Saturday, July 30, 2011

Update on Tale of Two Veterans

We received the following information by email from "Our Veteran", the Veteran whose claim file had been security sealed for 8 years without his knowledge.

We thought you readers should know what happened. Our Veteran wrote:

"I sent your blog to our Congressman, and 4 people from his office in DC, including his Chief of Staff, in response to our action, drove directly today [Friday] to the VA building in DC, stood in front of a high person's desk, and said, "How long do you think it will take to rate this terminal vet's claim?", showing them a doctor's letter and other items from June 20, 2003.

"The VA bigwig was indeed able to open the file!! The bigwig, eyes bugged out, said, "Can you give us two weeks?" And there WERE timely claims and appeals in 'Our Veteran's' file, after all. Imagine that! Hmm.

"The pen is mightier than the sword -- sometimes."

Sometimes it is. But in this case it is the 'sword' that was wielded by Our Veteran's Congressman's office. Here's hoping the DVA does the right thing and give's this Veteran back his life.

Over the past 8 years, they have lost almost everything they own spending their money on medical bills trying to keep Our Veteran alive.

They deserve better. So do all our Veterans. So does our Country.

VNVets

”It is a stain on this nation's honor that the Department of Veterans Affairs has become a deadlier and more difficult adversary to the American veteran than any they have ever faced on a battlefield."-- VNVets

"The concept that Agent Orange, and its effects, stopped dead in its tracks at the shoreline is simply too illogical, and too ludicrous to accept. What does that say about the Obama Administration and his Department of Veterans Affairs?"--VNVets

"With malice toward none; with charity for all; with firmness in the right, as God gives us to see the right, let us strive on to finish the work we are in; to bind up the nation's wounds; to care for him who shall have borne the battle, and for his widow, and his orphan--to do all which may achieve and cherish a just and lasting peace, among ourselves, and with all nations." --President Abraham Lincoln

"It follows then as certain as that night succeeds the day, that without a decisive naval force we can do nothing definitive, and with it, everything honorable and glorious."--President George Washington

Copyright © 2005-2011: VNVets Blog -- Now in our Seventh Year of Service to Veterans; All Rights Reserved. Reprinting or copying of the contents of this blog without the express permission of the author is unlawful.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

A Tale of Two Veterans

We have two stories about Veterans that will be of interest to many. We believe neither is fictional. We believe both are true accounts. One story is from a Veteran who works in a VA Regional Office [RO], and has written to us about the anti-Veteran mindset of lower level management and as a result, some raters in the Department of Veterans Affairs [DVA] claims system. The other is a Blue Water Navy Veteran, whose experience is from the other side of the desk.

We will keep both of these folks anonymous to protect them, one because his job is on the line and the other because his claim is currently pending. Yes, folks, there is a real threat to both of them from the DVA.

Our Blue Water Navy Veteran has been chasing his claim for years - since 2003. He and his wife are near destitute from paying medical bills that should have been covered long ago by the DVA Compensation system. But like most Blue Water Navy Veterans, the rejections keep coming, and appeals don't go anywhere, and the claims keep getting re-filed.

On a recent visit to the Regional Office he made a request to see his file. After filling out the papers he waited two hours until he was called back. The VA Claims person stated he could not open the file. It was labeled "Sensitive Level Seven". He was asked if had ever worked for the DVA. The answer was no, never. The Claims person said that was the only reason a file would be labeled "Sensitive Level Seven", and that he was not cleared to open it. Apparently a "Sensitive level Seven" indicates a person employed by the DVA, locked tight to protect the privacy of the employee. Our Veteran never worked for the DVA.

A search was made for someone with the clearance to open the file. Again he was asked if he had ever worked for the DVA. Again the answer was no. When that person opened the file, our Veteran was informed there were no open claims in it, all had been denied. The file was never opened the entire time it went through the claim process, because no one had authority to open the file, it was simply denied repeatedly. That went all the way to the United States Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims, for which our Veteran had to hire an attorney. Further, they were told:

“all the claims had expired. You have no claim pending with the VA at all, there was no action on the claims, no appeals, nothing” [‘despite there BEING action on every file, every claim, every appeal, every request for records, etc’]”….any claims person at the VA could ‘Classify’ a file as such” [sending it to la-la land’] “…it took someone in Washington with the clearance to conduct a review, and IF agreed, then to remove it…call Washington to get it removed…"

Our Veteran was never told who to speak to in Washington.

