Wednesday, December 8th, 2004

Soldier News: Troops Go After Rumsfeld + More Back Door Draft

Don Rumsfeld was questioned sharply in Iraq about the lack of safety and the extended stays troops in Iraq face. From the AP Wires:

“Why do we soldiers have to dig through local landfills for pieces of scrap metal and compromised ballistic glass to uparmor our vehicles?” Wilson asked. A big cheer arose from the approximately 2,300 soldiers in the cavernous hangar who assembled to see and hear the secretary of defense.

UPDATE: Good commentary going on here.

Also, check this from Davey D:


By now everyone has heard stories about a ‘Back Door’ draft. To make sure the US military is well staffed as it continues its war in Iraq, military leaders have done all sorts of shady things including; extending people’s stay of duty, refusing to let people retire, giving petty criminals a choice between jail time or joining the army and more recently calling people up and demanding they report to duty years after they’ve been honorably discharged.

In one instance, well known Hip Hop scribe Jeff Chang saw his cousin, David Miyasato who lives in Hawaii, go through an agonizing situation when the US Army attempted to force him back into service after he had been retired for 13 years. In addition, Miyasato had served a tour of duty during Desert Storm back in the early 90s.

He had served his time and was at home relaxing with his newborn child and eons away from the reality of war. However, because he was a skilled truck driver and truckers have been frequent targets by the Iraqi insurgence, the Army felt it necessary to order Miyasato back on the battle field. He report date was last month on Veteran’s Day.

For those who don’t know, if given a date to report to duty, even if a mistake is made, once you report you are at the beck and call of the military. So even if they are mistaken in calling you up to duty, once you show up it’s their ball game until things are figured out.

Miyasato was lucky to have a cousin who is well connected in the media. He was also lucky to have a good lawyer. The subsequent attention he received resulted in a quick resolution to his situation, but not everyone is so lucky.

The latest casualty of this shadiness on behalf of the US military, involves 19 year Bay Area native Jamelle Posey (spelling may be wrong). He attended the School of Social Justice in Oakland which is known for its activism. Posey comes from a background where money and resources are scarce and his neighborhood is really rough. Very few make it out, but he was one of the few who was determined.

He wanted to go to college, but like many of the folks around him, his financial situation would not allow him to do that. As a last resort he signed up for the Army after a recruiter broke it down to him about all the benefits and advantages he would have.

His classmates who are hip to the game and underhanded recruiting tactics of the military, including a close friend named Michelle, tried in vain to persuade him not to join. According to her, Jamelle really wanted to go to college and believed the promises of the military recruiters and wound up joining.

As soon as he signed the papers, the Army moved to have him graduate early and transfer out of the School of Social Justice. His friends speculate that the army did not want him to be around folks who would influence him or even use his situation to make a larger case about how those who live in poor communities are economically drafted.

It wasn’t too long after graduation that Posey was shipped off to Iraq where he served for a year. He found himself having to come back to the Bay Area because it was discovered that his mother has terminal cancer. The army gave him a few weeks to get his affairs in order. The other week his 18 month old baby brother. Note: I said 18 months not years, was tragically stabbed to death. So now Posey has a mom who is dying and suddenly had to deal with the funeral of his infant brother being killed.

One would think the army would say to 19 year old Mr. Posey ‘stay at home get yourself together and take care of your family’. Unfortunately the Army remained steadfast in its stance that Posey must continue serving and make his way back to the battle lines in Iraq.

When word got out about his situation friends from the School of Social Justice began to kick up dust and alert people. This in turn prompted army officials to raid Posey house and take away all forms of communication including cell phones and computers. He had been ordered to keep quiet about his ordeal. It appears this is the new tactic being used by the military to do their dirt while non -military folks are kept in the dark.

The other day we had two of Jamelle’s friends from the School of Social Justice, Jackie and Michele along with community activist George Galvez and former Vietnam Vet and Gang counselor Nane Alejandrez of Barrios Unidos come on our Hard Knock Radio Show to speak to this disturbing situation.

We are providing a direct link to the radio show so you can hear this unbelievable story for yourself. It will make you cry and get you pissed off as hell. People need to call their elected officials and demand that these sort of tactics being used by our military be put to an end.

On another note, my question is where are all these so called Red State voters who are in full support of the War in Iraq? Why is the army short of personel? One would think that we would have a long waiting list of folks ready to go fight and show their support for this country and our current foreign policy. I guess talk is cheap in the end. We only have one Pat Tillman and bunch of folks who like to cheer and in this case vote from the sidelines.

Here’s a link to the radio show where we talk about the shadiness of the US military and Jamelle Posey.

Here’s a link to the radio show where we covered David Miyasato’s Case.

posted by @ 10:07 am | 0 Comments

Comments are closed.

Previous Posts

Feed Me!






Come follow me now...


We work with the Creative Commons license and exercise a "Some Rights Reserved" policy. Feel free to link, distribute, and share written material from for non-commercial uses.

Requests for commercial uses of any content here are welcome: come correct.

Creative Commons License