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Understanding Military Veterans

Program Equips Law Enforcement and Clinicians with Tools to Understand Military Veterans

Veteran Experts Launch ‘Combat to Community’ Training.

"Our goal is not to give veterans a ‘get out of jail free card,’ but rather to make sure that the population is understood. Because veterans make up less than one percent of the population, there is often a lack of cultural competency"

July 20, 2010

More veterans are returning from duty in Iraq and Afghanistan, some struggling with transition to civilian life and the invisible wounds of war.

World {not just Brits} Surge in Criminal Terror

UK's terror surge after Iraq invasion

21 July 2010 SECRET Service chiefs were "swamped" with terror plots by British Muslims after the invasion of Iraq, MI5's ex-boss said yesterday.

Baroness Eliza Manningham-Buller told the official Iraq War inquiry the conflict in 2003 turned a generation of young "home-grown" Muslims into fanatics.

The invasion "substantially" increased the risk of terror attacks - to the point where she asked then-PM Tony Blair to DOUBLE her budget.

She said: "Our involvement in Iraq radicalised, for want of a better word, a whole generation of young people who saw our involvement in Iraq and Afghanistan as being an attack on Islam."

"Wings and a Prayer", Gulf Oil Spill

The pelican and the Gulf oil spill, in pictures and music

 


July 21, 2010 "Wings and a Prayer," a mythical journey of Louisiana's endangered state bird, the brown pelican, is told in art and music. Continued

Agent Orange Cleanup:

A Priority for Hillary Clinton in Vietnam

Walter Isaacson and Lt. General Phung Khac Dang, Vice President of the Vietnam Veterans Association are briefed on dioxin containment work at Danang Airport

21 July 2010 The last stop on Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's Asian tour this week is Vietnam, where she will discuss among other things an enduring remnant of the war, the after-effects of Agent Orange. The U.S. government belatedly recognized the impact of the deadly defoliant on American troops, but has resisted accepting responsibility for the damage the chemical inflicted on the Vietnamese with birth defects still evident decades after the end of the war.

The U.S. Government is 'The People'!!

This actually came to me through the DoD Military Medical Digest for Military Health System e-mail updates when new is added to the list, who says change can't happen!!

U.S. Government to Gulf War Vets: DROP DEAD!

Video Clip Part 1 of 6: Click to Watch

Medicinal Ecstasy? Who'da thunk it

MDMA (Ecstasy)-Assisted Psychotherapy Relieves Treatment-Resistant PTSD, Study Suggests

ScienceDaily (July 20, 2010) — MDMA (±3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine, also known as Ecstasy), may one day offer hope for individuals with posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), even people for whom other treatments have failed. Clinical trial results out July 19 in the Journal of Psychopharmacology suggests that MDMA can be administered to subjects with PTSD without evidence of harm and could offer sufferers a vital window with reduced fear responses where psychotherapy can take effect.

As They Used to Say, "No S**T Dick Tracy!!!"

Iraq inquiry: Ex-MI5 boss says war raised terror threat

20 July 2010 The invasion of Iraq "substantially" increased the terrorist threat to the UK, the former head of MI5 has said.

Giving evidence to the Iraq inquiry, Baroness Manningham-Buller said the action "radicalised" a generation of young people, including UK citizens.

As a result, she said she was not "surprised" that UK nationals were involved in the 7/7 bombings in London.

She said she believed the intelligence on Iraq's threat was not "substantial enough" to justify the action.

Baroness Manningham-Buller said she had advised officials a year before the war that the threat posed by Iraq to the UK was "very limited", and she believed that assessment had "turned out to be the right judgement". Continued

U.S. security turns corporate

And adds to what already has taken place in the previous decade, brought on by the same, to make National Security Much Less Secure!!

Some of the nation's most sensitive duties have been doled out to private contractors, with exploding budgets and little oversight.

In June, a stone carver from Manassas, Va., chiseled another perfect star into a marble wall at CIA headquarters, one of 22 for agency workers killed in the global war initiated by the 2001 terrorist attacks.

The intent of the memorial is to publicly honor the courage of those who died in the line of duty, but it also conceals a deeper story about government in the post-9/11 era: Eight of the 22 were not CIA officers at all. They were private contractors.

Baha Mousa inquiry:

Commander accused of lying

19 July 2010 Counsel for Iraqi civilian who died in British custody questions evidence given by officer in charge

Colonel Jorge Mendonca, whose evidence to the Baha Mousa inquiry has been called into question. Photograph: Barry Batchelor/PA

The commanding officer of the regiment in whose custody an Iraqi civilian died was accused today of misleading an official public inquiry about what he knew of the treatment meted out by his soldiers.

Colonel Jorge Mendonca of 1st Battalion the Queen's Lancashire Regiment (1QLR) said he saw nothing out of the ordinary when he checked on hotel worker Baha Mousa and a number of other Iraqi civilians after their arrest in Basra, southern Iraq, in 2003.

