Military

Expert Infantry / Creative Commons

Women are still excluded from certain areas of military service, but the Department of Defense has given branches until 2016 to eliminate "unnecessary gender-based barriers to service". Now, bases are evaluating how women fare during training that was reserved for men.

Camp Lejeune is studying enlisted female Marines who have passed their first 29 days of general training and volunteer for another 30 days of specialized training. At the end of it, their male peers can become machine gunners and missile men.

Air Force airmen lay sandbags to protect against a flooding disaster in MO in 2011.
Dept. of Defense

Climate change and the way we use energy are threats to national security, according to group of U.S. military generals at the nonprofit CNA Corporation.

Their research shows stronger storms will likely divert more troops to humanitarian missions and American dependence on fossil fuels forces convoys to routinely transport fuel through dangerous areas.

Host Frank Stasio talks with retired Lt. Gen. Richard Zilmer, a member of the Military Advisory Board at CNA Corporation.

A picture of lights on a police car.
Alejandro Mejía Greene/JubiloHaku / Flickr Creative Commons

Police and community leaders in Fayetteville are working on a local incarnation of the Silent Siren program to help veterans in an emergency.

Fayetteville police responded last week to a call from a woman whose husband, a soldier, was parked outside a Walmart threatening to kill himself. Police approached the stand off without lights, sirens and shouting.  They were able get the soldier help.

Fayetteville wants to expand that gentle approach for emergencies involving veterans with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder or traumatic brain injury.

A picture of the Airborne logo.
The US Army Institute of Heraldry / US Army

All American Week gets underway today at Fort Bragg to honor members of the 82nd Airborne Division. 

Events begin this morning with a four-mile division run with 20,000 participants. 

Wednesday is International Day, where military leaders from US allies will be invited to tour the base and attend a ball in the evening. 

Lieutenant Colonel Bob Risdon said the culminating events will be held Thursday when thousands will turn out to see the Division Review.

The Durham VA Medical Center
Durham VA Medical Center

The Department of Veterans Affairs is investigating allegations of improper scheduling at VA medical centers across the country. 

Leaked emails from VA offices in Arizona and Wyoming suggest employees changed records to falsely show that veterans were getting prompt appointments. VA Secretary Eric Shinseki is testifying about those allegations today on Capitol Hill.

This week, two employees at the Durham VA Medical Center were put on administrative leave amid similar allegations.

map, states, veteran education assistants
Student Veterans of America / StudentVeterans.org

North Carolina is one of only eight states in the country where none of the state's schools offer in-state tuition or residency exemptions for veterans. With the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan winding down, the number of veterans living in the state is expected to balloon by as much as 60,000.

This presents an opportunity for the state to change course and join the rest of the country in training service members who have called North Carolina home while in the military, though are technically residents of the states from which they enlisted.

Return From War

Apr 10, 2014
Intrepid Life Coffee and Spirits owner and Marine veteran Matt Victoriano
Carol Jackson

Military veterans face many challenges in combat zones and on battlefields. But what about the struggles they face when they return to civilian life?  

Jeffrey Berejikian teaching a class.
http://berejikian.net/

Individuals are more likely to dwell on losses than gains. They are also more likely to take risks to recover losses than to achieve new gains. Those ideas have long been accepted in social science circles, but now they are being applied to international relations. 

Department of Defense Seal
defense.gov / Department of Defense

    

The sexual assault case against Army General Jeffrey A. Sinclair halted this week when a judge’s review of emails revealed “unlawful command influence” in the rejection of a plea deal in January. The latest development provides an opportunity for Sinclair’s defense team to renegotiate a plea bargain with a new group of military officials. 

The Neuse is Scuttled - March 1865
Stephen McCall / CSS Neuse State Historic Site

This week, an archaeological team is expected to set out to see if they can find remains of the CSS Neuse, a battleship that met a watery grave near Kinston, NC, during the Civil War. Now, many of you history buffs might know why parts of an ironclad ship is lying inland, at the bottom of the Neuse River, but we did not. The story is at times dramatic, frustrating and incredibly sad.

Karl Eikenberry headshot
stanford.edu

From 2009 to 2011, Karl Eikenberry served as U.S. ambassador to Afghanistan where he worked to stabilize the country and build a stronger foundation for democracy.

The challenge is great as many question the intervention of American troops. Eikenberry, a Goldsboro, NC native, believes the humanities can provide an innovative approach to modern diplomacy.

