Sunday, October 30, 2005

Response to YAF Chickenhawk Talking Points

I just posted this on the Young Americans for Freedom "Chickenhawk" thread:

Why the "Chickenhawk Argument" is patriotic!

Thanks to all who have commented thus far, but I think most of you are missing the point.

The "Chickenhawk Argument" is actually quite patriotic.

Here's how: Our country has had elections over the past few years, by which the American people have selected one party to lead the entire country (both Houses of Congress and the White House; the President has yet to veto a single bill).

Leadership means responsibilities.

Operation Yellow Elephant reminds the current and future leaders of our governing party of their leadership responsibilities. After all, if you cannot lead our military into war, or even consider [just consider!] volunteering yourself if you are eligible, then you really aren't worthy of leading our country.

So, what the "Chickenhawk Argument" is really doing is motivate Our President's strongest supporters to Save This Presidency by volunteering to Support Our President by serving in the military in Iraq.

Wouldn't it be great if this wasn't satire?

Thank you for your attention.

Athens OH: Nov. 2 Protest Harms Poor People's Careers

Ohio University College Republicans Vice President Marc Feneil is the Trent Lott of the next generation. Responding to Students for Peace and Justice's claim that military recruiting is often forced upon the poor of Southern Ohio, Feniel said this argument was invalid because the military provides good career opportunities for the poor:

"If they want poor people to not join the military, they should come up with other jobs for them and ways to pay for their college," he said.

Surprisingly, even anti-war leftists in California agree. At a typical leftist conference, those arguing against campus military recruitment called the occupation a rich man's war fought by the poor.

"Military recruitment is done so that poor people are doing the dirty work for those who are rich," UC Berkeley Ph.D. candidate Snehal Shingavi, a member of the UC Berkeley Stop the War Coalition and an event organizer, said.

Saturday, October 29, 2005


Bowdoin College Republicans: No Class

The Bowdoin College community shares The General's concerns that College Republicans National Committee Secretary Dan Schuberth questioned the "logic and motivation" of Maine College Democrats Co-President Alex Cornell de Houx, a member of the Marine Reserve, on the eve of his deployment to Iraq. [Although Cornell de Houx opposes the war, he is ready and willing to do his job to its fullest extent.]

Bowdoin President Barry Mills stated, "I have enormous admiration for Alex. I would never question the motivation of any person in the military. All we should be doing is supporting and applauding their efforts."

Sophmore Joshua Cippel told the campus newspaper, "If anything, America needs more people who, like Alex, can look beyond their own interests and opinions and take part in a cause that is larger than themselves."

But Bowdoin Republicans President Alex Linart belittled his classmate's service in Iraq, "Another article, eh? Maybe run an entire section about him." He then regained his senses and concluded, "I thank Alex for his service to his country and wish him well in Iraq." Schuberth, however, stands by his comments.

Cornell du Houx responded: I am dedicated to my country through community service, political service and military service and I challenge them to do the same. [Welcome to Operation Yellow Elephant, young man! We respect your service to our country and wish you the best.]

Let's Make Men of the Yellow Elephants!

Operation Yellow Elephant salutes clinical psychologist Dr. Teresa Whitehurst, author of Jesus on Parenting: 10 Essential Principles That Will Transform Your Family (2004) and coauthor of The Nonviolent Christian Parent (2004), for The Executive-Congressional Draft. She proposes that political leaders taking the nation to war send their own flesh and blood before asking anyone else. "First Families Sacrifice First!"

Please check out her website. And a hat tip to Buzzflash.

York, Pennsylvania, Asks the Question

Here's a Letter to the Editor published in the York Daily Record Saturday, October 29, 2005:

Bush daughters should enlist

It is somewhat puzzling that even after the full revelations of the lies and deceptions, there are still letters to the editor being written fully supporting Bush’s Iraq madness, and what is even more puzzling is that these letters are originating from places such as Dallastown and Dover Township (PA).

If these letter writers are so blind as to be committed to Bush’s deeply flawed policy, why have they not long ago visited the local recruiting office and made themselves available for a relocation to the streets of Baghdad? Why are they not doing what persons of their ilk should see as their patriotic duty?

Furthermore, why has Bush apparently not been able to even convince his young daughters, Jenna and Barbara, of what he apparently sees as the nobility of his cause and persuaded the daughters to set an example for others by joining the armed forces to add their capabilities (whatever they may be) to the Bush crusaders in Iraq?

