Friday, September 19, 2008

Bush Cronies Deny American Latino Soldier´s Medal of Honor! His Mother Cries!

Sgt. Rafael Peralta died a war hero serving his country in Iraq. His mother Rosa cried when President Bush cited Peralta's heroism in a Memorial Day speech in 2005, saying the Marine "understood that America faces dangerous enemies, and he knew the sacrifices required to defeat them." Rosa was told her son would get the Medal of Honor in a November 2007 telephone call from an undersecretary of the Navy, who told her the nomination was to be forwarded to the White House.
Then, last Thursday, her memories of a grateful nation for her son´s heriosm were stolen from her. Rosa was told the nomination was denied by Defense Secretary Robert Gates because of questions about the final act. Gates, during his review, took the unprecented extra step of asking five other individuals 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. The five were given medical reports that had not been available in the initial review. They thoroughly reviewed the case again, including inspecting the evidence and re-enacting the event, Whitman said. "Each independently recommended to the secretary that the evidence did not support the award of Medal of Honor," he said. Gates made his decision this month.
Details of Rafael´s Herioc Actions:
Peralta was shot several times in the face and body during a house-to-house search in Fallujah on Nov. 15, 2004, during some of the fiercest fighting of the war. According to witness accounts, Peralta lay mortally wounded on the floor of a house and grabbed a grenade lobbed by fleeing insurgents. His body absorbed the blast and he died immediately.
In a rare move, the Marine Corps Thursday released a redacted copy of the Medal of Honor nomination by Lt. Gen. Richard Natonski and an investigative report detailing the "friendly fire" shooting of the sergeant.
The report found sufficient evidence existed to believe that Peralta was probably shot by a fellow Marine and that a gunshot wound to the head and injuries to the head from a grenade caused his death. The nomination, which relies on witness statements, forensics, bomb fragment analysis and an autopsy, concluded that although Peralta was shot in the head, he made "a conscious, heroic decision to cover the grenade and minimize the effects he knew it would have on the rest of his Marine team."
The nomination details Peralta's actions in the final minutes of his life, with several witnesses recounting how the Marine lay face down and used his arm to pull the grenade to him. It also says a forensic analysis of Peralta's clothing and flak jacket show the grenade was underneath him when it exploded.
Rosa plans to appeal to Congress to award her son the nation's highest military honor after learning it was denied. She made the decision after a Marine general told her that her son would be awarded the Navy Cross rather than the Medal of Honor because the nomination was tainted by reports he was accidentally shot by a fellow Marine shortly before an insurgent lobbed the grenade. "I'm going to see what can be done, because I'm not satisfied with what they want to do now," she said. "The president spoke of him. So how is this now possible that they do this," Rosa Peralta said.
About Rafael:
Rafael was born in Mexico City on April 7, 1979 to Rafael and Rosa Peralta. He grew up as the oldest of four siblings, with sisters Icela and Karen, and brother Ricardo. Upon emigrating to the United States, he attended San Diego's Morse High School. After graduation, he began working for the California Conservation Corps, being selected as a crew leader within six months. The day he received his green card he enlisted, as planned, in the U.S. Marine Corps.
Last Letter from a Hero:
"Tomorrow, at 1900 hours, we are going to declare war in the holy city of Fallujah. We are going to defeat the insurgents. Watch the news, it's going to be all over. Be proud of me, bro, I'm going to make history and do something that I always wanted to do.... If anything happens to me, just remember I lived my life to the fullest and I'm happy with what I lived." -- Nov. 6, 2004 letter to brother, Ricardo, then 14
Update: SAN DIEGO, California (AP) -- A California congressional delegation asked President Bush on Friday to posthumously award the Medal of Honor to a Marine who was chosen to receive only the second-highest medal the Navy can bestow for valor. A copy of the letter given to The Associated Press was signed by a bipartisan group of five other representatives and Sens. Dianne Feinstein and Barbara Boxer. It urges Bush to award the nation's highest honor, the same medal he gave to Marine Cpl. Jason L. Dunham, who was killed in 2004 after covering a grenade with his helmet.
"Intentionally absorbing a grenade blast to protect one's comrades in arms has been traditionally recognized by awarding the Medal of Honor. The sacrifice of Sergeant Peralta manifests the same devotion to one's comrade's and country as that displayed by Jason Dunham," the letter said.
The White House had no immediate comment Friday.
References:

100 comments:

Dee said...

The worst part about this whole denial of medal is that Secretary Gates, a non military former CIA bozo, denied it. He put in place the review board.

The witnesses and the military knew the medal was deserved, but it was Gates who put together the review team and denied it.

Gates is just Horrible!!!
He was never even in the military!!

patriot said...

Oh my God! Why in the world would anyone believe that a Hispanic or any other military personnel would be discriminated against by ethnicity in awarding medals? What would be the point of that? This is playing the victim mentality to the point of being bizarre. You Hispanics need to stop whining so much and playing the race card on everything. You are turning other Americans off and making yourselves look bad.

"The office of Secretary of Defense Robert Gates downgraded the award after a special investigation involving medical experts, a military general and a Medal of Honor recipient from a past war, Sabga said.
Yesterday, Pentagon officials said the Navy Cross is an extremely high honor. Only 23 service members – 17 of them Marines – have received the award for combat actions in Iraq and Afghanistan, according to the Web site homeofheroes.com."

patriot said...

Hmm, could there be a monetary reason that his family is upset about this?

The Medal of Honor comes with about $1,000 a month special pension in addition to other military pensions. Makes one wonder, doesn't it?

Liquidmicro said...

