO do if, say, Russia attacked western Europe? If NATO can’t defeat Libya, how can they possibly defend themselves? It’s more than obvious that NATO has outlived its usefulness and needs to be disbanded. Why should the United States continue to put up the vast majority of funding, troops, and equipment to support Europe’s defense, when Europe refuses to defend itself?

/and why the [expletive deleted] is Turkey a member of NATO, they not only don’t contribute much of anything, they actively work against the other alliance members, how insane is that?

Seriously, Just How [Expletive Deleted] Up Is This?

How is this unimaginable travesty even remotely possible? It almost has to be some kind of perverted, totally unfunny practical joke.

Iran wins seat on UN Commission on Status of Women

Iran has won a four-year seat on the United Nations Commission on the Status of Women, an influential body committed to promoting gender equality.

At a meeting at UN headquarters in New York on Wednesday, Iran was elected, through a vote of acclamation, as a member on the Commission on the Status of Women (CSW).

Iran’s election to the commission came Just days after Iran announced it withdrew from a high-profile bid for a seat on the UN Human Rights Council.

When its term begins in 2011, Iran will be joined by 10 other countries namely Belgium, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Estonia, Georgia, Jamaica, Liberia, the Netherlands, Spain, Thailand and Zimbabwe to help set UN policy on gender equality and advancement of women.

The CSW, a functional commission of the United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC), is tasked with setting global standards and policies to promote gender equality, monitoring the implementation of measures for advancement of women, appraising progress made at the national, sub-regional, regional and global levels, and conducting review of cases of women rights violation across the globe.

See also:
EXCLUSIVE: U.N. Elects Iran to Commission on Women’s Rights
Iran selected for women’s rights body
Iran on UN women’s rights c’tee
Iran wins seat in UN women’s rights body
United Nations Names Iran to Commission on the Status of Women
Misogynist Regime to Help Monitor Women’s Rights Violations
No Joke: U.N. Appoints Iran to Women’s Rights
Activists in uproar after UN agrees to seat Iran on women’s rights panel
U.S. Mum During Iran Vote to U.N. Women’s Commission
United Nations Commission On The Status Of Women
United Nations Commission on the Status of Women

Iran on an international womens’ rights commission, this Iran?

/seriously, while you’re at it, why not just name Hitler the Rabbi of a Synagogue or elect Osama bin Laden Pope?

65 Years Ago Today

/US Army Signal Corps

CHAPTER 20 CHRISTMAS EVE

CHRISTMAS EVE WAS QUIET. The commanders and staffs took official notice of the occasion. To all of the command posts within Bastogne went a G-2 reminder from the 101st’s chief joker, Colonel Danahy. It was a sitrep overlay in red, white and green, the red outlining the enemy positions completely encircling the town and the green showing only in the words “Merry Christmas” across the position held by the defenders.1 (Map 18, page 156.)

General McAuliffe also rose to the occasion with an inspired communiqué in which he told his men about the German demand for surrender and his answer to them. The rest of his Christmas message read as follows:

What’s merry about all this, you ask? We’re fighting, it’s cold, we aren’t home. All true, but what has the proud Eagle Division accomplished with its worthy comrades of the 10th Armored Division, the 705th Tank Destroyer Battalion and all the rest? Just this: We have stopped cold everything that has been thrown at us from the north, east, south and west. We have identifications from four German panzer divisions, two German infantry divisions and one German parachute division. These units, spearheading the last desperate German lunge, were heading straight west for key points when the Eagle Division was hurriedly ordered to stem the advance. How effectively this was done will be written in history; not alone in our Division’s glorious history but in world history. The Germans actually did surround us, their radios blared our doom. Allied troops are counterattacking in force. We continue to hold Bastogne. By holding Bastogne we assure the success of the Allied armies. We know that our Division commander, General Taylor, will say: “Well done!” We are giving our country and our loved ones at home a worthy Christmas present and being privileged to take part in this gallant feat of arms are truly making for ourselves a merry Christmas.2

Privately, on the phone that night to General Middleton, McAuliffe expressed his true feeling about Christmas in these words:

Map 18
“The finest Christmas present the 101st could get would be a relief tomorrow.”

But General McAuliffe’s greeting to his troops proved to be in every part a prophetic utterance though the quiet of Christmas Eve did not last for long.

That night the town was bombed twice. During the first raid, in the late evening, a bomb landed on the hospital of the 20th Armored Infantry Battalion near the intersection of the main roads from Arlon and Neufchâteau. It caved in the roof, burying 20 patients and killing a Belgian woman who was serving as a nurse. Another bomb landed on the headquarters of Combat Command B, doing heavy damage and knocking down the Christmas tree in the message center. The men set up the tree again, and in an elaborate ceremony, one of the sergeants pinned the Purple Heart on a mangled doll.2A

Except for those bombings Christmas Eve passed without unusual pressure from the enemy. (Plate 35 A and B.) The journal entries of the different regiments all use the word “quiet” in describing the period. But that is a word that simply does not record the tumult in the thoughts and emotions of the men of Bastogne. Such was their reaction to the Christmas and to the memories surrounding it, that for the first time all around the perimeter men felt fearful. It seemed to them that the end was at hand. That night many of them shook hands with their comrades. They said to one another that it would probably be their last night together. Many of the commanders saw this happening, though they knew it had little relation to the still strong tactical situation.2B (Map 19, page 158, shows the situation.)

