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Tuesday, June 05, 2007

Michael Yon: Death or Glory

After reading "The Final Option," you'd think Michael Yon would be hard pressed to top it.

You'd be wrong.

Michael Yon's latest dispatch, "Death or Glory (Part I of IV)" takes a look at British troops in southern Iraq. It's a rare look at our Coalition allies and what this war is like for them:
British soldiers truly are fighting in Iraq. On three consecutive missions with three different British units, their soldiers killed roughly 40 enemy in combat action that also saw two British soldiers killed in action, and three wounded...

The Brits have gotten their share of bad press in Iraq, and their treatment in the media has paralleled the treatment of our own Heroes. But make no mistake, the Queen's Royal Lancers are fighters, deserving of respect. They know how to go without:
The Queen’s Royal Lancers have been living out in the desert for about six months, like nomads moving from place to place, sleeping under the stars, getting much of their resupply of food and water by nighttime parachute drop as they patrol the Iran-Iraq border...
And they know what it is to be ambushed:
We had taken off nearly three hours earlier at 0830. At about 1120, the convoy entered the ambush. Eight of the 46 bombs detonated. EFPs tore through metal, ball bearings puncturing the vehicles, peppering them with holes...
It's an incredible dispatch, with lots of photos. It's another reminder of why I admire, and respect, Michael as much as I do. What he does takes serious stones.

Don't miss this chance to get to know a little bit about some of Britain's Heroes, who are every bit as 'in the sh**' as ours.

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Chocks are placed under a Global Hawk unmanned aerial vehicle after an intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance mission in Southwest Asia. This Global Hawk flew one of 11 ISR missions supporting Operation Enduring Freedom June 3. (U.S. Air Force photo)

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Lava Dog Returns to Sandbox Voluntarily for 7th Deployment

U.S. Marine Gunnery Sgt. Eugene Holiday Jr.

By Cpl. Rick Nelson
2nd Marine Division

HADITHA, Iraq, June 4, 2007 — Any duration of time away from friends and family can take a toll on the hearts and minds of all involved. The recent surges of deployments to Iraq are no different for servicemembers and their families. While some wish to never deploy again after their first or second tours, some Marines look forward to their deployments.

Such is the case of Gunnery Sgt. Eugene Holiday Jr., radio chief for Headquarters and Service Company, 1st Battalion, 3rd Marine Regiment, who is voluntarily back in Iraq for his seventh time.

Holiday realized in 1992, during his senior year of high school, he wanted to follow in the footsteps of his father and become a Marine.

“My father was actually disappointed when I decided to join because he wanted me to take one of the football scholarships I had been offered and go to college,” said the Jasper, Ala., native. “I had a friend who took a football scholarship the year before and during his first year of college he was injured and had nothing to fall back on, and I didn’t want to take that chance, so I decided the Marine Corps would be a better decision.”

Holiday left for Marine Corps Recruit Depot, Parris Island, S.C., on Aug. 3, 1992, where he began recruit training with 2nd Battalion, Platoon 2098.

“When I went to boot camp I joined as open contract because I honestly didn’t care what job I got, as long as I was a Marine,” he said. “When I found out I was put into the communication field I was pretty happy, because it was a technical job.”

After completing basic training, Holiday checked into 3rd Surveillance Intelligence Group, Okinawa, Japan. During his service in the Corps, he has performed recruiting duty in Atlanta and has been on many deployments with various units.

“This is actually my seventh time to Iraq, but only my second full deployment,” said the 32-year-old. “With my previous units we would come to Iraq for only a few months at a time. I actually left Joint Forces in Norfolk, Va., to deploy with 1/3 because I figured it would enhance my career and to have the chance to lead Marines again. At Joint Forces I was always leaving out of nowhere, but with 1/3 I’ll be gone for seven months and will return to my family. It’s a lot more stable.

“Aside from that, I love being with 1/3 because, compared to my other units, 1/3 is no stranger to deploying and the Marines know what to do and what is expected of them.”

Holiday said he likes to do what the Marine Corps expects from him, but has been deployed every year since his son was born five years ago.

“The hardest part is being away from my wife and son,” he said. “ It’s time that I’ll never get back, but receiving letters and emails from them is something that pushes me and keeps my morale up.”

The current deployment has proven both challenging and demanding for Holiday because his platoon inherited a two-year-old communications network that is difficult to maintain.

