27 January 2012

The MEDEVAC issue continues to grow.  There have been many articles and it's becoming difficult to keep up.  The Joint Chiefs of Staff is preparing something for Congress.  My guess based on conversations is that JCS will try deflection and will not solve the issue.  SecDef has done nothing, to my knowledge.  And so this is set to become an election issue.

This list below is not comprehensive but can be a helpful resource.

Please listen to my interview with Dennis Miller.

Op-eds by James Simpson

American Thinker

Breitbart Big Peace—D.C. Examiner

Washington Times


Army Times
Article in the Army Times about Congressman Todd Akin's (R-MO) letter to Sec Def Panetta:

Navy Times
Article in the Navy Times about Congressman Todd Akin's (R-MO) letter to Sec Def Panetta

Dispatches by Michael Yon

05 November 2012
Revered Pilot Comments on Dust Off Failures

24 October 2012
MEDEVAC at FOB Pasab, Afghanistan

15 October 2012
DUSTOFF Medevac: General -- Medal of Honor recipient -- Slams Army

24 September 2012
Stuck in the Mud

19 September 2012
Red Air: One Year Later

19 July 2012
Deadly Delays

18 July 2012
Military Professionals Discussing the MEDEVAC Dilemma: Armed or Escorted?

17 June 2012
Angels Over Afghanistan

12 June 2012
Another Smoking Gun: The Pentagon Caught Again on MEDEVAC

04 June 2012
More Army Red Cross Lies Exposed

31 May 2012
Proof That Military Puts Media Message before Troops' Lives

17 May 2012
US Congress and MEDEVAC

09 May 2012

23 April 2012
Dark Night

22 April 2012
Did Green Berets and MEDEVAC Violate Geneva Conventions in Afghanistan?

13 April 2012
America’s Angry Troops

07 Mar 2012
Senator Levin on MEDEVAC

01 Mar 2012
MEDEVAC Momentum: Senate Armed Services Committee to Raise the Issue

25 Feb 2012
White Birds in a Red War

23 Feb 2012
Army Dustoff Medics Unprepared

18 Feb 2012
A Hypothetical Interview General Martin Dempsey: (Fiction)

15 Feb 2012
Department of Army Monitoring MEDEVAC Articles

14 Feb 2012
Tippity Top General Lies to Congressman (in writing)

11 Feb 2012
A Matter of Trust

05 Feb 2012
Contempt of and for Congress?

03 Feb 2012
17 Members of Congress Want Answers on MEDEVAC

03 Feb 2012
Crucifixion of Common Sense

02 Feb 2012
The Army MEDEVAC Scandal: Report of Conspiracy

31 Jan 2012
Important Letter from Gold Star Mother

30 Jan 2012
13 Military Pilots Rebuke the Joint Chiefs of Staff

28 Jan 2012
British Army Officer on US Army Medevac

27 Jan 2012
Another Dustoff Pilot says Delays Costing Lives

26 Jan 2012  
Comments by Dustoff pilots

23 Jan 2012
E-mail exchange with JCS concerning document from Joint Chiefs of Staff

20 Jan 2012
CBS interview with LTG John F. Campbell

19 Jan 2012
Contact with staffer at Congressman Todd Akin’s office

19 Jan 2012
JCS letter to the House Armed Services Committee (HASC)

17 Jan 2012
Congressman Todd Akin’s (R-MI) letter to SEC DEF Leon Panetta about the JCS document and RED AIR

17 Jan 2012
Danger For Senators and Representatives Army Deceptions May Cause Embarrassment
Letter to Senator Jon Kyle (R-AZ) regarding RED AIR dispatch of 12 Oct 2011

16 Jan 2012
Progress on Removing Dustoff Red Crosses
Posting of an Alaska Op-ed on RED AIR

10 Jan 2011 (sic)

9 Jan 2012
Take me to your Leader (if you have one); CENTCOM passes buck back to Army

9 Jan 2012
Link to Breitbart Big Peace Blog, piece by Bill Tuttle:  A Pilot’s Perspective on Michael Yon’s Medevac Debate