A quick call to the attorney and a suit was immediately filed against the DVA.

All of you with denied claims should check to see if your claim file is closed and labeled with a security level. It may be one easy way for the DVA to simply "deny, deny and wait for them to die."

Our other Veteran is an employee in a Regional Office. He has worked claims, and reviewed claims. His story is one of frustration with his peers, his managers, and what he calls "the culture of the DVA".

In his letter, he tells of claims handlers who purposefully rate claims low, for example, rating a PTSD claim at 50% when it clearly met the 70-100% level. Others find reason after reason, legitimate or not, to deny Veterans claims.

He writes:

"When the Secretary came out last year and told us that VA was going to be advocates for veterans, not adversaries, I was told to disregard that, it will never happen. The Secretary said that he was going to change the culture of VA. So far I have seen not one scintilla of evidence that anything has been done to change the culture - at least not among those who rate disability claims. All of the energy is directed at getting rating decisions done - the numbers. There is no effort to make sure claims are fairly rated - just that they are done correctly - i.e., don't miss any issues, don't forget to dot the "i's" and cross the "t's"."

He also reports on a general attitude of disgust for those Veterans filing claims for PTSD. He writes that the DVA needs to address that issue because it is "...causing ratings to be woefully diminished or denied and were creating an atmosphere of tolerance and acceptance of such attitudes..."

He writes:

"The prevailing attitude is still, if there is anything there that can be used to deny or diminish a rating, that's what is done. Our training to "grant if you can, deny only if you must" is just lip service. There is no reality in that at all. Raters know that the best way to avoid errors on quality review is to lowball ratings or deny claims. Period...So, what is a veteran to do with this kind of stuff going on?...I'm still waiting for the Secretary and VA to address the issue of culture change within the VA. The primary focus, in my humble opinion, on culture change, has to start on the rating teams if anything positive for veterans is ever to be accomplished. I'm not optimistic at all."

We were neither shocked nor surprised at what we read from this person. If you work with Veterans long enough you get to hear lots of stories, some horror stories, some not.

What we get from this, and from our second Veteran's letter is that there are some ROs where the anti-Veteran bias glares as bright as the sun, ruining the lives of many of the Veterans caught in its glare. Apparently, our DVA employee/Veteran is working in such. And that is a shame. Here we have a Veteran trying to work the system properly and he is forced to do so in an environment that is the antithesis of positive help for Veterans. [And can you imagine what it is like for that worker?]

We get email from DVA workers from ROs around the country asking for advice or clarification on things, and we have worked directly on occasion with some very positive claims personnel, who truly are trying to help their Veteran claimants. One even made the point that there were many "good" workers out there who genuinely cared about the Veterans and did what they could to help them. We agree. Unfortunately, there are not nearly enough to make the horror stories that Veterans have about their experiences with the DVA claim system the exception and not the rule.

We've mentioned before that if two Veterans with identical backgrounds and identical health profiles apply for benefits in two different ROs, one will likely be denied, the other will likely be approved. There is no consistency. There is no standardized training. And there is obviously no legitimate review of anyone's work being done above low level management.

We like the current Secretary. We would love to see him succeed at his attempts to improve the DVA. We wish we could help. But apparently his underlings have him walled off, and THEY make the policy decisions. What a sham, and what a shame.

We hope to follow up on these stories sometime in the near future.

Stay tuned...as Bette Davis once said on the silver screen, "Fasten your seat belts. It's going to be a bumpy night!"


VNVets

”It is a stain on this nation's honor that the Department of Veterans Affairs has become a deadlier and more difficult adversary to the American veteran than any they have ever faced on a battlefield."-- VNVets

"The concept that Agent Orange, and its effects, stopped dead in its tracks at the shoreline is simply too illogical, and too ludicrous to accept. What does that say about the Obama Administration and his Department of Veterans Affairs?"--VNVets

"With malice toward none; with charity for all; with firmness in the right, as God gives us to see the right, let us strive on to finish the work we are in; to bind up the nation's wounds; to care for him who shall have borne the battle, and for his widow, and his orphan--to do all which may achieve and cherish a just and lasting peace, among ourselves, and with all nations." --President Abraham Lincoln

"It follows then as certain as that night succeeds the day, that without a decisive naval force we can do nothing definitive, and with it, everything honorable and glorious."--President George Washington

Copyright © 2005-2011: VNVets Blog -- Now in our Seventh Year of Service to Veterans; All Rights Reserved. Reprinting or copying of the contents of this blog without the express permission of the author is unlawful.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Veterans and the Debt Limit

Just a short note to let you all know that we are hearing from the Veterans Service Organizations that they are working directly with the Administration and with Congress to guard the US Military and the US Veterans and the dependents of both from budgetary reductions.

