All Black’s Haka
I have posted previously on the All Blacks and their dreaded Haka; in fact the last post on the subject had a pic of them doing the Haka all outfitted with handbags. In the interests of sportsmanship I feel I should also post on the following ‘Press Release’ from the IRB even though deep down I think it’s just a case of the Kiwis taking the mickey out of us.
There are no prizes for guessing this was sent to me by a KIWI mate but considering where the Bleddisloe Cup currently resides I can’t really say too much…..just gotta cop it on the chin.
International Rugby Board (IRB) Rugby World Cup 2007
Following complaints to the IRB about the All Blacks being allowed to motivate themselves by performing the ‘Haka’ before their games, other nations were asked to suggest pre-match rituals of their own. The IRB Rugby World Cup 2007 Organizing Committee has now agreed to the following pre-match displays:
1) The England team will chat about the weather, wave hankies in the air and attach bells to their ankles before moaning about how they invented the game and gave it to the world, but no one appreciates them.
2) The Scotland team will chant “You lookin’ at me Jimmy?” before each of them smash a bottle of beer over their opponents’ heads.
3) The Ireland team will split into two, with the Southern half performing a Riverdance, while the Northerners march the Traditional route from their dressing room to the pitch, via their opponents dressing room.
4) Unfortunately the Committee was unable to accept the Welsh proposal to form a choir and sing Tom Jones’ “It’s Not Unusual”.
5) Argentina will unexpectedly invade a small part of opposition territory, claim it as their own “Las In-Goals-Areas” and have to be forcibly removed by the match stewards.
6) Two members of the South African team will claim to be more important than the other 13 whom they will imprison between the posts. These two will then go about selecting the best parts of the pitch to settle on and claim that they have been there for centuries.
7) The Americans will not attend until almost full time. In future years they will amend the records to show that they were in fact the most important team in the tournament and Hollywood will make a blockbuster fi lm called ‘Saving Flanker Ryan’.
8) Five of the Canadian team will sing La Marseillaise and hold the rest of the team to ransom.
9) The Italian team will arrive in Armani gear, sexually harass the female offi cials and then prepare pasta dishes, which they will flog to the crowd for a fortune.
10) The Japanese will shock fans buy demonstrating how to capture a whale for scientifi c research buy harpooning an opposition prop.
11) The French won’t have a pre-match display and will simply hide in fear in the dressing room for the whole match.
12) The Australians will have a BBQ on their side of the fi eld and invite the opposition over before the game. The food and alcohol will be in abundance and by the start of the game no-one will remember what they came to the stadium for. After some streaking, the singing of dirty songs and the occasional chunder everyone will go home thoroughly convinced it was a bloody good night.
13) The Moroccan team will quietly pray during the fi rst half and then launch suicide attacks against the opposition after the break. Unfortunately, this strategy works well for the first game only, after which Morocco is forced to withdraw from the Rugby World Cup due to lack of players.
14) Samoa will prepare a huge feast in the middle of the pitch by digging a large hole and fi lling it with burning embers. They invite the opposition over by saying, “We’d like to have you for dinner”. It’s only when the opposition get to the pit that they realize there is no meat and that they are the dinner!
Hopefully, with these policies now in place, further problems is this area of the game should cease to exists.
THE INTERNATIONAL RUGBY BOARD
Huguenot House 35-38 St Stephen’s Green Dublin 2 Ireland
Tel: 00 353 1 240 9200 • FAX: 00 353 1 240 9201
Oh my God…Hezbollah tells fibs
Freehold land rights thrown out
On Monday, the Douglas Shire Council passed a planning scheme to prevent people who bought freehold blocks in the Daintree 20 years ago from developing the land, bringing to an end two years of political wrangling over the rainforest’s future.So much for freehold title. Less than 20 years ago the Daintree was a hippy colony and any talk of roads or any other development was shouted down. Roads brought civilization…civilization brought police….police frowned on and locked up drug users. In 1982 I did a recce of the area looking for sufficient room to conduct an infantry exercise for 1RAR. We stopped in at the Cooktown Police station and introduced ourselves to the local Sergeant. He had just taken over the area and when we announced our intention to look at the Daintree his eyes opened wide. He was too scared to go down there as he had it on good intelligence that the drug runners were armed with M16 A2s and wisely he figured his .38 S&W pistol wasn’t up to the job. He fantasised about a battalion of infantry with associated M16s, GPMG M60s, SLRs, rocket launchers and the likes adding some balance to the equation but we had to disappoint him. We explained we were career officers and slaughtering civilians, even if they were drug runners and maybe deserved such summary justice, would be a poor career move. He knew this of course but it does reflect the aura of the Daintree. These days thousands of civilians cross the Daintree river every year and ooh and ah at the local rainforests but I wouldn’t be surprised that if they stopped and lived there for awhile they would smell the undercurrent of alternative people. The issue is not a small one and could tip the scales against the government. We are talking about a 100 blocks spread over a huge area currently controlled by local mayor Mike Berrick who my Cairns contact tells me is the quintessential greenie; a watermelon, red on the inside and green on the outside and typically anti-development. The freehold land owners have a case for compensation and the Premier has agreed to land valuation plus 10% and well he should as the valuation they are using is based on the value of the land without development rights. The land was brought freehold and should be valued as such – with development rights. Unfair but that’s what happens when you have a labour government. To keep the factions quite the greenies need to be appeased and thrown regular swill to keep them onside and so the people suffer financially. Still in the north residents of Charters Towers are under siege from flying foxes, and hope an election will finally prompt action from the politicians in Brisbane. Good luck guys. Residents have invited Premier Peter Beattie and Environment Minister Desley Boyle to stay in their houses overnight so they can hear the screeching of up to 20,000 black and red flying foxes themselves.