I don't see how it could be any clearer than this:
"Rosa was told the nomination was denied by Defense Secretary Robert Gates because of questions about the 'final act'. Gates, during his review, took the unprecedented extra step of asking five other individuals 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. The five were given medical reports that had not been available in the initial review. They thoroughly reviewed the case again, including inspecting the evidence and re-enacting the event, Whitman said. "Each independently recommended to the secretary that the evidence did not support the award of Medal of Honor," he said. Gates made his decision this month."

Only 297 Marines, since the inception of the medal (1782), have ever received the award. The marines are held to a very high standard, it is expected of them, not to say the other branches are any less, but there is a distinction among those of the Marines.

Dee said...

My gosh Pat and Liquid. You obviously have no hearts.

My crystal ball is telling me the witnesses and the military will escalate this to Congress and Hero Peralta will receive the Medal of honor as he so deserves.

Dee said...

Pat,
Your true colors are showing.
You and the newspapers are the only ones mentioning money.

How crass!

Dee said...

The military and the witnesses know what happened. That is why he was honored by the President and that is why he was recommended for the Medal of Honor. Peralta is a true hero and we should ALL honor him! The men in his troop are angry he did not receive the medal as recommended.

Pat, you should re read your posts and be ashamed for NOT honoring a true hero who died defending you and me and all of us! Shame on you!!

The facts are, Gates never even served in the military. After Hero Peralta was honored so highly all that was needed was the presidential signature. Gates never served in the military. Why would you call a review board when the recommendation came in so highly recommended, with witnesses who saw what happened? My gosh!

Dee said...

The shrapnel from the grenade was embedded in his flack jacket. His last selfless heroic act was saving his men from the grenade thrown by the insurgents. READ PLEASE!!

Dee said...

Here is the criteria for the Medal of Honor. If Hero Peralta doesnt deserve it, how on earth could the person on the review board have received it????

The Medal of Honor is the highest military decoration awarded by the United States government. It is bestowed on a member of the United States armed forces who distinguishes himself "conspicuously by gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty while engaged in an action against an enemy of the United States". Because of the nature of its criteria, the medal is often awarded posthumously.

Dee said...

I honor this fallen soldier for his courageous acts defending you and me and the men he saved:

Details of Rafael´s Herioc Actions:Peralta was shot several times in the face and body during a house-to-house search in Fallujah on Nov. 15, 2004, during some of the fiercest fighting of the war. According to witness accounts, Peralta lay mortally wounded on the floor of a house and grabbed a grenade lobbed by fleeing insurgents. His body absorbed the blast and he died immediately.

Dee said...

Pat,
Apparently you forgot Operation Phantom Fury in Fallujah in Nov 2004. Rafael was one of the men who died a hero that November.

About Fallujah:
On March 31, 2004, Iraqi insurgents in Fallujah ambushed a convoy containing four American private military contractors from Blackwater USA, who were conducting delivery for food caterers ESS.
The four armed contractors, Scott Helvenston, Jerry (Jerko) Zovko, Wesley Batalona, and Michael Teague, were dragged from their cars, beaten, and set on fire. Their burned corpses were then dragged through the streets before being hung over a bridge crossing the Euphrates. This bridge is unofficially referred to as "Blackwater Bridge" by Coalition Forces operating there.

This led to an abortive US operation to recapture control of the city in Operation Vigilant Resolve, and a successful recapture operation in the city in November 2004, called Operation Phantom Fury in English and Operation Al Fajr in Arabic. Operation Phantom Fury resulted in the reputed death of over 1,350 insurgent fighters. Approximately 95 American Marines were killed, and over 1,000 wounded.

Liquidmicro said...

Have you served in the military, Dee? You, not family members. What Peralta did was heroic, nobody is denying that, The Naval Medal of Honor is very distinguished, only 297 Marines since its inception have ever received it. From what I understand: "A rare decision by U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates to reject a Marine Corps recommendation for the nation's highest military honor was based on some doubt the act of covering the grenade was a voluntary act, USA Today reported.

Peralta had been wounded in the head a short time earlier, leaving investigators some doubt that he intentionally reached for the grenade."

It appears to come down to ascertaining Sgt. Peralta's state of mind at the time of the incident.

The question about whether to award Peralta the Medal of Honor centers on whether the mortally wounded Marine, who was shot in the head and upper body, could have intentionally reached for the grenade and covered it with his body. There's probably only one person who could give a truly accurate answer to that question, and he's dead. Seems odd. Haven't others received the Medal of Honor for precisely this sort of behavior?


Odder still:

In a rare move, the Marine Corps Thursday released a redacted copy of the Medal of Honor nomination by Lt. Gen. Richard Natonski and a investigative report detailing the "friendly fire" shooting of the sergeant.

The report found sufficient evidence existed to believe that Peralta was probably shot by a fellow Marine and that a gunshot wound to the head and injuries to the head from a grenade caused his death.

I think he may have known he was hurt badly and with his last ounce of strength he did the most courageous thing any man can do, he sacrificed himself. Do I think he deserves the Medal of Honor? I don't simply because he sacrificed himself doesn't warrant it. What would have happened had he not fell upon the grenade? Would others have been mortally wounded? Would it have changed the outcome of the battle they were in?

patriot said...

No hearts? My God he received the coveted Navy Cross which is an extremely high honor! Only 23 have ever received it! Why do you question the findings of the review panel? Do you know better than they do? You lost the argument when you tried to make it a racial issue as usual, dee. Everything is about race to you. Disgusting!

patriot said...

And YOU should be ashamed for attacking my character over this, dee!!!! I abide by what the panel found. You always want everyone to agree with you regardless of facts or you start with your damned insults in here. Knock it off!

Dee said...

