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Reserve Soldiers Combine Civilian, Army Skills
The U.S. Army Reserve transportation management coordinators, of the 385th Transportation Detachment, Fort Bragg, North Carolina traveled across the country to participate in Combat Support Training Exercise 91-16-02 at Fort Hunter Liggett, California. These Soldiers walk, talk, and perform at the same level as their active duty counterparts, with one exception: They also have full-time civilian careers.

As the largest U.S. Army Reserve training exercise, CSTX 91-16-02 provides Soldiers with unique opportunities to sharpen their technical and tactical skills in combat-like conditions. Soldiers from the 385th put their civilian lives on hold for this three-week exercise to report for military duty and provide transportation movement control to units at Tactical Assembly Area Schoonover.

“The Soldiers stop the vehicles, ask for trip tickets and log the time,” said Staff Sgt. Araina McCormick, from Fayetteville, N.C.

A seemingly simple task, this job keeps track of the times Soldiers depart and return from missions. Whether in a training scenario or a combat zone, this is a critical point in the movement control process, providing information about which personnel or vehicles may be missing, and for how long.

The duty these Soldiers perform is essential for the safety and success of CSTX, and positively affects each Soldier's personal and professional development when they bring what the U.S. Army Reserve has taught them back into their civilian lives.

For Spc. Jahvar Billings, from Pembroke, North Carolina, that means utilizing the discipline and time management skills the Army has given him into his life as a full-time student.
 
Warrior Games final: Top team goes to black & gold
Heat, humidity and wicked thunderstorms forced organizers of the 2015 Warrior Games to juggle schedules and work overtime to ensure the safety of all athletes, but little could dampen the spirit of sports as 270 athletes competed for 527 medals in Quantico, Virginia, June 19-28.

The Army team smoked the competition, earning the grand prize of the games, the Chairman's Cup, by bringing home 162 medals, including 69 golds. Taking second place for the second year in a row, the Marine Corps team earned 105 medals, including 47 golds.
 
 Air Force came in third in the medal count with 87, followed at their heels by the British team, with 85. Special Operations Command athletes earned 45 medals, while the combined Navy and Coast Guard team took home 43.

With his service hosting this year's games, Commandant of the Marine Corps Gen. Joe Dunford praised the athletes for their indomitable spirit — for adapting and for overcoming the challenges they have faced during illness, injury and recovery.
 
DoD Hack the Pentagon' Program Nets 138 Issues
Hack the planet? Tough. Hack the Pentagon? Easier, but still fairly tough. Yet, that didn't stop more than 250 hackers from taking part in the Department of Defense's first-ever bug bounty program. The pilot, which ran from April 18 to May 12—less than a month—netted 138 vulnerabilities that the Defense Department determined to be "legitimate, unique and eligible for a bounty."

Though the bug bounty program ended up costing the federal government around $150,000, officials believe it was money well spent.

"It's not a small sum, but if we had gone through the normal process of hiring an outside firm to do a security audit and vulnerability assessment, which is what we usually do, it would have cost us more than $1 million," said Ash Carter, Secretary of Defense, as reported by the DoD.

The Department of Defense seems pleased by the results, as it also announced that it's now planning to expand its bug bounty program and introduce other policies designed to help bolster DoD security. That includes the creation of a new vulnerability disclosure policy that will allow anyone to submit information about potential vulnerabilities in DoD systems, networks, applications, or websites.

"Next we will expand bug bounty programs to other DoD Components, in particular the Services, by developing a sustainable DoD-wide contract vehicle. Lastly, we'll include incentives in our acquisition policies and guidance so that contractors practice greater transparency and open their own systems for testing – especially DoD source code. With these efforts, we will capitalize on Hack the Pentagon's success and continue to evolve the way we secure DoD networks, systems, and information," reads an announcement from the Department of Defense.
 
Thousands honor Fort Hood fallen Soldiers
housands in this sprawling Central Texas post paused for a solemn memorial held for nine fallen warriors June 16 during a service inside the Spirit of Fort Hood Chapel.

Eight Soldiers from 3rd Battalion, 16th Field Artillery Regiment, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Cavalry Division, and one cadet from the United States Military Academy at West Point, New York, were the victims of flash flood waters while conducting convoy operations June 2 on Fort Hood.

"Today, we honor and pay tribute to nine fallen comrades of the 1st Cav. Div.," said Maj. Gen. John 'J.T.' Thomson III, 1st Cav. Div. commanding general. "These exceptional cavalry troopers from Fox Forward Support Company … represent the best our nation has to offer."

