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Discussion Starter #1
Let me be the first to ask a question regarding the return of Pfc. Jessica Lynch. Can someone explain to me why she is called a hero? Or, why was she awarded the Bronze Star? I served my time in the military, as did my father, father-in-law, and several friends. My father-in-law spent over 200 days in combat in France/Germany during WWII. He was awarded the Purple Heart and Bronze Star. A close friend was wounded during the TET offensive in Viet Nam in 1968. He only got a Purple Heart. Now I may be out of touch regarding the awarding of military medals, but shouldn't Pfc. Lynch qualify for the Purple Heart and POW ribbon alone. I'm not saying she shouldn't be praised for her military service. I applaud her for that, but the Bronze Star I question. Along with the title, HERO.
 

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The Troll Whisperer (Moderator)
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The same thoughts have been running through my mind, AJ - not wanting to take anything away from the fact she was captured and spent some miserable time without proper medical care as a POW, for the life of me, I think this is a media event soley. The Army knows they'll get good mileage out of this as an injured (not wounded as reported) FEMALE soldier and the press has eaten up the story, even if they have been found to be hyping the whole story. Sorta like the murder trial out in Calif that seems to have captivated the media - I get so tired of hearing about that one, I tend to mute or turn the tv to something else whenever they start rehashing the worn out story.

Here in Ariz, our female and homosexual governor jumped immediately to rename a small mountain in the Phoenix area "Piestuwia" Peak, in lieu of it's century's old name of "Squaw Peak" to honor the other female in Lynch's convoy that died of injuries suffered when the truck they were in rammed the back end of another truck at approx 45 mph and hurt/killed everyone in the vehicle. That in turn, necessitated the renaming of expressways and all other state owned infrastructure that carried the Squaw Peak title. NOTE: The fed's have refused to rename all their stuff to that name for a minimum of 5 more years. Again, I'm not saying the renaming of the landmark isn't a nice gesture, just that everyone is rushing pell-mell trying to honor these two women just because they were involved in injuries in battle. As you point out, there's lots of others that need recognition as well and equally.

Yes, I too, spent time in a lousy place at a lousy time, called Korea. Lots of people I knew did their duty and paid the supreme sacrifice and didn't garner all this attention or tribute.
 

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I do not have any problem with calling her a hero. She suffered in combat and at the hands of the enemy. Are the others who did the same and more heroes? Absolutely. Lets not take anything from her because others are heroes also. All our combat vets need to be honored.

There is another very necessary aspect of this. We, Americans, need designated heroes. She is a very visible soldier, a woman, a prisoner, who was dramatically rescued on camera. Again this does not subtract from others, but lets honor her while we can. I still see no problem with it. The most common quote you hear from Medal of Honor winners is that they were doing their duty just like everyone else. They mourn those lost, just as PFC Lynch did on the radio today. It is good to have her home.

Don

USMC
 

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She did her duty. For that she should be commended. Like all the others that did theirs. I have not heard her calling herself a hero, only the press. I do not see any heroic action in being unlucky enough to be captured. She only did what was expected of any soldier. I think that this is mostly an issue of the members of the press having no idea of what the definition of heroism is. In calling the act of preforming ones duty well heroism they inadvertantly demean the true (and very rare) heros. They are wanting to sell papers and get ratings. accuracy is imaterial.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Found this on another forum. I don't read where being the passenger in a vehicle that crashes into another vehicle should be awarded the Bronze Star. It just belittles the award and all others who FOUGHT and were awarded the medal. The hero issue, 'forget about it'. I know the media is focusing on the cute petite woman that looks good for tv. Haven't heard much from the other POW's from her outfit. Hmmm, wonder why?
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The Bronze Star Medal is awarded to any person who, while serving in any capacity in or with the military of the United States after 6 December 1941, distinguished himself or herself by heroic or meritorious achievement or service, not involving participation in aerial flight, while engaged in an action against an enemy of the United States; while engaged in military operations involving conflict with an opposing foreign force; or while serving with friendly foreign forces engaged in an armed conflict against an opposing armed force in which the United States is not a belligerent party.
 

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There is a large difference between a "Bronze Star" and a Bronze Star with "V" for valor. The Bronze Star is awarded for "meritorious service," while the added "V" means awarded for exceptional bravery during combat. PFC Lynch was awarded a Bronze Star, WITHOUT "V."

I have a good friend who served two tours in Vietnam, U.S. Navy, on a destroyer and a cruiser. He told me he was awarded two Bronze Stars (without "V") and he didn't even know what in tarnation they were being awarded for. Said the Bronze Star, without "V", was a standard "handout." Meant "good service performed."

Another good friend of mine and hunting partner, also served in Vietnam, in an infantry platoon and he too, has a Bronze Star... with "V." He also has some pretty good scars to go along with it.

PFC Lynch apparently did her job the best she could. I hope she recovers fully.

It was her C.O., Capt. King, who failed her and the troops in that Company. He did not insist that his X.O., Lt.s, and Sgts, demand all weapons and equipment be in fighting order. Rifles would not fire. Ma Duece wouldn't work. Light machine guns wouldn't fire. Ammo was very low. Trucks ran out of gas, ad nauseum. Capt. King should answer for dereliction of duty, in not making certain his troops were ready to fight.

JMHO. L.W.
 

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Nawth East Moderatah
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I was NEVER in the military, one of the biggest mistakes I made in my personal life experience. I will always feel that I should have, but now at 39, married and in the middle of life, there is little I can do about it now.
My grandfather served in the Navy in WWII
My father in the Army during Korea
My uncle as an Army medic in Vietnam in 67-68
My cousin as Airborne 101st as a jumpmaster.

But my philosophy is this.

I have nothing but thanks for those who serve in our military; wartime or not, front lines or not. You are to be commended for your life's decision.
You are all heros!

thank you
 

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The Bronze Star is the most mis-awarded medal the US has. I was awarded one, with the "v" device, but the PFC who was with me in the action in question was not. Did I deserve it? I like to think so, when I think about it at all, but no more so than him, maybe even less. The Bronze Star is a good "press award". A friend of mine who served in WW II was awarded one because his unit needed a recipient for some sort of media ceremony, and he was selected. Awarding it to PFC Lynch further cheapens it. She got lost, hurt in a vehicle wreck and was captured. If those events are reason for designating somebody a hero to fill some perceived need of our country for a hero, the Nation is in deep trouble. She is getting all the attention soley because she is a female, and not too hard to look at.

DC
 

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Discussion Starter #9
DMC

You and I are on the same page. I just hate to see any military award cheapened because we need a "hero" now, or she's so "cute" and blonde. I need a break from the media's definition of a hero. Unfortunately most of us will never know the true heroes of war. They were KIA and no one was there to report their actions.
 

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I agree with horseman 1, The thing that bothers me is the fact that the media singled out her. Yes ,she did go through **** for a short time through circumstances that were beyond her control. But I can't help wondering how the medias coverage of her has effected all of the other men and women who have been over there for months now risking thier lives, hoping that the next bullet fired won't be the one that strikes them dead from a smelly ragheaded extremist that just wants to kill anything because they have so much hate in thier hearts. I'm a vet. of Nam. also with four tours from 66 to 1970. I saw a number of ribbons given out, some deserved ,some not, but for me they are all heros when they are willing to serve thier country. I don't care if they are a clerk or a grunt in the middle of the jungle/sand. They are all needed in Gods great plan of victory for the USof A. I pray for each and every one of them that they will come back safe with all thier original body parts. As for the media over there , they risked there lives also. OK I can get off my soap box now.
Bob
 
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