Arizona National Guard Recruits Unwilling Homeless People Into ‘Most Dangerous Game’

  bet joe arpaio wishes he'd thought of this

Jan Brewer and Hugo Salazar totally getting to the bottom of thisNeed a life-affirming bit of sunshine and daisies? Then have we got the opposite of that for a story for you! Arizona National Guard recruiters, it seems, have a long, undisciplined history of taking their sometimes-still-underage prospects around town to get a taste of the excitement of military service, by shooting paintballs at homeless people! Also, sex crime, sex crime, blah blah blah. It’s cool though. One whole person got busted some ranks and not honorably discharged! So the system works! (That one time. Everybody else just got transferred, like a priest.)

Military investigators were told that [Sgt. First Class Michael] Amerson wore his National Guard uniform and drove a government vehicle marked with recruiting insignia as he and other soldiers — some still minors — shot transients with paintballs or got them to perform humiliating song-and-dance routines in return for money. During some of these so-called “bum hunts,” female recruits said, they were ordered to flash their breasts at transients. Homeless women, conversely, were offered food, money or drinks for showing their breasts.

We bet Michael Amerson was the most successful recruiter in the entire Arizona National Guard.

Don’t worry, everyone. The Guard says that these problems have been dealt with! Except for all the people who say that they haven’t.

[O]ther high-ranking officers who talked with The Republic disagreed that problems have been dealt with. They said the National Guard suffers from lax discipline, cronyism, cover-ups, whistle-blower abuse and other systemic flaws. To this day, they note, the Guard has never successfully court-martialed an officer or soldier despite serious wrongdoing uncovered by investigators.

 
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Lt. Col. Rob White, who conducted a command climate investigation in 2009 to assess whether commanders were at fault, said he is sickened by the failure of National Guard leaders to root out misconduct and impose punishment.

“The way the Arizona National Guard is today, I would not trust it with my son or daughter,” said White. “It disgusts me … People don’t get fired, they get moved.”

White, who oversees future operations at the Guard’s Arizona Joint Forces Headquarters, is a soldier of 23 years with a Purple Heart and a Bronze Star. He and others said attempts at reform have repeatedly failed, in part because appeals to Brewer or the National Guard Bureau’s inspector general have been simply referred back to Arizona Guard headquarters.

“The organization is there to take care of soldiers. That’s what we’re supposed to do,” White said. “But what they’re doing is taking care of good ol’ boys. And, when victims come forward, the Arizona Guard turns on them and eats them.”

[...]

White and several other officers came to The Republic with their grievances out of frustration that the problems were not being addressed. Others shared their views confidentially for fear of losing their jobs.

“I’ll probably get retaliated against,” White said. “I’ll be gone. I think they’re already going for me.”

But here are some other people! And they say the same things, and different things!

Lt. Col. Paul Forshey, who recently retired as the National Guard’s top lawyer, or JAG officer, said he was dismayed that a list of reforms suggested by a panel of high-ranking officers was disregarded by top leaders. “I have never seen a board like that … where command did not follow the recommendations of three senior officers.”

The Guard last week accused Forshey of violating attorney-client privilege and threatened him with a state Bar complaint for speaking with The Republic, but he said he won’t be silenced. He said an ethical breakdown has created a culture of arrogance.

Someone who works for Jan Brewer though was all nah mang. Nah.

[Jan Brewer appointee and top Guard officer Major Gen. Hugo] Salazar denied ignoring recommendations for reform. He said suggestions were carried out, though with modifications. He also rejected inferences of a problematic culture.

“We do not have a corrupt command climate in either the National Guard or in recruiting,” he said. “We address misconduct. The criticism is neither fair nor true.”

We are sure that is exactly right, because after all, he says so.

The moral of the story is Paul Ryan, who did not shoot that old homeless with a paintball gun, really is a living saint.

[Photo: AZCentral /MilitaryTimes, via Wonkette operative JK Trotter]

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About the author

Rebecca is the editor and publisher of Wonkette. She is the author of Commie Girl in the O.C., a collection of her OC Weekly columns, and the former editor of LA CityBeat. Go visit her Commie Girl Collective, and follow her on the Twitter!

View all articles by Rebecca Schoenkopf

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159 comments

  1. actor212

    Arizona National Guard recruiters, it seems, have a long, undisciplined history of taking their sometimes-still-underage prospects around town to get a taste of the excitement of military service, by shooting paintballs at homeless people!

