( – promoted by buhdydharma )
IF YOU HAVE NOT YET READ PART ONE IN THIS SERIES, I STRONGLY SUGGEST YOU DO TO GET NEEDED INFORMATION THAT IS ONLY IN THAT PORTION. http://sanchopress.com/showDia…
See above for part one also -buhdy
excerpt from NamGuardianAngel’s
Acinetobacter baumannii brought back from Iraq and Afghanistan
New Bacterial Infection Linked to Military
Report: Troops Transmitted Mysterious Bacteria That Has Killed 7 And Affected Military And Civilians Alike
By JOHN HENDREN
Feb. 8, 2008
Troops arriving home from Iraq and Afghanistan have been carrying a mysterious, deadly bacteria, according to a new magazine report.
Doctors have linked the bacterium acinetobacter baumannii to at least seven deaths, as well as to loss of limbs and other severe ailments, according to the report, which found the bacterium has spread quickly since the war in Afghanistan began in the fall of 2001
Acinetobacter baumannii has been found in military hospitals in Germany, the Washington, D.C., area and Texas — the primary destinations of wounded service members from the two war zones. And it has now spread to civilians, according to the report.
“The outbreak began traveling with patients or nonpatients from Iraq all the way back to Walter Reed,” said Dr. Rox Anderson at Harvard Medical School.
Dr. Timothy Endy, a retired Army colonel now teaching infectious disease medicine at the Upstate Medical University of the State University of New York, said the outbreak might be the largest of its kind to spread through hospitals in history.
Doctors quoted in the magazine article agreed. “Of the infectious disease problems that come out of the conflict, it is the most important complication we’ve seen,” Dr. Glenn Wortmann, acting chief of infectious disease at Walter Reed Army Medical Center, said in the February issue of Proceedings, published by the U.S. Naval Institute, a professional organization focused on naval issues.
The report was released to subscribers of the magazine this week.
I’ve been posting on this for a couple of years now but it all gets ignored. When I posted this recent report, one of my readers, Marcie Hascall Clark, who has been working on this since the beginning left this message.
Marcie Hascall Clark said…
Thanks Kathy for keeping tabs on this bug!
Acinetobacter baumannii is neither new or mysterious. This ABC story is a cut and paste from a real story by Chas Henry for a naval publication, which is a pretty move for them considering the extent to which the DoD has tried to keep this under the wire.
The real story can be read at www.chashenry.com along with some television work his has produced on Ab.
Since we last spoke Acinetobacter baumannii strains from the military evacuation system have spread to hospitals all across our country and have killed many people.
This could have been contained.
Marcie Hascall Clark
excerpt from NamGuardianAngel’s
When reports came out about women being raped by Halliburton/KBR employees, which is a crime, being treated as an arbitration dispute, you would have thought the women in this nation would be screaming so loudly the government wouldn’t dare ignore them. You’d also be wrong. It happens to women in the military all the time. Here is another report I posted today.
Sen. Patty Murray Seeks Help For Survivors Of Military Sexual Trauma
Sen. Patty Murray, D-Wash., says women in the military return home traumatized because, in addition to the pressures of living in a war zone, they have been living in close quarters with men and, in many cases, report that they had been sexually harassed, assaulted or raped.
Senator Seeks Help For Survivors Of Military Sexual Trauma
Published on 2/10/2008
Washington – Scurrying back to her Army barracks in the dark after her shift at the hospital, Sally, a 21-year-old medic, was grabbed by a man who dragged her to the woods and raped her at knifepoint.
When she reported the attack, Sally, of Kirkland, Wash., who asks that her full name not be used, was brushed off by her superior officer at Fort Belvoir, Va., who dismissed the rape as a spat with a boyfriend.
Her story is alarmingly like that of hundreds of other veterans who have suffered sexual harassment, assault and rape in the military, according to Susan Avila-Smith, a Seattle-based advocate who has helped hundreds of women veterans get VA benefits and treatment for military sexual trauma (MST).
