The whole story is just heartbreaking. RIP Pat. :(
Kevin Tillman speaks out against the war
The Arizona Republic
Oct. 20, 2006 06:35 PM
Kevin Tillman has finally spoken.
The former Army Ranger who served in Iraq and Afghanistan with his older brother Pat Tillman, wrote what can only be called a scathing indictment of the war, the Bush administration, and the American people's apathy.
"Somehow the more soldiers that die, the more legitimate the illegal invasion becomes," he writes in the essay. The former Arizona State University student joined the Army with his brother in response to the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.
The brothers served together as Rangers with the 2nd Battalion of the 75th Ranger Regiment.
After serving in Iraq, they were on a mission together in Afghanistan when Pat was killed by friendly-fire on April 22, 2004.
Since his discharge from the Army, Kevin Tillman has not spoken publicly about the war or his brother's death.
But in an essay purchased and published by Truthdig.com, Kevin wrote openly about the war and America's people response to it.
"Somehow the same incompetent, narcissistic, virtueless, vacuous, malicious criminals are still in charge of this country.
Somehow this is tolerated.
Somehow nobody is accountable for this."
(To read the entire letter, click here: [url="http://www.truthdig.com/report/item/200601019_after_pats_birthday/"]After Patís Birthday[/url])
After starring at ASU, Pat Tillman was drafted by the Arizona Cardinals in 1998. He played with the team for four years.
On Sept. 12, 2001, he gave an interview in which he talked about how "stupid" football seemed relative to world events.
"At times like this you stop and think about, not only how good we have it, but what kind of system we live under," Tillman said.
"My great-grandfather was at Pearl Harbor. And a lot of my family has gone and fought in wars. And I really haven't done a damn thing as far as laying myself on the line like that."
In the Spring of 2002 Pat Tillman was on the verge of signing another contract with the team when he decided to join the Army instead.
Kevin Tillman, who played minor-league baseball after playing at ASU, joined the Army with his brother.
The Tillmans were initially sent to Iraq as part of Operation Iraqi Freedom.
In 2003, the brothers returned to the U.S. for training to become Army Rangers.
Following that, they were sent to Afghanistan.
Pat Tillman was 27 when he died in a canyon in eastern Afghanistan near the Pakistani border in April of 2004.
Kevin Tillman stayed in the Army until his discharge last year.
It is not clear how he has spent his time since leaving the service. Calls to the Tillman family and the Pat Tillman Foundation made late Friday afternoon were not immediately returned.
In the aftermath of Pat Tillman's death, his family would come to vehemently criticism the Army's investigation of the events that lead to Pat's death, and the Army's actions after he was killed.
Is what he saying new? I don't think so. Think how Vietnam vets feel. Vietnam didn't commit any aggressioin to the US. It was a political war of entangling alliances (Thanks France) and we lost thousands of young men because of it. And when our vets came home, they were spit on and called baby killers!
At least Pat and Kevin were trying to find the mastermind of 9/11, a noble mission.