There Could be Big Trouble at the Inauguration. Troops Are There to protect

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This is the last post before the inauguration on Wednesday. I hope there will not be any bad news from that day. I live in Salem, Oregon, which is the state capital of Oregon. Protesters are already starting to show up and they are carrying weapons.

They are peaceful at the moment, but I am afraid they will have plans for Wednesday.

The Capital is well fortified this week. Hopefully the show of force will cause the protesters to stay peaceful.

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In our nation’s capital 25,000 National Guard troops have been called up to protect the capital. That is five times more troops than there are in Afghanistan, and Iraq combined.

High fences have been put up. Windows covered. The congress men and women have been put on alert.

The actual inauguration site is also well fortified. They are only allowing a few people to come, and they will be spaced apart correctly.

This is be the most unusual inauguration in the history of our country.

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I heard a person say, “If they need that many troops there, it must be the wrong person becoming president.”

I ungently ask you not to go to any capitals and protest. There will be clashes, and people hurt.

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I had a great experience with the Oregon National Guard on Thursday. They are doing vaccine shots for the COVID virus at our State fairgrounds, which is in my home city of Salem.

My wife and I went to try to get a dose. There were thousands trying to get into the parking lots. There were directors moving cars in the right direction.

We parked our car and saw people running to a building. We knew that was where they were giving the shots.

We got to the end of the line and I had my walker, because it was going to be a long wait, and could sit down.

I did set down, because the race to get to the building, exhausted me. I also had my Army hat on.

Then out of no where a PFC National Guardsman came through the crowd and told me and my wife to follow him. He took us to a side door and escorted us to a side area where they were giving shots for those who may have handicaps.

We sat down, and five minutes later we got our shots. There were hundreds of people waiting for the shots, and we were done in less than an hour.

Did the walker cause this soldier to feel pity, or was it the Army hat he could see in the mob of people?

I think it was both. It was a brother helping another brother.

When we left there were still people in line outside that were in the line when we were there.

Maybe it was not fair to get moved up in front of so many people. Some of you may think so, but there was a caring trooper that made it all possible.

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How are you doing? Have been able to get your shot? I hope so.

Are you holding up under all this chaos? Does the scene seem to scary right now?

Not to worry, my friend there are over 10,970 fellow veterans here and they all have your back.

If the road is too long and rough GET HELP!

Here is a toll free number to call 24/7. It has highly qualified counselors there to help, and it is all free.

Do not take on this crazy world alone!

1-800-273-8255 Option # 1

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Remember:

You are never alone.

You are never forsaken.

You are never unloved.

And above all…never, ever, give up!

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Sexual Harassment, and Rape Are too Common in the Military

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Things are heating up now that President elect Biden is choosing his cabinet. The following example shows you what I mean:

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Once again, lawmakers must decide whether to allow a retired general officer to serve as defense secretary even though he has been out of uniform for less time than the seven years required by law.

Retired Army Gen. Lloyd Austin left active-duty in 2016 after 41 years of service. He is a Silver Star recipient and has had extensive command experience. If confirmed by the Senate, he would also be the first Black man to lead the Defense Department.

Slotkin, a former CIA analyst who worked with Austin when he was on active-duty, said she has deep respect for the retired general. 

However, the defense secretary’s job is to ensure civilian control over the military, added Slotkin, who served as acting Assistant Secretary of Defense for International Security Affairs from 2015 to 2017.

“That is why it requires a waiver from the House and Senate to put a recently retired military officer in the job,” Slotkin said in the statement. “And after the last four years, civil-military relations at the Pentagon definitely need to be rebalanced. General Austin has had an incredible career — but I’ll need to understand what he and the Biden Administration plan to do to address these concerns before I can vote for his waiver.”

Biden added that he understands and respects the reason why officers are legally required to be out of uniform for a certain period of time before assuming the mantle of defense secretary.

“I would not be asking for this exception if I did not believe this moment in our history didn’t call for it – it does call for it – and if I didn’t have the faith I have in Lloyd Austin to ask for it,” Biden said.

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Sexual harassment, or even rape, has been going on for far too long in the military. I have a whole chapter in my new book, Signs of Hope for the Military: In an Out of the Trenches of Life, on rape, and an interview with a nurse who took care of two women who had been raped. Heart breaking stories.

The Supreme Court on Thursday delivered a big win for survivors of sexual assault in the military by closing a loophole that allowed three convicted rapists to walk free.

“I fought so hard to get the justice to have him put away for what he did,” Air Force veteran Harmony Allen told CNN about her rapist, Master Sgt. Richard Collins, in an article last year.

Collins raped Allen in August 2000, but he was not convicted until 2017. But a year later, a 2018 ruling by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces (CAAF) instituted a five-year statute of limitations on military rape cases between 1986 and 2006, and Collins walked free.

“To have that ripped away after finally getting it is so hurtful and crushing and it just questions my belief in the justice system,” Allen said.

CAAF’s 2018 ruling reversed decades of precedent. Under Article 120(a) of the Uniform Code of Military Justice, rape is one of several crimes that is punishable by death in the military, and thus has no statute of limitations. But in 2018, CAAF pointed out the Supreme Court’s 1977 ruling in Coker v. Georgia that the Eighth Amendment forbids a death sentence for the rape of an adult women. 

