Regardless of how anyone feels about our military presence and mission in Iraq, Afghanistan and elsewhere, the men and women who carry it out -- and all others who wear or who have worn the uniform of this country -- deserve the very best whether its training and supplies, support in the field and at home and, yes, medical care.
But the past three decades have shown a decline in such care and commitment, often to pathetic and dangerous levels, and of the compassion that should be associated with it. This is something that reflects the character of the nation.
The Washington Post has been documenting some of the most egregious examples in its expose of conditions at Walter Reed Army Medical Center, once a crown jewel of military medical care facilities. The newspaper's stories give us all reason for angst. This is a national shame that should never have happened and should never happen again.