Sarah Palin will pry your Klondike bar from your cold dead fingers.

calendar   Sunday - September 28, 2008

This about sums it up

I found the link over at Sara’s Pal2Pal blog. Follow it. READ IT. Pass it on. Mention these points to every dumbocrat you know. Will it make any difference? No, but we have to try anyway.

I wish this was the last time I every needed to post about Obama. It won’t be. Anyway, here’s the link. And here is an excerpt:

The topic is the illness on the body politic which has been deepening for some time.

We are about to elect a man with no achievements on his resume, a Chicago Machine politician posing as a reformer. We will not elect the man who called the Surge right all along and who authored legislation to clean up Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac about four years ago, along with other GOP. It doesn’t occur to you that this legislation was blocked by Obama and other Democrats. Obama sued banks (see 9/27/08) to make them give people mortgages who could not afford them. “As a young attorney in the 1990s, Barack Obama represented ACORN in Washington in their successful efforts to expand Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) authority.” He looks in your eye and blames the crisis on the Republicans’ philosophy of liberty. CRA and ACORN caused the bad mortgages, but you will put him in the White House.

McCain whom you will not elect also is widely knowledgeable about national and international affairs. There is no sign of his competitor’s being in his league on that score, but you thought he looked smooth enough, even if oddly angry, at a debate with McCain, so you count them even on knowledge.

You believe that the GOP caused the current financial crisis by causing Wall Street “greed.” It doesn’t appear relevant to you that that the Democrats’ Community Reinvestment Act and their Fannie and Freddy caused the $2T in bad mortgages and the resultant housing bubble that would pop, exposing the rot.


Posted by Drew458   United States  on 09/28/2008 at 08:11 PM   
Filed Under: • Politics •  
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Iconic Afghan policewoman shot dead.  (form the other side of the world via Al Jazeera)

Well heck.  When will women simply learn their place and be happy raising multiple children and accepting slave status?  Is that too much to ask?
Jews too. And other infidels like Christians and in fact, everyone who isn’t a talibanee.  Cretins!

Story Credit: AlJazeera

A woman regarded as Afghanistan’s most prominent female police officer has been shot dead in the southern city of Kandahar, a government official has said.

Malalai Kakar, the head of the city’s department on crimes against women, was attacked by armed men on Sunday as she left her home, Zalmay Ayoobi, a Kandahar government spokesman, said.

“Today between 7am [0230 GMT] and 8am when she was [in her car] outside her house and going to her job, some gunmen attacked,” Ayoobi said.

“Malalai Kakar died in front of her house. Her son was wounded.”

Kandahar is a traditional stronghold of the Taliban, which is fighting an armed campaign against the Afghan government and US and Nato forces in the country.

Kakar, who was in her late 30s, was shot in the head, a doctor said.

“She died on the spot and her son, who was badly injured, is in a coma in the hospital,” he said without giving his name.

A spokesman for the Taliban said that the assassins were from his group.

“We killed Malalai Kakar,” Yousuf Ahmadi, spokesman told the AFP news agency, said.

“She was our target, and we successfully eliminated our target.”

Death threats

Kakar, a police captain and mother of six, led a 10-strong team of women police officers and had reportedly received numerous death threats in recent months.

She was well-respected in the police force for her bravery, one of her colleagues said on condition of anonymity.

Her work attracted attention from international media outlets interested in her work in Kandahar.

She was the first woman to enrol in the Kandahar police force after the 2001 removal of the Taliban and had been involved in investigating crimes against women and children, and conducting house searches.

The head of Kandahar province’s women’s affairs department was killed in a similar way two years ago.

Assailants shot dead a female police officer in June in the western province of Herat in what was believed to be the first assassination of a female police officer in Afghanistan.

Afghanistan’s police force was destroyed by the time the Taliban were removed and is being rebuilt with international assistance. It numbers about 80,000 people, including a few hundred women.

About 750 policemen have been killed in the past six months, mostly in Taliban-linked violence sweeping the country.


Posted by Drew458   United Kingdom  on 09/28/2008 at 01:20 PM   
Filed Under: • InternationalRoPMATerroristsWar On Terror •  
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Terror arrests linked to controversial Muslim book.  (here we go again?)

Well now this is a big surprise, is it not?

North London terror arrests linked to controversial Muslim book
Four people have been arrested in London over an alleged terror attack on the publisher of a controversial book on the prophet Muhammad.