Is it possible that the Bush daughters and the stateside armchair Bush supporters are merely following in the footsteps of their idol, Bush, who, while saying that he fully supported the American involvement in Vietnam back in the 1960s and early 1970s, showed that he was all talk and no action by making his only contribution as a young man to that war effort from a barstool deep in the heart of Texas?

Judging by their actions, or more precisely their inaction, many of the right-wing Bush admirers apparently feel as I do that the precedent of the pitiful hot air-only Vietnam record of our faux macho “wartime president” makes those actually doing the fighting in Iraq today into not much more than a bunch of saps.


Friday, October 28, 2005

Norfolk Army Vet Asks The Question

Norfolk Army Veteran and anti-war activist Tom Palumbo spread the word by Asking the Question in the run-up to President Bush's October 28 speech: If it's such a noble cause, why aren't Jenna and Barbara going over? Well done!

Check out his website.

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

It's what Dick would do

Dan Schuberth
Secretary, College Republican National Committee

Dear Mr. Schuberth,

It takes a lot of balls for an officer of the College Republican National Committee to attack a soldier heading off to war. When you did so, you opened yourself up to being assailed as a cowardly yellow elephant and a souless, political hack who selfishly places his partisan ambitions above all that is right and decent. Thank God you didn't let that stop you.

It's important for people to know that although Alex Cornell du Houx is honorably keeping the commitment he made to the Marine Reserves in high school, he is still a major player in the Maine College Democrats and a vocal opponent of Our Leader and the Iraq Phase of the Eternal War to Resubjugate Brown People. He doesn't deserve to face death in battle for the glory of Our Leader and his Administration of the Indicted. That honor should be reserved for people like you, able-bodied, albeit overweight, College Republicans who place the needs of the party ahead of national interest.

I was particularly impressed by your claim that this young Marine opposed his country by opposing the president. It demonstrates that you are capable of doing whatever it takes to destroy your political opponents. Just as such former College Republican greats as Scooter Libby and Karl Rove betrayed the identity of a CIA agent for political purposes, you accuse a Iraq-bound Marine of treason simply because he protests Our Leader's policies. Obviously, you have the right stuff to go far in today's Republican Party.

There is still more you can do. Join the Marines and follow du Houx to Iraq, and when an opportunity presents itself, betray him to the enemy. That's what Dick Cheney would do.

Heterosexually yours,

Gen. JC Christian, patriot

Note: Some of you may not have noticed that I always put a link to the addressee's email address in the salutations of these letters. It makes it easier for others to contact them if they wish.

A helmet tip to reader Sally.

Friday, October 21, 2005

Military Recruiting Lead for 2014

It's never too early to prepare for the FY-2014 recruiting year, given how the Iraq War will be going nine years from now and what the total mission is likely to be. Mr. Noah McCullough will be turning eighteen in 2014 and definitely will be interested in a military record for his 2036 Presidential Campaign (and service on the Supreme Court).

Can we sign him up under the Delayed Entry Program today? With his mother's permission?

Also, do we need a new political movement: Extremely Young Republicans?

Thursday, October 20, 2005

Another Opinion Columnist Asks The Question

Here's Bill Gallagher from the Niagara Falls Reporter Asking the Question:

I'm sure droves of College [Republicans,] Young Republicans and Young Americans for Freedom will be lining up at recruitment offices and volunteering for military service to help cover [the] shortfall. I'll make special mention in this space for those who do. Just send us a copy of your military contract.

Bill, any update?

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

$15,000 bonus to re-enlist... psych!

I thought that a little pic of a fake inflatable recruiter was just perfect for this story of fake recruiting promises full of hot air:
WASHINGTON – The Pentagon has reneged on its offer to pay a $15,000 bonus to members of the National Guard and Army Reserve who agree to extend their enlistments by six years, according to Sen. Patty Murray (D-Seattle).

The bonuses were offered in January to Active Guard and Reserve and military technician soldiers who were serving overseas. In April, the Office of the Secretary of Defense for Reserve Affairs ordered the bonuses stopped, Murray said.

"This is outrageous," the senator said in a telephone interview. "It makes me angry that this administration has broken another promise to our troops."

Murray, a leading Capitol Hill critic of management of the Pentagon and the Department of Veterans Affairs, said she didn't know why the bonuses were dropped but suspected it was connected to the tight federal budget.

