Major General Harold Green, RIP
American two-star general, 55, shot dead by 'insider' at Afghan military training facility in attack that left 15 troops wounded
Harold J. Greene, the two-star Army general who on Tuesday became the highest-ranking U.S. military officer to be killed in either of America's post-9/11 wars, was an engineer who rose through the ranks as an expert in developing and fielding the Army's war materiel. He was on his first deployment to a war zone.
Greene was killed when a gunman believed to be an Afghan soldier opened fire at a military academy near Kabul. More than a dozen other coalition soldiers were wounded, including about eight Americans, according to early accounts of the attack. It was among the bloodiest insider attacks of the war in Afghanistan….He was on a routine visit to the British operated training facility just outside the capital Kabul when a man dressed in the uniform of the Afghan military opened fire.
Maj. General Greene who is survived by his wife and two children, is the highest ranking member of the military to die in a war zone since Vietnam. In a 34-year career that began at Fort Polk, Louisiana, Greene, a native of upstate New York, earned a reputation as an inspiring leader with a sense of humility. He had been in Afghanistan since January, serving as deputy commander of a support command called the Combined Security Transition Command, in Kabul.
Greene flourished in the less glamorous side of the Army that develops, tests, builds and supplies soldiers with equipment and technology. That is a particularly difficult job during wartime, since unconventional or unanticipated battlefield challenges like roadside bombs in Iraq and Afghanistan, call for urgent improvements in equipment.
In 2009-2011, for example, he served as deputy commanding general of the Army's Research, Development and Engineering Command and senior commander of the Natick Soldier System Center at Aberdeen Proving Ground in Aberdeen, Maryland. During that tour of duty he gained the rank of brigadier general, and at his promotion ceremony in December 2009 he was lauded for his leadership skills and ability to inspire those around him.
His awards include the Legion of Merit, the Distinguished Service Medal, a Meritorious Service Award and an Army Commendation Medal.
Obama on first combat death of an American general in decades: (Silence)
But Obama had nothing to say, issued no White House statement. Wednesday during several public events, including a 40-minute pre-vacation news conference, the commander-in-chief uttered not a single word about the violent death of one of only about 200 Army generals. Strange behavior from someone who so often pays lip service to the devotion and sacrifice of U.S. military volunteers and behavior likely to confirm widespread skepticism of the Democrat's sincerity.
Posted by Jill Fallon at August 10, 2014 8:22 AM
Aides hinted to White House reporters that Obama did not want to elevate one soldier's death over any other. Well, in his 34-year military career the two-star general was elevated regularly above his peers, as was his wife Sue, a retired Army colonel. In 13 years, 2,322 Americans have died in Afghanistan, 74% of them during Obama's five-year presidency.
Here's the real reason for no White House comment: Afghan soldiers turning on Americans undermine Obama's entire hasty withdrawal narrative, that our job is done and Afghans are ready to take on their own security by year's end.
Gen. Greene was to begin a two-week home leave tomorrow. He planned to take his wife, their grown children and his 85-year-old father to a pair of Sox games at Fenway Park. Instead, the family will assemble at Arlington National Cemetery for the funeral of the man whose service and sacrifice the Obama White House refused to acknowledge.