Archive for the ‘Shinseki’ Category

Military veterans’ mental traumas

December 28, 2008

More that ever before, the wounds of war are of and in the mind and the Veterans Administration has been learning how best to provide treatment…

“Wars are supposed to end when the last shots are fired, but some of our new veterans will unfortunately have to cope with internal demons that may last their lifetime,” said Joe Davis, spokesman for the Veterans of Foreign Wars.

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President-elect Barack Obama (L) introduces retired General ... 
President-elect Barack Obama (L) introduces retired General Eric K. Shinseki as nominee for Veterans Affairs secretary during a news conference in Chicago, December 7, 2008.REUTERS/John Gress (UNITED STATES)

Service members returning from Afghanistan and Iraq increasingly are suffering from mental trauma that dampens their homecomings, hobbles their re-entry into civilian life and imperils their continued military service – a situation the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) has sought to address with treatment, counseling and even drug experimentation.

But even as the VA has worked to provide quality health care for millions of veterans at its facilities across the country, it has endured a series of failures – from not notifying test subjects about new drug warnings to ignoring safeguards during experiments. Those failures have damaged the reputation of the agency charged with supporting vulnerable veterans.

But it also has compromised the speedy recovery of those vets.

By Audry Hudson
the Washington Times

President-elect Barack Obama, who has named retired Gen. Eric K. Shinseki as incoming VA secretary, will have to deal with those long-standing discrepancies in the agency, as well as seek out new solutions to remedy the mental health problems plaguing an ever-growing population of veterans.

“Wars are supposed to end when the last shots are fired, but some of our new veterans will unfortunately have to cope with internal demons that may last their lifetime,” said Joe Davis, spokesman for the Veterans of Foreign Wars.

Read the rest:
http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/200
8/dec/28/va-grapples-returning-veterans-mental-traumas/

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Obama’s Choice of Gen Shinseki For VA: Good or Bad For Vets?

December 10, 2008

General Eric Shinseki gained controversey, even noteriety, when he predicted that the invasion of Iraq would take a lot more troops than the number predicted by Defense Secretary Rumsfeld.  When asked about the appointment of General Shinseki to head the Department of Veterans Affairs on “Meet the Press,” part of Barack Obama’s answer was, “He was right” about the troop numbers.

I thought at the time: being right on that one issue doesn’t make a person the best leader of the Veterans….

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From the Washington Post

My own view is that Shinseki is a shrewd choice.  He is an honorable man — he has handled his retirement much better than the anti-war faction has — and he will give the VA post a higher profile than it has had in the past.  Ironically, his sky-high reputation will give him authority to serve as something of a check on the Administration if they move in ways detrimental to Veterans.  What is your view?Read the rest:

 

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President-elect Barack Obama (L) introduces retired General ...

President-elect Barack Obama (L) introduces retired General Eric K. Shinseki as nominee for Veterans Affairs secretary during a news conference in Chicago, December 7, 2008.REUTERS/John Gress (UNITED STATES)

Obama: No person ‘more qualified’ than Shinseki to head VA

December 7, 2008

President-elect Barack Obama formally announced Sunday that retired Army Gen. Eric Shinseki is his pick to be secretary of Veterans Affairs.

CNN

Obama names Shinseki as choice for VA chief 

“There is no one more distinguished, more determined, or more qualified to build this VA than the leader I am announcing as our next secretary of Veterans Affairs — General Eric Shinseki,” Obama said at a press conference. “No one will ever doubt that this former Army chief of staff has the courage to stand up for our troops and our veterans. No one will ever question whether he will fight hard enough to make sure they have the support they need.”

Read the rest:
http://www.cnn.com/2008/POLITICS/1
2/07/obama.shinseki/index.html

Rumsfeld nemesis Shinseki to be named VA secretary

December 7, 2008

President-elect Barack Obama has chosen retired Gen. Eric K. Shinseki to be the next Veterans Affairs secretary, turning to a former Army chief of staff once vilified by the Bush administration for questioning its Iraq war strategy.

General Shinseki Is A Spectacular Pick!

Obama will announce the selection of Shinseki, the first Army four-star general of Japanese-American ancestry, at a news conference Sunday in Chicago. He will be the first Asian-American to hold the post of Veterans Affairs secretary, adding to the growing diversity of Obama’s Cabinet.

“I think that General Shinseki is exactly the right person who is going to be able to make sure that we honor our troops when they come home,” Obama said in an interview with NBC’s “Meet the Press” to be broadcast Sunday.

NBC released a transcript of the interview after The Associated Press reported that Shinseki was Obama’s pick.

By Hope Yen, Associated Press WriterShinseki’s tenure as Army chief of staff from 1999 to 2003 was marked by constant tensions with Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, which boiled over in 2003 when Shinseki testified to Congress that it might take several hundred thousand U.S. troops to control Iraq after the invasion.

 

Rumsfeld and his deputy, Paul Wolfowitz, belittled the estimate as “wildly off the mark” and the army general was ousted within months. But Shinseki’s words proved prophetic after President George W. Bush in early 2007 announced a “surge” of additional troops to Iraq after miscalculating the numbers needed to stem sectarian violence.

Obama said he chose Shinseki for the VA post because he “was right” in predicting that the U.S. will need more troops in Iraq than Rumsfeld believed at the time.

Read the rest:
http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20081207/ap_on_go_ca_st_pe/oba
ma_veterans_affairs;_ylt=Am9B9OU36FH.uoTOzSUjkpKs0NUE

In this July 21, 2000 file photo, then Army Chief of Staff Gen. ... 
In this July 21, 2000 file photo, then Army Chief of Staff Gen. Eric Shinseki talks with reporters Pentagon in Washington. Democratic officials say President-elect Barack Obama has selected Shinseki to be the next Veterans Affairs secretary.(AP Photo/Kamenko Pajic, File)