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TracGunny
06-30-04, 07:01 PM
Wednesday, June 30, 2004
Story last updated at 5:45 p.m. on Wednesday, June 30, 2004

Organization focuses on positives in Iraq

By RON WORD
Associated Press Writer

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - Sgt. Chris Beard, severely injured by a bomb in Iraq, joined a retired National Guard general and Jacksonville's mayor Wednesday to mark the handover of power in Iraq by emphasizing "untold" improvements made in that war-torn country.

The three appeared on behalf of Iraq-America Freedom Alliance, which is a project of The Foundation for the Defense of Democracies. Former Republican vice presidential candidate Jack Kemp is chairman of the foundation, which lists among its directors former Republican presidential candidate Steve Forbes and Jeanne Kirkpatrick, former ambassador to the United Nations in the Reagan administration.

"We cannot afford to let the good news go untold," said retired Maj. General Ronald O. Harrison, retired adjutant general of the National Guard in Florida. "It's not all chaos. Iraq is not burning in all areas."

Since the fall of Saddam Hussein, Harrison said vast improvements have been made in Iraq. Those include the renovation of 3,300 Iraqi schools; the printing of 9 million new math and science textbooks; improvements to telephone and electric services; 600 new judges, and improvements to health care.

"Our men and women who are making the sacrifices on behalf of our nation are not focusing on the negatives and the obstacles as they interact daily with the citizens of Iraq," Harrison said. "Americans' helping hands are everywhere."

Harrison said he has no problem with negative reports of bomb blasts and soldiers being killed and wounded, which make up much of the nightly news shows.

"I just want to make sure we balance it," he said.

Beard, who was received shrapnel in his face, back and spine, when a roadside bomb exploded Nov. 30 next to his Humvee, said he wanted to extend his stay in Iraq before he was injured.

"From my experience, they were thankful for us being there," said Beard, a Florida Army National Guard soldier.

"There are bad apples who want to spoil it for everyone," Beard said about those who fighting U.S. efforts.

Mayor John Peyton pointed out the value of the military to the Jacksonville community and noted the approach of Independence Day.

"We are very proud of the work our troops are doing to free the Iraqis. As we approach July 4th to celebrate our own democracy and founding and freedom in this country at the same time we are handing off Iraq to their people so they free to accomplish democracy in their area," Peyton said.

The Iraq-America Freedom Alliance is a coalition of Americans and Iraqis committed to fostering good will between the two nations and winning the war on terror. While its parent organization is headed by conservatives, it lists both Republicans and Democrats on its board of advisers.

They including Donna Brazile, who was Democrat Al Gore's campaign manager, and Sen. Charles Schumer, a Democrat from New York, as well as Republican congressmen Eric Cantor of Virginia, and J.D. Hayworth of Arizona. Newt Gingrich, former Republican speaker of the House from Georgia, and R. James Woolsey, former director of the Central Intelligence Agency, are listed as distinguished advisers.

On the Net:
Iraq-America Freedom Alliance: http://www.untoldiraq.org
The Foundation for the Defense of Democracies: http://www.defenddemocracy.org

Copyright Associated Press.
http://www.jacksonville.com/tu-online/apnews/stories/063004/D83HG0B00.shtml

Sgted
06-30-04, 08:26 PM
Originally posted by TracGunny
Wednesday, June 30, 2004
Story last updated at 5:45 p.m. on Wednesday, June 30, 2004

Organization focuses on positives in Iraq

By RON WORD
Associated Press Writer

"We cannot afford to let the good news go untold," said retired Maj. General Ronald O. Harrison, retired adjutant general of the National Guard in Florida. "It's not all chaos. Iraq is not burning in all areas."

Since the fall of Saddam Hussein, Harrison said vast improvements have been made in Iraq. Those include the renovation of 3,300 Iraqi schools; the printing of 9 million new math and science textbooks; improvements to telephone and electric services; 600 new judges, and improvements to health care.

"Our men and women who are making the sacrifices on behalf of our nation are not focusing on the negatives and the obstacles as they interact daily with the citizens of Iraq," Harrison said. "Americans' helping hands are everywhere."

"From my experience, they were thankful for us being there," said Beard, a Florida Army National Guard soldier.

Mayor John Peyton pointed out the value of the military to the Jacksonville community and noted the approach of Independence Day.

Copyright Associated Press.
http://www.jacksonville.com/tu-online/apnews/stories/063004/D83HG0B00.shtml

HAPPY INDEPENDENCE DAY TO THE PEOPLE OF IRAQ.

THANK YOU AND GOD BLESS OUR MARINES (AND SOLDIERS) OF FREEDOM AND FORTUNE.

THIS IS WHAT AMERICA, AMERICANS AND DEMOCRACY IS ALL ABOUT.

MAKES ME PROUD.

TracGunny
06-30-04, 10:01 PM
thnks Sgted...