Senators Fiddle on Military Base Carry While ISIS Threatens U.S. Airmen at Home

Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Tex.) Photo credit: TheHill.com.

Senator and Presidential candidate Ted Cruz (R-Tex.) and Senator and former Presidential candidate John McCain (R-Ariz.) got into a little bit of a tiff recently over the issue of military personnel being able to carry personal firearms for self-defense purposes while on base. As Politico reports, Sen. Cruz suggested that he was “pressing” Sen. McCain – the chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee – on the issue, while in response, the former chief engineer of the Straight-Talk Express showed the kind of trademark wit that won him the votes of twenty-two of America’s fifty-seven states . . .

“I was fascinated to hear that because I haven’t heard a thing about it from him. Nor has my staff heard from his staff,” McCain said of Cruz (R-Texas). “It came as a complete surprise to me that he had been pressing me. Maybe it was some medium that I’m not familiar with….”

“Maybe it was through, you know, hand telegraph. Maybe sign language,” McCain said. “Ask him how he communicated with me because I’d be very interested. Because who knows what I’m missing.”

In the end, Sen. Cruz appears to have backed down, allowing that he “may have misspoken”. Apparently, he’d been pressing the previous head of the Armed Services Committee, Sen. Carl Levin (D-Mich.), and just got the two mixed-up.

Sens. John McCain (L) and Carl Levin. Separated at birth? Photo credit: Slate.com.

Fair enough. All those old white male senators kind of look the same to me too, sometimes.

This doesn’t appear to have been the first row between the two, and probably won’t be the last, so I’m sure we’ll have all manner of entertaining barbs between these two solons, especially as the 2016 campaign heats up.

Meanwhile, the Shreveport Times reported last month that the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) has been threatening the lives of U.S. Air Force bomber crews here in the United States.

B-52H Bomber home-based at Barksdale AFB. Photo credit: Wikipedia.

 

B-52 bomber crews from Barksdale Air Force Base [in Bossier City, La. – across the Red River from Shreveport,] and its sister base in Minot, N.D., form a quarter of the 100 U.S. military personnel threatened in online postings by the terror group Islamic State in Syria, or ISIS.

The 25 local names, with photos and addresses that in many cases appear to be old, are in the list of personnel the terror group is asking [its adherents to] follow[] and…to harm.

The text opening the page says the list was gained after what is called the “Islamic State Hacking Division … hacked several military servers, databases and emails,” though the list includes many names of personnel who have appeared in news accounts and features over past years.

Included among them are personnel from Barksdale active duty 2nd Bomb Wing and its 307th Bomb Wing, an Air Force Reserve unit….

Air Force Global Strike Command [responded] to a query from The Times.

“The Air Force Office of Special Investigation is coordinating with appropriate federal and local authorities on this matter,” the response said. “We have taken the appropriate steps to make sure that everyone impacted has been notified.

“As always, force protection is a primary concern. As such, we are encouraging all Airmen to ensure privacy settings on online/social media forums are adjusted to limit the amount of available personal information. As it relates to personal social media accounts, we are encouraging personnel to remove personal details such as physical addresses, email addresses and phone numbers. As always, vigilance and force protection considerations remain a priority for commanders and their personnel worldwide. A strong emphasis is always placed on ensuring the appropriate (operational security) and force protection training occurs and procedures are in place.”

Bossier City police have taken notice, spokesman Mark Natale said.

“BCPD is aware of the situation and is prepared to provide assistance to Barksdale Air Force Base in regard to this issue,” he said. “As part of that effort the police department is working to step up a law enforcement presence in certain locations of the city.”

Shreveport police said they have not been asked to provide extra patrols or take other steps. They also pointed out that since much of the information appeared taken from social media and online sites, it had little credibility.

“When you think about the information that these people have, it’s essentially equivalent to a dating site,” said Shreveport Police spokesman Cpl. Marcus Hines. ” It’s nothing you couldn’t get on anybody with five minutes of work.” (Emphasis added)

Yes, this is probably a simple list compiled by someone plugging in a few search terms into a search engine and spitting out whatever results came by after “five minutes of work.” However, the attitude expressed by Cpl. Marcus Hines, in my mind, is rather flip. Someone from Iraq isn’t going to fly into Louisiana or North Dakota and, using this list, start assassinating bomber crews. But we have seen in the not-so-distant past several incidents where locals sympathizing with the aims of ISIL have decided to step up and launch their own attacks: as in places like Ottawa, and Sydney. It has become a commonplace to hear news of arrests of people in the USA who are trying to join the Islamic State or were inspired to try to commit acts of violence by it.