By Andrew Alderson, Chief Reporter
Last Updated: 9:44AM BST 28 Sep 2008

The arrests are connected to a fire at a property in Islington, north London, which is used as the home and office of Martin Rynja, a publisher.

His company, Gibson Square, recently bought the rights to a novel which is considered by some to be more controversial than Salman Rushdie’s book, The Satanic Verses. The new book, about the prophet Muhammad and his child bride, is entitled The Jewel of Medina.

The blaze yesterday, which led to people being evacuated from the house, may have been started by a petrol bomb pushed through the letter box.

Initially, three men, aged 22, 30 and 40, were detained at around 2.25am yesterday after a fire broke out at a property in Lonsdale Square, Islington. Two were stopped by armed officers in Lonsdale Square, and the third was seized when a car was stopped by armed police near Angel underground station.

Random House US, the major publishing group, announced in May this year that it was dropping its plans to publish Sherry Jones’s debut novel following warnings that it could incite acts of violence from radical Muslims. The Jewel of the Medina was also pulled from bookshops in Serbia last month after pressure from an Islamic group.

Gibson Square, which has previously published other controversial books, bought the rights to Jones’s book after Random House pulled out. It paid what it described as a “compelling” advance to acquire The Jewel of Medina. The book will be published by Gibson Square next month [October] in Britain, Australia and New Zealand. In the US, the book will be published by Beaufort Books.

Speaking before yesterday’s attack, Mr Rynja said: “In an open society there has to be open access to literary works, regardless of fear. As an independent publishing company, we feel strongly that we should not be afraid of the consequences of debate.

“If a novel of quality and skill that casts light on a beautiful subject we know too little of in the West, but have a genuine interest in, cannot be published here, it would truly mean that the clock has been turned back to the dark ages. The Jewel of Medina has become an important barometer of our time.”

Mr Rynja added that as a small publisher, Gibson Square would be more capable of handling any controversy. “With a book that is controversial – and we’ve done a number – it is incredibly important that it is looked at from all sides. That is very difficult for a large publisher to do as they are looking at 200 titles a month so a controversial one is just one in the mix.”

He said that he hoped that once people read the novel in its entirety there would be a “healthy discussion” about its content. “[Jones has] done very careful and detailed research for the novel – she’s writing about this love story which even after 1,400 years we don’t know much about.” Mr Rynja was unavailable for comment yesterday.

Ms Jones, also speaking before yesterday’s attack, said that her novel had was not intended to be disrespectful to Islam. “I have deliberately and consciously written respectfully about Islam and Mohammed … I envisaged that my book would be a bridge-builder.”

Random House was told by security experts and academics that the novel, for which it paid a $100,000 (£55,000) advance, was potentially more incendiary than both The Satanic Verses and the Danish newspaper cartoons of Muhammad. Random House decided not to publish the title “for the safety of the author, employees of Random House Inc, booksellers and anyone else who would be involved in distribution and sale of the book”.


The publication of The Satanic Verses in 1988 saw attempts made on the lives of Rushdie’s Italian and Norwegian publishers, while the Japanese translator of the book was killed.

Police also searched four addresses around north-east London yesterday - two in Walthamstow, one in Ilford and one in Forest Gate.

The men, who were arrested on suspicion of the commission, preparation or instigation of acts of terrorism, were being questioned at a central London police station.

Later yesterday a fourth person, a woman, was arrested at a property in Ilford for allegedly obstructing the police, a spokesman for Scotland Yard said.

The police confirmed that there had been small fire inside the property in Lonsdale Square, which had to be put out. “At this early stage it is being linked with the arrests,” the spokesman added.

Residents in Lonsdale Square said armed police, assisted by fire-fighters, broke down the door to the targeted property at around 2.30 yesterday morning.

Francesca Liebowitz, 16, who lives nearby with her parents, said: “The police couldn’t get the door open so the fire brigade battered it down.

“There was smoke coming from around the door, but I don’t know whether that was because of the door being broken down. They evacuated people from the house. It’s a bit scary to have this happen on your doorstep.”

A neighbour and friend of Mr Rynja said the company normally published books on current affairs, and said the publisher had never expressed concerns that his work might endanger his safety. A green hoarding covered the doorway to the four-storey town house yesterday afternoon.


Posted by Drew458   United Kingdom  on 09/28/2008 at 10:57 AM   
Filed Under: • RoPMATerroristsUKWar On Terror •  
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British children as young as nine are being forced into marriage by their families.

Yep ... a posting from the other side of the world because I don’t think this makes the evening news in America.

