I grieve the loss of any American service member in war or peace, but the death of Spec. Michelle Witmer has all the appearance of another Jessica Lynch stage production.
You’ll recall that it was initially rumored that Lynch “fought until she ran out of ammo” and based on her actions, was being considered for the Medal of Honor. Truth is, she never fired a shot, instead, she admitted that she put her hands over her head and started praying.
As well, no heroics were claimed by or on behalf of her friend and fellow POW, Shoshana Johnson. Both would be awarded the Bronze Star.
They are both alive today because of another soldier… a male who’s name won’t be remembered. No movies have been made about him; he isn’t writing books or making speeches.
Sgt. Donald Walters, a real hero of the ambush of the 507th Maintenance Company at An Nasiriyah, is dead.
Just a few days ago, Walters’ Bronze Star was upgraded to the Silver Star for his heroic stand against a numerically superior and fanatical enemy. Alone, he fought to the last bullet, providing covering fire so his comrades could escape. His body was found with several small arms and knife wounds. It’s called close combat.
So eager was the Pentagon to bestow awards on the basis of political correctness and to justify having women in combat zones, Walter’s heroics were at first attributed to PFC Lynch. But, had it not been for Sgt. Walters’ family’s persistent efforts over the last year to make his story known, his gallantry would never have been properly acknowledged.
Clearly, he was the wrong gender.
Now it’s happening all over again with the Spec. Walters, who was shot and killed last week in Iraq when her Humvee was ambushed.
Walters has been posthumously awarded the Bronze Star. The commanding general of Wisconsin National Guard, quoted a friend of Walter’s in Iraq who said “Witmer tried to defend herself and her fellow soldiers when they were ambushed."
“Tried to defend herself?” That rates the nation's sixth highest valor award? My guess is that the citation that accompanied her award has been thoroughly massaged by Army PR specialists devoted to the agenda of social engineering.
When the real facts eventually emerge they won’t be “heroic,” but merely the sad truth of a young American who died in a war zone. To rewrite her last moments for a political agenda is cynical, disrespectful and minimizes her sacrifice.
She died in service to her country… that should be enough to honor her memory.
Bound and hooded, Fabrizio Quattrocchi, one of four Italian security guards abducted earlier this week, was shot dead yesterday by barbarian, raghead cowards.
Italian Foreign Minister Franco Frattini, who viewed a video recording of the killing, said the kidnappers put a gun to his head and "Quattrocchi tried to take off his hood and shouted: 'Now I'm going to show you how an Italian dies'. And they killed him," Frattini said.
"He died a hero," he added.
He did indeed. In the face of death he was defiant. They didn't take his life, he gave it in the name of freedom for others.
And his nation stands behind him, as he stood for his nation.
While Kerry ducks out of the campaign with snowboarding vacations, shoulder surgery and meetings with phantom “foreign leaders,” Terry McAuliffe and his fellow attack rats direct the 9/11 Commission’s frontal assault on The Bush administration.
This proves that the dems have far less interest in national security, than in regaining the White House. Question their patriotism? What patriotism?
And true to form, Kerry is hiding behind the skirts of yet another female… his wife, Za Za.
The would-be First Billionaire is refusing to release her tax returns… you see, they have nothing to do with John Kerry, the war hero of Vietnam fame. It’s a privacy issue, you see.
Kerry’s tax return indicates that his major source of income in 2003 was from the sale of a painting by some Dutchman (apparently there weren’t any Frederick Remingtons available) which netted the couple about $375,000. Some time back they bought the painting for one mil… quite a purchase for a man with a $150,000 salary.
Flashback: Being such a man of means, Kerry "loaned" his campaign $6.4 million by mortgaging "his" share of a home he jointly owns with his wife and which Za Za ponied up the cash for nine years ago. At that time Kerry’s financial disclosure indicated his personal net worth was less than mine… and trust me, that ain’t nuthin’ to brag about.
Interest on the loan is $200,000; and as we know, John-John makes a nifty buck-fifty. Do the math.
And, America… this is the man who begrudges you your tax break, criticizes self-made millionaires such as GW and Dick Cheney, and has promised that if elected he’ll raise taxes by $900 million.
This alone is reason enough to disqualify him from the Oval Office…. That and he doesn’t seem to own a dog. But watch for one to show up say in September or October… sorta like the late “Buddy” Clinton.
