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My story is just like every other Vietnam Vet; when I first got into the 57th AHC, I saw the blown-up helicopters on the ground, I heard the stories about the men that were killed in the attack and I wasn’t sure that I could do what I had to in order to be a Gladiator.  But I learned, under one of the first attacks against us later in January of ’68 that I had to “tuck it up” and do my job, and I did.  When the Tet Offensive began, we were under heavy attack and there was no time to think about anything but doing my job and doing what I could to help keep everyone alive, as did everyone else in the unit!  Later, when I began flying as a Crew Chief, my bird went into a lot of “Hot LZs” (Landing Zones under heavy fire) and I knew that there was a major risk that we wouldn’t make it out, but no one in the 57th ever refused to go in to save some lives, so I “tucked it up”!  “Tucking it up” was the rule of being a soldier; it was what kept us going as long as possible, and it was done with pride by every Serviceman and Service Woman throughout the history of our country, from the American Revolution to the men and women serving now!  And, for every single one of them that served, some civilian was saved from having to risk his life for his country and, until Vietnam,  Vets were looked at with great pride and respect for their service, honor and bravery to their country!  But Vietnam was the turning point….

The Progressives/Socialists/Communists feared the Veterans in America because we have always be a sort of  “back-up” to our military if things ever happened in our country!  The name has changed but, over the years, the leadership of the Communist Movement is still pushing for the same things they wanted to gain by leading the anti-War protests back in the ’60s; a Russian leader once stated that the main reason the Russians never attacked America was that they feared the number of armed Veterans in America, so they wanted to weaken the Veterans and destroyed any real connections between Vets and the American Government and people!  They ridiculed us and called us “Baby Killers” and “Crazy Vets”, which is where the term “Crazy Vet Disorder” came about, forcing Vets out of society into the woods, because we were looked at as a danger to everyone!  And they kept it up until 1983, when Vets marched on DC, protesting the lack of governmental interest in Veterans’ problems and illnesses!  Ask yourself one simple question:  Why, after all the wars America fought, did so many Vietnam Veterans commit so many suicides because of the memories and pain from Vietnam, and even more from the ridicule by the very people they fought to protect?  There’s only about 30 to 35% of Combat Vietnam Vets still alive because many of the rest were so mistreated when they came home that they killed themselves!  And who bears the greatest responsibility for those deaths?  The now-Progressives that put so much pain in their lives that they felt that they had no option but to die!  But things are about to change….

The Progressives began bring back the “troubled Vet” claims again for the Vets from Iraq and Afghanistan, but instead of calling them “crazy”, they show “pity” and “concern” for those Vets and, now, instead of making them look like they are “mentally ill”, they have changed it to “poor Vets”, those “poor victims” of the Wars that can’t handle their lives without tons of drugs and lots of psychiatric” assistance”!  They are putting veterans in the same basic situation, except it is for “pity” now, not “hatred”!  To Vets, it’s the same damned thing!  But they have pushed too hard; it has finally put them in a position where we finally have a chance to stand up with honor and fight for our Rights, the very Rights we earned in combat, while all they did was use their Rights as a tool to take over our government!

Why do illegals have the “right” to free Health Care?  Why do illegals have the right to “free housing and food stamps”?  Why are people brought into our country with no money, yet they get special loans that allow them to own businesses like Gas Stations and Motels, yet Vets can’t?  Why are so many foreigners that hate our country allowed to attend so many of our great colleges for free, yet many of those same colleges don’t want Vets in their schools?   Why is it so easy to get any kind of help or assistance in America for anyone, regardless of their lack of ever doing anything except work a job, yet Vets are denied the very  Benefits that were guaranteed them when they became a member of the Military?  Why?  Because, to the Progressives, we don’t matter!  We are no more than “tools” to allow them to do what they want to!  Well, guess what?  WE AREN’T ANY DAMNED TOOLS!  WE ARE THE VERY PEOPLE THAT SACRIFICED SO THAT EVERY SINGLE AMERICAN CAN BE SAFE AND LIVE THEIR OWN LIVES!  AND, IF THAT ISN’T IMPORTANT TO THEM, LET THEM GO LIVE IN AFGHANISTAN AND SEE HOW IMPORTANT OUR MILITARY IS TO THEIR RIGHTS AS AMERICANS!

Because the VA has been caught up in the mess that was created by the very  fact that the majority of the Department of Veterans Affairs employees are sitting at desks doing nothing because their job was just a way to put people to work, they are not Veterans and they have never done anything for anyone except themselves and they have their jobs because of “Special Rights”!  I’m not saying there aren’t good people in the VA; the doctors and nurses are very good at doing their jobs but are limited by the “upper crust” of the VA!  And many of the people you deal with in a hospital or clinic do their  jobs as best as they can, but the “Paper pushers’ are only concerned with their own pay, benefits and bonuses; screw the Vets!  So the time has come for some real change!

We have found a cause, a situation where we can get the attention we need from the people of America and the very politicians who have ignored us for so long!  We can stand up and use the lack of concern for Veterans as our cause to change things!  We need to gather around the country and protest in front of VA Hospitals and Offices and show them that we have had it!  This is an election year and, as in the 1968 takeover of the Democratic Party by Progressive hippies like Pelosi, Reed and others that now run our country, we can make the mistreatment of Veterans such a huge issue that we can open up the lies of the Progressives in our government and expose them to the people of America!  We can have a very serious effect upon the upcoming elections by making our voices heard, by putting our politicians in a position where they can either fix things, or be thrown out of Congress!  Start using the term “anti-Vet” when you talk to someone about anyone who stands in our way!  Help make the label “anti-Vet” something that every politician fears, just like “anti-Black” and “anti-anything”!  This is the chance we have waited for over 40 years!

Anyone who serves their country deserves anything that they can get, totally unlike the political freebies handed out to anyone who wants them and we need to get the public on our side!  We need to get them to understand the truth of “honor, pride and courage”!  The time has finally come; do not let your brothers and sisters down; do something!  If all you can do is stand alone, do it!  If you can get a group together, do it!  If we can get a huge protest going in DC, let’s do it!  It’s up to us!  We are not the hippies, we are Veterans!  And we know that, when times get hard, we get tough and fight harder!  So, my brothers and sisters, the fight is now in our hands!  Let’s get out there and honor all of our brothers and sisters who sacrificed their lives for our Freedoms and Rights and make our voices heard!  If I can help you with getting something done, contact me!  This is the battle for Veteran’s Earned Rights and we need to win!  RESPECT THE VET!


Michael J. Kilgus

Gladiator 059

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