How Allen West Uses the Military and Ignores Its Biggest Problems

Categories: WTFlorida
Thumbnail image for allen-west-military.jpg
What used to be a uniform has become a political prop.
The political entity that is Congressman Allen West would not exist without the military. It is his sole qualification for office, and he touts it at every opportunity. You would be hard-pressed to find any public statement from "the Colonel" that doesn't mention his military service, and he has justified his ridiculous statements (about communism, about Islam, about "the Democrat Party") by saying "nuance" wasn't a good thing on the battlefield and he's not about to engage in any now.

That he is no longer on the battlefield does not appear to have affected his continued refusal to act as a statesman, resorting instead to stunts like calling fellow Florida representative Debbie Wasserman Schultz "the most vile, unprofessional, and despicable member of the U.S. House of Representatives." And people love him for it.

He "tells it like it is." He fights the "patriotic" fights and doesn't couch his language to appease the media, which are conspiring against him by quoting him accurately.

But for all his flag-waving bluster, West has remained utterly silent on some of the most important issues plaguing our modern military. He sent out an e-card for D-Day and tweets regularly about Our Great Constitutional Republic, but he hasn't used his massive social media presence to bring attention to actual military issues: suicide, sexual assault, domestic abuse, and gross incompetence, just for starters.

Suicide in the military has risen to an all-time high: In the first 155 days of 2012, 154 servicemembers killed themselves, according to Pentagon figures. In contrast, 136 were killed in Afghanistan during that same time. More American troops are now being killed by their own hand than by the enemy.

This news broke on June 7. On that day, instead of advocating for increased suicide prevention measures or mental-health services or cultural shifts in the military's shaming of mental illness, West took to Facebook to rant about a 72-year-old liberal talk show host's statement that he doesn't like "The Star-Spangled Banner."

West, with all his influence and visibility, failed. Rather than trying to protect the troops he makes such a big deal of having led, he attacked some guy who thinks the national anthem doesn't sound so pretty.

He has likewise failed to address the growing, urgent problem of rape in the military. An estimated 20,000 servicemembers were raped in 2010. The Invisibile War, a documentary about sexual assault in the military that debuted at Sundance earlier this year, included stories like this, from Time magazine:
When Andrea Werner reported her rape to her Army superiors, she was charged with adultery, though she wasn't married (her assailant was) and the sex was nothing like consensual. The investigation into rape charges brought by Lieutenant Elle Helmer against her Commanding Officer at the elite Marine Barracks in Washington, D.C., was closed due to "lack of evidence" (he denied it); a new case was opened, charging Helmer with conduct unbecoming an officer and public intoxication.

What the military denied in public, it suppressed in the field. Soldiers who had been raped had no recourse outside the chain of command. Ariana Klay was told to do "what a Marine officer should do, and that's to ignore it and move on."
It goes on and on. Where is West on this issue? He hasn't been sounding any of his patriotism alarms over the statistics or over the stories of servicewomen being classified insane after reporting assaults or over the Shaheen Amendment, which would give women in the military access to health care already available to all other government workers.


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76 comments
oscar642
oscar642

The author has never heard (actually listened to him in an unbiased manner) Mr West speak and has no idea what Mr West's accomplishments are or his values. I have been at Mr Wests events several times, spoken to him, listened to him and I have also been at his former opponents events, Mr Ron Klein. Mr Klein had no substance and accomplished nothing but paper pushing for 4 years while Mr West has actively tried to make a difference in spite of being attacked at every turn. When he defends himself aggressively, he is blamed for the attacks. He is much more than a military guy as he has a Masters degree in political science and history which he uses to try and stop the present government from repeating the mistakes of the past. He is a war hero with a true American spirit. He is one of the brightest men I've met and he is one of the few politicians in Washington who will not be involved with lobbyists. Please check your facts and if you truly want America to recover, try to understand both sides rather than take part in the name calling that is so commonplace today.

 

Respectfully,

Glenn

Mike
Mike

  Allen West is an Honorable man.  I have not heard him lie like what occurs almost daily with most of the Democrats.  Congress needs to do an investigation to prove Mr. Obama is eligible to be POTUS.  We have more evidence that says he is not eligible than he is.  Mr. Obama was not vetted in 2008 as he should have been.  Look at the policies of the current administration and see how much they have harmed the United States. 

