Washington Lies About Our Troops

by James Glaser
September 9, 2003

In every war we have had since the one in Vietnam, the slogan is, "Support Our Troops!" Almost all Americans do, except for those Americans in the White House and the Pentagon. One would believe that those senior officers in charge of our military would be moving heaven and earth for their troops, but the truth is, these Generals are positioning themselves for good jobs in the Defense Industry.

If a General can prove that he knows how to play ball, he will get a good high paying job when he retires. That is why the Generals in Iraq claim they don't want more troops over there. They are showing the Defense Industry that they can save money even if it does cost some lives. Lose a Soldier and the Pentagon only has to pay out $10,000, but to move in enough troops to do the job right, will cost billions. Plus it will make the Secretary of Defense and the President look bad. Right there is the real reason that we are not taking the advice of every retired General about troop strength. The word passes down real fast, about what Washington wants the Generals to say.

Almost all Generals were never in their lives, one of the Troops. They have no idea of what it is to be on that bottom rung of the ladder and so they blow off their soldiers requests like they were never made.

Just exactly like this Soldier in the following story, I had to buy ice from the Vietnamese. Many, many nights my unit had to sleep out under the stars and the rain. My Parents sent me food and blankets and socks too.

I know most Americans just assume that because we are the richest nation on earth, we treat our soldiers with only the best. That is not true, it wasn't true when I was in the Marines and it isn't true now. Washington and the President do not support our troops. President Bush will thank the families of those killed fighting his war, but when it comes to spending money on the enlisted men and women, he does not have the time of day for them.

Dennis Baumis is in the National Guard in Iraq. You can tell in the letter he wrote that his moral has hit bottom and he is mad about the treatment he has received. In every war the enlisted man lives like a dog, he gives his all for his country, and those in charge treat him like dirt. Praise for dying, nothing for doing your job.

On the other hand, the money is about to start flowing and you know those with friends in the right places in Washington are not going to do a thing for our country without getting a lot of money for their work. Corporations have no Patriotism, heck many Corporations no longer even pay taxes, but they still get the contracts.

That 87 billion that President Bush wants to spend on his war is the whole reason we are at war. It is all about the MONEY!

Soldier: Walk in my boots, then tell me I'm complaining
by Dennis Baumis, For the Journal and Courier

I'm tired of reading letters telling soldiers to quit whining and do their job. People who are writing these letters have no clue as to what is going on over here.

I am with the 1st 293rd Infantry Battalion and we went into Iraq on March 26. During the war we dealt with hot drinking water, sand storms, lack of sleep, living in a hole, no showers, scorpions, snakes and wild dogs—not to mention the enemy. We dealt with these elements because we were in the middle of a combat zone during a war.

The problem is, after the hostilities ended we were treated like dirt. We were swept under the rug and forgotten. We were given meaningless jobs to keep us gainfully employed until they could find us a go-home date.

We are infantry and they gave us military police jobs when we had several military police units sitting around doing nothing. And that's not to mention that these same MP units came into Iraq after the war was over.

For several weeks after the war ended we still had no means of cooling our drinking water. We had no tents or buildings to sleep in and no hot food to eat. But everyone else around us had all of these things. We had to pay money out of our own pockets to buy coolers and ice from the Iraqi people. That was the only way we could keep our water cool. Every time we complained through our "chain of command," the reply was always the same: "Suck it up and drive on."

I could go on and on with my complaints, but I don't have the time. The bottom line is the Army doesn't take care of their troops; or maybe it's just the battalion I'm in.

Please don't write letters telling us to quit whining, because you have no clue.

Spc. Baumis, a Lafayette resident, is a member of the 1-293rd Infantry Battalion of the Indiana Army National Guard, stationed at Tallil Air Base in Iraq.

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