Is Candidate US Veteran Who Killed Unarmed Iraqis a Tea Partier or Warmonging Republican?
Boris in Miami – October 27, 2010

An article like the one below will have many in the Freedom Movement and the Libertarian community complaining about “those warmongers” at the Tea Party.

We at  the Daily Tea Party attend many Tea Party gatherings and talk to many people who self identify as Tea Partiers, and we can tell you that most of those people are not the ‘Tea Party’ that this article, or many like it, talk about.  We think that the moniker “Tea Party” is being used by many in the media as a shortcut for what we used to call “right wing conservative.”

We believe that the “Tea Party” name is being incorrectly used, even by many outlets in the Freedom Movement.  Lets remember that the Tea Party is the name of a grassroots movement of people, people who are fed up with big government.  This movement and its branding is being actively co-opted by big Republican money, and we believe that the branding can and is being co-opted, but the people in the movement are not, they remain firmly in the constitutional learning path.

We ask that you remember that even if the warmongering wing of the Republican party co-opts the name, that the people in this movement are very moral people, strongly pro-constitution, and as such are in principle against these unconstitutional, undeclared wars and against murder.  So please… when you hear the media label a whole group of people as warmongers and unprincipled like the article below does, remember that it reflects more on the bias of the people speaking than those of the group they are supposedly writing about.

Please don’t let media labels and propaganda shade your idea of what this revolution that started in 2007 is about; it is about Liberty, Constitutional Governance and most of all, about education. We must continue our Constitutional education revolution into the 2012 elections.

US veteran who killed unarmed Iraqis wins Tea Party support

Murder charges were dropped against Ilario Pantano, who now verges on election victory buoyed by right-wing backing The basic facts are undisputed: on 15 April 2004 Ilario Pantano, then a second lieutenant with the US marines, stopped and detained two Iraqi men in a car near Falluja. The Iraqis were unarmed and the car found to be empty of weapons.

Pantano ordered the two men to search the car for a second time and then, with no other US soldiers in view, unloaded a magazine of his M16A4 automatic rifle into them, before reloading and blasting a second magazine at them – some 60 rounds in total.

Over the corpses, he left a placard inscribed with the marine motto: “No better friend, No worse enemy.”

Six years later Pantano is on the verge of a stunning electoral victory that could send him to the US Congress in Washington. He is standing as Republican candidate in North Carolina’s 7th congressional district, which was last represented by his party in 1871.

With the help of the right-wing Tea Party movement, and with the benefit of his image as a war hero acquired from what happened on that fateful day in 2004, he has raised almost $1m (£630,000) in donations and is now level-pegging with his Democratic opponent, Mike McIntyre.

“We are in complete contention. We are certainly neck-and-neck. And we are feeling terrific,” he said at a Tea Party rally outside Wilmington.

Pantano is one of the new breed of hardline Republicans thrown up by the turmoil of the economic meltdown and the ensuing Tea Party explosion. He served in the first Gulf war, then worked for Goldman Sachs before rejoining the marines days after the 9/11 attacks.

A few months after he killed the two unarmed Iraqis, a member of his unit reported him to senior officers and he was charged with premeditated murder. At a pre-trial military hearing, prosecution witnesses testified that the detainees, Hamaady Kareem and Tahah Hanjil, were unthreatening and that their bodies were found in a kneeling position having apparently been shot in the back…

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