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  1. #41  
    Quote Originally Posted by ToolkiT
    That man should be given a medal for that, I think he hit the nail on the head!
    Here's what the bus driver said according to this CNN report:
    "I have been very lucky. I am just relieved to be here and to be able to see my wife and children. Many other people have not been so fortunate. I feel for the people that have perished and for their families.

    "I am pleased that many people in London are still getting the bus, despite what has happened," he said.

    "We are going to continue our normal lives. We are not going to be intimidated. I need some time to recover from what has happened, but I want to get back to work with Stagecoach and see all the great people at the depot."
    “Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away.” (Philip K. ****)
  2. #42  
    By the way, about my comment above, I realise it's the commanders' decision not the squaddies, but it still doesn't look good.
    Animo et Fide
  3. #43  
    Quote Originally Posted by PeterBrown
    I'm feeling badly let down by the USA military this morning, all personnel stationed in the UK have been told not to go into London. What's that about? It's safe enough for the queen to drive slowly down the Mall in an open top vehicle, it's safe enough for the mayor of London to go on the Tube. It's safe enough for several million people to go about their normal business, what are we to make of this order? I honestly didn't think the US military were such cowards.
    That is an 'interesting' order indeed..
    <IMG WIDTH="200" HEIGHT="50" SRC=http://www.visorcentral.com/images/visorcentral.gif> (ex)VisorCentral Discussion Moderator
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  4.    #44  
    Quote Originally Posted by PeterBrown
    I'm feeling badly let down by the USA military this morning, all personnel stationed in the UK have been told not to go into London. What's that about? It's safe enough for the queen to drive slowly down the Mall in an open top vehicle, it's safe enough for the mayor of London to go on the Tube. It's safe enough for several million people to go about their normal business, what are we to make of this order? I honestly didn't think the US military were such cowards.

    "Cowards" ????!!!! Force protection is job one it todays military. You may debate the judgement call on the order to stay out of London, but to brand the US Military cowards seems a stretch to say the least.

    I don't know you, so I will exercise restraint so as to be courteous. I would like to see a retraction and apology for this statement.

    The US Military is in no way, shape or form a bunch of cowards. I take great offense at your assertion and await your comment.
    "It is the soldier, not the reporter who has given us the freedom of the press. It is the soldier, not the poet, who has given us the freedom of speech. It is the soldier, not the campus organizer, who gives us the freedom to demonstrate. It is the soldier who salutes the flag, who serves beneath the flag, and whose coffin is draped by the flag, who allows the protester to burn the flag." -- Father Dennis Edward O'Brien, Sergeant, USMC
  5. #45  
    It's because I normally have a high regard for the military of both our countries that I'm upset by this decision. I would never usually use the word coward to describe anyone who's signed up to risk their life, which is why I put an extra statement further up this page. Whoever took the decision, not the guys who obeyed their orders, should be ashamed because it was a cowardly decision. Maybe justified immediately after the bombs went off, but it should have been rescinded a day or so after when we were all striving to return to normality. Ok?

    The best you can say about that order remaining in place is that it is over-protective. I hope it's rescinded today. And I repeat, it's the guys who left that order in place that I'm calling cowards, not the guys following their orders, and not the US military in general. Maybe I'll calm down in a bit and think that it's too emotive a word, but right now I'm bloody furious.
    Last edited by PeterBrown; 07/12/2005 at 07:42 AM.
    Animo et Fide
  6. #46  
    Quote Originally Posted by PeterBrown
    I'm feeling badly let down by the USA military this morning, all personnel stationed in the UK have been told not to go into London. What's that about? It's safe enough for the queen to drive slowly down the Mall in an open top vehicle, it's safe enough for the mayor of London to go on the Tube. It's safe enough for several million people to go about their normal business, what are we to make of this order?
    There's also good news, PeterBrown: Today I've read that there have been almost no cancellations of travels to London in Swiss travel agencies, despite offers to postpone the journey or book another location than London. So at least some tourists will be around.
    “Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away.” (Philip K. ****)
  7.    #47  
    Quote Originally Posted by PeterBrown
    It's because I normally have a high regard for the military of both our countries that I'm upset by this decision. I would never usually use the word coward to describe anyone who's signed up to risk their life, which is why I put an extra statement further up this page. Whoever took the decision, not the guys who obeyed their orders, should be ashamed because it was a cowardly decision. Maybe justified immediately after the bombs went off, but it should have been rescinded a day or so after when we were all striving to return to normality. Ok?
    Not sure if you have much military experience, but the decision seems on par with normal operations if you ask me (USAF for 16 years). As I have said before, force protection is job one in todays United States Air Force. That means protecting your people is your highest priority.

