As the needle bends

A world view thru my hobbit hole door

Are Damascus and Tehran stirring the Israeli-Lebanon pot?

According to reports from World Net Daily’s Jerusalem bureau, the Katyusha rockets that were lobbed across Israel’s northern border with Lebanon were “carried out by ’agents’ working on behalf of Syria and Iran, Lebanon’s Druze leader Walid Jumblatt said in an interview .” Reportedly more accurate than the normal Katyusha attacks, these rockets penetrated further into Israeli territory, and an Israeli news reporter speculated “that the accuracy of the attack on the IAF base of the notoriously inaccurate Katyushas could be due to a new satellite-controlled guidance system,” in a Sunday article in the Jerusalem Post. The J-Post article went on:

The clashes followed a surprise launching of at least six Katyusha rockets before dawn at an IAF air traffic control base on Mount Meron. These were the first rockets to hit so deep inside Israel – some 10 kilometers from the border. At least three of the 122mm rockets reportedly fell in a residential area of the base and damaged a building. One soldier was lightly wounded and treated for shock.

In a Monday update to the article,

The IDF Northern Command was maintaining a high level of alert on Monday after the security establishment expressed concern that Hizbullah would renew its rocket attacks on Israel’s northern border. Commander of the Galilee Division Brig.-Gen. Gal Hirsch said Monday that the Katyusha attacks on the northern cities had been planned far in advance – and were not a reaction to the assassination of the Islamic Jihad leader in Sidon last week, Army Radio reported.

Hizbullah leader Sheikh Hassan Nasrallah threatened retaliation for the Israeli airstrikes which followed.

“I can confirm that the north of occupied Palestine is within the range of our missiles,” threatened Nasrallah.
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May 29, 2006 Posted by | Life and Ramblings | 3 Comments

On Memorial Day, 2006

When it comes to Memorial Day, I am often at a loss for words to express my deep feelings of gratitude, of love, and appreciation for those who have given their all to protect freedom, even the freedoms of those who don’t understand it or value it.

On this Memorial Day, I offer this:

"A Soldier’s Prayer"
(Larry Walker, Tommy Oliver)

One hot desert morning at dawn’s early light
While trudging through the sand
I found a piece of paper
Clutched in a young man’s hand

And upon that paper the words he wrote
Were not filled with despair
Just thoughts from the heart of a brave young lad
He called it, “A Soldier’s Prayer”

I took the paper from his hand and read it aloud…

Will there be a place in heaven
For a person such as me
Who, through youth and the love for life
Isn’t all you’d have me be?

I’ve been a man but a short time now
And I’ll ask you this, if I might
Isn’t fighting for freedom’s cause
A fight that’s always right?

The men I’ve killed, some things I’ve done
Are not things I’ve wanted to do
But a job I believe had to be done
By we who believe in you

I had those thoughts upon my mind
When I heard that deadly sound
Then, all around me, one by one
My friends fell to the ground

Somehow I knew before it hit
Fear ran up my spine
I felt the blast tearing my side
I knew this one was mine

There’ll be much grief for loved ones at home
when they learn that I am dead
Please ease their pain and let them know
These things that I have said

Time’s run out, I can feel death’s sting
Oh, God, please hear my plea
Let there be a place in heaven
For a person such as me

Lord, this is the chaplain, I’m here with this lad
Our country’s given the finest it had
We who are older and have studied your word
Know this boy’s prayer is more than just heard

It is answered with your love
And the promise that there’ll be
A special place in heaven
For a person such as he.

As The Needle Bends

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May 29, 2006 Posted by | Life and Ramblings | Leave a comment

In all things God works for the good of those who love Him

When I heard Ken Lay’s statement after being convicted on all counts on Thursday, May 25, I thought at least he wasn’t beating his chest, crying "poor, pitiful me." Since then I’ve heard, read, and seen some discussion that possibly,he misunderstands the scripture from which his statement came:

"Despite what happened today, I’m still a very blessed man. And, most of all, I believe God, in fact, is in control and that, indeed, God works all things good for all who love the Lord."

So, instead of cluttering up someone else’s blog with my opinion about this, I decided that I’d just write about it here.

I’ll admit that I thought Mr Lay sounded a bit like a pompous windbag when I heard his statement, but I do remember thinking that it was good that his feet were so well grounded because he’s going to need that faith where he’s going. Some of my blog-buddies at LoneStarTimes were discussing it today, and got me thinking about what that particular scripture means to me. Then I read what JimB posted on his blog about the statement and the scripture, and I just had to share write this, whether anyone else ever reads this or not.

1995 was a really less than spectacular year for me. My mother passed away from cancer on April 30. On May 31, I was told that my husband needed a heart transplant. On June 30, I got to practice my CPR on him – and it didn’t work. Enough about that. That’s the setting, not the story.