"It feels like every day I wake up to something else gone wrong," she said. "And it all goes back to this administration not planning adequately for the Iraq war."

In a two-paragraph reply to Murray, Donna Warren, the National Guard Bureau's congressional liaison, said the bonus program had been scrubbed by order of the Office of Secretary of Defense for Reserve Affairs. Warren said it had been discovered that Defense Department regulations prohibited such bonuses, but she offered no elaboration.
So, for three months, troops were enticed with the offer of a $15,000 bonus. How many Guard and Reserve members in desperate financial straits had no choice but to re-enlist and take the money? It's not clear whether the soldiers will have to pay back the bonuses (they'd better not!), but it's inexcusable that the offer would be made counter to regulation in the first place, and even more unfathomable that it would take three months to discover the problem!

Still, $15,000 bonuses don't seem to be attracting our Yellow Elephants. It could be that young college Republicans with "other priorities" just aren't poor enough for fifteen grand to be worth investing a couple years' time, risking life and limb, and suffering post-traumatic stress disorder. We should come up with a bonus that will irresistably lure the Yellow Elephants into enlisting.

Hmmm... how about a lifetime supply of Pabst Blue Ribbon beer? I hear that's hot with the college kids. Maybe a downpayment on a nice home in a affluent, white, gated community? Perhaps a three-way with Ann Coulter and Michelle Malkin (do it for the troops, ladies). Wait, aren't the kids into hip-hop and the "bling-bling" culture now? I know, a diamond bejeweled keyboard and a pimped-out PC workstation with 20" chrome rims (no, I don't know how you put car tire rims on a PC... I'm just thinking out loud). No, I've got it: a promise that when the Yellow Elephants go to Iraq, they'll actually get body armor and armored transportation! We can let Sean John design the body armor and we'll put the 20" chrome rims on the armored Humvee!

Monday, October 17, 2005

Caught in the act!

Our intrepid OYE photography team finally got a picture of a Yellow Elephant fighting the Battle of Ideas.

lil yellow elephant

Sunday, October 16, 2005

OYE 102: Full Disclosure by Pro-War Pundits

Our volunteer Army's largest recruiting shortfall since 1979 means that continued U.S. military engagement in Iraq and elsewhere will succeed, or fail, on Americans' willingness to serve.

Healthy heterosexuals age 18-39 (soon to be 41-or-under) are eligible and should visit their local recruiting station. Even if an individual volunteer is not accepted for military service, Your Country Thanks You for your courage in stepping forward.

Media credibility requires full disclosure of relevant personal circumstances. Pundits supporting the war who are eligible to serve must disclose whether they - personally - have considered volunteering, and if not, why not; what resulted from those deliberations? Those not eligible must disclose whether they have encouraged their relatives and friends, or circle of influence, to consider serving, and if not, why not; what resulted from those conversations? 'No objection to asking the same questions of anyone, pro or con, opining on the war in Iraq. [Cindy Sheehan has already Answered The Question. What about you?]

Americans must volunteer to serve in our Army. Anyone who supports the war only if "other people" actually fight it does not, in fact, support the war at all. Newspaper readers and other media audiences have the right to know of personal conflicts of interest of commentators supporting the war who refuse to share the sacrifices they urge only on other Americans, not on themselves.

Saturday, October 15, 2005

CBS News Asks The Question - Finally!

CBS News has picked up Clarissse Profilet's column from The Nation. We've seen this theme before; in America, repetition is the key to success.

See above: It's their war. Why aren't they fighting it?

Beating brown people for freedom

Theodore Reynolds
George Mason Police Department

Dear Officer Reynolds,

It's a tragedy that some of our greatest heroes in the Eternal War to Resubjugate Brown People never get the recognition they deserve. Take you for instance. You'll never receive a medal for beating Tariq Khan, the George Mason University student you arrested for peacefully protesting military recruitment on campus. Action on the domestic front is not considered worthy of commendation. That's a shame, because repressing dissent is a critical part of Our Leader's plan to promote freedom.

I was particularly impressed by your ability to discern Khan's terrorist intentions by simply looking at the color of his skin. Perhaps that's something you learned from being a dark brown man yourself. After all, you've experienced the way some white people look at you and instantly decide that you're about to rob or rape them. Maybe you picked up this skill from them.

