Joined: Mar 17, 2005
Location: Staten Island
|Posted: Sun Apr 10, 2011 9:18 am Post subject: What About Our Soldiers?
From Sun Apr 10, 2011 3:00 am to Fri Apr 15, 2011 2:59 am (included)
|As it appears we will be entering into yet another military conflict in the Middle East we need to demand that our soldierís needs are addressed.
We approve millions in military spending to rebuild foreign countries while our critically injured soldiers get substandard treatment and medical facilities here at home.
As you know a bill was passed that upped the death benefits for the military from $12,500 to $100,000 and also increased maximum life insurance payouts from $250,000 to $400,000. While these changes are welcome and long overdue we should not discontinue our efforts because they unfortunately are not good enough. Most soldiers will not be able to afford the higher insurance premiums on their salaries so their families will never see the $400,000 in the event of their deaths. Also even though the bill does address some of the needs of critically injured soldiers with payments of up to $100,000 it still falls short in many areas.
While these were a few good first steps here are a couple of common sense recommendations:
Increase the death benefit to $250,000 or have the Government pay the premiums on a $250,000 policy for each soldier that goes into combat. The soldiers would then decide if they would want to pay for additional coverage.
Assure that any widow or widower is not forced of a military base after the death of their spouse in combat as has been the case in the past.
Pass a measure that would allow hospitalized military personnel to have their long distance phone bills from any hospital billed to the office of the Senator or Congressman from their home state.
Make sure that a percentage of every dollar spent rebuilding structures in war areas goes to improvements on existing military hospitals. As part of one of our former military spending packages we spent $600 Million to build an embassy in Baghdad. While I am sure this is necessary I am also sure we could build a fine embassy for $450 Million and use the remaining $150 Million (25%) to upgrade facilities at Walter Reed or one of the other Military Hospitals.
This same bill also included money for replacement armored vehicles and bullet proof vests that did not work. I am not saying these are not important but has the government taken any action to recoup the money spent on the faulty vests and armored vehicles that have contributed to the deaths of many soldiers. Where is the accountability? I may be wrong but I never heard of any of these companies being held responsible. They keep the money we pay them and we just keep giving them more even if they donít deliver. Soldiers die and we keep paying these companies. Someone has to make sure these companies are held accountable. How about starting with the bullet proof vests that didnít stop the bullets? Maybe we could set up scholarship funds for children of soldiers killed in action from the monies we recoup. These companies should also be denied further contracts if they are found to be responsible for supplying faulty products.
Finally 1% to 5% of all military spending should be allocated to the mental and physical needs of soldiers coming home. As military spending increases so would the care of those who served.
Itís common sense. The long term needs of the injured soldiers need to be addressed and could also be assisted from the monies we save from the above recommendations.