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October 26, 2005
Geo-political maneuvers continue
The Washington Times reported that the US SecDef visited Mongolia to thank them for their Army's service in Iraq and Afghanistan. A visit from the SecDef is very significant, especially when he pronounces the United States and Mongolia share a "strong military—to—military relationship." The US has provided $18 million to help replace outdated and aging equipment, and six US Marine trainers are embedded with Mongolian units.
By itself, this is not a large amount of assistance, but taken in context with the past year's successful alliance building efforts, it is a key additional step to counter a new anti—American Asian Confederacy. A glance at the map tells the tale; India, Japan, Australia, Singapore, and now Mongolia. Too bad the MSM can't grasp the importance of these US and Coalition maneuvers.
Doug Hanson 10—26—05
UPDATE: Dick Weltz adds:
Ah, but the MSM, as represented by The New York Times, did take notice of the Rumsfeld meeting. The importance it placed on this was evidenced by its reporter's preoccupation with mockery of the gust of a horse ceremoniously presented to the SecDef and the obvious logistic problem posed by his plane's inability to take it away with him to his New Mexico Ranch (of course, as the ever—objective Thom Shanker chose not to mention, another plane could —— and probably was —— easily dispatched for transport).
A Horse for Rumsfeld, but, Whoa, There's a Snag
By THOM SHANKER
Mr. Rumsfeld came to Ulan Bator to deliver that message personally, and he was given a horse.
In dazzling sunlight on the grounds of the Mongolian Defense Ministry, Mr. Rumsfeld took the reins of the calm gelding and said, "I am proud to be the owner of that proud animal." He immediately announced that he would name the horse Montana, because the dusty plains and mountains that ring the Mongolian capital reminded him of that Rocky Mountain state....
But transport for Mr. Rumsfeld's gift posed a problem.
The defense secretary is on an eight—day around—the—world mission aboard the National Airborne Operations Center, an aircraft nicknamed the Doomsday Plane because it would be the flying command post for American leaders in case of nuclear war.
The reconfigured Boeing 747 has a secure teleconferencing suite, nozzles for midair refueling and oversize computer consoles for a nuclear battle staff, like something out of a cold war film festival. But Air Force planners apparently gave no thought to stables.
So in an act of modern horse—trading, Mr. Rumsfeld's staff said, the Pentagon offered a herder a flashlight in ceremonial compensation for his agreement to care for the horse along with his herd 100 miles from Ulan Bator, at least until the defense secretary can return to retrieve his gift.