News Archives For January 2007

Health Officials Unveil Revitalized Plan
Military Health System officials are working on several ways to improve health care delivery and management and save servicemembers money. One development that will facilitate health care administration is the Armed Forces Health Longitudinal Technology Application, the electronic health records system recently deployed. more

Transformation Ensures Combat-Ready Troops
When the National Training Center opened here in 1981, it presented the most realistic environment imaginable for troops to prepare for a potential large-scale, tank-on-tank confrontation with the Soviet Union in Germany’s Fulda Gap.

Too Early to Judge Iraq Stability Plan
It’s too early to judge the new stability plan for Iraq, Vice President Richard B. Cheney told a “Newsweek” reporter here yesterday. "People are trying to make a judgment on whether or not this plan is going to work I think far too early,” Cheney told journalist Richard Wolffe during a White House interview in the vice president’s West Wing office. more

National Guard Chief Confirmed
The U.S. Senate has confirmed the nomination of Army Lt. Gen. H Steven Blum for a two-year extension as chief of the National Guard Bureau. President Bush nominated Blum for the extension in December. The Senate acted on the nomination Jan. 26. Blum will have served as the chief for four years in April. more

IRAQ: 14 Enemy Fighters Killed
Coalition and Iraqi forces killed 14 terrorists and captured dozens of suspected insurgents during operations conducted in Iraq today and over the past week, officials said. -- Coalition troops nabbed 21 suspected terrorists, including a senior al Qaeda in Iraq courier, an improvised-explosive- device cell leader, and a foreign-fighter facilitator during operations across Iraq today. more

U.S., Afghan Forces Nab Five Terrorists
Coalition and Afghan forces arrested five individuals connected with a known terrorist sub-commander and weapons transporter during a raid at a compound near Khost city today, officials said. more

War Game Encourages Teamwork
Military and other government decision makers are working this week to determine how best to use the government’s powers to defeat an insurgency. Nearly 160 participants were given an imaginary crisis and asked to create a unified response during the U.S. Marine Corps-hosted Expeditionary War Game that began Jan. 21 and ends tomorrow at the William F. Bolger Leadership Facility. more

Transition Team Attacked Training Police
The morning is chilly as Sgt. Alexis Medina briefs his squad on its mission. Medina and his Soldiers, from the Florida National Guard's Company D, 2nd Battalion, 124th Infantry Regiment, are one of several squads that make up the police transition team working in Tal Afar. Their mission is to see that the Iraqi police are properly trained so they can operate on their own. more

DoD Shows Non-Lethal Energy Weapon
The Active Denial System works by emitting a directed beam of millimeter wave energy, which creates an intolerable heating sensation on an adversary’s skin, causing an instantaneous repel effect without causing injury, according to a DoD news release. more

Diplomacy Main Avenue for Dealing With Iran
Although U.S. troops will continue to defend themselves against any elements that threaten their security in Iraq, diplomacy remains the primary avenue for solving problems between the United States and Iran, President Bush said here today. more

Senate Confirms Petraeus to Head Ops in Iraq
WASHINGTON, Jan. 26, 2007 – The Senate today confirmed Army Lt. Gen. David H. Petraeus for promotion to general and assignment as commander of Multinational Force Iraq. more

U.S. Military Police Teach Iraqis Rule of Law
WASHINGTON, Jan. 26, 2007 – A U.S. military police brigade deployed in Baghdad is teaching Iraqi police about democratic principles such as tolerance in addition to law enforcement skills, the unit’s commander said today. more

Chaplains Reach Out to Extended U.S. Soldiers
BAGRAM AIR BASE, Afghanistan, Jan. 26, 2007 – U.S. military chaplains serving in Afghanistan want troops who have been extended to know support is there for them. “Hang in there; we’re right with you,” is what chaplains want recently extended soldiers to know, a senior chaplain here said. more

Soldier Honored
WASHINGTON, Jan. 23, 2007 – An Army sergeant who was awarded the Silver Star for his valiant actions in Iraq was honored by President Bush at the annual State of the Union Address here tonight. Sgt. Tommy Rieman, who is now an administrative assistant for the Army personnel office in the Pentagon, served with a reconnaissance squad in Iraq in 2003.

