Skip to comments.Pentagon Changes Mind, Won't Deploy Congressman
Posted on 04/01/2003 10:54:38 AM PST by InHisImage
WASHINGTON -- Congressman Steve Buyer won't be trading his business suit for Army fatigues after all.
The Indiana Republican is a member of the Army Reserve and said he had been called to active duty. But the Pentagon is having second thoughts.
Buyer received a letter Monday from the military brass saying his services wouldn't be needed. The Pentagon said Buyer's high-profile status could endanger him and his fellow soldiers.
Buyer is a lieutenant colonel and served in the first Gulf War as a military legal adviser. He would have been the first member of Congress since World War II to take a leave of absence to serve in the war.
And that would, no doubt, be that great Americun Silver Star holder LBJ.
My uncle was a Corpsman in Vietnam, and took 2 bullets (one in the head) and a dozen grenade fragments while dragging a wounded radioman (with his radio) into cover after an ambush. This was on his second tour and after his second purple heart. The radioman lived, and the radio was used to call in air support which probably saved the rest of the Marines.
He received a Bronze Star with combat "V", and always said he didn't deserve it.
I believe in a just God, and think that my now deceased uncle would say that he was unworthy of having an ex US president as his personal servant for eternity, and I again would disagree.
Seriously, the Pentagonians just tossed away a PR goldmine. Must've been nixed by a Clinton holdover.
Johnson's "combat gallantry" may not be well-known here, let's repeat it for the newbies.
Awarding the Silver Star to Johnson, forever tarnished the meaning of the medal. Saddest part of all, was the man was not ashamed to show it to people long after the war.
Some here may be too young to remember Johnson and the Silver Star affair. Johnson was a shallow, vain, egomaniac, that became president of this country.
Crewmembers on that same mission didn't recall anything out of the ordinary, and didn't receive anything except points towards an Air Medal (30 flights in hostile territory unless special circumstances). When they found out the JAFO on board received a Silver Star, they were amazed.
Congressman Buyer (R-IN) was one of the very brave, courageous Managers who brought about the Impeachment of clinton.
I don't know much about him, but the guy will always be A#1 in my book.
" LBJ's Silver Star Navy Lt. Cmdr. Lyndon Baines Johnson, the first member of Congress to enter active duty in World War II, was awarded the Silver Star in 1942 for gallantry in action on a flight over enemy territory. But historians have called Johnson's decoration one of the most undeserved Silver Stars in history, and CNN's review of the historical record raises new questions about the circumstances of its award by Gen. Douglas McArthur nearly 60 years ago.
LBJ had been in congress since 1938. The acft was a B-25, the crewmembers got nothing.
Ever hear the tale of LBJ's flight home? Supposedly when his helo took him to his ranch after Nixon's inauguration, no one was there to meet him. LBJ insisted that Marine-1 remain there, but the crew stated: "This isn't your helicopter anymore", unloaded his bags and took off. The pilot said the last he saw of LBJ was the big old SOB stomping his foot and shaking a fist at them.
Probably a myth, but does a heart good.
Now, hold on! LBJ flew a long way to get that Silver Star in a old un-air conditioned, non-pressureized Catalina. Why his uniform got mussed!
He had a worse time than
Algore but he didn't have to invent all those pesky guns to win honor and glory.
All Texas knows LBJ. He's our very own Liberal Butthead Jerk whose Great Society wiped out poverty and hunger for all time! Not to mention he lost our first war to the media and whetted their thirst for blood and Watergate.
Ha, the greatest thing about JBL:
"He's dead, Jim."
Someone 40+ and retired/ and activated is not necessarily sent front line/ or even in theatre. They could be AD in the home front.
O.K. then Pentagon people, will you at least reconsider the point and perhaps send a Senator into action instead? Say a Jr. one from N.Y.? Surely she wouldn't refuse to be come the first entombed Senator in Iraq. (Oops, sorry, I meant embedded of course---LOL)
I don't know much about him, but the guy will always be A#1 in my book.
He also went down to Florida during the post-election re-re-re-re-re-recount, when it became known that the 'rats were trying to get military ballots tossed.
He's definitely one of the good guys, and that's why I have made him my adopted congressman, to help me deal with the fact that my actual congresscritter is Jerry Nadler.
