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Mother to ask Congress to award son Medal of Honor

Discussion in 'The Lounge' started by EsDee_in_RI, Sep 18, 2008.

  1. EsDee_in_RI

    EsDee_in_RI Well-Known Member

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    Give this kid the medal, I know there is a lot of people that have sacrificed their lives in this war. But it takes a special person to take a grenade for the safety of others. This is a local SD kid too.


     
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  2. Lightning's Girl

    Lightning's Girl Mod Chick =) Staff Member Moderator

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    I'm with you on this one, EsDee---anybody who'd take a grenade to help save his buddies deserves the highest of honors IMHO. God keep him from any more pain.
     
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  3. o-line protagonist

    o-line protagonist BoltTalker

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    Can I ask where this article originates from? Just curious.
    As a ex-Marine, I care. TX.
     
  4. Game123

    Game123 Well-Known Member

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    My personal feelings aside, this kid was reviewed and denied the CMH. One of those that reviewed his nomination was also a CMH recipient. That's good enough for me.

    The part that sucks about this case is that the soldier's mother raised the issue of racial bias in her son being denied our nation's highest honor. That's unforgivable IMO.
     
  5. EsDee_in_RI

    EsDee_in_RI Well-Known Member

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    This was written by the AP writers Erica Werner in Washington and Elliot Spagat in San Diego. I saw it first on Comcast.net
     
  6. EsDee_in_RI

    EsDee_in_RI Well-Known Member

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    Sorry GAME but I cant see where the racial bias is in the story...maybe I misread but I don't see it, But that is not the point. This man is an American Marine. I am seeing this from a different point of view. As a military man myself, I would love and hope to be lucky enough to be serving next to someone who I know has my back. Doesn't matter who it is. White, Black, Hispanic, Asian or anyone.

    Here is a list of Some medal of Honor recipients in the past few years.

    Jason Dunham USMC Iraq, Fought hand-to-hand with the enemy and hurled himself on a grenade to protect fellow Marines

    Michael A. Monsoor Navy Iraq, Saved the lives of his fellow SEALs at his sniper position by diving on a grenade

    Ross A. McGinnis Army Iraq, Saved the lives of four soldiers by diving on a grenade while inside HMMWV

    I don't see any difference from what this Marine did and what the other ones did. He deserves it.
     
  7. Game123

    Game123 Well-Known Member

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    1. Here is the link... http://www.signonsandiego.com/news/military/20080918-9999-1n18peralta.html

    Peralta's mother wonders whether military officials denied him the top award because he is Hispanic. Peralta was a Mexican citizen and a legal resident of the United States. His mother, Rosa, and his sister Icela recently became U.S. citizens.

    2. You're right but the mother made it an issue. That's disgusting. I feel like every time someone doesn't get what they want in life, its because someone else was a freakin' racist. It cheapens her son's valor and his memory.

    3. And you're talking to an ex-soldier... what's your point?

    4. I agree.

    5. Their bravery has no bearing on Peralta's valor. Each was an individual act of courage, not tied to another.

    6. Let me point out the difference...

    http://www.signonsandiego.com/uniontrib/20080919/news_1n19medal2.html

    Although the Marine Corps recommended Peralta for the Medal of Honor, a 282-page report that it completed in December 2005 lays out conflicting evidence.

    The report included findings from Army Col. Eric Berg, a pathologist who performed an autopsy on Peralta. Berg said a bullet fragment that struck Peralta in the back of the head “would have been immediately incapacitating and nearly instantly fatal. He could not have executed any meaningful motions.”

    Berg also said Peralta's injuries weren't consistent with those caused by a grenade explosion against the upper body. The grenade likely exploded near Peralta's knee or thigh, he added.

    By contrast, a neurologist, two neurosurgeons and the surgeon for Peralta's battalion said Peralta could have purposely grabbed the grenade and tucked it into his chest. After examining the autopsy data, they said the bullet fragment likely didn't kill him quickly because it was traveling at a “low velocity.”

    Defense Department spokesman Bryan Whitman said because of the contradictory opinions, Gates asked five other people to review the case – a former commander of U.S. forces in Iraq, a Medal of Honor recipient, a civilian neurosurgeon who is retired from the military and two forensic pathologists who also are military retirees.
     
  8. EsDee_in_RI

    EsDee_in_RI Well-Known Member

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    I was not aware that there was an interview with the mother. You are right it does suck to bring bias into something like this.