(It also makes me wonder what someone with more than five minutes to spend on the task might come up with. After all, we’re not talking about hacking DoD databases here, either – after all, lots of commercial have employment information for their customers – like credit-card issuing banks, for example.)

Is it likely that someone will try to attack these USAF crews here at home? maybe not. Is it possible? Absolutely. It is also not simply a matter of stepping up base security; for those not in the know, most USAF personnel (and almost all officers – like the kind that would command and pilot a B-52,) live off-base. At some point in their day, they’re going to be outside the fence, with no help from guard dogs and Air Police sentries.

So once Sens. McCain and Cruz get done exchanging barbs, it would be nice if they — and the rest of Congress — could either, pass a law allowing people to carry on base in compliance with local state laws, or else explain to us why crews entrusted with the operation and care of one of the most venerable and storied weapons in the American arsenal, are not to be trusted carrying a pistol for their own defense, subject to the same rules as any civilian, even after the enemy has threatened to attack them at home.

comments

  1. avatar Ima Yeti says:

    Congress works for us. Let’s fire these bozos!

  2. avatar Former Water Walker says:

    Whatever…McCain needs to retire. Ted for President!

  3. avatar Sammy says:

    Sorry, McCain is a big part of the problem when it comes to honest government dedicated to personal freedom. I thank him for his service and sacrifice, but spending 5 years in a tiger cage does not enhance anyone’s resume when it comes to governing.

    1. avatar AllAmerican says:

      Don’t be sorry. McCain is a democrat.

      1. avatar Sammy says:

        Your being kind. He’s a progressive. His only redeeming qualities are his wife and he’s a beer guy.

        1. avatar ELOT says:

          Democrat is putting it nicely. At least they’re honest about their philosophy.

        2. avatar Garrison Hall says:

          John Kerry gave serious consideration to asking McCain to run as his vice president when he ran for president. That event defined McCain for me.

      2. avatar Accur81 says:

        He’s some sort of statist.

  4. avatar Roymond says:

    “Fire” them — and get to pick from another list already vetted by the 0.1%

    Though it makes e wonder, since we only get to vote for people the wealthy approve of, why we don’t have a Congress full of advocates for the Second Amendment — after all, Machiavelli wrote that an armed populace is a guarantor of the wealth of the few (the princes, as he said it). Letting military folks carry weapons should be a no-brainer.

    1. avatar ClayinUT says:

      The biggest problem is getting to your gun after work. you cant even have it in your car, If you live in a great neighborhood that is safe and secure this is not a problem. But with the money provided does not always afford the greatest living locations.

  5. avatar AllAmerican says:

    Living off base they may very well be safer because at least then they can arm themselves without a hassle. And off base at least they can carry.

  6. avatar Ed Rogers says:

    I never owned a firearm, while I was active duty. Living on base I would have had to store my weapons in the armory…I just didn’t trust the system.

    1. avatar Grindstone says:

      And you would be right not to, I’ve had many friends who’ve stored their guns in the armory on base get them back in worse condition. The morons working there love to play around with other people’s stuff.

      1. avatar Accur81 says:

        That definitely sucks. I had to store my guns with the Madison, WI police department when I went to college at UW-Madison. I spent my first year in college with nothing more than a pocket knife. After that I got an apartment and could store my rifles and shotguns with me. I didn’t buy my first handgun until I was 22 or 23.

  7. avatar uncommon_sense says:

    Virtually all personnel on a military base are unarmed which is utterly and totally asinine. Aside from the likes of a spree killer or terrorist attack which has already happened twice in the last decade, how about a good old fashioned attack on the base from a foreign military operating clandestinely on U.S. soil? All it would take is about 200 armed attackers working in coordination with each other to totally take over a base and hold it for days if not weeks. And imagine if they took over a military base with heavy machine guns, tanks, or fighter jets … they could then employ those against any responding forces.

