This is one of the earliest Powerful Peace discussions on video, recorded in Washington nearly a year ago. It’s fun for me to look back on the earliest expressions, marvel at the consistency of the concepts over time, and discover along with my audience what’s evolving in the message!
I’m remembering my fallen SEAL friends, and the many who fell before our generation. Some think we “diminish” Memorial Day with picnics…but freedom & family is what they fought for.
Honor those who have given all for our way of life by living with love, health and happiness today.
Yikes. This is what happens when growth exceeds infrastructure… sharing the following link from our media team’s announcement at the Powerful Peace FB Page. I would say ‘mea culpa’ and take the blame, but it’s probably more of a we-a culpa because everybody knows I’m too dumb to effectively manage our online presence!
Powerful Peace Team: “Huge thanks to all who let us know about this: The ‘Buy Now’ button for signed copies of Powerful Peace was broken! To make it up to you, we’ve repaired the link and raised discounts. Hoping your friends and families will appreciate the new surge of gift copies!”
“The president’s budget proposal is now on the streets of Washington, D.C. Currently, it would protect funding for the State Department and the Agency for International Development and related activities from further cuts. The combined annual budget for development aid, security aid and diplomacy has averaged close to $60 billion over the past half decade. That is now slated to decline to about $50 billion, partly due to reduced war-related costs. But this amount could come under intense scrutiny. Moreover, if there is no grand bargain between the president and the Congress, sequestration could force reductions of a further 10 percent.
“Such an outcome would be bad for our nation’s security. As each of us has testified on Capitol Hill in past years, America’s ability to protect itself and advance its global interests often depends as much on its ‘softer’ power as it does on our nation’s armed forces. For example, though Latin American countries were themselves primarily responsible for their progress, the headway many of them made in stabilizing their countries in recent years has been a big plus for American security, too — and American aid had a role in that progress. That is part of why we have supported a budget deal that would repeal sequestration and achieve most further deficit reduction through savings in entitlement spending with similar increases in revenue generation. Implicit in our approach was the thinking that lawmakers should avoid the temptation to gut foreign aid just because it generally lacks a strong constituency in the United States.”
Live, Saturday May 1, 2013, 0900 hrs EDT
WDEO 990 AM, (Detroit/Ann Arbor)
WMAX- 1440 AM (Saginaw/Flint)
There isn’t much else to say. The name says it all.
Conflict, Hizballah, Al Qaida, rebels, Assad,
intervention, military action, quagmire, Iran….
Who or what are we supporting if any of these issues.
Veterans Radio will focus on the civil war in Syria with guest host
J. Robert DuBois, retired SEAL and author of Powerful Peace.
Don’t miss it.
While on the air, got a question for our guest,
call us at 877-573-7825.
Well, we had an enjoyable and productive panel on the Hill today. It was rewarding to have Congressional staffers, representatives of organizations and private citizens in the audience.
The panel were very diverse and accomplished, as well. That helped as we explored the future of special operations forces.
Here’s a photo of the crew from my perspective:
(From near to far)
–Derek Leebaert, Author of “To Dare and to Conquer: Special Operations and the Destiny of Nations from Achilles to Al Qaeda”
–LtColonel Anthony Shaffer, DIA, Army, Director of External Communications, Center for Advanced Defense Studies
–Michael Ostrolenk, co-founder of the American Conservative Defense Alliance, and event facilitator
–Jed Babbin, Former Deputy Undersecretary of Defense
–Peter O’Brien, U.S. Naval Intelligence (Ret.)
–Herb London, President of the London Center
–Eli Gold, Vice-President of the London Center and event coordinator.
And here’s a more relaxed pic of me with friends Peter, Tony and Michael. Among the highest designations one can receive in the traditional SEAL community is that of “A Good Mug”…these gents qualify.
You are cordially invited to a Round Table discussion
The Future of Special Operations:
A Look at Capabilities, Needs and Threats
In this round table discussion with experts and former operators, we are going to explore the global threats the U.S. faces and the role(s) that the special operations community will play in addressing those threats. We will discuss the actual capabilities our SOF have and what they will need in the near future as well as their limitations in being an extension of U.S. Foreign Policy.
Join the London Center for Policy Research as we ask our expert panel to dissect these questions and offer their thoughts on this topic of utmost importance. The panel will include:
- Herb London, President of the London Center;
- Lt Col Anthony Shaffer, DIA, Army, Director of External Communications, Center for Advanced Defense Studies;
- Jed Babbin, Former Deputy Undersecretary of Defense (President George H. W. Bush);
- Arthur Herman, Visiting Fellow, American Enterprise Institute;
- J. Robert DuBois, Navy SEAL (Ret.), author of Powerful Peace; A Navy SEAL’s Lessons on Peace from a Lifetime at War
- Peter O’Brien, U.S. Naval Intelligence (Ret.);
- Derek Leebaert, Author, To Dare and to Conquer
Eli. M. Gold, London Center Vice President and Michael Ostrolenk, co-founder of American Conservative Defense Alliance, will moderate the panel.
