Re: [veterans] Military Leaders Warn of Shortages
- I really do not understand the anger and the attitudes of you and those like you!!! I was discharged from the Air Force in 1982 after twelve years of service, with a service-connected disability. I was placed on the TDRL (temporary disabled retired list) with a rating of 30%. I was very disappointed and fought to stay in, but, was discharged anyway. Even though the Air Force told me that I was disabled, I didn't consider myself disabled and worked very hard to get well. I went to college on my GI Bill and then went to work for the postal service in 1985. In the meantime, The VA rated me at 10%, (I didn't know that I had the right to appeal their decision). In 1986, the USAF removed me from the TDRL, and even though I was deeply disappointed that I was not allowed to return to actice duty, I made the best of it. I worked for the postal service for 14 years, until the VA doctors said that I was unable to work any longer. I went on disability retirement in Jan. 2000.
I had been treated by doctors at the VA outpatient clinic, in Peoria, Illinois, from 1982 until 1998, when I was admitted to the VA hospital in Iowa city, Iowa. I began an appeal of my disability rating while in the hospital, after being advised that I could do so, by a representative of the American Legion. It took a year, and I was increased to 50%. I had been hospitalized several more times since then, and again appealed the 50% rating. It took another year and a half, but, I finally was rated 100%.
There were times when I was angry and disappointed with the ratings board, and sometimes I felt that the medical care was inadequate; but, I learned to be patient and also to speak out (sometimes loudly), although courteously, whenever I felt mistreated. Sometimes it is necessary to be loud to get their attention, but, the squeeky wheel gets the grease!
However, I found my treatment, by both the the medical staff and the ratings board, overall, to be more than satisfactory. The medical personnel, in particular, have been and continue to be, very polite, courteous and professional in their duties, and in their treatment of me, all through the years. I feel that I have received the very best care that they could give me. To be sure, there is plenty of room for improvement, and I have heard more than my share of horror stories. Maybe my experience is an exception to the rule. I don't know, and I certainly hope that it is the rule, rather than the exception!
The Veterans Administration is truly underfunded and understaffed, and do their best to properly treat the millions of veterans that seek their help. I salute them!
I am extremely concerned about the shortages of personnel and equipment in the United States military. President Reagen worked hard to build it up, and our ex-Commander-heat, Bill Clinton, did all that he could to destroy our military, discourage re-inlistment of senior personnel, and deplete our stockpile of bombs and cruise missles, while failing to be sure that what was expended was replaced. Our military is suffering and it will take both time and money to rebuild it; and the draft might need to be re-instated to bring man-power up to the necessary levels. But, I believe that President Bush is doing his very best to accomplish this.
But, even if I had received the worst of treatment from the VA, I would never turn my back on my country, or my brothers-in-arms; nor would I encourage my children to do so. I only wish that I could don my uniform and serve with my brothers overseas right now. Unfortunately, I am unable to do so, but, I am proud to say that my sons have both told me that they are ready and willing to serve. I am extremely proud of them and I feel that they are exceptional young men. Respectfully, Charlie Baker
----- Original Message -----
From: Tom Westhoven
Sent: Monday, March 25, 2002 11:04 PM
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Subject: [veterans] Military Leaders Warn of Shortages
Dave.... We might also want to thank the DVA, the system of lie's and broken
promises for screwing over millions and millions of Vet's, and in turn those
millions vets are discouraging their sons and grandsons from joining the
military... As I see it turn about is fair play. you screw me and my kids
watch you do it.. then you need them to fight your wars, they in turn tell
you to go screw yourself.....I know my 2 son's and all the kids in my
neighborhood have seen what the VA has pulled on me, and they all tell me
they'll go live in Mexico before they'll fight and die for this sorry
government that lie's like hell and turns their backs on the guys that made
this counrty what it is today.......... Tom Westhoven RVN 68-69
From: David J Lindstedt <semperfidave@...>
Subject: Fw: Military Leaders Warn of Shortages
Date: Thu, 21 Mar 2002 21:42:45 -0500
MAYBE if the dopy bastards that have been running the show since Reagan
left office, hadn't gutted, fagged & feminized our military as well as
sending our industrial capacity to 3rd word nations and countries with
COMMUNIST SLAVE LABOR; THIS PROBLEM might not exist.
