Army neglects safety

During this campaign season, the president has been saying he supports the troops in Iraq with persistence. But in light of the current anomaly overseas, his actions and those directly responsible for the security of the involved soldiers have proven otherwise.

This past weekend at least 19 members of a supply platoon refused to go on a convoy mission. They were slated to transport supplies from an air base in Iraq to a city near Baghdad.

The soldiers admittedly disobeyed the orders given to them for the simple fact that they would be subjected to hauling contaminated fuel in inadequately armored vehicles that were in poor working condition. As a result, the soldiers were detained by U.S. military authorities.

Disobedience of direct orders by any person in the armed forces is not tolerated and that fact is not lost on us. However, when soldiers are placed within a straightaway of impending danger all recrimination for dereliction of duties should be thrown out the door.

No sane person would willingly drive through a combat area without the proper protection and equipment guaranteed to him or her.

The casualty number of American servicemen and women in Iraq has totaled 1,091 as reported by the Kansas City Star newspaper on Oct. 16.

Convoys in Iraq are frequently subjected to ambushes and roadside bombings. In addition to that, the trek the soldiers would have made is a known hotbed. So would the Pentagon rather have that number increase to 1,110?

Albeit the offenders may have handled the manner inappropriately by calling their family members and notifying them, but what would have been done if they had not? Certainly, the media would have never known about this situation days after it happened and pressure would have never been put on government officials to investigate the matter instead of criminalizing the soldiers.

These men and women were merely rescuing themselves from a tragedy ready to happen.

You can’t be mad at that.