Marine veteran Jon Hammar enlisted in the service at age 18 and was deployed to Afghanistan and Iraq where his unit provided security for Afghanistan’s President Hamid Karzai, protected election polls and disrupted insurgent cells.
Via LaborUnionReport at Redstate:
According to one account, in Fallujah, Hammar’s battalion was hit hard, with 13 killed in action and more than 100 wounded.
Imagine surviving Iraq and Afghanistan only to be jailed a few years later in a notoriously awful Mexican prison, literally chained to a bed — on a ridiculous technicality. Since August, the 27 year old Hammar has been languishing in a Mexican jail in Matamoros, confined to solitary confinement and now is chained to his bed. The look of despair on this man’s face is heartbreaking.
An Iraq War veteran is being held in a Mexican jail, chained to his bed, his life continuously threatened, while his family is extorted for money…and our nation’s leaders appear impotent (or negligent) by their failure to help him.
After you’ve read the story below, please go to the White House petition and sign it to press the Obama Administration to start working to bring Jon Hammar home.
In early August, Hammar and McDonough embarked on a surfing trip to Costa Rica.
With their surfboards in tow, Hammar and McDonough made their way South. However, they didn’t get too far.
They made it to only the Mexican border. Hammar is in a Matamoros prison, where he spends much of his time chained to a bed and facing death threats from gangsters. He’s off the grid, for sure, in walking distance of the U.S. border. But it’s more of a black hole than a place to heal a troubled soul.
The reason might seem ludicrous. Hammar took a six-decade-old shotgun into Mexico. The .410 bore Sears & Roebuck shotgun once belonged to his great-grandfather. The firearm had been handed down through the generations, and it had become almost a part of Hammar, suitable for shooting birds and rabbits.
While some might argue, Hammar should have never taken his gun, he was complying with the law–or so he thought:
The pair had crossed the border and handed the paperwork for the weapon to Mexican officials, but police ended up impounding their RV and jailing the men, saying it was illegal to carry that type of gun. Hammar’s friend was later released because the gun did not belong to him.
Bill O’Reilly has taken up Hammar’s cause, and has been reporting on the case for the past couple of weeks. On The O’Reilly Factor, last Friday, he reported that “high level negotiations were taking place and there’s some optimism that Corporal Jon Hammar will soon be free.” He had on Rep Ileana Ros Lehtinen to discuss the case.
She said that according to the Mexican Ambassador she spoke with on the phone, the reason he is chained to the bed is because they had to move him from the general population to an area that is less secure – “so unsecure that they fear he will escape.”
O’Reilly asked how the Mexican Ambassador could justify this travesty, and Ros Lehtinen answered that the Mexican government is somewhat powerless in this case because as she says, “they believe they are under siege by the Mexican drug lords and they have ceded control to these gangsters..” She continued, “The folks who are administering this terrible prison are not the Mexican government, but these drug lords.”
She agreed with O’Reilly that the President of Mexico has the power and authority to release Hammar, but doesn’t have the guts to.
Please sign the White House petition to exert pressure on the Obama administration to demand that Mexico Authorities release Hammar immediately.
Total number of signatures on this petition as of Monday night, 11:35 pm: 19,033 and counting. 25,000 signatures are needed by January 06, 2013 for the request to be taken up by Obama. Help bring Jon Hammar home.
God willing, this Marine could be home in time for Christmas.