Triple Amputee Iraq Vet Blasts Obama: “You Have No Idea What it Means to be Poor”

Daniel Greenfield, a Shillman Journalism Fellow at the Freedom Center, is a New York writer focusing on radical Islam. He is completing a book on the international challenges America faces in the 21st century.


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Senior Airman Ret. Brian Kolfage lost both his legs and an arm in Iraq in a rocket attack. He served on Gabrielle Giffords’ Veterans Advisory Committee and received the Pat Tilman Scholar Award.

On September 11, 2004, on his second deployment in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom, he lost both legs and an arm after a rocket attack. The 107mm rocket shell exploded about three feet from Airman Kolfage, who was thrown several feet in the air and landed against a wall of sandbags. Still conscious, he began calling for help. Thirty-six hours after being struck by the blast of that mortar, he was airlifted to Walter Reed Medical Center, where his new life would begin.

The fact that no one with his level of amputation had ever been able to walk independently didn’t discourage him. Brian walked out of Walter Reed 11 months after being injured. To this day, he is still the most severely wounded Airman to survive any war.

Brian is in his fourth year at the University of Arizona’s School of Architecture, where he has risen among the ranks to the top of his class with an overall 3.8 GPA. He never let the daunting tasks of drawing without his dominant right hand affect his ability to perform. With persistence and determination, he has beat all the odds stacked against him and recently was awarded one of the most prestigious military scholarship’s, the Pat Tillman Scholar Award.

Kolfage was subjected to unbelievably ugly harassment online by leftists. Now he has written a strong letter to Obama about Iraq and Income Inequality.

 Mr. Obama, even though we have extreme opposite views, we have one thing in common, we both attended school in Hawaii. However, that’s where the similarities end.  You see, as you attended your exclusive, private school, I would ride my bike to Kaimuki High School in one of the roughest areas in Hawaii.  Every morning I would ride past Punahou, the exclusive private school you attended and I would notice all of the Bentleys, Maseratis, and fancy foreign cars that all the kids were dropped off in; wow it must have been extremely rough in Hawaii living that life, right?

I could only imagine what it was like to have that kind of money. Fortunately for you, not many people are aware of the school that you and the upper class citizens of Hawaii attended. The tuition to attend your exclusive, private school was more than it cost me to obtain a Bachelor’s degree in Architecture from the University of Arizona. You talk a big game when it comes to financial inequality, yet I’m quite sure you have no idea what it’s truly like to have to sacrifice. You were one of the elitist children in Hawaii.

After High School, we each chose very different paths. You were able to attend America’s finest Ivy League schools, while I pursued a career in the military, in hopes of earning a degree. What we have in life as children usually helps to set the tone for how we achieve success later in life. I worked to get where I am today, while it was handed to you…. Mr. Inequality.

I volunteered to go to Iraq on both of my deployments, and the second time I begged to go even after I wasn’t selected.  During that second deployment, I was ultimately placed on the team where I would lose both legs and my dominant arm.  Even though many Americans were against the war in Iraq, I’ve never asked myself if it was worth it after losing 3 of my limbs.

I am frequently reminded of the many young Iraqi children who would beg me for water, food, and toys while I was stationed in Iraq.  Children, who in all aspects made the poorest of poor American children look rich. You have no idea what it really means to be poor. It’s laughable that you, who would have no idea what it means to be poor would so frequently play the inequality card.

While I was in Iraq, our mission was to liberate the Iraqi citizens from a tyrant and that’s what we did. Never forget, it was your people who sent us there, like the Clintons, John Kerry, Nancy Pelosi & Carl Levin.  However, since the day you busted onto the scene you’ve been talking about ending the war and pulling the troops out, not understanding the blood sweat and tears that so many Americans and Iraqis invested.

And with complete disregard for every life sacrificed, every limb lost, and every broken family, you bailed on our mission to pursue an agenda that was completely centered on your re-election in 2012. If you didn’t bail on Iraq you were worried that you may not get re-elected and that’s a fact. Just before elections on Oct 11, 2012 you said “Al Qaeda is on the run and Osama bin Laden is dead.”

Look at Iraq now, they are in shambles and the Al Qaeda flag is flying freely.  Clearly, you’re unfit for duty as a Commander in Chief. You put your own agenda ahead of America’s agenda, and now you have single handedly ruined and destroyed nearly everything we gained in Iraq. It clearly means nothing to you, because the only thing that you’ve personally invested in that country was a promise to bail on them. However, people like me gave limbs, friends have died, and we’ve watched families destroyed by war’s aftermath.

I’m not placing blame on you for the war, I’m placing blame on you for destroying what we’ve worked so hard to build. You’re not a leader, you’re a community organizer. A leader would have stood up regardless of the situation and put America’s agenda first and that is ensuring a secure Iraq even after 10 years of war. But, you placed Barack first, just as Robert Gates confirmed in his new book.

I can’t help but think of those poor kids who I gave water and toys to 11 years ago. They’re probably 15 or 16 years old now, and I can only imagine what it’s like for them to have their nation being torn apart yet again; all because of your poor leadership qualities.

