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Thu Jun 7, 2012, 07:31 AM

Soldiers Are Coming Home Injured and Addicted -- Will We Pay Our Debt to Our Vets?

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Soldiers come home from the two wars with a staggering rate of brain injuries and the addictions paired with them, but to treat them could cost $1 trillion.


http://www.alternet.org/drugs/155635/soldiers_are_coming_home_injured_and_addicted_--_will_we_pay_our_debt_to_our_vets/?page=entire

Soldiers Are Coming Home Injured and Addicted -- Will We Pay Our Debt to Our Vets?
The Fix / By Katie Drummond
May 29, 2012

Robert LeHeup will be the first to admit that he's an alcoholic. I drink so that I don't go to shit, says LeHeup, a 30-year-old bartender living in Columbus, South Carolina. I drink because I have to.

LeHeup is a former Marine sergeant, who served two grueling tours in Afghanistan during the US invasion and early occupation. He drinks to dull memories of the everyday chaos and carnage. He drinks to tolerate his disgust at the raucous bar-goers who have no idea how easy life is in America, compared to the casual violence and grinding poverty of Afghanistan. He drinks because, in the Marines, that is just what everybody does.

LeHeup, in his ongoing struggle with alcoholism, is anything but an outlier among this generation of military service-members. In fact, more than a decade after the start of the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, an unprecedented number of men and women in the US military are currently in the throes of addiction.

~snip~

America claims to be committed to taking care of ailing veterans for their entire lives if need be. For the generation of veterans of the war in Vietnam, which ended in 1975, the peak in healthcare costs and disability payments has not yet been reached. For the new generation of veterans of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, the peak is not due for another 40 or 50 years. By one estimate, the total price tag for this care will be $1 trillion. Yet budget hawks in Congress, especially among the Republicans, have already proposed cutting funds for veteran affairs.

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Reply Soldiers Are Coming Home Injured and Addicted -- Will We Pay Our Debt to Our Vets? (Original post)
unhappycamper Jun 2012 OP
vi5 Jun 2012 #1
geckosfeet Jun 2012 #2
xchrom Jun 2012 #3
Scuba Jun 2012 #4
caseymoz Jun 2012 #5
Tippy Jun 2012 #6
sorefeet Jun 2012 #7
unhappycamper Jun 2012 #8
lonestarnot Jun 2012 #9
white cloud Jun 2012 #10
The Wizard Jun 2012 #11
The Wizard Jun 2012 #12
era veteran Jun 2012 #13

Response to unhappycamper (Original post)

Thu Jun 7, 2012, 07:34 AM

1. Yes, we will pay our debt...

 

.with lots of stickers and ribbons and slogans that say things like "Freedom isn't free!!" or "Support The Troops".

Just don't...you know ask anyone to actually pay for or sacrifice anything themselves. I mean you know.....within reason.

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Response to unhappycamper (Original post)

Thu Jun 7, 2012, 07:37 AM

2. Protect the unborn - everyone else is on their own

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Response to unhappycamper (Original post)

Thu Jun 7, 2012, 08:04 AM

3. Du rec. Nt

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Response to unhappycamper (Original post)

Thu Jun 7, 2012, 08:09 AM

4. We stopped doing that after the Korean war...

 

... now all you need is a little fucking yellow ribbon on your bumper.

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Response to unhappycamper (Original post)

Thu Jun 7, 2012, 08:35 AM

5. No. I'm stunned anybody joins now.


After Vietnam, Afghanistan and Iraq, it ought to be apparent to everybody by now that the military is being used as a tool for politicians. Its personnel are disposable. Whatever proud tradition it had is gone after it literally became an imperial army. A government cynical enough to do what we've done in Iraq is calloused enough to leave our veterans twisting in the wind.

The news hasn't sunk in yet, but as these veterans become more alienated and are around to spread their disaffection, it will.

I hate to say too many people, conservatives mostly, took the exact wrong lesson from Vietnam, and that was we just didn't do it right.

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Response to unhappycamper (Original post)

Thu Jun 7, 2012, 09:08 AM

6. Did this country ever really take care of our vets?

I really dont thnk so..

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Response to unhappycamper (Original post)

Thu Jun 7, 2012, 09:18 AM

7. I'm a Vet

and the Republicans can't wait until I die. I did my job and now I am of no use, I'm disabled and all I'm doing is costing the system. I have had to fight tooth and nail to get medical help from the VA, and so do thousands more elegible Vets. I think the next winger that tells me how wonderful America is, will get the chance to experience the medical community first hand. I have been lied to my entire life. And they wonder why more Vets kill themselves than die in wars. All of our elected officials should hang their heads in shame as they are the only people in America who have real and affordable health care. Spineless cowards.

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Response to sorefeet (Reply #7)

Thu Jun 7, 2012, 09:32 AM

8. 11B?

I was a 31E REMF.

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Response to unhappycamper (Original post)

Thu Jun 7, 2012, 10:19 AM

9. The blow hard dog abuser wants to cut the federal work force. Aren't they already having issues

 

timely processing claims for vets?

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Response to lonestarnot (Reply #9)

Thu Jun 7, 2012, 10:40 AM

10. A big reason

We can't allow Romney RWR to have a chance to cut our throat again.

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Response to unhappycamper (Original post)

Thu Jun 7, 2012, 03:43 PM

11. Repubes are first

to cash in on war and last to support the people who make their war profits a reality. Giant assholes and anti American.

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Response to unhappycamper (Original post)

Thu Jun 7, 2012, 03:55 PM

12. Wisdom

"The willingness with which our young people are likely to serve in any war, no matter how justified, shall be directly proportional to how they perceive the Veterans of earlier wars were treated and appreciated by their nation."

- George Washington

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Response to unhappycamper (Original post)

Fri Jun 8, 2012, 05:16 AM

13. I hate the Goddamn VA

I think it is surprising people that our soldiers are getting addicted. I don't know why, do they make drugs in Afghanistan?
Stick with the hashish boys you can't get heroin like that in the 'world'.
No different than Vietnam except a lot more soldiers then.

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