    The military is not like a civilian company. The base commander there has thousands of lives to protect. I am certain it is safe for the most part in London and I realize why it might seem to be an odd decision to a civilian. However, it would be unacceptable for that commander to lose a single airman to another [however improbable] attack on London.

    In short, it is an easy call to make to keep airman from London. They limit travel for airman in the UK all the time. I was stationed there for 6 years at RAF Mildenhall. There are several bars in Newmarket that are off limits pretty much constantly. Further, London and parts of London have been made off limits many time in the past. This is not a new or rare policy decision.

    By barring airman from a certain location, you virtually guarrantee that you will have no issues resulting from the possible danger (again, however improbable) at that location.

    Imagine if they did not limit travel and their was another attack and they lost 4 USAF Airman to a bomb blast. Can you imagine the fallout? With the previous attacks that commander has almost no choice but to limit travel into London. He has an absolute obligation to protect his people and will use the means of an administrative bar as an effective tool to that end.

    Odd to you, I understand. Effective, absolutely! Cowardly? Not in the least!

    Cheers
    "It is the soldier, not the reporter who has given us the freedom of the press. It is the soldier, not the poet, who has given us the freedom of speech. It is the soldier, not the campus organizer, who gives us the freedom to demonstrate. It is the soldier who salutes the flag, who serves beneath the flag, and whose coffin is draped by the flag, who allows the protester to burn the flag." -- Father Dennis Edward O'Brien, Sergeant, USMC
  8. #48  
    Quote Originally Posted by mattyparanoid
    The military is not like a civilian company. The base commander there has thousands of lives to protect.
    The mayor of London and Tony Blair have millions of lives to protect, but they didn't ask Londoners to stay at home and avoid the tube or busses, to the contrary. They asked the people of London not to be terrorized, and that is what happened: they were not, and they continued life as normal, knowing there may be another attack...
    Imagine if they did not limit travel and their was another attack and they lost 4 USAF Airman to a bomb blast.
    Imagine more civilians got killed... it's not that 4 USAF Airmen killed would be more (or less) tragic.

    The point was not to allow terrorists change life in London. Even tourists continue to go to London, though they don't have to. That's bad news for terrorists.
    Last edited by clulup; 07/12/2005 at 08:37 AM.
    “Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away.” (Philip K. ****)
  9.    #49  
    Quote Originally Posted by clulup
    The mayor of London and Tony Blair have millions of lives to protect, but they didn't ask Londoners to stay at home and avoid the tube or busses, to the contrary. They asked the people of London not to be terrorized, and that is what happened: they were not, and the continued life as normal, knowing there may be another attack...
    Imagine more civilians got killed... it's not that 4 USAF Airmen killed would be more (or less) tragic.

    The point was not to allow terrorists change life in London. Even tourists continue to go to London, though they don't have to. That's bad news for terrorists.
    I see your point, but the difference is that the military as a rule can [and does frequently] restrict civil liberties with a greater degree of frequency and ease then can a mayor. Further, sending a message in this manner is not the commander in questions priority, protecting his people is.

    It would IMO,not be reasonable or practical to restrict (or attempt to restrict) tourism or commuting to London by the mayor. It is however very feasible for the USAF commander to restrict London to essential travel only.

    It is a difference in thinking not only in civilian/military terms, but in US/UK terms as well.

    And of course, my statement that pertaining to the theoretical loss of 4 airman in no way meant to diminish the loss felt by the UK in the wake of these awful attacks. It was meant merely to illustrate (apparently, not effectively) that no commander wants to be the one to report to the pentagon that they have lost 4 airman in London because they didn't take the pro-active stance to restrict travel when they could have.

    I regret deeply the loss felt by all of you in the UK. I lived there for many years and have a special place in my heart for the people and country. Further, I respect the british stance on this issue and I am sure it will be effective in the long run.

