Thursday, January 28, 2010

Cold War

Most people tend to forget (or forget on purpose) about the Cold War. People believe it was a "time of peace".
Many seem to ignore the fact that it was a time of great stress and fear. Those who are old enough may
remember fall out shelters, drop and cover(a rather useless attempt to ease the fears of everyone).

It was the US and our Allies against the Soviets and the Soviet bloc. The Soviets wanted to expand their
sphere of influence, while our side tried to stop the spread of Communism. Each side insisted that "the enemy"
must capitulate.

This led to many stand-offs, the rapid build up of military forces; and of course Nuclear Weapons. Though
weapons of assured mutual mass destruction, the world teetered on the brink of "Nuclear Winter". Neither side
wanted to use them, but were fearful of the other side making a first strike.

Through all this, our military stood ready and armed at all times. There was of course loss of lives as our planes
were shot down by enemy forces. Our ships were attacked and in one case the USS Pueblo(AGER 2), captured, and still held captive by North Korea.
The USS Scorpion (SSN-589) sank with 99 hands aboard, under still suspicious circumstances.

There was the Congo, Haiti, Dominican Republic, Lebanon, Berlin, the Cuban Missile Crisis, Granada, and
scores of other instances of potential all out war. We stood toe to toe with the enemy and hoped never to
hear the words "the balloon went up"; which would have meant the end of all we held near and dear.

And as of today there is still no authorized medal or award authorized to honor those who served during
the America's Longest War. The time has come and gone for these brave men and women to be recognized.

This could be the year of change. Right now there are bills in both houses of Congress that would authorize a
Cold War Service Medal to all who served in the military from Sept. 1945 to Dec. 1991.

Please contact both of your Senators ask them cosponsor S. 2743 The Cold War Service Medal Act 2009
and urge them to have it included in the National Defense Authorization Act 2011.

In the House of Representatives are a couple of bills of great interest to "Cold Warriors". Ask your Congressman/Congresswoman to cosponsor H.R. 4051 The Cold War Service Medal Act 2009, and be
sure it gets included in the NDAA 2011.

Another bill, H.RES. 900 would designate May 1 as Cold War Veterans Recognition Day. Ask your Representative to become a cosponsor of this bill also. This would be an easy and no cost way to honor
our veterans.

The Cold War ended in 1991, nineteen years is a long time to wait. Let this year be the year that our
country finally says Thank You to our veterans, many of these men and women served their tours and
never received any type of medal or award. Change this unequal treatment of veterans. We as a nation
should show our gratitude now and forever.

Jerald Terwilliger
National Chairman
American Cold War Veterans, Inc.

Time is getting short for Cold War Medal

Congress will very soon begin working on the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA)
for 2011.

This will be our best chance to have the Cold War Service Medal Act 2209 incorporated
into the NDAA, and best chance of our medal being authorized.

Please contact both of your Senators ask them to cosponsor S.2413 and ask them to have it included in the NDAA 2011.

Please contact your Congressman/Congresswoman ask them to cosponsor H.R. 4051 and have
in included in the NDAA 2011. This is an identical bill to the Senate version. If we can
get both houses to agree and have it included in the NDAA this will be our best chance
in many year to have the medal approved and authorized.

Also ask your Representative to cosponsor H.RES.900 to designate May 1 as Cold War
Veterans Recognition Day. This would be similar to the Cold War Victory Day that several
states have proclaimed in recent years. This would make it on a national level and get
more notice and support for all Cold Warriors.

We need to keep up the pressure. A simple email on the Senator's or Representative's
web page. A phone call to their office, and even their local offices. Just let them
know how important this is, and we need their support and co-sponsorship.

Let this be the year to finally receive the recognition and honor that all these brave
and dedicated veterans so justly deserve. We have all waited far too long, this year
is nineteen years since the end of the Cold War; time for our country to say Thank You!

Jerald Terwilliger
National Chairman
American Cold War Veterans, Inc.

