Thursday, March 5, 2009

Cold War Service Medal

Time is passing much to quickly, and nothing appears on the horizon. The National Defense Authorization Act 2010 (NDAA) is being drafted and defined right now.

So far it appears that no action is being taken on a Cold War Service Medal for the next year's budget. Last year Senator Clinton introduced a bill that would have created a long overdue
recognition of all those who served honorably in the military from Sept. 1945 to Dec. 1991.

How long must our veterans go unrecognized? The Berlin Wall fell 20 years ago, and the Soviet Union collapsed 17 years ago. Do you not think that is a very long time to be ignored?

Yes, the country is in the worst economic condition in a very very long time. Yes the Department of Defense will object on "duplication of awards", and quote a very high price tag for a medal.

But, in truth, many of our military did their tour of duty and received no award or medal. Some medals are time specific, others are restricted to certain geographical limitations. So if you
were not in that time frame -National Defense Service Medal -, or not in the correct spot -Korea, Vietnam and a few other "hot spots"- nothing for you, so sorry.

The cost DOD has floated in the past is way out of line with reality. DoD also calls attention to
the Cold War Certificate. A piece of paper that makes no mention of military service, anyone
who worked for the government for at least one day is eligible for this certificate. The Army
command in charge of issuing this certificate says that in the ten years it has been authorized
only about two million have been issued.

Now is the time to speak up, as I said time is moving quickly, and the number of veterans
who would be eligible are growing smaller all the time. Maybe that is what DOD is waiting for, the last Cold War Veteran to leave this mortal world. Then they will no longer have to listen
and the final chapter can be re-written. There never was a Cold War.

So everyone contact your elected officials in Washington, ask them to introduce legislation to
authorize, and DIRECT DoD to issue a Cold War Service Medal.

No longer should these brave men and women be ignored and dishonored. We have been snubbed too often for too long. Tell your Senators and Congressmen/women that enough is too much. Give these veterans the recognition and honor they deserve.

Jerald Terwilliger
National Vice Chairman/Treasurer
American Cold War Vetrans, Inc.
"We Remember"
www.americancoldwarvets.org