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Cooley Hurd

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Member since: 2002
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Why Trump's prime minister shove pleased Putin


(CNN)President Donald Trump's body language during his visit to Brussels on Thursday was about as subtle as a politician body slamming a reporter. For America's closest allies, in town for a major meeting of NATO, the actions and words of the new US President were visibly troubling. For Vladimir Putin, who surely paid close attention from Moscow, the day was filled with pleasing images and satisfying rhetoric.

The moment that best encapsulated Trump's day came after the speeches, when NATO leaders were taking a tour of the Alliance's brand new headquarters. Trump fell back into the pack, but worked his way forward, pushing aside the Prime Minister of Montenegro to put himself in front.

I will not suggest that Trump deliberately chose Prime Minister Dusko Markovic as the leader to clear out of his way, but the incident could not have made for a better metaphor.

This was Markovic's and Montenegro's first NATO summit. The tiny Balkan country has just been accepted into the alliance, much to Moscow's chagrin.

How much chagrin?

Authorities in Montenegro say they stopped a Russian-backed plot to kill Markovic's predecessor, which was aimed at preventing Montenegro from joining NATO. They have arrested 14 people, including two Russians. (Russia denies involvement.) The plot, prosecutors say, sought to install a new government loyal to Russia and opposed to Montenegro's efforts to grow closer to the West and to NATO. The plot failed, and now Montenegro is becoming NATO's 29th member.


Dina Merrill, Actress, Heiress And Philanthropist, Dies At 93


Dina Merrill, the actress, heiress and RKO executive whose blend of beauty and refinement made her the perfect woman to portray socialites on screens big and small, has died. She was 93.

Merrill died Monday at her home in East Hampton, N.Y., The New York Times reported.

As the daughter of Wall Street maverick E.F. Hutton and Marjorie Merriweather Post, heir to the Post Cereals fortune, Merrill was born into and raised in New York society, and her characters often came from upper-crust backgrounds as well.

She made her feature debut in 1957 as one of the eager young research assistants who work for TV executive Katharine Hepburn in the comedy Desk Set, and she played a long-suffering wife whose husband (Laurence Harvey) cheats on her with Elizabeth Taylor in Butterfield 8 (1960).

In John Frankenheimer's The Young Savages (1961), Merrill portrayed the well-to-do wife of assistant district attorney Burt Lancaster, and she was a sophisticate who's not crazy about Glenn Ford's kid in The Courtship of Eddie's Father (1963).

Cross gently, Dina. Such a stunning actress...

83 years ago today; "The Battle of Toledo" during the Auto-Lite strike


The "Battle of Toledo"
On the afternoon of Wednesday, May 23, the sheriff of Lucas County decided to take action against the picketers. In front of a crowd which now numbered nearly 10,000, sheriff's deputies arrested Budenz and four picketers. As the five were taken to jail, a deputy began beating an elderly man.

Infuriated, the crowd began hurling stones, bricks and bottles at the sheriff's deputies. A fire hose was turned on the crowd, but the mob seized it and turned the hose back on the deputies. Many deputies fled inside the plant gates, and Auto-Lite managers barricaded the plant doors and turned off the lights. The deputies gathered on the roof and began shooting tear gas bombs into the crowd. So much tear and vomit gas was used that not even the police could enter the riot zone. The mob retaliated by hurling bricks and stones through the plant's windows for seven hours. The strikers overturned cars in the parking lot and set them ablaze.

The inner tubes of car tires were turned into improvised slingshots, and bricks and stones launched at the building. Burning refuse was thrown into the open door of the plant's shipping department, setting it on fire. In the early evening, the rioters attempted to break into the plant and seize the replacement workers, security personnel and sheriff's deputies. Police fired shots at the legs of rioters to try to stop them. The gunfire was ineffective, and only one person was (slightly) wounded. Hand-to-hand fighting broke out as the rioters broke into the plant. The mob was repelled, but tried twice more to break into the facility before they gave up late in the evening. More than 20 people were reported injured during the melee. Auto-Lite president Clement O. Miniger was so alarmed by the violence that he ringed his home with a cordon of armed guards.