New Test Help Spot PTSD - Researchers Find New Method to Identify Biomarkers for PTSD

A U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs-funded study at the University of Minnesota and Minneapolis VA Medical Center has used magnetoencephalography (MEG) to identify a biological marker in the brains of persons exhibiting post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

The study is published in the January 20 issue of the Journal of Neural Engineering. The lead researchers are Apostolos Georgopoulos, M.D., Ph.D., and Brian Engdahl., Ph.D., who are both members of the Brain Sciences Center at the Minneapolis VA Medical Center and University of Minnesota.

According to the study the subjects were a group of 74 veterans in Minnesota and Wisconsin with a likely current PTSD diagnosis. Some of the veterans had been in combat conflicts including World War II, or the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, or most frequently the Vietnam War.

The researchers were able to diagnose PTSD using MEG. MEG is a non-invasive technique that measures magnetic fields in the brain generated by electrical activity, which the University of Minnesota says conventional brain scans (X-ray, CT, or MRI) are unable to do. The MEG measurements of tens of thousands of brain cells enabled the researchers to locate specific biomarkers in the brains of patients exhibiting PTSD. The researchers reported more than 90 percent accuracy in differentiating PTSD patients from healthy control subjects using MEG.

PTSD, according to the National Institute of Mental Health, is "an anxiety disorder that can develop after exposure to a terrifying event or ordeal in which grave physical harm occurred or was threatened. Traumatic events that may trigger PTSD include violent personal assaults, natural or human-caused disasters, accidents, or military combat."

"These findings document robust differences in brain function between the PTSD and control groups that can be used for differential diagnosis and which possess the potential for assessing and monitoring disease progression and effects of therapy," Dr. Georgopoulos said in a press release.

The University of Minnesota says this research on detecting post-traumatic stress disorder, follows success in using MEG in detecting other brain diseases, such as Alzheimer's and multiple sclerosis.

Adapted in part from a University of Minnesota Press release:

Jerald Terwilliger
National Chairman
American Cold War Veterans, Inc

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

US Miliary Women Sexually Harassed, Abused, Raped

1/3rd of Women in US Military Raped | NEWS JUNKIE POST

According to NPR, “In 2003, a survey of female veterans found that 30 percent said they were raped in the military. A 2004 study of veterans who were seeking help for post-traumatic stress disorder found that 71 percent of the women said they were sexually assaulted or raped while serving. And a 1995 study of female veterans of the Gulf and earlier wars, found that 90 percent had been sexually harassed.”

The BBC recently reported on The Lonely Soldier: The Private War of Women Serving in Iraq by Helen Benedict. This book examines the extreme difficulties female soldiers have in serving abroad. Benedict interviewed several women in the military to get a deeper understanding of the issue, and some of their stories were real eye openers.

Army specialist Chantelle Henneberry spoke of some of her experiences in Iraq, “Everybody’s supposed to have a battle buddy in the army, and females are supposed to have one to go to the latrines with, or to the showers – that’s so you don’t get raped by one of the men on your own side. But because I was the only female there, I didn’t have a battle buddy. My battle buddy was my gun and my knife.”

Another study concluded that 90% of all women serving are sexually harassed. Another one estimates that 90% of all the rapes do not get reported, despite supposedly easier ways to report the crime with confidentiality since 2005. Either way, this appears to be an epidemic that needs to be dealt with.

An online discussion from a former soldier whose identity is being protected had this to say, “At least a rape ends. It’s the day-to-day degradation that eats at you. None of my friends who were raped on active duty reported it. Or if we tried, we were told to shut up for ‘morale.’ Working with your rapist on a daily basis isn’t a lot of fun, believe me.”

How the military is dealing with this appears to demonstrate a pattern of sweeping it under the rug. In 2008, 62% of those that were convicted of sexual assault or rape received very lenient punishments such as demotion, suspension, or a written reprimand.

This problem is not confined to the US military either. This abuse is rampant among private defense contractors overseas as well, as recently highlighted by the recent press about Jamie Leigh Jones. Ms. Jones was in Iraq in 2005 when seven Halliburton/KBR employees drugged and brutally gang-raped her. Her injuries were so extensive that she had lacerations to her vagina and anus, her breast implants were ruptured, and her pectoral muscles torn. The response of KBR was to lock her in a shipping container with only a bed, and to deny her food, water, and medical treatment. The rape kit that was taken after she regained consciousness was mysteriously lost.

