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Where Are All The Heroes?

Posted by Bruce Carroll at 7:27 am - March 2, 2006.
Filed under: General,War On Terror

I’m on a “hero kick” lately. Check out these two posts to see what I mean.

Now for my biggest and angriest pet peeve in this vein: We do not have any heroes in the War on Terror, and we need them.

The area where the Bush Administration has fallen very very short in my eyes is truly making this war have meaning for those of us on the homefront. The only families feeling sacrifice in the WoT are those who have relatives in Afghanistan, Iraq, the Phillipines and all around the world where we are chasing down those who want to kill Americans and destroy Western civilization.

Part of the “war on the homefront” is having heroes. We need them, they are important. So far our only true heroes since 9/11 are the brave men and women from Flight 93 and the first responders in New York City following the WTC attacks.

But I know that there are many, many more heroes that are fighting on the ground in foreign lands and also in front of computers and maps at the NSA or CIA helping to stop attacks from taking place in the USA.

We need to hear about them!! I will do my part and ask you all to help me. Please, if you know of any examples that are allowed to be talked about… send them here.

To Those Who Make Decisions In Washington: You need to trust the American people and tell us about our nation’s successes in the War on Terror. The news media is not responsibly reporting this war. You need to step up to the plate. Many Americans in and out of uniform have lost their lives — they deserve better treatment than our news media is giving to this war. President Bush — that is your job to fix. Tell us who our heroes are.

-Bruce (GayPatriot)

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34 Comments

  1. Michael Yon writes stories about them, but it is a shame the media and Pentagon don’t give us more.

    This story http://www.michaelyon-online.com/wp/gates-of-fire.htm makes me believe LTC Kurilla is a hero, and he isn’t the only one.

    The sad thing is if you asked people about things our men and women have done in Iraq, they likely will mention Abu Graib long before they mention people like Kurilla.

    Comment by Just Me — March 2, 2006 @ 8:15 am - March 2, 2006

  2. No one with whom I have ever spoken has ever said Calley was anything more than an aberration. Nor has anyone ever said to me that Abu Ghraib was typical of G.I. activity.

    While we might disagree about government policies, I know of no one who has anything less than respect for the quality of men and women who are serving.

    Everyone in uniform is a hero.

    Comment by Gene — March 2, 2006 @ 11:20 am - March 2, 2006

  3. Ummm, Dan? Casey Sheehan and the seven men who died with him on the mission to rescue Americans under attack on that Palm Sunday 2004… all eight are heroes of the first order. They are: Spc. Robert R. Arsiaga, Spc. Ahmed Cason, Sgt. Yihjyh L. “Eddie” Chen, Spc. Stephen D. Hiller, Spc. Israel Garza, Cpl. Forest J. Jostes, Sgt. Michael W. Mitchell and Spc. Casey Sheehan.

    You can read more about that day at Black5’s blog >http://www.blackfive.net/main/2005/08/army_specialist.html

    When people try to argue that sports celebrities are heroes… it’s crazy. These men are truly heroes. Thanks for the post.

    Comment by Michigan-Matt — March 2, 2006 @ 11:28 am - March 2, 2006

  4. There are common heroes in this war who are civilians working here within our borders. Some of them are working at the NSA, wire-tapping foreign terrorists who are talking to people living among us and plotting the next attack. Unfortunately, for some reason, the press and the rest of the Left see them as demons instead.
    It’s politics, Bruce. One man’s hero is another man’s Swiftie.

    Comment by ColoradoPatriot — March 2, 2006 @ 12:08 pm - March 2, 2006

  5. #0 – Good one, Bruce. Thanks. In today’s world, it is part of the Bush Administration’s job.

    #2 – “While we might disagree about government policies, I know of no one who has anything less than respect for the quality of men and women who are serving… No one…has ever said Calley was anything more than an aberration. Nor has anyone ever said to me that Abu Ghraib was typical of G.I. activity.”

    Gene, 2 words for you: John Kerry. Check out http://www.wintersolider.com – and his 2005-2006 statements about U.S. soldiers supposedly “terrorizing” (I think that was his word?) Iraqi civilians.

    Comment by Calarato — March 2, 2006 @ 12:35 pm - March 2, 2006

  6. Two of my nominees would be the Major from the Washington National Guard who was cradling that mortally wounded little girl in his arms – that hit the papers for a few days. There was also a young sergeant, 23? or so, who was so good at working with local leaders that they found a scrap of land and three sheep so that he could be designated a sheikh. His liaison work saved an unknown number of lives.

