The Claws of A Great Bear and the Conscience of a Man laid in the Balances in the Sight of God

And the beast which I saw was like unto a leopard, and his feet were as the feet of a bear…..Revelation 13:2aursa-major

Many have wondered about the portrayal of the constellation of Ursa Major as a Great Bear with a long tail, which is typical of a leopard or a lion. In occult literature, this constellation represents the Luciferian Priesthood, and depending on the time of observation, this bear can be seen on all four legs lumbering slowly around a central point, or standing upon its back legs as a sign of retribution.

On page 291 of the book Expendable Elite: One Soldier’s Journey Into Covert Warfare, written by Lieutenant Colonel USASF (Ret.) Daniel Marvin,(published by Trine Day 2003/2006), this comment is made: The CIA.  They are like a beast with many claws.  They have many secret operations and many ways to destroy a man.”

I reviewed one aspect of the story narrated in the Expendable Elite on Veteran’s Day, November 11, 2016 in a post called, A President’s Fantasy Is A Soldier’s Curse.  As a Christian reader, this is a fascinating story both historically and morally as a study of the conscience of one man.  Two different periods of time in the life of the author are represented.  The first section tells of the workings of the conscience of an unsaved but honorable man who served in the sixties in Vietnam as the commander of a Special Forces A team. The second section details the publication of this book after the author became a Christian resulting in him becoming a defendant in a defamation lawsuit filed by the Special Forces Association and his own men.  In both time periods, the shadow adversary of the author was the CIA and their retributive justice served out generously to those who are at cross purposes with them.expendable-elite-book-cover

In considering how the role of the CIA played out with regard to a Special Forces man, I was somewhat astounded when I read on page 1 of the book, that a the break in the line of accountability occurred when the author took on a secret mission for Special Forces.  Marvin was told by his superior,  “…if you take command of A-424 and accept this TOP SECRET mission, you’ll be on your own.  When you leave this room, it will be as if we never met.  We can’t and won’t stand behind you if you are caught doing what I am about to tell you to do.  Got it, Captain?”

I have never been in the military, and as an outsider, I have always had the general impression that lines of authority are very rigidly upheld in this realm, even more so than in the corporate world, which guards its lines of authority very jealously.  So who silently filled the gap?  Well later, the CIA shows up to give Daniel Marvin and his A Team another covert mission, which is to override the work and the alliances which were established in his first mission.  The fact that Daniel Marvin does not reject the CIA mission at the start, but rather conditions his acceptance on the meeting of one condition, would seem to imply that the broken line of command which was covertly filled by the CIA, was not an abnormal event.

In the introductory page xv, this chilling comment is made to journalist and editor, Jacqueline K. Powers, “We don’t fear the enemy we are trained to defeat,” he told me, “We fear what may happen to us should those in power decide that our nation would be better served if we were no longer available for question or comment.”  Dan then told me without any outward manifestation or trepidation “other volunteers, trained and dedicated as we were would be asked to ‘dispose’ of us.  It was as simple as that.”

The book Expendable Elite was published after the author, Daniel Marvin, comes to saving faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, a fact which he explains took away any fears he might have had of the repercussions of telling the truth of how the CIA attempted to dispose of his company of men when he aborted their mission assignment. On page 406 where the CIA is referred to as the Company, it is explained how the crosshairs of the CIA were centered on Marvin because he refused to obey illegal demands. Page 414 notes that “the lawsuit was a ‘steam roller’ operation- which is spook slang for an attempt to cover up history, deny questionable activities, and flatten opposition to the official story”.

The question is asked on page xi, “Why would the Special Forces Association, nominally a fraternal organization, go to this extent?  The answer is that they wanted to hide the facts of what Special Forces are really involved with in their day-to-day- operations as counter-insurgents, terrorists, assassins and saboteurs”.  If you are interested in the details of the two lawsuits filed in Federal court against Daniel Marvin and his publisher, Trine Day, there are many documents posted on the internet at expendableelite.com.