In any event, you'll never get the recognition you deserve as long as you're attached to a domestic police unit. That's why I think you should sign-up for duty in Iraq. There are plenty of brown people to beat up over there. And if you can get yourself assigned to prison duty, they'll let you torture and rape whole families of brown people. I bet you'd enjoy that.

I hope you'll think about it.

Heterosexually yours,

Gen. JC Christian, patriot

Army Recruiting Plan Ignores Patriotism, President

There's no need for the Army to use sophisticated demographics to focus on the most likely prospects, thereby increasing recruiters' productivity. Simply focusing on, Fox News, pro-war and Support Our Troops rallies, as well as the College Republicans and the Young Republicans, coupled with inspiring Presidential Leadership, should bring forward many well-qualified, patriotic and motivated volunteers.

Thursday, October 13, 2005

College Republicans Fight for Military Recruiters

It's nice to know that the College Republicans at the University of California at Santa Barbara (UCSB) and Holyoke Community College (HCC) in Massachusetts strongly support access to the campus for military recruiters. More from UCSB here.

Of course, if the College Republicans would just go downtown to the recruiting station and sign up, military recruiters wouldn't have to bother anyone on campus.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

Recruiting crisis, again

I guess the Army National Guard's generous offer of 3 mp3s wasn't enough to convince the yellow elephants to come out of their spider holes. Due to the shortage of grunts, the Pentagon is plugging the holes with airmen and sailors:

Airmen Fill the Gaps in Wartime
Thousands of Air Force personnel are being sent to Iraq and Afghanistan to perform low-tech roles and help the Army keep up force levels.

By Mark Mazzetti and Greg Miller, Times Staff Writers

WASHINGTON — Straining to find ground troops to maintain its force levels in Iraq and Afghanistan, the Pentagon has begun deploying thousands of Air Force personnel to combat zones in new jobs as interrogators, prison sentries and gunners on supply trucks.

The Air Force years ago banked its future on state-of-the-art fighter jets and billion-dollar satellites. Yet the service that has long avoided being pulled into ground operations is now finding that its people — rather than its weapons — are what the Pentagon needs most as it wages a prolonged war against a low-tech, insurgent enemy.

Well, good luck with all that. Maybe one day Ralph Peters will be forced to wake up and smell the latte.

(cross-posted to my blog)

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

Yellow WH Press Corps won't Ask The Question

Thanks to Terry Neal of the Washington Post for taking the White House Correspondents to task for refusing to Ask President Bush The Question. If Our President won't disclose whether he has even bothered to encourage his daughter Jenna to consider volunteering, why should any other American parent take him seriously?

Military Response

Active duty and retired combat veterans respond to a Yellow Elephant's column in the Rocky Mountain Collegian:

Another coward conservative, always ready with an excuse. Supporting our troops is "letting THEM do their job and praying for their safety..."
Give me a break. If Connie Rice had done HER JOB the president would have read the Augsut 9th PDB and Osama would be in jail and the World Trade Center Towers would still be standing.


Regarding the column that Ryan Chapman ran in your paper considering the lies of liberals, I think he needs to take some courses in reality and history.

Clinton's moral conduct was personally unacceptable but did nothing to harm this nation as a whole. President Bush's lies about Weapons of Mass Destruction have led to the deaths of over 2000 brave Americans who, unlike Ryan, were willing to put their lives on the line for this nation. Oh, and yes I am a liberal who backed up his words with action-I served in the Army for 20 years. This war is the first preemptive war in our history and our involvement in the country of Iraq is based on a lie. How does that make it honorable? We can honor the sacrifice of our troops if we make sure that our motives and our cause is honorable. I will always support our troops but not always the politicians that send them there especially if their motives are suspect.

I am not a woman and would never presume to make such a momentous decision as an abortion and I caution anyone to make a moral and personal decision for another individual unless you are in their shoes. So unless Ryan is a biological abnormality, he should refrain from making the decision on abortion, just like most of our politicians. If you believe the Republican philosophy that we are better with less government, why should the government intrude in this most personal decision?

The Bush administration has done more to destroy our rights as defined in the Constitution and the Bill of Rights than any modern American administration and then hides behind the specter of 9/11. It is assumed that good Americans support his views and are patriots. Maybe I missed something in my study of history, but our founding fathers were willing to risk their lives for their dream of a democratic nation, something that President Bush, his most ardent supporters, and young Ryan don't seem to understand. Support of our nation means not blindly following the ideology of our President but following the Jeffersonian ideal of being a part of the informed electorate and being involved in our nation. Many of us have backed our words with deeds. Unless Ryan and the Bush daughters are willing to actively go to Iraq or at least volunteer their time in a Veteran's Hospital, you have little credibility in my book. And why should so many members of minorities and us "liberals" go and serve in this war so you can safely spend your time hiding out at CSU and avoiding your duty not as a conservative or a Republican, but as an American? So I challenge you to put up or shut up.

