Another soldier silenced

Daniel Goetz is a stop-lossed soldier whose tour in Iraq was supposed to end seven months ago. ("Stop-loss" means a soldier can still be retained in a unit's tour of duty even if his/her enlistment time is up.) Via Tattered Coat, we learn that he's been blogging to vent his frustrations; yet in spite of the fact that he's taken great care to play by the rules of being a military blogger, he will no longer be posting on his blog due to some extra attention he received last week.

Last week, Goetz became Operation Truth's veteran of the week; here's an excerpt from the post that garnered him that special touch from the higher ups:
... Like the rest of the America, I clung fervently to the justifications for it. The underlying righteousness was my source of motivation when we crossed the Kuwait-Iraq border in March of 2003.

In the months that were to follow, those justifications collapsed - and with them, my confidence in a nation. In those days, my colleagues and I would often patrol the streets of Baghdad with the infantry in a bid to quell boredom. We were also looking for hope among the Iraqi people; we could live vicariously through their optimism, and perhaps therein find meaning for our occupation. But hope betrayed us as the insurgency swelled.

He went on to express his concern on his own blog that this widespread attention might cause some ire with the military censors:
Operation Truth has published my story as their Veteran of the Week profile. I am excited and nervous for the extra attention this will attract. Excited because the army is trying very hard to muffle the cries of battered soldiers, abused by the system they are sworn to protect. Each time our story is heard by someone new, the country comes that much closer to understanding what is happening to us in Iraq and Afghanistan.

What's brilliant of him is to end his blog tenure with this bit of is the Orwellian language -- he even titles the post "Double Plus Ungood":
For the record, I am officially a supporter of the administration and of her policies. I am a proponent for the war against terror and I believe in the mission in Iraq. I understand my role in that mission, and I accept it. I understand that I signed the contract which makes stop loss legal, and I retract any statements I made in the past that contradict this one. Furthermore, I have the utmost confidence in the leadership of my chain of command, including (but not limited to) the president George Bush and the honorable secretary of defense Rumsfeld. If I have ever written anything on this site or on others that lead the reader to believe otherwise, please consider this a full and complete retraction.

For more reports of silenced soldier's, check out this article from CJR two weeks ago. (Hat tip to Feministe.)

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