The scandal that has most recently rocked the Walter Reed Army Medical center is a tragedy that didn’t have to happen. God knows Maj. Walter Reed, for which the center is named, would never have allowed this kind of shit to happen. Now I could go all moonbat on you guys and blame this all on Bush, which, while somewhat justified due to Iraq, would not be totally fair. The allegations (read: truths) coming out of Walter Reed concerning the outpatient care facilities go much deeper and have been going on longer than Bush’s presidency.
Many of us that truly support the troops have been saying for years that the VA and its handling of veterans, spanning from World War II, to Korea, to Vietnam, to Gulf War I, to Iraq and Afghanistan, is reprehensible at the very least. Part of the blame, however, does lay at Bush’s and the Pentagon’s feet: specifically their budgeting process and how much is actually allocated to the care of our servicemen and -women. In the not-too-distant past, most of you should recall the fight by veterans of Gulf War I to have their illnesses diagnosed and treated properly. In fact, that fight is still ongoing today. It’s a travesty. Those young men and women that our Commander in Chief puts in harm’s way, by virtue of Executive Order or whatever, deserve no less than top-of-the-line, premium medical care. Those at Walter Reed didn’t get it.
The blame for this fiasco needs to be placed squarely upon the shoulders of the top commanders of Walter Reed as well as those in the Pentagon. The Veterans Administration should also be taken to task for their horrible mismanagement of after-service care for these men and women. Now I know that I’m mixing the two issues, care at Walter Reed and care at VA Hospitals and outpatient clinics, but to me, the issues are damn near interchangeable because they both represent what has been wrong with military and veteran’s healthcare since at least Vietnam. When you have an ultra-nationalistic President saying “Support the Troops” at every press conference and photo op, you’d expect him to put his money where his mouth is and make sure that the “Troops” are taken care of before, during, and after deployments.
I can’t wait to see some heads roll for this. Preferably Bush’s, Cheney’s, and Rumsfeld’s, but I know they were not directly responsible for this mess. Shit like this takes more than 4 years of degradation and willful negligence to get to the condition these buildings were found to be in. There is absolutely no excuse for rats, cockroaches, and other critters to be found in these dilapidated buildings or in any military facility for that matter. The fact that many of these injured personnel were not even given medical escorts to get where they needed to go is nothing less than a damn shame. All of this begs the question: Does our government really “Support the Troops” or is that just a tired, worn-out line to be used whenever they feel it necessary?