Iraqis Celebrate School Reopening
An Iraqi neighborhood north of Ramadi celebrated the reopening of its school Jan. 23, U.S. and Iraqi forces provided aid to citizens in Adhamiyah this week, and students in Tal Afar received cold weather gear from Iraqi forces Jan. 22, military officials reported. more

43 Insurgents Detained, Weapons Found
In a string of operations across Iraq over the past four days, Iraqi and coalition forces detained 43 suspected terrorists, found several weapons caches, stopped an illegal checkpoint, and freed three captives, military officials reported. more

Afghanistan Unit Extension Announced
Some 3,200 soldiers of the 3rd Brigade, 10th Mountain Division, will have their tour in Afghanistan extended for up to 120 additional days, Defense Department officials announced today.Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates approved the extension was based on the recommendations of commanders on the ground, whom Gates visited last week, Bryan Whitman, a DoD spokesman, said. The extension will provide military capability for NATO to build on the success achieved in promoting stability and security in Afghanistan while denying safe haven for the Taliban, he said. more

More Guard to Protect U.S Border
WASHINGTON, Jan. 24, 2007 – More than 600 Texas National Guardsmen were activated by the state’s governor Jan. 22 to support a surge operation targeting crime and international drug and human trafficking along the state’s 1,200-mile border with Mexico.

DoD, VA Joint Inpatient Record System
The Defense and Veterans Affairs departments have announced plans for a common inpatient electronic health-record system. The two departments now have separate systems that require upgrade, officials said. more

DoD - Afghanistan Force Adjustment
The Department of Defense announced today Secretary of Defense Robert Gates approved a request from commanders to extend for up to 120 additional days 3,200 soldiers of the 3rd Brigade, 10th Mountain Division currently operating in Afghanistan. more

AW2 Meets Wounded Soldiers' Needs
WASHINGTON (Army News Service, Jan. 25, 2007) - Staff Sgt. Johnathan Holsey was certain his military career had ended on Nov. 10, 2004. That day, just outside Ramadi, Iraq, a roadside bomb exploded near his convoy, so severely injuring his left leg that it had to be amputated just below the knee. more

May 1 ‘Silver Star Day’
A day to honor our Wounded together nationwide. Thanks to the efforts of Silver Star Families of America, Indiana and New Mexico have proclaimed May 1 as “Silver Star Day” to honor the nation’s wounded servicemembers. Silver Star Families of America is a member of America Supports You, a Defense Department program highlighting the ways Americans are supporting the nation’s servicemembers. more

Baghdad Insurgents Kill One Soldier
Insurgents fired on a U.S. patrol operating in Baghdad today, killing one soldier and wounding two more. In addition, Defense Department officials released the identities of 12 servicemembers killed in a helicopter crash Jan. 20.

B-52 undergoes synthetic-fuel cold weather testing
A B-52 Stratofortess powered by a mix of synthetic fuel arrived here Jan. 17 for cold-weather testing, the last step in the testing and certification process to help reduce Air Force dependence on imported fuel. more

DNA Registry Helps Identify Troops
Deep within a nondescript warehouse in this Washington suburb lie millions of blood-smeared cardboard cards that hold the key to every servicemember’s unique personal identity, captured in DNA. more

Bush Urges Congress to Support Strategy
Citing freedom’s progress in the Middle East, the ambitions of a thinking and determined enemy and the consequences of failure in Iraq, President Bush tonight urged Congress in his State of the Union Address to support a strategy of victory in Iraq. more

‘Eagle’ Flies to Military Family’s Aid
WASHINGTON, Jan. 23, 2007 – Injured in Iraq, Katie Kriesel’s husband is facing a long recovery at Walter Reed Army Medical Center here. But her employer, Eagle Global Logistics, is making sure she’ll get to stay by his side. more

U.S. Tracks al Qadea in Africa
WASHINGTON, Jan. 24, 2007 – The United States will track down al Qaeda operatives wherever they try to find safe haven, including in the Horn of Africa, a senior Defense Department official said today. more

Operation Tomahawk Nets Insurgents
WASHINGTON, Jan. 24, 2007 – Several insurgents were captured and a weapons cache was found during a combined security operation that was kicked off today in the Haifa Street area of Baghdad, officials said. more

