National Guard recruiters forged re-enlistment papers: report

Washington State National Guard recruiters repeatedly forged re-enlistment papers in a desperate attempt to hold on to soldiers in the run-up to the Iraq war surge, a local news channel’s investigation has found.

In one case, a soldier found himself fighting against deployment to Iraq after re-enlistment papers with his signature on it appeared — even though he never signed any such papers, reports Chris Ingalls at KING channel 5 news in Seattle.

And in another case, a sergeant who had signed up for a one-year tour of duty was shocked to discover his enlistment papers stated he had signed up for two years.

Former soldier Michael Patrick sounded the alarm when he discovered forged re-enlistment papers with his name on them.

“Sounds crazy,” Michael Patrick told KING 5. “Sounds like something from a movie.”

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Medicating the military

At least one in six service members is on some form of psychiatric drug.

And many troops are taking more than one kind, mixing several pills in daily “cocktails” — for example, an antidepressant with an antipsychotic to prevent nightmares, plus an anti-epileptic to reduce headaches — despite minimal clinical research testing such combinations.

The drugs come with serious side effects: They can impair motor skills, reduce reaction times and generally make a war fighter less effective. Some double the risk for suicide, prompting doctors — and Congress — to question whether these drugs are connected to the rising rate of military suicides.

“It’s really a large-scale experiment. We are experimenting with changing people’s cognition and behavior,” said Dr. Grace Jackson, a former Navy psychiatrist.

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