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Dharma_Bum Donating Member (182 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-18-05 11:35 PM
Original message
Pat Tillman, Our Hero ... NFL Player / War Hero
Edited on Wed Oct-19-05 02:52 PM by Skinner
Pat Tillman, Our Hero
by Dave Zirin

"I don't believe it," seethed Ann Coulter.
Her contempt was directed at a September 25 San Francisco Chronicle
story reporting that former NFL star and Army Ranger war hero Pat
Tillman, who was killed in Afghanistan last year, believed the US war on
Iraq was "f***ing illegal" and counted Noam Chomsky among his favorite
authors. It must have been quite a moment for Coulter, who upon
Tillman's death described him in her inimitably creepy fashion as "an
American original--virtuous, pure and masculine like only an American
male can be." She tried to discredit the story as San Francisco
agitprop, but this approach ran into a slight problem: The article's
source was Pat Tillman's mother, Mary.

Mary and the Tillman family are relentlessly pushing for answers to the
questions surrounding Pat's death in Afghanistan. They want to know why
it took the Pentagon five weeks to tell them he died in a tragic case of
friendly fire. They want to know why they were unwitting props at Pat's
funeral, weeping while lies were told by eulogizing politicians. Mary is
now hoping that a new Pentagon inquiry will bring closure. "There have
been so many discrepancies so far that it's hard to know what to
believe," she said to the Chronicle. "There are too many murky details."

The very private Tillmans have revealed a picture of Pat profoundly at
odds with the GI Joe image created by Pentagon spinmeisters and their
media stenographers. As the Chronicle put it, family and friends are now
unveiling "a side of Pat Tillman not widely known--a fiercely
independent thinker who enlisted, fought and died in service to his
country yet was critical of President Bush and opposed the war in Iraq,
where he served a tour of duty. He was an avid reader whose interests
ranged from history books...to works of leftist Noam Chomsky, a favorite
author." Tillman had very unembedded feelings about the Iraq War. His
close friend Army Spec. Russell Baer remembered, "I can see it like a
movie screen. We were outside of watching as bombs were
dropping on the town.... We were talking. And Pat said, 'You know, this
war is so f***ing illegal.' And we all said, 'Yeah.' That's who he was.
He totally was against Bush." With these revelations, Pat Tillman the PR
icon joins WMD and Al Qaeda connections on the heap of lies used to sell
the Iraq War.

EDITED BY ADMIN: COPYRIGHT

http://www.thenation.com/doc/20051024/zirin
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RaleighNCDUer Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-18-05 11:44 PM
Response to Original message
1. Has it ever been determined just who it was that shot him?
Call me a tinfoil hatter, but I wonder if there was someone who really REALLY didn't want him to become a spokesman for the other side.
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Ferret Annica Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 01:34 AM
Response to Reply #1
8. No
I was quite outspokenly liberal while in Special Forces, and the relationships you engender at the sort of close knit small units he was in transcended politics.

Fratricide for any reason is an extremely far-fetched notion.
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malmapus Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 09:03 AM
Response to Reply #8
11. Can vouch for that too


Can't even begin to describe the kind of relationship you have with your team mates, really nothing like it outside of that community.
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RaleighNCDUer Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 09:36 AM
Response to Reply #8
12. I never suggested that it was someone in the unit.
That would be almost unthinkable. But I wonder if there were any MI types, 'contractors', 'observers', the people that we called 'spooks' forty years ago, whatever the CIA or other such operatives are called today.

Fratricide is far fetched, but political murder? Not so much.

Like I said, it's tinfoil-hatty but it would not surprise me. Of course, they may have covered it up, obfuscated about it simply because it was friendly fire and it jarred with their posterboy image, had to figure out how to spin it.

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malmapus Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 11:17 AM
Response to Reply #12
13. I just dunno myself

Horrible mistakes can and do happen, my field was commo and I remember our saying was that "communications is a theory". Some days could send a signal for god know how far, and others I couldn't even hit a radio just 50 yards away line of sight.

Plus from personal experience with having been shot at (luckily buddies below weren't firing a few centimeters higher) during a live fire exercise because conflicting orders were being given by our commanding officer, that and other experiences I know how shit can hit the fan hard.