    Comment by Jim — March 2, 2006 @ 12:35 pm - March 2, 2006

  7. SFC Paul R. Smith, US Army Infantry, and Medal of Honor winner. This fine young man and my brother were buddies in NCO school, and while we are all saddened by his sacrifice, it’s always nice to know that there are indeed people in this world with balls of fucking steel!

    Hoo-RAH!!!!

    http://www.army.mil/medalofhonor/smith/

    – sorry I couldn’t figure out how to hyperlink this..

    Eric in Hollywood

    Comment by HollywoodNeoCon — March 2, 2006 @ 1:02 pm - March 2, 2006

  8. You know Bruce, you are not the first one to comment on this. If you want to find some Heroes, you don’t have to look farther than the reporting of lthe Mudvillegazzette blog. You should also read Blackfive’s blog and look under the category titled “someone you should know.

    I read these ever day:

    http://www.mudvillegazette.com/

    http://www.blackfive.net/

    http://www.lt-smash.us/

    There are others on my website, but if you want the mothership of milblogs, check out the Mudville Gazzette first.

    Comment by Patrick (Gryph) — March 2, 2006 @ 1:48 pm - March 2, 2006

  9. #5 – Misspelled link, sorry – Should be: http://www.wintersoldier.com

    Comment by Calarato — March 2, 2006 @ 2:03 pm - March 2, 2006

  10. I’m glad you’ve alighted onto some unsung heroes. I personally know of two who have fought in Iraq, one injured, the other killed. Their heroic stories do need telling.

    Part of the problem is that the press cannot get beyond the Green Zone. It’s beyond hazardous, it’s lethal. ABC’s reporters demonstrated that fact. This fact alone underscores just how little has been accomplished in Iraq, despite heroic service, $250 billion, but no war plan. Rumsfeld should be replaced two years ago, and frankly, we should have never started this excursion in the first. Now that we’re entrenched, we need an exit plan. Even that doesn’t exist. Our personnel have done extraordinarily under extreme duress. To make them do even more is just plain insane.

    Comment by Stephen — March 2, 2006 @ 3:20 pm - March 2, 2006

  11. Thanks, Cal. Went to wintersoldier. The URL displayed: http://ice.he.net/~freepnet/kerry/ . Who are these people?

    –supposedly “terrorizing” (I think that was his word?) Iraqi civilians.–

    In context of this discussion, “terrorizing” is a bit vague. We’ve seen embedded reporters and cameramen videoing night raids. In the course of the mission, of course people are going to feel terror.

    G.I. Joe is a tool, as he/she must be, in these situations. They’re following difficult orders, but it is the mission which is the metaphorical terrorist, not the grunts.

    Kerry saw active duty; I can’t begin to imagine what he and those just a couple of years younger than I experienced–I was on active duty during the “Cold War.” I think a bit more context is needed before a final judgment can be made.

    Comment by Gene — March 2, 2006 @ 3:21 pm - March 2, 2006

  12. http://tinyurl.com/fvk68

    For pictures of liberals “supporting the troops,” see http://www.zombietime.com

    Comment by rightwingprof — March 2, 2006 @ 4:17 pm - March 2, 2006

  13. Kerry saw active duty; I can’t begin to imagine what he and those just a couple of years younger than I experienced–I was on active duty during the “Cold War.” I think a bit more context is needed before a final judgment can be made.

    The judgment was made years ago after full investigations. Kerry’s Jane Fonda crap was just that. Most of those testifying had either seen no action or had never been in the military. The wintersoldier hearings were all lies, meant only to demean America and enable Ho Chi Minh.

    If you’re familiar with the Constitution, specifically Article II, Section 2, that’s treason.

    Comment by rightwingprof — March 2, 2006 @ 4:43 pm - March 2, 2006

  14. It is sad that we have to rely totally on independent bloggers–like you guys–to do this noble work. The White House should be taking point on this, but seems to be distracted with one million other things right now.

    Thanks Bruce for your part in righting this wrong.

    Comment by Scott — March 2, 2006 @ 6:25 pm - March 2, 2006

  15. #11 – Thanks, Gene. I don’t know who that website host is, but:

    (1) Kerry’s actual ground duty in Vietnam lasted all of four months, and quite provably involved no secret missions to Cambodia, as Kerry has (falsely) tried to claim it did many times over the years;

    (2) it is undeniable that Kerry’s false Congress testimony in 1971 (and subsequent ugly activities with VVAW) was a public sensation, and likely played a large role in launching the whole “Vietnam vets as baby killers” myth;

    (3) it is undeniable that tape recordings of Kerry’s false Congressional testimony (“razing villages”, “army of Genghis Khan”) were played to U.S. POWs in the “Hanoi Hilton”, sometimes while they were being tortured – because decorated POWs have testified to that effect;

    (4) Kerry has never apologized for any of the above, despite being asked to by decorated POWs on many occasions.

