War camp?

For only $399, you can send your kids away to spend a few days this summer with Ollie North, professional traitor, frolicking about on a military base and pretending to be brave warriors with absolutely no risk. It’s the perfect activity for young Republican chickenhawks-in-training. It’s an organization called the “Freedom Alliance Military Leadership Academy”, and it claims to be training the next generation of American leaders.

That’s really all we need: a generation of leaders who think of war as a fun summer outing.

It’s clear, though, that the real intent of this exercise is to let Republican kids put “Military Leadership Academy” on their résumés—look at what they claim for their program:

Academy graduates are highly motivated, physically fit and goal oriented. Many have pursued careers in the military and as DOD civilians, such as the Navy Criminal Investigative Service, while others go to college or directly to the workforce.

The “Academy” is five days spent on a military base, making field trips to local military hardware, and the worst hardship the kiddies might face is a little rain. I don’t think the academy can take much credit for anything, unless Republicans are really that shallow and easily impressed by the word “military” on a CV.


  1. CalGeorge says

    Oliver North on Bush:

    For those of us tired of hiding our belief lest we “offend” anyone, President Bush is an example of how to live one’s faith in the public square: with respect, enthusiasm, openness, and, above all, humility. […] As evidenced by his words and actions, President Bush apparently recognizes the Truths that his faith dictates; fundamental truths that include hope that others will accept Jesus Christ as their savior. This is the desire of every Christian. We’re supposed to respect the beliefs of others – and pray that God will grant those who do not understand or accept – the openness of heart and mind to see the Truth. […] He is unashamed to pray for wisdom, peace and the spread of freedom and justice. And above all, he maintains humility. We’re blessed to have such a man as our President.

    Nice, huh?

  2. Paguroidea says

    I’ll pass on sending my kids to that camp. Does anyone know of any camps with a peace type of theme?

  3. El Cid says

    I think this fun camp should be held in some of those amazingly safe locations in Baghdad which have been helped by The Surge(TM) and maybe even in some of those schools that have been re-opened and painted. They could even take excursions to that incredibly safe Baghdad market visited by John McCain and the fellow lackey who described it as like a visit to an Indiana farmers’ market.

    Aw, who’m I kidding? Today’s Republican activists are all Constitution-hating cowards, every last one of ’em.

  4. Bruce says

    Y’know, I really try to keep up on politics and I AM getting older but I can’t remember why Ollie isn’t still in jail. Did he get a pardon?
    Of course, now that we’re winning in Iraq and God’s existance was proven last week, maybe it isn’t really important…

  5. mojojojo says

    HA! This reminds me of an episode of the Simpsons set at Rommelwood Military Academy, where the students discuss a work of Keats (identified as “civilian” on blackboard):

    Cadet: Truth is beauty, beauty truth, sir!
    Lisa: They’re discussing poetry! Oh, they never do that at my school.
    Teacher: But the truth can be harsh and disturbing! How can that be considered beautiful?
    Marge: Well, they sure sucked the fun out of that poem.

  6. El Cid says

    Unfortunately Ollie’s conviction was overturned due to the court’s view that his Congressional testimony (for which he was granted immunity) influenced the jury indirectly. Oh well.

    On the other hand, Ronald Reagan, Elliot Abrams et al never faced charges for the genocide which the UN ‘truth commission’ found they had actively aided in Guatemala through the CIA, so if a US administration can get away with directly facilitating genocide, it’s not surprising that lesser and obedient punks like Ollie can avoid jail.

  7. says

    The military academies already have leadership camps for students who are ‘highly motivated, physically fit and goal oriented.’ If I may brag, they only pick two students from every state to go. Theyre camps are, actually, prestigious.

    However, the creepy religious culture I experienced at the Air Force Summer Scientific Seminar is what convinced me (and the other student from my state) not to go to the Air Force Academy for college. And we were only there for a week. I dont know how a Jewish/Pagan/Atheist cadet could tolerate the place for school.

  8. deanbcurtis says

    I’d go, but I’m saving up for Manuel Noriega’s Rock n’ Roll Fantasy Camp.

  9. Adam says

    “That’s really all we need: a generation of leaders who think of war as a fun summer outing.”

    Now you’re just being ridiculous! C’mon, how many boys do you know growing up who didn’t play with toy guns or toy soldiers? Or are you the kind of person who thinks that everyone who goes paint balling is a “chicken-hawk”? With all the things worth complaining about, I hardly think this one is worth the effort.

  10. bernarda says

    Parguroidea, over at NoGodBlog they talk about a camp known as Camp Quest I think. You could ask the blogger Dave about it.


