The Week of September 25th…What is going on?

I have written several articles chronicling how markets and banks, politicians and PTB have been moving and acting in the world.  Recently, I warned that as the markets, and now even countries, are on the verge of collapse, that Red Flag Operations may be resorted to by the PTB.

A Red Flag Operation is an act or set of events that are orchestrated by the PTB to re-focus US to their desired focus point and NOT have our attention focused on what is really going on.  I am not a conspiracist, but must admit I have always had many questions about the assassination of JFK and MLK. I think a lot of sensible people would admit the same.

I think we all now know how Ole GW got us into Iraq and consequently Afghanistan under the guise of WMDs.  I would also venture to say that we all know instinctively that the good ole boys on Wall Street criminally raped us blind and continue to do so.

But all of these past events pale given what may be potentially unfolding.  There is a flurry of disinformation out there and most of it is focused on Comet Elenin, Planet X, End of Days, etc.  However, I believe, as I have warned my readers, “don’t believe your lying eyes.”

What I believe is more important are these facts:

The insiders have vanished.  Chief executives, board members, and the head honchos gone, everywhere. These are the people who know.  Just a few weeks ago, they were out in force, buying up shares in their own companies with both hands.  No longer is that happening. They’ve disappeared, almost overnight.

“They’ve stopped buying,” says Charles Biderman, the chief executive of stock market research firm TrimTabs, which tracks the data. “Insiders aren’t buying this rally.” Insider stock purchases, which surged above $100 million a day in the market slump last month, have now collapsed to just $13 million a day.

Specifically I am talking about CEOS and Execs from these companies for example:

Sun Microsystems          Royal Bank of Scotland                 Bank Leumi of Israel
Lenovo                                Wellpoint                                            Ingersoll-Rand
Gasco                                   Syntel                                                   Motion Picture Television Fund
AgResearch                       Zain Telecom                                    Ethan Allen Institute
Uranium International Corp                                                     Argentina Central Bank
Hong Kong Exchanges & Clearing (CFO)

These are but a selection of over 200 “players” Biderman was referring to in his quote.  I selected these particular ones, not necessarily because they were the biggest, but they represent the universal nature of this sudden move.  The pervasiveness of who acted and how they all suddenly acted in the very same way is very strange and really cannot be explained as “normal market behavior.”

Even if there was insider information that a large market adjustment was coming, there would not be this universal and coordinated response.  However, rumors of a world-wide conflict “could” trigger just this response.  Historically, just prior to WWII and even Korea, similar financial moves were made.

It is true that during the week of September 25, Elenin will make its closest approach to earth. However, here is where it gets a bit interesting and beyond coincidence, President Obama leaves DC during this week to Denver.  FEMA and 101 Colorado agencies will have a major disaster drill in Denver on that week.  The US military will conduct Operation Cocked Pistol, a DEFCON1 exercise on 27 September in Denver!   Many NASA staff will arrive that week in Denver.  The CIA has announced moving 10,000 people to their new Denver offices.  There are multiple military trains loaded with tanks, personnel carriers, fuel trucks, etc., moving towards Denver as we speak.

The Senate and House of Reps will be out of DC during this week. They always take the month of August. This is the first time they are recessing again the next month.  The British Parlament leaves for recess for this week.   The main British royalty are nowhere to be found on these dates, no scheduled events.
The UN will be off during these dates.  The Russian Duma will be in recess during this week.  The pope will be off during this week.

These various events may be just one giant coincidence, but whew!  Those are a lot of facts coming together in a very strange way.  It seems everyone is getting the Hell outta of Dodge!

And let us not forget the bizarre cryptic words of President Obama during the 911 speech.
“Psalm 46 – 1 God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.
2 Therefore will not we fear, though the earth be removed,
and though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea;
3 though the waters thereof roar and be troubled, though the mountains shake with the swelling thereof.”

I will let you all be the judge of this information, but at the risk of sounding like a fool, I think we should look at this closely.  In war there is one fact I know from personal experience, those with the least amount of knowledge are the first causalities of conflict.

 

Making Sense of the Events in The Middle East

MSM tends to report the events in Egypt, Yemen, Tunsia, Bahrain, Syria, and Libya as if they were all the same.  The same MSM, both western and Arab tend to paint the involvement of the EU, UK, and the US as purely self interests related to oil.  In both cases to do so does not create an understanding of the real complex and in all cases, country specific issues.  Nor does these same western countries relate the events in the region to events at home in their own countries.

Let’s address the “oil” issue first. The truth is that the entire global economy, including the side-liners like Russia, China, and India economies,  must have a SECURE supply of oil.  If anyone of these nations were really “after the oil”, Kuwait would be a US territory as well as Iraq.  That is not the case in either country and the US pays MARKET price to these countries for their oil, just like everyone else.  The same could be said of the european countries as related to Libya.  So from my perspective and vantage point, the oil imperialism argument, primarily kept in the mainstream by Iran, is just a red herring argument.

When we look at the divisions within the Arab countries, Iran is the nation, fomenting the issues.  What most Westerners fail to grasp is the fact that while Iran is primarily a Shia nation, they are NOT Arabs!  Iran is Persian.  One only has to look deeply at how Iran has constantly be meddling in the affairs of Iraq to understand why there is more concern in the Arab world over the activities of Iran than there are concerns about Western interference.

That is not to say that the Arab countries are all that secure with their relationships with the US and EU, but these concerns are more related to the consistency that may be demonstrated by the US and the EU and NATO related to assisting in the security and protection of Arab countries in relationship to Iran.  these concerns are well founded and have resulted from the fickle manner in which both the US and NATO have acted in the past.  These concerns were voiced again when US Secretary Gates visited Saudi Arabia last week.

The GCC countries are especially worried about the Iranians , their aggressiveness in the region, and their ability to disrupt the flow of oil to the world.  GCC foreign ministers on Sunday condemned Iran’s “blatant” interference in the State of Kuwait’s internal affairs, accusing Iran of “planting espionage networks on [Kuwait’s] territory” to undermine the country’s security and stability and the interests of its citizens. In a statement issued at the conclusion of their extraordinary one-day meeting, the foreign ministers commended Kuwait’s security bodies for uncovering the sleeper cell of spies believed to be working covertly on Iran’s behalf. The ministers also affirmed their support for all the measures taken by the State of Kuwait to protect its national security.