This crime eventually led to an amendment being added to the defense appropriations bill by Sen. Al Franken (D-MN). This would require defense contractors to allow their employees access to US courts in cases of rape or sexual assault, regardless of where they are stationed. The 30 Republican senators voted against this amendment are currently being humiliated on the Republicans for Rape website and by John Stewart on the Daily Show.

The culture of sexual violence against women that is allowed to exist in both the US military and private contractors needs to come to an end. When almost a third of all women serving are raped, and over two thirds sexually assaulted, this problem is rampant and systemic.

Jerald Terwilliger
National Chairman
American Cold War Veterans

Bills important to Cold War Veterans

The following bills are pending in Congress. We need everyone to contact both their Senators to become cosponsors for S.2743 The Cold War Service Medal Act 2009, introduced
by Senator Snowe of Maine. Currently with 5 cosponsors:
Sen Kerry, John F. [MA] - 1/20/2010
Sen Kirk, Paul Grattan, Jr. [MA] - 1/20/2010
Sen Landrieu, Mary L. [LA] - 11/5/2009
Sen Lincoln, Blanche L. [AR] - 11/5/2009
Sen Menendez, Robert [NJ] - 11/19/2009
Sen Webb, Jim [VA] - 11/5/200

If you Senator is not on the list ask them to cosponsor S.2743, ask for it to be included
in the NDAA 2011.

In the House are several bills:H.R. 4051 The Cold War Service Medal Act 2009(a companion
bill to the one in the Senate introduced by Congressman Israel with 11 cosponsors:
Rep Altmire, Jason [PA-4] - 1/21/2010
Rep Brady, Robert A. [PA-1] - 1/21/2010
Rep Gerlach, Jim [PA-6] - 1/21/2010
Rep Higgins, Brian [NY-27] - 11/19/2009
Rep Murphy, Tim [PA-18] - 1/21/2010
Rep Pascrell, Bill, Jr. [NJ-8] - 11/16/2009
Rep Pingree, Chellie [ME-1] - 1/21/2010
Rep Platts, Todd Russell [PA-19] - 1/21/2010
Rep Ross, Mike [AR-4] - 1/21/2010
Rep Thompson, Glenn [PA-5] - 11/19/2009
Rep Wittman, Robert J. [VA-1] - 1/21/2010

If your representative is missing please ask them to become a cosponsor, ask it to be
included in the NDAA 2011

