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February 21 2014 - President Obama will correct a historical act of discrimination next month when he awards the Medal of Honor, the nation’s highest commendation for combat valor, to 19 Hispanic, Jewish and African-American veterans overlooked previously because of their racial or ethnic backgrounds.

The unusual presentation will culminate a 12-year Pentagon review ordered by Congress into past discrimination in the ranks, and will hold a particular poignancy hosted by the nation’s first African-American president.

Although the review predates Obama’s tenure, he has made addressing discrimination in the military ranks — including ending the ban on gay and lesbian service members — a priority as commander in chief.

The recipients, which the White House will announce Friday afternoon, served in World War II, Korea, and Vietnam. Collectively their award ceremony will mark the single largest batch of Medal of Honor recipients since World War II, when more than two dozen service members were honored in the conflict’s last days. Just three of the 24 who will be honored in all are still alive.   read more>>>

More good news as to Brother Veterans, Sisters too, from the CiC that is actually a Commander in Chief and continues showing his and the Executive Branch's extensions, Cabinet and those around it all, support for those that serve the greater masses. To bad he doesn't control the nations purse strings, after the previous administration!!

UpDate: Here's the written from the CBS report:

Obama to award Medal of Honor to 24 Army veterans

All but one of the recipients are enlisted men, from privates to master sergeants. One recipient is a World War II first lieutenant. One of the recipients is Private First Class Leonard M. Kravitz, a relative of the popular singer Lenny Kravitz.

From Stars and Stripes: The recipients

President Obama will award the Medal of Honor to these living veterans during a ceremony next month:

Spec. 4 Santiago J. Erevia will receive the Medal of Honor for his courageous actions while serving as radio telephone operator in Company C, 1st Battalion (Airmobile), 501st Infantry, 101st Airborne Division (Airmobile) during search and clear mission near Tam Ky, Republic of Vietnam.

Staff Sgt. Melvin Morris will receive the Medal of Honor for his courageous actions while serving as Commander of a Strike Force drawn from Company D, 5th Special Forces Group (Airborne), 1st Special Forces, during combat operations against an armed enemy in the vicinity of Chi Lang, Republic of Vietnam on September 17, 1969.

Sgt. 1st Class Jose Rodela will receive the Medal of Honor for his courageous actions while serving as the company commander, Detachment B-36, Company A, 5th Special Forces Group (Airborne), 1st Special Forces during combat operations against an armed enemy in Phuoc Long Province, Republic of Vietnam on September 1, 1969.

The president will award the Medal of Honor posthumously to these individuals who served during the Vietnam war:

Sgt. Candelario Garcia will receive the Medal of Honor for his courageous actions while serving as an acting Team Leader for Company B, 1st Battalion, 2d Infantry, 1st Brigade,1st Infantry Division during combat operations against an armed enemy in Lai Khe, Republic of Vietnam on December 8, 1968.

Spec. 4 Leonard L. Alvarado will receive the Medal of Honor posthumously for his courageous actions while serving as a Rifleman with Company D, 2d Battalion, 12th Cavalry, 1st Cavalry Division (Airmobile) during combat operations against an armed enemy in Phuoc Long Province, Republic of Vietnam on August 12, 1969.

Staff Sgt. Felix M. Conde-Falcon will receive the Medal of Honor posthumously for his courageous actions while serving as an acting Platoon Leader in Company D, 1st Battalion, 505th Infantry Regiment, 3d Brigade, 82d Airborne Division during combat operations against an armed enemy in Ap Tan Hoa, Republic of Vietnam on April 4, 1969.

Spec. 4 Ardie R. Copas will receive the Medal of Honor posthumously for his courageous actions while serving as a Machinegunner in Company C, 1st Battalion (Mechanized), 5th Infantry Regiment, 25th Infantry Division during combat operations against an armed enemy near Ph Romeas Hek, Cambodia on May 12, 1970.

Spec. 4 Jesus S. Duran will receive the Medal of Honor posthumously for his courageous actions while serving as an acting M-60 machinegunner in Company E, 2d Battalion, 5th Cavalry, 1st Cavalry Division (Airmobile) during combat operations against an armed enemy in the Republic of Vietnam on April 10, 1969.

The following individuals who served during the Korean war will receive the Medal of Honor posthumously:

Cpl. Joe R. Baldonado will receive the Medal of Honor posthumously for his courageous actions while serving as an acting machine gunner in 3d Squad, 2d Platoon, Company B, 187th Airborne Infantry Regiment during combat operations against an armed enemy in Kangdong, Korea on November 25, 1950.

Cpl. Victor H. Espinoza will receive the Medal of Honor posthumously for his courageous actions while serving as an Acting Rifleman in Company A, 23d Infantry Regiment, 2d Infantry Division during combat operations against an armed enemy in Chorwon, Korea on August 1, 1952.