    I know it’s shocking. I was shocked at first, when I learned it. (Remember, I was a hardcore Democrat for 16-18 years, before switching to Independent a few years ago.)

    As for Kerry’s comments about U.S. soldiers terrorizing the Iraqi population in dead of night – do a Google on “Kerry terrorizing dead of night Iraqis” and check the first couple links – I got video clips and interview transcripts from ExposeTheLeft.com and from James Taranto (Best of the Web) – I am at a highly limited computer where I can’t paste them myself right now, sorry.

    Comment by Calarato — March 2, 2006 @ 7:17 pm - March 2, 2006

  16. OK, Cal, here’s the “money quote” from the transcript on the first video:

    “And there is no reason, Bob, that young American soldiers need to be going into the homes of Iraqis in the dead of night, terrorizing kids and children, you know…”

    Immediately before the above quote the transcript reads: “You’ve got to begin to transfer authority to the Iraqis.” Immediately, on the video clip, Kerry goes on to say, “The Iraqis should be doing that.”

    Doesn’t this support the point of separating the man from the mission? In this quote Kerry is supporting G.I.s, acknowledging they are doing their duty while at the same time it shouldn’t be a mission for them.

    Thanks for that Google tip.

    Comment by Gene — March 2, 2006 @ 7:42 pm - March 2, 2006

  17. OK, Gene, here we go.

    First, for Kerry to say “You’ve got to begin to transfer authority to the Iraqis” on that date – December 2005 – was crazy, because our troops have been transferring authority to Iraqis steadily since 2004 – beginning with transfer of sovereignty in June 2004, followed by 3 elections in 2005 where the Iraqi forces they’re training have done progressively more of the security, and formal base turnovers to the native government throughout 2005 and 2006.

    So, here we see Kerry either being negligently ignorant of – or else, implicitly putting down the performance of – the incredible job that our troops have been doing all this time.

    Next: Kerry characterized “young American soldiers” as “going into the homes of Iraqis in the dead of night, terrorizing kids and children” with no context (and, no evidence!). In other words: As if our young people are psychopaths who don’t care; or as if terrorization is what they set out to do. I’m sorry Gene, that is outrageous.

    I will admit, part of what makes it “extra” outrageous coming from Kerry’s mouth, is the wider context of (or “resonance” with) Kerry’s earlier career in putting down the U.S. military.

    First, again, Kerry is essentially calling U.S. soldiers terrorists – a charge increasingly heard (only) in the fever swamps of the furthest Left, e.g. Daily Kos – where Kerry is now an official contributer, by the way.

    Second, Kerry’s quoted words echo his false 1971 Congressional testimony (that he never apologized for) where he besmirched the U.S. military with the “army of Genghis Khan” baby-killer myth.

    Comment by Calarato — March 2, 2006 @ 8:58 pm - March 2, 2006

  18. Gotta find out who the heroes are so that Stephen and his douchebag ilk can piss on ’em.

    Comment by ThatGayConservative — March 2, 2006 @ 9:59 pm - March 2, 2006

  19. I don’t see how the white house is supposed to take the lead on identifying heroes for us. Anything presented by them will be labeled propaganda. The media and others get on Bush for failing to do a good job with the PR, and I know I’ve said this many times, but no one is going to *let* him.

    We’ve got Blackfive and Yon and Mudville Gazette. They find reports and repost them and link them and bring them to our attention.

    Comment by Synova — March 2, 2006 @ 11:22 pm - March 2, 2006

  20. And how many people (really) read blogs?

    And if the MSM won’t tell people about war strategy, plans, progress, heroes, etc… who will? (President’s role as Great Communicator, anyone?)

    Comment by Calarato — March 3, 2006 @ 1:41 am - March 3, 2006

  21. ThatGayConservative, #18, that comment was really unworthy of you. Stephen has never said anything that “pisses” on the troops.

    Criticizing the commander-in-chief for his management of the war isn’t pissing on the heroes on the battlefronts.

