Archive for the ‘Veterans’ Category

A video of the man was first posted on Facebook just two days ago. It is captivating the nation, with more than two million views.

“Incredible!” wrote one viewer. “Just beautiful,” said another. And “such talent, it’s a shame he is homeless,” wrote yet another.

He’s playing the piano on a public sidewalk. Anyone can sit down and play. It’s part of an arts project in Sarasota, Florida.

But no one expected this. Pedestrians are taken aback. Another video shows him performing for a father and his young son.

Source: [ABC7]

So who is this homeless maestro? His name is Donald Gould and he’s a former U.S. Marine. Gould’s story is heartbreaking. He’s 51 and said he has struggled with drugs. His wife died in 1998. He’s been living on the streets for at least three years. He was laid off, his unemployment benefits ran out and has been unemployed six years.


Source: [Facebook]

A United States airman who risked his life to save those of French counterparts was decorated with France’s top award, the Legion d’Honneur, on Monday, by French Defense Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian during a ceremony held at the Paris Air Show.

Gregory Swarz, a 26-year old staff sergeant, pulled four French airmen from the burning wreckage of a Greek F-16 jet on January 26, minutes after the tragic crash that killed 11 people at Albacete NATO Airbase in Spain with the help of four other U.S. airmen who were also decorated on Monday.

Nine French nationals and two Greeks were killed and 21 people injured shortly after the Greek fighter took off at a training center in Albacete, 260 km (160 miles) southeast of the capital Madrid.

Swarz said he did not hesitate when he realized some people could still be saved from the flames.

“I did not see the plane crash, I just heard an explosion of it, I just saw people running, I went around the plane and looked.

The former military member says he just wants the freedoms he swore he’d protect.

“I took an oath that I would support and defend the constitution and the freedoms that entails, and I really feel like those are being trampled upon,” Truitt said.

Truitt is prepared to fight for his property. “You have to stand up for what you believe in. They could come out here today if they wanted to and take us to jail for trespassing if that’s what they want to call it and, you know, that’d be fine with me. I’ll still come back the next day and the next day and the next day because it’s my home and because I live here. Where else am I supposed to go really?”

WAFF48 reached out to Huntsville Utilities and Huntsville City Attorney Peter Joffrion. So far, neither have responded.

 Source: [WAFF 48]


A Veterans Administration researcher used actors and pressured veterans into participating in a “secret shopper”-style project, and now the House Veteran Affairs Committee is investigating how the agency spent $900,000 for the faked study.

The head of the study, Dr. Saul Weiner, professor of medicine, pediatrics and medical education at the University of Illinois at Chicago, admitted actors were hired to portray veterans, according to a letter from the committee chairman, Rep. Mike Coffman, R-Colo.

The study, described as akin to a “secret shopper” program where people anonymously rate a business’ service, was supposed to measure the effectiveness of the interaction between VA doctors and their patients during appointments. The goal was to make doctors’ visits more patient-centered. Actors posing as patients presented themselves with made-up maladies and secretly recorded their interaction with the doctors for analysis.

“Firstly, the improper use of VA resources for actors’ fake maladies is beyond comprehension given VA’s wait time scandal and spending scandal,” the letter stated.

Full Story @ [WND]


The Veteran’s Affairs Department has found that female veterans commit suicide at almost six times the rate of non-veteran women. For younger women who have served, those aged 18-29, the number doubles to twelve times more likely than their non-veteran counterparts.

Shockingly, the suicide rate of female veterans is so high that it nears the rate of male veterans, a surprising finding given that, statistically, men are far more likely to commit suicide than women.

The VA analyzed 174,000 veteran and non-veteran suicides in 23 states from 2000 until 2010, and found that 5.2 women kill themselves annually per 100,000 population. In contrast, 20.9 men per 100,000 will take their own lives.

When the study looked at rates among veterans only, however, the rates were much higher, and the gap between men and women was much smaller, with 28.7 per 100,000 for women and 32.1 per 100,000 for men.

Estimates by the Pentagon have shown that 10% of women in the military are raped while on active duty, and some suggest that this may be one of the contributing factors.

Full Story @ [Sputnik News]


Surveys suggest that as many as 80% of those who serve come from a family in which a parent or sibling is also in the military. They often live in relative isolation — behind the gates of military installations such as Ft. Bragg or in the deeply military communities like Fayetteville, N.C., that surround them.

The segregation is so pronounced that it can be traced on a map: Some 49% of the 1.3 million active-duty service members in the U.S. are concentrated in just five states — California, Virginia, Texas, North Carolina and Georgia.

The U.S. military today is gradually becoming a separate warrior class, many analysts say, that is becoming increasingly distinct from the public it is charged with protecting.

As the size of the military shrinks, the connections between military personnel and the broad civilian population appear to be growing more distant, the Pew Research Center concluded after a broad 2012 study of both service members and civilians.

Full Story @ [latimes]

The cause of death was “clearly suffocation,” Fanning said. “There was nothing natural about the cause of death. They used pepper spray, he pleaded for help, they refused medical assistance when they should have administered it.” In the video, Brown was heard repeatedly stating that he could not breathe. He claimed he was choking on his own blood.

“It is particular injustice to this soldier who went overseas, thought he was fighting for freedom and democracy, did two tours in Iraq and then he comes home to be killed by fellow Americans,” said Fanning, author of ‘Worth Fighting For’.

When it comes to justice, things remain unclear, according to the former military man.

“It is very rare to see an indictment for a police officer when they kill somebody… They clearly proven time and time again they are incapable of investigating themselves in a just and timely manner.”

Public attention, protests and calls for justice are the main drivers that could bring the indictment around, just like in the case of Freddie Gray’s death, Fanning said. There is increasing outrage over Brown’s death, particularly in veterans’ community, and the incident has been trending on social media.

Full Story @ [RT]

Newly released video has revealed the dying moments of an African-American active-duty soldier who checked himself into the El Paso, Texas, county jail and died while in custody nearly three years ago.

Sgt. James Brown reported to jail for a two-day sentence for driving while intoxicated. His family said Brown informed the jail he had a history of post-traumatic stress disorder after two combat tours in Iraq.

Source: [Democracy Now]

2015: Guns ARE being taken away from Americans by the thousands and the media is not reporting it. It started with Vets and now it will be coming to everyone! Are you ready?