Medevac Neglect of Wounded Troops: Issue Getting Hot

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Gulag Bulletin: This is posted as a follow up to James Simpson’s article: “Bureaucracy Killing U.S. Troops in Afghanistan,” 1/16/2012, in Examiner.com and the Washington Times.in Examiner.com

medevac

Medevac "Dustoff" Helicopter, Courtesy Soldier of Fortune Magazine - Click to Enlarge

No sex, many lies, one video tape, and a soldier’s unnecessary death

By James Simpson, DC Independent Examiner

It is not a movie. It could be labeled a comedy, a farce, even a Greek tragedy, except that people really are dying. It is in fact, an absolutely abhorrent, disgraceful and unacceptable demonstration of the hidebound, self-serving attitude, omnipresent throughout the Federal bureaucracy, and among many in our political establishment, that my agency, my mission, my job, is more important than anyone or anything else.

It is called protecting turf, and the ugly fact, as any government analyst can tell you, is that the federal government spends more time doing it than practically anything else. (And Obama wants to give our medical care over to them, no less!) It is bad enough that these petty turf battles squander agency time and resources, but when they dictate policies regulating combat operations, they can become deadly.

Last month, we brought you the story about Specialist Chazray Clark, the soldier wounded in Afghanistan by an IED, who died due to delays because an unarmed medevac helicopter but a few miles away could not launch without armed escort. This story first came to light through the intrepid front-lines reporting of Michael Yon. And yes, he did provide a video tape. No sex, only the agonizing moments waiting for the helicopter to arrive, while Chazray’s life slipped away.

Army policy claims, incomprehensibly, that medevac helicopters must be unarmed and must be marked with the Red Cross to satisfy the Geneva Convention. However the Convention specifically allows for an exclusion when the enemy does not abide by it—not even a joke question with al Qaeda and the Taliban.

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