    To explain my statement about me being in the military ( i now know that you served, Thanks! :flag:) was just to put myself in the shoes of the people he saved. I would like to believe that the eye witness accounts from his brothers at arms would count for something. They were there and they all saw the same thing.

    Don't get me wrong, I believe in forensics. But science isn't always right. There must have been a report with statements from the other marines. Why try to prove them wrong...when they know what they saw. They have no reason to make things up.
     
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  9. Game123

    Game123 Well-Known Member

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    1. I read that article 1st and it made me angry. I understand Ms Peralta's loss, but I cannot excuse such an accusation. Add to that another person's comment in the second article... Doug Sterner of Pueblo, Colo., a historian of valor awards who runs the Web site homeofheroes.com. “Medals are capriciously awarded by a bunch of chair-bound rangers who wouldn't know valor if it bit them in the (butt).” WTF???? Does this dick-head even know that Gates asked five other people to review the case – a former commander of U.S. forces in Iraq, a Medal of Honor recipient, a civilian neurosurgeon who is retired from the military and two forensic pathologists who also are military retirees. Where does this fool get off calling these guys "a bunch of chair-bound rangers"? To those *******s, perception is their reality.

    2. Hey, I'm with you 100% on taking care of our own and expecting the same level of self-sacrifice from our brothers. I wouldn't trade anything for the guys I served with and I guess you feel the same way. Nevertheless, our feelings shouldn't enter into this CMH debate. Questions came up and were dealt with by fellow soldiers (retired and otherwise), and they concluded the CMH was not warranted. That does not diminish Peralta's valor or courage under fire... it does reinforce just how highly coveted the CMH really is. I don't think any of us would want to award such a medal unless we were absolutely sure of the facts. It did take four years to conclude the commendation and the 2nd highest award was given.

    To make this issue even less honorable, read this...

    **
    Robert Reynolds, a former Marine who credits Peralta with saving his life in the Fallujah house, said the Pentagon's decision insults his honor.

    “I feel like the Navy Cross is a cop-out,” said Reynolds, 31, of Ritzville, Wash. “I was 5 meters away. I saw what happened. I feel like they're calling me a liar.”
    **

    Ok, they're calling this guy, Robert Reynolds, a liar? Really?? How about we turn this comment around 180 degrees... Is Robert Reynolds calling the CMH recipient, who also oversaw the rejection of the CMH for Peralta, a liar and questioning his honor too? I wonder? Truly sickening.

    3. Eyewitness accounts are great but the facts are better. While I personally don't know what Peralta did or did not do, it matters not. He served his country, his fellow brothers-in-arms, and gave his life in their defense. Someone, somewhere along the chain of command, thought his sacrifice merited high honor. In the end, he came away with the Navy Cross. Regardless, this nation has lost a son. No award can ever replace the soldier, the son, or the man. Let him rest in peace.
     
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  10. BFISA

    BFISA Well-Known Member

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    If y'all don't think racial bias plays into the awading of the Medal Of Honor, one need only consider the cases of the courageous nisei soldiers in the European theater in WWII. Only after two generations was this wrong righted.

    As for an eye witnesses testimony versus an august board, consider the case of Roy Benavidez, who inserted into an LZ unarmed in a Huey to render aid to fallen comrades and retrieve valuable top secret documents so they wouldn't fall into enemy hands. After rallying what was left of the small unit to defend their perimeter, and after many attempts at extraction, a very badly wounded Benavidez was finally able to get aboard the last extraction bird.

    Back in the states, Roy was awarded the Distinguished Service Cross (DSC). He had been submitted for the MOH, but his account couldn't be verified by a witness. There was a witness, Brian O'Connor (OC), who, after being medevaced and his own wounds being taken care of, simply fell off the face of the earth.

    Roy's CO at 5th Army HQs at Ft Sam Houston, a full bull, kept pushing for further investigation, but the eye witness thing kept clogging things up.

    Then by chance, OC heard that he was being sought to confirm or deny Roy's account. He was living in the outback in Australia, and word reached him at his general delivery post office there. He came back to the states to confirm Roy's story, and sometime later, Roy received the Medal Of Honor from President Ronald Reagan.

    I've had the distinct honor and privilege of knowing and working with many MOH recipients from Special Forces; brave and gallant men, all. One of them, Charles "Snake" Hoskings, jumped on a grenade, risking his life to save others.

    Why the PsTB chose to convene a board rather than to believe an eye witness is beyond me, and I'm not in a position to challenge their decision.
     

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