Congressman John Murtha Dead at 77

Rep. John Murtha (D-Pa.) has died at the age of 77 after succumbing to an infection following gall bladder surgery a few weeks ago.

Aside from the fact that he served his country as a Marine in Vietnam, I can’t say that I liked him much.  Still, his passing is newsworthy.

Congressman Murtha first found its way to the pages of this blog Dec. 6, 2006, as the subject of one of my earliest posts, Anti-War Congressman Earns ‘Warning Label’.  Below are links to 15 other posts in which I mentioned the Pennsylvania Democrat’s name:

  • Nightly Newsers Full of Nightly Surprises — Katie Couric surprised everyone with a “hit piece” on Murtha and the so-called “charities” in his home town of Johnstown that have reaped billions in Department of Defense contracts without having paid any taxes.
  • Headlines Paint Poor Picture of Murtha’s Past — A federal judge refused Friday to dismiss a defamation case against Rep. John P. “Jack” Murtha (D-Penn.) and ordered the Pennsylvania Democrat to give a sworn deposition about his comments alleging “cold-blooded murder and war crimes” by unnamed soldiers in connection with Iraqi civilian deaths.
  • Marine’s Family Wants John Murtha Censured — One week after Marine Corps LCpl. Justin L. Sharratt was acquitted of all charges, his family demanded that Congress censure Murtha for saying Marines over-reacted and killed civilians “in cold blood”.
  • Johnson ‘Dresses Down’ Murtha — Sam Johnson, a Vietnam-era Marine Corps veteran and former prisoner of war who now serves the 3rd District of Texas in the U.S. House of Representatives, gave Murtha a piece of his mind regarding his stance on the war.
  • Marine Faces Bogus Charges, Needs Your Help — Murtha was an outspoken anti-war critic who publicly accused the four Marines of being “cold-blooded murderers” and high ranking officers of “covering it up.”
  • ‘Flying Lincoln Bedroom’ Close to Reality for Pelosi — As chair of the House Appropriations Committee, Murtha was the enabler who helped to make it possible for Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) to waste millions of taxpayer dollars via the use of military aircraft for her travel junkets.

I could have written a lot more about Murtha, including the fact that he was caught on tape negotiating bribes with Arab Sheiks during the FBI’s 1980 Abscam investigation and somehow escaped prosecution as an un-indicted co-conspirator.  Instead, however, I would rather use my time and “ink” on better subjects.

Help Boot Jack Murtha From Congress!

Click image to view video.

Click image to view video.

I learned through a comment on this post that an effort has been launched to help Pennsylvania Republican Bill Russell raise $200,000 by Sept. 11 en route to ousting turncoat Congressman Jack Murtha from the 12th Congressional District seat he’s held far too long.

Not familiar with Murtha?  He’s the Pennsylvania Democrat who described the so-called “Haditha Marines” as “cold blooded killers” during interviews and media opportunities over a period of several months.  When the facts were heard, court rulings revealed dramatically different stories of personal courage under fire and true heroism.  Better yet, seven of eight Marines have been found not guilty of all charges.  One has yet to go to court.

Lt. Col. Bill Russell, on the other hand, is a survivor of the Sept. 11, 2001, attack on the Pentagon and is running a grassroots campaign aimed at both setting the record straight and removing one of Washington’s most-entrenched power brokers from his comfortable perch on Capitol Hill.

Click here or on the image at right to view Colonel Russell’s latest campaign advertisement, an effort that spells out clearly the differences between a turncoat Congressman and a modern-day American hero.

Help Bill defeat Congressman Murtha in November. Click Here now!

Another ‘Greatest Generation’ Hero Passes

Eric Dowling

Eric Dowling

When I learned of the passing of Eric “Digger” Dowling, another hero from the “Greatest Generation,” I couldn’t help but think about how his efforts may have been received by anti-war and environmental-extremist liberals had they taken place today.

In case you’re not familiar with his story, Dowling was a British man whose efforts as a prisoner of war in World War II Germany inspired the 1963 film, The Great Escape. He passed away July 21, one day shy of his 93rd birthday, according to this Associated Press report today.

In The Great Escape, which I’ve viewed countless times, Allied prisoners forged documents, made maps and dug three tunnels through which prisoners attempted to escape on several occasions. Had they done the same thing in this day and age, they would probably face courts-martial proceedings (think Haditha Marines) — or worse yet, trial by a War Crimes Tribunal. for committing fraud, producing counterfeit documents and violating terms of some global environmental law that requires individuals to seek permits, conduct surveys and prepare environmental impact statements prior to digging.

Just a thought. For more about the Greatest Generation, read My Father’s War Stories from World War II.

Senior ‘Haditha Marine’ Found Not Guilty

On six occasions during the past two years, I’ve highlighted the case of Marine Corps Lt. Col. Jeffrey Chessani and his fellow Marines making up the group that came to be known in the media as the “Haditha Marines.” Today, I offer more news — VERY GOOD NEWS — about Colonel Chessani: Today, he was found not guilty on all counts, according to news reports like this one.

