Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Flashback: US Navy Releases Sen. John McCain's Military Record

An undated official U.S. Navy portrait of John S. McCain III. (Courtesy Naval Historical Center)

News in Balance:

NOTE: This is a timely repost of an earlier article.

WASHINGTON, May 8, 2008 -- The U.S. Navy recently released Sen. John McCain's military record after a Freedom of Information Act request by The Associated Press.

Yesterday's AP story by Jim Kuhnhenn contained a link to the official Navy file. However, AP editors failed to double-check the erroneous URL, which the reporter mistyped.

I have included a link to the correct Web address below.

McCain was awarded a Silver Star Medal for resisting "extreme mental and physical cruelties" inflicted upon him by his captors from late October to early December 1967, the early months of his captivity, according to the citation. The North Vietnamese, according to the Navy, ignored international agreements and tortured McCain "in an attempt to obtain military information and false confessions for propaganda purposes."

McCain, now the Republican Party's presumptive presidential nominee, was taken prisoner in October 1967 after he was shot down while on a mission over Hanoi. He wasn't freed until March 1973, after the United States signed peace agreements with the North Vietnamese. His captors tortured him and held him in solitary confinement. Still, he declined an offer of early release until those who had been at the prison longer than him were let go.

The decision earned McCain a Navy Commendation Medal. Although McCain was "crippled from serious and ill-treated injuries," he steadfastly refused offers of freedom from those holding him prisoner. "His selfless action served as an example to others and his forthright refusal, by giving emphasis to the insidious nature of such releases, may have prevented a possibly chaotic deterioration in prisoner discipline," the citation says.

McCain attended the U.S. Naval Academy from 1954 to 1958, and was commissioned as an ensign in June of that year. He retired in April 1981 with the rank of captain. In that time he received 17 awards and decorations. Besides the Silver Star Medal, McCain also received the Legion of Merit with a combat "V" and one gold star, a Distinguished Flying Cross and a Bronze Star Medal with a combat "V" and two gold stars.

He earned his Bronze Star the day before he was shot down, for participating in a mission over an airfield in Phuc Yen, 11 miles north of Hanoi.

(Story from an AP article.)

Related: Official Military Personnel File Information Regarding Captain John S. McCain, III (http://www.npc.navy.mil/NR/rdonlyres/330F85C7-5982-4B09-A46A-373964430AFB/0/Document.pdf)

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

Unlike Sen. Barak Obama, all of Sen. John McCain's original documents, including proof of citizenship, are available for inspection.

Please ask Sen. Obama to release his original birth certificate, proof of citizenship, certified college transcripts and any literature written prior to his two books.

5:31 PM EDT  

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