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December 8, 2011

14

The US Air Force dumps soldiers in mass graves

by Andrea O'Connell

I left work two hours early today, at 3:00 and normally don’t get to hear the BBC news on NPR.

So, when I started my car, preparing  to drive  home, the BBC news was reporting on a story that I would never believe was true, but it is.

Because I hadn’t heard the beginning of the story, I missed the worst part – that these atrocities occurred not way back in a war of the past, like during the Vietnam years.  I was sure that was probably the case – I thought our nation was better able to handle the logistics of war and the caring for the dead.

I was wrong.  I just read tonight that in 2004 until 2008 the United States Air-force had been systematically been dumping the remains of soldiers in a landfill.

Are you ready to cry or vomit like me?  I’m sorry if you hadn’t heard this news and you’re learning it here for the first time.  It doesn’t seem possible, does it?  This is the United States of America!  We are better than that, right?

In 2003 that mad scientist that drunken horrible president, and sick, sick, sick, liar sent American men and women into a war that was not a war, it was a one-sided attack on people who never, never, never attacked us!  After all, this country set Saddam Hussein up – gave him all the support in the world.  Why?  Can you spell O. I. L?  Oil and money. Money and Oil.  Guns and gun making.  That’s what it was about.  The fat cat non-military consultants were making millions – millions.  Our soldiers, giving their lives and their limbs, their sanity and their minds, were dying every day only to be thrown away like trash.

Image by WeMeantDemocracy via Flickr

Remember how the nation felt when the adorable little Caylee Anthony was thrown into a swampy grave in the woods?   This is the same situation times hundreds of dead American soldiers.

God Dammit!

It makes me want to throw something when I think about this.

People mean nothing?

George W. Bush – the worst criminal the American Presidency has ever known – should, along with the criminal VP Dick Sick Cheney, be tried for war crimes against the United States of America.

History will look back at what these two maniacs did to this country and, with any luck, future generations will learn from it.  Well, we can hope that happens before the right-wing evangelical, racist extremists completely destroy this country.

From a mother’s perspective:

Gari-Lynn Smith, the widow of an Army bomb-disposal expert killed in Iraq, began asking the military in 2007 what happened to some of his remains that were identified after his funeral the previous year.

After four years of letters and phone calls she received a letter from the mortuary in April informing her that her husband’s partial remains had been disposed of in the King George County landfill, reports the Post.

“I hope this information brings some comfort to you during your time of loss,” read the letter.

Ms Smith told the Post that what the mortuary had done was “disgusting”.

Since the landfill dumping ended three years ago, such cremated partial remains are now buried at sea.

After the Post reported the practice in early November, federal investigators released a report lambasting “gross mismanagement” at the air base mortuary.

It emerged that a dead soldier’s ankle had been lost and a damaged arm bone was sawed off a dead Marine before burial so he could fit in his uniform and coffin.

The commander at the morgue, a colonel and two civilian officials were disciplined.  READ the full BBC story here:  http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-16081240

Here is the story from the Washington Post, the paper who broke this story: Air Force dumped ashes of more troops’ remains in Va. landfill than acknowledged

I am so tired tonight I am seeing double.  I will give this a more in-depth exploration tomorrow.

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14 Comments Post a comment
  1. Ron
    Dec 9 2011

    I agree with the writers thoughts about the Bush gang.As a Vet and a Mason I`m in disbelief.One should not be too surprised though you have to have honor to be able to show it.

    Reply
  2. Dec 9 2011

    “After four years of letters and phone calls she received a letter from the mortuary in April informing her that her husband’s partial remains had been disposed of in the King George County landfill, reports the Post.”

    “I hope this information brings some comfort to you during your time of loss,” read the letter.
    _______________________________________

    My God! Comfort? Seriously? I would be mortified. Hell, I AM mortified! I had no idea any such thing had taken place. I agree with you, Andrea…Bush & Cheney should be tried for war crimes against the USA. This is disgusting and shameful.

    Reply
    • Dec 10 2011

      Hi Kitt, Yes, it’s just utterly sickening. And, remember when the media was forbidden from photographing the caskets coming home from Iraq? The Bush administration didn’t want the realities of the deaths of soldiers to be brought home in that way. If we saw caskets on the nightly news and in our papers day in and day out, it would become too much to bear and the American public might just question why all the soldiers were dying.

      Bush, Cheney and the Military thought “out of sight, out of mind.” And, they needed the American public to have that kind of distance from the reality of the so called “war.”

      Reply
  3. weezie
    Dec 11 2011

    I must say, Obama is getting a low down and dirty treatment from the media, press and his Republican haters. Why is it, that most of the U.S. military are now on homeground, and this story comes out before the primaries? This is not a coincidence by the right wing to exploit and destroy the Democrats any way they can.
    It is disgusting, but it rests on the shoulders of the Military, not the Commander in Chief. Any General who would allow the deceased soldiers to be dumped “Like Trash” should be court martialed. Imagine being a parent who signed a document that was never analized at the upper levels? Allowing the desecration of such bodies is frightening. Makes you wonder what other atrocities were committed.

