Wednesday, October 03, 2007

"To care for him who shall have borne the battle, and for his widow and his orphan.”

This is truly disgusting. We send our forces over to Iraq to die for literally nothing. Some of them are horribly injured, and we give them terrible medical care and stick them in a squalid hole.

Some of them survive but have a hard time living with the horrors they've experienced. They're just as badly injured as those with physical injuries, so they've earned our gratitude and our support, haven't they?

What do they get instead? Slandered, labeled as constitutionally unfit to serve, and kicked out without the care and support they need.

Here's part of the story from The Nation. Go there and read the rest.

On April 9, Spc. Jon Town was featured on the cover of The Nation, in an article that told how he was wounded in Iraq, won a Purple Heart and was then denied all disability and medical benefits. Town's doctor had concluded that his headaches and hearing loss were not caused by the 107-millimeter rocket that knocked him unconscious but by a psychological condition, "personality disorder," a pre-existing illness for which one cannot collect disability pay or receive medical care.

Further investigation by The Nation has uncovered more than a dozen cases like Town's from bases across the country. All of the soldiers interviewed passed the rigorous health screening given recruits before being accepted into the Army. All were deemed physically and psychologically fit in a second screening as well, before being deployed to Iraq, and served honorably there in combat. None of the soldiers interviewed during this eleven-month investigation had a documented history of psychological problems.

Yet after they returned from Iraq wounded and sought treatment, each was diagnosed with a pre-existing personality disorder, then denied benefits. As in Town's case, Army doctors determined that the soldiers' ailments were pre-existing without interviewing friends, family or fellow soldiers who knew them before they were wounded in combat.

Oh yes, and one more thing: Thanks, Ralph.


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