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Friday, February 23 2018 @ 10:20 PM CST
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DoD Mobile Chemical-agent Destruction System Wins U.K. Award

WASHINGTON, Dec. 12, 2014 – A United Kingdom organization has given an innovation award to the Defense Department team responsible for developing and operating the field-deployable hydrolysis systems used aboard the U.S. ship MV Cape Ray this year to destroy tons of Syrian chemical materials.

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U.S., Partner Nations Strike ISIL in Syria, Iraq


TAMPA, Fla., Oct. 6, 2014 – U.S. and partner nations' military forces continued to attack Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant terrorists in Syria yesterday and today, using fighter and remotely piloted aircraft to conduct three airstrikes, U.S. Central Command officials reported.

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Defeating ISIL is Long-term Endeavor


WASHINGTON, Sept. 26, 2014 – Defeating the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant will require a long-term commitment by the United States and its allies on many fronts and will not be achieved by airstrikes alone, Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel told reporters today.

“This will not be an easy or brief effort,” Hagel said at a Pentagon news conference, where he took questions alongside Army Gen. Martin E. Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

“We are at the beginning, not the end” of efforts to degrade and destroy ISIL, Hagel said.


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Obama: U.S. to Keep Nearly 10,000 Troops in Afghanistan in 2015

WASHINGTON, May 27, 2014 – President Barack Obama today announced the United States plans to keep nearly 10,000 American troops in Afghanistan next year -- a level largely in line with what U.S. commanders had requested -- and that nearly all U.S. forces will leave the country by the end of 2016, bringing to an end a U.S. military mission that began in response to the 9/11 terrorist attacks.

 “The bottom line is it’s time to turn the page on more than a decade in which so much of our foreign policy was focused on the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq,” Obama said in a televised address from the White House Rose Garden.

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Few Russian Troops Withdraw From Ukraine Border

WASHINGTON, May 28, 2014 – Tens of thousands of Russian troops remain encamped on the Ukrainian border, a Pentagon spokesman said today.

 Some troop withdrawals have been observed, Army Col. Steve Warren said, but the movements aren’t yet significant in comparison with the large numbers of troops left behind in the border region.

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Winnefeld Warns of ‘Overwhelming Response’ to Missile Strikes

WASHINGTON, May 28, 2014 – Iran and North Korea, considered by the United States to be the chief nuclear and missile threats to the nation, know they would face “an overwhelming U.S. response to any attack” on the United States or its allies, the vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff said today.

 Successive U.S. administrations have consistently said that all options remain on the table should either nation deploy or use a nuclear weapon, but Navy Adm. James A. Winnefeld Jr. used much stronger language in remarks to a missile defense conference here.

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Balkan floods may have undone years of landmine detection

(Reuters) - When Mehmedalija Djapic bought his house on the banks of the River Bosna after the 1992-95 war, he had no idea the land around it was laced with landmines.

Fourteen years passed before the deminers scouring Bosnia detected his minefield and several months ago began the painstaking work of marking it with yellow tape and skull-and-crossbone signs.

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International Militaries Conclude Mine Countermeasures Exercise

 120920-N-ZZ999-008 GULF OF OMAN(Sept. 20, 2012) (From left to right) RFA Cardigan Bay, USS Sentry (MCM 3), HMS Diamond, and USS Devastator (MCM 6) transit in formation in the Gulf of Oman. The coalition force was operating in support of International Mine Countermeasures Exercise (IMCMEX) 2012 as part of Task Force South. IMCMEX 12 includes navies from more than 30 countries whose focus is to promote regional security through mine countermeasure operations in the U.S. 5th Fleet area of responsibility. (U.S. Navy photo by Lt. Cmdr Micah Murphy/Not Released)TAMPA, Florida (September 27, 2012) — Militaries from more than 30 nations yesterday concluded the International Mine Countermeasures Exercise 2012 (IMCMEX 12) in closing ceremonies at U.S. Naval Forces Central Command headquarters, Manama, Bahrain. The ceremonies marked the achievements of the multinational exercise -- the largest of its kind in the region -- bringing together approximately 3,000 personnel from 33 countries in exercise activities spanning twelve days and 1,000 miles in the region, and combining existing and new capabilities.

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Sergeant Rasheem Thomas never thought his first night working on Camp Bastion would turn into a gun battle with 15 insurgents.

General John Allen, commander of the International Security Assistance Force, pays his final respects to Lt. Col. Christopher Raible during a memorial ceremony, Sept. 19. During the ceremony, Marines paid tribute to Raible, commanding officer of Marine Attack Squadron 211, from Huntingdon, Pa. Raible was killed in action while engaging insurgents during an attack on Camp Bastion, Sept. 14.
When Thomas was told he was transferring from 1st Platoon to 2nd Platoon, the landing support specialist with Combat Logistics Battalion 2, Combat Logistics Regiment 15, thought nothing of it. Instead of working on Camp Leatherneck, Thomas would be working at the rotary wing Arrival Departure Airfield Control Group on Camp Bastion,  Afghanistan, an adjoining base ran by British Armed Forces. He would be responsible for getting coalition forces and cargo on helicopters departing Camp Bastion’s airfield heading for remote forward operating bases throughout Regional Command Southwest’s area of operations. 

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Statement from Secretary Panetta on Recovery of Surge Forces in Afghanistan

This week, the ongoing effort in Afghanistan marked an important milestone:

The United States military has completed drawing down the surge forces President Obama committed in December of 2009, reducing our presence by 33,000 troops on schedule. As we reflect on this moment, it is an opportunity to recognize that the surge accomplished its objectives of reversing Taliban momentum on the battlefield, and dramatically increased the size and capability of the Afghan National Security Forces (ANSF).


Joe Leonard photographer


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