Saturday, 25 November 2006

War in Lebanon: Hezbollah Weapons from Iran on Display

War in Lebanon: Hezbollah Truck Carrying Anti-Aircraft Gun

War in Lebanon: Hezbollah Rocket Launcher in Village

War in Lebanon: Israel Attacks Hezbollah Infrastructure

War in Lebanon: Hezbollah Rocket Launcher in Village

War in Lebanon: Hezbollah's Use of Human Shields

War in Lebanon: Hezbollah Fires From Behind 3-Story Bldg

War in Lebanon: Israeli Attacks on Hezbollah

Haifa Under Attack - July 16th 2006 Israel

Haifa bombed by rockets - WAR

HAIFA - Katyusha hit near - WAR

alarm in haifa during lebanon war

Hezbolla rockets in Israel- קטיושות נופלות

Home הביתה

After the Lebanon War

The bunkers - הבונקרים ליד בינת-ג'בריל

Captives of Hizballah - שבויי חיזבאללה

הכי זבאלה

To the battle - Israel at war / אל הקרב - ישראל במלחמה

Lebanon 2006

gdud 50 in lebanon

Israeli special intelligence unit in action

Force of the Israeli air - חיל האויר הישראלי

Israel Air Force חיל האוויר הישראלי


IDF - 1st Brigade, 12 Batallion

IDF tribute //

IDF tribute //

Respect the IDF // תן את הכבוד לצה

לזכר חללי צה

israel's soldiers

It's in the Koran

Osama Bin Laden and the role of women in Islam

Foster Friess' introduction to the documentary Obsession

9\11 tribute

Never before seen Video of WTC 9/11 attack

WTC site photos

September 11, 2001

Remembering September 11th

Fox News:The Threat of Radical Islam (Pt. 6 of 6)

Fox News:The Threat of Radical Islam (Pt. 5 of 6)

Fox News:The Threat of Radical Islam (Pt. 4 of 6)

Fox News:The Threat of Radical Islam (Pt. 3 of 6)

Fox News:The Threat of Radical Islam (Pt. 2 of 6)

Fox News:The Threat of Radical Islam (Pt. 1 of 6)

E.D.Hill FoxNews

Wafa Sultan - Truth About Islam (Hebrew Subtitles)

Wafa Sultan-Terrorism and Islam (New)

Wafa Sultan In First Ever English Interview (Part-II)

Amazing interview -

Friday, 24 November 2006

Why "safra ve'saifa" ?

I used a traditional Hebrew phrase in my URL - "safra ve'saifa", which means " a man of the book and a man of the sword". I spotted it in a comment by veteran Israeli political leader, Shimon Peres [9th Israeli President] about the Dublin-reared 6th President of Medinat Israel, Maj-Gen Chaim Herzog, and quoted on the cover of his candid, inspiring and courageous 1997 auto-biography, "Living History". ISBN 0 297 81941 0. US Democratic Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan described it as " a witty and fascinating memoir by one of this century's great Irishmen".

Not only do I greatly admire the life and thinking of this many-sided man, his story is also typical of the best of the Irish tradition - he wore 5 uniforms, but all in the service of freedom and democracy. On arrival in British-administered Palestine in 1935, he joined the Haganah Jewish self-defence force, then was a part-time police reservist, was in the Cadet Corps while a student in Britain, then in the British Army Intelligence Corps, and finally retired as a Maj-Gen and Director of IDF Intelligence [Aman].

Another hero is the oft-ignored Irishman among the first crew to fly the Atlantic against the prevailing winds, from East to West, from Baldonnel Military Airfield, South County Dublin, on April 12, 1928. He was the Irish Air Corps O/C, Col. James Fitzmaurice, their co-pilot and navigator, along with 2 Germans, in the "Bremen". His [363 pp] 1997 hardback biography by Teddy Fennelly -"Fitz and the famous flight" - is well worth reading. ISBN 0 86335 023 2.

Like Herzog, Fitz wore many uniforms. National Volunteers, British Army [a volunteer in WW I], Royal Air Force, and finally Irish Air Corps from 1922. Both men, Herzog the younger by 21 years, served only one cause, but in several units. As did the young Dubliner, L/Cpl Ian Malone, slain by a sniper's bullet in Basra in liberating the Shia, Kurdish and Sunni peoples of Iraq from Saddam's Baath neo-Nazi terror. Indeed, Saddam's uncle took part in the pro-Nazi "Golden Square" coup of Rashid Ali and the Palestinian leader, the Mufti of Jerusalem, in 1941. The Mufti went on to recruit Muslims in the Balkans for 2 SS Divisions. Ian was a Private in the part-time Reserve 20th Infantry Bn of the Irish Army and then joined 1 Bn, Irish Guards, in the British Army. The O/C of 1 Bn, Royal Irish Regt, Col Tim Collins, led his fellow Irishmen, from both South and North on our Island, in liberating Iraq, and his stirring speech is rightly famous. And Collins had a Dublin father, and an East Belfast mother.

