Thursday, September 30, 2004

In the Guard? Don't want to go to Iraq? Then quit.

Following a link from Americablog, we have this delightful story of the White House releasing yet another of George Dubya's military service records (the last one, really, we promise, Scout's honour -- we're not fooling around this time, we really mean it, really).

According to the document (which is, in all likelihood, legit since it was released by the White House itself), Dubya wrote that
"he had decided not to continue as a member of the military reserve", because of (and here's the best part), "inadequate time to fulfill possible future commitments."

That's right. Dubya solved his obligation to the National Guard by ... resigning. Is that priceless or what? But that's not the best part.

At the moment, the Pentagon is currently involved in re-activating Guard members who thought their commitment was over. And it's hanging onto currently deployed members through its "stop-loss" program, through which the Pentagon can arbitrarily extend the tour of military personnel beyond what they signed up for. Things are getting ugly to the point where, as you can read here,

The 635 soldiers of a battalion of the South Carolina National Guard scheduled to depart Sunday for a year or more in Iraq have spent their off-duty hours under a disciplinary lockdown in their barracks for the past two weeks.

The trouble began Labor Day weekend, when 13 members of the 1st Battalion of the 178th Field Artillery Regiment went AWOL, mainly to see their families again before shipping out. Then there was an ugly confrontation between members of the battalion's Alpha and Charlie batteries -- the term artillery units use instead of "companies" -- that threatened to turn into a brawl involving three dozen soldiers, and required the base police to intervene.

But now, thanks to the genius precedent of their Commander-in-Chief, all of these soldiers have a simple way out -- they can simply resign. Is this just delightful or what? And who could criticize them for doing nothing more than what Dubya did so many years ago?

If you know someone in the Guard who's been told to pack their gear and get ready to go overseas, get on the phone and tell them about this. The irony is just too delicious not to take advantage of.

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