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10/07/2007 08:09 PM ID: 65482 Permalink   

U.S. Soldiers Serving Longest Tour in Iraq Miss Benefits by One Day


2,600 National Guard soldiers, who served 729 days in the longest tour of duty in Iraq returned home expecting educational full benefits. Had they stayed one day longer, they found out, then they would be receiving up to 800 dollars more per month.

"It's pretty much a slap in the face," says one soldier who was counting on the GI Bill. "I think it was a scheme to save money, personally. I think it was a leadership failure by the senior Washington leadership... once again failing the soldiers."

The soldiers stayed 22 months, longer than they expected, extended due to U.S. President George W. Bush's 'surge' in Iraq. Several politicians have raised questions to the Army and Senate.

    WebReporter: theironboard Show Calling Card      
ASSESS this news: BLOCK this news. Reason:
thats MESSED up. .. my burrocracy at work. jackasees.
  by: elijah4twenty     10/07/2007 08:19 PM     
Very biased headline there.
  by: l´anglais     10/07/2007 08:27 PM     
  by: AnsweringQuestions     10/07/2007 08:34 PM     
  I stand by the headline.  
I could have used MUCH stronger words to describe what the government has tried to do to our soldiers.
  by: theironboard     10/07/2007 08:45 PM     
  @ L'Anglais  
Being a currently SCREWED Veteran, it's far from bias.

This wasn't a failure, this was premeditated.
  by: Discarded Vet   10/07/2007 08:49 PM     
... is quite a harsh term to use. A headline such as "U.S. Soldiers Serving Longest Tour in Iraq Miss Benefits by One Day" is objective and allows the reader to decide for him or herself whether the soldiers were screwed. (I agree, they were, but the headline's biased, no two ways about it.)
  by: l´anglais     10/07/2007 08:53 PM     
A headline like that in a newspaper or on, etc., would prompt thousands of letters to the editor damning the "liberal media."
  by: l´anglais     10/07/2007 08:55 PM     
729 days is 1 day short of 2 years, not 22 months.

I foresee an uprising in the very near future if things keep up the way they're going...
  by: DekaR   10/07/2007 08:58 PM     
  The USA and UK would never neglect their own  
“Being a currently SCREWED Veteran, it's far from bias.

This wasn't a failure, this was premeditated.” Vet.

I think premeditated is the correct word, they have had all the use out of you they can possible get, and then they can just throw you on the heap.

What ever happened to look after your own? Doubt that has ever been heard of by these crooks.
  by: captainJane     10/07/2007 09:09 PM     
nah, they were screwed. Its a descriptive word describing the situation.

Thats like saying you cant say boxer A hammered boxer B, he only beat him though it was a one sided victory when only boxer A was doing the punching.

I hope they push it through quick to get those people their money.
  by: AccessG     10/07/2007 10:34 PM     
  Support Our Troops  
Is the mantra of the Neo-Con Right to keep their hideous war going. These Hippocrites sell our troops out at every turn. Shabby hospital care (Walter Reed Hospital),denial of benifits,lack of body armour, lack of armour on thier vehicles,using the National Guard for a foriegn offensive force,inhumane extensions of service in a theater of combat, the list goes on and on. Now the administration extends these soldiers tour of duty to one day shy of qualifying for the benifits that they have earned. These smug hippocrites again keep spouting thier support our troops mantra while stomping on the backs of the ones who offer themselves and the financial welfare of thier families to serve thier country.
I can not express how much I despise these traitors, The Neo-Con Right.
  by: ichi     10/07/2007 10:37 PM     
  more than meets the eye  
you never know...the commander could have offered a vote to stay for 2 more months or leave immmediatly. We don't know all the facts! I like seeing all the information before throwing the foul card out of my pocket.
  by: slayer06   10/07/2007 10:54 PM     
  THREE* by theironboard  
ONE* by the complainer who feels neglected and wants the sun to shine brighter on him,. I agree with the iron board. Screwed, chewed and tatooed might have worked tho'. (LOL)
  by: old man   10/07/2007 11:04 PM     
  au contrair  
Consider this , L'Anglais-

