March 20th, 2013
We tell veterans don’t shoot yourself, don’t shoot your wife, just stick with it and we’ll see what we can do while you wait two years for your benefits. The system sucks.

Shad Meshad, former Vietnam War combat medic and head of the National Veterans Foundation, said of the Iraq and Afghanistan veterans he counsels. 

Since Obama took office, the number of veterans waiting more than a year for their disability claims had increased by more than 2,000 percent – from 11,000 in 2009 to 245,000 in December.

Rep. Jeff Miller, chairman of the House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs, called for the head of the agency’s benefits administration to resign. 

“When you have a company, any company, that doesn’t perform, you fire the CEO,” Meshad said.

March 19th, 2013

Many Iraq veterans wait more than 10 months on benefits

Today marks the 10th anniversary of the U.S. invasion of Iraq. As you can see from our infographic, the number of veterans waiting on benefits from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs has grown dramatically in the past decade, and is expected to top one million by the end of the month.

Many veterans returning from Iraq wait more than ten months for a response on their disability claim. Get the full story from reporter Aaron Glantz here

See the complete infographic here.

August 31st, 2012

Get more on this story - The geographic inequity of VA wait times is fully detailed for the first time in our analysis. Simply put: Veterans in sparsely populated states often encounter quick resolution of their compensation claims for problems ranging from back injuries to post-traumatic stress disorder while those in metropolitan areas languish.

Read our full story and find out how long vets in your area are waiting.

June 18th, 2012

How different are what political leaders say in public and what they may have known in private? The documentary “Iraq’s Secret War Files” reveals that it is often divergent. Executive producer Iain Overton and the London-based Bureau of Investigative Journalism were given first-look access to nearly 400,000 WikiLeaks reports detailing American involvement in Iraq under President Barack Obama. Overton and the bureau craft a critique of what they describe as the “war and occupation that the U.S. military doesn’t want you to know.”

May 1st, 2012

In the combined wars of Afghanistan and Iraq, all 50 states and the territories have lost service members. More than 6,300 people have died and more than 44,000 have been wounded in action, many of whom were saved by modern medicine not available during previous wars. Click through to see our map of casualties by state.

October 21st, 2011
The last American soldier will cross the border out of Iraq with their heads held high, proud of their success, and knowing that the American people stand united in our support for our troops. That is how America’s military efforts in Iraq will end.
President Barack Obama announcing the United States will pull troops out of Iraq by the end of 2011. via New York Times.
September 2nd, 2011

AUGUST STAT: In Iraq, no deaths for the first time. In Afghanistan, deadliest period since war began

From our homeland security reporter G.W. Schulz.


Here it is, folks — one of the more unpleasant statistics you’ll hear this summer. First, the good news. In Iraq, August marked the first time there were no troop fatalities. Now for the bad news. In Afghanistan, August marked the deadliest month since the war began with 66 troops killed.

Image: Staff Sgt. Brian Ferguson

Reblogged from Perilous
May 16th, 2011
When I had first arrived at SQU in October, students told me about another bus accident that had killed 12 girls. No, seven. Actually it was 15. No, it was 20. No, someone else insisted. Only four died. How can you not know the number, I implored my students. And then I’d go on to describe how we’d often arrive at a body count when covering a suicide bombing in Iraq, where I had been a reporter for the Washington Post in 2004 and 2005. “You check with the U.S. military because they often send soldiers to secure the scene,” I explained. “And then you call the health ministry in Baghdad because they coordinate with the hospitals. Of course you talk to witnesses, but they’re often emotional and not always objective. You can go to the hospitals yourselves, although if it’s a large bombing, you may have to go to four or five, and the streets might be barricaded. But if you really want to know, you go to the morgue and you count the bodies.”
Jackie Spinner, a former Washington Post staff writer, reflects in College Media Matters on her efforts to launch an independent student newspaper called Al Mir’ah in Oman. She has also launched student newspapers in Iraq. 
April 29th, 2011

Cost of global war on terror reaches $1.2 trillion

"As of March 2011, Congress had approved a total of more than $1.2 trillion dollars for costs associated with the wars in Iraq, Afghanistan and other post-9/11 ‘war on terror’ operations, the Congressional Research Service said in its most recent update on the subject." - via Secrecy News

Congressional Research Service reports are not readily made available to the public. But the Federation of American Scientists, which hosts Secrecy News, regularly posts them. Below, find the full report.

Cost of the war on terror

Loading tweets...


At The Center for Investigative Reporting, we believe journalism that moves citizens to action is an essential pillar of democracy. Since 1977, CIR has relentlessly pursued and uncovered injustices that otherwise would be hidden from the public eye. Today, we are upholding this legacy and looking forward, working at the forefront of journalistic innovation to produce important stories that make a difference and engage our audiences across the aisle, coast to coast, and worldwide. What drives our work isn't profit – it's impact. Learn more at