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Mine field / 26 May 2008

Those of you who’ve read my e-books will know that I’m not backward in coming forward when it comes to lambasting this Government with regard to its continued involvement in the American Iraq war … oops, sorry, the free world’s war against terrorism! (Phew, nearly had those men in raincoats who mutter into their sleeve round again!).

We now hear that the Ministry of Defence has announced extra funding for their medical center at Headley Court, which provides treatment for troops who become disabled whilst on active service and which includes making and fitting prosthetic limbs, treating brain injuries and providing rehabilitation support. Apparently the new funding, or investment as the defense secretary Des Browne (no relation) calls it, is worth £24 million over the next four years.

I’m not knocking this you understand. There are so many youngsters coming back from the fighting, missing vital bits and pieces that they deserve the best treatment that they can get. You’ll notice though, that there’s no mention again of any additional support for those young servicemen and women who have been spared the horrors of having a bit blown off, but have been so psychologically traumatised by their involvement in this pointless conflict, that they are unable to function once they’re tossed back out into civvy street.

History tells us that it was the American Vietnam Vets, thoroughly pissed off with the lack of support they received when they came back home, that created the groundswell for that country’s Disability Rights movement. The end result was the Americans with Disabilities Act which has more teeth than something … with lots of teeth! So watch it Mr Brown (nearly said Blair then!), mind you don’t get bitten in the arse when we all link up and come after you!

Oh, and while you’re at it, perhaps instead of pouring more millions into maintaining a British ‘presence’ out there, you could divert that dosh into removing more barriers for other Disabled people across the whole of the UK …??!!