The VA Secretary continues to push aggressively for the rights of disabled veterans, and this time Eric Shinseki has his sights set on veterans with “Gulf War Illness.”
Veterans with Gulf War Illness (or Gulf War Syndrome) exhibit a wide range of chronic symptoms that include fatigue, headaches, loss of muscle control, vertigo, loss of balance, problems with memory, joint and muscle pain, skin rashes, weak immunity, and birth defects.
The call for the Veterans Affairs Department to re-examine the rejected claims of Gulf War vets claiming to suffer from the symptoms of this illness comes nearly twenty years after the war’s end.
This is the latest show of force by Shinseki, who recently announced that hundreds of thousands of Vietnam vets exposed to Agent Orange would now have the opportunity to seek service-related compensation for B-cell leukemias, Parkinson's diseases and ischemic heart disease.
Gulf War veterans who were previously told that their symptoms were a product of their imagination, will now be working with medical staff that has acquired improved training and a better understanding of an illness that is anything but imaginary.
The recent news coming from the VA suggests that Shinseki is sincere in his dedication to a cause that has been overlooked for far too long: the welfare of the men and women who served our country when called upon. It’s certainly a welcome change to watch as someone other than our sick veterans fight for the rights and welfare of our disabled soldiers.