    1. avatar Accur81 says:

      Pretty much. Our dipsh!t congressmen (and women) have left our military bases wide open. The only thing standing in the way are a few MP’s with handguns. It’s a pretty sad state of affairs.

      1. avatar Raven says:

        Yup, and most of them are splitting only a few rounds between them, if not locked up. Shameful, absolutely shameful the policies in effect on most bases both here on homeland soil & abroad.

  8. avatar LarryinTX says:

    The point of those venerable and storied weapons is that they, and of course their crews, carry THERMONUCLEAR weapons, they are trusted with those, but cannot carry a 9mm? It was stupid when I was in, and I’ve been retired 25 years.

  9. avatar uncommon_sense says:

    “As always, force protection is a primary concern. As such, we are encouraging all Airmen to ensure privacy settings on online/social media forums are adjusted to limit the amount of available personal information.”

    Nice. People who hate the United States, have publicly sworn to do everything they can to kill us, and have singled out certain military personnel, have explicitly stated their intention to attack said military personnel. And the response from the military to said military personnel: adjust your privacy settings on Facebook.

    What the f#@$ is wrong with our military, law enforcement, and government leadership?!?!?!?

    1. avatar Silver says:

      The same thing that’s at the root of most every human evil: progressivism.

      1. avatar Stinkeye says:

        While it would be nice to blame everything on leftist ideology, a whole lot of what’s wrong with people in “leadership” roles is just plain ol’ human stupidity. It’s the Peter Principle – people rise within an organization until their climb is stopped by their incompetence, and there they stay. The net result is that most people in positions of authority are completely incapable of doing their job well.

  10. I have a brother serving active duty army, and I am against military personal carrying their privately own firearms on base for self defense. Every military person should be carrying a military issue firearm at all times. They should never HAVE to use their own weapon, they should never need to spend money on a weapon while in the military.

    1. avatar LongPurple says:

      That is a sound extension of the principle that any clothing or equipment required to be possessed by an enlisted service member will be issued to that member by the military. No enlisted member can be ordered to purchase anything. If it is required of him, it will be issued to him.
      The same does not apply to the commissioned ranks.

      1. avatar pyratemime says:

        I understand and appreciate the sentiment. That being said, no. Please don’t force me to carry some rattle trap piece of shit. Please let me carry a gun I purchased and modified for my needs. Please?!?!

        1. avatar LongPurple says:

          There should be some latitude granted in the individual choice of weapon. I recall a Korean War veteran in my family who carried a .38 S&W Combat Masterpiece revolver in that “police action”. He mentioned that sort of side arm was preferred by many Marines to supplement (or perhaps replace) a .45 M1911.

    2. avatar LarryinTX says:

      The everyday uniform (BDUs) should include an issued sidearm, to be worn on base AND OFF, state law be damned, let’s see you request that the base be closed! I dare you! Currently issue sidearm is a Beretta, feel free to buy your own and modify it as you like, as long as it is indistinguishable from the issue item when you are carrying it in uniform.

  11. avatar Grindstone says:

    As a DOD CTR who works on base in a “gun-free zone” I would absolutely LOVE to be able to carry on base, especially since I can’t even keep my gun in my vehicle while on base. Forget storing anything in the armory, those jokers will mess with your stuff and break it and won’t do anything about that. Happened more than a few times. Just like how TMO “accidentally lost” your Xbox, TV, DVDs, etc.

    However, I’m more worried about some lunatic snapping and going after co-workers a-la Norfolk than I am about a super-seecrit Muslim sleeper-cell infiltrator.

    1. avatar SurfGW says:

      The threat from ISIS is to personnel out in town, not on base. Carrying on base does nothing to protect service members from threats in town.
      The main defense is not running around with a high and tight haircut, battalion t-shirt, and EGA stickers or Marine everything on your vehicle in town.

      1. avatar Grindstone says:

        Right, but the discussion was about base carry. Obviously you can protect yourself at home (depending on local laws) easier than on base.

