portland independent media center  
images audio video
newswire article commentary global

government

Pentagon Misinforms National Guard and Reserve Soldiers About Education Benefits A report

...Education Benefits~Produced by Between the Lines' Melinda Tuhus
Pentagon Misinforms National Guard and Reserve Soldiers About Education Benefits

A report on the dispute between the Pentagon and National Guard and Reserve veterans over eligibility for GI Bill education benefits, produced by Melinda Tuhus

Some American soldiers returning from duty in Iraq and Afghanistan and now hoping to start or continue their college education, are being told that they're no longer eligible for GI Bill education benefits. But a law was passed in the early 1990s extending National Guard and Reserve soldier benefits eligibility for a period of time after leaving the service. The Veterans Administration and the Department of Defense disagree on whether the 400,000 service members who have served in these two wars are eligible for up to $300 a month in benefits to pursue an education.

Between The Lines' Melinda Tuhus files this report. She begins by interviewing Jack Mordente, executive director of the National Association of Veterans Program Administrators and director of Veterans Affairs at Southern Connecticut State University, about his efforts to help returning vets secure these benefits.

For more information on G.I. Bill benefits, visit the National Association of Veterans Program Administrators website at www.navpa.org.

LISTEN to this week's half-hour program of Between The Lines by clicking on one of the links below:
 http://www.btlonline.org
*
"Between The Lines" is a half-hour syndicated radio news magazine that each week features a summary of under-reported news stories & interviews with activists & journalists who offer progressive perspectives on international, national & regional political, economic & social issues. Because "Between The Lines" is independent of all publications, media networks or political parties, we are able to bring a diversity of voices to the airwaves generally ignored or marginalized by the major media. For more information on this week's topics & to check out our text archive listing topics & guests presented in previous programs visit:  http://www.btlonline.org
*
"Between the Lines," WPKN 89.5 FM's weekly radio news magazine can be heard Tuesdays at 5:30 p.m. ET; Wednesdays at 8 a.m. ET & Saturdays at 2 p.m. ET (Wednesday's show airs at 7:30 a.m. ET during fundraising months of April & October).
*
For an email subscription of "Between The Lines Weekly Summary" which features a RealAudio link to the week's program for Between The Lines, send an email to  btlsummary-subscribe@lists.riseup.net
*
For an email subscription of "Between The Lines Q&A" which features a RealAudio link & weekly transcript to one of the interviews featured on Between The Lines, send an email to  btlqa-subscribe@lists.riseup.net
*
 http://www.btlonline.org
*
 betweenthelines@snet.net
*
 http://www.squeakywheel.net
*
Distributed by Squeaky Wheel Productions
2006 Between The Lines. All Rights Reserved.

homepage: homepage: http://www.btlonline.org
address: address: BETWEEN THE LINES c/o WPKN Radio 89.5 FM Bridgeport, Connecticut

Regarding the Pentagon 16.Dec.2006 09:14

Ken Larson

There are good points in your article. I would like to supplement them with some information:

I am a 2 tour Vietnam Veteran who recently retired after 36 years of working in the Defense Industrial Complex on many of the weapons systems being used by our forces as we speak.

If you are interested in a view of the inside of the Pentagon procurement process from Vietnam to Iraq please check the posting at my blog entitled, "Odyssey of Armaments"

 http://www.rosecoveredglasses.blogspot.com

The Pentagon is a giant, incredibly complex establishment, budgeted in excess of $500B per year. The Rumsfelds, the Administrations and the Congressmen come and go but the real machinery of policy and procurement keeps grinding away, presenting the politicos who arrive with detail and alternatives slanted to perpetuate itself.

How can any newcomer, be he a President, a Congressman or even the Sec. Def. to be - Mr. Gates- understand such complexity, particularly if heretofore he has not had the clearance to get the full details?

Answer- he can't. Therefore he accepts the alternatives provided by the career establishment that never goes away and he hopes he makes the right choices. Or he is influenced by a lobbyist or two representing companies in his district or special interest groups.

From a practical standpoint, policy and war decisions are made far below the levels of the talking heads who take the heat or the credit for the results.

This situation is unfortunate but it is absolute fact. Take it from one who has been to war and worked in the establishment.

This giant policy making and war machine will eventually come apart and have to be put back together to operate smaller, leaner and on less fuel. But that won't happen until it hits a brick wall at high speed.

We will then have to run a Volkswagen instead of a Caddy and get along somehow. We better start practicing now and get off our high horse. Our golden aura in the world is beginning to dull from arrogance.