Feb 22 2008

Obama’s Uparmored Humvee Myth, Tapper Excuse Doesn’t Fit Timeline

Jake Tapper has attempted to do some junior detective work on Obama’s idiotic claims during last night’s debate about a rifle platoon being split up between Iraq and Afghanistan in the Summer of 2003 – when we had two very hot wars on our hands. The problem is Tapper is, like many liberals, fairly naive on the military and its equipment and the well documented problems of going to the uparmored versions when we first went to war. Here’s Jake’s attempt at sleuthing:

The Army captain, a West Point graduate, did a tour in a hot area of eastern Afghanistan from the Summer of 2003 through Spring 2004.

Prior to deployment the Captain — then a Lieutenant — took command of a rifle platoon at Fort Drum. When he took command, the platoon had 39 members, but — in ones and twos — 15 members of the platoon were re-assigned to other units. He knows of 10 of those 15 for sure who went to Iraq, and he suspects the other five did as well.

Note some dates here. First off the tour in Afghanistan was started Summer of 2003. But the movement of personal happened BEFORE the tour, when they were stationed at Fort Drum. Which puts that at the time when we were in the early stages of fighting Saddam’s forces in Iraq – Spring 2003. Of course resources were being moved to units heading to Iraq – Duh! But notice it happened on ones and twos, which means it happened over many months while this unit trained for its tour in Afghanistan – which was much quieter at the time they finally deployed.

He adds that maybe a half-dozen of the 15 were replaced by the Fall of 2003, months after they arrived in Afghanistan, but never all 15.

As for the weapons and humvees, there are two distinct periods in this, as he explains — before deployment, and afterwards.

At Fort Drum, in training, “we didn’t have access to heavy weapons or the ammunition for the weapons, or humvees to train before we deployed”

LOL! This is highly doubtful. There were no humvees to train on ever? There never were heavy weapons or live ammo? What I suspect is there was limited access to shared resources, not dedicated resources for each unit to train with. But Tapper is a journalist who probably gets all his knowledge about the military from the History Channel. There’s more of course:

They also didn’t have the humvees they were supposed to have both before deployment and once they were in Afghanistan, the Captain says.

“We should have had 4 up-armored humvees” he said. “We were supposed to. But at most we had three operable humvees, and it was usually just two”.

Key word here is ‘operable’. Be that as it may the other thing to note is ‘up-armored’ humvees – which actually did not go into heavy production until after the period this ‘captain’ claims he should have had them. This was well documented as one of those features the military wanted but which Congress had slowed funding for many years. It began in earnest in the fall of 2004:

Much like the armored inserts in flak jackets saved Marines on the road to Baghdad during phase I of Operation Iraqi Freedom, in late 2003 the I Marine Expeditionary Force began investing in new armor to protect Marines in humvees against improvised explosive devices used by enemy fighters in Iraq. Moreover, 110 “hard armor” kits already had been ordered by the end of 2003.

With funding secured and contracting processes completed, by early 2004 the Army started to move ever-larger quantities of both armoring kits and newly built armored humvees into Iraq. By late January 2004 there were more than 2,000 armored humvees deployed in the Global War on Terrorism, and most of them are in Iraq.

Tapper claims this Captain was deployed in Summer 2003 and his rifle platoon was without up-armored humvees as if this was abnormal. But as the timeline of contracts and production clearly show the kits did not start coming out until the fall of 2003 and the first production models of up-armored hummers came out in 2004. If Jake wants to still defend this spin he needs to confirm with his source if and when hummers were provided to Afghanistan (which again, was fairly quiet in late 2003 and early 2004). Here is a news story from Dec 2004 which notes when the Pentagon had asked for increased production:

The U.S. Army has asked the company that is producing fully armored Humvees to expand the Army’s order to 550 per month, an increase of 100 a month, NBC News learned Friday.

In fact, this subject elicited one of Rumsfeld’s most memorable quotes:

“Why do we soldiers have to dig through the local landfills for pieces of scrap metal and compromised ballistic glass to up-armor our vehicles?” asked Army National Guard Spc. Thomas Wilson, who is in a unit that will soon head into Iraq from Kuwait.

At one point in his response, Rumsfeld sounded almost dismissive. “As you know, you go to war with the Army you have,” he said.

Bottom line is the complaint by this ‘captain’ doesn’t fit the historic facts. His platoon was never going to be deployed to a lower conflict area in Afghanistan with the limited up-armor hummers while the Iraq war was just beginning – never. So we have two Obidiots now.

Update: Dr. Rusty Schackleford reminds our sleuth Sherlock Tapper that fact checking doesn’t mean going and having the same source repeat the same story – that is just an echo dude!

