Jewish War Veterans of the United States of America

Department of Homeland Security Should Not Have Singled Out Returning Soldiers as Potential Threats

to American Security

April 2009

The Jewish War Veterans of the USA (JWV) deplores the inclusion of returning war veterans as potential threats to the security of the United States in a recently released report by the Department of Homeland Security, entitled "Right-Wing Extremism: Current Economic Climate Fueling Resurgence in Radicalism and Recruitment."

According to the report, "the return of military veterans facing significant challenges reintegrating into their communities could lead to the potential emergence of terrorist groups or lone wolf extremists capable of carrying out violent attacks."

While the JWV appreciates the preemptive attempts of the Department of Homeland Security to protect the country from possible future attacks, it is unconscionable that our military heroes should have been singled out in the report as representing potential threats to our future security. We recognize and appreciate that Secretary Napolitano of the Department has apologized to military veterans for their inclusion in the report, but it is important to condemn the thinking that had included them in the report in the first place.

Those who have defended our country should never be singled out as possible threats to its stability. Our veterans deserve the praise of a grateful nation, not its scorn.

The mention of our veterans in this list of potential threats should be a wake-up call to the nation. Their service must be honored, and their return to civilian life should be eased by ensuring that the services which they have earned are available to them. Their wounds, both physical and mental, should be attended to as a top priority by the American people, and they should be given every help in reintegrating into American society.

No longer should they be forced to join the ranks of the homeless. No longer should they be haunted by the demons of PTSD or TBI from their experiences on the battlefield.

It is not enough to apologize for slurring a group that should be receiving our highest praise, but our returning veterans should be our top priority. Only when they receive the respect and services that they have earned will an apology be accepted. Profiling is unacceptable to those who serve their country in harm's way.


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