Michael's Dispatches

Godspeed to Paula Loyd


Published: 08 January 2009

Word just came to me that Paula Loyd died.  The word came from a close mutual friend who currently is in Afghanistan.  Godspeed to Paula.  Those who knew Paula said many great things.  I was told she was engaged to be married.  Now Paula is with God.

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[Note from Webmaster: In the original draft Paula's name was mispelled "Lloyd". Corrected 12 January 2009.]

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  • This commment is unpublished.
    anita lynne · 13 years ago
    In this world when someone such as Paula gives their life for others to live better, it may not be noticed by most of the world. But God notes the sacrifice and those of us who know can thank God for her life. Our prayers are with her family and friends as they look for answers in the cruelty of individuals and cultures. May God continue to work in this part of the world to make it better for all humans, especially women.
  • This commment is unpublished.
    Eddie Lechuga · 13 years ago
    From an old Navy Corpsman, 5th Marines ... Bethesda ... Pensacola NAS

    I feel for her loved ones.

    Blessings to all
  • This commment is unpublished.
    Anon · 13 years ago
    ... if whomever had told you had actually respected her family's wishes to keep this under wraps until the funeral is done. And it would have been super if you had done the same.
  • This commment is unpublished.
    John Bailey · 13 years ago
    May they receive the "peace that passes understanding."
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    Lorene · 13 years ago
    RIP Ms Lloyd, prayers out to your family and friends.

    Michael, do take care when you head back into the madness...
  • This commment is unpublished.
    Joe Norman · 13 years ago
    RIP to a fine human being.

    When are we going to get it....REALLY GET IT!!......that islam is the problem, and until it is eradicated from the earth, we will continue to be forced to mourn the Paula Lloyds of the world.
    ELIMINATION is the ONLY cure!!

    Harsh truth....but truth nonetheless!
  • This commment is unpublished.
    Timothy vonBecker · 13 years ago
    The suffering of this vapor we call life is over for Paula. She gave her life in the service of others. No greater calling will there ever be. I pray comfort for her family and friends in the face of such reckless hate.
  • This commment is unpublished.
    Fred Taylor · 13 years ago
    I agree with comment number 6.
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    Damon · 13 years ago
    I read what happened to Paula that, "She approached a man carrying a fuel jug and they began talking about the price of gas. Suddenly, the man doused Lloyd in a flammable liquid and set her on fire." (http://warandhealth.com/pray-for-paula-loyd/) I thought, "I hope they killed the guy that did it. They did. "Another member of the U.S. Army Human Terrain Team to which Loyd belonged, a military contractor named Don Michael Ayala of New Orleans, executed Salam by firing a gun into his head, once he had already been captured, subdued and restrained. According to an indictment filed in a U.S. court (Ayala was removed from Afghanistan and is now out on bail), the execution happened about 10 minutes after the attack on Loyd, once Ayala heard that she had suffered severe burns to most of her body." (http://openanthropology.wordpress.com/2008/11/26/on-the-conduct-of-military-contractors-in-afghanistan-in-the-words-of-paula-loyd/). I didn't know her and it doesn't bring it back, but just even reading about the incident made me think that the guy who did this doesn't deserve to live. Justice served. Mr. Ayala has to go through the criminal court system now. I wonder what will come of him?
  • This commment is unpublished.
    Robert W Anderson · 13 years ago
    I support My Ayala's actions wholeheartedly! The only problem with it was his target didn't suffer enough. I'm sure he'll have to go through the criminal justice system. We can only hope that common sense will prevail.
    Anyone judging this man's action needs to imagine what they might do if someone they knew was killed in this manner right in front of them in a combat situation.

