Become a SOFREP Member

Subscribe now to get news and insider perspective from the former special operations and intelligence professionals that mainstream news media can’t access.

April 10, 2013

The Shifting Definition of Soldiers and Weapons of Mass Destruction

Today I have a guest post from the author of America, our Military, and the Roman Empire. Our guest author served as a US Marine in the Vietnam War, and later as a soldier in the Rhodesian Army during the Bush War, which makes him uniquely qualified to comment on the recent case of an American fighting in Syria being charged for the use of “WMD’s” while abroad.  Here, our guest author will go by his callsign from his days in Rhodesia, Yankee Papa. -Jack

There was a recent story about an American who is being prosecuted for “terrorism…”  The short version of this story is that he served in the U.S. Army in the U.S. for some years and was discharged for damage to his head requiring a metal plate.


or Log In


About the Author

is an eight year Army Special Operations veteran who served as a Sniper and Team Leader in 3rd Ranger Battalion and as a Senior Weapons Sergeant on a Military Free Fall team in 5th Special Forces Group. Having left the military in 2010, he graduated from Columbia with a BA in political science. Murphy is the author of Reflexive Fire, Target Deck, Direct Action, and numerous non-fiction articles about Weapons, Tactics, Special Operations, Terrorism, and Counter-Terrorism. He has appeared in documentaries, national television, and syndicated radio.

To comment on this article please join/login. Here's a sample of the comments on this post.

  • Maiingankwe

    I remember the media being in an uproar over the TSA and Joe Foss, one of our great American Heroes. How anyone could not know what the Medal of Honor is, and then to have a group not know is mind blowing. The ignorance due to our education is inexcusable. I hope every one of those TSA agents learned the history of this man. He exemplifies what hard work and dreams can accomplish. It was a sad day in October 2003 when he passed away. Thank you for the Wikipedia link. I didn't know he had his own outdoor shows, or that he was friends with John Wayne.

  • YankeePapa

    Maiingankwe , . ...My most unfavorite TSA story.  Medal of Honor recipient from WW2 and later state governor... Joe Foss... shortly before he died was invited to West Point to address the Corps of Cadets.  TSA gave him hell about him bringing the medal... (star has "pointy ends" don't you know...) . http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Joe_Foss . -YP-

  • YankeePapa

    Maiingankwe , . ...In Boise I have not had problems... but in some other airports...  I was returning from visiting the couple who are acting in "loco parentis" re my books. Late in life (she was 43) they had a son... (followed some years later by another)   . ...I had taken photos of my godson.  My camera had died so I purchased one of those cameras with film included... you turn in the whole thing when done.  Because the film speed was high (700)) there was the possibility of film being "fogged" by security equipment.  In line with TSA regulations I asked young TSA type to hand carry my camera around equipment.   . ...But this lad was ignorant... and refused.  Said that I had to "...take the film out of the camera..."  Well, you just don't do that with a pre-paid camera... TSA woman overheard our discussion and chased him off and carried my camera around and shots of my godson were intact.   . ...Last year a friend gave me a digital camera.  Film dying out... so too pre-paid cameras.  But if I had to do it again, I would have left pre-paid camera with couple and had them develop and send me prints and CD.   . ...I am afraid that I have been a tad slow in updating to latest in camera technology.  In Rhodesia I shot many of my color photos with a 110 Pocket Instamatic.  Before anybody makes fun of me... better the small camera that you can carry into the bush than the $ 25,000. Hasselblad that you left in barracks.   . ...Film came from Holland (like many countries they were into sanctions breaking), but shipments not regular and sometimes I had to borrow a friend's camera or go without.  All of my black and white photos taken with borrowed cameras.  Amazing that so many of my 110 photos turned out as good as they did.   . ...In my later years I was an Instructor of Cadets (not a drill instructor... those were different folks).  Group shots being taken and I handed a simple hand-wind 35mm film camera to a cadet and asked him to take some of the photos.   . ...Well, other instructors had cameras... but they were all digital.  Cadet was dumbfounded... As if I had turned up for drill with a 45.70 Trapdoor Springfield rifle and a buffalo robe... . -YP-

  • Maiingankwe

    Oh my, I didn't know that. All I hear on TV, the radio and in the papers is whether Obama Care is constitutional or not, and only the Supreme Court can decide. If they do not have jurisdiction to make that decision, then why have they been doing it for so long? There has got to be lawyers, judges and others who would say what you are. Wouldn't there? Have there been? I am by no means discounting you because I seriously do not know, and it will be just one more thing in my ever growing pile to learn. If you have any reading suggestions on this topic, please share with me. Ma'iingankwe

  • Maiingankwe

    OMG, that is so wrong on so many different levels. It is getting way out of control. I almost said... I cannot believe a TSA punk would go through the bullshit of calling you over to explain a book on "Anti"- terrorism. You are so smart in keeping quiet and professional to him, whereas I would want to spill a few choice words and of course later regret due to the power trip/ego he held. I mean come on, seriously, a f'n book? What's next the Bible? What the hell was he thinking? He saw the word terrorist and that's all he needed to know? Not pretty smart was he? And we have these idiots in these power positions, which they get off of. I swear a good number of them were picked on high school and its all about giving it back. I do have to say that I travel extensively, and the majority of the TSA agents are pretty nice. I have metal in my knee brace, which is required for me to walk, and most will ask if it hurts. I'm always thinking I wouldn't be bloody wearing it if it didn't. Anyways, at least they are nice enough to ask and are usually gentle. I never get snarky with them over it. I have also met some real assholes, generally the men on power trips. The last one deliberately held me and my daughter back knowing quite well we running late, and truly got off on it. Needless to say, I took his name, the time, the number of the screening area and wrote a nice letter of complaint. I received a somewhat bs, canned letter in return, but it felt so good to write it knowing he knew I was going to. My daughter's only transgression was having one of those scissors that have crinkly or curvy blades to cut paper in neat designs. He had to measure it to see if it was short enough for her to have in her backpack. What an ass. He still gets my panties in a twist every time I think about it, and then I think of letter I wrote,... and I feel all better. Aaaahh... My initial response was to the poor woman guilty of only being vindictive and getting the whole load dumped on her by the federal govt. it's as if the feds are testing the waters to see what they can get away with, and this woman being the pawn. At least that is my take on it.