Veterans Day 2009

(11 am. – promoted by ek hornbeck)

Below is just a small group of articles and reports coming in on this Veterans Day 2009. Some about Veterans Day, some about Veterans older and to the present, some about todays Veterans and Soldiers. Much will be said today, much seen, some will even think about, some.

While important it isn’t so much about what will be said or done by our political leaders, it’s really more about how the greater majority in this country who don’t serve, don’t want to really sacrifice, but are quick to use those who do, and their families, then quickly move away from their false meme’s when it comes time to actually heed the calls for the funds to pay for the results of our occupations of choice. And as always by not heeding those calls for sacrifice it ends up causing more suffering by those who’ve suffered enough for country and much much more in the costs of the results of their service!

No Longer a Soldier, Shinseki Has a New Mission

But the visit also underscored Mr. Shinseki’s current mission: to modernize his problem-plagued agency, which was struggling to care for aging veterans even before the flood of young ones from Iraq and Afghanistan began.

For months, Mr. Shinseki has been crisscrossing the country as President Obama’s pinstriped evangelist for veterans’ care, raising concerns about a coming tide of post-traumatic stress cases, traumatic brain injuries and other physical and psychological scars of battle.

Having led soldiers in Vietnam as a young West Point graduate, until a mine tore off part of his right foot and nearly ended his Army career, he can speak about the “baggage” of war with deep feeling.

“All of us who went through combat, we were carrying a little bit of baggage from the experience, the stress,” he said in an interview before the Fort Hood shootings…>>>>

Honoring Our Service Members

A By-the-Numbers Look at Difficulties Facing America’s Veterans on Veterans Day 2009

This Veterans Day, we at the Center for American Progress once again honor the millions of brave men and women in the active and reserve components of the Army, Navy, Marines, Air Force, and Coast Guard who have made great sacrifices to protect our country and our freedoms-especially those who have given their lives. We also honor the families, friends, and loved ones who made their service possible…>>>>

Many Veterans Are Without A Health Insurance Plan

Doesn’t the Veteran’s Administration provide health insurance and medical to veterans? That is largely the case. However, many veterans uninjured in combat are–surprisingly–considered ineligible for VA insurance. The post-military income levels deemed too high to receive benefits are surprisingly low; a veteran with no dependents can only take advantage of the government’s health insurance plan if he or she earns under $29,400 per year, while one with four dependents can earn around $41,300 before losing eligibility for VA benefits. Such incomes aren’t quite poverty level, but are the domain of working-class Americans (including civilians) unable to afford private insurance if their employer doesn’t offer it. Because of this, a large number of armed forces members decide to look into ways of making money from home to boost their finances. Troops returning from Iraq and Afghanistan are also struggling with unemployment, and are a disproportionate percentage of the nation’s homeless. Many are working low-paying jobs that push them just above Medicaid and VA eligibility. This makes it even harder for them to become insured…>>>>

Veterans Day, A look back and one forward

This year, we are struck by an additional sentiment, the solemn duty that falls to all citizens to make sure that the nation never sends its men and women in uniform into harm’s way without sure and certain justification. We write this as two U.S. wars grind on in Asia, and the president weighs the advice of one of his highest commanders to escalate the war in one of those theaters, Afghanistan/Pakistan, by an additional 40,000 troops…>>>>

Reid: Coburn move ‘illogical’

{this is an automated voice read of the short article written}

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid called Sen. Tom Coburn (R-Okla.) “illogical” for holding up a veterans care bill Tuesday, criticizing the Oklahoma Republican for supporting war funding while blocking health care funding for veterans…>>>>

In this report below the following is stated:

“I don’t think we’ve really cracked the nut on how to really get at PTSD and TBI,” said the battalion commander, Lt. Col. Danny Dudek. “This is the most complex job I have ever had. Being in a battalion where people are going through the most difficult thing they’ve ever had to deal with.”

Well for some four decades Veterans, starting with us ‘Nam Vets which opened up and brought forth our Korean and WWII brothers, and some really dedicated civilians who did hear us, have been yelling into the Winds of a Country that didn’t want to Listen. That Country hires it’s representatives who weren’t forced to pay attention, and the Circle Comes Back Around adding this time not just serving but serving Multiple Times under the extreme stress of Conflict adding to lives stress!!

Army strain, recovery at Fort Lewis

Veterans Day traditionally has been set aside more to honor those who have served rather than those still serving. But eight-plus years of war in Afghanistan and Iraq have created a huge class of combat veterans who still wear the uniform, many of them with two or three or more deployments under their belts and perhaps more in their futures.