Avila-Smith says she also was a victim when she served in the Army, having been sexually assaulted in a hospital recovery room after sinus surgery at Fort Hood, Texas.
The pressures on women service members, who now comprise about 7 percent of all veterans, are escalating:
• According to the Veterans Administration, 19 percent of women who have sought health care in the VA were diagnosed as victims of military sexual trauma.
• Cases of military sexual trauma increased from 1,700 in 2004 to 2,374 in 2005, according to the Department of Defense Sexual Assault Prevention Response Program.
What kind of a nation are we now? Are we a nation of laws or have we become a fraud? Women in the military raped, yet it is passed off and ignored, or worse, the women who report it face harassment instead of justice. Hallibuton/KBR employees are raped and yet when they report it they face retribution. Instead of turning it over to law enforcement, they only allow the victim to be heard in arbitration. What are we now?
Please see this article just posted 2/6 by NamGuardianAngel with too many links regarding PTSD to add. Great stuff. Excellent links. Wanna know more about PTSD? Then check it out. http://sanchopress.com/showDia…
excerpt from NamGuardianAngel’s article; http://sanchopress.com/showDia…
While searching I also came across a reminder of news that never really got much attention at all. There are 23 military bases with contaminated water, more with contaminated soil and a long list of them with depleted uranium contamination.
23 military bases have tainted water
Lejeune, Barstow on contamination list
By Kimberly Johnson – Staff writer
Posted : Monday Jun 18, 2007 21:53:40 EDT
Congressional lawmakers who were examining extensive drinking water contamination from the 1960s through the 1980s at Camp Lejeune, N.C., now say that the problem extends to 22 other bases throughout the country, to varying degrees.
In 1980, military officials at Lejeune discovered the presence of trichloroethylene (TCE), a volatile organic compound used by the military and by civilian businesses, such as dry cleaners, said Rep. Bart Stupak, D-Mich., chairman of the House Energy and Commerce’s subcommittee on oversights and investigations. As a result, 10 wells at the base were shut down by 1987 after their TCE contamination was found to be 1,400 parts per billion, well above the government’s maximum level of 5 ppb.
“TCE is the most widespread water contaminant in the nation, and almost every major military base has a Superfund site with TCE contamination,” Stupak said.
At least 850 former residents of the base have filed administrative claims, seeking nearly $4 billion, for exposure to the industrial solvents
How none of this makes any of the 24 hour cable news stations is very telling. They used to say that “if it bleeds, it leads” but now it has to involved someone sexy to get any attention at all. You would think that since we claim to be so gratful of the service the troops do for us, we would give them at least a fraction of the attention we give Britney Spears.
Video from jimstaro’s article; http://sanchopress.com/showDia…
Winter Soldier: Iraq and Afghanistan
WAR CRIMES ENCOURAGED AND UNOFFICIAL POLICY
excerpt from jimstaro’s article; http://sanchopress.com/showDia…
VCS Releases New VA and DoD Fact Sheets
I’m sitting out a slight Freezing Rain, that when I left this morning, in the dark and on the country roads, I drove right into.
Instantly blocking All view out my windsheild and caking on my wipers. Turned around, as I was only a few miles from home, hit a few icy road spots on the way but made it back, I drive a Van loaded with tools, not great on icy country roads.
Temps still sitting at 32 so I’m going to post up the latest Veterans for Common Sense newsletter, it’s another Eye Opener.
This week Veterans for Common Sense releases updated versions of our popular VA and DoD Fact Sheets. The statistics are very disturbing.
The Pentagon officially reported 72,043 battlefield casualties from Iraq and Afghanistan through Jan. 5, 2008
VA hospitals and clinics have already treated 263,909 unplanned patients from the Iraq and Afghanistan wars – PDF. On top of that, VA reported 245,034 unanticipated disability claims from veterans of the two wars.
VCS issued warnings about this growing problem. On Veterans Day in 2007, VCS posted an editorial about how we believe VA and DoD mask the true costs of the two wars.