Blind Eye to Casualties of War and Occupation

Labour turned a blind eye to Iraq casualties

19 July 2010 A new report reveals Labour's near-pathological state of denial about the cost in human life of the 2003 invasion and aftermath

Adam Ingram, former minister for the armed forces, said counting civilian casualties in Iraq would not have stopped them occurring. Photograph: Christopher Furlong/Getty

High Court to Investigate: Torture

And you thought that meant the U.S. courts I'll bet {we don't do accountability of top officials representing us}, nope it's the British high courts and a Brit Government Inquiry into torture is also setting to begin. But they both will bring out the U.S. participation in that which we condemn those we occupy and are fighting of doing.

Marketing War and Peace

I’m happy to run with the six peaceniks that stood trial in DC Superior Court on July 12th. Three are with Peace of the Action (POTA) and include Cindy Sheehan, national director of the organization, as well as Jon Gold and Jim Veeder. They were acquitted. Elaine Brower of Military Families Speak Out and Matthis Chiroux of Iraq Veterans Against the War were convicted, as was Leflora Cunningham-Walsh. I applaud these citizens of the world and their devotion to peace and activism. Sheehan and Gold have articles about the trial on POTA’s web address: peaceoftheaction.org/.

On July 13th, some of us gathered at the White House. We took a bullhorn to the president’s presidio and told Barack Obama what we think of his George Bushiness foreign policy. This was gratifying, a celebratory wrap for POTA’s July action, especially since the defendants, prior to the trial, had been under a “stay away order” from this area of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.

Now, this:

Iraqi Refugee's in Country

What wasn't before, now the way of life in a country destroyed! Think "They'll forget!", don't count on it, especially the surviving children growing up in the new Iraq over the past eight years and into the future! Not even mentioning the millions who fled outside of the country!

Legions Of Iraqi Squatters Grow Even As War Recedes

 

Sabah Arar/AFP/Getty Images An Iraqi man walks past sewage and rubbish in a squatter camp in Baghdad in 2008.

July 15, 2010 In Iraq, about 2 million people have been displaced by the war and sectarian fighting. Aid groups estimate that nearly 500,000 of them are living in cities and towns as squatters.

Torture of Iraqis to Judicial Review

British army's alleged torture of Iraqis goes to judicial review

16 July 2010 High court victory for 102 men claiming systemic abuse while in detention may lead to public inquiry

Lawyers representing 102 Iraqi prisoners say they have documented hundreds of allegations of torture. Photograph: Mohammed Sawaf/AFP/Getty Images

The high court today gave permission for a judicial review of the government's failure to hold a public inquiry into the British army's detention policies in Iraq amid allegations that large numbers of civilians were tortured.

Extremely Sad but not Unexpected News

Record number of Army suicides in June

 

7/15/2010 Officials have been grappling with how to identify, treat soldiers at risk

The U.S. Army on Thursday reported a record number of suicides in a single month among active duty, Guard and Reserve troops, despite an aggressive program of counseling, training and education aimed at suicide prevention.

Suicides for the first half of the year are up 12 percent over 2009. In June, 32 soldiers are believed to have committed suicide, including 21 on active duty.

The June report came as the Army also released a 20-minute training video on suicide prevention titled, "Shoulder to Shoulder — I will never quit on life." Continued

 

Did Britain Care? {We Know Here There's Little Concern!}

And that lack of will come back to haunt us in the coming decades, it is already!

Iraqi Civilian Deaths: Did Britain Care?

 

July 16, 2010 Of all the controversies that surround the Iraq war and its aftermath, the most troubling is the number of civilians who died.

The figure varies depending on which source you choose to believe... but they're all staggering.

50,000? 200,000? 400,000? One survey even puts the figure at over a million.

The attitude of the US commander who led the invasion of Iraq in 2003 goes some way to explaining why no one really has any idea of the number.

Iraq Inquiry extends an Important deadline

Iraq Inquiry extends deadline for international lawyer submissions

12 July 2010 In June the Iraq Inquiry issued an open invitation to international lawyers to give their analysis of the arguments relied upon by the UK Government as the legal basis for the military intervention in Iraq. The Inquiry decided to issue an open invitation, rather than writing to individual international lawyers, to avoid the risk that we might inadvertently fail to write to particular individuals, or the perception that we had focused on people who were thought to hold a particular view.

A number of international lawyers have already responded. Others have indicated that they would like to respond, but need a little more time to do so. We are therefore extending the deadline for submissions until 13 September.

Brit Iraq War Inquiry: 'should have seen'

Gee ya Think!!

Cabinet 'should have seen' full legal arguments on Iraq

14 July 2010 The cabinet should have seen all the arguments on the legality of the Iraq war, a former senior minister has said.

