Gulf Wars Exposures: Gulf War (August 2, 1990 to present), includes Operations Desert Shield and Desert Storm
Gulf War Veterans may have been exposed to a variety of environmental and chemical hazards that carried potential health risks. Join the Gulf War Registry and the Airborne Hazards and Open Burn Pit Registry to document your exposures and health concerns. find out more>>>
"DeLara's case is part of a much larger problem that has plagued the U.S. military since the 1990 Gulf War: a failure to create and maintain the types of field records that have documented American conflicts since the Revolutionary War."
3/27/15 - During and immediately after the first Gulf War, more than 200,000 of 700,000 U.S. troops sent to Iraq and Kuwait in January 1991 were exposed to nerve gas and other chemical agents. Though aware of this, the Department of Defense and CIA launched a campaign of lies and concocted a cover-up that continues today.
A quarter of a century later, the troops nearest the explosions are dying of brain cancer at two to three times the rate of those who were farther away. Others have lung cancer or debilitating chronic diseases, and pain.
More complications lie ahead.
As Alan Friedman wrote in "The Spider Web: The Secret History of How the White House Illegally Armed Iraq", the Reagan and Bush administrations, which backed Iraq in its 1980-1988 war with Iran, approved of U.S. companies selling chemical agents and equipment to Iraq, including “a huge petrochemicals complex called PC2. Western intelligence also knew that PC2 was capable of generating chemical compounds to make mustard and nerve gas.”
Donald Riegle, a Democratic U.S. Senator from Michigan, held hearings about the veterans illnesses in 1993 and 1994. He told me the decision by Reagan and Bush “to secretly help Saddam Hussein build his biological and chemical weapons was a monstrous strategic error that eventually led to the tragedy of Gulf War Syndrome, which killed and disabled so many unprotected American troops.”
When Brown and others tried to obtain their medical records to prove their illnesses were service-related, they learned that the records had disappeared. In a 2007 letter, Dr. Gary Trogdon, chief of the Public Inquiries Section at the Army’s Historical Resources Branch, informed Brown that Army units were told to destroy the “after action” reports, since “there was no space to ship the paper back to the States.” But, Trogdon said, records were kept at the brigade level. When Brown asked Senator Mark Warner to help, he, too, came up empty-handed. read more>>>
The above ProPublica/Seattle report, what was done under both Bushes, continued:
Finally started getting addressed, though limited because of the congressional budgets, for decades and wars of, by the Shinseki VA administration and now continuing with the McDonald administration, and for the first time in my lifetime, while conservative ideology continues obstructing and cutting which isn't a first, as a vet with the Executive branch and it's Cabinet aiding where it can, the only Government branch actively addressing the real issue problems and has since coming in, while being either ignored or out right denied the issues exist, so those served need not Sacrifice while they wave their, poser, patriotic flags and flash the same in words and symbols!!!
Veterans may have been exposed to a range of chemical, physical, and environmental hazards during military service. read more>>>
28 Dec 2014 - NATO has held a ceremony in Kabul formally ending its war in Afghanistan, officials said, after 13 years of conflict and gradual troop withdrawals that have left the country in the grip of worsening conflicts with armed groups. read more>>>
Memorial at the New JPED facility at Dover Air Force Base, Del..OEF: Afghanistan - Pakistan!! There have been 3,485 coalition deaths -- 2,356 Americans, 41 Australians, 453 Britons, 1 Belgian, 158 Canadians, 10 Czech, 43 Denmark, 25 Netherlands, 9 Estonians, 2 Finn, 86 French, 54 Germans, 7 Hungarian, 48 Italians, 2 Jordan, 3 Latvian, 1 Lithuanian, 10 Norwegians, 40 Poland, 2 Portuguese, 21 Romanians, 1 South Korean, 34 Spaniards, 5 Swedes, 14 Turks, 11 New Zealand, 27 Georgian and 14 NATO/ISAF -- in the war on terror as of November 3 2014, according to a CNN and iCasulties count. Below are the names of the soldiers, Marines, airmen and sailors whose deaths have been reported by their country's governments. The troops died in support of the U.S.-led Operation Enduring Freedom or were part of the NATO-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) in Afghanistan. At least 20,067 U.S. troops had been wounded in action, according to the Pentagon.. In addition to the military deaths, 11 U.S. intelligence operatives have died in Afghanistan.
