Michael's Dispatches

Brian Williams to the Troops


22 December 2009
Kandahar, Afghanistan

Brian Williams from NBC emailed to me something for the troops.  Brian is a Great American.

I was in Afghanistan about two months ago, and as usual the best part of the trip were the Americans in uniform who we met along the way.  I think about all of you every day.  I tell my civilian friends about you, and about what I've seen.  They all know that you are the people I admire most.  We toasted all of those deployed overseas at our Thanksgiving table, and we will on Christmas Day and on New Year's Eve.  I appreciate your service, and we appreciate our freedom.

We owe you all a staggering debt.

For now, Happy Holidays and the blessings of the season to you all.


Brian Williams


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  • This commment is unpublished.
    Carl · 10 years ago
    We thank all of you and wish the best for you during these dangerous times. If not for you, we would not have the freedoms we hold true today. God bless you and keep up the good fight. We will keep you in our hearts and minds everyday until you all return home. We are praying that will be in the not to distant future.
    God bless.
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    David M · 10 years ago
    The Thunder Run has linked to this post in the blog post From the Front: 12/22/2009 News and Personal dispatches from the front and the home front.

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    Steve B. · 10 years ago
    My friend Brian Williams is a lot of things, but "Great American" isn't one of them. Brian and his friends at NBC have undermined our effort in Iraq and Afghanistan every day since the invasion of Iraq. Forget Brian Williams! Sending "Holiday" wishes to YOU for the troops does not make a "Great American".

    god bless our troops,
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    Possum · 10 years ago
    I agree with Steve B. How can someone who consistantly tears down our country be a "great American"?
    God bless and protect my brothers in arms .
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    Ellie · 10 years ago
    Brian Williams and NBC do not impress me for sending Christmas messages to our Troops.
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    Chris H · 10 years ago
    I love reading Michael Yon's work.
    Brian Williams has been a constant supporter of those who did everything they could to insure our defeat in Iraq. In the same way that I don't believe his version of the news, I sincerely doubt he's telling ANY of his liberal friends about our troops. The people he admires most are the Obamas; he's been fawning over them since the Iowa primary.
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    JerseyDave · 10 years ago
    ...for a different reason though. I object to his 'everyman' persona. He's perptually tan, with perfectly tailored suits. Not to mention, he literally speaks out of the side of his mouth. He is the least authentic anchor out there.
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    inspectorudy · 10 years ago
    Where was Mr. Williams during GWB's war in Iraq? That's right knocking it every night and declaring it unwinable. Now that he has learned how to bow, like Obowma, he can make grandiose statements about "Our" troops in harms way. F**k him and all of his liberal friends.
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    Steve R · 10 years ago
    Williams is a great American because he's a great reporter and the free press is a vital part of our democracy, even when you don't like what they have to say and even when their reporting is one dimensional. That even goes for the bozos on the cable TV news who are basically talking heads doing PR pieces for the state/party.

    The sort of "with us or against us" thinking that you guys are displaying has a perfect place in some countries where people are a lot less free than the US.
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    Ski Goggles · 10 years ago
    Sentimentality is unearned emotion. When you start to toast their efforts on your air, I'll believe you.
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    buddy larsen · 10 years ago
    Steve R, i can't believe you wrote both those paragraphs. which one did you mean for us to read?

    Brian Williams was on tne Letterman show right after the election, mocking the founding fathers as part of an overall "good riddance to THAT America" snark-a-thon. He mocked them as "...the geniuses with the hair" --to Letterman's overdone horse laffin'.
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    xixi · 10 years ago
    Agree with Steve B.

    Brian Williams is just another overpaid talking head who puts down America and American values. He has no clue about the blood, sweat and tears of an American G.I.
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    dphorstick · 10 years ago
    Brian Williams is such a weenie he has to sit down to pee. Merry Christmas to our troops in the middle east and around the world.
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    arlo · 10 years ago
    Steve R.

    "With us or against us" is pretty much what it's about. You know who you can depend on. Call me an asshat one day, and then a hero the next... Guess which one I remember.
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    T. Shaw · 10 years ago
    Brian Williams can shove all his toasts and happy holidayses up where the sun don't shine.

    My son is over there and every day the MSNBC and NBC scum make it worse for us all.

    A paragraph of freaking lies don't do it B-boy.

    Try saying prayers (like we do every day our sons over there) and Merry Christmasses.
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    orpheus · 10 years ago
    brian williams is a phoney
    and nbc can go f... itself
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    Charlie Gibson · 10 years ago
    Who is this Brian Williams you speak of?
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    buddy larsen · 10 years ago
    I second Orpheus (and salute his compression & economy).