To assist you with making sense of the new Fact Sheets, a VCS analysis shows that between June 2007 and November 2007:
* The number of PTSD claims approved rose 80 percent (from 19,015 to 34,138), while the veteran population rose only 16 percent. The incidence of PTSD is dramatically rising, or VA is finally starting to take this problem more seriously, or both.
* 100 PTSD claims were approved every day. VA can expect tens of thousands, if not hundreds of thousands more PTSD claims from our new war veterans as more service members deploy to the war zone and then begin to return home.
* Veterans who served in the National Guard or Reserves were nearly three times as likely to have their VA disability compensation claim rejected (14% compared to 5%). VCS remains concerned about the apparent unequal treatment faced by our veterans who were ordered to active duty in the war zone from the National Guard and Reserves.
While the PTSD claims situation may be improving slightly due to intense pressure brought about by the VCS and Veterans United for Truth lawsuit against VA, there are still nearly 18,000 Iraq and Afghanistan veterans diagnosed by VA with PTSD who are not yet receiving VA disability payments.
VCS believes that VA is still not properly reviewing and approving PTSD claims for veterans already diagnosed with PTSD by VA doctors. This means VA continues to deny and delay essential disability payments for our veterans that could be the difference between paying the rent or becoming homeless.
Wounded Warrior Update: Last week, the House voted to include the “Dignity for Wounded Warriors Act” (formerly S 1606 and then HR 1585), in the new Defense Bill, HR 4986. Now we are waiting on the Senate to approve the bill. Sadly, the provision allowing our Gulf War veterans tortured by Iraq to sue the new Iraqi government was watered down.
Please share the critical information in your VCS Update with your friends, reporters, and elected officials so that they know the facts about the Iraq and Afghanistan wars.
Please donate generously to VCS so we can keep reporting the accurate and complete facts about the human consequences of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars. We appreciate your support so we can provide the policy advocacy that all our veterans need.
Veterans for Common Sense
excerpt from NamGuardianAngel’s comment
Fort Carson Soldier Pulled Out Of Hospital To Redeploy
Fort Carson Forcibly Removed Soldier from Mental Hospital and Deployed Him to Iraq War
Feb 10, 2008
Paul Sullivan, executive director of Veterans for Common Sense, was outraged. “If he’s an inpatient in a hospital, they should have never taken him out. The chain of command needs to be held accountable for this. Washington needs to get involved at the Pentagon to make sure this doesn’t happen again. “First, we had the planeload of wounded, injured and ill being forced back to the war zone. And now we have soldiers forcibly removed from mental hospitals. The level of outrage is off the Richter scale.”
Ill GI says he was deployed from hospital
Februray 10, 2008 – A Fort Carson soldier who says he was in treatment at Cedar Springs Hospital for bipolar disorder and alcohol abuse was released early and ordered to deploy to the Middle East with the 3rd Brigade Combat Team.
The 28-year-old specialist spent 31 days in Kuwait and was returned to Fort Carson on Dec. 31 after health care professionals in Kuwait concurred that his symptoms met criteria for bipolar disorder and “some paranoia and possible homicidal tendencies,” according to e-mails obtained by The Denver Post.
The soldier, who asked not to be identified because of the stigma surrounding mental illness and because he will seek employment when he leaves the Army, said he checked himself into Cedar Springs on Nov. 9 or Nov. 10 after he attempted suicide while under the influence of alcohol. He said his treatment was supposed to end Dec. 10 but his commanding officers showed up at the hospital Nov. 29 and ordered him to leave.
“I was pulled out to deploy,” said the soldier, who has three years in the Army and has served a tour in Iraq.
Soldiers from Fort Carson and across the country have complained they were sent to combat zones despite medical conditions that should have prevented their deployment.
Late last year, Fort Carson said it sent 79 soldiers who were considered medical “no-gos” overseas. Officials said the soldiers were placed in light-duty jobs and are receiving treatment there. So far, at least six soldiers have been returned.