I just dunno, from the accounts I've heard I just feel that it was a tragic mistake.
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Ferret Annica Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 01:30 PM
Response to Reply #12
14. All I will say is spooks and the like are reflexively dis-trusted
in Special Forces. When I was in anyone who engineered the death of or killed a team member, it would have sucked to be them.

Special Forces people are smart. They are competitive. And they mean what they say and some rules of engagement are clear cut.

It is far safer for a clique of people engineering an assassination to plan for a hit while the service member is on leave. Nobody in their right mind plays that sort of game in the field.

More realistically speaking, washing out people who are perceived as being dangerous to SF culture happens at the Q course. On top of the cadre's analysis of the students is the peering out process that students do to unmask those with exceptional gifts of treachery and were not outed by the cadre, but spotted by their peers.

I can only speak from the SF stand point. But it would make me angry enough to risk my life to deal with a person or chain of people killing or maiming a team member.

Just something to think about, because you are not dealing with what probably happened.
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RaleighNCDUer Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-20-05 08:18 PM
Response to Reply #14
18. You and Malmapus both make good points.
Just my paranoia showing, I guess. If Bushco had wanted to silence him it would be much easier, and safer, for him to have a car/plane crash while on leave. And, as said above, accidents do happen.

Maybe I just WANT another thing to abhor this administration for.

(I just discovered there is no "peace sign" smiley)

Peace.
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usregimechange Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-18-05 11:46 PM
Response to Original message
2. Our atheist hero, wait, what did I say? Atheists in the Fox hole?
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PurityOfEssence Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 02:27 PM
Response to Reply #2
16. Just to be picky: did he identify himself as an atheist, an agnostic or
some form of non-specific non-believer?

The point you're making is a great point, and it's a great poster and slogan; I've been championing this approach ever since I heard the quote from his brother at a ceremony where he took the mic to silence some creeping religiosity.

What else is known of his motivation? Did he enlist out of a desire to fight against fundamentalist religion? Did he enlist from purely patriotic fervor?

I've used this rejoinder to crackpot religious nutjob war supporters for a while, but it'd be interesting to know the specifics.

His is the true stuff of heroism.
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usregimechange Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-20-05 08:27 PM
Response to Reply #16
19. Not sure but his brother indicated he was not religious
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Celeborn Skywalker Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 12:39 AM
Response to Original message
3. Kick!
:kick:
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LynnTheDem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 12:57 AM
Response to Original message
4. "critical of *Bush and opposed the war in Iraq"
How many troops did CANADA send to 'Nam, Mannie??? Still waiting on your answer to that one.

Rightwingnuts; ALWAYS MFing stupid, ALWAYS WRONG, ALL the time.
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enigmatic Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 12:59 AM
Response to Original message
5. Those of us who lived in Phoenix in the 90's
Knew the real story about Pat.

He was absolutely one of a kind, and I'm proud to have known him, if just slightly.
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Bozita Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 01:09 AM
Response to Original message
6. That article's a great email gift to wavering freepers
Thanks.
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renate Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 01:30 AM
Response to Original message
7. so heartbreaking, that a hero and a man of real integrity
was USED like this by people with no courage and no integrity at all.

I cannot even begin to imagine the rage that the people who knew and loved him must feel.
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Elwood P Dowd Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 01:57 AM
Response to Reply #7
9. Used and then killed by cowards, draft dodgers, and liars.
I wouldn't doubt for a minute that the word came back to Washington that PT was not a happy camper, and a "tell all" story was coming out. The republican mafia couldn't have that, now could they?
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Ferret Annica Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 03:49 AM
Response to Reply #7
10. Not to mention those people...
...would never in a million years send their kids to war. That job is for the poor and those who once made up the thinning middle class.
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proud patriot Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 02:07 PM
Response to Original message
15. Dharma_Bum please read
In the future please limit your snips to 4
paragraphs as per the Democratic Underground
copyright rules.


proud patriot Moderator
Democratic Underground
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Dharma_Bum Donating Member (182 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 07:57 PM
Response to Reply #15
17. Understood ...
...Thank you for the reminder! :hi:

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