Operation Resolute Support
There had been 4,804 coalition deaths 4,488 Americans
2 Australians, 1 Azerbaijani, 179 Britons, 13 Bulgarians, 1 Czech, 7 Danes, 2 Dutch, 2 Estonians, 1 Fijian, 5 Georgians, 1 Hungarian, 33 Italians, 1 Kazakh, 1 South Korean, 3 Latvian, 22 Poles, 3 Romanians, 5 Salvadoran, 4 Slovaks, 11 Spaniards, 2 Thai and 18 Ukrainians -- in the war in Iraq as of January 2, 2012, according to a CNN and iCasulties count.
Graphical breakdown of casualties. At least 32,230 U.S. troops had been wounded in action, according to the Pentagon.
22 December 2014 - The ACLU and Human Rights Watch say the offences amount to ‘a vast criminal conspiracy’ and are ‘shocking and corrosive’ to US democracy and credibility read more>>>
The Royal United Services Institute said the UK could face a bill of nearly £65bn, once the cost of long-term care for injured veterans was factored in, with most of the money was spent on the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.
The study, called Wars in Peace, said both conflicts were largely “strategic failures” for the UK, The Guardian reported."
"And when you add up to the Department of Defense, Department of State, CIA, Veterans Affairs, interest on debt, the number that strikes me the most about how much we're committed financially to these wars and to our current policies is we have spent $250 billion already just on interest payments on the debt we've incurred for the Iraq and Afghan wars." 26 September 2014
December 22 2014 - American taxpayers have shelled out roughly $1.6 trillion on war spending since 9/11, according to a new report from Congress’ nonpartisan research arm. That’s roughly $337 million a day -- or nearly a quarter million dollars a minute -- every single day for 13 years. read more>>>
Chris Hayes MSNBC: "If you can run a deficit to go to war, you can run a deficit to take care of the people who fought it" In response to Republican opposition to expanding Veterans' benefits on fiscal grounds
Neither of these recent wars have yet been paid for, let alone the results from, including the long ignored or outright denied existence of, till this Administrations Cabinet and Gen Shinseki, only Government branch consistent for the past six years, issues! As well as under deficits most of the, grossly under funded, VA budget is still borrowed thus added, problem creating, costs that shouldn't exist!
"Then, when we started a second simultaneous war in another country, we gave ourselves a second huge round of tax cuts. After that second war started. The wars, I guess, we thought would be free, don`t worry about it, civilians. Go about your business." Rachel Maddow - 23 May 2013
Washington – 30 March 2015 - The federal initiative to provide timely decisions on disability payments to Veterans has crossed a major milestone in its final sprint to eliminate the backlog of Veterans’ benefits claims.
The major transformation effort to apply new technology and process solutions has paid off at the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). It reduced its inventory of backlogged claims from a high of 611,000 claims in March of 2013 to fewer than 200,000 this week, while at the same time improving decision quality.
“Make no mistake, we’re not slowing down short of the finish line,” said Under Secretary for Benefits Allison Hickey. “Our goal is to eliminate the claims backlog by the end of 2015 – meaning all Veterans will receive timely and accurate decisions on their disability claims.” read more>>>
April 2, 2015 - VA is committed to providing high quality, proactive, personalized, patient-driven care to Veterans and strives to improve our services. We are determined to rebuild the trust of Veterans and stakeholders and improve service delivery by focusing on Veteran outcomes.
Some Veterans are still waiting longer than they desire for their appointments, and we are working hard to try to get them the care they have earned where and when they need it.
We realize appointment wait-time data, and how it gets calculated in a system that schedules over 80 million encounters a year, can be complicated and hard to understand—so we want to take this opportunity to explain our methods. We are working in good faith to be as transparent and open as possible with our data, and the way it’s calculated.
