This bit of bureaucratic retardation at DoD shows how out of hand things have truly gotten...
The new blue, red and white-ribboned Distinguished Warfare Medal will be awarded to individuals for ‘‘extraordinary achievement’’ related to a military operation that occurred after Sept. 11, 2001. But unlike other combat medals, it does not require the recipient risk his or her life to get it.
Officials said the new medal will be the first combat-related award to be created since the Bronze Star in 1944.
A recognition of the evolving 21st Century warfare, the medal will be considered a bit higher in ranking than the Bronze Star, but is lower than the Silver Star, defense officials said.
Awesome... We are going to start handing out participation trophies for "extraordinary achievement." A medal that ranks higher than the Bronze Star for doing a job that I could get any 12 year old boy to do for a raise in his allowance and promising to let him have the new Call of Duty for his birthday. Speaking of that; can I get overseas/combat service credit for all of the Resistance--Fall of Man and Call of Duty playing time I had while deployed?
To give those in the audience who have no idea what it takes to get a Bronze Star, this is the award criteria:
The Bronze Star Medal was established by Executive Order 9419, 4 February 1944 (superseded by Executive Order 11046, 24 August 1962, as amended by Executive Order 13286, 28 February 2003).
The Bronze Star Medal may be awarded by the Secretary of a military department or the Secretary of Homeland Security with regard to the Coast Guard when not operating as a service in the Navy, or by such military commanders, or other appropriate officers as the Secretary concerned may designate, to any person who, while serving in any capacity in or with the Army, Navy, Marine Corps, Air Force, or Coast Guard of the United States, after 6 December 1941, distinguishes, or has distinguished, herself or himself by heroic or meritorious achievement or service, not involving participation in aerial flight—
- (a) while engaged in an action against an enemy of the United States;
- (b) while engaged in military operations involving conflict with an opposing foreign force; or
- (c) while serving with friendly foreign forces engaged in an armed conflict against an opposing armed force in which the United States is not a belligerent party.
The acts of heroism are of a lesser degree than required for the award of the Silver Star. The acts of merit or acts of valor must be less than that required for the Legion of Merit but must nevertheless have been meritorious and accomplished with distinction. The Bronze Star Medal is awarded only to service members in combat who are receiving imminent danger pay.
The Bronze Star Medal (without the "V" device) may be awarded to each member of the Armed Forces of the United States who, after 6 December 1941, was cited in orders or awarded a certificate for exemplary conduct in ground combat against an armed enemy after 7 December 1941. For this purpose, the Combat Infantryman Badge, Combat Action Badge or Combat Medical Badge award is considered as a citation in orders. Documents executed since 4 August 1944 in connection with recommendations for the award of decorations of higher degree than the Bronze Star Medal cannot be used as the basis for an award under this paragraph.
So this new medal for sitting in an OPS center at some undisclosed location will be higher than that? Higher than the Bronze Star that a PFC at a remote COP might be awarded for taking charge of his mortar team during a patrol and providing accurate fires on the enemy after his team leader was wounded? Higher than a Bronze Star awarded to a Buck Sergeant, who after being deployed for 7 months, is working 3 levels higher as the Company First Sergeant in his section because of combat attrition? No disrespect to the Predator driver and missile shooter; you guys are an important component in the battles we fight, but I could get my work done in the 'Stan without them. They are doing a job that can be done wearing flip-flops while eating take out. The only thing funnier than giving this award would be seeing this medal awarded to the awardees standing at attention in their flight suits.
There are alot of medals for achievement, I don't think we need one that would rank higher than a Bronze Star for the ‘‘extraordinary achievement’’ of pressing the "FIRE" button on your Predator Drone flight control to launch a missile that is going to ride a laser beam being painted on a target by a TAC-P that is just as dirty, sleep deprived and smelly as the platoon of infantry in the fight around him; who are actually and life threateningly engaged with the enemy.
And if you are thinking "Deebow, why are you so upset about this? Don't you want to recognize the contributions that these people have made to the GWOT?"
Ask me that after you read my Bronze Star citation...