Liquid,
I think all you have said supports what I am saying about his deserving the medal of honor. How many times have we heard the actions in Fallujah changed the tide of the War.
If his fellow soldiers are so adament and saying he did what he did in saving their lives, if his bravery and courage supported their moving the next step to turn the tide, if the grenade shrapnel in his chest and head are further proof, and the words in is letter to his little brother prior to the operation can be further proof of his determination, and then the military men themselves move to bypass the denial by Gates, what further proof do you need!

patriot said...

And what the hell are you talking about that I don't honor this man? Where have I stated that? Stop your BS, dee! Your character assassinations in here of those who see things differently than you do is very unbecoming to a grown woman.

Dee said...

Pat,
Answer these questions.

1. Do you acknowledge Rafael is a hero? Yes or No

2. Do you honor his service and acknowledge he died for you and me and all Americans? Yes or No

Nuff Said!

Dee said...

Gates was NOT a soldier!
I dont think he should even have a vote!!

Dee said...

The Military is moving to overturn Gates´denial of this medal!

patriot said...

Why is it so damn important to you to get liquid and myself to agree with you and some others who view it the way that you do? You are arguing with the wrong people. Liquid and I weren't there and neither were you. We can only go along with the finding and rulings of the panel. He was honored and rightly so. Just because it wasn't the kind of award that you and his family and some others wanted doesn't make me and liquid heartless or disrespectful towards this man's heroic deed. You need to learn to be more respectful of your fellow bloggers in here and respect our opinions as your so-called mission statement says.

patriot said...

I already acknowledged that what this man did was heroic and I respect that. But I also respect the findings of the panel in regards to which medal to award him. The fact that Gates was never in the military had nothing to do with it. He was just following the rules and policies of awarding medals. He wasn't the only one involved in the decision either.

If the ruling is changed on down the road and he is awarded the Medal of Honor, well then so be it!
But stop attacking liquid and myself for not coming to a different conclusion then the panel did for the time being. Grow up, dee!

patriot said...

Another thing, if this were a white guy I would still go along with the ruling of the panel. You of course wouldn't even have made this a topic in here dee if this were about a white man.

Anonymous said...

I don't thik this medal was denied due to any kind of race issue. If the boy was anglo, black or asian-
they would still have denied him. He is a hero regardless of race. But dee you are not the one who decides who gets this medal. Move on.

The Arizonian said...

Dee is not going to like what I am about to say....

He was shot, and fell onto that grenade. And yes, he was hit by several NATO 5.56 rounds. Those are used in the M-4 military assault rifle. That would our M-4 assault rifle. There was no indication of him being hit by a 7.62x39, typical of AKM's.

That is not to take away from his service, nor his sacrifice. But being shot in friendly fire, and falling on a grenade isn't warranting a Medal of Honor.
Remember the Pat Tillman scandal? This is about the same situation.

But he still did what most Americans won't do. He went into a house filled with insurgents and opened fire.

He is very deserving of the Navy Cross.

ultima said...

"He was never even in the military!!"

Of course, neither were you. Judge not that ye be not judged1

Do you have any idea how many recommendations for decorations were disapproved even for anglos? This is a rather routine event. I recall a guy who wrote himself up for the Silver Star. It was turned down quite appropriately. The Navy Cross is the nation's second highest award for valor. A Navy Seal who perished heroically in Afghanistan was given the Navy Cross for valor above and beyond. This is a very high honor.

Gates is not "horrible". He did what any rational person would do if there was a shadow of a doubt about the circumstances the soldier's death. Note I omitted the word Latino because it is completely irrelevant and Dee knows this full well.

This is just another example of her warped ethnocentric thinking in her haste to find something more to criticize a loyal servant of the American people. Gates is an honorable man and deserves better.

ultima said...

ilk = kind or type

ultima said...

"My gosh Pat and Liquid. You obviously have no hearts."

More histrionics,Dee? Use your head and your unbiased reasoning power before you go off half-coked like this. I am surprised at you. You have got to take off those glasses that make you see everything you dislike or disagree with as a manifestation of racism.

ultima said...

"he was recommended for the Medal of Honor"

The operative word there is "recommended". Have you never seen a recommendation turned down?
The Navy Cross is a high honor, one that should not be sullied by claims of racism or cries of anguish.

So you want Obama to be the Commander in Chief -- "He was never even in the military!!"

ultima said...

"Why would you call a review board when the recommendation came in so highly recommended, with witnesses who saw what happened? My gosh!"

Recommendations almost always are based on eye witness's testimony. It is for others to determine based established criteria and whatever other evidence there might be. Let's see how would you approach a hypothetical situation involving potential friendly fire? Perhaps you don't remember how badly the Pentagon bungled the story about the NFL football player who was killed by friendly fire in Afghanistan. I suspect Gates didn't want another debacle like that on his hands.

You don't have a case just hyperbole and ad hominems ad nauseum.

The Arizonian said...

Exactly, "recommended" is the key word. I have personally filed 4 letters of recommendation:

1. Private _______ was in the process of disarming an IED when he took enemy fire. He preceded citing that if he didn't finish, the next convoy would be hit.

2. Private ______ was killed trying to evacuate a family from a house in Kabul, under enemy sniper fire. He suffered mortal wounds while shielding the "mother" of the family when an insurgent appeared from around the corner of a building holding a RPK (machine gun-heavy-full auto). The mother survived.

3. Lnc corporal _________ Suffered mortal wounds while rescuing several Marines from an APC that caught fire after they ran over an IED. The APC exploded while the Lnc was retrieving the last Marine. He suffered massive blood loss due to a piece of shrap was lodged in his throat from the explosion. He still carried the marine 20 yards afterward. All 4 marines pulled from the APC lived.

4. Stf Sgt. _________ died while trying to extract 2 marines wounded in a building in Fallujah, during a sweep mission. He entered the building, being shot some 12 times by AKM fire. His M-4 was hit in the processes. He still managed provide some cover fire with his Beretta (handgun). He then dragged the two marines outside by their pants. When outside, he shielded the two from a RPG launched from the roof. The two Marines live to this day.

