Iranians pull back

In “reprisal” for the death of a top general by a U.S. air strike, on Wednesday Iran launched a dozen surface-to-surface missiles at two bases in Iraq housing American troops.

Purpose of the launch apparently was to send a propaganda message to Iranians that the regime had avenged Qasem Soleimani’s death with a lethal strike on U.S. forces in Iraq.

However, the missiles were apparently intentionally targeted at sites where troops and equipment were not located, incurring no casualties and minimal damage. In other words, the Iranians did not, at least at this point, wish to continue a fight.

President Donald Trump, who earlier had said the U.S. would respond to any further Iranian aggression, chose to forego military strikes.

Instead, in a tempered response, the president set in motion tightening economic sanctions against Iran while stating the U.S. is willing to meet with Tehran’s leaders to negotiate differences.

The result is, for now, a stalemate between the two nations. Through its proxies across the region, Iran could continue to launch attacks against the U.S. and its allies.

Or Iranian leaders could pull back from their role sponsoring terrorism across the Middle East and start paying attention to the nation’s struggling economy, which will only get worse with tougher sanctions.

Walter condolences

In her short time as Salida’s deputy city clerk, Sonia Walter impressed those she worked with and those who went to her office for services with her professionalism and positive, friendly attitude.

Ms. Walter, who died in a car accident Sunday morning on U.S. 285 just south of Poncha Pass, was promoted to deputy city clerk just a year ago.

“Sonia’s death leaves a huge hole in our organization and she will be greatly missed,” Salida Mayor P.T. Wood said.

City Administrator Drew Nelson said, “We are devastated by the loss of our dear friend and colleague. Sonia was a shining light of happiness and joy,” adding that through her work she had a positive impact on Salida.

Condolences to her partner, Steve O’Neill, to her family and friends and to those with whom she worked at the city.

Thanks for the park

Thanks to Salida’s Holiday Park Sisterhood for their efforts over the past 15 years to organize and supervise the popular Christmas tree display at Riverside Park.

Started in the late 1980s by sisters Dea Maltby and Sandy Lyles to honor their mother, and originally displayed at the SteamPlant, Holiday Park has become a Salida tradition right along with Christmas Mountain.

Over the years Holiday Park has grown to 90-plus trees, some from families honoring loved ones, others from organizations and businesses extending Christmas cheer. In addition, the display has generated more than $12,000 in scholarships for local high school graduates.

Organizers said the display has grown to the point where it needs to be taken over by a larger group with more manpower and resources.

Here’s hoping a new group steps forward to continue the Holiday Park tradition.

Shiver-shiver-shiver

A salute to Scout Troop 60, to accompanying leaders and parents, for their grit at a year-end snow cave campout at 10,700 feet in subzero temperatures. The rest of us can only shiver ... .

— MJB