Good morning Legionnaires and veterans advocates, at present is Thursday, September 20, 2018 which is Nationwide Fried Rice Day, Nationwide Peperoni Pizza Day, Nationwide Punch Day and Nationwide String Cheese Day. It’s additionally Nationwide Gibberish Day for these not inclined to culinary holidays.
This Day/Weekend in Legion Historical past:
· Sept. 20, 1944: The 26th American Legion Nationwide Conference passes Decision 138, primarily as a plan to teach and enthuse World Conflict II veterans concerning the group they’re quickly becoming a member of. Summarized as “at least two weeks” of an “intensive course of study for selected World War I and World War II Legionnaires,” the very first American Legion School, with a category of 63, wouldn’t start till 1946 on the nationwide headquarters in Indianapolis. By 1954, American Legion departments are conducting their very own Legion Schools, which turn into the popular technique of management coaching, and the nationwide program is suspended. Forty-five years later, nationwide American Legion School is resurrected and continues immediately.
This Day in Historical past:
· 1519: Portuguese navigator Ferdinand Magellan units sail from Spain in an effort to discover a western sea path to the wealthy Spice Islands of Indonesia. In control of 5 ships and 270 males, Magellan sailed to West Africa after which to Brazil, the place he searched the South American coast for a strait that might take him to the Pacific. He searched the Río de la Plata, a big estuary south of Brazil, for a means by way of; failing, he continued south alongside the coast of Patagonia. On the finish of March 1520, the expedition arrange winter quarters at Port St. Julian. On Easter day at midnight, the Spanish captains mutinied towards their Portuguese captain, however Magellan crushed the revolt, executing one of many captains and leaving one other ashore when his ship left St. Julian in August.
· 1565: Spanish forces beneath Pedro Menéndez de Avilés seize the French Huguenot settlement of Fort Caroline, close to present-day Jacksonville, Florida. The French, commanded by Rene Goulaine de Laudonniere, misplaced 135 males within the first occasion of colonial warfare between European powers in America. Most of these killed have been massacred on the order of Aviles, who allegedly had the slain hanged on timber beside the inscription “Not as Frenchmen, but as heretics.” Laudonniere and a few 40 different Huguenots escaped.
· 1963: An optimistic and upbeat President John F. Kennedy means that the Soviet Union and the USA cooperate on a mission to mount an expedition to the moon. The proposal caught each the Soviets and lots of People off guard.
TABLE OF CONTENTS:
· Video: TAL Americanism Director Jill Druskis on The Climate Channel
· Army.com: VA Cites Enhancements at 5 Hospitals Faraway from ‘High-Risk’ Listing
· Enterprise Insider: 43 years after the Vietnam warfare, many Navy veterans are nonetheless battling for advantages for potential Agent Orange publicity
· Stripes: College students utilizing GI Invoice obtain incorrect housing funds as a result of VA technical errors
· Military Occasions: A brand new push to recruit and retain the perfect candidates for the infantry
· Navy Occasions: Navy SEAL in brig whereas brokers probe killing in Iraq
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Video: TAL Americanism Director Jill Druskis on The Climate Channel
Army.com: VA Cites Enhancements at 5 Hospitals Faraway from ‘High-Risk’ Listing
Stars and Stripes 19 Sep 2018 By Nikki Wentling
WASHINGTON — 5 low-performing Division of Veterans Affairs hospitals have improved sufficient up to now six months to not qualify as excessive danger, the VA introduced Tuesday.
The VA hospitals in Dublin, Ga.; Harlingen, Texas; Roseburg, Ore., Nashville and Denver have been faraway from high-risk standing based mostly on new efficiency statistics launched Tuesday.
The statistics, referred to as the Strategic Analytics for Enchancment and Studying, or SAIL, rating hospitals based mostly on 25 classes, together with affected person satisfaction, general effectivity and demise charges. The scorecards are used to rank hospitals utilizing a star system — one star being the worst and 5 one of the best.
Final yr, 15 hospitals, together with the amenities in Dublin, Harlingen, Nashville, Roseburg and Denver, acquired one-star scores. The VA in February introduced an “aggressive new approach” to enhancing these hospitals, which included extra direct oversight from VA headquarters.
On the 15 hospitals, 26 managers and senior leaders have been eliminated — a results of “close scrutiny of performance trends,” stated VA Press Secretary Curt Cashour.
The 5 hospitals faraway from the high-risk record are on monitor to rise to 2 stars when the brand new star scores are launched, Cashour stated. The brand new star scores are anticipated to be made public earlier than Sept. 30, the top of the fiscal yr.
9 different VA hospitals are nonetheless designated as excessive danger. These amenities are situated in Hampton, Va.; Huge Spring and El Paso, Texas; Jackson, Miss.; Loma Linda, Calif.; Memphis and Mufreesboro, Tenn.; Walla Walla, Wash., and Phoenix.
