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William Rivers Pitt: Obama/Congress & a 10-Deployment, Maimed Vet

I came across an article by William Rivers Pitt entitled “The Sugar Makes the Poison Taste Sweet”. I am posting a powerful excerpt from it in which Pitt lets his anger rip about the shameless exploitation of a 10-deployment, maimed vet by Obama at the end of his 2014 State of the Union Address. Obama spun the jingoistic propaganda to validate permanent profiteering corporate war that uses young American troops as cannon fodder as well as tools to destroy the lives of hundreds of thousands of foreign peoples.

And then...and then, there was Cory Remsburg, the last invited guest Mr. Obama made note of. Remsburg, an Army Ranger, was injured by a roadside bomb in Afghanistan during his tenth deployment.

His tenth deployment.

His tenth deployment.

Cory Remsburg rose up before that parliament of whores, disfigured, maimed for life, and was duly recognized for his service and devotion to country. He received a deafening ovation from a room filled with the worst people in the country, many of whom voted over and over again to send him back to war ten times over, who cheered so loudly to cover over their shame...including the president himself, whose Afghanistan "surge" played its own part in putting Cory Remsburg in the path of the bomb that left him barely able to stand, blind in one eye, and forever damaged.

The President of the United States made no mention of the insanity of any soldier having to endure ten deployments, made no mention of the concept of actions and consequences, even as he stood before the loudest microphone on the planet. Perhaps he and his people thought the face of Cory Remsburg said it for him, and if so, that is another sorry example of the eleventy-dimension chess being played by an administration which is trying to run a country that only knows, politically, how to play checkers.

There are times when real leaders have to say things out loud into microphones, even when those things are so obvious that they bleed on the pavement. What happened to Cory Remsburg was wrong. It was, in fact, a crime, a long act of profiteering that has fed tens of thousands of men and women like him into the meat grinder, to be spat out into a VA system that is utterly overwhelmed and paralyzed before the avalanche of bodies it is tasked to help.

Instead, Mr. Obama said this: "My fellow Americans, men and women like Cory remind us that America has never come easy. Our freedom, our democracy, has never been easy. Sometimes we stumble; we make mistakes; we get frustrated or discouraged. But for more than two hundred years, we have put those things aside and placed our collective shoulder to the wheel of progress..."

We have put those things aside? Cory Remsburg, and the tens of thousands of soldiers who share his damage, cannot put those things aside. Mr. Obama turned that soldier's plight into a pep rally for the country that fed him to the bomb that almost killed him. "Sometimes we stumble; we make mistakes" was the only apology that ravaged Ranger got from his Commander in Chief. He deserved far more than that, as do all the men and women not lucky enough to get applause from Congress on television.

It is easy peasy for politicians to talk about putting difficult issues "aside," out of mind, away. That's the bread and butter of the Teflon not-my-problem political hack. Leaders, real leaders, address those difficult issues head-on. They challenge we the people to take them head-on, as well, and that is how we heal and rise and move on. That did not happen on Tuesday night. Again.

Pitt's piercing call out reminds me of a haiku I wrote a while ago:

Defense Spending

Quagmires of blood, fed
troops by Congress-whores for goals
of Vampire Lobbies.

[cross-posted at open salon]

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Comments

Submitted by lambert on

Seems like there's a bit of a split in the Democratic nomenklatura. Which is good, of course, but let's not kid ourselves about how far it goes.

First they ignore you, then they ridicule you, then they fight you, then you win. -- Mahatma Gandhi

Submitted by lambert on

... is why we couldn't put boots on the ground in Syria. Obama and Bush together broke the Army. All kinds of horrible stress-related problems, and it turns out the Army isn't a ticket to anything like the middle class either, surprise surprise.

First they ignore you, then they ridicule you, then they fight you, then you win. -- Mahatma Gandhi