Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Who hyped Lynch's rescue?

Jessica Lynch talks to Fox 'n Friends about the falsification of reports of her rescue. 4 years later she is having to set the record straight - there was no Rambo type rescue of Lynch. The news was hyped and untrue.

Setting the Record Straight
Web Exclusive
By Julie Scelfo
Updated: 3:42 p.m. PT April 24, 2007
April 24, 2007 - Jessica Lynch became a national hero in 2003 after she was dramatically rescued by a team of Special Ops soldiers from an Iraqi hospital where she was believed to be a prisoner of war. Her story was compelling not only because she was a 19-year-old supply-unit clerk who had stumbled into an attack during convoy travel with her unit, but because she was portrayed by military authorities as having valiantly fought back against her attackers even as her unit was surrounded and her comrades were killed and injured. The legend quickly unraveled, however, after Lynch returned to the States, recuperated from her substantial injuries (broken arm and leg bones, damage to her back and kidneys, and a six-inch laceration to her head) and began to speak out about what had really happened.

Today, Lynch testified before a House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform hearing probing the source of misleading information about Lynch and about the death of Army Ranger Specialist Patrick Tillman in Afghanistan. NEWSWEEK's Julie Scelfo spoke with Lynch, who turns 24 on April 26, about her experiences...

NEWSWEEK: Why did you decide to testify?
Jessica Lynch: Mainly it was about me just getting out the truth. I’ve spent the past four years trying to tell everybody the real truth, and not the stories they put together. They were false, ya know?

What was the greatest misinformation about you?
The whole Rambo story, that I went down fighting. It just wasn’t the truth.

So what really happened?
I didn’t even get a shot off. My weapon had jammed. And I didn’t even get to fire. A rocket-propelled grenade hit the back of our [Humvee], which made Lori [Piestewa], my friend, lose control of the vehicle, and we slammed into the back of another truck in our unit.

Who is to blame for spreading the misinformation?
Well, I think really the military and the media. The military, for not setting the record straight and the media for spreading it, and not seeking the true facts. They just ran with it instead of waiting until the facts were straightened out.

What do you hope Congress achieves with today’s hearing?
I hope it [helps] the Tillman family get the accurate information that they deserve. They need to know what happened to their son and why they were lied to.

Do you feel like this is a pattern, misinformation from the military?
Well, it kind of seems like that’s the way it’s been happening. I hope they can learn from mistakes and correct this and not let other family members and soldiers have to deal with the things that my family and I went through.

Tillman, Lynch accounts slammed
By Tom Vanden Brook, USA TODAY
WASHINGTON — The Pentagon lied to create heroes from Iraq and Afghanistan, former Army private Jessica Lynch and the brother of former NFL star and Army Ranger Pat Tillman told a House committee Tuesday.
Kevin Tillman, who served in a Ranger unit with his brother, and Lynch testified as part of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee's investigation into inaccurate accounts of the battlefield actions of Lynch and Tillman...

Early versions of Lynch's capture and rescue, quoting unnamed U.S. officials, said Iraqi soldiers shot and stabbed Lynch, who fought back until she shot off her last round of ammunition and was captured. That made her seem like "little girl Rambo," Lynch said Tuesday.

In truth, she said, she was hurt too badly to fight. The narrative that described Tillman's actions, for which he was awarded the Silver Star, "was utter fiction," Kevin Tillman said...

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