Department of Defense Seal
defense.gov / Department of Defense

    

Army General Jeffrey A. Sinclair's sexual assault trial began yesterday. General Sinclair is one of the highest ranking military officers to be tried by jury. The case comes just as legislation to address sexual assault in the military goes before the Senate for a vote.

Lance Cpl. Justin A. Rodriguez / U.S. Marine Corps

Camp Lejeune is one of the Marine's largest bases. Here at WUNC, we report on the base regularly because it's located in North Carolina. We used to call it Camp "Luh-JOON". But we recently started pronouncing it "Luh-JERN". How come?

U.S. Army

Ground was broken this week on a new center at Fort Bragg that will focus on the treatment of traumatic brain injuries. According to the latest estimates from the Defense Department, there have been hundreds of thousands of these cases diagnosed - and perhaps as many that have not yet been diagnosed.

Nine of these new centers are planned for different communities in the United States. They are known as the National Intrepid Center of Excellence (NICoE) Satellite Centers. 

Contaminated water at the Camp Lejeune military base has been linked to adverse health effects.
Sanjay Parekh, via Flickr

 

A new study from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that babies born to mothers who drank contaminated tap water at Camp Lejeune while pregnant had elevated risks of childhood cancers and serious birth defects.  

Soldier saluting
U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs

Veterans returning from deployment face a quickly-changing job market. Many have a difficult time explaining how their military experience has prepared them for the civilian work force. The unemployment rate for veterans is about 7-percent, on par with the national average.

The North Carolina National Guard Education and Employment Center helps guard members look for civilian jobs.

Manager and fellow veteran Austin Walther says they also help vets translate their military experience into civilian job skills.

Fort Bragg
Fort Bragg

The annual Thanksgiving holiday meal and best dining facility competition starts Tuesday at Fort Bragg. Some 20,000 military service members, family and retirees are expected to attend.  Chief Roshaun Anderson is food advisor for the 82nd Sustainment Brigade.  He says the event is like the food service Super Bowl on post.

UNC Press

    

In the 1600s, European settlers invaded Eastern North Carolina where nations like the Tuscarora, Machapunga, and Core Indians resided.

Courtesy NClegion.com

When Patricia Harris became leader of the North Carolina Department of the American Legion, she was the first African-American and the first female to take the post. 

Veteran student, Fort Bragg
Fayetteville Tech Community College

    

One of the most pressing concerns for armed services members returning home is employment.

Here's video of a dramatic Coast Guard and Navy rescue off the North Carolina Coast. Watch as the Coast Guard and the crew of the Navy destroyer USS Cole rescue three people Sunday. Those rescued were from a sailboat, Wings, located approximately 210 miles offshore of North Carolina coast in the Atlantic Ocean.

Soldier saluting
U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs

North Carolina is taking a day to recognize the estimated 700,000-plus veterans living in the state.

American Legion branches around North Carolina are honoring local veterans today after parades in Raleigh and Fayetteville over the weekend.  N.C. Central University is among those that have invited veterans to speak at their events today. 

Ann Jones of Fayetteville Technical Community College says the school is hosting its own Veterans Day ceremony Monday morning.  She says veterans who take classes there use their experience to help fellow students.

Military Jobs
usmilitary.com

A report by the state Commerce Department highlights the economic impact of the military in North Carolina.

The Commerce Department says the state has a tremendous opportunity to grow the economy by helping military personnel find employment after their service ends. 

More than 60,000 people stationed in North Carolina are projected to leave the military over the next five years.  Commerce spokesman Josh Ellis says many of them will stay here.

37th US Colored Troops re-enactors participated in Pvt. Frank Worthington's headstone ceremony, Civil war
Leoneda Inge

The city of New Bern is honoring black Civil War soldiers with an official state highway marker. 

It's meant to mark the  flag of the city's 1st NC Colored Volunteers, raised there in the spring of 1863. That was shortly after President Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation - effectively freeing African American slaves in areas of rebellion against the union.  New Bern native Bernard George is an administrator in the city's planning department. He says, just as importantly, it allowed African American slaves to enlist in the army.

Soldier saluting
U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs

First Lieutenant Nathan Rimpf of Raleigh lost both his legs to an improvised explosive device in Afghanistan last year.  He received a Purple Heart and got two titanium legs when he returned. And on Thursday he'll be a new home owner.

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