    Reply
    • Dec 12 2011

      Hi Weezie… Yes, it does make one wonder what other nefarious deeds went on, especially under George W at the start of the Iraq attack.

      We already know there were no weapons of mass-destruction. We already know Saddam was a tyrant but not a danger to the free world. He was a danger to us because he was not cooperating and we needed that part of the world for its oil, for its ability to make American military, construction, and arms businesses much richer.

      And to hear some of our Republican presidential hopefuls claim that water-boarding is okay, is sickening.

      Reply
  4. Sam
    Dec 11 2011

    I am a US Soldier. I served in the Middle East from 2003-2007 in the Iraq wars that claimed thousands of lives. I served proudly with those Soldiers. Soldiers with names like Johnathan, William, Alfred and the so on. Now we all complained and moaned but we knew we had a job to do. Is it too much to ask for a decent burial? Who’s job is that? The truth is this: The dead don’t care, they’re dead. What kills me is the living individuals who front as if they give a damn about humanity. One Million or so living human beings struggling in Americas ghetto’s; War on Terror my ass! I’d rather die a Soldier and be thrown in a landfill than to LIVE like an animal. Come on America, stop playing….

    Reply
    • Dec 12 2011

      Hi Sam and thank you for posting here. I am very honored that you would visit and share your thoughts here.

      I have no doubt you served proudly, Sam, and I know others like you who did the same. No one can repay the debt of gratitude we owe you for your sacrifice. You deserve to be honored, and I honor you and your fellow soldiers.

      The men and women less fortunate, who gave the ultimate sacrifice, should also be honored. It chills me to the bone that they were not. I know that their souls are gone, and the body is the earthly vessel that is left behind. But families still want to honor the memory of the whole person and the thought of their loved ones body being desecrated is too much to bear.

      It is a cruel punishment to the poor families.

      Reply
  5. Dec 11 2011

    Sam. You are so right and to be honest, there isn’t enough money or media coverage that would change this situation until the concience of the American people get on the steps and in the promenade like they have done so recently but without a definitive cause. What is the heart and mind of a soldier after fighting in someone else’s country, witnessing so much death and horror? I doubt I would want to live either. The brave have no honour by the masses until they SAY SO.

    Reply
    • Sam
      Dec 11 2011

      As far as politics are concerned, think about this: How profitable is peace? America, Russia and China lead the “civilized” world in arms dealing; seeing profits surpass billions. A generous portion of which covers the media; hell, we know exactly where it’s going down, we sold the guns to them. Prime example, Did you guys know that U.S. Soldiers were being executed on live television overseas in 2003? G.I heads for $10 each. Of course not because it wasn’t “newsworthy.” You all back home didn’t know that. Here’s what you got……In other news, bombings throughout Iraq has left them without electricity, phones and radios so we gotta re-build it. America was built on hypocrisy and she laps up it like breast milk to an infant. Our true enemy is ignorance. The Electorial College should’ve opened everyone’s eyes years ago; while you surely are counted (for tax purposes) you damn sure don’t count. For the people, right by the people.

      Reply
      • Dec 12 2011

        OMG, Sam. No, I did not know of US soldiers being executed on live television. I don’t know what to say to that….. only, it can be a terrible world. That sounds trite, I didn’t mean to talk in cliche’s; it’s difficult to know what to say….

        I agree that peace is not profitable for the US. There are plenty of fat cats making a ton of money as a result of decimating Iraq. How people like that live with themselves is beyond me.

        yes, the real problem is ignorance – and the fat cats and the people who want to get richer like it like that. The Dumbing-Down of America has been going on for a long time now. If the middle class and poor Americans really understood the issues this country is facing, they would NEVER vote republican. Sadly, they don’t realize when they vote Republican, they are voting against their own interests.

        Thank you again, Sam, for your sharing your thoughts.

  6. Dec 11 2011

    Andrea; I meant to say how much I love your blog with the snow flakes. It’s sweet.

    Reply
    • Dec 12 2011

      Thanks Weezie… I love it, too. It’s something that WordPress offers every winter. It’s only available until Jan. 4th though….

      Reply
  7. Dennis Dauchess
    Dec 15 2011

    This is a disgrace to our soldiers who GAVE IT ALL and to be thrown into a loandfill and not been given a soldiers honors in a military cemetary somewhere here in the Unites States for which these soldiers’ fought to protect this nation… I heard this topic at work today, and had to look it up to see if these war crimes did exist under the Bush administration…. the same George W. Bush I went to Desert Storm with him as my Commander in Chief…

    Reply

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