Thursday, September 25, 2014
A mother is being hailed a hero for saving her baby's life by placing the six-month-old in a toilet bowl, despite the fact she was dying from a gunshot wound herself.
Jessica Arrendale was holding little Cobie as she hid in the bathroom while drunken and abusive partner Antoine Davis was on a violent rampage.
The former US marine broke down the bathroom door and shot Ms Arrendale dead. Rather than falling straight to the ground, the 33-year-old mother managed to fall towards the toilet and place the baby in the bowl before collapsing on top of her.
It is believed this saved the little girl's life as Davis was unable to find her.
When police arrived at the home they found Davis had shot himself dead in Cobie's bedroom, where it is believed he went to look for the little girl.
Cobie was found in the toilet alive, but suffering from hypothermia.
"He shot her and [the police] don't know how she was able to twist her body and fall literally in the opposite direction," Ms Arrendale's mother Teresa Ionniello told local station WSB Radio. "She had pure will. She wanted that baby to live."
Shockingly, the murder-suicide in the Atlanta suburb of Smyrna was also witnessed by Davis' two older daughters, aged 9 and 10, from a previous relationship.
The older girls' mother, Tamara Chesley, said one daughter told her that her father had stared at her for a "very long time" before she asked him, "Daddy, what are you doing?"
Davis then went upstairs with a gun and the daughter heard Ms Arrendale screaming and then a gunshot.
Police were called to the family's home in the early hours of Sunday September 14 responding to reports that someone was armed with a gun.
Ms Ionniello said Davis had been "belligerently drunk and abusive" on the weekend of the murder.
Ms Arrendale picked up a baseball bat to defend herself but he overpowered her and struck her with the bat, Ms Ionniello said.
Ms Arrendale then barricaded herself in the bathroom with baby Cobie as Davis went to get his assault rifle from the wardrobe.
When police arrived at the scene they evacuated nearby homes and tried to make contact with Davis. After those attempts were unsuccessful, officers forced their way into the house and found the carnage.
It is thought Cobie may have been hit with the baseball bat while her father was attacking her mother, as she also had a head injury when she was found in the toilet.
Davis had served as a marine in Iraq and was reportedly involved in a custody battle with Ms Arrendale over Cobie.
A family friend Leslie Tidwell has set up a GoFundMe page for Cobie and Ms Arrendale's 15-year-old daughter, who was not at the home at the time of the shootings.
On the page Ms Tidwell wrote: "An amazing mother, daughter, sister and friend was taken way too soon. Jessica was one of the most beautiful people I have ever met. This fund has been set up for the two children that she has left behind."
Cobie is still being treated at hospital and there are plans for Ms Arrendale's mother to take custody of the baby.
Young Black Conservative Speaks Out
By Markeece Young
Why am I a young Black Conservative Republican? All my life I have always been different. I wasn’t easy to persuade and didn’t think the same as others. People say I am an old soul. I grew up in a violent drug ridden neighborhood where it was easy to get caught up in a drug or gang culture. My mom moved us to a better safer community.
I have always been interested in history and political matters, but growing up I idolized Democrats like North Carolina native John Edwards and former President Bill Clinton. I was a strong Democrat supporter as a kid, but as I grew up I started to question the Democrat Party and why Blacks were so loyal to them. I found out that the Democrat Party was pro-slavery, pro-segregation and pro-abortion. That the Democrat Party sterilized Blacks so they wouldn’t have more children. As a child I asked why would anyone support the Democrat Party? I asked my elders they had no answers!
By the 7th grade it all changed and I read every single presidential book in the library, about 65, and I said to myself my morals and beliefs fit more with the Republican Party. During the 2008 presidential election, I knew Barack Obama was a fraud so I supported Senator John McCain (R-AZ). I was called “White” just for questioning Obama’s qualifications. In 2010, I finally became a Republican my freshman year in high school. I wasn’t really involved in any politics but on November 2, 2010 – election day and my 15th birthday – I heard about the Tea Party winners. I had always had an interest in colonial and Constitutional issues so when I saw the Tea Party patriots beating the drums, marching in the streets for liberty and freedom, I knew the Tea Party and the Republican Party was for me!
