Army Sending Injured Troops Back to Iraq

Saw this news item yesterday, but Salon has a tidy piece on it that’s worth reading. You read the title correctly — the U.S. is sending injured troops — vets — back into military action. The opening snip sums up my reaction as well:

“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.

Pair this with the video of Jon Stewart’s reportage of the Walter Reed scandal, and you’ve got the picture.

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