VA began publicly posting patient access data online in June 2014. You can find that data here. Back in October, VA made clear that, as directed by Congress, it was establishing new wait-time standards that more accurately reflect whether or not a veteran has been waiting too long for an appointment. VA has done just that, and has been fully transparent about it all along. We began reporting average appointment wait times in two categories: completed and pending. Both of these measures are determined based on the Veteran’s preferred date. The preferred date method is based on a clinician’s specified date for the patient to be seen, or 30 days from a date that the patient prefers to be seen in the absence of a clinical recommendation.
We report this completed appointment average wait time data monthly. VA also regularly advises and updates Veterans service organizations and congressional stakeholders on our patient access data and wait time methods. read more>>>
25 March 2015 - Some 50,000 military veterans are homeless each night in the United States. In parts of North Texas, that number is declining. The latest census shows the homeless vet count in Fort Worth has dropped by one-third compared to last year. Seventy vets in that city currently call the Presbyterian Night Shelter home. On Tuesday, at a fundraiser for a vets program, a retired Marine general told vets he's got their backs.
Outside the First Presbyterian Church in Fort Worth, small American flags lined flower beds to welcome 15 homeless veterans. Inside, the smell of fresh biscuits, scrambled eggs and bacon filled a church hall, where 150 people gathered for the second annual Freedom Breakfast.
“I really believe that veterans are the conscience of America,” says retired Marine General Terrence Dake. read more>>>
03/17/2015 - Traumatic brain injury is one of the invisible wounds of war and one of the signature injuries of troops wounded in Afghanistan and Iraq. This Defense.gov special report highlights the Defense Department's efforts to care for wounded warriors suffering from this condition while promoting research to improve diagnosis and treatment.
The National Intrepid Center of Excellence received special recognition from Government Computer News for successful innovation of a continuity management tool that enables clinicians to electronically collect thousands of data points per patient, electronically, and that also pulls additional sets of information to form a robust repository of TBI-related health data.
The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency is working to develop wireless, implantable brain prostheses for service members and veterans who suffer memory loss from traumatic brain injury.
MARCH 25, 2015 - The under secretary of the Army on Wednesday apologized for the military’s treatment of American service members exposed to chemical weapons in Iraq, and he announced new steps to provide medical support to those with lingering health effects and to recognize veterans who had been denied awards.
Under Secretary Brad R. Carson acknowledged that the military had not followed its own policies for caring for troops exposed to old and abandoned chemical munitions that had been scattered around Iraq, and he vowed improvement.
He also said that the Army had reversed a previous decision and approved a Purple Heart medal for a soldier burned by sulfur mustard agent, and that he expected more medals to be issued to other veterans after further review.
“To me, the scandal is that we had protocols in place and the medical community knew what they were, and yet we failed in some cases to implement this across the theater,” he said. “That was a mistake, and I apologize for that. I apologize for past actions and am going to fix it going forward.”
In a sign that steps were being taken, Mr. Carson said, the Army on Tuesday approved a Purple Heart for an explosive-ordnance disposal technician burned by sulfur mustard agent while dismantling a roadside bomb in 2007. The veteran, former Specialist Richard T. Beasley, had previously been denied the medal.
That standard did not conceive of the insurgents’ practice in Iraq of occasionally using old chemical shells in roadside bombs — essentially traps in which the chemical agents inside might be released by an unsuspecting soldier tasked with destroying the weapon or handling its broken remains.
Mr. Carson said the four services now agree that wounds caused by such makeshift bombs would qualify for the award. read more>>>
ProPublica and The Seattle Times Nov. 9, 2012 - Lost to History: Missing War Records Complicate Benefit Claims by Iraq, Afghanistan Veterans
"DeLara's case is part of a much larger problem that has plagued the U.S. military since the 1990 Gulf War: a failure to create and maintain the types of field records that have documented American conflicts since the Revolutionary War."
