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Reservist Called Up for FIFTH Time

Miami Herald story:

Erik Botta believes he's done right by his country.

Days after 9/11, as a young Army reservist, he volunteered to go to war. He was soon in Afghanistan.

The next year, he was sent out again, this time to Iraq, part of a Special Operations team.

In the next two years, he was sent to Iraq again. And again.

He thought he was done. But now, the Army wants Sgt. Botta one more time.

The 26-year-old Port St. Lucie man has been ordered to report to Fort Jackson, S.C., on July 15 for his fifth deployment. And that has compelled Botta, a first-generation American who counts himself a quiet patriot, to do something he never thought he'd do: sue the Army.

''I'm proud of my service,'' he said. ``I never wanted it to end like this.''

Nearly seven years into his eight-year commitment to the reserves, the personal costs are higher for Botta. He could lose his home. His job at Sikorsky, working on the Black Hawk military helicopter, could be on the line. He's halfway to his electrical engineering degree, planning a career in defense work, but his professors say he'll suffer a significant setback if he is deployed. He doesn't mention the danger another deployment would bring, but his wife and parents do.

Troops are just commodities for the Bush Bunch. Use them until they are dead or irretrievably broken then do as little for them as they can get away with. It's completely remarkable to me that any member of the military could continue to support Bush given his track record.


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Comments (3)

FWIW, when you join the military, you HOPE for a peacetime tour of duty, BUT YOU MUST BE PREPARED FOR THE WORST. The military basically does two things: "Break things and kill people", and when you join you have to expect to do that, for as long as your commitment lasts. Tough, Mr. Botta, but that is just the way it is. Sounds like you just "joined for the glory", and not with any consideration for the RESPONSIBILITY that goes with THE OATH.

Paul Hamilton:

So patriotic, honest people join the military to serve the nation and Bush's respect for their commitment is to ABUSE them like chattel.

If this was was legitimate, there would be no problem with finding people to join the cause. The fact that Bush needs to maintain the military by lowering the standards for enlistment and with stuff like stop-loss orders and endless redeployments shows that the problem is not with people like Erik Botta, but rather with the leadership of the nation.

Lee Ward:

"Sounds like you just "joined for the glory", and not with any consideration for the RESPONSIBILITY that goes with THE OATH."

You're apparently overlooking the headline of this post, and paragraphs two through four of the quote block:

Days after 9/11, as a young Army reservist, he volunteered to go to war. He was soon in Afghanistan.

The next year, he was sent out again, this time to Iraq, part of a Special Operations team.

In the next two years, he was sent to Iraq again. And again.

One tour in Afghanistan and three tours in Iraq, and you are suggesting he's shirking his responsibility. Feh...


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Publisher: Kevin Aylward

Editors: Lee Ward, Larkin, Paul S Hooson, and Steve Crickmore

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