Sgt. Eduardo C. Gomez will receive the Medal of Honor posthumously for his courageous actions while serving with Company I, 8th Cavalry Regiment, 1st Cavalry Division during combat operations against an armed enemy in Tabu-dong, Korea on September 3, 1950.

Pfc. Leonard M. Kravitz will receive the Medal of Honor posthumously for his courageous actions while serving as an assistant machinegunner with Company M, 5th Infantry Regiment, 24th Infantry Division during combat operations against an armed enemy in Yangpyong, Korea on March 6 and 7, 1951.

Master Sgt. Juan E. Negron will receive the Medal of Honor posthumously for his courageous actions while serving as a member of Company L, 65th Infantry Regiment, 3d Infantry Division during combat operations against an armed enemy in Kalma-Eri, Korea on April 28, 1951.

Master Sgt. Mike C. Pena will receive the Medal of Honor posthumously for his courageous actions while serving as a member of Company F, 5th Cavalry Regiment, 1st Cavalry Division during combat operations against an armed enemy in Waegwan, Korea, on September 4, 1950.

Pvt. Demensio Rivera will receive the Medal of Honor posthumously for his courageous actions while serving as an automatic rifleman with 2d Platoon, Company G, 7th Infantry Regiment, 3d Infantry Division during combat operations against an armed enemy in Changyong-ni, Korea on May 23, 1951.

Pvt. Miguel A. Vera will receive the Medal of Honor posthumously for his courageous actions while serving as an automatic rifleman with Company F, 38th Infantry Regiment, 2d Infantry Division in Chorwon, Korea, on September 21, 1952.

Segt. Jack Weinstein will receive the Medal of Honor posthumously for his courageous actions while leading 1st Platoon, Company G, 21st Infantry Regiment, 24th Infantry Division in Kumsong, Korea on October 19, 1951.

The president will award the Medal of Honor posthumously to the following individuals who served during World War II:

Pvt. Pedro Cano will receive the Medal of Honor posthumously for his courageous actions while serving with Company C, 8th Infantry Regiment, 4th Infantry Division during combat operations against an armed enemy in Schevenhutte, Germany on December 3, 1944.

Pvt. Joe Gandara will receive the Medal of Honor posthumously for his courageous actions while serving with Company D, 2d Battalion, 507th Parachute Infantry Regiment, 17th Airborne Division during combat operations against an armed enemy in Amfreville, France on June 9, 1944.

Pfc. Salvador J. Lara will receive the Medal of Honor posthumously for his courageous actions while serving as the Squad Leader of a rifle squad with 2d Platoon, Company L, 180th Infantry, 45th Infantry Division during combat operations against an armed enemy in Aprilia, Italy on May 27 and 28, 1944.

Sgt. William F. Leonard will receive the Medal of Honor posthumously for his courageous actions while serving as a Squad Leader in Company C, 30th Infantry Regiment, 3d Infantry Division during combat operations against an armed enemy near St. Die, France on November 7, 1944.

Staff Sgt. Manuel V. Mendoza will receive the Medal of Honor posthumously for his courageous actions while serving as a Platoon Sergeant with Company B, 350th Infantry, 88th Infantry Division during combat operations against an armed enemy on Mt. Battaglia, Italy on October 4, 1944.

Sgt. Alfred B. Nietzel will receive the Medal of Honor posthumously for his courageous actions while serving as a section leader for Company H, 16th Infantry Regiment, 1st Infantry Division during combat operations against an armed enemy in Heistern, Germany on November 18, 1944.

First Lt. Donald K. Schwab will receive the Medal of Honor posthumously for his courageous actions while serving as the Commander of Company E, 15th Infantry Regiment, 3d Infantry Division, during combat operations against an armed enemy near Lure, France on September 17, 1944.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (33+ / 0-)

    "If military action is worth our troops' blood, it should be worth our treasure, too; not just in the abstract, but in the form of a specific ante by every American." -Andrew Rosenthal 10 Feb. 2013

    by jimstaro on Fri Feb 21, 2014 at 04:09:25 PM PST

  •  Well done C in C! (14+ / 0-)

    The comment thread under the linked WaPo article is very interesting.  The Repugs have taken the opportunity to accuse Obama of grandstanding without ANY justification.

    One comment resonated;

    Defense Department officials said there was specific evidence to suggest such discrimination may have existed in the ranks, including instances when Hispanic and Jewish soldiers apparently changed their names to hide their ethnicity
    Even in the 70s even I had an issue with someone who called me a "spic" in the service.

    Daily Kos an oasis of truth. Truth that leads to action.

    by Shockwave on Fri Feb 21, 2014 at 04:31:23 PM PST

  •  Unfortunately, not the first time (7+ / 0-)

    this kind of thing has happened, nor will it be the last time. How many hundreds of nominations for decorations below the MoH were pigeonholed because of this kind of thing? No one will ever know.

