Monday, July 11, 2005

supporting the troops

The war in Iraq was based on impeachable lies and criminally poor judgment -- but the troops there deserve the best medical support possible if they come back wounded.

So how does the US Army treat severely wounded soldiers? By trying to push 'em out of the military and off of the US Army's medical expense account.

Due to a combination of factors -- the nature of insurgent attacks and bombings, increased survivability rates due to the body being so well protected by kevlar armor, greatly improved military emergency medicine -- there are, proportionate to battlefield deaths, many more troops in Iraq are surviving with severe damage to the head and limbs than in previous wars. This means more amputees and more severely brain damaged troops that will need significant medical care for years, or perhaps for the rest of their lives. And it will be expensive.

But that's part of the bargain. We recruit these young people for dangerous jobs, and the least we owe them is appropriate medical treatment for the appropriate time if they are hurt in King George's War. To do anything less is a gross breach of our moral contract with them.

Support the troops, indeed.