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View Full Version : U.S. Troops Want Rumsfeld to Send Them Home


zimv20
Sep 5, 2003, 10:40 PM
http://story.news.yahoo.com/news?tmpl=story&u=/nm/20030905/pl_nm/iraq_troops_morale_dc_5


TIKRIT, Iraq (Reuters) - If they had the chance, U.S. soldiers at a base in Iraq (news - web sites) would have had one question for Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld -- When are we going home?.

But Rumsfeld made no formal speech on Friday to the troops at their base at the palace of deposed Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein (news - web sites) in his hometown of Tikrit.

"I don't give a damn about Rumsfeld. All I give a damn about is going home," Specialist Rue Gretton said, humping packs of water bottles on his shoulders from a truck.

"The only thing his visit meant for us was we had to clean up a lot of mess to make the place look pretty. And he didn't even look at it anyway," Gretton said after soldiers swept the dusty streets around the complex of lakes and mansions.

Instead, the Pentagon (news - web sites) chief briefly thanked soldiers after a meeting with military leaders.

"It was good for morale," said Major Josslyn Alberle, a spokeswoman for the Fourth Infantry Division headquartered at the palace.

(more)

Ugg
Sep 5, 2003, 10:50 PM
They lied to the US public about the reasons for the need for war and then they lied to the soldiers who fought the war. I wonder how many have gone AWOL? Of course, the government will never tell us, but it is interesting to speculate nonetheless.

IJ Reilly
Sep 5, 2003, 11:59 PM
I doubt very much that AWOL is a problem. We've got a highly professional military. They are doing the job they are paid to do, and I really don't like hearing them grumble in public about it. This is all completely apart from the question of whether I think they ought to be doing this particular job -- it is still not something members of the armed forces get to decide.

Sayhey
Sep 6, 2003, 12:12 AM
What do you think it did for the troops morale to hear their Commander-in-Chief tell the people who are killing their comrades to "Bring it on"?

Ugg
Sep 6, 2003, 08:06 AM
Originally posted by IJ Reilly
I doubt very much that AWOL is a problem. We've got a highly professional military. They are doing the job they are paid to do, and I really don't like hearing them grumble in public about it. This is all completely apart from the question of whether I think they ought to be doing this particular job -- it is still not something members of the armed forces get to decide.

They're Americans, they deserve the right to be heard and their complaints should be taken for what they are, serious dissatisfaction with the lack of a postwar plan for Iraq. Everyone has the right to express their discontent about their boss and soldiers are no exception.

IJ Reilly
Sep 6, 2003, 11:50 AM
In response to both of these objections:

It simply is not the role of members of the military to question the directives of the Commander in Chief, and I feel the same way about this now as I did when a certain southern senator encouraged the military to gripe about Bill Clinton. In this country, the military is under civilian authority, and this is one of the key differences between the United States and a banana republic.

Today, nobody is in the military against his or her will. Armed service members can feel how ever they wish about any given mission, but if they want to wear that uniform, they've got to learn to keep their feelings to themselves.

michaello
Sep 7, 2003, 11:53 PM
Well, I hope they don't keep their votes "to themselves" in 2004.

IJ Reilly
Sep 8, 2003, 12:46 AM
Originally posted by michaello
Well, I hope they don't keep their votes "to themselves" in 2004.

I never suggested that they should.

michaello
Sep 8, 2003, 12:57 AM
No, I know.

I guess I agree that they should refrain from speaking to the press about their personal feelings. Not because I feel that their personal feelings are inappropriate, but I think it could create problems in an already tense and chaotic atmosphere.

It's misplaced aggression, really, for a soldier to tell a reporter something that he wouldn't tell his officer or president, face to face.

I just hope they carry their personal feelings with them to the polls and use this method to tell the president how they feel about his "dangling" them out there without a solid plan of action.

pseudobrit
Sep 8, 2003, 08:22 PM
Originally posted by IJ Reilly
Armed service members can feel how ever they wish about any given mission, but if they want to wear that uniform, they've got to learn to keep their feelings to themselves.