Report: Troops to war despite broken leg, torn rotator cuffs.
DENVER – Soldiers who were medically unfit or considered borderline have been sent to the Middle East to meet Army goals for “deployable strength,” The Denver Post.
Quoting internal Army e-mails and a Fort Carson soldier, the newspaper said that more than 50 troops were deployed to Kuwait en route to Iraq while they were still getting medical treatment for various conditions. At least two have been sent home.
Capt. Scot Tebo, the surgeon for Fort Carson’s 3rd Brigade Combat Team, wrote in an e-mail obtained by the newspaper that “We have been having issues reaching deployable strength, and thus have been taking along some borderline soldiers who we would otherwise have left behind for continued treatment.”
Master Sgt. Denny Nelson said he was sent to Kuwait last month despite a severe foot injury. He was sent back to Fort Carson after a military doctor in Kuwait wrote that he never should have been shipped out.
Maj. Harvinder Singh, the 3rd Brigade Combat Team’s rear detachment commander, said he did not believe medically unfit soldiers have been sent to Iraq. He said soldiers with medical problems are deployed only if they can be assigned to light-duty jobs and if medical services are available at their destinations.
Fort Carson spokeswoman Dee McNutt said she knew of no Army policy defining “deployable strength” levels that Army commanders must meet.
excerpt from Edger’s article; http://sanchopress.com/showDia…
By Matt Renner, t r u t h o u t | Interview, Tuesday 15 January 2008
“Nothing has changed [at Walter Reed]. Same facility. None of the recommendations that I made have been implemented and to my knowledge they really aren’t working on it.
Former Army Lt. and military nurse Doug Connor sat down for an interview with Truthout reporter Geoffrey Millard to share his experience before and after the Walter Reed Medical Center scandal broke.
Encouraged by the firings of top military officials as a result of the problems at Walter Reed, Connor spoke out about the dilapidated conditions at Walter Reed. He sent a letter to Gen. Gregory A. Schumacher with recommendations for improving conditions in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) where there were equipment shortages and outbreaks of infectious bacteria, including extremely dangerous drug-resistant forms of Acinetobacter baumannii, a bacterium that has been ravaging injured soldiers in Iraq and in domestic military hospitals.
The infection problems caused other units within the hospital to lose faith in the ICU’s ability to care for surgical patients. Because of the infections, “the kidney transplant team will not recover their patients in the surgical ICU anymore,” Connor said in the interview.
According to Connor, his recommendations were not acted upon. Instead, he claims that he was retaliated against.
“I thought he would thank me for letting him know where there were areas that needed to be fixed …I have been retaliated against because of the letters that I have sent out. It is pretty transparent… Everyone that has seen what happened around me is just like ‘yeah, they’re going after you.'”
excerpt from NamGuardianAngel’s article; http://sanchopress.com/showDia…
Nam Nights Of PTSD STILL
While it is great that there has been so much attention on the Iraq and Afghanistan veterans, it’s not so great Vietnam veterans have been left out of all of this.
Last year there was a report that came out stating there were 148,000 Vietnam veterans seeking help for PTSD in a period of 18 months. While that tells me the outreach work being done with them is working, it also shows there are still Vietnam veterans without a single clue what’s wrong with them. I get their emails all the time.
This video is for the Vietnam Veterans.
excerpt from NamGuardianAnemgel’s article; http://sanchopress.com/showDia…
Ambien links need to be investigated
The Iraq War: On Drugs. Soldiers in Iraq routinely given various narcotic and addictive sleeping medications by medical staff
“Soldiers I talked to were receiving bags of antidepressants and sleeping meds in Iraq, but not the trauma care they needed,” says Steve Robinson, a Defense Department intelligence analyst during the Clinton administration.