Jimmy Breslin Accused of Faking Interview
NEW YORK - (AP) The head of a conservative lobbying group accused Newsday columnist Jimmy Breslin of making up quotes attributed to him in Wednesday's column. The newspaper's editor said Breslin, a Pulitzer Prize winner, told him the quotes came from a 1992 interview, and that it would have been better if the columnist had made that clear.
The Rev. Louis Sheldon, chairman of the Traditional Values Coalition, said he has "never met Jimmy Breslin, never had the conversation described in his column today and never said those sentences to anyone in my life."
Shades of lying liberals like reporter Jason Blair, plagiarist-historians like Doris Kearns Goodwin and Stephen Ambrose... plagiarist-preachers like Michael "Martin Luther" King, lying race baiters like Jesse Jackson ("Martin Luther King died in my arms")... and on and on.
Ever wonder why liberals... especially those in the media, book publishing, academia, entertainment, the environmental movement, politics, social movements, the law and medicine... find it necessary to lie? Worse... they lie so poorly that it infuriates anyone with an IQ in excess of room temp.
The Liar in Chief: "Lemme say this one more time. I never had sex with that woman... Ms. Lewinsky."
Gore--“I carried an M-16. . . . I pulled my turn on the perimeter at night and walked through the elephant grass, and I was fired upon.” In 1988, Gore told the Washington Post: “I was shot at. . . . I spent most of my time in the field.”
I took the initiative in creating the Internet.”
February 20, 2000: Gore said he has “always, always, always” supported Roe v. Wade.
1977--Rep. Gore voted for the Hyde Amendment, which says that abortion “takes the life of an unborn child who is a living human being.”
Janet Reno -- "I am not gay."
Clinton-- "I didn't inhale."
Hillary Clinton-- I tried to enlist in the Marine Corps in 1975; they turned me down because I was a woman."
Little Dick Gephardt--"My dad was a milk truck driver, a proud member of the Teamsters. He always told me his union's bargaining power made it possible for him to put food on our table."
Jean Francois Kerry -- "I never fall."
A half truth is a whole lie.
Faithful reader Ghostrider just pointed out that JFKerry's MTV appearance... mirrored Clinton's in '92 and '96. He opined that "It makes sense...young people, usually being immature, are more liberal...and eMpTytV caters to a young audience. Kerry make a complete ass of himself though. I'm not sure where he finds "social anger" in Ludacris rhymes or in lyrics like, "My milkshake brings all the boys to my yard."
Yes, politicians playing up to cultural enclaves has become increasingly depressing from the standpoint of dignity and statesmanship.... but I suppose a certain amount of baby-kissing and pancake-flipping has become necessary.
It has come to this, I suppose, because elected federal officials are greatly removed from the average citizen... kind of like professional athletes. The higher up the food chain, the less chance you’ll ever met one. Ever shake hands with your senator? Ever met a president or a cabinet member?
Nope… like the rich, they are far different than you and me, that’s the reason they seek TV appearances on which they play to the lemmings… to show they are really good guys---some are, most aren’t.
Jack Kennedy refused to wear a top hat at his inauguration because he was haunted by the unfortunate image of “Silent” Cal Coolidge in an Indian war bonnet. Jack didn’t need to pander… he was the epitome of political cool; a war hero who almost never mentioned it, a rich guy who seemed very approachable, the most powerful leader in the world with toddlers in his office, surrounded by dogs, ponies and a huge family. The trappings of wealth and privilege seem to fade to the background.
No one else has ever been able to pull that off with such jenesaisquoi, as Mr. Kerry would say.
Since Jack’s time, politicians trying to lure younger voters to their cause have done so through TV.... RMN appeared on "Laugh-in" in '68. He said... "Sock it to me?" in his best Nixon.
I think it did soften Nixon a bit... showed a sense of humor that he probably didn't really have, so it worked at some level.
Clinton's appearances worked on MTV because the 'utes correctly saw him as not much different than they. They actually got a future president of the United States to answer the question... "Boxers or briefs?" AND ... as I recall.. the questioner was an attractive young lady... so the MTV crowd knew he wasn't far from Beavis and Butthead or them.
They saw Bubba correctly as just a fellow senior cutting classes with beer in his El Camino, but wearing a suit.
He sought the black vote in the same way… by playing the sax on TV (with sunglasses --since he would be the future first black president) while Arsenio swooned and salivated.
Even algore (and GW) showed a bit of self-deprecation on the Letterman show... and after the 2000 debacle, Al was actually very funny in a skit about it on SNL…. But then what did he have to lose?
