March 11, 2007 | FORT BENNING, Ga. — “This is not right,” said Master Sgt. Ronald Jenkins, who has been ordered to Iraq even though he has a spine problem that doctors say would be damaged further by heavy Army protective gear. “This whole thing is about taking care of soldiers,” he said angrily. “If you are fit to fight you are fit to fight. If you are not fit to fight, then you are not fit to fight.”
As the military scrambles to pour more soldiers into Iraq, a unit of the Army’s 3rd Infantry Division at Fort Benning, Ga., is deploying troops with serious injuries and other medical problems, including GIs who doctors have said are medically unfit for battle. Some are too injured to wear their body armor, according to medical records. (emphasis mine)
The entire building, constructed between the world wars, often smells like greasy carry-out. Signs of neglect are everywhere: mouse droppings, belly-up cockroaches, stained carpets, cheap mattresses.
This is the world of Building 18, not the kind of place where Duncan expected to recover when he was evacuated to Walter Reed Army Medical Center from Iraq last February with a broken neck and a shredded left ear, nearly dead from blood loss. But the old lodge, just outside the gates of the hospital and five miles up the road from the White House, has housed hundreds of maimed soldiers recuperating from injuries suffered in the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Now Republicans including their dear leader is all in a rush to appear as though somehow this was just some back alley bureaucratic foul-up. That being the case why is Bush with Republican support in Congress and the chorus of usual fanatical right-wing pundits backing Bush’s plan for continued escalation. This is what Bush said about the treatment of our military, “We have a moral obligation to provide the best possible care and treatment to the men and women who have served our country,” the president said. “They deserve it and they are going to get it.”
Bush, like all conservatives well trained in the use of the meaningless sound bite thinks of the American military not as part of our national defense, but as cannon fodder for their policies and an extension of their rabid authoritatrian world view:
I’m glad the smear sites made a big deal out of it. Now we can all know who was with the anti-military internet crowd. We’ll post the names of all who support the smear merchants on
billoreilly.com. So check with us.
UC SANTA CRUZ HATES OUR TROOPS
By Michelle Malkin · April 11, 2006 09:59 PM
Here’s how they show support for the military at UC Santa Cruz (hat tip: Brian Maloney and reader Allen) – via the Santa Cruz News Sentinel
SNOW: You know, again, so I think what John Kerry’s comments did was reiterate the fact that Democrats tend to have a view of the military that is not always fully respectful and even when they say they’re supporting them, they’re undercutting them. I mean they not only undercut them by refusing to fund the ongoing operations in Afghanistan and Iraq (remember Senator Kerry voting for it before he voted against it?) but also constantly trying to undermine public confidence in that military by describing defeat what people on the ground see as hard-won victory. These people — don’t you think, Rush, these people — deserve our respect?
“Every time (the liberals) take over the White House, they do social experiments with the military, they undermine the military, they cut the military’s budget. Why don’t you liberals just admit it? You don’t like the military. It’s all phony when you say you support the troops. ( One of the biggest cuts in modern military man-power was done by Dick Cheney)
from Hannity & Colmes (11/1/06)
(Newt) Gingrich said, “It’s clear that the Howard Dean, Nancy Pelosi, John Kerry wing of the Democratic Party has a visceral loathing for the American military and for, frankly, America as a country in the world. Their whole approach is to blame us for what, in fact, our enemies do.” Gingrich added, “I think it tells you how deep the sickness is in the left wing of the Democratic Party.“
(All emphasis in excerpts mine). The Right likes to dismiss one simple fact that liberals or the left as they like to say frequently make. There is a difference between the troops and the Right’s policies. They’ve been fairly successful at selling the public the meme that their ill thought out and obviously disastrous policies and the military are one and the same, practically Siamese twins joined at the hip. The military’s mission is to defend America, not act on the latest bizarre goals thought up by the Defense Policy Council .
From 2003 to 2004, the average incomes of the bottom 99 percent of households grew by less than 3 percent, after adjusting for inflation. In contrast, the average incomes of the top one percent of households experienced a jump of more than 18 percent, after adjusting for inflation. (Census data show that real median income fell between 2003 and 2004. Average income is pulled up by gains at the top of the income spectrum; much of the 2.3 percent rise among the bottom 99 percent seems to largely reflect gains by households in the top ten percent of the income spectrum. In contrast, trends in median income capture the experience of households in the middle of the income spectrum.)
The top 1 percent of households (those with annual incomes above about $315,000 in 2004) garnered 53 percent of the income gains in 2004….
…The share of total U.S. income that the top one percent of households received in 2004 was greater than the share it received in any prior year since 1929, except for 1999 and 2000.
Conservatives will continue this upward redistribution because it works. You see if some folks start to point out that the hardest working people in America are rewarded at a small percent of what some guy in a three thousand dollar suit is paying himself then you’re a left radical. The reality is that without a permanent class of wage slaves these guys couldn’t make billions. No billionaire or millionaire in the world has become same without the toil and brain power of those just making a living wage. That is not capitalism, that’s a broken down system of permanent wage inequity. Of course they like it that way. Envy isn’t called for, by all means the multi-millionaires and billionaires should enjoy their good luck, but its not unreasonable that some of those huge profits be redistributed through progressive taxation toward the people that made that those fortunes possible.
General Eaton: “Republican Congress worst thing that’s happened to US Army and Marine Corps”