As Congress continues obstructing, conservative ideology, especially as to Military personal and Veterans, the only Government Branch consistent, six plus years, on the issues, the Executive and it's Cabinet, continues actually doing what the Country Served should be! Wars, and the continuing blowback from the policies, still unpaid for as well as VA obstructed budgets still mostly borrowed, which bring about the conservative wanted, and country served, FOX speak media hyped 'scandals'!!
April 3, 2015 - As part of a program to help military members land jobs, the skill of precision welding is being taught to a select number of U.S. Marines at Camp LeJeune, North Carolina. CBS News visited the base where we saw active duty Marines attending class.
They've been allowed under a Pentagon program called SkillBridge to spend the last four months of their enlistments in full-time job training. Every one of the 15 Marines has a guaranteed job, thanks to a national shortage of skilled welders.
"It's a dream job for me really," said Sgt. Damien Gilbert.
He said acceptance into the program was a huge weight off his shoulders.
"I'm an infantryman by trade, so there's not very many jobs out in the civilian world that transfer that skill over," said Sgt. Gilbert.
The Pentagon now allows 15 private employers access to 16 military bases nationwide. Microsoft is one of those companies and is looking for internet technology (IT) technicians. read more>>>
Many of those taking these courses are further advanced in the alternative energy development already, having used the advanced technologies on bases and especially in these war theaters, then those taking courses in in the private sector. Ignored by that private sector when leaving the Military they're just legitimizing that training and advanced knowledge, already experienced in!!
The proposals are modest compared with what President Barack Obama has asked Congress to do through legislation to promote clean energy, invest in infrastructure projects and force reductions in carbon dioxide emissions. But with lawmakers unwilling to consider any major climate legislation, Obama has sought to maximize what presidential authority he does hold.
09/18/2014 - The U.S. is planning to train veterans to become solar panel installers in the next six years, the White House said Thursday.
The jobs training program is among a host of initiatives the White House says will cut carbon dioxide emissions by more than 300 million tons through 2030, plus save billions of dollars on energy bills for homeowners and businesses. It will launch this fall at one or more military bases and train a total of at least 50,000, including veterans.
The Agriculture Department will also spend nearly $70 million to fund 540 solar and renewable energy projects, focused on rural and farming areas. And the Energy Department will propose stricter efficiency standards for commercial air conditioners, a move the department said could cut emissions more than any other efficiency standard it has issued to date.
The proposals are modest compared with what President Barack Obama has asked Congress to do through legislation to promote clean energy, invest in infrastructure projects and force reductions in carbon dioxide emissions. But with lawmakers unwilling to consider any major climate legislation, Obama has sought to maximize what presidential authority he does hold. read more>>>
While coming in with the two long wars still ongoing and a near total collapse of the economy the Veterans of weren't overlooked, except by the people served and through their direct representatives, and not only as to employment, and issue that comes with all Veterans especially after our wars and the private sector shies away from hiring or rehiring those that served them!!
WASHINGTON, March 23, 2015 – In the more than five years since President Barack Obama established the Veterans Employment Initiative, a steadily increasing annual percentage of veterans have entered federal civilian service.
In fiscal year 2014, according to an Office of Personnel Management news release issued today, the percentage of veteran new hires hit a new high of 33.2 percent, surpassing the previous mark set in FY 2013, when 31 percent of all new Federal civilian hires were veterans.
Fiscal 2014 also marked the first time since the president established the Veterans Employment Initiative that new veteran hires increased in a year when overall new employee hires also increased.
‘Ongoing and Sustainable’ Progress for Veterans read more>>>
Effective March 24th, 2015, VA is implementing improvements to make it easier for you to apply for benefits.
Online application tools, standardized forms, and a new intent to file process will create faster and more accurate decisions on your claims and appeals.
What does it all mean?
As part of the VA’s full-scale transformation in 2015, these new changes will:
* Streamline the benefits process, making it faster and easier
* Use standardized forms to file disability claims and compensation appeals
* Establish a new intent to file a claim process
Learn more about these important changes:
March 4, 2015 - I first came to VA’s central office 22 years ago to interview for an opening in the public affairs office. I was tense and nervous, as it was yet another of many interviews in a five-month-long job search.
