Fighting for the truth . . . exposing the corrupt


As many as 15 Indiana National Guard recruiters may have faked enlistee medical records, has learned, and Rep. Steven Buyer of the Hoosier State is calling for a Department of Defense probe.

Guard officials are tight-lipped about the scandal but have acknowledged recruiters face disciplinary action for faking a doctor's signature on physical exam records of some 130 recruits.

MAJ Sara Hall, a Guard spokesperson, told an Indianapolis newspaper the recruiters were being investigated. She said MG Robert Mitchell, commander of the Indiana National Guard, would not have any comment at this time.

The recruiters have not been identified publicly, but sources say they were stationed at Division Armory, the Tyndall Armory and the Castleton recruiting station.

An internal Guard investigation began this March after a recruit called headquarters with questions about his "medical waiver."

Allegedly the recruiters played so loose with the truth, they even enlisted a 29 year-old South African citizen. John Pipsillides said recruiters approached him at a country fair in 1999. He told them he didn't think he could join up because he did not have U.S. citizenship.

"No problem," the recruiters said. "Joining the Guard will help you get a green card, permanent residency and eventual citizenship."

Of course, that was bogus, as the Immigration and Naturalization Service caught up with Pipsillides a few months after he enlisted and informed him he was in violation of federal law prohibiting anyone serving in the military without proper U.S. citizenship.

Another former Guardsman, Joe Kwisz, said recruiters signed him up despite their knowledge he had a broken toe and was scheduled for surgery. He claimed recruiters told him to "lie" to doctors about the disability. When Kwisz had the surgery and showed up for his first Guard drill on crutches, the scam was exposed.

Buyer, co-chairman of the House Military Reserve and Guard Caucus and a USAR officer himself, told the Indianapolis STAR the stress of Guard recruiters "is real and genuine." He said the "present system is not good. When we put an army into the field, we want it to be the best."

At least one informed source familiar with the congressman is skeptical of Buyer's concern. "He's known for being arrogant and obnoxious and basically is an 'insider.'" The source said. "We'll be very curious to see how far this federal investigation really goes."


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