Latuff | 01.01.2004 12:30 | Anti-militarism
SOLDIERS SENT TO IRAQ DESPITE POSITIVE DRUG TESTS
Although the U.S. Army says it has a zero-tolerance policy on drugs, 21 Iowa National Guard soldiers who tested positive for drugs were sent to Iraq, the Associated Press reported Nov. 16.
The soldiers tested positive for drugs the day before they were scheduled to be deployed overseas. Army officials said that 13 soldiers from other states also tested positive for drugs but were sent to Iraq, as well.
Officials at Fort McCoy, Wis., which serves as a multi-state gathering point for Reserve and Guard troops, said a number of the soldiers took drugs with the hopes of getting caught and being sent home.
"A positive on their drug test is not going to keep them here, unless there's a dependency issue," said Linda Fournier, a Fort McCoy spokeswoman. " These units have to have so many people to go overseas."
The Army said it would address the drug-test results when the troops return.