None, I mean none, of these self-less men have been awarded the Medal of Honor. 2 white, one black, and one hispanic. The criteria for the Medal of Honor is strict.

But if it was up to me, anyone that died in a live combat situation would receive the Honor. But it is reserved for those basically fitting of their own statue.

Li said...

"He was shot, and fell onto that grenade. And yes, he was hit by several NATO 5.56 rounds. Those are used in the M-4 military assault rifle. That would our M-4 assault rifle. There was no indication of him being hit by a 7.62x39, typical of AKM's."

So you're one of the eye witnesses? No, of course not, just another "armchair general." If the people who were there say the man saved their lives, I can't see where any further investigation is needed. I don't believe the denial was racially motivated, but falling on a grenade to save your comrades doesn't seem any less heroic to me than leaping on a grenade. Maybe, knowing he was dying, the man fell on the grenade as a final sacrifice.

greenriverkate said...

Patriot. You are an idiot. This IS about him being Hispanic. You better go back and read your history. He gave his life for his men. I know Medal of Honor recipients and they think this boy was screwed. No mother in this country would sacrifice her son for a louse $1000. a month and you may be wrong on the amount. You are also a bigot. The immigration crap is going to come up again and how would it look for them to give a kid with a green card the Medal of Honor. Are you just stupid. Navajo code talker just got their awards but don't get mad. There was only a handful left alive after all these years. Do I have to tell you how many black men were denied this medal because they were black. Some finally got the award, but dont be mad. Most of them died before they got theirs. Lord man, I was a veterans benefits councelor for years. Don't talk about things you know nothing about. Furthermore Gates was an idiot in the Cia and is still a good ole boy idiot friend of Bush's. This is strickly racial.

greenriverkate said...

By the way. State of mind is not concidered in giving this award. The major players are the witness'. He was wounded, doesn't matter by whom. He reached out and pulled it under himself as evidenced by the autopsy and flack jacket. They felt he saved their lives and they are still alive.. When someone does this they just do it and dont' think. This comes from many MOH recipients. None of them really thought about what they did, it just needed to be done and they did it. He did NOT fall on the gerande. Witness' said he reached out and pulled it under himself. Head wound or not, he did what he did saving lives beyond and above. Look up the history on Gates. He is a joke. I hope this goes into the next presidency because we will have an intelligent honest person in office and it won't be McCain.

Anonymous said...

Why would anyone say "ONLY the second highest medal. Seems to me that is quite an honor in itself. I don't believe any racism was displayed here. If Gates put together a review team, that means the team made the decision not Gates alone. No matter how the man died, he gave his life for his country just by being there and we should all be proud of him.

patriot said...

Ok dee, you said no name calling in here. Are you going to allow "greenriver" to call me a bigot and other vile names or are you going to be unbiased and expect civility from everyone including those who agree with your views? I will be waiting to see if your "mission statement" applies here and warn this person or are you are going to be a hypocrite about it?

patriot said...

greenriver, see arizonian's post about how many have been denied the Medal of Honor including whites and blacks. Take your race card and stuff it! You know nothing about me to call me a bigot in here. There are three other members of this blog who view this situation the same as I do. Why are you singling me out for your insults? I smell a fish and it wouldn't be the first time that someone's evil twin made an appearance in here.

Anonymous said...

Something is really wrong with this country when we elect a man like George Bush as president, and deny a man like Rafael a medal. Discrimination and hypocrisy come to mind.

Anonymous said...

You are right patriot, this medal is not a race issue and you are right the evil twin appears again under a new name. So obvious.

patriot said...

anon, yes people were idiotic to elect Bush as president but this soldier was awarded the second highest military honor based on the panel findings. As I said, what has race to do with this when whites have been denied the Medal of Honor also? Maybe you could explain why a panel would discriminate against a Hispanic soldier? Is there some sort of nationwide conspiracy going on against Hispanics? Yeah, right! You have taken the victim mentality to new heights here.

ultima said...

See what a real Medal of Honor performance is like.

patriot said...

Thanks for posting that Ultima to set dee and anon straight about some so-called discrimination against Hispanics in awarding medals to them in the military.

Liquidmicro said...

The autopsy and the findings DO NOT AGREE with the 'eye witness' accounts. These 'eye witnesses', members of Peraltas team, all were probably close and they would like to see him get the highest award possible. However, that does not warrant the issue of the Medal of Honor.

Li, Greenriver, all though I understand what you are attempting to do and say, unless either of you have ever served in the military, you are doing the same as you are accusing others of doing, "arm chair generaling". To turn this into a racial ordeal is just plain racism on your own part. As a former soldier, I and others can tell you that in the military there is no 'RACE', there is only the color of the uniform, your brothers in arms. So until you have served your country in the armed forces, your opinions matter even less.

Dee said...

Az,
I feel the same!




Az said
But if it was up to me, anyone that died in a live combat situation would receive the Honor.

patriot said...

Still waiting for you to chastize "greenriver" for calling me a bigot and other nasty remarks, dee. Remember your "mission statement".

Dee said...

GreenRiver,
Welcome to my blog and I hope you come back often! I appreciate the passion and conviction you have in your comments.
I do ask that you withhold the name calling. (e.g. idiot) I disagree with Pat many times too and sometimes I feel like reacting to him negatively, however, all people here are asked not to call names or use profane language.
Thank you in advance.

Dee said...

Li,
Welcome to my blog and I hope you come back often.
I appreciate your sharing your thoughts on this subject.
Actually the reason I posted about this young hero was because I did visit the website his family created for him. He is a hero and he touched my heart.

Dee said...

Ulty,
Another true hero, Sgt Benavidez.. good story! Thank you for sharing!