Also H.RES.900 Supporting the goals and ideals of a Cold War Veterans Recognition Day to honor the sacrifices and contributions made by members of the Armed Forces during the Cold War
This would designate May 1 as Cold War Veterans Recognition Day with 48 cosponsors:
Rep Abercrombie, Neil [HI-1] - 11/17/2009
Rep Ackerman, Gary L. [NY-5] - 11/17/2009
Rep Aderholt, Robert B. [AL-4] - 12/1/2009
Rep Andrews, Robert E. [NJ-1] - 11/17/2009
Rep Arcuri, Michael A. [NY-24] - 11/17/2009
Rep Bartlett, Roscoe G. [MD-6] - 12/1/2009
Rep Bishop, Timothy H. [NY-1] - 11/16/2009
Rep Boozman, John [AR-3] - 12/3/2009
Rep Connolly, Gerald E. "Gerry" [VA-11] - 11/17/2009
Rep Courtney, Joe [CT-2] - 11/17/2009
Rep Crowley, Joseph [NY-7] - 11/17/2009
Rep Davis, Susan A. [CA-53] - 11/17/2009
Rep Emerson, Jo Ann [MO-8] - 12/1/2009
Rep Eshoo, Anna G. [CA-14] - 11/17/2009
Rep Fortenberry, Jeff [NE-1] - 12/7/2009
Rep Franks, Trent [AZ-2] - 12/1/2009
Rep Hall, John J. [NY-19] - 11/17/2009
Rep Harman, Jane [CA-36] - 11/17/2009
Rep Heinrich, Martin [NM-1] - 11/17/2009
Rep Higgins, Brian [NY-27] - 11/17/2009
Rep Hinchey, Maurice D. [NY-22] - 11/17/2009
Rep Johnson, Timothy V. [IL-15] - 12/3/2009
Rep Kirk, Mark Steven [IL-10] - 12/1/2009
Rep Langevin, James R. [RI-2] - 11/17/2009
Rep Larsen, Rick [WA-2] - 11/17/2009
Rep LoBiondo, Frank A. [NJ-2] - 12/3/2009
Rep Loebsack, David [IA-2] - 11/17/2009
Rep Lowey, Nita M. [NY-18] - 12/7/2009
Rep Massa, Eric J. J. [NY-29] - 11/16/2009
Rep McMahon, Michael E. [NY-13] - 11/19/2009
Rep Meeks, Gregory W. [NY-6] - 11/17/2009
Rep Murphy, Scott [NY-20] - 11/17/2009
Rep Platts, Todd Russell [PA-19] - 12/7/2009
Rep Rehberg, Denny [MT] - 12/1/2009
Rep Rogers, Mike J. [MI-8] - 12/1/2009
Rep Ross, Mike [AR-4] - 11/17/2009
Rep Sanchez, Loretta [CA-47] - 11/17/2009
Rep Sestak, Joe [PA-7] - 11/17/2009
Rep Smith, Adam [WA-9] - 11/17/2009
Rep Snyder, Vic [AR-2] - 11/17/2009
Rep Taylor, Gene [MS-4] - 11/17/2009
Rep Thompson, Glenn [PA-5] - 11/19/2009
Rep Tonko, Paul D. [NY-21] - 11/17/2009
Rep Towns, Edolphus [NY-10] - 11/17/2009
Rep Wamp, Zach [TN-3] - 12/1/2009
Rep Weiner, Anthony D. [NY-9] - 11/17/2009
Rep Wittman, Robert J. [VA-1] - 12/3/2009
Rep Wolf, Frank R. [VA-10] - 12/3/2009

Again contact your Representative ask them to cosponsor this bill and vote for it when
it reaches the full House Floor.

And H.CON.RES 207 Expressing the sense of the Congress regarding the victory of the United States in The Cold War and the Fall of the Berlin Wall.
With 24 cosponsors:

Rep Bartlett, Roscoe G. [MD-6] - 11/3/2009
Rep Blackburn, Marsha [TN-7] - 11/3/2009
Rep Burton, Dan [IN-5] - 11/3/2009
Rep Calvert, Ken [CA-44] - 11/3/2009
Rep Chaffetz, Jason [UT-3] - 11/3/2009
Rep Coble, Howard [NC-6] - 11/3/2009
Rep Conaway, K. Michael [TX-11] - 11/3/2009
Rep Culberson, John Abney [TX-7] - 11/3/2009
Rep Foxx, Virginia [NC-5] - 11/3/2009
Rep Gallegly, Elton [CA-24] - 11/3/2009
Rep Hoekstra, Peter [MI-2] - 11/3/2009
Rep Inglis, Bob [SC-4] - 11/3/2009
Rep Jenkins, Lynn [KS-2] - 11/3/2009
Rep Lamborn, Doug [CO-5] - 11/3/2009
Rep Latta, Robert E. [OH-5] - 11/3/2009
Rep Linder, John [GA-7] - 11/5/2009
Rep McClintock, Tom [CA-4] - 11/3/2009
Rep Myrick, Sue Wilkins [NC-9] - 11/3/2009
Rep Posey, Bill [FL-15] - 11/5/2009
Rep Price, Tom [GA-6] - 11/3/2009
Rep Rogers, Harold [KY-5] - 11/3/2009
Rep Wamp, Zach [TN-3] - 11/3/2009
Rep Wolf, Frank R. [VA-10] - 11/3/2009
Rep Young, C.W. Bill [FL-10] - 11/3/2009

I ask that you please all contact your Senators and Representatives, ask them to cosponsor and vote for passage of these bills.