Sometimes sleeping pills, antidepressants and tranquilizers are prescribed by qualified personnel. Sometimes not. Sgt. Georg Anderas Pogany told Salon that after he broke down in Iraq, his team sergeant told him “to pull himself together, gave him two Ambien, a prescription sleep aid, and ordered him to sleep.”
Other soldiers self-medicate.
“We were so junked out on Valium, we had no emotions anymore,” Iraq vet John Crawford told “Fresh Air” host Terry Gross. He and others in his unit in Iraq became addicted to Valium.
“It concerns us when we hear military doctors say, ‘It’s wonderful that we have these drugs available to cope with second or third deployments,'” Joyce Raezer of the National Military Family Association told In These Times.
“But that statement makes military spouses cringe,” she continues, “Soldiers are saying ‘we don’t have time to recover.'”
Marine psychiatrist Cmdr. Paul S. Hammer confirmed to San Diego Union-Tribune reporter Rick Rogers that Marines with PTSD are returning to Iraq.
In many cases, their problem is labeled stress. “Army docs have told me that commanders pressured them not to diagnose PTSD because it would cut into combat power: the ability to project men and women into war,” says Robinson. “The docs admit that the decision is unethical, but are unwilling to take the huge career risk of becoming a whistleblower.
When you look at the non-combat deaths with vehicles, there are many of them. The question is, how many were given Ambien before they happened? Is anyone looking into any of this?
video from Edger’s article; http://sanchopress.com/showDia…
“A major factor in the end of the Vietnam war was the resistance within the armed forces that all but halted the ground war. While at the Veterans For Peace conference this year I spoke with the next generation of GI resisters, who are being compared with the soldiers successful at shutting down the military in Vietnam.”
excert from NamGuardianAngel’s article; http://sanchopress.com/showDia…
Saturday, January 12, 2008
More wounded, less doctors and nurses than during Desert Storm
Shortages could be hurting Army health care
By Laura Ungar – Gannett News Service
Posted : Saturday Jan 12, 2008 7:52:09 EST
Injured in a roadside blast in Iraq, Sgt. was assigned to a new medical unit at Fort Knox, Ky., devoted to healing the wounds of war.
But instead of getting better, the brain-injured soldier from Westfield, Ind., was found dead in his barracks on Sept. 21. Preliminary reports show he may have been unconscious for days and dead for hours before someone checked on him.
Sen. Evan Bayh, D-Ind., linked his death in part to inadequate staffing at the medical unit. Only about half of the positions in the unit were filled when Cassidy died. The Army is investigating the death and its cause, and three people have lost their jobs.
“By all indications, the enemy could not kill him, but our own government did,” Bayh told the Senate Armed Services Committee. “Not intentionally, to be sure, but the end result apparently was the same.”
As more wounded soldiers return from war, critics say staff shortages and turnover have affected the quality of health care at Army posts across the nation.
Overall, the Army’s Medical Corps has downsized significantly since the Persian Gulf War in the 1990s, dropping from 5,400 to 4,300 physicians and from 4,600 to 3,400 nurses.
According to the Department of Defense, more than 29,000 service members have been wounded in action in Iraq or Afghanistan in the last six years, compared with fewer than 500 in Operation Desert Storm.
go here for the rest
This is what I’ve been screaming about since before the invasion of Iraq. No one was ready for any of them and they started to care too late for too many. I often wonder what would have been happening if the media didn’t report on any of this. Then I wonder what could have been done if they reported on all of this sooner.
Full article by ArmyofOne; http://sanchopress.com/showDia…
I usually don’t allow things to get under my skin too easily; sort of comes with the job. Not too long ago, there was a post about the DADT policy and its supporters. I know that the premise this sit focuses mainly on Vet issues but I think we all need to remember that ALL Soldiers that return from this “war” will be considered Veterans. It is for that reason that I address this subject.
