Top 10 Veterans Stories in Today’s News – January 16, 2013


Veterans! Here’s your Top 10 News stories of the day compiled from the latest sources


We encourage you to browse our list so that you can take what you want and keep what you need


1.   President again invokes military pay, vet benefits in looming budget fight.  With another big budget showdown brewing in Washington, will vets and troops pay the price?
2.   Wal-Mart hiring initiative targets new veteransIf you just left the military, Wal-Mart has a job for you. Guaranteed. The nation’s largest retailer announced it will hire any honorably discharged veteran less than a year out from the military, starting Memorial Day. In a speech before the National Retail Federation on Tuesday, company CEO Bill Simon called the move part patriotism, part common sense.
3.   Marine Corps: Poor tests score should not delay F-35’s Beaufort arrival.  The U.S. military’s next-generation aircraft should arrive on time in Beaufort County, despite falling short of testing goals, a Marine Corps official said Monday. The Pentagon’s chief weapons tester sent Congress a report Friday describing more problems for the program that has been marked by delays and cost increases.
4.   Afghans want withdrawal of village police trainers.  Days after Afghan President Hamid Karzai and President Obama seemed to agree on the future role of U.S. forces in Afghanistan, a division has emerged over one of the American military’s most prized defense programs.
5.   Karzai: Afghan security will not be compromised when US leaves.  Afghan President Hamid Karzai on Monday sought to reassure an anxious public that security will not be compromised when the bulk of U.S. forces leave next year, saying the country needs American aid, not troops , to fight the Taliban.

6.   Powell: Hagel Is “Supremely Qualified” To Be Defense Secretary. ABC World News  “President Obama’s embattled nominee for Defense Secretary got a strong endorsement…from former Secretary of State Colin Powell” on Sunday. The “retired four-star general called Chuck Hagel ‘supremely qualified’ to be the next Secretary of Defense. Powell and Hagel are both Vietnam vets.”  Bloomberg News  “Former US Senator Chuck Hagel, a twice-wounded Vietnam War veteran, is ‘superbly qualified’ to run the Pentagon, former Secretary of State Colin Powell said…in a television interview” on Sunday. Powell, a “Republican like Hagel, appeared on NBC’s ‘Meet the Press’ program, rejecting criticism from other party members over a comment the former Nebraska lawmaker made about the ‘Jewish lobby’ and a 2007 vote opposing designation of Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps as a terrorist group.” Los Angeles Times  “Retired Gen. Colin Powell offered a vigorous defense of Chuck Hagel’s nomination as the next Defense secretary.” The defense came as Sen. Bob Corker, the top Republican on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, “added questions about Hagel’s temperament to lawmakers’ other concerns about the nominee, particularly his position on Israel.” The Times adds, “In an extensive interview on NBC’s ‘Meet the Press,’ Powell lauded Hagel for what he called ‘a very, very distinguished public service record,’ saying Hagel volunteered to serve in the Vietnam War, showed courage in quitting his post at the Veterans Administration to protest poor treatment of veterans, and led the USO, which provides morale and recreation services to troops, while running a private cellphone carrier company.”
7.   Obama Signs Law Restoring Clark Veterans Cemetery.  Manila (PHI) Bulletin President Obama “has signed into law a bipartisan legislation to restore the Clark Veterans Cemetery located in Clark Freeport Zone, which is the final resting place in the Philippines for more than 8,600 US service members. The cemetery is also the burial place for Filipino Scouts who served in the US Army, and who died in conflicts other than World War II or on military bases in the Philippines.” The Bulletin adds, “Since 1994, volunteers in the Philippines have attempted to maintain the cemetery without assistance from the US government.”
8.   Possible HIV Exposure At Buffalo VA Hospital.  AP  The US Veterans Affairs Department “has told western New York members of Congress that more than 700 patients at the Buffalo VA Medical Center may have been exposed to HIV, hepatitis B or hepatitis C because of accidental reuse of insulin pens.” Authorities, however, “told The Buffalo News…there is a ‘very small risk’ for the diabetic patients who may have been exposed to the reused insulin pens between Oct. 19, 2010 and November 2012.” The AP notes that US Rep. Chris Collins (R-NY) has discussed the matter with Dr. Robert A. Petzel, VA’s undersecretary for health. Collins said Petzel’s “thought was that it’s a very, very low chance of passing infection.” Collins added, “But it’s not out of the realm of possibility, and that’s why they’re testing everyone.”

9.   A Poquoson Soldier Says The Burn Pits At Bases In Iraq And Afghanistan Did What The Enemy Couldn’t.  Hampton Roads (VA) Daily Press  “Hundreds of personnel,” including Chief Warrant Officer Jeff Lamprecht, “say they have been sickened by toxic fumes and debris” from burn pits in Iraq and Afghanistan. President Obama recently “signed into law a wide-ranging veterans bill that includes the creation of a registry for burn pit victims. It will create a list similar to the Agent Orange and Gulf War registries to help patients, doctors and the US Department of Veterans Affairs determine to what extent air pollution caused by open air burn pits has led to health problems.”
10. Viagra For Vets Costs Surge On War Disorders.  Washington Post  “The Department of Veterans Affairs has almost tripled spending on erectile-dysfunction drugs in the past six years as war-related psychological disorders contribute to sexual difficulties.” Jason Hansman, Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America’s senior program manager for health and mental health programs, said, “It’s a very good sign that the VA is paying out and not trying to avoid the issue in any way.” But according to USA Today, US Rep. Chellie Pingree (D-ME) “wrote a letter last month to Allison Hickey, the VA’s undersecretary for benefits, asking her to consider increasing benefits for women veterans who suffer sexual-arousal disorder after military service-related injuries.” Pingree stated, “If you look at this as a parity issue, males are being treated in numbers that are going up, and women with similar kinds of issues deserve equal access to car.”


Have You Heard?

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