Last Friday, five days ago....three Americans took down a Jihadist guy on a train to Paris. It's fairly big news in Europe and people are amazed of the event.
Well....I sat last night and watched German network news. They had a 90-second piece over what happened in Paris on Monday morning. The French are pretty quick about recognizing bravery, grit and valor. So they wrapped up a little ceremony for the three guys and gave them each the French Legion of Honor by French President Hollande. It basically took less than forty-eight hours to determine it was necessary.....write up the words....and get the three guys to Paris for the ceremony.
One of the three guys is a active duty Air Force airman. A second guy is a reservist in the Air Force National Guard.
Having seen the reality of how medals work in the US.....I'm guessing that each will get some Air Force medal for their heroic action, but it'll be anywhere from three to six months before it gets awarded.
Some US Air Force Captain will sit down and interview the guys and get the words, and spend three weeks writing some type of draft version. Then six guys will whip out their pens and draft more. Then it'll go to some definite wording and get sent to the first approving guy. Then some Colonel will do his drafting on it. And then some general will draft on it. And finally it'll hit the Pentagon where six different folks will want to draft on it.
It's funny how things work. The French guys probably spent no more than sixty minutes of writing up the simplified wording, then mentioned something along the lines of fearlessness, mettle, daring and spirit. The French President looked it over and probably said that was fine, and that was the end of the discussion.
The truth of the matter is that you can sum up the five-minute in roughly forty words....then end it with summation of....when audacity mattered....these men were up for the job.