4-19-2013

Distinguished Warfare Medal Cancelled

Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel announced this week that the Distinguished Warfare Medal, the proposed military decoration to honor drone pilots and cyber-warriors, has been cancelled and will be replaced by a device that can be affixed to previously awarded medals. In February 2013, the Department of Defense (DoD) announced that the Distinguished Warfare Medal would be authorized for wear above the Bronze Star and Purple Heart, both of which are awarded only for battlefield service.Recognizing valor in combat has profound and significant meaning within the military community and FRA believes that recognition for non-combat service should not supersede combat-related awards. FRA National President Mark Kilgore and numerous other leaders of military and veteran organizations signed a letter to President Obama asking his personal involvement to lower the new medal’s standing in the military medals order of precedence.

Legislation was also introduced in the House (H.R. 833) and Senate (S. 470) to ensure that the Bonze Star and Purple Heart combat medals rank ahead of a new medal honoring service away from the front lines.  FRA thanks the many shipmates who used the FRA Action Center to contact their elected officials on this important issue.