Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Getting a jump on throwing people in the garbage 

In Iraq not only are many U.S. soldiers being killed but many others are being very severly injured with lost limbs, brain damage, lost eyesight or hearing, and many other lasting injuries. Further, many others have trauma that may not be visible but is never the less very real - depression, post-traumatic stress disorder, and generalized anxiety disorder among others. In theory, the U.S. Veterans Administration is supposed to care for all veterans - in fact many are tricked when they first enlist into thinking they will get lifetime free medical care.

Of course that is all B.S. As soon as the U.S. is done using a group of people to do its dirty work it promptly throws them in the garbage and forgets about them. This goes right back to the inception of the country when the Continental Army was paid with promisory notes that were later to become worthless (of course, some rich people like George Washington and Alexander Hamilton quickly bought them up for pennies on the dollar and then used their control of the government to have them redeemed at full face value - Washington may not have known how to tell a lie but he did know how to screw over his own troops to make a quick buck). The most famous example of this is the fate of the "Bonus Army" where during the great depression thousands of WW I veterans camped out in the U.S. capital demanding they be paid the bonuses that had been promised them. They never got their bonses as the army (with George Patton in the lead) went in to voilently evict them.

Usually though, the government waits until the war is over and they are completely done using the soldiers to begin screwing them over. But not the Bush administration. They are already going after health care spending for veterans hoping to cut it back. So the U.S. soldiers are going to be learning soon what people like Bush and Cheney really think of them.

Of course, if the soldiers were at all perceptive they would already know the government probably doesn't care about them. After all, given that they are in Iraq and get to see how cheap Iraqi blood is it shouldn't be such a big leap to see when all is said and done their blood is just as cheap. The people calling the shots in Washington D.C. tend not to care much about anyone save themselves.


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