The statement further noted that the senior government officials had expressed concern at what they called “continuous Iranian interference in the domestic affairs of the GCC countries, by conspiring against those nations’ national security … and instigating sectarian sedition between their GCC countries’ citizens, independence, principles of good neighborliness, international laws, the Charter of the UN and OIC.” The foreign ministers also welcomed the return of calm and stability to the Kingdom of Bahrain, praising the spirit of the Bahraini people who it said had sought the country’s higher interests.

Bahrain has the capabilities and wisdom to dealing with its internal affairs, said the ministers, whilst stressing that they “strongly condemn the Iranian interference” in Bahrain’s affairs. The senior government officials also stressed the legitimacy of the deployment of Peninsula Shield forces in Bahrain, which they indicated was compliant with an earlier defense agreement binding the six GCC countries – Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Oman, Qatar and UAE.

The GCC ministers further condemned the Iranian Shura Council’s national security and foreign affairs committee’s statement which claimed that Saudi Arabia’s policy was “playing with fire.” The Iranian statement, which also called on Saudi Arabia to pull out forces from Bahrain, “is a hostile position and is a provocative interference in the internal affairs of the GCC countries,” the ministers warned.

On Yemen, the foreign ministers voiced great concern over the deterioration of security and the growing divisions in the country, a matter that would undermine interests of citizens and economy as a whole. They called on all parties in Yemen to launch dialogue to ultimately reach reform and bring about social stability. The ministers said they respected the wishes and choices of the Yemeni people, adding that they would be establishing contact with the Yemeni government and opposition to address the conflict

Also on Sunday, the UAE’s Foreign Minister Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al-Nuhayyan said that there is a “huge contradiction” between Iran’s words and its deeds towards the GCC countries. “The espionage networks that were arrested in the State of Kuwait are strange [things to] happen from a neighboring country that always claims to have good neighborly relations with us,” Sheikh Abdullah told a joint news conference with GCC Secretary General Abdullatif Al-Zayyani that followed the ministers’ meeting.

The Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries are firmly behind the Bahraini King’s request to send Peninsula Shield forces to the Kingdom, he reiterated. Concerning events in Yemen, meanwhile, Sheikh Abdullah said the GCC countries would be contacting the government and opposition parties there in a bid to resolve their conflict. Al-Zayyani on his part said that there are currently numerous challenges facing the GCC countries, further reiterating the member states demand for “other countries not to interfere in the GCC countries’ affairs.

Meanwhile, Kuwait’s caretaker foreign minister Sheikh Dr. Mohammad Al-Sabah told a Kuwaiti daily Al-Qabas via phone following the meeting that the talks, as well as the concluding statement, “reflect the collective spirit of the GCC,” indicating that “GCC Foreign Ministers insisted on the common united fate of GCC countries,” whilst also noting that the Bahraini subject and current events in Kuwait were equally addressed during the meeting and stressing the cohesion of the GCC as a single unit. “The GCC proved to be capable of meeting its responsibilities, and showed that to the security of member states…meaning a threat to any GCC state is regarded as a threat to all countries of the region”.

Meanwhile, in the same article, Al-Qabas, also quoted GCC insiders as saying that the foreign ministers had agreed during the meeting that all the member states’ capabilities would be utilized to confront any potential threats against any member state. The sources further indicated that the senior government officials agreed on the principal measures that should be taken to face any Iranian threats, adding that an agreement was also reached to hold further top-level GCC meetings featuring senior security and defense personalities within the next couple of days to discuss the type of measures to be taken and the strategies to be utilized for their implementation.  The insiders further asserted that the GCC foreign ministers were unanimous in stressing the importance of eliminating “suspicious individuals” in member states, while ensuring that this process is not based on group identity. Other sources also revealed that an agreement was reached to “reinforce internal fronts” in the member states in order to confront any attempts to incite sectarianism.

Given these issues and the economic situations in each of the countries now experiencing internal conflicts it is crucial for the US, the EU, and NATO to develop a consistent and strong policy to support it’s vital Arab partners.  Players like Russia, China, and India are sitting on the sidelines looking for opportunities to exploit the failures of the US and EU policy in the region.  So far, their decision to remain on the sidelines, and even tacitily support Iran seems to have traction.  The politicians in the US and EU better get their act together before oil goes to $200 or $300 per barrel.  Commit to their Arab partners and support them unconditionally.

Seems Like Too Much Fear and Anxiety

I am reminded in these times of Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s first inaugural address in which he uttered those famous words; “let me assert my firm belief that the only thing we have to fear is fear itself—nameless, unreasoning, unjustified terror which paralyzes needed efforts to convert retreat into advance.”

In today’s noisy background with terrorists, natural disasters, two wars being prosecuted, swine flu, bird flu, global warming, corrupt politicians, and financial gangsters, I try to find a place of quiet to reflect on just what the hell is going on, really!  I also remember “Deep Throat’s” advice, follow the money.

In fact, I make it a daily habit and have reported my findings extensively in my blog. What I know is that since 2007, someone has picked our personal pockets for about $11 Trillion dollars, robbed our national collective treasuries, because I include the EU primarily in the mess, although the GCC states got popped also, for about $20 Trillion collectively.  Add on top of that the cost of the wars and well you see very quickly that all of these events did not just show up on the timeline spontaneously.

It appears that some amount of planning and cooperation has gone into the unfolding of these events.  There are literally hundreds of conspiracy theories, but that is not the focus of my thoughts just now.  My thoughts are centered on how did we let this happen?  I mean collectively we, as Americans and Europeans, sit docile as we are being raped.  Why?

I think the answer comes down to two words, fear and apathy.  Ok, I know I am not saying anything that profound.  However, if you consider that there might be a possibility that those responses were being socially engineered to occur, then that might be another story, wouldn’t it?

I am bringing this all up now because if I am correct in my little theory, then we are collectively about to see the grand finale between now and next spring.  It is just a necessary timing thing.  That means there will be a need to ratchet up the feelings of fear and insecurity.