At 5:30 a.m. on Thursday, May 24, 900 Ohio National Guardsmen, most of them teenagers,[22] arrived in a light rain. The troops included eight rifle companies, three machine-gun companies and a medical unit. The troops cleared a path through the picket line, and the sheriff's deputies, private security guards and replacement workers were able to leave the plant.

Later that morning, Judge Stuart issued a new injunction banning all picketing in front of the Auto-Lite plant, but the picketers ignored the order.

During the afternoon of May 24, Charles Phelps Taft II, son of the former president, was sent to Toledo by President Roosevelt to act as a special mediator in the dispute.[23] AFL president William Green sent an AFL organizer to the city as well to help the local union leadership bring the situation under control.

During the late afternoon and early evening of May 24, a huge crowd of about 6,000 people gathered again in front of the Auto-Lite plant. Around 10 p.m., the crowd began taunting the soldiers and tossing bottles at them. The militia retaliated by launching a particularly strong form of tear gas into the crowd. The mob picked up the gas bombs and threw them back. For two hours, the gas barrage continued. Finally, the rioters surged back toward the plant gates.

The National Guardsmen charged with bayonets, forcing the crowd back. Again the mob advanced. The soldiers fired into the air with no effect, then fired into the crowd—killing 27-year-old Frank Hubay (shot four times) and 20-year-old Steve Cyigon. Neither was an Auto-Lite worker, but had joined the crowd out of sympathy for the strikers. At least 15 others also received bullet wounds, while 10 Guardsmen were treated after being hit by bricks.

A running battle occurred throughout the night between National Guard troops and picketers in a six-block area surrounding the plant.[1][25] A smaller crowd rushed the troops again a short time after Hubay and Cyigon's deaths, and two more picketers were injured by gunfire. A company of troops was sent to guard the Bingham Tool and Die plant, a squad of sheriff's deputies dispatched to protect the Logan Gear factory, and another 400 National Guardsmen ordered to the area. Nearly two dozen picketers and troopers were injured by hurled missiles during the night.[1][23] The total number of troops now in Toledo was 1,350, the largest peace-time military build-up in Ohio history.

In the early morning hours of Friday, May 25, Auto-Lite officials agreed to keep the plant closed in an attempt to forestall further violence.

Also on May 25, Clement Miniger was arrested after local residents swore out complaints that he had created a public nuisance by allowing his security guards to bomb the neighborhood with tear gas. Louis Budenz, too, was arrested—again on contempt of court charges.

Meanwhile, rioting continued throughout the area surrounding the Auto-Lite plant. Furious local citizens accosted National Guard troops, demanding that they stop gassing the city. Twice during the day, troops fired volleys into the air to drive rioters away from the plant. A trooper was shot in the thigh, and several picketers were severely injured by flying gas bombs and during bayonet charges. In the early evening, when the National Guard ran out of tear gas bombs, they began throwing bricks, stones and bottles back at the crowd to keep it away.

Tensions worsened during the day. The AFL's Committee of 23 announced that 51 of the city's 103 unions had voted to support a general strike.[1][11]

That evening, local union members voted down a proposal to submit all grievances to the Automobile Labor Board for mediation. The plan had been offered by Auto-Lite officials the day before and endorsed by Taft. But the plan would have deprived the union of its most potent weapon (the closed plant and thousands of picketing supporters) and forced the union to accept proportional representation. Union members refused to accept either outcome.[1][11][23][25] Taft suggested submitting all grievances to the National Labor Board instead, but union members rejected that proposal as well.[1]

On Saturday, May 26, the violence began to die down somewhat. Troopers began arresting hundreds of people, most of whom paid a small bond and won release later the same day. Large crowds continued to gather in front of the Auto-Lite plant and hurl missiles at the troops, but the National Guard was able to maintain order during daylight hours without resorting to large-scale gas bombing. During the day, Ted Selander was arrested by the National Guard and held incommunicado. Despite the pleas of Muste and Lamb, Taft refused to use his influence to have Selander freed or his whereabouts revealed. With two of the AWP's three local leaders in jail, the AWP was unable to mobilize as many picketers as before. Although a crowd of 5,000 gathered in the early evening, the National Guard was able to disperse the mob after heavily gassing the six-block neighborhood.

