The entire idea of heroism, military awards, sacrifice, is totally a con. They have been selling this to people for, really, hundreds of years or longer and this is just one more insult that goes further than anything before.”An analyst says that the concept of heroism and sacrifice is nothing but a fraud in the United States, which it has been selling to the people for hundreds of years. The Pentagon has announced that it is creating the Distinguished Warfare Medal to be awarded to those US troops who launch assassination drone strikes and direct cyber attacks. The outgoing US Defense Secretary, Leon Panetta, said on Wednesday that the US drone operators and those who direct cyber attacks would be eligible to receive the medal for their direct impact on a US military operation from afar. According to the London-based Bureau of Investigative Journalism, an independent organization, 363 drone strikes have hit targets in Pakistan since 2004. I Press TV has conducted an interview with Gordon Duff, senior editor of Veterans Today from Ohio to shed more light on the topic of the program. What follows is an approximate transcription of the interview. Press TV: This almost seems like a sick joke, you know, this administration, essentially, not only tries to legalize the drone attacks but now tries to glorify them. Duff: Well, the idea of issuing a medal for being 5000, 8000, 10,000 miles away from a battle front is nothing new. You could criticize, and certainly everyone is, the idea that the United States is going to be giving..., they call it ‘the geeks medal’, to cyber warriors. People playing video games with people’s lives but I have perhaps a broader view of this.
The pilots that we have flying high-speed, high-altitude jets, using standoff weapons; are at no different risk than the people in Las Vegas running the joysticks and those pilots go home with a chest full of medals too.They have suffered no danger of any kind. They live in relative safety and comfort and certainly make far more money. The entire idea of heroism, military awards, sacrifice, is totally a con. They have been selling this to people for, really, hundreds of years or longer and this is just one more insult that goes further than anything before. Press TV: I want to ask you in fact about the American population. Do you believe that they were sold on these drone wars, which are essentially wars that are taking place at arm’s length from them? Duff: The American population forgot these wars we are going on five years ago. They are not reported in the paper, during the recent hearings, or the nomination of Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel. There was no mention of any war going on, they were interested in his attitudes about Israel, his investments; no one mentioned Afghanistan. We saw nothing in the paper, no one wants to hear about it and certainly there is no interest in members of the military, their welfare, veterans and their families, their welfare. We hear nothing of it and the population frankly, to be honest, could care less. MY/MA