A ‘Day of Infamy’

From the Desert with feet planted firmly in the Cornfield
From the Desert with feet planted firmly in the Cornfield

Today marks the 74th anniversary of the attack by the Japanese Imperial Navy on the US of A’s naval base at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii. President Franklin Delano Roosevelt declared the Monday after the attack:

Yesterday, December 7th, 1941 — a date which will live in infamy — the United States of America was suddenly and deliberately attacked by naval and air forces of the Empire of Japan.

The attack on Pearl Harbor was the oomph that helped push the US into World War II on the side of the Allies. But it was not the only factor, there were many more as well.

Not only did the Japanese launch an attack at Pearl Harbor that peaceful Sunday morning, but that same day attacked Guam, Wake Island, The Philippines, Malaya, Thailand and Midway.

Eventually General Douglas MacArthur would utter the immortal words, “I shall return,” as he fled The Philippines as the Japanese occupied.

Thousands of American sailors and soldiers lost their lives that sleepy morning. Battleships still lie in rest in the harbor, the watery grave for American lives lost.

In recent years, commemoration of Pearl Harbor Day has seemed to fade. Perhaps in part it can be attributed to the fact that more and more of whom Tom Brokaw called, “The Greatest Generation“, die off. The memory of that tragic day begins to fade as well.

An article detailing 5 myths about Pearl Harbor at TwinCities.com from a few years ago noted:

The attack on Pearl Harbor awoke America from its isolationist slumber and bolstered its charge into the Pacific war, but it did not spur entry into the European war. That happened when Nazi Germany and fascist Italy declared war on the United States on Dec. 11, compelling Roosevelt to respond in kind – thus committing the United States to a world war.

http://twincities.com/opinion/ci_19476298

From the Cornfield, I am hoping those who read this will stop and remember those sailors, marines and soldiers whose lives were lost.

To “The Greatest Generation“, we salute your service, your action and how you kept the world “safe for democracy“.

President Speaks – Misses Target

From the Desert with feet planted firmly in the Cornfield
From the Desert with feet planted firmly in the Cornfield

President Barack Obama for only the third time in his presidency addressed the nation in prime time from the Oval Office.

His purpose: Assure the American people his policy is correct and that the country is secure.

He failed.

If you listened to his speech, do you feel safer now that you did 15 minutes before? The President spent most of his time in seemed as a defense of Muslims who reject the small minority of extremists such as the Islamic State and Al Qaeda, who have perverted the religion for their own evil designs.

The President did say he would continue with the strategy that is working (???) in the conflict. He went on to say, he would not commit US troops in large numbers on the ground.

On the issue of gun control, the President called on Congress to bar people on no-fly lists from being able to purchase guns.

Presidential candidate and Florida Senator Marco Rubio on CNN’s State of the Union this morning defended his vote against that ban, noting that some 700,000 people on the no-fly and other watch lists are on those lists simply because their names are similar to a person of interest.

The President vowed “We will overcome terrorism.”

His words were harder than normal. His tone more serious.

Prior to tonight’s speech, the most recent poll revealed that 60% of Americans believe the President is wrong in how he is directing the war on terror.

The President also asked Congress to authorize use of force to defeat the terrorists, which it has refused to do.

From the Cornfield, I come back to the main question: Do you feel more secure now than you did 15 minutes ago before the President spoke?

I am still not convinced there is a strategy and, if there is one, that it is working.

Be Wary – Not Scared

From the Desert with feet planted firmly in the Cornfield
From the Desert with feet planted firmly in the Cornfield

The Islamic State’s tentacles have stretched into the US of A.

The deadly shooting of 14 and wounding as many in San Bernardino, California on Wednesday put ISIS in our living rooms. Once more Americans have been shaken to their collective core. Once more terror has penetrated our shields.

Unlike what happened following the horrific attack on the Twin Towers, the Pentagon and the downing of flight over Pennsylvania, where the country unified with partisan political divides for a moment disappeared, this time, Americans are divided.

Partisan bickering has been heightened. Ideological lines have been drawn. People are running scared.

Healthy fear is good. It kicks in our instinct for self-survival. But over-reaction and fear based, not on facts, but on ideological and partisan rhetoric can be as destructive as the act itself which gave rise to the debates.

We must be wary – but not live our lives scared. We must put it all in perspective.

This is not about guns.

This is not about political parties.

This is not about religion.

This is about evil people who wish to kill whoever disagrees with their warped view of the world, life and religion. An Ohio State University professor provided this information on Michael Smerconich’s program on CNN this morning:

  • Chances of getting killed by a terrorist in the US – 1 in 4 million.
  • Chances of getting killed by a gun in America – 1 in 9 million.
  • Chances of getting killed in a vehicle accident – 1 in 400,00.

We must go on with life.

We must not allow terror to grip us.

We must not be paralyzed by fear.

We must not resort to knee-jerk reactions.

What we must do is remain vigilant, alert and wary.

What we must do is life our lives in the freedom we so cherish.

From the Cornfield, our best response to those who wish to do us harm is to go on and not show the fear in our eyes, words or actions.

Let freedom ring with life lived on our terms, not in reaction to terror.