Thursday, June 28, 2012

Ken Aden fires back on military record

Posted By on Thu, Jun 28, 2012 at 11:47 AM

IN SERVICE: Ken Aden
I mentioned earlier the Democrat-Gazette's reporting today on discrepancies it found in checking the military record of Ken Aden, the Democratic candidate for 3rd District Congress.

He's issued a statement in response. In short, he stands by his assertion that he earned Special Forces designation, though he says he had misspoken on at least one occasion as describing himself as a member of a Green Beret unit. He did not address the article's finding that he didn't have an associate degree from Arkansas State University, as claimed. There is no dispute that he served three combat tours in Iraq and held the parchutist badge as a member of the 82nd Airborne.

The full release on the jump, plus links to documents he's provided.

ADEN NEWS RELEASE

RUSSELLVILLE—Ken Aden, Democratic nominee for U.S. Congress from Arkansas' Third District, issued the following statement in response to a story in Thursday's Arkansas Democrat-Gazette:

"The Arkansas Democrat-Gazette this morning made multiple inaccurate statements about my military record and designation as a Special Forces Weapons Sergeant, commonly known as an '18B.'

I earned the 18B designation, and was awarded the same on June 12, 2008, and provided a copy of the orders from Installation Management Command at Fort Bragg to the Democrat-Gazette. Unfortunately, they ignored these documents.

The claims perpetuated by the Democrat-Gazette that my maintaining the 18B designation was somehow a mistake or error are ridiculous. Soldiers are not awarded and do not keep designations by accident. Additionally, it was noted on multiple service evaluations that I both held the 18B designation and used the training from that designation to better serve my unit. Again, the Democrat-Gazette ignored the relevant documents.

Unfortunately, it is difficult for us to adequately respond to many of the false claims the Democrat-Gazette made about my training and service record, as they declined to let us review the documents they claim to have received under a Freedom of Information Request. Given the fact that military records are often either inaccurate or incomplete when released even to individual soldiers, we will not comment further on some of the Democrat-Gazette's outrageous claims. We also note that, the Public Information Office at Fort Bragg and the John F. Kennedy Special Warfare School advised our campaign yesterday that they had never received any inquiries from the Democrat-Gazette, in spite of the fact that the Democrat-Gazette claims to quote an official from the Special Warfare School.

We advised the Democrat-Gazette that I made a request for my complete military file from the National Archives, which would be far more extensive than what the newspaper could have received under the Freedom of Information Act, and offered to share the entire contents of that file with the newspaper. Receipt of this file would have enabled the newspaper to verify more accurately the information they have reported, and to have caught multiple mistakes they made in their story. Unfortunately, the Democrat-Gazette elected not to wait for the short amount of time it would take to have the opportunity to review the more accurate record.

I have made no secret of the fact that I misspoke about serving with a Green Beret Unit. However, as indicated in records I provided the Democrat-Gazette and other media outlets, I was designated as 18B, which is a special forces designation, and I maintained that designation until I was discharged. For the Democrat-Gazette to claim I was not entitled to that designation or that it was somehow a mistake that I held the designation for so long is both ridiculous and insulting, to myself and other combat veterans who may be considering a run for public office.

I do not intend to allow this to distract my campaign from our mission of ensuring that the people of the Third Congressional District are ultimately represented in Congress by someone who reflects their values and beliefs on issues such as Medicare and Social Security."

Here's his copy of an 18B order.

Here's an award citation.

Tags: , , ,

Favorite

Speaking of...

Comments (23)

Showing 1-23 of 23

Add a comment

 
Subscribe to this thread:
Showing 1-23 of 23

Add a comment

More by Max Brantley

Readers also liked…

  • Monticello preparing for KKK rally

    Drew County authorities are taking precautions, but also watching their words, about apparent plans for a Ku Klux Klan meeting Saturday.
    • Jul 22, 2015
  • Campus gun bill clears committee

    The so-called compromise amendment that will allow anyone 25 or older with a training certificate carry a concealed weapon on public college campuses was approved in a Senate committee this afternoon.
    • Feb 21, 2017
  • Rutledge refuses open records of fired trooper who now leads ABC enforcement

    Attorney General Leslie Rutledge yesterday refused to allow release of records that explain the 2000 firing of Boyce Hamlet as a state trooper.
    • Sep 1, 2015

People who saved…

Most Shared

Visit Arkansas

"Locally Labeled" passport expands to accommodate booming brew scene

"Locally Labeled" passport expands to accommodate booming brew scene

As if great beer weren't reward enough, you can earn prizes for sampling local craft beverages

Most Viewed

  • Cotton seeks friendlies for town hall

    Is Tom Cotton working to pack his town hall Wednesday in Springdale with fans. So says one source.
  • NRA opposes campus carry bill as amended

    The NRA, which calls most shots on gun bills in Arkansas, now opposes the campus carry bill primarily because it adds an additional training requirement before anyone 25 and older can take a concealed weapon on a public college campus.
  • House committee approves vote suppression amendment

    A House committee today talked about stripping colleges and the Highway Department of power and tightening procedures on constitutional amendments but in the end voted as Chairman Bob Ballinger orchestrated and expected — to put a Voter ID amendment on the 2018 ballot.
  • Prosecutor Cody Hiland says analysis indicates Damascus is a speed trap

    Prosecuting Attorney Cody Hiland has announced completion of a State Police analysis of Damascus police speed limit enforcement and concluded that statistics indicate tickets are written in excess of limits in law that define speed traps.
  • City board squelches Little Rock school talk

    A letter from Little Rock school activist Dr. Anika Whitfield happens to underscore a point I made earlier today — and in a column to be published this week. It lays some of the school district's problems on benign neglect, and sometimes malice, of the Little Rock City Board.

Most Recent Comments

Blogroll

 

© 2017 Arkansas Times | 201 East Markham, Suite 200, Little Rock, AR 72201
Powered by Foundation