D.C. -- Baatan. Battle of the Bulge. Iwo Jima. Pork Chop Hill. Da Nang. Khe
Sanh. These are the far away and strange sounding places where our men and
women gallantly fought for our country in the name of freedom.
there are 1.9 million Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) in the United States,
and many people say the veterans have not been paid enough.
elected Commander John W. Smart (left) delivered a statement on this matter
before the joint committee of Veterans Affairs.
of the speech included these comments: "There should be no question
that the VFW shall never waiver nor relent in its fight on behalf of
America's true heroes, our nation's veterans and our active duty, reserve
and national Guard members, their families and survivors and our military.
veteran should ever be denied or should have any benefit, entitlement or
medical treatment delayed for which he or she is eligible."
saluted the efforts and courage of the legislators who proposed the funding
increases for the VA from the president's initial budget. He went on to ask
for help in securing the funding needed to allow the VA to care for the
veterans of today while preparing to meet future demands-some $500 million
above the year 2000 budget for VA healthcare.
emphasized that the $350 million in funds siphoned off into the General
Treasury were intended to enhance veterans' medical care and benefits. He
said he believes the root of this "disgraceful situation" is the
lack of adequate funding and properly trained staff; and he went on to urge
the Congress to take action in providing the requisite dollars and
strongly supports a new GI Bill for the 21st Century that will recognize and
reward members of the Armed Forces for their service to this country by
providing full tuition support, covering the costs of all educational
related fees, and providing a reasonable stipend for living expenses at any
institution of higher learning or training at which the veteran is accepted.
behalf of the entire VFW membership, Smart saluted Chairman Bob Stump and
Ranking Democrat Lane Evans for introducing separate legislation that would
provide for such a GI Bill.
brochure about becoming a member of VFW, write:
of Foreign Wars National Headquarters
Broadway at 34 Street
Kansas City, MO 64111 or visit www.vfw.orgr