Topic: Healthcare

Master Sgt. Darryl Sterling, 332nd Expeditionary Logistics Readiness Squadron equipment manager, throws trash into a burn pit at Joint Base Balad, Iraq, in 2008. Photo by Senior Airman Julianne Showalter, courtesy U.S. Air Force.

“It’s so inaccurate”—How the VA Is Failing to Track Veterans Burn Pit Claims

VA figures show an astonishingly low rate of approval of burn pit claims: Of the 10,588 claims, 2,360 veterans had their benefits granted and 8,228 were denied.
Children from a nearby village pose for a photograph in Zharay district, Kandahar province, Afghanistan, in 2012. Photo by Spc. Jason Nolte, courtesy of U.S. Army.

“I Screamed Into My Radio to Ignore the Order”—Pardoned Soldier’s Comrade Still Lives With Guilt of Murdered Civilians

When Clint Lorance ordered his men to kill innocent civilians in Afghanistan, the soldiers came home and struggled to assuage their feelings of guilt.

The Dangers of the Marine Corps’ Complacency About Covid-19

Is the Marine Corps taking the Covid-19 pandemic seriously enough?
The author on bridge watch as the Officer of the Deck, 2007-2009. Photo courtesy of Alison Maruca

Minding the Ship During a Storm of Poor Leadership

Even with sound decision-making by a capable and loyal team, the wrong leader can make any mission feel doomed.
Brandon Alt, right, was one of at least six Marines and Navy corpsmen who deployed from Camp Pendleton, California, to Afghanistan in 2010 who later developed seizures or seizure-like episodes. Photo courtesy of Brandon Alt.

Mystery Seizures Haunt Marine Units a Decade after Deployment

Seizures among veterans are surging. Some blame PTS and TBI. Others blame toxic exposures.

“Pulling the Crazy Card”—Choosing to Show Empathy for a Suicidal Sailor

Thibaut Delloue rushed a suicidal sailor to shore after he asked for help on deployment only to see his shipmate ostracized and labeled a malinger.
Roy and Andrew van Wey in Husaybah, Iraq. Photo courtesy of the author.

“They Didn’t Make It?”—When Your Brother’s Homecoming Starts in a Burn Ward

After an IED exploded in Iraq, a badly burned Marine asks his brother if his teammates survived. “He knows I won’t lie to him. We are both warriors.”
Naylon on an operation in a village outside of Bagram, Afghanistan, 2014. Photo credit: Spc. Jamill Ford for U.S. Army

Leaders Are Forged as a Rocket Falls

In a time of crisis, initiative trumps authority when authority fails to lead.
The body of Ernie Pyle was laid to final rest in the new Punchbowl Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific, Oahu July 19, 1949