First, a definition of “gerrymandering”:
ger·ry·man·der tr.v. ger·ry·man·dered, ger·ry·man·der·ing, ger·ry·man·ders
To divide (a geographic area) into voting districts so as to give unfair advantage to one party in elections.
I’ll leave it up to the readers to define what "Kerrymandering" could possibly be.
The New Republic doesn’t support the troops; but they do support any John Kerryesque disgruntled grunt who will bolster their anti-war campaign of snatching defeat from the jaws of victory.
I think Dean Barnett is spot-on with his assessment:
the real story here isn’t “Thomas” or “Beauchamp” or even the accuracy of his “reporting”, but rather The New Republic’s crass effort to besmirch the war effort with the former “Thomas Diarists”. It’s interesting that Beauchamp writes, “My pieces were always intended to provide my discreet view of the war; they were never intended as a reflection of the entire U.S. Military.” While it’s hard to take this claim at face value, in TNR’s hands they served exactly that purpose.
TNR isn’t the New Yorker; it doesn’t publish articles solely for their artistic merit. Rather, as we learned yesterday, TNR under Franklin Foer’s command aims to “explicate ideas.” The idea in need of explication regarding the "Thomas Diarists" was just how sociopathic and depraved our military has become. TNR made no effort to put Beauchamp’s writings into context of the 160,000 men and women who, unlike Private Beauchamp, are serving honorably and nobly in Iraq. What’s more, Franklin Foer’s subsequent comments that Beauchamp’s tales represented “mild practical jokes” implied that the diaries were really just the tip of iceberg regarding American malfeasance in Iraq.
The simple fact is that up until now the American left has done everything possible to discredit the war effort in Iraq. Except for one thing – they’ve at least publicly professed to “support the troops.”
Once again, as I’ve said all along, you can’t “support the troops” while publishing agitprop that suggests the troops are a bunch of sociopaths. The Nation went after the troops a couple of weeks ago; the “Thomas Diarists” were The New Republic’s tepid entry into the field. As regards the accuracy of Beauchamp’s charges, I’m sure we’ll be hearing from his superiors before the sun sets in Iraq.
This may have already happened, as one Malkin reader writes in,
I’m active Army & an Iraq vet.
I just pulled up “Scott Thomas Beauchamp” on the secure “Army Knowledge Online” website. It lists his current rank as “PV2″. (That data is kept accurate via pay records on that website.)
In his Sep 06 blog post he listed his rank as “Private First Class”. That indicates that without a doubt he was busted at least one rank as part of Article 15 proceedings under the Uniform Code of Military Justice, and he likely has a strong ax to grind with his chain of command.
Michelle Malkin also points out the following lines of poetry written by Scott Thomas Beauchamp, which ends with a John Kerry moment of "look-to-the-future-political-self-interest" reason for military service:
I cant do it without getting through this army experience first, which will add a legitimacy to EVERYTHING i do afterwards, and totally bolster my opinions on defense, etc, and of course its making me a lot less lazy, just because im not use to being lazy any more, etc.
Malkin has much more.
UPDATE by Curt
I didn’t see Word’s post on Scott until I bumped mine so I will add my updates to his post and bump mine down:
As Word wrote, the lefty known as "Scott Thomas" has revealed himself. He is a private with Alpha Company, 1/18 Infantry, Second Brigade Combat Team, First Infantry Division. Check out his blog here and you will quickly come to the conclusion that, as Powerline noted, he is one "pretentious ass":
My Diarist, "Shock Troops," and the two other pieces I wrote for the New Republic have stirred more controversy than I could ever have anticipated. They were written under a pseudonym, because I wanted to write honestly about my experiences, without fear of reprisal. Unfortunately, my pseudonym has caused confusion. And there seems to be one major way in which I can clarify the debate over my pieces: I’m willing to stand by the entirety of my articles for the New Republic using my real name.
I am Private Scott Thomas Beauchamp, a member of Alpha Company, 1/18 Infantry, Second Brigade Combat Team, First Infantry Division.
My pieces were always intended to provide my discreet view of the war; they were never intended as a reflection of the entire U.S. Military. I wanted Americans to have one soldier’s view of events in Iraq.
It’s been maddening, to say the least, to see the plausibility of events that I witnessed questioned by people who have never served in Iraq. I was initially reluctant to take the time out of my already insane schedule fighting an actual war in order to play some role in an ideological battle that I never wanted to join. That being said, my character, my experiences, and those of my comrades in arms have been called into question, and I believe that it is important to stand by my writing under my real name.
