Combat vets and non-combat vets - Page 9




 
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4 Weeks Ago  
LeEnfield
 
 
How can any one that has never been in action criticise some one who has. Unless you have been there and done that just how do you know what you are talking about. When you have lost mates and have wondered if you will see the next day you can say you are a combat vet.
4 Weeks Ago  
-- Dusty
 
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chief Bones
EVERY PERSON WHO SERVED A HITCH IN THE MILITARY DESERVES RESPECT .....

- HOWEVER -

Those who have served in a combat zone deserve a respect above and beyond those who have not. I am NOT advocating you disrespect a non-combat soldier ... what I AM saying, is the combatant has EARNED a respect that the non-combatabt has NOT easrned.

No non-combatant has ever had a best friend die in his/her arms .. no non-combatant has ever heard the sound of enemy bullets zinging around his/her head and known that enemy was trying to kill you as hard as you were trying to kill them. The non-combatant has never been wounded and ended up shedding their blood.

Get the picture??? Unless you were there, you can NEVER understand how we feel .. you will NEVER know the connection that combatants have with one asnother.

WHILE I WILL ALWAYS RESPECT THOSE WHO NEVER SERVED IN COMBAT, I WILL ALWAYS RESERVE MY GREATEST RESPECT FOR MY FELLOW WARIORS WHO HAVE HEARD THE SOUND OF GUNFIRE .. THEY ARE THE FRIENDS OF MY CHILHOOD WHO SERVED IN EVERY CORNER OF THE WORLD, THAT MY FELLOW CITIZENS WOULDN'T HAVE TO.

If some people have a problem with that ... it is their problem .. NOT mine. For info .. Vietnam was a scary place for a young man just turned 18. Of a 13 man squad, there are only 2 of us still alive. Many of my childhood friends are STILL suffering from PTSD ... are still off the map, living on the streets of a country that forgot them. (Whoa ... I didn't mean to get on my soapbox).

Suffice it to say that combatants have earned a respect that much of the world has chosen to not give them and leave it at that.
When I first came to this group in 2009, I offered Redleg & O3 a copy of my DD214 shortform. They turned it down. My offer still stands.



I have encountered an awful lot when I was out of the Army, far more than when I was enlisted. Hell, I was getting better eats when I was in the Army than when I was out. I still miss the BBQ Chicken on Friday nights, though the mashed taters sometimes tasted like they used recycled toilet water to add to the flaked taters.



Though my service was nothing in comparison to you guys, I still have my expectations. My knees couldn't handle it. The VA was obligated to do "something" about my knees, of which they did nothing (no surprise). I don't even have a Vet Card, because the VA argues that I didn't serve. Really? Wow. Coulda fooled me. According to the written law, I served. According to the VA's unwritten law, no one served unless they were in combat, and even then they'll argue it. My grandfather served in WW2 in the USN/Atlantic theater. Earned a few medals including a purple heart from an injury that got him honorably discharged. 60-70% disabled because of it, but that didn't stop him. It did stop the VA, and until 1998 the VA refused to help him. No ID card, no disability check, nothing for his injury...nothing, period. 53 years later, they gave him a shitty set of hearing aids and told him that's the best they can do.


The VA despises me so much, they keep hunting for reasons to deny me service. There's been a couple times they ask me about when I was in Special Forces. WTF? Homie, I ain't NEVER been in SF, guaranteed. One of my childhood friend's dads was SF in Nam. There is no way in heaven or hell or even my wildest wet dreams could I be SF. Never been there, never claimed it, nothing. But, they say I did. I asked them to verify that, and there was no response (go figure).



They even argued some line about what I said in the MOT briefing. WTF? No, I don't have a photocopy of what was said then, but somehow they do. No sweat, I was honest all the way in that briefing. So what is it they have that says I didn't serve? I don't get it. Ask them for a copy and they said no. WTF?


Then they pull some load of shit about how my medical records would have prevented me from getting past MEPS. Seriously? Like SERIOUSLY seriously? Give me a ****ing break. I gave them copies of records going back to when I was born, for Christ's sake. I found out through the grapevine that the VA makes it a point to share serviceman records with others, even when they aren't supposed to. Gee, that's real nice. Sharing with others what I am refused access to about myself.



I don't want much. It's too late to fix my knees, but I want a vet card. I want the services that I qualify for. If I didn't earn it then I guess I don't get it. But if I did and I qualify, they have no right to deny it. I can't even get my congressman or senator to help. The damned bastards.



I quoted Chief Bones because of some stuff he said--



"No non-combatant has ever had a best friend die in his/her arms .. no non-combatant has ever heard the sound of enemy bullets zinging around his/her head and known that enemy was trying to kill you as hard as you were trying to kill them. The non-combatant has never been wounded and ended up shedding their blood.

Get the picture??? Unless you were there, you can NEVER understand how we feel .. you will NEVER know the connection that combatants have with one another."



Chief, I respect you. Really, I do. I respect all serviceman, combat vets especially. But while I may not have held my best friend while he died, I was hold a good friend's wife's hand when she died from a car wreck. He was in a spot I couldn't reach. They wrecked in front of my & my wife's place while we were babysitting their kids. GHod that was awful. Hold their daughter while she screamed hysterically, crying a cry I pray to God I never hear again.



Chief, I have been shot and I have been shot at. And I ain't even a cop, either. December of 1988. I was 19. No details, other than I was riding with a friend in his old Dodge out in the desert (the SW US version at least), snow on the ground, listening to Christmas songs on the radio, next thing we know the sounds of someone hitting the truck with a hammer. But it wasn't a hammer, they were bullets. Glass flying everywhere, we ducked down, drove off the road into a ditch, bailed out and crawled through the bushes and snow to safety, about 1/4 mile or so away. I don't remember the exact distance. When we figured we're clear, we stood up and my friend shit his pants. I had blood all over my front and pants. I was hit. Later at the ER turned out it was just a ricochet. Still got the bullet in my arm, in fact. I have a copy of a recent x-ray that shows it (I can post it here, if you want to see it). In the following years, I've been shot at several times, and even fired back a few times. Crazy shit, bro. Really crazy shit.



So maybe I havn't seen combat in the Army, but I have seen a lot outside of it. That by no means says I earned any award or badge from the Army. They don't give credit for previous experiences.


I think that as vets we are expected to be professional, we have the obligation to show we are better than those that havn't served. We can behave better, too. Especially to fellow vets.



Now if only the goddamned VA would act like grown men and not try every trick in the book to deny services (I ain't the only one, there's a lot more vets refused services, too). If they ain't using that money they're given to provide services to vets, then what the hell are they doing with it? If they're buying booze or hookers, they can at least share.



I just wish my knees were fixed.


Sorry for the adult language....