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realclearworld

“For the first time in my 37 years I was ashamed of my country.”(Multi-decorated D-Day & Battle of Bulge vet, Grayston Lynch, April, 18, 1961)

BRIGADA2506graylpeteray

At the Bay of Pigs, Grayston Lynch and his band of Cuban brothers learned -- first in speechless shock and finally in burning rage -- that their most powerful enemies were not Castro's Soviet-armed and led soldiers massing in Havana, but the Ivy League's Best and Brightest dithering in Washington.

Lynch trained, in his own words, "brave boys most of whom had never before fired a shot in anger." Short on battle experience, yes, but they fairly burst with what Bonaparte and George Patton valued most in a soldier -- morale. They'd seen the face of Castro/Communism point-blank: stealing, lying, jailing, poisoning minds, murdering.

They'd heard the chilling "Fuego!"" as Castro and Che's firing squads murdered thousands of brave countrymen. More importantly, they heard the "Viva Cuba Libre!" from the bound and blindfolded patriots, right before the bullets ripped them apart. They set their jaws and resolved to smash this murderous barbarism that was ravaging their homeland. And they went at it with a vengeance....

By the second day, nearly half of these almost suicidal brave Cuban exile pilots had met a fiery death from Castro's jets.

This was too much for their enraged and heartsick American trainers at the base in Nicaragua. Four of them suited up, gunned the engines and joined the fight. These weren't pampered Ivy Leaguers. They were Alabama Air Guard officers, men with archaic notions of loyalty and honor. They were watching the decimation. They knew the odds. They went anyway.

All four died on that first mission. All four (Pete Ray, Riley Shamburger, Leo Barker, and Wade Grey) have their names in a place of honor alongside their fallen Cuban comrades on The Bay of Pigs Memorial, plus streets named after them in Miami's Little Havana, plus their crosses at Miami's Cuban Memorial cemetery.

Our friends at Townhall help to further disseminate details of a historical item mostly unknown everyplace over .000000000000876 millimeters from Miami-Dade borders.

1 comment to “For the first time in my 37 years I was ashamed of my country.”(Multi-decorated D-Day & Battle of Bulge vet, Grayston Lynch, April, 18, 1961)

  • asombra

    JFK had multiple "issues": inexperience, poor judgment, bad advisers, a monumental sense of entitlement (as if he deserved anything he wanted, be it political or sexual), and an overriding concern for protecting and advancing his political prospects at all costs. It goes without saying that he saw both Cuba and Cubans as entirely expendable and acted accordingly, both in 1961 and in 1962 (when the failure of 1961 came home to roost as the Missile Crisis). I suppose he couldn’t be expected to care much about Cuba per se, but he should have seen the broader geopolitical implications and potential dangers of a communist outpost on the island, both for the US and the whole region. Alas, he was simply not up to the job, and he dropped the ball big time, twice. Starting the Vietnam War didn't turn out so well, either, but that's another story. The guy should have simply devoted himself to being a rich playboy, but ambition (both his and his father's) pushed him where he never should have gone, and no matter how badly you want something, that does NOT make it right for you.