    Comment by Jack Allen — March 3, 2006 @ 3:37 am - March 3, 2006

  22. I think Bruce has his answer on why the MSM doesn’t report on the heroes in Iraq and Afghanistan >>because to do so, would indirectly validate the actions taken in the WOT… the press knows that if it interviews or portrays a soldier who engaged in heroic action, the solider will likely praise his commanders, his fellow soldiers, and his Commander in Chief while talking about the good of the mission.

    To get the anti-Administration scoop on body armor, the press have to go to TedKennedy… a great American hero.

    And the MSM doesn’t want that image of a soldier glorifying his actions and mission in the American psyche because it undercuts their liberal bias against this Administration, against nearly anything military, and against the notion that America –working in concert with her allies– can do good in the world.

    The rehashing of Kerry’s continuing disgraceful conduct underscores how far we have to go before we can argue the MSM needs to tell these stories of heroic action and success. This thread ought to be about heroes, not a failed Democrat candidate for President.

    And, God forbid I say this to the Kerry supporters here: Kerry was no hero. Not everybody who puts on a uniform is a hero, despite the cliché. What they DO in that uniform will determine their heroism.

    The press has a political and social agenda which parallels the liberal agenda of most higher ed administrators (like at Yale this day). Nixon and Agnew weren’t wrong: there is an elite in America that doesn’t share most of the common values of our country and are embarrassed by patriotism, duty, honor, and service to advance the good.

    That condescending elite were with us in 1776, in 1861, in 1916, in 1941, in 1968, and today. We haven’t learned how to offset their insidious influence

    Comment by Michigan-Matt — March 3, 2006 @ 8:35 am - March 3, 2006

  23. “Kerry was no hero.”

    Reliable evidence that Kerry’s medals were “fudged” or largely undeserved is extensive.

    Nonetheless, it is a topic I personally prefer NOT to argue, simply because it is a huge distraction from the more important story: the real and great damage that Kerry elected to do to the United States upon his return (that launched his career/celebrity among the far Left).

    Comment by Calarato — March 3, 2006 @ 12:44 pm - March 3, 2006

  24. But it’s so much *fun* to talk about Kerry! 😉

    You know… it’s not really the fact that there is a question about his medals. I have an Air Force Commendation medal… the citation is a brilliant work of fiction. Part of me figures out I worked hard enough… the other part figures that they were making excuses to award people evacuated from Clark and I lucked out. Sometimes it just matters if you have a commander who puts his people in for awards and one that doesn’t. Some actively look for excuses and are good at writing up recommendations and some won’t put their people up for an Acheivment award unless they are forced to because they don’t think it’s right to give that ribbon (it’s not a medal) for “came to work and kept his nose clean” which is a common practice.

    No, it’s not the medals. It’s… well, it’s what he did after, and it’s that he threw his medals away (someone elses, in fact, which I think makes it even worse) and wants to *have* them too. And it’s the fact that he (or his people) didn’t have the proper humble attitude toward having them.

    Hester, when interviewed about the Raven 42 patrol, had the attitude that they’d done their jobs and she hadn’t done anything more remarkable than anyone else. She and the squad leader got silver stars. Everyone in that action got a medal. 10 security police against a prepared ambush of 40 to 50 insurgents… three or four Americans immediately injured and put out of action. Seven Americans, led by Hester and her unit leader, completely destroyed them.

    http://www.courier-journal.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20051112/NEWS0104/511120387

    She really is my hero. I didn’t realize that Raven 42 was her first and only direct combat experience, which just makes it mindboggling.

    Comment by Synova — March 3, 2006 @ 1:38 pm - March 3, 2006

  25. Blackfive has the account of Raven 42 in his archives. I just love talking about it, and can’t help myself.

    Seven SP’s took out that whole ambush. They were trailing a semi-truck caravan, when it stopped they took off-road to get upfront. One Humvee was hit by a rocket and the soldiers wounded. The two remaining vehicles agressively moved forward into the kill zone. The medic and other female (an E-1 I think… very young) started tending to the wounded, though they also laid some suppressing fire when they recieved fire from a building. One of the 50 cal gunners was temporarily knocked out, but recovered… So mostly they had two stationary 50 cals in action, a couple tending the wounded and Hester and her squad leader *running forward* to clear trenches with grenades and machine guns, returning for more grenades and doing it again.

    The insurgents had a video camera (captured) and handcuffs to take kidnap victims… if the SP patrol hadn’t been there the drivers would have been captured for ransom or videotaped beheadings. If the two functional Humvees had fled in the face of riddiculous odds the wounded soldiers in the first Hummer would have been captured.

