The VA Will Now Pay For Robotic Legs For Veterans

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Navy volunteers are framed between the prosthetic legs of a Paralympic Military Sports Camp participant at Balboa Naval Medical Center.
Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Travis K. Mendoza

For paralyzed veterans with spinal cord injuries, a new technology involving robotic legs may allow them to walk again, according to The Associated Press.


Paralyzed veterans have been sending letters to Veterans Affairs Secretary Robert McDonald this summer, and on Dec. 10, VA officials sent a memorandum outlining plans to train staff to fund the technology.

The device, which is made with a brace with motion sensors and motorized joints that respond to subtle changes in upper-body movement and shifts in balance, was approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration in 2014.

According to Ann Spungen, who led VA research on the system, "The research support and effort to provide eligible veterans with paralysis an exoskeleton for home use is a historic move on the part of the VA because it represents a paradigm shift in the approach to rehabilitation for persons with paralysis."

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Known for acting on impulse, President Donald Trump has adopted an uncharacteristically go-slow approach to whether to hold Iran responsible for attacks on Saudi oil facilities, showing little enthusiasm for confrontation as he seeks re-election next year.

After state-owned Saudi Aramco's plants were struck on Saturday, Trump didn't wait long to fire off a tweet that the United States was "locked and loaded" to respond, and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo blamed Iran.

But four days later, Trump has no timetable for action. Instead, he wants to wait and see the results of investigations into what happened and is sending Pompeo to consult counterparts in Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates this week.

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That sound you're hearing is Army senior leaders exhaling a sigh of relief, because the Army has surpassed its recruiting goal for the year.

After failing to meet recruiting goals in 2018, the Army put the pedal to the metal and "did some soul searching," said Acting Army Secretary Ryan McCarthy, to ensure that they'd meet their 2019 goal. It must have paid off — the service announced on Tuesday that more than 68,000 recruits have signed on as active-duty soldiers, and more soldiers have stuck around than they expected.

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Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. David Goldfein transformed into the Cigarette Smoking Man from "The X-Files" on Tuesday when explaining why UFO enthusiasts should avoid storming the mythical Area 51 installation in Nevada.

"All joking aside, we're taking it very seriously," Goldfein told reporters during the Air Force Association's annual Air, Space, and Cyber Conference. "Our nation has secrets, and those secrets deserve to be protected. The people deserve to have our nation's secrets protected."

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Paul Szoldra/Task & Purpose

SAN DIEGO — A San Diego-based Navy SEAL acquitted of murder in a closely watched war crimes trial this summer has filed a lawsuit against two of his former attorneys and a military legal defense nonprofit, according to a complaint filed in federal court in Texas on Friday.

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NATIONAL HARBOR, Maryland — The Air Force is reviewing whether some airmen's valor awards deserve to be upgraded to the Medal of Honor, Chief of Staff Gen. David Goldfein said on Tuesday.

Goldfein revealed that several airmen are being considered for the nation's highest military award during a press conference at the Air Force Association's annual Air, Space, and Cyber Conference. He declined to say exactly who could receive the Medal of Honor, pending the outcome of the review process.

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