Afghanistan Vet to Receive Medal of Honor

Clinton Romesha will join Michelle Obama at State of the Union
By Matt Cantor,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 11, 2013 7:38 AM CST
Afghanistan Vet to Receive Medal of Honor
A military aid holds the Medal of Honor during a ceremony in the East Room of the White House in Washington, Wednesday, May 16, 2012.   (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

Today, President Obama will award Clinton Romesha the Medal of Honor, making the former Army staff sergeant just "the fourth living recipient to be awarded the Medal of Honor for actions in Iraq or Afghanistan," the White House notes, per USA Today. Romesha was among 53 soldiers at Combat Outpost Keating who faced an onslaught of as many as 400 Taliban fighters on Oct. 3, 2009.

He helped lead the effort to regain the outpost following the attack, during which eight Americans were killed as US forces fought for more than 12 hours to eventual success, reports CNN. (It adds this stunning detail: Days later, the US left and then bombed the outpost, and a subsequent Pentagon probe "concluded that the camp had no strategic or tactical value.") Now, Romesha—whose story is told in a book by CNN's Jake Tapper—is set to attend the State of the Union address as Michelle Obama's guest. (Click to read about last year's guest of the first lady.)

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