Thursday, December 22, 2011

Dead??? I didn't even know Kim Jong was il

The years most hilarious post-heading aside, it seems that Christmas has come early for the people of North Korea as the evil dictator and long-suspected extra terrestrial Kim Jong-il [pictured left] died earlier in the week.

Despite this great news, we must err on the side of caution. Jong-il's death may not plunge the country into chaos as he had begun grooming his son, Kim Jong-un to succeed him and placed him in a high-ranking position. It remains to be seen however if the young whelp has had sufficient time to consolidate a power base and form the necessary alliances required to rule the troubled country.

Jong-il's death could set back efforts by the west to get Pyongyang to abandon its nuclear weapons ambitions. Concerns are also high that Kim Jong-un may feel he needs to prove himself by precipitating a crisis or displaying his swagger on the international stage.

The "mourners" in N.Korea must pretend to wail at the loss of their "beloved" leader or they'll be shot.

Whatever the future; this was a great time to vacation in North Korea. Pure coincidence I swear...

Thursday, December 08, 2011

Mercury Invaded!

An Extra Terrestrial spacecraft is currently in orbit of the planet Mercury possibly sending in ground forces to establish a permanent staging area from which to launch an assault on Earth.

That was the chilling revelation from Rear Admiral "Smokestack" Henderson Acting Director of UNETIDA speaking from the UN in New York this afternoon. Henderson said he had received actionable intelligence that there could be an imminent threat in our own solar system.

Colonel "Whopper" Creedon Acting Director of Intelligence, UNETIDA revealed images of a gigantic object almost the size of Mercury itself which has appeared on both astronomers and UNETIDA extra-planetary surveillance officers' screens lurking near the planet."The only explanation is that it's a cloaked Extra Terrestrial craft the size of the Death Star from Star Wars" said Colonel Creedon. "I mean what else could it be?"

The Colonel theorizes that the craft secretly is offloading troops and war machines including inter-planetary missile launchers which may deliver payloads loaded with personnel "like in Quake 2" or warheads capable of completely obliterating our planet."If they have the technology to get here and cloak themselves, we have to assume that the −183 °C to 427 °C temperatures won't be much of an issue for them," he added.

Admiral Henderson was at the UN to ask for increased funding to the tune of  US$5.5 Trillion for UNETIDA space defence projects including a number of first strike initiatives designed to prevent attacks on the Earth by eliminating the enemy first. It is assumed Colonel Creedon's trademark "theatrical scaremongering" will secure the much needed budget.

Colonel "Whopper" Creedon reveals a cloaked alien craft near Mercury.

Source: Civilian Overseer / The Daily Mail

Wednesday, December 07, 2011

December 7th 1941, "a date which will live in infamy."

Today marks the 70th Anniversary of the cowardly attack on Pearl Harbor by the Empire of Japan "which awakened a skleeping giant" and broughtthe United States into World War II.

Seven decades later President Barack Obama called for the Stars and Stripes to be flown at half mast on federal buildings across the country, to mark National Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day.

"On a serene Sunday morning 70 years ago, the skies above Pearl Harbor were darkened by the bombs of Japanese forces in a surprise attack that tested the resilience of our armed forces and the will of our nation," Obama said in an address.

"In the wake of the bombing of our harbor and the crippling of our Pacific Fleet, there were those who declared the United States had been reduced to a third-class power. But rather than break the spirit of our Nation, the attack brought Americans together and fortified our resolve. Patriots across our country answered the call to defend our way of life at home and abroad."

Obama paid tribute to "the more than 3,500 Americans killed or wounded during that deadly attack and ... to the heroes whose courage ensured our nation would recover from this vicious blow. "As a nation, we look to December 7, 1941, to draw strength from the example set by these patriots and to honor all who have sacrificed for our freedoms."

U.S. Navy vetran David Callahan, one of the few living surviors of the attack will attend a memorial ceremony today. It will be his fist time back at Pearl since then.

Sources AFP / Foz News

EARTH 2 Located! Threat Imminent!

NASA concept artist's impression of Keplar 22b
Defying UNETIDA suggestions, NASA have revealed the discovery of the first ever planet in a habitable zone outside our solar system.

While earlier this year astronomers "confirmed" the first rocky exoplanet to meet key requirements for sustaining life was Kepler-22b, initially glimpsed in 2009, their findings were much dismissed as those astronomers were actually french, and therefore cretins. However now that the US space agency has confirmed the planet, it can be taken as being fact and is emerging in news stories across the globe.

Confirmation means that astronomers have seen it crossing in front of its star three times and that the conditions are right for our form of life and not that they know life actually exists there. It has the right distance from its star to support water, plus a suitable temperature and atmosphere to support life as we know it. "We have now got good planet confirmation with Kepler-22b," said Bill Borucki, Kepler principal investigator at NASA Ames Research Center. "We are certain that it is in the habitable zone and if it has a surface, it ought to have a nice temperature," he told reporters.

"If we can see their planet, then we have to assume they can see ours" declared Colonel "Whopper" Creedon, Acting Director of Intelligence for UNETIDA. "It's naive to believe that they have the same level of technology we have and that somehow being 600 light years away is the same kind of insurmountable obstacle that it is to us presently."

Colonel "Whopper" Creedon during his briefing to the UNSC

The Colonel outlined his "first strike" strategy at a meeting of the UN Security Council this afternoon. Present were representatives of world military research agencies who are now drawing up plans to both conceive of a payload effective against a rocky, gaseous or liquid planet [as Kepler-22b's composition is unknown] and a method of delivering it as quickly as possible.

In the meantime NASA also announced that Kepler has uncovered  more than a thousand other potential target... er planets, twice the number it previously had been tracking, according to research being presented at a conference in California this week.

