Friday, 26 November 2010

Celebrating real American Thanksgiving together with Kim Chatman in Ramstein, Germany


I hope that you all had a wonderful day, and in case you thought that Kathleen and I didn't celebrate Thanksgiving in Germany, then you were very mistaken! ;-)

We used this opportunity to see the first of our new Alaskan friends in person - Kim Chatman, who has the achievement of having filed the only completely successful ethics complaint against Sarah Palin in history, the complaint against her "Alaska Fund Trust", Sarah's first legal defense fund.

As a result of this ethics complaint, investigator Tim Petumenos wrote a devastating report. In addition, Sarah Palin had to pay hundreds of thousands of dollars back to the donors, money she could have used otherwise just for about everything she wanted, due to the setup of the "Alaska Fund Trust" as a "slush fund" for the Palin family.

Kim Chatman recently moved the Ramstein, Germany, where she will be working for the next 3-5 years as a civilian in the military at the local US base. She is living here together with five of her seven kids. It's not easy at the moment for the children to get used to the completely new environment, but at least Kim found a spacious, very nice house, which makes things a bit easier. In addition to the kids, three little dogs also ensure that a lively household is in operation. ;-)

Our visit was the opportunity to celebrate our first American thanksgiving, and also get to know Kim Chatman much better. Let's start with the food - it was simply fantastic, and there was a lot, of course:





We also had "real" Americans drinks with "real" ingredients... ;-)


Together with all the guests, we were about 15 people, and we had great fun.

The visit was of course also an opportunity to get to know Kim Chatman much better, and to talk for example about Sarah Palin. Regarding Kim, I would like to highlight that fact that she has been working for the military for 30 years in total, including 15 years of active duty in the Air Force. I believe that this fact should be emphasized, as Sarah Palin seems to believe that all soldiers admire her, and on a regular basis uses "the troops" as a tool to silence her perceived opponents - for example when she addressed the media in her final speech as Alaska's Governor:

"Democracy depends on you. And that is why, that's why our troops are willing to die for you. So, how about, in honor of the American soldier, you quit making things up."

(Meaning: Media making things up = Media reporting the ugly truth about Sarah Palin.)

But not all soldiers are fans of Sarah Palin - far from it.

Kim showed us some "souvenirs" from her military career.

That's her with seventeen years, after she had joined the US Air Force:

Kim Chatman - 17 years, Air Force

San Antonio, Texas, in 1978:




Her first dog tag:


Here is an unusal "souvenir" - in the "old days", members of the forces were apparently sent the following letter when a baby was born:


Kim Chatman became a fierce opponent of Sarah Palin after it became obvious during Palin's time as Governor of Alaska that Palin is a liar and a phony. Interestingly, one of the "crucial" moments was when Kim Chatman and her kids saw Sarah Palin at the Elmendorf Air Force base in Alaska, shortly after Palin had announced her surprising pregnancy on March 5, 2008. Kim Chatman realized immediately that Sarah Palin was not pregnant at all, and this became a turning point for her. Kim recently went on the record about this incident when she gave Palingates in September 2010 the permission to publish her comments about it:

Kim Chatman Facebook screenshot 1

Kim Chatman Facebook screenshot 2

Kim's opposition to Sarah Palin had consequences: For example, after she filed the ethics complaint because of the "Alaska Fund Trust", several friends in Alaska turned away from her. But Kim is as determined as ever and was well aware that her opposition could have undesirable effects. She was also not afraid to turn up at Sarah Palin's book signing in December 2009 at the Elmendorf base, identify herself and get four copies of "Going Rogue" signed (her daughter Kayla even showed up wearing an Obama t-shirt).

Today, she gave one of the books as a present to us, signed by Sarah and Todd:


We already know what we are going to do with this signed copy of "Going Rogue." More details later!

Enjoy the rest if your holiday, Gaters! :-)


Update (November 27):

Kathleen and I returned today from Ramstein. We stayed one day longer as planned, and we had a wonderful time. We talked with Kim about many topics regarding Sarah Palin, and with a bit of luck, we might meet her and her family soon again.

When we see Kim again, I plan to do a taped interview with her, because she has a lot to tell, and she is not afraid of anything. If more people in Alaska had as much courage as Kim, Sarah Palin would already be history. There are a few courageous people in AK (mainly women, actually), but there need to be many more.

Kim Chatman was, by the way, a lifelong Republican until 2008, but due to the Republican madness which then started in combination with the promising rise of Barack Obama, for whom she and her family campaigned, she then changed her registration to Democrat. Kim says that she never cared too much for politics before Sarah Palin was chosen by John McCain, but afterwards, the impact these events had on her life was huge.

The visit also gave Kathleen and me some new insights into contemporary African-American culture, as all of Kim's children are African-American. We watched for example movies by Tyler Perry, which was a great discovery, as Tyler Perry is an incredibly fascinating and inspirational person.

So hopefully we will be able to meet Kim and her family very soon again!

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