    It says something that I don’t know the name of the squad leader who certainly was every bit as heroic and showed just as much leadership as Hester did. It’s not really fair, is it? But… it does mean something special that she’s female.

    Comment by Synova — March 3, 2006 @ 1:51 pm - March 3, 2006

  26. And according to the Democrats’ mouthpieces Cindy Sheehan and Michael Moore, Hester and hers had no business resisting; they should have surrendered to the “freedom fighters” and been suitably punished for being Zionist agents of American imperialism.

    This sort of thing is why I laugh whenever the Dems put up a “war hero” like Kerry, or all the other “veteran” candidates they’re digging up; do they really think the American people believe them when the darlings of the DNC are people like Sheehan and Moore?

    Comment by North Dallas Thirty — March 3, 2006 @ 4:17 pm - March 3, 2006

  27. Calarato, we may not agree on DADTDH… but we do agree on #23.

    Comment by Michigan-Matt — March 3, 2006 @ 4:17 pm - March 3, 2006

  28. I think there is a very strong aversion to making a hero of someone because they were very good at killing people.

    Sorta-kinda like that guy in SF not wanting the IOWA docked there as a museum where all the impressionable children could see what amounted to a big gun looming over the shoreline, that it wasn’t really proper to glorify something that, at heart, has the singular purpose of killing people.

    Comment by Synova — March 3, 2006 @ 6:20 pm - March 3, 2006

  29. Point taken, Synova. But what tends to be rewarded in actuality is not people who are necessarily good at killing to kill, but to protect or save the lives of others.

    And, honestly, the Iowa is the same way. Yes, it’s a giant and effective killing machine. But if it and its sister ships hadn’t done what they did, millions more would be dead, thanks to the “Greater East Asia Co-Prosperity Sphere” and other such things.

    Comment by North Dallas Thirty — March 3, 2006 @ 7:50 pm - March 3, 2006

  30. “But I know that there are many, many more heroes . . . ” OK, smart guy, name them.

    Comment by johnny z — March 4, 2006 @ 12:30 am - March 4, 2006

  31. #24 – And, Synova – It’s also that Kerry:

    – Gave fraudulent testimony to Congress in 1971 along the lines of the “Vietnam baby killer” myth, launching his public career.

    – Suborned fraudulent testimony in his VVAW “Winter Soldier Investigation” to further the above.

    – Visited the North Vietnamese delegation to the Paris peace talks while still a member of the military Reserves, and behind the back of the U.S. government, and essentially told them he was working for their position and came away endorsing their position.

    If it were merely the case that he had thrown his medals away or not shown a humble attitude when he was young and dumb – Well, that’s nothing. Military people would be long over that.

    Comment by Calarato — March 4, 2006 @ 11:51 am - March 4, 2006

  32. Doesn’t this support the point of separating the man from the mission?

    It’s a volunteer military. There is no separation possible.

    OK, smart guy, name them.

    Every man and woman who chose to serve, rather than go to “protests” and side with the terrorists.

    Comment by rightwingprof — March 4, 2006 @ 11:55 am - March 4, 2006

  33. #31 Oh absolutely! It’s what he did after he got home and that was all sorts of nasty stuff. But he doesn’t apologize for that. He wants to keep his “anti-war” creds. And he wants to keep his “military hero” status, too. He wants to throw his medals away and have them too.

    And people (of a particular sort) think that veterans and military should like him because he’s a war hero and how *dare* you question his war heroship, by golly!

    And… the converse of that… how can you *possibly* support that dodger Bush? Huh? Huh?

    But it’s because they don’t understand why claiming Kerry was a “player” isn’t worse than the winter soldier stuff ( “How *dare* you claim he didn’t *earn* those medals!!!” ) and why Bush’s behavior isn’t remarkable in the guard (which tends to be flexible for most members, not just the sons of the wealthy.)

    Comment by Synova — March 4, 2006 @ 1:00 pm - March 4, 2006

  34. “Dodger Bush” is a big scam / canard by itself.

    Bush volunteered in 1968 fully believing he would be sent to Vietnam; his TANG was actively fighting in Vietnam at the time, and General Westmoreland’s plan called for troops to be increased from the 500,000 range to the high 700,000s – meaning no NG units would be going home. It was only in 1969, after President Nixon took office, that they decide on a direction of troop withdrawal (and pulling back units).

    As you suggest, the “dodger Bush” scam helps left-liberals mentally build up Kerry, and (I say) also mentally avoid the fact that Clinton was a real-live academic draft dodger.

    Comment by Calarato — March 5, 2006 @ 7:06 pm - March 5, 2006

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