VVA passed along a note to some of its members, but not posted on its website as of 10 AM today, that contains the following message:

"Vietnam Veterans of America (VVA) was one of the key veterans and military organizations present at a briefing at the White House late Tuesday regarding the potential impacts if the nation defaults on its loans on August 2. The debt ceiling must be raised by next Tuesday to prevent the United States from defaulting on its obligations. While senior Presidential advisors neither endorsed nor opposed any of the competing plans put forth by Democrats and Republicans, they did stress the President's continuing strong commitment to active-duty military, veterans, and our families."
VFW also sent out a release today about yesterday's White House Meeting. Mr. Fred Burns, the VFW Washington Office Director of Administration and Operations was at this meeting, and had this exchange with the Administration officials:

"During the question and answer period, Mr. Burns asked if the President's strong commitment to veterans and military families remains the same. Mr. Carson answered with a resounding 'Yes'!"
Additionally, the VFW made this statement in its press release:

"The VFW maintains its position to not agree to any Administration or Congressional proposal to deny or limit any health care program or benefit to eligible veterans, or to increase fees on any eligible veterans, service members, their families or survivors."
Now, if only Congress would hold to these promises...

Stay tuned folks.

VNVets

”It is a stain on this nation's honor that the Department of Veterans Affairs has become a deadlier and more difficult adversary to the American veteran than any they have ever faced on a battlefield."-- VNVets

"The concept that Agent Orange, and its effects, stopped dead in its tracks at the shoreline is simply too illogical, and too ludicrous to accept. What does that say about the Obama Administration and his Department of Veterans Affairs?"--VNVets

"With malice toward none; with charity for all; with firmness in the right, as God gives us to see the right, let us strive on to finish the work we are in; to bind up the nation's wounds; to care for him who shall have borne the battle, and for his widow, and his orphan--to do all which may achieve and cherish a just and lasting peace, among ourselves, and with all nations." --President Abraham Lincoln

"It follows then as certain as that night succeeds the day, that without a decisive naval force we can do nothing definitive, and with it, everything honorable and glorious."--President George Washington

Copyright © 2005-2011: VNVets Blog -- Now in our Seventh Year of Service to Veterans; All Rights Reserved. Reprinting or copying of the contents of this blog without the express permission of the author is unlawful.

Monday, July 25, 2011

A Veteran's Worst Enemy...Part Two

We don’t usually go public with things like this, but one of my comments raised the ire of some folks in one of the national Veterans Service Organizations, sparking some inquiries, and a slam by email. So, for once, we will offer this explanation of our comment. Please bear with us.

Most Veterans belong to one or more of the national Veterans Service Organizations, such as the American Legion, with over 3 million members, the Veterans of Foreign Wars with almost a million and a half members, and others such as the Fleet Reserve Association, AMVETS, Disabled American Veterans, Veterans of Modern Warfare, and Vietnam Veterans of America.

Veterans have come to rely on these organizations for many reasons, including providing Service Officers to help with filing claims at the VA, and operating local Chapters or Posts, and the social clubs that usually go with them. Veterans also rely on these organizations as their voice in Washington -- not just their voice, but their eyes and ears as well, to keep an eye peeled on Congress, the President and his Cabinet, and even the Courts for decisions and actions that would impact Veterans. It is an enormous and daunting task. And Veterans should be grateful for these fine organizations, and the work they do on their behalf.

Veterans Service Organizations generally have an "umbrella" spread over the particular group of Veterans they serve. Obviously, the largest is the American Legion, which serves ALL Veterans. The VFW serves those who served overseas in combat or combat support roles, in combat theaters or areas supporting combat operations. Smaller segments of the Veteran population are served by some of the other groups, like the Fleet Reserve Association which serves Naval Personnel, and the VVA, which serves the Vietnam Veterans.

Last week Senator Coburn, R-OK, introduced an amendment to the Military Construction/Veterans Affairs Act, which sets up funding for 2012. The Amendment would have changed how Agent Orange claims were dealt with by the DVA, by requiring the establishment of "a causal relationship" between the Veteran's disease and their exposure to dioxin-related herbicides. This would have essentially ended Agent Orange benefits.