        1. avatar Accur81 says:

          We’ve certainly had our disagreements, but unless you can’t avoid a metal detector you certainly *can* carry on a military base. It sucks that management will vilify you for carry, but it’s still an option. There are certainly a lot of micro .380’s on the market that are pretty easy to conceal.

      2. avatar Johannes Paulsen says:

        And when you’re commuting to work…?

      3. avatar Indiana Tom says:

        The threat from ISIS is to personnel out in town, not on base.
        The Washington Navy Yard and Fort Hood shootings sort of deflates that theory.

        1. avatar SurfGW says:

          Still so rare that we have more to worry about freak weather phenomenon

        2. avatar Accur81 says:

          At both. Just carry all the time. Sh!t happens.

        3. avatar Indiana Tom says:

          Yeah, the Fort Hood shootings were just work place violence anyway. Aloha Snackbar!

        4. avatar LarryinTX says:

          Surferdude, we increase our spending for protection against freak weather phenomena every year, millions and billions for new radars, notification systems, personnel. Sort of makes that a silly argument. If you are the one a crazy Major is aiming to kill next, you really don’t care how often that happens.

  12. avatar ThomasR says:

    Ah yes. Senators have their armed security, which follow them into what are GFZ for the rest of us subjects. Schools, government building, post offices, churches. military bases, no place is denied the freedom they have to defend themselves.

    But they need such freedom to have armed security denied the rest of us, their lives are important, our lives are not. So say those that believe this current situation is just, right and appropriate.

  13. avatar ELOT says:

    I think its an absolute disgrace that military can’t at least carry to their work parking lot. This basically makes the entire base a “gun free zone” and it can have terrible consequences such as the Navy Yard incident. Nonetheless, our politicians don’t really care. We’re not a big enough group of voters for them to change anything for. It may sound good but, in the end, we’ll be left defenseless.

    In other news, did anyone see this article about South Carolina Boeing workers chasing off union thugs with guns? I’m willing to bet the cops weren’t called because the guns were holstered while they were escorted away. Interesting though.

    http://www.foxnews.com/us/2015/04/24/union-cancels-boeing-vote-says-gun-toting-workers-told-it-to-take-off/

  14. avatar MarkPA says:

    Guns on military bases was proposed a year ago by Congressman Stockman in his bill HR 3199 – Safe Military Bases Act. I sent the following e-mail to Congressman Stockman and each of the co-sponsors.
    Briefly, I found his bill fatally flawed; so much so that I wondered if it was designed-to-fail. I offered him an inverted approach which would implement the intent in a way beyond the ability for any President or command officer to frustrate the bill’s intent. If you should find merit in my reasoning I encourage you to write your Senators and Representative.

    Dear Congressman Stockman:

    I was very pleased to see that you have the common sense to sponsor HR 3199 – Safe Military Bases Act. I respectfully offer a suggested amendment to:

    – preclude the Commander in Chief – whomsoever he may be – from frustrating Congressional will in respect of this bill; and,
    – to remove plausible excuses for voting against the bill.

    I further – respectfully – argue that IF the sponsors of this fine bill FAIL to AMEND its language they will CONDEM it to FAILURE in the face of plausible practical and Constitutional arguments from Democrat and weak-kneed opponents.

    My suggestion is to alter the bill to REQUIRE the commander of each base to arm AT LEAST: 10% of the qualified personnel at each base by FYE 2015; 20% by 2016; . . . 50% by 2020.

    The first weakness in the existing language is found in “military personnel shall NOT be PROHIBITED”. Neither Maj. Hasan nor Specialist Lopez would have objected to the current bill’s permissive language. Obviously, stripping or undermining officers’ ability to regulate arms-bearing is counterproductive for our intended subjects; it ENABLES the very individuals we hope to arrest! This permissive aspect of the bill alone probably dooms its prospects. However laudable the objective of killing Hasan or Lopez before he claimed his 2’nd victim, many will refuse to authorize perpetrators from carrying on base. Notwithstanding that such refusal is a false-economy, it gives cover to a Nay vote.

