Huffington Post www.huffingtonpost.com is running a series of articles on the military and veterans, focusing on military families. Mostly positive, feel-good pieces with useful information and links to worthy organizations. But there’s some “downers” too.

I specialized in national defense while working for a public policy/current events database for over 15 years. In that time I covered, among other topics, Agent Orange, PTSD, Gulf War Syndrome, the VA, and veterans who are homeless and unemployed. As the chasm between our all-volunteer armed forces and civilians widened, I was curious about Want Ads with the phrase “JMO (junior military officer) preferred” I telephoned the company or agency concerned. The conversation usually went like this: do you have a veteran’s preference policy? do you hire many veterans? is the boss a veteran? are YOU a veteran? do you know any veterans? It was ugly.

Then came 9/11 and the GWOT. Now a quick internet search lists many sites offering job searching services targeting JMO’s which may in fact be legitimate. Same for vets employment services in general. But veterans’ preference points don’t mean much when government agencies aren’t hiring. And in a “down” economy veterans are all too often lumped-in with the general public. If your MOS was Mortarman you’re likely in for a rough ride; but here’s a former US Navy medic:

Out of War, Out of Luck: For Veterans, Skills Learned In Service Don't Translate To Employment

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