Michelle found some of his poetry:
Every morning I get up and I’m a little more liberal than the day before
Every morning I get up and try to recite a fact from something I read last night.
Every morning I get up and wish I was as free as the people that I’m “fighting for”
Every morning I get up and think I’m a tool for global corporations
Every morning I get up and miss my mother
Every morning I get up and shave
Every morning I get up and realize how much I love my comrades
Every morning I get up and say I’m Scott Beauchamp, in the army, living in Germany, and this is my life, and I’m going to be treated like shit today and do landscaping and janitorial work and practice killing people and there could be no other way to appreciate what I had or what I’m going to have once I get out other than enduring this now when all I really want to do is teach history and lay around and read and hustle around and repair the world (tikkun olam) and sift through knowledge and improve culture and learn how to sail and work in soup kitchens and start a family and really, I mean REALLY study the best the western civilization has to offer and facilitiate the mystery and power through everything I do, but I cant do it without getting through this army experience first, which will add a legitimacy to EVERYTHING i do afterwards, and totally bolster my opinions on defense, etc, and of course its making me a lot less lazy, just because im not use to being lazy any more, etc.
Every morning I get up…
All making sense now?
Even more on his motivations:
“My goal is to become an incompetent leader that gets fragged by 30 something NCO’s at a forward operating base in Sadr City. Heres to the memories and stardust kid. love, Scott.”
“He’s not in Iraq at this point, I don’t think: his sidebar bio says he’s training in Germany and he cops to being in Amsterdam three weeks later, but I guess it’s possible (is it?) that he was in Iraq and then went to Europe in the intervening time. Either way, the May 8 item can only be one of two things: an exercise in creative fiction that looks exactly like the sorts of things he wrote for TNR or a bit of reportage of an actual incident — in which a U.S. commander ordered the murder of children. Which is it?”
Ta da! I’m guessing this guy will get a BCD based on the lies he has given and then become the hero he has always wanted to be to the anti-war left. This is another Kerry, another boy who went into the military for one goal…to provide legitimacy to his hoped for liberal career.
UPDATE II by Curt
Ace has news that Scott may have been chosen as a writer because he is married to someone at The New Republic…sounds quite Plameish:
Source: TNR Is A Lot More Worried Than They’re Letting On; Scott Thomas Got His Job For Plame-ish Reasons: "Frankln Foer Doesn’t Want To Tell TNR Staffer Elspeth Reeve Her Husband Is A Liar"
The actual quote was "Frank doesn’t want to tell ___ her husband is a liar," offered up not by my source but by someone else. The blank has now been confirmed as TNR staffer Elspeth Reeve, and even though the quote was "husband," there’s some question about that: Via the weddingchannel.coml says their wedding is coming in October. Though perhaps they had a quickie civil ceremony before his last deployment or something, with the ceremony to occur later.
Look, husband/fiancee, not sure it matters. It certainly seems that everyone in the TNR offices were under the impression they’d already been married.
I was going to let this slide and not report it but then TNR played the hard guys and fired the guy actually sharing information about this with people. Meanwhile Foer and Beuchamp are still drawing paychecks.
Needless to say, Elspeth Reeve has nothing in particular to do with this, other than, I guess, some guy who walked by in the hallway suggesting her husband for the
NigerIraq mission. Gracie’s pretty firm on her innocence, and, even if he weren’t, this was Foer’s call, not hers.
Scott Thomas Beauchamp was not chosen for this job because he had some terrific amount of experience or credentials or integrity. He was picked for Plame-type reasons: He’s married or engaged to someone at TNR.
Funny funny stuff.
Plus, Ace’s source inside TNR whom he calls Gracie has been fired this morning:
TNR fired Gracie at 7:25 this morning with the non-explanation, "Your services are no longer required." This information is offered up by one of Gracie’s psuedonyms ("near certainty" on that) at discarded lies.
I was holding that back because, other than Gracie sending me an email early AM telling me of this nasty wake-up call, I haven’t been able to make contact and determine if I could run this information, or if a protest was planned, etc. In other words, my stating "my source was fired" sort of tells them they were right, eh? But it’s been announced on the site they’re busily checking (when they should be checking stuff in Iraq, no?).