Lord Boateng said it would have been "helpful" to see then Attorney General Lord Goldsmith's full legal deliberations in the run-up to war.

Military action would be lawful, Lord Goldsmith ruled days before the invasion, but critics said his earlier reservations were not made clear.

But Lord Boateng said he believed the invasion was "right".

The Iraq inquiry is continuing to examine the background to the UK's participation in the 2003 invasion, the build-up to the war and its aftermath.

WARs of Choice: Reality Check

Horrors of war get reality check

Sgt. Serena Hayden, a public affairs specialist deployed to Iraq from 2006 to 2008, poses with the niece of Diyala province Gov. Ra'ad Hameed Al-Mula Jowad Al-Tamimi during a visit to his house. But Hayden's deployment was hardly idyllic, and she has sought treatment for post-traumatic stress disorder, which has been denied so far.

July 14, 2010 The dazzling smile Serena Hayden flashes in photographs masks the horrors of war she witnessed in Iraq.

She was a public affairs specialist, a job that some dismiss as cushy. Done right, however, the job means sharing the risks borne by combat soldiers. After all, you can't document a war if you're not in it.

Post-traumatic stress disorder takes a 'village'

Florida vets with PTSD need boosted grass-roots response.

{As does the rest of the country and should have over these last some three plus decades!!}

July 14, 2010 In a long overdue move, U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs officials took shears to the red tape that tangled up veterans pursuing disability benefits for post-traumatic stress disorder.

Noncombat veterans who served in war zones no longer need produce backing documents or buddies to vouch for a specific event that triggered their PTSD. Now, it's presumed that a combat-zone veteran's claim of PTSD is service-connected.

Certainly, the VA would have made an even bigger splash had it also lightened the load of its understaffed ranks of mental-health professionals by blessing PTSD diagnoses from private-sector therapists.

Neo-Con Rush to War and Weakening of National Security

Britain rushed to invade Iraq

14 Jul 2010 A former British diplomat says government did not tried hard enough to find an alternative to the military action to deal with Iraq's former dictator Saddam Hussein.

Carne Ross, who served as first secretary at the UK's mission to UN between 1997 and 2002, told the Iraq war inquiry on Monday that Britain's pre-invasion containment policy ruled that the government considers sanctions and other measures before leaping to a military solution.

He said no "significant intelligence" backed up the claims that Iraq was armed with weapons of mass destruction but officials opposing a military campaign there were "very beleaguered".

Holbrooke on Afghanistan/Pakistan

Sorting through the complexities in Afghanistan

July 13: Richard Holbrooke, the U.S. special representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan, talks with Rachel Maddow about the history of the relationship between Afghanistan and Pakistan and the different Taliban groups active in the region.

 

Civilian Trauma {PTSD} from Disasters

July 13: Corey Hebert, WDSU medical editor, talks with Keith Olbermann about attention being paid to Gulf Coast residents whose health is affected by the BP oil disaster.

 

 

House Committee on Veterans' Affairs: 14 July 2010

Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations

Examining the Progress of Suicide Prevention Outreach Efforts at the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs July 14, 2010 10:00AM

 

Live Streamed Webcast July 14 at 10 a.m. {est}

 

Witness Testimonies

*

Panel 1

* Warrant Officer Melvin Cintron, USA (Ret.), Woodbridge, VA, (Gulf War Veteran and OIF Veteran)

* Linda Bean, Milltown, NJ, (Mother of OIF Veteran)

*

Panel 2

* Timothy S. Embree, Legislative Associate, Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America

* Jacob B. Gadd, Deputy Director, Veterans Affairs and Rehabilitation Commission, American Legion

USAG HOLDER: "We will not tolerate wrongdoing by those who are sworn to protect the public."

Translation: "We will not tolerate wrongdoing by small fry (just forget Bush/Cheney, etc., etc., etc.)."

Six more policemen charged in Katrina killings

5:14pm EDT
By Jeremy Pelofsky

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Six more New Orleans police officers have been indicted in connection with the shooting deaths of two people and the wounding of four others who were walking on a bridge after Hurricane Katrina devastated the city in 2005, the Justice Department said on Tuesday.

U.S. prosecutors unsealed a 27-count indictment that charged three current officers and one former officer with the killing, and subsequent cover-up, of James Brissette, a 17-year-old city resident, and Ronald Madison, a 40-year-old man who suffered disabilities and was shot in the back.

Torture Inquiry: Cameron Agrees to Terms

PM agrees terms to torture inquiry

July 14, 2010 Judge-led investigation would examine claims of British complicity in abuse and rendition of terrorism suspects

David Cameron and the foreign secretary, William Hague, are understood to have agreed the terms of a judge-led inquiry into claims that British security services were complicit in torture of terrorism suspects.

