Order of medals must be retained

The new Distinguished Warfare Medal, meant to honor the relentless perseverance, skill and talent of those operating out of harm’s way, is a great idea.

Veterans’ groups agree. But many vets believe the medal – which could be awarded to intelligence analysts and drone pilots – should not rate higher than battlefield honors such as the Bronze Star and Purple Heart. As it stands now, the new medal would outrank those two. That’s why it’s good to know the order may change; legislation to alter the planned order of precedence has been introduced in the House.

“It’s absolutely necessary to ensure that combat valor awards are not diminished in any way,” said Rep. Duncan Hunter, R-Calif., a combat veteran who served in Iraq and Afghanistan.

We agree. We hope the Pentagon will, too.