Welcome to the Dawn Patrol, our daily roundup of information on the War on Terror and other topics - from the MilBlogs and various sources around the world. If you're a blogger, you can join the conversation. If you link to any of these stories, add a link to the Dawn Patrol too and your trackback will be added to the list. Hat Tips to the Dawn Patrol are greatly appreciated.Refresh for updates.
The Battle of Wanat- First Hand -- [Blackfive]
Last night we heard an amazing story from two gentlemen who were there. They are only speaking up now because what was a tough day but ultimately a victory has been turned into a case where they are portrayed as victims.
The Battle of Wanat was fought right at the end of the 2nd of the 503rd, 173rd Airborne's 14 month tour. The Taliban had begin returning from their safe havens in Pakistan and they came in force...
Prince of Wales Makes Surprise Visit to British Troops in Afghanistan -- [ISAF/Facebook]
Friday, March 26, 2010 at 5:05am
HRH Prince Charles, The Prince of Wales, has made a surprise visit to British troops in Afghanistan. He is the most senior member of the royal family to visit Afghanistan and the only one in living memory to visit Kabul.
Prince of Wales makes surprise visit to British troops in Afghanistan -- [Helmand Blog - in Afghanistan]
He flew into the Afghan National Army brigade camp of Shorabak in an RAF Chinook, close to Camp Bastion, where he was greeted by an Afghan guard of honour before speaking with Afghan troops and their British mentors from 2nd Battalion, the Yorkshire Regiment. The Afghan and British soldiers gave a demonstration of instructional and training techniques, including identification of IEDs.
He later flew to Camp Bastion where he spoke with soldiers of the Joint Helicopter Force (Afghanistan), the UK Joint Force Medical Group, and the Joint Force EOD (Explosive Ordnance Disposal) teams.
The Prince laid a wreath at the Camp Bastion memorial, in memory of those British soldiers killed during the campaign.
Obama in Afghanistan -- [Mudville Gazette]
US national security adviser Gen James Jones told reporters on Air Force One that Mr Obama hoped to help Mr Karzai understand that "in this second term that there are certain things he has to do as the president of his country to battle the things that have not been paid attention to almost since day one".
"The talks with Mr. Karzai will probably touch on several issues that have concerned administration officials about the Afghan government," says the New York Times, "...even reintegration with certain reconcilable members of the Taliban insurgency."
A touchy subject, that.
Nato commanders to put Afghan troops in front line for new southern push -- [Time (UK) Online]
Nato commanders are to change their tactics in the battle for Kandahar, putting Afghan forces at the forefront of the operation to drive the Taleban from their spiritual heartland.
Operation Omid -- the Pashto word for hope -- is the next stage of a year-long campaign to retake southern Afghanistan. It will target the southern city and surrounding areas with a "gradual squeeze" different from Operation Moshtarak, the airborne assault on the Marjah district of Helmand province last month.
Daily brief: major Kandahar operations to begin in June -- [Foreign Policy]
Summer of violence ahead
The NATO-led coalition in Afghanistan will reportedly begin major operations in Kandahar, the southern Afghan province that was once the seat of the Taliban's government, this June, with the aim of completing the "clearing phase" of the offensive by August for the Muslim holy month of Ramadan...
The Battle for Kandahar: Part I -- [Mike Yon - in Afghanistan]
The Battle for Kandahar has begun. The face of this battle is not one of sudden fury but a process, a complex struggle for legitimacy between local Taliban governance and Kabul rule... "Shaping Operations" are underway. Special Operations Forces are picking off and collecting key Taliban leaders.
Burgers go way of booze as US general Stanley McChrystal bans junk food -- [Times (UK) Online]
No longer will the fighter pilots at Bagram or Kandahar airfields be able to ring Pizza Hut to deliver. Once General McChrystal has his way, the Whoppers will be off the menu: Burger Kings at both locations are to close. Even the newly opened TGI Friday's on the boardwalk in Kandahar is to close its doors once its contract expires.
"This is a war zone, not an amusement park," wrote Command Sergeant-Major Michael T. Hall in a military blog.
Iraq panel to bar 6 lawmakers from taking office -- [LA Times]
Reporting from Baghdad - An Iraqi government commission said Monday that it would bar six newly elected parliament members from office, accusing them of having been members of Saddam Hussein's Baath Party.
The move, if upheld by a panel of judges, would take away at least two seats from the secular Iraqiya list, currently the largest bloc in the upcoming parliament...
Iraqi panel wants to bar 4 elected on winning list -- [AP]
A committee that vets candidates for ties to Saddam Hussein's regime is recommending four people elected to parliament from the winning list of former Prime Minister Ayad Allawi be disqualified, an official on the committee said Monday. The challenge risks deepening Iraq's sectarian tensions.