So much for what Rep. John Murtha (D-Pa.) and his contention that the Marines over-reacted and killed 24 Iraqi civilians “in cold blood” in 2005. A military court found otherwise. Goes to show how out of touch liberals like Murtha really are.

Stay involved, folks. Staff Sgt. Frank Wuterich, still faces court martial. More on that later.

Hat tip: Gateway Pundit

Blogger to Make Guest Appearance on BBC

A BBC Radio producer called this morning to invite me to appear as a guest during the first hour of today’s WORLD Have Your Say program that airs at Noon (Central) or 5 p.m. (GMT). Today’s topic: When does diplomacy become appeasement?

After turning down several invitations during the past year, I decided to accept today’s invitation because of the subject matter being discussed. This will mark my fourth appearance on the program in the past two years.

During my most-recent appearance in April 2007, I discussed the crisis in Darfur. Prior to that, show topics included Nancy Pelosi, and the case of the so-called “Haditha Marines.”

If you’re interested in participating in the program, there are several ways to do that:

Call: +44 20 70 83 72 72

Send a text message: +44 77 86 20 60 80

Send an e-mail message: worldhaveyoursay@bbc.co.uk

Listen live here.

Listen to the podcast here.

Check back this afternoon as I’ll be posting an update after the show.

Haditha: ‘Quest for Prosecution — Not Justice’

While I’ve been following the investigation and prosecution of the so-called “Haditha Marines” for more than a year now, the case became more interesting after it was revealed that an “extraordinarily unusual oversight body” comprised of high-ranking administration officials had been set up by former Secretary of Defense Donald R. Rumsfeld to oversee the Haditha investigations of Marine Lt. Col. Jeffrey Chessani and other combat Marines.

Lt. Col. Jeffrey Chessani, USMCYesterday, officials with the nonprofit Thomas More Law Center, who are representing Colonel Chessani, revealed the existence of the shadow body. Among the observations made was this one:

“The hysteria and media firestorm over Abu Gharib and the Pat Tillman investigations lead to fear of a similar media reaction to the Haditha incident, causing the military’s civilian bosses to set up this shadow oversight body. This extraordinary action politicized the military justice system and was a clear signal to top generals that they were expected to hold individuals criminally responsible. The investigation turned into a quest for a prosecution—not justice,” commented Richard Thompson, President and Chief Counsel of the Law Center.

After you read the entire news release, I think you’ll agree with me: If Colonel Chessani and any of the other Marines are convicted — on any counts! — for their efforts in combat, those convictions will become fodder for the anti-war, anti-military crowd who seem driven to make the job of military recruiters more difficult and more challenging than ever before.

Lt. Col. Chessani Defense FundDonate Now!

Haditha Marines Still Need Your Help!

During the late 1980s, this former Air Force officer spent more than three years on Okinawa, a Japanese island which served as home to tens of thousands of United States Marines. During those years, I grew to respect the hard work, dedication and sacrifice that goes into being a Marine. Today, I feel obligated to pass along the letter below from Christopher Ruddy, editor of NewsMax, and encourage you to take action NOW:

Marines Banner

Urgent Letter From Christopher Ruddy
Publisher, Newsmax.com

Dear Reader:

Two Marines need your help . . . again.

Last year, I wrote to you about the plight of three American heroes, Lance Cpl. Stephen Tatum, Lance Cpl. Justin Sharratt, and Staff Sgt. Frank Wuterich.

The three were under investigation for allegations that they committed atrocities in Haditha, Iraq, in November 2005.

When I first wrote to you about these courageous men, they were under Article 32 investigation — the military equivalent of a grand jury hearing.

The hysteria against these Marines was set off by a Time magazine reporter whose only sources were known insurgent propagandists, civilian supporters of al-Qaida, or civilians intimidated by al-Qaida thugs.

On the basis of the Time story alone, and despite the fact that Time was forced to retract parts of the initial story four times, the media across the world reported that the Kilo Company Marines had gone on a rampage.

The Time report claimed Marines had massacred 24 innocent civilians on Nov. 19, 2005, in retaliation for the death of one of their fellow Marines. The Marine was killed by a roadside bomb.

In response to the media charges and those echoed by Rep. John Murtha, D-Pa., and a badly bungled investigation by the Naval Criminal Investigation Service (NCIS), the three heroes were falsely charged with multiple counts of murder.

When we alerted you to this grave injustice, Newsmax readers rose to the occasion. You donated more than $250,000 for the legal defense funds of these Marines.

And your help made a big difference.

At the end of the Article 32 hearings, the presiding military officer recommended strongly that all charges be dropped against the three Marines.

Sharratt was fully exonerated.

But suddenly the Pentagon ignored the findings of the military tribunal relating to Tatum and Wuterich and recommended that these Marines should face courts-martial.

Both are scheduled to go to court in March, with long jail sentences looming.

As you can imagine, the legal defense costs for these Marines have placed an enormous burden on them and their families, and have well exceeded even the $250,000 our readers have donated to their cause.

We have been informed that these Marines are in desperate need of financial resources to continue their legal struggle.

You can help these Marines — Go Here Now!

Click here to read the rest of the letter — and DO IT NOW!