Read more here

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Movie Mini-Reviews 30-11-11


In this crime drama, Ryan Gosling portrays a nameless Hollywood Stuntman who moonlights as a Driver for the criminal underworld. It is similar in many respects to the 1978 Walter Hill movie The Driver but is a very different beast. Some may even call Drive a modern Western in it's execution.

Drive is directed by the little-known Danish director Nicolas Winding Refn and  features excellent performances from Brian Cranston and Carey Public Enemies Mulligan with cameos from Ron [I'm in a dozen movies this year] Perlman and Christina Mad Men Hendricks. Cliff Martinez takes us back to the '80s with his vibe for the score.

I don't normally appreciate crime movies where somehow lawless nefarious actions are glorified on screen but I was intrigued by this movie as grotesque violence was promised after I heard that several reviewers had walked out of a press screening in disgust. This "extreme gore" was certainly delivered and it features some truly shocking moments not seen since Scorcese's The Departed. Sadly however these moments of violence are too few and far between to recommend the movie outside of its niche audience. Exciting at times but the time waiting between its violent and exciting moments can drag a bit.

Colonel Creedon Rating: **1/2

Johnny English Reborn

Johnny English, British comedy’s answer to James Bond was expertly brought to life by Rowan Mr. Bean Atkinson in a 2004 movie with Natalie Imbruglia and John Malkovich. It apparently made a mint but it still took 6 years for a sequel to emerge, an eternity in movie making terms for an industry which seems intent on turning out sequels in the fastest humanly possible time. Johnny English’s producers however bided their time with Johnny English Reborn and despite bringing nothing relatively new to the formula it was good enough to equal it’s progenitor.

Rubber-faced Atkinson naturally returns as the elite secret agent, elite that is on being almost oblivious to what’s going on around him. The movie explains in-universe why it’s been so long since the sequel – a protection detail in Mozambique [cue nervous twitch] some years ago wiped the shine off Johnny’s star and he fell out of favour with MI7. Since then he’s been holed up in a Tibetan monastery learning how to use his wits to solve problems and to ignore pain by dragging boulders with his genitals. Needless to say a situation arises that needs his “unique” talents and he returns to civilisation and the agency where he puts his training to work. He still remains oblivious to the larger picture and retainis his sense of superior arrogance which almost constantly backfires with much hilarity.

There are some great action scenes and almost Bond-class set pieces. While far from the class of Edgar Wright or Will Ferrel, William Davies has woven an expectantly implausible plot that a blind man could see the climax of before the end of the first act, this of course is to cement the idea that everyone watching is more observant that Johnny himself. Atkinson is supported on screen by Gillian X-Files Anderson as Pegasus the head of MI7, Dominic Centurion West as Agent Ambrose, Rosamund Die Another Day Pike as Kate and Daniel Kaluuya as Tucker. A worthy sequel in the same vein as the original. Fans will be satisfied.

Colonel Creedon Rating: ****


We all know our disaster movies, earthquakes, volcanoes, meteor strikes, modern ice-ages, the sun being blocked out and even some Zombie movies can be shoe-horned into that category. But perhaps the most chilling, because it’s more believable, is the global pandemic. SARS, H1N1, Bird-Flu have been recent buzz words to signal the end or humanity but were dealt with before annihilating all life on the planet. When it was announced that “realistic” director Steven Soderbergh would be bringing us Contagion, one knew that while you'd be fed a jarringly grim tale, humanity would win out in the end.

Despite it's well researched viral science - praised by science writers and vaccination experts [as well as an "official" nod of approval from the CDC], this is still high drama as opposed to a documentary and thusly entertaining.  The movie has some outstanding performances from a plethora of famous faces; Matt Damon, Gwyneth Paltrow, Lawrence Fishburne, Jude Law, Marion Collitard and Kate Winslet lend their acting chops to this well directed and hauntingly scored [by Cliff Martinez] movie. They are supported by Brian Cranston who made an excellent Admiral with the Public Health Commissioned Corps and Elliot Gould who had been long absent from the silver screen.

I know there was plenty of laughing and sneezing after watching Outbreak in 1995, but this was so evocative of reality that there was no such nonsense here. Gripping stuff.

Colonel Creedon Rating: ****

Machine Gun Preacher

Machine Gun Preacher is unusually entertaining for a true story that wouldn’t be really out of place in the realm of Kris Kristofferson/Sally Field Lifetime movies – albeit late at night when intense violence could be permitted. Gerard 300 Butler plays Sam Childers an ex-con who swiftly returns to his biker-gang drug-using ways upon his release from prison. In his absence his stripper trailer-trash wife Lynn [2-time Whopper Award Winner Michelle Monaghan] finds Jesus and helps Sam on his road to redemption. Not only does Sam himself find Jesus, work, start his own construction company, build a non-denominational church in which he becomes a preacher but he also travels to The Sudan during the height of civil war to build an orphanage and rescue young South-Sudanese children from the hands of those of the North who kidnap them to be child-soldiers and sex-slaves.

It’s this “rescuing” that provides the true meat of the movie. Sam is not military trained – he just “likes his guns” and he seems to relish being in an environment where he can shoot people and not be frowned upon by either the law or The Lord. His journey is even more fascinating when you know it’s true although Christian groups have slammed the movie for it’s unnecessary focus on Childers’ most violent actions as opposed to his deeply spiritual journey – a fact that I insist on rewarding with stars!

Colonel Creedon Rating: ****

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Hypersonic Weapon tests successful

The Pentagon announced this week that on Nov 17th it successfully test fired an Advanced Hypersonic Weapon [above], understood to be one of a number of alternatives [including the Falcon programme] under consideration as part of it’s "prompt global strike" system that can deliver long-range weapons anywhere in the world while avoiding flying over third-party nations as revealed through a congressional report earlier in the year.