    Amateurs!

    We paid our bums to fight with a jar of sterno.

  2. BadKitty904

    Has America always been this way and I've just been really unobservant for the past 24 years? Or is this kind of dumbfuckery getting worse?

    1. PsycWench

      They're getting more sophisticated at covering it up, maybe? Case in point: He said suggestions were carried out, though with modifications.. The modifications just happened to be not carrying them out in reality.

      1. Tundra Grifter

        Remember how Multiple-Choice Mitt said he didn't feel like he went to Viet Nam (well, because he didn't)?

        Maybe the Arizona National Guard didn't exactly feel like the suggestions were carried out…

    1. Lot_49

      One thing's for sure: they ain't gittin' no 'Bortions w/Uncle Sam's $$$. Cuz that'd be sinful!

      And sorry about the random capitalization. Wonkette and the iPad keyboard have a lot of disagreements.

    2. Tundra Grifter

      Maybe it's just me, but if I'd been forced to look at a homeless woman's tits I would have a very hard time whipping it up.

  3. Schmannnity

    Except for the paintballs, it kind of sounds like Mardi Gras. Maybe they should throw beads instead.

    1. Chet Kincaid_

      Seems more like "Jag" or "NCIS" territory, both shows which I have avoided ever seeing in their long and storied runs. Aren't they the pseudo-military cop shows?

      1. Jukesgrrl

        Yes. I had a cousin who was an investigator for the real NCIS. They are an honorable bunch who work very much under the radar, investigating crimes done by and to members of the Navy and Marines … not much like the high drama insanity that CBS would have us believe. Lots of domestic abuse and drug cases.

  4. Blunderthing

    Endless Stream Of Garbage Passing For Humanity Stinks To High Heaven–Too Much For Perfume To Be Effective

    1. BadKitty904

      Though, based on the two guys in that photo, they may want to start aiming at the homely, rather than the homeless…

  5. SayItWithWookies

    I'm so glad Jan Brewer's using Arizona's resources to protect our borders because that's all she ever fuckin' screams about over and over again.

    And yes, the NG can only be mobilized by President Obama, but the state can at least train the Guard for potential duty — which I doubt involves shooting the homeless. Yet.

  6. MissTaken

    Homeless women, conversely, were offered food, money or drinks for showing their breasts.

    Pics or GTFO!

    Um, actually, please don't.

  7. noodlesalad

    You might think a desert hell-hole populated by religious zealots, confused old people, and gun nuts would be a great place to be poor or homeless. Surprisingly, you'd be wrong.

    1. actor212

      "It'll be tough slogging heading back up Hamburger Hill. Deploy the 101st Hooter Division. Those bazookas ought to get them out of there."

    2. FakaktaSouth

      And as punishment, they should all be treated to a Jan Brewer Flashing – or "face melting." Bet that would stop that shit cold.

    3. PubOption

      Either I read or dreamt, some years ago, that the Israelis had used it on the Palestinians. A female soldier would appear topless from one of the hatches of a personnel carrier and while the Palestinians were staring, another soldier would start shooting.

      1. Tundra Grifter

        Topless? Heck, all she had to do was take off her hat and gunglasses. After twenty years of seeing every woman except your mom covered head to toe in a dark sheet, I think that would have been enough.

  8. Oblios_Cap

    Explain to me again why the members of our military are so much better than the rest of us.

    Thank you for your service.

      1. fatbob54

        Sexist Comment Warning:
        If Jan Brewer's tits are anything like her face, they look like a pair of old leather work gloves that you find behind the tool bench after a couple of years of drying out, and being crapped in by mice…

  9. Toomush_Infer

    If you're thinking back to the dayz when I wasn't an oldz, when just going into a local bar was fighting words, when I was slapped in the face from my pastor, just because I didn't agree that dinosaurs bones were God's way of testing our faith, well, um, yeah, dumbfuckery's been around a while….(oops, this is in reply to BadKitty, sorry, trail…)

    1. PugglesRule

      Jan's leathery skin suggests she has never used as much as SPF 4. She would need SPF 35,000 to reverse that damage, if it were possible.

  10. Monsieur_Grumpe

    I imagine that some of the new recruits were disappointed when they found out that bum hunting was actually stalking the homeless.

