I am hesitant to post political stuff up here, but consider this a mild rant:
I have a brother-in-law in the reserves. He's been in training for the past few months. The more I hear about the inner-workings of this branch of the army, and the more I experience the tangential frustrations of having family in the armed forces (he's being deployed, he's not being deployed, he may be being deployed, we'll know tomorrow, next week, when he gets back, when he reports to command...), the less confidence I have in our government in general.
Case in point: today was the platoon's last exam of advanced training. Many people cheated. Many people were caught cheating. Many people were punished, but none were discharged. These are the same people who, after X number of months in training, still do not know how to follow orders and as a result have the whole platoon doing extra PT because they're too dense to learn. These are the people who have been threatened, repeatedly, with being sent back to day 1 of Basic training as punishment, but who nonetheless were allowed to graduate on to advanced training. These are the the "Army of One" working as a team (don't get me started on the brilliance of this statement) who are supposed to work with, and help, and protect, my brother-in-law?????
I am no longer surprised at prison abuse or the murder of Iraqi civillians or rape and victimization perpetuated by our troops worldwide. I am only sorrowful that their leaders can't muster the fortitude and character to make the changes necessary to prevent it.