That name Collins also echoes strongly for Irish ears. USAF Maj-Gen Michael Collins, the astronaut who commanded the first moon landing flight in 1969, or his fellow USAF astronaut, Col Eileen Colllins. In addition to Gen Michael Collins, 1890-1922, famed from the Irish War of Independence, and slain in an ambush by a fellow Irishman, in his native County Cork in August, 1922, there are dark recent echoes. The cowardly armed gangsters of the "Provisional IRA" shot another Collins in the back in Derry City on the banks of the River Foyle, on April 10, 1997, with a single upper-body shot, as she was on guard duty at the local Courthouse. This brave woman later died of cancer - but the woman who rushed to her aid was a civilian, also named Collins, a Southerner working in that city.

RUC Constable Collins wore the same dark bottle-green uniform and badge of Harp with Crown, which my own Great-grandfather wore when he came South from North Armagh in the Royal Irish Constabulary in 1852, to County Kilkenny in the SE of Ireland and served firstly at Kilmoganny and then at Bennettsbridge Barracks, Thomastown District, Co Kilkenny where he died at 46 in 1878. His oldest, William Lappin, also joined the RIC, serving in Limerick, before joining the Western Australia Police, being eventually promoted  Inspector, while a daughter Maria Lappin married Leixman Daniel McLoughlin, RIC Sgt in Mullinavat. This Ulster Protestant ancestor of mine, Peaden Lappin Con 15865, often came to mind when the 302 Irish policemen and women in the RUC [ and another 18 retired officers] were murdered from 1969. Various "republican" gangs also murdered almost all of our slain police in the South, our Gardai, among whose ranks my own father, South Tipperary-born in Kilfeakle, John Carew 5198, served. One of  his best friends during Border Duty during WW II, was the RUC Sgt in Newtownbutler, County Fermanagh.

I am colour-blind when it comes to uniforms stained dark by blood, and being proudly Irish also means honouring the huge Irish presence among the FDNY and NYPD dead, equally with their comrades who died to protect freedom, in Ireland, or overseas, including the 48 dead the Irish Army suffered on UN duty in Lebanon - a rate of casualty higher pro-rata than the US total in Iraq. Maybe up to 1 in 3 of the over 16,000 US Law Enforcers who gave their lives on duty were Irish, as with the US Firefighters. And New York's Sgt Dan Daly, US Marine and twice winner of the Congressional Medal of Freedom, is another brave Irish Defender of Freedom who bridges both sides of the Atlantic, not only in his origins, but with his courage and values. No other Enlisted Marine, and only 1 Officer [Gen Smedley Butler] won the Medal twice. Born in Long Island on Non 11, 1873, he served 30 years [20 on Active Duty] and died in Long Island on April 27, 1937. This small [5'6" and 132 lbs] Marine also won the Navy Cross for action in June, 1918 at Belleau Wood in WW I, and was wounded in action 3 times. The Irish Diaspora deserves as much honour and celebration as the Jewish one, and that global reach is one honourable bond both peoples can rightly cherish.

Freedom is never free, and those who refuse to stand behind our Uniformed Defenders, are free to stand in front of them.

The refusal to be stereo-typed and pigeon-holed into narrow boxes, prefabricated for us by tradition, bigotry, history, authority, media, or fashion, is at the heart of human life and freedom. My maternal grandfather, Michael Davin from Fethard, South Tipperary, was both a Cricket Captain [Sheestown, Kilkenny] and later National Vice-Chair of the Handball Council in the GAA {Gaelic Athletic Association}. The efforts of revolutionary bigots and bullies to divide and "purify" the living, in the name of dead dogmas, is an old habit, but a dying one, whose slow and eventual burial is guaranteed only by the continuing and staunch witness and resistance of those who believe in freedom and variety. I cherish that line of the great Ulster poet, Louis Mac Neice - "the drunkeness of things being various".

And one of the inspiring pictures of that vision today are the Bedouin, many badged in the Jordanian Army, others in their own **Shaked** Recon Bn in the IDF Southern Command, all of whom stand against our common enemy of the suicide-bombers. Differentiated by badge but united in courage and purpose.

I hope you enjoy some of what will be posted here, and that it may add to the sum of "things being various", and also to our determination to keep our world various and free, no matter what the threat or attacks, and no matter how many ignore or run in the face of the common enemy of the Jihadi Fanatical Fringe. The vision that moves me is the "safra ve'saifa" in the URL, that we all need to hold to both Joshua and Isaiah, to defend as well as proclaim freedom and justice, and do so unceasingly and unconditionally. And prove that we do indeed love life, not death, and know how to prevail over the new, ruthless Jihadi threats, and know how to eliminate their ideology as much as their resources and agents.
Friday, Nov 24, 2006.