This is Supporting Our Troops?!
Once again, we see just how much supporting of the troops is really going on by the Iraq nightmare’s cheerleaders.
From Liberal Jarhead at Bring It On:
Who remembers Catch-22? In Joseph Heller’s novel, Catch-22 was the hook in the rules that made it impossible for flyers who were driven crazy by combat to be relieved from flying more missions. The way it went was that if you went crazy, you could be taken off flight status on request; but since it was supremely rational to want to stay alive, anyone who requested to be relieved was obviously not crazy, and anyone who didn’t ask to be taken off flight status would not be relieved because he hadn’t requested it.
In the modern version, Marines who develop disabling posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) should get psychological care as a result; but if their behavior and conduct are disturbed because they have PTSD, they are being kicked out without VA benefits, i.e. put on the street with no care for their PTSD, and if they don’t show behavioral problems, they aren’t disabled. As my wife Jan said when I told her about it, this is not okay. [emphasis mine]
I don’t know whether this is happening in other branches of the military too. If it is, shame on them. If not, good for them and shame on my beloved Corps.
A story in the 11/13/06 issue of the Marine Corps Times describes it in detail. What it boils down to is that in the cases of 1,019 Marines who have been kicked out for violating the Uniform Code of Military Justice (the UCMJ) after being in uniform for at least a year, serving combat tours in Iraq and/or Afghanistan, and getting in trouble after coming back with PTSD, the Marine Corps has taken the position that PTSD is not an excuse for misconduct because not everyone with PTSD breaks the rules. That is faulty reasoning – saying that if situation A doesn’t lead to outcome B in every case, then they aren’t connected, even if outcome B is much rarer in the absence of situation A.
In this case, a lot of good Marines, bona fide combat heroes, who never got into trouble before they went to war and experienced their traumas are now having problems with alcoholism and other drug abuse, anger management problems, conflicts with authority, and other classic symptoms of PTSD. When that happens, they often get kicked out with classifications of discharges that deny them VA benefits, even though they need ongoing psychiatric care for the very problems that led them to get into trouble. As Marine Captain James Weirick is quoted by the Times as saying, “People would be appalled if a guy came back and he had lost a leg, lost a limb, and then we say, ‘Oh, you had a DUI, so you’re going to have to give your prosthetic back.”
Read the rest here.
From Welcome to Pottersville:
Sometimes you have to dig deeply in the most obscure parts of a newspaper find nuggets of truth regarding the war in Iraq. This page is just such an example. It’s dedicated to giving a forum for soldiers and Marines just back from Iraq to briefly tell of their experiences, “in their own words.” I was reading through some of them and came across this account of the new outsourced military, written by Army reservist Lisa Dunphy.
Here’s one of the most despicable parts, one that, unfortunately, doesn’t surprise me:
An earlier tour in Bosnia left a bad taste in Dunphy’s mouth about the role contractors played in war zones. Her Iraq experience didn’t change that opinion… “The whole idea of it is to free up the military to deal with military stuff… There would be a generator broken. We’d have soldiers that could fix it, but they couldn’t touch it because they would void the contract. So we couldn’t fix our own stuff, would have to call and put in a work order with [Kellogg Brown & Root]. It just seemed like a big bottleneck for almost everything you needed or wanted to do. You wanted to fix a road or building, you couldn’t do it. Had to jump through a lot of hoops. I think it’s become more of a hindrance than it’s a help.” [emphasis mine]