Top 10 Veterans Stories in Today’s News – January 22, 2013


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


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1.   ‘Afghan-sustainable’ policy shifts security burden from coalition.  As the U.S.-led coalition prepares to end its combat role, it is withholding resources it once eagerly provided Afghan security forces in the fight against insurgents, from compasses and construction materials to air support.
2.   Afghan forces reluctant to patrol villages where insurgents may have support.  Intended as a show of force and a confidence booster for Afghan soldiers and police, a recent daylong clearance operation also exhibited how reliant they remain on NATO coalition resources, from radios to roadside bomb protection and the evacuation of injured.
3.   Is Mali the next Afghanistan?  Those who study international terrorism say it would be a mistake for Americans to think of this conflict as anything but deadly serious. The war in Mali is the new front in the war on international terrorism.
4.   Army report raises possibility of major troop cuts at Fort Bragg by 2020.  Fort Bragg could lose as many as 8,000 soldiers and Army civilians by 2020 under alternatives outlined by an Army report on possible force cuts. All told, more than 10,500 jobs could be lost in Cumberland County and the surrounding region just a few years after the base realignment process brought thousands of new troops and civilians to the post.
5.   Staff Sgt. Tracy Dice not considered war widow, despite loss of wife in Afghanistan.  Clutching a copy of her marriage certificate and racked with grief, Tracy Dice steeled herself for a battle. Dice had just received a call from her in-laws, summoning her to their Hoke County home. Dice knew what lay ahead. Her wife, fellow National Guard member Donna Rae Johnson, failed to call her that October morning from Khost, Afghanistan. Worse, Dice learned through the Internet that three unidentified soldiers had been killed in the same area hours earlier.
6.   Veterans swell ranks of students.  Dressed in jeans and a UNCG sweatshirt, Tavia Brightwell looks like any other college student. But just a couple of years ago, the 27-year-old Brightwell wore a different uniform — that of a United States Marine.

7.   Educators get taste of Marine Corps life.  Seven educators and a school resource officer from Bowling Green recently got to taste the military experience, complete with real ammunition and drill instructors shouting in their faces.

8.   Military training kicks in, ex-Marine chases down robber.  Merrill Lake, who had recently finished serving four years in the U.S. Marine Corps, was walking down an Anchorage street, when he noticed a woman banging hysterically on a bank window. He spotted a man with a bag walking quickly away. “I just thought, he’s got to be stopped,” he said.

9.   New Orleans Works to End Veteran Homelessness.  In 2009, the same year the Volunteers of America of Greater New Orleans Veteran’s Transitional Facility opened, President Barack Obama and the Veterans Affairs Department set a goal to end veteran homelessness by 2015.
10.       Veterans May Lose Post Lease For Flying Old Glory.  Chicago Daily Herald  VFW Post 2377, located in a Glendale Heights shopping center for 23 years, is facing default on its lease for flying flags, which is “apparently against the rules of the new property owner.” The post was ordered to take down the flags by Midland Equities of Oakbrook Terrace. Property manager Dawn Stewart wrote, “Your lease expressly addresses that banner signs and flags are prohibited.” The company also accused the post of “leaving broken beer bottles in the parking lot” and “‘inviting crime’ by having people smoke in the alley behind the building.” Village President Linda Jackson said “her ‘gut feeling’ was that the property owner is trying to make life difficult for Post 2377” and promised to go to bat for the post. “Jackson said she hoped newly elected 8th District Rep. Tammy Duckworth, who lost two legs while serving in the Iraq War, could intervene.”

Have You Heard?

Keeping in Touch: VBA Conducts Outreach and Collects Feedback    U.S. Army Veteran; Communications Specialist, Veterans Benefits Administration Representatives from VBA’s Benefits Assistance Service (BAS) conduct dozens of outreach activities each year. It’s just one of the many ways VBA stays in contact with the Veterans we serve.

Read More →


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