Some possible coming attractions are:

All out currency war with the yen, dollar, and Euro seeing significant devaluations. Hyperinflation is coming to a country near you.

Red flag minor terrorist attacks in a city near you.

Watch out for inbound asteroids!

Another Trillion plus bailout of the banks will be coming just after the elections.

Official disclosure that there are indeed aliens, lots of them, and they are all not necessarily friendly, so fear all of them, presented in new holographic technology.

Look, I am not a conspiracy nut.  There is just too much disinformation out there to really know anything significantly important.  I am however a lover of patterns.  I have liked patterns ever since my grandfather, whose was a master Indian weaver, taught me the “secret” of the pattern.  Simply stated, if you pay attention closely to the pattern, you will soon see and know what comes next.

The real point is though, that if the pattern exists, then there is a necessity to elevate the sense of helplessness to secure the “final objective”.  This however is predicated on our “conditioned” response to the “events” as they are unfolded.  In this state of anxiety and fear we tend to readily give up our personal freedoms and rights to be “protected”.  What happens if we do not buy it? What if we collectively take FDR’s advice?  Just a thought.  It is late and I have had a lot of coffee.

A Deeper Look at Some Disturbing Math

Last week, I did an article concerning the plight of a lot of returning veterans from Iraq and Afghanistan, and for that matter and 35 years later from Vietnam.  The real story, as I dug further,  is even worse than I imagined and none of it is being elevated in MSM. The truth is we are losing more soldiers to suicide on a daily basis after they return than we are losing soldiers on the battle field.  On average 18 per day, every day!  There are, on average, 30 attempted suicides by returning veterans every day. The suicide rate among war veterans is extraordinary, new data reveals reported by The Army Times .

“Of the more than 30,000 suicides in this country each year, fully 20 percent of them are acts by veterans,” said VA Secretary Eric Shinseki at a VA-sponsored suicide prevention conference in January, Inter Press Service reported.

The Times noted that “In general, VA officials said, women attempt suicide more often, but men are more likely to succeed in the attempt.” The report cites access to health care and age — younger veterans are less likely to try — as two major factors in the suicide rate, and notes that the VA is seeking to strengthen its suicide prevention programs.

According to the National Coalition for Homeless Veterans, “Roughly 56 percent of all homeless veterans are African American or Hispanic, despite only accounting for 12.8 percent and 15.4 percent of the U.S. population respectively.” The struggle among veterans to return to everyday life has been documented over the years.

As a veteran of the Vietnam War and a multiple tour medic, I struggled with my demons for several years.  I never sought help or treatment, as so many of us did not.  Any soldier will tell you that “civilians” simply do not have a frame of reference to even begin to understand what a soldier is even coping with as he or she struggles to re-assimilate into civilian society.  Yes friends and family can be sympathetic and empathetic, but they have no frame of reference to say “I understand what you are going through.”

I have had a sense however, that the veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan were having even a rougher go of it than my alumni from Vietnam because of two factors.  First, there are a lot higher number of “drafted soldiers” in these campaigns.  No, there isn’t a draft, but so many people were placed into active combat duty because they were serving in the reserves, more than in any other war.

Secondly, there are so many older troops.  These are men and women who are not single, but have families, jobs and careers.  Suddenly they have been yanked from their lives and do three or four tours in combat zones.  Even the term “combat zones” have a very different meaning in these campaigns.  At least in Vietnam, we had some semblance of front lines and combat zones, but not in these campaigns.  No chance to hunker in a “hooch” and get a little R&R.  It is 24/7 on your toes in these campaigns.  The numbers are really showing it too.

The Associated Press reported in November 2007 that one in four homeless people across the nation is likely to be a veteran, even though veterans constitute a mere 11 percent of overall adults in the United States.  “And homelessness is not just a problem among middle-age and elderly veterans,” AP added. “Younger veterans from Iraq and Afghanistan are trickling into shelters and soup kitchens seeking services, treatment or help with finding a job.” Homelessness among women who served in Afghanistan and Iraq is on the rise.

The Boston Globe reported last year that “number of female service members who have become homeless after leaving the military has jumped dramatically in recent years.” One in ten homeless veterans under 45 years of age is a woman, statistics showed in July of 2009. “Some of the first homeless vets that walked into our office were single moms,” Paul Rieckhoff, Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America’s executive director and founder, told the Globe.

Troubling new data show there is an average of 950 suicide attempts each month by veterans who are receiving some type of treatment from the Veterans Affairs Department. Seven percent of the attempts are successful, and 11 percent of those who don’t succeed on the first attempt try again within nine months. The numbers, which come at a time when VA is strengthening its suicide prevention programs, show about 18 veteran suicides a day, about five by veterans who are receiving VA care.

Access to care appears to be a key factor, officials said, noting that once a veteran is inside the VA care program, screening programs are in place to identify those with problems, and special efforts are made to track those considered at high risk, such as monitoring whether they are keeping appointments.

A key part of the new data shows the suicide rate is lower for veterans aged 18 to 29 who are using VA health care services than those who are not. That leads VA officials to believe that about 250 lives have been saved each year as a result of VA treatment. VA’s suicide hotline has been receiving about 10,000 calls a month from current and former service members. The number is 1-800-273-8255. Service members and veterans should push 1 for veterans’ services.  Dr. Janet Kemp, VA’s national suicide prevention coordinator, credits the hotline with rescuing 7,000 veterans who were in the act of suicide — in addition to referrals, counseling and other help.

”We have now nearly two million vets of Iraq and Afghanistan and we still haven’t seen the type of mobilization of resources necessary to handle an epidemic of veteran suicides,” Aaron Glantz, an editor at New America Media editor and author of “The War Comes Home”, told IPS.  ”With [President Barack] Obama surging in Afghanistan coupled with his unwillingness to withdraw speedily from Iraq, it means we have more veterans who have served more and more tours and as a result we have an escalating number of people coming home with PTSD, depression and other mental health issues,” Glantz continued.

Health officials have pointed to the multiple tours of duty served by many U.S. soldiers deployed to Afghanistan and Iraq as one of the stresses placed on military personnel that differs from previous wars fought by the U.S.  “The unfortunate truth is that the real challenge begins when these service men and women return home and readjust to day-to-day life,” said Rep. Michael McMahon, co-founder of the Congressional Invisible Wounds Caucus.