The missile was launched from Hawaii and reached its target on Kwajalein atoll, part of the Marshall Islands in the Pacific 3700km away in less than 30 minutes by exceeding Mach 5. Such a hypersonic weapon concept flies at a relatively flat trajectory within the atmosphere, rather than soaring up toward space like a ballistic missile and eventually coming back down.

The Department of Defence said "The objective of the test is to collect data on hypersonic boost-glide technologies and test range performance for long-range atmospheric flight." Nonetheless defence analysts Global say the aim of the programme is to be able to strike a target 6000km away in 35 minutes, with an accuracy of 10m. They claim the weapon is part of a programme to allow a conventional weapon to strike "fleeting targets around the globe faster than today's munitions".

The X-51 Missile is another Hypersonic Weapon in development

The Tinfoil Helmet Brigade [THB] a group of UFOlogists and conspiracy theorists believe that the AHW is part of a UNETIDA project to quickly destroy Extra Terrestrial assets that successfully evade the orbital defence grid and make planetfall. There was no statement from UNETIDA in response as their Office of Public Affairs is currently being audited by the Special Investigations Committee.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

So Long Afghanistan

Sadly the work of Task Force Razor is at an end, but and it had a hell of a ride over the past 10 years. A super-secret multi-service Tier-1 Special Operations unit commanded directly from "someone" in the NMCC. It began with 48 operators in 2001 who rotated in and out every few months to form four six-man standard teams. It'll make a great TV show one day if only they could ever declassify anything we did, but I think it's somewhat unlikely.

The Colonel [right] with a Name/Rank-classified operator of TF Razor in late 2011

With the death of  42 of the operators over the course of OEF and with no orders to replace the fallen; it was certain that the days of TF Razor were coming to an end. I rotated back in earlier in the month to lead a series of suitably suicidal but successful missions in a classified urban area but before extraction after the final mission, a building collapsed, killing 3 of the remaining operators and seriously injuring another. The only operator who would have been ever able to walk again 'Patches' told me "It's time to go sir!" I knew what he meant, our time here was done, his even more so because a sniper nailed him as he carried our wounded comrade back to the helo. Sadly he too died before we landed leaving me to do all the debriefings alone.

I am on my way next month to assume a permanent staff position with UNETIDA [though appointments are currently being held up by the Special Investigation Committee], a position which would have conflicted with the types of operations TF Razor handled with exceptional valor and intrepidity above and beyond the call of duty. At least that's what the citations for the medals given to the 47 members' families say. As always, I'll wear my own new medals to honour their sacrifice and dream of past glory as I watch everything with more eyes then ever before.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Happy Birthday USMC

A special message from General James F. Amos, Commandant of the Marine Corps and Sergeant Major Micheal P. Barrett, Sergeant Major of The Marine Corps to mark the 236th Birthday.

Semper Fi!

Tuesday, November 08, 2011

Movie Mini Reviews 8-11-11

The last several movies I've seen since Captain America haven't compelled me to write full reviews for them - they literally weren’t anything to write home about, which is a bit sad considering the performance of summer movies in recent years. I managed to avoid both Rise of the Planet of the Apes and Cowboys And Aliens in the last batch despite enjoying the previous Planet of the Apes remake with Mark Wahlberg and wanting to see if Jon Favreau could do something as impressive as Iron Man with something else. Sadly I was warned away by several sources who claimed that neither movie was in any way up to the hype that fuelled them.

Super 8

Hype however, was one thing that J.J.Abrams is able to generate if Cloverfield was anything to go by [where the hype was actually better than the movie itself], but in his sci-fi monster movie Super 8 he paid tribute to someone he obviously has the deepest respect for: Steven Spielberg. The entire movie struck me as a deeply personal homage on J.J.’s behalf to Spielberg who was obviously a great influence on his career choice and it was certainly a fitting tribute [perhaps even more than Pegg/Frost’s attempt earlier in the year with Paul]. The problem is however that I dislike most of the peacenik crap Spielberg put out earlier in his career like E.T. which I have always despised and Close Encounters, I mean seriously; giant mile-long ships come that close to the planet and we don’t fire off volleys of ICBMs at them? Nonsense!
Nonetheless Super 8 is a well paced movie that sadly has more to offer 10-14 year olds then a nostalgic trip down memory lane remembering at all those kid-friendly sci-fi movies you grew up with.

Colonel Creedon Rating: **1/2

Conan The Barbarian

The reboot of Conan The Barbarian was sadly only a middling attempt to revitalise an extraordinary character for the silver screen. Jason Game of Thrones Mamoa was cast as the titular hero and got all oiled up for a chance at movie stardom. Sadly while they got the look for Robert E. Howard’s most famous character down perfectly, the true spirit of Conan wasn’t bottled in this movie and the Millius/Schwarzenegger version written by Oliver Stone can lord that over this pale imitation. Don’t get me wrong, as an adventure tale itself, it wasn’t too shabby. The set pieces, architecture, locations and action elevated this from the mediocre direct-to-DVD bin but this was Conan! So more was expected. I will point the finger at Lionsgate because promotion for this movie in this part of the world anyway was anaemic at best.

Stephen Avatar Lang nailed the overacting required to be a truly reprehensible villain and a terribly disfigured Rose Charmed McGowan [girls, this is what happens when you try to change your appearance unnecessarily] under layers of make up makes us glad that Rodriguez never got his vision for Red Sonja off the ground. Ron [I’m in about 5 movies this year] Perlman is well suited as Conan’s aged barbarian father and his death is one of the most unique I’ve ever witnessed on screen. Rachel G.I. Joe Nichols is suitably cast as the eye candy and sets back female role-models about twenty years with her screaming damsel in distress once her pitiful fighting skills fail her. As good as they were, James Earl Jones subdued Thulsa Doom, Sandahl Bergman’s feisty Valeria and Mako’s hilarious Wizard are still worth ten times the characters in this movie.