Then, as if it was meant to happen, as I walked in front of VA headquarters, President Lincoln gave me the boost I needed.
Right there on the front of the building at eye level was our 16th president’s famous charge to all Americans – “To care for him who shall have borne the battle and for his widow, and his orphan.”
Even then, I marveled at the fact that in 1865 President Lincoln wrote one of the shortest and most perfect mission statements in history, for a federal agency that would not begin to exist until 65 years later. read more>>>
It is important that we openly and willingly discuss our mistakes and how we intend to improve. As we acknowledge areas where more work is needed, we also need to set the record straight when our work is unfairly mischaracterized.
March 29, 2013 - The past is never dead, as William Faulkner might have written if he were analyzing the federal budget, it’s not even paid for. Did you realize that World War II still costs U.S. taxpayers $5 billion a year? Or that we haven’t closed the financial books on the Civil War yet? read more>>>
Exact Count of Civilian Casualties may never be known, as is the case in every conflict, especially an Invasion by another Country. For it is the Innocent Civilians and those Defending their Countries,of which All would be counted if this country, the U.S., were ever invaded, who suffer the most, during and long after!
Proactive Pain Management: 10 Ways to Manage Your Chronic Pain
Chronic pain can last a long period of time, even if it comes and goes. This is something that many adults suffer from, and it is one of the symptoms often reported by Gulf War Veterans. In fact, nearly all Gulf War Veterans referred to the War Related Illness and Injury Study Center (WRIISC) report chronic pain as one of their top complaints.
The Fastest Way to Get a Disability Claim Decision
If you’re a Veteran who needs to file a disability compensation claim for the first time or you need to submit a new claim for a previous service-related condition, there is now a faster, easier way to get a claim decision. With the help of your local Veterans Service Officer, you can file an electronic claim, eClaim, through eBenefits and get a faster VA decision.
Gulf War Registry: Three Reasons to Participate read more w/backlinks>>>
03/21/15 - Growing up, Tomas Summers Sandoval was surrounded by veterans of the Vietnam War: His father and uncle and neighbors served proudly, the survivors returning to start families in the working-class suburbs of Los Angeles, the San Gabriel Valley and the Inland Empire.
But outside his social circle, Summers Sandoval was dismayed to find very little has been done to document the impact of the war on Latino communities.
This month, 50 years since U.S. troops set foot in Vietnam, Summers Sandoval has found himself face to face with these men as they tell their stories.
“To understand Latinos in California, how they found their way into the military is a window to understanding the educational inequalities in society of the time,” the soft-spoken Summers Sandoval said.
A history professor at Pomona College, Summers Sandoval is researching the Latino experience in Vietnam and plans to calculate the casualties of Latinos in the war, teaming up with economics professor Fernando Lozano to get those figures. read more>>>
Apr 09, 2015 - Army Sergeant Bunyan Durant Price Jr. was declared "Missing In Action" in Cambodia in 1970, and remained that way since. His body was returned to his family in Gastonia Thursday. read more>>>
19 March 2015 - Lucy Coffey, the oldest female veteran in the United States, died Thursday at her home in Texas. She was 108.
Coffey had been ill for about a week, Quita Marquez, a friend and veterans service officer, told The Associated Press. The Bexar County Veterans Service Office paid tribute to Coffey, saying in a statement that "she was an incredibly lady who will be missed dearly. Her contributions to our country and community will not be forgotten." read more>>>
HONORING THE FALLEN: US Military and Coalition Forces Killed in Action, Iraq & Afghanistan/Pakistan from 2001 to ................. - My Honor Rolls, and more, to Share
National World War II Memorial
National Korean War Memorial
National Vietnam Veterans Memorial - "The Wall"
The Vietnam Women’s Memorial
Department of Veterans Affairs National Cemeteries
Arlington National Cemetery
American Veterans Disabled for Life Memorial - Dedicated on Oct 5th 2014