Dee said...

Pat,
You stretch the limits yourself by calling names like hypocrite or making accusations about money for the family as motivation, etc.
I recognize this is a passionate issue and I ask that everyone including you and me and all of us keep to the rules of civility.
Thank you in advance.

Dee said...

Good News!
I just posted the update:
SAN DIEGO, California (AP) -- A California congressional delegation asked President Bush on Friday to posthumously award the Medal of Honor to a Marine who was chosen to receive only the second-highest medal the Navy can bestow for valor.

patriot said...

Yes, occasionally I do resort to name calling also but it is usually in retaliation of being called names first.

Liquidmicro said...

Identification of Ownership of a Medal of Honor

The grade, name, and organization of the awardee are engraved on the reverse of the Medal of Honor. The name only of the awardee is engraved on the reverse of every other decoration and the Good Conduct Medal. Normally, engraving will be accomplished prior to presentation. When this is impracticable, the awardee will be informed that he or she may mail the decoration (or Good Conduct Medal) to the Commander, U.S. Army Support Activity, Philadelphia, 2800 South 20th Street, Philadelphia, PA 19101-3460, for engraving at Government expense.

Recipients of the Medal of Honor receive $1,000 per month for life, a right to burial at Arlington National Cemetery, admission for them or their children to a service academy (if they qualify and quotas permit), and free travel on government aircraft to almost anywhere in the world, on a space-available basis.


As you can see, there are a great number of benefits that come along with the Medal of Honor. So to chastise Pat for making that connection is wrong on your part, Dee, and showing your own hypocrisy, since you do it continuously with every topic you write.

LMJ said...

after reading the posts from the beginning, I was wondering how long it would take Pat to bring race into this...

"Another thing, if this were a white guy I would still go along with the ruling of the panel. You of course wouldn't even have made this a topic in here dee if this were about a white man.

September 19, 2008 6:39 PM"

LMJ said...

point being that Pat brought up race FFIIRRRRSSSTTTTT!!!!

LMJ said...

I'm angry at this issue because how can a NON-military man strip this soldier of ANYTHING. Let alone the medal of honor.

Now Liquid, I consider you to be very intelligent (a little arragant... lol a little) and a soldier. In your HONEST opinion. Is it WRONG what happened. NOT THAT IT SHOULDN'T HAVE HAPPENED, do you believe this is wrong?

Liquidmicro said...

Do I believe what is wrong? I highlighted and linked to why I formed my opinion. The Autopsy and the witness accounts conflict, Gates brought in five other individuals 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. The five were given medical reports that had not been available in the initial review. They thoroughly reviewed the case again, including inspecting the evidence and re-enacting the event, Whitman said. "Each independently recommended to the secretary that the evidence did not support the award of Medal of Honor," he said. Gates made his decision this month.

That pretty much sums it up. Since non of us was there, all we have to go by is the information given. What Peralta did was heroic, however, in my opinion, not to deserve the Medal of Honor.

patriot said...

lmj, you are a riot! Dee is the one who interjected race into this topic from the get go and yet you say nothing to her? I only mentioned race to show that I wouldn't care what race the soldier was they should ALL be scrutized when being considered for the Medal of Honor. In otherwords, I am not playing favorites here. They should all be held to the same standards.

patriot said...

NO! Dee brought up race first! Try reading the title of this topic before you make false accusations of me. "Bush Cronies Deny American LATINO Soldier's Medal of Honor!" Why do I have a feeling that I know who you are, lmj?

ultima said...

Dee's ilk = Bush's cronies

What's good for the goose is good for the gander, or in this case the hen.

ultima said...

" LMJ said...
I'm angry at this issue because how can a NON-military man strip this soldier of ANYTHING. Let alone the medal of honor."

You are showing your ignorance because you do not, apparently, understand that the military are accountable to civilian givernment and it you thought about a little you wouldn't want it any other way. The civilian heads of government are in charge ultimately not the generals and that pertains to all aspects of military strategy, operations, awards,etc. There is even a civilian court of appeals for those convicted by military courts martial.

You and Dee are making a political and racial football out of this rather straightforward decision of the civilain heads of government. The evidence is in and you and DEE simply want to ignore it. Shame on you!

LMJ said...

OH SO sorry mr HIGH AND MIGHTY ULTIMA if I'm not familiar with military procedure and are showing to much ignorance. (bows b4 ULITMA THE NEVER WRONG MIGHTY ONE)

Bottom line Gates was "THE STRIPPER" and the soldier was "THE STRIPPEE." And Gates was NEVER in the military. Thats the part I have a problem with. I'm a showing more

The Arizonian said...

Li said
So you're one of the eye witnesses? No, of course not, just another "armchair general."

I'll just remind you of what you apparently didn't read:
http://immigrationmexicanamerican.blogspot.com/2008/09/why-antis-are-losing-argument.html

I was in the Corps, served 2 tours in Afghanistan, and 3 in Iraq as a EOD specialist.

So yes, I was there in Fallujah when this event occurred. I spoke to many corpsmen in his unit, some that were in that room even. This was the first time I have ever heard this account.

Maybe you should learn a little history about someone before throwing insults.

The Arizonian said...

Just FYI, most of the Secretary of Defenses we have had over the years were never in the military......

The Arizonian said...

I was trying to find the original article Dee used as reference, and came across some interesting things.

1. Born in 1979 in Mexico city. Immigrated to the US and joined the Corps as soon as he had arrived in the US. He was later naturalized while serving in the Corps.

2. There was reports that he pulled in a yellow grenade (THE grenade). I found these reports fishy.... Being EOD I have never seen, read, or heard of a yellow colored grenade, outside the US Mk.II used in WWII, and smoke grenades. Either the grenade was painted yellow by someone, which would dumb, or maybe the accounts of a yellow grenade had the color wrong. Now, there are olive (green) grenades of Russian manufacture with a yellow stripe. I wonder if they meant that instead.