That morning, Taft led a round of negotiations involving the union, officials of all three companies, and National Guard leaders. Union officials demanded that the plants remain closed during arbitration and that troops be withdrawn. But at Taft's urging, they agreed to lower their wage demands to a 10 percent increase.

On Sunday, May 27, almost all picketing and rioting within the now eight-block-wide zone surrounding the Auto-Lite plant ceased.[28]

Sheriff David Clarke plagiarized portions of his master's thesis on homeland security


(CNN)Controversial Milwaukee County Sheriff David Clarke, who this week announced he will be joining Donald Trump's administration as assistant secretary in the Department of Homeland Security, plagiarized sections of his 2013 master's thesis on US security, a CNN KFile review has found.

Clarke, a visible surrogate for Trump during the campaign known for his incendiary rhetoric, earned a master's degree in security studies at the Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey, California. In his thesis, "Making U.S. security and privacy rights compatible," Clarke failed to properly attribute his sources at least 47 times.

In all instances reviewed by CNN's KFile, Clarke lifts language from sources and credits them with a footnote, but does not indicate with quotation marks that he is taking the words verbatim.

According to guidelines on plagiarism posted on the Naval Postgraduate School's website, "If a passage is quoted verbatim, it must be set off with quotation marks (or, if it is a longer passage, presented as indented text), and followed by a properly formulated citation. The length of the phrase does not matter. If someone else's words are sufficiently significant to be worth quoting, then accurate quotation followed by a correct citation is essential, even if only a few words are involved."


Who knew?

90 Years ago this morning; Lindbergh takes off from Roosevelt Field, LI on his way to Paris


Lindbergh took off from Roosevelt Field for Paris in the early morning of Friday, May 20, 1927. Loaded with 450 U.S. gallons (1,704 liters) of fuel‍—‌strained repeatedly to avoid fuel line blockage, and weighing about 2,710 lb (1,230 kg)‍—‌and hampered by a muddy, rain-soaked runway, Lindbergh's monoplane, powered by a J-5C Wright Whirlwind radial engine, gained speed very slowly during its 7:52 am takeoff, but cleared telephone lines at the far end of the field "by about twenty feet (six meters) with a fair reserve of flying speed".

Never a fan of his politics, but you cannot deny it took guts to do what he did.

Check back tomorrow to see if he makes it.

30 yrs ago today: USS Stark nearly sunk by Iraqi Exocet missile



USS Stark was part of the Middle East Task Force assigned to patrol off the Saudi Arabian coast near the Iran–Iraq War exclusion boundary. An Iraqi pilot attacked USS Stark in a Dassault Falcon 50 modified business jet armed with two Exocet missiles.[1] Even though it did not have the capability at the time, American Intelligence was convinced the attack was made with a Dassault Mirage F1.[2] It took off from the airbase of Shaibah at 20:00 and headed south into the Persian Gulf also along the coast. The aircraft was flying 5,000 feet (1,500 m) above the water at 550 mi (890 km) per hour.[citation needed] An AWACS plane on patrol nearby, with an American and Saudi Arabian crew, first detected the incoming Iraqi jet and informed the Stark, which picked up the aircraft on radar, 200 miles (320 km) out.[citation needed] When it came within view just before 22:00, the attacker was off Stark's port side beam.

Initially not alarmed, at 22:09 Captain Brindel ordered a radioman to send the message: "Unknown aircraft, this is U.S. Navy warship on your 078 (degrees) for twelve miles. Request you identify yourself." The Iraqi Falcon pilot did not respond to the message. The ship's captain ordered a second message sent, to which there was no reply. At 22:10 hrs Captain Brindel was informed the Iraqi aircraft had targeted his ship, locking his Cyrano-IV fire-control radar onto Stark. The Falcon 50 then fired the first Exocet missile 22 miles (35 km) from the ship, and the second Exocet from 15 miles (24 km). The pilot then banked left and began to withdraw.