Bush Stresses Cooperation, Perseverance
Emphasizing that failure in Iraq would be grievous and far-reaching, President Bush said tonight that American leaders must work together to set the conditions for success in the long war against terrorism. more

Suites Serve Cancer Patients
WASHINGTON, Jan. 24, 2007 - A new area of Walter Reed Army Medical Center here will provide state-of-the-art medical care for terminal cancer patients in a warm, homelike setting. more

DoD, VA Announce Plans for Joint Inpatient Record System
WASHINGTON, Jan. 24, 2007 – The Defense and Veterans Affairs departments have announced plans for a common inpatient electronic health-record system. more

Officials to Stop Remote Home School Program
WASHINGTON, Jan. 24, 2007 – The Department of Defense Education Activity will discontinue its Remote Home School Program beginning in school year 2007-2008, DoDEA officials announced today. more

Stryker Force Ready, on Call for Iraq
Strike hard! Strike fast! This could be the motto for the Stryker Readiness Force–Iraq, whose mission is to respond to threats across the battlefield of Operation Iraqi Freedom.

ISF Rreceive Leadership Training
Sgt. Maj. Samuel Campbell, the task force sergeant major for 1st Battalion, 319th Airborne Field Artillery Regiment, presents a certificate of achievement to a 9th Battalion, Strategic Infrastructure Brigade soldier at his graduation from a new non-commissioned officer (NCO) course in Tikrit, Iraq, on Wednesday. The NCO training course was established and staffed by U.S. Soldiers from 1-319th AFAR stationed out of Contingency Operating Base Speicher. more

New Schools Open in Mushahidah
Jan. 23, 2007 — It has been said that fostering education is one of many steps toward improving safety and stability for Iraq’s future — its children. The soldiers of Company B, 2nd Battalion, 8th Cavalry Regiment helped the city of Mushahidah, Iraq, get one step closer to this goal by opening three new schools within the city, Jan 15. more

Family Needs as New Iraq Strategy Is Implemented
Principal Deputy Under Secretary of Defense for Personnel & Readiness, Michael L. Dominguez, is working with 22 of the most active family support organizations in the department and across the nation to expand needed support services to families by President Bush's new Strategy for Iraq. more

America Supports You: Pizza Party Provided to Taji Troops
The generosity of an infantryman’s parents, working in coordination with a major pizza restaurant’s corporate office, a unit family readiness group, and a major shipping company, led to a feast for some soldiers here Jan. 18.

Deputy Secretary Praises Troops
Deputy Defense Secretary Gordon England today told servicemembers deployed to Bahrain that they’re following in their fathers’ and grandfathers’ footsteps by protecting liberty and freedom for future generations. England, speaking at the 5th U.S. Fleet headquarters in Manama, told the deployed troops they’re confronting terrorism and extremism the same way past generations faced off against fascism and communism.

Cadets Mostly Feel Safe From Sexual Harassment
WASHINGTON, Jan. 23, 2007 – Most students at the Army, Air Force and Naval academies say they feel safe from sexual harassment when on or off campus, according to findings contained in a 300-page report based on the latest Defense Department-commissioned survey on the subject. more

Dark Horse Keeps Watchful Eye Over Base
In order for soldiers and civilians on the base to sleep soundly, someone needs to stay up all hours of the night to make sure no one gets in who shouldn't. In order to keep peace and safety in the International Zone, someone needs to control all the traffic. more

Petraeus Supports Troop Increase in Confirmation Hearing
WASHINGTON, Jan. 23, 2007 – President Bush’s pick for command of Multinational Force Iraq today supported the new strategy for Iraq, emphasizing that additional U.S. forces are essential in accomplishing the mission there. more

Army Video News - Blasts in Iraq kill over 60
Associated Press - (APTN)
Jan. 22, 2007. 08:28 AM EST
Blasts in Iraq kill over 60

U.S. Commitment Will Continue in Afghanistan
U.S. Commitment Will Continue in Afghanistan
KABUL, Afghanistan, Jan. 21, 2007 – The outgoing commander of Combined Forces Command-Afghanistan said the United States is committed to NATO’s success in Afghanistan and will remain the single largest contributor of troops to the mission.