At the heart of Daniel Marvin’s actions concerning the lawsuits (one resulting in a mistrial, the other involved the jury absolving the defendants of the defamation charges) is his desire to have what a Christian would refer to as a guaranteed right to a Daysman.  In the Bible,  Job was in a manner “put on trial” by his friends, as also Marvin was formally put on trial by his Special Forces men.  Job desired a Daysman between him and God, whom he regarded as the source of his plight. Unaware of the discussion of his righteousness which had taken place between God and Satan, Job was correct in acknowledging that the Final Authority in all matters is God, and not Satan.

That trials are a means of refining men as gold, is a difficult fact of life. But as Paul in Romans 11:33-36 says, and he knew such trials personally, “O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God!  how unsearchable are his judgments, and his ways past finding out!  For who hath known the mind of the Lord?  or who hath been his counselor?  Or who hath first given to him, and it shall be recompensed unto him again?  For of him, and through him, and to him, are all things”  to whom be glory for ever. Amen”.

Daniel Marvin says on page 406, “If, by circumstances evolving when engaged in covert or independent missions, most of which are within a ‘compartmentalized’ frame of reference (i.e. sealed-off, and therefore deniable), our warriors find themselves in the crosshairs of the CIA because they refused to obey illegal demands upon them, they must then be assured proper legal representation, even the right to demand that related TOP SECRET documents be made available to their attorneys.”

To my knowledge, Daniel Marvin was never able to get a law into effect that would allow such a Daysman for a military man who has illegal or unconscionable demands placed on him in the line of duty where covert operations have been established.  He adds on page 407, “…we who wore the Green Berets owed our loyalty first and foremost to Special Forces.  We were taught that we were expected to automatically follow orders from our superiors, without question or hesitation.  Should any truth represent a threat to who we are, what we now do, have done in the past, or may be asked to do in the future, that truth may be obliterated, or surrounded by the constructed walls of secrecy that create plausible deniability for the official channels while leaving the men out in the cold.”

As an American citizen desiring that America live up to her ideal of Justice in law and in practice, there should not be any situation where military personnel in this nation who are faced with obeying illegal or unconscionable demands, cannot have their concerns reviewed by an official third party. It is a dangerous authority when any man is officially granted the power to  kill the conscience of another person, and if that cannot be accomplished,  to be allowed to assassinate that man without a trial.

As an aside, The Epilogue Part Five on pages 414-415 of Expendable Elite reveals that there are still many professional journalists with integrity in the Main Stream Media, despite the continuous derogatory comments of the “Christian” Alternative Media radio hosts, who themselves are guilty of contributing a steady flow of disinformation to the American public. Kris Milligan, the publisher of this book, stood by the author, when he could have backed off.  Both men paid a steep financial cost for their stand.  The following comments were excerpted from an opinion piece of February 2006 published in the Eugene Register-Guard and reprinted in Daniel Marvin’s book.

The lawsuit was a “steam roller” operation- which is spook slang for an attempt to cover up history, deny questionable activities, and flatten opposition to the official story.  The Special Forces Association, a fraternal organization of retired and active Special Forces personnel, obtained the lawyers, financed the lawsuit, and even paid the plaintiffs’ out of pocket expenses.

The association has carried the ball on similar steamroller operations, operations in which our true history is covered up by official denials, obfuscations, and political lies.  Let’s review a few of them.

“Special Forces don’t talk to reporters, and reporters don’t talk to Special Forces.”  That was the direct message delivered to a member of a CNN news crew that reported a covert U. S. Military operation in Laos during the Vietnam “police action”.  The story was part of a broadcast on the secret warfare activities of the Studies and Observations Group, an elite commando unit of the Army’s Special Forces.

CNN Producers April Oliver, Jack Smith, and their news crew had spent eight months on the story, lining up interviews ranging from the grunts on the ground all  the way up to Adm. Thomas Mooer, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff at the time.  Interference to suppress a news story included pressure on CNN board members by Henry Kissinger, a threatened boycott of CNN by veteran groups, and an alleged threat to freeze out CNN from Department of Defense background briefings.

After being fired from CNN, members of that news team have won judgments arising out of the litigation surrounding the affair…and stand by their story today.

