Many of the same people who helped derail the 2004 presidential campaign of Sen. John Kerry (D-Mass.) as members of Swift Vets and POWs for Truth are back in 2012 as members of Special Operations Speaks. As part of an effort to combat what one leader of the group describes as “a government that has gone rogue,” the group’s members have decided to champion the causes of two soldiers about whom I’ve written much over the past three-plus years: 1LT Michael Behenna and Sgt. 1st Class Kelly Stewart.
The good news came this morning in the form of an email from Beverly Perlson, founder of the pro-troops organization, The Band of Mothers, who had received the news from Larry Bailey, one of the leaders of Special Operations Speaks who is a retired Navy captain and also chairs the pro-military group, Gathering of Eagles.
Behenna is the Army Ranger officer about whom I have written and published more than 60 articles during the past three years. He is currently serving a 15-year prison sentence for killing Ali Mansur, a known Al-Qaeda operative, in self-defense in Iraq in 2008.
My most-recent post, American Warfighters Deserve Same Consideration as Taliban, offers details about Lieutenant Behenna’s case that will make you shake your head in disbelief.
Stewart is the highly-decorated Green Beret whose life story and wrongful conviction are chronicled in my book, Three Days In August: A U.S. Army Special Forces Soldier’s Fight For Military Justice.
Based on extensive interviews and never-before-published details taken from the actual Record of Trial, Three Days in August paints a portrait of military justice gone awry that’s certain to make your blood boil. The most-recent update on his case can be found here.
*Note: The photo of Lieutenant Behenna above was shot prior to his deployment to Iraq when he was still wearing the gold bar of an Army second lieutenant.