Apr 11, 2008

Letter From John Edwards

Hat tip to Bob at Mad in the Middle for finding this-

John Edwards Letter to the editor - The New York Times

(reprinted in full):

In “For Wounded Veterans and Their Families, a Journey Without Maps” (Editorial Observer, March 24), Lawrence Downes missed an important opportunity to explain why both the Department of Defense and the Department of Veterans Affairs are unprepared to care for the service members who have been hurt in the Iraq war.

The reason is that the frequently reported number of the wounded in action (29,320 as of March 1) does not include everyone who’s been hurt.

The complete number of nonfatal casualties in Iraq is 60,645. Most assume the wounded number includes all, but it does not. It leaves out another 8,273 injured and 23,052 who became ill and required medical air transport from the war zone. The Department of Defense releases two reports: one with the weekly numbers of those wounded and killed, and then another monthly report with the complete numbers. After five years, it is time for respected news organizations to use the complete number.

The public needs this information so that we can better prepare for the care of all of our veterans from this war and others. The struggle for them and their families your article addressed is happening all across this country. Nearly 300,000 Iraq and Afghanistan veterans have already sought care from the V.A.

The system is broken. That is why so many veterans are still fighting for the care they earned. That is why their families struggle with paperwork and months of delay. And that is why 154,000 veterans sleep on grates or under bridges every night.

We have tens of thousands set to come home, and we aren’t prepared. Every day we should honor the more than 4,000 lives lost: every suicide, bullet or serious accident.

And every day we should honor those who have been hurt. That number is 60,645 and rising.
John EdwardsChapel Hill, N.C., March 31, 2008

also blogged about at: EENR and TPM

4 comments:

Bob said...

Thanks for hat tip! Go John!

C.J. said...

John ROCKS!

Neither of my children has lived in this country during peacetime. I am simply hopeful that they will get to before their childhoods are over.

Swinebread said...

The VA was on the road to recovery under Clinton, then Bush and his cronies deliberately broke the system and made sure you were labeled unpatriotic if questioned what the was going on with the VA

The Poor Blogger said...

One of the reasons the State Dept. is relying so heavily on mercenaries is so they can keep the list of wounded and killed down as well. They don't have to report them if they aren't soldiers.