The inquiry is expected to offer compensation in cases, where necessary, and is likely to be held in private. A judge-led inquiry or commission may have the advantage of bringing together the 13 separate compensation cases currently going through the courts.

The Battle Between the First and Second Amendments

By John Grant

There is a contest going on in America between the First and Second Amendments as to which has more favor in our court system. It's a face off between gun violence and freedom of the press and it involves individuals, giant corporations and standing armies.

Last week in Oakland, CA, demonstrations followed the manslaughter conviction of a white police officer who claimed he had meant to shoot a young black man with his Taser but grabbed the wrong item from his belt. That whole incident was “shot” by two citizens with cell phones.

Deciding what trumps what in this kind of conflict between rights is an issue relegated to the Supreme Court, an aloof entity accountable to no one. The question that should concern every American though, is how this court and those below it have their fingers on the scale when it comes to the first two amendments of the Constitution.

A New Year's subway shooting

wink;o} wink;o} Ginning up WMD Intelligence

Brit War Inquiry EXPLODES with Damning Testimony! Will the Chilcot group take this and remove the somewhat gentlemanly gloves of questioning so far and get tougher, will it also bring about a re-questioning of earlier participants, like Blair and company, who might have thought they were through with their spinning of facts! Will documents not intended for public view suddenly become very public to answer what isn't known but said only behind closed doors!

Tony Blair 'intentionally talked up WMD', Iraq inquiry told

13/07/2010 Tony Blair "intentionally" exaggerated the threat posed by Saddam Hussein's weapons of mass destruction, the Iraq inquiry heard yesterday.

Interrogation Guidelines Facing Their First Legal Challenge

New interrogation policy faces early legal challenge

12 July 2010 Lawyers acting for Iraqi civilians threaten judicial review over failure to ban hooding

The government's interrogation guidelines for intelligence officers are facing their first legal challenge, less than a week after they were published as part of David Cameron's attempt to signal a break with the counter-terrorism practices of the Labour administration.

Lawyers representing dozens of Iraqi civilians who were detained and allegedly mistreated by British troops are threatening to begin judicial review proceedings because the policy fails to outlaw the practice of hooding.

Violence, Not Overdose, the Likely Method of Suicide in Veterans With Substance Use Disorders

ScienceDaily (June 21, 2010) — Veterans with substance use disorders who die by suicide are more likely to use violent means (such as a firearm) rather than nonviolent means (such as a drug overdose), new research suggests.

In a study of more than 5,000 Veterans Affairs (VA) patients with substance use disorders, researchers found that, despite having access to potentially lethal substances, 70% of those who died by suicide used violent means. The study was reported in the July issue of the Journal of Studies on Alcohol and Drugs.

Speaking Events

2016

War Is A Lie: Second Edition
Book Tour

May 19, Sarasota, FL, 7:00 p.m. Fogartyville Community Media and Arts Center 525 Kumquat Court, Sarasota, FL

May 20, Jacksonville, FL, 7:00 p.m., Florida Christian Center Auditorium, 1115 Edgewood Ave S, Jacksonville, FL 32205, (904) 381-4800.

May 21, Gainesville, FL
7:00 p.m.
Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Gainesville, Florida
4225 NW 34th St, Gainesville, FL 32605
(352) 377-1669
Sign up on FB.


May 28, San Francisco, CA
11 a.m. to 1 p.m., David Swanson interviewed by Daniel Ellsberg, at San Francisco Main Public Library, 100 Larkin Street.
Sign up on FB.

May 28, Marin County, CA
4 to 6 p.m., David Swanson in conversation with Norman Solomon, at Book Passage, 51 Tamal Vista Blvd., Corte Madera, CA
Sign up on FB.

May 29, Oakland, CA
3 to 4 p.m., David Swanson interviewed by Cindy Sheehan, at Diesel: A Bookstore, 5433 College Avenue at Kales (near Manila), Oakland, CA
Sign up on FB.

May 29, Berkeley, CA
7:30 to 9 p.m., David Swanson and Cindy Sheehan at Berkeley Fellowship of Unitarian Universalists, sponsored by the Social Justice Committee and Cynthia Papermaster, 1606 Bonita Ave. (at Cedar), Berkeley, CA
Sign up on FB.

May 30, Fresno, CA
2 to 4 p.m., David Swanson and Cindy Sheehan at a Peace Fresno event
Community United Church of Christ
5550 N. Fresno Street
Fresno, CA 93710


June 11 St. Paul, MN, 6 p.m. at Macalester Plymouth Church Social Hall 1658 Lincoln, St. Paul, MN.
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June 12 Minneapolis, MN, 9 and 11 a.m. at St. Joan's 4533 3rd Ave So, Minneapolis, MN, plus peace pole dedication at 2 p.m.
Sign up on FB.


Other Events Here.

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