3 Jan 2012
Passing the MEDEVAC Buck to CENTCOM, response by SEC of the Army John McHugh to Senator Charles Grassley (R-IA)

30 Dec 2011
DELTA Force Commander (Former) on DUSTOFF MEDEVAC

09 Dec 2011
Embarrassed Army

23 Nov 2011
Crusader Copters

22 Nov 2011
Mark of the Beast: Evil Symbols in Afghanistan

14 Nov 2011
Marked for Destruction

10 Nov 2011
Leadership: More than a Word

8 Nov 2011
Question for Congressman Pompeo: What is your Position?

7 nov 2011
Report to Congress: Army called to Report on MEDEVAC Failure in Afghanistan

6 Nov 2011
Fool’s Gold & Troop’s Blood

27 Oct 2011
Dustoff Traction

26 Oct 2011
Machine Guns on Dustoffs

24 Oct 2011
Golden Seconds: Open Letter to Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta and President Barack Obama

12 Oct 2011  
RED AIR—America’s medevac Failure

14 Sept 2009
Pedros, USAF SAR in Afghanistan



17 May 2012
Revamped Flight Medic Training

12 May 2012
Word Games

15 April 2012
Is the Red Cross a Neutral Symbol to Afghans?

13 April 2012
Senator Harkin’s Disinformation Letter

5 April 2012
Aerial Camouflage – Why It’s Not Easy Being Green…with White Patches and Red Crosses

1 April 2012
How the Army is slow to meet MEDEVAC Challenges in the 21st Century

29 Febuary 2012
The real reason why Army MEDEVAC helicopters fly unarmed

23 Febuary 2012
Army Medical Department (AMEDD) MEDEVAC Innovations 1991-2011

23 Febuary 2012
Army Medical Department (AMEDD) Innovations 1991-2011

22 Febuary 2012
NATO Newsletter: NATO Medical Lessons Learned Newsletter, March 2011

22 Febuary 2012
NATO Training: PECC Training Course

22 Febuary 2012

22 Febuary 2012
NATO report: NATO – Medical Evacuation in Afghanistan MP-HFM-157-05

21 Febuary 2012
US Army Report: 2011 After action report blasts MEDEVAC shortcomings

20 Febuary 2012
Point-Counterpoint: 92% Casualty Survival Rate in Afghanistan

20 Febuary 2012
Point-Counterpoint: Geneva Convention Applicability to the U.S. in Afghanistan

17 Febuary 2012
Daily Mail Online (UK): ‘He’d still be here’: Mother’s agony

17 Febuary 2012
Yon: 66 minutes is not 59 minutes

17 Febuary 2012
Kevin Lehmann: Incomprehensibly Stupid Army Regulation Killing Americans in Afghanistan

16 Febuary 2012
Medical Treatment Facilities (MTF)

16 Febuary 2012

16 Febuary 2012
AP: Should U.S. Arm Medevacs in Afghanistan?

15 Febuary 2012
Yon: Department of Army Monitoring MEDEVAC Articles

14 Febuary 2012
Yon: Tippity Top General attempts to Deceive Congressman (in writing)

8 Febuary 2012
Fox News: Debate over arming Army medevacs. Does current policy cause delays?

7 Febuary 2012
American Thinker: No Sex, Many Lies, One Videotape, and a Soldier’s Unnecessary Death

7 Febuary 2012
New Letter from Joint Chiefs of Staff to Congress

7 Febuary 2012
Fox News: Congressman Akin Discusses Medevac Issues in Afghanistan

6 Febuary 2012
Letter from Chazray Clark’s Mother

3 Febuary 2012
Yon: 17 Members of Congress Want Answers on MEDEVAC

1 Febuary 2012
NY Post: Hurry, wait … and die. Army rules stalling Medevacs

29 January 2012

27 January 2012
Army Times: Rep. Todd Akin Tells DoD Savings Lives more important than Geneva Convention

26 January 2012 Controversial debate brewing: Should Army medevacs be armed?

25 January 2012 Should Army medevacs be armed?

24 January 2012 Is Army medevac policy killing our wounded troops?

21 January 2012
Gen. Dempsey talks about trust

20 January 2012
U.S. Army Chief PAO: Army statement on MEDEVAC issue

19 January 2012
CBS Evening News: Did a military rule cost a soldier’s life?

18 January 2012 Amid Criticism, Army Defends Medevac Mission

18 January 2012
Dennis Miller interview of Michael Yon 2012-01-18

16 January 2012
