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President Trump picked Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster, a widely respected military strategist, as his new national security adviser on Monday, calling him “a man of tremendous talent and tremendous experience.”
Mr. Trump made the announcement at his Mar-a-Lago getaway in Palm Beach, Fla., where he has been interviewing candidates to replace Michael T. Flynn, who was forced out after withholding information from Vice President Mike Pence about a call with Russia’s ambassador.
The choice continued Mr. Trump’s reliance on high-ranking military officers to advise him on national security. Mr. Flynn was a retired three-star general and Defense Secretary Jim Mattis is a retired four-star general. His first choice to replace Mr. Flynn, who turned the job down, and two other finalists were current or former senior officers as well.
Shortly before announcing his appointment, Mr. Trump wrote on Twitter: “Meeting with Generals at Mar-a-Lago in Florida. Very interesting!”
Retired Lt. Gen. Hal Moor died in his home in Auburn, Alabama, a few days short of his 95th birthday. He is survived by three sons, two daughters, 11 grandchildren and four great-grandchildren. He was preceded in death by his wife, Julie Compton, in 2004.
A funeral mass will be held at St. Michael's Roman Catholic Church in Auburn, followed by a memorial service National Infantry Museum at Fort Benning Army Base in Columbus, Georgia. Internment following at Fort Benning.
LTG Moore Co-Authored the best selling book "We Were Soldiers Once… And Young" with Joseph L. Galloway in 1992 about the First and Second Battalions of the 7th Cavalry Regiment in the Battle of the Ia Drang Valley, which was later adapted ainto the movie We Were Soldiers released in 2002.
Moore and Galloway wrote a sequel to the book titled "We Are Soldiers Still: A Journey Back to the Battlefields of Vietnam" which was published in 2008 about their return to Vietnam and a reflection on how the war had changed them.
The U.S. House of Representatives on Friday approved a 2.1 percent pay raise next year for troops.
The measure was included in the 2017 National Defense Authorization Act, which the lower chamber overwhelmingly backed by a vote of 375-34. The massive $619 billion bill sets policy and spending goals for the fiscal year that began Oct. 1.
"This bipartisan bill focuses on our troops, America’s most important national defense resource," Rep. William "Mac" Thornberry, a Republican from Texas and chairman of the House Armed Services Committee, said in a statement.
"It provides them a full pay raise for the first time in four years, it stops layoffs of our military personnel and actually increases the end strength of our Armed Forces, and it starts to stabilize the readiness problems that are making it more difficult for our troops to accomplish their mission and increasingly represent a danger to their lives," he added. "It contains landmark reforms to improve our military’s strength and agility."
The Senate on Monday confirmed President Donald Trump's nominee to run the CIA despite some Democratic objections that Rep. Mike Pompeo has been less than transparent about his positions on torture, surveillance and Russia's meddling in the U.S. election.
The vote was 66-32.
Pompeo takes the helm at the nation's top spy agency at a crucial time for U.S. national security as intelligence — traditionally a nonpartisan issue — has been thrust into the political arena. Trump has been critical of intelligence agencies after their assessment of Russian involvement to help him win the election while the new president also has said he is fully behind them.
Senate Republicans had hoped to vote on Pompeo's nomination Friday, after Trump's inauguration. But Democrats succeeded in stalling action until they could debate.
Democratic Oregon Sen. Ron Wyden on Monday said Pompeo was the "wrong man for the job."
"He has endorsed extreme policies that would fundamentally erode liberties and freedoms of our people without making us safer," Wyden said. He said Pompeo's answers to questions from some senators have been "vague" and "contradictory," making it impossible to know what Pompeo believes.
American warplanes and combat advisers are once again backing Turkish military units battling Islamic State fighters in northern Syria, the most tangible indication yet that months of tension between the NATO allies may be easing.
Four airstrikes, occurring Tuesday near the town of al Bab, hit Islamic State construction equipment and tactical vehicles, including an armored personnel carrier, said Air Force Col. John Dorrian, a spokesman for the U.S.-led coalition based in Baghdad. Dorrian indicated the mission, developed with Turkish commanders, most likely was enabled by American ground troops working nearby.
"One of the things that we very much prize is to have boots on the ground operating in proximity to, or directly with, our partner forces. That's the preferred alternative," Dorrian said, when asked whether airstrikes conducted in support of Turkey require spotting by American air controllers who can see the desired targets. "And that is one of the reasons why we have to be very careful, especially on a very crowded and complex battlefield with a lot of different actors to make sure that we're hitting the targets that we intend to hit."
President Barack Obama commuted the sentences of a pair of high-profile military prisoners and pardoned a controversial former Marine Corps general on Tuesday as one of his last acts before leaving the Oval Office.