Our inbox was hit immediately with two alerts, one from VFW, one from FRA. We immediately posted here asking all Veterans to go to the CapWiz page hosted by FRA to automatically send a letter of objection to both their Senators. FRA makes it very easy to do this.

We also wondered, since Agent Orange and other dioxin-containing herbicides is strictly a Vietnam War problem, where was VVA?

As it turns out, we received a rather nasty email from one of the high muckety-mucks at VVA, informing us that VVA was the organization that caught this move of Senator Coburn’s, and didn't we know that VVA had been the entity to notify FRA and VFW?

Ummm…how in the world would we know that?

Well, let's see...we heard from FRA, VFW, American Legion, but not...VVA. Not even the second day when further emails from the VFW and FRA, and the American Legion announced the success of the effort to hammer the Senate grass roots style, and get the motion tabled...thank you Senator Murray!

So when we posted the thank you to all for their efforts, we included a question about the VVA being absent from the effort to reach out directly to Veterans to help with the effort. That generated a rather gratuitous slam by the VVA official, and upset some VVA folks.

Today we received the VVA's Web Weekly, which, among other things, recounted the events surrounding Senator Coburn's amendment.

The VVA's public thank you to its own Veterans waited until today.

The appearance is that VVA relied on other groups to reach out to Veterans, including those under their own umbrella, apparently eschewing a special edition of their VVA's Web Weekly email system to go directly to their constituency. We have to ask: Why? Why take the chance of missing someone? Certainly, VVA has some members who do not belong to any other Veterans Organizations. Unless those members are tuned in elsewhere, which in our experience is highly unlikely, they will have gone through the whole event without hearing word one about it before today, IF they get the VVA's Web Weekly [which is sent out about three times per month, rather than on a weekly basis].

We work hard on this blog, and on the group we formed here three years ago, the Veterans Association of Sailors of the Vietnam War. We pride ourselves on getting the word out when things happen, as quickly as possible after we hear it and confirm it. We also provide help in understanding what is happening. Compared to the national Veterans Service Organizations, this blog, and the VASVW Forums reach less than a thousand persons. We do our part, but we’re small. So when we see one of the biggies dropping the ball when it comes to keeping their people informed, and involved, we'll point that out.

We have a great working relationship with FRA, VFW, and American Legion. We've reached out several times to VVA, and have been largely ignored, shunned even...a sad way for the umbrella organization to treat an organized, specific segment of their own constituents.

Our “shot” was not fired at the membership of VVA. It was fired at the organization’s administrative team for dropping the ball by not communicating to its own Veterans.

We enjoy life membership in the VVA...and the American Legion, VFW, FRA, AMVETS, DAV, and more than a few other national Veterans Service Organizations. One of our best friends, another VVA member, repeatedly reminds us that, "A Veterans worst enemy is another Veteran," a sentiment many members of the VVA will recognize when they read it. How unfortunate it is that Veterans have enemies among their own peers, for only the Veterans lose as a result.

VNVets

”It is a stain on this nation's honor that the Department of Veterans Affairs has become a deadlier and more difficult adversary to the American veteran than any they have ever faced on a battlefield."-- VNVets

"The concept that Agent Orange, and its effects, stopped dead in its tracks at the shoreline is simply too illogical, and too ludicrous to accept. What does that say about the Obama Administration and his Department of Veterans Affairs?"--VNVets

"With malice toward none; with charity for all; with firmness in the right, as God gives us to see the right, let us strive on to finish the work we are in; to bind up the nation's wounds; to care for him who shall have borne the battle, and for his widow, and his orphan--to do all which may achieve and cherish a just and lasting peace, among ourselves, and with all nations." --President Abraham Lincoln

"It follows then as certain as that night succeeds the day, that without a decisive naval force we can do nothing definitive, and with it, everything honorable and glorious."--President George Washington

Copyright © 2005-2011: VNVets Blog -- Now in our Seventh Year of Service to Veterans; All Rights Reserved. Reprinting or copying of the contents of this blog without the express permission of the author is unlawful.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Great Work! Success in the Senate!

Many thanks to all who contacted their Senators over the past 48 hours. There was success garnered from that effort, led by our friends at the Fleet Reserve Association and the Veterans of Foreign Wars [Where, oh where, was VVA on this?].

Yesterday, a motion to table the amendment won in the Senate 69-30 with one member not voting.

Go to this Senate Roll-Call page to see who voted for the motion to table and who voted against it. Keep that in mind come election time.

