Saturday, December 08, 2007

More about wounded warriors

By Carol Gee

Senator Carl Levin (D-Michigan) announced at a news conference yesterday that a Senate-House Defense Authorization conference report had been agreed upon. The main news discussion focused on the revelation of an interrogation videotape of water-boarding of two detainees that the CIA has since destroyed. As a result The Wounded Warrior Act is a piece of legislation included in that report that may escape notice. To quote the [pdf-29 pages] Senate Armed Services Committee Chair's news release:

This Conference report . . . Wounded Warrior Act which will address the substandard living conditions, poor outpatient care and bureaucratic roadblocks and delays faced by injured soldiers at Walter Reed Army Medical Center and elsewhere. These provisions will dramatically improve the management of medical care, disability evaluations, personnel actions, and the quality of life for service members recovering from illness or injuries incurred while performing their military duties and begin the process of fundamental reform of DoD and VA disability evaluation systems.

"Warriors in clashing cultures" was a S/SW blog post I did in March of this year, shortly after the Walter Reed Hospital scandal broke. We are still at war in Iraq And Afghanistan and wounded warriors are still trying to put their lives back together. Since the scandal broke there have been commissions appointed, recommendations made, lots of firings and hirings. A short blurb from Ohio.com discussed a recent development regarding that promises to be a good thing for veterans, new leadership. An army physician who has come up through the ranks will take the helm of the V.A. for a year. To quote:

VA nominee's pledge
Pledging to ''do the right thing,'' Veterans Affairs nominee James Peake said Wednesday he will be an independent advocate for thousands of injured veterans and will fight for the needed funding for their care. In a 21/2-hour confirmation hearing before the Senate Veterans Affairs Committee, the retired Army lieutenant general also vowed to work on making significant headway in fixing gaps in care and reducing delays in disability pay. The full Senate is expected to confirm Peake as early as this month.

"Wounded Warrior 3 Nov 2007 pictures from Germany" is a fascinating album with photos from "wrblack101" at Webshots.com. There are no words with the images but they tell their own story. Starting in December of 2004, this intrepid photographer has put up 33 albums headed "Wounded Warrior Trips." I was unable to find anything about the circumstances of the trips. His profile states that he is a "Senior Intelligence Analyst." The trips, evidently, happened about monthly since they began.

The Wounded Warrior Project lists rallies and other supporting events such as 'M.S. Garvey's Letters To The President - Venice, CA.' Their excellent website reports that:

The Hartford Ski Spectacular is now in its 20th year! Come out to support our wounded warriors at Beaver Run Resort in Breckenridge, CO, December 2 – 9, 2007 and be part of one of the nation’s largest winter sports festivals for people with disabilities.

My reference links:

(Cross-posted at South by Southwest.)

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