Tuesday 10 February 2004

Wounded U.S. veterans get a raw deal at home

Ok, I know you probably think that I, and by default this site, are a little bit on the lunatic fringe of society - you're probably right. Be that as it may, the one impression that I don't want you to have is that I hate you; no matter who you are, what religion you follow, what colour your skin is, what job you have, or how much money you have - or don't have. The purpose of this site is to reflect some of the things happening in my mind, or to publish things that I read or people send to me. I don't necessarily believe all (or any) of it, it's just there - a reflection of the world around me and somewhere that I can say what I want to. The world is full of a lot of crazy things, if you're reading this page then you've found one of them! But amongst all the craziness and selfishness and greed, this planet has a heart that beats in tune with ours some of us have really messed up ideas - but that's all they are! IDEAS. I guess that's my point, codshit tries to attack ideas. When I'm attacking Bush I'm not attacking the man, I'm attacking the IDEAS his administration has brought to the world. He (and Phony Tony) are the figureheads for this monstrosity of lies and deception and WAR. We were lied to and the buck stops with them, it's as simple as that. If you still don't believe me then here's a story about how much The System really cares about those who SACRIFICE THEIR LIVES, WHETHER THEY ACTUALLY DIE OR NOT! It took 60 years for them to pay for UK vets to visit the battlefields where they gave their soul for us! "War is a racket." General Smedley Butler USMC (circa 1930, I think, if you care that much look it up I can't be arsed but he did say it)

If you have a good idea about how to save us from ourselves then please email it to me and I'll post it to the site. If it's a good idea it doesn't matter how crazy it is email jumperb at yahoo dot com (codshit email is dead R.I.S. (rest in spam)) :-(

Quote of the day: "War kills all those who participate in it, even the ones who survive." - ewar 100204

There's no emotional sting like the one inflicted by that 500 number. It's larger now, the total of Americans dead from an Iraq war launched on false pretenses, but 500 is getting a lot of usage as the ultimate cost of this mess. It's a cost 500 can't begin to illuminate.

How about at least 9,000 servicemen and women wounded, sickened or injured? How about 6,891 troops medically evacuated for non-combat conditions between March 19 and Oct. 30, 2003?

"There are about 2,500 combat casualties," Dave Autry said on the phone from the Disabled American Veterans offices in Washington. "The rest are attempted suicides, vehicle accidents, other accidents, illness. Something that's becoming a big concern is lesions caused by exposure to sand fleas that carry a particularly virulent bacteria."

All of this could be categorized as the inevitably horrible cost of post-modern war in the desert, but the scandal is what is happening to these survivors once their government brings them home. Tom Keller, the immediate past commander of the DAV in Ohio, wrote to me last month about the secretive nature of the process.

"I can't speak for the DAV's national organization," Tom said, "but I have my own feelings about why the Bush administration is bringing the casualties back to the States in the middle of the night and wants to keep organizations like the DAV away from them. I believe the administration wants to keep the American people in the dark about the number of troops being wounded, the severity of the injuries they are receiving and the types of illnesses that may be surfacing."

There are reasons potentially too disturbing even to ponder as to why the Defense Department, for example, would want to do what Keller is suggesting, but the evident reason appears to be depressingly common: money. It appears that the government does not want these veterans even to be aware of, let alone receive, the benefits due them for donating their limbs and their souls and their innocence to America.

The DAV's executive director, David Gorman, who left both his legs in a stinking Southeast Asian jungle more than 30 years ago, took up the subject early last month in a letter to Secretary of Offense Donald Rumsfeld.

Full story...