18

Military Responds After President Elect Trump’s Epic Win – Some Compare it to the Killing of Osama Bin Laden

Soldiers voting. (Photo: Public Domain)

Soldiers voting. (Photo: Public Domain)

November 10, 2016

Written by Lorra B.

Trump’s win in Tuesday night’s presidential run left many Americans shocked and our military members were no acceptation. At the Pentagon, service members indicated that they never expected Trump to actually pull off the election, though many were elated at the news and compared the win to the day Osama Bin Laden was killed, according to Checkpoint.

One Army officer stated, “More than one person has compared it to the day Osama [Bin Laden] was killed. “I guess there’s a feeling among soldiers that Trump will care about them and fix everything they see as broken about the Army.”

Programs Manager for the Defense Department, Air Force Maj. Todd Watson, who voted for Trump, stated, “I stayed up until about 1:30 in the morning, and I couldn’t believe it. “A lot of times what he said concerned me, and I thought he would have had a better time if he would have used a different tact. I was bothered by a lot of the same stuff most folks were put off by, but at the end of the day, I don’t know if the lesser of two evils was the right terminology … but it was a vote against Hillary Clinton.”

Watson just does not trust Clinton and defined Trump as “an outsider who will try to inject something different into the system,” he said.

Though there is plenty of reservation over Trump’s win, the military seems to be embracing it as well.

In California, at the Army’s National Training Center at Fort Irwin, soldiers were reported to have cheered as Trump won the election. Overseas, however, the tone was much more subdued. One soldier serving in Afghanistan stated that no one really discussed the election…that the “troops were more focused on what was going to be for dinner that night,” reports Checkpoint.

Back here in the states, a U.S. Navy officer not wishing to be identified, was amazed by Trump’s win saying, “It was kind of shocking. It just seemed like by all the polls that were coming out; everybody seemed to be saying Clinton was a shoo-in. I didn’t vote for either one of them,” reports Military.com.

Many military members remain suspicious of Hillary Clinton’s handling of classified information and the double standard it implies to them, that they would have received severe punishments had they handled the information as she had. They, therefore, were leaning for Trump to win.

Service members’ beliefs are that Trump will bring change to ‘military’s cultural issues, including gender integration.’

Gender integration is a bigger issue in the military than most Americans are aware, which Defense Secretary Ashton B. Carter finalized in December of 2015. Many service members wish for Trump to reverse the combat roles for women.

“Two active-duty enlisted infantry Marines, one at a sniper school and another in an infantry battalion, said some members of their units hope Trump looks at the data provided by the Marine Corps on its gender integration studies and comes to a conclusion that isn’t “political” and hopefully reverses the decision to allow women in combat roles. In 2014, the Marines started a nine-month experiment with a gender integrated infantry unit that concluded with mixed results,” according to a report by Checkpoint.

A female Army lieutenant, on the other hand, is concerned that the progress she deems having been made for women will be lost stating, “It is especially disheartening to see my male peers, subordinates, and superiors celebrate with such reckless abandon. “Last night’s results only reinforce that the misogyny, racism, and homophobia we have been fighting to stamp out in our formations have found a powerful outlet and will be given new life.”

Pentagon Brass have worries of their own about Trump and believe he may not fully grasp how the military should be run or how to defend our country.

Carter released a statement to the Pentagon concerning the election:

“I am very proud of the way each and every one of you conducted yourselves during this campaign, standing apart from politics and instead focusing on your sacred mission of providing security. I am committed to overseeing the orderly transition to the next Commander-in-Chief. I know I can count on you to execute all your duties with the excellence our citizens know they can expect.”

Trump plans to boost the size of the military and in September called for an increase for the Army of about 540,000 active-duty soldiers, the Navy an increase of 350 surface ships and submarines, the Air Force an increase of 1,200 fighter aircraft and an increase to the Marine Corps to 36 battalions. The Reserve and Guard figures have not been taken into account.

Soldiers were reported to have said that if the people and Congress got behind Trump to make these changes they could, and should, be made.

Watson stated, “I think a guy like Trump is going to work hard and get darn close … My hope is he can do a lot of what he says he is going to do.”

The sky is the limit and opportunities abound…Will Trump rise to the occasion and will Congress get behind him to ‘make America Great Again?’ The world watches and waits.

Related Video:

Written by Lorra B.

