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State Senator

Saud Anwar

Representing East Hartford, Ellington, East Windsor and South Windsor

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Legislation Providing Benefits to Hmong Laotian Veterans Who Fought During Vietnam War 'Secret War' Receives Public Hearing

HARTFORD – Yesterday, legislation providing veterans benefits to members of the Hmong Laotian special guerilla units who served in the secret war in the Kingdom of Laos during the Vietnam War received a public hearing in the Veterans' Affairs Committee. This legislation, which would provide those individuals with legal veterans status, financial support for a funeral, and other similar benefits, was supported by legislators who want to support these men for their brave sacrifices to support the United States.

"These men fought hard and sacrificed to support the American people," said Sen. Anwar. "I am proud that we moved forward an effort to recognize them for all they've done to support our country. I hope to support this legislation on the Senate floor."

During the Vietnam War, members of the Hmong worked together with the CIA to conduct covert operations in Laos, also known as the "secret war." Tens of thousands of men were killed during the war, more after its end. Though these men were hired and paid by the CIA, according to Twin Cities PBS, they are not recognized as United States veterans and as such receive no benefits. More than 35,000 Hmong and Lao soldiers died supporting the United States armed forces. If this legislation is approved by the House and Senate, these brave men will finally receive the support and respect they earned in battle.

 

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