In the meantime, work on those Senators who voted against the motion to table. They must be educated. Call, write, fax. Get to them and let them know what they did wrong and why, and warn them they need to show a different side to get reelected.

Tabled means the bill is effectively dead...for the moment. A motion to pick it up can be passed at any time. That would be unusual, but not unheard of. So be vigilant. Keep those old Mark I A1 eyeballs peeled back for this one, or others like it.

Great work folks! Bravo Zulu!

VNVets

”It is a stain on this nation's honor that the Department of Veterans Affairs has become a deadlier and more difficult adversary to the American veteran than any they have ever faced on a battlefield."-- VNVets

"The concept that Agent Orange, and its effects, stopped dead in its tracks at the shoreline is simply too illogical, and too ludicrous to accept. What does that say about the Obama Administration and his Department of Veterans Affairs?"--VNVets

"With malice toward none; with charity for all; with firmness in the right, as God gives us to see the right, let us strive on to finish the work we are in; to bind up the nation's wounds; to care for him who shall have borne the battle, and for his widow, and his orphan--to do all which may achieve and cherish a just and lasting peace, among ourselves, and with all nations." --President Abraham Lincoln

"It follows then as certain as that night succeeds the day, that without a decisive naval force we can do nothing definitive, and with it, everything honorable and glorious."--President George Washington

Copyright © 2005-2011: VNVets Blog -- Now in our Seventh Year of Service to Veterans; All Rights Reserved. Reprinting or copying of the contents of this blog without the express permission of the author is unlawful.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Emergency Action Required: Oppose HR 2055 Amendment 564!!!

FRA has issued the following alert [and VFW has also]:

Oppose Amendment to MilCon/VA Spending Bill (HR 2055)

Senator Coburn (Ok.) has filed an amendment (#564) to the Military Construction/ Veterans Affairs Appropriations bill (HR 2055) that will require a "causal relationship" for presumption for service connection for diseases associated with Agent Orange exposure that will significantly restrict benefits to Vietnam veterans. Vietnam veterans are presumed to be exposed to Agent Orange if they have certain conditions or diseases after the VA determines that a positive association exists between the exposure and the occurrence of the disease. Congress chose this mechanism because it is nearly impossible for Vietnam veterans to prove that exposure to Agent Orange caused their disease. Requiring a "causal relationship" would essentially mean that VA benefits for Agent Orange exposure would be out of reach for many Vietnam veterans that were exposed to the Agent Orange herbicide. Please use the FRA Action Center to ask your Senators to vote NO on this floor amendment # 564 for HR 2055.

Here is the link to the FRA's Action Center



Please lodge your opposition immediately!

This is hideous.

VNVets

”It is a stain on this nation's honor that the Department of Veterans Affairs has become a deadlier and more difficult adversary to the American veteran than any they have ever faced on a battlefield."-- VNVets

"The concept that Agent Orange, and its effects, stopped dead in its tracks at the shoreline is simply too illogical, and too ludicrous to accept. What does that say about the Obama Administration and his Department of Veterans Affairs?"--VNVets

"With malice toward none; with charity for all; with firmness in the right, as God gives us to see the right, let us strive on to finish the work we are in; to bind up the nation's wounds; to care for him who shall have borne the battle, and for his widow, and his orphan--to do all which may achieve and cherish a just and lasting peace, among ourselves, and with all nations." --President Abraham Lincoln

"It follows then as certain as that night succeeds the day, that without a decisive naval force we can do nothing definitive, and with it, everything honorable and glorious."--President George Washington

Copyright © 2005-2011: VNVets Blog -- Now in our Seventh Year of Service to Veterans; All Rights Reserved. Reprinting or copying of the contents of this blog without the express permission of the author is unlawful.

Friday, July 01, 2011

An Editorial from Veterans-For-Change Founder Jim Davis

The following is the lead editorial in the weekly Veterans-For-Change newsletter that arrived in my mailbox on July 1. We think it is important that you read this. 

It is hereby reproduced with the permission of the author, Jim Davis:

-----------------------------------------------------------------

This-N-That

Over this past week I’m sure many of you have seen where there was a VAIG Report released showing some 280+ cases of sexual assault in VA Clinics and facilities nationwide.

These are only the cases reported, and most sexual assaults go unreported, but what has or will the VA do?

I’ve looked, searched, made calls and asked questions, but there seems to be no charges are being filed against any of these individuals, why? Is this the same type of government cover-up we’re all accustomed to?