If the headline read: 'U.S. Soldiers Serving Longest Tour in Iraq Rewarded by Government Upon Return', would it be closer to your version of reality?
  by: theironboard     10/07/2007 11:17 PM     
By the way, I don't mean to sound like I am saying you agree/disagree with the actual story and trying to paint you as some kinda villain. Just look at my last post OBJECTIVELY. ;)

'Screwed' pretty much sums up this entire Iraq business.
  by: theironboard     10/07/2007 11:27 PM     
The government likes to do things like this. Hell i'm surprised when they actually do something they say they're gonna do.
  by: splicer   10/07/2007 11:57 PM     
I won't defend what happen what I will say its too bad they aren't SF. I know a SeAL-EOD who lost/losing his hearing during peacetime accident, what does he get? U.s. Gove pays half of any expene he has. Just provide receipts? Guy was staying at a 3,000 a month apt in manhattan and all the little goodies a upper middle class would have to enjoy( hehad a monster sized t.v. Along with other home stuff)

In conclusion doesn't this remind any one of animal farm? That's the first thing I thought of when I read this. These soldiers are boxer and they have been spent and now sent to the glue factory. :-/
  by: drk   10/08/2007 12:01 AM     
Oh BTW I don't find the headline to be very biased as it didn't read "Evil world power that eats babies denies orphan saving hero well deserved reward".
  by: splicer   10/08/2007 12:02 AM     
  I stand by my comments  
If anybody were to read anything I've ever posted to SN regarding the Iraq war, you know I don't support it and you know that I despise Bush for getting the Western world into it. However, in news reporting, there's a difference between using objective language and just saying what reasonable people know to have happened.

When I say it's biased, I don't mean it's wrong! I'm saying that you're connecting dots, and as a reporter, you don't connect dots. You present the dots, you may even quote other people connecting the dots, but you *yourself* don't connect the dots, or you're telling the audience how to think. That's the job of a columnist, editorial writer or similar professional who is supposed to do persuasive writing -- you show people evidence and then tell them that -blank- is the only reasonable conclusion. But when you report the news, that's all you do -- you report it. You don't say that the gov't screwed people out of benefits, you say that it brought them home a day before their eligibility for benefits would have begun and let others say that the gov't screwed them. It's what you're taught in your very first journalism class in college.
  by: l´anglais     10/08/2007 12:42 AM     
  @DRK: interesting reference to Orwell's AnimalFarm  
@DRK: it's interesting that you made a reference to "Animal Farm"* - by George Orwell.

You use it as an indictment against the corruption of our current government. [Boxer was a strong, patriotic and simple horse who worked himself to death for the cause of his 'Party'. Ultimately, the leaders (Pigs), sold him to a glue factory and claimed to the rest of the animals that he had been put to pasture]

This was originally used as an anti-communist propaganda movie by the CIA who brought the movie rights from Orwell's widow.

*A story that's an indictment to communism where the Farm Animals free themselves against the farmer only to finally suffer a dictatorial and oppressive rule by one of their own corrupt leaders they elected.
  by: redstain   10/08/2007 12:57 AM     
Seriously, show me one human being on this planet whos not suckling on the poisoned teat of George W. Bush who doesn't believe these, and all the other soldiers are being screwed.

Do this succesfully and I will video tape myself eating my Red Sox hat for all of Short News to see.
  by: Jediman3     10/08/2007 01:29 AM     
  lol -- last attempt to explain myself  
OK. You have a story about an airline pilot who was drunk and crashed his plane. A reporter investigates and finds out that the airline hasn't tested pilots for substance abuse in five years.

The proper headline for such a story would be something like, "Airliner Hasn't Tested Pilots for Intoxication in Five Years." It's a statement of fact.

A biased headline, such as the one on this story, would be, "Airline Doesn't Care if Pilots Fly Drunk." In that case, you're using the evidence to reach a conclusion.