The DADT policy was implemented during a time frame when it was considered “immoral” to not be what is considered a “100% pure blooded American Soldier” by political/moral standards. The fact that you were willing to fight and, if need be, die for your country never came into the equation. I must say that I WHOLE HEARTEDLY DISAGREE with this policy for a number of reasons which I will gladly list below:
1) IT truly has NO effect on the morale or unit cohesion, with the exception of a few individuals who can not fathom that the guy they are in the gym with, or sharing an MRE in the cold desert night with is anything but a “man’s man”.
2) The majority, i.e. 98% of Soldiers could care less about what you find sexually appealing as long as it is confined to someone that appreciates the attention. The usual consciences is that if approached in an uncomfortable way once, say something about it and it will not happen again – it usually doesn’t.
3) There is a MASSIVE misconception that homosexuals will be “overtly” aggressive in their interaction with others. THAT IS NOT TRUE!!! They are not going to stand in the shower/locker rooms scoping out people and trying to pick anyone up. Given the “observed” aggressiveness of some of the male and female service members I have seen in my career, I would say that the opposite is far more likely for Heterosexual Soldiers.
4) The vast majority of Homosexual Soldiers do not act “flamboyant” as is another misconception of these individuals. You could be benching 250 lbs right next to a guy and not know it. You could have a guy carry you for 3 blocks to an extract point after you have been shot (as some of us have done) and not think he was “queer”. You could be taking orders from your Commander to put fire on and enemy fire position that just killed your best friend (as some of us have seen done) and not know that he lives an “alternative lifestyle”. All you would know is that he is there to watch your back as you watch his and get you back to your family and loved ones in one piece. People are people, and everyone expresses themselves differently. Think about the fact that there are people that don’t meet the expected stereotypes placed on them.
This policy is one of the only times where a Soldier is “Constitutionally required” to lie to keep their job if asked about there sexual preference. Isn’t it interesting that this is a direct violation of the UCMJ we have sworn to abide by?
(ART. 107. FALSE STATEMENTS
Any person subject to this chapter who, with intent to deceive, signs any false record, return, regulation, order, or other official document, knowing it to be false, or makes any other false official statement knowing it to be false, shall be punished as a court-martial may direct. )
It also places an entire section of a population into a “sub-class” within an organization designed to encourage cohesion, camaraderie, and dependability on your battle buddy. That is not right in any way and it should be stopped. Not placing any blame or pointing any fingers at you Brandon but the statement you made at the beginning of your post speaks volumes. The main reason this policy is not going to change anytime in the future is that it is a low priority to a large portion of the population … except for those that have to live a lie and live a secret life day-in and day-out to serve their country. It is a low priority for all for those except for that “other group” who have to suffer through special occasions or figure out some “innovative” way to explain why they have asked to speak to someone of the same gender that they miss on that morale VTC. IT is a low priority for all those except that “other” group that can not share unit functions or promotions with someone important there to support them and be proud of them. I guess to get my point across I couldn’t be too careful in expressing my views. I have no idea how my words or future post will be taken on this blog from this day forward. So if you don’t ask me, I don’t have to tell you … but I am here getting shot at just like everyone else. I am experiencing the pain, the joy, the friendship, and the lose just like every other American Soldier in the Unites States Military in this and other Combat Zone that TRAVEL OUTSIDE THE WIRE. Regardless of what anyone thinks, I will continue to fight and, if need be die, for my God, my Family, my Country, and all of you.
Ok, I will get off the soap box now and pray that I did not just get myself kicked out of the group of respected Veterans and Active Duty members here. 🙂
excerpt from Don Quixote article posted 11/02 on Dkos and also items added found out since the original article. http://www.dailykos.com/story/…
The silent epidemic & “signature” injury of the Iraq war
TBI–Traumatic Brain Injury. Have you heard of TBI? Some have but don’t know much about it. The VA began noticing it in Iraq Vets 2-3 years ago. Social security only considered it as a disability about 6 years ago. It was only then, that it was put on their list as an illness eligable for Social Security Disability Insurance(SSDI). I know this because I have TBI from an auto accident in 1999 and had to have brain surgury.
