Archive for the ‘offensive’ Category

Vietnam War Hero, With His 600 Men, Stopped 20,000 Enemy and 200 Tanks

November 3, 2008

Retired Marine Col. John Ripley, who was credited with stopping a column of North Vietnamese tanks by blowing up a pair of bridges during the 1972 Easter Offensive of the Vietnam War, died at home at age 69, friends and relatives said Sunday.

Associated Press

Ripley’s son, Stephen Ripley, said his father was found at his Annapolis home Saturday after missing a speaking engagement on Friday. The son said the cause of death had not been determined but it appeared his father died in his sleep.

In a videotaped interview with the U.S. Naval Institute for its Americans at War program, Ripley said he and about 600 South Vietnamese were ordered to “hold and die” against 20,000 North Vietnamese soldiers with about 200 tanks.

“I’ll never forget that order, ‘hold and die’,” Ripley said. The only way to stop the enormous force with their tiny force was to destroy the bridge, he said.

“The idea that I would be able to even finish the job before the enemy got me was ludicrous,” Ripley said. “When you know you’re not going to make it, a wonderful thing happens: You stop being cluttered by the feeling that you’re going to save your butt.”

Ripley crawled under the bridge under heavy gunfire, rigging 500 pounds of explosives that brought the twins spans down, said John Miller, a former Marine adviser in Vietnam and the author of “The Bridge at Dong Ha,” which details the battle.

Miller said the North Vietnamese advance was slowed considerably by Ripley.

“A lot of people think South Vietnam would have gone under in ’72 had he not stopped them,” Miller said.

Read the rest:
http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20081103/ap_on_re_us/obit_ripley_3

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Offensive Remark End Career of Japan’s Top Air Force Officer; China, others Express Relief

November 3, 2008

Japan’s Air Force Chief is gone following written comments that outraged China, Korea, and many others…

(CNN) — A state-run Chinese newspaper expressed relief Monday that senior Japanese officials had dismissed the country’s air force chief after he denied Japan’s aggression before and during World War II.

General Toshio Tamogami

General Toshio Tamogami
Gen. Toshio Tamogami lost his job as chief of staff for Japan’s Air Self-Defense Force, the Ministry of Defense said, after saying in an essay that “it is certainly a false accusation to say that our country was an aggressor nation.”

Japanese troops invaded China in 1937 and were widely accused of gross human rights abuses, including raping tens of thousands of girls and women and killing several hundred thousand others in what has come to be called “The Rape of Nanking.” Imperial Japan also invaded several other Asian nations, leading to the death and misery for an untold number.

Two former Japanese prime ministers have apologized for Japanese aggression before and during World War II. Yet China has long accused of elements within Japan of trying to whitewash the Japanese atrocities committed before and during World War II.

“The denial of the aggression history by Toshio Tamogami comes in as an element of disharmony,” the state-run China Daily said a commentary Monday. “Yet, as long as the Japanese government has a right attitude to this question, the smooth development of ties between the two neighbors will not be derailed by such discordant notes.”

Read the rest:
http://www.cnn.com/2008/WORLD/asiapcf/11/03/
japan.war.role/index.html?section=cnn_latest

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China Applauds Dismissal Of Japan’s Air Boss

Associated Press

An official Chinese newspaper has applauded the dismissal of Japan’s air force chief over an essay he wrote that claimed Japan had not been an “aggressor” in World War II.

China remains highly sensitive over depictions of Japan’s brutal wartime occupation, and there were concerns that the essay by Toshio Tamogami, who was fired on Friday, would negatively impact ties between the two countries.

On Monday, however, the government’s English-language China Daily called the essay “an element of disharmony” and said Beijing felt “relieved” over Toshio’s removal.

“Yet as long as the Japanese government has a right attitude to this question, the smooth development of ties between the two neighbors will not be derailed,” the paper said in an unsigned editorial.

On Saturday, China’s Foreign Ministry issued only a mild comment on the controversy, saying it had noted the Japanese government’s action.

In the essay, Tamogami said it was “certainly a false accusation” to say Japan was “an aggressor nation” during World War II, and defended life under Japanese occupation as “very moderate.” Tamogami also claimed that Japan was tricked into attacking Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941, by then-U.S. President Franklin D. Roosevelt.

China-Japan relations were thrown into a tailspin earlier this decade over former Japanese Prime Minister Jinichiro Koizumi‘s visits to a shrine honoring war dead, including convicted war criminals, as well as Chinese accusations that Japan was playing down its wartime culpability.

However, ties have improved markedly in the two years since Koizumi’s successor, Shinzo Abe, visited China, allowing the sides to weather potential storms such as the Tamogami essay.

Naughty Phone Prank Brings Down BBC Stars

October 30, 2008

Even if you make $10Million a year, saying sex talk while broadcasting and insulting others may not work for you….

BBC logo

By Kevin Sullivan
Washington Post Foreign Service
Thursday, October 30, 2008; Page A18

LONDON, Oct. 29 — Junior high-school boys everywhere, listen up: One highly paid BBC personality was forced to quit and another was suspended Wednesday for making a prank phone call using dirty words.

