Jump to content
Washington Football Team Logo

Which is it?


Recommended Posts

Surprised some of you aren't all over this. By the way, I agree with the Col. Surprise, surprise;

Using Jessica Lynch


Posted: August 26, 2003

1:00 a.m. Eastern

© 2003 David H. Hackworth

Jessica Lynch recently was awarded a Bronze Star Medal, a Purple Heart and the POW Medal. The BSM citation reads: "For exemplary courage under fire during combat operations to liberate Iraq, in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom. Private First Class Lynch's bravery and heart persevered while surviving in the ambush and captivity in An Nasiriya."

A BSM for "bravery" and "surviving in the ambush and captivity"!

The Army's official After-Action Report said she was in a vehicle that crashed while hauling butt trying to escape an enemy ambush. She was knocked unconscious and woke up at a nearby Iraqi hospital receiving special attention from some super-caring Iraqi doctors and nurses.

This was probably the first incident in U.S. military history in which an American soldier was awarded our country's fourth-highest ground-fighting award for being conked out and off the air throughout a fight.

BSMs citing bravery typically read: "Moving his machine gun to a forward vantage point, he covered the advance of the infantry with a heavy volume of effective fire. Repeatedly exposing himself to a devastating small-arms automatic weapons and mortar barrage ..." Or: "He voluntarily acted as point man and ... when the platoon was fired upon ... charged the enemy position ... Through his courage, determination and devotion to duty, he saved his patrol from suffering casualties and captured a prisoner who later provided important information."

It's no big surprise that I've been bombarded by thousands of angry e-mails from vets protesting this assault on our country's sacred award system.

"She wasn't wounded in action, nor did she do anything to deserve a Bronze Star," writes Arch McNeill. "We have hundreds of valiant soldiers here in the 3rd Division who far more deserve more than she received but in many cases didn't receive anything."

"I'm going to send all my awards back to the president and tell him where he can shove them," says a genuine war hero, Jack Speed, a former Army Raider.

Trust me, the troops – past and present – are unhappy.

So I rang the Pentagon and asked Col. Jeff Keane, "Why the bravery bit?" Finally, when the standard Army propaganda drill wasn't going down, Keane told me, " It was for her bravery in the hospital."

But all this flimflam wasn't Jessica's doing. She was used right from the first – a frail prop in the Pentagon's public-relations campaign to sell the war to the American people and to encourage their daughters to join up and be heroes.

To keep the truth under wraps, the Army concocted another whopper: "She suffers from amnesia."

A senior officer from V Corps (the unit that eventually awarded her the BSM), who has asked to remain anonymous, comments that there was "tremendous pressure right from the get-go to award Pvt. Lynch a Silver Star. But the high brass here concluded, 'There was no evidence of heroism on her part,' and told the pushers to back off."

But when the propagandists conned the highly respected Washington Post into reporting on how Lynch was shot and stabbed but continued to kill Iraqis until her last round was spent, heroic stuff that would make Audie Murphy look like a slacker – which the Post then took several months to correct – other media were fast to pick up the fairy tale, and the Army was besieged by proud Americans demanding that Jessica be awarded the Medal of Honor.

Of course, many of us now know that a high-priced flack in Tommy Frank's headquarters came up with this tall tale and then duped the Post.

According to retired Marine Lt. Col. Roger Charles: "There's nothing they won't stoop to spin. The Army needed a female hero to boost female recruiting and PR efforts, so they went and invented one."

And that's the root of the problem. The elevation of Jessica to Joan of Arc status is to recruit more women, even though thousands of female soldiers couldn't deploy with their units to Iraq because of pregnancy, no sitters for single moms' multiple kids and other problems.

And poor Jessica Lynch has become the unwitting poster girl for an Army of One that's fast becoming an Army of Two – since apparently more than half of the women deployed to Iraq are now pregnant.

Then this;

Jessica Lynch Honorably Discharged From Army

Wednesday, August 27, 2003

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Jessica Lynch (search), the former prisoner of war who became a national hero when special forces rescued her from an Iraqi hospital, has been honorably discharged from the U.S. Army, her lawyer said Wednesday.

