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Lindsey Graham’s “Served In Afghanistan” Remark Pilloried




|| By FITSNEWS ||  Of all people, U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham should know better than to exaggerate his military service.  After all, he’s been busted once before doing just that … 

But Graham – who kicked off his presidential campaign this week – couldn’t help himself.

In an email accompanying his formal presidential announcement in Central, S.C., Graham referred to having “served in Afghanistan.”

First of all – just so there’s absolutely no confusion as to what Graham said – here’s the context of the comment within his “I’m Running for President” email, sent to supporters this week:

I’ve visited and served in Afghanistan and the Middle East more than 20 times gaining first-hand knowledge about terror groups that threaten our way of life.

“Visited and served.”  Hmmm …

Here’s the thing about Graham’s remark.  Yes, in 2008 he was deployed to Kabul, Afghanistan – where he stayed for five days.  And in 2007 he did a pair of brief stints in Iraq.  In each case, Graham was in decidedly non-combat situations “under heavy protection,” according to our military services – guarded “better than (a) general.”

What was he doing?

In Afghanistan, he reportedly trained military judges and attorneys.  In Iraq, he is said to have worked on detainee and rule-of-law issues.

Of course in a 2007 interview with The Washington Post, Graham offered an interesting characterization of his environment.

“It’s a dangerous place,” Graham said. “I carried a 9mm like everyone else, and there were several times I was glad I had one.”

FITS spoke with several War on Terror veterans who took a dim view of Graham’s “soldiering.”

“It was a political stunt, nothing like my deployment,” said Jonathan Lubecky, a former Marine and retired U.S. Army sergeant who did a fourteen-month tour of duty in Iraq.

Several other War on Terror veterans we spoke with shared Lubecky’s sentiments – but declined to go on the record for fear of reprisal.  One did put the difference between Graham’s deployments and “real tours” pretty bluntly, though.

“There’s a difference between being a soldier and playing soldier,” one Afghan veteran told us. “I’m guessing he wouldn’t know the difference.”

Wow …

We’re not questioning Graham’s right to say he “served” in these conflicts.  He can say that without fear of contradiction.  We’re simply questioning whether it was advisable.

Stay tuned … we’ll have a follow-up report tomorrow on some curious legal questions posed by Graham’s deployments.