alex asunder

Navy SEAL Michael A. Monsoor posthumously awarded Medal of Honor today
April 8, 2008, 1:33 pm
Filed under: freedom | Tags: , ,
USN/USMC Medal of Honor

The President of the United States, in the name of the Congress, takes pride in presenting the Medal of Honor, posthumously, to Master At Arms Second Class, Sea, Air and Land, Michael A. Monsoor, United States Navy. For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty while serving as Automatic Weapons Gunner for Naval Special Warfare USN Seal Michael A. MonsoorTask Group Arabian Peninsula, in support of Operation IRAQI FREEDOM on 29 September 2006.

As a member of a combined SEAL and Iraqi Army sniper overwatch element, tasked with providing early warning and stand-off protection from a rooftop in an insurgent-held sector of Ar Ramadi, Iraq, Petty Officer Monsoor distinguished himself by his exceptional bravery in the face of grave danger. In the early morning, insurgents prepared to execute a coordinated attack by reconnoitering the area around the element’s position. Element snipers thwarted the enemy’s initial attempt by eliminating two insurgents. The enemy continued to assault the element, engaging them with a rocket-propelled grenade and small arms fire. As enemy activity increased, Petty Officer Monsoor took position with his machine gun between two teammates on an outcropping of the roof. While the SEALs vigilantly watched for enemy activity, an insurgent threw a hand grenade from an unseen location, which bounced off Petty Officer Monsoor’s chest and landed in front of him. Although only he could have escaped the blast, Petty Officer Monsoor chose instead to protect his teammates. Instantly and without regard for his own safety, he threw himself onto the grenade to absorb the force of the explosion with his body, saving the lives of his two teammates. By his undaunted courage, fighting spirit, and unwavering devotion to duty in the face of certain death, Petty Officer Monsoor gallantly gave his life for his country, thereby reflecting great credit upon himself and upholding the highest traditions of the United States Naval Service.

Official White House press release.

President Bush said,

“The Medal of Honor is awarded for an act of such courage that no one could rightly be expected to undertake it … Yet those who knew Michael Monsoor were not surprised when he did.”

Interestingly, President Bush noted the day Monsoor left us was also St. Michael’s Day: “the Christian feast honors an angel who, according to the book of Daniel, helps Israel in a time of trouble and against the prince of Persia.” (New York Sun: St. Michael’s Day)

One of Monsoor’s teammates: “Mikey looked death in the face that day and said, You cannot take my brothers. I will go in there instead.

Other Medal of Honor recipients in the Global War on Terror include:
Sergeant First Class Paul R. Smith, US Army
Lt. Michael P. Murphy, USN
Corporal Jason L. Dunham, USMC
(Also see the Navy Destroyer, the USS Jason Dunham DDG-109, that will be commissioned in his honor.)

Update: Blackfive notes:

The New York Times printed 78 words about the pending MOH for Mike Monsoor and had to correct the story. Three sentences for a man like Mike…


He’s got a TON of great information re: Monsoor, including mission stories, pix, and videos. Check ’em out here.