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ospreyjp comments

Posted in: Japanese students more open to use of marijuana, survey suggests See in context

This is a pretty silly headline. After reading the story you find out that a whopping 1.9% of junior high students have a positive view of marijuana use - an increase of .4% from the last survey. In other words 98.1% think it is a bad idea down from 98.5%, hardly a dramatic shift at all. Click bait...

9 ( +10 / -1 )

Posted in: American man gets 8 years for killing, dismembering body of woman See in context

Does anyone know the circumstances around the killing itself? Auto-erotic asphyxiation or some other extenuating reason he got such a light sentence?

Otherwise, on the surface of it this is an insanely light sentence. Distribution or even possession of certain substances would get you more time this in Japan. Sheesh, the sentence this person got really does boggle the mind...

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Posted in: Afghan troops push into city of Kunduz; Taliban in retreat See in context

Kunduz is an area that is not generally sympathetic to the Taliban, rather it is the heartland of the Northern Alliance and the forces of Massoud. I am glad the ANA ran them out of there and doubt they'll be back in Kunduz. The eastern and southern provinces are where the Taliban will continue to press their advantage.

Most Afghans want stability and the ANA is vastly improved over what it was ten years ago. Let's hope they can stabilize their country.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Posted in: Toyota in damage control mode after American exec arrested See in context

Getting Oxycon sent to you in a package from Kentucky, a place known for Oxycontin aka "hillbilly heroin", is pretty dumb. At a minimum she is guilty of bad judgement and will be sacked...

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Posted in: U.S. news anchor Brian Williams recants on coming under fire in Iraq See in context

Williams visited the special forces base where I was as a civilian in Afghanistan in 2009 and filed an inaccurate report from our base. He had been sitting with some of the SF guys at a table after they came in from a mission and said during his report later that he had been seated with a group of SF fighters who were all "solemnly eating their meals reflecting on the losses that had occurred during their mission that day." The problem with this was that it had only been a routine mission, there had been no loss of life or even injuries, and everyone was in pretty good spirits telling jokes and generally enjoying their meal. When the report aired on AFN and the SF guys saw it they were pretty pissed at the made-up story. It looks like Brian Williams has a need to embellish at a minimum if not lie outright when it comes to his reporting...

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Posted in: 7 things all Japanese just gotta say See in context

The Japanophile/apologists are out in full force this morning finding righteous fault with every comment in a new article that is intended to be humorous. I think the author did a nice job of putting into words the kind of experience that almost all of us have over here. Sure the questions might vary a little and certainly the amount you are spoken to in English versus Japanese varies according whether you are living in Tokyo or Yamaguchi. I find funny the self-evident questions that I receive. Such as, "can you eat raw fish?" while I am sitting in front of 6 or 7 empty plates at the Keitenzushi and actively stuffing a piece of hamachi into my mouth. Ditto that question for chopsticks. Or the awkward or strange questions about whether or not you like Japan or if you like Japanese ladies. I mean what do they expect you to say, "well, actually I don't like Japan very much, but I had some student loans to pay off and this seemed like a pretty decent option" (for the record, I do like Japan:). Or, "as a matter of fact, I like Japanese women a lot" (then give lecherous smile). Lastly, the ever present "what is your hobby?" question is annoying in that you find yourself forced to give one thing that you are interested in above all others. Heck, a lot of us don't even have hobbies in the true sense of the word. I mean think of a "hobby shop" back home and what comes to mind? Model airplanes, remote controlled cars, macrame, painted figurines... That said, I like Japan and its quirkiness. Thankfully, once you get to know individuals here, they stop asking the silly repetitive questions and start having more genuine conversations. That is until they introduce you to one of their friends and the cycle repeats....

3 ( +12 / -9 )

Posted in: What are some of your candidates for the worst movie of all time? See in context

Almost every movie that Jerry Bruckheimer has ever made. You can almost feel IQ points dropping while watching them, so that by the time you leave the theater you are unable to remember how to do basic arithmetic. I really hate his bloated brand of Hollywood movie...

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Posted in: 8 youths arrested for stealing cigarettes See in context

Where's the weenie in this story? I thought to myself, "okay, I'll bite... there must be something more to this story than the headline leads on... I'll read it and find out". I think I am going to stop reading this supposed news site as it is now including random bits of nothingness. Come on, these are just some juvenile delinquents shop lifting. In a country the size of Japan, this is news? I know Japan is supposed to be so crime free and all, but give me a break. Check the police blotters again and find us something a bit more noteworthy than some teenagers shoplifting. See you Japan Today!!

