Two items today should make all of us call our congressmen.
First is this news from the St. Louis Dispatch, that the Pentagon has been discharging tens of thousands of combat troops on the pretense that the mental health problems they've developed after serving in Iraq aren't PTSD — but rather pre-existing "personality disorders."
The pre-existing part is the kicker — because it means that the Pentagon, acting like your least favorite HMO, won't pick up the cost of the medical care of these troops after it discharges them.
"They've kicked out about 22,000 troops who they say have pre-existing personality disorders. I don't believe that," Missouri Sen. Kit Bond told the newspaper. "And when you kick them out, they don't get the assistance they need, they aren't entitled to DOD or Veterans Administration care for those problems."
Bond and Obama have introduced a bill to attempt to remedy this outrage.
Number two is almost as aggravating:
Turns out the Army is nickel and diming National Guardsmen returning from 22 months in Iraq. More than 1,100 of these troops should be eligible for full educational benefits under the G.I. bill. But the clever bean counters at the Pentagon deployed them for only 729 days... exactly one day short of the 730 days needed to guarantee thousands of dollars a year for college.
This war is tragic enough without our government shortchanging our soldiers. Now if only these real outrages could move our congressmen to take action for our men and women in uniform — rather than serve up ever more bullshit resolutions in response to MoveOn and Rush Limbaugh.