FOB Tacoma

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UPDATE 2: Two paratroopers rescued from trees

Emergency personnel came to the rescue of two Army paratroopers who got hung up when wind blew them into trees during a training jump Thursday afternoon near Rainier, according to a news release.

Neither paratrooper was seriously injured.

The Joint Base Lewis-McChord fire department was able to retrieve a male paratrooper who was more than 30 feet high using a ground ladder. But they had to wait for the Thurston County Special Operations Rescue Team to rescue the female paratrooper, who was between 70 and 75 feet off the ground, Lacey fire battalion chief Steve Crimmins said.

The team includes

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Embed update: Eating Easter ham and getting stuck in the sand … differently

Happy Easter from Shinkai District, Afghanistan.

You’ll be happy to know your soldiers got a good meal with pie, turkey and ham at Forward Operating Base Sweeney. There wasn’t much else for the holiday here because most of the American soldiers were coming home from a two-day mission to resupply an Afghan base north of here. They were too tired and dirty for an egg hunt. Me too.

This mission gave me a strong sense of the challenges traveling around Afghanistan presents for U.S. ground forces. I was in one of the latest models of the eight-wheeled Stryker, the main

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Assault charge against Robert Bales stemmed from casino incident

A police report released today shows that the 2002 assault charge against a Joint Base Lewis-McChord soldier suspected in the massacre of 16 Afghan civilians occurred at a Tacoma casino while he was intoxicated.

According to Law Enforcement Support Agency documents:

Army Staff Sgt. Robert Bales threatened another customer at the Silver Dollar Casino July 14, 2002, and the customer reported the incident to security.

Two security guards told Bales to leave the casino and watched as he got in a cab. Bales then got out of the cab and, ignoring orders to get back inside the cab and leave,

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JBLM soldier detained after threat allegedly made to blow up barracks

A soldier at Joint Base Lewis-McChord has been detained after allegedly threatening to blow up his barracks, an Army spokesman said today.

The incident occurred Saturday night after another soldier reported the threat to military police.

No bomb or explosive device was found and no injuries were reported, Lt. Col. Gary Dangerfield said.

The soldier is being kept in confinement on the base until investigators determine whether there is enough evidence to pursue charges, he said.

It’s unclear what prompted the threat.


News Tribune team heading to Afghanistan for embeds with JBLM troops

You get a lot of advice when you tell people you’re about to embed with the Army in southern Afghanistan.

Don’t go, your grandmother tells you.

Pack a tourniquet, well-meaning friends suggest.

Give ‘em hell, rabble rousing editors bellow.

Don’t try to interview al Qaida, your practical fiancé says.

I take the advice to heart, and appreciate all the more the couple reporters and veterans who say simply, “Have fun.”

Fun? In Afghanistan? While lugging around body armor, satellite equipment and your own expectations to do you best work ever every single day?



That’s enough to bring some

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