WASHINGTON—In this week’s address, President Obama spoke from the USS Carl Vinson in San Diego during Veterans Day, and he called on all Americans to rededicate themselves to serving our brave men and women in uniform as well as they have served us. Today, there are more than 850,000 veterans unemployed, which is why the President issued a challenge to private companies to hire or train more than 100,000 post-9/11 veterans or their spouses by 2013, and he was pleased to see the Senate pass proposals in his American Jobs Act on Thursday to give businesses tax credits for hiring veterans. President Obama told veterans that just as they have fought for us, he will continue to fight for jobs and opportunities for them, and that the United States will always honor their service and sacrifice.
Category Archives: Veterans Day
Washington, DC – Congressman Frank Pallone, Jr. Thursday released the following statement recognizing the sacrifices and bravery of New Jersey’s veterans in honor of Veterans Day Friday, November 11, 2011.
“As today’s veterans return from deployment it’s important we continue to fulfill the same promises to them as we have to past generations and that we also respond to the unique needs veterans face today as they reenter civilian life. If you have the opportunity, thank a veteran for fighting to protect freedom we enjoy every day,” Pallone said in a statement.
This Veterans Day, it is time to recommit ourselves to helping every military family across the Garden State.
We need to help businesses help veterans and their spouses build careers, make sure that our schools are doing all they can to help military kids, and all of us need to do what we can to help military families in our local communities.
But truly honoring our veterans means providing jobs. It means job training, and giving every job opportunity possible to unemployed veterans.
In New Jersey we have 453,498 veterans — 12 percent of them are unemployed. That’s why I am proud to be a co-sponsor of the VOW to Hire Heroes Act that gives businesses a tax credit for hiring returning veterans, and more of a tax credit if they hire a wounded veteran.
As our troops begin coming home from Iraq, our duty to them is not just remembering their service, not just saying thank you on Veterans Day, it’s delivering on the promise of a grateful nation every day.
New Jersey’s hero-sons-and-daughters did not wait to sign up to serve this country, and they should not have to wait to get the benefits they have earned defending it. And they should not have to come home only to stand on the unemployment line after putting themselves on the line serving this nation.
That’s why the Veterans jobs bill encourages employers to hire veterans, ensures that disabled veterans who have exhausted their unemployment benefits get the training and rehabilitation they need, the Vocational Rehabilitation and Employment benefits they need and job assistance tailored to today’s job market.
The bill provides a competitive grant program for nonprofits that provide mentoring and training programs for vets. It allows employers to be paid for providing on-the-job training to veterans and it would provide Work Opportunity Tax Credits for businesses that hire veterans — and more for businesses that hire disabled vets.
We made a promise to veterans, and it’s a promise we must keep.
Happy Veterans Day to all.
May God bless our troops. And may God bless America.
On Thursday, Americans will formally honor the nation’s military veterans. Veteran’s Day is a federal holiday and is observed annually on November 11, the anniversary of the signing of the Armistice that ended World War I. On that day, major hostilities were formally ended at the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month of 1918 with the German signing of the Armistice. The holiday is officially celebrated in other parts of the world as Armistice Day or Remembrance Day.
Former New Jersey Governor and U. S. President Woodrow Wilson proclaimed an Armistice Day for November 30, 1919. Seven years later Congress declared the holiday should be moved to November 11 as “a day to be dedicated to the cause of world peace…”
One of the ways New Jersey and most other states honor their veterans is through property tax breaks. New Jersey provides a $250 annual property tax deduction to veterans who are U. S. citizens and New Jersey residents and who have been honorably discharged from active service during war-time. Since 1947, this benefit has been protected by a provision in the State Constitution and has increased from $50 to its current level. Since 2003, when the deduction was raised to its current level, there have been no increases. Surviving spouses and domestic/civil union partners continue to receive this benefit as long as they do not remarry.
These property tax deductions are available only to veterans who served during wartime, including those who have served or are serving in Iraq and Afghanistan. The number of veterans claiming this deduction has decreased by more than 30 percent in the past 10 years, from 337,344 in 2000 to 257,366 this year. This decrease is expected to continue as New Jersey veterans continue to age.
Municipalities currently administer this program and the state reimburses them 102 percent – the entire cost of the deduction plus 2 percent for administrative costs. This calendar year, the deduction has cost the state $65.5 million, an amount that like the number of veterans has been declining each year since its appropriation peaked at $81 million in 2003.
A smaller number of veterans – those rated 100 percent disabled by the federal Department of Veterans’ Affairs and who served during war-time – are totally exempt from paying property taxes. In 2010, 6,790 New Jersey veterans qualified for this exemption.
For more information on this deduction and eligibility for this benefit, go to the deduction application.
As Veterans Day approaches, thank the veterans for their valiant efforts against tyranny and for their peacekeeping efforts around the world.
The President looks back at a week where we honored those who serve on Veterans Day, and mourned those we lost at Fort Hood. He discusses the review he has ordered into the Fort Hood incident, and pledges to stand by our servicemen and women, as well as our veterans, as his most profound responsibility.
This afternoon President Obama spoke at the memorial service for the 13 fallen soldiers of the Fort Hood massacre. The President spoke each name and told a personal story for each of the fallen soldiers.
It was one of the most eloquent and moving speeches that the President has ever given.
by Richard Huff – New York Daily News
If he were a senior in college today, he probably wouldn’t pay to see his film, “Body of War.”
“Body of War” is a tough film that follows the story of U.S. Army soldier Tomas Young, whose spine was severed when he was shot after being in Iraq just five days.
The film was produced and directed by Ellen Spiro and Donahue. It hit festivals and theaters early this year, and will air tomorrow night(tonight) at 7 on the Sundance Channel.
“It’s tough, it’s hard-hitting and has a strong message,” said Laura Michalchyshyn, general manager of Sundance. “We wanted to be able to tell a story that’s real, honest and true and hasn’t been manufactured.”
Donahue met Young on a visit to the Walter Reed Army Medical Center. He also spoke to Young’s mother during her bedside vigil for her son, who is paralyzed from the chest down.
“I couldn’t get him out of my head,” Donahue said. “The first thing you think is, why him and not me?”
The former TV host remained in contact with Young and his family, and the film emerged.
Donahue has been against the war in Iraq since the start, and lost his show at MSNBC in 2003 because of his nightly stance against the war and the Bush administration.
“Body of War” blends footage from the debate in Congress on the war with scenes from Thomas’ struggle to adapt to life without the use of most of his body.
“This is the most sanitized war of my lifetime,” Donahue said. “We do not see the pain. Less than 5% of us have sacrificed for this war. What you see in this film is the drama that’s taking place in thousands of homes in this country occupied by young soldiers who have come home with hideous injuries.”
The film, however, focuses on just one. Young’s life involves pain, multiple health problems and trouble dealing with the sort of activities most people take for granted.
“The American people do not see this,” Donahue said. “This war is over to them. Less than 10% of us identified the war as a the major reason we were voting.”
Sundance’s decision to air the documentary on Veterans’ Day is not an accident.
“It’s not just about Iraq, it’s about how we’ve treated these veterans,” Michalchyshyn said. “I don’t think a lot of people have conceived of the Iraq war veterans the same way as World War I or World War II veterans.”
In addition to Sundance, where “Body of War” will get multiple plays, the film is out on DVD. Eddie Vedder of Pearl Jam wrote two songs for it, and part of the proceeds of the DVD sales at Pearl Jam’s Web site go to Young.
“Before the next President swaggers in front of the camera with a big lone-star belt buckle and says, ‘Bring it on,'” Donahue said, “I want them to meet the honorably discharged Army Spc. Thomas Young.”