"As of the now, she is not a member of the military anymore," Stephen Goodwin of Charleston said.

The medical discharge clears the way for Lynch to pursue possible book or movie deals about her ordeal, Goodwin said. Though she has not spoken publicly about her time in Iraq, Lynch has said through a spokesman that she plans to tell her story in a book to be published by the end of the year.

"Like any citizen, she is now free to enter into a contract," Goodwin said.

Lynch, 20, suffered multiple broken bones and other injuries when her 507th Maintenance Company (search) was ambushed in the southern Iraqi city of Nasiriyah on March 23.

Her rescue on April 1 made a celebrity out of Lynch, who joined the Army to get an education and become a kindergarten teacher.

She returned home last month to a hero's welcome after a long stay at Walter Reed Army Medical Center (search) in the nation's capital. She revisited the hospital for the first time last week for a checkup, and was granted the discharge during that trip.

Lynch will continue physical therapy at Camden-Clark Memorial Hospital in Parkersburg. She can walk with crutches, but is still recovering.

She hopes to improve enough to travel to Colorado in November to celebrate Thanksgiving with her fiance, Army Sgt. Ruben Contreras Jr., and his family.

Goodwin said Lynch had not signed a book deal with anyone as of Wednesday, although Pulitzer Prize-winning author and former New York Times reporter Rick Bragg (search) has been a guest at the Lynch home to do research. The Times has reported Bragg will be paid $1 million to tell Lynch's story.

NBC plans a TV movie starring Laura Regan (search) that has been developed without Lynch's authorization, while CBS abandoned its plans for a Lynch movie.

Goodwin said he wasn't sure if Lynch is receiving medical disability. Calls to the U.S. Army were not immediately returned Wednesday.

I must say, from the scoop I got at first, I was confident she was at least beaten while a POW, but as it stands now, she really didn't do a whole lot, certainly nothing to get a Bronze Star. The killer in this story was when she all of a sudden got "amnesia" an dcouldn't remember anything, but now she's gonna tell her story in a book.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

This is all traceable back to a disturbing trend I've watched for some time, the cheapening of the word "hero".

I was brought up to think that "hero" connoted some form of selflessness and sacrifice. Mother Theresa was a hero. The firefighters who went rushing up into the soon-to-be collapsing WTC were heroes. The man who died yesterday in the high desert area saving a young girl from a car caught in a flash flood was a hero.

But consider who else we call heroes. Scott O'Grady was shot down over Bosnia and managed to elude capture for several days before being rescued, all to much fanfare. He was decorated by President Clinton himself, and was labeled a hero. But why? The guy did nothing but save his own skin. Did he act bravely and keep his composure? Of course. But all of his efforts and bravery went to his own benefit.

That's the key distinction to me, and I'd liken Jessica Lynch more closely to O'Grady than to any real hero.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

This does not surprise me at all. During the first Gulf War, awards were being passed out like candy at Halloween. My CO had the XO put him in for a silver star and he got it (he also was kicked out when we got back for adultry) As long as you had a buddy with a little rank and they could write up a nice story for the award, then you got it. We tried to give awards to people in the unit that deserved them but were told they we couldn't because our "allotment" had been used, after further checking, they had been used on the Commander, XO, 1st shirt, CWO's and Lt's. They were uning them as a way to pad their files.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Originally posted by bigzak25

I'm sure this girl got raped and beaten time and time again. I think people need to give her a break.

Do you know this or are you speculating?

I hadn't heard anything like this at all.

For the most part, I agree with the past vets, it looks like the PR machine is just creating a feel good story in what is fast becoming an unpopular war.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Yes of course I'm speculating. The girl has 'amnesia'. Riiight.

She and her family wouldn't want to put this out for all the world to know. Not now while it's so fresh anyway. But I think we are all aware of the total disregard for women over there...now put a young attractive american woman soldier in there hands and what do you thinks gonna happen....

Link to comment
Share on other sites


This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.
  • Create New...