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Tag: afghanistan

Feb.
26th

Local links, Feb. 26

The Olympian carried a brief today about an event next week dubbed Religion in Wartime. It’ll take place at The Evergreen State College and features some local military names, including James Yee, the former Fort Lewis chaplain who later served at Gitmo and was accused of spying and espionage. (He was later cleared and previously has had some unfriendly things to say about the military’s tolerance of Islam.)

Capt. Kelly Hansen, a chaplain at Joint Base Lewis-McChord will also be there. She deployed in 2008-09 with the Washington National Guard’s 81st Brigade Combat Team.

Other local links:

24th Quartermaster

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Feb.
24th

Friends honor fallen Stryker soldier


Photo by Janet Jensen/The News Tribune

Sgt. Adam J. Ray entered the Army in a noncombat role but yearned for the long marches, the weaponry and the front-line missions.

So in April 2008, Ray changed from hospital patient administration to the infantry. He left for Afghanistan with his Joint Base Lewis-McChord Stryker brigade in July. And on Feb. 9, a roadside bomb killed the 23-year-old Kentucky native.

“His performance” in Afghanistan, the rear detachment commander of 4th Battalion, 23rd Infantry Regiment said in a memorial service Wednesday, “was nothing short of excellent.”

Ray died in southern Afghanistan as his battalion moved from Kandahar and Helmand province to join the largest offensive operation of the nine-year war. Operation Moshtarak, a joint NATO-Afghan mission to clear Taliban insurgents from the Marjah region, began four days after Ray’s death.
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Feb.
23rd

Memorial for Lewis soldier killed in Afghanistan

Joint Base Lewis-McChord will hold a memorial service tomorrow for Sgt. Adam J. Ray, the 23-year-old Stryker soldier killed in Afghanistan on Feb. 9.

The Kentucky native served with 4th Battalion, 23rd Infantry Regiment, a unit of the larger 5th Brigade, 2nd Infantry Division. He is the fourth soldier from his unit to die in Afghanistan, and the first since a roadside bomb blast killed three soldiers on Sept. 24, 2009.

Feb.
19th

Local links, Feb. 19

The public affairs folks for 3rd Brigade, 2nd Infantry Division up in Diyala province have a pretty neat story. We reported a while back on the trilateral checkpoints — manned by American, Arab Iraqi and Kurdish soldiers — going up throughout northern Iraq.

The three forces recently held a trilateral medical civil action program. Doctors, physicians assistants and medics from U.S. Army, Iraqi Army and Kurdish peshmerga had an open call for medical care in a small village outside Tibaj.

These soft-power projects are what local troops are spending much of their Iraq deployment doing, and most of

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Feb.
13th

741st EOD returns from Afghanistan

The citizen-soldiers of the 741st Explosive Ordnance Disposal Battalion have returned from Afghanistan.

The 25 Washington National Guardsmen of the battalion’s headquarters detachment were mobilized for a year and provided command and control for Task Force Paladin, the main counter-IED effort throughout the country. Bombs are by far the top killer of American and coalition troops throughout the country.

Stars and Stripes did a great two-part series on them last year. (Read it here and here.)

The unit was the first local group to deploy to Afghanistan after the Obama administration laid out its revamped strategy

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Dec.
3rd

Hemphill: Major problems with war plan

President Barack Obama’s plan to send 30,000 additional troops to Afghanistan has proven divisive. Supporters hail it as a clear-eyed approach to a limited engagement. Some detractors want fewer troops; others want more. The issue of declaring a planned drawdown to begin in 18 months also is controversial.

The News Tribune contacted several retired general officers with ties to the South Sound to ask their opinions.

Maj. Gen. John Hemphill was awareded a Distinguished Service Cross for his bravery in the Korean War and later commanded a battalion and brigade in Vietnam. He retired in 1985 and now lives

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Dec.
3rd

Harrison: Right strategy, wrong moves

President Barack Obama’s plan to send 30,000 additional troops to Afghanistan has proven divisive. Supporters hail it as a clear-eyed approach to a limited engagement. Some detractors want fewer troops; others want more. The issue of declaring a planned drawdown to begin in 18 months also is controversial.

The News Tribune contacted several retired general officers with ties to the South Sound to ask their opinions.

Lt. Gen. Bill Harrison served as Fort Lewis commander from 1987 to 1989. He later served as mayor of Lakewood from incorporation in 1996 to 2003:

“I support the president’s

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