One hospital that made the high-risk listing has gotten worse. The Washington, D.C., VA Medical Middle was elevated to “critical” in July after a quarterly evaluate discovered circumstances had deteriorated.
The D.C. hospital has been underneath scrutiny since final yr, when the VA inspector common warned of widespread failures that put veterans in danger. The warning prompted former VA Secretary David Shulkin to fireside the hospital director. Since then, a collection of short-term administrators have led the power.
VA Secretary Robert Wilkie stated Aug. 7 that he would quickly announce a brand new, everlasting chief for the hospital. As of Tuesday, he had but to call a alternative.
Enterprise Insider: 43 years after the Vietnam conflict, many Navy veterans are nonetheless battling for advantages for potential Agent Orange publicity
Veterans teams are pushing a invoice making its method by way of Congress that may prolong VA advantages to tens of hundreds US Navy veterans who have been probably uncovered to Agent Orange whereas serving off the coast of Vietnam. The invoice is the newest glimmer of hope for veterans who’ve fought for many years to obtain the profit, and would lastly acknowledge their publicity to the poisonous herbicide however come at an estimated value of $5.5 billion to US taxpayers.
The VA is trying to delay this provision, saying that this huge improve in well being care prices ought to solely come after extra research, which is more likely to publish subsequent yr.
“Science does not support the presumption that blue water Navy veterans were exposed to Agent Orange,” stated VA Secretary Robert Wilkie in a letter to the Senate.
The letter is yet one more roadblock dealing with Vietnam veterans who declare their well being has suffered resulting from publicity.
Operation Ranch Hand
Agent Orange was one in every of a number of chemical herbicides used through the Vietnam Struggle to destroy enemy cowl and meals crops. Though primarily delivered by way of plane, the defoliant was additionally carried on automobiles, back-mounted gear, and sprayed from ships.
Operation Ranch Hand lasted a few decade earlier than a scientific research reported that one of many chemical compounds triggered delivery defects in lab animals. The army stopped its use of herbicides in 1971; all through the subsequent decade veterans started reporting situations of most cancers and delivery defects of their youngsters.
The legitimacy of their claims can be argued for the subsequent 20 years, till the Agent Orange Act of 1991 directed the VA to conduct analysis into the chemical’s potential uncomfortable side effects. Within the many years since, Vietnam veterans have slowly began to realize recognition of their Agent Orange publicity and its typically life-threatening penalties.
As lately as 2010, the VA prolonged the listing of illnesses it might acknowledge as being linked to the herbicide. Simply three years in the past, the company began accepting claims for veterans who served in Agent Orange-contaminated plane within the post-Vietnam period.
However since 2002, the VA took what advocates and veterans say was a step backwards by invalidating claims introduced by blue-water veterans, saying there was no conclusive scientific proof that the vets, who served in warships off the coast, have been ever uncovered to Agent Orange.
VA: An excessive amount of cash, not sufficient science
The query is whether or not the veterans have been uncovered to the herbicide by means of chemical runoff that made its means into the South China Sea and was then transformed into consuming water by way of the ships’ distillation crops.
The place the ships have been situated makes all of the distinction.
The VA discredits arguments that US ships made water shut sufficient to land to have used contaminated water. In response to the Institute of Drugs, which is now often known as the Nationwide Academy of Drugs, any chemical runoff would possible have been diluted by coastal waters earlier than reaching the ships’ intakes. However, as reported in in depth protection by ProPublica, veterans have stated ships typically distilled water nicely inside that vary.
Surprisingly, each side of the ordeal — the VA, which claims blue water veterans weren’t uncovered and veterans advocacy teams that say they have been — use the identical IOM research to argue their aspect.
That’s as a result of the IOM merely states it’s “possible” the Navy vets have been uncovered.
The VA now says that’s precisely why they need to wait earlier than extending advantages to blue-water veterans.
In a Senate listening to on August 1, Dr. Paul Lawrence, the VA underneath secretary for advantages, famous this as simply considered one of three causes the VA opposes the invoice.
One of many provisions would improve the payment charged to debtors underneath the VA’s residence mortgage program. Lawrence stated the VA is against “increasing the costs that some veterans must pay to access their benefits.”
He additionally maintained that the elevated mortgage charges couldn’t offset the prices related to an extension of Agent Orange-related advantages. Secretary Wilkie’s letter strengthened this concept, stating that Congress had underestimated the well being care prices by a whopping $5.four billion. He additionally argued that the addition of tens of hundreds of eligible veterans would solely exacerbate an already in depth backlog of Agent Orange-related claims.
