March 7, 2015
Capt. Mathew L. Golsteyn is congratulated by fellow soldiers after receiving the Silver Star for heroism in Afghanistan on Jan. 4, 2011. (The Fayetteville Observer/James Robinson)
The secretary of the Army is defending his decision to strip awards for heroism from a former Green Beret officer, saying the soldier demonstrated a “lack of honorable conduct” after he earned the medals.
Maj. Mathew L. Golsteyn received the Silver Star in 2011 for valor in Afghanistan on Feb. 20, 2010, and was later approved for an upgrade to the even more prestigious Distinguished Service Cross. That award is considered second only to the Medal of Honor in recognizing heroism in combat.
Golsteyn was later investigated for an undisclosed violation of the military’s rules of engagement in combat — a violation related to the killing of a known enemy bombmaker, according to officials familiar with the case. The investigation closed in 2014 without Golsteyn’s being charged with a crime, but Army Secretary John M. McHugh made the rare decision to strip him of both awards anyway.
The move has been scrutinized by the media and criticized by Rep. Duncan D. Hunter (R-Calif.), a Marine veteran who has advocated on Golsteyn’s behalf. But McHugh stood by his decision in a new letter to Hunter, saying that the senior officer who initially approved Golsteyn’s Silver Star, Gen. David M. Rodriguez, agreed with his decision.
“Every step in the process of investigating Major Golsteyn’s actions, and reviewing and subsequently revoking his valor awards has been thorough, objective and justified,” McHugh wrote in the Feb. 26 letter, obtained by The Washington Post. “The Army’s investigation demonstrated that Major Golsteyn’s service during or at the time of the distinguished act, achievement or meritorious service was not honorable, which led to the revocation of the Distinguished Service Cross.”
So, this hero is being stripped of his awards for killing an ENEMY BOMB MAKER? By killing this scumbag he saved countless lives! This is completely insane!
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Disclaimer: This was not written by Lorra B.