European and Pacific Stars & Stripes: “Phone rates
I�m one of the lucky soldiers deployed to Iraq in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom. I�m writing about something that�s been bothering me and many of my fellow soldiers: phones. Why is AT&T charging so much for calls back to the United States? One would think that AT&T would give a discount to troops calling home, since if not for the military there would be no AT&T that would be able to charge such rates. We soldiers have protected the rights of companies to be open and free to be run the way they see fit.
But I don�t think that it�s fit to charge $15 for a 200-unit phone card that lasts for only 16 minutes of actual talk time. That�s approximately 93 cents per minute on the satellite phone that we�re able to use. While in Camp New York, we had a phone bank in a trailer and the rates were lower. How hard can it be to get those same phone systems in Tikrit, Mosul and Kirkuk? We up north seem to be getting left out. Seeing that the powers that be can�t figure out when anyone is redeploying, at least AT&T could improve morale by cutting down on the rates and stop trying to get even richer off soldiers deployed to protect their way of life.
Sgt. 1st Class G.L.C., Jr.
Tikrit, Iraq”

It is so shameful that AT&T would milk the last dime from a Soldier that may give his life that day in defense of their way of life. And if those Soldier cann�t pay, AT&T may be inadvertently denying him/her the last call they will every make.


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