Jerald Terwilliger
National Chairman
American Cold War Veterans, Inc

atomic veterans to get their day in court dnd compensation program an insult they say

atomic veterans to get their day in court dnd compensation program an insult they say

Our Canadian friends are fighting a battle similar to the one our sister group NAAV National Association
of Atomic Veterans are waging here in the US

Jerald Terwilliger
National Chairman
American Cold War Veterans

Defense Department to expedite PTSD claims

The Defense Department has agreed to expedite the claims of possibly thousands of Iraq and Afghanistan military veterans who suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder but have been denied benefits, a veterans group announced Monday.

More than 4,000 veterans could be eligible for benefits available from a class-action lawsuit if they left the military because of PTSD, the veterans' advocacy group National Veterans Legal Services said at a press conference in Washington.

The original class-action suit was filed in December 2008 by seven veterans who suffer from PTSD but who were denied a required rating to make them eligible for a variety of long-term benefits.

A federal judge in Washington last month accepted a list of some 4,300 veterans who may also have been improperly denied the benefits. A court-authorized mailing is now going out to veterans on the list, telling them they can join the suit if they qualify.

"The legal notice gives thousands of veterans the right to join this class action under terms that are likely to result in millions of dollars in monetary and health care benefits," said Bart Stichman, a spokesman for National Veterans Legal Services.

Eligible veterans who respond to the notices will receive an expedited review of their disability rating and, if applicable, a correction of their military records to comply with the law. Benefits then would begin for six months until a further review and resolution of each medical case to establish permanent, long-term payouts.

"I fought one war for my country abroad, but I now am fighting a different battle here at home," said former U.S. Marine Cpl. Tyler Einarson, 28, "the battle to get health care benefits to which I and thousands of other servicemen are entitled."

Most of those eligible to join the lawsuit received disability discharges related to their military service in Iraq or Afghanistan from December 2002 through mid-October 2008, when the Defense Department is thought to have ended the challenged denials.

Jerald Terwilliger
National Chairman
American Cold War Veterans,

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Arguments For A Cold War Medal

Arguments for a Cold War Service Medal:

1. No Campaign Medal exists to recognize the dedicated participation of these service members who "Stood Watch" in the cause of promoting world Peace and stability, and who also participated in hundreds of military exercises and operations that occurred between the start of the Cold War on 02 September 1945 and the end of the Cold War on 26 December 1991.
a) Although there have been some instances where a medal or ribbon such as Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal, KDSM, Vietnam Service Medal have been issued; the vast majority of veterans did not receive any medal.
b) Service members stood on the line in the Fulda Gap, facing a force ten times their size. They did this knowing that they
were present only to "slow down" the Soviets.
c) Missile silos, ships and submarines SAC planes were all armed and ready 24/7

2. Millions of Cold War Veterans prevented communist world domination and nuclear war, and it is fitting that these service members who served Honorably during this era receive proper governmental recognition for their efforts in the form of the timely award of the Cold War Service Medal.
a) Another reason many Cold War Veterans received no awards was due to so called "early discharge", at the discretion
of the Secretary of Defense, as reduction in force. This means they did not even receive a Good Conduct Medal.
b_ Many of our allies have either issued a Cold War Medal or are in the process of debating and issuing a medal.
c) Since 1991 several medals and ribbons have been issued: Overseas Service, Sea Service and others, which our Cold War
Veterans were not eligible to receive; having been released from duty prior to that date.

3.During this period, thousands of these service members were killed, wounded, and became missing in Cold War overseas operations, which were separate and distinct from other recognized wars such as the Korean War and the Vietnam War. In addition many were exposed to chemicals, atomic radiation, and other substances that created health problems; without the
service members knowledge.
a) Although the VFW reports approximately 380 deaths in the Cold War, there were in fact many more that were reported as
"operator error", "training accidents"; which were in fact due to hostile actions.
b) These incidents made the "morning report", but not the morning newspaper
c) Veterans exposed to Atomic Radiation are just now being recognized for their valor, and dangers they faced.
d) Many service members were treated with serums untested and not approved by FDA. Service members used as
human guinea pigs, nothing was explained as to possible risks, and they were unable to refuse these treatments.
e) Korea, Vietnam, Beirut, Granada, the Congo, Hati, Dominican Republic were all part of the Cold War

