“Our landings in the Cherbourg-Havre area have failed to gain a satisfactory foothold and I have withdrawn the troops. My decision to attack at this time and place was based upon the best information available. The troops, the air and the navy did all that bravery and devotion to duty could do. If any blame or fault attaches to the attempt it is mine alone.”
On or about June 5, 1944 General Dwight Eisenhower scribbled this note and stuck it in his jacket pocket. He never had to use it and it was found years later, still in the jacket pocket. Since the little sheet of paper shows the editing he did as he wrote, many historians believe he probably wrote it as he traveled from base to base to visit with the airborne troops as they readied to board their planes for the invasion of France.
Worst case casualty estimates for the airborne troops was up to seventy percent. The man believed it was important to look into the eyes of the men he was sending into harm’s way. Contrast this with the Deepwater Horizon survivors who were asked to sign liability waivers as soon as they reached shore.
Contrast this with the “nobody told me anything, I apparently haven’t displayed any curiosity whatsoever about how the company I’m in charge of drills for oil, I wasn’t on the Deepwater Horizon rig before the disaster, so these events are not my responsibility” testimony of BP CEO Tony Howard in Washington DC yesterday. It may be catty, but I picture the man in his office eyes closed, fingers in ears, humming really, really loud.
In another note, Rep. Joe Barton R-Texas (recipient of over $1,400,000 in oil and gas contributions since 1989 ) first apologized to Howard at the beginning of the hearings for the “shakedown” by the White House that forced BP to set up an escrow account to cover damage claims from the spill, then withdrew his apology later in the day. It appears he was strongly encouraged to do so by members of his own party. As in “eat crow now or risk losing your seat on the committee.” Again the précis of the news story is my own, but it gets the gist of it.
After all the ‘Pubs are hoping to pick up as many seats at possible this fall. It’ll be interesting to see how this plays out as the supporters of “leave industry alone to regulate itself” face the voters. At least the escrow fund may help the alleviate some of the capitalize the profits, socialize the cost of cleaning up the messes we’ve seen in the past.
Cross posted in Walking With Hope.