Battleland

Happy Birthday, Battleland!

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Battleland is one year old today. Great. Twenty more and we can have a drink. Actually, we’ll be toasting the anniversary this afternoon with some freezer-prepped Jeremiah Weed. Some pilots say it’s the only kind of depth charge worth delivering.

Our little slogan at the top – Where military intelligence isn’t a contradiction in terms – has proven controversial. We’ve heard from a number of readers that it initially turned them off. But we always explain that in a national-security world so full of hokum (meaning baloney, not the NATO nickname — Hokum — for the 1980s’ Soviet KA-50 Black Shark attack chopper with its nifty coaxial rotors), there’s a place for a common-sense approach to the real threats facing the nation.

All threats are not created equal. Perhaps that should be our catchphrase. Too bad you’d never know it if all you did were listen to congressional hearings and read certain reports produced by certain elements of the national-security atomic-threat inflator.

Battleland takes a backseat to no one when it comes to the nation’s defense. But amid a lot of ahistorical chatter about today’s perilous world crammed with unprecedented threats, we like to plop Creedence Clearwater Revival’s Fortunate Son on the turntable (speaking of ’80s technology) and listen to John Fogerty sing the final verse (Battleland also likes to listen to it via iPod, especially when visiting the Vietnam Veterans memorial wall):

 Some folks inherit star-spangled eyes,

Ooo, they send you down to war, y’all.

 And when you ask them, how much should we give?

Ooo, they only answer more! More! More! Y’all.

We’d like to thank our contributors, as well as the troops, veterans and taxpayers who inspire us. And, most of all, we’d like to thank our readers. Take a look at the 10 most popular stories on Battleland in its first year. Congratulations on being such a discerning bunch: three involved bin Laden, two focused on Navy SEALs…and only one mentions George Clooney:

1. The Man Who Got bin Laden: The Most Deadly Would-be Journalist in the World

2. Who Teaches SEAL Team 6 How to Fight?

3. Area 51, Revisited

4. Clooney’s Satellites Capture Piles of Bodies, Mass Graves in Sudan

5. A “Golden BB” Downs a U.S. Helicopter in Afghanistan, Killing 38

6. Bin Laden: Betrayed By His Face, His DNA…And His Wife

7. No Idle Boast: A Soldier’s Tattoo Becomes Truth

8. Afghan Sitrep: A Grunt from the Front Sounds Off

9. How ‘Operation Kill bin Laden’ Went Down

10. Inside Navy SEAL Team 6

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