    BTW, BriWi the professional wordsmitty could use a grammar lesson: 'part' and 'were' should agree but don't (quick fix, add 's' to 'part'), and "I think about all of you every day" is needlessly confusing, apparently addressed to an individual about whom BriWi every day thinks about from head to toe.
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    Jeran Blackburn RN, · 10 years ago
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    Rich C · 10 years ago
    I have zero use for libs/aka socialists.
    Williams is part & parcel of the leftists who did all they could to undermine and defund the war when GW was CIC.
    My son was in country [Iraq] when this game was being played & I shall never forgive the Party of Obama for their disregard for our troops.

    So, Williams can shove it.
  • This commment is unpublished.
    buddy larsen · 10 years ago
    Jeran Blackburn is trying to make sure the door is open for the briWi types to come to their senses and put all that 2004-2008 stuff down the mmory hole,. forgive and forget, move on, quit dwelling in the past if that is keeping you from moving forward, we need to stop this bitterness or we're doomed, all of that and more. And i agree with Jeran blackburn, and with blood on the line in country, Blackburn has without a doubt thought it all through.

    But the BriWi types need to do more than go chameleon as per what's good for Obama at the moment. Why? Because the bullshit they pulled against GWB killed and hurt our soldiers. How do I know? Well for one thing it's plain common sense. For another, I've read general Giap, and fully savvy that the people our guys are fighting well knew up to the election of 2008 that the BriWis were deliberately trying to induce a reprise of the Vietnam syndrome and blame it all on GWB and his party, and thus get their own people (those 44 watermelon czars) into office. Fine, one can agree with their policies, but outside of one's perhaps monomaniacal focus on domestic politics exclusively, there's still that darn world, it has some people in who want to kill us, and how on God's earth can ANYONE forget that the BriWi's are the very thing that keeps them thinking they can win if they will juuuust keep attacking juuuust a little while longer?

    So long/short, the quetion is, IS giving aid and comfort to an enemy that was evidently scared and possibly ready to quit until the Kerry campaign coldly decided to ''go antiwar'' (as a campaign tactic in order to differentiate itself from the incumbent and up his chances of winning an election), an enemy that will TELL you he watched and listened to our BriWis and decided to cooperate with the BriWis and ALSO try to ''do Vietnam'', IS that a forgiveable and/or forgettable offense?

    Jeran Blackburn may well be right to suggest that American smoke its own peace pipe with itself, but imho the BriWis are gonna have to acknowledge what they did, have done twice now, Vietnam as well as their mighty effort to lose the war in Iraq (and does anyone doubt would be doing a third time right now in Afghanistan had John McCain won the election?).

    They need to somehow find a way to do politics without actively subverting their own country and its miltary. Of course, the justice of the war is important, but every soul smarter than a broccoili realizes how the cow eats the corn on those wars, and that all that 'USA aggressor' crap is just the current brand of rule-or-ruin leftwing-idiot politics, which when it wins soon has to try to sell such BS as Kerry saying only a year or two ago that the post-USA SE Asian bloodbath never happened (search and see it), and that USA's motive as world cop trying to keep the global system operating in the face of deadly enemies trying to collapse that system, is somehow more evil than not doing so and letting the species slide back into hunter-gatherer at worst and master-slave at best.

    Hillel's Prayer is good to remember.
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    John in KC · 10 years ago
    ...or perhaps not. I think I will interpret Mr. Yon's comments as being less than impressed with the Thanksgiving toasts and generic [holiday TBD] wishes. Perhaps I am not in the proper charitable mood during this "holiday" season.

    Merry Christmas and may God bless and protect our troops and nation throughout the New Year.
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    James F · 10 years ago
    To you Michael and our Brothers and Sisters in Arms, God Bless you and Keep you and Merry Christmas. I and my family pray for our military when give thanks for the bleesings of freedom, shelter, and food on the table. As for Steve R. its time to wake up brother. There's a war going on here at home too. The Progressives are the enemy. Not since the communist has such a sleezy evil metastisized through the body of this wonderful country.
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    YNSN · 10 years ago
    I'm in AFG right now. I am doing the d*mn thing! You can say what you want. But, All a person has to do, is thank me for what I am doing and I will take them at that. No need to call a person out when they say something nice to you.
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    buddy larsen · 10 years ago
    YNSN, forgive me but --isn't that what all confidence men always do? Say something nice to whomever it is they want to trust 'em? I hate to be a cynic, but i gotta go with established pattern and long-term track record at least for awhile, to wait and see how long the new BriWi lasts, before i can feel as large-hearted as you do. Maybe he is permanently off the 04-08 horse, but --well, like the man said, trust but verify.
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    Richard Bradley Bond · 10 years ago
    Hello, sir,
    Are these people your friends? Does the military over there think these people are their friends? Somebody said something nice, that's all it was. It has nothing to do with whether you approve of the person. It's the message that matters. There's not a word wrong with what he said. They could pretend *they* said it and then they could admire it for *who said it.* I just admire it openly for what it is. Those are good words. Pure American.
    Thank you very much. Please take great care.
  • This commment is unpublished.
    buddy larsen · 10 years ago
    Mr. Bonds, then Michael Yon's headline could be "A person emailed me a message for the troops" and he (Yon) could print the message just as he did, but never mention the writer except as "a person" --and that would transmit the same information to you as it does as is, as attributed to the NBC heavyweight?
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    covan · 10 years ago
    "watermelon czars"? Larson is a racist, pure and simple. I am a Vietnam vet. We had the same idiotic thinking at the senior levels in Iraq. McNamara/Rumsfeld thought we could replace boots with technology. GINOs, (Generals in name only) pandered to by mid-level staff pukes getting their one year ticket punch on their resume, never understood the dynamics. Body count as a metric? Give me a break. Can't bomb Hanoi, or Kep, or Haiphong....stupid, stuplid policy.