35

More Veterans Will Be Filling Congressional Seats on Capitol Hill Next Year as Trump Takes the Helm

Former Navy Seal, Eric Greitens, with the machine gun, grins his way through the campaign. (Photo: Public Domain)

Former Navy Seal, Eric Greitens, with the machine gun, grins his way through the campaign.
(Photo: Public Domain)

November 9, 2016

Written by Lorra B.

Last night, in an epic upset, Donald Trump took out his opponent, Hillary Clinton, and will become the next president of the United States.

On Jan. 20, Trump will take the helm of this country and our military. Joining Trump on this new page in history are at least 27 veterans who won their congressional races last night and more presumably to come as the votes continue to be counted.

The majority are veterans of the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, according toMilitaryTimes. There are 26 veterans from those same wars currently with seats in Congress.

Democrat Tammy Duckworth, who served in the Army, was successful in bid for a Senate seat as well as decorated former Navy SEAL, Eric Grietens “who served multiple tours in Iraq and Afghanistan, [who] won his election for governor of Missouri as a Republican against Democrat Chris Koster, the former State attorney general,” reports Military.com.

Illinois Republican Sen. Mark Kirk, a reservist in Afghanistan, was the only incumbent veteran to lose his Senate seat. Duckworth, who lost both of her legs in 2004, won the seat over Kirk. Duckworth’s helicopter was shot down over Iraq.

A Florida Republican, Brian Mast, who also lost both of his legs to war, will be seated in Congress come January. In 2010 Mast unsuccessfully tried to defuse a bomb.

Republican Scott Taylor is another veteran heading to Congress to fill the Virginia Beach seat. Taylor is also a former Navy SEAL.

“Some 14 veteran incumbents kept their seats, including defense leaders Duncan Hunter, a Republican of California, Adam Kinzinger, Republican of Illinois, and Martha McSally, Republican of Arizona,” reports Military.com.

These are just a handful of last nights winners. Here is a full list of the Iraq and Afghanistan veterans who ran for Congress this cycle.

Congratulations to all the veterans who won their seats in Congress. Since 2006 the number of veterans in Congress has increased each election. However, for the first time since the 1950’s “the total veterans count in the House and Senate appeared poised to drop under 100,” according to MilitaryTimes.

Photo: Public Domain

Photo: Public Domain

Written by Lorra B.

 

9

How Does Your City Rank? 2016’s Top and Poorest Cities for Veterans to Live – Get Out & VOTE for Change!

Honor Our Veterans (Photo: Public Domain)

Honor Our Veterans (Photo: Public Domain)

November 8, 2016

Written by Lorra B.

Our Veteran’s sacrifice in ways that most civilians will never know or fully understand and American’s have an obligation to make sure that our brave heroes, home and abroad, have peace of mind about how they will be treated and provided for here at home.

Freedom is not one bit free and our brave heroes selflessly provide daily that freedom for each and every one of us. Voting is not only our right and privilege, it is our duty. Your vote just may help to change many of the difficulties our veterans face every day.

Challenges for our veterans are seemingly without number as they face injuries as well as psychological trauma. Finding a city with military-related jobs, veteran-friendly employment, affordable housing, economic health, and health care can prove tedious for many veterans.

Upon re-entering civilian life, veterans should expect benefits such as help with housing, health care and education but not all cities provide equal assistance with their growing needs.

According to WalletHub, “both unemployment and homelessness have declined for this group — other issues still require attention from various levels of government. Veterans in many cities wait too long — 115 days on average in Phoenix, for instance — to see a mental-health professional, despite a $10 billion effort to expand their access to such care. Thousands this year also lost their GI Bill education benefits as a result of for-profit school closures.”

WalletHub has, from best to worst, rated 100 cities with the worst two being Detroit, MI and Newark, NJ. We, however, will focus on the top 10.

Cities are ranked by 21 factors such as jobs, economic health, and access to the Department of Veteran Affairs.

Texas has four of the top 10 cities for veterans, Laredo, Plano, Austin and El Paso. Scottsdale, Arizona, however, comes in first. Congratulations Arizona!

Other top cities include Colorado, Tampa, California, San Diego and Irvine.

What all the top cities have in common are strong veteran job availability and good veteran quality of life standards.

WalletHub analyst, Jill Gonzalez, stated, “I think one of the key takeaways here is that jobs and economy really play into anyone’s retirement a career – but veterans even more so because they are often younger. They really do need to make sure the job opportunities in whatever cities they are settling down in are good for veterans.”

