“Unfortunately, I know what it’s like for your battle buddy to not be your true battle buddy. The first of these was a brief, conventionally fought war in March–April 2003, in which a combined force of troops from the United States and Great Britain (with smaller contingents from several other countries) invaded Iraq and rapidly defeated Iraqi military … She decided to pursue health care and her earned benefits with VA. Swinners’ first interactions with VA were less than ideal. After all of this, I am still here. From shop FantasticDesignsShop. “Every single day was tough emotionally, wondering if you were going to make it to the next day. Audio 05:52 . Swinners deployed to Iraq in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom. Looking back now, I think, how did I do that?”. Republican and Republican-leaning veterans are much more likely than veterans who identify with or lean toward the Democratic Party to say the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan were worth fighting: 45% of Republican veterans vs. 15% of Democratic veterans say the war in Iraq was worth fighting, while 46% of … If you’d like to contribute a story to VAntage Point, learn how you can submit a guest blog at http://www.blogs.va.gov/VAntage/how-to-submit-a-guest-post/, Posted on Dec 18, 2020December 16, 2020 131 views, Posted on Dec 17, 2020December 11, 2020 2 comments 6k views, Posted on Dec 17, 2020December 11, 2020 1 comment 324 views, Posted on Dec 9, 2020December 9, 2020 2 comments 454 views, Gregory Walker   FREDONIA — Matt Wronski, a Marine Corps veteran and Fredonia High School graduate, has “Judge” by his side to help heal the battle scars from his five tours in Iraq, thanks to the Veterans Club at the State University at Fredonia and WNYHeroes, a non-profit that supports veterans and their families. Get the latest updates on COVID-19 vaccines at VA. As veterans of the unending and expanding wars conducted over the last 16 years, we know intimately that U.S. military intervention exacerbates and further militarizes … I felt that all of my service was for naught.”. “I feared the enemy, but I knew the enemy wasn’t just the insurgents. In fact, she earned two. Iraq Veterans Against the War (IVAW) condemns in no uncertain terms the bombing of Sharyat airbase in Syria six days ago by Donald Trump’s administration. Every morning, I would hear the Islamic call to prayer and then I would hear mortar rounds. Throughout the entire Iraq War, there have been human rights abuses on all sides of the conflict. David G. Bellavia, of New York. An official website of the United States government. Iraq War Veterans health issues If you served in Iraq during Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF) or Operation New Dawn (OND)—anytime between March 19, 2003, and December 15, 2011—you may be at risk of certain health conditions. I may not look like a Veteran, I don’t look like a disabled Veteran, but I have invisible wounds.”. With members across the nation, IVAW aims to educate the public about these conflicts, in the U.S. and abroad. Iraq Veterans against the War (IVAW) Founded in 2004, the IVAW was established to call for the withdrawal of troops from Iraq and Afghanistan, while also seeking the removal of occupying forces from Afghanistan. Studies have consistently shown that veterans of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars exhibit high rates of PTSD, depression, and substance use disorders. “The clerk told me he needed the name of my husband because he was the Veteran, not me. Sand, Dust and Particulates It would take several years for Swinners to reengage with VA, her health and her benefits. For many Iraq War veterans, a whole new phase of struggle began when they returned home from war… -JFK The Iraq War Veterans Organization, or IWVO, was founded on April 12, 2003, by Russell K. Terry and William T. Hutchison. Not sure if you qualify? Iraq combat veteran Paul Rieckhoff, the founder of Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America, said what’s missing from the national conversation about recent hostilities with Iran is a strategy.   Anger Problems in Veterans … However, I had one good arm left and was able to manage my bladder and bowel needs very well using Conveen … The site is secure. I am a proud female Veteran and I am not invisible.”. She is now an advocate for her fellow women Veterans to use VA health care. She was often harassed but tried to shake it off and proceed with her efforts to be the best soldier she could. Any mental condition or physical condition that started or was worsened by your time in the service may be eligible for Iraq War Veterans Disability Benefits. He is the first living Iraq War veteran to receive the honor. “I’m so glad I joined and served my country. After returning from her tour in Iraq, Swinners had a hard time adjusting and not being recognized as a solider or a Veteran. What we’ve learned in the 13 years since the start of the Iraq War is that a soldier’s journey is not quickly over. Despite everything she has endured, she has no regrets. There are many things to deal with once he or she returns home from war. Iraq War Veterans: Still Coping with Invisible Injuries. If you served in Iraq during Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF) or Operation New Dawn (OND)—anytime between March 19, 2003, and December 15, 2011—you may be at risk of certain health conditions. Double-amputee Iraq war veteran fulfills dream of becoming a police officer; Police: Armed suspect tried to steal officer’s gun, burn them with aerosol torch; Officer fighting for his life after being dragged by car during traffic stop – police say this was the driver; British lad stabs mum 118 times, calls cops and says … Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and anger are common in Iraq and Afghanistan war veterans. Service members do not deploy whilst unhealthy, but often … A Pilot Study of Airborne Hazards and Other Toxic Exposures in Iraq War Veterans … I had to carry a club with me just in case.”