Friday, February 04, 2005

"...any movement in Iraq places your life in jeopardy."

It's paradise, yes, paradise. Freedom is on the march. Except you can't march anywhere, particularly if you're in the Army, and have a medical condition that requires hospital treatment.

Is this from a left wing fishwrap, like Village Voice or New York Times? Naw, it's from that well known liberal rag, Stars and Stripes:

ARLINGTON, Va. — U.S.-based military doctors are bracing for a wave of servicemembers returning from Iraq this spring whose treatment for a skin disease has been delayed by the dangerous security situation there.

The soldiers who may be infected with cutaneous leishmaniasis are mostly from the 1st Brigade of the 25th Infantry Division, the Army’s “Stryker Brigade,” according to Dr. Alan McGill, infectious disease specialist at Walter Reed Army Institute of Research in Silver Spring, Md.

“We’ve heard rumors of a couple hundred cases in the Stryker Brigade,” McGill said Friday.

But travel in Iraq is so perilous for U.S. troops that health care staff there are choosing to let suspected cases of the disease go, rather than risk a trip to the large medical facilities for diagnosis, said McGill, the U.S. military’s leading leishmaniasis expert.

“Doctors in the field are making some hard choices, because any movement in Iraq places your life in jeopardy,” he said.

Update, 4PM EST - And, just in case you missed the following story yesterday, it also surfaced on Stars and Stripes:

The Marine Corps Commandant chastised but also defended one of his top commanders after video surfaced on NBC of the three-star general publicly saying “it's fun to shoot some people.” During a panel discussion in San Diego on Wednesday, Lt. Gen. James Mattis said, “Actually, it’s a lot of fun to fight. You know, it’s a hell of a hoot. I like brawling.”

"Chastised"?? This guy's got nothin' on Gen. Jack D. Ripper. "Committed" might be a more appropriate course of action.