Who Are Considered Gulf War Veterans?

The Gulf Wars of the Middle East are some of the most recognizable conflicts in modern history, partly due to the number of troops deployed and their ongoing repercussions to date. While the infamous Iraqi operations are well-known among the masses, there exist other quests, widening the net for veterans termed as gulf war veterans. Listed are some missions classified under the Gulf War umbrella. 

The Iraqi Freedom Operations After 9/11

The 9/11 attack on the United States had a devastating impact on the country, with then-president Bush launching an offensive operation in Iraq in March 2003. Unfortunately, troops sent to the Middle East encountered numerous physical and mental health scars. To help them cope with the effects of the operations, veterans gained the distinction of gulf war veterans, allowing them to claim various benefits needed to help them get back to normalcy. Gulf War disability claims lawyers suggest applying for these benefits from the nearest VA regional office, with the benefits portal also handy for filing claims.

Operation Desert Shield

This operation was centered around Saudi Arabian territory, with troops from the United States dispatched in August 1990 to help prevent Iraq’s possible invasion of the Persian Gulf’s oil supply. Veterans serving in the fighter wing and national guard dockets were some of the personnel sent to the region.

Operation New Dawn

Operation New Dawn was set up in February 2010 to signal the end of the Gulf War, most notably in Iraq. Troops withdrew from the region, ending years of combat operations in the Persian Gulf. Troops who served in any docket of operation New Dawn are entitled to veteran protection and benefits, providing them with the same opportunities as other personnel on previous missions to the Gulf region.

Operation Desert Storm

Veterans serving in the combat mission against Iraq on January 17, 1991, also fall in the category of gulf war veterans. While this attack lasted for only close to two months, the damage to property in the country has been linked to the spiraling Gulf War operations that took place after that.

Other Southwest Asia Operations

In addition to the above operations, veterans serving in territories in the southwest Asia region are also listed as Gulf War veterans. These territories include

  • The USA, Qatar, and Bahrain
  • The Red Sea, the Persian Gulf water space, and the Arabian Sea
  • The Gulf of Oman and the Gulf of Aden
  • Kuwait
  • Other territories outside the southwest region. This includes countries such as Turkey, Israel, Jordan, Egypt, and Syria.

Requirements for Getting Gulf War Veteran Benefits

A few considerations the veterans serving in the above operations need to qualify include:

  • An ailment lasting for at least six months
  • Have a disability rating of 10%
  • The conditions need to satisfy the Southwest Asia Theatre of Operations specifications
  • The ailments began before 2017
  • The veteran must have one of the following conditions; chronic fatigue syndrome, fibromyalgia, and illnesses including cardiovascular disease, joint pain, or headaches.
  • Have developed specific Gulf War disabilities comprising Q fever, West Nile virus, brucellosis, and shigella

Applying For Gulf War Veteran Benefit

Veterans in any of the above-listed options can get help from veteran service organizations and non-profit organizations specializing in veteran help. Veterans are eligible for a disability examination to help them gauge their symptoms and to allow them to receive compensation under the suitable benefit scheme. You can also request an additional exam if you experience new symptoms that may not have been present in your initial exam. These tests are optional and free since qualified VA experts conduct them.

If you are unsure whether you qualify for a gulf war veteran benefit claim, the above guide will be essential for helping you determine where your service area falls under. While most Gulf War veterans served in major operations such as the Desert Storm and the Iraqi Freedom operations, other combat operations in regions such as Turkey, Israel, and Egypt also fall under this class. This allows you to claim benefits from Veterans Affairs, with specific Gulf War-related conditions accelerating your claim further. 

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