Further proof should anyone still need same, that some cultures cults just do NOT fit into a modern western society.
Of course, who says they want to?  Not many of them. They want to come here and change things and make em the way they are in the place they left.  ??  Good thinking folks. Duh.

Nine-year-old Midlands girl rescued from forced marriage
British children as young as nine are being forced into marriage by their families, The Sunday Telegraph can reveal.

By David Barrett, Home Affairs Correspondent
Last Updated: 1:57AM BST 28 Sep 2008

The disclosure comes as official figures show that nearly 60 children aged 15 or under have been rescued by the Government’s Forced Marriage Unit in the past four years.

The cases are feared to be the tip of the iceberg. They will fuel concerns, first raised earlier this year, that large numbers of children are disappearing from British schools to be forced into wedlock overseas.

A charity which runs a national helpline on forced marriage and “honour"-based crimes, Karma Nirvana, revealed that in one incident a nine-year-old girl from a Pakistani family in the east Midlands was taken into council care after her parents told her she was to wed.

Jasvinder Sanghera, director of Karma Nirvana, said that on average four children a month aged under 16 have contacted its helpline since it launched in April.

“The youngest child we have dealt with was nine years old,” she said. “The girl told her teacher she was going to be forced to marry someone and initially she was not believed.

“Ultimately, with the help of the Forced Marriage Unit, she was dealt with through child protection procedures. She was assessed and, thankfully, taken into foster care.”

Ms Sanghera called on ministers to make sure primary school children are taught about forced marriage and given advice on how to avoid becoming a victim.

The Forced Marriage Unit has helped rescue 58 underage children since it was set up in January 2005, including 11 under-16s so far this year. The youngest victim this year was 13, one was 14 and nine were 15.

The unit deals with 5,000 inquiries and 300 cases of forced marriage a year. A third of inquiries come from under 18s.

The youngest victim repatriated by the unit, which is jointly funded by the Home Office and the Foreign Office, was an 11-year-old girl who was flown back to Britain from Dhaka, Bangladesh, last year after her parents had agreed to marry her to a local man.

Ms Sanghera, who herself fled home after being threatened with forced marriage at the age of 15, said: “I currently have cases involving four children aged 11 to 14 who were forced to marry or were at risk, and have now been made wards of court.

“You don’t just get forced into a marriage at 16 or 17; this is happening to very young children. We certainly have had cases of minors being sexually abused.

“If you are forced into marriage as a minor you will be multiple-raped, because as a child you are legally unable to give consent.

“But we have no idea how many children under 16 are at risk, and this is compounded by a reluctance of schools to engage with the issue. Many schools shy away due to supposed cultural sensitivities.”

She went on: “There will be children sitting in our classrooms this week who have already had identified for them a husband or a wife.

“These marriages can be prevented by identifying the signs in school or teachers believing pupils when they raise it.”

The problem is particularly prevalent in Pakistani communities, where betrothing offspring to their first cousins is common practice, said Ms Sanghera.

“It happens across all races but there is a disproportionate number of cases within the Pakistani community, and we need to recognise that,” she said.

“At Karma Nirvana we have noticed a significant trend of young people aged 14, 15 and 16 coming forward for our services.

“We need reassurance from schools, especially headteachers, that existing Department for Children, Schools and Families posters giving advice about forced marriage are displayed in primary and secondary schools.

“We also believe there should be proper headcounts of pupils after the summer holidays, so that steps can be taken if any children have disappeared from the register. I think what the schools discover will alarm them.”

She estimated there could be a dozen cases a year in some medium-sized comprehensive schools with significant numbers of Asian children.

A nine-month study by Karma Nirvana in 2006 followed the fortunes of 15 girls aged 10 to 18 in Derby, where the charity is based. By the end of the study, four had been taken abroad including a 17-year-old who had subsequently returned to the UK after being wed to a 35-year-old man.

Earlier this year a report by the Commons’ all-party Home Affairs Select Committee said 2,089 pupils were unaccounted for in just 14 local council areas of England and Wales. A proportion of these are believed to have been children removed from education and forced into marriages overseas.


Posted by Drew458   United Kingdom  on 09/28/2008 at 10:42 AM   
Filed Under: • Miscellaneous •  
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calendar   Saturday - September 27, 2008

Troll Baiting

this post IS about and from europe. 1 in 4? 1 in 5? Not that anyone is keeping count. Not really. But it’s a good header that I think we should use for a while. And a good awareness builder. Not sure that this post should even count, since it’s hardly more than a link. And it was written and posted here in New Jersey.

