KUWAIT CITY: Canadian soldiers, who are currently assigned in Camp Arifjan and are participating in the fight against ISIS, are no longer entitled to a major tax break which made them save more than $9,000 each during their six-month tour.
A report published on the website of CTV News explained that tax breaks ranging from $1,500 to $1,800 monthly are granted to soldiers if they meet certain criteria related to the risk of their duties and the relative hardship of their living conditions while deployed overseas. After the military downgraded the risk level, 15 soldiers lost the tax break in September. They fought to get it back, arguing that they faced no less danger or hardship than other soldiers stationed in the country.
Instead of restoring the tax break to Camp Arifjan’s soldiers, the military took the exemption away from more than 300 soldiers who will no longer be eligible as of June 1, 2017. One soldier told CTV News that out of all the nations fighting ISIS, he believes the Canadians are the only ones who will not be getting the tax break.
The Pentagon confirmed to CTV News that all American soldiers deployed to Iraq receive tax exemption status. Military sources say the change is already causing hardships. One deployed soldier supports his disabled sister and pays his elderly mother’s mortgage, and now their financial future is uncertain. His mother, Glenda Lindsay, said it feels as though her son is being cheated.
“They’re cutting corners at the troops’ expense,” she told CTV News. Defense Minister Harjit Sajjan promised to fix the situation at a defense committee meeting on Dec 1 when he was pressed by Conservative Defense Critic, James Bezan. But there has yet to be any change. One affected soldier feels like “we got kicked in the stomach”.
Meanwhile, Zach Douglas, an American patriot from the Wheeling Town of Missouri who “wants to sacrifice his life for the Land of the Free and the Home of the Brave” was on Feb 9 deployed to the State of Kuwait along with his brother John Hiber, reports newspressnow.com.
In the days leading up to his deployment, his phone and Facebook were filled with goodbyes and messages of well wishes. After graduating from Chillicothe High School, Douglas joined the Army National Guard on Oct 8, 2013 and graduated from Basic Fort Benning, Georgia on July 31, 2014. He then drilled in Maryville while attending Northwest Missouri State University, a university from where his family is a long line of graduates.