Heh.

My brother (in the Honor Guard; non-deployable even) called me today. I said something about the Bush asking for $87B extra and how we need to get the hell out of Iraq.

His response (in earshot of other soldiers):

"Bush is a ****ing *******."

Dale Sorel
Sep 8, 2003, 11:59 PM
Folks in the military get tremendous, lifelong benefits...they need to stop bitching and do their jobs :rolleyes:

zimv20
Sep 9, 2003, 12:08 AM
Originally posted by Dale Sorel
Folks in the military get tremendous, lifelong benefits...they need to stop bitching and do their jobs :rolleyes:

when are you enlisting?

Durandal7
Sep 9, 2003, 12:20 AM
When you join the military you should join with the expectation that you will be called upon to serve in a hostile environment. You surely should not join and then undermine your superiors in front of the international media.

When they get drafted, then they can complain openly.

zimv20
Sep 9, 2003, 12:24 AM
Originally posted by Durandal7
When you join the military you should join with the expectation that you will be called upon to serve in a hostile environment.

true. but bush reversed 200+ years of a non-preemption doctrine. perhaps some of the military feel a little cheated by that.

Ugg
Sep 9, 2003, 12:30 AM
Originally posted by zimv20
true. but bush reversed 200+ years of a non-preemption doctrine. perhaps some of the military feel a little cheated by that.

Not only that but due to extremely poor planning on the part of gw & co. their tours of duty keep on getting extended. Let's face it, all soldiers are gonna gripe a little, but when you've been away from family and friends for over a year and there is no end in sight then they deserve to bitch and moan. Can you imagine what it is like wearing body armor in 120+degree heat?

Dale Sorel
Sep 9, 2003, 01:16 AM
Originally posted by zimv20
when are you enlisting?

Yep, this is America and I can make that choice can't I...same as those who are currently enlisted did :rolleyes:

Sayhey
Sep 9, 2003, 01:24 AM
Soldiers have always complained. This time I agree with them.

zimv20
Sep 9, 2003, 01:54 AM
Originally posted by Dale Sorel
Yep, this is America and I can make that choice can't I...same as those who are currently enlisted did :rolleyes:

so... they should "stop bitching and do their jobs" (your words) so you can enjoy the freedoms they're defending.

my opinion, but i think that's a little messed up. i feel for them.

mactastic
Sep 9, 2003, 08:46 AM
Originally posted by Dale Sorel
Folks in the military get tremendous, lifelong benefits...they need to stop bitching and do their jobs :rolleyes:

Yes! Like the lifelong benefit of winding up dead!

I don't really like the fact that they are publicly griping to the media, but if they are doing that, then they have been griping among themselves and their superiors have heard it as well. That means morale is low, and low morale needs to be addressed. If the individual soldiers didn't tell the media about their unhappiness, the pentagon sure wouldn't volunteer the information though. From what they have said, all the soldiers are perfectly happy.

Ugg
Sep 9, 2003, 09:32 AM
link (http://www.guardian.co.uk/uslatest/story/0,1282,-3125910,00.html)

WASHINGTON (AP) - U.S. National Guard and reservists are having their tours of duty extended to 12 months, defense officials said Tuesday, as U.S. commitments to Iraq, the global war on terror and other missions around the world have stretched U.S. forces.

With active duty troops already being held longer than expected in Iraq, officials ordered that Army Guard and Army Reserve troops now in Iraq and surrounding countries serve 12-month tours.

The new order, signed Friday night and not publicly announced, covers some 20,000 people and means some of them will remain months longer than they thought they would, officials said. The order was first reported by The Washington Post in Tuesday's editions.