  Allen West supports the United States of America.  I will support people who support the United States and not those who do not. 

huck91w
huck91w

So, none of you here have served under his command and or even been to Iraq. I can tell you personally that LTC West was EXACTLY the type of field commander that wins wars. Whether you agree with them or not he was ordered to go and became a target of political hack jobs that now run amock in the servive. where is your indignation when dems call him uncle tom? whats the matter, cnt understand a black man who isnt in lock step with the democrats who push for expansion of the slavery welfare state? as far as the shaheen amendment, all women in the military get the same healthcare as men, i see it every day at sick call. there is no mens only line at the clinic. because hes blunt honest and dosent hold back against the very democrats who engage in nothing but name calling and slander. typical lib b.s. " i can call names, but if you call names im crying foul and going home to pout"

p.s. he was never a rear echelon file clerk

fgikol
fgikol

Allen West is a joke and a disgrace to the true heroes of the military,  He brings dishonor to the uniform and is a total dipshit.

methadras
methadras

Allen West's turds are better than people who are democrats.

charliegolf
charliegolf

Wow.  Brazen political hatchet job?  Absolutely.  One of the most contriving, conniving and politically motivated bloggers ever afforded a thin veil of legitimacy by a "newspaper"?  You bet.  This post is the most egregious example of argumentum ad ignorantiam I've seen in recent memory.  Rich, if I may call you that, if you don't like the guy then don't vote for him.  If you come across some actual "dirt" then by all means, share it with us.  But, toiling away on a piece chock-full of logic that only a toddler could truly appreciate in an attempt to impugn Rep. West just shows us what your character is made of.  It does nothing to discredit your subject.  As a side-note, you look like a jackwaggon when you write "the Colonel".  He was a colonel (lieutenant colonel more precisely) and by trying to pass this off in quotes when you're not actually quoting someone, you appear to be making an allegation rather than a statement of his rank.

riverrat69
riverrat69 topcommenter

 @oscar642

 When Asshole Allen says something in an unbiased manner, maybe I will too. But don't count on the teabag troglodyte to be civil.

riverrat69
riverrat69 topcommenter

 @Mike

 Do you come from the planet Kolob like Mittens?  You've never heard West lie? He wouldn't know the truth if it bit him in the ass. He's the ultimate frightwing lying teabag hypocrite. The United States supports Allen West. He's never had a paycheck without a government signature attached to it.

riverrat69
riverrat69 topcommenter

 @huck91w

 What's typical Asshole Allen bullshit is his always referring to his time in the military. Hey, frightwinger, what has he done as a civilian except collect checks from the government he dispises. He's never had a job that didn't have a government check attached to it. And if he's such a toughguy, how come he's crying all over the media about the negative campaign adds directed at him, when he's been ranting and raving about all those commie Dems in congress? It's OK for him to call names, but when he's called out for the teabag douche that he is, he gets upset? He sounds more and more like a REMF to me.

oscar642
oscar642

 @fgikol all the military guys and women that I know respect him and all the women I speak to about him that have sons or daughters in the military wish he was there leading and protecting their offspring just like he did the men whose lives he saved in Iraq

KennyPowersII
KennyPowersII topcommenter

 @methadras So you know quite  a bit about West's bodily expulsion material. TMI.

riverrat69
riverrat69 topcommenter

 @charliegolf

 Asshole Allen doesn't need any one to impugn him. He's doing a fine job of that on his own.

oscar642
oscar642

 @riverrat69 please rfrain from the insults. it serves no constructive purpose. Thank you

oscar642
oscar642

please refrain from this type of speech. We are trying to save a country here and as Americans, we need to stand united and try to see both sides. @riverrat69 

oscar642
oscar642

 @riverrat69 allen has a great deal of respect for our constitutional republic. Please open your mind to the facts rather than believe the press. Allen is defending himself amd us and he is called names much more often than he uses that type of rhetoric

oscar642
oscar642

 @riverrat69 because the ads are racist in spite of what the NAACP says. Have you seen them?

charliegolf
charliegolf

 @riverrat69 Is that the new test for asshole vs. alright guy?  Whether one has been on the public dole their entire life or not?  What's that?  Speak up a little.  Whoa now!  Did you just call President Obama and VP Biden  assholes?  I think you did.  And, "toughguy"?  You're the only toughguy here at the moment.  Instead of taking issue with one of West's positions so we can openly debate it, you'd rather verbally hack away at the man himself.  It takes a real toughguy to do something like that.  In fact, the only thing you've shown on this board is that you're lacking in intellect and short on vocabulary. 

