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Would You Do The Things He Did? Could You?

Discussion in 'Off Topic' started by Kuroshio Apocal, Oct 10, 2003.

  1. Kuroshio Apocal

    Kuroshio Apocal Sucka Free

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    By Ed Offley

    By all accounts, he was not Ranger material: A scrawny, 23-year-old Army soldier from Kansas who shot a mediocre 26 on the M-16 qualification range, worked as a welder in a rear-area maintenance unit, and in his own words, had authority problems with officers.

    That was until the morning of March 23, 2003, on the banks of the Euphrates River outside Nasiriyah, Iraq, where Pfc. Patrick Miller became an icon of heroism and true grit.

    Miller was driving a five-ton wrecker towing a water trailer when the rest of his unit from the 507th Maintenance Co. took a wrong turn and drove straight into the city. The horrific ambush that followed, where Iraqis killed 11 soldiers (including two from another unit), wounded nine and took six prisoner, has been widely documented in recent months because of the media feeding frenzy over Pfc. Jessica Lynch.

    It is a sad and cynical commentary on our times that reporters, Hollywood screenplay writers and other members of the chattering class were so blinded by the politically-correct stereotypes fueled by the (inaccurate) accounts of Lynch’s heroism that they were blinded to the astounding story of what Miller did during the ambush at Nasariyah.

    Reporter Tom Bowman of The Baltimore Sun did much to correct journalism’s sorry record when his blow-by-blow account of Pfc. Patrick Miller appeared in the newspaper last Sunday. (We have created a link to Bowman’s article, “The Unknown Hero of the 507th,” here at SFTT.org.)

    Miller and a second soldier and the other 507th soldiers were trapped by a fast-moving mobile ambush staged by Iraqi Fedayeen Saddam fighters in trucks and other vehicles, who riddled the cumbersome vehicles with AK-47 fire and RPG grenades. At one point, they slowed to pick up two other soldiers in a disabled vehicle, retrieving one while the other vanished and was killed several hundred yards away. Minutes later an Iraqi bullet shattered the windshield, instantly killing Pvt. Brandon U. Sloan.

    Miller was desperately trying to reach friendly troops on the other side of the Euphrates River when the truck’s transmission began giving out. He and the other survivor, Sgt. James Riley, jumped from the truck and ran forward until they came upon a grisly sight: an Army Humvee that had smashed into a disabled truck. All five soldiers inside were either dead or seriously injured, and only one, Lynch, would survive.

    It is clear that Miller and the other soldiers were unprepared for the vicious firefight that was escalating around them. As the official Army investigation into the ambush later concluded, practically all of the soldiers’ M-16 rifles had already jammed due to insufficient maintenance and cleaning. Miller himself, Bowman writes, had not even fired his M-16 since visiting a training range seven months earlier, in August 2002. Bowman’s narrative continues:

    “Miller reached an earthen berm just across the road from the Iraqi truck. Then he noticed a group of Iraqis in front of the dump truck, some 50 feet away, setting up a mortar tube. A rocket-propelled grenade slammed into the far side of the berm, and Miller rolled out the other side. When he crawled back inside and peered over the top, he could see an Iraqi ready to drop a mortar round into the tube.

    The Iraqis, apparently untrained Fedayeen fighters, sprayed Miller’s berm with inaccurate fire. Meanwhile, the young welder discovered he could only fire his rifle in single-shot mode. Bowman continues:

    “But Miller’s rifle was jammed. A spent round would eject, but the new round would only go halfway into the chamber. Miller slammed his palm into a lever on the side of the gun, and the bullet slid into place. He raised his rifle and fired. The Iraqi collapsed in a heap before he could fire the mortar round. …

    “One by one, Miller, by his count, shot seven Iraqis as each popped up and tried to work the mortar. After it was over, a large bruise spread over Miller's palm from the constant slapping against the rifle.”

    Suddenly, several dozen armed Iraqis swarmed the site and Miller and the others threw down their weapons. Miller and four other soldiers were hustled off into captivity while their captors took gravely injured Pfc. Lori Ann Piestewa (who died shortly thereafter) and Lynch to a hospital.