    His email is in the lower right.

    As to fascist Ollie North, he is not only a traitor but a genuine war criminal. He was responsible for torturing and massacring thousands of Central Americans. If he had happened to be in Germany at the end of WWII, he would probably have been tried and executed.

    Finally, isn’t “Republican Chickenhawk” a redundancy?

  11. CalGeorge says

    Each night you will have free time to organize your locker, call home, shower and study leadership.

    Oh boy oh boy oh boy oh boy!

  12. says

    Tulse: “Freedom Alliance” sounds like a B-rate comic book superhero team.

    How about the “Freedom of Information League”? That’s a right-wing fantasy comic about Hannity and Liddy and good old Ollie North converted into cyborg superheroes to fight the radical-liberal forces who dominate and are destroying America. It may be ludicrous to you and me, but it’s one-handed reading for the pretend patriots of the right.

  13. MikeM says

    I’ll pass on sending my kids to that camp. Does anyone know of any camps with a peace type of theme?



    Ollie’s camp is just a place for PNAC parents to send their PNAC kids. In a way, I hope they get there, get disgusted, and get out. Future “anything but PNAC” kids.

  14. bernarda says

    I ran across this ode the the 101st Keyboarders,

    The Battle Hymn of the 101st Fighting Keyboarders
    (Sung to the tune of the Marine Corps Hymn)

    ‘tween the walls of mommy’s basement
    On the floors our spunk has stained
    We fight our fights through proxy
    With a mouse, keyboard, and brain
    First to call for wars of freedom
    Policies that kill the poor
    We’ll do the least that we can do
    And fight with our keyboard.

    Our George was safe – he made the Guard
    And Rush had a sore ass;
    Deferments saved Dick’s butt five times
    But not the working class;
    In the dorms of far-off college quads
    A light year from the war
    You will find us cursin’ Democrats
    One Hundred-One Keyboards.

    There’s beer for us and guns for them
    And each one has a role;
    We’re many so glib, we’ll flame a Lib,
    As warfare takes its toll;
    If the Army and the Navy
    Are understaffed in war;
    Go find another place to turn
    We’re the One Oh One Keyboards.


  15. says

    My favorite is this bit from the “core values” page:

    Respect – Treat people the way that they should be treated.

    And how should people be treated? Why, they way we say they should, of course. Lock ‘n’ load.

  16. Chuck says

    We should have a contest in which Republican organizations or events are named by taking cool words like “Freedom” and “Military” and “Alliance” and “Resolve” are strung together randomly, making little sense to a grammarian but carrying a lot of emotional punch for rightwingers.

  17. Steve_C (Secular Elitist) FCD says

    They would never take pride in a camp on dimplomacy and foreign affairs.

    I would rather our future leaders had a background in foreign cultures and language.

    Ollie North is a tool.

  18. Rey Fox says

    “Academy graduates are highly motivated, physically fit and goal oriented. Many have pursued careers in the military and as DOD civilians, such as the Navy Criminal Investigative Service, while others go to college or directly to the workforce.”

    Sound like colossal assholes to me.

  19. Kseniya says

    Chuck and Steve_C: Yes!

    I’d go, but I’m saving up for Manuel Noriega’s Rock n’ Roll Fantasy Camp.

    LOL… priceless!

    Reagan [McGee] was born on September 11th, 2001. He is the son of a NYC firefighter whose life was spared by attending his son’s birth. Reagan has grown to manhood in an ultra-liberal educational system: being told, not asked, what to think.

    “Told, not asked” – LOL.

    Liberal: Kid, all conservatives are scum!

    Conservative: Kid, I’m asking you to believe that all liberals are scum!

  20. Hank Fox says

    The “Leadership Academy” is hosted by the Freedom Alliance – “The Price of Freedom is Eternal Vigilance.” Just browsing the names on the site and elsewhere, I see “Thomas P. Kilgannon serves as the President of Freedom Alliance, an educational and charitable foundation dedicated to preserving the American heritage of freedom and defending U.S. sovereignty.”

    There’s a nice pic there of him and his well-fed jowls posing in front of an American flag, looking like Captain America just back from saving the free world from the evil clutches of the Red Skull.

    “Before joining Freedom Alliance, Kilgannon served as a top aide to Congressman Mark Neumann of Wisconsin, one of the most visible and effective members of the historic freshman class of 1995. Prior to that, he coordinated policy and communications for the Christian Action Network, a pro-family lobbying organization, and served as deputy press secretary for Patrick J. Buchanan’s 1992 presidential campaign.”