  11. noodlesalad

    Also, worse use of the word "conversely" ever. Female soldiers were exploited. Conversely, homeless females were exploited. THE TWO ARE NOT OPPOSITES NOR EVEN MUTUALLY EXCLUSIVE. Bad grammar pisses me off, almost as much as exploitation of women and poor people. This makes America one of the worst places for me to live, I am now realizing.

  12. ManchuCandidate

    Damn copycats. When will people stop doing their versions of Community's Modern Warfare episode?

    In real life and in actual paintball, people do shoot back. Fucktards.

  13. CommieLibunatic

    Do we have to support ALL the troops? How about we support the AZ National Guard by NOT beating the shit out of them with a chair leg in return for a humiliating song-and-dance routine?

  14. MissTaken

    What kind of fucking world do I live in??

    Sorry, but between not letting kids meet kids they don't normally hang out with because gay is a communicable disease and then teaching minors to pay to gawk at homeless women's tits I've had just about enough. Fucking hell.

  15. Hammiepants

    Seriously, fuck Arizona with fire. It's pretty bad when you make Texas look like a utopian paradise.

      1. SorosBot

        "I don't like sand. It's coarse and rough and irritating and it gets everywhere." – Darth Vader

  16. mrpuma2u

    NEEDZ MOAR BUMZ GITTIN ABUZED! WTF, Arizona and Jan Brewer are becoming the Alabama and Wallace of this decade. BUM SHOOTIN' TODAY, BUM SHOOTIN' TAMARRAH, BUM SHOOTIN FOREVAH!

  17. no_gravity

    When I read this yesterday this is the first thing I thought of:

    "Nonsense," laughed Rainsford. "This hot weather is making you soft, Whitney. Be a realist. The world is made up of two classes–the hunters and the huntees. Luckily, you and I are hunters.

  18. Estproph

    Relax, everyone. This is just a game. It's good training for when they go live against anyone with brown skin.

  19. brditsme

    "We are sure that is exactly right, because after all, he says so. The moral of the story is Paul Ryan, who did not shoot that old homeless with a paintball gun, really is a living saint."

    Sometimes I feel like Rebecca is actively trying to make me fall in love with her.

  20. CthuNHu

    Shoot the homeless with toy guns, amuse yourself for an hour. Give the homeless guns, and — well, more guns is always the right answer, right?

  21. Ruhe

    And somewhere in the Arizona desert a dedicated group of Hobos are secretly assembling the new "beans-and-hooch" war-head for their dirt-rocket ICBMs. The bum offensive is coming.

  22. Toomush_Infer

    Little known fact: the homeless love paintball….they'd like to borrow your gunz for a sec, though….

  23. Blueb4sinrise

    Heck, the Border Patrol shot and killed a kid for throwing rocks. This barely registered on the alarm meter.

    Anyway, I'm sure Jan will take full responsibility for NG, since she's CINC, or whatever she thinks she is.

  24. prommie

    That dude in the picture is the very model of a modern major general! Very Rehnquistian, in his sartorial splendor!

    1. Tundra Grifter

      I couldn't tell if that was an officer in the Arizona National Guard or a New York City co-op doorman.

  25. Doktor Zoom

    Our brave warriors just need to blow off steam with some harmless pranks. If the Warrior Class doesn't have some privileges, how will we recruit stout fighting men to defend our homeland?

    1. bikerlaureate

      I have no problem with them having some privileges and advantages.
      Tormenting other people, particularly the less fortunate, wouldn't be among the perks. Mature humans with any empathy would understand this.

  26. owhatever

    Paintballs? I told you to lock and load full metal jacket rounds and piss in their skulls, you moron. This is Arizona, not some pussy state like Texas. When Mitt takes us to his new wars, you gonna use paintballs? Anyway, thank you for your service.

  27. An_Outhouse

    There's still time to send all the Arizona Nat Guard to Afghanistan right? That would make Mr. Ryan very happy. Maybe Mitt can charter the plane.

  28. decentcitizen

    It's an absolutely valid test of a man's (or woman's) potential for inhumanity to man (or woman). What could go wrong with entrusting our national security to such fine specimens?

  29. editor

    wtf? is there no porno in arizona?

    okay, fine, i'll send every law enforcement officer in arizona a picture of my boobs, if they will promise to leave the homeless alone.

Comments are closed.