That’s why I had "near certainty" the person searching for Gracie’s posts was from TNR, btw.
I guess I’m not letting anything out when I say the other blogger who vouched for Gracie was Sean Gleeson, over there at discarded lies. He’s the one who told me about TNR searching discarded lies for hints about Gracie’s identity — which they seem to have found.
And that’s sort of why I decided to reveal the marriage angle– which I was going to hold back, but they pissed me off with this.
We should start some kind of drive to help Gracie out, he/she did us a huge favor by outing this scumbag Scott Thomas. Work well done and it should be rewarded.
UPDATE III by Curt
Although the article was rigorously edited and fact-checked before it was published, we have decided to go back and, to the extent possible, re-report every detail. This process takes considerable time, as the primary subjects are on another continent, with intermittent access to phones and email. Thus far we’ve found nothing to disprove the facts in the article; we will release the full results of our search when it is completed.
And Bob Owens, doing what he does best, proves that this DOES NOT take considerable time:
How easy would it have been for Franklin Foer to do a cursory fact-check to even see if a contractor matching that description has been on base in recent memory?
About this hard:
Dear Major Luedeke,
My name is Franklin Foer, editor of The New Republic.
I’ve recently been submitted a story that mentions the existence of a female contractor that is said to have significant facial burns and scarring as the apparent result of an IED attack in the past. She was not recently injured, and is apparently healthy, other than the scarring. I would like to simply check to see if someone matching that description is presently at FOB Falcon, to make sure that this description is correct.
The New Republic
I didn’t have Major Luedke’s email address when I started composing this email containing just one of the questions Franklin Foer should have asked before going to press with Beauchamp’s now heavily disputed accounts.
It took my a grand total of 29 minutes to get Major Luedeke’s email address, within which time I was able to compose this fictitious email of Foer’s, and a very real email that I did send with far more probing questions that I’d hoped to have answered.
Unfortunately, Major Luedke responded just 38 minutes later to let me know he could not respond to my questions, citing the "active, formal investigation on the allegations Pvt. Scott Beauchamp has made in the New Republic."
57 minutes… apparently that was too much time for TNR to invest in fact-checking Beauchamp’s claim.
A grand total of 57 minutes to get some kind of response. When I was reporting on my Jamil story I would never have to wait longer then 6-8 hours for a response from the military in Iraq. They understand just how important the media portion of this war is and have a great crew of people at CentCom to sort through the truths, the half-truths and the full on lies which this Scott Thomas story is quickly becoming.
Ace is thinking this story is being a little over-played by the Conservatives but I disagree. This is the kind of thing I, along with all of the writers at MythBusters have been railing against for years. The blatant bias displayed by media outlets damages the morale of our troops and the morale of those stateside. Damages it unnecessarily seeing how their bias leads them to print stories that are untrue.
This is an important story which allows people to see how out of control our media is.
This Scott Thomas Beauchamp is using the tactics refined by Kerry years ago but the difference is that bloggers were able to sift through his lies within a day or two and out him for what he is, a liar with nefarious intentions.
Also, Blackfive is heading up an effort to get messages of support to this losers fellow comrades in his Battalion. Please head over there and show some support to ensure there is no flagging morale going on after this guy is sent to the brig.
UPDATE IV by Curt
ChrisG in the comments section to this post states that he also can confirm this guys was most likely busted down to Private:
I will back up the email cited above. PV2 Beauchamp IS on AKO and in 1/18th IN. This would indicate he was demoted by UCMJ (either FG or CG Article 15)
Anyone taking bets what his charge was?
UPDATE V by Curt
Scott Beauchamp awoke one morning to find himself transformed into …
21 Feb 2006 by Scott Thomas
I joined the army because I’m too fucking lazy to make any decisions about my life. I’ma debter. I’ve lied and decieved people I love. I’m unappreciative. I’m spoiled. Overweight? Yeah. Guess what else I am: the best fucking emerging …
And he’s still doing it.
A former fetus, the “wordsmith from nantucket” was born in Phoenix, Arizona in 1968. Adopted at birth, wordsmith grew up a military brat. He achieved his B.A. in English from the University of California, Los Angeles (graduating in the top 97% of his class), where he also competed rings for the UCLA mens gymnastics team. The events of 9/11 woke him from his political slumber and malaise. Currently a personal trainer and gymnastics coach.
The wordsmith has never been to Nantucket.