According to Rumsfeld, they're partly to blame for our troop loss in Iraq
Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld warned Monday that procedures designed to protect the environment can sometimes jeopardize U.S. troops and should be balanced against military needs. "When those concerns are not balanced, the consequence can be unfortunate, such as when troops deployed to Iraq," he said in remarks prepared for delivery at the White House Conference on Cooperative Conservation. When some troops trained for service in Iraq at the National Training Center at Fort Irwin, Calif., Rumsfeld said, they were taught to roll up the bottom of their tents to stay out of the way of desert tortoises. "In Iraq, however, light spread out at the base of the tents and made troops more visible and possibly more vulnerable to insurgents," he said.
Hey Rumsfeld: Why is the California National Guard in Iraq, in the first place? Oh, right... We need more troops, and you can't risk what little support you have left by reinstating the draft. Second. Have you thought about retraining them on such obvious differences in priorities based on the mission's environment, before shipping them off to Iraq? Apparently not. But then, I guess it's just easier to blame it on the tree-huggers. Isn't it? Hell, it's a two-fer: You excuse yourself from any accountability, and you fire up your base against those damn liberals. Impressive.