    In captivity, his co-prisoners described Miller as defiant, singing Toby Keith’s anti-terrorist song, “Courtesy of the Red, White and Blue.” He even managed to fool the Iraqis into believing that a sheet of radio callsigns and frequencies in his pocket was a list of machine parts and their order numbers. Several weeks later, a Marine patrol rescued them.

    Through no fault of her own, Jessica Lynch became the poster girl of women in combat, stoked by Pentagon officials with an axe to grind and reporters unable (or unwilling) to look beyond their own most cherished illusions.

    Interviewed by reporter Bowman, Patrick Miller declined to express resentment or anger over Lynch’s book deal, movie contract and network TV interviews. One of his fellow prisoners in Iraq, Spc. Shoshana Johnson, said it best, telling Bowman: “Jessica’s a wonderful girl, and we're happy she's OK. But it was Patrick; it wasn’t Jessica. His weapon was working. He was doing everything possible. Patrick deserves so much, and he’s not getting the recognition. He's still a private first class. He hasn't even been promoted.”

    The Army did award him the Silver Star for valor – he was the only member of the 507th to receive it – as well as the Purple Heart and POW medal for his actions. He is currently assigned at Fort Carson, Colo., where he works in the motor pool and lives in a modest home with his wife and two children.

    Col. Heidi V. Brown, who commanded the Army task force in Iraq that included Miller’s company, personally wrote the citations for his awards. Brown has compiled a detailed account of Miller’s actions at Nasiriyah and briefs her subordinate officers on the soldier’s performance. She concludes, asking a question of her audience: “Would you do the things he did? … Could you?”

    Thanks to reporter Bowman, the entire nation finally has gotten the real story about that tragic morning in Iraq. Each of us can ask ourselves the same question: “Would I do the things he did? … Could I?”

    -----

    Nothing pisses me (and a large number of my buddies) off more than seeing people get recognition they don't deserve. Lynch didn't do **** except get KO'd in a truck crash. PFC Miller looked hell in the eye and poked it out. Hell, even Spc. Johnson at least fired back before being shot in both legs. And yet the media chose Lynch to be the hero. That is grade A bull****!
     
  2. ecale3

    ecale3 Sniper - May be harmful to your health.

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    So did Lynch do anything?
     
  3. TheShiningWizard

    TheShiningWizard Because it's more fantastical.

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    Yup. She became a hero to all of those brave soldiers who fuck up and get captured.
     
  4. Freon

    Freon Braaaaiinss...

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    just a question, the iraqi fighters actually went on the ambush site to pick the wounded US soldiers up and bring them to an hospital. didn't these guys only delayed them? maybe they should have dropped their weapons faster so that their mates could survive :hmm:
     
  5. spm1138

    spm1138 Irony Is

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    Sounds a lot like they were still trying to kill everyone, Freon.
     
  6. poaw

    poaw You used to sleep easy at night.

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    Maybe they should have maintained their weapons. Maybe they shouldn't have tried to link up with the forward units that day. Maybe they should have asked for a rifle platoon to ride with them. Maybe they should have travelled with the unit they were supposed to support. Maybe they should have stopped a kilometer short of where they would be ambushed and called artillery in on the Fedyaeen. Maybe they should have stayed in bed that day. Maybe they should have told the CIA before the war started about the Fedayeen who were going to ambush them so that they could all be killed in their sleep.

    All of the above require the sort of 20/20 vision that only hindsight can provide. They got ambushed, fought back, and when the situation became hopeless they surrendered. You can sit back and theorize about what they should and shouldn't have done but you're doing so with the benefit of knowing the story from beginning to end.
     
  7. Big_Duke_06

    Big_Duke_06 Charlie Don't Surf!

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    I agree 100%. And here in Phoenix, AZ, one of the main freeways in town has been named "Piestewa Parkway" but I still call it the "Squaw Peak Parkway."

    Matthew
     
  8. DallasStarsRule

    DallasStarsRule making personal insults since 1999

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    Yep.