charliegolf
charliegolf

@riverrat69 A more articulate expression has never before been written by the hand of a human.  I see that Rich's argument has been effective on you.  Rat, if it's my attention you want, you got it.  I wasn't going to comment on something you wrote earlier, but now I believe I will.  "And call him to his face what you usually call him to his back."  I'll refrain from commenting on your persistent use of pejoratives as your intellectual crutch, but it hasn't gone unnoticed.  I called him "sir".  I don't know him and I'm sure he doesn't know me. But, in a brief 10 second encounter in Kuwait, 2003, as our respective units were getting ready to move into Iraq, I personally saw (unless there is another lieutenant colonel wearing field artillery insignia, with the last name "West", who just happens to bear a striking resemblance to Rep. Allen West and just happened to be in Kuwait in Feb-March of 2003) Ltc. West display more integrity, humility and civility than I'm afraid YOU could muster up in 10 lifetimes.  Now, read over my entire comment again.  Notice that not once did I write a single profane or hateful word.  Are YOU capable of doing that?  If so, are you willing to do that? If neither then you are nothing more than a hopeless troll contributing to the social and moral entropy that will one day tear this country from its very foundation. 

riverrat69
riverrat69 topcommenter

 @oscar642

 Neither you nor he would know a fact if it bit you in the ass.

oscar642
oscar642

 @riverrat69 Allen uses facts, not made up words that are attempting to be insults. Please try to be constructive.

riverrat69
riverrat69 topcommenter

 @oscar642

 Talk to West. Tell him to refrain from his attack rhetoric. I'm only using his and Karl Rove's tactics. If he doesn't offend you, I will. He's a frightwing teabag hypocrite.

riverrat69
riverrat69 topcommenter

 @oscar642

 Why must I keep calling frightwing teabaggers names? I'm just using the same tactics Asshole Allen uses when he calls everyone that is a Democrat a derogatory name. Do you know how to read? In my previous post I indicated to you some of the outrageous statements made by West. You choose to ignore his attacks. You are a typical teabag hypocrite just like he is.

oscar642
oscar642

 @riverrat69 why must you call people names?. Is anyone who disagrees with you a member of the tea party? The fact is that the democrats have tried repeatedly to demonize Republicans. I happen to be a fiscal conservative and a social democrat. Please refrain from the name calling if you want any of this to be constructive.

riverrat69
riverrat69 topcommenter

 @oscar642

 You're on dream street. If he had any respect he wouldn't say off the wall outrageous shit like this...

1  LIBERALS “GET THE HELL OUT”:..

2 JOSEPH GOEBBELS WOULD “BE VERY PROUD” OF DEMOCRATS..

3 Rep. Allen West channeled Joe McCarthy in a town hall event in Florida that he’s “heard” that up to 80 House Democrats are Communist Party members, the Palm Beach Post reports... Do you want more? Now, just what would an ignorant teabagger like you call these statements?

charliegolf
charliegolf

 @smdrpepper That's not an issue of his.  That's your issue against him (and a democrat talking point I might add).  Can you not see the distinction between someone "living on the government dime" as a soldier rather than a bureaucrat?  Are you saying that West is "against" all soldiers?  Of course you are.

oscar642
oscar642

 @smdrpepper how is one a criminal that has been proven innocent in a military court? Please check your facts

riverrat69
riverrat69 topcommenter

 @charliegolf

 There's no 'new' test for asshole. West has proven time and again that he's earned that moniker and much worse. You're a typical teabag hypocrite. When the opposition uses your tactics against you, you cry foul. What's foul is the odor comming off West and you.

smdrpepper
smdrpepper

 @charliegolf  Well there is that huge hypocrisy of the criminal West.  The fact that he is against anyone living on the government dime when thats exactly what he has done his entire life.  Hows that for an issue of his?

KennyPowersII
KennyPowersII topcommenter

 @oscar642  @smdrpepper Then that person lied to you Oscar. 

 

" In testimony at an Article 32 hearing -- the military's version of a grand jury or preliminary hearing -- West said the policeman, Yahya Jhrodi Hamoody, was not cooperating with interrogators, so he watched four of his soldiers from the 220th Field Artillery Battalion beat the detainee on the head and body. West said he also threatened to kill Hamoody. Military prosecutors say West followed up on that threat by taking the suspect outside, put him on the ground near a weapons clearing barrel and fired his 9 mm pistol into the barrel.

[...]

But while West's supporters call him a hero, military prosecutors said his actions amounted to torture and violated articles 128 and 134 of the Uniform Code of Military Justice."