That would be Tim Johnson, 'rat senator from S. Dakota.
Then again, we could also just use her as a wide-load MOAB and drop her over Baghdad...
Pentagon Rejects Lawmaker's Serve Offer
Pentagon Says Thanks, but No Thanks to Indiana Congressman's Offer to Serve
The Associated Press
In the end, Rep. Steve Buyer got a thanks, but no thanks from the Pentagon for wanting to report for military duty near the battlefields of Iraq rather than in the halls of Congress.
Even before the first bombs were dropped on Baghdad, the Indiana Republican and a lieutenant colonel in the Army Reserve was making plans to ship out as a judge advocate to the Persian Gulf, where 12 years ago in an earlier war he was a legal adviser in a POW camp.
He sought and immediately received from House Speaker Dennis Hastert an indefinite leave from Congress and returned to his home in Monticello, Ind., to spend a few days with his family before what he thought would be a speedy deployment.
The plan came to an end Monday night, not abruptly but after days of wrangling by Pentagon officials over whether Buyer's desire to report for active military duty should prevail over a six-decade practice of not sending lawmakers into harm's way as soldiers while Congress is in session.
"The Army appreciates your willingness to serve the nation in Operation Iraqi Freedom," Buyer (pronounced BOO-yer) quoted a Pentagon notice he received Monday. "However, due to your high profile status as a United States representative, we are concerned that your presence would put in jeopardy your safety and the safety of those serving around you, given the current security environment in the theater of operations."
Buyer, 44, said in a telephone interview before heading back to Washington that he had mixed feelings about the Army's decision.
"When you get ready and you're prepared to go, you're ready," he said. "(But) I have a family and I've already done this once.... I'm neither the first nor will I be the last soldier ever told to pack your bags, you're deploying, stand by, stand down, now unpack your bags."
Others were not surprised.
"There is a tradition of not wearing two hats in the government," said Senate historian Donald Ritchie.
Sen. Tom Carper, D-Del., was a member of the House and a Navy Reservist when he offered to serve in the Persian Gulf war. He recalled Dick Cheney, the secretary of defense then, telling him to stay put.
"I think Secretary Cheney recognized that making it possible for me to fly missions with P3 air crews in a war setting probably created more problems than it solved," Carper said.
Had the Army decided the other way, Buyer would have become the first lawmaker since the early days of World War II to go to war while Congress is in session without first having to give up his seat. When several lawmakers did it then, President Roosevelt issued an order in 1942 prohibiting members of Congress from being activated.
About a dozen congressmen and one senator later gave up their seats in Congress to serve. Others did the opposite. Lyndon B. Johnson resigned his commission in the Navy to stay in the House.
According to Defense Department directives, lawmakers in the reserves or National Guard units can volunteer for active duty but cannot be called up unless there is a pressing need for their specific skills. Even then, they can turn down activation orders, officials said.
One of Buyer's colleagues, Rep. Mark Kirk, R-Ill., a Naval Reserve intelligence officer, has arranged to spend Congress' two-week spring recess as a watch officer in the Pentagon's war room.
"I think it's important for a member of the Congress to get a view from the bottom up," said Kirk, who typically spends one weekend a month on duty.
Other reservists in Congress include Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., and Rep. Roger Wicker, R-Miss., both lieutenant colonels in the Air Force Reserve, and Rep. John M. Shimkus, R-Ill., a lieutenant colonel in the Army Reserve. Rep. Joe Wilson, R-S.C., is a colonel in his state's Army National Guard.
A couple of times a year I make small contributions to his re-election campaigns and always get back a signed letter and brief note, and last time I got a very nice handwritten note after I explained that I "adopted" him to cope with the fact that Nadler is my district's congresscritter. I keep that with my Ken Starr autograph, as part of my Impeachment Heroes Collection. :D
in the guise of religious authority
Where does any "religion" come into the article? It has nothing to do with religion.
And, what's demoraize, anyway? English your second language? Do you mean demoralize? Or do you mean demonize?
Either way, people post for all kinds of reasons. It's not always to demonize and demoralize.
Usually, it's just to dissimulate, dissipate and disinformate.
Wait, maybe it's an optical delusion!
BTW, I noticed you just signed up. Things getting boring over at DU?