Mar 24, 2019

Fabrication of wartime “heroism” saddens

“INTENTIONAL FALSEHOODS.� “Deliberate and careful misrepresentations.� “Fraud.�

These were the words used by Kevin Tillman, the brother of Army Ranger Pat Tillman, who was killed by friendly fire in Afghanistan three years ago.

Joining Kevin Tillman was Jessica Lynch, the “little girl Rambo,� as they testified in front of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee’s investigation.

Tillman and Lynch recently gave their testimony on the fabricated stories of war experiences. Both seeking answers, Tillman sought justice for being lied to about his brother’s death, while Lynch questioned the government’s intentions for making her out to be a superhero.

Honestly, I would like to think this whole ordeal was simply an oversight. I could use some faith in our government at the moment. But looking back on this administration, I know this is just not possible.

No matter which political party one identifies with, I think many Americans are left with some unanswered questions. Why would the military or government lie to the family of a dead Ranger? Why would they create some false story about a wounded soldier? Who would condone such actions?

The simple fact is that we may never know. I guess the real question we should be asking is this: When does the image of the military outweigh the basic moral rights of the American people?

After listening to the testimony of Jessica Lynch, I wondered what as going through her mind as she heard the broadcasts of her capture. Reports described how she fired every last shot from her weapon before being overtaken by her captors.

In reality, Lynch stated that her weapon jammed and she could no nothing but fall on her knees in prayer. Not exactly the death-defying hero she was made out to be.

From her testimony, Lynch seemed more than merely disappointed in the government and military she swore to defend. Integrity, honesty and truth seem like the highest of ideals, yet the hidden agendas still somehow take precedent.

It was not until the courtroom scene that both the Tillman family and Lynch got to speak out. It saddens me deeply that it had to come to this point in order for the people to understand what it means to go to war.

In the case of Pat Tillman, I tried to put myself in the place of his family. When sending a loved one into war, there is never a guarantee that they will come home in one piece. In this war, innocent civilians are no safer than those fighting on the front lines. Suicide bombings occur almost daily and have sadly become almost commonplace. Despite all this, I don’t think the Tillman family expected to be lied to, especially after losing a loved one serving his country.

America is a nation that is looked up to across the globe. I wonder what kind of example we set for the rest of the world. So far, we have communicated that the image of our nation is more important than truth. I see no end to these kinds of cover-ups until our government and military are ready to turn a critical eye on themselves.

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