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Wednesday, 07 February 2018
Topic Started: Feb 7 2018, 08:02 AM (11 Views)
michaelisam
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Michael Isam
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Thanks to Kevin Secor

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- Wednesday, 07 February 2018

- Did you know:

- Pence arrives in Tokyo, plans to keep heat on N. Korea ahead of Winter Games.
- Pentagon agency can't account for $800 million in spending: Report.
- Pentagon‘s No. 2: Dismissing cyber risks is like ignoring smoking dangers.
- Mattis to Congress: No Pentagon budget could impact troop pay, recruiting, prolong problems.
- Mattis: Proposed nuke missile is a bargaining chip.
- Mattis: No such thing as a ‘tactical’ nuclear weapon, but new cruise missile needed.
- Latest US strategy in Afghanistan draws Senate panel’s rebuke, ire.
- The U.S. Army’s Bradley Fighting Vehicle Might Get Even Bigger.
- A cave in cold Hell has everything a Marine brigade needs to fight .
- Navy may consider khaki coveralls.
- How the Air Force Could Fly the F-22 Raptor Until 2060.
- Congress Is To Cheap to give Veterans the Benefits They Demand – All politicians say they want to help Veterans, so why aren’t they dong more?
- Is the VA motto outdated and sexist? The head of the Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans group thinks so.
- Military Vets Are Among Factors Changing the Politics of Pot.
- Defense, Veterans Affairs departments partner to reduce military suicides.
- Many War Veterans Don’t Get Mental Health Help – An evaluation finds that half of those who need it don’t apply for it.
- VA Faces Challenges As it Tries to Expand Mental Health Care.
- Varied uptake on e-consults at New England VA facilities.
- E-consults spiked at VA hospitals as users were drawn to workflow efficiencies.
- VA sees big savings in expanding caregiver stipends, but lawmakers still worry about costs.
- VA considers restricting eligibility for caregivers program.
- Louisville VA Medical Center director resigns after being accused of ‘whistle blower retaliation’.
- VA hires new dentist at Billings Veterans clinic while whistleblower dentist hangs in the balance.
- More firing may not lead to better results.
- VA farm loans: How they work, and where else Veterans can go for help.
- Federal bill focuses on veterans' burial benefits .
- VA celebrates Black History Month – The community is invited to recognize the many contributions of African-Americans.
- Indiana man goes to Vietnam to remember cousin killed in 1968 Tet offensive.
- Watch an Army veteran take down a casino robber wearing a Batman mask.
- Military Veterans Come Together For Iraqi & Afghan Refugees In Colorado.
- Veteran of the Day – Robert Mossi Alexander.


Did you know:

The 2018 Children and Adolescents and Adults Immunization Schedules are now available online. View or print several formats for both healthcare professionals and the general public, and display any of the schedules on your website. Plus, whenever CDC makes a change to the immunization schedules, your page will automatically display the update. For syndication instructions, see Display Immunization Schedules and Quiz on Your Website.
• Immunization Schedule for Infants and Children, 2018
• Immunization Schedule for Preteens and Teens, 2018
• Immunization Schedule for Adults, 2018



Stars and Stripes Pence arrives in Tokyo, plans to keep heat on N. Korea ahead of Winter Games. Vice President Mike Pence has arrived in the Japanese capital where he’ll engage in talks Wednesday with Prime Minister Shinzo Abe that are expected to focus on the threat from North Korea.

Washington Examiner Pentagon agency can't account for $800 million in spending: Report. A division of the Department of Defense lost track of more than $800 million in construction projects financed for the Army Corps of Engineers and other agencies, according to an internal audit.

Defense News Pentagon‘s No. 2: Dismissing cyber risks is like ignoring smoking dangers. The Pentagon and its contractors need to take a more rigid and uncompromising approach to cybersecurity, a change in philosophy that would require a more active role from CEOs and industry leaders.

Stars and Stripes Mattis to Congress: No Pentagon budget could impact troop pay, recruiting, prolong problems. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis visited Capitol Hill on Tuesday to testify about two recently released Pentagon strategy documents and chastised House lawmakers over Congress’ failure to provide a full budget to the military, warning of dire consequences from more stopgap funding measures

Stars and Stripes Mattis: Proposed nuke missile is a bargaining chip. The Trump administration's proposal to add a sea-launched cruise missile to the U.S. nuclear arsenal, criticized by some as overkill, is meant to provide new negotiating leverage to U.S. diplomats trying to persuade Russia to end violations of a key arms control treaty, Defense Secretary Jim Mattis said Tuesday

Defense News Mattis: No such thing as a ‘tactical’ nuclear weapon, but new cruise missile needed. When is a nuclear weapon tactical, and when is it strategic? It's pretty cut and dry for Defense Secretary Jim Mattis.

