It is rare and reviving sight in Washington, DC. to see honor and duty and moral clarity drive a political measure.
I refer to House Resolution 21, recently introduced by the truly honorable Rep. Walter Jones (R-NC) and explained in the video below to call upon the US military to correct the great and terrible wrong it perpetrated on brave and loyal US Marines who came under enemy attack in Afghanistan one day in March nearly ten years ago.
On that day, Marines met an enemy attack with appropriate force and survived. It was the attacks by their own commanders in the aftermath that opened wounds that have not yet healed. For the men of Fox Company and their families, these wounds continue to cause professional and personal setbacks and suffering. Rep. Jones' resolution asks that the military publicly acknowledge the fact that these Marines acted appropriately and without fault in order to restore the reputations stolen from them by irresponsible military commanders, even to this day.
HR 21 specifically calls on the Commandant of the Marine Corps to "issue a public document that members of Fox Company of the Marine Special Operations Command were not at fault in the firefight that occurred on March 4, 2007, between members of Fox Company and enemy forces in Bati Kot District, Nangarhar Province, Afghanistan, and the Marines of Fox Company involved in this incident deserve to have their names cleared."
It is important to realize that what began happening to the men of Fox Company a decade ago, well documented in a five part series at Military Times, is not a story about the men of Fox Company only. It is also a story about our entire Afghanistan debacle, writ small, large and every which way, which the American people still have not had told to them, or even acknowledged by our leaders, elected, appointed, military or civilian. That debacle is America's doomed fight for Afghan "hearts and minds," the absurd-if-it-were-not-tragic basis of America's long, costly and failed so-called counter-insurgencies in the Islamic world. The 2007 reactions of commanders Kearney and Nicholson, now top generals, to what proved to be completely false charges against Fox Company, was pure COIN, pure dhimmitude, pure corruption, as chronicled so often in this space. Now, Gen. Nicholson, commander of all forces in Afghanistan, even has the the mad audacity to call for several thousand more US troops to send into that blood-and-treasure pit.
The madness must stop. The essential first step is HR 21 to restore the reputations of these Marines. The next step is more complicated. It requires some extensive national soul-searching as to how our leaders ever put them in this unwinnable situation to begin with -- something Candidate Trump seemed open to -- and why the powers that be, now including President Trump, continue to reward and empower the senior officers and strategists who did.