Tuesday, April 30, 2013 at 11:00AM -12:00PM
Cannon House office Building,
The London Center for Policy Research
10 West Street | Suite 20E | New York, NY 10004 | (212) 227.9820
In gratitude and honor to all the fine people who have endured the undeserved, served to the limits of their strength, and prayed with all the strength in their hearts—in other words, to all the good and innocent people involved in the Boston bombing, from victims to distant observers—I decided to lift Chapter 11 of Powerful Peace and share it with the world. I pray this will provide some comfort and hope during the painful minutes and months to come.
Thank You, Mr. bin Laden
While I was still in uniform, I once had what’s called a “bad landing.” That’s what happens when a SEAL gets into an airplane just fine and jumps out of it just fine, but then experiences a less-than-optimal reunion with the planet. The spinal surgery and other consequences of this event offer an excellent segue to discuss the in-validity of the use of terror.
You all know that I have been sustained throughout my life by three saving graces—
my family, my friends, and a faith in the power of resilience and hope.
These graces have carried me through difficult times and
they have brought more joy to the good times than I ever could have imagined.
We’ll get back to that in a moment.
As a result of the above parachuting mishap, a surgeon sliced into my throat and shoved my trachea, esophagus and artery out of the way in order to gouge out a damaged disc from my spine. Earlier in the same operation, he had carved bone out of my hip and fashioned a replacement, which he now fit into my spine. He capped this all off by screwing a titanium plate into the vertebrae above and below the replacement, then zipped up my throat.
When the entire production was finally healed, it turned out to be exactly as the surgeon had promised: the neck was not only good as new, but stronger than before. With those two vertebrae fused into one, there is a negligible reduction of flexibility, but a generally reinforced structure. In other words, I could endure the same fall better now, thanks to this invasive and gruesome process, than with my original neck.
Again, we’ll get back to that in a moment.
Osama bin Laden was no Superman. His image may have become more familiar than those of some legitimate world leaders. No matter. He was a living myth, blown up by the real affection of a handful of admirers and an unreal mystique for millions, awed by the attacks accomplished at his instigation.
OBL must have sometimes gotten diarrhea. He must have had uncomfortable and embarrassing gassy moments, and he must have sometimes gotten a little booger on the outside of his nostril. How do I know this? Because he was human. When I teach students to “think like the terrorist” I urge them to first put the adversary into perspective. To esteem him unrealistically is to self-inflict intimidation. It is to give weight and energy to his cause, to the detriment of our own. They’re only guys, guys.
Bin Laden and AQ acted as a malevolent surgeon on the spine of the free world. With 9/11 they sliced into a global throat in hopes of finding the jugular to kill the patient.
Before I “broke my neck a little bit,” my neck was natural and average. After the surgery I was sore for some months of healing. In the end, my spine was technically (but not noticeably) less flexible. It was also greatly reinforced, better able to survive trauma similar to what had caused the original damage.
After the “operation” of 9/11, the patient (the world) was sore for a few months of healing. The patient was understandably anxious about the future and the prognosis for recovery. To the unacknowledged disappointment of the surviving 9/11 attack supporters and their McQaeda franchises worldwide, however, the end result is the same as my own surgery. These attacks did not kill the patient. The operation steeled a spine. Our world is stronger, and better prepared, to meet malevolent actors in the future.
Achilles is remembered as a great Greek warrior who was invulnerable except for a one small spot on his heel. During the news footage filmed as the attacks occurred, we can still hear one commentator’s inaccurate remark spoken in the heat of that desperate moment: terrorists had “found the Achilles’ heel of America.” This was an inaccurate analogy.
America and our world, however, are stronger than ever before.
Thank you, Mr. bin Laden.
Walked a block from friend/mentor Kerry’s home (in a rough neighborhood) to the community center and a Powerful Peace talk with youth here in Detroit. I always pray to be “of use” to every audience…but in this rough area, ever so much more.
I’ve been around the world a few times, and I’ve seen almost all of America, but I have never seen a U.S. city with such widespread decay. There are many nice homes over the several miles I’ve explored, but most of those conscientious property owners are besieged by collapsing or burned shells on all sides. It feels as though the recession, the international shift of the auto industry, and despicable corruption by leadership all hurtled in to crash together in a perfect storm over this society.
I eagerly anticipate the day Detroit recovers from today’s painful reality. In the meantime, I am also encouraged by the many good men and women who refuse to back down from ensuring the safety and education of their youth. Every neighborhood has similar ventures, and it was a delight to meet today’s little mob of kids who are the hope for our future. I showed them some photos from my life and SEAL career, and they swarmed ever closer to my iPad…especially for an image of one of Saddam’s many gold-plated toilets!
My prayers go out for the recovery of this living legend in the endless striving toward dignity for every human.