Yep, politicians today are increasingly defined by television producers. Many seem to be able to go a bit over the top and get away with it and gain a bit of good will for themselves.
Jean Francois Kerry, on the other hand, is absolutely devoid of any "common" traits of humor, a nod and a wink to ones position and stature, or a good nature that the others have displayed.
The real John Kerry claims he “never falls” when skiing, and called one of his Secret Service agents a “son-of-a-bitch” for running into him. These are men who would take a bullet for Kerry. If he treats he protectors in such an abominable way, what does he think of us?
Many weeks ago a campaign audience member wearing a cap with "X" on it asked Kerry what the "cultural significance of my cap is." Kerry pretended he didn't hear the question, then hummed and hawed and then said, "You mean that it's Latin for the number 10?" Finally, the crowd began to laugh and someone told him it stood for Malcolm X. Ever the opportunist, Kerry immediately launched into an obviously insincere polemic about what an inspiration "Malcolm" was to him.
A short time later, the blatant panderer probably offended every black voter in the nation by saying that he would hope to be known as the "second black president, after Bill Clinton."
It got worse on the MTV interview (sic) in which he claimed to be a big fan of rap music.... no one over the age of 30 bought his patronizing act and those under don't vote anyway.
Net gain for John F'ing Kerry..... .01% from a group he'll win anyway, just as Ghostrider suggests.
The man is an empty suit.... if he had a mustard seed of the real JFK’s wit, charm and savvy, Kerry would have said he didn’t really understand rap and hip hop because he has little knowledge of the black culture that produces it. He would have said, “I prefer to listen to classical guitar music, besides, like many of you I am too old to understand the lyrics.”
Net gain... 10% from moderates and undecideds.
Indeed, Kerry is Ludacris........
Last week I traveled to Texas for what I’m sure will become an annual event… a pilgrimage, actually.
My friends Don and Lynette Pettigrew have established something truly unique in their community of Gainesville Texas. It’s a mix of Southern hospitality, the warm of small towm America, heart-felt patriotism and unabashed respect for America’s greatest heroes.
They call it the Medal of Honor Host City Program and they hope to spread the program to other cities across the country. There, our young people can meet the best of America... living national treasures.
Just the other day John Francois Kerry was asked (on MTV no less) who he thought are the inspirational figures for today’s youth. “Boy, that’s a good question,” he said. “…it’s just a different time right now. My daughters …tell me that a lot of young people just don’t have that feeling right now.”
Essentially, Kerry was saying we have no heroes.
As usual… he was wrong, and he wasn’t in Gainesville last week where hundreds of school children and local residents were inspired by the visit of seven Medal of Honor recipients. Young and old, they stood in line for an hour waiting to get autographs and have their pictures taken with men whose physical courage, sacrifice and valor almost defy belief.
A pioneering Marine Corps fighter pilot, Gen. Robert E. Galer was awarded the Medal of Honor in 1942 for his conspicuous heroism and courage in the skies over Guadalcanal. In approximately two and a half months of sustained combat, then Maj. Galer was shot down three times while destroying 11 enemy planes. He ended the war with 14 confirmed kills and four probables.
In addition to the Medal of Honor, he hold’s the nation’s second highest award… the Navy Cross.
Despite his 90 years, Gen. Galer remains active and frequently attends Medal of Honor functions.
Ten years after Galer’s heroics, a young Marine platoon leader, George O’Brien, lead his men over open terrain under withering Communist fire to retake a strategic hill in Korea. There they engaged a well-entrenched enemy in vicious close combat.
O’Brien immediately organized for the expected counterattack, refusing medical treatment for his several wounds. Only after his position was relived by another platoon, his dead accounted for and his wounded treated, O’Brien lead his men off the hill.
O’Brien and his wife still live in Texas an preside over of family that includes 13 grandchildren.
Clarence Sasser is a quiet man with a ready smile and a bright red Corvette. His tour of Vietnam lasted less than two months.
An Army medic, Sasser reacted instantly when his unit was ambushed by murderous fire from several concealed enemy position. In the first few minutes of the action, he repeatedly rushed about the killing ground, treating and helping the wounded to safety. Wounded by shell fragments, he refused medical attention and continued to seek out the wounded.
Despite immobilizing wounds to his legs, Sasser dragged himself through the mud toward another soldier 100 meters away, treated him, and proceeded on to encourage another group of soldiers to crawl 200 meters to relative safety. There he attended their wounds for five hours until they were evacuated.
