Observations on the world today.

Monday, July 26, 2004

Sorry To Sound Like a Broken Record About Bush's Broken Record 

Democratic Underground Forums - Bush's UNDESIRABLE Discharge from the National Guard

The administration, and Bill O'Reilly have been claiming for months that we already had all of Bush’s records from the military, but that was never true until recently. The AP sued and got those records under the freedom of information act. Not before, however, the government claimed that the records had been inadvertanty destroyed. But this week they finally gave all of the records up (or so they say.) There is still no DD214, the "Certificate of Release or Discharge from Active Duty."

However, on page 24 of the forms we find this:
DD FORM 258AF will be furnished.
This suggests that Bush never got a DD214 release, but a DD258 release instead. So the question is, just what is a DD258 release, and where is THAT form?

Well, I cannot answer the second question, but I may be able to answer the first. According to the Code of Federal Regulations: §887.7;
Those persons whose character of service was under other than honorable conditions or dishonorable are not eligible for CILs. However, an official photocopy of the report of separation or certificate of discharge (DD Form 214, Certificate of Release or Discharge From Active Duty, or equivalent form), if available, may be sent on written request of the member.

(a) On the DD Forms 214 issued before October 1, 1979, the following items will be masked out before a photocopy is sent out:
(1) Specific authority for separation.
(2) Narrative reason for separation.
(3) Reenlistment eligibility code.
(4) SPD or separation designation number (SDN).
(b) For DD Forms 214 issued after October 1, 1979, send one copy with the Special Additional Information Section, and one copy without it.
(c) If a report of separation is not available, furnish a brief official statement of military service. Use the letterhead stationery of the issuing records custodian. File copy of the statement in the master personnel record (MPerR).
(d) If (obsolete form) DD Form 258AF, Undesirable Discharge Certificate, has been issued, it may be replaced with DD Form 794AF, Discharge Under Other Than Honorable Conditions.
(e) A $4.25 fee may be charged for issuing a document under this section, with the exception of paragraph (d) of this section.
(Emphasis mine: Mister)

So what does that mean?

Well, according to my reading of §887.7 subsection d. of the Code of Federal Regulations - form 258AF is a now-obsolete form issued by the Air Force for the equivalent of "Discharge Under Other Than Honorable Conditions," though it was not a dishonorable discharge per se (although it would be considered one by today's standard since the modern equivilent - form 794AF - is a dishonorable discharge.) Also, according to the paperwork which the government supplied to the AP, George Bush was issued such a form of release from military service.

As I understand it, there are several reasons that one can get an Undesirable status. For example, alcohol use or drug possession. Also perhaps this was punative for his missing his physical. There may be other explainations too. For example; homosexuality. Truth is, I don't know why the form says DD258. Maybe Bush can supply the form so we'll all know.

John Kerry, on the other hand, has three purple hearts, a bronze star and a silver star as well as an honorable discharge from the US Navy.


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