After all, in the military I pledged to serve and protect the Constitution of the United States which includes the Bill of Rights. Your opinion, although disagreeable to me, is something that I risked my liberal life to protect. Would you be willing to do the same for me?

Douglas P. Bertolini
US Army Retired
Fort Collins


I'm sure the troops are relieved that you are praying for them and slandering "liberals" at the same time. As the troops are in Iraq fighting a tough insurgency, you're over here putting your life on the line to make us safe from those darned liberals. Your courage knows no bounds- especially as you construct and then destroy one strawman after another.

As you said, after 9-11, many Americans did think we needed to go to war- in Afghanistan. Many of us, including a growing number of military officers and conservatives, believe that the war in Iraq is a mistake and has made us more vulnerable to terrorism. Many of us believe Bush has squandered our national prestige, resources, and the lives and limbs of our fine military men and women whom you profess to admire so much.

As a former combat arms officer and conservative, I am offended by the excuse-making of many college Republicans like yourself. I don't ask that you enlist in the Army but I do ask that you don't make-up lame excuses for not doing so. Just tell the truth: "I support the war but I don't want to put my neck on the line because ______." It's that easy.

Richard Gilson

Quit your sniveling. As a 12-year veteran of the Marine Corps who was wounded in combat and medically discharged I'm sick of self-serving whining comments like yours. If you support the war then go. It's typical of Repubs to think other people should fight their wars and Bush is the prime example. I have more respect for Clinton who said he opposed the war and didn't go then Bush who strongly supported Vietnam and then used his connections to get out of it and then even National Guard duty which he deserted from.

Tell me what is conservative about Bush btw. He gives money from the poor and middle class to the rich, has run up the biggest deficit in history, and has overseen the biggest growth of government in history. Whats conservative about that? If you call yourself a conservative and you support Bush then your a fool


Wow, talk about "conservative lies".... Clinton was attacked for something that was perfectly legal and if you remember your history, most every one of the Republicans attacking him at the time for his affair were having affairs of their own, which resulted in several stepping down because of the hypocracy. You can support the troops and not the war and just because you don't support Iraq (I never did), doesn't mean that you don't support any other war or the military. The reality is that history will not look at this favorably, just as it hasn't with Vietnam, so you should get off of your high horse and realize what is going on. You claim to support our troops but it is the Republican party that cuts taxes and taxes pay for everything from education to the troops to war. Why do you think that the military has constantly complained that they are understaffed, underpowered, and improperly protected? The joke is that the same people who attacked Kerry for not voting on $80 billion for the war have been slashing the military personnelle budget since they came into office. Sure, the military has more money, but it is all spent on $800 million dollar airplanes that are truly archaic, weapons (M16) that are obsolete, and bombs that cost way too much considering what they do. Don't you ever dare to talk about the military until you have been in it, and don't you claim to support them because saying "I support the troops" doesn't save their lives. Words didn't help the almost 2000 troops that are already dead in just Iraq and the tens of thousands with debilitating wounds that will NEVER heal! As the chant goes, "join up, or shut up!"

I am very liberal and I have been in the military and the federal government, so for you to say that liberals "sit around refusing to support anything to do with the United States" is pure doggma. I would also suggest you explain how the war in Iraq has furthered my freedoms? Last time that I checked, since the Republicans came into power, we have seen anti-sod. laws, huge deficits, 2 wars at once (the military isn't that big, which is why we hardly leave the Afghan capitol... military science majors should be able to explain the parrallels between this and the Russo-Afghan war...), and our rights and freedoms restricted. If you want to talk about freedom, don't look towards General Cooco-bananas, look towards the Democrats because it is under them that we have had the most freedom. You aren't a woman, you're not pregnant, and you're not the one giving birth, so don't tell them that they can't terminate the life of an unborn child who cannot feel yet (<7 months, approx), especially if the child has a debilitating illness that would cause only pain and an aweful, horrid life. I have debated many times with "conservative Christians" and the hypocracies abound. None of them were able to claim a "higher moral ground" once I was done and those that did, weren't listening and didn't know their facts, just as you don't see to Ryan Chapman. Get over yourself. You are a chicken hawk. Fight if you think it's right, otherwise shut up because you have no idea what it's like to kill someone, you have no idea what it's like to be wounded for your country and then told that you can't feel a certain way. If we are truly free, I can feel that this war is unjust, I can hate what has happened to me, I can hate war, and I can live my life without others telling me how I can or can't have sex with my wife, what she can do to a baby that will only suffer, or if I think that the US has to live up to its treaties and obey the UN.

