May 12 VCS Weekly Update: Iraq and Afghanistan Wars By The Numbers

Shh . . . ! (Headline Now Appearing in Newspapers.) (VCS has the numbers the government doesn’t want you to see, the statistics the press frequently neglects to report . . .)

VCS spent the past two years sending Freedom of Information requests (FOIA) to the Pentagon and VA to get the facts about human costs of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars. We use the documents to educate the public, reporters, and legislators about the facts.

Our attorneys in our lawsuit discovered that VA intentionally lied to conceal the suicide epidemic from the public. And the Sunday, May 11 edition of the New York Times published a scathing editorial lambasting VA for failing to plan for hundreds of thousands of Iraq and Afghanistn war casualites, writing “If this country gave back to wounded troops even a fraction of the commitment and service that it has received from them, they will be well cared for.”

We need your help to keep our FOIA campaign active. Please set up a monthly contribution today so we can keep up the work fighting for facts!

The numbers keep getting worse.  Here is heavy dose of real FOIA facts, compliments of VCS:

1,668,000 service members deployed to the Iraq and Afghanistan wars, about one-half of one percent of the 300 million U.S. population.

Nearly 100 percent involved in combat for more than six years in Afghanistan and more than five years in Iraq.

600,000 estimated casualties from both wars so far, where only half sought medical care, according to a new RAND study limited to brain damage, major depression, and post traumatic stress disorder.

500,000 deployed twice or more into combat – which increases risk of post traumatic stress disorder by 50 percent. 

300,000 treated at VA hospitals after their return home – and VA still lacks a plan to handle the flood of casualties so that veterans are not turned away.

288,000 filed disability claims against VA for military-related medical problems, and again VA has no plan to process these claims accurately or quickly.

58,300 forced to remain in war under stop loss – military orders that force a soldier to remain in the military past the end of their enlistment contract.  Many of these soldiers are on their second and third war deployment.

43,000 deployed combat after they were already declared unfit by a doctor – with broken legs, brain damage, and post traumatic stress disorder.

120 veterans complete a suicide every week. And 1,000 attempt suicide while under VA care each month. This is VCS in action, working hard to ensure that America does not forget about the sacrifices of our servie members, veterans, and families make.

The numbers for Iraq are equally devastating – up to one million killed, two million more internally displaced, and two million more international refugees, and a nation in shambles.

And, finally, here is a bit of humor. What would you do with $3 trillion dollars? Go to this web site to see, with a bit of fun, exactly what could have been done with the $3 trillion spent on the Iraq and Afghanistan wars.

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