    Merely-permissive language will be rendered ineffective by a sufficiently determined President or officer in charge of a particular service branch. Military discipline is implemented – in the main – by a social understanding that service members acquiesce to the wishes of their superior officers. If the President – or any officer – merely wishes that his subordinates remain un-armed, the obedient will comply. Unfortunately, the existing language represents nothing more than a prayer that a few honorable, conscientious and responsible service members will DEFY the wishes of their immediate and senior officers by bearing concealed weapons. I will grant you that 1 – 10% of such service members will bear arms at some risk of retaliation; however, this will not be ENOUGH to achieve the goals of the act.

    The act’s language (“shall not reinstate the firearm bans”) will not frustrate a determined President or officer. To illustrate, the DoD or any officer could simply allow any service member to carry – ONLY – a full-sized US 1911 .45 caliber handgun. Likely, only a few service members would both defy the tacit wishes of their superiors and desire to carry a relatively heavy – bulky – weapon that does not lend itself to concealment.

    To be effective, the act’s plan must result in some combination of two possibilities:

    – open-carrying by a majority of those present in every venue; or,
    – concealed-carry by a probable substantial minority in every venue.

    Under a “full-sized US 1911” permissive rule, Hasan nor Specialist Lopez would simply seek-out a venue where, apparently, no more than one service member is (conspicuously) armed.

    Our goal should be to arm, for illustration:

    – 10 – 20% of open-carriers willing to bear the additional weight on their belts; and,
    – 20 – 30% of concealed-carriers willing to bear at least a pocket-pistol.

    Facing a 99% probability that any group of service members includes several arms-bearers ought to accomplish the objectives of the act.

    Finally my proposed language avoids singling-out individual service-members. A base-commander ought to ban a service member such as Hasan or Lopez from bearing arms on base. Yet, political correctness or sensitivity would inhibit a commander from singling-out named service members under language where all are presumptively permitted even if commanders retained discretion to name the excluded. Leaving the commanding officer in charge of exactly which 10 – 50% are ordered to bear arms eliminates this problem. Major Hasan would simply have never been chosen to be ordered to bear arms. Specialist Lopez would “randomly” be rotated-off the list of servicemen ordered to be armed; without such an order, he would (under the current regime) be prohibited from bearing arms. Assuming a rich mix of concealed carriers, no one would be stigmatized by completing a career without ever being “honored” with the order to bear arms. Typically, non-coms would deliver periodic orders to arm/dis-arm each individual and would then enforce discipline by watching for individuals not so-ordered who might be carrying unauthorized concealed weapons.

    Second, there is a political facet in the language of the existing bill that would be cured by my proposed alternative. The nay-sayers will argue – with some justification – that there is at least one serviceman in every company who seems to have a screw-loose. He represents a low-probability/high-consequence risk. (The services’ personnel needs for non-combatants renders prohibitive screening-out all recruits and active-duty risks.) Any such serviceman should not be armed outside the scope of actual combat. (Neither Hasan nor Lopez would likely ever need to be armed for combat given their respective jobs.) Opponents can easily assert such an argument to justify their votes in opposition to a permissive bill.

    My proposed language preserves discretion of the military to keep this minority un-armed while their superiors remain unconvinced of their reliability. The commander of each base would be COMPELLED to arm ONLY those individuals he and his junior officers are convinced represent the lowest risk of unjustified violence. This is to say that my proposal is entirely consistent with the existing regime of commander discretion as to WHOM to arm while baring the executive from creating a de-facto “nobility” of a tiny “court” of MPs.

    I can also see a Constitutional argument; a part of the “political” prospects for the proposed act. While the President is Commander in Chief, Congress has authority “To make Rules for the Government and Regulation of the land and naval Forces”. These two authorities are in contention. Arguably, the President’s authority might trump that of Congress were the latter to strip the executive of ALL authority to regulate carrying firearms on military bases. We, the Constitutionalists, must not be seen as insensitive to separation-of-powers.

    My proposed language overcomes the foregoing objections. My language only compels commissioned officers to arm a MINORITY of qualified ARMED-service members on base. Such a – very measured – “Rule” could not be seen as seen as exceeding Congressional authority. The executive branch would retrain discretion to regulate arms-bearing by at least 1/2 of those nominally qualified. Nay-sayers could not reasonably argue that more than 1/2 of nominally-qualified service members are unreliable.