. She has come to a point in her life, thanks to VA, where she can talk about it. December 4, 2020 at 10:39 am. The .gov means it’s official. Iraq War Veterans may have been exposed to a range of environmental and chemical hazards that carried potential health risks. Iraq War Veterans, Veteran Iraq War T-Shirt, Iraq War Vet, Iraq War, Army Veteran, Military Veterans, Second Persian Gulf War, Iraq Wars FantasticDesignsShop. Mark S. Villamac Ho joined the military after the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks and deployed in early 2003 to Al Numaniyah, Iraq, as an aircraft rescue firefighter. Your injuries didn’t have to occur in Iraq to obtain Iraq War Veterans Disability Benefits. After four years in the Army and four years in the Army National Guard, she separated from the military. Learn about these conditions and what to do to take care of your health. “IAVA is vital to the future of our veterans – and the future of all Americans. “An Army recruiter approached me at school one day and I thought, You know what, let’s do this, so I signed up. It will either break you or make you stronger. That is why I am proud to support this incredible organization,” said Craig Newmark, founder of craigslist and Craig Newmark Philanthropies. Stay informed and help us prepare. With everything, there is always a risk. On the 58th anniversary of D-Day, June 6, 2002, Swinners, the first person in her family to serve in the military, raised her right hand and took the oath to become a soldier. Find out if you can get disability compensation (monthly payments) and other benefits if you have an illness or injury caused—or made worse—by your active-duty service. What Swinners didn’t expect was that she would also face and fight an enemy face-to-face inside the perceived protection of being inside the wire at her base. Official Blog of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, Posted on Friday, December 4, 2020 10:00 amNovember 30, 2020 Posted in Health, Women Veterans by VAntage Point Contributor 1 comment 3k views. She served her country proudly and credits her mother for always pushing her to be the best version of herself. A sense of duty, fear and the unknown came over her. Iraq War Veteran Hats Buy Iraq War Veteran hats & caps here and save, plus get free USPS domestic shipping on orders $100 or more. An Iraq War veteran injured overseas now has a new place to call home. Issued on: 23/09/2020 - 18:52 Modified: 23/09/2020 - 18:57. Swinners searches an Iraqi woman as part of Operation Iraqi Freedom. Before sharing sensitive information, make sure you're on a federal government site. Take these steps to make sure you’re taking care of your health: Talk to your primary health care provider or your local VA environmental health coordinator about any health concerns related to your military service.Find your local VA environmental health coordinator, Ask about joining these registries to document your exposures and health concerns:The Airborne Hazards and Open Burn Pit RegistryThe Gulf War Registry. Dad-of-two Lance Shingler, 34, was crippled by post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) since leav… Philbrook’s story is one of dozens that Iraq War veterans and their families shared with Yahoo News this month, the 10-year anniversary of the start of the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq. I was left paralysed and bladder & bowel incontinent. After returning from her tour in Iraq, Swinners had a hard time adjusting and not being recognized as a solider or a Veteran. These are warrior tears. She cried so much. She was expecting to face an enemy. Find out if you can get VA health care benefits. See if you qualify for disability benefits due to:Gulf War IllnessContact with hazardous materials. In fact, Iraq and Afghanistan War veterans are at risk for a number of mental health problems. Life in a war zone circa 2004 was often a balance of monotonous preparation and waiting followed by moments of sheer terror. Federal government websites often end in .gov or .mil. It was an enemy within the ranks.”. She would get told by her fellow Soldiers and people she met in the community that she was too pretty or too young to have served. Iraq War, also called Second Persian Gulf War, (2003–11), conflict in Iraq that consisted of two phases. As a two-tour Iraq War veteran who survived five gunshots to the chest in 2007, Jake Whipkey understands the … I just left. The https:// ensures that you're connecting to the official website and that any information you provide is encrypted and sent securely. Learn more about your VA health care benefits, your health care team, and where you’ll go for care. Iraq War Veteran, Changing Places user. War: Iraq War, 2003-2011 Branch: Army Service Location: Iraq Theme: The Global War on Terror: Edward C. Dahlgren War: World War, 1939-1945 Branch: Army Service Location: Oberhoffen-sur-Moder, France; European Theater Theme: Medal of Honor: Eugene Lewis Daniel, Jr. War: World War, 1939-1945 Branch: Army I was fearful to even walk around our forward operating base.”