Tag Archives: Stars and Stripes

Bob McCarty’s Weekly Recap: Dec. 21-27

I like to think I emphasized quality instead of quantity during the week of Christmas 2014. That in mind, I share highlights of the past seven days at BobMcCarty.com below:

This January 2014 photo shows Butters, my office assistant, looking into his porcelain bowl in an effort to predict how the year might turn out.

This January 2014 photo shows Butters, my office assistant, looking into his porcelain bowl in an effort to predict how the year might turn out. I shared it in a post Dec. 23. To read it, click on the image above.

Sunday, Dec. 21 — Distracted by family obligations, I posted nothing at BobMcCarty.com this day. It gets better below, I promise!

Monday, Dec. 22 — While spending most of my day working on my next book, I did share some good news about my just-released crime fiction novel. Read about it under the self-explanatory headline, The National Bet Receives Two 5-Star Reviews.

Tuesday, Dec. 23 — Under the headline, 2014 ‘Most Unusual Year I’ve Experienced’ Online, I explained what it was that made my eighth year online dramatically different than the previous seven.

Wednesday, Dec. 24 — Because I’m married to a flight attendant, I’m accustomed to being flexible around the holidays. This year, as we had during each of the previous nine, we celebrated Christmas a day early to accommodate her schedule. As a result, I focused on family and food instead of fodder for this website.

Thursday, Dec. 25 — After a Washington Post article about the Centers for Disease Control in Atlanta caught my eye Christmas Eve, I shared details about how the CDC fits into the mystery inside my just-released crime-fiction novel, The National Bet.  Some of those details appear under the headline, Error-Prone CDC Figures Prominently in New Fiction Novel.

Friday, Dec. 26 — Recent news about the al-Shabaab terror group reminded me of the action in the opening chapter of The National Bet, so I shared an excerpt in a post under the headline, Africa-Based Terror Group Plays Part in New Fiction Tale. Later the same day under the headline, Top Intel Official Gets Away With Lies for 53 Weeks (so far), I reminded readers that Director of National Intelligence James R. Clapper Jr. had gotten away with lying to Congress for more than a year thanks to inaction by soon-to-depart Attorney General Eric Holder. I ended the day with humor. Finally, after coming across a 2016 presidential straw poll at Townhall.com, I thought it might be fun to ask my online friends to enter my name as a write-in candidate — so I did ask! Details at Author Asks for Your Presidential Straw Poll Write-In Vote.

Saturday, Dec. 27 — I ended the week with a look back at a shoddy act of journalism that took place two years ago. You can read it where it appears under the headline, Flashback: Stars and Stripes Reporter Fails To Do Her Job.

The remainder of the year will probably be as slow as the past week, so I recommend you get your fix of Bob McCarty by ordering copies of my books. Details about how to do that appear below.

For links to other articles of interest as well as photos and commentary, join me on Facebook and Twitter.  Please show your support by buying my books and encouraging your friends and loved ones to do the same.  Thanks in advance!

Click on image above to order Bob's books.

Click on image above to order Bob’s books.

Flashback: Stars and Stripes Reporter Fails To Do Her Job

Unlike most people who read reporter Nancy Montgomery‘s article two years ago this week in Stars and Stripes, I noticed something terribly wrong in some of the comments attributed to German police detective Daniel Lorch.  His words conflicted with the real-life events in my book, Three Days In August, which chronicles the story of former Army Sgt. 1st Class Kelly A. Stewart and the military justice debacle that ended his stellar career as a Green Beret and landed him behind bars at Fort Leavenworth.

Click image above to order book.

Click image above to order book.

About halfway into her article, Montgomery shared comments made by Detective Lorch about his experience as an investigator and his personal opinion “that (Stewart) was guilty” of a variety of sexual assault-related charges stemming from a one-night stand involving the highly-decorated combat veteran and a then-28-year-old German woman.  The reporter did not, however, include any comments by the detective about the complete lack of physical evidence and eyewitnesses to the alleged crimes.

Montgomery also attributed a statement to the detective about a taxi driver being among the people (plural) who had allegedly seen Stewart’s accuser the morning she left his hotel and later provided corroborating trial testimony.  Apparently, the reporter did not ask the detective for details about those people. Nor did she ask about their testimony during the trial.  Why?  Because, contrary to what the detective must have told her, only the taxi driver testified as a witness during the trail.  Additional witnesses to her departure from the hotel could not be found.

Finally, Montgomery quoted Detective Lorch on the matter of what the taxi driver allegedly saw when she picked up the accuser outside Stewart’s hotel:

“He described, very detailed, very clearly, her physical damage,” Lorch said. “He was sure something very bad had happened to this woman.”

