Friday, December 01, 2006

Mortarmen at Haditha....Finished

"Danger Close" Oil on canvas, 20x16

The title of this finished oil painting is "Danger Close". Danger close is a phrase used when friendlies are dropping things that go boom, whether 2000 pounders or 81mm mortar rounds, just about on top of your position. The tube of this gun is as vertical as it can get, and what goes up must come this case very close.

The past couple weeks I've steered clear of ranting about the present state of affairs engendered by the recent mid-term elections. Like alot of you I'm more than a little burned out with the current state of politics in the world....especially in the Western World. Victor Davis Hanson hits every nail on the head with his recent commentary Losing the Enlightenment.

I doubt if Hanson reads Fire and Ice, but he eloquently touched on virtually every situation that has set my teeth on edge since 9/11 with regards to the so-called liberal progressive left, the greatest benefactors of Western Civilization. He speaks of their rampant complacency and self-loathing, the malaise of perfectionism, the inability to confront evil as evil, and the basic ignorance of how our collective bread gets buttered in the first place. Please go and read this piece!

Sergeant Kris Battles has just returned from an extended time out in the "goo" and has made a lengthy entry (with art to follow) over at his blog Sketchpad Warrior. You can also view and listen to Sergeant Battles talk about his experiences at a site called Ends of the Earth Productions.


Anonymous said...

I have read Hanson's piece. You are so right about him hitting the nail on the head. I get so angry about the current state of affairs I could pull my hair out. Americans have become fat and lazy in mind and spirit. We are a spoiled generation. American pride is considered to be a form of arrogance. Most high school history teachers don't teach our young people how great this nation is and the sacrifices that have been made by so many people not much older than they, the students, are. They teach that we are a greedy, imperialistic country that wants to force it's rule on the world. So it is no wonder our kids are more interested in MTV's "The Real World" than they are in the real world our brave young fighting men and women find themselves in. It is crazy and sad.

Flag Gazer said...

Danger Close is quite powerful - I find myself waiting for the "boom"

The Hanson piece is brilliant! Anon sums it up nicely.

I'm rather glad you have avoided ranting - I'm limiting my blog reading these days because I've felt like I needed to paper the room with tin foil!

Carol said...

This is so damn fine.

Best always and God bless...

Samantha West said...


Your work is so exceptional and moving. You must never stop your art, it is such a grand gift to us all!


Flag Gazer said...

Finally made the time to watch Kris' videos - really interesting - thank you for the link!

Bag Blog said...

The finished "Danger Close" is excellent. Once again, I love your choice of color and lighting.

While flipping through a "People" magazine at the doctor's office, I found an article about a woman who paints portraits of fallen soldiers. This morning I looked up her website called Her work is impressive and moving.

eric said...

WO Fay,
Concerning your portrait mortarmen
at Haditha. Do you have any of
their names? I would be interested
to know.

manu said...

Great art,
I'm a french reader, altough i agree with your opinion about the role of US Army against terrorism. Few of french or european people do so, but some do know the important role that you do for our freedom.
I think the others will understand it one day, maybe too late.

Dave Livingston said...

Chief Fay - thanks for posting the finished painting. Was looking forward to it but think you ought to not explain the title and see who figures out the basic physics. And then the notion of why one would want the mortar to land that close :).

My favorite story from Brokaw's "Greatest Generation" is the librarian apoligizing to a young man for the rowdy behavior of a bunch of teenagers disturbing things by say, "after all, they're only 17. What were you like at 17 ?".

His reply - "going ashore with the 1rst wave on the Canal".

We take so much for granted that was purchased for us at such great cost.

Tad said...

I have "stumbled" across your blog. What great luck for me. I don't know which is better: your written observations or your visual renderings.

Do keep after it. You add much to our history and give depth to the sacrifices of our Marines and other service personnel.

Semper Fi,

William Curtis USMC (Ret) 1958-1991

Tom said...


He likes this site !

Brian Dunbar said...

Excellent painting - like 'flag gazer' I was waiting for the 'fw-boom'.

Thanks for going over and capturing these scenes.

Grimmy said...

Thank you sir. Thank you for helping those of us stuck on the home-front in the too sick, lame, old or lazy division to keep the fire lit in our bellies.

You are a constant source of motivation and inspiration.

Semper Fi Sir.