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Archives: June 2007

June
29th

A wounded platoon leader’s story

Lt. T.J. Hromisin, a platoon leader with Fort Lewis’ 4th Brigade, 2nd Infantry Division, was shot in the head May 29 in Iraq. He was evacuated to Balad, and then on to Landstuhl, and then stateside, where his recovery continues.


His family is maintaining a journal of his progress at the Caring Bridge online community – a donor-funded service that got some well-deserved recognition in the fictional story of B.D.’s wounding, treatment and recovery in “Doonesbury.”

June
29th

McChord airmen trading places in and around the war zone

About 100 airmen from McChord’s 7th Airlift Squadron left this week to take the place of their comrades from the 8th Airlift Squadron, who are due home in the next week or so after a four-month deployment in Germany, Turkey, Iraq and the ‘Stans.


All four of McChord’s active-duty flying squadrons from the 62nd Airlift Wing are responsible for making up the numbers in the deployed 817th Expeditionary Airlift Wing.


In a McChord press release, the 7th’s commander, Lt. Col. Brian Newberry said:


“We are excited to go help our joint partners by delivering the ‘stuff

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June
29th

Second star for Allardice

It probably comes as no surprise to folks around here that former McChord Air Force Base wing king Bob Allardice has been nominated for a second star. He’s on the list the Defense Department put out Friday.


Brig. Gen. Allardice, who moved to a personnel job at the Pentagon after he came out of command at McChord in 2004, is now commanding the Coalition Air Force Transition Team – an arm of Lt. Gen. James M. Dubik’s Multi-National Security Transition Command-Iraq.

June
28th

Ripper update

The torrent of Ripper news has slowed to a trickle. Even the Multi-National Force-Iraq public affairs press release is down to three quick paragraphs.


There is still some good stuff out there, though. Lauren Frayer’s Associated Press story (we ran it today here) is a great read – 3rd Brigade infantrymen are taking their time moving through the bomb-infested streets of west Baqouba.


Among the links posted on Strykernews.com, there’s the Julian Barnes story in the LA Times that puts Ripper in the broader context of the current U.S. military strategy — the run-up to

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June
27th

Another installment from Matt Green

It’s been a few weeks since we last heard from Lt. Col. Matt Green, the former Fort Lewis officer who for several months now has been leading a team of advisers to an Iraqi National Police commander in Baghdad. This piece was written June 21 but was held up due to a communications blackout.

"Six, this is five, Bahaa is on the ground."

"Roger." Pause…

We were not in one of our neighborhoods, so a decision that had become almost automatic took several seconds to process. The night before, the general had asked if I would come on a patrol with him the next morning to visit one of his subordinate battalions. His first battalion had not been under his command in the last six months. They have been up north, and we had had very little interaction with them. The previous day the unit had road-marched down to Baghdad where they were going to take control of a new area, allowing a unit of Pesh from northern Iraq to return home. The first battalion would not be working in our sector, nor would they be under our control, but Bahaa felt it was his responsibility to go visit, see how the unit was doing, and give the battalion some advice on how to regain control of an area that had not made anywhere near the progress as ours had. The fact that this neighborhood was where the general had lived as a boy and for the few years between the invasion and him joining the National Police was an obvious second motive.

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June
27th

Fort Lewis online survey about memorial ceremonies

The I Corps inspector general has put up an online survey to gather information for the post commander, Lt. Gen. Charles H. Jacoby, Jr., about memorial ceremonies held for Fort Lewis soldiers killed in Iraq and Afghanistan.


The post earlier this month was set to go ahead with a plan to consolidate all its memorials into one monthly ceremony, but Jacoby put a stop to it and said he needed more time to study the issue.


The post currently conducts ceremonies by the units that lose soldiers – as it did over two days this week,

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June
26th

Arrowhead Ripper update (again)

The Los Angeles Times has Alexandra Zavis on the story, who quotes Arrowhead boss Col. Steve Townsend thusly:


“There ain’t no capital of the Islamic State of Iraq anymore,” Townsend told reporters Monday at a base on the city’s northern outskirts

.


The Washington Post’s Joshua Partlow is in with a longer story from the block-by-block clearing operation that 3rd Brigade troops are conducting in western Baqouba. He writes that:


“The city feels like a long-abandoned metropolis on a planet too close to the sun.”


Evidently we didn’t have room in the paper for

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June
25th

More memorials

Fort Lewis has four memorial ceremonies scheduled today and Tuesday.


&bull At 1 p.m. today, the post will remember Cpl. Damon G. LeGrand, who died June 12 in an ambush in Baqouba. LeGrand was assigned to the 571st Military Police Company. The ceremony will be held in the Main Post Chapel.


&bull At 11 a.m. Tuesday, a ceremony will be held for Sgt. Danny R. Soto, Sgt. Cory M. Endlich and Spc. Zachary A. Grass, all of the 4th Brigade, 2nd Infantry Division. The ceremony will be held in the Evergreen Chapel. Endlich was killed June 9 in

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