Maj. Ryan Oaches, RET USMC

I responded here and here.

Sunday, October 09, 2005

Support the Supporters

Ryan Chapman
Rocky Mountain Collegian

Dear Mr. Chapman,

I can't express the anger I felt when I read the following response to the column where you defended the College Republicans' courageous efforts to fight the war by documenting your professors' subversive activities:

So I get this article referred to me by my cousin, a student at CSU. Speaking for myself, I don't feel all that well supported by Mr. Chapman. There aren't enough of us here to do all the missions we need to do to keep from loosing this thing. You'll notice I didn't say 'win this thing.' 17 years of military experience tells me that we cannot win in Iraq in any way that Americans are used to thinking of the term 'winning.' I was against this war from the beginning because it was a stupid, pointless mission that had no legal or moral justification.

So, to those who say that a person cannot support the troops without supporting the president and the mission, I say, f--k you. I do it every day of my life. And on a personal note to Mr. Chapman--please join up. We're very short handed right now, and I'd prefer you took my place on the next Iraq rotation since you believe in it and I don't. Otherwise, shut your pie-hole.

Michael Galletly
Staff Sergeant, Army National Guard

What is wrong with these soldiers? Don't they understand how much the College Republicans have sacrificed to help the war effort by holding "Support the President" rallies, affirmative action bake sales, and immigrant hunts? It's heartbreaking to think of all the toga parties, keggers, and Greek nights that have been delayed because these fine young men and women were busy photographing their professor's office doors in the defense of our nation.

Maybe it's time these troops took some time off from dying for Our Leader's glory and started holding a few "Support Our Supporters" rallies to honor you who have given up so much. They could begin each rally by calling for the gassing of their own mothers as a tribute to the good work you've been doing promoting the use of violence against Cindy Sheehan. Then, they could pass a helmet around to collect war porn, so that the 101st Fighting Keyboarders won't be left wanting after Chris Wilson's arrest. With any luck, they'll collect enough pictures of mutilated brown people to provide your peers with masturbation fodder for years to come.

I'm not sure how to go about starting something like this, but I bet you and your fellow College Republicans can figure it out. Maybe you could do a column on it.

Heterosexually yours,

Gen. JC Christian, patriot

Non-partisan Nonsense from California (of course)

To Chris Pagenkopf
Third-year Political Science major
University of California at Santa Barbara

While Operation Yellow Elephant certainly appreciates your support of our troops, under our Constitution, our military recruiting crisis simply isn't "completely nonpartisan." Our Army just missed its annual recruiting quota for the first time since 1999, with (or, I should say, without) the largest shortfall since 1979.

The best way for UCSB students to support our troops is to volunteer to serve in our military. As long as you are under 39, healthy and heterosexual, Our Country Needs You! And since the American people elected one party to govern all of us, our governing party's current and future leaders have a special responsibility to set a worthy example for everyone.

Once the College Republicans and the Young Republicans sign up in noticeable numbers, other Americans will follow. If they don't, and won't, why should anyone else?

Saturday, October 08, 2005

Young Republican, We're in Iraq; You're Not. Why?

Meet Young Republican Daniel Kinnamon, age 32, resident of the Glen Haven subdivision in Plainfield, Indiana, married to Debi, two children, Tori (age 5) and Brock (age 2), bachelor's degree in business from Valparaiso University (IN) and master's from Butler University (PA).

So, as you say, "It's important to know why we are in a war in Iraq. Hearing it straight from Senator Lugar is more important than hearing it from the media."

But I guess that Senator Lugar isn't that inspiring a leader. After all, even though you heard it straight from your Senator, it hasn't inspired you to volunteer to join the Army, which just missed its annual recruiting quota for the first time since 1999, with (or, I should say, without) the largest shortfall since 1979.

