Lieutenant Colonel Terrence Lakin yesterday returned to the Pentagon clinic where he has been stationed but this time he was met by his commander, Colonel Gordon Roberts, who read Lakin his rights and revoked his pass access to the building. Lakin’s computer is also reportedly being seized and the military case for his court martial being prepared.
Greeley native Lakin made a splash last week in announcing he was unconvinced that Pres. Obama was a natural-born citizen of the United States and legitimate Commander in Chief. Lakin said he would refuse all military orders, including orders to report Monday to Ft. Campbell in Kentucky from which he was to deploy to Afghanistan, until he sees more evidence than is presently available documenting that Pres. Obama was born in Hawaii. Lakin is the highest ranking member of the active-duty military to subscribe to the so-called birther conspiracy, which holds that the birth records of the president are illegitimate or falsified. Many birthers, such as Colorado talk-radio host Peter Boyles, believe there is strong evidence that suggests the president was born in Kenya.
The American Patriot Foundation, which is backing Col Lakin in his stance, issued a release detailing this morning’s developments:
Washington, D.C., April 13, 2010. Army doctor Lt. Col. Terrence Lakin yesterday met with his brigade commander, Col. Gordon R. Roberts, who proceeded to read LTC Lakin his Miranda rights, and who informed LTC Lakin he had the “right to remain silent” because LTC Lakin is about to be charged with serious crimes. Col. Roberts was at age 19 awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor, the only recipient of the nation’s highest honor currently on active duty in the Army.
LTC Lakin had previously been ordered in writing to report yesterday to Ft. Campbell, KY and then on to deploy for his second tour of duty in Afghanistan. Lakin refused to obey these orders and instead came to work yesterday morning at the Pentagon. Late yesterday afternoon he was confronted by his brigade commander.
Before the meeting was over, LTC Lakin’s Pentagon Access Pass had been revoked, and his laptop computer was set to be confiscated.
The message to LTC Lakin is clear; through official channels, he was informed yesterday that he will shortly be court-martialled for crimes (specifically, missing movement and conduct unbecoming an officer) that for others has led to lengthy imprisonment at hard labor.
Lakin has announced in a Youtube video that has now been viewed more than 110,000 times that he considers it his duty to refuse to obey orders that would be illegal if President Obama is ineligible to hold office.
There have been a handful of soldiers in the last year who have refused to deploy for the same reason. Their cases have inspired little confidence. In July, Major Stefan Frederick Cook volunteered to deploy to Afghanistan and then refused and hired infamous birther lawyer Orly Taitz to represent him in a federal suit he filed against the president. But soldiers who volunteer for deployment are under no order. Cook’s request to deploy was merely rescinded. Lakin has been ordered to deploy and so his refusal demands disciplinary response. Indeed, Lakin had been warned off his decision not to deploy by sympathetic lawyers but he seems intent to play a game of chicken with the president.
“If they court-martial [Lakin], it will be huge,” said American Patriot Foundation Spokesperson Margaret Hemenway. “They will risk making a martyr of him.”
In September, U.S. District Court Judge Clay Land tossed a similar claim placed by Capt. Connie Rhodes, another military doctor and another birther represented by Taitz.
“In a remarkable shifting of the traditional legal burden of proof, the plaintiff in this case unashamedly alleges that defendant has the burden to prove his ‘natural born’ status,” Land wrote at the time. “Any middle school civics student would readily recognize the irony of abandoning fundamental principles upon which our country was founded in order to purportedly ‘protect and preserve’ those very principles.”
Land said that Americans and their political parties had spent hundreds of millions of dollars on the presidential campaign in 2008 when great teams of opposition researchers combed through Obama’s records and found nothing to substantiate these claims. He said Congress this year has had ample time to bring about impeachment proceedings. It has not. Indeed, Land was disgusted by the thinness of the case brought by Taitz and said he would sanction her if she were to ever again bring a similarly frivolous complaint to his court.
Lakin spokesperson Hemenway appeared on the Peter Boyles radio show Monday. Hemenway and Boyles voiced support for Lakin in his “search for the truth” and looked forward to the “showdown” or what Boyles called a “reckoning” for the president.
Other observers feel Lakin has thrown away a distinguished career of service, hypnotized in effect by the anti-Obama theories that have cropped up on right-wing talk radio shows since Obama took office– that Obama is a closet Muslim, that he was born in Kenya, that he would confiscate firearms across the country, that he would ban all sport fishing, et cetera.
“Lakin has spent a lot of time trying to get people in the military to help him with this inquiry and all he got was a lot of sympathy,” said Hemenway on Boyles show. “No one says ‘I will try to find out if the president is lawfully your commander in chief.’ No one wants to do that.”
“We’ll see tomorrow if [Lakin] gets sent home of if they put him in an office with a phone on the desk or if they just put him in an office and make him stare at a wall, which is one of the other gimmicks that can be done,” said Boyles. “But the story has picked up steam. I don’t know, this is headed for a showdown.There’s a theme in history that there’s always a reckoning.”