Seriously… Congress is considering a medal for ““courageous restraint” for holding fire to save civilian lives”? SERIOUSLY??? Let me very clear to President Obama and Congress and every Commander who is misguided enough to actually think this is a good idea- IT’S NOT!!! It is a horrible idea and I, for one, promise to shred the orders awarding such a medal to me in front of the award ceremony if I were ever embarrassed with one. There are already medals available to award Soldiers for something called “VALOR”.
According to Merriam-Webster, valor means- strength of mind or spirit that enables a person to encounter danger with firmness : personal bravery.
If a Soldier exercises appropriate restraint in a tough situation, then his/her leadership already has the tools to recognize that action. If such restraint isn’t valor, then what exactly is this medal supposed to honor?
This idea stinks of a political platitude for the ever increasing danger our Soldiers face because our politicians impose never-ending layers of rules for engaging an enemy who has no rules and would sooner torture our Soldiers and slaughter their own civilians than acknowledge any manner of Geneva Convention.
Now, I’m not surprised that our current political “leadership” is unaware as to exactly what such medals as the ARCOM stand for, but I am aghast that our commanders are actually entertaining this idea. It’s as short-sighted as stripping the black beret from the Rangers so that American Soldiers can look like some UN pansy. (No disrespect to Special Ops brethren. I am as frustrated as you that the beret has largely lost its meaning for the US Army). This medal will be meaningless in an era that Soldiers are exceedingly frustrated with having to play police officer in near impossible and dangerous situations when they joined the Military expecting to fight a war. This medal will be a slap in the face to every Soldier who has exercised such restraint only to be shot by some coward hiding among women and children, mosques, schools, and hospitals.
Fight the war, Mr. President, or get our Soldiers out of harm’s way if you and your Congress don’t have the fortitude to properly engage the enemy!