“Tragically, our brave U.S. soldiers aren’t just dying on the battlefield. Roughly 22 veterans commit suicide every day, a rate even higher than previous estimates, according to a report released by the Department of Veterans Affairs recently.
The Huffington Post provides this devastating infographic that brings the military suicide epidemic into focus:
Memorial Day commemorates the U.S. solders who lost their lives in service. It’s also a time to recognize a growing but less visible group of fallen solders who chose to end their own lives while serving or after returning from war.
There are about 22 veteran suicides each day, a rate higher than previous estimates, based on a report released by the Department of Veterans Affairs earlier this year. Many veterans who take their own lives are over 50, but the hundreds of thousands of veterans returning from Iraq and Afghanistan also struggle to adjust to civilian life while dealing with the mental and physical effects of war on top of a weak job market.
Adam Legg, a 30-year-old Naval veteran, found that he couldn’t even get a job at McDonald’s after returning from tours in Iraq and Afghanistan in 2009, according to ABC News.
“When you feel like you can’t take care of your family, feed them, shelter them, it’s a very, very dark place. A feeling of uselessness that maybe they would be better off if you’re not around,” Legg told ABC.
Some troops don’t make it home before taking their own lives. Military suicides reached a record high of 349 in 2012, and former Defense Secretary Leon Panetta has described the situation as an epidemic.”
WHY? You may ask?
Let me count just a few of the ways this administration has disrespected the military and crippled them at the same time.
A US Marine holds an umbrella for US President Barack Obama during a brief rain shower as he hold a joint press conference with Turkish Prime Minister Recep Erdogan in the Rose Garden of the White House in Washington, DC, May 16, 2013. (Photo: SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images)
While male Marines are generally considered “out of uniform” if they carry an umbrella, at the request of the CIC, it is not an infringement of the Marine code. Yet, to my mind, it is an infringement on their honor to be asked to do something so demeaning and silly.
There’s the mess at the VA:
Lawmakers make pre-Memorial Day calls to fix vet claims backlog
“In a pre-Memorial Day push to show their concern about the backlog of veterans’ disability claims, House Republicans are calling for an independent task force to recommend a solution while House Democrats pushed the idea of providing temporary benefits to anyone whose claim has been pending before the Veterans Affairs Department for more than 125 days.
Neither idea will become law by Memorial Day, but both are signs that lawmakers share many veterans’ concerns that the mountain of compensation claims is not going away any time soon.
Reps. Jeff Miller, R-Fla., the House Veterans’ Affairs Committee chairman, and Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., introduced a bill Thursday creating a 15-member commission or task force to evaluate the claims process.” READ MORE
Obama refocuses terror threat to pre-9/11 level
“Some call it wishful thinking, but President Barack Obama has all but declared an end to the global war on terror.
Obama is not claiming final victory over extremists who still seek to kill Americans and other Westerners. Instead, he is refocusing the long struggle against terrorism that lies ahead, steering the United States away from what he calls an equally frightening threat – a country in a state of perpetual war. In doing so, Obama recasts the image of the terrorists themselves, from enemy warriors to cowardly thugs and resets the relationship between the U.S. and Islam.
His speech Thursday was designed to move America’s mindset away from a war footing and refine and recalibrate his own counterterrorism strategy. Obama asserted that al-Qaida is “on the path to defeat,” reducing the scale of terrorism to pre-Sept. 11 levels. That means that with the Afghanistan war winding down, Obama is unlikely to commit troops in large numbers to any conflict – in Syria or other countries struggling with instability in the uncertain aftermath of the Arab Spring – unless, as his critics fear, he tragically has underestimated al-Qaida’s staying power.”
Obama forgot to salute: Barack Obama shakes Marine’s hand, makes jokes instead?
“President Barack Obama forgot protocol while boarding Marine One en route to Annapolis, Maryland, CNN reported on Friday.
“Obama did not salute the Marine standing at the bottom of the helicopter while boarding. Upon realizing the faux pas, the president jogged back down to shake hands with the Marine and spoke privately with him before entering the helicopter again.”
The Profound Moral Failure of Benghazi
These men follow a creed – I will never leave a fallen comrade to fall into the hands of the enemy. Sadly, we now know from the hearings and whistleblower Deputy Ambassador Gregory Hicks, that is exactly what happened to Ambassador Stevens’ body as it was carried away by Libyan militants to a hospital controlled by those who carried out the attacks. Do you know how infuriated and hot that gets the Special Forces community? Men who have sworn to never leave a fallen comrade behind were forced to do just that by the military leaders they trust their lives to. To them it is the ultimate dishonoring of all they stand for. And it came from their own Commander in Chief.
Clearly, this President is generally unfamiliar and unconcerned with the lifestyle and care of our Military members. From cutting their benefits to cutting numbers, this administration proves its disrespect for the military. They spin it as a “Military slimdown“, but what it means is – those willing to put their lives on the line so that the rest of us can continue to “not be bothered” with the evils of Islam and other misc unrest, continue to pay for the GOVERNMENT’s unwillingness to cut senseless over-spending – like sending huge sums of money to our enemies!) Meanwhile, Benghazi’s HUGE change in the “No Man Left Behind” policy, pulls the rug out from under those willing to serve. While DADT served to keep sexuality under the radar in the Military, that, too, is now gone, and leaders have their hands full trying to maintain discipline while also walking to political correctness tightrope. Is it any wonder, these honorable men and women suffer far beyond those who came before them. The Foundation of our Nation is crumbling out from under them.
President Obama will say and do anything … ANYTHING to maintain his uniquely detached stance while America burns, including destroy the military, if he can, from within. There was a day that discipline meant everything in the military, but in today’s military, politics & political correctness rule, and, as always, it’s the SOLDIERS that pay.