3. He was not assigned to do building sweeps, but chose to anyway.

And this would be a bigger disgrace:
http://www.chocolatecity.cc/blog/2008/09/18/384/

Sgt. Rafael Peralta family may reject military’s medal
September 18th, 2008 ·

Sgt. Rafael PeraltaThe mother of the late Sgt. Rafael Peralta, Rosa Peralta, said she may reject the new medal, the military plans to award to her son for valor.

patriot said...

"Immigrated to the U.S. and joined the Corp. right after that". It appears that this soldier didn't have time to develop a sense of loyalty and love for this country, it would have been impossible if he had just arrived here. Many of our own American soldiers do not join the military for the right reasons either. Some join for mercenary reasons or other reasons that will gain them something. It appears that this soldier might have done the same.

Before I get flamed in here, I am not saying that he wasn't a hero to do what he did, I am just questioning his reasons for joining the military in the first place.

Anonymous said...

i know imj also pat. ;-)

Dee said...

Az,
From you link. I think it says it all!!

MEDAL DESERVED:
As the investigation into Peralta’s combat heroism dragged on for nearly four years, there was widespread feeling among Marines and veterans that Peralta deserved the Medal of Honor, too.

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.”

Former Marine officer Tom Richards is disappointed that Peralta didn’t receive the highest combat distinction. He is national president of the Legion of Valor, and he was awarded the Navy Cross in the Vietnam War.

Richards is among many veterans who have criticized the Pentagon for awarding so few Medals of Honor – the purpose of which, he said, is to inspire other service members.

Dee said...

Pat,
How dare you Pat.
One more word dishonoring a hero who died for you and me and I will delete your further comments!
You should be ashamed!
(You and anonymous who agrees with you)
The purpose of this blog was to discuss the Medal and how this hero should be honored!
Regardless of what you or some of the others think, at least members of Congress have the courage to dispute this and ask the Medal to be issued. Remember, the President honored this hero on Memorial Day 2005. READ what the witnesses said!



Pat said...
It appears that this soldier didn't have time to develop a sense of loyalty and love for this country,

Dee said...

Witness quote:
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.”

patriot said...

Mind explaining what you are accusing me of, dee? Where did I dishonor this man? You are unbelievable!

patriot said...

And YOU should be ashamed for not allowing others an opinion in here that is in oppostition of yours without threatening to delete their posts, dee! Especially since you are accusing me of dishonoring this soldier and that is blatanly false!!!!

The only reason for deletion in here should be for profanity and/or insults to others, not a difference of opinion!

patriot said...

If insults are not directed at another blog member in here, I have every right to insult those not in this blog. It would be my own business and my own opinion!

patriot said...

I consider Sheriff Joe a hero in his own way also but you insult him all the time. Guess it is ok if it is you though? And no, I am not comparing a him to a war hero just trying to show you how ridiculous it is to try and stop someone from making negative comments about those NOT EVEN IN THIS BLOG BUT A PUBLIC FIGURE!

The Arizonian said...

Don't get me started on that punk Reynolds..... There is a reason we called him "The Rap".

Dee said...

Dee said...
Pat,
When you say a HERO didnt have a sense of loyalty or love for our country, the country he died for, you are dishonoring this HERO!

Yours is not a disagreement. It is shameful rhetoric. We are discussing this HERO´s Medal. Stick to the subject.

Pat said...
It appears that this soldier didn't have time to develop a sense of loyalty and love for this country,

Dee said...

LMJ,
I agree with you.
What those here arguing against the medal don´t understand is the HERO died for our country and helped turn the tide in Iraq while saving his comrades lives in Fallujah. They forget insurgents had overtaken that town and hung some of our contractors on a bridge in a display of retaliation. They forget that the last letter he wrote to his little brother (a letter all big brother heroes might send to their younger brothers, ""Tomorrow, at 1900 hours, we are going to declare war in the holy city of Fallujah. We are going to defeat the insurgents. Watch the news, it's going to be all over. Be proud of me, bro, I'm going to make history and do something that I always wanted to do.... If anything happens to me, just remember I lived my life to the fullest and I'm happy with what I lived."

Dee said...

They forget President Bush used Sgt Peralta´s heroic example as the pinnacle of heroic behavior in Iraq during his Memorial Day 2005 speech. President Bush had countless examples to choose from, but he and his staff selected this example to speak to the nation and to the world. Prior to that speech, the President and his staff had countless examples of heroic behaviors to choose from and they selected Hero Peralta.

And after the Military and all of their review boards sent the recommendation to the President for his approval, Gates stopped it. Empaneled a review board of civilians and one "living" medal winner (even though these medals are typically provided posthumously). They chose to deny the medal. Why? I am going to be graphic here.

As the soldiers were going house to house, Sgt Peralta was shot several times including in the head and upper body. The insurgents were everywhere, sniping and throwing grenades. Apparently the shot to the head and upper body was by friendly fire. Peralta fell. A grenade was tossed by an insurgent. He pulled the grenade beneath him to save his fellow soldiers which enabled them to continue on to take over Fallujah. The fragments of the grenade were found embedded beneath him, in his flack jacket.

The question is, with the gunshot wound to his head by friendly fire, could he have pulled the grenade beneath him or did the witnesses just say he did. Gates and his review board argument is really ridiculous. They were not there. There was no conspiracy. Extraordinary occurrences happen during times of war. Remember the hero´s last letter to his little brother.

The soldier witnesses know what they saw. The President and his Review Board know he was a hero that is why they cited Peralta during the Memorial Day speech.
That is why the members of Congress today are disputing Gates´ scurrilous decision.