Dave... listening to the SUCKING SOUND IN PA
Peace at any cost is a Prelude to War!
Military Leaders Warn of Shortages
Wed Mar 20, 3:48 PM ET
By CAROLYN SKORNECK, Associated Press Writer
WASHINGTON (AP) - Leaders of the U.S. Pacific and European commands said
Wednesday the war on terrorism has overtaxed troops and equipment,
dangerous shortages that ultimately could hurt Americans.
The commanders were asked if they had enough forces to carry out all
operations as well as possible military action against Iraq, and their
answers were "very troubling," said Rep. Ike Skelton (news, bio, voting
record), D-Mo., who asked the question.
"We do not have adequate forces to carry out our missions for the Pacific
the operations in the Central Command (Afghanistan (news - web sites))
continue at their recent past and current pace," Navy Adm. Dennis C.
commander in chief of the Pacific Command, told the House Armed Services
Air Force Gen. Joseph W. Ralston, commander in chief of the European
Command, gave a similar response.
"The answer to your question as you posed it is: I do not have the forces
EUCOM today to carry out these missions," Ralston told Skelton, the
committee's top Democrat.
But if more operations are assigned, Ralston said, "I will come back to
chairman of the joint chiefs and the secretary of defense and ask for
additional forces. Then they are going to have to come up with a choice:
Where are they going to take them away from?"
Ralston, whose command oversees 91 countries, said he is short-staffed,
with 115,000 forward-based troops, 8 percent of the military's total
"I have not had a marine amphibious ready group since October of last
"This is the primary unit that I use to evacuate Americans if there is a
(news - web sites) operation taking place in one of those 91 countries,"
said. "And I don't believe I will have a marine amphibious ready group
year other than just for a few days as they transit the Mediterranean."
Likewise, Ralston said he has not had an aircraft carrier in many months,
save for a few days when it traveled through the Mediterranean. He has
sent AWACS aircraft to support operations in Southwest Asia.
In the meantime, the commanders are making do by shifting forces around.
"We were without a carrier battle group in the Western Pacific" in the
war's early days, Blair said. "We compensated for that by moving Air
aircraft from Alaska to the Korean peninsula."
"So we can mitigate for a while ... but there are shortages of naval
of intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance forces, in particular,
have to be made up for if we are to continue the current level of
in the Central Command," Blair said.
Lengthening deployments, bringing in more reserves and delaying
decommissioning of ships can cover some shortfalls, but it will take more
keep going over the long term, Blair said.
Asked by Rep. Jo Ann Davis (news, bio, voting record), R-Va., about the
impact of another aircraft carrier retirement, Blair said it would
shift to land-based airpower, creating a potential problem in the vast
"I'm already at zero," Ralston said. "With one less, I can't be any worse
than at zero."
Army Gen. William F. Kernan, commander in chief of the U.S. Joint Forces
Command, told the committee last week that U.S. troops are overextended
exhausted, and he supported calls by service leaders for more people:
40,000; Air Force, 6,000; Marines, 2,400, and Navy, 3,000. The current
Army personnel is 480,000; Air Force 358,800; Marines 172,600, and Navy,
Rep. Gene Taylor (news, bio, voting record), D-Miss., asked Wednesday
President Bush (news - web sites)'s statement that North Korea (news -
sites), Iran and Iraq form an "axis of evil" might prompt them to create
real alliance, retaliating against the United States for any action taken
against any of them.
"Most countries realize that to attack us when our blood is up is not a
idea," Blair said. When the United States is at war, he said, "countries
to tread carefully."
The committee's chairman, Rep. Bob Stump (news, bio, voting record),
and its subcommittee chairmen were at the White House for a budget talk,
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