Nothing like changing the rules in the middle of the game.

mactastic
Sep 9, 2003, 09:51 AM
Oh man I feel for those people. Reservists going on year-long duty status isn't good for our forces. They have jobs that they will now be missing for a year. :(

Dale Sorel
Sep 9, 2003, 01:22 PM
Originally posted by zimv20
so... they should "stop bitching and do their jobs" (your words) so you can enjoy the freedoms they're defending.

Exactly!

Hey, I was registered for the draft when Reagan was in office. And I would have gone in a second if called upon.

Dale Sorel
Sep 9, 2003, 01:24 PM
Originally posted by mactastic
Yes! Like the lifelong benefit of winding up dead!

Or being able to buy a house with $0.00 down through the VA.

Hey, they knew the bargain going into it, didn't they :rolleyes:

zimv20
Sep 9, 2003, 01:27 PM
Originally posted by Dale Sorel
Exactly!

Hey, I was registered for the draft when Reagan was in office. And I would have gone in a second if called upon.

yes, i registered under him, as well.

in several ways, the military is working for me (i pay their salaries, they are doing me a service).

in business, when i had people working for me, part of my job was to listen to them complain. sometimes they had valid points, sometimes they just needed to vent. either way, hearing it was my job. and it made them feel better.

i feel the same way about the military.

zimv20
Sep 9, 2003, 01:28 PM
Originally posted by Dale Sorel

Hey, they knew the bargain going into it, didn't they :rolleyes:

no! the rules changed in march '03.

mactastic
Sep 9, 2003, 01:29 PM
Originally posted by Dale Sorel
Or being able to buy a house with $0.00 down through the VA.

Hey, they knew the bargain going into it, didn't they :rolleyes:

Lots of people get benefits from their jobs. That in and of itself does not mean one isn't allowed to bitch about a crappy work environment. Confidence in your leadership keeps you from bitching about a tough time at your job.

IJ Reilly
Sep 9, 2003, 02:50 PM
Originally posted by Sayhey
Soldiers have always complained. This time I agree with them.

Sure, but professional soldiers should not complain to the press about their commanders -- and whether I agree with them isn't material.

Dale Sorel
Sep 9, 2003, 05:21 PM
Originally posted by zimv20
in business, when i had people working for me, part of my job was to listen to them complain. sometimes they had valid points, sometimes they just needed to vent. either way, hearing it was my job. and it made them feel better.

I guess the bottom line, in today's world, is that people are going to bitch no matter what you do :rolleyes:

I have a friend who was born in 1926. He served in WWII. If you do the math, he lied about his age just to be sent overseas so he could defend his country.

How things have changed :rolleyes:

zimv20
Sep 9, 2003, 05:39 PM
Originally posted by Dale Sorel

I have a friend who was born in 1926. He served in WWII. If you do the math, he lied about his age just to be sent overseas so he could defend his country.

How things have changed :rolleyes:

i know someone who joined the reserves so he could do his part in defending the country. now he's in iraq to help clean up the aftermath of a non-defense action.

yes, things have indeed changed.

Dale Sorel
Sep 9, 2003, 08:33 PM
Originally posted by zimv20
i know someone who joined the reserves so he could do his part in defending the country. now he's in iraq to help clean up the aftermath of a non-defense action.

So I guess this means that Hussein and his regime have/had nothing to do with international terrorism :rolleyes:

zimv20
Sep 9, 2003, 09:00 PM
Originally posted by Dale Sorel
So I guess this means that Hussein and his regime have/had nothing to do with international terrorism :rolleyes:

iraq didn't attack us.

a personal challenge to you: make a post that doesn't end in eyes rolling.

Ugg
Sep 9, 2003, 09:06 PM
Originally posted by Dale Sorel
So I guess this means that Hussein and his regime have/had nothing to do with international terrorism :rolleyes:

That is an interesting point and one that should be explored. Of course gw & co. do not want to know the answer to it so that is why it has not been discussed.