I did not get involved until 2012 and decided to come out as a black conservative and didn’t care what people said. I was a top volunteer in North Carolina at the age of 16, which was the only swing state Mitt Romney won. Today, I fight so hard to get other blacks to be independent and to think for themselves. I do a lot of youth minority engagement and broke through to lifelong Democrats which is why I believe God gave me a gift to change minds and touch hearts. This is my calling.
Don't blame my Army for the lack of black officers in combat commands
The writer is a retired soldier who wore the uniform for over 34 years
It is a well-known fact that the Army has struggled for decades trying to get more black officers to reach the highest ranks of the Army and especially the combat arms. This should be a surprise to no one.
But don't go blaming the Army for the inability to solve this issue. This is a multi-faceted problem and one which must be solved involving all aspects of American society: Army, academia, family, and community leadership.
In trying to resolve this issue the Army has gone through excruciating efforts to recruit more black officers into the combat arms. The Army has not failed, but has not made much progress. Previously, while I was in a position to observe the branch assignments of one of the Army's largest commissioning sources, it was apparent to me that there was little interest from the majority of minority men in going into the combat arms. In particular, black me were significantly underrepresented in the infantry, armor and field artillery branches. Correspondingly, the ADA, signal and logistics branches were overrepresented. As for explanations, none could be found.
In a previous life I was in a position to observe the intake of initial-entry soldiers into the Army. It became apparent rapidly that minorities of all types and black soldiers, in particular, were underrepresented in combat arms. We instituted an analysis of why and obtained no cogent results. Often we asked members of high-school academia how we could get more black men to enlist for the combat arms. They had no answer. We asked them why they thought young black men were not coming into the combat arms and their best guess, and only a guess, was that the community was sending them to where they could best obtain a skill transferrable to civilian life. Being a member of rifle squad, an M1 tank gunner, or a gunner on an M198 crew did not transfer well to civilian life, according to them.
The Military Leadership Diversity Commission (MLDC) (circa 2009-2011) was tasked to examine this issue. You would have thought that this commission, made up mostly of active and retired black flag officers, other minorities, and women, would have taken it on. They seemed much more concerned with the issue of how to make more women four-star flag officers. They addressed the issue, scrutinized it, but admitted they had no solution. They also acknowledged that despite a higher attrition rate on black junior officers in the Army, there was no institutional bias that could account for the higher attrition. The MLDC actually just left this issue hanging like a chad in an election and continued to pursue their main purpose; finding a way to make more women senior flag officers.
Now, if you think the Army is the only service with this issue, think again. The Marine Corps has a similar issue with its combat arms, and the Air Force and Navy have the same difficulty, but within their own organizational structure.
But the issue of a lack of black senior leaders is probably greatest in the U.S. Special Forces. It is rare to see a black NCO or officer in the U.S. Army's Ranger Regiment. It is rarer to see them in the U.S. Army Special Forces. I can only remember one black senior officer in U.S. Army Special Forces at colonel or higher. There may have been more, but it is doubtful there have been many. I can't speak to the SEAL community with any real credibility, but I would be willing to bet they have at least as great a void of black representation as do the Army's Special Forces, and I would bet this is a similar area of concern for AFSOC and MARSOC.
As for solutions, I doubt there are many, if any, or the Army would have solved this 40 years ago. For sure, forced appointment to the combat arms of black junior officers will only be counterproductive. Such an action will probably result in dissatisfied officers who will either attrite themselves by going into another branch, the Acquisition Corps, or leave the Army -- or even worse, be forced to leave the Army. Being a professional and good combat arms leader is a choosing and a calling, not a result of a draft.
Over the years I have observed that the opportunity for black officers who obtain the rank of colonel in the combat arms to make general officer is significantly higher than that of their peers. So, maybe the approach to be made by the Army should be: If you want to be a field marshal, go into the combat arms. However, it is doubtful that approach will be productive in terms of increased unit effectiveness or combat readiness.
My take on this is that the Army is just going to have to endure with whatever happens. It is highly doubtful anything can be done to produce more black or other minority officers in combat arms. And guess what? The same issue, but probably on a greater scale, is going to occur with women, should the decision be made to go that direction.
