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Thread: What has happened to us? 9/11, sixteen years on...

  1. #41
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    Default Re: What has happened to us? 9/11, sixteen years on...

    How do we expect politics to not include identity when we have James Byrd, James Craig Anderson, Trayvon Martin, Michael Brown, and hundreds of others?

    ...and how the hell do I know Dylan Roof's name and not a single name of the men and women he murdered?

    So much to write if this weren't just the internet...
    Jason Babcock

  2. #42
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    Default Re: What has happened to us? 9/11, sixteen years on...

    Jason...my gosh you nailed it...thank you

    Ray
     

  3. #43
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    Default Re: What has happened to us? 9/11, sixteen years on...

    Hey Jason,

    I've got to respectfully disagree. The examples that you mentioned in your response are basically examples of, or the results of, identify politics. I'm definitely not looking for a back & forth 'discussion', so I'm may just leave it at that. Thanks.
     

  4. #44
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    Default Re: What has happened to us? 9/11, sixteen years on...

    I was stationed on a carrier in Norfolk, VA on 9/11. I had reported 6 days prior and was having coffee with a chaplain in his office with the TV on in the background. We both realized what was happening when the second plane hit the tower. The ship was due to deploy on 9/19 so our level of readiness was good. We started both reactors and got ready to leave port so we could defend the ship from further attacks. A ship tied a pier is vulnerable. We ended up not leaving and spent 3 days onboard while the base was locked down. Once we could leave, the priority was to get all our stuff on the ship to deploy. The day of deployment, we had about a dozen members of Congress for the send off. While deployed we had a constant stream of visitors from the House and Senate. Once in the area of the Gulf of Oman, we were part of five carrier group including another US carrier, UK carrier (can't remember which one), Italian Garibaldi, and French De Gaulle. We were a powerful force and spent 159 straight days launching airstrikes before finally having some days off. We were New York's carrier (T Roosevelt) and there was a certain amount of pride that we were taking the fight to the Taliban and Al Qaeda. About three months into the airstrikes, the Taliban was no longer an organized military with tanks, personnel carriers, and helicopters, we destroyed all that. After that, it was all ground fighting with guys on the ground trying to contain a huge country with no infrastructure.

    I was gone during the heady days following 9/11, I missed all the fear mongering and constant rumors of terrorist attacks. I returned to the US in Late March of 2002 and we were welcomed as heroes because we were constantly in the news. I had no idea of the scope of our deployment. We just did our jobs. It all kind of made me uncomfortable.

    In May of 2002, we entered a maintenance period in the shipyard until mid December. Rumors were swirling about an Iraq invasion and they got worse when we heard that the second half of Christmas leave was cancelled. We left port the first week of January 2003 for an exercise near Puerto Rico. I told all my guys to bring their stuff like they were deploying. We lost a Tomcat (not the crew) and a replacement was quickly flown down from Oceana. A few days later we turned east and headed to the Med. We spent several weeks driving up and down the Syrian coast and it all seemed to spiraling out of control, moving so fast. I was an officer of the deck so I was driving the carrier. We watched as Shock and Awe started, our surface ships were unloading their Tomahawks on Iraq. We had to launch up over Turkey and then south into Iraq to avoid Syrian and Israeli airspace. Then came the airstrikes, we had two carriers in the NE Med so aircraft were in the air 24/7. We were the night carrier, we launched starting at 7pm and recovered the last aircraft at 8am. Honestly, there was a big level of unease about the whole thing. While we were driven by patriotism for OEF, OIF seemed more like an exercise that no one was really that comfortable about. We didn't have the same influx of visitors but we did have a big media presence because we were the night carrier and the time zones worked better for US news coverage. We also had a tight rein on what was reported. Peter Arnett was kicked off the ship for using a satellite phone to make a report. Bottom line, I was never comfortable about OIF even though I was a player as the guy driving the carrier that launched the strikes.
    I heart burnt bikes.

  5. #45
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    Default Re: What has happened to us? 9/11, sixteen years on...

    Big Bill, a sincere THANK YOU and all who serve and have served.

    Has the nation come together? After every big event, we’re told this by politicians and the media. I’ve chosen not to believe either of those factions.