    Lastly, all I can say is it is a very normal decision for a USAF Commander to make and I am not sure why it is so inflammatory to the citizens of the UK on this board. It happens all the time, the only difference is the great tragedy that London and the entire UK has felt at this horrible attack and the fact that it was reported on the world media.
    "It is the soldier, not the reporter who has given us the freedom of the press. It is the soldier, not the poet, who has given us the freedom of speech. It is the soldier, not the campus organizer, who gives us the freedom to demonstrate. It is the soldier who salutes the flag, who serves beneath the flag, and whose coffin is draped by the flag, who allows the protester to burn the flag." -- Father Dennis Edward O'Brien, Sergeant, USMC
  10. #50  
    Ok Matty, I understand the background a bit better now. Is this in some way driven by the risk of prosecution from family members because the commander is legally responsible for their lives? If so then that's so sad, to see the military are more risk-averse than civilians (see, I used the less emotive term 'risk-averse' there, must be calming down). Aren't soldiers/airmen/whatever capable of making their own decisions about where to travel and being treated like any other adult or tourist? I know there are specific restrictions on using particular bars, and probably on travelling anywhere near likely troublespots near football matches etc., that's probably because there have been fights and specific threats in the past though, am I right?
    Animo et Fide
  11.    #51  
    Quote Originally Posted by PeterBrown
    Ok Matty, I understand the background a bit better now. Is this in some way driven by the risk of prosecution from family members because the commander is legally responsible for their lives?
    Probably more political or internally/militarily political rather then fear of litigation, but yes that is the sentiment.

    Quote Originally Posted by PeterBrown
    If so then that's so sad, to see the military are more risk-averse than civilians (see, I used the less emotive term 'risk-averse' there, must be calming down). Aren't soldiers/airmen/whatever capable of making their own decisions about where to travel and being treated like any other adult or tourist?
    Nope, completely not allowed. We go where we are told, when we are told. In our off-duty time we are still bound by the limitations set forth by policy and regulation, as such limitations like this are common. This is the military, I am property, USG..

    Quote Originally Posted by PeterBrown
    I know there are specific restrictions on using particular bars, and probably on travelling anywhere near likely troublespots near football matches etc., that's probably because there have been fights and specific threats in the past though, am I right?
    Exactly, spot on. Including demonstrations, that was common while I was there (98-2004).

    I am sure it won't be forever with this ban. One of the most major benefits of serving in the UK is going to London, that coupled with the aforementioned political impact of such a ban will likely limit it.

    I for one miss a good curry....!

    Cheers
    "It is the soldier, not the reporter who has given us the freedom of the press. It is the soldier, not the poet, who has given us the freedom of speech. It is the soldier, not the campus organizer, who gives us the freedom to demonstrate. It is the soldier who salutes the flag, who serves beneath the flag, and whose coffin is draped by the flag, who allows the protester to burn the flag." -- Father Dennis Edward O'Brien, Sergeant, USMC
  12. #52  
    i am disappointed that some of our uk friends would call our military cowards.

    i don't know the reason for the order, but it may be for a completely different reason, than cowardess.
    maybe it is so that when london is in trouble, the first thing they see isn't a bunch of us servicemen, but rather their own british forces.
    maybe it is to lessen negative emotions that views of american troops might bring about.

    i am sure there is a reason, but i doubt highly it is cowardess.
    too bad people have to act in this way.
    iBug
    mac osx usernew beetle pilotpowerbook operatorsmartphone communicator

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  13. #53  
    iBug, the negative emotions were brought about by NOT seeing your guys! Anyway, now I've calmed down and had a more thorough explanation from Matty I do apologise for using the c-word. I generally try not to offend anyone, but when you're feeling offended you're more likely to offend someone else in turn.

    I still don't accept that it's a reasonable or necessary order though, and it sends all the wrong signals, I won't go over them again but they are negative to the image of the USAF.

    Anyway, back to normality, I thought you might like to read this blog by a woman who survived one of the attacks. She was inside the same carriage as one of the bombs! I think it's an amazing read of one woman's battle against fear and trauma. It's an abridged version of what's on the Urban75 website, but you have to register there to read the full version. There is a link from this page though. Have a read: http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/4670099.stm
    Last edited by PeterBrown; 07/12/2005 at 11:08 AM.
    Animo et Fide
  14. #54  
    Quote Originally Posted by iBug
    i am disappointed that some of our uk friends would call our military cowards.

    i don't know the reason for the order, but it may be for a completely different reason, than cowardess.
    maybe it is so that when london is in trouble, the first thing they see isn't a bunch of us servicemen, but rather their own british forces.
    maybe it is to lessen negative emotions that views of american troops might bring about.

    i am sure there is a reason, but i doubt highly it is cowardess.
    too bad people have to act in this way.
    Why would american troops bring negative emotions? arent the US and the UK allies?
    If there is trouble we'll see UK helptroops first anyway, we are talking about soldiers on leave here not on official duty AFAIKAFAIKAFAIK.