Panel in Iraq Moves to Disqualify 52 Candidates -- [NY Times]
At a news conference on Monday, the commission's director, Ali Faisal al-Lami, refused to disclose the names or political affiliations of the 52 candidates the commission is seeking to disqualify. Many were likely to be members of Mr. Allawi's Iraqiya coalition.
Iraqi PM says He Will Form Broad Coalition Government -- [Voice of America]
Prime Minister Nouri al Maliki is on the attack in his political battle to remain in office and form the next Iraqi government. He says he will succeed in putting together a broad coalition in the next few days and will ultimately head the new government.
Life in the Mud Pit -- [Ramblings from a Painter - in Iraq]
I'm hoping that maybe this'll be the last bout with rain and mud that I have to deal with before heading home.
"Heading home": what a wonderful concept! I've been deployed for 18 months and have one more to go. It's looking better and better...
Limits Eased on Pakistani Scientist -- [NY Times]
A Pakistani court on Monday eased some travel restrictions on Abdul Qadeer Khan, the scientist and pioneer of Pakistan's nuclear arsenal who admitted six years ago that he had been running an illicit proliferation network.
Pakistan court maintains curbs on AQ Khan -- [AP]
A Pakistani court Monday maintained restrictions on a nuclear scientist who allegedly leaked atomic weapons secrets to Iran, North Korea and Libya.
SKorea president orders military on alert amid suspicion NKorea may have downed navy ship -- [AP]
South Korea's president ordered the military on alert Tuesday for any moves by North Korea after the defense minister said a mine from the rival country may have caused the explosion that sank a South Korean naval ship.
NKorea accuses South of psychological warfare -- [AP]
North Korea warned the U.S. and South Korea on Monday of deadly consequences for engaging in "psychological warfare" by allowing journalists into the heavily fortified Demilitarized Zone dividing the two Koreas.
The stern statement was the first from North Korea's military since a South Korean naval ship sank in the tense waters near the Koreas' maritime border under unclear circumstances. It made no mention of the ship...
US Wants Nuclear Treaty with Russia Ratified this Year -- [Voice of America]
U.S. Under Secretary of State for Arms Control and International Security Ellen Tauscher says the goal is to submit the treaty to the Senate within the next three months.
Russia braces for terrorism's return as 38 die in subway bombings -- [Washington Post]
The explosions occurred about 45 minutes apart at downtown stations during the morning rush hour. They followed triumphant reports in recent weeks that Russian security forces had killed several top leaders of the Islamist rebel movement, which seeks to establish a fundamentalist state in the North Caucasus region.
The elimination of each militant leader was portrayed as a victory for Putin's tough approach to suppressing the insurgency, which had not mounted an attack in Moscow in nearly six years.
'Black Widows' suspected of Moscow Metro bombings that killed 38 -- [Times (UK) Online]
Chechen militants have used women bombers in Moscow before, in July 2003, killing 14. Yesterday's attack was the worst in the city since 2004 when the bombing of a Metro train killed 41 and wounded 250...
One theory was that the attackers were intending to blow themselves up in front of the FSB headquarters and Interior Ministry but had either got lost or delayed. Another puzzle was why the bombs were detonated in stations rather than in tunnels. Last night there were reports of attacks on women of Chechen or Muslim appearance in Moscow, apparently in revenge for the bombings.
Militia members indicted on conspiracy, weapons charges -- [LA Times]
The anti-government Hutaree group, which described itself as a 'Christian warrior' group, allegedly planned to kill a police officer, then attack others during the funeral.
Militia Charged With Plotting To Murder Law Enforcement Officers: Facebook Hutaree Craziness -- [Jawa Report]
A search was done on Facebook for these crazy's. (click all images to enlarge)
Facebook Hutaree Christian Militia page...
Fallen Marine's dad ordered to pay $16,510 to protesters -- [Greyhawk]
On Friday, Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit ordered Snyder to pay $16,510 to Fred Phelps. Phelps is the leader of the Westboro Baptist Church, which conducted protests at Marine Lance Cpl. Matthew Snyder's funeral in 2006.
Put yourself in his dad's shoes -- [Burn Pit/The American Legion]
...The American Legion is also in the process of filing an Amicus Brief with the Supreme Court on this issue.
[UPDATE III: National Adjutant is seeding this with a donation of his own. All funds will go to paying these lawyer fees, then for aiding in the Supreme Court filings, and anything above that will be used for other similarly situated individuals, since alas, this problem likely will not go away soon.
DoD authorizes non-chargeable recuperation leave for Iraq and Afghanistan -- [Army.mil]
The nonchargeable rest and recuperation leave program will be limited to the "most arduous" areas, and the combatant commander must recommend it through the Joint Staff for approval by the undersecretary of defense for personnel and readiness, Retherford said.
To qualify for the program, members must be serving in a leave restricted area, where no dependents are allowed. They must be receiving hostile-fire pay and in areas where travel in and out of the country is restricted. "Two additional areas are that the duty has to be extremely arduous and the command has to foresee continuing combat operations," Retherford said.
