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Veterans poll: military 'overextended'

Oct. 4, 2006 at 3:14 PM   |   Comments

WASHINGTON, Oct. 4 (UPI) -- A new poll released by a veterans group says a majority of Iraq and Afghan war veterans surveyed believe the military is overextended.

Overall, 63 percent of all Iraq or Afghanistan veterans believe the

Army and Marine Corps are overextended at this time, including 67 percent of Army and Marine veterans and 66 percent of veterans who experienced ground combat," reports the poll, released Wednesday by VoteVets.org.

VoteVets.org is a political action group critical of the execution of the Iraq and Afghan wars and committed to getting veterans of both conflicts elected to Congress, according to its publicity material.

The poll also shows that a fifth of veterans have been impacted by stop-loss regulations or extensions beyond their promised deployment, which is one year for the Army and seven months for the Marine Corps.

"Twenty percent of respondents said their unit was extended past its original time frame," the poll states. "Thirteen percent of all veterans say they were affected by stop-loss regulations, including 14 percent of National Guard and Reservists."

The poll also shows a third of combat veterans have experienced nightmares and other post-traumatic stress symptoms after returning home.

A fifth of veterans who responded to the survey and 27 percent of ground combat veterans say they feel more stress after returning from the war than they did before going.

Twenty-six percent of all veterans -- and a third of Guard and Reserve veterans -- have sought some service from the Veterans Administration or a VA hospital since returning.

A third of National Guard and reserve veterans of the wars suffered financial hardship when they were deployed; some make more money in their civilian jobs than they do with the military.

© 2006 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
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