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Memorial Day Shocker: How The U.S. Government Really Handles Veterans Benefits – Deny, Deny, Deny Until They Die

One of the ways that you can judge the character of a nation is by how they care for their military veterans.  On this Memorial Day, we remember those who have fought and died defending the American Dream, but this should also be a day when we check and make certain that those who have served this country so bravely are being taken care of.  Unfortunately, a cold, hard examination of the facts reveals that the U.S. government is doing a horrific job of caring for our military veterans.  U.S. government officials seem to be able to do a great job of laying wreaths and holding ceremonies, but when it comes to actually getting military veterans the care and benefits that they desperately need, the attitude seems to be “deny, deny, deny until they die”.   

The truth is that we have made it extremely difficult for our military veterans to claim the benefits that we have promised them.  Vets have to fill out an absurdly complicated 23 page application and if they make even one small mistake their applications can be stonewalled for years.  The U.S. Veterans Administration actually has a policy under which they pay large bonuses to employees that meet certain application processing goals.  This explains why approximately 70% of the claims submitted to the Veterans Administration are refused or sent back to be redone.  In fact, using the Freedom of Information Act, one local NBC station was able to learn that $250,000 was paid in bonuses to VA employees who work inside the Poff Federal Building in Roanoke, Virginia in just one year alone. 

Not only that, but a report issued by the VA’s Office of Inspector General said the department issued millions of dollars in performance awards to employees nationwide over a two year period in 2007 and 2008.

According to CNN, one retired VA official was singled out for improperly approving a very large number of bonuses and the report said that she “acted as if she was given a blank checkbook to write unlimited monetary awards.”

Yes, you read all of that correctly.

We actually pay government employees huge bonuses for turning down the benefits applications of our military veterans.

Does that sound like America to you?

The reality is that the level of negligence at some VA offices can be absolutely shocking….

Back in 2009, a VA office in Detroit turned in 16,000 unprocessed mail and 717 unprocessed documents that were stuck in storage and hadn’t even been looked at. Many other documents were found in shredding bins, not just in one office but in several regional offices.

Things have gotten so bad that even 60 Minutes has done a report on the horrific treatment our veterans are receiving at the hands of the VA….

200,000 backlogged appeals?

Yes, you heard the video correctly.

But that 200,000 figure is just for backlogged appeals.

There are many more veterans who have been waiting months or even years for the VA to review their cases for the first time.

The following is a list of facts about the treatment of our veterans from the Veterans Services Transparency website….

•1,000,000 veterans, are currently waiting for the VA to review their cases, many have been waiting for years. And would you believe it, the VA is still telling many of them that “their records have been lost.” (Source of numbers: Veteran Affairs web-site)

•400,304 (42%) of the veterans returning from Gulf War II have symptoms of Gulf War illness and have asked the VA for help. By the VA’s own records, over 178,000 (45%) of these soldiers have possible mental disorders (including PTSD and Traumatic Brain Damage). (Source of numbers; Analysis of VA Health Care Utilization Among US Global War on Terrorism (GWOT) Veterans, January 2009, pages 7, 11)

•58% of the Gulf War II veterans are between the ages of 18 – 29. These young adults are not being told when they enlist that there is a greater than 40% chance their future will be destroyed or severely altered by Gulf War illness. (Source: January 2009 report – Veteran’s Affairs)

•Of 133,057 potentially eligible disabled retirees, 28,283 were denied retroactive pay awards and 8,763 died waiting for their cases to be heard. (Source: Congressional Report reported in the ArmyTimes on July 21, 2008)

•Since 2001 there have been over 575,000 cases of Gulf War illness and no documented cases of recovery. But there have been at least 6,500 documented deaths.

•175,000 Gulf War I veterans with serious and persistent health problems, Gulf War illness, have been waiting over 17 years for assistance from the VA. During this period the VA has denied applications over and over again, shredded records, hid unopened claims in storage, and actually altered original documents to fit the program of denial designed by the VA leadership. (Source of numbers: Page 17 – Gulf War Illness and Health of Gulf War Veterans – Research Advisory Committee on Gulf War Veterans’ Illnesses)

It kind of makes you want to run out and sign up for the military, eh?

These young men and women have fought and have sacrificed for us.

Now they are being pushed aside like so much refuse.

But even the care that the VA does provide to our veterans is often so poor that it makes headline news. 

Some time ago, ABC News did an investigation of VA hospital conditions across the United States.  The following is a list of just some of the things that they found during the course of their investigation…..

*Bathrooms filthy with what appeared to be human excrement

*Dirty linens from some patients mixed in with clean supplies

*Examining tables that had dried blood and medications still on them

*Equipment used to sterilize surgical instruments that had broken down

*Some patients were forced to beg for food and water

*Veterans that were neglected so badly that they developed horrific bedsores and dangerous infections

But those are the vets that were able to get care.

Many others are still waiting.

ABC News found that getting a first appointment at a VA hospital can take months and months…..

Veterans who responded to a survey by the American Legion in 2003 said it took an average of seven months to get a first appointment at a VA hospital. In some hospitals, patients have waited as long as two years.

So should we be proud of all this?

Should we applaud the U.S. government on this Memorial Day for taking such great care of our veterans?

No, the truth is that we should all be ashamed at how our veterans are being treated.

But like so many other things involving the U.S. government, nothing is likely to change any time soon.

Once Memorial Day has passed, and all the wreaths have been laid, hundreds of thousands of disabled vets will continue to have their applications denied and the care that they so desperately need withheld from them.