Regardless of why we went to Iraq, its water under the bridge. We went there, we waged war, and we not only owed it to our KIA’s but we owed it to the citizens of Iraq. We invaded their country and turned it upside down, and you bailed on them. You bailed on our soldiers and you’ve wasted every death and every limb, it’s all for nothing.  And to make matters worse you blame others for your failures.

I’ve only quoted part of the letter, but it’s interesting to see someone who knows that environment call out Obama on being what he is, another liberal rich kid preaching the cant of an equality that he never actually lived.

Senior Airman Ret. Brian Kolfage worked to get ahead. Obama was born with a silver spoon in his mouth that he has minimized in order to make readers feel sorry for him in his endless memoirs about growing up with a confused identity.

And as bad as what Obama did in Iraq, what he did in Afghanistan was even worse.

  • darnellecheri

    Sr. Airman Ret. Brian Kolfage: A very grateful nation thanks you for your service and sacrifice. No, your sacrifices were not in vain. I was in contact with many servicemen during the war and they would politely beg me to send them shoes, clothes, sports gear, and toys for those Iraqi kids. They told me it was extremely risky to transport them to the village kids — as the enemy knew Americans would bring items for kids and they set ambushes — but still they went. Still they asked. Still they gave. They inspired me. America inspires me, still.

  • Q

    The sovereign Iraqi Government rejected the terms of what the United States thought was a reasonable status of forces agreement. Disregarding the wishes of the Iraqi Government would have delegitimized the very government we facilitated the establishment of.

    • blert

      You are quite uninformed. Maliki was entirely okay with extending the SOFA — doing so in exactly the same manner as done before: an EXECUTIVE ORDER under his own signature.
      Barry INSISTED that Maliki run it through the Iraqi legislature.
      The US State Department and the DoD both advised Barry that to do so would be to kill the SOFA.
      Now that Maliki is no longer swayed by the Americans, he’s delegitimized himsef with the Sunnis and the Kurds — and many others. (Christian Iraqis are fleeing en masse.)
      &&&
      Something like the Iraqi travail is underway in Kabul.
      Barry is the only one to know the inside story. But, it’s very apparent that he, himself, has rejected Karzai — pretty much from the outset. The glad-handing of GWB that Karzai loved ended five-years ago. (W used to phone Karzai every Tuesday — probably immediately after his NSC confab.)
      Barry wants out. He also does not want to be fingered for wanting us out. This entire drama has been orchestrated so that the onus falls on Karzai.
      Just like Baghdad, Barry made Karzai jump through hoops to get the legislature to sign off. He probably assumed that the deal would die — just like it did with Baghdad.
      When he realized that the loya jirga was taking the deal… Barry shifted into Plan B… and started rubbing Karzai raw.
      That was easily done via cutting him out of our pleasantries with the Taliban — in Doha.
      Barry is a MASTER manipulator. That’s his one true gift. It’s the gift that keeps on grifting.
      Look for it.

    • Scott Snoopy

      the current White House occupant did not attend nor did he have his lackey hillary attend one meeting on the SOFA…they let the issue linger and blamed Iraq…The White House occupant wasted all of the lives lost in Iraq simply to be able to pull out and use this as a bonus point to re-elect his worthless ass.

  • Dyer’s Eve

    A very eloquent and focussed missive, Senior Airman Ret. Brian Kolfage. May you succeed at every future endeavour. Live long, live strong! One of the best summaries of Obama I’ve read. Like all commie rich kids, Obama expects the public to make sacrifices he wouldn’t make in a million years. The ivory tower is swaying. Obama. Your day will come.

  • jakespoon

    God bless you in your endeavors, Airman. You seem to have our President pegged.

  • objectivefactsmatter

    I’m speechless.

  • David Freeman

    A mercenary got blown up, big deal. He wasn’t serving America, he was serving kikes who made ca$h from his war crimes and injury.

    • Scott Snoopy

      oh the delusions of the paranoid conspiracy crazed…you better hide under your tinfoil hat..bye now…

    • Notalibfool

      Go see a psychiatrist. Antisemitism is a sign of mental illness.

      I suppose you also believe the LIE that Obama was an underprivileged child and has struggled through life.

      As a leftist you have sunk to new lows. Chairman ObaMAO would be so proud of you.

  • Scott Snoopy

    this SrA’s comments are something that all of the liberal progressive RINOs in the congress should read…

    • carpe diem 36

      they will not understand it and will continue to support obama.

  • Hirightnow

    PSTD.
    Seek counseling, boy.

  • laura r

    the letter should be sent to micheal savage, mark levin & jeff kuhner. should be read on air. obamas biggest problem in life was that he imagined he was followed in dept stores.

  • Sean Mei

    First, I thank Sr. Airman Ret. Brian Kolfage for his service.

    Secondly, can I ask a question? Did Obama say those horrible things about him? Is that woman who did say those horrible things about him real? Does the union she represent a liberal/democratic union? Or how about the Facebook page. Did anyone stop to really think about how this came about or who started before letters to the President got sent?

  • ghhshirley

    Sounds like he is suffering from brain damage too. Poor guy.