Then we have the Houston National Cemetery who has just popped into the spotlight the last few days and their Director who seems to have an agenda of her own on banning the following:

· VA Forbids Mention of God at Funerals for Veterans and Requires Families to Submit Prayer for Approval to the Government

· VA instructs the VFW and a Private Funeral Home that they may not present the option of prayer to families

· VA Tells Volunteers to Remove "God Bless" from Condolence Cards to Grieving Families

· VA Closes Cemetery Chapel; Uses it for Storage

How is this honoring those who served this great nation of ours and given their lives in service to our country? Where is the Veteran Community outrage?

You served your country with dignity, honor and pride, you’ve earned your benefits, care and a final resting place, but we continually allow Congress, the DoD and the VA to treat Veterans worse than second class citizens.

To continually deny you benefits and medical care or to slowly strip you of earned benefits and care, hike the Tricare premiums, yet we can send billions of dollars in aid to foreign countries who for the most part are against the United States.

We have over 100,000 homeless Veterans across the country, and I’m sure you’ve seen where the ACLU has filed a class action lawsuit again the West Los Angeles VA for not providing the care, benefits and housing for the homeless Veterans.

There are at least 12 buildings that have sat vacant for more than 25 years on VA Land, they’ve known of the homeless situation there for decades and chose to ignore it! Why? Did they think it would go away all on its own? It won’t!

Now they have a “Master Plan”, but the problem is it only involves one building, but no way to fund the renovation to make it useable for Homeless Veterans which means they have no plan at all, yet Secretary Shinseki has vowed to end homelessness among Veterans by 2015. I wonder how he plans this grand plan if VAMC’s are allowed to lease out land to private entities and elitists.

Veterans-For-Change brought on a whole new program in September 2010 called the Homeless Heroes Project. With that came the Homeless Backpack program which was launched in December 2010 with 100 backpacks being distributed.

This year the goal is 300+ which would cover both Los Angeles and Orange Counties and our major sponsor this year is Southern California Gas Company and a strong supporter, the Garden Grove Police Department. And just in the past few days the Long Beach Health and Human Services has pledged to come on board with distribution through their homeless outreach program.

I’ve personally sent out many letters to local VFW Posts and American Legion Posts in Garden Grove, Anaheim, Buena Park, Santa Ana, Orange, Westminster, Midway City and am waiting to hear back from these various posts.

So as we say in all our newsletters, “If Veterans don’t help Veterans, who will?”

All across the country thousands of Veterans are either on the verge of ending up on the street or are there now and through no fault of their own. So, if we can’t help them who will?

I was told by one Veteran I was working with that I had provided local resources to with telephone numbers and when I checked with that Veteran a few days later I was told one of our Nationally Chartered Veteran Service Organizations said he didn’t qualify.

A single parent with three children living with him on the verge of losing everything and excuse me, he didn’t qualify?

So again I ask, if Veterans can’t help Veterans, who will?

My best regard and respect to you all, and thank you for your service to our Country!

Jim Davis

Founder & CEO
Veterans-For-Change

-----------------------------------------------------

Thank you Jim. As usual, a fine job of identifying the problems and clarifying the issues.

Please visit Veterans-For-Change at:

http://groups.yahoo.com/group/VETERANS-FOR-CHANGE/

A worthy group for any and all Veterans to join and support.

VNVets

”It is a stain on this nation's honor that the Department of Veterans Affairs has become a deadlier and more difficult adversary to the American veteran than any they have ever faced on a battlefield."-- VNVets

"The concept that Agent Orange, and its effects, stopped dead in its tracks at the shoreline is simply too illogical, and too ludicrous to accept. What does that say about the Obama Administration and his Department of Veterans Affairs?"--VNVets

"With malice toward none; with charity for all; with firmness in the right, as God gives us to see the right, let us strive on to finish the work we are in; to bind up the nation's wounds; to care for him who shall have borne the battle, and for his widow, and his orphan--to do all which may achieve and cherish a just and lasting peace, among ourselves, and with all nations." --President Abraham Lincoln

"It follows then as certain as that night succeeds the day, that without a decisive naval force we can do nothing definitive, and with it, everything honorable and glorious."--President George Washington

Copyright © 2005-2011: VNVets Blog -- Now in our Seventh Year of Service to Veterans; All Rights Reserved. Reprinting or copying of the contents of this blog without the express permission of the author is unlawful.