Colonel Creedon Rating: ***1/2


Columbiana starts off as an exciting thriller as the titular character as a young schoolgirl is chased through the favalas of Columbia by her parent’s killers as she races to the U.S. embassy with highly sensitive intelligence data stored on a flash drive which she has swallowed. Had the movie been just about that, I’d probably be writing a great 5-star review now. Sadly no such thing happened as the movie soon transformed into a predictable revenge thriller as the little schoolgirl grew up into a frighteningly thin Zoe Star Trek Saldana [Lucas woman, eat a ham sandwich or three will you?] who proceeded to get her well deserved retribution.
Bland performances all round from Saldana who really can't carry a movie, Michael Alias Vartan, Lenny Human Target James and Cliff Die Hard 4.0 Curtis were sadly not much better with the material here. I was expecting more from the director of The Transporter 3, Oliver Megaton. It ended up being a hideously misjudged train wreck, punctuated with some satisfying Besson-like action scenes.

Colonel Creedon Rating: ***

Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy

The stylish if uneventful thriller Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy may be a tad over long and light on action but its heavy on intrigue, nail biting suspense and brings seriously big acting guns to the game. Featuring extraordinary performances from Gary Oldman, John Hurt, Colin Firth, Mark Strong, Toby Jones and Tom Hardy. A welcome change of pace that is well worth watching especially if classic spy movies are your bag.

Colonel Creedon Rating: ****

Drive, Johnny English Reborn, Contagion and Machine Gun Preacher to follow

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Kill All Kittens!

Lance Corporal Spazweki once asked me: "How come you always shoot every animal we encounter Sir?"

Always one to impart knowledge, my response was exceedingly simple, "Because you never know son, you just never know..."

Army Public Health Command poster

From Bruce via Wired.

Friday, October 21, 2011

He vowed to die a Martyr but instead he died a coward

Moammar Gadhafi was born in 1942 and abandoned Geography studies to pursue a military career. He rose to power at only 27 after a bloodless coup against King Idris in 1969. In the 70's he laid out his Third Universal Theory which walked a line between communism and capitalism and oversaw the rapid development of Libya with regards to her oil industry and military. He improved living standards making him popular with the poor at least initially.

As other Gulf nations such as Saudi Arabia also improved oil production to the same degree, Libyans noticed that the standard of living in these places was becoming much higher whereas in Libya; while the economy and infrastructure was improved - freedom and liberty became severely restrained. All political parties were banned and any attempts at creating one were met with execution. Intrusive surveillance was set up in government, education and industrial sectors. 10% of the Libyan people became informants. Freedom of expression was outlawed and any objections to the regime were met with public mutilations and dismemberment. Adultery was punished by flogging, homosexuals were jailed and thieves were amputated. The list goes on, but I'll stop it there...

Castro and Gadhafi BFF
Growing increasingly Islamist, Gadhafi supported militant groups in the Philippines and Indonesia. In '79 he supported the Iranian revolution and later in the '80's he supported the Red Brigades in Italy and the IRA in Ireland. However not content with supporting others, he got his own hands dirty by having his diplomats murder a British policewoman in London, his agents bombed a nightclub in West Berlin but perhaps his most heinous act of all was personally ordering the bombing of Pan Am Flight 103 in 1988 which killed all on board and more in Lockerbie, Scotland the town on which the aircraft debris fell. These events saw many UN countries impose trade sanctions against Libya.

President Reagan set Libya as a high priority for his administration in '81 due to the madman's support for extremist groups. SecDef Haig wanted pro-active measures against him and after year of occasional skirmishes over Libya's claim over the Gulf of Sidra in the Mediterranean, Operation El Dorado Canyon was launched. 18 F-111 bombers dropped 60 tons of munitions on military targets in Tripoli but alas, Gadhafi survived.

In the mid 1990's Gadhafi seemed to reassess his image and began a process of atonement by extraditing the "Lockerbie bombers" to Scotland. Due to a fall in oil prices in the early 2000's, Gadhafi publicly renounced terrorism and once Saddam Hussein was captured in Iraq in 2006 he renounced his own WMD programme. It seemed Libya was finally coming in from the cold as I noted then.

In February 2011, with vigour infused by the revolutions in Tunisia and Egypt, there were major political protests against Gadhafi. The protesters were met with stiff opposition as the tyrant claimed all who opposed him were drunk and had consumed drugged Nescafé. When he ordered that his troops begin gunning down the protesters "like dogs and rats", that was the final straw for the Libyan people and a full-scale civil war began, and the world took note.

While President Obama promised "no boots on the ground" the U.S. war machine joined it's NATO allies including france and the United Kingdom as they began an intense bombing campaign against Gadhafi-controlled military targets. They systematically whittled down the numbers of his forces with precision strikes and  over several months, city by city, allowed the Libyan people to retake control of their country, a privilege denied them for over 4 decades.

Sirte, the dictator's birthplace, became the last bastion of Gadhafi's regime after the fall of Tripoli to the rebels - who had since become The National Transitional Council [NTC]. There on Wednesday evening, RAF Tornados flew surveillance missions which cleared the way for french fighter jets to fly a sortie. The same frenchies that grew some balls and actually started NATO's campaign in Libya earlier in the year,  on Thursday morning together with U.S. Predator drones, attacked a convoy at a roundabout two miles west of the city. Over a dozen armed trucks were destroyed killing 50 or so but some of the personnel escaped from their wreckage - among them, unbeknownst to NATO was Colonel Gadhafi himself!

The tyrant fled with a handful of loyal men into a storm drain but the forces of the NTC were in hot pursuit. They fired anti-aircraft guns into the drains before going in on foot. After an intense firefight, the loyalists were dead and a snivelling whimpering Moammar Gadhafi was dragged out from from the sewer pipe in which he was trapped like a rat. 

