6 August 2003

Rumsfeld is an arrogant asshole

Retired colonel David Hackworth continues to lash out against the Bush administration and its Iraq invasion campaign, this time in a Salon interview. Hackworth details how his pair of web sites, Soldiers for the Truth and Hackworth.com, are serving as a "repository for the gripes and fears of America's beleaguered combat troops".
On a typical day Hackworth receives hundreds of e-mails, letters and faxes from American soldiers, complaining about everything from silk-weight underwear to the weapons they've been assigned. "Pistols suck," wrote one soldier. "Bring and use every weapon. Shotguns are great at close ranges." At a time when soldiers have been disciplined for griping to the media, Hackworth is providing a fascinating outlet for what they're really experiencing. Among the more evocative messages:

"Soldiers are living in the dirt, with no mail, no phone, no contact with home, and no break from the daily monotony at all. I practically got in a fist fight with this captain over letting my private send an e-mail over his office's internet. This clown spends his days sending flowers to his wife and surfing the net. Fucking disgraceful and all too typical of today's Army."

"Soldiers get literally hundreds of flea or mosquito bites and they can't get cream or Benadryl to keep the damn things from itching ... .I am not talking about bringing in the steak and lobster every week. I am talking about basic health and safety issues that continue to be neglected by the Army."

This is the first war of the internet age and it's interesting to follow and read from the perspective of a host of different views. Well, technically, the Balkans excursion happened after the net, but the internet was confined to the province of geekdom at that time.

I wonder if the brass reading this and monitoring the emails sent home from troops stationed overseas will clamp down on dissent. Or censor and/or edit the email. It is telling that according to Hackworth, soldiers must use military accounts and some guys just don't care if Big Brother is watching and are still sounding off anyway.


Why not send him a "flaming asshole" from http://www.flamingasshole.com?

Great for politicians