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A nation that neglects its warriors does not deserve to prosper. I understand we cannot control the conditions that must be endured during a time of war. Our Soldiers must often do many of the things that we take for granted every day under seemingly unbearable conditions, yet they persevere. The horrors they witness the stretching taut of every nerve, minds and bodies forced beyond the limits of humanity. These young Men and Women freely volunteer for such service and are trained in a encapsulated manner for a job for which many could never, no matter how long be prepared. We ask them to kill, maim, and maintain vigilance thousands of miles from home against an enemy that knows no rules of engagement, while back at home they would barely be of age to partake of an adult beverage.
We are however, in full control of the conditions they face here at home upon their return.
There are many ugly things about war, the actual horrors of which may not be the worst. The ugliest thing of all is the way our returning Veterans are forgotten, lost in and endless sea of politicking and bureaucratic red tape. Why in this day and age of such excessive diplomatic expenditure and vastly unnecessary and poorly managed social spending can we as nation not come up with a plan and funds to reintroduce our returning armed forces personnel back into society. There needs to be realistic emotional and mental screenings, with real Doctors who are not overwhelmed by work load, and psychological counseling for the troops and very immediate family made available if it is deemed necessary by those screenings.
There need also be a concerted effort to help these men and women secure meaningful employment, with employment come purpose and without purpose there is no hope.
Those severely injured in a foreign war or conflict, loss of limb, or other life changing injuries must have access to healthcare for life and that healthcare must be administered with dignity.
These are just a few thoughts from a man that realizes that at times when war is necessary,  we call upon young men and women to do our dirty work, both justified and not, they do not question that call and serve with honor. The question we must ask ourselves on Veteran’s day 11-11- 2014 is, are we returning this service in kind, sadly the answer is no. This is within our power to change.  ~ Nick Pensabene

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