The 69 year old 'Mad Dog' begged for his life, a far cry from his trademark defiant posturing while in power. He was beaten with shoes as a sign of great disrespect, but just in case he didn't get the message he was summarily executed like "a dog in the street" by the very people he had treated worse than animals. His body was hauled onto a truck and dragged around Sirte before being brought to Misrata where it was driven about the streets as the jubilant inhabitants rejoiced shouting "God is great".

"He called us rats, but look where we found him," said Ahmed Al Sahati, standing next to two stinking drainage pipes under a six-lane highway.

The entrance to this now-famous storm drain in Sirte is already a monument. The graffiti says "The hiding place of the vile rat Gadhafi."
The man has no basis in any event of reality we exist in. He is, in my opinion quite mad. It's obvious he's playing out some sort of insane plot in his head and the Libyan people are simply playthings in his sick game.
Upon taking power a Lieutenant simply promotes himself to Colonel and starts dressing in completely over the top elaborate military uniforms - I mean what's up with that? Today, if someone just promoted himself to Colonel and started wearing dozens of medals and badges on an array of colourful uniforms and declares that he's in charge -  I hope that this would be a sign to people that this bozo needs serious professional help... or a bullet - to prevent a madman from taking power again.
 -Excerpt from a declassified psychological report on Colonel Moammar Gadhafi prepared by Lieutenant Colonel C. Creedon, USMC in 1998 for the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

May the victims of the Lockerbie bombing and all those even among his own people finally rest in peace now that this tyrant has been sent to rot in hell.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Steven Seagal: Border Sheriff

There was some unfounded speculations that after he left the governor's position that Arnold Schwarzenegger would pick up a weapon and stand on the U.S. / Mexican border to prevent illegal aliens from crossing - but he didn't, he's going back to acting. So you therefore have to hand it to fellow 80's action star Steven Seagal though, because next year he's grabbing a gun and going to do it instead!

Give a man a badge. [via Splash]
That's right, this is not, I repeat not Creedon's insane ramblings for the week this is real! In January 2012, Seagal will be swapping Louisiana for Texas where he has just been sworn in as Sheriff's Deputy this week to go out on patrol in Hudspeth County, which runs along the Rio Grande east of El Paso. Yes Seagal will be on the front line in the border wars against drug lords and to stop illegals from crossing the border, or at least a 98 mile long stretch of it.

Seagal, 59, a 7th dan black belt in Aikido, will bring his martial arts prowess to bear in protecting the border, as well as offering up his expertise to train the other sheriff's deputies, working full-time to help secure the border Texas shares with Mexico.

As you know from reading here that for the past couple of years cameras have been following him around Jefferson Parish, Louisiana where Seagal is a fully-commissioned Reserve Deputy Sheriff. What's the bet that those camera's will be heading Southwest now too?

"Holy Shit! They're coming through the fence - don't just stand there slackjawed! You gotta badge now! Just point an shoot!" [picture via Splash]

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Special Investigation Committee formed

On Friday the U.N. Office of Internal Oversight Services at the request of the Security Council announced the appointment of a Special Investigation Committee to examine the manpower, assets, finances and procedures of UNPASID after a number of high profile debacles put the directorate under scrutiny. The committee will also jointly assess UNETIDA with regard to manpower and budgetary issues being faced by many countries who contribute personnel and assets to the organisations.

The five permanent member countries of the Security Council will be represented on the committee by: Professor Wai Chen, Chinese Academy of Sciences [Peoples Republic of China], Lt. General Andrew G. Kelly [Ret.], NASA [United States], Deputy Director Sergei Sitnikov, FSB [Russian Federation], Rear Admiral Oliver Braithwaite III CBE, Defence Intelligence [United Kingdom] and Cardinal Antoine Pascal, Roman Catholic Church [France].

The committee will be chaired by Mrs. Anna Scherzer, a senior economist with the Swiss Financial Markets Authority and will make recommendations to the UNSC together with a report of the committee's findings in due course.

All UNPASID and UNETIDA directors, officers, personnel and staff have received instructions through the organisations respective Inspector Generals offices to comply with the wishes of the committee and to make themselves available for questioning at their behest.

Friday, October 14, 2011

World War Z without guns?

The filming of the movie adaptation of Max Brooks' World War Z starring Brad Pitt hit a snag this week as Hungarian police confiscated some 100 weapons at Budapest's Ferenc Liszt Airport destined for use on the movie.

Apparently Hungaran police were dissatisfied with the methods that the London armourers used to deactivate the real weapons from being able to fire live ammunition. Janos Hajdu, head of Hungary's Counterterrorism Center, explained that in Hungary; weapons were considered to be deactivated only if the process "was irreversible," while the weapons seized could still be fired even though screws had been used to fill the end of the barrels.

Bela Gajdos, a weapons supervisor for World War Z, said Mafilm, a Hungarian film company based near Budapest which had the guns brought to Hungary, had the necessary permits, including a detailed list of the weapons in question, issued by local police authorities. Gajdos was questioned by investigators who thoroughly searched his Budapest home before dawn Monday and confiscated the permits.

In an unrelated story, Lt.Colonel "Spinner" Kilar, Chief Logistics Officer for the United Nations Paranormal and Supernatural Interdiction Directorate [UNPASID], was arrested along with several other personnel today under charges of conspiracy and misappropriation of UNPASID assets. The charges were as a result of some 100 UNPASID weapons not being reported as missing over a number of weeks. The weapons whereabouts are unknown at this time.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

OEF 10 years on

The factory-applied layer of silver polish had just about worn off my first set of eagles, when I was given command of Task Force Razor - not two weeks after the twin towers fell. Rummy gave me my orders in the executive bathroom of the White House of all places. There would be no records - I had to flush the orders after reading. The man stood there and watched as I did so. "We're not declaring war so anything goes" I was told. "Don't let torture, or the Geneva Convention stand in your way, but keep the civilian kill-count on the minimum because you never know who will be watching you, or if you will know who will be watching them watch you." Classic Rummy.