 

They cut him a deal and allowed him to retain his pension.

charliegolf
charliegolf

 @riverrat69 "I can come up with every postion I hold that is the opposite of an unhinged mind like West"Put up or shut up.

riverrat69
riverrat69 topcommenter

 @charliegolfThe more you post the more you cement your hold on frightwing ignorance and stupidity. I never said or implied that Asshole Allen posted on these threads.  He posts his frightwing drivel on his own website.  I can come up with every postion I hold that is the opposite of an unhinged mind like West. He thinks he's the reincarnation of Joe McCarthy. That's more than enough to dismiss him as a frightwing nutcase. And obviously you are too.

 

charliegolf
charliegolf

 @riverrat69" Allen doesn't post on here." Really?  Who would've known. Why don't you READ YOUR OWN STATEMENTS before you open your mouth?  "As long as Asshole Allen keeps posting his..." to which I asked, "What is 'Allen' posting?".  I said nothing about West posting here.

  What's wrong?  Are you mad because your ad hominem attack has been grossly over played?  Are you running out of pejoratives?  Is it nap time for you?  Come on riverrat, tell us what's wrong.

  Can you come up with ONE political issue for debate that you hold which runs counter to West's platform?  Or, would you rather just sit here and malign people you don't even know?  I don't think you'll be able to participate in a debate, but go ahead and prove me wrong.

riverrat69
riverrat69 topcommenter

 @charliegolf

 What are you talking about you ignorant teabagger? Allen doesn't post on here. He's got a national audience for his devisive rhetoric. I'm sure you're a fan of the Faux News Ministry Of Disinformation. He's on there all the time spewing his frightwing bullshit. And when he's not, he's at town meetings doing the same shit on a local basis. And the more you post, you expose yourself as an ignorant misinformed frightwing troglodyte.

charliegolf
charliegolf

 @smdrpepper Wow.  Those are deep thoughts from a shallow mind.  "...since I know that it provides exactly no actionable intelligence."  You made the statement, now prove it.       "He had NO reason to even suspect that this cop was anything other than a cop..."  Wrong.  An informant came to the front gate of FOB Gunner and gave the cop's name and details of the plot to a military intelligence soldier who, in turn, passed that intelligence along to LTC West.  If that is "no reason" to you, then you are, well, unreasonable. 

     "Your boy..."  Do I detect an underlying racial tone to that statement?

     What is the "word of law", precisely?  Do you mean "rule of law"?

     By your definition, every officer who has ever resigned his/her commission has been "tossed out".  I wasn't aware that there were so many dishonorable former officers out there. 

     "...has done NOTHING in Congress..."  It took all of 4 seconds to find the govtrack page with his voting record.  "From Jan 2011 to Aug 2012, West missed 2 of 1503 recorded or roll call votes..."  So, you're either lying or you meant to say that Rep West has done NOTHING that you approve of. 

     "..ill gotten power."  Other than your incessant rhetoric, are you able to substantiate this charge? 

charliegolf
charliegolf

 @riverrat69 What are you talking about?  What is "Allen" posting?  Your grasp on reality appears tenuous, at best.    I sincerely hope you DON'T go away.  Every time you post or reply it serves my purpose of exposing you and your ilk to potential voters.  So, by all means, PLEASE continue making an ass out of yourself. 

smdrpepper
smdrpepper

 @charliegolf Unlike the criminal West, I would have obeyed the rules.  I would not have tortured anyone to get information since I know that it provides exactly no actionable intelligence.  The fact is, West went off the reservation and tried to gung ho around.  He failed.  He had NO reason to even suspect that this cop was anything other than a cop so yes, he pulled him out at random.  Plus, this is just what he got caught doing, I wonder what else he was doing that he did not get caught doing.

Your boy is a criminal with exactly no honor and even less respect for the word of law.  He has no place in any position of power which is why he was tossed out of the military.

You can choose to believe that rose tinted version of this putz, but in reality you are supporting someone with less qualifications than a fry cook.

Never mind the fact that he has done NOTHING in Congress other than try to belittle anyone that is not a tea bagger.  He knows what his record is so instead of running on it, he is running AWAY from it in an attempt to keep his ill gotten power.

