Lance Cpl. Jordan Haerter and Cpl. Jonathan Yale (Marine Corps)
Now is a good time to reconsider the case of Cpl. Jonathan Yale and Lance Cpl. Jordan Haerter.
Yale and Haerter died facing down the blast of a vehicle-borne improvised explosive device at the entry control point of Joint Security Station Nasser in Ramadi, April 22, 2008. An investigation by then-Lt. General John Kelly resulted in Navy Cross awards.
Given the nature of retired Cpl. William Kyle Carpenter’s recent Medal of Honor award, it’s not a far cry to argue Yale and Haerter deserve the same regard. Video of the incident in Ramadi, which has been circulated widely, leaves even smaller room for doubt.
Whether it is jumping on a grenade or standing in the path of a 2,000-pound bomb, the bravery and determination to protect others is worthy of the highest honor.
In the Ramadi video, an Iraqi guard is seen behind the gate, peering out at the truck. He immediately recognizes the threat and turns, fleeing deeper into the combat outpost.
Concurrently, from inside the duty hut located at the left side of the gate, Yale and Haerter are clearly seen opening fire at the driver’s side of the truck’s windshield.
Like the Iraqi, who survived, they could have fled. Instead, they stood their ground to save the lives of the Marines and Iraqis inside the post.
Just this year, Democratic Rep. Tim Bishop from New York introduced a bill that would authorize President Obama to review the actions of Haerter and Yale and determine whether their Navy Crosses should be elevated tothe nation’s highest honor.
Right now that bill languishes in the House Committee on Armed Services. Right now would be a perfect time to give that bill review.