“The Department of Defense and the Department of Veterans Affairs must be prepared with the appropriate staff and funding to conduct post-deployment psychological screenings with a mental health professional for all service men and women,” he said. “Evidently, the paper questionnaires currently in use simply do not suffice. How many more young men and women must die before we provide the necessary mental health care?”  The VA estimated that in 2005, the suicide rate per 100,000 veterans among men ages 18-29 was 44.99, but jumped to 56.77 in 2007.

FAQ about Homeless Veterans

Who are homeless veterans?

The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) states the nation’s homeless veterans are predominantly male, with roughly five percent being female. The majority of them are single; come from urban areas; and suffer from mental illness, alcohol and/or substance abuse, or co-occurring disorders. About one-third of the adult homeless population are veterans.

America’s homeless veterans have served in World War II, the Korean War, Cold War, Vietnam War, Grenada, Panama, Lebanon, Afghanistan and Iraq (OEF/OIF), and the military’s anti-drug cultivation efforts in South America. Nearly half of homeless veterans served during the Vietnam era. Two-thirds served our country for at least three years, and one-third were stationed in a war zone.

How many homeless veterans are there?

Although flawless counts are impossible to come by – the transient nature of homeless populations presents a major difficulty – VA estimates that 107,000 veterans are homeless on any given night. Over the course of a year, approximately twice that many experience homelessness. Only eight percent of the general population can claim veteran status, but nearly one-fifth of the homeless population are veterans.

Why are veterans homeless?

In addition to the complex set of factors influencing all homelessness – extreme shortage of affordable housing, livable income and access to health care – a large number of displaced and at-risk veterans live with lingering effects of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and substance abuse, which are compounded by a lack of family and social support networks.

A top priority for homeless veterans is secure, safe, clean housing that offers a supportive environment free of drugs and alcohol. Although “most homeless people are single, unaffiliated men… most housing money in existing federal homelessness programs, in contrast, is devoted to helping homeless families or homeless women with dependant children,” as is stated in the study “Is Homelessness a Housing Problem?” (Understanding Homelessness: New Policy and Research Perspectives, Fannie Mae Foundation, 1997).

Doesn’t VA take care of homeless veterans?

To a certain extent, yes, but VA’s specialized homeless programs served more than 92,000 veterans in 2009, which is highly commendable. This still leaves well over 100,000 more veterans, however, who must seek assistance from local government agencies and community- and faith-based service organizations.

Since 1987, VA’s programs for homeless veterans have emphasized collaboration with such community service providers to help expand services to more veterans in crisis. These partnerships are credited with reducing the number of homeless veterans by more than half over the past six years. More information about VA homeless programs and initiatives can be found here.

What services do veterans need?

Veterans need a coordinated effort that provides secure housing, nutritional meals, basic physical health care, substance abuse care and aftercare, mental health counseling, personal development and empowerment. Additionally, veterans need job assessment, training and placement assistance. NCHV strongly believes that all programs to assist homeless veterans must focus on helping them obtain and sustain employment.

What seems to work best?

The most effective programs for homeless and at-risk veterans are community-based, nonprofit, “veterans helping veterans” groups. Programs that seem to work best feature transitional housing with the camaraderie of living in structured, substance-free environments with fellow veterans who are succeeding at bettering themselves.

Government money, while important, is currently limited, and available services are often at capacity. It is critical, therefore, that community groups reach out to help provide the support, resources and opportunities most Americans take for granted: housing, employment and health care.

VA has approximately 4,000 agreements with community partners nationwide. These types of partnerships have demonstrated that groups are most successful when they work in collaboration with federal, state and local government agencies; other homeless providers; and veteran service organizations. Veterans who participate in these collaborative programs are afforded more services and have higher chances of becoming tax-paying, productive citizens again.

These numbers are so disturbing that we all have to intervene.  Of all of the issues we are facing as a nation, this issue should have a top priority.  They are our sons and daughters.  As families, I know that they also are at a loose as to how to deal with the problem.  But this definitely an issue we can deal with in our local communities.  We just have to care and then find out how to act. The National Coalition for Homeless Veterans suggests the following guidelines.

What can I do?

  • Determine the need in your community. Visit with homeless veteran providers. Contact your mayor’s office for a list of providers, or search the NCHV database.
  • Involve others. If you are not already part of an organization, align yourself with a few other people who are interested in attacking this issue.
  • Participate in local homeless coalitions. Chances are, there is one in your community. If not, this could be the time to bring people together around this critical need.
  • Make a donation to your local homeless veteran provider.
  • Contact your elected officials. Discuss what is being done in your community for homeless veterans.

In a world where we seem insignificant and helpless most of the time to affect a positive outcome, this is one area where we are empowered.  Get to know the situation in your community. Find out how you can volunteer.  My personal example was to identify the homeless veterans in our area.  The next step was to insure they are got enrolled for VA care.  Then it was to make sure they sought the care they needed.  We did a few fund raisers and bought a van to make sure they all could have transportation to the VA hospital.  We were just a few folks who cared, but I think we made a big difference in people’s lives.  You can do the same.

Some Very Disturbing and Shameful Math

Lost in the hoopla concerning the financial markets and volcanoes and their economic impacts is a truly sad and disturbing story.  It is a story about heroes and people who have made the most important sacrifices for our freedom.  These are the veterans of the Vietnam, Iraq and Afghanistan wars.  Some of those veterans have completed three or four tours of combat.  This is especially true in the Iraq and Afghanistan campaigns.  In Vietnam, two tours were the norm and three and four tours were rare exceptions involving people with critically needed skills.  I did two tours in Vietnam, but a third was not allowed.

But the story today is about how these people are being cared for AFTER their service.  The disturbing math is obvious from the following stories that have been posted lately.  I think the most important facts just aren’t adding up.

For example, one story talks about the fact that of 100,000 veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan, 31% of them are suffering from Post Traumatic Stress Disorders and a slightly larger number from the residuals of head injuries.  That is about 31,000 veterans.  However the second story is telling a more disturbing story that 22,000 of these soldiers are imprisoned for “personality disorders (PD)” and only released from confinement if they sign a PD discharge which then denies them of care or benefits.  If I do my math right that means 22% of the people who have served often multiple tours and in the illustrated case 12 years of service are imprisoned and subjected to ridicule and psychological abuse until they acquiesce and sign PD discharges.  You be the judge of the facts.

