- Posted January 19, 2013 by
Camp Shelby, Mississippi
This iReport is part of an assignment:
Salute to troops
US Army unable to get troops home from Afghanistan in a timely manner
Over a year ago, two companies from the 27th Infantry Brigade Combat Team of the New York National Guard left for Afghanistan. Today, I would LOVE to welcome them all home to Ft. Drum - but can’t, because of typical Army inefficiency.
Most of the Soldiers are home (they hit U.S. soil again on December 31 - Happy New Year!) but seven injured Soldiers are still stuck at Camp Shelby, Mississippi for the most ridiculous reason you’ve ever heard: NO MONEY.
Yep. NO MONEY.
Out of the two companies, about 40 Soldiers were found to have injuries requiring further treatment. None were able to leave Camp Shelby because the US Army “didn’t have any money” to buy their airline tickets.
Their families were also denied the opportunity to pay for the flights themselves, so the men sat. And sat. And sat… until today. Money was miraculously found to send them all home today… EXCEPT the ones going to Ft. Drum.
Now they’re stuck because the US Army “can’t find flights” to Watertown, New York until at least Tuesday.
Funny. I was able to find flights every day for the next week, starting Saturday morning… so why can’t the Army? I was also able to find flights (plenty of them, not just one a day like the Watertown flights) to Syracuse, NY, which is only about 40 minutes from Ft. Drum. Depending upon who you talk to, they can’t fly to Syracuse either because the Ft. Drum WTU won’t allow it or because the Camp Shelby Transitions Office won’t let them.
I may only be a civilian, but it didn’t take mad skills to find flights to get these men home before next Tuesday… so why can’t the U.S. Army?