MSNBC Analyst Malcolm Nance Goes to 'Fight' in Ukraine, Ends up Punching Himself in the Face

A few things about Malcolm Nance’s life are not in dispute. He’s 61. He was in the Navy for 20 years (1981-2001) and retired as a Senior Chief. I didn’t have to check Wikipedia to know that; Nance lets everyone who doesn’t ask know that. He’s also a loudmouth and talks about himself — a lot.

He recently left MSNBC as an analyst to join the “fight” in Ukraine. In his words, he was “done talking.” Nance promptly did a lot of talking, and some more talking. A lot of what comes out of his mouth seems to be a lot of puff and nonsense.

There’s also the optics. When Nance resurfaced in Ukraine, he posed for a photo of himself in his “combat kit.” Combat vets, who have actually seen combat, were quick to mock him for what he was wearing, what he wasn’t wearing  and what he didn’t do. He had empty magazine pockets, and an unseated magazine in his rifle. Nance’s explanation was: he was too busy “clearing his weapon” to notice.

His photo, it seemed, is a poser-poster. I’m thinking it might be perfect as the back-cover art for his next book of fiction.

I did some searching on the “internets” about Senior Chief Nance. In one long interview with C-SPAN’s Brian Lamb, Nance was asked a lot of interesting questions, and some silly ones, too.

Lamb asked Nance if he had ever “killed a person.”

Nance answered: (emphasis mine)

“Well, I certainly have seen a person killed. I fought – I mean, I was in Beirut in 1983. I was in the subsequent combat, Naval combat against the shore positions there. I took part in the Libyan air raid and many other operations. The first Gulf War, I was on the U.S. Tripoli when we hit a sea mine. That wasn’t half as bad as being near a mine. I went over to USS Missouri and guided drones to shell Iraqi positions.

Once I went ashore with EOD and then with the Saudi forces, there were a lot of dead there….

Have I directly fired on individuals? Yes. I have. Now, there’s a big difference between when you use a rifle in a defensive purpose. Half the time, you’re not aiming. You’re trying to, but the enemy moves about. And I was doing mainly suppressive fires in the first Gulf War.

But I’ve many times put my fingers on the map in Bosnia.”

Nance’s answer to Lamb seems to be more of a resume super-fluffer than an actual answer. Nonetheless, Nance has lots of supporters and acolytes on the left. Not so much from the veteran community. Most vets who have commented about Nance think he a posing clown. There is evidence that that is in fact, the case.

A Navy Senior Chief (E-8), Airborne Mission Supervisor, cryptologist (Arabic) and SPECWAR operative named Peter Morlock wrote an article about Nance. The article was like a character nuke. It turned Nance’s BS into pink mist. In short, no one in the Navy wanted anything to do with Nance. While Morlock was with Naval Reconnaissance Support Activity (NRSA) in Rota, Spain, he was told directly by his commanding officer that if Malcom Nance showed his face anywhere near NRSA, Morlock was authorized to physically remove Nance.

Morlock mentions that Nance was transferred to SERE school as an “instructor” because no one wanted Nance. But Nance has fluffed his time at SERE has evidence of his badassery. In fact, Nance instructed no one in SpecOps or any Aviators. I strongly suggest that everyone read Morlock’s article. Morlock is (rightfully) incensed by Nance’s chest-thumping, and particularly bothered by Nance wearing a combat action ribbon, when Nance almost certainly never saw direct action.

After Nance posed for his “I’m in Ukraine fighting, I’m not talking” photo, he did an interview on NBC to share some ‘Nance-speak.’ In an incredible (and hilarious) video, Nance (sans combat kit) is seen donning a bright yellow jacket and talking about his favorite subject — Nance.

During the interview, there are (apparently) incoming munitions. Nance looks up and down, and sniffs the air for clues of what ordnance are “incoming.” He yells “Standby” (whatever that means) multiple times.  At one point, he gets a super-serious look on his face and pulls his arm up to check… his watch.

Nance then tells his interviewer and the audience that, by looking at his watch, he can tell the “missiles” are coming from “East-Southeast” which, according to Nance, he instantly translates into  “caliber anti-ship missiles.” Nance is sitting in a park…in a city. Watch the video. It’s hilarious and sad at the same time — and resembles an episode of “The Office.”

I was never in the military. My dad and son are both combat vets, for whatever that is worth. What I do know? But I have two eyes, and I can read. I don’t even need to stay at a Holiday Inn to know that Malcolm Nance is a posing clown.

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