Sunday, September 05, 2004

Operation Truth

Bush Finds Link! Posted by Hello

"You want the truth? You can't handle the TRUTH!" Wanna know what's REALLY going on in our great "War of Liberation" in Iraq? (That is what they're calling it now that we haven't found any WMD's or BLT's, right?) Check out this site by folks who have been there or are still there!

These are the guys fighting this bullshit war. If you disagree with them, I suggest you quit the Protest Pissants and join the Marines!

Here's a small sampling:

Issues Facing Our Troops

Operation Truth will raise the awareness of problems and issues that our Troops are facing on the battlefield and back at home. Problems can be fixed only if they are discussed openly. Educating the public about the problems facing our Troops will empower the American public to support our troops in a very tangible fashion: by demanding that elected officials address these issues.

As of August 23, 2004 there have been 961 total deaths and 6,497 men and women wounded in Operation Iraqi Freedom (link). The American public is not well aware of the casualties numbers in Iraq, nor what it means to be wounded (link). Additionally, when the coffins of servicemen and women killed in OIF return to Dover Airforce Base in Delaware, the press is not allowed to photograph the solemn occasion. The issues Troops deal with and the hardships they face deserve more attention.

The following highlight the key initial problems and issues facing our soldiers that Operation Truth will address. The organization will continuously adapt to changing circumstances and focus on the most pressing needs.

Veterans Affairs Budget CutsThe latest budget plans put forth by the current administration will cut more than $910 million from the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) in the fiscal year 2006 budget (Source: OMB). In the last year, plans were announced by the current administration to close or drastically reduce services at 11 VA hospitals. Additionally, 572,000 veterans are estimated to be missing out on disability payments largely because they are unaware that payments are owed to them, and in an effort to maintain costs no effort is being made to inform them of what is rightfully theirs. In a time of war, it is immoral and unconscionable to treat our heroes of the past and present in this manner.

Stop Loss: A “Back-Door Draft”Stop Loss is the involuntary extension of active duty status of soldiers beyond their contractual obligation. In other words, soldiers who may originally have signed a contract for three years of service may now be forced to serve four years. Stop Loss is essentially a “back-door draft”-- a band-aid solution that has now been implemented to provide additional troop strength. Stop Loss is destroying the very concept of our volunteer military, is terribly damaging to morale, and is yet another indication that the original plan for war was flawed.

Weak National Support Systems for Soldiers’ FamiliesWhen National Guard and Reserve soldiers are deployed, their families are left to fend for themselves. We need to create a solid network that embraces and protects families to the fullest. Child care, counseling services, job placement, spiritual support and financial safeguards need to be established formally to take proper care of those families who fight for us.

Proper Counseling and Treatment for the SoldiersAs of August 23, 2004, 961 American Soldiers have been killed in Iraq, but 6497 have been injured. The number of people suffering from psychological problems is even higher. Returning units have seen a spike in suicide rates. The long-term effects of Larium, the anthrax vaccine, and other medical treatments administered to troops have not been fully explored. The government must act quickly to provide adequate counseling and treatment for our wounded and traumatized Troops.

Proper Funding and Compensation for Reservists and National GuardsmenFor decades, Reservists and National Guardsmen have been treated as second-class citizens within the military. Reservists and National Guardsmen should be equipped and trained on par with their active duty counterparts. Funding for wages and hazardous duty pay needs to be increased to afford our Servicemembers and their families an acceptable standard of living.

Problematic Role of Private Contractors in Combat ZonesHalliburton, K.B.R, Blackwater and other companies have relationships with our military that are extremely disturbing. Their effectiveness and affordability are questionable and their role in our Armed Forces should be significantly curtailed. Furthermore, these private contractors are poaching and weakening our military by drawing away experienced war fighters using incentives such as significantly higher wages, better benefits and a more relaxed lifestyle. The utilization of these companies has eroded and will continue to erode the U.S. military’s overall combat effectiveness, and introducing profit to the battlefield sets a dangerous precedent.

Citizenship for Returning ServicemembersA notable percentage of the military is currently composed of non-U.S. citizens. While these Servicemembers are eligible for U.S. citizenship following a tour on active duty, the process to become a citizen remains prolonged. Operation Truth believes that these men and women, who have honorably served and risked their lives defending the United States and its values, desperately deserve the opportunity to join our society as citizens. This is a critical issue within immigrant communities. Operation Truth will demand a streamlined, faster process to reward these Servicemembers.

Got the gist?

Okay, gotta update! An anonymous reader who stopped by was under the impression that I wrote the above. I didn't. I copied it from the optruth website as an example of what you can find there. In the future I will take care to ensure that proper credit is given for pieces I publish here. Anon also criticized a statement I did make concerning "kicking ass". Upon reflection, I agree that Anon was right and that the statement detracted from the integrity of the post, so I have deleted it. Sorry for any confusion. The site is great, shoots straight and is worth a look by any who really want an inside look at Operation Iraqi Freedom. - d.


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