    It is not always minorities that this happens to as well. Step on the wrong toes and your nomination goes into the Vortex of Doom. I have some personal interest in this. My great-grandfather rode with Teddy Roosevelt at San Juan Hill. PaPaw revered Roosevelt. How many Lt. Colonels have you heard of leading from the front, armed with a pistol in one hand and a saber in the other? PaPaw was there.  

    But, Roosevelt stepped on some toes. He wrote to Secretary of War Russell A. Alger, recommending in rather strong terms that since the fighting was over. American troops be immediately returned to the United States. To say that Secretary Alger was pissed is an understatement. His nomination for the MoH was shelved for 103 years.

    By the late 1990s, the rejection was reviewed, and the review board reversed the decision to reject the nomination. Finally, in 2001, President Clinton presented the Medal of Honor to Tweed Roosevelt, Teddy's grandson.

    The citation reads:

    For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty.

    Lieutenant Colonel Theodore Roosevelt distinguished himself by acts of bravery on 1 July 1898, near Santiago de Cuba, Republic of Cuba, while leading a daring charge up San Juan Hill. Lieutenant Colonel Roosevelt, in total disregard for his personal safety, and accompanied by only four or five men, led a desperate and gallant charge up San Juan Hill, encouraging his troops to continue the assault through withering enemy fire over open countryside. Facing the enemy's heavy fire, he displayed extraordinary bravery throughout the charge, and was the first to reach the enemy trenches, where he quickly killed one of the enemy with his pistol, allowing his men to continue the assault. His leadership and valor turned the tide in the Battle for San Juan Hill. Lieutenant Colonel Roosevelt's extraordinary heroism and devotion to duty are in keeping with the highest traditions of military service and reflect great credit upon himself, his unit, and the United States Army.

    Rudeness is a weak imitation of strength. - Eric Hoffer

    by Otteray Scribe on Fri Feb 21, 2014 at 06:06:41 PM PST

    •  Otteray, this is fascinating. Thanks for (3+ / 0-)

      posting this interesting historical information and that your great grandfather was there....wow !

      Keystone Liberals on Twitter @ KeystoneLibs , Join PA Liberals at http://keystoneliberalsforum.aimoo.com/

      by wishingwell on Sat Feb 22, 2014 at 03:01:30 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Thank you wishingwell. (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        A Man Called Gloom, wishingwell

        PaPaw never talked about it, except that he loved Teddy Roosevelt, literally.  I have an idea that PaPaw was probably nominated for a medal of some kind, but every one of the handful of volunteers in that charge all got the same treatment from the War Department.

        He died when I was just a kid, but I still remember him vividly. A tall, dignified man, who carried himself with a military bearing his entire life.  This is my PaPaw, taken in front of his livery stable (the family business at that time) about 1905.

        Rudeness is a weak imitation of strength. - Eric Hoffer

        by Otteray Scribe on Sat Feb 22, 2014 at 07:35:30 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  Holy cow, I know that guy! (10+ / 0-)

    Melvin Morris was (post-Vietnam) my first platoon sergeant on active duty. I can't begin to describe how much he taught me about being a soldier.

    When my first Thanksgiving on active duty arrived, SFC Morris showed up at the barracks and collected everyone in his platoon (and a few from other platoons) who hadn't been given leave, and led a caravan of vehicle to his house...where he and his wife had prepared several turkeys and boatloads of side dishes. I asked what I could do to help, and he told me to collect everyone's coats and put them "in the back room."

    When I entered the back room, one entire wall was covered with certificates and awards, including several from other countries.  I knew that he'd been with 5th SF (he wore their patch as his 'combat patch'), but this...was stunning.  Fluency in multiple languages, including Vietnamese, decorations I'd never even heard of, Silver Star, Bronze Star, Meritorious Service Medal....wow.  SFC Morris walked into the room and saw me gaping at the wall...and he said, in that calm quiet voice, "None of this makes you a soldier, Morgan...this stuff just means you were lucky. It's being ready to do it while you hope you don't have to that makes us soldiers. Let's go eat."

    I've never forgotten.

    The word "parent" is supposed to be a VERB, people...

    by wesmorgan1 on Fri Feb 21, 2014 at 06:49:29 PM PST

  •  Another one (0+ / 0-)

    My uncle, Lt. Col. T.C. Florey, an officer who led from the front in two wars and who knew bravery when he saw it, nominated an outstandingly brave fellow who happened to be Jewish.  

    Despite initial rejection, Uncle Ted continued fighting well into his retirement to see this man honored, with no better results.

    Maybe it's time to dust off Uncle Ted's papers and continue his fight in honor of both brave men.

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