“(The noise goes on) all day and all night . . . the minister has said the bats sleep during the day,” said Kaye Jackson at 10am yesterday as she shouted to be heard above hundreds of flying foxes. She said: “We can’t have a barbecue, we can’t sell our house, we can’t do anything.”It is illegal to kill them and harassing the flying foxes with loud noise is only allowed from 5am to 7am and after 5pm. Yep, another Greenie places bats above humans in the feed chain. I’d harrass the foxes with a loud noise being the detonation of the percussion cap and propellant of a 12 bore. The answer? We are looking into a chemical deterrant.
But a spokesman for Ms Boyle said the Environmental Protection Agency was researching whether a chemical deterrent could move the bats away without killing them.Flying foxes have been a problem in towns for hundreds of years and the EPA is looking at answers now! What the spokesman really meant was we don’t think we will loose votes over this issue so I’ll say just throw a platitude their way to settle down the rednecks and the problem will be buried. As I said Good luck the Towers. You may be outnumbered almost three to one by the bats but Greenies don’t count people.
Vietnam Veteran’s Day washup
It’s now Sunday and I’ve recovered sufficiently to feel confident enough to write in complete sentences.
I spent the day with Percy Meredith, a digger in Recce Pl 7RAR with me in Vietnam. The previous evening I found a photo of Percy and printed it out for him. As he showed everyone he met I felt the need to apologise for having had a mere child in my platoon. Did I really tell this ‘child’ to do things of a dangerous nature? The short answer is yes and he certainly soldiered at a level well above his juvenile appearance. In fact he was as good as any and a very good forward scout.
We gathered, talked and marched through Brisbane. At the end of the march there was a comemmorative service at the Vietnam Veteran’s memorial in ANZAC Square with Adrian D’Hage, MC being given top billing. I have posted on D’Hage previously and wondered what the Vietnam Vets organization were thinking when they invited him to the event.
He didn’t disappoint delivering a peace message within the body of his speach. One would think that Adrian D’Hage of all people would realize the peace we enjoy is directly attributable to the fact that our young men and woman have gone to war when called.
Brigadier d’Hage said the lesson of Long Tan was to show the futility of war and the need for tolerance and acceptance of different cultures and faiths.
I beg to differ, old chap. The lesson of Long Tan was the courage of the participants with the ‘futility of war’ being a very moot point. If we accept futility as ‘uselessness as a consequence of having no practical result‘ I would suggest most wars do have a practical result with the demise of Hitler and Tojo being a good example.
Brigadier d’Hage said Long Tan was also a lesson for more recent conflicts.
“Young men and women are once again paying with their lives in Iraq, in Afghanistan and more recently in Lebanon.”
Negotiation should be the first resource, with war only as a last resort, Brigadier d’Hage said.
Brigadier Adrian D’Hage is himself a lesson in futility espousing words and ideals as the only ammunition against terroists prepared to blow up themsleves and their children in the pursuit of a new world order that doesn’t include infidels. There is no point negotaiting as a first resource with a group who detonate as a first resource.
Jesus Adrian, come back to the world.
There were mobs of KIWIs breasting the bar and as always they are treated as just another digger albeit with funny accents. Considering the NZ impact on the Battle of Long Tan one would imagine that the NZ press would be all over the celebrations of the 40th anniversary but when I linked to the NZ Herald the only mention I could find of Long Tan solicited a subscription to actually read the link.
I later went to Gallipoli Barracks at Enoggera to view the Drum Head parade [scroll down to para 5] and the concert. Organizers had found Adrain Cronauer, the original ‘Gooooooooooooood Mornnnnnnnnnnnnnnnning Vietnammmmmmmmmmmmmmm’ DJ and he didn’t disappoint. Neither did grey haired Col Joye and the Joy Boys nor Rhonda Burchmore who sang well albeit with her quality voice and interpretation overshadowed by her long legs appearing to represent a full two thirds of her body length. I stood along side Minister for Veterans Affairs Bruce Billson and his delightfull wife Kate, sharing the musical memories of the era with them and know that they both have a sympathetic approach to Vietnam Veterans.
We stayed late and reminisced until common sense bid me call my daughter Jennifer with a coded message along the lines of Dad…Enoggera…fetch!