These arguments echo one made in July, simply days earlier than the Senate listening to, by former VA Secretary and Vietnam Navy veteran Anthony Principi. In an op-ed revealed in USA Right now, Principi argued that Congress ought to stand on the aspect of science and cross “sensible laws that maintain the integrity of our legislative process.”
The Blue Water Navy Vietnam Veterans Act soared via the Home of Representatives with a vote of 382-Zero. When — or even when — it can turn into regulation rests within the palms of the Senate Committee on Veterans’ Affairs which, since receiving Wilkie’s letter, has but to determine.
Stripes: College students utilizing GI Invoice obtain incorrect housing funds as a result of VA technical errors
By NIKKI WENTLING | STARS AND STRIPES Revealed: September 19, 2018
WASHINGTON — About 340,000 college students attending faculty utilizing the GI Invoice acquired barely smaller housing funds in August than they’re eligible for beneath federal regulation, in response to the Division of Veterans Affairs.
Month-to-month housing allowances assist scholar veterans pay for his or her housing prices, utilities and meals. Veterans who began the 2018-2019 faculty yr final month acquired incorrect funds brought on by delays on the VA Workplace of Info and Know-how with complying to new guidelines on how stipends are calculated.
The VA continues to be working to repair the issue, and officers haven’t stated whether or not this month’s funds will probably be corrected.
In a letter this week to VA Secretary Robert Wilkie, 15 veterans teams described it as “an organizational and customer service failure at the highest level.”
“These incorrect payments are asking veterans, their families, and schools to bear the burden of VA’s problems,” the teams wrote. “They have left students and schools confused, with improper payments, and absent a clearly articulated timeline for when these issues will be fixed.”
Final yr, Congress authorised the Perpetually GI Invoice, which included quite a few modifications to veterans’ schooling advantages. One change requires calculating veterans’ housing allowances based mostly on the ZIP code of the campus the place they attend courses, fairly than defaulting to the primary campus.
Due to know-how issues, the VA failed to satisfy an Aug. 1 deadline to implement the change. VA officers informed lawmakers that it will be accomplished by mid-August, however that deadline got here and went, too, and not using a repair.
When the autumn semester began, the VA despatched scholar veterans their housing allowances based mostly on 2017 charges. For about 340,000 college students, meaning they acquired funds that didn’t account for cost-of-living will increase in 2018. Based on the VA, the wrong housing stipends have been a mean of 1 % lower than they need to have been.
In Fort Collins, Colo., the distinction between the quantity veterans acquired and the quantity they’re entitled to obtain was $138 per scholar.
Marc Barker, director of grownup learner and veterans providers at Colorado State College in Fort Collins, stated scholar veterans are flooding his workplace with questions concerning the incorrect funds.
About 1,400 college students at Colorado State are veterans who use VA schooling advantages. They’re grownup college students, and in some instances have mortgages and youngsters, Barker stated.
“Many of them have outside responsibilities, and they’ve made the transition back to higher education in good faith that their benefits will be delivered to them on time and accurately,” he stated. “They’re counting on that. When that’s not happening, it becomes a barrier to their success in the classroom. They’re focused and worried about these things they shouldn’t have to be concerned about.”
The VA isn’t speaking with affected college students, Barker stated, and Colorado State hasn’t been capable of obtain concrete solutions from the company to share with college students. If veterans at Colorado State obtain incorrect funds once more when housing allowances are dispersed on the finish of September, the varsity is ready to pay the distinction to every affected scholar in October, he stated.
“They’re kicking the can down the road,” Barker stated. “What we’re losing site of is the impact on the students.”
The 15 veterans teams who wrote to Wilkie additionally charged the VA with not being upfront concerning the issues.
“It took several weeks into the current semester before any communication was sent to students, and schools have received little information beyond, ‘wait and see,’” their letter reads.
“Transparency on what to expect and when to expect it, from all levels of leadership at VA, is critical to helping students and schools make informed decisions.”
On Wednesday, VA Press Secretary Curt Cashour stated the VA is constant to run checks on the brand new IT program that will probably be used to calculate housing stipends and can start utilizing it “as soon as possible.” College students who’re underpaid will get that cash again as soon as the fixes are made, he stated.
Elsewhere, some veterans are receiving funds which might be an excessive amount of due to modifications in cost-of-living from 2017. Cashour stated the VA wouldn’t require college students to pay again the surplus quantities.
The 15 teams that wrote to Wilkie need reassurance.
“VA should strongly stress to students and schools that they will not bear any undue financial burden for [the VA Information Technology]’s delays,” they wrote.
Military Occasions: A brand new push to recruit and retain the perfect candidates for the infantry
By: Todd South 14 hours in the past
Members of a activity pressure targeted on grunts and particular operations troops are discovering methods to make infantry a best choice and never a final resort for entry-level recruits.