Washington Times: Bureaucracy killing U.S. troops in Afghanistan – Political correctness keeps Army medevac helicopters grounded

16 January 2012
“So That Others May Live”

14 January 2012
Mat-Su Valley Frontiersmen: Medevac policy is costing lives

9 January 2012
Big Peace: A Pilot’s Perspective on Michael Yon’s Medevac Debate

20 December 2011
U.S. Army Chief of Staff letter to Senator Jon Kyl

17 December 2011
American Thinker: Army MEDEVAC Choppers Travesty

6 November 2011
Yon: Fool’s Gold – Video from SPC Chazray Clark’s MEDEVAC Wait

24 October 2011
YON: Golden Seconds

12 October 2011
YON: Red Air – America’s Medevac Failure [the article that started it all]

6 September 2011
USA Today: Army to boost flight medics

25 August 2011 Calm in the midst of chaos is lifesaving protocol for medevac crew in southern Afghanistan

22 June 2011 Excellent Report of How a MEDEVAC Mission Can Run

24 May 2012
2011-05-24 Secretary Gates Blasts Pentagon’s Resistance to Change



Health care in danger: making the case

CBS News interview with LTG John F. Campbell regarding RED AIR and the Army's policy:

MEDEVAC Photo Essay by Nicole Sobreki
Photographs by Nicole Sobecki of an Army medevac unit in Afghanistan.  Photo 3 shows the interior of a UH60A medevac helicopter.  The gunners would sit in the two seats behind the sitting Marine that face outward toward the windows just behind the pilots.  This configuration belies the Army's argument that he UH60 would suffer degraded performance and cause the removal of two litters from the helo were two .50 caliber machine guns to be mounted on the fuselage.
U.S. Army
The U.S. Army's Public Affairs Office response to the criticism of the Army's medevac policy:

Larry Wood
14 Jan 2012
Frontiersman (Wasilla, Alaska) Medevac policy is costing lives

24 Jan 2012, Is Army medevac policy killing our wounded troops?

Stars and Stripes
26 Jan 2012
Controversial debate brewing: Should Army medevacs be armed?

New York Post
01 Feb 2012
Hurry, wait ... and die Army rules stalling Medevacs

The Post and Courier
Use of armed medevac choppers debated

Right Truth
Should the U.S. arm medevac helicopters?

News Day
Soldier's death sparks debate over arming medevacs
Soldier’s death sparks debate over arming medevacs

'He'd still be here': Mother's agony as soldier dies after unarmed rescue team was delayed an hour waiting for cover

Associated Press
Should U.S. arm medevacs in Afghanistan?


+3 # Medevac title page dateMr. Johan Morgen 2012-01-27 15:32
As information, your Medevac page is dated February 27, 2012.

You are getting a little ahead of yourself. ;-)


Johann Morgen
Reply | Report to administrator
+3 # Keep up the good workLarry 2012-01-27 15:34
Keep up the good work keeping this issue high on the list. To all those higher ups who continue to kick the can down the road, malarkey! You be safe out there!
Reply | Report to administrator
+3 # Mr. MorgenMichael Yon Author 2012-01-27 16:00
Actually it was dated correctly as 27 February. I was in my time machine when I wrote it. ;) (Thank you.)
Reply | Report to administrator
+4 # Thanks for the links!jamescgonzales 2012-01-27 17:00
Thanks for listing these. It makes it a lot easier to find and forward them to folks.
Reply | Report to administrator
+3 # An Election Issue?Al Reasin 2012-01-27 23:55
With the letters going out and the questions being asked by me and others, the DOD civilian leadership cannot be ignorant of the problem; one that has apparently existed prior to this Administration. The MSM is ignoring it for some reason. Maybe because they worry this will show the lack of concern the Obama Administration has for the military which overrides the possible condemnation that could be heaped on the Bush administration.