    Has our nation ever really been together?

    Perhaps that’s what drives us.
     

  6. #46
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    Default Re: What has happened to us? 9/11, sixteen years on...

    Helping my kid with US history (articles of confederation, constitutional congress) and I'm reminded that the common cause is much more the exception than the rule, ever since this experiment began. But still possible.

    Thanks to all who sacrifice for the rest of us.
     

  7. #47
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    Default Re: What has happened to us? 9/11, sixteen years on...

    Quote Originally Posted by Corso View Post
    Big Bill, a sincere THANK YOU and all who serve and have served.

    Has the nation come together? After every big event, we’re told this by politicians and the media. I’ve chosen not to believe either of those factions.

    Has our nation ever really been together?

    Perhaps that’s what drives us.
    If you look at huge events in US history, the nation was still wracked with internal strife. In WW2, we interred Japanese Americans, we kept the military segregated, the nation was far from a unified front of patriots. We're taught differently because that's what we want history to remember. Now we have division at the forefront on the 24/7 news media. Are we more unified than divided as a nation? I'd say we are, but that doesn't mean that we need to address some glaring issues. Confederate monuments were erected all over the south in the last century. Are these monuments a reminder of proud southern heritage or a symbol meant to remind blacks in the early to mid 1900's that they are viewed "separate but equal" but really neither? I fail to see what a statue in front of a courthouse glorifying Confederate leaders is symbolizing other than subjugation of a group of people. Put statues in museums and battlefield monuments to identify the players but don't have them looming over people as a symbol of a past era that has since been Constitutionally banned. But, they shouldn't be removed by mobs, that just brings out the extremes and the media coverage that is there to see a clash of extremes. Local governments can handle this but the removal has to be mandated. Heritage not hate is a nice slogan, but the heritage is racism. And as a nation, we legalized racism in some form or another for 100 years after the Civil War.

    My family has been in Texas since Austin's Colony. I have ancestors that fought for the Confederacy, I have family records that show sales of slaves (1805 in Tennessee), I attended segregated schools until the 3rd grade. When it did desegregate, one set of bathrooms were marked "colored". Things aren't going to be ok until we address the outstanding issues but I don't think we're doing ourselves any favors by the people who are making the news, they aren't representative of mainstream America.
    I heart burnt bikes.

  8. #48
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    Default Re: What has happened to us? 9/11, sixteen years on...

    Quote Originally Posted by bigbill View Post
    Things aren't going to be ok until we address the outstanding issues
    Shoot...I knew I liked you. Used to be I just lusted after the BLE though. Well, actually I still lust after that bike. Seems we'd have a lot to talk about on a ride though. Some day.
    Jason Babcock

  9. #49
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    Default Re: What has happened to us? 9/11, sixteen years on...

    Barnett Newman (American abstract painter 1905-1970) once said, "Art history is to me what ornithology is to the birds." I sort of think these political categorizations like "identity politics" are like that to "We the people...". They don't actually have a lot to do with us, but they satisfy someone else's observational & descriptive needs.

    Or their need to divide and conquer.
    Jorn Ake
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  10. #50
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    Default Re: What has happened to us? 9/11, sixteen years on...

    I think a problem with a thread like this is our memories tend to compress the timelines. We forget the many little steps that had to happen to get us there. I think the country was united when the war on terror was launched and called Operation Enduring Freedom on Oct 7, 2001. I just think by the time the Iraq Resolution was passed in congress a year later, support was already splintering and people were skeptical.

    I enduring memory is the idiotic Bernard Lewis and his book 'What went Wrong?' as a justification by an expert to fix the middle east.

    We tend to remember the big things, but forget that is was the daily incessant drumbeat which got us there.
     

  11. #51
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    Default Re: What has happened to us? 9/11, sixteen years on...

    I came here for the socks.

  12. #52
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    Default Re: What has happened to us? 9/11, sixteen years on...

    How wrong can you be and still keep your job?

    This question comes to mind often.

    So many of those who were cheerleaders, prognosticators, apologists, etc, and were dead wrong, still work in positions of power and influence.
     

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