16 responses so far

16 Responses to “Obama’s Uparmored Humvee Myth, Tapper Excuse Doesn’t Fit Timeline”

  1. ABC “Fact Checks” by Quoting Same Unamed Source as Obama…

    Wow, ABC’s Jake Tapper “Fact Checks” Obama’s story about a “Captain” of a “Marine rifle platoon” who’s “platoon” was “split up” with many of them going to the bad war (Iraq) and the others going to the good war (Afghanistan)……

  2. Soothsayer says:

    While AJ tries vainly to derail the inarguable fact that

    Hundreds of U.S. Marines have been killed or injured by roadside bombs in Iraq because Marine Corps bureaucrats refused an urgent request in 2005 from battlefield commanders for blast-resistant vehicles, an internal military study concludes.

    . . .

    . . . John Sidney McCain III aka Crazy Old Cootâ„¢ gets caught lying:

    First, the Cootâ„¢ assures the public he had never even spoken with anybody from Paxson or Alcalde & Fay a regulatory matter . . .

    shortly after giving voice to the lie, Johnny gets something caught in the wringer when a 2002 deposition McCAin gave under oath included:

    “I was contacted by Mr. Paxson on this issue,” …

    “…where did you get information of that sort, Senator McCain?”
    McCain replied: “I was briefed by my staff.”

    “Do you know were they got the information?”

    “No,” McCain replied. “But I would add, I was contacted by Mr. Paxson on this issue.”

    “You were?”


    So – is he lying now or was he lying then??? Generally, McCain can be sadi to be lying if his lips are moving . . .

  3. Terrye says:


    What are you talking about? The Congress has been threatening to cut off funding for the military for years now. Who do you think the military is?What exactly do you think those funds are paying for?

    BTW, your post made no sense. Although calling a war hero and military man old coot does show your disregard for the military and the men who serve in it.

  4. Terrye says:

    BTW, McCain is no liar, it is unfair to call him that.

  5. So – is he lying now or was he lying then??? Generally, McCain can be sadi to be lying if his lips are moving . . .

    Left by Soothsayer on February 22nd, 2008


    The return of the Anti-American/Pro-Jihadi Leftist Nutbag Traitor!

    I’ve MISSED you Moonbat!

    I haven’t had anyone to embarrass, make fun of, put down, and generally show their exposed ass to the world!

    Welcome back Buffoon, this is going to be fun, AGAIN!

    Can “THECENTERISABUNGHOLE” be far behind???


  6. Terrye says:

    I must admit, I am having trouble following all this Paxon stuff, whatever is soothie talking about?

  7. conman says:

    Soothsayer’s point is that McCain’s response to this NY Times story is inconsistent with a sworn statement he gave in a 2002 deposition on this topic. Here is an excerpt from a Newsweek article that makes the point Soothsayer is trying to make:

    “On Wednesday night the Times published a story suggesting that McCain might have done legislative favors for the clients of the lobbyist, Vicki Iseman, who worked for the firm of Alcalde & Fay. One example it cited were two letters McCain wrote in late 1999 demanding that the Federal Communications Commission act on a long-stalled bid by one of Iseman’s clients, Florida-based Paxson Communications, to purchase a Pittsburgh television station.

    Just hours after the Times’s story was posted, the McCain campaign issued a point-by-point response that depicted the letters as routine correspondence handled by his staff–and insisted that McCain had never even spoken with anybody from Paxson or Alcalde & Fay about the matter. “No representative of Paxson or Alcalde & Fay personally asked Senator McCain to send a letter to the FCC,” the campaign said in a statement e-mailed to reporters.

    But that flat claim seems to be contradicted by an impeccable source: McCain himself. “I was contacted by Mr. Paxson on this issue,” McCain said in the Sept. 25, 2002, deposition obtained by NEWSWEEK. “He wanted their approval very bad for purposes of his business. I believe that Mr. Paxson had a legitimate complaint.”

    So, the point is that McCain is either lying now when he denied having been asked to send the FCC letter or he was lying in his 2002 deposition when he said the opposite.

    I’ll have to admit that I originally thought this story would go nowhere because the initial focus was on the infidelity/sex aspect. Who cares about that. But the aspect that relates to McCain’s ties to lobbiest, along with the Washington Post article about all the lobbiest in senior positions of his campaign and his problem with the FEC over the terms of his $5 million campaign, could create a real problem for someone who claims to be the champion of ethics.

  8. WWS says:

    Oh isn’t that cute, Soothsayer is supporting himself with his sockpuppet.

