Another IVAW Fabulist

Thus Spake Ortner at the Sniper dissects a recent piece of pulp fiction published on the Socialist Worker homepage involving an interview (Link:  with one Chanan Suarez Diaz, who claims to have been a Navy corpman in Iraq. Diaz is a member of the IVAW (Iraq Veterans Against the War), a conglomeration of dredges and peurile misfits, which I’ve previously blogged about here:

Thus Spake Ortner does an outstanding job of tearing this candy-ass a new one.
Some excerpts: (TOS analysis in bold)

CHANAN SUAREZ DÍAZ was a Navy corpsman who was deployed to Iraq in September 2005. He returned to the U.S. after being wounded in February 2006, and was sent to Southeast Asia. Upon coming back to the U.S., he became active in the antiwar movement, joining Iraq Veterans Against the War in Seattle. He was honored with a Purple Heart and Navy Commendation Medal with Valor.

Southeast Asia? What the hell was he doing there? Aiding Rambo? Freeing POWs Chuck Norris style? I’m going to assume the astute minds at Socialist Worker meant Southwest Asia, but let’s not quibble and argue about being on the wrong side of a continent. Lord knows many a LT has been further off in land nav.

……Late one night, I was sitting in one of the homes we were sweeping, and I started talking to an Iraqi medical student who lived there. I asked him what he thought of the war, and he said that the U.S. is here for the oil.

That was the first time I ever made the oil connection–he explained how the U.S. wanted to control the oil, make money and control Iraq. That completely blew my mind at the time. We lost 10 guys in my company, and seeing all of that and a lot of innocent people dead, it just clicked.

Dude. The epiphany that Iraq had oil occurred to you when a med student told you in 2005? A little late to the party aren’t you? I mean really, your friends were running through the streets with “No Blood For Oil” for several years by then. How’s that whole making money, and cheaper oil thing working out? No doubt this is where he inserts the BFEE (Bush Family Evil Empire) and/or mentions oil company profits. Not getting into the conspiracy nonsense.

……Now, looking back and understanding how the U.S. pits different groups against each other, I remember how we worked with Kurdish commandos, who hated the Sunnis.

I remember doing ops at night, and the commandos would come with us. They were the only ones allowed to go into mosques. For U.S. soldiers, mosques were a no-go zone. You didn’t shoot at a mosque unless you got a contact from a mosque. But the Kurdish forces were allowed to go in, and they didn’t have any mercy. They were ruthless. This fit the whole U.S. divide-and-conquer strategy.

Kurdish Commandoes huh? I think what you are referring to is the 36th Commando Battalion which is not Kurdish, it’s a mixed unit. How do I know it was that unit? Because there is an entire Time Magazine article about the battle. But hey, let’s not let facts get in the way of a good narrative.

……OUR COMPANY had already taken a bunch of casualties. We had already lost about eight people. And November was the worst month. We lost an average of a Marine a week. Then four snipers got killed on the same night.

He jumps in and out of times here, so I am going to start with the overall picture. During Deployment, Whiskey Company 2-5 lost 11 men. That is a really high casualty rate. Possibly one of the worst by unit of any I have researched. Had he just stuck with the facts, and given his Navy Commendation with “V” device, I would have ignored it, but this is where he starts to really leave the reservation.

The four snipers killed in one night did not occur in the November time frame. It also didn’t happen in his unit. The Snipers were killed on June 21, 2004 and they were in 2-4, not 2-5. (RIP: Lance Cpl. Deshon Otey, Lance Cpl. Juan Lopez, Lance Cpl. Pedro Contreras, Cpl. Tommy Parker Jr.)

If there were 4 Snipers killed on the same night at another time, it is news to me, because I went through the list of all 2-5 Marines killed, and they only had one day with more than 2 casualities (more on that later.)

I was a part of the Second Battalion, Fifth Marines, which is the most decorated battalion in the Marine Corps, and it’s an infantry battalion. We relieved the Second Battalion, Fourth Marines, and they wanted us to do the same death mission that one of its squads–which is eight Marines, plus a Navy corpsman, for a total of nine–did.

The squad was completely wiped out. They got ambushed in a bad part of Ramadi, and all of them were killed–their bodies were stripped and left on the street. They wanted us to do the same thing–to go on the same route, but have backup at some distance. They wanted us to draw the fire, call in the backup and then wipe them out.

……There are several things to this story that are interesting/inaccurate. First off, the so-called “Death Mission” happened on April 6, 2004, over 5 months before Diaz’s unit even arrived in country. So it wasn’t like they were sending him the next day. When a unit is said to “Land on Omaha Beach”, it would make a big difference if they did so on June 6, or November 6. April 6, 2004 in Ramadi was the first day of the battle for Ramadi.

……Also, they weren’t “ambushed” in the sense that they weren’t expecting combat, it was a movement to contact, and they got hit. They got hit hard, and on that day alone, 12 Marines lost their lives. But, the squad in question was not “wiped out” technically, since (at least) one man from the squad lived. Unfortunately, he only lived for another 2 months, because the survivor of that battle was Lance Cpl. Deshon Otey, the soldier who would later lose his life with the Sniper team.

……What I didn’t find is MORE instructive. Nothing on being left dead and naked. I would think it would have been mentioned in the news somewhere. And since Otey got away, how do you reconcile that with everyone left naked etc?

Link to Sniper’s page and rest of blog:

Sniper also covers another clusterfuck of IVAW misfits lying giving ‘testimony’ before Congress:

The IVAW storyteller described and quoted in Thus Spake Ortner’s post, is just like the rest of the gang of idiots in that organization. He not only makes shit up, but he uses personnel and actions from OTHER units to fill the void in his wild imagination.

The IVAW is a sewer full of disgruntled fuck-ups and problem children. There’s a reason why these types of individuals are drawn to it. It’s tailor-made.

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