    Bob Anderson
    SP/5 91B20
  • This commment is unpublished.
    Tim O · 13 years ago
    She's gone,
    RIP Paula
  • This commment is unpublished.
    Charley199 · 13 years ago
    When are we going to get it? 'Eradicate' Islam? Clearly you don't get it. Fundamentalist Islam is a very real threat to World peace and human harmony, but it represents only a fraction of the Islamic World. Just remember, there are probably just as many armed religious fanatics in the US as there are in the Middle East. Most Muslims are law abiding (and no, not just the Sharia) peace loving and decent people. Some are intolerable fanatics. I know, I've fought them. As well as fanatical Irish Republicans. My father fought some fanatical Chinese communists, Arabic Communists (odd, but true) and Indonesian Nationalists and his father some fanatical Germans. We didn't try to 'eliminate' all Muslims, Communists, Republicans, Nationalists, Chinese or Germans (or Japanese for that matter). Just as well, since they now own most of our industry and may well get us out of this economic mess. Get a grip. That kind of moronic rhetoric makes you no better than 'them'.
  • This commment is unpublished.
    Allen E. · 13 years ago
    It is saddening to hear from the ruthless acts of fanatics who in the name of their religious beliefs commit senseless crimes like this one. But it is comforting to know that people like Paula, in spite of all the terrible dangers they know will await them in far away places, still volunteer to go there. Our prayers go to her family and friends and we hope they find resignation after this tragedy. Her gift of life is the greatest a human being can offer in the search for peace in this troubled world. I hope that Mr. Ayala will surpass his ordeal through criminal court; his reaction in my opinion, was fully justified after watching the barbaric act perpetrated by the Islamic terrorist against Paula.
  • This commment is unpublished.
    Mamie · 13 years ago
    Any group which has martyrdom as a tenet and which has as a reward a 70 virgin contingent for the martyr's afterlife satisfaction, which believes that killing females who "offend" is a right; which believes that females have no souls is ipso facto anti-female. Since on any given street corner a "social scientist" cannot know who wishes that afterlife reward NOW, wouldn't more than a little caution be taken? Ignorance of the law--in this case the law of jihad--is no excuse. I am not shocked by the act of the enemy--killing is a virtue to them; however, I am shocked at the ignorance of those who would send such an incautious person into harm's way. All I am is a student of history and even I know that our present war zones are places where people get killed in horrible ways and that the incautious bring destruction to more than themselves. Now apparently someone is being held for murdering the murderer. Sorry if this sounds cruel toward the victim, but what an awful tale all the way around. This is a very dangerous world for women. Those who forget that imperil us all.
  • This commment is unpublished.
    Rick Balentine · 13 years ago
    Dear Don Michael Ayala,

    Thank you.

    R. Balentine
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    RobertT · 13 years ago
    ...are that she is in a better place, a place where she feels no pain, suffers no disfigurement.

    May she rest in peace.
  • This commment is unpublished.
    Akmatov · 13 years ago
    May she rest in peace.

    She walked into the Valley hoping to do good and was met with hatred.
  • This commment is unpublished.
    Thomas Laumann · 13 years ago
    I is hard for me to read about Paula and what had happened to her. If you have faith you know she's in a better place. May her story lead others to fill our earthly void without her. She truly is a hero!
  • This commment is unpublished.
    Peter Warner · 13 years ago
    Of all the major (and perhaps minor as well) religions, only one does not include an equivalent to 'do not do to others as you would not do to yourself'. That singular exception is Islam. Islam means 'submission', not 'peace'. It does not seek to bring salvation to all, it seeks to impose dominion over all.

    Judaism demands ethics and justice.

    Christianity instructs us to live our lives (and even lay them down) for the sake of others.

    Islam tells us to kill others for its glory. This is the precise reverse from Torah and Biblical faith.

    Islam is not compatible with modern civilization.

    Michael has many good Muslim friends, I have some. We cannot simply ignore or abandon good people. Can Islam be educated and reformed into a productive and civilized faith? We may wish so, but what we wish has no consequence: the answer and solution must come from within the Islamic community itself. It is not. Every indication is that the movement is incapable of reason. The present Pope has raised this issue directly, and might well be doing more to raise Islam from the brutality of the sixth century than any Muslim spokesman. Bless him for his courage and devotion.