I am sure he knows why but cannot safely say it: Cowardice
The Battle Over Israel’s ‘Etzion Bloc’
While the Middle East burns and tens of thousands of corpses pile up in Syria and Iraq, Jewish residence anywhere beyond the 1949 armistice lines –– in eastern Jerusalem, the West Bank, transfixes the attention of foreign governments. Just recall the Obama Administration saying nothing when, in March 2010, the Palestinian Authority (PA) named a public square in Ramallah in honor of blood-soaked terrorist Dalal Mughrabi –– but condemned Israel for announcing a program of building Jewish homes in eastern Jerusalem the day before.
Now, Israel has designated 988 acres in the Etzion bloc south of Jerusalem as state land, leading the Obama Administration to condemn this “settlement announcement” as “counterproductive to … a negotiated two-state solution with the Palestinians.”
Meanwhile, Obama’s “blocking back,” the faux “pro-Israel, pro-peace” J Street organization, has gone still further, urging President Obama in the pages of the Los Angeles Times to start calling Jewish communities beyond the 1949 armistice lines “illegal.”
There is some relevant history here. In 2011, President Obama vetoed a UN Security Council resolution making this false declaration –– although that was only after he unsuccessfully attempted have the U.N. Security Council baselessly call them “illegitimate.”
Clearly, J Street is trying to push the President in a direction he’d like to go but can’t, due to legal and factual hurdles that would cost him politically to straddle, but which J Street would like to ameliorate.
Factually and legally unsound, J Street’s agitprop on this issue is simply designed to isolate and increase pressure on Israel, not defend the cause of peace that is actually unthreatened by this Israeli administrative action.
The Etzion bloc was home to substantial Jewish communities even before Israel was created. It’s widely accepted that it would be incorporated into Israel in any feasible peace treaty, should one emerge one day.
Even an anti-Israel partisan like former President Jimmy Carter has publicly stated regarding the Jewish communities in the Etzion bloc that this “area is not one I ever envision being abandoned or changed over into Palestinian territory.’
So why the furor? It’s not as if the designation changes the land’s pre-existing status. Since the days of the British Palestine Mandate, the land in question has always been classed as public land. Its designation as ‘state land’ merely reaffirms this, following exhaustive investigation to ascertain that such a designation was not in conflict with any private property rights.
The Obama Administration and J Street object to any process that would seem to remove any obstacle to Jews living in or building homes in these disputed territories. That is because both subscribe to the canard that Jewish residence there is –– or ought to be –– illegal.
The basis of this canard is Article 49 of the Fourth Geneva Convention, which prohibits
“Individual or mass forcible transfers, as well as deportations of protected persons from occupied territory to the territory of the Occupying Power or to that of any other country, occupied or not … The Occupying Power shall not deport or transfer parts of its own civilian population into the territory it occupies.”
Formulated in the aftermath of the Second World War to prohibit Nazi-like mass deportations and forced population transfers, Article 49 clearly holds no relevance: Palestinians are not being deported or forcibly transferred to another territory; Jews are not being deported or transferred from Israel to these Jewish communities; they are moving there freely of their own will.
Peace is presently impossible due to continuing Palestinian refusal to accept the permanence and legitimacy of the Jewish state of Israel and the terrorism, aggression and incitement to hatred and murder against Jews and Israel that flows from this –– not due to Israel duly designating state lands.
Whether one favors or disfavors Jews living in the territories, no one should falsify the law in order to indict Israel as an international violator.
Last week, Israel announced the construction of thousands of apartments in eastern Jerusalem’s Arab neighborhoods. If building apartments is a crime, it remains so when done for Arabs no less than Jews. Is this a logic the Obama Administration wishes to embrace? So far it seems to be saying that it is a crime for Jews, and Jews only, to move in or build homes in these areas –– a discriminatory and absurd argument.
The Congress should explicitly repudiate this logic and the canard of illegality that underlies it, a canard, moreover, which is fueling anti-Israel and anti-Semitic agitation worldwide. A damaging lie cannot be finessed; it must be exposed and repudiated.
Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.
American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of other countries. The only real difference, however, is how much power they have. In America, their power is limited by democracy. To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges. They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did: None. So look to the colleges to see what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way. It would be a dictatorship.
For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and DISSECTING LEFTISM. My Home Pages are here or here or here. Email me (John Ray) here.