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Global gathering for America

A homegrown group got some international help Friday in its weekly patriotic display on Bayshore Boulevard. The colors of flags from countries worldwide mixed with the red, white and blue of U.S. banners as more than 60 international coalition members from MacDill Air Force Base joined in the Bayshore Patriots' flag-waving tradition. After helping the group, whose proclaimed purpose is to support the United States and promote patriotism, each coalition member met Gen. John Abizaid, commander of U.S. Central Command at MacDill.

More than 60 members of the international coalition based at MacDill Air Force Base wave the flags of their native countries Friday along Bayshore Boulevard, where the Bayshore Patriots have been waving U.S. flags weekly since Sept. 11, 2001.

Gen. John Abizaid, commander of U.S. Central Command, right, shakes hands with Maj. Anwar Javed of the Pakistani army during a flag-waving event Friday on Bayshore Boulevard. The general greeted each member of the international coalition.

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