International Herald Tribune Editorial - War wounds
Copyright by The International Herald Tribune
Published: August 1, 2007
There is no more urgent task than improving medical care for wounded veterans, whose shameful neglect is yet another failure of the Iraq war.
A presidential commission hurriedly created in the wake of scandalous accounts of mistreated and forgotten veterans has issued a series of sensible recommendations for repairing the damage, including a major overhaul of the way disability pay is awarded and providing more support for wounded veterans' family members.
Making all the required improvements, the commission's report said, would require "a sense of urgency and strong leadership." Unfortunately, there is no sign that the White House either grasps the urgency or is prepared to provide that leadership.
The commission did not blame the White House for its gross shortchanging of veterans' care. But the panel pointedly noted executive action could solve most of the problems. True leadership is required to force necessary change. A public increasingly jaded about the damages from this war should demand that the commander in chief face up to the sufferings of his returning troops.