The detective repeatedly referred to the taxi driver in the masculine sense when, in reality, the taxi driver was Monika Haug, a middle-age woman with memory issues.  I highlighted those issues in the book and, more recently, in a post from which the excerpt below appears:

During questioning six months before the trial, according to official documents, Haug told German police officials, “I’m sorry I don’t see her in front of my eyes anymore right now,” later adding, “I believe she had blonde dyed hair.  I don’t remember her clothing or age right now anymore.”

During the trial one year after she had allegedly picked up Stewart’s 28-year-old accuser in front of the Stuttgart-Marriott Hotel in Sindelfingen, Germany, Haug was able to remember accurate details about Stewart’s accuser (i.e., that she was wearing knee-high boots, had long black hair, etc.) that she wasn’t able to remember when it should have been fresh on her mind.  A miracle perhaps or was it coaching by prosecutors that helped Haug “improve” her memory?

Montgomery’s article came 24 days after she had contacted me via email, informing me that she was interested in doing a story about the latest development in the Stewart case, had read my website and wanted to talk.

In a written reply to Montgomery, I told her I had spent a lot of time one year earlier with John Vandiver, a Stuttgart-based Stripes reporter, and that the effort — via phone and email — had yielded not a single story.  Furthermore, I told her, I cited my experience with Vandiver — several emails back and forth plus phone interviews, but no stories — when telling her I wasn’t excited about speaking with Stripes.

Apparently, Montgomery spoke with Vandiver and made no further attempts to obtain my input.  In fact, her name did not appear on my radar again until Stripes published her report about the status of Stewart’s appeals process minus any mention of my name and the name of my book and, more importantly, without several critical details about the case.

If you’re interested in the details of how the military justice system railroaded an elite Special Forces Soldier, read Three Days In August.  Based on 18 months of research, interviews with the key players and access to the actual Record of Trial, this book is available in paperback and ebook versions here.

For a snapshot of Stewart’s situation today and to find out how you can help, read this letter and/or read this recent article. Thanks in advance!

UPDATE 4/19/2015 at 1:15 p.m. Central: Check out the limited-time free-books offer here.

For links to other articles of interest as well as photos and commentary, join me on Facebook and Twitter.  Please show your support by buying my books and encouraging your friends and loved ones to do the same.  To learn how to order signed copies, click here. Thanks in advance!

Click on image above to order Bob's books.

Click on image above to order Bob’s books.

The Uniformed Military Balked at ‘Enhanced Interrogation’ Because They Had Better Option in Now-Banned Technology

The headline above a recent Stars and Stripes article caught my eye, because it included four words — the uniformed military balked — that became familiar to me as I conducted an exhaustive four-year investigation into the federal government’s use of credibility assessment and interrogation technologies.

Click image above to read article.

Click image above to read article.

Those four words reminded me of the memos issued by three top DoD officials in an attempt to remove one interrogation technology from the toolkits of our nation’s top military and intelligence warfighters. Worth repeating is the fact that it took three memos, because most warfighters simply refused to give up the tool after the first two memos were issued in June 2004 and in 2007. In other words, the uniformed military balked. It was only after a third memo was issued in June 2008 that the technology was finally removed from warfighters’ toolkits.

Some of our nation’s top warfighters described their reactions to the memo-backed efforts to take away one of their most-effective interrogation tools.

A former member of the Navy SEALs, who spoke with me on the condition I not reveal his identity, said the second memo, issued by then-Under Secretary of Defense James R. Clapper Jr., was a contributing factor in his decision to retire from the military much earlier than he could have. He went on to say that the people responsible for efforts to remove that technology from the hands of warfighters “should face charges and do time.”

A former Army Green Beret, who used the now-banned technology to conduct some 500 interrogations of enemy combatants and other detainees, spoke with me under the same condition. He told me he “would testify in front of Congress that this piece of equipment is essential for (Human Intelligence) personnel on the ground in Iraq and Afghanistan.  If they want to save lives, they’ve got to put this piece of equipment back into that theater. Every unit should have this equipment.”

Why did members of the uniformed military balk at giving up this particular piece of interrogation technology? Because it works far better than any kind of torture or “enhanced interrogation techniques.”

There’s only one place where you’ll find the details about how well this technology worked with detainees at Guantanamo Bay, on members of Saddam Hussein’s inner circle (a.k.a., “The Deck of Cards”) and on members of al-Qaeda and the Taliban — inside the pages of my second nonfiction book, The Clapper Memo.

Click here to order a copy of The Clapper Memo.

Click here to read the high-profile endorsements the book has received.

UPDATE 4/19/2015 at 1:25 p.m. Central: Check out the limited-time free-books offer here.

For links to other articles of interest as well as photos and commentary, join me on Facebook and Twitter.  Please show your support by buying my books and encouraging your friends and loved ones to do the same.  Thanks in advance!

Click on image above to order Bob's books.

Click on image above to order Bob’s books.