This from the Chicago Tribune:

Corey Gibson’s right leg bounces when he sits. At 29 he sleeps fitfully, with an AR-15 semi-automatic rifle mounted above his bed. “That’s my sense of security,” he says. Laurie Emmer, a 47-year-old mother of four, shuns crowds and strangers. She always sits facing the restaurant door when she goes out to eat and, before sitting down, makes sure to identify the quickest route out. And Eric Johnson, 62, who revisits Vietnam nearly every night in his head, escapes the demons who rob him of sleep by patrolling the streets of his South Side neighborhood with his yellow Labrador retriever, Che.

The veterans come from different generations and different wars, yet they share a common and increasingly costly wartime affliction — post-traumatic stress disorder and other forms of psychological damage. Last year, mental illnesses accounted for 35 percent of the $22 billion spent on disability payments to veterans who served in the Vietnam, Persian Gulf and “global war on terror” eras, according to a Tribune analysis.

Compensating veterans with psychological scars has helped fuel a 76 percent surge in service-related disability costs since 2003, the Tribune found, burdening an already overwhelmed system and underscoring the reality that the biggest costs of war are not often immediate or visible. Studies suggest costs will continue to soar. The percentage of military evacuations from Iraq and Afghanistan that were attributed to mental disorders has increased sharply in the last four years, a recent Defense Department study shows. Another survey of about 100,000 Afghanistan and Iraq veterans found that 31 percent had been diagnosed with mental health or psychosocial problems. “When you look at the epidemic of PTSD, you see the future,” said Harvard University‘s Linda Bilmes, co-author of the 2008 book “The Three Trillion Dollar War: The True Cost of the Iraq Conflict.”

The Tribune’s analysis of claim records from the Department of Veterans Affairs found that vets’ psychological wounds are by far the most expensive type of disability. Compensating wartime veterans since Vietnam for PTSD and other mental conditions is four to five times costlier than the average for all disability categories, the Tribune found. Victims of PTSD also are more likely to suffer other serious and costly health problems than other disabled veterans. In short, they are sicker.

Gibson, Emmer and Johnson represent veterans at different stages of an evolving psychological struggle.
Johnson is a reminder that psychological damage can consume an adult life — in his case, 40 years. Johnson left South Vietnam in 1970, returning to Chicago after a year of tracking and killing the enemy in the jungle. He says he was ill-prepared for an abrupt transition to civilian life.

“I felt stripped naked without a gun,” said the burly, dreadlocked Johnson, who after his return would wear twin shoulder holsters carrying .45 automatics. When Johnson showered, he always took a gun, sealed in a plastic bag. He slept with a gun under his pillow. His first wife, Cookie, knew not to shake him awake or touch his feet. For years he couldn’t acknowledge he had a problem, but in 1979, Johnson was diagnosed with PTSD.

The VA spent an estimated $5.6 billion last year compensating Vietnam veterans like Johnson for mental disorders, according to the Tribune analysis. That’s $4 of every $10 paid to disabled veterans from that war. Johnson also reflects the reality that compensation payments to Vietnam veterans with psychological damage are, on average, 134 percent higher than payments to other disabled Vietnam vets. Johnson receives compensation for diabetes, high blood pressure, an intestinal disorder and a back injury sustained during a helicopter crash in Vietnam, in addition to PTSD.

PTSD has changed Johnson, a guarded man who is slow to trust strangers and rarely socializes. He ignores holidays and birthdays (including his own) and avoids family functions. The night terrors of Vietnam have receded but not gone away. Johnson still returns to Vietnam nearly every night.  Johnson’s second wife, Erma, has learned to recognize and deal with the enemy he’s chasing in his dreams. “She’ll wake me up and say, ‘Don’t go — I got him,'” he said.  A retired postal worker who worked through his injuries, Johnson said he does not drink or take drugs, beyond pain relievers for his back and legs and medications to treat his diabetes. “Mentally, I’m a survivor,” he said with a smile. “I’m more fortunate than the average veteran because I’ve figured a few things out.”

Gibson is today where Johnson was in 1970. Volatile and solitary, Gibson tallies his losses after his tour of duty in Iraq — his fiancée; three jobs from which he was fired; an active, engaging life that seems forever lost.

Gibson is part of a generation of younger vets whose problems are only starting to emerge. Last year, veterans of the war-on-terror era received $329 million in disability payments related to mental disorders, or 34 percent of the money paid to all disabled vets from the same era.  A paramedic from Terre Haute, Ind., Gibson signed up in 1999 for a five-year stint with the Army’s 555th Forward Surgical Team, whose job was to penetrate deep into the battlefield and provide emergency treatment for wounded soldiers advancing to the front. He entered Iraq in March 2003.

Gibson chooses not to dwell on what happened in Iraq, other than brief mentions of mortar attacks, taking prisoners and being blown from a truck during an attack on the way to Baghdad. When he returned home in 2004, “My fiancée knew right away. ‘You’ve changed, you’re different,’ she kept saying,” he said. There were night terrors and flashbacks. He became hypersensitive to perceived slights. “It doesn’t help that I’m a male nurse,” he said.

Gibson sleeps little and spends a lot of time alone, walking the neighborhood with his dog, Gibby. One night, while his fiancée slept with her head resting on his chest, Gibson had a terrible nightmare and curled his body, putting her in a powerful headlock. She pounded on his chest to wake him up. Soon after, she left him, Gibson said.

He has been diagnosed with PTSD but also complains of other troubles, such as dizziness, a loss of long-term memory and back pain, which he says stems from his being thrown from the truck. After returning in 2004, he often slept less than an hour a night until he bought and mounted the rifle above his bed. “My sleep went from 45 minutes a night to about two hours,” he said. He calls the gun “an extension of my arm.” Gibson, who receives compensation for PTSD, recently filed a claim with the VA for traumatic brain injury. He spends most of his time at home, on his computer or watching videos. The shades are drawn.

