We Will Be
Stunned By Fully Expecting Their Ingratitude
An officer writes at Soldiers for the Truth, from Southeast Asia, Jan. 20:
It has been three weeks since my ship, the USS Abraham Lincoln, arrived off the Sumatran coast to aid the hundreds of thousands of victims of the Dec. 26 tsunami that ravaged their coastline. Iíd like to say that this has been a rewarding experience for us, but it has not: Instead, it has been a frustrating and needlessly dangerous exercise made even more difficult by the Indonesian government and a traveling circus of so-called aid workers who have invaded our spaces.
What really irritated me was a scene I witnessed in the Lincolnís wardroom a few days ago. I went in for breakfast as I usually do, expecting to see the usual crowd of shipís company officers in khakis and air wing aviators in flight suits, drinking coffee and exchanging rumors about when our ongoing humanitarian mission in Sumatra is going to end.
What I saw instead was a mob of civilians sitting around like they owned the place. They wore various colored vests with logos on the back including Save The Children, World Health Organization and the dreaded baby blue vest of the United Nations. Mixed in with this crowd were a bunch of reporters, cameramen and Indonesian military officers in uniform. They all carried cameras, sunglasses and fanny packs like tourists on their way to Disneyland.
My warship had been transformed into a floating hotel for a bunch of trifling do-gooders overnight....
Iím all for helping the less fortunate, but it is time to give this mission to somebody other than the U.S. Navy. Our ship was supposed to be home on Feb. 3 and now we have no idea how long we will be here. American taxpayers are spending millions per day to keep this ship at sea and getting no training value out of it. As a result, we will come home in a lower state of readiness than when we left due to the lack of flying while supporting the tsunami relief effort.
I hope we get some good PR in the Muslim world out of it. After all, this is Americans saving the lives of Muslims. I have my doubts.
I have no doubts whatever.
P.S. See also Schwartenberg. Schwartenberg? Schwartenberg! and The Stunning French?
Lane Core Jr. CIW P Mon. 01/24/05 07:57:15 AM
Categorized as International.