To that finish, they’ve visited the Israeli Protection Drive, the 75th Ranger Regiment, the Military’s main fight coaching facilities, the Military’s Infantry Faculty and the Marine Corps’ mixed arms coaching middle to seek out one of the best practices for locating, recruiting, retaining and coaching a reworked mild infantry.
Military Sgt. Maj. Jason Wilson, the senior enlisted adviser to the Shut Fight Lethality Process Pressure, briefed media on the Pentagon this week on a number of the early initiatives of the duty drive because it was shaped in March.
Wilson, a profession infantryman, broke down how the duty pressure is bringing concepts, gear and evaluation to Secretary of Protection Jim Mattis, the duty pressure’s creator, to make the infantry extra deadly and capable of “overmatch” any “pacing threats” it’d quickly face.
Whereas particulars have been scant within the briefing, Wilson did spotlight the evaluations the staff has completed as a primary step towards presenting a few of the first main modifications to how the Military, Marine Corps and Particular Operations Command construct the preventing pressure that does close-in killing and disproportionately suffers the best losses in fight.
“We want to get away from our close combat forces being the place where soldiers that don’t meet the requisite criteria to be an intel analyst or whatever, get sent to,” Wilson stated.
To that purpose, they need to determine troops early of their army careers to see if they’ve the potential to be within the infantry.
And it goes past ASVAB and bodily health scores.
“Do they have the resilience and mental capacity to handle some of the things they may see in the infantry, be able to overcome that adversity and bounce back?” he stated.
And as soon as they’ve received one of the best candidates, they need to practice them realistically and hold them within the shut fight ranks.
On that entrance, the duty pressure is trying to superior gaming applied sciences and mixed areas of stay, digital and constructed and artificial capabilities.
The aim is for troopers, Marines and particular operators to first be capable of run by way of fight situations in digital environments from anyplace, whether or not at residence station, aboard ship or in different coaching areas.
That may broaden to incorporate the power to mix artificial environments with real-world coaching. And this effort goes past coaching for a handful of troopers — the aim is to have a whole brigade fight staff linked within the digital world to conduct a coaching train, Wilson stated.
Navy Occasions: Navy SEAL in brig whereas brokers probe killing in Iraq
By: Carl Prine 11 hours in the past
A SEAL assigned to Naval Particular Warfare in California is within the brig pending an ongoing investigation into allegations that he was tied to the 2017 execution of a detainee in Iraq with a blade.
The chief particular warfare operator has not been charged with a criminal offense, however Naval Felony Investigative Service brokers proceed to probe the claims, SEAL officers informed Navy Occasions.
“A service member currently assigned to a Naval Special Warfare unit is under investigation by NCIS for professional misconduct while deployed to Iraq in 2017. We take all allegations of misconduct seriously and will cooperate fully with investigative authorities,” stated Naval Particular Warfare spokeswoman Cmdr. Tamara Lawrence in a written assertion emailed to Navy Occasions.
“All members of Naval Particular Warfare are required to adjust to the Regulation of Armed Battle and U.S. regulation and laws within the conduct of army operations.
“Naval Special Warfare strives to maintain the highest level of readiness, effectiveness, discipline, efficiency, integrity, and public confidence. All suspected violations for which there is credible information are thoroughly investigated. “
To protect the integrity of the NCIS investigation, she declined to offer different info.
Graphic particulars of the prisoner of conflict’s alleged execution have been repeated to Navy Occasions by seven officers at 5 flag instructions, together with the Pentagon.
As a result of he has not been formally charged with a criminal offense, nevertheless, Navy Occasions is withholding his identify.
Sometimes, an Article 32 listening to to sift by means of the proof towards the SEAL can be held in San Diego beneath the authority of Navy Area Southwest. A listening to officer can be instructed to advocate whether or not felony expenses must be filed and a common court-martial convened by an admiral.
Navy Area Southwest officers informed Navy Occasions that an Article 32 listening to has not been scheduled but.
The SEAL is incarcerated on the Naval Consolidated Brig Miramar. He’s being held beneath Guidelines for Courtroom-Martial 305, which provides commissioned officers the authority to bodily confine enlisted service members when an inexpensive quantity of possible trigger exists to attempt somebody beneath army regulation.
4 SEALs are present process court-martial now in San Diego for struggle crimes they allegedly dedicated at Village Stability Platform Kalach within the Chora District of Afghanistan’s Uruzgan Province on Might 31, 2012.
However attorneys representing Particular Warfare Operator 1st Class Daniel V. Dambrosio Jr. and two particular operator chief petty officers — Xavier Silva and David N. Swarts — and their former commanding officer, Lt. Jason L. Webb, have contended that the SEALs are harmless within the alleged detainee abuse.