The Home of Steven Barnes
Author, Teacher, Screenwriter

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Thoughts on Iraq and the 3rd Crusade

1)     Apparently, Mike Hagee, commandant of the U.S. Marine Corps set to retire, has spoken publicly that he repeatedly asked superiors about the exit plan for Iraq.  What was going to happen after we won?  NO ONE ever got back to him.  Those who want to know my attitude about this particular debacle need only combine this with Richard Clark’s thoughts in “Against All Enemies”—that in his impression, the administration wanted to go into Iraq even before 9/11.

Why?  I’d bet some combination of motivations, some patriotic, some practical, and some venal.  My guess is that when all of the Halliburton info is added up, Dick Cheney will have personally enriched himself fantastically.  Deferred salary and stock options, I’d figure, plus “gentleman’s agreement” bonuses after he leaves office.  Does that mean he thought the Iraq adventure would be bad for America?  I doubt it.  I think they thought they’d find WMDs, that Americans love their oil enough to ignore how it is secured, that we’d be greeted as liberators, that what was, (in that grand phrase from Li’l Abner) “What’s good for General Bullmoose is good for the U.S.A.)  And by the way, as Dave Chappell would say, “He’s Rich, Beyotch!”

Ah well…
I’m currently experimenting with Coach Sonnon’s “4x7” program, which “waves” intensity of workouts quite effectively, going from mild to medium to intense, followed by a day of recovery.  The cycle is repeated seven times, followed by four days of rest, and then the cycle begins again.  I’m adding an additional level of variance: every other day is Yoga day.  Sundays are taken off, regardless of the level of intensity I’m SUPPOSED to have that day.  I kinda figure that if working out six days a week won’t cut it, it’s too tough to cut.  Plus, (as Steve Perry constantly reminds me) overtraining is a very real problem among us junior geezers.
The reviews for CASINO ROYALE are in, and they soar.  I just can’t wait! 
It looks as if I’m going to be writing three books set during the 3rd Crusade, around 1185-1195.  This is a challenge, as it’s not an era of history I’ve studied.  The process of research I’m using is to immerse myself in the “little golden book of Crusading” level history to get an overview, and then dive into specifics about the Templars, the Hashassin, Saladin, Richard the Lionheart, etc.  This one is going to be an intense haul…but quite worth while.  More as the research and work continue.

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