You seem to be qualified: healthy heterosexual male, seven years YOUNGER than the current maximum age of 39 (and 42 soon).

You were named Outstanding Young Republican Male for Central Indiana and District 4 Young Republican Chair. And you want to "grow the Young Republicans from three to 12 chapters (statewide)."

So, is political power more important than exercising your party's national leadership responsibility?

Friday, October 07, 2005

College Republican: Where are Your Boots?

The anti-war American Friends Service Committee sponsored an exhibit of pairs of Army boots representing U.S. military deaths in the Iraq war; an exhibit of shoes signifies unknown Iraqi civilian casualties.

While Cornell College Republicans Chairman Paul Ibrahim noted that war can also save lives, why didn't Amy Ju of the Ithaca Journal ask him obvious follow-up question: Have you considered helping to save lives by volunteering to serve in our military?

Ask her yourself: aju (at) ithacajournal (dot) com

Thursday, October 06, 2005

Covert Holiday Shopping for Yellow Elephants

As the holiday season approaches, Real Americans might wish to consider the Perfect Gift for the College Republican or Young Republican who has everything. It's even more patriotic than a yellow ribbon for your SUV; may your favorite Republican display it with well-earned pride.

[I've already ordered one for Republican National Committee Chair Ken Mehlman.]

No, There Is No American Foreign Legion (Yet)

Immigration became a "third rail" of American politics because of the conflicting alliances it forges. Just look at the great job Our Governing Party is doing with Homeland Security; with the National Guard in Iraq, real Americans can join the Minutemen patrolling the Arizona border with Mexico, then take advantage of the low prices or great profits brought about by reliance on undocumented immigrant labor.

But I never thought that service in our armed forces, which President Bush described as an "honorable calling" only last June 28, is now a job for illegal aliens because real Americans no longer consider it as worthwhile for themselves. Oct 14 update: The recruiter was convicted.

And all because the Young Republicans lack the courage of their convictions. Yellow Elephants indeed! [Note diapers.]

Can a Just War be Just if You Won't Fight?

Religious philosophers will have to update the Just War Doctrine to take into account the Yellow Elephants who vocally support U.S. military intervention in Iraq, provided that other people do the actual fighting.

Accepting at face value President Bush's determination that we had to go to war against Iraq to protect our essential national interests, doesn't that make the Young Republicans essentially traitors, even worse than Jane Fonda? [At least she actually went to Vietnam.]

Whining at the Student Union

From the Rocky Mountain Collegian:

The second lie liberals have been spouting lately is that conservatives, most notably the College Republicans, are being hypocritical for supporting the war in Iraq/on terror and the troops serving in those wars without enlisting themselves. This is ludicrous. Supporting the troops means letting them do their jobs and praying for their safety, NOT saying you support them and then holding a rally damning the cause they are fighting for. Also, where exactly do the people spreading this garbage think the military gets their officers and best leaders if not from the ranks of college graduates?

I reply:

As the founder of Operation Yellow Elephant, the movement that popularized the hypocrisy of College Republicans who refuse to fight in the war they demanded, I find it amusing to watch them justify their refusal to match their words with actions.

The College Republicans were among the most vocal proponents of this war. They characterized it as one of the greatest struggles of all time and made ludicrous comparisons to WWII and the Civil War. Yet, at a time when the military faces its greatest recruiting crisis in decades, they hold affirmative action bake sales and attack those who want to bring our soldiers home.

If you really believe in the rightness and the importance of this war, put off college for a couple of years and sign up. Otherwise, shut up. Your whining is pathetic.

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

PATRICK RUFFINI - A Modest Proposal

This smiling young man, Patrick Ruffini, would seem to be an excellent addition to the armed forces of this great land of ours. A glance at his website bio shows he's probably about 23 or 24 years old - the perfect age to start boot camp. His speciality is things electronic - ideal for defusing those unexploded IEDs in Iraq. He was chairman of the Penn College Republicans, so he has connections and might be able to get a few more of his classmates to sign up and fight the Dear Leader's war.

I respectfully suggest that Mr. Ruffini be encouraged to enlist and fight for his beliefs. Merely fighting the War of Ideas is obviously not enough for this man.

Tuesday, October 04, 2005

If at first you don't succeed, lower your expectations

This Friday ended the 2005 fiscal year for Army recruiting, and the Army missed its goal by about 7,000 warm bodies. Gee, you'd think with all those swell "help him find his strength" commercials and keen $20,000 signing bonuses, College Republicans and other able-bodied conservative war supporters between the ages of 17 and 38 would be flocking to sign up for Operation Enduring Clusterfuck.