    In opposing civilsation, Islam condemns itself.

    Best regards, Peter Warner.
  • This commment is unpublished.
    John the Baptist · 13 years ago
    May Paula rest in peace... ...and may Islamic terrorists who commit such acts rot in Hell...
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    Howard E. Morseburg · 13 years ago
    Certainly Islam, as with Christianity, has many different leaders and many different interpretations, but it is also apparent that it will never, never bring peace to the world.

    This is not to say that the majority of Muslims do not live peaceful lives, but that rogue Mullahs who concentrate on the conversion or killing of Infidels and Jews as their main duty in following that faith, as well as murdering women whom they believe violate the tenants of the Quran, will forever preach and plan these killings, incite the young to do their bidding, and keep these primitive lands in turmoil.

    But it is not only the ignorant or illiterate in these territories, but even the highly educated who live in European and American socities who will carry out terrorist acts, which should make us all wary. Even were we all to convert, it is only a matter of time before the differences between Sunni and Shiite reach other countries and erupt into the same terrible deeds, because without exorcising the passages that lead to these acts, the seeds of it will follow civilization down through the centuries. There is no solution, just continued rounds of death and grief becaise pf a few hundred words imbedded in a book of faith and religious instruction.
  • This commment is unpublished.
    mister mike · 13 years ago
    comment 12 shows the ignorance of some people. we must recognize that islam and the koran preach hatred and death. i think we should bannish that "faith" from our own country, unless we want to be cowtowing to these extremists like the stupid french and the english. i don't want to be like the poor toad in a boiling cauldron of water.
  • This commment is unpublished.
    belle · 13 years ago
    I met Paula when she was an instructor for a training for civilians at Ft. Bragg who were deploying to Afghistan. No doubt a gifted and special person, what made her stand out even more was her humility and humanity. Hers is a loss that cannot be measured. My thoughts and prayers are with her family and friends, as their loss is truly unfathomable.

    Godspeed, Paula.
  • This commment is unpublished.
    Mr. Todd · 13 years ago
    Comments 22 and 6. You obviously are KNOW expert on the diarrhea pouring out of your mouth. You both have diarrhea of the mouth and constipation of the brain. What you are expressing is prejudice. Bigots! Just a very small fraction of muslims are going out blowing them selves up. The Koran does NOT preach hate and murder. You are believce what the extremist want you to believe.
  • This commment is unpublished.
    Martin Riggs · 13 years ago
    The savages score another victory, another innocent dies at the hands of Islam while its "peaceful silent majority" continue to stay silent.

    Too bad that peaceful majority can't rouse itself and eject the murderers in its ranks, perhaps because they don't really want to.

    Religion of peace? Religion of simple-minded cavemen.

    RIP Ms. Lloyd
  • This commment is unpublished.
    Webmaster · 13 years ago
    Michael does not endorse comments calling for the abolition of Islam. He also does not endorse the abolition of Christianity, Hinduism or Buddhism. He strongly wishes to abolish war, but is not hopeful that his attempts will be successful.

  • This commment is unpublished.
    Nightsapper · 13 years ago

    I am of the opinion that Salafism/Wahabism has made Islam a mental and moral cancer that must be either greatly reformed or else eradicated.

    In Latin: Facta, Non Verba

    Deeds, Not Words.

    Motto of the Triple Deuce, The 2/22 Inf (a unit I once served
  • This commment is unpublished.
    ZZMike · 13 years ago
    I suppose there's some good reason that story never made the major media.

    She held on for "more than two months".
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    Arcturus · 13 years ago
    I suggest all read the book "America Alone". It has the scary statistics about the growth of Islam in various countries - and the rise in violence that has begun and will grow. I wish this was *only* a political war....
  • This commment is unpublished.
    Been There · 13 years ago
    that the organization she worked for, the Human Terrain System at Fort Leavenworth, under the direction of Steve Fondacaro and Steve Rotkoff, attempted to discredit Paula and blame her for her injuries. Go to the website http://humanterrainsystem.mil.army You will not find Paula's name listed "In Memoriam."
  • This commment is unpublished.
    flyonthewall · 13 years ago
    My deepest sympathy and respect to this woman's loved ones. Her faith in and commitment to humanity surpasses any religion created by man. I wish I'd have known her and hope there are others like her. They are our only hope. If not for this website, where would I learn of such people?
  • This commment is unpublished.
    RC-South Veteran · 13 years ago
    RIP to Paula Lloyd and sympathies for her loved ones.