We deployed 'in country' on Sept 23rd 2001 and from then until mid '02 we did some crazy shit over there let me tell you. We took our commands from a company spook called "Smith" from the Special Activities Division. We marked the targets for the October 7th airstrikes, helped coordinate anti-Taliban forces on the ground with U.S. firepower from the air and generally eliminated anyone we found with a 'banana clip' at least until we found one that talked, or persuaded to do so later.

Some "influential" donkey senator got word that there was a rogue CIA op causing havoc in the Kandahar province and that their leader was called "د هغه سړي سره کوم روح" [the man with no soul]. We got shut down pretty quickly after that. Smith vanished and my team were absorbed into regular SpecOps forces under Col. Mulholland and I was sent stateside to assist the selection process fot MAR DET ONE. At that point the U.S. was trying to win the hearts and minds of the local populace to thwart the efforts of the insurgents and to be fair it wasn't helpful that we were accidentally shooting women and children every couple of months.

It's because I can remember it as yesterday is what makes it so hard to believe that President Obama marked the 10th anniversary of Operation Enduring Freedom on Friday, honouring those who have served and noting their efforts toward bringing the war to a responsible end from a position of strength. Despite the tremendous losses of almost 1,800 American patriots, he noted progress in taking the fight against violence extremism to the source. “In delivering justice to Osama bin Laden and many other al-Qaida leaders, we are closer than ever to defeating al-Qaida and its murderous network,” he said in an address.

Personally I think enormous challenges remain it's certainly worth noting that the Taliban have been pushed out of their key strongholds, Afghan security forces are growing stronger and the Afghan people are in a better position to craft their own destiny if they can manage to hold onto the freedom and hope that the U.S. and coalition allies have brought them over the subsequent years.

Mulholland the aforementioned colonel is now a Lieutenant General and ending a tour as commander of U.S. Army Special Operations Command. “We’re moving toward an increased special operations role,” together with U.S. intelligence, he said, “whether it’s counterterrorism-centric, or counterterrorism blended with counterinsurgency.”

So basically while most American troops prepare to withdraw from Afghanistan in 2014, the CIA and military special operations forces who were first to fight will also be the last to leave as they begin girding for the next great pivot of the campaign, as they continue to train and support the Afghans and closely observe if they have what it takes to keep their country above the mire of terrorism. That in itself is no small task and one that could stretch their war up to another decade.

Sources: U.S. Department of Defense / Marine Corps Times

Friday, October 07, 2011

Aw crap! "That guy!" died! RIP Charles Napier

You probably won't recognise the name Charles Napier too quickly as he wasn't particularly famous for it, but because of his voice, his face and the square-jawed tough guys and military types he played in many movies and TV shows, he will be remembered forever - even if only as "that guy!"

Gen. Gilmore [Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery]
Napier was born in Scottsville, Kentucky, served in 11th Airborne Division and studied teaching before becoming an actor. He made his film debut in Cherry, Harry & Raquel! in 1970. Among his more memorable movie roles were Murdock, the intelligence officer in Rambo: First Blood Part II and Lt. Boyle in Silence of the Lambs. Less serious roles included Loaded Weapon 1 and as generals in the first two Austin Powers movies. His role as Judge Garnett in Philadelphia was described  [by those who saw his whole performance] as "career defining" but sadly much if it was cut for running time.

Col. Briggs [The A-Team]
Napier was just as recognised for his numerous television appearances. He guest starred dozens of TV shows like Mission: Impossible, The Incredible Hulk, The Rockford Files and Knight Rider. He also did two episodes of The A-Team. His most memorable TV work is of course the role of Adam the "space hippie" in the Star Trek: The Original Series episode "The Way to Eden". 25 years later he returned to Star Trek to portray Lt. General Rex Denning in the Star Trek: Deep Space Nine episode "Little Green Men".

On Star Trek - Adam [L] and Gen. Rex Denning [R]
The voice of Duke Phillips [The Critic]
Napier's voice is instantly recognisable. He voiced many of The Incredible Hulk's growls in the '70's has also provided several guest voices for episodes of The Simpsons. Fans of the animated Superman series in the late 90's and later The Justice League will know his voice as General Hardcastle. His greatest voice work in my opinion however is as the Ted Turner-esque media mogul Duke Phillips in the 1990's animated series The Critic.

Napier was married twice and had three children. He collapsed in his home on Monday and was found the following morning and taken to Memorial Hospital in Bakersfield, California. He was taken off life support just before 1pm EST on Wednesday and died shortly thereafter. He was 75.

Wednesday, October 05, 2011

Dempsey replaces Mullen as CJCS

Admiral Michael Glenn "Mike" Mullen, retired from the United States Navy at Joint Base Myer-Henderson Hall, Va. on Friday Sept. 30. He passed the reigns as Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff to Army General Martin E. Dempsey during a change of responsibility ceremony there before an audience that included President Obama, Vice President Biden, Secretary of Defense Panetta, senior military officers and other distinguished officials.

Gen. Dempsey [L] and SECDEF Panetta [R]

In his final speech as Chairman, Adm. Mullen said he reminded Gen. Dempsey that he will not only be the POTUS' advisor, but also the representative of 2.2 million members of the armed forces. He said that his successor's biggest challenge will be in Afghanistan "making sure that the security gains we have made are not squandered by the scourge of corruption or the lack of good governance."