Five U.S. Soldiers Killed During Attack on Coordination Center
Five U.S. soldiers were killed and three wounded yesterday while repelling an attack on the Provincial Joint Coordination Center (PJCC) in Karbala, Iraq, military officials reported today.
The PJCC is used by local Iraqi officials, Iraqi security forces and coalition forces to meet and address the security needs of the population, said Brig. Gen. Vincent K. Brooks, deputy commander Multinational Division-Baghdad. more

12 U.S. Soldiers Die in Helicopter Crash
WASHINGTON, Jan. 21, 2007 – Twelve U.S. soldiers were killed when the Blackhawk helicopter in which they were riding crashed northeast of Baghdad Saturday afternoon, Multinational Force Iraq officials reported today.
Initial reports erroneously claimed that 13 individuals were killed, officials said. more

Suspected Terrorist Killed, 25 Detained During Operations
Coalition forces killed one terrorist and detained 18 others while conducting multiple operations throughout Iraq today, military officials reported. During a raid in Mosul one terrorist was shot and killed after he began firing at coalition forces. Meanwhile, in al Anbar province, coalition forces captured six enemy fighters believed to have ties to a weapons and bomb facilitator. more

Iraqi Police Monitor Tigris River for Criminal Activity
Keeping the Tigris River free from criminal activity is the mission of a unique group of Iraqi policemen. An Iraqi policeman keeps an eye on one of the bridges his boat unit is tasked with protecting during a patrol on the Tigris River on Jan. 7. Photo by Petty Officer 2nd Class Elisandro Diaz, USN '(Click photo for screen-resolution image);high-resolution image available. more

Gates Trip Aimed at Understanding Ground-truth
WASHINGTON, Jan. 20, 2007 – Seeking ground-truth, Robert M. Gates made his second trip of his less than month-long tour as defense secretary to the U.S. Central Command area of operations. Gates met with soldiers and kings, sailors and emirs, airmen and sheikhs and Marines and presidents during the six-day visit to seven countries. He specifically sought out opportunities to speak with allies and coalition partners on the visit. He returned to Washington very early this morning. more

Counter-drug Efforts as Possible Model for Afghanistan
The chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff thanked Colombia’s leaders here yesterday for using their country’s long experience in its counter-drug effort to help the Afghan government fight a similar battle.
“I should thank President (Alvaro) Uribe and the entire government here in Colombia for the way that he and his leaders have reached out to (Afghan) President (Hamid) Karzai and his government to provide experience, to provide teams of experts, to go sit and talk with President Karzai and the folks he has working the counter-drug (issue),” Marine Gen. Peter Pace said. “It’s been a very helpful contribution by the Colombian government.” more

Pace Extols Virtues of ‘Jointness’ to Colombian Officers
OGOTA, Colombia, Jan. 20, 2007 – Marine Gen. Peter Pace, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, recounted yesterday to Colombian military officers his initial doubts about the U.S. military going “joint,” but he said he was firm in his conviction two decades later that the armed forces are better off when fighting together as a team. more

Force Increase Involves Range of Capabilities
WASHINGTON, Jan. 19, 2007 – An increase in the active-duty military and changes to the policies for reserve forces announced this month by Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates are aimed to increase the military’s overall capabilities, a senior defense official said here today. more

Military Channel Broadcasting Servicemembers’ Stories
The Military Channel is asking servicemembers across the armed forces to submit videotaped stories about their service in the global war on terrorism for broadcast on television, company officials said. “We want to give a voice to the troops to allow them to tell their stories,” Jill Bondurant, Military Channel publicist, said during an interview with American Forces Press Service today. more

Casey Says Iraqis on Timetable for Commitments
Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki’s government is delivering on its commitments for the new way forward in Iraq, the commander of coalition forces said here today. "So far, so good" is the way Army Gen. George W. Casey Jr. characterized Iraqi efforts to bring security to Baghdad.

Defense News, Information Now Customized for Mobile Devices
WASHINGTON, Jan. 17, 2007 – Defense Department news releases, articles and other information are now available in a new format that’s customized for easier viewing on BlackBerries and other mobile devices, officials said.