Gonzalez went on to say, “Employment is so important – especially before you’re settling down in a city, that’s something that you really need to think about before.”

I couldn’t agree more. So, get out and vote. Vote for the person who represents the change you applaud the most and may that include change for our veterans.

Here is a list of the Top 10 cities for veterans and their rankings.

Snapshot Credit, WalletHub

Snapshot Credit, WalletHub

 

Related Video: Last year Arizona was #2 in ranking, this year they move up to #1

Written by Lorra B.

19

POW Finally Coming Home 65 Long Years After Being Starved to Death at the Age of 19

Lone Soldier, North Korean War. (Snapshot: Pinterest)

Lone Soldier, North Korean War. (Snapshot: Pinterest)

November 7, 2016

Written by Lorra B.

After 65 years, Prisoner of War, Wayne Minard, is finally coming home.

Minard was only 17 when he enlisted in the U.S Army, having begged his mother to let him enlist before his 18th birthday.

It was only two short years later, Feb. 16, 1951, that Minard starved to death in a North Korean prison camp, according to The Bellingham Herald.

Wayne Minard  (Photo Credit: Bruce Stubbs)

Wayne Minard (Photo Credit: Bruce Stubbs)

“Against great odds, the U.S. military found his remains in far northern North Korea, at a time (2005) when that troubled country still allowed some searches for remains by U.S. military recovery teams. The Army wasn’t sure for the next 11 years about whose remains they’d lifted out of that roadside grave. But DNA analysis proved the remains were Minard’s.”

According to the Pentagon, Chinese communist soldiers attacked United Nations forces near the Ch’ongch’on River and the next day Minard, 19 at the time, was reported missing and never heard from again.

Minard’s great-nephew, Bruce Stubbs, stated that after his capture he was taken to a prison camp and starved to death. His mother, Bertha Minard, never forgave herself for giving the written permission to join the Army and died nine months after hearing of her son’s death.

Stubbs stated, “They say she died of a broken heart. I [also] remember the pain his death caused my grandmother Helen when I was a kid. He was her brother. When I was at the farm with her, she’d wring her hands and tear up, looking out the door, and tell how he was captured, and then how he was missing in action, and then how he died. The hurt and pain they felt, you could see it. I didn’t fully appreciate it as an 8- or 10-year-old kid, but as you get older you understand why they hurt so badly.”

Stubbs went on to say, “The family still has letters he wrote home. In the early battles in Korea, they were always outnumbered. He’d write home about how the enemy were all like a whole lot of ants running down a hill at them. He actually got shot in the hand in one battle; and made a joke out of it. He wrote that it showed that the other guys were really poor shots.”

Now, after 65 long years, Wayne Minard is finally coming home and will arrive on Wednesdays.

A statement by the Department of Defense was released last week regarding Minard:

“In late November 1950, Minard was a member of Company C, 1st Battalion, 9th Infantry Regiment, 2nd Infantry Division, fighting units of the Chinese People’s Volunteer Forces (CPVF) … in North Korea, in a delaying action south to Kunu-ri,” the Army wrote.

“Enemy forces launched a large-scale attack with heavy artillery and mortar fire on Nov. 25, when the regiment was located in defense positions near the Chongchon River. By the following day, enemy fighting had isolated the unit and they were ordered to withdraw. Minard was reported missing in action as of Nov. 26, 1950.

“Minard’s name did not appear on any POW list provided by the CPVF or the North Korean People’s Army,” the Army statement said. “However two repatriated American prisoners of war reported that Minard died at Hofong Camp, part of Pukchin-Tarigol Camp Cluster, on Feb. 16, 1951.

“Based on this information, a military review board amended Minard’s status to deceased in 1951.

“In April and May of 2005, a Joint Recovery Team conducted the 37th Joint Field Activity in Unsan County, South Pyongan Province, North Korea. On April 19, the team visited a site reported by a local witness to contain American remains.

“To identify Minard’s remains, scientists from [the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency] and the Armed Forces DNA Identification Laboratory used mitochondrial DNA analysis, which matched two sisters, as well as dental and anthropological analysis, which matched his records and circumstantial evidence.”

According to the Pentagon there are 7,784 American remains still unaccounted for from the Korean War.

Wayne Minard, welcome home brave soldier. Thank you for your service and ultimate sacrifice. RIP. NEVER TO BE FORGOTTEN.