Vietnam, Long Tan and all that
Mr Edwards, who lost his legs to a mine in Vietnam, maintains the men who did the real fighting on the day have not been properly recognised, and it was officers who were miles away from the fighting who unfairly won the top citations.I know Graham well as we served in the same company in Vietnam and I know him to be committed to helping veterans when ever he can. It may come as a surpise to the unitiated but under the old Imperial system bravery medals were rationed in war in the same way that food, water and beer were rationed. If you had the bad luck to be involved in a major battle towards the end of the ration period then, simply put, there were no bravery medals left in the Staff Officers drawer at AHQ, Canberra. As well as soldiering under this anomoly regulations denied soldiers being awarded foreign decorations unless HM Queen Elizabeth herself gave approval as detailed by Bob Buick, Platoon Sergeant 11 Platoon, Delta Company 6RAR in his book “All Guts and no Glory”
On 2 September 1966 a parade was assembled near the Task Force headquarters[Nui Dat] because the Vietnamese Government intended to award honours and decorations for the battle at Long Tan. I think there was a total of 22 decorations – including a posthumous award to a member of the APC Troop who came to our rescue. The whole day turned into a fiasco and I’m ashamed to say AUstralians primarily caused it. The Commander of the Vietnamese Armed Forces and Chief of State, General Nguyen Van Thieu, effectively the Vice President, was told by the Australian government late on the previous night that he could not award Vietnamese decorations to Australians.This lead to the surreal circumstances where the General’s aids had to go to the local markets and buy gifts to replace the medals.
So, instead of military decorations and awards befitting warriors, the officers received laquered wooden cigar cases, sergeants were given similar cigarette cases and the corporals and privates received the dolls [Vietnamese dolls in national dress].When I was posted out of SASR I was replaced by Bill ‘Yank’ Akell. Then a Captain, he had been a private signaller in 1966 and was with D Company Headquarters [CHQ] at the battle. Radio operators had difficulty being heard over the maelstrom and at one stage 10 Platoon lost their radio when Private Brian Hornung was shot through the chest [and presumably through the radio as well]
Although wounded he walked back to CHQ and Bill ‘Yank’ Akell raced to 10 platoon with a new radio. ‘Yank’ was the second company signaller in CHQ and as he dashed forward to 10 Platoon through a maelstrom of enemy bullets he killed a couple of Viet Cong with his 9 mm Owen machine carbine. He received the Mention in Dispatches [MID] award for his actions.The MID was the lowest of all bravery awards and could also be awarded for just doing your job well. Clerks got MIDs for keeping their records straight so no way have I ever accepted that ‘Yank’s’ actions only warranted a MID. From the Australian editorial on 5 Aug; [scroll down]
A combination of incompetence, jealousy and the Imperial medal system led to many Long Tan veterans having their medal-worthy performance downgraded to mere mentions in dispatches. Even the commander of Delta Company, Harry Smith, saw his recommendation for a Distinguished Service Order knocked down to a Military Cross. Adding insult to injury, soon after the fight Canberra blocked an attempt by the South Vietnam government to honour the Australian troops who fought in the battle with bravery citations.My old mate Graham is right. A review is called for. Some readers may opine that us Vietnam Veterans do go on but after other wars the militay held a end-of war medal review. 20 years after Vietnam the government were embarrassed into holding a similar review for Vietnam and then every success was a long and arduous fight. My father came home from his war a hero and welcomed by all of society. I came home and was asked by an attractive young woman how many babies had I killed. Graham tells how a woman, a member of the church his mother attended, told her she hoped he died of his wounds. A male phoned up parents of one of 7RAR’s dead within days of his demise and told them he deserved to die. This morning’s news relates that ten percent of Vietnam Veterans have committed suicide and we wonder why…..and people wonder why I hate the left wing. I went to the Welcome Home march in Sydney in 1987 to see my mates, not to be welcomed home. Two years ago I wrote a tribute to a mate I lost in Vietnam headed A Letter to Ray. You might like to read it and feel the depth of our compassion. I have also written a piece headed ‘My first patrol’ No heroics, no medals, just a couple of days in the life of an infantryman. I’m taking the day off. I’ll get dressed up and go find some Infantry mates. We’ll go ANZAC Square in Brisbane and remember our absent friends and then maybe go off to a pub somewhere. No, not maybe…I will go to a pub and toast our mates and spit on the communist sympathisers. Stuff ’em. I know I did the right thing.
Just going camping, your honour
Mr Hammoud tells her he is going to the mountains for two days. When his wife asks what exactly they are doing, he says: “Uh, go do a bit of, you know, terrorist training.” She replies: “Don’t be stupid. What are you going to do there?” Mr Hammoud says: “Go camping . . . kick back, read a bit of the Koran.”Go camping….kick back…read a bit of the Koran! It should be go camping….kick back…have a couple of drinks with your mates…do a bit of fishing/hunting…sit around the campfire telling exagerated stories of sexual conquests…..play a game of touch…..have a couple more drinks and buy some fish on the way home to prove it was all serious stuff. Shoue Hammoud, 26, made the comment, described by defence lawyers as an inappropriate joke, during a conversation recorded on October 8, 2004. Maybe it is a joke and they meant to have good time but I suspect they were sitting around the campfire plotting to kill us infidels. Maybe that’s a ‘good time’ to them but my way is more fun.