Further down page 415, the author notes that during that period, “The Bush administration is currently removing thousands of historical National Archives documents from the public-some of which have been on college library shelves for years- and reclassifying them.”  We must ask why?

We all recognize the need for secret, covert military operations.  But the Bible pronounces a warning to certain persons, saying in Isaiah 29:15, “Woe unto them that seek deep to hide their counsel from the LORD, and their works are in the dark, and they say, Who seeth us? and who knoweth us?”  Presently the church is being destroyed by these type of persons, as Jude noted in verse 4, “certain men crept in unawares” and Peter in his second epistle, also marks those false prophets and false teachers, “who privily shall bring in damnable heresies, even denying the Lord that bought them,…”.

I recommend  Expendable Elite: One Soldier’s Journey Into Covert Warfare, especially to Christian readers,  as it focuses on one man’s dealings with his own conscience which underwent a trial by fire during his military service 50 years ago.  At the very same time which he was trying to uphold high ideals in the compromising world of war which involved real guns, real bullets, real wounds, and the face of Death, another war was going on with the sixties generation.  That war involved a major PSY-OP on the youth of this nation which continues on today.  The Assassination of JFK, the rock and roll, the sex and fornication, the drugs……….and almost 40 years after, the 911 demolishing of the Twin Trade Towers in New York City. Someone altered the mass psychology of this great nation, and it has been in a downward spiral since then.

And where was, and  is the church, the salt and light, in all of this?  Well, throughout all these time periods, there have always been those who by words and deeds have been the voice of conscience and wisdom. But sadly, the church which should represent the highest ideals has become lovers of themselves, rather than lovers of the words of God.

It was a sad day for Daniel Marvin, who had high regard for his men in Vietnam to have to ask after they allowed themselves to be plaintiffs in a CIA based lawsuit, “Would each of these once brave souls be sworn in and then sit in the witness chair and perjure themselves?”  The Claws of a Great Bear might be fearful, but as Hebrews 10:31 points out, “It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God”. And there is a day when all of us must give account to God the Judge.

A President’s Fantasy Is A Soldier’s Curse

The heading of today’s post is taken from the title of Chapter 15 of the book Expendable Elite:  One Soldier’s Journey Into Covert Warfare, the expanded Victory Edition, 2003/2006, written by Lieutenant Colonel United States Army Special Forces (Ret.) Daniel Marvin and published by TrineDay of Walterville, Oregon.

Today is Veterans’ Day in America. Election Day, this past Tuesday,  has resulted in a new President who will be inaugurated in January as our nation’s leader, and as the new Commander-in-Chief of our Armed Forces.  Therefore, I thought it fitting to remember those Veterans who served with loyalty and distinction; and especially those who tried to maintain high ethics in that twilight zone of political unrealities which are pitted against the backdrop of combat realities.

The author of Expendable Elite, Daniel Marvin, began his military career in June of 1952.  In the latter days of the Korean War, he had served as a combat engineer Lieutenant.  Because of this combat experience, after he received training as a Green Beret, he was given  command over an A Team in Vietnam, near the border of Cambodia, where the Bassac River flows through.

The bold italic words of Chapter 1:Secret Orders summarizes the nature of this assignment with this quote: Lieutenant Colonel Tuttle, the commander of all Special Forces in the IV Tactical Corps of South Vietnam, spoke in a whisper, “Dan, if you take command of A-424 and accept this TOP SECRET mission, you’ll be on your own.  When you leave this room, it will be as if we never met.  We can’t and won’t stand behind you if you are caught doing what I am about to tell you to do.  Got it, Captain?”

Daniel Marvin’s narrative then takes us on a personal journey of the who, what, where, and when of the seven months from December 1965 to August 2, 1966 when he served in the An Phu District of South Vietnam.  This is very interesting reading, and we learn of the close working relation which he developed with ARVN Lieutenant Colonel Phoi Van Le, the Hoa Haos Buddhists who occupied the rural areas, and in the final scene, the heroic decision of ARVN Lieutenant General Quang Van Dang who rescued Dan Marvin and those related to his Green Beret/ Special Forces operation, from the retribution of the CIA.  “What?”, you ask. “The retribution of the CIA against a Special Forces A Team? What is the back story on that?”