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Posted in: Pakistan flood survivors protest slow aid See in context

ospreyip. The article doesn't say either way. How do you know they are not? My point is this. For a decade now we have been fighting in Afghanistan, and by proxy that means NWFP Pakistan. Much of that fight without much forward movement towards peace. Add to that the fact that our border bombings have cost considerable civilian lives, and given rise to even greater anti-western sentiment in the tribal regions and you have a serious problem. This flood is the greatest tragedy for the region in memory. As I wrote before, my contacts there are seeing this as the wrath of God for the situation in their region. What better opportunity to do some honest good, while helping to win the hearts and minds of the tribal region's people? This is in many ways the time for us to shine as friends to the people of the region and to help them find peace. That is why it is so critical that we deliver aid and help the people. Doing so may do more for peace in the region than another five years of armed conflict. We should act now out of compassion and out of a will to help turn this tragic event into something that can help forward peace in the region.

I have lived and worked with Afghans in Afghanistan for the past year. Many of my students either have lived or have relatives in the Peshawar region. I have spoken with them at length about the floods and have asked them what relief they have heard about coming from Islamic countries, the answer... none.

I think you are mistaken to think that the USA hasn't been doing a lot to help rebuild this country. The USA provides a lot of money and resources (human and capital) to both countries. I work with people who are helping build clinics and schools here in Afghanistan. I personally have been in charge of administering a significant budget to build and maintain a language school paid for by the DoD. The non-Taliban folks that I work with every day want the USA to be here until they have security. They are scared of what will happen if the USA and other NATO countries cut and run leaving them to face a dangerously violent situation.

Again, I assert, where are the Islamic countries and why are they not providing aid? I hope I can be proven wrong since the residents of NW Pakistan (heavily Pashtun like Afghanistan) need all the help they can get.

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Posted in: Historians rethink key Soviet role in Japan's defeat in WWII See in context

As mentioned, the Soviets were influenced to invade Japan sooner rather than later precisely because the USA used the bomb on Japan. The Soviet Union wanted to make sure they got what was promised to them at Potsdam and hoped they could get more like the rest of the Korean peninsula and Hokkaido. For this reason, the use of the Atomic bomb most certainly did speed the end of the war by showing Stalin that he needed to enter the war and crushing any deluded hopes the Japanese military powers still had of being able to hold onto mainland possessions.

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Posted in: Pakistan flood survivors protest slow aid See in context

Where are the Muslim countries with this? Why are we not seeing wealthy Gulf states like the UAE and Saudi Arabia stepping up to the plate to help. The United States is flying missions around the clock now using the Marines to deliver much needed aid. The rich Gulf states are quick to fund building a new Madrasa but not so fast to help save the poor from this catastrophe. Shame on those countries...

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Posted in: Army psychiatrist kills 12, wounds 31 in shooting rampage at Fort Hood in Texas See in context

I think you are right Joe Biggs and that would eliminate many if not most Christians from the military as well.

Yet another tragedy that we can attribute to the whole failure of the previous adminstation to properly execute the war in Afganistan because they diverted resources to a fake and failed war in Iraq. More collateral damage as you military types loved to say about Shock and Awe.

Jeez, can't some of you take a day off from figuring out ways to link anything that happens, no matter how disconnected, to bashing the USA. It's like some of you are trying to channel Oliver Stone. 12 of my fellow service members lost their lives this afternoon because a nut case killed them.

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Posted in: Army psychiatrist kills 12, wounds 31 in shooting rampage at Fort Hood in Texas See in context

This guy got a free ride from the military through undergrad and medical school to the tune of just under $500,000 and shows his appreciation by killing 12 of his fellow soldiers.

My heart goes out to the families who were already worried as their loved ones prepared to go downrange to serve their country in a war zone, only to be killed by this crackpot.

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Posted in: Army psychiatrist kills 12, wounds 31 in shooting rampage at Fort Hood in Texas See in context

Fox news is also now reporting it. It still is a rapidly developing story though, so you never know. I hope he is alive so they can get to the bottom of this. They'll know what to do with him at Leavenworth. They'll bring out Mcveigh's old gurney for him to get strapped into.

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Posted in: Army psychiatrist kills 12, wounds 31 in shooting rampage at Fort Hood in Texas See in context

Tune in to the news. He is alive and in stable condition.

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Posted in: Army psychiatrist kills 12, wounds 31 in shooting rampage at Fort Hood in Texas See in context

Some of the posts on this topic have been terribly insensitive. I am at a military installation right now just down the road from Ft. Hood and will be deploying to Afghanistan in just less than two weeks. I have friends at Ft. Hood and I hardly think that such a tragic event should invite a bunch of callous grandstanding. Politics aside many families are suffering by the actions of one individual who, incidentally, did not die according to the latest reports.

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