    I fear that if the sponsors of this act fail to anticipate, and overcome, the objections I’ve explained above they will condemn it to defeat. Indeed, many of the sponsors’ constituents could suspect that defeat-in-a-noble-cause was the intention from the outset. Obviously, a simple majority of both houses is insufficient to overcome a Presidential veto. Under prevailing circumstances, to succeed a Republican-passed bill must threaten a Congressional over-ride. You must make this bill so unimpeachable as to guarantee pervasive bipartisan support. In the wake of base mass-shootings, and on the eve of the 2014 midterm elections, you have a bill that COULD achieve veto-proof support. It is your duty to shape the language of the bill to achieve that objective. It is not sufficient to fail-short by one vote in either chamber.

    I trust that you will not take personal offense that I mention, in closing, the growing suspicion of the RINOs in Congress. It seems remarkable that Republicans sponsor so many – fundamentally sound – bills to the cheers of their conservative constituents. Nevertheless, most such bills attract too few Democrat supporters and just enough RINO defectors to fail passage. We now begin to wonder if there isn’t a great conspiracy among the majority of the Republican caucus to seize failure from the jaws of victory. This bill offers an extraordinarily clear-cut case to prove that such suspicions are unwarranted.

  15. avatar BIG AL says:

    McCain got his ass handed to him and you act like 22 states is a win?

  16. avatar Ralph says:

    I seem to recall the leftists saying that the only persons who should have guns are the police and the military. What the same leftists meant but didn’t say is that the military can only have guns to kill the people who the state wants them to kill. Self defense is out of the question.

  17. avatar Silver says:

    It boggles the mind why anyone would join the military in this day and age, putting their lives on the line for this pathetic, unworthy populace and treasonous government. Stories like this just solidify that position.

    1. avatar Indiana Tom says:

      You are not alone.

    2. avatar LarryinTX says:

      Unless I am mistaken, the pay and bennies keep going up, that is the reason. I retired in 91 after 20 years commissioned and a pilot, making around 40K a year. I read around 2000 about a Army WO flying helicopters, making 80K a year. I suspect that number would be well past 100K by now. You’re going to treat me like shit and risk my life continuously, then you are going to PAY me. Or be alone.

  18. avatar Fed Up says:

    McStain, Lenin, all those 80 year old Democrat Senators are interchangeable anyway.

    (I hope by now that nobody reading this will try to “correct” my statement of McLame’s party affiliation)

    1. avatar SteveInCO says:

      Sorry but I can’t let your misstatement of his affiliation pass, since everyone knows he’s National Socialist.

      1. avatar LarryinTX says:

        I love the man, but would suggest his party is “past his prime”, which is composed of a whole lot of people who profess to be Dems or Reps.

  19. avatar Joe R. says:

    1) The enemy (well the one in question here, no not rino McCain) calls itself “ISIS” or “IS”. Stop calling them ISIL (Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant) as it cedes territory (Israel) to your enemy that not even your enemy has the stones to claim (because Israel will down them in time to be home for the Sabbath).

    2) Barksdale is a golf-course with beautiful big and small, fast and slow aircraft on it, and when SHTF [a/k/a 9/11 when Air Force 1 was briefly re-routed there (It was a bright sunny day there when the base suddenly went to Defense Condition Delta) and the very professional Air Force Security personnel put a pretty tight unbroken ring around the inner perimeter of the fence line.] it is dangerous for all things not packing a weapon with a recognizable rack #. So GOD Bless if ccw comes around full-time.

    3) GOD Bless all their families anyway, but I wouldn’t fool myself into thinking the DoD can adequately protect your families, nor Barksdale’s Finest (as good as they are, they are still [mostly] just a phone call away). There has to be another plan, and it has to be individual and personal.

    4) Barksdale. . . your days were never so bright as when you were the home to my BEES. You need to ask the DoD to stand you up a new Battalion, then you wouldn’t have to fish for security dollars by claiming a threat to the families of your aircrews (I’m not discounting ANY threat, just what Barksdale AFB could do about it).