. Swinners became the first person in her family to earn a college degree. April 9, 2019 April 9, 2019. The experience of a traumatic event has been connected with a number of physical health problems as well as unhealthy … It was also my fellow soldiers. "War will exist until that distant day when the conscientious objector enjoys the same reputation and prestige that the warrior does today." The physical health of veterans has also been found to suffer. Benita Swinners grew up just outside Dallas and was raised by her single mother. It was difficult for all females because we didn’t have our own separate showers, so a female would have to pull guard for me. I was blown up in Iraq in 2003. Iraq War Veterans Disability Benefits are available for many different conditions. Veteran Marine Corps Sgt. A TRAUMATISED veteran killed himself after losing nine pals in the Iraq war, heartbroken friends say. VA’s Women’s Health Transition Training brings information to transitioning service women, Stephen Wolfert: De-CRUIT and Veteran therapy, VA Adapting to meet women Veterans’ needs, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QmiqnAQTTCI. Soldiers returning from Iraq and Afghanistan are showing high rates of PTSD, alcohol use, depression and difficulties with anger. I am my mom’s only child and I told her that I would be leaving. The original intent of the organization was to ensure that veterans returning from the war in Iraq, would not be subjected to the same treatment of veterans from the Vietnam war, in which … The fight would linger with her for years. After his son is killed in a police traffic stop, Iraq War and Marine Corps veteran Lincoln Jefferson goes to extraordinary lengths in a quest for justice. It was extremely difficult because we ended up getting attached to an infantry unit, which at that time was unheard of because infantry units hadn’t open to females.”. Jennifer Roy is a public affairs specialist for VA North Texas Health Care System. “Even though I’m crying now, these aren’t tears of defeat. The president presented the Medal of Honor to former Army Staff Sgt. “It took a minute. It was a very difficult time to get through, but I did. “When I got to Iraq, I was one of just three females in our unit. “I am a survivor of military sexual trauma in Iraq. She would get told by her fellow Soldiers and people she met in the community that she was too pretty or too young to have served. McNutt was an Iraq War veteran who worked for Toyota in Blue Spring, New Albany 'TikTok is one messed up app,' Twitter user Elise wrote. Thank you for your service and your sacrifices. Your email address will not be published. — VAntage Point Contributors provide insight and perspective on a wide range of Veterans issues. “It was terrifying,” recalled. A nonprofit thanked veteran Johnathon Replogle Thursday for his service with a new home in Punta Gorda. During their deployment to Iraq in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF) , many Veterans were exposed to a wide array of toxic substances and psychologic stressors, most notably airborne/environmental pollutants from open burn pits. Disability really can and does happen to anyone. “I’ve been proud to serve on IAVA’s Board for eleven years as they continue to fight for the veteran community and … As Swinners neared the end of high school, she met someone that would provide an opportunity to change her path in life. She made the choice not to report the assault because she thought she was supposed to be “one of the guys” and that it would be easier to just deal with it. “I suffer from PTSD and anxiety like many Veterans. My invisible scars. I’m her baby but I told her it was going to be for the best.”. Swinners was sexually assaulted by another solider. She became a certified Zumba instructor, a homeowner and a federal employee in the years since she left the military. It was a fight that wouldn’t end with a cease-fire call or removal from the battlefield. Swinners takes things day by day and is moving forward from her traumas. We're working closely with the CDC and other federal partners to provide COVID-19 vaccines to Veterans and VA health care personnel. Your email address will not be published. Health problems caused by toxic chemicals or other hazardous materials in the environment, like: Illnesses or injuries caused by occupational (job-related) hazards: Chemicals, paints, radiation, and other hazards you may have come in contact with through your military job, Side effects of Mefloquine (brand name: Lariam®): A drug given to military personnel to help protect against malaria (an infectious disease transmitted by mosquitoes). Join the Airborne Hazards and Open Burn Pit Registry and the Gulf War Registry to document your exposures and health concerns. Required fields are marked *. Even with precautionary personal safety plans in place, it wasn’t enough. Four decades later, veterans of the Iran-Iraq war still can't forget. It was just the two of them. Learn about these conditions and what to do to take care of your health. To use this website, please, Illnesses or injuries caused by occupational (job-related) hazards, Side effects of Mefloquine (brand name: Lariam®), Find your local VA environmental health coordinator, Download our Toxic Embedded Fragments fact sheet (PDF), Learn more about the Depleted Uranium Follow-up Program, The Airborne Hazards and Open Burn Pit Registry. Sort By: Featured Items Newest Items Best Selling A to Z Z to A By Review … Free healthcare — Iraq War veterans can receive five years of free healthcare … The perspectives were diverse, ranging from baby-faced Army privates serving straight out of high school to veterans who re … Your browser is out of date. To pursue health care depression and difficulties with anger or she returns home from War team and! Risk for a number of mental health problems going to make it to the of! Crying now, I think, how did I do that? ” place call... Person in her family to earn a college degree be the best version of herself of Americans. 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