He is a coward, pure and simple.

charliegolf
charliegolf

 @smdrpepperIt doesn't matter whether he was a "civilian police officer", local dog catcher or taxi cab driver.  Possibly the most difficult aspect of this war was that the same "civilians" who would wave as you drove toward them would start lobbing grenades as soon as you drove past.  The fact remains that LTC West was given intelligence that an attack was to be carried out against himself and/or soldiers under his command.  He didn't just pick someone at random to interrogate. Again, what would YOU have done in that situation?    Also, could you define what areas of Iraq were "combat areas".  I seem to recall that Iraqi mortars, rockets and snipers had great difficulty delineating rear areas from combat areas.

smdrpepper
smdrpepper

 @oscar642 Too bad there are transcripts of the incident.  It WAS a civilian police officer that this criminal attacked.  The "info" he tortured out of this innocent man was nonsense since that is the result of torture.  You will say anything to make it stop which is just what this man did.

Sorry, your buddy the criminal West put EVERY man in danger thanks to his actions which is why he was thrown out of the military.  If he wasnt thrown out, he would still be in there.  And yes, this all happened in the rear.  He was NOT in any combat areas.

Your info is HIGHLY inaccurate and very questionable.

oscar642
oscar642

 @smdrpepper he was in the field a s a US army paratrooper on the front lines in 3 combat zones in 22 years.

oscar642
oscar642

 @AngelaTC yes they did. They did not kick him out. He turned himself in as the honorable gentleman that he is, they investigated him, and he was not thrown out of the army. He broke rules and fessed up to it. His breaking of the rules saved lives. In any other army in the world, he would have received a medal and a promotion. In ours, he got a desk job.

oscar642
oscar642

 @smdrpepper check your facts. I have spoken to someone who was there. It was not a police officer, it was a prisoner who knew when our men were going to be attacked and from where. Allens actions saved his men's lives.

riverrat69
riverrat69 topcommenter

 @charliegolf

With your posts you've proven "wise' is not in the teabag lexicon. As long as Asshole Allen keeps posting his frightwing unsubstantiated bullshit, I'll continue to criticize and vilify the teabagger. Get used to it hypocrite, I'm not going away.

charliegolf
charliegolf

 @riverrat69 " Well, since you posted this to me, why don't you post this to your 'hero'?" 

Because I'm not talking to him, I'm talking to YOU.  Is that the best  response you can come up with?  You are proof that some of us are wise, and some of us are otherwise.   

charliegolf
charliegolf

 @smdrpepper Are you ignorant, or stupid?  You obviously don't know a damn thing about Iraq or Kuwait in early 2003.  Nor do you know anything about LTC West's service or the Army in general. 

riverrat69
riverrat69 topcommenter

 @charliegolf

"Notice that not once did I write a single profane or hateful word.  Are YOU capable of doing that?  If so, are you willing to do that? If neither then you are nothing more than a hopeless troll contributing to the social and moral entropy that will one day tear this country from its very foundation."

  Well, since you posted this to me, why don't you post this to your 'hero'? When Asshole Allen stops doing what you accuse me of going, maybe I'll stop. Then again with all the dumbed down teabaggers on here, maybe I won't.

smdrpepper
smdrpepper

 @charliegolf Funny, he was not in a combat zone.  He was in the rear.  He was nothing more than a file clerk.

charliegolf
charliegolf

 @smdrpepper Were you there?  Did you witness this event?  Have you ever been directly responsible for 400-ish lives in a combat zone?  As you have demonstrated, it is very easy to sit in the comfort of a desk chair behind a computer and Monday morning quarterback an event that happened over 6,000 miles away.  What right do you have to judge his actions?  None.  If you call what then LTC West did to this "unarmed police officer" torture then you're just as intellectually bankrupt as the last person I responded to. He was sent to Iraq to do a job and he carried out his orders.  Acting on information he received he investigated a possible attack. Had the U.S. Army not morphed into a "kinder and gentler" politically correct organization run amok, LTC West would probably still be in the Army and not have entered into politics, at least not when he did.  The police officer lived.  Have you ever seen what they have done to some Americans? If we had fought according to their rules the war would have been over in six months, maybe a year at most. Tell me, smdrpepper, what would you have done?  Would you have given the police officer a "talking to" and then just sent him on his merry little way?  Probably.  It's easy for you to judge his actions when it wasn't YOUR ass, or the lives of YOUR men, on the line.  Unless you've been in that position you should stfu.

smdrpepper
smdrpepper

 @charliegolf Takes a lot of integrity to torture and shoot his gun at an unarmed police officer I guess.  Lots of humility and civility.  As others have said, the criminal West has disgraced that uniform and all others who have and are serving in this military.  To put him anywhere near the pedestal that all other soldiers are on is an insult to their memory.

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