Photo of USTDC courtesy of Les Duffin

Thursday, June 20, 2013

The Prodigal Plaque

Military units often present plaques or other mementos to those who depart for other assignments.  When I was at USTDC, most of us received a plaque and maybe a medal or two.  Unfortunately, during one of my moves from one assignment to another over the years, my TDC plaque was lost.

Some time ago, Army LTC Scott Ellinger casually asked me for the dates of my tour at TDC and, after doing a bit of digging, I managed to come up with them.

A few days ago I received a package from Scott that contained a plaque exactly like the one I lost.  Actually, the engraved plate is a bit more fancy than the brass plate that was on the original, but otherwise they're identical.

I spoke with Scott this week and he explained that he purchased several items from the estate of the late Navy Vice Admiral Phil Beshany, who was the Commander of TDC while I was there and this plaque was among them.  The brass plate was missing but the plaque itself was undoubtedly presented to VADM Beshany upon his departure from TDC a few weeks ahead of me.  That makes it even more special to me.

Thanks so much, Scott.  It was very thoughtful of you and I sincerely appreciate it.

Saturday, June 8, 2013

Analyst in a War Theater Role -- 1964

Old friend John Quinn uncovered a very interesting declassified document from 1964.  It's called "Analyst in a War Theater Role" and it provides an overview of the role of U.S. military intelligence analysts at the U.S. Taiwan Defense Command and elsewhere, especially during the early years of the U.S. military presence in Taiwan.  It was written by Robert W. Smith, who may have been on the J-2 (Intelligence) staff at USTDC.

You can read or download the PDF document at: