Hostile Fire Pay – what’s the truth, and what isn’t.
Let’s get real, shall we?
The screaming and hysterical flailing that I’ve been seeing on some military and military spouse Facebook pages has been another sample of the worst of social media; the topic now is hostile fire pay. I first saw it when a page with a huge audience tried to set the record straight, but she didn’t connect to the piece that had instigated this latest flurry. She refused to sully her page with a link to it (as do I)
One of my Facebook friends did. A nasty little site called conservative action alerts. I understand partisanship, I do. But telling an out and out lie? Their title is Obama Pulls Combat Pay for US Troops. This is complete and utter Bull! I read the drivel, and was encouraged by the comments that told them they were spreading disinformation. This “information” site took the regulation and tried to say that unless you were being actively shot at, you wouldn’t get combat duty pay. Again. Bullshit.
As military.com states in its piece, the change to the regs is that the hostile fire pay is now prorated! That only means that hazardous duty/hostile fire pay is paid to the service member when they are actually IN that combat area. Not for the entire month, as had been the case.
Years ago, I remember hearing about folks that would try to stay in country for one extra day if they were close to the end of the month, to be able to get that extra month’s hostile fire pay. Now you may wonder, what’s the diff, it’s only a couple hundred bucks. Multiply that by thousands. Multiply that by the staff guy who flies into Kabul for a couple of weeks for meetings, and then leaves, but gets paid for the entire month, unless it was one week during one month, the second week was during the next month, and then they get paid for two months!! Is that fair? Is it right that he gets the same amount of hostile fire pay as the guy sitting on the FOB, or tramping the mountains?
So let’s get real, let’s get the RIGHT information out there. And stop throwing a hissy fit until you really REALLY read the regulations.