Military

During a San Diego training exercise, the Marine Corps tried out some new tools to enhance its amphibious landings.

The National Geographic mini-series depicts the true story of an ambush that killed eight Americans and hundreds of Iraqis.

John Carroll Whitener
Courtesy of John Carroll Whitener

 John Carroll Whitener could have easily avoided being drafted into the Vietnam War. He could have truthfully checked the box marked “yes” on the military form that asked new recruits if they had homosexual tendencies. But doing so would have meant admitting a truth he was not ready to accept and facing the consequences of a future that did not include his family and church.

Cover of Hue 1968
Courtesy of Mark Bowden / Atlantic Monthly Press/2017

Almost 50 years after the epic battle that changed the course of the Vietnam War, author Mark Bowden visited the city of Hue to piece together what happened. 

On Veterans Day, WUNC presents stories recorded during a live storytelling event at the Airborne and Special Operations Museum in Fayetteville, NC.  The hour long broadcast is hosted by Eric Hodge. Hear these stories Saturday, November 11 at 2 p.m. on North Carolina Public Radio.

Over the hour you'll hear from active duty soldiers and veterans who share their Ft. Bragg Stories. You can listen to the broadcast online, too:

David Jay Photography

For many years U.S. Navy Officer Jerri Bell swallowed the story that when it came to military service, women were only involved in support roles. It was not until she started researching for a book on women’s military history that she realized the common narrative was false: women had been actively involved in combat since the American revolution. 

A month and a half after hurricane Maria, the VA Caribbean Healthcare system is delivering care in unconventional ways. And it's helping veterans whose PTSD was triggered by the storm.

Senior Airman Brittain Crolley / U.S. Air Force

 

The U.S. Senate has backed away from a proposal to close military bases for now, but that is not stopping some communities from planning ahead for the next round of cuts.

In Goldsboro, organizations and civic leaders are teaming up with the Seymour Johnson Air Force Base to improve the base’s facilities and increase engagement with the community. The partnership is a part of strategy to improve relations with the military and bolster the efficiency of the base.
 

Ft Bragg Stories A mixed 'chalk' of U.S. and British paratroopers line up to board a C-130 transport plane for the main jump of the joint exercise.
Jay Price / North Carolina Public Radio - WUNC

North Carolina is home to the largest U.S. military installation in the world by population. It employs more than 50,000 military and close to 30,000 civilians and contributes tens of billions of dollars to the state’s economy.

Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl
Ted Richardson, File / AP

Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl's attorneys are nearing the end of their defense for the soldier who pleaded guilty to endangering his comrades by walking away from his remote post in Afghanistan in 2009.

Removing pythons helps the ecology of the Everglades - and helps veterans transition from the battlefield to civilian life.

Many residents are making daily visits to distribution sites, where the Army has set up portable water purification systems.

Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl
Ted Richardson / AP

Updated 2:45 p.m. | October 31, 2017

Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl was a "gold mine" of intelligence, helping the military better understand insurgents and how they imprison the enemy, two agents testified Tuesday as defense attorneys sought to show the soldier's contributions since he was returned in a prisoner swap.

PONCE, PUERTO RICO -  North Carolina National Guard SSG Joe Rodriguez carries donated water and MRE's for Nani Soto in a distribution center in a sports arena in the Southern town of Ponce, the 2nd largest city in Puerto Rico, on October 20, 2017.
Angel Valentin / For WUNC

It has been more than five weeks since Hurricane Maria hit Puerto Rico. Close to three-quarters of residents on the island are still without power. Many also still do not have access to food or safe drinking water. 

1st Lt. Erin Graham of the North Carolina National Guard inspects a washed out bridge in the small Puerto Rico community of Vallaja.
Jay Price / WUNC

A North Carolina-based engineering battalion is making slow progress repairing roads that were blocked or damaged in Hurricane Maria. But months of work lies ahead.

PONCE, PUERTO RICO -  North Carolina National Guard SSG Joe Rodriguez carries donated water and MRE's for Nani Soto in a distribution center in a sports arena in the Southern town of Ponce, the 2nd largest city in Puerto Rico, on October 20, 2017.
Angel Valentin / For WUNC

Last week marked one month since Hurricane Maria struck Puerto Rico, and conditions remain primitive on much of the island. About one million people remain without running water and three million are without electricity.

Kevin Ziober says he was illegally fired because he served in Afghanistan. His employer is forcing him to take his complaint to binding arbitration, rather than to court.

FILE - In this Jan. 12, 2016, file photo, Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl arrives for a pretrial hearing at Fort Bragg, N.C. Prosecutors argue that serious injuries to two soldiers who searched for Bergdahl in 2009 show that he endangered his comrades by leaving
Ted Richardson, File / AP

Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl will appear Monday before a military judge who will determine his punishment for endangering comrades by walking off his post in Afghanistan.

Human error is likely to be among the causes of two separate collisions involving Navy destroyers. The accidents killed 17 sailors.

Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl
Ted Richardson, File / AP

Updated 2:46 p.m., October 16, 2017

Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl, who was captured and held by the Taliban for five years after walking away from his post in Afghanistan, pleaded guilty Monday to desertion and endangering his comrades — charges that could put him behind bars for the rest of his life.

President Trump's directive prohibits transgender people from joining the military and bans the military from paying for gender reassignment surgery. But it doesn't address what will happen to transgender people currently serving.

Army Sergeant Bowe Bergdahl
Wikipedia

Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl will appear in court next week to enter an expected guilty plea to charges that he endangered comrades by walking off his remote post in Afghanistan in 2009.

Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl
Ted Richardson, File / AP

Updated 4:47 p.m., October 6, 2017

Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl, who was held captive by the Taliban for half a decade after abandoning his Afghanistan post, is expected to plead guilty to desertion and misbehavior before the enemy, two individuals with knowledge of the case said.

Military C-130 and C-17 aircraft have been outfitted with medical equipment, as the Air Force flies patients to hospitals in the mainland U.S.

Army Sergeant Bowe Bergdahl
Wikipedia

A military judge ruled Wednesday that prosecutors trying Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl don't have to turn over more information about conversations one of them had with the Trump administration about the case.

Members of the Jacksonville, N.C. Rolling Thunder chapter pass a flame during a cememony honoring prisoners of war and troops missing in action.
Jay Price / WUNC

In the Vietnam War era, Americans became more interested in recovering missing troops -- largely because of the activism of some military families.

Retired Army Colonel Fred Black came to Fort Bragg as a second lieutenant platoon leader in 1968. He remembers the sense of pride and accomplishment among the men of the 82nd Airborne Division.

The well-equipped medevac helicopters that transported injured troops in Vietnam became the model for today's air ambulance services in the U.S.

An image of a sign for Fort Bragg
Fish Cop / Public Domain

More than 2,000 soldiers are deploying from Fort Bragg to Afghanistan, joining 1,500 soldiers sent there earlier this year.

An image of a sign for Fort Bragg
Fish Cop / Public Domain

Updated 2:28 p.m., Sept. 15, 2017

A soldier killed in a demolition accident was training to become a Green Beret experienced in handling explosives.

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