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The VA Just Dropped More Details About The New Veteran ID Cards
The Department of Veterans Affairs has been playing coy since it first announced that new veterans identification cards — wallet-sized IDs that allow people to prove their military service without a copy of their DD214 — will become available to former service members beginning in November, revealing details about the application process in piecemeal. Now the department has graced us with a little more information.
Military.com, which first broke the news of the new veteran IDs earlier this month, now reports that vets who want one of the new cards must first register online with Vets.gov, a website that authenticates users through the ID.me system. Officials originally told Military.com that veterans would be able to apply for the cards online, but provided few specifics; they were no less taciturn with Task & Purpose.
We did confirm, however, that veterans will not be able to use the cards as proof of age when shopping for adult commodities like cigarettes and beer, because they are not official government-issued IDs — which, as a Military.com notes, also means they can’t be used for things like air travel.
Unfortunately, we still don’t know what the cards will look like.
The 2015 Veterans Identification Card Act directed the VA to issue a hard-copy photo ID to any veteran who applies for one (though there are some gray areas, detailed below). The legislation was introduced after politicians realized that people were having trouble proving that they had served in the military when attempting to secure sweet veteran discounts and benefits, like a free meal at Applebee’s on Veterans Day.
“Goods, services and promotional activities are often offered by public and private institutions to veterans who demonstrate proof of service in the military, but it is impractical for a veteran to always carry Department of Defense form DD-214 discharge papers to demonstrate such proof,” the law states.
Currently, only veterans who are enrolled in the VA healthcare system or receive retirement pay have photo ID cards. A handful of states also allow people to identify themselves as veterans on their driver’s licenses.
The law does not stipulate that only honorably discharged veterans are eligible for the card. However, Military.com reports that an honorable discharge is required. Task & Purpose is waiting for verification on this crucial bit of information from the VA, and will update this article accordingly.
According to Military.com, to complete the application process, veterans must upload a copy of a valid government photo ID — like a driver’s license or a passport — and providing other information, such as a Social Security number. The VA has yet to announce the specific website address where vets can apply.
The VA will mail the cards directly to the veteran, but officials told Military.com that the department has yet to finalize a “timeline for how long it will take to receive a card.” We also don’t know when in November the VA will start accepting applications. Stay tuned.
The U.S. military will build 'facilities' to house at least 7,500 adult migrants, the Pentagon announced on Wednesday.
Acting Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan has approved a request from the Department of Homeland Security to construct the facilities, said Pentagon spokesman Army Maj. Chris Mitchell.
Defense officials will brief President Donald Trump's national security team on a plan that involves sending 5,000 more troops to the Middle East to deter Iran, Task & Purpose has learned.
So far, no decisions have been made about whether to send the reinforcements to the region, unnamed U.S. officials told CNN's Barbara Starr.
"The military capabilities being discussed include sending additional ballistic missile defense systems, Tomahawk cruise missiles on submarines, and surface ships with land attack capabilities for striking at a long range," CNN reports. "Specific weapons systems and units have not been identified."
The Navy warship forged from World Trade Center steel has returned to New York for the first time in years
The thousands of sailors, Coasties and Marines who descend on New York City every year for Fleet Week are an awesome sight to behold on their own, but this year's confab of U.S. service members includes a uniquely powerful homecoming as well.
When an Air Force major called J.J. completed a solo flight in the U-2 in late August 2016 — 60 years after the high-flying aircraft was introduced — he became the 1,000th pilot to do so.
J.J., whose name was withheld by the U.S. Air Force for security reasons, earned his solo patch a few days after pilots No. 998 and No. 999. Those three pilots are in distinguished company, two fellow pilots said this month.
"We have a pretty small, elite team of folks. We're between about 60 and 70 active-duty pilots at any given time," Maj. Matt "Top" Nauman said during an Air Force event at the Intrepid Sea, Air, and Space Museum in New York City.
"We're about 1,050 [pilots] right now. So to put that in context, there are more people with Super Bowl rings than there are people with U-2 patches," Nauman added. "It's a pretty small group of people that we've hired over the last 60 to 65 years."
In what appear to be his first public remarks on U.S. national security since his resignation as Secretary of Defense, retired Marine Gen. James Mattis offered a word of caution to President Donald Trump amid escalating tensions with Iran on Tuesday.
"The United States should buy time to keep peace and stability and allow diplomats to work diplomacy on how to keep peace for one more hour, one more day, one more week, a month or a year," Mattis said during remarks in the United Arab Emirates.
"Iran's behavior must change," Mattis added, "[but] the military must work to buy time for diplomats to work their magic."