In the Plank post in which Private Scott Thomas Beauchamp reveals his identity, one commenter(Tgossard on 2007-07-26 12:34:16) has this to say:
I assert that there will be no apologies forthcoming from any of the outraged and offended individuals who have promised to apologize, regardless their conditions. Even if every incident, every pertinent fact, the entirety of evidence were to be validated - which of course is impossible in the case of an individual's eyewitness account; there will always be somebody who will dispute this or that alleged fact or because in their recollection it happened a different way, or, technically, happened in a alternate context composed of differing circumstances - there is always the possibility of a falsehood in investigations (even exhaustive ones) since moment(s) and sequence(s) in time, in their entirety are impossible to replicate and examine from a multiplicity of angles, etc.Fair enough.
At the end of the day, I'll say again, there will be no apology from any individual, since the objective is not to affirm nor deny, but to vindicate. And who, wanting vindication, will ever accept anything less[.]
I, Juliette A. Ochieng--retired veteran, milblogger, conservative Republican--apologize for speculating as to the existence of Private Beauchamp.
I do not apologize, however, for continuing to wonder whether the anecdotes which Private Beauchamp related in âShock Troopsâ are true.
I do not apologize for wondering whether a group of GIs, who live under the immediate danger of being injured or killed by an IED and who may have comrades-in-arms who were killed/injured by IEDs, could actually make fun of a woman in their midst who was permanently maimed by such a weapon.
I do not apologize for wondering how such a woman could go unnamed in such a small unit as FOB Falcon appears to be.
I do not apologize for being skeptical about how a Bradley Fighting Vehicle driver would be allowed to drive so recklessly in a land where vehicles are constantly blown up by IEDs buried in the road.
I do not apologize for scoffing at the notion that a soldier would be allowed by his superiors (or his peers) to desecrate a mass-grave.
I do not apologize for wondering why no NCO, commissioned officer or even a peer âregulatedâ the alleged perpetrators of these incidents.
And, if one did, I do not apologize for wondering why Private Beauchamp made no mention of that in his missive.
I do not apologize for wondering why Scott Thomas Beauchamp would rather passively allow such alleged violations of the UCMJ and would rather put these anecdotes out for public consumption under the cover of a âpseudonymâ as opposed to doing what every GIâpast and presentâknows to do: put a stop to these incidents personally or report them to oneâs immediate superior.
And, finally, I do not apologize to The New Republic nor to its editor, Frank Foer. TNR was all too willing to publish Beauchampâs story (stories) such as they areâsimply because Beauchampâs creative writing exercise fits a narrative which plays in the heads of all too many Leftists: that of the stupid-brutal US military man.
SSgt Juliette A. Ochieng, USAF, USAFR (ret.)
UPDATE: Well. According to Ace, Beauchamp's wife is TNR staffer Elspeth Reeve.
UPDATE: Correction: according to the source used by Ace, the two are merely engaged.
UPDATE: The thing that should have happened in the immediate wake of these alleged incidents is happening now. FOB Falcon's Public Affairs Officer, Major Kirk Ludeke, tells Michael Goldfarb that the appropriate authorities in his unit
are in the midst of a formal investigation into the allegations Pvt Beauchamp has made.Someone is making a formal reporting statement to his CO as we speak.