I retired from the Army National Guard last year, and in one of my last drills, I had to submit to something that I'd never had to in all my 20 years in the Guard. I had to get checked for tattoos. No, not the traditional military tattoos that soldiers or sailors used to get - an anchor, an Airborne symbol, a heart with the girlfriend's name. No, the tattoos they were looking were gang tattoos. Because the U.S. military now has gang members in the ranks. Well, guess what? Angela Kochera writes in"Mexican Cartels Looking to Exploit Gang Connections in U.S. Military" that
The ties between drug cartels and street gangs in Mexico are well-established. But now, there are signs the cartels are looking to exploit gang connections in the U.S. military.
The article highlights the recent case of Michael Jackson Apodaca, a soldier who is "now facing capital murder charges for the contract killing of a drug cartel informant in El Paso." Apodaca's grandfather, former border patrol agent David Jackson , thinks his grandson is innocent. Well, what do you expect ? How bad is the gang problem in the U.S. military ? The article reports that
The Department of Defense doesn't deny there are gang members in the military ranks, but stresses they’re a small percentage of the troops.
That reminded me of an old Monty Python sketch I'd seen years ago. So I looked it up and it does bear a certain resemblance. It's the sketch in which "Vice Admiral Sir John Cunningham" is being interviewed. (See video here). Sir John says
... may I take this opportunity of emphasizing that there is no cannibalism in the British Navy. Absolutely none, and when I say none, I mean there is a certain amount, more than we are prepared to admit, but all new ratings are warned that if they wake up in the morning and find any toothmarks at all anywhere on their bodies, they're to tell me immediately so that I can immediately take every measure to hush the whole thing up.
Speaking of Monty Python, could Sarah Palin's husband Todd be related to to Monty Python's Michael Palin?