I’m going to deviate from our regular celebrity-infused news to bring attention to this incredibly sad and distrubing story. Apparently, there is an organization called Baghdad Pups that provides medical attention, clearance and transport for the animals U.S. soldiers have come to love during deployment in the Middle East. Unfortunately, the US Military has intervened in their rescue operations and is now threatening to kill one the beloved pups named Ratchet. Here’s a bit from the SPCA press release,
Today, the United States military committed a crime against their own mentally wounded U.S. soldiers serving in Iraq. Commanding officers ordered the confiscation of a dog, Ratchet, befriended by a group of soldiers during a 15th month of deployment. Ratchet has been a lifeline to Sgt. Gwen Beberg. This morning, Ratchet was on his way to SPCA International rescue experts at the Baghdad Airport to be flown home to Gwen’s parents in Minneapolis, MN when Sgt. Beberg’s commanding officers ordered Ratchet confiscated and held in Iraq to face certain death.
It is against military regulations for active duty troops to befriend animals – Soldiers can face immediate court-marshal and some even see their animals brutally murdered by a direct gunshot to the head from commanding officers who will not bend the rules. Hundreds of U.S. soldiers in the Middle East befriend animals in the war zone to help themselves cope with the hardship and terror they face every day. These dogs and cats become their lifeline – saving them from deep depression and Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).
We here at Ecorazzi find this abhorrent and ask that everyone spread the new about Ratchet and the efforts of Baghdad Pups to bring animals like him home. Please check out more information on this story here — including a bit more behind-the-scenes photos and personal reactions.