“BMEWS, the Amero-centric multinational blog.”

It’s always fun to pay a visit once in a while to The Dissident Frogman. He’s over there in Fwance all alone, fighting the good fight.

Here’s a link to one post where he plays Whack The Pinata with a bunch of muzzie trolls, most of whom haven’t quite brought their English Writing skills up to the LOL Catz level.

Muslims In The Mail.


Posted by Drew458   United States  on 09/27/2008 at 10:37 PM   
Filed Under: • Humor •  
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Another public service announcement

This post is neither from or about Europe

As we belatedly found out in the previous post, September is/was Library Card Sign-up Month. September is almost over, so it’s probably too late to sign up for a library card this year. Better luck next year. Please mark your calendars.

I thought it would be a good idea to find out what October holds in store for us. I’ve found that October is one very busy month indeed.

Filipino American History Month
National Arts & Humanities Month
National Hispanic Heritage Month
Italian American Heritage Month: Italian Heritage and Culture Month
Polish American Heritage Month
Celiac Sprue Awareness Month
Health Literacy Month
Healthy Lung Month
National Breast Cancer Awareness Month
National Dental Hygiene Month
National Down Syndrome Awareness Month
National Infertility Awareness Month
National Lupus Erythematosus Awareness Month
National Orthodontic Health Month
National Physical Therapy Month
National Spina Bifida Awareness Month
National Spinal Health Month
Rett Syndrome Awareness Month
Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) Awareness Month
World Blindness Awareness Month
National Pharmacist Month

source: Wikipedia

I don’t see how I can fit all of that into my schedule. I got a head start on being aware of Down Syndrome thanks to Governor Palin. That will help.

That is all.


Posted by Christopher   United States  on 09/27/2008 at 10:44 PM   
Filed Under: • Odd-StrangeSatire •  
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A public service announcement

This post is neither from or about Europe

September is was Library Card Sign-up Month.

(Who decides these things?)

This meant . . . a poll. Another useless poll. Full of useless facts. Facts like:

two thirds (68%) of Americans currently own a library card.

I’m not sure I believe it is that low. I’d like to know their definition of ‘American’. Do they include hostile invaders illegal aliens? That would bring the percentage down.

Some other worthless ‘facts’ from this poll:

See More Below The Fold


Posted by Christopher   United States  on 09/27/2008 at 09:50 PM   
Filed Under: • Health-MedicineOdd-Strange •  
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Irritated Islamists

This post is neither from or about Europe.

I just can’t muster much of my ‘give-a-damn’.

Chemical irritant empties Islamic Society of Greater Dayton mosque

By Kyle Nagel

Staff Writer

Saturday, September 27, 2008

DAYTON — Baboucarr Njie was preparing for his prayer session Friday night, Sept. 26, when he heard children in the Islamic Society of Greater Dayton coughing. Soon, Njie himself was overcome with fits of coughing and, like the rest of those in the building, headed for the doors.

“I would stay outside for a minute, then go back in, there were a lot of kids,“ Njie said. “My throat is still itchy, I need to get some milk.“

Njie was one of several affected when a suspected chemical irritant was sprayed into the mosque at 26 Josie St., bringing Dayton police, fire and hazardous material personnel to the building at 9:48 p.m.

Someone “sprayed an irritant into the mosque,“ Dayton fire District Chief Vince Wiley said, noting that fire investigators believe it was a hand-held spray can.

I’m thinking that the mosque already had several ‘irritants’ in it.

According to fire dispatch communications, a child reported seeing two men with a white can spraying something into a window. That child was brought to the supervising firefighter at the scene.

Wiley would not discuss that report, but said the investigation has been turned over to police. Police were not commenting.

The 300 or so inside were celebrating the last 10 days of Ramadan with dinner and a prayer session, but the prayer session was interrupted so those suffering from tearing, coughing and shortness of breath could receive treatment.

See, 300 irritants were present to start with.

See More Below The Fold


Posted by Christopher   United States  on 09/27/2008 at 09:11 PM   
Filed Under: • RoPMA •  
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“from and about Europe”

This post is about Europe though not from Europe.

This is dedicated to Walt, who left BMEWS after a year and a half

...probably because most of the posts were from and about Europe.