A traumatic brain injury is usually the result of a sudden, violent blow to the head. Such a blow can launch the brain on a collision course with the inside of the skull. The skull itself can often withstand a forceful external impact without fracturing. The result – an injured brain inside an intact skull – is known as a closed-head injury.
(Mayo Clinic Report, see original post for link)
Laymans terms for TBI in Iraq. TBI can be caused by the concussion from several forces. It can be from an actual object. In Iraq, most TBI’s are from the immense force of air exiting an explosion & it hits our Vets so hard, their brain collides with their skull. IED’s are the cause of TBI to Vets of Iraq. Many in the blast raidius of an IED receive no physical injury but still have TBI. The symptoms vary greatly. It is similiar to what happens to a boxer over a long career but is usually not as obvious as it is when you hear a long time boxer speak in his later years, but it can be. TBI from an explosion concussion is similiar to what happens in shaken baby syndrome.
Look at this in the block quotes below from our US military report in ARMY TIMES.
“Between 125,000 and 150,000 U.S. troops may have suffered mild, moderate or severe brain injuries in Iraq and Afghanistan, Pascrell estimates. That’s a hidden population of wounded that far exceeds the official casualty figures of 26,000. Between 10 percent and 20 percent of the returning troops screened at a few individual military bases may have suffered brain injuries, Pentagon spokesman Chuck Dasey says.”
Now look at this from an unbiased, more reliable, government source that utilized the best experts in coming to their conclusion.
House Addresses Traumatic Brain Injury, Week of July 23, 2007
Members of the House Veterans’ Affairs Committee met recently discuss ways to provide treatment for traumatic brain injury (TBI), which is considered by many to be the signature injury of the war in Iraq. Among veterans and servicemembers from Iraq and Afghanistan treated at Walter Reed for injuries of any type, approximately 65 percent have TBI as a primary diagnosis or simultaneous injury. Medical doctors, neuropsychologists, researchers and family members attended the symposium to discuss the health care needs of our returning servicemembers. This symposium continues the series of roundtable discussions that the Committee will hold throughout the 110th Congress.
65%—-65%—-65%!!. I verified that is not a typo. We have had 1.6 million troops serve in Irag and/or Afghanistan. 65% of that is 1,040,000!! This number of returning troops in need of mental health assistnace will absolutely overwhelm the Veterans Admisinstration. It is already happening.
We are not yet done in Iraq either. What will the figure be if we stay another year or two or ten?!?! Over one million troops and veterans of Iraq/Afghanistan with some degree of brain damage. Our entire military force including all active duty branches and reservists and national guard (both latter two never intended for combat) we have a total of 2.5 million “soldiers”. 42% of our entire military forces has some degree of brain damage.
Another question arises. Why such a difference between Army Times figures and House Veterans Affairs Committee?
Well, it just so happens I have an Ex-Army Times writer who is soon going to be contributing articles on Sancho Press. He also has a few other professional journalists from military publications, like one from a USMC magazine, who are also unhappy with their situation. They can shed some light on many interesting things about what the military writes and won’t write.
Also, on 2/7/08 I spoke with my Comgressman’s communications director because my Congressman is on the House Veterans Affairs Committee. They are going to review all aspects of Sancho Press and be copied on this article. He may possibly write an article on Sancho Press.
excerpt from Don Quixote’s article; http://sanchopress.com/showDia…
I have commitments from a half dozen professional journalists who have worked at places such as Army Times, USMC publications and more. These individuals should be on within a few weeks and should really get things rolling.
Sancho Press will have some exclusives with “dirt” on the military and their publications.
END OF EXCERPT.
This article was cross posted to Turn Maine Blue. Because they are a member of “Advertise Liberally” the article was picked up by them. They then sent it to ALL of their members nationwide.
Within six hours of posting this I could tell from my “site meter” that someone from Army Times and The Sargeant of Arms of the Senate looked at the article. One day later someone from Congress looked at it. Two days later it was looked at three times in two hours by: house.gov (U.S. Government) IP Address 143.231.# Information Systems, U.S. House of Representatives, ISP. It was also looked at by Treas Gov.
