In an op-ed for FoxNews.com, former Texas governor and presidential candidate Rick Perry slammed left wing media ‘snakes’ for exposing “American Sniper” Chris Kyle’s embellishments about his military record.
Chris Kyle, whose bestselling memoir was adapted into the blockbuster movie American Sniper, has earned the title of “deadliest sniper in American history.” He claimed to have been awarded two Silver Stars and five Bronze Stars during his time as a Navy SEAL, but now that claim is turning out to be false.
According to The Intercept, internal Navy documents show that Kyle only earned one Silver Star and three Bronze Stars.
Back in 2013, Kyle was murdered by Eddie Routh, a former Marine suffering from PTSD who was being mentored by Kyle. About a year later, a jury awarded former governor Jesse Ventura $1.8 million in damages in a defamation suit against Kyle, who falsely claimed he beat up the governor in 2006 bar fight.
In his op-ed, Perry framed the revelations about Kyle’s problems with the truth as the product of a left wing media hit job and an overall “disturbing trend in the left-leaning press to undermine the heroism of men and women who are willing to risk their lives in the defense of our nation’s freedom.”
“The most recent snake to peek its head up from the muck is a writing team for a leftwing publication whose only knowledge of the military was likely acquired while googling derogatory slogans to scrawl on protest signs,” Perry wrote, referring to The Intercept.
“If there is any inaccuracy in Kyle’s account it’s that he didn’t take ENOUGH credit for his awards.”
Perry called for “seemingly indifferent” military officials to be punished for sharing public records – which is completely legal thanks to the Freedom of Information Act.
“I am calling on people of conscience to join me in calling for the retraction and deletion of the offending article and reprimand of the Navy personnel who have fed this misperception with their lackadaisical handling of the original information request,” Perry said.
“This request might seem odd from someone who is committed to the constitutional freedoms our military fights to defend, but freedom of speech and deliberate libel are two entirely different things,” he continued, seemingly acknowledging the anti-constitutionality of his statement.
Someone should give Perry the memo that says you can’t “libel” a person with the truth.
Featured image: The Texas Tribune