For those that doubt the ability of our government to use propaganda, or out-right lies, to propagate an image, check out this Fox story on Pat Tillman...
So what's going on here? Why would the Pentagon and Army brass cover up Tillman's friendly fire death? [...]
It would have been tough for the military to concede its own ineptitude caused the death of the war on terror's poster soldier in any setting. But just days after Tillman's death, the Abu Ghraib scandal broke. The military was in desperate need of some good news. Recycling Tillman's selfless bravery put torture stories on the backburner for at least a news cycle or two.
What's tragic is that the military's duplicity in all of this has buried the better story - what a remarkable man Tillman was. Tillman, we've since learned from media interviews with friends, family, and fellow soldiers, was a thinker. He defied easy classification. He was a poet, kept a journal (which vanished after his death), and subscribed to the Economist. He admired Winston Churchill, but was also interested in anti-war academic Noam Chomsky. He read Emerson and Thoreau. He wasn't religious, but had read the Bible, the Koran, and the book of Mormon. He brought along a portable library of classic novels for his platoon pals to read.
Perhaps most interestingly, Tillman opposed the war in Iraq. He'd told platoon mates he thought the war was "illegal," and a distraction from the war on Al Qaeda, but fought in Iraq anyway, owing to a sense of duty.
We lost a complicated, interesting, fascinating guy 18 months ago, a guy who exhibited the kind of critical thinking that seems to be in short supply among the men who commanded him. They, and we, owe Tillman a lot. Truth and accountability would be a good start.