Just another European from Oktoberfest 2008 in Munich. (SFW)

Think my wife would let me go next year? Me neither.  downer


Posted by Christopher   United States  on 09/27/2008 at 08:34 PM   
Filed Under: • Eye-CandyFun-Stuff •  
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Smart Tools

This is pure nerd-vana to a tool junkie. The very best kind of tool porn. This really is a quantum leap forward in power saw technology. It’s the “intelligent” table saw that knows when it’s cutting wood, and when it’s cutting your fingers off. And when the latter happens, the blade stops and retracts in an instant. I’ve known too many carpenters and butchers in my time who could go by the nickname “Stubby” because they all lose a few fingers eventually. Right now this saw costs about 3 times what other saws cost ... but this is how the future ought to be.

SawStop, the World’s Safest Table Saw

SawStop’s 10” cabinet saw and 10” contractor saw were developed from the ground up with a particular focus on safety and quality. They feature a revolutionary safety system that stops and retracts the blade (within 5 milliseconds) upon accidental contact, drastically reducing the severity of user injury. The safety system provides invisible protection (doesn’t interfere with your work), is always “on” and performs continuous self tests. The saws also includes a European style riving knife (secured via a quick-change mount) that helps minimize kick-back.


How does it do it? The saw blade is slightly electrified, and has a monitoring circuit. When your hand touches the blade the voltage drops, and that triggers the safety mechanism. That blows a fuse which lets a spring loaded aluminum block slam against the running saw blade. The blade and the motor are mounted on a pivot, so when the block smacks into them not only is the blade stopped dead in its tracks, the whole affair snaps out of the way. So the blade instantly stops and hides under the table. Impressive!

Found over at Hog On Ice. The SawStop is an industrial grade tool, and is priced accordingly. Prices run between $2800 to $3400


Posted by Drew458   United States  on 09/27/2008 at 02:45 PM   
Filed Under: • Neat InventionsScience-Technology •  
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Now councils tell us what to eat.  (now I ask you. how could I ignore this one?) for real? yup.


Ain’t this stupid?  See where tree hugging left wing PC leads?
I don’t have time to make the MANY comments running through my head at the moment. Or the questions.

Like most ppl have the time for this stupidity.  Sure, many folks grow their own veggies and such. But this goes way beyond that and anyway, you’d need to involve the whole country to get anywhere.  Fat chance of that.

Have to go off line for some hours.  Just couldn’t save this for later.  Duh! 

Bin collections row: Now councils tell us what to eat
Householders are being told what to eat by councils in the latest controversial plan to cut down on domestic waste.

By Christopher Hope, Home Affairs Editor
Last Updated: 2:06PM BST 26 Sep 2008

Local authorities have devised a “council cook book” featuring such culinary delights as beans and egg on toast, lentil salad and home-made muesli, which can be made without buying anything in throwaway packaging.

It has been produced as part of Zero Waste Challenge Week, in which four councils in the West Country are challenging residents to go for a seven days without producing any rubbish.

But critics claim it is yet more evidence of a sustained assault on people’s rights to weekly bin collections, as well as being patronising.

Among the tips contained in leaflets produced by the councils are that people should make their own food, such as yogurt, and take resealable boxes to the butcher so meat does not have to be put in plastic bags.

Recipes contained in the leaflets are made up of ingredients which can all be bought either in paper bags, cardboard boxes, tins or jars, which can all be recycled.

Zero Waste Challenge Week, which has been devised by Bristol City Council, Bath and North East Somerset Council, South Gloucestershire Council and North Somerset Council, starts on Monday.

The councils want community groups, schools and residents to sign up to the challenge not to throw anything away in the dustbin by only using products that can be reused or recycled.

A leaflet says: “That way we’re left with nothing else to throw away in the bin.”

The leaflet adds: “We believe that if you make enough changes, it is possible to achieve a Zero Waste Week. However, the aim of the challenge is to see how close you can go.

“Circumstances are different for everyone and even if you don’t quite manage to achieve Zero Waste, you’ll find you can have a dramatic effect on the amount you throw away.”

The results will be used by the councils to advise on future recycling and rubbish collection strategies.

The councils say: “Completing and returning your record sheet will allow us to assess the success of the scheme and help us to find ways to tackle waste minimisation in the future.”

Crucially, commercial waste – such as rubbish thrown away at work – is not included in the project.

Last night the Conservatives criticised the plans.

Eric Pickles, the shadow local government secretary, said: “We are entering a brave new world of fortnightly rubbish collections that we all know is going to fuel a surge in fly-tipping and backyard burning.