The benefit will take effect once an area is designated by the undersecretary of defense for personnel and readiness and will not apply retroactively.
About 400 welcome home troops -- [Dekalb Times-Journal]
As anxious families watched soldiers with tears in their eyes, it was nearing the end of a mission that started in the same place nearly 11 months ago to the day.
"It's a red letter day in Fort Payne to welcome our troops home," said Mayor Bill Jordan. "It's good to have you back home. Your families are not just in Fort Payne but are spread out all over the state. Your absence affected a great many people."
It was a day that also featured former Alabama lead singer Randy Owen singing the National Anthem as soldiers and families grew even more impatient for embrace.
"Welcome home dragon soldiers," said Co. David Brown. "You did Alabama proud. I salute you for a job well done."
First Welcome Home vets day held -- [Santa Maria Times]
Complete with a ceremony, barbecue and live music, the first Welcome Home Vietnam Veterans Day took place Sunday in Guadalupe.
...Last year, Gov. Arnold Schwar-zenegger signed Assembly Bill 717 by Assemblyman Paul Cook, R-Yucca Valley, to establish an annual "Welcome Home Vietnam Veterans Day."
'Call of Duty Endowment' Aids Unemployed Vets -- [Wired Magazine]
Activision Blizzard has established a charity to help find jobs for unemployed veterans, it said Monday. The Modern Warfare publisher has committed to raising millions of dollars through a new foundation called the Call of Duty Endowment, a non-profit dedicated to helping soldiers find work.
Unemployment Among Young Vets Skyrocketed in 2009 -- [Call of Duty Endowment]
The Bureau of Labor Statistics released a report today on 2009 veterans' unemployment figures, which show some alarming growth rates from 2008.
The 2009 unemployment rate for all Gulf War-Era II Veterans was 10.2 percent, compared to 7.3 percent in 2008. In the same period, the unemployment rate for young post-9/11 vets jumped from 14.1 percent to a staggering 21.6 percent.
Opening Night Festivities, 2010 Milblog Conference -- [Milblogging.com]
Friday evening [April 9], we'll have a cocktail reception following the kick-off panel. At the reception, there will be a cash bar and lite fare (passed hors d'oeuvers). A full dinner will be served at Saturday evening's big bash. The agenda for Friday (April 9), is below...
Hurt Locker -- [Mike Yon/Facebook]
Watched Hurt Locker yesterday. Not realistic other than sounds. Bad movie. Soldiers now use it as insult (calling someone "Hurt Locker" is insult)
American Heroes Ready and Willing to Serve in Congress -- [Sarah Palin/Facebook]
There are a number of great veteran candidates running for office this year, and there are some excellent organizations dedicated to helping them, including: Iraq Vets for Congress and Combat Veterans for Congress (please click on the links to visit their websites).
There are three veterans in particular I'll be supporting this week...
Palin supports war veterans for House -- [CNN]
Sarah Palin is putting her rock-star status among Republicans behind three Iraq war veterans who are taking on Democratic House candidates in November.
In a posting on her Facebook page Monday, Palin urged her supporters to donate to the campaigns of Major Vaughn Ward, Captain Adam Kinzinger, and Lieutenant Colonel Allen West.
Address to the Nation, March 29, 1973 -- [President Richard Nixon]
"Tonight, the day we have all worked and prayed for has finally come.
"For the first time in 12 years, no American military forces are in Vietnam. All of our American POW's are on their way home. The 17 million people of South Vietnam have the right to choose their own government without outside interference, and because of our program of Vietnamization, they have the strength to defend that right. We have prevented the imposition of a Communist government by force on South Vietnam.
"There are still some problem areas..."
U.S. Forces Out of Vietnam; Hanoi Frees the Last P.O.W. -- [NY Times/March 1973]
Saigon, South Vietnam, March 29 -- The last American troops left South Vietnam today, leaving behind an unfinished war that has deeply scarred this country and the United States.
There was little emotion or joy as they brought to a close almost a decade of American military intervention.
This afternoon at Tan Son Nhut, while waiting for his plane to take off, Col. Einar Himma, a naturalized American from Estonia, talked of his two tours in Vietnam. He had grown fond of the Vietnamese, he said, and he felt sad about their future.
"There's going to be a full blown war starting up after we leave," he said. "The fighting has never stopped anyway."
March 29, 1973 -- [Procopius]
It is an anniversary that passes almost unnoticed every year... Still, I think it is an anniversary worth remembering. On March 29, 1973, the last American combat troops left Vietnam.
Like most Americans, I rarely think about this anniversary. The only reason I remember it this year is because my Vietnam veteran brother pointed it out on his Facebook page. March 29 bears little similarity to the main end-of-war anniversaries of the 20th century...
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