Thursday, July 10, 2008

How The Army Treats A Patriot

Greg Mitchell of Editor and Publisher tells us here about Gina Gray, who was the public affairs director of Arlington National Cemetery (Mitchell’s post is based on a story in today’s Washington Post by Dana Milbank).

I say Gray “was” the director because…

When (Gray) took over…about three months ago, she discovered that cemetery officials were attempting to impose new limits on media coverage of funerals of the Iraq war dead -- even after the fallen warriors' families granted permission for the coverage. She said that the new restrictions were wrong and that Army regulations didn't call for such limitations.

“Six weeks after The Washington Post reported her efforts to restore media coverage of funerals, Gray was demoted. Twelve days ago, the Army fired her. ‘Had I not put my foot down, had I just gone along with it and not said regulations were being violated, I'm sure I'd still be there,’ said the jobless Gray, who, over lunch yesterday in Crystal City, recounted what she is certain is her retaliatory dismissal. "It's about doing the right thing."
Indeed it is.

By the way (as Mitchell notes), today’s story by Milbank is actually a follow up to an April Milbank column on Lt. Col. Billy Hall, an Iraq war fatality whose family also consented to letting the media cover his Arlington burial (the military did not allow the coverage).

This is something I’ve found myself wondering about, I must admit; I’ve been meaning to contact Barack Obama and ask him if, were he elected, he would lift Dubya’s order banning media coverage of the funerals of our heroes in Iraq.

Or, if you want to ask him yourself, click here (may be for Illinois residents only; I'm not sure).

Finally (speaking of military fatalities), this is the tragic story of Pfc. Joe Dwyer, who was the subject of a wonderful photo communicating true military heroism (as always, would that the politicians who sent him halfway around the world had acted with a fraction of his integrity).

Update 7/11/08: And as long as we're on the subject...

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