“This is not a responsible or practical way of encouraging recycling but merely a cleverly disguised form of propaganda attempting to peddle the benefits of fortnightly rubbish collections for town halls. This is bureaucratic convenience, without any public benefit.

“Recycling rates are going up which begs the question why do we need this. We want people to be environmentally responsible but employing the heavy hand of the state is not the solution.”
Top Tips for Zero Waste Week

* Avoid food contained in packaging that cannot be recycled, like crisps

* Try making your own food, like yogurt

* Take your own plastic boxes to the local butcher or green grocer to cut back on packaging

* Plan ahead so that you are not caught out throwing something away.

* Buy bread wrapped in paper, rather than plastic packaging



Posted by Drew458   United Kingdom  on 09/27/2008 at 03:30 AM   
Filed Under: • EnvironmentNanny StateStoopid-PeopleUK •  
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Fighter pilot who proved one of the finest American combat leaders of the Second World War .

Recently I am aware we’ve been criticized for so much foreign posting on what is after all, an American blog site.

I might have more to say on the subject later but here is a Brit obit in a major paper on an American pilot of WW2.  I was never aware of this fellow. Were any of you?  Did any major American paper give this guy this sort of coverage?  We just don’t tend to do it this way back home. And that’s a shame really because there have been many people, ordinary folks, who once had lives and achieved things of note and then got on with living and raising families and never talking about the past.  Then after they’re gone we learn about them and they turn out to be quite fascinating.  But they were never famous in their own time and did not seek fame.

I post a lot of things here that are to do with things Brit or European. (I never thought of Brits as European. Never will and wife’d divorce me if I did)
I had hoped that seeing what’s happening here might wake up ppl at home.  Not that anyone here is asleep.  But I did think folks might be interested in how we’re covered in the press here, as well as the totally screwed up and stupid PC culture that prevails.  And when it comes to PC stupid, the left here takes first prize. So far anyway.  My next post of nanny statery will be beyond belief.

OK so here .... The obit for an American fighter ace.  One of his pilots described Blakeslee as “George S Patton Jr in a P-51 Mustang”.

And damn it ... wouldn’t it have been something to be able to have known this guy and listened to his war stories. If he’d have talked about them.

Colonel Don Blakeslee
Fighter pilot who proved one of the finest American combat leaders of the Second World War .

Last Updated: 10:27PM BST 26 Sep 2008

Colonel Don Blakeslee in his RAF Spitfire: he later flew Mustangs from Debden, Essex, as commander of the 4th Fighter Group

Colonel Don Blakeslee , who has died aged 89, served in the Royal Canadian Air Force and the RAF before transferring to the USAAF, where he was considered one of the finest combat fighter leaders of the Second World War.

On January 1 1944 Blakeslee was appointed to command the 4th Fighter Group based at Debden, Essex. The role of the Group was to escort the Eighth Air Force’s long-range bomber force deep into enemy territory. A forceful, no-nonsense man, Blakeslee left his pilots in no doubt of what he expected of them when he addressed them for the first time: “We are here to fight,” he began. “To those who don’t believe me, I would suggest transferring to another Group. I’m going to fly the arse off each one of you. Those who keep up with me, good; those who don’t, I don’t want them.”

His Group was equipped with the P-47 Thunderbolt, a fighter he had little time for. He worked hard to be re-equipped with the P-51 Mustang, and when this was approved he was told that his pilots had to be operational within 24 hours of receiving them. He agreed, instructing his pilots to “learn how to fly them on the way to the target”.

In March 1944 Blakeslee led the first Mustangs over Berlin, escorting a daylight-bombing raid. In just four months his aggressive leadership led to the Group’s achieving its 500th “kill”. On June 21 he led his fighters (known to the bomber crews they escorted as their “little friends”) on the first “shuttle” bombing mission to Russia by Eighth Air Force Flying Fortresses, a flight of 1,470 miles. Blakeslee and his pilots landed in Ukraine after seven hours in their single-engine fighters.

By his own admission Blakeslee was not a very good shot, and he flew very close to his adversary before opening fire. He was credited with 15 and a half victories, but when there was a multiple claim he always allowed junior pilots the credit. Many believe that he destroyed at least 30 enemy aircraft.

His greatest asset was his outstanding ability as a leader in the air. One eminent aviation historian wrote: “He was everywhere in the battle, twisting and climbing, bellowing and blaspheming, warning and exhorting. His ability to keep things taped in a fight with 50 planes flying at 400mph was a source of wonder.” One of his pilots described Blakeslee as “George S Patton Jr in a P-51 Mustang”.