In the first chapters of this book, Marvin gives a detailed overview of the work of his A Team in gaining the confidence of the Hoa Haos Buddhists, and the Vietnamese through several civic works.  But what is telling about the primary mission of the Green Berets, is what Marvin discloses to his wife Kate, who knew little of his career other than what he was allowed to disclose to her.  On page 3, Marvin says, “…it would be twenty years after I earned the Green Beret before I shared with her what I’d actually experienced of an unconventional nature. I hadn’t considered the negative mental effect telling the truth would have on her, thinking she would be happy to at last be aware of what being a Green Beret truly meant in all aspects of its secret, unconventional nature.  After learning of the dark side of guerrilla warfare, special demolitions, interrogation methods and operations that ignored, even defied the International Law of Land Warfare, particularly assassination and terrorism, Kate was emotionally blown away.  One day in the Spring of 1984 she blurted out, “You are not the man I married!” and she had never been so right.  This way of life, though foreign and distasteful to most, was what made my adrenaline flow as nothing else could.”  This confession is interesting, because what we are impressed with in the initial narrative is the integrity of the author, who appears to always consider the higher ethical framework as a part of his daily command.

In the Dedication page of this book, Marvin notes at the end, “This book of truth was begun in 1984, the year I accepted the Lord Jesus Christ as my Personal Saviour”.  This piece of information is the most interesting slant on the narrative given by Dan Marvin, for this confession of faith was made 18 years after the incident with the CIA which almost got him and his men assassinated, when he aborted one of their missions.  It is intriguing that the entire story which he relates from memory and interviews and written documentation was done by a man, now a Christian, looking backward to those days when he tried to maintain high ethics, while not having a higher authority than his own conscience and his loyalty to the Special Forces organization of which he was a key part.

Marvin, who by virtue of believing in Jesus Christ, who sits in heavenly places, has a changed perspective of what is required of man.  For he later notes, that after becoming a Christian he started to view the men he worked with in the past with higher expectations than he would have done in fact, when he was an unsaved Special Forces leader of an A Team.  And therein lies a quandary of every Christian trying to understand his former way of thinking; what standards does God actually apply to the reality of the motives and understanding of truth of that version of us in the past?

On page 411, Dan Marvin says, “I had kept silent about “questionable” activities I was involved in, and, in particular, the facts  surrounding the time in early June of 1966 when the CIA decided to kill me and my men, as well as the time Master Sergeant J. H. and I met with the Mafia don in the vicinity of Boston, and were offered a job to work for him as a “hit team”.  “You won’t have to kill any cop,” he told us.  Sadly, thinking back to that day in 1964, I know now that if I had not been married, I would have seriously considered his job offer.  After all, I rationalized, it’s all right to do it for Uncle Sam, why not the Mafia, which, to my understanding, Uncle uses for jobs here in the States?  My mentality at the time was geared toward doing what was necessary to achieve victory-right or wrong, legal or illegal.  Thank God I no longer feel that way.”

He then describes how his daughter Danilee was instrumental in leading him to the Lord on January 29, 1984.  He adds, “That very day I no longer feared “them” sending anyone –  anyone like me –  to kill me for not holding my silence.  I would fear only the Lord from that day to this.”  Many a man has his wife and children to thank, for being the restraining force in his life from going deeper into darkness, and for being the means which God uses to turn their heart towards God.

So let us get back to the title of this post, A President’s Fantasy Is A Soldier’s Curse.  The central point around which Expendable Elite:  One Soldier’s Journey Into Covert Warfare turns is summed up in the following words on page 307, and elsewhere in this book.  I quote in part, “The yellow represents known VC sanctuaries.”….General Johnson, in an angry tone, interrupted again, “Remove them from the map, Colonel, the President of the United States has told the American People that Cambodia does not permit its territory to be used by the enemy.”

