11 March 2007

Walter Reed fallout and who should blame

So people have been talking all over the place about the issues with Walter Reed Military Hospital. It has gotten so bad that the Congress is doing investigations, and at a variety of places were there is a major military hospital various main stream media have begun to report at problems of Vets and active duty in trying to get help at the hospitals.
I have paid some attention to the fiasco at Walter Reed and though the General in charge of the Hospital is to blame for the problems that have occurred. The people that I really think should stand up and say that they are at fault is the Staff Sergeants and above. These are the people that form the back bone of the enlisted leadership in the US Army. These are the people who should have been tactfully complaining to the officers in their chain of command about these issues. Heck these are the people that should of known about these problems long before it came to the light of the Washington Post.
To give you civilians who read this post an idea of the power of these people. They are similar to Tony Soprano or a union shop steward. These are the representatives to management about how the workers are doing. They are also the ones that are to put the discipline in the junior folks and offer wise sage like advise to junior officers. Basically, they what is actually holds up most military forces.
So how is it that senior non-commissioned folks let things like this happen? I don't know. I am not talking about the patients, rather I am talking about the staff members. These are the people that should of been reporting, correcting, and in general kicking butt to get things in order. How or why this didn't happen I don't know.
I am a second class petty officer in the United States Navy, pay grade is E-5 and comparable to being Sargent in the rest of the military. I was taught from day one of being an NCO that my job from day one was to take care of junior people around me. If I couldn't do it right then I would find out ways to help my people. I would try and stand up for them and find for them the answers to some of thier problems are the people to start the road of help. I was taught to read the rules, instructions, notices, etc and then go take the people that go "it is not my job" to task for not doing thier job as outlined by those written words.
Yet, that did not happen here. I believe that there was too much "its not my job" going on at Walter Reed and a number of the VA hospitals in the US. That drives me nuts and very angry. I just can't contain my angry about this and I am so angry that I can't even express myself very well. I will sit and read the papers and keep my ear to the grapevine to see what will happen with the further fall out from this.

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