Blakeslee forged the 4th Fighter Group into one of the most formidable and successful USAAF fighter combat units — many claim it was the best. By the end of the war it had become the top-scoring American fighter Group. Having flown more than 400 operational sorties since transferring to the USAAF, he was finally grounded in September 1944.

Donald James Mathew Blakeslee was born on September 11 1917 at Fairport Harbour, Ohio. As a boy he watched the Cleveland National Air Races and became fascinated by flying. In 1939 he and a friend bought a light aircraft, but when his friend crashed it Don left Ohio, in October 1940, to join the RCAF.

After completing his training he arrived in England in May 1941, joining No 401 (RCAF) Squadron, flying Spitfires from Biggin Hill. Engaged on sweeps over northern France throughout 1941, he was credited with destroying a Messerschmitt Bf 109 and damaging others. He also destroyed two aircraft on the ground during strafing attacks.

He later transferred to No 133, one of the three American-manned “Eagle” squadrons of the RAF, and during the Dieppe operation in August 1942 he shot down a Dornier bomber, probably destroyed a Focke Wulf 190, and damaged two others. He was awarded a DFC after completing 120 operations.

In September the Eagle squadrons were transferred with their Spitfires to the USAAF’s 4th Fighter Group, and Blakeslee took command of the 335th Squadron. The unit was soon re-equipped with the P-47, and in April 1943 he achieved the aircraft’s first success when he shot down a FW 190, followed shortly afterwards by a second. In May he was promoted to lieutenant-colonel and became the Group’s executive officer, continuing to fly in combat. As one of the most experienced American fighter pilots in Europe, he was asked to lead the recently arrived 354th Fighter Group on its initial operations. This was the first unit to be equipped with the P-51 Mustang, and he was able to claim another victory on the type. His experience with the 354th convinced him that the Mustang was superior to his own unit’s P-47s. A few weeks later he was promoted to colonel to command the 4th Fighter Group.

After he was grounded, Blakeslee returned to the United States to command an airfield in Florida. He remained in the USAAF and commanded a fighter wing. His later assignments included two tours in Germany and one in Korea, at HQ Tactical Air Command.

He saw service in Vietnam and retired from the Air Force in 1972 , when he went to live in Florida.

Blakeslee was one of America’s most decorated pilots: he was twice awarded America’s Distinguished Service Cross, as well as a Silver Star and numerous other medals.

Most fighter pilots enjoyed playing the role, sporting artwork on the noses of their aircraft as well as the tally of their scores. But for all his aggression and flamboyance in the air, this was not Blakeslee’s style. His aircraft bore no artwork and no “victory” crosses beneath the cockpit.

In later years, many aviation artists chose to paint a particular ace’s finest moment, usually an event relating to one of their air combats. The only painting Blakeslee ever officially approved was one that shows him standing in front of his Mustang pointing to his watch as he stands alongside a Russian officer. It depicts his arrival in Ukraine after his unique flight in June 1944 when he led the 4th Fighter Group across Germany and Eastern Europe using only a map on his knee and a watch.

He was greatly admired in the American fighter pilot community, which recognised him as one of the two outstanding pilots in the European theatre, the other being Colonel “Hub” Zemke.

In retirement Blakeslee was a private man who shunned publicity; but in July 2001 he agreed to visit Duxford with three other American “aces” for the Flying Legends Show.

Don Blakeslee died on September 3. He married his wife, Lee, on his return to the United States in 1944. She predeceased him, and he is survived by their daughter.


Posted by Drew458   United Kingdom  on 09/27/2008 at 02:43 AM   
Filed Under: • War-Stories •  
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calendar   Friday - September 26, 2008

the Big Debate, Round 1

Is it just my imagination, or did somebody put a little anti-Grecian Formula in Obama’s hair? Just a little touch of gray at the sides. Just a little. To make him look more worldly, distinguished, and mature.
I did notice that McCain was wearing his less-yellow set of dentures. Good move John. Obama’s suit was so sharp it could cut you. McCain looked a little saggy baggy, but not too bad. McCain has learned to close his eyes, shake his head, and grin whenever he feels a Cheney Moment coming on. Good move again John. Obama can’t take criticism hardly at all. Did you see all the pissy faces he was making? He had that whole “damn cracker, there he go again” expression going on half the night.