Emmer, a retired Army sergeant, is among about a quarter-million women who have served in the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, according to the Department of Defense. But the number that speaks to Emmer’s life-changing experiences is $50 million, the amount spent last year by the VA to compensate all female veterans from the war-on-terror era for psychological damage, according to the Tribune’s analysis.

A medic in the Army’s 82nd Airborne Division, Emmer waited 20 years to get an overseas combat assignment. Within a couple months of arriving in Afghanistan, her career as a skilled medic began to unravel. Emmer reported being raped by a coalition officer in Kandahar Province in spring 2003. In a separate incident, she injured her head falling off a military vehicle.

Today, the combination of PTSD and traumatic brain injury, or TBI, has enveloped Emmer in a light fog marked by physical imbalance, disorientation, anxiety and a round-the-clock headache. As a result of her injuries, Emmer is at a higher risk of stroke and early-onset Alzheimer’s disease. The ultimate costs of her maladies are unknown.

A pleasant woman with a boyish smile, Emmer appears on her front porch nearly every morning to plant the American flag and reappears to remove it at sundown. There is little physical evidence to suggest she is a severely wounded veteran. But these days, when Emmer leaves the house, she writes down where she is going and why for fear that she’ll forget.

“Unless you lose a limb, I don’t think other injuries resonate with the public,” Emmer said in the living room of her Civil War-era home in rural Sycamore. “Relatives wonder if we’re just making this stuff up, to get free money.” She still longs to jump out of airplanes, which she did about 60 times during her 23-year military career with the 82nd. But that won’t happen. Emmer said she wants to go back to college and get a degree in history, so she can be a substitute teacher. But her doctor has advised against it, saying college might be too stressful. Emmer, who has two children enlisted in the military, is determined to regain much of her old self. She finds support in other veterans “on the roller coaster” who are working toward the same goal. “They want the old normal back,” she said. tmjones@tribune.com
jgrotto@tribune.com

Caring for soldiers suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and other mental illnesses is costing the federal government billions of dollars a year, and will continue to do so for years to come. According to an analysis of Department of Veterans Affairs’ records by the Chicago Tribune, the VA spent $5.6 billion last year to treat mental disabilities. While these costs included treating veterans from previous wars, such as Vietnam and the Persian Gulf, the ballooning expenses have been driven largely by soldiers serving in Afghanistan and Iraq.

One military survey of about 100,000 veterans of the Afghanistan and Iraq wars showed that 31% had been diagnosed with mental health or psychosocial problems. But the following story casts a very disturbing light on things and how our military is dealing with this overwhelming situation.

By Sherwood Ross – BLN Contributing Writer

An army sergeant who had received 22 honors including a Combat Action Badge prior to being wounded in Iraq by a mortar shell was told he was faking his medical symptoms and subjected to abusive treatment until he agreed to a “personality disorder”(PD) discharge.

After a doctor with the First Cavalry division wrote he was out for “secondary gain,” Chuck Luther was imprisoned in a six- by eight-foot  isolation chamber, ridiculed by the guards, denied regular meals and showers and kept awake by perpetual lights and blasting heavy metal music—abuses similar to the punishments inflicted on terrorist suspects by the CIA.

“They told me I wasn’t a real soldier, that I was a piece of crap. All I wanted was to be treated for my injuries,” 12-year veteran Luther told reporter Joshua Kors of “The Nation” magazine (April 26th). “Now suddenly I’m not a soldier. I’m a prisoner, by my own people. I felt like a caged animal in that room. That’s when I started to lose it.” The article is called “Disposable Soldiers: How the Pentagon is Cheating Wounded Vets.”

Luther had been seven months into his deployment at Camp Taji, 20 miles north of Baghdad, when a mortal shell exploded at the base of his guard tower that knocked him down, slamming his head into the concrete. “I remember laying there in a daze, looking around, trying to figure out where I was at,” he said. Luther suffered permanent hearing loss in his right ear, tinnitus, agonizing headaches behind his right eye, severe nosebleeds, and shoulder pain.

The sergeant took a Chapter 5-13 PD discharge in order to escape his confinement, becoming one of 22,600 soldiers so separated since 2001, a discharge that relieves the Pentagon of the responsibility and cost of long-term care for the wounded. An Army major told Luther to sign the discharge papers or “you’re going to be here a lot longer.” Luther recalled, “They had me broke down. At that point, I just wanted to get home.” Many of the PD discharge recipients are soldiers who have served two and three tours in Iraq and Afghanistan, author Kors writes.

Sgt. Angel Sandoval, who served under Luther, said Luther’s insistence on his wearing ceramic plates strapped to his bulletproof vest saved his life and described Luther as “one of the greatest leaders I had.” Yet this is the man the Army imprisoned when he requested medical treatment. “This should have been resolved during the Bush administration. And it should have been stopped now by the Obama administration,” Paul Sullivan, executive director of Veterans for Common Sense, is quoted as saying about PD discharges. “The fact that it hasn’t is a national disgrace.”

Luther’s case is no isolated example, writes Kors, noting that in the past three years “The Nation” has uncovered more than two dozen such cases. “All the soldiers were examined, deemed physically and psychologically fit, then welcomed into the military. All performed honorably before being wounded during service…Yet after seeking treatment for their wounds, each soldier was diagnosed with a pre-existing personality disorder, then discharged and denied benefits,” Kors writes.

This past December, he reports, VA doctors found Luther to be suffering from migraine headaches, vision problems, dizziness, nausea, difficulty hearing, numbness, anxiety and irritability—and diagnosed him with traumatic brain injury and post-traumatic stress disorder, declaring the veteran 80 percent disabled. The diagnosis cleared the way for the sergeant to receive disability benefits and lifetime medical care.

With his health improving, Luther has vowed to fight the military on behalf of other soldiers who got a raw deal like himself.  He founded Disposable Warriors, a one-soldier operation near Fort Hood, Texas,  that assists soldiers fighting their discharge and those appealing their disability rating, Kors reports. Luther says the base had 12 suicides last year as of June 2nd but reported only two. Luther is quoted in a November 21, 2009, article on “Truthout” as saying there is only one mental health professional for every 1,263 soldiers “and that is the first failure.”

