Saturday, November 20, 2004

Amputees to Iraq
Is this for real? I saw the link on a Kos comment thread, and I can't believe it. Either way, it's very sad. Thousands of American men and women have been crippled in this needless war, and they don't show up in the KIA totals you see every once in a while in the papers. Among the many permanently crippled:

One of those amputees is Marine Corp. Peter Bagarella, who attended the groundbreaking with more than a dozen other amputees, families and military personnel. On foot patrol this summer with his unit in western Iraq, the 21-year-old from Cape Cod, Mass., stopped to examine a suspicious object. "The next thing I know, my eyes turned white and my ears were ringing," he said.

"My left foot fell off, it was just gone, and I went blind because shrapnel got in my eyes."

Bagarella had his left leg amputated below the knee, suffered hundreds of tiny shrapnel wounds in his right leg and left knee, and has impaired vision. Walking carefully with his new prosthetic and a cane, he said the new center gives survivors hope they can lead the kind of lives they had before getting injured.

I'm all for giving amputees hope and the treatment they deserve, but I think the long-term solution would be to remove the source of maiming, which is the Iraq War. Get the elections over with, get the Arab League in there, and get the hell out. The whole thing was a colossal mistake, and it's getting worse every single day.


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