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12 Military Awards Eligible For New 'C' and 'R' Devices PDF Print E-mail
The Pentagon has quietly implemented a series of changes to its awards policy for troops involved in combat, establishing new criteria for recognizing contributions both on and off the battlefield. 

Commanders may now recommend their troops for 12 types of awards affixed with new "C" or "R" devices, products of an internal review focused on honoring drone operators, cyber warfare specialists and others who use emerging technology to influence the battlefield in unconventional ways. The former, which stands for "combat," signifies meritorious performance "under combat conditions" while the latter, which stands for "remote," is reserved for those “not directly exposed to hostile action or significant risk."  

Equally noteworthy,  the Pentagon's guidance establishes new eligibility rules for awarding medals with the coveted "V" device intended to recognize valorous combat actions taken at great risk and under duress. Service specific Achievement Medals are no longer eligible for a "V," only a "C" or "R," a decision some may call controversial. That's true now, too, for the Legion of Merit, heretofore awarded with a "V" only by the Navy and Marine Corps. However, each of the services is clear to award the Distinguished Flying Cross with "V," as the Air Force has since for heroism dating to the Korean War.

 
The Army's new combat helmet Up to 24 Percent Lighter PDF Print E-mail
Soldiers will soon be wearing a helmet that’s up to 24 percent lighter than the current 15-year-old model, according to the Army. 

The Advanced Combat Helmet Generation II looks the same as the legacy ACH, but the new helmet is made from polyethylene instead of Kevlar, PEO Soldier experts told reporters during a media roundtable Thursday at Fort Belvoir in Virginia. 
 
“The goal is to achieve a lighter-weight helmet with equal to or greater protection [than the legacy ACH],” said Maj. Brandon Motte, assistant project manager at Soldier Protective Equipment. 

An extra-large legacy helmet weighs 3.88 pounds, he said, but an extra-large Gen II helmet weighs 2.94 pounds, which equals a 24 percent reduction in weight. The small and medium helmets see a 21 percent reduction in weight. 
 
Cadets Win Commander-In-Speech-Debate Compteition PDF Print E-mail
Three cadets from U.S. Military Academy’s Debate Team will be awarded the Commander-In-Speech trophy from Speaker of the House, the Honorable Paul Ryan in his office Wednesday, March 29 at 5:30 p.m. 
 
The U.S. Military Academy team won the Commander-In-Speech Debate Competition in the fall debating the topic, “The Department of Defense should substantially increase its offensive cyber capabilities” against both the U.S. Naval Academy and the U.S. Air Force Academy.  
 
“We are honored to receive the first ever awarding of the Commander-In-Speech trophy from Speaker Ryan and believe that this presentation not only demonstrates Congress' unrelenting support of the military, but the military's unrelenting dedication to creating informed and impassioned leaders,” said Debate Team Captain Cadet James Hickey.  
 
 
Reports of Sexual Assault Increase at Two Military Academies PDF Print E-mail
Reports of sexual assaults increased at two of the three national military academies — the United States Naval Academy in Annapolis and the United States Military Academy at West Point — last year, according to a new military study.
 
The Defense Department said that reports of sexual assault at all three academies decreased over all, but that is because the number of reports at the United States Air Force Academy in Colorado dropped.
 
At West Point, there were 26 reports of sexual assault in the 2015-16 academic year, up from 17 the year before. At the Naval Academy, the number rose to 28 reports from 25. By comparison, reports dropped steeply to 32 from 49 at the Air Force Academy.
 
Pence Tells West Point Cadets America Honors Their Service PDF Print E-mail
 In this time of uncertainty and danger, America needs the service of all its citizens, Vice President Mike Pence said yesterday at the U.S. Military Academy in West Point, New York.


Pence spoke at the annual Lieutenant Henry O. Flipper Dinner -- an event marking the extraordinary life of the first African American graduate of the academy.

Flipper faced extreme prejudice and persevered to earn his commission in 1877. He was accused and court martialed for a crime he did not commit and ejected from the Army in 1882. President Bill Clinton righted that wrong with a pardon in 1999.

The academy has honored its first African American graduate with the annual dinner.

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