 

Written by Lorra B.

33

Sailor Imprisoned for Mishandling of Classified Information, Hillary Clinton Not at All Held to the Same Standards

Angry mom of convicted Sailor who tried using ‘Hillary defense’ wants to see Hillary…face-to-face. (Photo: Public Domain)

Angry mom of convicted Sailor who tried using ‘Hillary defense’ wants to see Hillary…face-to-face. (Photo: Public Domain)

November 4, 2016

Written by Lorra B.

Many Americans remain a bit confused as to why there seems to be a double standard in our government when dealing with appropriate punishment for the mishandling of classified information, and with good reason.

In May, Petty Officer First Class Kristian Saucier plead guilty to and is currently serving a one year sentence in federal prison for violation of the Espionage Act, though no charge of espionage was ever filed. His crime, he used his cellphone to take 6 photographs while he was in a “classified area of a submarine,” the USS Alexandria. reports Fox News Insider.

Saucer, after learning he was under investigation, destroyed a camera, memory card and a laptop computer.

Six Photographs, destroyed evidence and a year in prison. He did the crime and he should do the time. But why isn’t every American citizen held to this same accountability standard?

The FBI have been investigating Hillary Clinton’s mishandling of classified information for some time and new evidence keeps piling up. Yet, not only is she still in the running for the presidency of the United States, but she has not received so much as a slap on the hand when it has been proven that she indeed has mishandled classified information.

Regardless of which side of the political arena you play on, this double standard should unnerve you.

“Intelligence agencies claim that Clinton’s account contained 65 messages with information considered “Secret” and 22 classified at the “Top Secret” level,” reports Politico. “Some messages contained data under an even more restrictive “special access program” designation.”

Clinton also erased 33,000 emails and destroyed several computers, thus destroying evidence. Hillary, however, escaped any accountability and she was deemed cleared of any charges.

Blogger, Ed Morrissey, wrote, “The DOJ is willing to prosecute a former sailor to the full extent of the law for violating the law on classified material, in a situation where there was no purposeful unsecured transmission of classified material. “Will they pursue Hillary Clinton and her team, at the other end of the power spectrum from the rank-and-file, for deliberate unsecured transmission of improperly marked classified nat-sec intelligence? Will they pursue the same kind of obstruction of justice charges for Hillary’s wiping of her server as they are for Saucier’s destruction of his laptop?”

Mr. Morrissey, you pose very good questions! Perhaps the latest scuttlebutt will produce more desired results, though I must admit I am skeptical.

While investigating Anthony Weiner for inappropriate sexting with a minor, the FBI came across and obtained a warrant to look through 650,000 emails from Hillary’s private server on a laptop seized at the Weiner residence.

They are not duplicate emails. In fact, the emails in question have never been seen before, according to Fox’s Bret Baier.

Though it remains to be seen how significant or relevant these emails are to the investigation the bottom line remains the same. Hillary not only mishandled classified information and destroyed evidence she allowed emails (many most likely classified) from an unsecured server to be sent to an unsecured laptop.

More importantly, just what were in the missing 33,000 emails that Hillary erased?

Why does the FBI turn the other cheek when clearly Hillary is guilty, at the very least, of the same crime Saucier was imprisoned for? Why the double standard and what does that say of our current administration?

Former director of the government’s Information Security Oversight Office, Bill Leonard said, “It is exceedingly common for people in the military to be held accountable for classified information violations, much more so than in the civilian government or contractor world.”

Why is that? Hillary Clinton is running for the highest position this great nation holds and her ability, or inability, to handle sensitive information is of the utmost importance. It should be more important for anyone running for the presidency to be able to handle classified information than anyone else on the planet.

Clearly, there is no crying in politics as Hillary smiles broadly while getting away with crimes that should be punishable to the fullest extent of the law.

Related Videos: 

Written by Lorra B.

 

15

Two More Brave American Heroes Lose Their Lives to the War in Afghanistan

Afghanistan War Casualties. (Photo: Public Domain)

Afghanistan War Casualties. (Photo: Public Domain)

November 3, 2016

Written by Lorra B.

During an operation in Kunduz province two U.S. soldiers were killed and two others were wounded along with dozens of civilians.

On Thursday, the U.S.-led military coalition stated that the U.S. troops came under attack “during a train, advise and assist mission with our Afghan partners to clear a Taliban position and disrupt the group’s operations.”

