By Lisa Desjardins, CNN Radio

The suicide rate among veterans of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars is at an all-time high. Some of the possible reasons include the length of deployments (15 months per tour, often extended involuntarily), the lack of safety while in theater (soldiers can be attacked any time, any place — several have been electrocuted in the shower due to faulty electrical wiring by underpaid foreign contractors), and the lack of support for veterans and their families when they return.

You would think that the Department of Veterans Affairs would be shouting from the rooftops: “WE HAVE A CRISIS: PLEASE HELP US FIX IT”. You would think the VA would be desperately recruiting help from Congress and the veterans organization. But instead, the VA is covering up the magnitude of the problem — even refusing to provide the basic statistics to Members of the Veterans committee in Congress unless they file “freedom of information act” request.

This pattern of obfuscation, denial and defensiveness has been the conduct of the VA for several years. Read this article to get a flavor of what’s going on here:

WASHINGTON (CNN) — The chairman of the House Veterans Committee blasted the Veterans Affairs Department on Tuesday, accusing the agency of criminal failure to respond to evidence of rising suicide rates among former soldiers. Read more here.


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