Among the 209 commutations and 64 pardons announced by the White House were Chelsea Manning, serving 35 years for leaked sensitive Army documents related to the Iraq War; Dwight Loving, a soldier on death row convicted of murder in 1988, and James Cartwright, convicted of lying to the FBI about the release of sensitive intelligence information to reporters five years ago.
Cartwright received a pardon, effectively erasing the crime from his record. Manning, who has served seven years of a 35-year sentence, will be released in May.
Loving had his sentence reassigned to life in prison without the possibility of parole.
All of the 273 decisions were announced without further explanation from the White House. The majority of the decisions were for lower-level drug offenses, an issue that has been among Obama’s top executive actions in recent years.
Manning’s case had been among the most closely watched as Obama’s time in office grew shorter, with advocates pushing for her release. She has attempted suicide several times in the last year, and her imprisonment has raised problematic questions about the military’s responsibilities to deal with her requests for gender reassignment surgery.
Manning, an Army intelligence analyst known as Bradley Manning at the time of her 2010 arrest, made public hundreds of thousands of military documents, including military reports from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and diplomatic cables from American embassies around the world.
New Army regulations will allow soldiers to wear turbans, beards and hijabs under most circumstances, reflecting a change Sikhs have sought for years.
“Based on the successful examples of Soldiers currently serving with these accommodations, I have determined that brigade-level commanders may approve requests for these accommodations,” wrote Secretary of the Army Eric K. Fanning in a Jan. 3 memo.
In March, the Army concluded that permitting beards for medical reasons but banning them for religious reasons is a discriminatory bar to service for Sikhs, who are forbidden by their faith to cut their hair and beards.
With that decision, Capt. Simratpal Singh, a West Point graduate and Bronze Star recipient, was the first to win Army approval to continue on active duty while maintaining his religiously mandated beard and turban.
The U.S. Department of Defense is urging soldiers to ease up on drinking too much energy beverages as it could lead to serious damaging of the body.
The military noticed that a growing number of servicemen choose to drink energy beverages over water, especially during the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. Researchers examined data collected from soldiers serving during 2010's Operation Enduring Freedom and discovered that as much as 45 percent of those deployed downed at least one energy drink a day.
The findings also showed that nearly 14 percent of U.S. soldiers serving in the conflict consumed three or more drinks a day.
Negative Health Effects Of Drinking Too Much Energy Drinks Energy drink manufacturers choose to market their products to young Americans, including those in the armed service. Some of the most popular beverages can even be found on military facilities.
Health experts, however, warn that these drinks contain high amounts of caffeine, which could cause serious negative effects on the body such as insomnia, irritability, restlessness, nervousness, faster heartbeat and even muscle tremors.
The inauguration of President-elect Donald Trump will include a parade composed of 8,000 marchers from 40 organizations including the military, veterans groups and law enforcement, as well as the Boy Scouts of America.
The Presidential Inaugural Committee announced in a release Friday the list of groups that will march in the parade following the Jan. 20 inauguration of the 45th president. All branches of the military will be represented, as will a number of high school and college marching bands.
“People from every corner of the country have expressed great interest in President-elect Trump’s inauguration and look forward to continuing a salute to our republic that spans more than two centuries,” said Sara Armstrong, chief executive of the presidential inauguration committee.
The parade will spotlight horse-mounted members of several Army units, including the Caisson platoon out of Fort Myer, Va., responsible for the carriage-drawn funeral ceremonies in Arlington National Cemetery.
Calling all engineers: The Department of Defense is on the lookout for a new bullet that will sprout seeds, instead of waste, after it’s shot.
In a call for proposals, the DoD says that the U.S. Army uses “hundreds of thousands of training rounds” across the country and world. These rounds are left on the ground or just beneath the surface, which is an issue for a few reasons. For one, the components take hundreds of years to biodegrade. When corroded, they could pollute nearby soil and water. Additionally, civilians such as farmers and construction crews who encounter the remnants don’t know if they’re training or tactical rounds.
To solve these problems, the DoD is looking for a bullet casing that eliminates environmental hazards. Embedded in the biodegradable composites will be bioengineered seeds from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ Cold Regions Research and Engineering Laboratory that don’t begin to germinate until they’ve been in the ground for several months. The DoD wants these seeds to produce eco-friendly plants that remove soil contaminants and consume the biodegradable debris from the bullets. It’s important that animals can eat the plants without getting sick.
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Recent Fallen Grads
- COL Richard D. Garlick USA (Retired), USMA1958: 06 Nov 1932 - 21 Feb 2017
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