A very important new study by Catherine Lutz at Brown University reports on the very high human costs of the Iraq and Afghanistan Wars.
This research catalogues the deaths and injuries of military personnel, U.S. private contractors (who make up 54 percent of the total US workforce in Iraq and Afghanistan), as well as non US Allied Uniformed and Local Military and Police.
It also emphasizes the depth of injuries not reported by the DoD which give a clear glimpse into the magnitude of the cost of war. For instance,
- One out of four veterans of the current conflicts has filed a disability claim at the VA, and the VA has already treated 30% (650,000) of veterans of the two wars.
Lutz states that the large additional number of those who are treated by the VA and other providers beyond the DoD counts of injuries is indicative of how many veterans are suffering from psychological injuries of war who had not been counted by official sources, how much delayed detection and treatment of TBI and other problems has occurred, and how many uniformed rape victims or troops with hearing loss from heavy equipment and explosions approach the VA system for help long after their injuries were first incurred in Iraq and Afghanistan.