…is this man still on the payroll?
Robert McDonald, the Secretary of Veterans Affairs, wrongly claimed in a videotaped comment earlier this year that he served in the Army’s elite special forces, when his military service of five years was in fact spent almost entirely with the 82nd Airborne Division during the late 1970s.
Haven’t had done, yet, with these problems of stolen valor, now that it’s reaching into the upper echelons of our Federal government?
US special operations forces (SOF) are composed of exhaustively trained and highly capable troops from each military service, including the Army Rangers, Delta Force, Navy SEALs, and Army Special Forces (also known as the Green Berets)—but not the 82nd Airborne. They [SOF] are certified to undertake the most dangerous and delicate missions….
To be sure, after having been found out, McDonald has issued an apology for his lie:
While I was in Los Angeles, engaging a homeless individual to determine his Veteran status, I asked the man where he had served in the military. He responded that he had served in special forces. I incorrectly stated that I had been in special forces. That was inaccurate and I apologize to anyone that was offended by my misstatement.
This was no little white lie, though, nor a politician’s…exaggeration for effect. On something of this magnitude, I get a little stiff-necked, and I ask: if McDonald had any integrity, he never would have made the claim in the first place; how, then, can we take his apology at face value? How, too, can we trust his apology when it didn’t come spontaneously, but only after he’d been caught out in his lie?