So here we had the situation of our United States military men during the Vietnam conflict, who operated in dangerous combat conditions, being told that their maps were not to reflect the actual reality of enemy strongholds. On page 310, we read, “When General Johnson departed, not a one of us offered to shake his hand or so much as said a word of farewell to him.  In my mind, General Johnson was a living example of a lack of integrity and courage within the military hierarchy from General Westmoreland all the way to the White House.  The extent to which subterfuge was and would yet be used to satisfy immoral political purpose was an obvious evil perpetrated by those in power at the pleasure of our President. American Embassy and CIA leadership would steer that course with full knowledge it would lead to the killing and maiming of South Vietnamese combatants and innocent civilians alike.  Americans and other allies too would be sacrificed in this, a global farce and a tragedy.”

He follows this with, In his book, “A Soldier’s Reports” General Westmoreland wrote, “The enemy’s obvious use of Cambodia as a sanctuary and refusal of Washington authorities to allow me to do anything about it was frustrating.”  Why then, knowing the facts, didn’t General Westmoreland resign and tell the American people the truth rather than be a part of the power structure that knowingly aided and abetted the enemy?  Pure and simple:  No honor, no guts!

So who was placed in the position of conscience to reprove this fantasy of the Commander-in-Chief, President Johnson, who was endangering our troops and assisting the enemy?  As history would reveal, it was Daniel Marvin, as commander of a Green Beret A team on the border of Vietnam and Cambodia, in the heart of dangerous territory, who would speak the needed words.  He was given the assignment to assassinate the Crown Prince of Cambodia, and to make it appear that the Viet Cong were responsible.

Note that Marvin did not turn down the assignment; he agreed to this mission on one condition.  This is summarized on page 259, at the start of Chapter 12: Mission:  Assassinate A Prince, saying, As I turned to exit the command bunker, with Major Le close behind me, I looked CIA agent Walter Mackem in the eyes and told him, “You can tell your ‘highest authority” just what I told you.  If President Johnson insists the enemy be permitted to have their sanctuaries inside Cambodia, I refuse to send my people to risk their lives to kill Prince Sihanouk.”  Major Le smiled.  Mackem glowered at me, turned and went down the stairs in front of us to join Lieutenant Strait who would escort the agent to his waiting helicopter.  Before he had gone two paces toward the chopper with John, he turned, and glared and shouted out to me, “You can’t fight the system, Captain, because you know you can’t win.”

This one condition was not met, and on page 302, Marvin comments on the aftermath of his decision to abort a CIA mission.  He says, “I kept hoping for a miraculous change of military strategy that would allow my people to remain here with Major Le and his people for the duration.  I naively figured that at some point in time the higher command would wake up and discover that what we were doing here worked and should be copied throughout South Vietnam, not erased.  I wanted so much for my low regard for CIA covert operations to be wrong and I yearned to learn that the CIA had nothing to do with that ARVN Regiment breathing death down our necks.  But, I knew in my heart that what we’d lived through right here in An Phu was an example of the terrible reality of high level CIA, Embassy and White House skullduggery.  It was not, as the ‘company’ would want to pass it off, a crazed CIA renegade’s one time foray into international assassinations and subterfuge that could send a 1,500 man ARVN Regiment with orders to attack and take an US Army Special Forces Camp as an act of retribution.”

Marvin’s on page 297, says,  “It was that very moment, the time we were rescued by a South Vietnamese General from the wrath of our own government, that I knew what it meant to be a part of “the expendable elite.”  It is no wonder that we lost the war!”  This short post, remembering an event which occurred fifty years ago, was brought to remembrance on this Veteran’s Day because truly, A President’s Fantasy Is A Soldier’s Curse.

The Expendable Elite:  One Soldier’s Journey Into Covert Warfare” by Lieutenant Colonel USASF (Ret.) is a 502 page book which has 3 forewords, one introduction, fifteen chapters, an Epilogue with 5 parts, a publisher’s afterword, maps, appendices, photographs, an addendum and a postscript.  In this fascinating narrative, there are many levels on which this book can be reviewed.  In my next post, I am going to tackle the “steam roller” operation of the CIA which involved a lawsuit against the author and the publisher of this book.

Happy Veterans Day to all those who served honorably in the military, and especially those who attempted to do extremely difficult missions which had aspects which were troubling to them as individuals with a conscience.