Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Baltimore loses two more sons to war in Iraq

An accident between a tractor trailor and a humvee killed two young Baltimore men in a military convoy in Iraq this past weekend. Specialist Bernard Ceo, 22, from Waverly "joined the military to help pay for college. He dreamed of being a teacher," according to Baltimore Sun reporters who interviewed his family. His father added "that's what he really wanted to do - is go to college. And he ... didn't want to put that type of [financial] strain on myself and his mother."

Sgt. Brian R. Conner from Gwynn Oak worked as a firefighter at a station on West North Ave in Walbrook until being deployed to Iraq two months ago. According to the Sun, he prepared by "bringing his personal body armor."

Both men were members of the Maryland Army National Guard. A third member of their unit. Spc. Samuel M. Bosman, 20, from Elkridge was also killed in the accident which occured when "the tractor trailor struck the rear of their Humvee... 'The Humvee caught fire and the ammunition aboard detonated."

All three men were from the 243rd Engineer Company from the Melvin H. Cade Armory in West Baltimore, a part of the Maryland National Guard which traditionally responds to emergencies domestically and does not fight in foreign wars. "They were the first Maryland National Guardsmen to die while deployed overseas since World War II," according to Maj. Gen. Bruce F. Tuxill.

This suggests that these three men may have joined the National Guard without intending to volunteer for combat, though they were willing to do so when called upon. Furthermore, the case of Bernard Ceo is a classic description of "Economic Conscription" which causes disporportionate army recruiting, deployment and fatalities among the less fortunate economic classes. This has also been called the poverty draft.

However, with deaths like these happening from all over the country while the incompetence and corruption of the ruling administrations highlights the moral bankruptcy of this war and foreign policy (as well as domestic policy) have started to send recruiting numbers plummeting, especially in the traditionally easy recruiting of working class Blacks and Hispanics/Latinos.

Notes: experiencing continued technical difficulty posting links

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