    Today, we have the best trained, best equipped, best led troops in the history of the world yet that is not enough to win a vaguely defined war with vague objectives. A war of necessity that has evolved to a war of choice. Who knows what "winning" means. Winning could have been the killing or capture of Bin Laden and other AQ leadership but that victory was squandered in an ill-conceived war in Iraq which tilted the balance of power in the region toward Iran. Whatever gains we made in Iraq are fading with corruption and ancient tribal animosities. Sound familiar?
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    Bob Hamilton · 10 years ago
    I would much more have liked Brian Williams to read this on camera during one of his telecasts. It's great that he is thankful though.
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    buddy larsen · 10 years ago
    I'm sorry, covan --i bet that did sit wrong with you --no it never even occured to me the old code meaning of that word --i meant it as i see it used nowadays --as the radical ''greens'' who are ''red'' on the inside. State control, one party dominance, climate taxation, gov't healthcare, all that. I did not even think of that old jim crow smear. I'm sorry to've offended you. i'll be aware of the dual meanings from now on. i'm not a racist --if i were i'd have been more careful with that description. i just wish we still had a functioning mass media rather than a mass media that is functionally a wing of one of our two political parties.
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    Connecticut Mom · 10 years ago
    Covan, you are absolutely right regarding squandering our troops in Iraq, when the real war should have been continued in Afghanistan, not diverted to Iraq. As crazy as Saddam Hussein was, Iraq was at least functioning as a somewhat westernized society, and was also a natural buffer to keep Iran at bay. Now Iran is a real threat to the area.

    Thanks for your enlightening and hard-earned point of view.

    I hope you and every American soldier finds peace this Christmas and is home with loved ones soon.
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    covan · 10 years ago
    Nationbuilding should start at home. I see no future in this war.

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    buddy larsen · 10 years ago
    We've all forgotten a lot of things --9/11 for one, how it rocked the world and the USA, how a second similar attack would've promised a third, how quickly that would've morphed into "unstoppable catastrophes in our cities from now on until forever", and what the reaction to that perception would've been. As is 9/11 came perilously close to wrecking our economy --we're still weakened by it, and jumpy, and fearful that we're vulnerable. We could not let a second 9/11 happen --at least not right away. The prospect of a 911 every 10 or 20 years is a whole lot different than the prospect of one every year or two.

    I hate to refer to financial systems but if we don't have a reasonable amount of confidence in our ability to defend our own sovereign territory, a lot of integral parts of our system will decay pretty rapidly. This isn't speculation, we've already seen it happening to some degree. Societies don't --can't --prosper without confidence in the future.

    A couple of pretty comprehensive articles worth refreshing on:


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    covan · 10 years ago
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    buddy larsen · 10 years ago
    i think that instead of the elaborate and easily debunked conspiracy implied in that wiki article, if the Bush admin had intended to deceive it could've found a few agents to plant something vile somewhere in the desert --and then find it --for all the world to see.

    That they did not do so is far more telling than the multiplex political opponents asserting that ''I'm pretty sure Cheney (or whomever) was lying.''
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    Benjamin Meyers · 10 years ago
    I echo Charlie Gibson,"Who is this Brian Williams?"! Williams is part of the strong and destructive media, but for the United States of America, gutless and weak minded person!The ocean is huge and mighty, like America, but it also contains a small amount of filth that surfaces in the form of foam.... some call it scum. Our typical media is like the ocean's foam! And almost all media in our country, has its own echos,.... that of treason, treachery and self-serving hypocrisy. "Great American" titles belong to those that serve, have served and those that support our just causes. Perfect? We are not! Good? We strive to be!

    My heart and prayers support our warriors! Psalm 31 is perfect!!!!! Servicemen and women...thank you for your gift to me and mine.
    2nd Amtracs'60 to '64
  • This commment is unpublished.
    Matt · 10 years ago
    Brian Williams is trash.

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