RIP Col. David Hackworth

The commentariat has lost one of its most unique members:

Retired Army Col. David Hackworth, one of the most decorated veterans in U.S. history who became a vocal advocate for military reform, died yesterday in Mexico at 74.

Hackworth returned from Vietnam as a strong critic of the war, later becoming a journalist and author of several best-selling books. He had written a weekly column for WorldNetDaily for seven years.

Hackworth was in Mexico for treatments of bladder cancer, which he had battled for some time.

I never met Col. Hackworth, but I always respected his opinions even when I disagreed with them. Unlike those of us who have never served in the military, Hackworth never forgot that grand geopolitical strategies depend entirely in the end on the individual soldier and he was their greatest advocate, constantly putting pressure on those he called “perfumed princes” to treat them fairly and give them what they need to do their job.

Back in the days when I watched more Fox, I always enjoyed his appearances there, as his casual black mocknecks and laconic air of being half-amused at the host’s questions was as individual as his column subjects. His column was one of those that set WND’s opinion page apart and it will be badly missed.

I hope that WND will be wise enough to find a milblogger to step in to fill Col. Hackworth’s large standard-issue boots instead of another clueless conservative du jour.