A spokesperson for Governor Asadullah Omarkhel, Mahmood Danish, said that airstrikes were called by Afghan special forces to push the militants back and to defend themselves. During the attack 26 Taliban were killed and 17 injured.

The U.S. Commander in the country, Gen. John W. Nicholson, was grieved over the loss of the two American military members, according to the Chicago Tribune.

“Today’s loss is heartbreaking and we offer our deepest condolences to the families and friends of our service members who lost their lives today,” she said in a statement. “Despite today’s tragic event, we are steadfast in our commitment to help our Afghan partners defend their nation.”

The two American casualties have yet to be identified by NATO as they seek to inform their families, nor did they comment further on the soldier’s mission.

What is known about the mission is that Afghan special forces were attempting to capture or eliminate two senior Taliban commanders in Bous Kanahari which is just outside the city of Kunduz.

A map showing the Afghan city of Kunduz. (Google Maps)

A map showing the Afghan city of Kunduz. (Google Maps)

The two senior Taliban members being targeted were confirmed dead. Four Afghan soldiers were also killed along with six others wounded.

The city of Kunduz was captured for a short time by the Taliban in 2015 and eventually pushed out. Last month, however, they fought their way back in and took control of several neighborhoods.

In 2014 President Barack Obama told the world that the combat mission in Afghanistan was over and done with. However, since that time over 700 airstrikes have been carried out on Afghanistan by American warplanes.

Remaining in Afghanistan are nearly 9,000 American troops.

The war in Afghanistan is America’s longest war in history. Since the war in Afghanistan began, there have been 20,049 American soldiers wounded in action and as of October 18, 2016, 2,386 U.S. troops have died. Of the 2,386 troops 1,834 deaths were the result of hostile acts, according to Wikipedia.

The war began on September 11, 2001 and continues today with no end in sight.

Written by Lorra B.

33

She Defended Banning Military Members From Bars. It May Be a Choice Democratic Senate Hopeful Deborah Ross Regrets

United States Marines. (Photo: Public Domain)

United States Marines. (Photo: Public Domain)

November 2, 2016

By Lorra B.

Deborah Ross, while serving as executive of the American Civil Liberties Union in North Carolina, was all in for bars wanting to ban military members from their establishments, according to The Washington Free Beacon.

North Carolina:  Deborah Ross.  (Photo: Public Domain)

North Carolina:
Deborah Ross.
(Photo: Public Domain)

“Critics of her ACLU record have pointed to cases that Ross took up and also cases that she chose to ignore.Ross, who is in a battle to defeat Republican Sen. Richard Burr for the State Senate seat, has come under fire for defense of banning military members from state bars and has been forced to answer questions about it.

“One group that never received her help was a group of active military members in North Carolina who were told they could not attend certain bars because they were part of the armed forces.”

North Carolina has a very robust military tradition but in 1996 it’s city of Wilmington began refusing entrance to anyone within the military and set about instilling a “no-military” rule.

Why you might ask? The bars cited that Marines were violent. So, the new rule went into effect and if anyone even looked as if they might be in the military they were asked to leave.

Club owner, Ian Mosely, wrote to Camp Lejeune requesting that they give notice that they would no longer be open for business to troops stating, “I truly believe in the armed forces. “But when you’ve been told kill, kill, kill seven days a week, it’s hard to calm down when you go out on a Saturday night.”

Mosely went on to say, “Having girls get blood splattered on their blouses isn’t good for business.”

Basically, Mosely was lumping all the armed forces into a stereotype with reckless abandon and throwing out the entire batch because of a few bad apples.

Marine Capt. George Josephs stated at the time, “How can they pick a certain class of people? That’d be the same as saying only people who make a certain amount of money can come in. They could just as easily say they don’t want blacks in or Jewish people in.”

Ross contended that service members of the military did not qualify “as a protected class” such as race or gender.

Besides, Ross could not be bothered with such issues because she had other pressing matters on her mind, the right to burn the American Flag.

While Ross busied herself with helping to defend the right to burn American flags, she had no time to help Vietnam War veteran, Robert McClure, who was told he could not fly the American Flag on his own property.

McClure wrote to Ross in 2001:

capture

A spokesman for Rep. Sen. Richard Burr, Jesse Hunt, stated, “There was one common theme during Deborah Ross’ dangerous ACLU career: she’ll stand up for convicted criminals and sex offenders, but can’t be bothered to help veterans or military members in need.”