    “Tom is a graduate of New York University where he studied economics. He has appeared on CNBC, MSNBC, Fox News, CNN International, C-SPAN, and Court TV, and numerous nationally syndicated radio programs. Tom is the host of the Freedom First radio program on the Rightalk Network. He is also the author of Diplomatic Divorce: Why America Should End Its Love Affair With the United Nations.”

    Nothing in there about military service, and I’d bet he’d absolutely crow about that credential if he had it. Probably just another nice Conservative Christian Republican who had other priorities than military service in his own life, but who now simple LOVES the idea of other people’s kids going off to die for freedom.

    There’s like an inbred nest of these people: Sean Hannity presents “Freedom Concerts ’07,” – “Also Featuring Oliver North.” I wonder if Ollie sings.

  21. CalGeorge says

    …cool words like “Freedom” and “Military” and “Alliance” and “Resolve”…

    No. 2 search result on Google for those words:

    President Delivers Commencement Address at the United States Military Academy at West Point

    No. 1 is a whacko anti-government site.

  22. Rheinhard says

    A great idea for a youtube documentary. Some enterprising young go-getters should set up a table with actual military recruitment forms outside the gate of this camp and ask the passersby whether, after their rigorous Ollie North training, they’d like to sign up to lend their much needed assistance in the fight against Islamofascism in Iraq.

  23. dorid says

    just another recruitment tool. “Come ON kids, the military is FUN! put on your super hero costume and join the Freedom Alliance!”

    I’m not surprised. With No Child Left Behind causing increased numbers of kids dropping out BEFORE high school, it seems the only place for some kids to get an education is the military, and in with the economy the way it is, there are large sections of the country where the military is also just about the only place to get a job. Now they’re sending recruiters into the MIDDLE SCHOOLS (OMG, my youngest came home with a “GO ARMY” bracelet last week! I just about had a STROKE) and hooking kids there.

    BTW, part of the NCLB act REQUIRES schools to open their records for military recruiters. SURPRISE. This isn’t about education, it’s about MILITARY RECRUITING.

  24. CalGeorge says

    Marine Major Megan McClung, a public affairs officer who became the highest-ranking woman killed in Iraq when she died two weeks ago, had been escorting Oliver North and a FOX News crew through Ramadi just moments before a roadside bomb took her life, a military spokesman said on Monday.

    When the explosion occurred on December 6, 2006, McClung was in the midst of escorting a Newsweek staffer, according to Lieuetnant Colonel Bryan Salas, a public affairs officer stationed at Camp Fallujah.

    “My understanding is that Newsweek was with her at the time of the explosion, in a different vehicle,” Salas said. “She had just dropped off the Fox News crew.”


    He’s even getting people killed.

  25. APK says

    It’s called Summer! Who hijacked camp and rid it of camping, boating, hiking, swimming, singing — having fun? What more of a theme does summer camp need?

  26. Lana says

    I’m thinking of sending my son. But only because he’s 16 and a pain in the ass. Sorry for the redundancy.

  27. MikeQ says

    “Freedom Alliance Military Leadership Academy”

    That’s a lot of buzzwords. why not call the place the “Shiny, Happy People’s Freedom Alliance Military Leadership Academy of Disneyland”?

  28. Tukla in Iowa says

    Reagan [McGee] was born on September 11th, 2001. He is the son of a NYC firefighter whose life was spared by attending his son’s birth.

    Wow, I didn’t know that every single on-duty firefighter was killed that day.

  29. jpf says

    I might find it a lot cheaper to send my kids to Mt. Zion Baptist Church’s Summer Bible Camp. This year’s theme is Soldiers in the Army of the Lord–with a Medieval flavor.

    This reminds me of something I saw once: there’s this church in University Place, WA that’s on a busy street. They have a reader board sign, the type with the movable plastic type, and they often have some braindead statement up on it. A few years ago they were inviting kids to join their “Children’s Crusade”. That’s bad enough on its own, but considering that a few blocks down the street there’s the only mosque in the area…

  30. says

    Sounds like yet another way for Republicans to identify other rich, stuck-up elitist scum– “oh, look… THIS one’s parent’s had $400 to blow on a useless camp. ACCEPTED!”

  31. Moses says

    unless Republicans are really that shallow and easily impressed by the word “military” on a CV.

    Of course they are, because most of them won’t know it’s just a one-week lark.

  32. Chinchillazilla says

    Freedom Alliance Military Leadership Academy

    …or NAMBLA…

    Damn you for beating me to it!