Dee said...

Another witness:
The decision is "almost like somebody called me a liar," said Marine Sgt. Nicholas Jones, 25, who was with Peralta that day. Jones, a recruiter, said Peralta's actions have become part of Marine Corps lore, as drill sergeants and officer-candidate instructors repeat it to new Marines. "His name is definitely synonymous with valor," said Jones, who was wounded by the grenade blast.

Dee said...

From a Marine Investigator:

In a Marine Corps investigation of the attack, Natonski said, "I believe beyond a shadow of a doubt" that the gravely wounded Peralta covered the grenade.

Natonski, commander of the U.S. Marine Corps Forces Command in Norfolk, Va., appeared disappointed by the news he brought the family, said David Donald, Rosa Peralta's son-in-law. "He felt like Rafael deserved the Medal of Honor," Donald said.

Peralta's heroism has become Marine Corps legend, Lapan says. . . . Peralta had been shot in the head before he covered the grenade, a Marine investigation said. The report concluded he was hit by a ricochet that likely came from the gun of another Marine while they were clearing insurgents from a local home.

After he was wounded, the report said, Peralta scooped an insurgent grenade under his body, absorbed the blast and died, according to five of the Marines who were with Peralta during the firefight.

Dee said...

Pat,
As long as you continue to attempt to hijack my blog for your own misguided chastisement of a HERO for your obviously racist taunts, your comments will be deleted.

We are discussing a HERO. And the Medal of Honor.

Dee said...

Incidently, your saying this doesnt make it so.
BTW, you never said you were in the military. That must be you didnt for your "right in your mind" reasons.

Pat said...
Just because someone dies during wartime doesn't mean that they joined the military for the right reasons.

Dee said...

As the eye witness said:

The decision is "almost like somebody called me a liar," said Marine Sgt. Nicholas Jones, 25, who was with Peralta that day. Jones, a recruiter, said Peralta's actions have become part of Marine Corps lore, as drill sergeants and officer-candidate instructors repeat it to new Marines. "His name is definitely synonymous with valor," said Jones, who was wounded by the grenade blast.

patriot said...

And I am saying his heroric act was for the love of his buddies and not necessarily for this country, dee! You keep avoiding my question of "how could he have developed a sense of love and loyalty for this country when he had just arrived here illegally!

Stop telling me that I am off topic because I am not! I AM discussing the topic of this soldier and the medal that he was awarded! What is wrong with you?

If you don't like my opinion then ignore it. But my opinion should be respected and allowed in here just like yours or anyone elses!

patriot said...

If you delete my posts with MY opinion on this matter AND I AM ON TOPIC AS I AM DISCUSSING THIS SOLDIER AND THE MEDAL HE WAS AWARDED, then I am out of here permanantly because you are disallowing freedom of speech with civility in here! It is your choice! I won't put up with it!

patriot said...

Also nothing I have said is not honoring this soldier. He did what he did for whatever reasons. I am just stating based on the story of his arrival here and what we know he did, is that his heroic act was absolutely to save his buddies but not necessarily giving his life for devotion to this country. There is nothing wrong with that! It still makes him a hero in my eyes! And that is not being off topic! As I said, the choice is yours! I haven't highjacked anything. I am only expressing my opinion and I have still called him a hero! I will not tolerate loss of freedom of speech in here as long as it is civil and nothing I have said is off topic!

patriot said...

You have a reading comprehension problem also, dee. I didn't say that for proof positive this soldier didn't join the military for the right reasons all I said is based on the fact that he just newly arrived here illegally and immediately jointed the military that is it unlikely that anyone in that same situation would have had time to feel loyalty and love for this country. Even a third grader could comprehend that!

FYI, I did serve during the Viet Nam War. Not that that has anything to do with it anyway!

The Arizonian said...

Pat, his family immigrated here legally.

Dee said...

Pat,
I like you here Pat. I like you here just to prove I could never make up someone with your opinions. However, as AZ pointed out, citizenship status has NOTHING to do with this topic. I believe your left turn on this topic is chastising a hero. You have raised my ire because I admire and honor American heroes.

I dont want you to leave.
However, I do not want you to slur a hero.

The topic is the medal. Nothing else.

patriot said...

AZ,

http://www.blackfive.net/main/2006/05/memorial_day_se.html


He joined the marines the 1st day he received his green card. That means he was in the country illegally before that.

patriot said...

AZ, here is more on that soldier:

Peralta came from a modest background. His father was a truck mechanic and his mother is a washerwoman. Sgt. Peralta, the oldest son, was born in Mexico City and raised in Tijuana. His parents sent him to attend high school in San Diego after he was beaten by members of a gang in Tijuana. They feared for his safety. Sgt. Peralta immigrated illegally to the United States as a teenager. He stayed with family friends. In high school, he was approached by a Marine recruiter who told him to get in touch once he cleared up his legal status. The morning his green card came through Rafael Peralta enlisted in the United States Marine Corps.

patriot said...

There is much more to this story than just the medal and I have not dishonored this young man by speaking about his life anymore than you speaking about his life in your topic yourself. You are making ridiculous rules under this topic about what can be said just because you don't like my opinion and are twisting it to make it seem that I am dishonoring him when I am not, dee. I said he was a hero for saving his buddies lives and deserved whatever medal the panel agreed was warrented him. What else do you want? I am entitled to my opinion on the rest of his story and if you don't like it then ignore my posts.

Dee said...

Pat,
I dont think any of us like your left turn here.

This man is a hero.
He is a Patriot who served in Iraq and risked his life for ALL of us.
The President honored him.
He was selected out of all the heroes in the War when the President cited his heroism as an example in his speech in 2005 out of all the other heroes who represented us, you and me, in the conflict in Iraq.
None of the rest of us are disputing any of these facts, or his loyalties.