It is well known that SH gave money to the families of Palestinian suicide bombers. He has probably funded terrorists in Iran and possibly Turkey. No link has been found between SH and al Qaeda, but I'm not sure to what extent SH was involved in Africa. SH's secular approach to Islam left him at odds with most terrorists in the middle east mainly because they are religious fundamentalists. Terrorism seems to be mostly a product of fundamentalist Muslim states. Indonesia, Libya, Saudi Arabia, Afghanistan, Sudan, etc.

SH was the type of guy who liked to have all the glory for himself so I wonder just how much terrorism he supported. I'm sure he funded it, the question is who.

Of course, terrorism has received the biggest boost from the US, whether in Central America or the Middle East. Any war on terrorism would be incomplete without some serious soul searching on our part, too bad gw is not interested in where it came from.

Sayhey
Sep 9, 2003, 09:08 PM
Originally posted by Dale Sorel
So I guess this means that Hussein and his regime have/had nothing to do with international terrorism :rolleyes:

Saddam and his regime were horrible. That doesn't mean they were sponsors of terrorist groups. If Bush or anyone else has proof that they were he should show it. It lends no credibility to Bush's case to make up or distort facts to advance his position. Ideologically, al-Qaeda and Saddam were at odds. bin Laden and Saddam showed that they did not trust each other and had not formed an alliance. Now given those facts how does it do any good to push the idea that Saddam was behind 9/11? If your position is that this lie is the most effective tool to get the people of the US to support an invasion of Iraq that you want for other reasons, then it possibly makes sense, in a machivellian sort of way. Otherwise it is just another lie to the American people.

pseudobrit
Sep 9, 2003, 09:37 PM
Originally posted by Dale Sorel
I have a friend who was born in 1926. He served in WWII. If you do the math, he lied about his age just to be sent overseas so he could defend his country.

Did he fight for the US or for the Nazis? Does it matter?

pseudobrit
Sep 9, 2003, 09:46 PM
Originally posted by Dale Sorel
Folks in the military get tremendous, lifelong benefits...they need to stop bitching and do their jobs :rolleyes:

My brother's not bitching about having to fight in Iraq, because he never will. He's not bitching for himself at all.

He's bitching about the fact that guys he went through basic with, friends and fellow soldiers, are getting shot at and killed for no good reason.

He's upset because those guys are fighting a war without dangerous combat pay, without the proper planning and supplies, without exit strategy, without purpose (no terrorists, no WMDs)...

...without anything worth fighting for. Would you fight for such a cause? Since you're not enlisting, I guess that answer is no.

So don't act like the troops are whining without justification because you're not in their place. Until you are, let them speak for themselves.

Dale Sorel
Sep 9, 2003, 11:13 PM
Originally posted by pseudobrit
Would you fight for such a cause? Since you're not enlisting, I guess that answer is no.

My time for enlisting passed alongside the Reagan administration.

So don't act like the troops are whining without justification because you're not in their place.

Is that what they teach you in boot camp, that whining is OK as long as it's justified :rolleyes:

pseudobrit
Sep 9, 2003, 11:21 PM
Originally posted by Dale Sorel
Is that what they teach you in boot camp, that whining is OK as long as it's justified :rolleyes:

No, they teach you how not to get killed. One way is not to get sent into a hostile environment with a spiteful local population with a target on your back for an indeterminate amount of time.

The troops have a legitimate beef, and you're in no position to tell them otherwise. You never enlisted, you never served, and you don't know what it's like.

PS. You failed the eye-rolling test :rolleyes:

pseudobrit
Sep 9, 2003, 11:24 PM
Originally posted by Dale Sorel
My time for enlisting passed alongside the Reagan administration.

I'm sure you could still go into the National Guard or something. Come on, if you like war so much, why don't you show your patriotism by putting your own head on the chopping block?

zimv20
Sep 10, 2003, 12:12 AM
Originally posted by pseudobrit

PS. You failed the eye-rolling test :rolleyes:

now _that's_ funny!