Though Ross stated that the Armed Forces cannot be a protected class, most would contend that any group being singled out and banned from entering an establishment of any kind a despicable act and disgraceful.

Perhaps bars should, under Ross’s rules, ban all politicians from their establishments?

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By Lorra B.

 

17

Of The 9,700 Soldiers Who Received ‘Improper’ Military Bonuses, The California National Guard Can’t Find Approximately 4,000

California National Guard marksmen take top honors at all-Army championship. (Photo: Public Domain)

California National Guard marksmen take top honors at all-Army championship.
(Photo: Public Domain)

November 1, 2016

By Lorra B.

The California National Guard stated that of the 9,700 soldiers who received improper military bonuses for reenlistment, approximately 4,000 cannot be located.

Maj. General David Baldwin told the Los Angeles Times that they needed help in locating the soldiers who received the bonuses during the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq 10 years ago.

The Treasury Department has indicated that of the 4000 missing troops some have been tracked down “long ago through tax returns and made them repay their bonuses,” reports Fox News.

This fiscal has cause a backlash of huge proportions within the Military and public, the Pentagon on the receiving end of that criticism.

House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy is less than pleased with this latest scandal and calls the demands for reimbursement “disgraceful.”

Former Capt. Christopher Van Meter, an Iraq Veteran, stated that, “People like me just got screwed. These bonuses were used to keep people in,” the military. Van Meter had no choice but to refinance his home after the Pentagon forced him to repay his reenlistment bonus of $25,000 and his student loan of $21,000.

In 2007 Brett Sholtis left the California Guard. In 2015 he received a letter from the Treasury Department demanding he repay his enlistment bonus of $2,500.79.

Sholtis refused to pay.

What happened next? Sholtis’s wages were garnished and his 2015 federal tax return was taken by the Treasury Department. $320 was taken from his check every month. He was also denied a Veteran’s Affairs home loan due in part to the bonus debt.

Sholtis stated, “I was one of those soldiers who couldn’t be located. They made a weak effort and then immediately proceeded to step two – turning it over to Treasury.”

According to Fox News, “Some guardsmen face serious punishment for not returning their bonuses. Eight current or former members of the California National Guard were indicted in 2014 on federal charges for fraudulently obtaining recruiting referral bonuses.”

To Help find these missing soldiers, a special office has been set up in Sacramento. After all, the deadline to recover all their money is fast approaching.

Defense Secretary Ashton Carter suspended the debt recovery program and ordered a faster appeals process. Carter set a July 1, 2017 cutoff to complete the recovery process.

Though most the 9,700 California Guard soldiers “unknowingly” received improper payments and enlisted “in good faith” it seems the Pentagon is hell-bent on finding them and collecting monies that were intended to be incentives.

With the deadline in sight the Pentagon is doing everything in its power to recover each and every penny, though the hardship to our veterans is immense.

By Lorra B.

23

Decorated Army Veteran with PTSD Sues Airline for Banning Service Dog

A soldier with a Therapy Labrador Retriever. (Photo: Public Domain)

A soldier with a Therapy Labrador Retriever. (Photo: Public Domain)

October 31, 2016

By Lorra B.

Post Traumatic Stress Disorder strikes many veterans and Lisa McCombs is no exception. After serving honorably for four years in both Iraq and Afghanistan, it is her service dog, Jake, that she relies on to help her combat the panic and stress associated with PTSD.

Her Labrador retriever has accompanied McCombs without incident whenever she has flown but all of that “changed one year ago, when she was barred from boarding a regional American Airlines flight with Jake, who was wearing his service vest and was properly documented at the time,” reportsThe Washington Post.

Army vet Lisa Mccombs, of Gulfort, Miss., and her service dog Jake. (Screenshot credit, WLOX-TV)

Army vet Lisa Mccombs, of Gulfort, Miss., and her service dog Jake.
(Screenshot credit, WLOX-TV)

According to her federal lawsuit, McCombs was attempting to fly from Manhattan to Kansas and as she was getting ready to board the plane an airline agent came up and asked “in a condescending tone, ‘ummm, are you going to fly with that?’”

Not only was McCombs reportedly humiliated she also spent the next 48 hours in limbo being interrogated and unable to return home. She was, according to the report, stressed out, ‘verbally assaulted by two agents’ to spoke loudly and rudely while insisting she explain in detail her ailments that would require her to have an accompanying service dog.

