Veteran Weighs In on Trump’s Restoration of the Honor of Three Military Men

'All charges involved enemy combatants in the field,' the author points out

Image Credit: Twitter, Donald J. Trump

Many people have read about how President Donald Trump granted clemency a few days ago to two Army officers who were accused of war crimes and restored the proper rank to a Navy SEAL already cleared of serious charges.

The soldiers are First Lieutenant Clint Lorance, who served six years on a contrived charge of second degree murder, and Major Matt Golsteyn, who was accused of murder.

The sailor is CPO Eddie Gallagher, who was also charged with posing for a photo with a dead ISIS fighter.

For that, he was reduced in rank.

All charges involved enemy combatants in the field.

The prosecution of the men recalls the line from “Apocalypse Now” that “charging a man with murder in this place was like handing out speeding tickets at the Indy 500.”

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Speaking of Hollywood, even the great actor and director Clint Eastwood chimed in on the issue.

It was an honorable and courageous move on the part of the president.

While most of the Left and the Democrats probably seethed with quiet but deep and frustrated indignation, they silenced their views.

They reluctantly did so, in my Left-loathing view, in order not to look all the more intrinsically and passionately anti-U.S. military than they generally do.

As an Army vet, I must admit to some professional bias on this matter. I served in Army Intel and was assigned to a tactical unit with the First Infantry Division; there, we primarily relied on data and perceptions from personnel on the ground, soldiers and sources in the field.

We rarely questioned their judgment, as the view of someone on the scene is usually worth the views of 10 chairborne rangers or rear-echelon types when ascertaining the raw credibility of reports.

That was not the view in these cases, as legitimate reports of these three men were discounted because the optics were bad for Pentagon PR and legal officers.

In the case of Gallagher, he was initially accused of murdering an enemy prisoner until the case completely unraveled when another sailor admitted to the offense.

Related: Navy SEAL Eddie Gallagher Was Still Fighting His Own Commanders

If the prosecution had done their homework in the case and discovered the person or persons who had actually committed the crime, Gallagher never would have been brought up on that charge.

However, in the Obama administration purge of combat savvy general officers — while also putting an emphasis on detailed legalities in the field — the stage was set for the unfair and unethical persecutions of innocent military personnel for doing their duty and for accomplishing their missions in sometimes harrowing circumstances.

What President Trump did was not only restore the honor and freedom of innocent soldiers and a sailor, he also restored the sullied honor of a military establishment and general officers who hung these brave men out to dry to fulfill their modern fantasies of a non-lethal, warm-and-fuzzy force — one more out to adhere to PC rules of engagement than to kill the enemy and blow things up.

After all, that is still — when all the silliness and bureaucratic folderol is shorn away — the main objective of any military force in the field.

President Trump, though not a vet himself, understands this.

Those who engaged in these egregious prosecutions do not.

See this tweet — and share your thoughts.

The opinions expressed by contributors and/or content partners are their own and do not necessarily reflect the views of LifeZette.

David Kamioner
meet the author

David Kamioner is a veteran of U.S. Army Intelligence and an honors graduate of the University of Maryland's European Division. He also served with the Pershing Nuclear Brigade and the First Infantry Division. Subsequent to that he worked for two decades as a political consultant, was part of the American Red Cross Hurricane Katrina disaster relief effort in Louisiana, ran a homeless shelter for veterans in Philadelphia, and taught as a college instructor. He serves as a Contributing Editor for LifeZette.

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