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IAVA | December 20, 2017

IAVA Daily News Brief – December 20, 2017


Today’s Top Stories 

During a White House briefing earlier this year, he said that state medical cannabis laws may be providing “some evidence that this is beginning to be helpful, and we’re interested in looking at that and learning from that.” But he added that “until time the federal law changes, we are not able to be able to prescribe medical marijuana for conditions that may be helpful.” | Forbes >>

“This practice was intended to streamline appeals processing for certain Veterans in our former paper-bound system. We agree that it affected appeals completion and timeliness and could have impaired our ability to identify and track the status of appealed issues. We have taken this matter seriously, to include rescinding the local practice and providing training to all appeals Veteran Service Representatives.” | WBDJ >>

U.S. Sen. Jon Tester, a Montana Democrat, recently urged the Department of Veterans Affairs to comply with hiring laws after the VA’s Medical Center in Iowa City employed a former Billings neurosurgeon with a history of malpractice claims and a revoked medical license. | Billings Gazette >>

Iraq and Afghanistan

“Given that the chief U.S. interest in South Asia is stability, the fact that you have rampant instability throughout much of Afghanistan and much of Pakistan as well suggests U.S. interests are very much imperiled in a part of the world where lest we forget, America has been fighting its longest-ever foreign war for the last 17 years,” he says. | NPR >>

The citizens of Iraq, especially those displaced by the difficult and destructive urban fights, now begin the slow process of returning home and rebuilding. As reliable partners, coalition nations and non-governmental organizations have begun to help, starting with clearing out booby traps and rigged explosives left behind by ISIS. | Fox News >>

On Monday, vaccinators began another dangerous attempt to immunize children in Shahwalikot, as the United Nations urgently appealed to all sides of the conflict to let them work. But after a day of going door to door and village to village in Shahwalikot, in Kandahar Province, they had gained access to just three of the 28 zones they needed to reach. They said the Taliban had promised to eventually let them into 11 others. | The New York Times >> 

Military Affairs

Eckels was one of three Marylanders killed this year in two separate collisions involving ships of the Navy’s 7th Fleet in the Pacific Ocean. Electronics Technician 1st Class Kevin Bushell, 26, of Gaithersburg, also died aboard the McCain Aug. 21. Petty Officer 1st Class Xavier Martin, 24, of Halethorpe, died aboard the U.S.S. Fitzgerald on June 17. | Stars and Stripes >>

Although in its early stages, the system includes a hands-free device that records audio and video. The plan is to have the audio automatically transcribed, separating words from battlefield noises, which would let doctors know how to properly care for the patient once they’re off the battlefield. | Military Times >>

In the event of war on the Korean peninsula South Korean soldiers will do the bulk of the fighting, both above and underground. Still U.S. forces would likley do a considerable amount themselves, and must be ready to fight and communicate hundreds of feet underground in the dark. In the meantime, U.S. troops must train for every contingency. | Popular Mechanics >>


“My college experience was like everyone else’s. I learned a lot. I gained a new perspective on the world and on people that I’m so thankful and appreciative for,” Carpenter said. “I was first and foremost a fellow Gamecock and friend before a Medal of Honor recipient. I just had a four years that is too special to put into words.” | Stars and Stripes >>

A veteran with a traumatic brain injury has overcome many challenges, including what she did Monday night: graduate from Tidewater Community College with honors. The ceremony was held at the Ted Constant Convocation Center on the ODU campus.  WTKR >>

There were individuals who had been ejected from the train onto the pavement,”  McCoy said. “And so my first initial thought was, I don’t know how stable this is. If this train continues to fall, it’s gonna fall on these individuals.” | Task and Purpose >>



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