VA Scandal Just the Tip of the Iceberg
John Guandolo Executive Director of Operations for ORW
Counter Terrorism Expert (Mr. Guandolo created and implemented the FBI’s first Counterterrorism Training/Education Program)
Former FBI Agent (assigned to the Counterterrorism Division,
Founder of UnderstandingTheThreat.com
Co-Author of Shariah – The Threat to America
Author of the newly released book: Raising a Jihadi Generation
In the ongoing war against the Global Islamic Movement, the most important weapon in our arsenal is the Military Warrior.
The U.S. government spends a great deal of time and money to recruit, train, and outfit America’s warriors. For the men in Special Operations units, the cost can reach over a million dollars per man to train and outfit our best trained fighters.
Yet, this is the one weapon system – the Warrior – our leaders neglect the most.
The public outcry over the current VA scandal reveals America’s combat veterans are literally dying while waiting for appropriate medical care. The internal documents and subsequent investigations have already uncovered evidence our fighting men and women are not being honored with the kind of care America should demand for the very people who give everything for the ideal that is America. Yet, the story is already fading in the media.
Sadly, the VA scandal does not even begin to touch the greater issues with which our veterans are dealing.
John Guandolo- Executive Director of Operations for ORW states: Today in this country, one active duty warrior and approximately 22 veterans are taking their own lives EVERY DAY. Translated – America is forever losing one warrior an hour. Friends, that is over 8,000 warriors a year – a number far greater than we have lost in combat in almost 13 years of fighting in Afghanistan and Iraq.
It is effecting every warrior at every level. Just before Christmas in 2012, the Commander of SEAL Team Four killed himself in Afghanistan. Approximately a month later, one of the Army’s most successful counselors of warriors struggling with Post Traumatic Stress and similar issues also took his own life.
This is an epidemic and a tragedy that is essentially not being addressed because none of the government solutions are demonstrating success.
The government continues to look at all kinds of possible ideas to solve the underlying causes of Post Traumatic Stress, Combat Related Stress, or whatever other label might be put on the hopelessness felt by our veterans, none of which get to the root of the issue.
An Army funded study by the National Institute of Mental Health reveals that men and women carry emotional wounds with them from their childhood into their military service which is the root of their struggles.
The pain of these wounds becomes energized by the traumatic events in combat and the pain comes to the surface wreaking havoc on the warrior. The warrior tries to medicate the pain with alcohol, drugs, sex, high-risk behavior (adrenalin), food, or whatever else will do the trick. But these are only temporary solutions. When the pain becomes too great and the “medication” no longer works, hopelessness sets in, and thoughts of suicide are often not far behind.
The reality is these wounds come from deep places inside these men from their pasts, usually from childhood, and while psychology can reveal the issues, the practical reality is that only God can heal them.
The only effective programs in the nation healing our warriors are the ones bringing God into the point of the pain. A vast amount of research continues to demonstrate counseling, medication, and all of the other programs inside the government system are ineffective in slowing the suicide rates, depression, and all the other maladies that we are witnessing across our great land.
But we have pushed God out of our schools, the public square, government, and in some cases, even our churches. So programs which put God at their center, are not welcome in the current “open and tolerant” atmosphere.
It is worth noting that America was founded on one primary principle: our liberty and our freedom comes from God.
“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness.”
No man nor government has the right to take our liberty from us. And because God gave us these rights, we have a duty and obligation to defend them.
Our founding documents reveal our system of laws is based on Biblical principles as articulated by the founders in laying out the Constitution and our Federal Code (laws). Knowing this explains why: Presidents must be natural born citizens (Deuteronomy 17:15); we have three branches of government (Isaiah 33:22); and why there is a separation of powers (Jeremiah 17:9 – sited by both George Washington and Alexander Hamilton for this).
Our Godly heritage is the reason for our founding and arguably why America is the longest standing Constitutional Republic in the history of the world.
In 1854, after a one year investigation following a petition in 1853 to remove all religious expression from the federal government, the U.S. Congress declared:
“Had the people during the Revolution had a suspicion of any attempt to war against Christianity, that Revolution would have been strangled in its cradle. At the time of the adoption of the Constitution and the amendments, the universal sentiment was that Christianity should be encouraged, but not any one denomination…In this age, there can be no substitute for Christianity…That was the religion of the founders of the republic, and they expected it to remain the religion of their descendants.”
Two months later, the House Judiciary Committee affirmed this by declaring: “The great vital and conservative elements in our system (the thing that holds our system together) is the belief of our people in the pure doctrines of the divine truths of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.”
And in 1892, after citing over 60 historical precedents, the U.S. Supreme Court declared: “There is no dissonance in these declarations. There is a universal language pervading them all, having one meaning they affirm and reaffirm that this is a religious nation…this is a Christian nation.”
John Adams himself said, “The general principles on which the fathers achieved independence were…the general principles of Christianity…Now I will avow that I then believed and now believe that those general principles of Christianity are as eternal and Immutable as the existence and attributes of God.”
The Founders never said all Americans must be Christians, but they did acknowledge that our nation was founded on the standards articulated in the Bible and that without these moral imperatives, this nation will not stand.
We owe it to our combat warriors to do whatever it takes to bring restoration to their lives. Our safety, security, and our future depends on them. If an effective solution to this problem involves God, then shouldn’t we go that direction for the sake of our military veterans?
I believe President Ronald Reagan had it right when he said, “If we ever forget that we’re one nation under God, then we will be a nation gone under.”
( Former) Captain John Guandolo, USMC is the Executive Director of Operations for ORW. He is a native of Rockville, Maryland who graduated from the U.S. Naval Academy in 1989, where he was commissioned an officer in the United States Marine Corps. During his active duty time, John served as a Platoon Commander with 2nd Battalion, 2nd Marine Regiment in combat operations in Desert Shield, and with 2nd Force Reconnaissance Company. John is a graduate of the U.S. Army’s Ranger School, Jumpmaster School, HALO School, and was a Combat Diver.
After resigning his commission in the Marines, John joined the FBI in 1996 as a Special Agent serving at the Washington, D.C. Field Office. As an FBI agent, John was a case agent, a paramedic, an undercover employee, and the Team Leader of the FBI’s Washington, D.C. SWAT Team. Since 2009, John has worked within the DoD and now privately as a National Security Consultant.
In 2006, John was forced to face issues he struggled with his entire life. Beginning a journey that led him into one of the first ORW programs in the spring of 2009, John found a perspective on the world he never knew. He also found deep healing. “ORW gave me the understanding of my place in this world, the authority I walk in, and the reality that God longs to Father me in the deepest parts of my wounded heart. It’s me walking arm and arm with Him. Without him I can’t. Without me, he won’t. Today, it is an honor and privilege to share that restoration and healing with other men.”