Thomson added that as the community mourns the lives lost, "We also praise them for who they were, what they stood for and how they honorably served our nation.

"They were many things to many people -- sons and daughters, brothers and sisters, fathers and husbands, caring friends, trustworthy classmates and loyal comrades-in-arms," he said.

Central Texas and the Army family across the nation came together in the wake of the flood to support those in mourning and remember the lives of each victim. The venue for the service has a capacity of 1,500, which was not large enough to seat all those hoping to attend. To reach out to hundreds more, the ceremony was live-streamed to Howze Theater, the Phantom Warrior Center and several conference rooms within the chapel itself.
 
Artwork Honors Military Women
“Honor knows no gender,” artist Steve Alpert said at the Women in Military Service for America Memorial in Arlington, Virginia, June 13.

Alpert spoke following the unveiling of a triptych titled “Portrait of a Woman.” His work depicts a female soldier seen from three directions -- both profiles and from the back. She is saluting the U.S. flag.
 
A triptych is a set of three associated artistic, literary, or musical works intended to be appreciated together.

The subject of Alpert’s work is a warrior wearing the combat patch of the storied 101st Airborne Division on her sleeve. “She looks fierce,” said one of the women veterans who attended the unveiling.

That was the idea, Alpert said during an interview.

“Courage is what an ordinary person does in an extraordinary situation,” he said. “’Portrait of a Woman’ honors the girls next door who went and signed up, volunteered for the armed services. They took the oath to protect the Constitution, the Bill of Rights and the pursuit of the American Dream. I define that as courage, and I see them as heroes.”
 
2 BCT commander heads to the Pentagon
For most of the past two years, Col. Joseph Ryan was on standby, waiting for the Army to send him and his 4,200 troops from the 2nd Brigade Combat Team across the globe to respond to crises or pitch in aid after a natural disaster.

As the unit on status as the Global Response Force, he knew he would have to recall and deploy his paratroopers in as little as 18 hours.

"The experience of being on the Global Response Force, it revalidates the notion that the paratrooper and 82nd Airborne Division can do anything," he said. "We give them training that challenges them and pushes them to prepare for deployment. We work very hard, train very hard, challenge ourselves on a daily basis."
 
Ryan will leave the 2nd Brigade Combat Team as he heads to Washington, D.C., to serve as the executive officer to the Army's chief of staff at the Pentagon. He'll be working directly with Gen. Mark Milley, the former commander of Forces Command who is currently the Army's chief of staff.

"It's a great opportunity," Ryan said. "It's a challenge, and I'm looking forward to it."

Ryan's path to the Pentagon began when he was accepted into the United States Military Academy. He grew up near West Point and knew he wanted to pursue a military career.

"My family had a lot of pride," he said. "Being in the Army and leading people was something I really enjoy."

Ryan graduated from the United States Military Academy in 1991 and was commissioned as a second lieutenant of infantry.
 
Speaking Frankly, at West Point
Drew Faust gave one of the signal speeches of her Harvard presidency at West Point this past March. The subject was education in the humanities—and in leadership. Her talk brought to the fore common Faust themes: immersion in the arts and humanities and learning to think critically about values. The venue and format (a formal address, rather than the occasions where an interlocutor poses questions, and Faust’s answers are briefer) made a difference.

At the United States Military Academy (USMA), as Faust noted, “the humanities are resources that build ‘self-awareness, character, [and] perspective,’ and enable leaders to compel and to connect with others.” She identified three ways in which that occurs. “First,” she said, “leaders need perspective”—the historical and cultural lenses that clarify a situation through “empathy: how to see ourselves inside another person’s experience. How to picture a different possibility.” Second, “leaders need the capacity to improvise. I often point out that education is not the same thing as training for a job.…Circumstances evolve. Certainly, soldiers know…that our knowledge needs to be flexible, as we grapple with complexity in an instant.” Third, she emphasized how leaders like Churchill and Lincoln “use the persuasive power of language.”

Two broad applications to Harvard come to mind. One concerns transitions. West Point, Faust noted, was “the nation’s first college of engineering.” Now, even as “other institutions drop liberal-arts requirements, military academies have been adding them. Over the past 50 years, West Point has transformed its curriculum into a general liberal-arts education, graduating leaders with broad-based knowledge of both the sciences and the humanities, and the ability to apply that knowledge in a fluid and uncertain world.” The College, grounded as it has been in the traditional liberal arts, is very much tilting the other way, expanding engineering and applied sciences, and inspiriting entrepreneurship. That prompts anxieties about waning student interest in humanities and adults’ responsibility to assure that their charges are broadly, not merely vocationally, educated.
 