I like how Obama kept agreeing with McCain, as if he was trying to leech into him the same way he made himself indistinguishable from Hillary during the primaries. But McCain wasn’t having it, and kept pointing out how BO was naive and unprepared. But that started to play against him after a while; I thought it was bad when McCain kept bringing up some Obama quote that was out of date. Not that the Big O hadn’t said what McCain said he did, just that BHO had long since reversed himself on whatever the position was. And without reminding us forcefully that he was pointing out a flip-flop, it just made McCain look a bit behind the times. OTOH, you need a fairly accurate watch to know what Ob’s current stance on anything is. Not quite the precision level of a John Kerry Positional Chronometer, but a good one nonetheless. Remember, the public is either stoned out or on major meds most of the time. We can’t remember anything past last week, if we’re lucky. Bring up a statement from a month ago and you just look misinformed, since everybody heard the Obaby say the opposite this morning.

Overall, I’d say McCain was the more assertive candidate. Although it’s so hard to tell, since his steady even plodding quiet tone that runs on and on forever without ever needing to inhale or even pause for a comma ought to be bottled and sold as over the counter sleep aids. Forget buying a bottle of SnoresMore, just put a CD of McCain speeches on and you’ll be out in a moment. ZZZzzzzz.

A few minutes after the debate the Dems released a statement that said that McCain was rooted in the past, while Obama was looking to the future. That’s lefty-speak for “our guy has no experience at all, and this is the only way we can respond to McCain’s relentless hammering about his 20 years of doing this, his 25 years of doing that, his 35 years of knowing Henry Kissinger and so on.”

I actually liked this format. It was actually a debate. Or nearly one. A big rambling discussion. The moderator just threw out a question and let them go at it. This beats the hell out of video questions from snowmen, and 3 minute soundbites that are no more than sloganeering. The “can you turn and look at your opponent and say that to his face” idea was just as juvenile as the “raise your hand if” thing from one of the middle GOP debates.

Overall, I’d say McCain was the winner. But it wasn’t a KO. It was a soft win, one you had to think about to realize. He could have hammered the dem’s part in creating this economic mess, starting with his own exoneration from the Keating 5, up through Clinton era PC lending policies rooted in dreamland, right through the Clintonistas like Gorelick screwing up Fannie and Freddie, the huge donations that have come from them to Obama, and how those former financial “wizzzards” (yes, 3 zees, since they’re all as inept as Rincewind, only without the world saving anti-heroism part) are now on Obama’s campaign staff. But that wasn’t McCain’s approach. He wasn’t there to point fingers, he was there to say we all need to work together to find a solution right now. It was Obama who wound up looking a bit churlish when he made his “another example of the failed policies of the Bush administration” remarks. McCain was above that. McCain could have really gone on the offensive several times, but he refrained from that. And really, isn’t that how a real leader, a unifier, ought to be?

Hey, I have a bracelet too you know. Duuuuuuh.

PS - Where the hell is Pokistan? Is that some funky place once visited by Jengjis Kaaaahn?

So, what do you think? Come on, it’s open mike night! Stand up, sound off.


Posted by Drew458   United States  on 09/26/2008 at 10:18 PM   
Filed Under: • Politics •  
Comments (4) Trackbacks(0)  Permalink •  

blogroll updates

I added Right U R. This is a pretty new blog. Let’s see how it grows. I like what he’s put up so far:


I also fixed CMBlake’s link.

That is all.


Posted by Drew458   United States  on 09/26/2008 at 07:10 PM   
Filed Under: • Blog Stuff •  
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Not that very many people ever read this far down, but this blog was the creation of Allan Kelly and his friend Vilmar. Vilmar moved on to his own blog some time ago, and Allan ran this place alone until his sudden and unexpected death partway through 2006. We all miss him. A lot. Even though he is gone this site will always still be more than a little bit his. We who are left to carry on the BMEWS tradition owe him a great debt of gratitude, and we hope to be able to pay that back by following his last advice to us all:
  1. Keep a firm grasp of Right and Wrong
  2. Stay involved with government on every level and don't let those bastards get away with a thing
  3. Use every legal means to defend yourself in the event of real internal trouble, and, most importantly:
  4. Keep talking to each other, whether here or elsewhere
It's been a long strange trip without you Skipper, but thanks for pointing us in the right direction and giving us a swift kick in the behind to get us going. Keep lookin' down on us, will ya? Thanks.


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GNU Terry Pratchett

Oh, and here's some kind of visitor flag counter thingy. Hey, all the cool blogs have one, so I should too. The Visitors Online thingy up at the top doesn't count anything, but it looks neat. It had better, since I paid actual money for it.
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