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Canada's wounded soldiers told not to criticize online

Jim Seggie said:
Give it time. Plant a seed in someone's mind and it will take root.
<cynicism alert>
And make sure doing the right thing doesn't cost anything - that increases the odds of it happening.
</cynicism alert>
Public Relations can play the game when individual soldiers come forward. Say it is an isolated incident or a clerical oversight. In some cases they have illegally raided their VAC files and gone so far as character assassination and intimidation to stop valid complaints. They fired the last ombudsman for telling the truth as well. Dealing in bad faith does not inspire trust in the system.

JPSU pers see the pattern of the problem. If you get one drunk you would be both shocked and angry. Shutting them up is very important.
Teager said:
Your point?

Some orders should be looked at and decided if it's an order because it is for the greater good of the machine or because it's convenient to not deal with/answer tough questions.

MARS said:
So yeah, those were the rules.  and when measured against the values held by the majority of canadian ciizens today, those rules would appear distasteful.  But not back then.  and they aren't the rules today.

Totally agree. I hope in the near future wounded vets being treated unfairly by the system/not getting the help they need won't be an issue.
captloadie said:
But in this day and age, with the current crop of junior members, is this true? Many walk through our doors with a sense of entitlement before they even don the uniform full time. Try to get guys to put in some extra hours or attend social events without ordering them to do so; there is a general apathy in many corners. ..

There is truth to this, but I can assure you that this is absolutely not new. We were sensing this (including amongst newly arriving junior officers) when I was on regimental duty back in the 90's. (We've spoken about it on other threads related to Mess life, etc) Like all important social changes (as Jim Seggie points out with his "planting a seed" observation) this change has been happening gradually for a while. Our society has been producing this for decades now. What did adults say about the "Hippy Generation" 40 years ago?

The whole business about speaking out is one I struggle with (and didn't handle very well when I was in uniform), but in the end I think that loyalty cannot be reduced to mere blind obedience.  That way lie atrocities, war crimes, a "culture of silence" and other bad things we can remember all too well.

Normally, those in uniform follow the rules very well, and do as they're told quite happily. Sometimes, they do it grudgingly. And, very rarely, they see something that they know is wrong, and begin to struggle over what to do about it. In fact, the Army for the last few years has made a lot of noise about encouraging people to speak out ("Lamplighters", etc), so the institution seems to send the message that it's not just OK, but encouraged. Still, it's difficult.

But, that said, the right thing to do in the face of a blatant wrong or injustice, once you have taken reasonable measures inside the system, is to speak up, and be prepared to face the consequences.  This is not a strong tradition in our military, maybe because it hasn't often been necessary.

On the issue of whether or not every complaint by every soldier or vet is justified, I agree with the suggestion that we need to be careful so as not to knock the legs out from under those with real problems. On the other hand, I do know (as many of us here may know) that there are a few whiners and posers out there too. Again, not a new thing. Still, I believe that they are a small minority, and the main focus needs to be on helping those in and out of uniform who need it.