Chinese Missile Destroys Satellite
China has conducted an anti-satellite weapons test in which an old Chinese weather satellite was destroyed by a balistic missile. The Chinese authorities have not confirmed a US report that it blew up one of its own aged weather satellites last Thursday with a ballistic missile fired from the Xichang space centre in Sichuan province. more

Sergeant in Trouble for Playboy Spread
Associated Press - (APTN)
Jan. 13, 2007. 02:23 PM EST
An Air Force staff sergeant who posed nude for Playboy magazine has been relieved of her duties while the military investigates. (Jan. 13)

Iraqi Army Boot Camp Trains Recruits
The transformation from civilian life to military life is similar, regardless of the country a soldier serves. For new Iraqi recruits it begins with the issuing of uniforms, a rifle, an introduction to military rules and intricate details of how to make a bunk and organize a locker. more

General Praises Operational Freedom
WASHINGTON, Jan. 18, 2007 – The most important component of President Bush’s strategy to stabilize Iraq is an expanded freedom of operations in Baghdad, the chief operations officer for the Joint Staff said here yesterday. more

U.S. Restoring Iraqi Factories
WASHINGTON, Jan. 18, 2007 – In an effort to bolster Iraq’s economy and employ thousands of Iraqis, the United States is working to restart operations at several factories around the country. A team from the Defense Department’s Office of Business Transformation has been visiting Iraq since May to evaluate the situations at the country’s roughly 200 former state-owned factories and determine what is needed to restart operations. more

Gates, Middle Eastern Leaders Talk About Iran
MANAMA, Bahrain, Jan. 18, 2007 – Iran is mistaken in believing it has the United States at a disadvantage, Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates said here today. Gates spoke to reporters traveling with him after briefings at U.S. Naval Forces Central Command here and at U.S Central Command Air Forces, in Qatar. He also met with Qatar’s emir and defense minister, Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani. more

Army Sees 20% Reduction in Accidents
FORT RUCKER, Ala. (Army News Service, Jan. 16, 2006) - The Army achieved a 20-percent reduction in accident fatalities in fiscal 2006 according to a recent report on safety. Driving mishaps were the leading category of accidental fatalities. Although driving fatalities decreased by 13 percent in fiscal 2006 compared to fiscal 2005, the category still represented 65 percent of the Army's accident-related fatalities. more

Army Video News - Iran Buys US F14 Parts
Associated Press - (APTN)
Jan. 16, 2007. 12:46 PM EST
An AP investigation reveals that middlemen for several foreign nations have exploited security flaws in the Pentagon's surplus auction system, purchasing everything from F-14 parts to missile components.

Afghan Citizens Prevent Terrorist Attack
KABUL, Afghanistan (Army News Service, Jan. 17, 2007) - Two Afghan citizens prevented a terrorist attack yesterday morning when a vehicle loaded with explosives attempted to crash through the front gate of Camp Phoenix. "Without any regard for their personal safety, a local Afghan security officer and an interpreter immediately recognized that this was a terrorist attack," said 1st Lt. Cathrin Fraker, Task Force Phoenix spokesperson. more

Invention Saves Humvee-Trapped Soldiers
CAMP STRIKER, Iraq (Army News Service, Jan. 16, 2007) - One of the top killers of Soldiers in Iraq isn't necessarily combat related. Since operations began there in 2003, many Soldiers have died trying to escape Humvees that have rolled into Iraq's numerous irrigation canals. more

Policies to Relieve Stress, Help Cohesion
WASHINGTON, Jan. 16, 2007 – The new Defense Department policy limiting the duration of call-ups to 12 months is already in effect for National Guard and reserve members being ordered to active duty, the senior DoD reserve affairs official reported. more

'Providers' Give Iraqi Soldiers Tools
CAMP STRIKER, Iraq (Army News Service, Jan. 17, 2007) - While 10th Mountain Division Soldiers push deeper into sector to defeat the enemy, others in the 2nd Brigade Combat Team contribute from behind the scenes. more

Afghan Citizens Prevent Terrorist Attack On U.S. Base
KABUL, Afghanistan (Army News Service, Jan. 17, 2007) - Two Afghan citizens prevented a terrorist attack yesterday morning when a vehicle loaded with explosives attempted to crash through the front gate of Camp Phoenix. "Without any regard for their personal safety, a local Afghan security officer and an interpreter immediately recognized that this was a terrorist attack," said 1st Lt. Cathrin Fraker, Task Force Phoenix spokesperson. more

House Committee on Foreign Affairs on Iraq
We are all aware that our country is facing a trying situation in Iraq. Success will be difficult under any circumstances, but the consequences of just giving up are beyond measuring. In the increasingly politicized debate over our involvement, it is important to remember that, beyond the strategic reasons, our decision to undertake military action was driven by
other considerations as well.