“Time is both his best friend and his worst enemy. I never seemed to have enough of it to do the things I wanted, and it’s hard to believe it’s over,” Mullen said as he finished a 43 year career.

Gen. Dempsey was sworn in at the 18th Chairman and he thanked his predecessor for his patriotism and friendship. He vowed to maintain and strengthen the military during his term in office. In his speech, Dempsey said U.S. armed forces “are powerful, responsive, resilient, versatile and admired. [They] provide leaders with a wide range of options to counter threats and crises. And when sent to do the nation's bidding, we are an unambiguous signal of our nation’s resolve.”

Adm. Mullen [L] shakes the hand of his sucessor
“Our people -- America’s sons and daughters -- are our decisive edge ... We’ll change and we’ll be challenged, but when I complete my tenure as the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, I intend to be able to say exactly the same thing: We will be the joint force the nation needs us to be, so help me, God.”

"I am supremely confident of the future because we have the strongest military force in our history and in the history of the world," SECDEF Panetta said. "And it is strong exactly because we can replace one great warrior with another."

On Monday, General Dempsey briefly spoke with reporters in his office at The Pentagon. While the session was considered off the record, Dempsey's staff allowed some details about the general's office to be revealed: He sits behind a 4 by 6 foot desk, the same one Gen. Douglas MacArthur used in the Philippines during World War II. He said his desk at home is one used by Gen. Omar Bradley, the first chairman. A larger than life painting of Gen. George C. Marshall hangs in the office in such a way that the chairman can see it clearly from his desk. On the desk however is something uniquely Dempsey's: a box that holds cards he had made when he commanded 1st Armored Division during its '03-'04 deployment to Iraq. The cards each bear the photo, personal and family information for a division solider killed in action there.

Credits: Jim Garamone & Karen Parrish, American Forces Press Service

Monday, October 03, 2011

You wait for ages and all of a sudden: 7 of them show up at once!

A Supernova, the death cry of a star. One supernova is a rare occurrence but in the galaxy designated Arp 220, a mere 250 million light-years from our Solar System, not only one supernova is occurring - but SEVEN!

According to IO9, a team of astronomers at Chalmers and Onsala Space Observatory found that all seven supernovas went off in the last sixty years (allowing for the 250 million years for the light to reach Earth). In cosmic terms, that's the blink of an eye. European Southern Observatory astronomer Rodrigo Parra explains: "In Arp 220, we see far more supernovae than in our galaxy. We estimate that a star explodes in Arp 220 once every quarter [century]. In the Milky Way, there is only one supernova per century."

Astronomers believe it's proof that Arp 220 is one of the most efficient galaxies in the universe when it comes to making stars...and then destroying them. There's so many stars that have formed in that galaxy that there's always plenty of potential supernovae, even allowing for the fact that exactly when each star explodes in its own lifetime can vary by a whole lot more than sixty years. Team member John Conway adds: "Arp 220 is well-known as a place where star formation is very efficient" as well as being a supernova factory.

Astronomers however are not privy to the information gathered by UNETIDA. Acting Intelligence director for UNETIDA, Colonel "Whopper" Creedon, said that the multiple supernovae are consistent with information that he acquired recently regarding an ancient conflict. A conflict between two immensely powerful empires a quarter of a billion years ago in Arp 220 or Sangesh'ka as it was known locally. "Basically you had two immense empires, the Jurathi and the Wevnarr," explained Creedon. "Both were highly technically advanced and quite belligerent. We understand that each expanded their rule from a single world at either side of the Sangesh'ka galaxy conquering all they encountered - until of course they encountered each other. We are now witnessing the final moments of their eons-long war as they wipe each other out – totally, in a way we can barely fathom - by destroying their suns."

Sunday, October 02, 2011

Advertisment leaves three dead!

A poorly conceived advertisement for a Cork city music event at a nightclub has left three dead in the wake of a UNETIDA raid on the premises on Friday morning.

The advertisement for a music event sponsored by a prominent European beer company was presented in a "wrap around" format over the real cover of the local newspaper. It presented the ad in such a way that it posed as the newspaper's headline "MIDDAY INVASION" [in the Impact font as 44mm high lettering]. It also featured a green "tractor beam" over the nightclub venue,  doctored photographs of extra-terrestrial spacecraft over the prominent Shandon landmark and testimony from a non-existent professor from a society that was invented for the purposes of the advertisement. Only a tiny message at the bottom  identifies the page as an advertisement [4mm high non-bold Times New Roman lettering].

Friday morning shoppers in Cork city were horrified to see a group of helicopters deposit two dozen armed men on the roof  and an armoured car simultaneously plough through the front doors of the ground floor of the nightclub; which by day is a small shopping arcade. Witnesses saw flashes from windows and heard small explosions and automatic weapons fire.

A UNETIDA statement later in the afternoon revealed that a Special Operations strike team was promptly dispatched to raid the venue described in the newspaper. A ground unit entered from street level while helicopters deposited a second unit the roof of the establishment where they blew in skylights and windows to gain access. The team reported that they "encountered resistance" once inside. They terminated three targets who were reported as "babbling and screaming alien language" and were disguised as cleaning staff. A fourth target was wounded and apprehended.

On Saturday, Colonel "Whopper" Creedon, Acting Director of UNETIDA Intelligence revealed that personnel, acting on the information presented in the newspaper, did perform an assault on the premises and shot and killed one Lithuanian and two Polish nationals employed by a local cleaning firm to service the establishment. He also slammed the newspaper and the European beer company for presenting the information in the manner that they did so, which he described as "grossly irresponsible". The only good thing about the ad according to Creedon "is that it covers George Hook's exceptionally ugly mug from being seen".

"UNETIDA is a fast-reaction force to this type of threat" added Creedon, "that sometimes means we don't have time to read all the way down to the samll print at the bottom of a page."

