Archive for December, 2011

Where There is No Vision, the People Perish

Thursday, December 22nd, 2011

Five days after U.S. forces hastily withdrew from Iraq, fourteen bomb blasts in Baghdad killed 63 people and injured 185 others.  Foreign Secretary William Hague condemned the attack as “cowardly” but what did we really expect to happen?

When the U.S. forces left Germany shortly after WWII ended nothing of the sort happened.  Exactly, nothing of the sort happened because the forces did not leave.  In 2011, Germany is a stellar member of the peaceful, productive nations of this planet.  While that is mostly due to the Germans, as they are as civilized as any people on Earth, had the conquerors of 1945 followed the model set by the U.S. in Iraqi, I venture to speculate they would not be the same today.  It takes organization, determination, and time to convert a totalitarian-warlike nation into a free and contributing nation.  Maybe it wouldn’t have taken 70 years, but it needed more than seven.

During the force-fed rehabilitation of Germany, the U.S. forces kept the Soviet antagonists at bay with a constant threat of war.  That threat of war included not just armed soldiers at checkpoints but also the promised use of annihilating-force against any large muscle movements by the Soviets.  We called that the “Cold War” back then.

With the advent of the Cold War, two German states were formed in 1949: the western Federal Republic of Germany (FRG) and the eastern German Democratic Republic (GDR). The democratic FRG embedded itself in key Western economic and security organizations, the EC, which became the EU, and NATO, while the Communist GDR was on the front line of the Soviet-led Warsaw Pact. The decline of the USSR and the end of the Cold War allowed for German unification in 1990. Since then, Germany has expended considerable funds to bring Eastern productivity and wages up to Western standards. In January 1999, Germany and 10 other EU countries introduced a common European exchange currency, the euro. In January 2011, Germany assumed a non-permanent seat on the UN Security Council for the 2011-12 term–that’s a success story.

The Soviets couldn’t logically risk their total destruction so they postured campaigns all around the world hoping to exhaust the U.S. and then they could have their way with Germany and the rest of the world.  But that didn’t happen, the Soviets were exhausted by the American double-blessings of leading-edge technological developments and the greatest economy in history of mankind, which enabled the U.S. forces to be unbeatable.

This “War in Iraq” mess went differently.  The rehabilitation program was mostly designed by the patient, while the U.S. forces allowed Iranian antagonists to leak into the county to lead the locals bandits in organized violent actions.  The U.S. political machine went out of its way to soften any demands or threats against Iran, which appeared to encourage their schemes.  Today the American technological programs have mostly been hacked into by the Chinese and others, which have mostly encouraged opposition to the U.S. and the American economy has been disassembled by a legislative branch which hasn’t produced a budget for over 1000 days, while the Democrat Party leaders have plunged the national debt to a greater level than the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) for the first time since the American Revolution.  For political reasons, which escape strategic reasoning, the U.S. has abandoned maybe the last opportunity to establish and maintain a civilized stronghold in a totalitarian-aggressive region without having to resort to annihilating-force.

Ironically, many are blaming U.S. intervention in Iraq as the reason for the current situation.  As a reminder, in August 1990, Iraq seized Kuwait but was expelled by US-led, UN coalition forces during the Gulf War of January-February 1991. Following Kuwait’s liberation, the UN Security Council (UNSC) required Iraq to scrap all weapons of mass destruction and long-range missiles and to allow UN verification inspections. Continued Iraqi noncompliance with UNSC resolutions over a period of 12 years led to the US-led invasion of Iraq in March 2003 and the ouster of the Saddam Hussein regime.

The invasion of Iraq was the result of Saddam Hussein’s failure to comply with U.N. sanctions, which was magnified through the prism of 9-11 and the resultant Global War on Terrorism.  Today’s revisionists are quick to say, “Saddam Hussein did not bomb the World Trade Center on 9-11,” which is just as true as the equally interesting but not compelling declaration, “Adolf Hitler did not bomb Pearl Harbor on 7 Dec 1941.”

