Thursday, May 14, 2009

Fragging Widow Slams Taluto as Unfit to Lead Guard

This is a press release I sent out today in response to the nomination of Major General Joseph Taluto to serve as Director of the Army National Guard. --SME

CONTACT: Siobhan Esposito

ALEXANDRIA, VA—The widow of a slain Army officer condemned President Barack Obama's nomination of Major General Joseph Taluto to serve as Director of the Army National Guard, stating that Taluto's weak and inattentive leadership in Iraq directly contributed to the murder of her husband.

"Under Joseph Taluto's leadership, the New York National Guard unit in which my late husband served was defined by a horrific lack of military discipline and personal accountability," said Siobhan Esposito, the widow of Capt. Phillip Esposito who was murdered in Iraq alongside 1st Lt Louis Allen in 2005 by a solider under General Taluto's command. "For his many failures on the battlefield, General Taluto should be reprimanded and retired, not promoted and entrusted with responsibility over the entire National Guard."

"General Taluto permitted the soldiers in the 42nd Infantry Division to conduct themselves in an utterly un-military and unprofessional manner," said Esposito. "In the case of my husband's murder, a solider was permitted to make repeated violent threats against my husband's life—threats that culminated in my husband's murder—without so much as a slap on the hand from Gen. Taluto or his lieutenants."

"Military commanders are directly responsible for the actions of the men and women under their authority," said Esposito, "yet at no time since the murder of my husband has Gen. Taluto taken any responsibility for Phillip's death. Not once has Gen. Taluto shown that he understands that his failures led to the division that he was entrusted to command to slip to the point where actions that plainly violated the laws that govern the armed forces were left completely ignored."

"I cannot imagine a worse betrayal of the trust our nation puts in the leaders of our Armed Forces," says Esposito "than to have a person who failed to protect the welfare of our fighting men in Iraq given the responsibility to ensure the welfare of the entire National Guard."

"The US Senate should reject Gen. Taluto as unqualified to lead," said Esposito. "His inaction and negligence puts the blood of my dead husband upon his hands and in no way should he be entrusted with the lives of other military men and women."

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