Another study showing just how much the government supports the troops:
Hundreds of U.S. Marines have been killed or injured by roadside bombs in Iraq because Marine Corps bureaucrats refused an urgent request in 2005 from battlefield commanders for blast-resistant vehicles, an internal military study concludes. [...]
Cost was a driving factor in the decision to turn down the request for the so-called MRAPs, according to the study. [...]
An urgent February 2005 request for MRAPs got lost in bureaucracy. It was signed by then-Brig. Gen. Dennis Hejlik, who asked for 1,169 of the vehicles. The Marines could not continue to take "serious and grave casualties" caused by IEDs when a solution was commercially available, wrote Hejlik, who was a commander in western Iraq from June 2004 to February 2005.
It should be noted that now-Major General Hejlik is currently calling his 2005 request "more of a recommendation than a demand." And it seems that his "recommendation" floated from bureaucracy to bureaucracy for two years without any action being taken.
According to the author of the study, Franz Gayl:
If the mass procurement and fielding of MRAPs had begun in 2005 in response to the known and acknowledged threats at that time, as the (Marine Corps) is doing today, hundreds of deaths and injuries could have been prevented. While the possibility of individual corruption remains undetermined, the existence of corrupted MRAP processes is likely, and worthy of (inspector general) investigation.
It should also be noted that Gayl filed for whistle-blower protection last year after being threatened with disciplinary action.
Perhaps after Congress finishes up with their investigations into steroids in baseball and missing NFL films, they can get around to looking into this.
Update by kos: How many dead Marines are we talking?
More than 700 U.S. troops died from roadside bombs because the Marine Corps' devotion to a military vehicle years away from deployment kept it from buying available Mine Resistant, Ambush Protected (MRAP) trucks, according to an internal Marine report obtained Friday by USA TODAY.
And how much money are we talking?
Gayl's report says the Pentagon could have bought 53 South African-made MRAPs called Casspirs for $200,000 apiece in early 2005 and thereby have provided Marines in Iraq's Anbar province with greater protection against IEDs. But the Marines failed to act, he said.
$10.6 million. In a war that is costing $275 million every day.
Or put it another way: $15,143 per dead marine.