Stars and Stripes Latest US strategy in Afghanistan draws Senate panel’s rebuke, ire. In a series of sharp questions and comments, the Senate Foreign Relations Committee took top state and defense officials to task over past missteps and future plans to resolve the war in Afghanistan. Among those concerns: the annual U.S. costs to run the war.

War Is Boring The U.S. Army’s Bradley Fighting Vehicle Might Get Even Bigger. More firepower and other upgrades.

Stars & Stripes A cave in cold Hell has everything a Marine brigade needs to fight . The giant caves in these fjordside mountains pack enough firepower for 4,600 U.S. Marines and are built to withstand the first few days of a hypothetical World War III.

Navy Times Navy may consider khaki coveralls. Navy officials say they might consider making a khaki version of the Improved Fire Retardant Variant coveralls if the fleet shows interest.

Popular Mechanics How the Air Force Could Fly the F-22 Raptor Until 2060. Is it possible to future-proof the F-22 four decades in advance?

VICE News: Congress Is To Cheap to give Veterans the Benefits They Demand – All politicians say they want to help Veterans, so why aren’t they dong more? No matter how dysfunctional politics become, conventional wisdom holds that everyone in DC can still agree and act on veterans’ issues. Especially in the wake of the scandals that have come to light since 2014 about long wait times, malfeasance, and cover-ups in the Veterans Affairs (VA) medical system, there’s been a burst of public and legislative pressure to improve the department’s accountability and capacity.

The Washington Post: Is the VA motto outdated and sexist? The head of the Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans group thinks so. The Department of Veterans Affairs is coming under increasing pressure to change its motto to include female veterans, through an effort championed by the Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America (IAVA), the largest organization representing post-9/11 veterans. At issue is an 1865 quote from Abraham Lincoln, “To care for him who shall have borne the battle and for his widow, and his orphan.”

NPR (Audio): Military Vets Are Among Factors Changing the Politics of Pot. Two stated goals of the Trump administration are coming into conflict. The president says he wants to care for veterans. His attorney general has made moves against states that legalized marijuana. It turns out some veterans are among those who feel marijuana helps them. NPR's Quil Lawrence reports.

UPI: Defense, Veterans Affairs departments partner to reduce military suicides. The Defense and Veterans Affairs departments are partnering with the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention to reduce military suicides. The first-of-its-kind partnership, announced last week at the foundation's annual leadership conference, will include information-sharing across the three entities. Leaders hope that cooperation will help the veterans and active service members they encounter on a regular basis.

AARP Blog: Many War Veterans Don’t Get Mental Health Help – An evaluation finds that half of those who need it don’t apply for it. An evaluation that included interviews, reviews of literature and site visits has found that up to half of recent U.S. wartime veterans who may have a need for mental health services have not taken advantage of such help. The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine, on behalf of the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), surveyed a representative sample of records for the 4 million veterans who served in recent conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan.

WUNC (NPR-91.5, Audio): VA Faces Challenges As it Tries to Expand Mental Health Care. The Veterans Health Administration is planning to make mental health care more available to help reduce veteran suicide. But veterans advocates worry about the impact on the already strained VA health system. A recent government study concluded that the majority of veterans who commit suicide are not enrolled in VA mental health care.

Healthcare DIVE: Varied uptake on e-consults at New England VA facilities. Clinicians' perception of a new technology has a big impact on how quickly it is adopted and disseminated throughout an organization. From that standpoint, e-consults should have a natural edge, the researchers note. They are viewed as beneficial, simple to use, can be tested before adoption and have measurable impacts on workflow.

Fierce Healthcare: E-consults spiked at VA hospitals as users were drawn to workflow efficiencies. The Veterans Affairs New England Healthcare System saw a rapid increase in preoperative electronic consultations over a four-year period driven by perceived workflow efficiencies by clinicians at four specific sites. Anesthesia e-consults at the VA New England system skyrocketed beginning in 2012 following a broader push from leaders at the regional and national level to enhance communication between primary care providers and specialists.

