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MATT LAUER: It is a startling number. More than 244,000 U.S. troops have returned from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan with traumatic brain injuries, an issue that is front and center for the NFL, a league dealing with the problem of concussions among many of its current and former players. The league is now teaming up with the U.S. Army and National Institutes of Health to research ways to limit these types of injuries. Roger Goodell is commissioner of the NFL. Dr. Story Landis is the director of the NIH's Neurology Institute, and General Odierno is the chief of staff of the Army. Good morning to all of you. It's nice to see you.
General, that's a huge number, 244,000 returning military personnel with these brain injuries. I know the seriousness of those injuries varies from person to person, but it's a problem that has to be addressed.
GEN. ODIERNO: Absolutely, and one of the problems we have are soldiers coming forward first to say I have a problem. And so one of the things we're really focusing on is making sure that the same qualities -- mental toughness,physical toughness,dedication to mission accomplishment -- does not impede people from saying "I have a problem and I need to get help." That's why this initiative is important to us. We're now putting sensors in helmets, our kevlar helmets for the first time. About 7,000 soldiers have those in their helmets. As we're collecting more and more data, we're learning more and more information, but we have a lot of work to do yet.
For Johnnie Larmore, a veteran of three combat tours in Vietnam, living with post-traumatic stress disorder means bursts of anger followed by wells of depression.
Last week, the Port Angeles man left a recently expanded treatment program at VA Puget Sound American Lake Division in Lakewood. He calls it “the best staff and the best facility” he’s seen in his 41 years seeking help coping with Army combat-related PTSD.
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The chairman of the House Veterans Affairs Committee said Wednesday that an inspector general’s report on Department of Veterans Affairs spending on conferences raises questions about its leadership’s ability to cope with problems faced by the people it serves.
“Disappointed is a polite word to describe my thoughts about this,” Rep. Jeff Miller, (F-Fla.) said at a joint hearing with the House and Senate veterans affairs committees to hear legislative requests from the American Legion.
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By Leo Shane III and Megan McCloskey
Stars and Stripes (stripes.com)
WASHINGTON – Caregivers of wounded veterans mistakenly received letters recently warning that automatic spending cuts set for January could stop their monthly stipends, creating more concern about the problems that sequestration might bring.
Veterans Affairs spokesman Josh Taylor said department officials have contacted all of the caregivers who received the notifications, clarifying that their stipends are not in danger and apologizing for the confusion.
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The department says the conflict-of-interest statute, passed after scandals in for-profit education, is outdated, but others call it a safeguard.
Previously unreported Pentagon data shows how much the average U.S. taxpayer has paid for combat operations in Afghanistan, Iraq, and now Syria.
Puerto Rican veterans who survived the horrors of Korea wonder when their commander-in-chief will address their islands humanitarian crisis.
Some of Pyongyang's surface-to-air missiles are old, but its newer ones could threaten American aircraft.
The lieutenant, who wants to keep her identity private, will lead a 40-person platoon.
As tensions between North Korea and the United States continue to intensify, two experts discuss the remaining options.
One U.S. officer watched TV shows like Cops and NCIS for lesson plans, watchdog says.
When European defense ministers played a tabletop cyber defense exercise, things got hard very quickly.
President Trump is poised to compound the most grave moral failing of his predecessor by making targeted killings less safe, less legal, and less rare.