They Were Killed in Combat, Mr. President
Senior military leaders and some in Congress are not happy with the President and his minions insistence that our troops killed in firefights weren’t on a “combat mission.” They insist they’re there on a “training mission.” They are killed or wounded by enemy fire…and that’s combat.
When Navy SEAL Charlie Keating was killed in Iraq during an intense firefight just a few days ago, White House Press secretary Josh Earnest was adamant about telling reporters that he wasn’t in Iraq on a “combat mission.”
The h*** they aren’t
“Why can’t we level with the American people and say that U.S. troops in harm’s way in the Middle East are in combat?” Dan Sullivan, R-AK
The Military Times wrote,
The U.S. now has 300 troops in Syria, where the fight against ISIS is intensifying. The Pentagon also is sending more troops to Iraq, boosting the total number there to more than 4,000. The Pentagon has even created an Operation Inherent Resolve campaign medal for troops who have deployed as part of the mission to crush ISIS.
Where those fights are being waged, American forces are targets from the moment they arrive. That they are tasked to train local forces to defeat ISIS and other enemies makes U.S. forces all the more vulnerable.
Calling it a training mission is cold comfort to the parents, spouses and children of the deployed troops. They know what happened to Keating, Cardin and Wheeler. They’ve seen the reports on how ISIS militants treat those captured. They know hostilities are growing and sense, rightly or wrongly, that a greater showdown may be in the offing and that U.S. forces very well may be in the middle of it.
Combat is combat
Call it anything you want, it’s still combat. Our troops are not cold hard statistics, they are human beings with loved ones. You can hang labels, lies, and hashtags on it, they are still in the midst of enemy fire.
They were killed in combat, Mr. President, stop trying to twist the truth.