I opened up this topic to discuss the Medal of Honor and whether he should or should not be a recipient of this medal.

No one else is doubting his courage, his heroism or his motives.

I do not know why you are taking this left turn.

Dee said...

Pat,
Again, Shame on you!
Blogger Blackfive HONORS Sgt Peralta!

All viewers should review Blackfives entire entry:
SGT Rafael Peralta, USMC 4/7/1979 - 11/15/2004 "Our Loving Hero"
Photo taken by Smash (click on image for larger version).
The words to "Taps" are:

Day Is Done,
Gone the Sun,
From the Earth,
From the Hill,
From the Sky,
All Is Well,
Safely Rest,
God Is Nigh
When Taps is played at dusk, it has a completely different meaning than when Taps is played during the day. No soldier really wants to hear it played during daylight. For when the bugle plays Taps in the daylight...that means a soldier has fallen...There is a belief among some that Taps is the clarion call to open the gates of heaven for the fallen warrior and letting them know to "Safely Rest"...

Marine Sergeant Rafael Peralta earned his rest the hard way. His name should be discussed more often than the celebrities of the day...

Sergeant Peralta was from Company A, 1st Battalion, 3rd Marine Regiment - his job was that of leading the scout section. In November of 2004, Peralta was 25 years old and not an American citizen. He joined the Marines on the very day that he received his green card. He later earned his citizenship as a Marine.

On November 15, 2004, the Marines were busy clearing houses in the Battle for Fallujah. Peralta, as scout team leader, was responsible for locating the enemy and directly ground forces to destroy them. He was not supposed join in the assaults inside the homes.

However, Rafael Peralta was not the kind of guy to stand around watching things happen. He wanted to make things happen. He routinely requested to join the assault teams entering the insurgent filled houses.

During the fateful assault on the 15th, after clearing three houses, Peralta lead the charge into the fourth house, finding two rooms empty on the ground floor. Upon opening a third door, Peralta was hit multiple times with AK-47 fire - severely wounded, he dropped to the floor and moved away in order to give the Marines behind him an opportunity to fire on the insurgents.

As the battle continued, the insurgents lobbed a grenade at the Marines. Two Marines were trapped in the room with Peralta. When they saw the grenade, they tried to get out of the blast area but were trapped.

Peralta, bleeding out on the floor, reached for the grenade and pulled it to his midsection, cradling the grenade before it cooked off.

The grenaded exploded, killing Peralta and critically wounding another Marine, the others all survived because Peralta absorbed the majority of the lethal blast.

Google news on Peralta and you'll find only a few items. You'll find more from around the time of the Battle of Fallujah but not much esle. Rafael Peralta doesn't even have a Wikipedia entry.

But my kids will know Rafael Peralta - I'll make sure of it.

patriot said...

Will you also make sure that your kids remember all of the fallen white soldiers or others of another race/ethnicity with as much reverance as for this Hispanic soldier? I doubt it! It wouldn't even have rated a topic in here.

DinTN said...

http://www.medalofhonor.com/Immigrants.htm

"As Veteran's Day approaches, the time has come to pay tribute to those who have given their lives to this country, though they were not born in this country. Immigrants have received the Medal of Honor in every war since the medal was first established. To receive it, a recipient must risk his life, the bravery of his act must be considered beyond the call of duty and distinguished from other acts, and at least two eyewitnesses must have observed the act and provide incontestable evidence that it occurred."

"More than 20 percent (over 700) of the Congressional Medal of Honor recipients in U.S. wars have been immigrants. As the official guide to recipients notes, "Those who have received the Medal of Honor since it was established in 1861 as the nation's highest decoration are as different as the melting pot population of our country."

As usual, the more I read Dee's blog, the more I see this is less an "immigrant" issue to Dee and more of a Hispanic issue. No appreciation for the award that he did receive.
Seems like Dee feels that if you're Hispanic, second highest award is just not good enough.

Anonymous said...

Welcome dintn! Dee usually welcomes
pro-illegal supporters personally and says she welcomes in theory anti-illegals posters. I saw the utube posted on your website. Very informative, maybe dee will comment after she views it.

The Arizonian said...

DinTN said...
No appreciation for the award that he did receive.


I couldn't have said it better myself.

Besides, the man's actions should make his legacy, not a piece of cloth and metal.

DinTN said...

Anonymous, thank you for the welcome, but I must come to Dee's defence on this one. I don't know who you are but you must not be aware that Dee has welcomed me here in the past. Kind of like an irregular regular. LOL

I'm pretty sure she has seen the video, but I know she has seen my blog, as (self-admittadly) unprofessional as it may be, I know.

Dee said...

Welcome back Dintn,
Sorry I didnt welcome you back sooner. I have been studying the Bailout issue most of the day.
I have visited your blog.
You and I may have different views, but we both do speak from the heart!

I have to admit this particular story sparked my interest. As with all articles I post, something about the story has to stir me from the inside before I write about it.

Why did I post it? I saw it on another site. Researched it. Then I read the home website created by Rafael´s family. I saw the last letter written by Rafael to his younger brother. That was the clincher. I have 2 sons myself and I know how older brothers have so much influence on younger brothers. Then the thought of the President using his heroism, out of all other acts, as the example he used to represent all acts of heroism in Iraq on Memorial Day 2005. Then his mother´s words, which quite frankly, broke my heart.

I knew there would be those here who hit me hard on this, but I thought the story was important enough to follow it. As with other articles I post, I do commit to follow this story to the end.

Anonymous said...

He stood there and took responsibilities to the heart, to safe some scary ass cracker...fuck off, he deserves that medal.

Hispanic power bitches!!

Anonymous said...

Awesome! Wonderful topic, but will this really work?

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