Well, here it is, yet another price of war. Repeated deployments and an incompetent system to deal with the mental health toll on our GI’s is taking a staggering toll.
Some advocates say the early presence of veterans from Iraq and Afghanistan at shelters does not bode well for the future. It took roughly a decade for the lives of Vietnam veterans to unravel to the point that they started showing up among the homeless. Advocates worry that intense and repeated deployments leave newer veterans particularly vulnerable.
“We’re going to be having a tsunami of them eventually because the mental health toll from this war is enormous,” said Daniel Tooth, director of veterans affairs for Lancaster County, Pa.
Yesterday, I was contacted by a group that wants to address the needs of damaged veterans and is holding aretreat for veterans and their families next May, here in Oregon.
I cannot emphasize the importance of attending to the needs of our returning veterans and in educating the general public to the consequences of sending young people to war. There are no trumpets blaring and flags waving at the end of their service, just pain and torment and isolation.