After opening Disposable Warriors, Luther found a threatening note on his car windshield that read: “Back off or you and your family will pay!!” Whoever wrote that note doesn’t know Chuck Luther very well.

We cannot and must not forget these brave men and women who have sacrificed themselves for us.  I personally did a lot of healing when I saw how much more respect our country and its people showed to the returning veterans from Iraq and Afghanistan.  I remember the yellow ribbons and the bumper stickers.  Somehow these shows of support healed my experiences of returning to SF and getting off the plane to experience people spitting on me.  I was once again proud of being a medic and a soldier and my service.

However, the reality of what is going on now within our military concerning these individuals cannot and should not be tolerated by any of us.  We should all be outraged by these actions.  If you know any of these people or their families, support them.  Get involved.  Write your CONgress members and let them know there should not be a SINGLE soldier confined for PD.  NOT A SINGLE ONE! PD is a medical condition and should be treated as such.  This is a cost management exercise and damn the costs.  If we can spend trillions bailing out fat cat banksters, we can certainly spend billions taking care of those brave individuals who fight for our peace and security.

Time to Stop Pussy Footing…We Must All Decide

I have been writing this blog for nearly one year now. 76 articles have been published by me.  We have discussed a number of issues.  In each article I try to present just facts, not conjectures, anecdotes, or conspiracy theories.  The article concerning the underground cities seems to have been the only article that really struck a chord with some folks because it has been viewed over 400 times!  I have come to realize that while I have tried to report on the issues that I think we all need to be aware of and how MSM has avoided or under-reported these issues, I have never in one article stated exactly what I think and know is going on.  I have never put the whole picture in front of you to consider.

The other day, one of the warriors out there trying to get the “truth” out stimulated me to do this article.  For over ten years, Adrian Salbuchi from Argentina has been trying to get the world to listen and pay attention.  He is a patriot of mankind if there ever was such a champion.  He works tirelessly to expose the PTB and their agenda.  While many of us take a piece of the puzzle and talk about it, he has kept it all in focus.  I have for over 30 years been on this quest to “know” the truth.  It isn’t easy because the real truth is embedded in a ball of twine, but like a ball of twine, it is in the end one piece of string.  You just have to have the patience to unwind it. In fact, our whole existence, history, and future is a single string of events wrapped up like a ball of twine.  So here goes.

For at least 1,ooo years, maybe more, there has been knowledge about the events that are about to unfold within the next few years.  These events will transform life on this planet as we know it.  When this knowledge was fully realized by the educated elite of the time, it was decided that this knowledge should never be released and in fact, those that uncovered this knowledge would and could use it to “control” the whole of mankind.  In fact they could always be in control and power.  While it can be argued that the knowledge existed long before this time it truly was not acted on in an organized fashion until it came into the possession of the Roman Catholic Church as a result of discoveries made during the Crusades and at the time, the Roman Catholic Church was essentially at the head of all major powers in Europe.  Therefore a decision was made in the Vatican to withhold this information from the general public as this knowledge could undermine the entire authority of the church.  The only organized power structure outside of the church with this knowledge were the Knights Templar who had “discovered” the knowledge and faithfully brought it to Rome.  They were systematically terminated to insure the sole possessors and controllers of the knowledge would be the Vatican.

Over the years, through many kings and queens of various European countries and eventually to the new world, everything was done with the design to maintain this secrecy.  It became necessary to control commerce, politics, economies and finance.  Therefore control mechanisms were required outside of the Vatican to ensure the integrity of the secret.  The Illuminati, the higher orders of Masonry, bankers, and eventually to the modern times, the Bildebergers  MJ12 and Council on Foreign Relations were designed and controlled to execute the plans. This is basically the structure of the “shadow government”.

What are the plans?  Well in a nutshell, the geophysical events that will take place over the next 4-6 years will reduce the world population to around 2 billion or less and all institutions, systems of government and economy will be destroyed.  This is not conjecture unfortunately it is fact.  The PTB are moving to establish complete control PRIOR to these events so that they will emerge from the events still in full and complete control.  This now requires them to establish a single world government prior to the event horizon and that is exactly what is going on at this very moment.  This isn’t about globalization of economies anymore, this is about one world government.  All the events of the 20th century were lead ups to this time.  First was the consolidation to two world superpowers, then the elimination of one of them.  The Soviet Union fell without a shot fired.

Now however, the remaining superpower must go!  They cannot risk a real patriot emerging and exposing the one world government plan.  All of the events in the last 20 years are leading to the event when the US collapses thereby requiring the establishment of one world government.  Adrian points out very accurately the twelve steps to this goal.

Global Financial Collapse – This actually is being accomplished right before our eyes. the weapons in this war are things like derivatives and repos. It actually started in 2001, when the weapons were used for the first time against a sovereign economy and Argentina was brought to its knees.  The next targets were Iceland and Ireland and now the targets are Greece, Spain, Italy, Portugal to bring the EU down.  Then the US is next.  The army deployed by the PTB are CitiBank, Goldman Sachs, Barclays, Deutsche Bank, Bank of America, and various large hedge funds.  If you really look at this in this manner, the facts are truly undeniable. This isn’t going to happen, it is happening right now and right on schedule.  This is creating a  deepening economic crisis that will not enable any one government or individual to challenge the PTB.

This has already begun to create a growing social upheaval which will lead to a “reason” to have “domestic” armies controlling the populations in each country.  The evidence of this is already unfolding in China, Chile, Haiti, Greece, and to a lesser extend in every country.  One only has to look at how “police” forces are equipped today to realize this transition is well underway.  In the US, the formation of Northern Command and the FEMA camps are very real and they exist.  For what?

In order for the PTB to control the psyche of the world population, the majority of us globally must believe all of this is necessary for our well-being and safety so a number of events have and will be staged to keeps us compliant and accepting of this transition to world government with a single police force.  The war on “terror”, 9/11, Iraq, Afghanistan, and now Iran are ALL planned and staged events to get us mentally prepared to accept this total control.  At first when people began to see these events for what they are they were labeled conspiracy theorists, but most recently because of the internet and good science these charges are becoming more credible.  The evidence of thermite and nano-thermite at ground zero and the fact the fires burned there until December 20th is just now emerging into the mainstream of conciousness.  If in fact, our own government, or more precisely a shadow government was involved in these events, what do you think the public reaction as related to the faith in government will be?  Exactly, the elimination of the last superpower and that void is to be filled by a single world government.