Military Times: VA sees big savings in expanding caregiver stipends, but lawmakers still worry about costs. Veterans Affairs Secretary David Shulkin insists a limited expansion of his department’s caregivers stipend program could save the federal government around $2.5 billion annually. But the up front costs of the plan still present a major obstacle for congressional lawmakers. On Tuesday, the House Veterans’ Affairs Committee renewed debate on the issue of VA’s caregiver program, which awards living stipends…

Stars and Stripes: VA considers restricting eligibility for caregivers program. Department of Veterans Affairs Secretary David Shulkin is considering new restrictions to a program that provides monthly stipends and other assistance to family caregivers of post-9/11 veterans. Testifying before the House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs on Tuesday, Shulkin said he wanted to limit eligibility for the program to the most severely injured and ill veterans in order to expand benefits to veterans of all eras without inflating costs.

Courier-Journal: Louisville VA Medical Center director resigns after being accused of ‘whistle blower retaliation’. This is a developing story; please check back for updates. Louisville's Veterans Affairs Medical Center Director Martin Traxler resigned Friday, the same day the federal agency asked for his removal. Traxlar was accused of "whistle blower retaliation, conduct unbecoming of a senior executive and lack of candor," according to a statement from the Office of Veterans Affairs.

Billings Gazette: VA hires new dentist at Billings Veterans clinic while whistleblower dentist hangs in the balance. The Montana Veterans Affairs Health Care System currently employs two paid staff dentists, though just one of them is practicing. The VA hired the new full-time dentist in December, according to Montana VA Assistant Director Kirby Osler. After a few weeks of training at Fort Harrison near Helena, he began taking patients in Billings.

WFED (AM-1500): More firing may not lead to better results. During the president’s State of the Union address last week he said: “I call on the Congress to empower every cabinet secretary with the authority to reward good workers — and to remove federal employees who undermine the public trust or fail the American people.” Reactions to the president’s remarks ranged from high praise to condemnation. Either he wants to politicize the federal workforce or he wants to “drain the swamp.”

Military Times (Home HQ): VA farm loans: How they work, and where else Veterans can go for help. Loans for service members and veterans seeking to buy farms have been part of VA’s loan-guaranty system since its inception in the 1940s. And farming remains the post-service career of choice for some veterans, with an uptick in interest recently, per the Agriculture Department. Veterans who want to work their own patch of land may be able to buy one with VA assistance, and there’s no limit to the amount of acreage they can purchase.

Rome News-Tribune Federal bill focuses on veterans' burial benefits . Federal law requires the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs to provide an outer burial receptacle to a veteran buried in a national cemetery under control of the National Cemetery Administration, a VA branch. The VA also can reimburse a family if the family chooses to purchase one instead of a ...

Union-Bulletin: VA celebrates Black History Month – The community is invited to recognize the many contributions of African-Americans. A celebration of Black History Month at Jonathan M. Wainwright Memorial VA Medical Center will be at noon Friday in Theater Building 78. Sponsored by Walla Walla VA’s African-American Special Emphasis Program and the Walla Walla Vet Center, the community is welcome to celebrate a renewed commitment of freedom, equality and togetherness and recognize the many contributions of African-Americans…

Stars and Stripes Indiana man goes to Vietnam to remember cousin killed in 1968 Tet offensive. One encounter at a small cafe left the group in tears. Two locals pulled up chairs to the table and began talking to the group. One of the men was a North Vietnamese soldier during the war. Fifty years ago, they would have been shooting at each other. In 2018, they couldn't stop hugging one another.

Stars & Stripes Watch an Army veteran take down a casino robber wearing a Batman mask. It was past midnight last summer when former U.S. soldier Elliot Montalvan unexpectedly drew on his Army combat training at a casino in the small Bavarian town of Heidingsfeld.

CBS News Military Veterans Come Together For Iraqi & Afghan Refugees In Colorado. Some military veterans are coming together for Iraqis and Afghans who put their lives on the line to help as translators in the Middle East.

Dept of Veterans Affairs Veteran of the Day – Robert Mossi Alexander. Army Air Forces Veteran Robert Mossi Alexander. Robert served with the 25th Infantry Division during World War II. In an interview for the Veterans History Project, he shared his memories of serving in the war.

Robert was sent to basic training in Sheppard Field, Texas before being deployed to the Philippines. En route to Luzon, he recalled a close encounter with two floating Japanese mines on their path. Fortunately, the captain was able to move them out of harm’s way. Robert said, “So that was my second time I had avoided death in the Army.” In Manila, Robert and his unit put in airstrips. “I confess to being in a labor battalion doing labor. But it was a meaningful thing because we were preparing those airfields for takeoffs to Japan.”

After he returned home, Robert joined the Army Reserves and served from 1950 – 52. During that time he graduated from Howard University and later on from Georgetown Law School. Robert said the benefits he received from the GI Bill were “very meaningful.” Along with his education, he and his wife also bought their first house on the GI Bill. Robert passed away in 2014. We honor his service.

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