    I'm not privy to actual details of the incident, but I doubt that the perpetrator was a terrorist or even affiliated with the Taliban. Rather, he was probably a villager who was offended and angered by being approached and questioned by a woman. Women do not exist in Pashtun culture and a Pashtun in a village will typically never seen any unveiled adult woman during his whole life except for his mother, wife, or sister(s). This perspective is more tribal than Islamic and is utterly alien to any Western value system. When we unknowingly create friction with this value system by doing things like sending female figures of authority to interact with Pashtuns - or deliberately create friction by promoting gender equality - we will get the same reaction that foreigner troops would get if they went into the Bible Belt of the U.S. and told the inhabitants that they should abandon religion. While we need to promote what we consider to be universal human rights, we have to balance this against the primary imperative in a counterinsurgency campaign - to build popular support for the legitimacy of the government.
  • This commment is unpublished.
    HTT Field Social Sci · 13 years ago
    I work served in the same position as Paula on one of the Iraq teams. I can tell you first hand that there is NO slight to Ms. Lloyd regarding memorializing her service or loss. The program will be holding a memorial service this week and the website, which we do NOT internally maintain, has been scheduled with the company that acts as our webmaster to be updated this coming week as well. Everyone in the organization feels a profound loss at Ms. Lloyd's death, and our thoughts and prayers are with her family and friends. As for anyone trying to blame Paula, I've not seen or hear anyone at all, including Mr. Fondacaro or Mr. Rotkoff do so. Rather, they and the rest of HTS leadership extended enormous amounts of energy to make sure that Ms. Lloyd got the best care and that her and her family's needs and wishes were taken into account and care of. Again, everyone in HTS's thoughts and prayers are with Paula's friends and family.
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    Jack E. Hammond · 13 years ago
    Dear Editors,

    I have been saying this since 9/11 and I will state it again: Anyone going to Afghanistan needs to get a copy of BUGLES AND TIGERS about the famous author John Master's experience in the British Raj army on the Afghan border in the 1920s-19 0s. And this is not just my opinion but t he opinion of US Army company commander's when quiz about the ten books t hey recommend. A lot of lives would have been saved since operations began in Afghanistan if this book had been read. And that is from a four star general to a private 1st class.

    Jack E. Hammond

  • This commment is unpublished.
    The Mole · 13 years ago
    I knew Paula. She was a breath of fresh air. May God bless Paula, and God bless Don Ayala.
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    Sue · 13 years ago
    Condolences to her family, friends and unit coworkers.

    Until the Muslims that believe so fervently in this old religion begin to have a shimmer of
    understanding regarding freedom and equality, they will either support the violence or
    stay quiet. These are the only two choices at the moment. It is incumbent upon the world
    to change Islam but it will take many, many decades to even make a dent. This is the clearest example of just how entrenched are the beliefs of religions and/or tribal life. We, as human beings, have a very long way to go, everywhere.
  • This commment is unpublished.
    Kanani · 13 years ago
    I'm very sorry to hear this. Godspeed to Paula, and condolences to her family, coworkers and friends.
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    Tricky · 13 years ago
    Don Ayala is now on trial in Louisiana for the murder of the raghead terrorist who doused Paula Lloyd with petrol and set her alight. She later died so I read. Don Ayala is a hero and his retribution was justified. You Americans should reward him not prosecute him.
    From a sympathetic Brit.
  • This commment is unpublished.
    Cecile · 4 years ago
    Get pleasure from Brotherhood Episode 1 now!

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