IAVA Daily News Brief 7.26.11
Posted by Caitlin Kenney on July 26
Here are some of today's top stories and happenings at IAVA. Prefer to receive real-time updates about major stories and legislation that IAVA is tracking? Follow us on Twitter @IAVAPressRoom or subscribe at www.IAVA.org/DailyNewsBrief.
As a result of the outpouring of support for student veterans generated by IAVA’s call to action on Monday, the Department of Veterans Affairs has chimed in on the Restoring GI Bill Fairness Act of 2011 [H.R. 1383] after talks with the House Veterans Affairs Committee. According to the VA, it will now regulate HR 1383 (pending passage Tuesday) so that the January 4, 2011 eligibility date will cover all student veterans attending school during the Winter/Spring terms of the 2010/2011 school year. This change will widen the terms of the GI Bill to embrace hundreds of additional veterans across the nation.
The number of homeless veterans who served in Iraq and/or Afghanistan has doubled three times since 2006, according to the Department of Veterans Affairs. There are now over 10,000 homeless veterans of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, including veterans who are in temporary housing programs. The vast majority of these homeless vets saw combat during their service; this experience, coupled with a poor economy post-deployment, makes it particularly difficult for the current generation of veterans to get back on their feet.
With nothing left off the table during Washington’s debt negotiations, disabled veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan want to ensure that the sacrifices they made on behalf of their country are not forgotten. On Wednesday, the organization Disabled American Veterans will lead a virtual march on Washington via Facebook and Twitter (#march4vets) to remind Congress that the benefits they earned in the service should not be part of the national debt talks.
As the U.S. continues to be preoccupied with hand-wringing and tongue-wagging in Washington, the future of Afghanistan is uncertain for those that will remain after NATO leaves the country in 2014. Afghan power brokers have a much more sober assessment of the insurgency than the Obama administration, and they doubt that peace talks with the Taliban will yield any concrete gains.
In the wake of Ahmed Wali Karzai’s assassination two weeks ago, a power vacuum has developed in the southern province of Kandahar, with the local elite biding their time and weighing their options in this crucial region of Afghanistan.
U.S. Marine commanders in southern Afghanistan are fighting a peculiar type of twenty-first century warfare, battling the Taliban by day and negotiating face-to-face with their commanders by night, in an effort to end the decade-long conflict.
In a sign of burgeoning economic cooperation, Iraq and Syria signed a $10 billion deal with Iran on Monday to permit the export of Iranian natural gas through their borders.
A guest columnist in Stars and Stripes has highlighted the work of civilian contractors in Iraq as a crucial element in winning the war.
TroopTube, the Defense Department’s alternative to the popular video-sharing site YouTube, will be shut down on July 31st.
Female naval officers are on the verge of breaking into one of the most exclusive posts in the Armed Forces, as they undergo training to serve aboard U.S. submarines.
On Tuesday Army General Martin Dempsey will face a Senate confirmation hearing to replace Admiral Mullen as the next chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.
As part of a broader plan for cutting the national deficit, Senator Tom Coburn of Oklahoma has proposed raising the cost of Tricare fees for retired, uninjured service members to be more in line with the cost of private sector health insurance.
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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