The Beginning Of The End - The New Novel About The Future Of America By Michael T. Snyder
  • Greg

    Would it make sense for our government to treat them properly in the VA after the entire process they put soldiers through in the military? Consider:
    They are considered human garbage and pawns for the elite – read Kissinger’s quotes
    They are sent to kill innocent people all over the world
    They are injected with anything that our government wishes to inject them with
    They are exposed to depleted uranium
    And in the very near future, they will be inundated with open flamers and most likely prosecuted if they resist or oppose the perverts!

    This nation is sooooo doomed. Gary, not even a Socialist government could save us now (that’s sarcasm).

  • Tim Murray

    It’s absolutely outrageous. I see these young men and women on television who have returned from combat and who are missing limbs, have severe facial deformities or are so traumatized from war that they can’t function in society, and I am outraged. It’s bad enough that we illegaly invaded the nations of Iraq and Afghanistan, destroying those nations and killing untold numbers of Iraqi and Afghan civilians. Many thousands of American soldiers have been crippled, and many of them are denied the care they need. Many veterans are homeless or have committed suicide. This is just one of many reasons that this nation’s days are numbered.

  • Gary

    If we simply had single payer health care(socialism) this would be a non issue. I never hear of vets in other social democracy countries having these issues. Could it be the curse of capitalism doing this? There is no profit in treating returning vets. Of course the bigger issue is that we should not be fighting these wars especially Iraq just so Bushes daddy could try to regain his pride. Greg you are so right about pawns of the elite and all that. Now if we can get you to see the wisdom in socialism…

    Did you know that Jesus was socialist? Lots of bible verses saying to help your neighbor etc.

  • Gary

    I think that on this Memorial Day we owe our vets an apology. An apology that they risked all for a country where 50% of the children need food stamps to eat. A country where in one weekend the money can be gotten to bail out billionaires but we can’t provide health care for all. A county where the richest 1101 people have more wealth and income that the bottom 290 million. A country where the best predictor of a child’s success is who their parents are. A country that lets greedy corporations and CEO’s export our good paying jobs so that now the fastest growing jobs are janitors, waitresses, and retail services that pay poverty wages. A country that is run by corporations where profits matter more than people. For this mess we call a country we owe our brave vets a big apology.

  • Greg

    Gary – you and I are on the same page in some respects and not in others. We agree that there are despicable things going on in this nation and greedy, immoral people have devastated our economy and the lives of millions. What we disagree on is the idea that there is hope in ANY form of government. This is a bigger topic, but America was destined to rise and then to be destroyed so we are fulfilling our destiny and no government change is going to stop the disaster that is happening. Our “leaders” are virtually all following the commands of the true power brokers and we, the sheeple, are merely led to believe that we can be saved by changing the cast when there really is no difference. We have to accept the fact that NO politician cares about us, yet we still want to believe in the myth of a caring, benevolent master that can govern and take care of us. Your hope in the myth that anyone will change our course merely causes you to falsely believe that our course might actually change.

    Regarding the vets, I find it impossible to believe that there will be any improvement in their care because soldiers are recruited and used as cannon fodder for no other purpose than to advance the New World Order. It is quite sad that we have so many great people who have believed they were fighting and dying for a just cause when in reality they were simply meat to fulfill the agenda of the NWO monsters. It is not realistic to think that our wicked government would throw the meat into any meat grinder that fit their current agenda and then care one iota about their wellbeing afterwards.

  • Robert

    All those US Presidents shamelessly standing up and saying support our military and US mass media cheering along with them. You Americans are mind boggling, shame on you. At least in countries with universal health care veterans are always guaranteed that.
    So where is universal health care in the US, where is Democrat single payer scheme, where is the amendment for single payer.

  • po’d-vet

    i am one of those vets… broken back disabled in constant pain and psych case. ptsd.

    the va is a death machine… va doctors – eugenics.

    they’re only good for band aids and drugs.

    they get paid 40% more than the average person in the civilian world and treat vets as cattle.

    it’s one big money machine…

    one payer system for vets is best as it allows the vet to chose and pick his care givers… it will give the vet quality care and control.

    **** the va. you all suck! especially the montana va!

    usaf vet
    disabled veteran

  • Stephen

    Gary – Very eloquently put & spot on.

    Much of what you say is the same in the UK. Ordinary people have been shafted & the ordinary workforce is being reduced to poverty & slave labour.

    I have to say though, many have not spared one guilty thought for the suffering of the corporation slaves abroad, whilst they have enjoyed relative luxury. You can see equal standards spreading worldwide – & it’s not upwards!!

  • SteveC

    I too am a disabled vet and have ptsd, a broken back from parachuting, and reactive arthritis. I struggled with VA for many years and have seen the twisted logic they use to deny claims.

    Currently, I live in England and get better treatment for my service connected disabilities from the NHS than from the VA. I stay away from VA at all costs.

    I learned the hard way that in the government’s eyes good vets are dead vets. They are heroes who died gloriously in battle. Words are cheap and dead vets don’t cost any money. Live wounded warriors are despised and treated as malingerers who burden the system.

    After much inner struggle the only way I found to deal with it was to turn to prayer, but sadly many do not chose that route and drink, take drugs, or end their lives. I understand why the do so.

    If you see a vet of any age, but especially the young ones, thank them. Buy ‘em a cold drink on a hot day or warm one on a cold day.

    Who knows, your kind words might make the difference between life and death for that vet, because the hardest battles are fought after we return home…

  • Nate

    Excuse me for the language..but this shit is fckn ridiculous/corrupt!!! unbelieveable thats all im gonna say

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