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I just got the following two emails, one from some lady in Florida, and another from a retired Marine. These are pretty good examples of the emails I've been getting from those on the right, and several folks claiming to be military or associated with the military, in response to my quote in Editor & Publisher yesterday:

Aravosis from AmericaBlog told E&P: "Now that the Joint Chiefs have addressed the insidious threat cartoons pose to our troops, perhaps they can move on to less pressing issues like getting them their damn body armor."
And you can bet that quote pissed them off.

The thing I'm trying to understand is whether these are typical of the way people think, or whether I simply have a direct connection to Idaho? Seriously, is this the typical crazy-ass Rush Limbaugh fans weighing in - i.e., angry partisans that don't want to see the truth - or is this more indicative of something bigger. Namely, it amazes me how Toles can defend the troops against Rumsfeld's calloused disregard for their safety, how I can publicly criticize (repeatedly) the Pentagon for not getting our soldiers the vehicle and personal armor and other supplies they need, yet somehow that makes me and Toles "anti-military."

Interestingly, Howie Kurtz in the Post today interviews a representative of a disabled vets organization who thought the cartoon was fine:
Dave Autry, deputy communications director for Disabled American Veterans, said he was "certainly not" offended by the cartoon.

"It was graphic, no doubt about it," he said. "But it drove home a point, that there are critically ill patients that certainly need to be attended to."
I'm serious. I'm really trying to understand this. Is this just a bunch of knee-jerk wackos weighing in, or do reasonable people in the military and the public honestly think that when liberals and moderates complain about the mistreatment of our soldiers by the Bush administration, somehow we're actually ANTI-soldier? I don't get it. I want to get it. But I don't.

And let me just remind folks of the Pentagon study, that was just leaked:
A secret Pentagon study has found that at least 80 percent of the marines who have been killed in Iraq from wounds to their upper body could have survived if they had extra body armor. That armor has been available since 2003 but until recently the Pentagon has largely declined to supply it to troops despite calls from the field for additional protection, according to military officials.
Help please? I'd be particularly interested in hearing from service members, current and former, and reasonable Republicans who are willing to have an honest discussion about this without the personal attacks, references to Hillary as a c---, etc.

Date: Thu, 2 Feb 2006 05:18:46 -0800 (PST)
From: Maureen W
Subject: I am an American

It is totally disgusting to see how immature and vicious our press has become that they resort to demeaning our wounded soldiers in order to make a "point". Most journalists,as I see it, were the least educated and the most noisy of our colleges of the past. They constantly attack what THEY don't understand,all in the name of support. Hogwash!

No one takes these vicious and biased journalists seriously anymore. I agree with the Chiefs of Staff that Mr.Towle 's " cartoon" is disrespectfully but also, in my opinion, evil and vicious. What is so hard to believe is that people,like Peter Jennings (a high-school drop-out) was given so much prestige with so little credentials. As a grandmother, it is hard to explain to my teenage grandaughter that people, like Towle, have any credibility when they are so nasty and inhuman.

No, thank you.

On Wed Feb 01 20:24:36 PST 2006, Brian wrote:

To John Aravosis regarding his recent quote: "Now that the Joint
Chiefs have addressed the insidious threat cartoons pose to our
troops, perhaps they can move on to less pressing issues like
getting them their damn body armor."

Johnny boy,

In reference to your recent above have no idea
what the hell you are talking about! Once you wake up from your
stupor and grow in maturity maybe then you will start to gain
some real perspective about what is going on in Iraq/Afghanistan
and how one successfully fights a war. Until then, I strongly
suggest you keep your inane, arrogant comments to yourself!

Brian J
LtCol, USMC, Ret.
As usual, no facts from Brian about what IS really going on.

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