    Whatever the reason it looks weird.. as PB said, it is sav enough for millions of UK civilian, safe enough for the Queen in an open top car, safe enough for Blair to come back the same day, but not safe enough for trained soldiers?

    If they want to limit the risk for soldiers they are sending out a funny message, either they think the life of a US soldier is worth more than a (UK) civilian or they are scared.. either way is not a good thing...
    IF there is a credible risc they should share it with the UK authorities so action can be taken.
    To be honest I can't think of another reasonable reason.. but hopefully I'm wrong.
    I'm not saying they are cowards, but I am puzzled by the reasoning of this order..
    <IMG WIDTH="200" HEIGHT="50" SRC=http://www.visorcentral.com/images/visorcentral.gif> (ex)VisorCentral Discussion Moderator
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  15. #55  
    Quote Originally Posted by PeterBrown
    Anyway, back to normality, I thought you might like to read this blog by a woman who survived one of the attacks. She was inside the same carriage as one of the bombs! I think it's an amazing read of one woman's battle against fear and trauma. It's an abridged version of what's on the Urban75 website, but you have to register there to read the full version. There is a link from this page though. Have a read: http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/4670099.stm
    Thats a great story PB!
    <IMG WIDTH="200" HEIGHT="50" SRC=http://www.visorcentral.com/images/visorcentral.gif> (ex)VisorCentral Discussion Moderator
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  16. #56  
    Keep in mind that the order for the trooops to stay on post would've been made by a lower level officer. Even a base commander is lower level compared to the folks that are used to making decision that receive world wide scrutiny. Those guys number one instinct is to protect their people (if they are good at what they do), not necessarily consider the political backlash. In the states for example after 9/11 we weren't allowed off base in uniform and were encouraged to hide our base decals on vehicles so as not to present an obvious target.
  17. #57  
    Quote Originally Posted by ToolkiT
    Why would american troops bring negative emotions? arent the US and the UK allies?..
    if i remember correctly, weren't there anti-american demonstrations there not too long ago?
    wasn't tony blair being attacked through protests and the media, for siding so strongly with the us.

    i believe that the us and uk are allies. however, not all of our countrymen are happy about that.
    iBug
    mac osx usernew beetle pilotpowerbook operatorsmartphone communicator

    ----------
    vzw.kyo6035 > vzw.kyo7135 > vzw.treo600 > sprint.treo650
  18. #58  
    Quote Originally Posted by PeterBrown
    iBug, the negative emotions were brought about by NOT seeing your guys! Anyway, now I've calmed down and had a more thorough explanation from Matty I do apologise for using the c-word. I generally try not to offend anyone, but when you're feeling offended you're more likely to offend someone else in turn.

    I still don't accept that it's a reasonable or necessary order though, and it sends all the wrong signals, I won't go over them again but they are negative to the image of the USAF....
    i understand emotions.
    it was also kind of you to apologize.

    i know that it is a strange time and tensions are running high.

    i agree that our boys should be highly visible, yet i can also see where it may not be the best in some peoples eyes.

    whatever it may be, my thoughts are with y'all.
    iBug
    mac osx usernew beetle pilotpowerbook operatorsmartphone communicator

    ----------
    vzw.kyo6035 > vzw.kyo7135 > vzw.treo600 > sprint.treo650
  19.    #59  
    Restriction from the inside of the M25 didn't last long...

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/pages/liv...n_page_id=1770

    At least what the paper is saying. Have to give some of my friends a call to see if it is true.
    "It is the soldier, not the reporter who has given us the freedom of the press. It is the soldier, not the poet, who has given us the freedom of speech. It is the soldier, not the campus organizer, who gives us the freedom to demonstrate. It is the soldier who salutes the flag, who serves beneath the flag, and whose coffin is draped by the flag, who allows the protester to burn the flag." -- Father Dennis Edward O'Brien, Sergeant, USMC
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