Stark's search radar and ESM systems failed to detect the incoming missiles. Captain Brindel suspected a possible Exocet attack but did not convey this clearly to the crew. He calmly requested a systems check including whether the Phalanx Close-In-Weapon-System (CIWS) system was "live". The crew reported no issue, he questioned again, however the crew repeated themselves believing he had simply not heard their first reply. Additionally due to miscommunication, the Captain believed the CIWS was "live" which to his mind meant; set to auto-targeting mode, but the crew were just reporting it was reading as operational (The CIWS was likely set to a passive mode waiting on the EMS.) Reassured falsely in the state of the ship, no further orders or evasive action was taken. It was not until seconds[citation needed] before the first hit that the Americans realized they were under fire.[citation needed] The first Exocet missile tracked in a little over 10 feet (3.0 m) above the sea surface[citation needed], and struck the port side of the ship near the bridge. Although it failed to explode, rocket fuel ignited and caused a large fire that quickly spread throughout the ship's post office, a store room, and the critical combat operations center (where the ship's weapons are controlled).

The second Exocet also struck the port side. This missile did detonate, leaving a 10 ft (3.0 m) by 15 ft (4.6 m) hole in the frigate's left side. Electronics for Stark's Standard Missile defense went out and Captain Brindel could not order his men to return fire. The AWACS plane was still in the area and just after witnessing the attack, it radioed a nearby Saudi airbase to send aircraft for an interception, but the ground controllers did not have the authority to order a sortie and the Iraqi jet escaped unharmed. The USN rules of engagement applicable at the time allowed Stark to defend herself after sufficiently warning the hostile aircraft.[3] A total of 37 crew were killed in the attack, 29 from the initial explosion and fire, including two lost at sea. Eight would later die from their injuries. Twenty-one others survived their wounds.

Throughout the remainder of the night and the following day, Stark's crew, along with sailors from the destroyer USS Conyngham fought the fire, which burned for almost 24 hours. Captain Brindel ordered the starboard side flooded to keep the hole on the hull's port side above water. This helped prevent the Stark from sinking. Brindel quickly dispatched a distress call after the first missile hit. It was received by USS Waddell, which was in the area, and Conyngham with  2⁄3 of its crew on liberty in Bahrain. Waddell and Conyngham arrived to provide damage control and relief to Stark's crew. Temporary Electronics Communications were installed by ETC Perry and team while Conyngham provided an escort for Stark as she slowly made her way to Bahrain.[citation needed]


Stark arrived at Bahrain the following day on 18 May 1987, under her own power. There she was temporarily repaired by the destroyer tender USS Acadia before setting a course for Mayport Naval Station, Florida, the ship's home port. A court of inquiry under Rear Admiral Grant Sharp was formed to investigate the incident and later Captain Brindel was recommended for court-martial. It was found that Stark was 2 miles (3.2 km) outside the exclusion zone and had not violated neutrality as the Iraqis claimed.[4] Iraq apologized,[5] and Saddam Hussein said that the pilot mistook Stark for an Iranian tanker. American officials claimed that the Iraqi jet's pilot was not acting under orders from his government, and that he was later executed. This has been disputed, as an Iraqi Air Force officer later stated that the pilot was not punished and that he was still alive.

Iranian Prime Minister Mir Hossein Mousavi called it a "divine blessing" and reiterated the standard Iranian view that Persian Gulf "is not a safe place for the superpowers and it is in their interest not to enter this quicksand". Iraq Foreign Ministry spokesman said Iraq would never intentionally attack any target in the Gulf unless it was Iranian, and laid the blame on Iran.

Washington used the incident to turn up the heat on Iran, which later it blamed for the whole situation. President Reagan said "We’ve never considered them [Iraq's military] hostile at all", and "the villain in the piece is Iran".

Ironically, the Pentagon said that an Iranian helicopter had joined a Saudi Arabian vessel in rescue operations.[5] Adding to the irony, the Joint Chiefs of Staff investigation into the incident recommended that Iraq be held accountable, a finding the government of Iraq eventually complied with.

Captain Brindel was relieved of duty and retired for not defending his ship and Tactical Action Officer Lieutenant Basil E. Moncrief resigned. Back in the United States, President Ronald Reagan was criticized for putting American sailors in harm's way.

Aarrgh! Sir Paul, matey!


I'm seeing him in concert in Sept.