  20. avatar Governmentknowsbest says:

    My wife and I carry…bring it motherf@$#ers

  21. avatar Big B says:

    The issue isn’t really on base carry but carrying to and from base. It would be criminal to deny them their right to self defense because they couldn’t carry into the gates. I’m not really sure how the current rules are on that. When I was in the Air Force we couldn’t carry or have any guns unless we declared them and used the armory to store them (for dorm residents). The armorers in my case were very cool and gave me no hassles at all as I picked up my shotguns to take to the skeet range on base.

  22. avatar jwtaylor says:

    Am I the only one that’s pissed to be left off the Isis hit list? I’ve killed almost enough jihidist thugs in Afghanistan. And I was a total invader and occupier. I mean come on, what does it take?
    Makes me feel old. I’m still dangerous, dagnabit. JWT

  23. avatar Indiana Tom says:

    why crews entrusted with the operation and care of one of the most venerable and storied weapons in the American arsenal, are not to be trusted carrying a pistol for their own defense,
    Well, the bomber is under government control while carrying a personal pistol is not.
    Government control is the key to all your questions.

    1. avatar LarryinTX says:

      Once the engines are running and the chocks removed, the aircraft is under MY control. Whether it is a gyrocopter headed for the capitol or a B-52 off to parts unknown, it will only go where I tell it to. Now, again, why can I not be trusted with a 9mm?

  24. avatar Shwiggie says:

    I’d like to press McCain, myself…over my head immediately before throwing him into a lion’s den. We need Jowls and the rest of his ilk to fall on their political swords. Or literal ones. I’m not choosy.

    1. avatar LarryinTX says:

      Might want to slack off on the “jowls” smartass. He got that unique look at the hands of the NVA while a POW for 5 years, not from overeating. He was fortunate to survive, as he was not real cooperative.

      Problem is not jowls, problem is that was 45 years ago, its time to retire.

  25. avatar ghost says:

    Believe it or not, in 1965, at Cam Ranh Bay , after hiking in from boat and docks, (nothing at the time but a few steel mats, French buildings and rundown piers, a village out on a point where STDs were sold, and I don’t mean Fords), those of us not on “Guard duty” were required to turn in our rifles and ammo to be stored in a locked makeshift hut. After the first firefight, at night, from bush to bush, that little plan when out the window. The higher powers that were on the spot at the time were not about to argue with a bunch of pissed off paratroopers that just tore a locked hut down.

    1. avatar SteveInCO says:

      The Vietnam War was utterly saturated with examples of REMF stupidity.

      It was also saturated (as are all wars) with examples of moments where stupidity can get people killed.

    2. avatar LarryinTX says:

      Same crap was going on in 1971, stationed at Quang Tri, 3 miles from NV border, intel said we had 20,000 NVA within about 10 miles, the Major in charge called us all together, distributed our weapons, and directed their cleaning. Then he pointedly made sure we understood that we were ordered to lock them in the weapons conex before leaving the area. Then he slung his own over his shoulder and walked back to his hut. So did the rest of us. But if I had to testify at his courts martial, I would have sworn that yes, he had ordered every one of us to lock our guns in that conex. Well handled. The order, BTW, came from Saigon, where the blue uniform was the uniform of the day, I don’t think all those 0-6s even owned fatigues or flight suits. None of us had brought a blue uniform to Vietnam, at all. We were there to fight.

  26. avatar kap says:

    the democratic party is dedicated too the fall of the US so it can become the only political party and run everything!
    We have a Muslim loving President that does not care about the rule of Law! the Democrats Have supported all the bad stuff like Obama care, give illegals status, let extremist Minorities De-grade our Constitution in the Name of Political correctness
    using the IRS and CIA and the Justice department in a war on the American People all for Control!

  27. avatar Tim Knight says:

    I disagree with the whole argument that our military personnel should be allowed to “carry” personal firearms on base. Stupid.

    They are trained fighters. They have been trained in handgun use. The military has millions of sidearms. Personnel should be ISSUED MILITARY SIDEARMS and AMMUNITION and be REQUIRED to wear them while on base.

    And as far as the comment “pass a law allowing people to carry on base in compliance with local state laws”; they no more have to comply with State laws as the Man in the Moon. A base is FEDERAL property and does not necessarily have to comply with State law in anything they do. And certainly should not in this case. Why would we put a military person in jeopardy of their lives on a military base just because it happens to me in New York State? We shouldn’t.

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