Sasser is now retired from the Department of Veterans' Affairs.
Don Ballard was also in Vietnam in 1968 to save lives. The Marine unit he was with was ambushed. Ballard repeatedly exposed himself to hostile fire to pull wounded Marines to a safer location and treat them. Later, this location was engulfed in a crossfire between the Marines and the enemy. An enemy hand grenade landed amongst the wounded. Ballard picked it up and threw it back. Moments later, another grenade landed near him. This time he didn't have enough time to pick it up, so Ballard selflessly threw his body onto the grenade in order to protect his patients.
When he grenade failed to detonate, Ballard reached underneath him to grasp the grenade, rolled over, and in the same motion threw the grenade away. A split second later, witnesses say, the grenade exploded in midair, but out of harm’s way.
It was instinct. Ballard said, "It was the right time to be in the wrong place."
Ballard left the Navy in 1970 and received a reserve commission in the medical branch of the Kansas National Guard from which he retired at the rank of colonel.
Now a businessman in Kansas City, Ballard and is involved in numerous veterans activities and issues.
David McNerney followed a similar path in the military. After a hitch in the Navy, he enlisted in the army and was nearing retirement age when he entered the fight of his life against a North Vietnamese battalion in 1967.
A first sergeant, McNerney was rushing to a potential breach in his unit defense when he was blown off his feet by an enemy grenade when his company was ambushed. He quickly recovered, and assaulted and destroyed an enemy machine gun position.
He was seemingly everywhere for the next several hours. Informed that his company commander and a junior officer had been killed, he assumed command of the company and immediately called in artillery fire, often within 20 meters of his own lines. At one point he climbed a tree to attach an identification panel so friendly aircraft could register the beleaguered company’s location.
Under sustained enemy fire, he next moved beyond friendly lines to gather explosives which he employed to clear a helicopter landing zone from the heavy surrounding vegetation. This enabled the successive air evacuation of the numerous wounded.
Disregarding his own wounds, 1stSgt. McNerney remained in command of the company until he was relived the following day.
Only two years later McNerney retired and went on to a career as a U.S. Customs Department inspector .
Drew Dix reminds one of Sam Elliot and it’s easy to understand why he is regarded as an ultimate professional in the ranks of America’s special operations community.
Only 25 years old, Dix was assigned to lead team of indigenous Vietnamese, Nung and ethic Chinese troops in secret operations against the Viet Cong and North Vietnamese. His job was intelligence gathering… he did so by entering hostile territory and capturing enemy soldiers---sometimes at the rate of 40 a month.
It was on such an operation that his base of operation was attacked by hundreds of NVA in the opening moments of the 1968 Tet Offensive. Dix and his men had to fight their way back into the city in order to organize a defense. For 56 incredible hours, Dix and his small band, outnumber 30 to one, fought tenaciously and successfully.
SSgt. Dix captured 20 prisoners, including a high ranking Viet Cong official. He then attacked enemy troops who had entered the residence of the Deputy Province Chief and was successful in rescuing the official's wife and children. His personal heroism resulted in 14 confirmed Viet Cong killed in action and possibly 25 more, the capture of 20 prisoners, 15 weapons, and the rescue of the 14 United States and free world civilians. Dix’s gripping account of the battle can be found in “Rescue of River City” and ordered directly from him at http://www.homeofheroes.com/drewdix/credits.html
He will personally sign your copy.
Mike Thornton hasn’t written a book but his exploits have been mentioned in 38 others.
Thornton’s was the last Medal of Honor action of the Vietnam War. A Navy SEAL, he risked his life to rescue his wounded team leader, Lt. Thomas R. Norris who had been submitted for the Medal of Honor for his own heroic actions just six months earlier.
Deep within enemy territory, Thornton, Norris and three Vietnamese SEALS were attacked and surrounded by as many as 150 North Vietnamese. During a vicious firefight, Norris was critically wounded in the head. Told by one of the South Vietnamese that Norris was dead, Thornton immediately ran to his last known position, found him, slung him over his shoulder and began to run toward their only escape route… the ocean.
Thornton carried his officer into the water, then realized another of his team was wounded and couldn’t swim. He told the man to hang on to him as he breaststroked toward open water.
Against all odds, the small five-man group was picked up by a destroyer after three hours.
Norris survived to be present when Thornton was presented the Medal of Honor in 1973, and the favor was returned by Thornton when Norris received the Medal of Honor in 1976.
Retired from the Navy, Thornton is a businessman in Dallas and Georgia.