So if rape cannot be punished by a death sentence under the Constitution, CAAF reasoned, then military rape is not a capital offense and thus is subject to statutes of limitations. But the Supreme Court disagreed.

“Respondents argue that the logic of the decision in Coker applies equally to civilian and military prosecutions, but the Government contends that the military context dictates a different outcome,” wrote Justice Samuel Alito in his opinion. “Among other things, the Government argues that a rape committed by a service member may cause special damage by critically undermining unit cohesion and discipline and that, in some circumstances, the crime may have serious international implications.”

Further, while Coker led to Congress changing the maximum penalty for rape in civilian cases from death to life imprisonment, Congress made no such change in the UCMJ, the justice wrote.

“On the contrary, in 2006 Congress noted that death would remain an available punishment for rape,” he added.

Alito pointed out that the “trauma inflicted by such crimes may impede the gather of the evidence needed to bring charges. Victims may be hesitant for some time after the offense about agreeing to testify. Thus, under current federal law, many such offenses are subject to no statute of limitations.”

A former Chief Prosecutor of the Air Force celebrated the decision.

“The unanimous nature of this opinion is a testament of just how wrong the lower court’s opinion was,” said Col. Don Christensen (ret.), president of the advocacy group Protect Our Defenders, in a press release. “Justice has been restored for three survivors and hope has been restored for countless others.”

Justice Amy Coney Barrett did not vote in the decision because the case was argued in October, before her confirmation.

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The Christmas rush is, hard at best, to handle. Then there is the ugly pandemic raising up even more.

How are you holding up, my friend? Is the rush and the world too fast for you?

You are not alone! There are over 10,350 other veterans on this site who have your back.

BUT! If it is just too overwhelming for you, Get Help!

Here is a toll free number to call 24/7. There are highly qualified counselors there to help you. They will not hang up until they know you are OK.

Don’t live in this world alone!

1-800-273-8255 Option # 1

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Remember:

You are never alone.

You are never forsaken.

You are never unloved.

And above all…never, ever, give up!

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+If you like what you see, please subscribe at the top of this page where it says, “subscribe.” When you do, all future posts will come directly to your inbox. Also, if you know some else who could benefit for the site, please let them know about it.

On A Plane ready to fly to the Bay of Pigs in Cuba

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Veteran’s Day is just a few days away. Check back to some of my previous posts where I share tons of great restaurant deals, plus events for veterans coming up. YOU DESERVE IT!

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I am going to talk about my upcoming book, Signs of Hope for the Military: In and Out of the Trenches of Life.

It is almost finished.

I just need to organize the interviews into something that is readable. I also have to format the whole book, which I know nothing about, but I am contact with an editor who may know someone to do it for me.

When all that is finished it will be off to publisher. I have been talking to a publisher that is very interested. I am negotiating with them, and I believe they are the one I will go with.

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What a blessing this book has done for me.

My first book, which won a national award from the Reader’s Choice Awards, was fun and it help many people. This book however is much needed. It hopefully it will reach out enough to save some brothers and sisters lives.

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I have receive some powerful endorsements.

I shared those with you in previous posts. I have endorsements from Generals, Colonels, CEO’s. and many more. They feel this book may be the break through to savings veteran’s lives.

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I am now going to share with you another excerpt for the book, Signs of Hope for the Military: In and out of the Trenches of Life.

This is from FT Bragg, my last base I was at before I transcend to private life. I only had about a month left and was feeling pretty good about where I was headed.

Then my world changed directions. We heard a call over the intercom for all personnel to report for formation outside of the headquarters.

We felt it was just another drill, but we moved fast because they timed us during drills. Found out it wasn’t a drill. The commander came out to talk to us. We never saw much of him.

He said, ” This is not a drill men. We have been informed by the President of the United States to be ready to be shipped to Cuba ASAP! The Bay of Pigs is to be our destination. You have one hour to pack all your gear and report back here. Dismissed!

I ran to get packed and made it back under the hour allocated. I thought maybe it had calmed down now, but instead they were loading us into buses to take us to the airport.

We got to the airport and started loading on the plane. My heart was pounding, and I could see on the other people’s faces that they were scared too.

We were all loaded on the plane and strapped in. The plane started its engines. We all started realizing that this was very real.

The plane started moving, and went to the spot where they would turn onto the take off runway. It revved it engines and I thought we were taking off.

Then the engines died down a little and we just sat there for it seemed like forever.

Then the pilot came on and said. “We are returning to the terminal. The Bay of Pigs has been aborted. ”

You could see the look of relief on all the men’s faces. some were even crying in relief.

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Bed check. How are you doing? Is this crazy world starting to get to you? With all the insane things happening, is it starting to wear you down?

You are not alone. There are over 10,000 fellow veterans on this site. They all have your back.

If it is just too much for you right now, GET HELP!

Here is a toll free number for you to call 24/7. There are highly qualified counselors there to help you. They will not hang up until they know you are OK.

1-800-273-8255 Option # 1

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Remember:

You are never alone.

You are never forsaken.

Your are never unloved.

And above all…never, ever, give up!

__________________________________________

+If you like what you see, please subscribe at the top of this page where it says, “subscribe.” When you do, all future posts will come directly to your inbox. Also, if you know some else who could benefit for the site, please let them know about it. Your comments will not be seen by other people, just me, and I will connect with you to see if you are OK to share it.