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Letter to the Editor: Military Operations

Canton, MI

Dear Editor,

I read with disgust that the Pentagon plans to promote Army Lt. Gen. Ricardo Sanchez, former head of military operations in Iraq.

Among his duties in Iraq, Sanchez oversaw all detention facilities, including Abu Ghraib prison. During his command American soldiers were put at risk at the arbitrary commands of the Secretary of Defense.

"Sanchez was born in the equivalent of a log cabin � no running water, a self-made man," said Charles Krohn, who retired last year as an aide to former Army Secretary Thomas E. White. "Anything perceived as an Anglo plot to hold Sanchez responsible for the sins of others would be looked upon with great disfavor."

Former Defense Secretary James R. Schlesinger found that Sanchez was "responsible" for creating an environment that contributed to the abuse of prisoners at Abu Ghraib, but not directly "culpable." That's enough for me. A bank clerk responsible for a bank robbery though not culpable would be fired.

A sheriff's deputy that was responsible for a rape while he was on duty but was not culpable would lose his badge.

Oct., 15, 2004, a 17-member Army Reserve platoon with troops from Jackson, Miss., and around the Southeast deployed to Iraq is under arrest for refusing a suicide mission to deliver fuel.

The soldiers refused an order on Wednesday to go to Taji, Iraq north of Baghdad because their vehicles were considered deadlined or extremely unsafe.

In my opinion they are the real heroes of Iraq. The real leaders of the Army.

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