|October 8, 2003|
Congresswoman Kay Granger (R- Fort Worth) will introduce a bill today that will require the Defense Department to award separate medals for military service in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Currently, the Department of Defense (DOD) has established an award for service in the global war on terrorism. This medal can only be issued once to each soldier during his or her entire term of service and does not distinguish between individual campaign fronts in the war on terrorism, specifically Iraq and Afghanistan.
Granger’s bill calls on the Secretary of Defense, Donald Rumsfeld, to establish specific, separate campaign medals for troops serving in Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Iraqi Freedom.
After a recent visit with U.S. troops in Iraq, Rep. Granger realized this bill was necessary. The enactment of this bill would ensure that our men and women in uniform receive the recognition they deserve.
"While I was in Iraq last week, one question I asked when I met with the troops was ‘what else can we do for you back home,’" said Granger. "This legislation came about when I saw men and women who had served both in Afghanistan and Iraq and may serve again in this continuing war on terrorism throughout the world."
In the past, the DOD has issued a number of campaign medals for campaigns that were part of larger wars. For example, three campaign-specific medals were issued during World War II: the American Campaign Service Medal, the Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal, and the European-African-Middle Eastern Campaign Medal. Similarly, DOD issued a Southwest Asia Service Medal for the Persian Gulf War in 1991 and the Kosovo Campaign Medal for the 1999 war in Kosovo.