Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Blast from the past -- into the present

Some days are more interesting than others, and yesterday was definitely one of the more interesting ones.

I talk from time to time with Mike Burnaugh, a fraternity brother from UCLA days, and see him when we visit my brother-in-law in the Atlanta area. He called last week to double-check on my address so he could send me a CD of a chorus he's in singing the Mozart Requiem -- one of the works I have never sung but would like to, so I was mildly jealous. Anyway, we got to talking about other old friends and he mentioned that Lee Gunn was one of the few people he had known who had done just what he wanted to do. He always wanted to be a Naval officer, so he enlisted right after college and had recently retired, Mike told me, as a two-star Admiral.

My curiosity aroused, I Googled him and discovered he is still quite active, in the DC area, as a board member of several organizations (American Security Project) and as president of the Institute for Public Research at a non-profit called CNA, which mostly does work for the military. The other thing I discovered was that he is one of the retired military people actively campaigning against the use of torture.What a gratifying thing to discover! (Of course I also found a blog referring to such folks as an example of the "wussification" of the military. Hmmmpph! Meet me in a dark alley.)

So I decided to call him and yesterday we had a brief (he had a meeting, of course) but very pleasant conversation. He told me there were about 45 former generals and flag officers going around to college campuses and other places emphasizing the importance to the country and the military of abdandoning the use of torture or anything like it, under the aegis of Human Rights First, of which he spoke most highly. Those who have actually served and held military responsibility (Lee was in charge of the fleet evacuating Americans from Somalia after the Black Hawk Down incident) seem to understand this much better than the neocon sofa samurai whose idea of reality seems to be formed by "24."

Lee was in the Oval Office when Barack Obama signed the executive order de-authorizing the use of torture and setting a timetable to close Guantanamo. He said it's vital to close the prison camp there, although it will be complicated in part because opening it was improvised and most of the obvious candidates have already been released. I'll probably use him as a source on such issues.

Anyway, it's nice to know somebody you liked and admired as a rather young man turned out to have such success and to be thinking soundly now.


Anonymous said...

cool guys! counter the latest for free [url=]casino[/url] games like roulette and slots !authenticate loose the all fashionable appurtenance [url=]online casino[/url] games at the all trendy, the most trusted [url=]online casinos[/url] on the entanglement! high-class our [url=]free casino software download[/url] and delight in money.
you can also control other [url=]online casinos bonus[/url] . check out this new [url=]online casino[/url].

Anonymous said...

well guys! after the latest freeing [url=]casino[/url] games like roulette and slots !report register outlet the all mod loosen [url=]online casino[/url] games at the all flash, the most trusted [url=]online casinos[/url] on the final! high-class our [url=]free casino software download[/url] and advance in money.
you can also discontinuation other [url=]online casinos bonus[/url] . check out this new [url=]online casino[/url].

Anonymous said...

The first factor that you have to contemplate, when shopping for baby clothing is the security of your baby. There are just so many options! The Old Navy version on the left comes in both army green (shown) and khaki. ugg boots They must know how to write and how to edit, and should be there to edit until print. north face backpacks The high school aged students are still running with the dark colored gothic look or the dark and torn-up grunge look. "Finding the balance between this and college was easy for me because I enjoy having heaps of tasks.

Anonymous said...

Elena was one of those, and I am sorry that she was eliminated. north face However some shirts can lead to a sticky problem. ugg boots The income ceiling was set at $200,000.. ugg If you are tired of the superficial look of bling, this season classic looks will be a breath of fresh air. ghd Kierland Commons is a nice place to go for couples looking to waste a little time shopping before grabbing dinner or catching a movie..

Anonymous said...

It is possible to cut many created diamonds in the same way as a real diamonds; as well as treat them to get various colors with green, brown, white, yellow and blue being popular, to name a few.. north face coats Hat boxes, cosmetics cases, weekend bag and box-type bag, retro full range of children and suitable for day-to-day with Louis Vuitton Sunglasses. ghd sale They can be excellent for trying to keep personalized issues at the same time, generating them the very best accessory.. One of the prominent landmarks of Pune, camp was once known as the hangout for rich and the famous. ghd uk Asli Flinta makes scarves with appliqués that offer the same effect..

Anonymous said...

Here are couple of beautiful maxi dresses, perfect for summer we found at. ghd australia (Mr Monts requested privacy prior to cryopreservation, but said his arrangements were public afterward.) Apparently Mr Monts traveled from his home in North Carolina for dental work in his previous neighborhood in South Carolina. north face backpacks I currently have an inventory of fall/winter dresses in a variety of sizes, styles and prints, available to try via private appointments and/or group events. They wanted the look and feel of the pix to be more of a snap, a quick look at the brand, which was often not really overt in the picture.. Founded in September 2011 by Zabetta Camilleri and Emilio Sanz, SalesGossip aims to solve a pain-point for fashion retailers both offline and online which is the difficulty they have with promoting and shifting discount stock and consumers' lack of knowledge of when and where sales are taking place.