Reed Holway spent 13 months in Iraq. He says PTSD brought on a drinking problem when he returned to the States — and that eventually led to a bad-conduct discharge. Vets with "bad paper" have trouble getting any VA health benefits — even for PTSD.
Eric Highfill spent five years in the Navy, fixing airplanes for special operations forces. His discharge papers show an Iraq campaign medal and an Afghanistan campaign medal, a good-conduct medal, and that he's a marksman with a pistol and sharpshooter with a rifle.
None of that matters, because at the bottom of the page it reads "Discharged: under other than honorable conditions."
China has been building up its military strength for some time now, and pushing ever farther from its coastline and into international waters. The real concern now is for miscalculation — particularly with Japan — that ends up in gunfire.
Just six months ago, the Pentagon released its annual report on China's military. Its defense budget was growing. The country was building more stealthy aircraft and submarines. It even bought an aircraft carrier from the Ukraine.
Pentagon official David Helvey highlighted particular areas of concern.
Last spring, the Colorado Springs Gazette investigated the connection between war wounds, military misconduct and other-than-honorable or bad conduct discharges. Now Democratic Sen. Michael Bennet wants to officially study the topic.
The sun rises at the Pueblo Chemical Agent-Destruction Pilot Plant, in this Sept. 2011 file photo showing the evaporator and crystallizer which will recycle up to 85 percent of the water used in the agent neutralization process back through the system.
Credit Hand Out Photo / Department of Defense
On the high plains at this city’s eastern edge, fields of concrete bunkers arrayed like a vast cemetery hold most of the remaining stockpile of the nation’s chemical weapons. The earth-covered “igloos” with their reinforced concrete headwalls contain 2,611 tons of mustard agent in mortar rounds and artillery shells.