4.The United States Government has not properly recognized the dedicated service of these Veterans who sacrificed so much, with many of their actions and activities shrouded in secrecy to this day, more than seventeen years removed, so that they receive and maintain no identity as Cold War era Veterans.
a) The National Defense Service Medal, which today is issued to recruits when basic training is completed, is another example.
Prior to 9/11 2001 this medal was only issued in specific time periods. Once again many veterans due to the period of their
service missed this medal.
b) The Global War on Terrorism and Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary were also issued after the fact for our veterans.
c) The Armed Forces Service Medal was issued in 1996, it was not made retroactive, thus we missed again.
d) Many service member received "early discharge", at the discretion of the Secretary of Defense, as "reduction in forces".

5. The award of the Cold War Service Medal to these Veterans by the United States Congress, via the Secretary of Defense, is supported by the American Cold War Veterans, and supported via resolution by the Veterans of Foreign Wars, AMVETS, the Air Force Sergeants Association, the Naval Reserve Association, the State Guard Association of the United States, and other Veterans organizations.
a) These VSO's support the Cold War Service Medal as an honor that is just and due.
b) Said VSO's are also fighting loss of membership and see this medal as a possible means to increase membership.

6. Advocates For Cold War Veterans' Honor, feels that concerned People who support the award of the Cold War Service Medal to these service members, that they begin to heal the wounds of Cold War Veterans, their families and friends affected by that, and that they bring Honor back unto their loved ones, themselves and their country.
a) Our veterans have waited for too long to be recognized and remembered.
b) 2009 marks the 20th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall, and the 17th anniversary of the demise of the Soviet
Union, and thus the end of the Cold War.
c) That makes this year as celebrations around the world take note of the fall of the Berlin Wall a most opportunistic time
to remember and honor our veterans, too long forgotten, a Cold War Medal.

Jerald Terwilliger
National Chairman
American Cold War Veterans

"We Remember"

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

South Korea ask North to allow search for remains

SEOUL (Reuters) - South Korea's president proposed a humanitarian project with rival North Korea on Monday under which the two states would cooperate in repatriating remains of tens of thousands of soldiers killed during the 1950-53 Korean War.

The reclusive North allowed U.S. military teams into the country for several years to search for remains of U.S. soldiers killed during the war in a bit of rare cooperation that went on despite difficult diplomatic times.

"South Korea will not forget those who gave their lives on foreign soil," Lee Myung-bak said in a New Year's address.

Lee also repeated a call for North Korea to return to stalled nuclear disarmament talks and said he wanted a new chapter in cooperation between the states, technically at war because their conflict ended with a cease fire and not a formal peace treaty.

He said the recovery project would be an appropriate way to mark the 60th anniversary of the start of the war in which U.S.-led U.N. forces and South Korean troops fought North Korea and China.

"This can only come out of trust between the two countries. It is also a problem that will likely be solved with money," said Kim Yong-hyun, an expert on the North at Dongguk University.

There are about 39,000 soldiers from the South killed during the war whose remains are thought to be in North Korea, the Defense Ministry said. The two states have not had a formal joint repatriation project before.

Destitute North Korea, angered at Lee's moves to suspend massive handouts until Pyongyang ends its atomic ambitions, had cut ties with the South Korean leader after he took office about two year ago. Last year, it warmed to Seoul in what analysts saw as an attempt to win aid for its battered economy.

The two Koreas position more than 1 million troops near one of the world's most militarized borders, while the United States keeps about 28,000 soldiers in the South to support its military.

Conflict between the two Koreas would inflict severe damage to the two states and devastate the economies of North Asia, which make up one-sixth of the global economy.

JPAC, the U.S. unit charged with finding remains of war dead, sent 33 missions to North Korea from 1996 to 2005, leading to the identification of more than 20 sets of remains, U.S. military officials said.

The United States in 2005 ended the recovery missions by the Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command as tensions were rising in nuclear negotiations with North Korea. There are about 8,100 U.S. servicemen not accounted for from the Korean War, JPAC said.