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Petition: Change medal's ‘order of precedence'

Feb. 15, 2013 - 01:36PM   |   Last Updated: Feb. 15, 2013 - 01:36PM  |  
The Pentagon is creating the Distinguished Warfare Medal to recognize UAV pilots.
The Pentagon is creating the Distinguished Warfare Medal to recognize UAV pilots. ()
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Do you disagree with the Pentagon's decision to put a new medal honoring drone pilots above some traditional combat valor medals in the military's "order of precedence"?

This is your chance to let the White House know how you feel.

A https://petitions.whitehouse.gov/petition/lower-precedence-new-distinguished-warfare-medal/5KdnkBBN">petition posted on the White House website Thursday asks the administration to lower the precedence of the Distinguished Warfare Medal.

The medal, which Defense Secretary Leon Panetta announced Wednesday, will be awarded to pilots of unmanned aircraft, offensive cyberwar experts or others who are directly involved in combat operations, but who are not physically in theater and facing the physical risks that warfare historically entails.

The new medal will rank just below the Distinguished Flying Cross. It will have precedence over — and be worn on a uniform ahead of — the Bronze Star with Valor device, awarded to troops for specific heroic acts performed under fire in combat.

"Under no circumstance should a medal that is designed to honor a pilot, that is controlling a drone via remote control, thousands of miles away from the theater of operation, rank above a medal that involves a soldier being in the line of fire on the ground," the petition reads. "This is an injustice to those who have served and risked their lives and this should not be allowed to move forward as planned."

Petitions on the White House site, "We the People," will get a response from the government if they reach 100,000 signatures within 30 days, though the White House is not required to respond within a certain time frame. As of midday Friday, the warfare medal petition had 57 signatures. It would need 99,943 more by March 16 to reach the goal.

To see the petition, https://petitions.whitehouse.gov/petition/lower-precedence-new-distinguished-warfare-medal/5KdnkBBN">click here.

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