I look at my site meter every day. I have never seen any that showed “US Gov” as all these did on the main page before opening to see who it was from US GOV.
I am not saying this is any conspiracy. If it were, they would be much more covert and I would never know they were looking at me. I just don’t like the way this feels.
excerpt from NamGuardianAngel’s article; http://sanchopress.com/editDia…
Nothing against America Supports You but this is bullshit!
Report: DOD may award PR contract for America Supports You
By Jeff Schogol, Stars and Stripes
Mideast edition, Sunday, February 10, 2008
ARLINGTON, Va. – The Defense Department could award a contract of up to $6.5 million for a public relations firm to promote America Supports You, according to the magazine PR Week.
The move comes as the Defense Department Inspector General’s Office is conducting an audit looking at how Stars and Stripes was used as a conduit to transfer money from American Forces Information Service to a public relations firm hired to promote the newspaper and America Supports You.
American Forces Information Service and Stars and Stripes fall under the purview of Allison Barber, deputy assistant secretary of Defense for internal communications and public liaison.
Barber also runs America Supports You, a Defense Department Program that gives publicity to nonprofit groups that support U.S. troops.
Do you think that kind of money would be better spent maybe opening some veteran’s centers across the country TO GIVE THE WOUNDED SOLDIERS WHAT THEY NEED TO REALLY BE SUPPORTED? $6.5 MILLION AND HOW MANY LIVE IN AREAS WITH NO MENTAL HEALTH HELP AT ALL? HOW MANY HOMELESS VETERANS WITH NO PLACE TO SLEEP? $6.5 MILLION FOR PR WORK? ARE THEY NUTS?
Sancho Press covered many issues in the last thirty days. There are many others. A few I want to briefly mention;
– 22,000 troops diagnosed with personality disorder (PD) instead of PTSD. PTSD entitles them to benefits, PD does not. Those 22,000 were often told to vacate the base within 10 days. They were also given less than honorable discharges.
– Base housing has been outsourced (like many things). It makes it more difficult to get problems fixed. Example; Family of four in Texas who had a mold problem so bad that they were all getting illness’. It took six months to finally get temporary quarters while their housing was fixed.
– All in the combat areas have been ordered not to blog.
– All communications leaving combat areas are supposed to be read by your superior.
– After returning and while filling out required “exit” paperwork, families are waiting across the gymnasium. It clearly states on the paperwork that if you believe you have PTSD, TBI or a mental health issue you will be immediately taken to an inpatient facility.
– Taliban forces do a “bait and switch” to get our troops to call in air strikes which result in many of the civilian casualties you read about. They shoot from houses and areas with civilians and then leave knowing American troops will call in an air strike with the coordinates.
– Some disabled troops were asked for their signing bonus’ back because they did not finish their tour of duty.
YES WE CAN
Yes we can help solve the problems of our troops and veterans — TOGETHER.
On Sancho Press, we have a “box” titled; “Best of troop/vet sites”. These are outstanding and have even more information than Sancho Press. Many are not blogs but websites and news information.
Well, if you got to here, you really want to know. If you didn’t know before, now you know a little of the bigger picture. Come to Sancho Press and help us. http://sanchopress.com/
ANY PART OR ALL OF THIS MAY BE REPRODUCED AND USED BY ANYONE TO HELP WITH THIS CAUSE. ALL I ASK IS A MENTION OF SANCHO PRESS. THANKS.
May God watch over our men and women in Iraq/Afghanistan as well as the civilians in these places.
May WE have the mettle, courage, strength and will to help force the massive changes needed within the DOD, VA & government to properly care for those who risked their lives in service to our nation.
FIRST INSTALLMENT OF THE TWO PART ARTICLE WAS SUNDAY 2/10. HERE IS LINK TO THAT ARTICLE; http://sanchopress.com/showDia…