Sunday, April 19, 2009

Dealing with Pirates

"There is not in all America a more dangerous trait 
than the deification of mere smartness 
unaccompanied by any sense of 
moral responsibility."
Pres. Theodore Roosevelt 
- a speech made at Abilene, KS, May 2, 1903

Photo above - of Lieutenant Colonel Theodore Roosevelt, US Army and the 1st Volunteer Cavalry Regiment (Rough Riders).

He is the last man who held the office of President of the United States that I personally admire. He knew how to deal with Pirates, he knew how to deal with people who abused US Citizens and he was a rampant conservationist, pushing for the creation of a National Park System. President Roosevelt was not shy about sending the "Great White Fleet" to protect Americans and American interests, yet his oft spoken motto was, "Walk softly and carry a big stick." He was responsible for the Panama Canal - that was given back to Panama in modern times...

When an Ilio and Eden Pedecaris and their two children were kidnapped by the Berber sharif, Mulai el Raisuni [and pirate] ) pictured right, President Roosevelt declared, "Pedecaris alive or Raisuli dead!" US Marines landed at Tangiers and deposed the Pashaw of Tangiers because he did not aid in the repatriation of the Pedecaris family. The story was popularized in a very good movie, "The Wind and the Lion" written and directed by John Milius.

"It is not the critic who counts: not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles or where the doer of deeds could have done better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood, who strives valiantly, who errs and comes up short again and again, because there is no effort without error or shortcoming, but who knows the great enthusiasms, the great devotions, who spends himself for a worthy cause; who, at the best, knows, in the end, the triumph of high achievement, and who, at the worst, if he fails, at least he fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who knew neither victory nor defeat."

"Citizenship in a Republic,"    Speech delivered by Pres. Roosevelt at the Sorbonne, Paris, April 23, 1910

1 comment:

Opus #6 said...

The Wind and the Lion is one of my favorite all-time movies. Sean Connery makes me swoon.

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