The last two elements in the manipulation of our psyche is in the context of religion and security.  I believe, as Adrian does, that we are going to see more “mega terrorists” attacks, war in the middle east, an assassination of a key world figure on the level of scale to a John Kennedy and further beating up of “rogue states” such as Iran, North Korea, Venezuela, and Somalia.  This will lead to a “nuclear accident” which will then require a single world entity to take control of all nuclear facilities and weapons.  With this move there is no need to go house to house and collect handguns and shot guns.

Finally, the religious issue I believe is going to be handled by staging “virtual” and profound events.  Virtual events are like Building 7 going down on 9/11 even though it was not hit nor did any fires start in that building.  Here is where prophecy meets reality, but unfortunately the “reality” will be a staged event. So look for the return of Jesus Christ in your neighborhood soon. Just for good measure we will also see “alien contact”.  Again staged.  Do aliens exist?  Yes, however, there is no such term as alien.  Hundreds of thousands of civilizations exist in this galaxy and every other galaxy.  Many civilizations have been present on this planet since the beginning, but there are strict rules concerning the evolution of new civilizations and non-interference is truly a prime directive.  However, since at least 1935, these civilizations have been requesting that the PTB and leaders of the world prepare us for this transition that is about to occur and not ONE leader has had the moral fiber or courage to do so. Not one.

The good news is that in the end the PTB will fail in their plan.  Ironically, they already know this, but have elected to continue with the plan anyway.  OK so I have laid it out.  You can certify me totally crazy now or you can be a true patriot and prove me wrong by becoming more informed than me.  If I am right however, everything I just said will to continue to unfold. If it does I wonder when you wake up or will you choose to just lie there with your eyes closed hoping the big bad man goes away?  I wonder?

Iraq, Iran, and Afghanistan, We Really Don’t Get It At All

The President announces his strategy, whom many thought was going to be something different, and it sure looks a lot like SOSDF.  We have woefully misread and misunderstood the Middle East for the last thirty years.  As a general public, we apply a US centric view and to me that is understandable, as we are so gullible to the MSM pander and how many of us really take the time or for that matter know where to look for international news.  But the State Department, the CIA?  Come on, these guys are supposed to be professionals, experts in language and culture.  How do they wind up looking like blind men describing the elephant?

There are those who think they belong to the US intelligentsia who  state it is all about oil and they apply that rationale equally to Iraq, Iran, and Afghanistan.  But close examination reveals that theory just does not apply.  The really elite morons will say that Afghanistan is really Smackistan and it that case it is about controlling the opium trade.  Again, that is really a myopic and simplistic view.  All three regions are embroiled in very complex political agendas and each have their own regional issues in which we have no business muddling in.

Bush and the chain rattling apparition known as the Cheney ghost must have repeated the word terrorist 1 million times during their “service” to our country.  I have been sitting in Kuwait for nearly three years now, watching the circus from a ringside seat and I think it is time I weighed in on this a bit.  It just is getting pathetically sad.

Let us first look at Iraq.  Bush et al insisted that Saddam was a threat, WMDs yadda yadda.  We tacitly had pre-signaled Saddam that his foray into Kuwait would not be reacted too, and then we used that effort to insert the US forces into the region.  While that was viewed very positively by Kuwait, and some of the other GCC countries, from a strategic point of view it may not have been well thought out.  Why?  Because Saddam was the only barrier to all of the GCC in relation to Iran.  By unseating Saddam, we allowed Iran to become a center of power by default and that has created more concern about regional security.While our military basically raced to Bagdad, we did not secure Southern Iraq and Iran literally swept in behind us.  By the time we realized this, we had already dissolved the Iraq forces and could not stabilize the South.  Eliminating the Baathist made this mistake even worse.  The rest is as we say history.

In the case of Iran, we have misread Iran’s intention for nearly thirty years now.  The Iranian population is very sophisticated and politically very savvy.  They are also a very proud people.  To say we can dictate to Iran is to not understand that even the most educated and influential peoples of Iran will always defend their sovereignty first, and therefore stand in support of even a radical government against embargos and sanctions.  We have in fact, taken the impetus to seek more moderate government and weakened those efforts because of the actions we have taken that effect ALL Iranians.  We are losing the support of the educated moderates because of these actions, and therefore we are defeating our goals, not enhancing our chances to “persuade” a more international basis for multi-lateral relationships with Iran.  Iran reacts by supporting the Shi’ite radicals, Al Qaeda, and Sunni Jihadist in Iraq and the Taliban in Afghanistan and Pakistan, in addition to defiantly INCREASING their nuclear ambitions.

In Afghanistan, we have learned nothing from 3000 years of history.  That lesson is simple, there is NO military solution for the issues.  From Alexander the Great to the Brits and the Russians, NO ONE has ever waged a successful military campaign in Afghanistan.  Today, by our own intelligence knowledge there are about 200 Al Qaeda in Afghanistan and about 400 in Pakistan, and we now have nearly 200,000 combined forces and haven’t secured a damn thing.  We have them outgunned 1000:1 and are losing. WTFO.  Then you have the issues of a corrupt inept government, based on cronyism and nepotism and the issue of the Taliban.  What most people don’t realize is the Taliban’s interest are ONLY regional.  they are Pashtun and have tribally occupied the border regions of Afghanistan and Pakistan for thousands of years.  They will never participate in an Afghan or Pakistani government scheme and they will defend their homeland to their last breath, whether those threats are Western, Afghani, or Pakistani.  The other side of that coin is they will never threaten anyone outside of their regions.  It is up to the people of the region to decide, not anyone else.

The President’s efforts, while still myopic are at least a tiny step in the right direction, but still are very clumsy.  Get educated, have a more informed opinion of the region and then encourage our representatives to have a more sophisticated approach to these issues.  It sure beats the hell of more Americans, Iraqis, Afghans, Pakistani, NATO troops and countless innocents from dying.  Not to mention bankrupting the US.

Here is Uncle Willie’s thought for the day: