Friday, March 10, 2006

What is "The Quakers' Colonel?"

As an idea, this blog’s genesis springs from a narrative in an as yet unpublished book that describes how an Army draftee and Vietnam war resister and a career soldier and Vietnam veteran became colleagues 30 years after U.S. combat troops left South Vietnam.

Were a stranger to read that unpublished narrative, she might find a few unexpected turns in the “plot,” decisions or actions that propelled one or the other protagonist down one road rather than another. Since the narrative is about life – rather, about lives as they were lived in a particular time and particular place and based on personal and societal beliefs and assumptions – to be authentic it must not only describe the unexpected but also reveal wherever possible the psychology underlying the reaction to changes.

This publication is also a narrative, albeit much narrower than “life.” It chronicles and comments on selected military and military-related events – war, weapons, spending, strategy and tactics, UN and multinational peace operations, the UN structure, military industry, intelligence, veterans – briefings, congressional testimony, speeches, etc. Except when a guest writer is featured, the commentary in the first instance will most often be from the perspective of The Quakers’ Colonel, but readers are invited to add their own perspective as the spirit moves them.

There is one caveat we ask respondants to observe. While policy, programs, and practices are always fair game for commentary by supporters and opponents, we ask you to remember, when writing about any individual, that there is “that which is of God” in each of us.

New commentary will initially be posted three times per week – Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. As demand and use blossom, additional days will be added.

Join the discussion. Debate the issues. Tell your friends – and your adversaries – that Capitol Hill has a new resident at



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