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Friday, November 03, 2006

Florida Today Editorial: 'Helping our veterans'

From Florida Today:

The war in Iraq has divided the nation and its worsening violence and chaos could lead to a major political shift in Congress when voters go to the polls Tuesday. But there is one thing that unites all Americans: Honoring the men and women in the armed forces who continue fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan, and doing everything possible to help them make the often difficult transition from the battlefield to civilian life.

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More from the editorial:

Many soldiers and Marines have served three and even four tours in Iraq, and a large number are members of the Reserve and National Guard who never thought they'd see extended combat.

The brutal urban fighting -- where there are no frontlines and insurgents and terrorists lurk around every corner -- is sending troops home with severe physical and psychological wounds. For example:

- Roadside bombs have caused a high number of head wounds, brain injuries and amputations, putting extreme stress on vets and family members as they deal with life-long medical care.

- More than 1 in 3 soldiers and Marines who have served in Iraq are seeking help for mental health problems that include post traumatic stress disorder, a number some experts predict will rise, according to Army studies.

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