Christopher Kyle was born April 8, 1974 survived four tours to Iraq and was tragically murdered by a fellow serviceman on February 2, 2013. Recently a movie titled “American Sniper” has come out with the permission and assistance of his wife. This movie has gotten a lot of praise as well as a lot of criticism. Dubbed the “Devil of Ramadi” by Iraqi Insurgents, Chris Kyle’s legacy is being attacked by the people who he fought to protect.
So you’re wondering why Wonderland is doing a movie review. Well I’m not. I haven’t seen the movie yet. But I am getting tired of seeing people put down a man who put his life on the line for this country. Whether you agree with the war in Iraq or not, you need to remember that it is not a service member’s position to question their superior officer’s orders but to carry them out to the best of their ability. As a service member you have to put your beliefs aside for the betterment of the mission. If they tell you to sit on a mountain and shoot anyone who gets past a certain point, guess what you’re going to be doing? If you don’t then you will face a court martial.
So I have seen a lot of negative things that say Chris Kyle was not a hero. Reviews saying that this movie shouldn’t have been made. Mike Moore said snipers are nothing more than cowards. Mike Moore a man who is an obese societal reject really decided to say something negative about a man who went to Iraq on FOUR deployments? Chris Kyle was wounded twice while he was deployed. He was involved in SIX separate IED explosions. SIX OF THEM. Insurgents placed numerous bounties on his head almost reaching into the six figures. He was tasked with guarding the general infantry and Marines. He has 160 confirmed kills out of 255 probable. And yet Michael Moore calls the Taliban “brave” and Chris Kyle a coward. When has he picked up anything more than a donut or sandwich his whole life, and he is going to call a highly decorated veteran a coward?
Chris wrote in his autobiography that he enjoyed the kill. While he is no longer here for us to ask him if he really in fact enjoyed the kill itself or if it was the thrill of combat. Did he love the adrenaline that pumped thru his veins knowing that he was saving the lives of the infantry he was charged to protect? The first shot Chris made while in combat was when he shot a woman holding her child in one arm and a live grenade in another. She was walking towards the group of Marines he was ordered to protect. He notified his supervisors of the situation and they told him to take the shot. He did what he was ordered to do. He did not harm the child. Later he is quoted as saying “she was already dead, I was just making sure she didn’t take any Marines with her.”
His longest successful shot was 2,100 yards when he spotted an insurgent with a rocket launcher pointed at an Army convoy. This was in 2008 just a year before he left the Navy. When he left the Navy in 2009 with an Honorable discharge, he paired with a non profit organization and started Heroes Project, which provided home gym equipment, programs, and training for veterans who were in need, suffering from disabilities, or PTSD. Does this really sound like someone who loved to kill people or a real American hero?
One February Saturday while trying to help a fellow veteran who he was told was suffering from PTSD, Chris Kyle and his friend Chad Littlefield were gunned down in cold blood. The mother of Eddie Ray Routh reached out to Chris for help with her son who was a 25 year old Marine Corps veteran. She told Chris that her son had PTSD and so he reached out to the young veteran and tried to help him. They went out to a shooting range and shortly after their arrival, Routh used Kyle’s weapon to kill both Chris Kyle and Chad Littlefield. Routh then took Chris’ truck which was used to drive all three to the range, and led police on a chase before his capture that evening. He is set to stand trial for the double murders next month.
The lawyers for Eddie Routh are trying to say now that with the recent release of the movie it will be hard to find impartial jurors to sit in on the case. They have yet to determine a motive for the shootings. Some have said the sound of gunfire triggered something within Routh and the PTSD is what made him kill the men he was with, some say it was a robbery, some are reserving judgement for the trial. This is a trial I will be following closely.
Regardless of your political views, Chris Kyle is an American Hero. Even if you don’t believe in the war in Iraq and Afghanistan, Chris Kyle saved American lives doing what he was ordered to do. It is easy for those of us who have never been to a combat zone to say what he did was wrong. It is easy for those of us to say in the comfort of out cozy pajamas cuddled with our families that we are appalled by his actions. But the fact of the matter is he did something that many people would NEVER do. He put his life on the line to protect the lives of others. People like Michael Moore and Seth Rogan can criticize him all day but the fact remains neither of them had the courage to step into the field and do what Chris Kyle did. Neither of them were shot twice. Neither of them were in 6 IED explosions. Neither of them had an $80,000 bounty placed on their head by terrorists. Neither of them had to make split second life saving decisions. So here at BrewCityExpress, we thank Chris Kyle for his service. May he rest in peace. And we thank every single person who puts on that uniform everyday, past and present, because without you out there on the line we would not have the freedoms to do what we do here.