American Thinker: No Sex, Many Lies, One Videotape, and a Soldier’s Unnecessary Death
By James Simpson
“It is not a movie. It could be labeled a comedy, a farce, even a Greek tragedy, except that people really are dying. It is, in fact, an absolutely abhorrent, disgraceful, and unacceptable demonstration of the hidebound, self-serving attitude, omnipresent throughout the federal bureaucracy and among many in our political establishment, that my agency, my mission, my job is more important than anyone or anything else.
It is called protecting turf, and the ugly fact, as any government analyst can tell you, is that the federal government spends more time doing it than practically anything else. (And Obama wants to give our medical care over to them, no less!) It is bad enough that these petty turf battles squander agency time and resources, but when they dictate policies regulating combat operations, they can become deadly.
Last month, we brought you the story about Specialist Chazray Clark, the soldier wounded in Afghanistan by an IED who died due to delays because an unarmed medevac helicopter but a few miles away could not launch without armed escort. This story first came to light through the intrepid front-line reporting of Michael Yon. And yes, he did provide a videotape. No sex, though — only the agonizing moments waiting for the helicopter to arrive, while Chazray’s life slipped away.
If they arm helos and strip off the red crosses, then presto, they are just regular Army helos — no special gig, though they can easily still be reserved for medevac. American troops are dying just so one Army bureaucracy can have its own designated fleet! We have suspected as much for a while, but our worst fears were confirmed when we received the following message. For obvious reasons we cannot disclose a name, but this active-duty Army officer is very close to the action:
“I am an active-duty Army officer, and would prefer my name and email address not be used, if that is at all possible[.] … Mr. Yon is only receiving pushback on the issue because the Army Medical Department is scared that removing the Red Cross from their helicopters will result in them being repurposed for general-use[.] … [They] would rather put soldiers’ lives in danger than chance losing control over “their” birds. This doesn’t seem to be a rational argument, especially considering that every other branch of service, as well as our allied partners, manage to have armed yet still-dedicated … aircraft, but that’s the argument the upper echelons [are] expressing[.]“
Shortly after that, we received another message:
…”When I went through the MEDEVAC Doctrine course two years ago I asked the question, why not arm DUSTOFF [medical evacuation helos]? I was told, “because then the army would lose its dedicated medical platform[.]“
So there you have it. The Red Cross has nothing to do with the Geneva Conventions, but rather provides a convenient way for certain members of the top brass to remain relevant. Taxpayer dollars; scarce Army resources; and, most importantly, the precious lives of our front line forces are being crucified on a Red Cross — a cross which in this case symbolizes not the Geneva Conventions, not stoic dedication to the Hippocratic Oath, but rather a blood sacrifice to the self-serving priorities of the high command. And in house, away from prying eyes, they’re even admitting it.”
Read the full article here.