With this being an issue even during the Iraqi war, where my son was for 27 months, this veteran, who is active politically and keeps in touch with military personnel, had never heard of the problem until Michael exposed it.

Thank you Michael.
Reply | Report to administrator
# RE: An Election Issue?Gary 2012-01-29 06:26
"Even" during the Iraq war? Hasn't this been an issue since the first medevac helicopter flew in combat in the Korean war (or whenever)?
Reply | Report to administrator
+1 # RE: RE: An Election Issue?Al Reasin 2012-01-29 22:48
You are correct, I went by what I remembered from Michael's dispatches

The Sikorsky Model S-55, military H-19 Chickasaw with a red cross was used in the Korean War and it had a red cross.

In Vietnam, the medevac Hueys were known by their radio call sign "Dustoff" for the dirt they kicked up as they took the wounded to safety. Later variants, such as the UH-1H, could carry three stretcher patients and a trained medic inside the cabin. Most served in the Army, although both the Navy and Marines used their Hueys for similar tasks.
Although almost never armed, Dustoff Hueys sometimes dropped off supplies and even ammunition to troops in the field—what one pilot referred to as "preventive medicine." They frequently came under fire and many were shot down—the large red crosses on their sides did not provide them with immunity. Dustoff pilots often earned reputations for immense bravery, risking themselves and their aircraft to remove wounded soldiers during intense fire fights, and resulted in the awarding of several Medals of Honor to pilots and crewmen.

Interesting, if true, that in Vietnam they were sometimes armed (which service, but Dustoff was the army term) and dropped off ammo. Thus one can say that when the Army removed the medics' red cross, they may have also used red cross labeled helicopters for more than wounded evac. If so that placed Dustoff helicopters at risk for violating the "rules of war".
Reply | Report to administrator
+1 # RE: RE: RE: An Election Issue?Michael Peterson 2012-04-26 04:28
I flew Cobras in Vietnam, but all pilots in our squadron had to fly "dustoff" twice a month. Our Hueys were not formal medevacs and did not display crosses and were armed with two door gunners.

Frankly, the formal medevac units were useless because there were so few of them and the commanders used 'em like pawns. Thus, most units (at least in our cav brigade) did their own evacs.

(A good example of how this worked can be seen in the movie, "We Were Soldiers Once and Young").

In my opinion, a good part of the problem with the situation Michael describes is that the military has become far too stovepiped and regimented. The paperwork necessary to launch a ship on a rescue mission (described by Michael in an earlier post) is just sickening. And the fact that heads don't roll is beyond criminal.

Michael P.
Undertaker 21 (RVN, '69)
Reply | Report to administrator
+1 # RE: MEDEVAC LinksJB 2012-01-29 18:34

take a read on what the USAF does. I'm biased but come on Army!!!
Reply | Report to administrator
# Todd Akin R-MOMatt 2012-09-19 13:50
Toward the top of this page, Todd Akin is referred to incorrectly. He is R-MO (Missouri), not R-MI (Michigan).
Reply | Report to administrator

Add comment

Due to the large amount of spam, all comments will be moderated before publication. Please be patient if you do not see your comment right away. Registered users who login first will have their comments posted immediately.

Reader support is crucial to this mission. Weekly or monthly recurring ‘subscription’ based support is the best, though all are greatly appreciated.  Recurring and one-time donations are available through PayPal or




You can now help support the next dispatch with bitcoins:

Donate Bitcoins

My BitCoin QR Code

This is for use with BitCoin apps: