Iceland Air's In Flight Magazine, No. 4, 2007 July-August. Page 13
SHRIMP TO THE RESCUE
Casualty numbers continue to climb alarmingly. The Green Zone is no longer safe. Children are murdered at point blank. Journalists continue to be captured. President Bush’s little project in Iraq has turned into a nightmare of biblical proportions. But at least there’s a glimmer of hope for extreme bleeding and it comes courtesy of a special carbohydrate delivered from the exoskeletons of Icelandic shrimp.
The U.S. Army has purchased more than 400,000 bandages made by Oregon-based HemCon, which have showed high success rates for external hemorrhage control in combat operations. The bandages’ main ingredient is chitosan, derived from the shrimp shells, which has been shown to rapidity clot blood. Whether out of success or dire need, the bandage was swept through U.S. Food and Drug Administration clearance in an almost record-breaking 48 hours. It’s just sad the military needs them in the first place. Hemcon.com.
On 6 Aug 07, I flew to Sweden via Iceland on Iceland Air flight 634 to join my wife who had proceeded me on an earlier flight. Iceland Air has been the choice of my family many times in the past and I expected to have a pleasant and uneventful flight.
My expectations were shattered however by my reading your ugly remarks which insulted my nation, my president, and our heroic armed forces in a shocking manner. I am referring to your article on page 13 in Iceland Air’s In-Flight Magazine No. 4, 2007 July-August addition.
Your airline presented my countries’ war on terror as, “President Bush’s little project in Iraq has turned into a nightmare of biblical proportions.” The “children murdered at point blank and the captures of journalists”, were actions of the enemy we are attempting to subdue. The statement that, “Casualty numbers continue to climb alarmingly,” is just a flat out lie. I fervently believe that the ruthless terrorists we now confront will bring carnage of enormous proportions throughout the world if not stopped. You may find disagreement with my beliefs however; I find it odder that you would express your highly controversial views in a corporate publication.
I have no objections finding comments such as yours expressed in editorials, opinion sections of newspapers, or by politicians, etc. However, I considered it not befitting a great international airline to gratuitously vilify the president of a nation whose citizens form a considerable percentage of your customer base.
You have insulted a large portion of those Americans who are proud of our sacrifices to rid humanity of a fanatic evil -- an enemy willing to visit great harm on millions of innocent people.
If this is your official position re The United States, and it becomes generally known within America, I think it would be a cold day in hell before those who believe in the necessity of confronting threats to our way of life would chose to fly Iceland Air.
We do have kooks on the left wing fringe of the Democratic Party that would agree with your condemnation of our president, thanks to our far left dominated media and universities. However, I believe that most Democrats would also find your views offensive and those who believe in confronting terror would find them intolerable.
You should review the lessons of history. The world could have stopped Hitler in 1936 with relatively little cost when he marched into the Rhineland in defiance of The Treaty of Versailles. Or in 1938 had the French and English governments not ceded the Sudetenland to Hitler. The appeasements ended up costing 60 million lives.
Iceland Air has apparently not learned from the mistakes of the 1930s era and has taken sides of those who would choose peace at any price. Your position seems ludicrous to me, given the fact that we face millions of murderous fanatics bent on world domination and the possibility of their obtaining weapons of mass destruction.
Your airline ignores the fact that America and our allies’ sacrifices liberated 50 million oppressed people. We routed the Taliban, ended the despotic rule of a brutal dictator who produced and used massive amounts of advanced chemical war munitions, made war on his neighbors, violated 17 U.N. resolutions, and presided over the deaths of over two million innocent people. Three hundred thousand of Saddam’s own citizens, to include women and children, have been found in mass graves where they were murdered.
Upon my return home with my wife, on 23 Aug 07, as usual, we were impressed by the courteous, professional, and friendly nature of the Iceland Air crew. It caused me to put my plans in abeyance until you have an opportunity to respond to my letter. Let me be absolutely clear. My plans are to use my influence with the American veteran’s societies, talk radio hosts, and several newspapers to make your position re our efforts in the war on terror known throughout the nation.
To be fair I must give you a chance to present a rebuttal to the evidence found in your magazine. There may have been some circumstance, plausible oversight, demonstration of regret, or situation beyond your control for which you profoundly regret, that I should consider in mitigation or exculpation of your remarks.
Please respond to this letter. I have always been found of Iceland, its people, and Iceland Air. I do not wish to do any harm to your airline if it is not justified or if appropriate corrective action has been already been taken.
Should those responsible for Iceland Air’s inexcusable comments find themselves in need of future employment, I am sure they could fine positions in the al-Qaeda or Taliban Ministry of Propaganda.
James J Reilley
LTC USA (RET)