To do great things, even great nations need great leadership.  Great leadership at the national level is usually manifest in the leaders ability to communicate his vision to the people.  “Hope and change” was a bumper sticker which appears to have been used as a blindfold on the American people.

The 44th U.S. President outlawed the use of the previous administration’s somewhat nebulous term “Global War on Terrorism” opting instead for the completely ambiguous term  “Overseas Contingency Operations.”  The resultant failure of national leadership to educate the American people as to why we were at war since 9-11 has all but squandered the investment of lives and treasure, which should have been used as a lever to move world opinion and policy against aggression and to deter what may prove to be the most destructive war ever.

It just makes sense.

FREE – – – The Dragoneers – – – FREE

Tuesday, December 20th, 2011

But only for one day.

The kindle version of The Dragoneers–the new 5-star novel at Amazon.com can be obtained for free on 21 December.

If you go there before or after that … it won’t be free.

Additionally, free Kindle software is available for just about every platform–Mac, PC, iPad, and just about all smartphones. With it you can read all kindle books. There’s even a Kindle cloud version for reading the books. I say again, “The Dragoneers is available for free (a bargain even at twice that price) TOMORROW, 21 Dec.”

Just a click and it’s yours.

The Dragoneers now available in print.

Tuesday, December 20th, 2011

The printed version of The Dragoneers is now available on line here.

You can find a limited time discount code on the books facebook page here.

B-52 veterans will find some of the novel … familiar, so to speak.

The Dragoneers is available in kindle for 99 cents

Monday, December 19th, 2011

This 5-star novel is now priced less than a buck for the Amazon Kindle version.Publishers Weekly:

“This novel defies conventional classification: is it science fiction? biblical fiction? thriller? The story describes a world where flying two-headed dragons and ogres exist, characters with telepathic gifts communicate with both animals and people, a man named Noah builds an Ark in his backyard, and a six-fingered giant named Lilith wants to take over the world. While this collage may have been implausible in lesser hands, the author makes it work, artfully drawing readers into Sethopolis (the “center of the last human-dominated nation on Earth”) and constructing an adventure with attention-grabbing plot twists.

At the center of it all is 18-year old Susah, a feisty heroine with the ability to communicate telepathically. Sheltered by her father, Noah, from the evils of the world, Susah’s life takes an unexpected turn when her aunt and uncle are killed by a violent street gang. Mesmerized by the soldier who rescues her and the flying dragon under his control, she decides to join the Dragon Corps, defenders of the Eden zone, and become a dragoneer. Lilith, aware of Susah’s gifts, wants to have her killed. As Susah trains to become a skilled dragoneer, she embarks on a collision course with Lilith’s army of giants and ogres as they march toward the Eden zone for the ultimate battle between good and evil.

The author has crafted a compelling story…”

Get it now for 99 cents at Amazon Kindle

Will the World Change Following the Death of Kim Jong-Il?

Monday, December 19th, 2011

Kim Jong-Il is dead—his heart failed him.  The country he leaves behind is economically dead, its population is mostly starving, as what resources it didn’t use to support the lavish comfort of the now dead 69 year-old dictator was pumped into maintaining an offensive military and the development of nuclear weapons and delivery systems.  Most likely, Kim Jong-Il’s death won’t end hunger in North Korea, reduce the threat of war, or work towards reuniting the Korean peninsula. 

The area we now call North Korea and South Korean was an independent kingdom for much of its long history, Korea was occupied by Japan beginning in 1905 following the Russo-Japanese War. Five years later, Japan formally annexed the entire peninsula and ruled with a brutality, which characterized the Japanese Empire of that day.

Historians and a few others know that the Soviets declared war on Japan the day after the A-bomb was dropped on Hiroshima.  In a mad rush to claim territory before it could be liberated, Soviet-sponsored Communists, under the leadership of Kim Il Sung took control of the northern half of Korea.  After the US and the rest of the free world disarmed, the Communist North Korea invaded liberated South Korea but failed to conquer the UN and US-backed Republic of Korea (ROK). 

