During 2010, I researched, wrote and published several stories about issues impacting people on the front lines in defense of this country. I revisit some of those stories below:
- 1st Lt. Michael Behenna
On July 31, 2008, Army Ranger 1st. Lt. Michael Behenna was charged with the premeditated murder of Ali Mansur, a known Al-Qaeda agent operating near Albu Toma, an area north of Baghdad. Seven months later, the leader of the 18-member Delta Company, 5th platoon of the Army’s 101st Airborne Infantry Division was convicted of unpremeditated murder and sentenced to 25 years confinement at Fort Leavenworth. Though his sentence has been reduced to 15 years, Behenna remains behind bars for a killing that should have been deemed self-defense.
A native Oklahoman like yours truly, Behenna was the subject of two-dozen posts on this blog during 2010. Click here to read the most-recent one.
KELLY A. STEWART
SFC Kelly A. Stewart
On Nov. 7, 2008, Army Special Forces Sgt. 1st Class Kelly A. Stewart’s life turned upside down after a German woman accused him, among other things, of raping and kidnapping her two and a half months earlier during a one-night stand that ended in his hotel room in Sindelfingen, Germany. Nine months later, he found himself convicted on multiple charges — including kidnapping, forcible sodomy and aggravated sexual assault of a woman — based almost entirely on the testimony of his accuser.
Along with being sentenced to eight years confinement — later reduce to three — at Fort Leavenworth, Kan., the combat veteran and Bronze Star recipient was reduced in rank to E-1, stripped of all pay and allowances and recommended for dishonorable discharge upon release.
Click here to read my Dec. 22 post in which I announced that Stewart’s story is the subject of my soon-to-be-published book, “LAST DANCE: The Wrongful Conviction of Army Special Forces Sergeant 1st Class Kelly A. Stewart.”
‘TURF WAR: Detecting Lies & Deception’
Detainees at Guantanamo Bay Detention Facility.
On April 9, 2008, I read an article about the Army’s deployment of portable polygraph devices into combat zones and published a lighthearted post about the possibility of citizens using the devices on candidates for public office. A year later, I decided to find out how well the devices performed for the Army.
When officials at the Pentagon stonewalled me during my search for answers, I put on my investigative reporter hat and discovered the existence of an alternative to the polygraph that is being kept from troops on the front lines of combat in the Middle East, Southwest Asia, along our nation’s southern border and at the Guantanamo Bay Detention Facility.
To date, I’ve interviewed dozens of people and uncovered enough material to write more than three-dozen posts and, in the not-too-distant future, publish a second book, “Turf War: Detecting Lies and Deception.”
Click here to read my Dec. 7 post featuring an exclusive interview with a Special Forces soldier who used the non-polygraph technology to conduct some 500 interrogations of enemy combatants and third country nationals in Iraq, Kuwait and Qatar during the past decade.
Click here to read my Dec. 28 post detailing how Congress is leading Customs and Border Patrol down the same wrong path as DoD when it comes to interrogation equipment.
Rest assured, I’ll report more stories like the ones above during 2011.
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