While I was working through all that I had to work through, both with Mama’s death and estate (not to mention 30 years of our family’s STUFF that had been crammed into every nook and cranny of "our" house) and with my husband’s death, I spent a lot of time with Mama’s baby sister. Aunt Lora was always a rock in my childhood,kind of a second mother, and when I was an adult crying because I wanted my Mama, she was there again. We walked and talked. We worked and talked. We discussed a lot of really silly things and some really deep things, and I don’t think I’ll ever forget her voice when she said, "Susie, don’t you ever forget that God will not put more on your plate than you can handle. But He does like to push the envelope a little some times – I think He knows that it makes us stronger, when we come out the other side."

And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose. Romans 8:28

Which is followed closely by Romans 8:35-39

35 Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? 36 As it is written, For thy sake we are killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter. 37 Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us. 38 For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, 39 Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Aunt Lora would say that means that God can take a sow’s ear and make a silk purse out of it, and it won’t ever be a sow’s ear again, no matter how muddy it gets. I think she’d say God never made a black cloud that doesn’t have a silver lining, and that God lets us choose our own path because the journey to Him, and with Him, mean so much more when you’ve seen the other choices. I can’t ask Aunt Lora, because we lost her last fall to Alzheimer’s. But I can still hear her voice, and I can still hear those scriptures – they were read at her funereal. And I’ve never thought that they mean that God will keep anything bad from happening to me, just because I love God, as I think some of my blog-buddies seem to believe is Mr Lay’s thought. I've always been taught that as long as you really love God, no matter how bad it seems to get, nothing will happen that you can’t handle. That no matter how bad things seem at the moment, someday I'll understand why I had to endure the bad. That was my mantra for the year after Mama and Jim’s deaths, and sure enough, I made it through,with many special memories of a journey that I wasn’t sure I’d survive. And I’m stronger for the trip.

I can’t pretend to know what is in Ken Lay’s heart, but perhaps the part of this scripture that he didn’t include in his statement describes his view of the possibilities that his future seem to hold for him, and that he believes that nothing that lies ahead of him, that he and God together can’t handle.

As The Needle Bends

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May 26, 2006 Posted by | Life and Ramblings | 6 Comments

When terror attacks come to our schools…

After reading about the school bus incident in Tampa last week, my husband and I were discussing what many fear is an inevitability in this country: that the attacks we read about or see on television will come to our nation, to our state, to our town. The same types of attacks that we have seen in Beslan, in Israel, in Madrid, and London will eventually occur here. The only questions are when, & where, and, I suppose, what? In my morning trek through my favorites, I found this article on The Northeast Intelligence Network’s website – Special Reports : Are plans in place if schools attacked? Written by Lt. Col. Joseph C. Myers in late 2004, and reposted with a tagline reading “With the recent probing events at U.S. schools, it needs to be republished and spread in the public venue.”  In light of the recent events, I would agree.

The article whole article is well worth a read, and is posed from the point of view of a rural sheriff, and I was shocked awake to read this portion:

Its now 8:47 a.m., and you receive a call from the city police, who relay that they just got a hysterical 911 call from the school. “People with guns are in the school!”

What you don’t know is that this scenario is also simultaneously playing out in rural schools in Oregon, Colorado, Kentucky and Maine.

What do you do?

For the other question that we discussed that morning, in addition to when, where, and what, was indeed – how many places at one time would the bad guys hit.

As The Needle Bends

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May 23, 2006 Posted by | Life and Ramblings | 3 Comments

Saudis Board Tampa School Bus – mistake or dry run?

I just read a report on WorldNetDaily, confirmed with a check at Tampa Bay Online about an occurrence this past Friday, where 2 Saudi men evidently waited at the corner with a bunch of school kids and then got on the school bus with them when it came. The substitute driver phoned ahead to the school, and the bus was met by Hillborough County sheriff’s deputies, who arrested the guys:

“We’re not sure if this was a situation of them just being new to this country, or if they were confused or what it was,” Callaway said. “We were unsure as to exactly what the final reason was, but it did cause great concern for the students on the bus and for us. One of the guys was wearing shorts with a black trench coat.”

The best part of the news about this decidedly strange event is this:

A judge revoked bail for two Saudi men arrested Friday for boarding a school bus and riding to Wharton High.

Initially, Mana Saleh Almanajam, 23, and Shaker Mohsen Alsidran, 20, were held in Orient Road Jail on bails of $250 each on misdemeanor trespassing charges. Circuit Judge Monica Sierra decided to hold them at a court appearance Saturday so investigators could dig deeper into their pasts….

At the hearing, Sierra agreed with a prosecutor that she needed to know more about them before she could feel comfortable releasing them.

The prosecutor said neither man carried identification when they were arrested at Wharton High School, and authorities haven’t had an opportunity to gather background information beyond a check of state records.

Thankfully, this didn’t happen in Houston – they would probably have been given the keys to the city already.

As The Needle Bends

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May 21, 2006 Posted by | Life and Ramblings | 1 Comment