“I don’t understand why I’m being treated like this!”, McCombs cried. “He is my service dog! I have PTSD, look at me, I’m an anxious mess!”

Because McCombs became frustrated and upset and cursed aloud the Airlines threatened to have her arrested.

This nightmare went on for two days. McCombs was assured that she would be able to catch a flight the next day, with Jake, but when she tried to board the plane the exact same disaster began all over again.

McCombs for forced to book a flight with a different airline and rack up and additional costs exceeding $600.

It is McCombs contention that American Airlines violated the Disabilities Act and she wants to be compensated for the “reckless disregard” of her rights, her airline tickets, medical treatment and legal fees.

PTSD is not to be taken lightly and affects about “11 percent of veterans of the war in Afghanistan and 20 percent of veterans of the war in Iraq,” according to the VA.

According to Service Dogs for America, specially trained service dogs can zero in on symptoms of PTSD and redirect the symptoms of panic, anxiety and nightmares by forcing their owner to focus their attentions on the animal.

American Airlines is not commenting on this issue other than to say, “The process for traveling with a service animal on American is in line with applicable federal regulations,” and that, ‘the company “appreciates and thanks Ms. McCombs for her service to our country.’”

Related Video:

 

By Lorra B.

16

Stolen Valor – Hoping for Less Prison Time, Man Falsely Claims to be a Marine Sniper

Marines.mil – Photos: Public Domain

Marines.mil – Photos: Public Domain

October 28, 2016

By Lorra B.

Shane Sperow, 43, finds himself in much more trouble than the initial 23 months he is serving in state prison for an assault conviction. The Pennsylvania man decided it would be a good idea to pretend to be an ex-Marine sniper, and a well decorated one at that, to get less time on his conviction.

Shane Sperow (Screen Shot, Check Point)

Shane Sperow (Screen Shot, Check Point)

Sperow’s charade has landed him up to five years of additional prison time at his sentencing Tuesday, according to The Reading Eagle.

Time serving in operations of Desert Shield and Desert Storm are just a couple of his outright lies. He goes on to claim he was deployed to Iraq, Afghanistan and Somalia. If that weren’t bad enough he shamefully claimed earning both a Bronze Star and two Purple Hearts!

Pennsylvania assistant district attorney, Charles Prutzman, while addressing the list of Sperow’s imagined accomplishments, stated, “In reality, none of those things were true. And you were never a U.S. Marine.”

According to Sperow he told the lies in order to not only get out of jail sooner but to turn his life around for his son as well.

Prutzman stated, “So not only did he disgrace veterans who actually made sacrifices for the county, but he basically exhibited a complete lack of respect for the court system as a whole and the legal process as it needs to function correctly.”

“If we can’t make accurate sentencing decisions, then it really impugns the entire system.”

Sperow began to realize he wasn’t as smart as he thought he was as his story began to fall apart. Prutzman, after reading Sperow’s written statement of all his accomplishments, said, “The list was so fantastical, it sounded like there should be a movie made about the guy.” That’s just about when the fact checking began and Sperow’s story ended.

The Eagle reported:

According to court documents, Elder noted that Sperow was a sniper with the First Force Recon, which is part of the Special Forces of the Marines. He said Sperow’s most notable service was his deployment in Fallujah, Iraq, in April 2004.

Elder said Sperow was watching over an Army checkpoint when it came under fire and was overrun. He claimed Sperow left his sniper post and went to the checkpoint, where he “personally saved four airborne individuals,” according to court documents.

Elder said that while Sperow was taking the other individuals to a safe place, a Humvee near him was blown up by a rocket-propelled grenade. He said the explosion severely injured Sperow’s right hand, right shoulder and the back of his head, resulting in numerous surgeries.

Sperow gave forged documents in February of this year stating that he was Marine Corps member, well decorated and retired, all of which he admitted to.

District Attorney John Adams stated that the “masquerade” had gone on quite long enough and that, “We intend to hold this individual accountable. We will continue to honor those who served in our military, but those who lie about their military service will be dealt with in an appropriate manner.”

Stolen Valor, a false claim about a person’s military service, isn’t taken lightly and nor should it be. Our Brave heroes put their very lives on the line every day for the likes of you and I…and yes, even folks like Mr. Sperow. Woe to the one who steals the Valor from those who served this great nation. Hell hath no fury…

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By Lorra B.