Some updates and observations
"I think it's a good thing to realize that this pain has been felt by thousands and thousands (probably millions, actually) of other people all over the world. That is part of the cost of war, any war, no matter how justified. If everyone who feels this pain keeps that in mind the next time we have to decide whether or not war is a good idea, perhaps it will help us to make a more informed decision. Because it is pretty clear that the average American would not have supported the Iraq War had they known the costs going in". 250,000 Civilians Dead in Bush's War.
a quote from Andrew Olmsted's last post
Juan Cole at Informed Comment
gives specifics when the corporate jingo media doesn't even reflect upon this dire fact. Pentagon rush to drug up returning soldiers?
a solution! Keep traumatized service persons doped up and numb after returning back from taking part in thankless battle. Keeps the mental illness industry in business, and the powers that be get to give a big kick back to the drug companies that help finance their road to power. Nice! The smart soldiers are leaving the ranks of the military.
Washington Monthly reports that
"...the top uniformed and civilian leaders at the Pentagon who think hardest about the future of the military have a more fundamental fear: young officers are leaving the Army at nearly their highest rates in decades. This is not a short-term problem, nor is it one that can simply be fixed with money. A private-sector company or another government agency can address a shortage of middle managers by hiring more middle managers. In the Army's rigid hierarchy, all officers start out at the bottom, as second lieutenants. A decline in officer retention, in other words, threatens both the Army's current missions in Iraq and Afghanistan, and its long-term institutional future." Andrew Olmsted's final post.
Serviceman Olmsted wrote about his observations of the war in Iraq for almost 5 years. This final post was put up by a friend, written last July with the intent that he be shared after he died. He was killed by sniper fire on 3 January 2008. He often said he did not want his death to be used for political ends. He commented regularly on politics, the war in Iraq and about Military conflict. He discontinued blogging on his own site in February 2007 after it was pointed out to him that he had been "...blogging in violation of a Department of Defense directive that restricts how much political activity soldiers may be involved with..."
He was a thoughtful writer. He is remembered in a post on Obsidian Wings
, where he posted under the pseudonym G'Kar. Although I believe he would say he died without remorse, his loss, is in fact, one more tragedy in the littered battlefield. Godspeed Andrew.
ABOUT THE IMAGE: I did this painting after Dubya's Daddy's war in 1991. It is part of a larger set entitled "Culture of Violence" |
Labels: andrew olmsted, death tolls, drugging soldiers, iraq quagmire