Gates Wants to Build on Success in Afghanistan
BAGRAM AIR BASE, Afghanistan, Jan. 17, 2007 – Progress in Afghanistan is impressive, and Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates wants to build on those successes. The U.S. government will likely request funds to accelerate army and police training in Afghanistan, Gates said today more

General Says Solution Requires Commitment
WASHINGTON, Jan. 16, 2007 – The solution in Afghanistan will not be military in nature, but will be possible with the cooperation and work of the international community, the former commander of U.S. European Command said here today. more

Iraqi Cell Leader Killed, Another Captured
Coalition forces killed the leader of an improvised-explosive-device cell and captured another in Iraq over the past three days, and coalition forces have detained 13 suspected insurgents this week, U.S. military officials said. more

Opening Remarks-House Committee on Foreign Affairs
We are all aware that our country is facing a trying situation in Iraq. Success will be difficult under any circumstances, but the consequences of just giving up are beyond measuring. In the increasingly politicized debate over our involvement, it is important to remember that, beyond the strategic reasons, our decision to undertake military action was driven by other considerations as well. more

Army Video News - A Soldier's Wife Reacts
Associated Press - (APTN)
Jan. 11, 2007. 01:41 AM EST
An Army wife at Fort Hood, Texas agrees with President Bush, but doesn't necessarily believe his plan will happen like he describes it. (Jan. 11)

NATO, U.S., Afghan Battle Taliban
KABUL, Afghanistan, Jan. 16, 2007 – NATO, U.S. and Afghan forces are preparing to counter an expected Taliban spring offensive, the commander of combined forces here said today. more

Afghan Army Makes Tremendous Progress
KABUL, Afghanistan, Jan. 16, 2007 – The Afghan National Army is making tremendous progress and is a factor on the battlefield, officials here said today. more

Military in Gulf Reaffirm U.S. Commitment
BRUSSELS, Belgium, Jan. 15, 2007 – Moving another carrier strike group to the Persian Gulf region and manning Patriot anti-missile batteries there is a way of telling the people of the area that the United States has an enduring interest in peace, Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates said here today. more

First Additional U.S. Troops Arrive in Baghdad
WASHINGTON, Jan. 15, 2007 – The first additional U.S. troops who will take part in new security operations in Iraq have arrived in Baghdad, the top U.S. military commander in Iraq said today. more

Gates, Scheffer Discuss Way Forward
NATO operations in Afghanistan, NATO’s ongoing transformation, Kosovo and the general state of the North Atlantic alliance were on the table as Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates met here today with NATO Secretary General Jaap de Hoop Scheffer. more

Victory in Iraq Crucial to U.S. Security
Failure in Iraq would threaten America’s security and create entrenched instability in the Middle East, President Bush said in an interview that aired last night on the CBS News program “60 Minutes.” “If we do not succeed in Iraq, we will leave behind a Middle East which will endanger America in the future,” Bush said... more

Gates Talks With British Allies
Continued progress in Afghanistan and details of President Bush’s new way forward in Iraq were the topics of discussion today as Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates met with British leaders here.

Forces Target Iranian Influence in Iraq
WASHINGTON, Jan. 14, 2007 – As part of their ongoing effort to target Iranian influence in northern Iraq, coalition forces continue investigating the activities of five Iranian nationals detained in Irbil, Iraq, Jan. 11, officials in Baghdad said today. more

More Troops Further Democratic Progress
Sending additional U.S. troops to Iraq will not only improve the security situation there, it will further the country’s democratic and economic progress, Vice President Dick Cheney said today during an interview on “Fox News Sunday.” “We’ve made the decision and came to the conclusion that until we got a handle on the security situation in Baghdad, the Iraqis were not going to be able to make the progress they need to make on the economic front, on the political front and so forth,” Cheney said. more

