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Maneuver Battle Lab tests new mortar system

The Army wants to decrease the weight Soldiers carry on missions, and Fort Benning's Maneuver Battle Lab is part of the effort. Last week, 10 Soldiers evaluated a lightweight base plate being developed for the M224 Lightweight Company Mortar System during a series of live-fire, static and movement exercises at McKenna Urban Operations Complex, Fergusson and Buckner ranges. The current M8 base plate limits the direction and distance a mortar can be fired, said Rusty Schulten, a project officer for MBL's Soldier Team, and Soldiers still have to carry the M7 base plate - weighing more than

Practice makes perfect for EOD

One mistake could mean your life and possibly the lives of other Marines.

Rescue crews train Japan Air Self Defense Force pilots

MOFFETT FEDERAL AIRFIELD, Calif. (AFNS) -- Japanese Air Self-Defense Force pilots teamed up with 129th Rescue Wing aircrews here for refueling training Dec. 7 to 18. Maj. Eiji Sekine and Capt. Takeshi Tokuda, UH-60J helicopter pilots assigned to the Air Rescue Wing at Komaki Air Base, Japan, and Maj. Masahiko Miyazaki and Capt.

The Center for Army Lessons Learned publishes Agribusiness Development Teams Handbook

The Center for Army Lessons Learned (CALL) at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas has just released CALL publication 10-10, Agribusiness Development Teams (ADT) in Afghanistan Handbook. This handbook is a product of the National Guard Agribusiness Development Team Coordination Office with input from current and previously deployed Agriculture Development Teams (ADTs). Agriculture accounts for 45 percent of Afghanistan's gross domestic product and is the main source of income for the Afghan economy. Over 80 percent of the Afghan population is involved in farming, herding, or both.

AFRCC Airmen aid in Arizona search for 55 stranded people

Airmen at the Air Force Rescue Coordination Center aided local and state first responders while searching for several missing individuals who were stranded near Flagstaff, Ariz.. Last week's winter storm dumped several inches of snow, trapping 55 individuals who were hunting or looking for the perfect Christmas tree in the area.

HIMARS Shoots High For Award

The High Mobility Artillery Rocket System is a repeat award winner. This precision strike weapons system, assigned to fire brigades supporting brigade combat teams, is the only two-time recipient of the Secretary of Defense Performance-Based Logistics award. The award recognizes government and industry teams providing war fighters with exceptional operational capability through PBL agreements. "This is the second time our team has been rewarded for a really good job of supplying fielded capabilities," said Col.

Traumatic stress response team helps Fort Hood victims

An Air Force medical team trained in helping people recover from traumatic events returned from Fort Hood, Texas, after responding to the Nov. 5 shootings, which left 13 people dead and dozens injured. The Traumatic Stress Response team, led by Maj. Sheila Beville, a 59th Mental Health Squadron social worker from Wilford Hall Medical Center, deployed to Fort Hood, Nov. 8 through Dec. 2.

Improved magazine increases weapons reliability

The Army has begun fielding a new 5.56mm 30-round "improved magazine" that delivers a significant increase in reliability for M-16 and M-4 weapons. Bolstering the already high reliability ratings of the M-16 and M-4, the improved magazine reduces the risk of magazine-related stoppages by more than 50 percent compared to the older magazine variants, according to officials at Program Executive Office Soldier. Identified by a tan-colored follower, more than 500,000 of the improved magazines have been fielded to units in Iraq, Afghanistan and the United States. "With the improved magazine

Coast Guard prepares for 2009-2010 icebreaking season

The Ninth Coast Guard District is preparing for the 2009-2010 icebreaking season in the Great Lakes. Coast Guard icebreaking operations are designed to facilitate the movement of commercial vessels to meet the reasonable demands of commerce on the Great Lakes and to assist the U.S.

Makin Island Completes First CSSQT, Harrier and AAV Ops

Sailors and Marines aboard the Navy's newest Amphibious Assault Ship returned to port Dec.

C-27J training operations center opens

ROBINS AIR FORCE BASE, Ga. -- Air Force, Army and community officials celebrated the opening of a new cargo plane schoolhouse Dec.

Japan-U.S. Military Exercise Improves Readiness

CAMP HIGASHI-CHITOSE, Japan-On the eve of the 50th anniversary of the U.S.-Japan mutual defense treaty, U.S. and Japanese forces have successfully concluded a major exercise here on Hokkaido, the northernmost island of Japan. Yama Sakura, an annual joint and combined full-spectrum training exercise, this year involved 1,500 U.S. service members and 3,500 members of the Japan Ground Self-Defense Force. Its focus was the refinement of bilateral planning, coordination, and interoperability. "This exercise proves the strength of the long-standing relationship between the U.S.

Loss for Government As BOI Finds LtCol Chessani Not Guilty of Misconduct

Late last Friday afternoon (Eastern Standard Time), after three hours of deliberation, the military Board of Inquiry ruled LtCol Chessani was not guilty of misconduct and should not be demoted.  Nevertheless, the Board’s ruling produced a mixed result.  It ruled Chessani must now retire because he displayed “substandard performance” by failing to conduct a more detailed investigation of the civilians killed as a result of the house clearing actions of four Marines after they were ambushed in Haditha, Iraq on N

Carl Vinson Air Department Works to Certify Flight Deck

Air Department Sailors aboard USS Carl Vinson (CVN 70) are working toward carrier flight deck certification during the December underway period. The flight deck certification is a two-day process to conduct flight deck drills demonstrating Air Department can safely handle all emergency situations such as an aircraft fire or crashes on the landing area. The first day consists of day launching, day recovery and taxi drills during the night. Day two of the flight deck certification is day and night launch and recovery of the squadron aircrafts.

Live-fire demo showcases future weapons

The Small Arms Branch of the Soldier Requirements Division rolled out more than 30 weapon systems - including pistols, rifles, sniper weapons, machine guns and grenade launchers - for a special live-fire demonstration Tuesday at Red Cloud Range. The weapons, including new sniper technology, weapons upgrades and an air burst rifle prototype, represent 60 percent of the Army's small arms strategy, said Lt. Col. Thomas Henthorn, chief of the small arms branch. The demonstration was to familiarize Maj. Gen.