  9. Frogg says:

    AP Quotes Opinion as “Military Study” in Lack of MRAPs for Marine Corps


    It is a rare occurrence when a letter of this nature must be sent to the president of a news organization, but the gravity of this situation warrants nothing less…

    …A story on Friday Feb. 15, by AP journalist Richard Lardner, “Vehicle Delay Blamed for Marines’ Deaths,” micharacterized the nature of a paper written by a civilian employee of the Marine Corps regarding the procurement of Mine Resistant Ambush Protected (MRAP) vehicles. The fact is the paper contained the personal views and opinions of the employee…..

    A subsequent AP article, “Biden, Bond Seek Probe of Vehicle Delay,” was posted Feb. 19, and included the following statement: “The Associated Press first reported Friday that hundreds of U.S. Marines have been killed or injured by roadside bombs in Iraq because Marine Corps officials refused the request of the commanders.” This statement was presented as fact and not attributed to the author of the paper, as representing his personal views. It is an especially egregious statement without the proper attribution.


  10. Frogg says:

    Senator Warner to Obama: “Bring me your captain”

    Senator John Warner of Virginia, the ranking Republican and former chairman of the Armed Services Committee who has endorsed Senator John McCain, wrote to Mr. Obama on Friday seeking more details. Senator Warner wants to find out of the story is true -– and, if so, who might be responsible for any lapses. He said that he will also raise the issue with Army Secretary Peter Geren and Army Chief of Staff William Casey when they testify next week before his committee.

    “There are specific military regulations governing the use by U.S. forces of weapons other than of U.S. manufacture, and, likewise, regulations covering the deployment into combat zones of military units at manning levels below optimum level,” said Mr. Warner.
    To establish accountability within the military chain of command, Mr. Warner is asking Mr. Obama to provide more facts about the incident cited in the debate -– the dates, the unit involved and the name of the captain……


  11. Frogg says:

    McCain Disputed On 1999 Meeting


    McCain attorney Robert S. Bennett played down the contradiction between the campaign’s written answer and Paxson’s recollection.

    “We understood that he [McCain] did not speak directly with him [Paxson]. Now it appears he did speak to him. What is the difference?” Bennett said. “McCain has never denied that Paxson asked for assistance from his office. It doesn’t seem relevant whether the request got to him through Paxson or the staff. His letters to the FCC concerning the matter urged the commission to make up its mind. He did not ask the FCC to approve or deny the application. It’s not that big a deal.”

    McCain himself in a deposition in 2002 acknowledged talking to Paxson about the Pittsburgh sale. Asked what Paxson said in the conversation, McCain said that Paxson “had applied to purchase this station and that he wanted to purchase it. And that there had been a numerous year delay with the FCC reaching a decision. And he wanted their approval very bad for purposes of his business.”

    The deposition was taken in litigation over the McCain-Feingold campaign finance law filed by Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.). The contradiction in the deposition was first reported by Newsweek yesterday afternoon.

    “I said I would be glad to write a letter asking them to act,” McCain testified, recounting the conversation with Paxson. “But I cannot write a letter asking them to approve or deny, because then that would be an interference in their activities.”


  12. Terrye says:


    That is absurd. The point is whether or not McCain did anyone a favor, there is no indication that he did. Whether he sent someone a letter telling them to get off their asses and make a decsion is not the point.

    BTW, Captains Quarters has an interesting post up about Obama hanging out with former terrorists/cop killers. We can play this silly little game all day.

  13. Terrye says:

    And just think,whenever Democrats vote to delay troop funding, they are voting to delay equipment. That is the whole point. So what are they bitching about? When Obama states he will make a symbolic vote to cut off funding, he is voting to make a symbolic vote to cut off humvees, ammo, pay, etc.

  14. Frogg says:

    Now, another key figure comes out to dispute Paxson’s account of meeting McCain. The thing is…..all of these memories took place years after any meeting was to have taken place….maybe none of them remember it right. And, IT DOESN’T MATTER if they met face to face or not because McCain’s behavior was ethical. He didn’t do anything wrong. It’s what you call a clear and simple smear job.

    2 Key Figures Have Differing Recollection of 1999 Talks With McCain Over FCC Matter

    Saturday, February 23, 2008

    New reports are further muddying the picture of what exactly happened in 1999 surrounding John McCain’s request to speed up a Federal Communications Commission decision on a deal involving a Pittsburgh TV station, a matter that is central to new questions over McCain’s relationship with lobbyists and special interests.

    But a separate report, by The Associated Press, says that another Paxson Communications official disputes Bud Paxson’s account, and said he believes McCain’s account that the two never met in person.

  15. VinceP1974 says:

    ZZZZ Lord knows I’m not supporter of McCain.. but give me a break… this is some sort of scandal.. McCain might have tried to get the FCC to do something . SHOCK HORROR… Senators trying to get things accomplished with the beuraracy!