    The only reason lynch got recognized is because she is a woman. Thats it.

    Most other countries a pathetic reaction like that would result in disciplinary action.
     
  9. MetalMickey

    MetalMickey Banned

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    What utter, utter nonsense.
     
  10. SaraP

    SaraP New Member

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    She didn't do anything other than surrender, which is hardly conduct deserving of praise.
     
  11. RogueLeader

    RogueLeader Tama-chan says, "aurf aurf aurf!"

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    It's pretty sad that the hero gets the shaft and the ****up gets the medal as well as movie deals. She was good for making propaganda for the war, and nothing more. :( truly saddening
     
  12. (SDS)benmcl

    (SDS)benmcl Why not visit us here in the real world.

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    If I understand everything Lynch didn't ****up. She was injured at the beginning so I am not sure what she should have done considering the condition she was in. Don't blame Lynch for everything that has happend.

    I agree she is no hero and the media and government needed a nice story to come out of that horror. To bad they couldn' pick a real one. Guess they don' know what one looks like.
     
  13. melagne

    melagne blah

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    You can't blame Lynch for being used as propaganda. It's not her fault.
     
  14. Nightmare

    Nightmare Only human

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    Didn't Lynch say she couldn't remember anything? Of the ambush, I mean.
     
  15. OICW

    OICW Reason & Logic > Religion

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    Didn't she develop amnesia about the whole thing when the real reports started to come out?
     
  16. JaFO

    JaFO bugs are features too ...

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    and then you wonder why 'they' didn't make him a 'hero' ?
    Whenever propaganda is needed 'they' pick the one with less black marks on his/her record. And if he/she is some kind of minority ... that's even better.
    Nothing like a little rewriting of history to make the people like something.

    // --
    One can make all sorts of statements about how one would have acted in that situation.
    One can have had best training on this planet and the best scores in the tests.
    However until one faces such situation in reality one never knows what one really is going to do.
     
  17. DallasStarsRule

    DallasStarsRule making personal insults since 1999

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    Wow Mickey I must have really gotten under your skin! Loserrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr
     
  18. Zundfolge

    Zundfolge New Member

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    :rolleyes:

    She WAS elevated to "hero" status purely because of her lack of a Y chromosome (the fact that she was cute and kinda "perky" really helped).

    She became a "hero" because she was the perfect "damsel in distress" which is one of the key elements of almost every action movie ever made (which is why it makes good propaganda). But in these politicaly correct times, one cannot refer to the "damsel in distress" as such, you have to call her a "hero".

    Let me ask you this Mickey; If she wasn't elevated to hero status because she's a woman then why was she?
     
    Last edited: Oct 11, 2003
  19. Saladin

    Saladin Fez Toting Warrior!

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    agh, while typing this i am serching for that ted rall cartoon, perfect for this post....

    ahh here it is....took a while
    [​IMG]
     
  20. Kuroshio Apocal

    Kuroshio Apocal Sucka Free

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    Lynch was sitting between two other soldiers in a Humvee when it crashed. They were both killed. She was KO'd and taken by Iraqis to a hospital, the Iraqis knowing good well that if she turned up dead the "happy face" of the American war machine would turn damned ugly. She spent 10 days being cared for before SF busted in thinking she was being held against her will.

    Spc. Shoshana Johnson is also a woman. She actually tried fighting back before taking bullet wounds to both of her legs. She didn't go to a hospital. She went through weeks of captivity.

    PFC Lynch was awarded the BSM (for meritorous service, not valor) but even then, most would say that is too much. She earned the Purple Heart and the POW medal.

    Lynch is the perfect recruiting tool for young women and the ideal hero for "mainstream" America. Johnson in spite of her heroism, isn't considered "marketable" enough. :mad:

    If you were gonna decide to ignore the hero, at least do it with someone who did something resembling a heroic action.

    EDIT: Johnson was hit in the ankle and once in the leg. But her treatment wasn't that bad.
     
    Last edited: Oct 11, 2003

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