President Kim Il Sung, adopted a policy of ostensible diplomatic and economic “self-reliance” as a check against outside influence. They demonized the US as the ultimate threat to its social system through state-funded propaganda, and molded political, economic, and military policies around the core ideological objective of eventual unification of Korea under Pyongyang’s control.  In 1994, Kim Il Sung died and Kim Jong Il assumed the dictators position.

After decades of economic mismanagement and resource misallocation, North Korea relies heavily on international aid to feed its population. North Korea’s history of regional military provocations, proliferation of military-related items, long-range missile development, WMD programs including tests of nuclear devices in 2006 and 2009, and massive conventional armed forces are of major concern to the international community.

Kim Jong-un, the third son of the dead dictator, is the new “dear leader” and get this—he’s 20 years old.  How will he lead?  But come to think of it, a lot of things were said about Kim Jong-Il which made one wonder how a Hennessey-sipping, sashimi-carving, caviar-chomping, DVD-watching, golf-cheating, people-starving megalomaniac could run an entire country, even one with such limitations as North Korea.  But we know the answer, don’t we? 

Since Kim Il-Song heart failed him at 82 years of age, other people have been running the country.  Having a “dear leader” for the people to worship helped them keep the people motivated.  Following Kim-Il Song’s death, many people reportedly “committed suicide” which probably goes to explain the consolidation of power by the winners.  Those folks, with their logical replacements, will continue to pull the strings on their new puppet—Kim Il-un.

Therefore, not much of anything will change.

It just makes sense.

Would you believe a 15 second trailer? The Dragoneers Book One of The Chronicles of Susah

Wednesday, December 7th, 2011

A 19 Second, second trailer, for the novel.

Tuesday, December 6th, 2011

The Dragoneers: Book One of the Chronciles of Susah

Monday, December 5th, 2011

The Dragoneers

Thursday, December 1st, 2011

My first novel is finally published in Kindle. To avoid confusion, I adopted the pen name, C. D. Sutherland, which is just another way of saying me. 

 

Let me tell you a little about this first novel.

 

The Dragoneers is a coming of age story, a bildungsroman some literary critiques might say, about Susah, a talented young woman, who refuses to join her three brothers in helping her father advance the family business. She wants to do something exciting with her life. While this story could have been set in any time, the fantastical world she lives in amplifies each step nearly beyond the bounds of imagination.

 

Against her parents’ wishes, Susah leaves home on a quest to become one of the dragoneers—an elite fraternity of warriors sworn to defend the ancient garden of Eden against all trespassers. 

Meanwhile, deep in a lair inside of Sethopolis’ roughest neighborhood, an evil giantess dreams of seizing the secrets of immortality and other powers, which she believes are hidden within the walls of the forbidden garden. Realizing she can’t achieve her dream with her own resources, she joins forces with a fallen angel, nearly as old as time itself.  

 

Seemingly unaware of the dangers awaiting her, Susah faces the greatest of all challenges. With the fate of the human race depending on their performance, will the dragoneers succeed in defending the garden of Eden against the forces of evil? And even if they succeed, will Susah survive the pivotal battle of good verses evil? 

 

This adventure builds on the little we know about the antediluvian world and overlays it with a blend of technology, supernatural powers, fire-and-ice-breathing, flying dragons, giants, and martial arts to begin Susah’s adventure to discover herself. Climb aboard and hang on for the ride of your life. 

 

This 100,000 word, Genesis-based fantasy will attract those interested in speculative fiction about the antediluvian world and will  also appeal to readers of general fantasy as well as military fiction. 

 

Those folks who’ve flown the B-52 might see some things that feel familiar, just saying. Some body once told me, “write what you know.”

We don’t post here much lately, but I pray this day finds all of the Band of Brothers in good health and enjoying life.

The Chuck