But maybe something else was hindering our Yellow Elephants. Maybe bending their brain around all that Bushite rhetoric has made their thought processes a little slow. Maybe they just weren't scoring high enough on the military's ASVAB tests to qualify for enlistment.

Well, happy days are here again! For if at first you can't sign up enough IED fodder for your war, lower your requirements for the IED fodder:
(Los Angeles Times) WASHINGTON — Facing recruiting shortages brought on by the conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan, the Army has decided to accept a greater number of recruits who score near the bottom of military aptitude tests, the secretary of the Army said Monday.

Coming off a recruiting year in which the Army fell short of its goal of 80,000 active-duty soldiers, Army Secretary Francis J. Harvey announced that the Army would allow up to 4% of its recruiting class to be Category IV recruits -- those who scored between the 16th and 30th percentile in the battery of aptitude tests that the Defense Department gives to all potential military personnel.

The Army until now allowed no more than 2% of its recruiting class to be from the Category IV level, fearing that letting too many low-achieving recruits into the Army might dilute the quality of the nation's largest military branch.
Ya think so? Listen, I don't know how many dear readers have taken the ASVAB (Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery), but consider that Forrest Gump passed the ASVAB. And clearing only the 16th percentile on that test makes passing a GED look like Fermat's Last Theorem.

So now instead of 1 out of 50 soldiers being so dumb the rest of the squad makes sure the soldier's rifle is pointed the right way, we're going to double that to 1 out of 25. Do ya think that might "dilute" things just a bit?
...the Army would also ease the service's requirement that at least 67% of every recruiting class be made up of recruits who scored in the top half (50th percentile or above) on the aptitude tests. The new threshold would be 60%, Harvey said, in accordance with Defense Department benchmarks.

The Pentagon benchmarks were established to prevent the military services from meeting recruiting quotas by accepting too many people with low IQs. Despite these parameters, the Pentagon allows each service, if it wishes, to set more rigorous standards.

Until the last fiscal year, the Army had few problems staying below the 2% threshold for Category IV recruits. According to data provided by the Army, Category IV recruits comprised less than 1% of the 2003 and 2004 recruiting classes.
Wow. First the military turns a blind eye to "don't ask don't tell" and refuses to boot openly gay servicemembers during this conflict (except, of course, the highly-trained Farsi translators in intelligence), now we're opening the barracks to Dumb and Dumber. There couldn't be a more perfect opportunity for your average College Republican!

(P.S. Just you watch. The next thing you'll see is a waiving of positive drug tests for marijuana as a barrier to enlistment. Then you'll start to see so-called drug courts offering the convicted a choice between service or prison. No barrel bottom will be left unscraped in the effort to avoid a draft that could potentially land a rich white kid in the service against his wishes.)

Sunday, October 02, 2005

Why OYE Should Support Army Captain Fishback

In addition to all the lofty justifications for following the Geneva Conventions, not torturing Prisoners Of War (POWs), Persons Under Control (PUCs), or mere detainees, etc., is basic self-interest: As long as the U.S. follows the rules, we can demand that the other side(s) follow those same rules when the tables are turned, so that we can protect U.S. servicemembers. What goes around comes around.

Army Captain Ian Fishback spent seventeen months raising these issues through the chain of command and got nowhere. Thanks to Arizona Senator John McCain (R) and Human Rights Watch, now the world knows.

So what does this have to do with Operation Yellow Elephant?

Well, if you demand that the U.S. treat foreign detainees humanely, then you are also Supporting Our Troops by demanding that they be treated humanely, and thus protected, in similar situations.

No American can ignore this issue.

On the other hand, if you accept, acquiesce in, or even support inhumane treatment of foreign detainees, but are unwilling to consider serving in our military (even though eligible) and placing yourself, personally, in danger of reciprocal treatment, then you are worse than Yellow. Think about it.

Send e-mails of support to Captain Fishback via supportfishback (at) aol (dot) com

Thanks to Andrew Sullivan for taking this on.

Saturday, October 01, 2005

New Mexico's Real (non-Yellow) Elephant!

Operation Yellow Elephant salutes New Mexico Young Republican attorney Natalie Panossian, who has joined the Army Reserve. We respect your service to our country and wish you the best. You go, girl!