Sunday, January 20, 2008

Back in the USSR

Something happened a couple of days ago that seemed to receive little coverage from local media…though of course, since my only media sources are the Snooze Minus, and a few minutes here and there of KUAC when I am on the road, I could easily have missed coverage. But for a fact, it wasn’t picked up by the FDNM.

Apparently two or three days ago, the army used the City of Fairbanks in a military game of hide and seek, putting up a dozen Kiowa helicopters to find and track military personnel in vans and other vehicles driving around town. A number of city residents complained to Ft. Wainwright about the noise – and to ask just what was going on – since the base did not find it necessary to inform the public of the planned training exercises.

And just why was the Army using the streets of Fairbanks as its very own training ground, when it has millions of acres around here for specifically that purpose? Well, because, as the Army spokeswoman stated, soldiers need to practice urban warfare in preparation for their deployment to Iraq.

Wow. Not that I am a conspiracy theory nut or anything, but that is one lame-ass excuse. It seems to me that just a scant few years back, soldiers were practicing urban warfare elsewhere on sprawling military complexes (which is exactly why they have so much real estate) and NOT using American cities as their training fields. And in the good ol’ days – i.e. before the premillennial, bible-inerrancy, rapture-happy fascists neocons took over our government – I wouldn’t have thought twice about this little news nugget, and would have taken it at face value. To wit, a really obnoxious noise nuisance caused by a bunch of copters engaged in a maneuver hatched by some bone-headed base commander.

But nowadays, with the Bill of Rights in shreds, Real ID about to launch, and a government that is barely bothering to hide its fascist bent, this stuff is unsettling. What better way to instigate a military police state with checkpoints and overhead and on-the-ground surveillance of citizenry than to slowly begin with seemingly innocuous training exercises under the patriotic guise of preparing to go to war against the unholy Infidel in Iraq and Afghanistan (and soon, other points Middle East)?

Kudos to the Fairbanksan, who, when interviewed by a local KUAC reporter, did voice concerns about what was to come next – first the Kiowas, he said, but what’s next, Strykers patrolling the downtown streets?

But that question wasn’t answered by the Ft. Wainwright spokeswoman, nor did she give any indication that this was a one-time deal. Her only proffer was that next time, the base might notify the public of the training.

Come on, people, where’s the outrage? Where’s the concern?


Coldfoot said...


That was quite a fiery, blazing rant.

On the whole, I'm more outraged that it is still against the law to randomly shoot cats.

Deirdre Helfferich said...

Yet another sage, worthwhile nugget of wisdom from coldfoot...

So back to the subject at hand: add to this the building of the immigrant detention center (er, housing barracks?) on Fort Wainwright, the request for bid for some 10,000 body bags last year (appeared in the FDNM's classified section, har har), the mightily expanded powers of the executive beyond all original intent, well, it does look a tad suspicious. Rather strongly, creepily suspicious.

Coldfoot said...


Immigrant detention center?

Meanwhile, back on Earth... you mean to tell me you think cats need more rights than a fetus?

Ishmael said...

I'm not sure... is this Cold Foot kidding? Just in case: there's no random shooting of fetuses. Just so you know. Because it sounds like you might not. Maybe get back on the meds. There ya go... easy now...

In other news: The friggin' Army National Guard (not the local armory only) took over three city streets in Kenai without asking the city's permission a few years ago. They were supposed to be doing an exercise on some vacant land on airport property, but branched out without asking OR informing the city it was doing so. The city manager had to dispatch half the police force to close off the roads and redirect traffic. During the same exercise those Kiowas (kinda hot you know what they're called) were following citizens' cars up and down the road to Nikiski, flying at bluff-top level over the beach. Let me tell you, it wasn't just the rightwingnut black helicopter crowd who were freaked out by all this.

subarctic mama said...

Damn! I heard all that noise and then missed the news about what it was. You're informing me now. I'm glad we're moving to the westside soon. Outrage seconded.