Watchdog Blog

Dan Froomkin: And the War Goes On

Posted at 4:50 pm, May 1st, 2012
Dan Froomkin Mug

As President Barack Obama was flying into Afghanistan on Air Force One for a few hours of speeches and ceremonies on Tuesday, Sgt. Nicholas Dickhut was flying back in a box.

Dickhut, a 23-year-old from a small town in Minnesota, was killed in a firefight on Sunday in southern Afghanistan,  just hours after calling his little brother to wish him a happy ninth birthday.

His body will be returned to Dover Air Force Base in Delaware late Tuesday night.

Obama traveled to Afghanistan to sign an agreement setting terms for the relationship between the two countries after U.S. troops withdraw in 2014, and to make a televised speech to the nation. According to the White House, the agreement “provides for the possibility of U.S. forces in Afghanistan after 2014, for the purposes of training Afghan Forces and targeting the remnants of al-Qaeda.”

Dickhut’s death is a reminder that the casualties of war continue. More than 1,000 American servicemembers have died in Afghanistan since Obama took office, and more than 8,000 have met the Pentagon’s narrowly tailored category of “wounded in action.” More likely, as many as 1 in 3 of the 90,000 American servicemembers currently in Afghanistan can be expected to return less than whole, having suffered some kind of grievous injury or ailment, including traumatic brain injury and post-traumatic stress disorder.

Dickhut was active online. A dramatic photo of him pointing his rifle after coming under fire by the Taliban while on patrol was taken by a Reuters photographer just three days before he died. According to the Minneapolis Star Tribune, Dickhut used instant messaging to describe to his mother what was happening in the picture.

The same day he was killed, he “liked” his regiment’s Facebook page.

2 Responses to “And the War Goes On”

  1. Deborah says:

    More of our children have died since Obama escalated this war in Afghanistan than in the 8 years of the Bush Administration. And are we any better off? The terrorists have moved to Libya and Syria.
    These are endless wars with no end in sight.

  2. Carole says:

    We have never had a more deceptive President. Obama has no regard for our troops health and welfare, as long as he can use our troops for a tool to further weaken America for His hidden AGENDAS, he will. No President has abused his executive powers to damage America like Obama has. Obama is signing executive orders without regard to the health of America, who cares about a health care plan. He has given $1.5 billion in foreign aid to the new Egyptian government, now dominated by a Brotherhood-led coalition in parliament — soon to be joined by an Ikhwan (i.e., Brotherhood) luminary as president, aka Al Quada in disguise. Obama has taken away our rights for freedom of speech, taxing the heck out of wage earners from $80,000 and lower, and setting tax law single handed when Congress is out of session, to nae a few. Tax law in 2010 nearly destroyed the 10% income tax bracket. Tax law in 2011 again butchered the 10% tax bracket. The small Mom and Pop self-employed shops are being taxed out of business. Obama HATES the poor… they are a drain to his administration and are being squished into oblivion! Wait until everyone gets hammered with the health care initiative and the penalty that is going to SLAM everyone in their income tax return… It will cost me $400 a month per employee to provide health insurance even though I currently provide a full insurance coverage plan at $185 a month per employee. At $400 a month plan, the Bronze Plan, we will all get less care! I love my country and there is no one President who can do it all right all the time. After all the Presidents are human just like us. At the very least get a more than a naturalized citizen into office to protect our country first!

    Wake up America!


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