View Full Version : Rumsfeld lauds Green Berets, 'Screaming Eagles' at Kentucky post

09-15-2004, 17:01


Rumsfeld lauds Green Berets, 'Screaming Eagles' at Kentucky post

By Kathleen T. Rhem
American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON (American Forces Press Service, Sept. 15, 2004) Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld thanked the Green Berets of the 5th Special Forces Group (Airborne) and the "Screaming Eagles" of the Army's storied 101st Airborne Division Sept. 14 during a visit to Fort Campbell, Ky.

The division had served a year in Iraq before returning to the Fort Campbell this spring, while the group has deployed numerous times to Afghanistan beginning in October 2001, and Iraq beginning in March 2003.

Rumsfeld compared these actions to those of service members of the World War II era. Despite hundreds of thousands of deaths and months of setbacks in battle, allied Soldiers defeated Germany, Japan and Italy, then spent years rebuilding those very nations and helping them form democratic societies, nations that soon became strong U.S. allies during the Cold War, Rumsfeld noted.

He said historians one day will look back and think just as highly of today's troops fighting the war on terror. "Those of you sitting out there who serve in the armed forces will be looked at with gratitude and appreciation of the American people," Rumsfeld said, "as you should be -- for your courage, for your professionalism, and for the fact that you have been steadfast in good times and in bad."

He said members of the 5th Special Forces Group "must be among the most overworked heroes in the Army." Rumsfeld said the group's motto, "To Liberate the Oppressed," is right on the mark for their recent service. "You have been central in helping to liberate some 50 million oppressed people in Afghanistan and Iraq," he said.

Rumsfeld lauded the troops for being volunteers and said they have the respect and admiration of the entire country. "Your efforts and the work of our coalition have helped to create two free nations, which now have governments that are fighting terrorists instead of harboring terrorists," he said.

He praised the division for its fight from the Kuwait border to the north of Baghdad during the opening stages of Operation Iraqi Freedom. In the middle of April 2003, the division took the area around Mosul.

"Last year, you helped bring down a regime of a brutal dictator and then put your compassion and your creativity to work in Mosul, training new Iraqi security forces, completing literally thousands of reconstruction projects of various types, and helping the Iraqis build a new democracy and a civil society," Rumsfeld told the crowd of cheering soldiers in green-camouflage uniforms.

The secretary got some chuckles from the crowd when he told them he's embarrassed to admit the last time he was at Fort Campbell was 1976. During that visit, he said, he met an Army colonel by the name of Colin Powell who was stationed there.

"Now, of course, he's the secretary of state," Rumsfeld said. "It's always nice to see a young fellow get ahead like that."

Then the secretary joked about himself being back in the same job another stint as secretary of defense. "I feel like a gerbil," he said. "I get up every morning, run like the dickens, and I stay right where I am."

03-30-2007, 16:18
Alot has changed since this post. Even Rumsfeld is no longer in the news. And a hundred other things not to mention. :munchin

03-30-2007, 18:15
Holy necro-post! For a second, I started to think Don was on a Post Sec Def tour to see the troops......

03-30-2007, 19:01
Holy necro-post! For a second, I started to think Don was on a Post Sec Def tour to see the troops......

Didn't mean to get ya stirred up ! Even Colin Powel was still Secretary of State then.

As for the article, it's spot on to the 5th SFG (A) efforts and success in OEF from the start in early October 2001.

ODA 555 "Triple Nickle" ;) and many others not mentioned.