Ballard, for example, is determined to rejoin his unit in Afghanistan. He is a medic in a Stryker brigade and was injured on one of the unit’s first missions after deploying to northern Afghanistan a few months ago.

“We ran over an [improvised explosive device],” Ballard said. “I remember the floor coming up very quickly, and it forced me straight down to the ground, and then there was that brief second in time where I was sort of floating as the vehicle dropped and I was still in the air.”…>>>>

Vice President Biden speaks at a Fort Lewis memorial ceremony to honor seven Stryker brigade soldiers killed in Afghanistan.  June 24, 2009

Sen. Jim Webb: Critical to keep promise to veterans

Each year on this day, Americans take a pause from school and the workplace to commemorate the service of our nation’s veterans. With one of the largest populations of veterans and active-duty military service members, Virginia plays a vital role in our nation’s defense.

As the son of an Air Force officer, the father of a Marine and a Marine combat veteran myself, I understand the value of having leaders in Congress who know firsthand what it’s like to be deployed, to have close family members deployed and, ultimately, to join the ranks of my fellow veterans…>>>>

Veteran-led Peer Support Combats Suicide

Last month in Washington, Department of Veterans Affairs Secretary Eric Shinseki made a staggering announcement: more veterans have committed suicide since 2001 than have been killed in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Coming within weeks of the release of the US Army’s suicide prevention guidebook, the VA Secretary’s statement underscores the commitment to teaching service members and veterans the methods for overcoming combat stress.

While for many the manual will be an important tool, veteran-to-veteran peer support is often the best way to stay mentally healthy during and after wartime service…>>>>

Iraq, Afghanistan veterans need more help at home

More resources may be needed to help care-givers cope with a rising caseload of damaged or suicidal veterans in need of counseling.

Floyd Meshad, Vietnam vet, was in a Ralphs supermarket in Westchester when his cellphone rang at 9 o’clock one evening not long ago.

It was Meshad’s suicide hotline, and a soldier was being patched through.

Meshad, a psychiatric social worker, walked outside the store so he could concentrate while trying to talk the soldier out of killing himself. He gets lots of calls like this from all over the country, more now than ever, and he knew one thing:

This soldier, calling from Florida, was serious…>>>>

When I was discharged back in ’71, after my four years of duty in the Navy, all shore bases, I didn’t expect nor even look for this Country to welcome me nor give much back, been in for four and once joining the community of soldiers then veterans it’s quickly seen and known what real support there is for those who serve once out. My last year of service was in country Vietnam which for us ‘Nam Vets compounded the known of payback, what with the coming results of our countries use of Defoliants, Agent Orange plus, as it started not only affecting many of those who served in the area’s where sprayed from our planes but the Vietnamese civilians as well. Then we finally started to understand what always has been as to extreme traumatic events and stress on the human mind, Post Traumatic Stress, and for many the life long nightmares of a war that never goes away, and for civilians replying their own traumatic life tragedies that have been done to them. And so much more.

I came out unscathed, not wounded physically but having served in a occupation conflict with the knowledge not only had I changed but so had everyone else who served as well as those we occupied, the trauma of wars. While not having flash backs nor nightmares I did feel that we all are now wounded with post traumatic stress, most not having more then our memories every once in awhile but not so as to be debilitating nor effecting our daily lives.

I, like many many of my brothers and sisters, became an advocate for the care of those physically and mentally wounded in our Wars of Choice, advocates that for the most part weren’t listened to. Until Now, and that has been brought about by once again a Nation accepting the failed policies of the few who controlled the leadership and easy to come to them lies and propaganda sending our soldiers into not one but two long running occupations, we’re still in both!

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    • jimstaro on November 11, 2009 at 1:25 pm
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    A Tribute to Native American Veterans

    • jimstaro on November 11, 2009 at 3:44 pm
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    White House Creates Council On Veterans Employment

    Last night the President signed an Executive Order creating an interagency Council on Veterans Employment to advise the President and Administration on how to set the bar for hiring and employing veterans.

    The Council will be chaired by Secretary of Labor Hilda Solis and Secretary of Veterans Affairs Eric Shinseki, with Office of Personnel Management Director John Berry serving as the Vice Chair and Chief Operating Officer of the Council.

    In statements prior to the signing, all involved gave their reasons for why the initiative is so important to them…>>>>

  1. Jim, thank you for your sacrifice and thank you for this information, it is important that we understand.

  2. should show our values and return the favor. This means  full support and whatever they need to pursue their happiness.

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