Army Prosecutor Wanted Special Forces Soldier to Break Law, Discuss Classified Info in Open Court; He Refused

Facing a possible life sentence if convicted, Army Green Beret Sgt. 1st Class Kelly A. Stewart faced substantial grilling by the Army prosecutor who seemed to want him to discuss classified matters in open court during his court-martial on allegations of rape and kidnapping.  Below are excerpts from Three Days In August: A U.S. Army Special Forces Soldier’s Fight for Military Justice, the book in which I chronicle this highly-decorated Special Forces combat veteran’s toughest battle ever:

Before his court-martial, Kelly A. Stewart's uniform was covered with signs of his life as an elite Special Forces Soldier.

Kelly A. Stewart’s uniform was covered with signs of his life as an elite Special Forces Soldier until the lies one woman told in a military courtroom brought his life and career to a crashing end.

“They just wanted me to admit that I spoke German, that I am trained in all this ‘secret squirrel’ stuff to beat and interrogate people and everything else,” Stewart said, noting that it’s a facade and that Green Beret professionals like himself are trusted to do national-level stuff for the president of our country on a daily basis.

“The one thing I wouldn’t say in there was… a lie. I told the truth (in response) to the questions that were asked of me.”

What if he had answered all of their questions in open court?

“If I had went up there and said, in a statement, that we do some type of training like, ‘We do free fall blindfolded, you know, to work on the psychological aspects of the mind…’ that reporter that I knew was in the courtroom… what would that person have written in the Stars & Stripes?”

The excerpts above stand as a smidgen of what’s contained in nearly 300 pages taken directly from the Record of Trial, other trial-related documents and interviews with key players involved in the case.

To learn more about why Stewart, a man who served his country honorably, should have never been prosecuted or convicted, order and read Three Days In August. In it, you’ll find all of the blow-by-blow details of the court-martial and post-trial hearing.

To learn more about the book and read two high-profile reviews before you order, click here.

To read other posts about Stewart, click here.

To provide financial assistance to Stewart and his family, click on the “DONATE” button at SaveThisSoldier.com, a website built and managed by Stewart’s dad, himself retired after more than 30 years of service in Air Force Special Operations.

UPDATE 4/19/2015 at 1:18 p.m. Central: Check out the limited-time free-books offer here.

Click on image above to order Bob's books.

Click on image above to order Bob’s books.

Soldiers Experience Vastly Different Court-Martial Outcomes

After comparing the outcomes of two Army court-martial cases that took place in Stuttgart, Germany, in recent years, I can’t help but smell a rat in the military justice system.

This image shows the front of the hotel in Stuttgart where the alleged crimes involving Stewart took place.

This image shows the front of the hotel in Stuttgart where the alleged crimes involving Stewart took place.

One case involved Staff Sgt. Justin Wolfschlag, a military police dog handler who, according to a Stars and Stripes article Thursday, was found guilty of maltreatment of a subordinate but not guilty of a sexual assault charge stemming from his accuser’s claim that he made her perform oral sex on him. Members of the court-martial panel acquitted Wolfschlag on the more serious charge after Wolfschlag’s defense team maintained the oral sex and exposure never happened and argued there was no physical evidence presented to support the allegations.

Sergeant Wolfschlag was sentenced Thursday to 60 days’ hard labor and busted down two pay grades but, it appears, will be allowed to remain in the Army.

The other case involved Sgt. 1st Class Kelly A. Stewart, a highly-decorated combat veteran and member of the elite Green Berets, who was accused in November 2008 of rape and kidnapping by a then-28-year-old German woman. Despite the lack of any physical evidence or witnesses and his accuser’s refusal to provide her mental health records — including details of her four-month stay in a psychiatric care facility — to the court, he was found guilty on several sexual assault-related charges, but not rape or kidnapping. Most importantly, he never admitted guilt to any of the charges against him.

Sergeant Stewart was stripped of his Special Forces tab and sentenced to eight years in prison. His stellar career as a combat medic and Level One sniper was brought to a halt by unproven charges, Stewart now lives as a convicted sex offender, based largely on the testimony of a German woman who, according to three of her friends who testified during a post-trial hearing, lied repeatedly on the witness stand during the court-martial.

My very-informed opinion is that Sergeant — err, wait — Private Wolfschlag got off easier than Stewart, largely because: (1) he was not an SF Soldier facing a court-martial panel made up of non-SF Soldiers who had recently served a deployment with the lead prosecutor as their legal officer; and (2) his accuser was an American instead of a German national who could not be held accountable by the military court for anything she said — or didn’t say — on the witness stand and could not be compelled to provide her mental health records to the court.

Of course, there is a lot more to Stewart’s story.

To read other posts about Stewart’s case, click here.

To understand the case fully, order a copy of my first nonfiction book, Three Days In August.

Click on image above to order Bob's books.

Click on image above to order Bob’s books.