Iraqis Must Help Stem Sectarian Violence
For the new U.S. strategy in Iraq to succeed, Iraqis must work in concert with American military forces toward ending sectarian violence, President Bush said today during his weekly radio address. “Their leaders understand this, and they are stepping forward to do it,” the president said. “But they need our help, and it is in our interests to provide that help.” more

Bush Presents Medal to Fallen Marine
President Bush today presented the Medal of Honor, the nation’s highest decoration, to the family of Marine Cpl. Jason Dunham, who died shielding his fellow Marines from a grenade blast in Iraq in April 2004. “With this medal, we pay tribute to the courage and leadership of a man who represents the best of young Americans,” Bush said before presenting the medal to Dunham’s family at the White House.

Security Plan Focuses on Region
U.S. interests in the Middle East go well beyond Iraq, and to walk away from the commitments in Iraq would be damaging to U.S. credibility, a senior defense official said yesterday, speaking on background to reporters. “Our allies that we work with and our coalition partners that we work with are watching us very carefully,” he said.

Bush Outlines New Strategy for Iraq
President Bush’s new strategy for Iraq, announced tonight in a televised speech to the nation, includes more than 20,000 additional U.S. troops on the ground in Baghdad and Anbar province, increased responsibility for the Iraqi government and Iraqi security forces, and more diplomatic and economic initiatives. more

Gates Calls for 92,000 More Soldiers, Marines
The active-duty Army and Marine Corps will grow by 92,000 personnel over the next five years, Defense Secretary Robert Gates said during a White House news conference today. more

Center Puts First Team Families First
“Our Soldiers and families deserve the very best,” said Wendy Fil, the “First Lady” of the 1st Cavalry Division, during her opening remarks at the grand re-opening of the division’s Soldier and Family Readiness Center here Jan. 5.

Soldiers Work , Train Iraqi Counterparts
Soldiers from the 18th Explosive Ordinance Disposal Company, based out of Fort Bragg, N.C., assumed the role of mentor and observer to 15 troops from the 2nd Iraqi Army Division who demonstrated their abilities by conducting an operation to destroy unexploded ordinance Jan. 7. more

Program Pays Off For DLA's Military Customers
Some military maintenance depots got parts and supplies faster and cheaper and America's military services got refurbished equipment returned sooner thanks to a pilot program called "Customer Pay." The program demonstrated early dividends supporting the rebuilding of Army High-Mobility Multipurpose Wheeled Vehicles, commonly known as Humvees. more

Stryker Troops Assist Iraqis
The ramp drops, the sun rises and the troops emerge. The missions vary and everyone has a different, but equally important job. The troops on the ground in Baghdad work every job from quick reaction force to humanitarian missions. more

Army All-Americans Recognized
Soldiers, players and Hall of Fame greats shared center stage to honor some of the nation's top high school football players during an awards dinner sponsored by the U.S. Army. The awards banquet, held at the Henry B. Gonzales Convention Center in San Antonio, set the stage for the Army-sponsored "All-American" Bowl that pitted the nation's top high school football players in an East versus West match-up. more

Soldier Show Seeks Musicians for Tour
The U.S. Army Soldier Show seeks musicians for its 2007 tour. Soldiers who play the guitar, bass, keyboard or drums have until Jan. 18 to apply for an audition. Those selected to be cast in the show must be released by their commander for a six-month tour of entertaining troops and their families.

Troops Tally $1 Million In Bonuses
Nearly three months into its Iraq deployment, the Cavalry Division's 1st Air Cavalry Brigade is looking like a million bucks. With just about three months of the yearlong deployment complete, the Warrior Brigade has reenlisted more than 120 Soldiers and given away more than $1 million in reenlistment bonuses since the start of the deployment in October. more

Stryker Brigade Reunites in Baghdad
The 3rd Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 2nd Infantry Division headquarters, and two of its battalions, trekked from Mosul to Baghdad over a two-day period recently, performing combat operations along the way. more

Paratroopers Bring Therapy to Front Line
Day in and day out, troops patrol the streets and countryside of Iraq for hours at a time; many carrying up to 100 pounds of gear. Over time, this excessive wear on the troops may lead to back or other injuries later on in life. Fortunately, physical therapy teams are now permanent and internal to each brigade combat team in the Army. more

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