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

UNETIDA's Week In The News 27-09-11

UNETIDA has appeared not once, not twice but three times in the press in the past few days...

Source: Getty
The Commander, UNETIDA Naval Tactical Support Capt. "Harpoon" Dutton KBE, speaking in the absence of Contraalmirante "Tridente" Carlos UNETIDA Naval Operations Commander, said "UNETIDA is currently not in command of either the USS Jefferson City nor any other U.S. naval asset afloat or submerged in the Pacific Ocean at this time. The NASA UARS satellite that crashed to Earth did not contain any UNETIDA controlled "black box" or other equipment on board. We are not involved in any search or recovery operation with the U.S. Space Agencies." 

UNETIDA's Director of Research and Development Dr. "Quantum" Pataal praised the work of Scientists at CERN near Geneva, Switzerland who have reportedly debunked half of "known physics" and rendered Einstein "the intellectual equivalent of a public school science teacher." Pataal said that science fiction writers will have to put on their creative caps now and come up with even more fantastical ideas than those of Asimov, Speilberg, Bradbury, Roddenberry, Dick and even Lucas himself now that space and time travel will be "reality in a few years". 

Source: Anorak
Colonel "Whopper" Creedon, UNETIDA's Acting Director of Intelligence gave evidence at an inquest into the death of one Micheal Faherty, 76, of Ballybane, Galway on December 22nd 2010. Col. Creedon proved that UNETIDA's prototype "Microwave Gun" could not have been responsible for the man's death as it produced far too much collateral damage. West Galway coroner, C. McLoughlin and Assistant chief fire officer, G. O'Malley said there was no other adequate explanation for the death of Mr. Faherty, other than "Spontaneous Combustion" - now the first recorded case in the country.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Captain America: The First Avenger rules the summer

I like to convince myself that the Matt Salinger Captain America movie never even happened. So for me, this was my first time seeing the star spangled avenger come to life in a live action motion picture. Marvel Studios and Paramount have collaborated on several movies now and each entry in their catalogue has been continuously impressive. Captain America: The First Avenger is inexorably linked to the The Avengers movie next year. The Incredible Hulk, Iron Man [1&2] and Thor all worked pretty flawlessly as movies but should Captain America fail, it could endanger what is going to be one of the most incredible cinematic events in history as these heroes finally come together to battle evil in the one movie.

Captain America: The First Avenger serves a dual purpose both as an introduction to the character who will lead The Avengers super-hero team and also brings the final pieces of the grand mystery that has been glimpsed in post-credits stingers for more than 3 years now. Like the other movies in the franchised, Captain America stands firmly on it’s own two feet and never reduces itself to being simply the piece of a larger whole.

When I saw Chris Evans was picked to portray Steve Rogers I was unsure. His performance in the Fantastic Four series was hardly stellar, but to be honest, he didn’t have a lot to work with those movies. Come to think of them in fact I believe Evans now puts a nail in the coffin of that franchise which isn’t exactly bringing a tear to my eye. Then I saw him in the even-more-awful Scott Pilgrim vs. The World as Lucas Lee and changed my mind – he’d certainly work as Cap and I was right. His performance as a weedy but ambitiously patriotic young Rogers is flawless but he really comes into his own when dosed with the Super Soldier Serum so he can become a living weapon, the first in an army of super-soldiers with which the U.S. can better combat the Nazi menace sweeping across Europe.

That's right, while the tale is framed by present day scenes, the majority of the movie takes place during WWII just as a Captain America origin tale should [the character first appeared in 1941]. While a comic book delivers it's story through illustrations with speech bubbles, it's up to a solid array of actors to make those drawings flesh and voice, and The First Avenger's cast is stellar. Hugo The Matrix Weaving was a deliciously OTT Johann Schmidt AKA Red Skull and single-minded in his quest for the Cosmic Cube, witnessed in the stinger at the end of Thor. I’m wondering however which of Weaving or Mark Strong gets the call “I want you to be the villain in my next movie” first nowadays as they seem to have cornered that market in recent years. Kings actor Sebastian Stan gets to be Captain America’s buddy Bucky Barnes, Tommy Lee Jones is excellent as Col. Chester Phillips. Hayley The Pillars of the Earth Atwell is Strategic Scientific Reserve officer  Peggy Carter, Stanley The Core Tucci is Dr. Abraham Erskine, creator the Super Soldier Serum, British theatrical actor Dominic Cooper as Howard StarkTony’s father and not forgetting Neil Star Trek: First Contact McDonagh as "Dum-Dum" Dugan of The Howling Commandos.

Director Joe The Rocketeer Johnston is know for his effects-laden movies and he doesn't disappoint with the cinematic spectacle he delivers here. Among the 1600 effects shots were a multitude of scenes with Steve Rogers before he was "bulked up" by the Super Soldier Serum using complex green screen and body double technology. There was one or two hokey effects shots [one scene where Cap was running after a bomber inside a massive hangar was especially crud] but they weren’t enough to snap you away from your immersion in this incredible stylised wartime world that Johnston and his team created for us. Veteran composer Alan Back To The Future Silvestri composed an instantly classic score, evoking the great epic cinematic qualities of old WWII adventures.

I'm pleased to announce that there is nothing to worry about, the world has accepted The First Avenger as a hero to admire [he did surprising well overseas for someone with “America” in his name and literally dressed in an American flag suit and has made over $350m]. The hype for The Avengers is already assured some measure of success provided Joss Serenity Whedon doesn’t screw it up, but the Marvel Super-Hero train is going so fast now, I doubt even he could derail it.

Final Verdict: An old-fashined adventure tale, another outstanding work of Marvel cinematic gold and another kick in the teeth for DC/Warner's epic fails at everything except Batman.

Colonel Creedon Rating: *****+