The two radio and TV stars, Jonathan Ross and Russell Brand, have been subjected to a public flogging all week on TV news and radio talk shows and on the front pages of British newspapers.

British radio and TV personality Russell Brand resigned yesterday after he and colleague Jonathan Ross made an obscene phone call to actor Andrew Sachs that was later aired on Brand's BBC radio program.

Above: British radio and TV personality Russell Brand resigned yesterday after he and colleague Jonathan Ross made an obscene phone call to actor Andrew Sachs that was later aired on Brand’s BBC radio program. (By Matt Cardy — Getty Images) 

The Sun tabloid dismissed Brand and Ross as “sickos.” Prime Minister Gordon Brown took a few minutes away from meetings in Paris on the global financial crisis to reprimand their “inappropriate and unacceptable behavior.”

Brand, who recently starred in the Hollywood film “Forgetting Sarah Marshall” and hosted this year’s MTV Video Music Awards, resigned from his BBC radio program late Wednesday after more than 27,000 people complained.

Ross, who earns almost $10 million a year as a radio and TV host, was suspended and apologized for his “juvenile and thoughtless remarks.” He will remain off the airwaves until top BBC bosses meet later this week. BBC chief Mark Thompson cut short a vacation to return to London to deal with the fallout.

Ofcom, Britain’s broadcasting regulator, is also investigating, and politicians across the spectrum have condemned Brand, Ross and the BBC.

The problems started Oct. 18, when BBC radio aired a show of Brand’s on which Ross and Brand made a phone call to Andrew Sachs, a 78-year-old actor famous for his role on the British TV comedy classic “Fawlty Towers.”

Brand, 33, had once had a romantic fling with Sachs’s granddaughter. On the prank call, he and Ross left a message on Sachs’s answering machine describing graphically what Brand had gotten up to with the young woman. After they hung up, the two said on air that they might have to make it up to Sachs by breaking into his house and performing a sex act on him.

Read the rest:
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2008
/10/29/AR2008102904436.html

Nearly 190,000 flee fighting in Pakistan

October 15, 2008
ISLAMABAD, Pakistan – Nearly 190,000 people have reportedly fled fighting between Pakistani troops and extremists near the border with Afghanistan, the United Nations said yesterday as fresh clashes in the area killed 17 extremists.

A Pakistani police commando leads a convoy of armed Pakistani ...

A Pakistani police commando leads a convoy of armed Pakistani people on patrol against Islamic militants in Mamoon Khataki Shabqader on the border of the tribal district of Mohmand Agency on October 9, 2008. A Polish engineer kidnapped two weeks ago in Pakistan by suspected Taliban militants appeared in a video address Tuesday urging the release of jailed Taliban fighters.(AFP/File/Tariq Mahmood)

Fighting is spreading across Pakistan’s rugged northwest as the government cracks down on insurgents blamed for attacks on U.S. and NATO forces in Afghanistan and a campaign of suicide bombings against military and Western targets within Pakistan.

Most of the clashes are taking place in Bajur, where the Pakistani military launched a big offensive in early August.

The U.N. refugee agency said 20,000 Pakistanis and Afghans had fled Bajur into eastern Afghanistan’s Kunar province since the fighting began.

Read the rest:
http://www.philly.com/inquirer/world_us/20081015_Near
ly_190_000_flee_fighting_in_Pakistan.html

Vietnam parade marks 40 years since Tet Offensive

February 2, 2008

HANOI (AFP) – Vietnam on Friday marked 40 years since the Tet Offensive with colourful military parades of its veterans and re-enactments of the surprise wave of urban assaults that marked a turning point in the war.

Veterans march during a parade held at the former presidential ... 

Communist Party leaders and military chiefs watched as former guerrillas and regular soldiers filed past Ho Chi Minh City‘s Reunification Palace, formerly the presidential palace of the US-backed Saigon regime ousted in 1975.

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http://news.yahoo.com/s/afp/20080201/lf_afp/
vietnammilitarytetoffensiveanniversary_
080201210115

Veterans of the Vietnam war march in rememberance. Vietnam on ... 
Veterans of the Vietnam war march in rememberance. Vietnam on Friday marked 40 years since the Tet Offensive with colourful military parades of its veterans and re-enactments of the surprise wave of urban assaults that marked a turning point in the war.
(AFP) 

Pakistan says offensive looming in militant valley

November 17, 2007

RAWALPINDI, Pakistan (AFP) – Pakistan will launch a major operation “any time from now” to clear militants loyal to a pro-Taliban cleric from a scenic northwestern valley, an army general said Saturday.

Major General Ahmed Shuja Pasha, director general of military operations for the Pakistan army, said he hoped the mountainous Swat area would be reopened for tourism by the end of December.

He said five days of clashes in which the army reports around 100 militants have been killed are only a prelude to the impending large-scale offensive.

Read the rest:
http://news.yahoo.com/s/afp/20071117/wl_sthasia_
afp/pakistanunrestnorthwest_071117195733