In the 502d Parachute Infantry the officers heard Christmas Eve Mass in the tenth-century chapel of the beautiful Rolle Château (plate 34) which they were using for a command post.” It was a happy occasion, well attended by the neighboring Belgians who had rounded out the regimental messes with contributions of flour and sides of beef from their own stores.4

. . .

See also:
Bastogne: The Story Of The First Eight Days In Which The 101st Airborne Division Was Closed Within The Ring Of German Forces
Bastogne: The Story Of The First Eight Days In Which The 101st Airborne Division Was Closed Within The Ring Of German Forces (Hardcover)
Bastogne – Dec. 1944, a journal
Siege of Bastogne

And you think you have problems?

/take a few moments today to give prayers and thanks for those troops, away from home on Christmas Eve, past, present, and future, who have sacrificed and will sacrifice to defend and protect your uniquely American way of life, freedom isn’t free

Sucks To Be This Stupid

UPDATE:

Girl with 56 stars tattooed on face admits she asked for them

Kimberley Vlaminck had insisted she dozed off after asking the tattooist for just three small stars – then woke in horror to find her face was covered.

The Belgian blamed the Flemish-speaking tattooist for not being able to understand her French and English instructions.

Amid a frenzy of media attention, she then pledged to sue the tattoo artist, Rouslan Toumaniantz, for the £9,000 she needed for laser surgery to have them removed.

She said after the tattooing last week: “It is terrible for me. I cannot go out on to the street. I look like a freak.”

But the 18-year-old has finally confessed she did not fall asleep, that she wanted all the stars and was “fully aware” of what Mr Toumaniantz was doing.

Ms Vlaminck told a Dutch TV crew: “I asked for 56 stars and initially adored them. But when my father saw them, he was furious. So I said I fell asleep and the that the tattooist mad made a mistake.”

Mr Toumaniantz – himself covered from head to foot in tattoos and piercings – had consistently denied he had made a mistake and always insisted Vlaminck wanted all 56 stars.

He said at the time: “I maintain that she absolutely agreed that I tattoo those 56 stars on the left side of her face.”

But despite insisting she had asked for 56 stars, he still initially agreed to pay for half of the treatment to remove the tattoos.

He said: “Kimberley is unhappy and it is not my wish to have an unsatisfied client.”

“I don’t regret it. To tell you the truth, this has given me some publicity.” Mr Toumanaintz is now said to have withdrawn his cash offer and said from now on he will get written consent from clients before he begins tattooing.

See also:
Girl with tattooed face admits she wanted all 56 stars
Kimberley Vlaminck, who got 56 star tattoos on her face, admits lying
Kimberley Vlaminck admits face was tattooed with stars at her request
56-star tattoo girl admits: I was awake

/like I said, no one “sleeps through” 56 stars being tattooed on their face

File under: seemed like a good idea at the time. Mamas don’t let your children grow up to be idiots.

Teenager Kimberley Vlaminck has 56 stars tattooed on face after ‘falling asleep’

This is the sight teenager Kimberley Vlaminck woke up to after falling asleep in a tattooist’s chair – despite claiming she only asked for three stars.

The 18-year-old, who is now suing the body artist for £8,500, said: “I can’t go out on the street. I am so embarrassed. I look horrible.”

Kimberley says she nodded off during the lengthy and painful procedure and awoke to “the nightmare” of 56 stars across her face.

But tattoo artist Rouslan Toumaniantz denies her allegations. He says she only complained after her father “threw a fit” and her boyfriend threatened to dump her.

Kimberley, of Courtrai in Belgium, claimed the Romanian tattooist had failed to under-stanher French and English. She said: “I explicitly said in my native tongue, French, and also in a little bit of English when he looked confused, that I wanted three little stars only near my left eye.”

But Mr Toumaniantz said he knew exactly what she wanted. He added: “She was awake and looked into the mirror several times as the procedure was taking place.

“The trouble all started when she went home and her father and boyfriend threw a fit. They are saying things now like I doped her or hypnotised her. What rubbish. She asked for 56 stars and that’s what she got.”

Kimberley has launched the civil action, seeking money for tattoo removal surgery.

starsarefug1

See also:
Twinkle, Twinkle Little Dumbass
Girl Sues for Stars Tattoo All Across Her Face
Oops! (Photos) Kimberley Vlaminck Passes Out – Awakes With 56 Tattoos
Teenager, Kimberley Vlaminck with 56 Tattooed Stars On Her Face
Video: Drunk? Kimberley Vlaminck Wakes To 56 Face Tattoos
Teen sues over face tattoos, says artist put extra star tattoos on her face while she was sleeping
I’ll pay for half those star tattoos to be removed, says the man who engraved 56 on 18-year-old girl’s face

Hey, I only wanted three stars tattooed on my face, I fell asleep while someone was repeatedly stabbing my face with a needle, I was drunk, doped up, hypnotized, I thought I was dreaming, I thought they were rub ons, the dog ate my sanity! Yeah, right, that’s the ticket!

Okay, she’s obviously lying, no one could “sleep through” having 56 stars tattooed on their face, but that’s actually beside the point. Let’s back up to the beginning. So, she walks into The Tattoo Box with the intention of having three stars tattooed on her face. Then, she meets and lays eyes on her “tattoo artist”, Rouslan Toumaniantz. Now, I ask you, would you let this man tattoo anything on your face? What’s wrong with this picture?

PH1_TATOE_160609_05

It was a rhetorical question. Anyway, it’s he said, she said, only he said he’s got a witness to the whole sordid episode.

Good luck finding any type of good paying job.

/let this be a lesson to you youngsters out there, DON’T GET TATTOOS ON YOUR FACE!