50 yrs ago today; "Are You Experienced" is released


Are You Experienced is the debut studio album by English-American rock band the Jimi Hendrix Experience. Released in 1967, the LP was an immediate critical and commercial success, and it is widely regarded as one of the greatest debuts in the history of rock music. The album features Jimi Hendrix's innovative approach to songwriting and electric guitar playing which soon established a new direction in psychedelic and hard rock music.

By mid-1966, Hendrix was struggling to earn a living playing the R&B circuit as a backing guitarist. After being referred to Chas Chandler, who was leaving the Animals and interested in managing and producing artists, Hendrix was signed to a management and production contract with Chandler and ex-Animals manager Michael Jeffery. Chandler brought Hendrix to London and began recruiting members for a band designed to showcase the guitarist's talents, the Jimi Hendrix Experience. In late October, after having been rejected by Decca Records, the Experience signed with Track, a new label formed by the Who's managers Kit Lambert and Chris Stamp.

Are You Experienced and its preceding singles were recorded over a five-month period from late October 1966 through early April 1967. The album was completed in sixteen recording sessions at three London locations, including De Lane Lea Studios, CBS, and Olympic. Released in the UK on May 12, 1967, Are You Experienced spent 33 weeks on the charts, peaking at number two. The album was issued in the US on August 23 by Reprise Records, where it reached number five on the Billboard 200, remaining on the chart for 106 weeks, 27 of those in the Top 40. The album also spent 70 weeks on the US Billboard R&B chart, where it peaked at #10. The US version contained some of Hendrix's best known songs, including the Experience's first three singles, which, though omitted from the British edition of the LP, were top ten hits in the UK: "Purple Haze", "Hey Joe", and "The Wind Cries Mary".

In 2005, Rolling Stone ranked Are You Experienced fifteenth on its list of the 500 Greatest Albums of All Time. They placed four songs from the album on their list of the 500 Greatest Songs of All Time: "Purple Haze" (17), "Foxy Lady" (153), "Hey Joe" (201), and "The Wind Cries Mary" (379). That same year, the record was one of 50 recordings chosen by the Library of Congress in recognition of its cultural significance to be added to the National Recording Registry. Writer and archivist Reuben Jackson of the Smithsonian Institution wrote: "it's still a landmark recording because it is of the rock, R&B, blues ... musical tradition. It altered the syntax of the music ... in a way I compare to James Joyce's Ulysses."

50 fucking years, and it still rocks!

Happy V-E Day!


Victory in Europe Day, generally known as V-E Day, VE Day or simply V Day, was the public holiday celebrated on 8 May 1945 to mark the formal acceptance by the Allies of World War II of Nazi Germany's unconditional surrender of its armed forces.[3] It thus marked the end of World War II in Europe.

The term VE Day existed as early as September 1944,[4] in anticipation of victory. On 30 April 1945, Adolf Hitler, the Nazi leader, committed suicide during the Battle of Berlin. Germany's surrender, therefore, was authorised by his successor, Reichspräsident Karl Dönitz. The administration headed by Dönitz was known as the Flensburg Government. The act of military surrender was signed on 7 May in Reims, France and on 8 May in Berlin, Germany.

The former Soviet Union and Eastern Bloc countries have historically celebrated the end of World War II on 9 May. However, the Baltic countries now commemorate VE day on 8 May.[5] In Ukraine from 2015, 8 May was designated as a day of Remembrance and Reconciliation, but it is not a public holiday.

80 years ago today: "Oh, the humanity!"


The Hindenburg disaster occurred on May 6, 1937, as the German passenger airship LZ 129 Hindenburg caught fire and was destroyed during its attempt to dock with its mooring mast at Naval Air Station Lakehurst in Manchester Township, New Jersey, United States. Of the 97 people on board (36 passengers and 61 crewmen), there were 35 fatalities (13 passengers and 22 crewmen). One worker on the ground was also killed, raising the final death toll to 36.

The disaster was the subject of spectacular newsreel coverage, photographs, and Herbert Morrison's recorded radio eyewitness reports from the landing field, which were broadcast the next day.[1] A variety of hypotheses have been put forward for both the cause of ignition and the initial fuel for the ensuing fire. The incident shattered public confidence in the giant, passenger-carrying rigid airship and marked the abrupt end of the airship era.


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