  33. JJR says

    If they really wanted to do something meaningful and worthwhile, they should join the National Guard and go through REAL US Army boot camp, and help make up for some of the manpower losses that are impairing the ability of our states to respond to natural emergencies here at home.

    The Iraq war & occupation is breaking the US Army, but it has shattered the National Guard infrastructure…so much for part-time citizen-soldiers helping out their fellow Americans, etc. Easier to subcontract that out to the friendly folks at Blackwater, etc. Fuckers.

    Many moons ago I attended a boys summer camp at the Marine Military Academy in Harlingen, Texas. I was a silly NJROTC cadet gunning for a ribbon; It was only 2 weeks long but it was pretty damn challenging for a young teen just barely a high school sophomore. I ended up not earning the ribbon (since that was MCJROTC, not NJROTC), but earned the respect of my classmates as something of a badass for having subjected myself to that sh*t voluntarily.

    I later did get to attend NJROTC Leadership Academy at NAS Pensacola, getting yelled at by retired USMC Drill Instructors, taking classes from retired Navy officers, etc. It was sort of summer camp + summer school, except all you took was JROTC, all day every day. Earned a ribbon, became a cadet officer, and also got a shoulder cord to wear.

    I also went on field trips to Navy and Marine installations for Spring break…Camp Lejune, Norfolk Naval Station, San Diego Naval Base…your 1980s tax dollars at work.

    If I had known about the Navy Sea Cadets program (think of a Navy-themed, completely secular Boy Scouts), I would’ve done that on top of my extracurricular stuff with NJROTC, but I didn’t learn about their existence until many years later.

    The closest I ever got to “real” military was 1.5 years in the Corps of Cadets at Texas A&M. I learned some valuable things from those experiences, even though I would have nothing to do with the military today, and I would have mixed feelings about recommending JROTC to young people today, or Sea Cadets, or Civil Air Patrol…it’s just such a different world now. I remember being pissed off at Ollie North *as a cadet* & *as a naive young Republican*; back then I took the military oath to the Constitution very very seriously, and as I saw it, Ollie flagrantly violated that oath and was no better than a common mercenary (obviously I had a lot to learn about Political Economy, the National Security State, the CIA, and how the world really works, etc.). I shudder to think what would happen to Cheney, Bush, et. al. if our Military actually took their oaths seriously. Lucky for them, they don’t.

    I had a NROTC scholarship in college but washed out due to bad eyesight. I’ve since had Lasik, but am too old to be playing Navy anymore. I do have two cousins that picked the Naval Academy over the USAF Academy precisely over the USAF Academy’s whacked out ultra-christianized environment these days. What scares me most about the AIR FORCE ACADEMY these days is all these apocalyptic Xtian types at the Air Force Academy–these bastards will have their fingers on the BOMB when they graduate. Scary Scary.

    Anyway, enough rambling from this former semi-foxhole atheist.


  34. Justin Moretti says

    I shudder to think what would happen to Cheney, Bush, et. al. if our Military actually took their oaths seriously. In Turkey, the military sees itself as the guarantor of the secular state, and has threatened to act ‘appropriately’ if anything happens to alter that. Its loyalties seem to be to the legacy of Ataturk.

    The nearest thing in Australia would be for the military to decide that its loyalties were to the Commonwealth of Australia, the Constitution and the Crown, and not necessarily to the head of government or state.

    When you get to the stage where the military is truly the defender of a nation’s secular democracy, interesting things are bound to happen…

    This five-day camp sounds like the perfect bunch of w*nk, frankly; I’d rather my teenage child (if I had one) openly joined army or air force cadets (air training corps in Australia) and found out as much as they could what the real military was like.

  35. nygdan says

    I’ve never really understood why Ollie North is still around, and a ‘journalist’ on Fox news at that. Well, I understand WHY, but damn if it ain’t nuts.

    On the other hand, some of those nuts from the SLA are university professors, apparently, these days, so I guess anything goes.

  36. says

    Christ, if five days of camping out constitutes an “academy” in their book, I must be the equivalent of a fully tenured professor for just having done my Dutch national service as a draftee “shake ‘n’ bake” sergeant.

  37. Metal Bldg Man says

    You bunch of liberal pansy ass morons . . . Is this all you have to do with your time. This leadership academy is no different than the local ROTC program at your high, or boy scouts for that fact. Richard Bey.org even implies that blacks aren’t accepted . . . that’s BS – my son happens to be the only “Token” white out of group of 8 from our community attending the leadership academy this week.
    Make you a deal . . . quick your bithin’ and my sons will fight so your’s don’t have to. (because they want to!) So there . . . nana nana boo boo