- By Tom Squitieri Red Snow News WASHINGTON — Civilian loath them and the military loves them for the same reasons : cluster bombs are incredibly deadly and efficient. And now the U.S is poised to provide cluster munitions to Ukraine — even though, according to some, that could be in violation of U.S law. TheyRead more
Caissons Stop Rolling, As Army Scrambles To Reverse, Improve Conditions That Put Arlington Horses In JeopardyBy Tom Squitieri Red Snow News WASHINGTON — One week after the Army privately touted its steps to improve the conditions for horses working at Arlington cemetery, it decided to shut down the Army’s Caisson platoon, the ceremonial horse unit that is the centerpiece of the service to carry the bodies of fallen troops forRead more
- By Tom Squitieri Red Snow News WASHINGTON — The Pentagon is upping its flow of land mine capability to Ukraine, looking the other way to the questionable use of land mines by both Ukraine and Russia in the current conflict. Cold War style anti-tank ladies are included in the latest military assistance package, $325 million,Read more
- By Tom Squitieri Red Snow News TALLINN, Estonia — There is no mystery to Estonians as to what Russian President Vladimir Putin’s plan is to win in Ukraine nor what he plans to do next, in the Baltics, as he waits out a battle of attrition that they say is in his favor. They knowRead more
- By Tom Squitieri Red Snow News BRUSSELS – In 1914, as troops invading France moved through this very region, those in charge of the defense of Paris scrambled to rush men and material to blunt that offensive. They had little time to react and threw everything they could find — including taxicabs — to getRead more
- By Tom Squitieri Red Snow News BRUSSELS: In the days before World War One, Germany’s ambassador to Belgium, Clause von Below-Saleske, said he was happy to be in this capital city after stints in danger zones because “Nothing ever happens in Brussels.” The Ukrainians here to meet with friends and NATO nations fervently hope thatRead more
- By Tom Squitieri Red Snow News WASHINGTON -Three active duty Marines have been charged with participating in the riot at the U.S. Capitol, authorities said in newly filed court papers. All three Marines, who were arrested more than two years after the attack, work in jobs connected to the intelligence community. Micah Coomer, Joshua Abate,Read more
- By Tom Squitieri Red Snow News WASHINGTON – The big meeting of the Ukraine Contact Group was held and for hours the participants heard Ukraine plea’s for tanks and other higher grade weapons, such as log-ranger missed and ground-launched Small Diameter Bombs. Defense Sectary Austin urged all to dig deeper. But the only thing thatRead more
- By Tom Squitieri Red Snow News WASHINGTON – Poland’s prime minister vowed to ask Germany for permission to send German-made tanks to the front lines in Ukraine, but also insisted that, whether Berlin approved or not, he would put together a coalition that would. German officials were all over the board, which some saying aRead more
- By Tom Squitieri Red Snow News WASHINGTON — They say war makes strange bedfellows. It may also make strange weapons productions. Such as U.S. companies making, essentially, Russian military ammo. Included in the $1.85 billion military aid package formerly announced Wednesday by the Pentagon, is $850 million in assistance via the Ukraine Security Assistance Initiative,Read more
- By Tom Squitieri Red Snow News WASHINGTON –– He entered Washington less than 24 hours after appearing with his front-line troops in a city under war zone fire. He presented Congress with a Ukrainian battle flag, given to him on Tuesday in that frontline city of Bakhmut in eastern Ukraine and signed by the troops.Read more
- By Tom Squitieri Red Snow News WASHINGTON — In a Defense Department world where a “readout” — the name of the staid press release that portends to describe in detail a meeting or event — can be written weeks in advance, the idea of journalists being accused by Pentagon officials of trying to parse wordsRead more
By Tom Squitieri
Red Snow News
WASHINGTON — In a Defense Department world where a “readout” — the name of the staid press release that portends to describe in detail a meeting or event — can be written weeks in advance, the idea of journalists being accused by Pentagon officials of trying to parse words for clarity and precision left some bemused, pondering, and underscoring the paucity of actual information.
Writ large, during the last Pentagon on-camera briefing, Deputy Pentagon spokesperson Sabrina Singh was asked why meetings with the Chinese are defined using the word “discussed” when meetings with the Russians are described as “talks.”
“Are we planning on having talks with China, something more substantial? Instead? — are they going to go in a room and just discuss talking points?,” one reporter asked Singh.
Singh’s reply: “Seems like a bit of parsing of words here.”
Yet the words used by the Pentagon in the readouts do mean different things, as the reporter explained.
“One is we just go in and have a conversation; the other is we go in and have high talks,” the reporter said. “So they keep using ‘discussed’ all the time when we’re only describing China. We never say the word “talk”. “They went in and had high — high talks.”
Singh suggested the reporter was “reading a little too much into some of the wording here, just in terms of discussed, met with, had a conversation. I mean, we’ve used certain — certainly, different words to characterize meetings, but I think the biggest takeaway that I would urge you to consider here is that this was an open dialogue.”
Words make a difference. Poet R.M. Engelhardt was not at the Tuesday briefing, so we will respond in his stead: “Words are powerful. Words make a difference. They can create and destroy. They can open doors and close doors. Words can create illusion or magic, love or destruction. … All those things.”
You say discussion, they said talk. Or dialogue. Or discourse. Or parley. Maybe bull session, rap, pourparler, skull practice. Perhaps confabulation. And there is always argy-bargy.