IAVA Daily News Brief 10.25.12
Posted by Jacob Worrell on October 25
Here are some of today's top stories and happenings that IAVA is tracking. Prefer to receive real-time updates about major stories and legislation that IAVA is tracking? Follow us on Twitter @IAVA and click here to get the News Brief delivered to your inbox every morning.
Military Times reports National Guard and reserve members who deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan are having a harder time than other veterans getting disability compensation claims approved by the Veterans Affairs Department. New data obtained by Veterans for Common Sense under the Freedom of Information Act shows the denial rate for claims filed by reserve component combat veterans is four times higher than for post-9/11 combat veterans who were active-duty members. Tom Tarantino, IAVA’s Chief Policy Officer, says the trend is disturbing. “Funky” record keeping, filing claims without the help of a veterans’ service officer who understands the process, or structural problems in how claims are handled could all contribute to the discrepancy, Tarantino said.
The Daily Beast reports that according to a new report from the VA, nearly 30 percent of the 834,463 Iraq and Afghanistan War veterans treated at VA hospitals and clinics have been diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder. Some veterans advocates say the VA is underestimating the number of PTSD sufferers and that the report exemplifies the stress of both wars on veterans and their families is severe and escalating.
Jon Stewart on The Daily Show interviews two Iraq war veterans who are both field train medics about veteran unemployment and skills translation from combat to the civilian sector. Stewart comments on the different licenses military veterans need for several medical jobs, despite their heroic experiences and trainings far above and beyond the requirements.
- The U.S. military says two of its service members have been killed in an apparent insider attack by an Afghan police officer.
- Mullah Mohammad Omar, Taliban leader, said in an email yesterday that insider attacks against coalition and Afghan national army will increase.
- The Commons international development committee said the UK should reconsider its ambition of building Afghan government institutions in favor of more traditional aid targets, especially set to improve the lives of Afghan women. Their report pointed out that Afghan women were three times worse off than men, and far more likely to be illiterate.
- Many former Afghan interpreters are waiting to hear about their status for U.S. visas. The long wait has been disheartening to thousands of men and women critical to the American mission, many of whom serve on the front lines with U.S. troops. Since 2007, at least 80 interpreters have been killed in combat.
- According to a U.S.official, U.S. intelligence believes that assailants connected to al Qaeda in Iraq were among the core group that attacked the diplomatic mission in Benghazi. The weakened al Qaeda affiliate has had a resurgence in Iraq since U.S. forces left the country at the end of last year.
- An Oklahoma woman shared a tragic story of her father's recent death Tuesday with a legislative panel looking into allegations of inadequate care at the state's seven veterans' centers.
- Former Secretary of State and Joint Chiefs Chairman Colin Powell said on “CBS This Morning” that he is siding with President Obama for the upcoming election.
THE NEW GREATEST GENERATION
- A bomb-sniffing army dog who died in Afghanistan on the day his handler was killed has been honored with the Dickin Medal, Britain’s highest award for animal bravery.
- Allyson Robinson, a transgender Army veteran, will be executive director of a new organization that combined the Servicemembers’ Legal Defense Network and OutServe, groups with histories of helping current and former service members long before the ban on service by openly gay troops was lifted by Congress.
- Female veterans face staggering unemployment rates but want to get to work. Some have found that they can be their own boss. To help bolster the growing pool of female veterans who have become entrepreneurs, Capital One and Count Me In have partnered to launch the Women Veteran Entrepreneur Corps, a training and mentorship program.
- Presidential Counterterrorism adviser John O. Brennan is the principal architect of a policy that has transformed counterterrorism from a conventional fight centered in Afghanistan to a high-tech global effort to track down and eliminate perceived enemies one by one.
- Obama wants to get into negotiations to resolve sequestration and the fiscal cliff "right after the election," a senior White House adviser told reporters yesterday, following up on the president's assertion that Washington could reach a "grand bargain" in six months.
A wide-range of views, positions, and publications are represented in these articles. These views, positions and publications are not endorsed by nor do they necessarily represent the views of IAVA.
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