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For the Fallen
John Bogle by Robin Holland
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September 28, 2007

"In the end, we need to recognize that our presence may have released Iraqis from the grip of a tyrant, but that it has also robbed them of their self-respect. They will soon realize that the best way to regain dignity is to call us what we are — an army of occupation — and force our withdrawal.
-"The War As We Saw It."

Less than a month after seven U.S. Army officers co-authored a NEW YORK TIMES Op-ed, which paints a much grimmer picture on the ground in Iraq than that being described by Bush Administration officials, two of the soldiers have been killed after their military vehicle turned over near Baghdad.

Staff Sgt. Yance Tell Gray, 26, of Ismay, Montana, was nearing the end of four tours of duty in Iraq and Afghanistan when he was killed. Said his wife Jessica, he was "an amazing husband and an adoring father (who) couldn't wait to come home and be a dad to his daughter."

The Gray Family
The Gray Family

Sgt. Omar Mora, who came to the United States from Sgt. Omar MoraEcuador with his mother when he was two, had just received his citizenship papers three weeks earlier when he and six other members of his division were killed.

In the recent Op-Ed piece, the officers stress the fallacy of examining the Iraq war from a strictly "American perspective":

"What matters is the experience of the local citizenry and the future of our counterinsurgency. When we take this view, we see that a vast majority of Iraqis feel increasingly insecure and view us as an occupation force that has failed to produce normalcy after four years and is increasingly unlikely to do so as we continue to arm each warring side."

As Bill Moyers reminds us in his essay:

"Any war is The War for the soldiers who die in it — the war they will not live to remember, or recount for their grandchildren, or revisit in the movies. For sergeants Omar Mora and Yance Gray, who fought bravely and bravely told us the truth, The War is over."

>We invite you to respond to Bill Moyers essay here on the blog.

Published on September 28, 2007

Related Media:
Clip File: August 23, 2007 - Underreported Iraq
Bill Moyers examines underreported stories about the Iraq war, including discussion about the soldiers' recent NEW YORK TIMES OP-ED.

The Cost of War
How do you make tangible the true costs of the Iraq war?

Bill Moyers on Sacrifice
Bill Moyers reflects upon sacrifice, democracy and war.
References and Reading:
The War as We Saw It
By Buddhika Jayamaha, Wesley D. Smith, Jeremy Roebuck, Omar Mora, Edward Sandmeier, Yance T. Gray and Jeremy a. Murphy, NEW YORK TIMES, August 19, 2007

Deaths of Soldiers 'Brings It Home' For 'NYT' Editorial Page Editor
By Joe Strupp, EDITOR AND PUBLISHER, September 12, 2007
"'It brings it home and it reminds you how distant most people are from this war,' said Rosenthal, who said the soldiers sent the column unsolicited to the paper seeking its publication. 'It would be ludicrous to say this war has now touched us, but it has in a way. These are guys who had been more public.'"

Soldiers Who Challenged War Spin Die in Iraq
By John Nichols, THE NATION, September 12, 2007
"At a time when the sloganeering pundits of talk-radio and rant-television attack critics of Petraeus for daring to challenge the general's politically-convenient account of circumstances on the ground in Iraq, the letter from Gray, Mora and their comrades delivers the most powerful critique of the commander's claims."

2 G.I.'s, Skeptical but Loyal, Die in a Truck Crash in Iraq
By David Stout, NEW YORK TIMES, September 13, 2007
"Two of the soldiers who wrote of their pessimism about the war in an Op-Ed article that appeared in The New York Times on Aug. 19 were killed in Baghdad on Monday. They were not killed in combat, nor on a daring mission. They died when the five-ton cargo truck in which they were riding overturned."

Family Mourns Local Soldier's Death
By By Mark Collette, GALVESTON COUNTY DAILY NEWS, September 12, 2007
Read the local coverage from Sgt. Omar Mora's hometown newspaper: "November would have marked the end of his 15-month deployment."

Department of Defense: Army Casualties, Sept. 13, 2007
According to this DOD press release, the deaths of Mora, Gray and 5 others are still under investigation.

PBS - THE WAR - A Ken Burns Film
Explore the Web site for the landmark PBS series directed and produced by Ken Burns and Lynn Novick.

Military Times: Every Brigade's Tour
Find out how long each army brigade has been deployed and when their deployment is scheduled.

Also This Week:

Investment industry giant John Bogle says that as more and more money managers take control over corporations on Wall Street, Main Street is paying the price.

Who is keeping track of the billions we're spending in Iraq. Under the radar news you need to know.

NPR's Deborah Amos — just back from Damascus — and THE NEW YORKER's George Packer on the Iraq war and what you haven't heard from Washington.

Bill Moyers on the fate of the authors of "The War as We Saw It"

>CLIP FILE, August 23, 2007 — Underreported Iraq
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