Taps for Chief Hammett

I was saddened yesterday to read a press release from the Pentagon announcing the death of Chief Warrant Officer Robert Hammett, who was killed in action on Tuesday in Sadr City along with Maj. Dwayne Kelley of the 432nd Civil Affairs Battalion.

I knew Chief Hammett and served with him in Baqubah, Iraq, during my tour in 2005-06. He was the air defense chief for the 3rd Brigade, 4th Infantry Division, at FOB Warhorse. I spent several nights inside the brigade's command center or out at the helipad talking with him while waiting for helicopters. He was a superbly brilliant officer who had a gift for relating to people. We will all miss him greatly, and keep his family in our thoughts and prayers.

By Phillip Carter |  June 29, 2008; 6:00 AM ET  | Category:  Iraq
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My condolences to this man's family and friends. I regret deeply the fact that the nature of this war and the American military that must fight it requires that people who have already served tours in Iraq must return again and again, making it progressively more likely that eventually each man's "number" will come up. It is a very heavy burden to lay on the shoulders of men and women who have already sacrificed more in service to the country than the rest of us.

Posted by: Zathras | June 29, 2008 11:25 PM

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False Flags for Denver DNC?

Judith Young
Pacific FP
Monday, June 30, 2008

On June 24, 2008 on the Alex Jones Show, a nationally syndicated news/talk program that also has a huge Internet audience, retired CIA analyst Ray McGovern discussed the potential for a U.S.-Israeli attack on Iran before the Bush Administration leaves office next year.

Former morning briefer for Presidents Ronald Reagan and George Bush Sr., McGovern noted that Iran is carefully avoiding any actions that could be interpreted as provocations for an attack: hence justification for an attack would require a pretext manufactured by the Administration and/or the Israelis.

In an editorial published by AntiWar.com on June 20, McGovern had brought our attention to a little-noticed statement by Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert about a June 4 White House meeting with President George W. Bush:

* "We reached agreement on the need to take care of the Iranian threat. I left with a lot less question marks [than] I had entered with regarding the means, the timetable restrictions, and American resoluteness to deal with the problem. George Bush understands the severity of the Iranian threat and the need to vanquish it, and intends to act on that matter before the end of his term in the White House."1

(Article continues below)

McGovern concluded that a perfect storm seems to be gathering in late summer or early fall, when the Bush Administration and allies in Israel will launch attacks against Iran.

There is reason to hypothesize that the requisite staged provocation for an attack on Iran has already been planned and is scheduled to take place in Denver at the time of the Democratic National Convention (DNC) in late August.

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Posted by: che | June 30, 2008 3:47 PM

I'm so sorry to hear about the death of your friend and comrade, Chief Warrant Officer Robert Hammett. We are all diminished by this loss.

Posted by: Kim Y | July 1, 2008 10:28 AM

Rob was my dear friend and fellow Warrant Officer. I love him and will miss him dearly. He served every day proudly, and his contributions to the Military will be linked to greatness long after this day... His loss has saddened our great nation and ripped through the heart of our Warrant Community. Godspeed my Brother..

Posted by: Jeff Sprague | July 2, 2008 2:21 PM

We send our condolences for the loss of your friend and a fine soldier.

Posted by: rangeragainstwar | July 2, 2008 2:38 PM

Condolences, Phil.

Posted by: fnord | July 5, 2008 11:58 AM

The opinions expressed in this e-mail are not the opinions of the government/military, but solely my opinion. I also worked with Chief and he was a wonder person. He loved the military and serving people. This is my tribute to him; I have served in the military for almost 18 years and it has been exciting and rewarding. The service rendered to my country has brought me a since of pride and honor; in return, my country has been good to me and my family. But for some reason when people think of the military, especially with the current situation in Iraq and Afghanistan, they suddenly express feelings of remorse and sorrow for the Soldiers. I want to convey to you that I love what I do. I think this is one of the most exciting times in history to be a part of the military.

I have enjoyed every moment spent in Afghanistan whether it was good or bad. Those moments have magnified who I am as an American and validated the values instilled in me at an early age by my parents, friends, church and teachers. I'm not a robot programmed to go about on a daily bases executing orders which compels me to go against everything I know to be true, honest, pure and good. I have been given the right to help foster freedom and a democratic way of life to people who can not imagine what it's like to enjoy all the wonderful benefits we now experience.

The Army has given me the opportunity to travel around the United States, Europe and now Asia. Through my travels, I have meet many people from all across our great country, cities, and towns, whom other wise I would have never met. I have built lasting relationships, shared personal experiences and entered a society that where ever I go, I will be considered a brother because I speak the same language, shared in some of the same experiences and is now a piece of the quilt of security that covers America with freedom.

A few years after I joined the Army, I struggled to find my place in the military while being a minister of the gospel since I wasn't a chaplain. Was this a mistake to join the military? How could I preach the goodness of God, carry firearms and simultaneously be trained to provide humanitarian aid and possibly have to take a life. This last year serving in Afghanistan has helped me to understand why the things we experienced and the things we view as so insignificant can be such a blessing to others. During my year in Afghanistan, I was afforded the opportunity to attend Bible Study every Wednesday night and church service every Sunday. Eventually, I began to teach Bible Study, which I found to be most rewarding. But it was after I returned to the United States that I received letters, cards and e-mails from Soldiers, civilians and contractors expressing how the interaction and teaching through Bible Study had changed their lives and given them a vision and direction they had never experienced. The enthusiasm conveyed from the words was overwhelming.

No man is an island to himself. Everything we do affects someone else, whether it's negative or positive; I realize that we make a difference. I'm glad I was able to help change the lives of so many people from all across the world, an opportunity I might not have otherwise had.

Posted by: Major Calvin Thomas, United States Army | July 10, 2008 5:30 PM

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