My point is that in professional journalism, you don't use the evidence to reach a conclusion, no matter how obvious that conclusion may be. You let the readers reach their own conclusions. That's what being non-biased is all about.

Put another way: In an objective story, there's no room for the reporter's view, even if that view would be shared by everyone with any sense. If you relax the standard of objectivity by one iota in your reporting, you're no longer to be trusted -- if you'll put a toe over the line here, who's to trust that you won't take a step over the line in another story?
  by: l´anglais     10/08/2007 01:44 AM     
  the head line is fact  
the gov. did it.its fact there is no way in hell you can say it wasn't .to many soldiers by lost out on money by one day. thats what it means to be screwed.for god's sake its just a dang head should feel lucky you get to read stories like this.they getting "Screwed" just so you can.
  by: kross10c   10/08/2007 02:19 AM     
  Changed title....  
It was too biased and sensationalized. I agreed with it, personally, but we are not supposed to interject personal opinion in our titles or summaries.
  by: Lurker     10/08/2007 02:31 AM     
I think a biased title for this story would have to be "US soldiers <deleted by admin> by the government".
  by: silentrage   10/08/2007 02:39 AM     
That kind of language isn't allowed here either.
  by: Lurker     10/08/2007 04:24 AM     
  I'm going to print tis story out  
and hand it to all the kids who are talking about joining the military for the college money.
  by: jaded fox     10/08/2007 05:36 AM     
it DID get changed. someone get butthurt?
  by: elijah4twenty     10/08/2007 06:24 AM     
What a crude way of putting that ... no, if I were to guess what happened, Lurker read through this thread and decided that the headline was indeed biased. I certainly didn't appeal to him to change it.
  by: l´anglais     10/08/2007 06:55 AM     
  2nd tour  
I was in the Army, so I know what's being told to those soldiers:

"We're sorry you didn't qualify for educational benefits. There's nothing we can do. HOWEVER, you are in a very special position. If you volunteer for another teency tincy tour, you'll be fully qualified upon your first day there. Aren't you in a wonderful position? Thank Uncle Sam"

Also, I'm sure not all 2,600 fell short. For some of them, this was their 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th, or 6th (really) tour. So, obviously, they're already qualified for full G.I. benefits, and this news doesn't affect them.

Thanks for reading, I'll take my replies off-air.

  by: bugmenot   10/08/2007 09:18 AM     
  This doesn't surprise me...  
This is business as usual for the military with respect to it's soldiers that are currently deployed. I'm a soldier, and I routinely see people get screwed out of petty things as small as a ribbon or medal. I don't know why the military would be motivated to do this but they'll change someone's duty station in the middle east a day before they'd be elligible for some kind of award (non-monetary no-less) for whatever reason. Many of the troops are getting screwed.
  by: MercDude   10/08/2007 03:39 PM     
  headlines vs.  
I knew the headline was going to be a quarrelsome affair, however I still can't supress my anger over the roots of the story and the headline will forever live on in my heart. -sniff-

I promise to follow up on this story when it reaches a conclusion.
  by: theironboard     10/08/2007 06:48 PM     
  I agree with L'Anglais  
Screwed is/was a loaded word. Yes, that is what is happening but it is subjective. It is like if I wrote a title, "Smokers getting screwed by more taxes". I know, there are people that think smokers are not being screwed but the point is, it is loaded wording.

BTW, great post and I agree, they are getting screwed.

@Jediman3 - Watch FOX News for a couple of hours. I look forward to seeing your video :)
  by: yourown   10/09/2007 12:58 AM     
  Feel sorry for the troops  
Like DiscardedVet, I had my share of problems with the VA and the glorious GI Bill. It took me almost a year to get them to follow their contractual obligation(s). Eventually, they came around, but it sure as hell wasn't easy. I never had much respect for weekend warriors, but these guys have served their time and they deserve their benefits.
  by: Zpravodajec     10/09/2007 07:30 PM     
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