Saturday, February 12

We Should Be Ashamed

"Criticism is necessary and useful; it is often indispensable; but it can never take the place of action, or be even a poor substitute for it... It is the doer of deeds who actually counts in the battle for life, and not the man who looks on and says how the fight ought to be fought, without himself sharing the stress and the danger." Theodore Roosevelt, 1894

So who is this who shames our nation by second-guessing the actions taken by our troops in war? It is the media -- like Kevin Sites, who photographed a soldier shooting a wounded insurgent. Never mind that the soldier had seen a similar situation shortly before where the insurgent had killed a buddy. Sites didn't bother to find out about that part -- reporters (and especially photographers) don't have time to find out "why." It is the war protestor. It is Senator Boxer, Senator Kennedy and their ilk.

It is the leftists who want us out of the war at any price who prompt "investigations" into every little detail of killing on the battlefield and try to find incidents to blame our troops.

It is those in the military who won't stand up against accusers who attempt to demoralize our troops by accusing them of murder -- even on the battlefield.

The situation has gotten so bad that now the parents of soldiers and other interested parties have had to band together to defend the defenders.

Another example: 2nd Lt. Ilario G. Pantano, a young and loyal Marine, is charged with the murder of two Iraqis
"during the peak of insurgent violence in mid-April of 2004, with hundreds of fellow Marines and soldiers being killed and wounded throughout the "Sunni Triangle." Terrorists, captured while trying to recover a vehicle used in an earlier attack on the Marines, had given detailed information about a supply of weapons and terrorist hideout that (Pantano) and his platoon were hastily dispatched to search. Their search revealed weapons, ammunition, mortar equipment, bomb-making material and two fleeing terrorists. In an ensuing search of the terrorists' vehicle, (Pantano), concerned for his safety and the safety of his men shot them both in self-defense and then disabled their vehicle so it could not be used in further attacks. He and his men went on to fight with distinction and honor in Falluja and the surrounding areas and, when possible, aided in the reconstruction effort. Months later, the government began an investigation that only now, 10 months after the fact, alleges an evil intent. . . ."

That account is on the Defend the Defender's website, which you can access by clicking on the title of this blog. In another section of the site, an article published in The Wilmington Post, titled "Marine's hearing may give hint at future of U.S. military," says,

"Murder accusations against a Wilmington Marine, arising from a 2004 shooting of two Iraqi men during combat in Iraq, foretell a trend military defense lawyers say could endanger service members still operating overseas.

Marine officials acknowledge that 2nd Lt. Ilario G. Pantano will face a military hearing to address the fatal April 15 shootings, but his attorney says trying a Marine for killing the enemy is wrong.

I suspect (although it's never stated anywhere in the articles and pieces on the website) that Lt. Pantano shot the insurgents as they were running away. So what? Was it wise for him to allow them to leave, only to fight again another day? That would be utterly and overwhelmingly stupid. In war you get rid of the enemy.

Those two incidents, the soldier who shot a wounded insurgent when he moved and the Marine who shot an enemy guilty of manning and insurgent's vehicle in a war zone, are indicative of something terribly wrong with our society.

We need these young men, fighting in a war, to be held UNaccountable for their actions in a war zone. If they had been in a bar, drinking and partying, that would have been different, but an Iraqi battlefield is a killing place. If a soldier kills the enemy, that's his job.

My husband and I will be donating to the "Defend The Defenders" fund. I don't hesitate to ask you to do the same. The money is to provide civilian attorneys to aid and support the defense of these soldiers.

We should be ashamed that our society has come to this point. And we all know where to look to place the blame. They march, with straggly hair, torn jeans and scruffy beards, in our streets with placards demanding that we leave any war zone. They rant on Capital Hill about looking for WMDs and not finding them. They do everything they can to make fun of and downgrade the world-wide fight against terrorism.

We mustn't let them demoralize our troops by hauling them into military courts when they think they can accuse one of killing. War is killing and when war is necessary like this one is, the military -- AND ALL OF US -- should stand firm against those who would demoralize the troops.


Anselm said...

Funny how the protesters want to bring the troops home, even though the vast majority of the troops think we should stay and get the job done. Like they actually care about the troops.

Sunnye T said...

It is odd, isn't it?
I think you're right -- they don't care about the troops at all; they care about the protest and the attention they get from the press. They're not builders, they are destroyers and malcontents.