Fallen West Point cadet honored
Hundreds of Family, friends, comrades and supporters attended a memorial held for Cadet Mitchell Alexander Winey, 21, at the Spirit of Fort Hood Chapel, June 9.

Winey, of the United States Military Academy at West Point, New York, was one of nine victims when flood waters took his life, and the lives of eight Soldiers, while conducting convoy operations with 3rd Battalion, 16th Field Artillery Regiment, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Cavalry Division, June 2.

"We are here on a solemn day, to pay tribute to a fallen comrade," said Maj. Gen. J.T. Thomson III, 1st Cav. Div. commanding general. "Today's ceremony allows Mitch's fellow cadets to honor him.

"To Mitch's Family," he added, "thank you for being here, and more so, thank you for allowing Mitch to serve our nation."

Winey's memorial was held ahead of the other eight fallen at Fort Hood as post officials wanted Winey's brothers- and sisters-in-arms to be able to attend. The cadets returned to New York Saturday. The memorials for Fort Hood's eight Soldiers will be held today at the Spirit of Fort Hood Chapel.

More than 100 cadets from West Point have been at Fort Hood since late May for their Cadet Troop Leadership Training -- a course all West Point cadets go through during their time at the academy.
 
USMA Cadets Shooting Down Drones With Cyber Rifles
Tall grass hid the advancing cadets from my perch in building 7. The tall grass hid nothing from the drone the defenders flew over their position, a Parrot AR 2.0, a common model used by civilian fliers. A minute later, after the drone pilot filmed the crawling cadets, instructors called in mock artillery fire. The cadets' position was compromised, and while the rest of their platoon advanced to take the buildings, these 10 cadets instead spent an hour in the sun contemplating what they could have done about the drone.
 
The answer was standing right behind them. As the smoke grenades denoting artillery landed nearby, a supporting electronic warfare officer aimed a rifle-shaped antenna at the drone. The drone crashed to the ground instantly, its camera going fuzzy and then only showing the pilot a close-up of asphalt.
 
The rest of the battle was a success for all involved: the defending squad of cadets successfully retreated, that attacking platoon took and held the buildings, and the Army Cyber Institute gave the Army’s next generation of leaders a taste of the complexity that cheap commercial technology can bring to modern war.
I, a non-combatant, am here at this rural training site near the United States Military Academy in West Point, New York, on this June Thursday at the invitation of the Army Cyber Institute.
 
Part of the Army’s larger cyber complex, the Institute is a sort of internal think-tank at West Point, trying to figure out what the cyber component of warfare looks like in practice. “Cyber” is a broad term, and it mostly brings to mind people sitting at desks slinging code across the internet.
 
“Cyber electromagnetic activities,” says the definition in an Army field manual on the same, “are activities leveraged to seize, retain, and exploit an advantage over adversaries and enemies in both cyberspace and the electromagnetic spectrum, while simultaneously denying and degrading adversary and enemy use of the same and protecting the mission command system.”
 
From Wounded Warrior to Warrior Angel
When Andrew Marr left his home of Argyle, Texas, to compete at the 2016 Department of Defense Warrior Games, winning his respective events of discus and shotput was not the first thing on his mind.

"Winning is a byproduct," said Marr, a medically retired Special Forces combat engineer. "I always try to contribute and perform to the best of my abilities and by doing that, my hope is that it will inspire and encourage others to know that they can do the same."

Marr's journey toward becoming an inspiration to other wounded warriors began years ago when he suffered a Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) after receiving enemy 107mm rocket fire during a combat mission in Wardak, Afghanistan.

"I came back to and we were in a fight, so there wasn't really any time to think about it or talk about it," said Marr. "And it was just part of the job, so I didn't think much about it after that.

In addition to the rocket attack, Marr was continuously exposed to blast waves while performing his functions as a combat engineer.

"I was a breacher for our team. So, that means I put surgical explosive charges on denied points of entry," said Marr. "Being that my specialty was explosives, I was around countless explosions -- hundreds, if not thousands. Back then, we never made any correlation between head trauma and blast waves. It just wasn't a thing, nobody knew anything about it."

Eventually, the symptoms of his injury -- memory loss, vision issues, migraines, lost vocabulary, and depression -- led him to seek treatment for his TBI. During his journey, Marr says he crossed paths with a neuro-endocrinologist who not only drastically helped improve his condition, but in doing so inspired him to try to help others with the same condition. 
 
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