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Political Commentary
Commentary on today's political happenings.

A central figure in world events during the past several years, retired Marine Lt. Col. Oliver L. North has provoked great controversy while gaining the respect of the vast majority of Americans.

Born in San Antonio, Texas, North was raised in upstate New York. When he graduated from the United States Naval Academy in 1968, he was commissioned in the U.S. Marines and shortly thereafter was assigned as a Marine rifle platoon commander in the Republic of Vietnam. His decorations for courage and bravery include: the Silver Star, the Bronze Star with a "V" for Valor, two Purple Hearts and three Navy Commendation Medals.

Following Vietnam, North served with distinction in a variety of assignments both in the United States and abroad. In August 1981, he was ordered to the White House for duty with the National Security Council staff and eventually was named deputy director of political-military affairs. While on the NSC staff, he was involved in planning the liberation of Grenada and the rescue of 804 medical students held on the island. He played a major role in the operation which resulted in the capture of the terrorists and murderers who hijacked the cruise ship Achille Lauro. He later helped plan the U.S. raid on Qaddafi's terrorist training camps in Libya -- after which he was targeted for assassination by Abu Nidal, the world's most brutal terrorist.

North is best known for the role he played in carrying out President Reagan's orders to support freedom and democracy in Central America. Promoted to lieutenant colonel in 1983, North held that rank until May 1988, when he retired in order to defend himself against a special prosecutor investigating the events in Central America.

Today, North is the chief executive officer of Guardian Technologies International, a Virginia-based manufacturer of protective equipment for law enforcement. He is also the president of Freedom Alliance, a non-profit foundation dedicated to promoting the principles of individual liberty, a strong defense and traditional morality in national policy.

Ollie and his wife, Betsy, live in Virginia with their four children: Tait, Stuart, Sarah and Dornin.




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