He said it’s the Marines who work under who keep the communication up and running, and that is the highlight of the deployment for him.

Lance Cpl. Kevin A. Lawrence, a radio operator with Headquarters and Service Company, 1/3, described Holiday as very passionate about his job.

“He can be very serious at times but is still able to allow people to feel comfortable around him,” said Lawrence, a Hartford, Conn., native.

Lawrence added since Holiday has worked with him, he has seen their platoon grow tighter and work has become a lot more enjoyable.

“A lot of people think the key to communication is push to talk, but there’s a lot more to it,” he added. “I tell people all the time, we work all night so you can talk all day.”

Holiday said he looks forward to returning home in October and reuniting with his family.

“I plan on staying in the Marines for 20 years and then retiring,” he said. “Once I’m retired, I’d like to continue my career in the communication field and spending as much time as possible with my family.”

First Battalion, 3rd Marine Regiment is a part of Regimental Combat Team 2, a Marine Corps command responsible for more than 30,000 square miles and 5,500 Marines, sailors and soldiers in Iraq’s Al Anbar Province.

Story originally posted at DefenseLink

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BEST FRIEND — U.S. Army Staff Sgt. Chuck Shuck and his K9 partner, Sgt. 1st Class Gabe, both with 178th Military Police Detachment, 20th Military Police Battalion, congratulate each other for a job well done after a training session at Forward Operating Base Q-West, Tikrit, Iraq, May 15, 2007. U.S. Army photo by Spc. Amanda Morrissey

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In Today's News - Tuesday, June 5, 2007

Quote of the Day
"Iraq is a long way from [the USA], but what happens there
matters a great deal here. For the risks that the leaders of a rogue state
will use nuclear, chemical or biological weapons against us
or our allies is the greatest security threat we face."

-- Madeline Albright, Clinton Secretary of State, Feb 18, 1998

News of Note
Operation Iraqi Freedom
Terror Group Claims U.S. Soldiers Captured in Iraq Were Killed Blog: Taking on the Mahdi Army

Homeland Security / War on Terror / Hamas-Hezbollah Happenings
Gitmo Cases in Chaos - Judges' rulings jeopardize detainee hearings
'Conspiracy to Murder Thousands'
Bust Targeted Al Qaeda Nuke Expert - VIDEO
Gunmen kill 2 soldiers at south Lebanon camp - Video
Trinidad group denies terror plot link
Plot shows dangers of mundane targets

Troops on Trial
Marines move to discharge protesting Iraq vet

Other Military News - The Battle of Midway

Worldwide Wackos
U.S., Venezuela trade barbs over media freedom, rights
Castro to return to Cuban TV in interview Tuesday

Politics / Government
Louisiana Democratic Rep. William Jefferson Indicted on 16 Different Charges
Leading Democrats try to woo religious voters - Video
Bush democracy speech in Czech Republic may irk Moscow
Zoellick on whirlwind tour for World bank job
Senate panel examines stock option tax gap
Protesters, police clash as German G8 summit nears - Video
U.S., NATO call Putin missile remarks unhelpful - Video ("Unhelpful??? That's the best we can come up with??? Unhelpful?!? Oh, how I wish Reagan were still around...)
McCain, Romney clash over immigration
Bush opens Europe trip on jarring note
Clinton: Faith got me past marital woes

Illegal Immigration / Border Control
Smooth path sought for immigration bill

In the Courts / Crime and Punishment / Law and Order
Paris Hilton Doing OK After First Night in Jail
Officer Details Hair-Raising Encounter With Missing Woman’s Husband
John Ramsey and Beth Holloway Twitty Are Dating
Fake New York Cop Faces Real Charges
Cops: Ex-Council Temp on Crack in Crash
Search for Missing Kansas Teenage Girl
Women prosecuted for smuggling children

Media in the Media / Bloggers in the News / Watching the Web
MySpace to seek court help to release predator e-mails

Science / Medicine / Technology
Beach Sand Found Full of E. Coli Bacteria
Study: Marriage Counteracts Depression
Study backs up warnings over second hand smoke
Doctors say Medicare cuts will hurt patients
Apple says iPhone to go on sale June 29 - Video
Old chicken bones show Polynesians came to Chile
Astronauts arrive for space shuttle launch
TB patient's family defend controversial travel
U.S. waited more than a week on TB case
U.S. cuts back climate checks from space
Murder, robbery on rise in big cities
Drought uncovers artifacts in Fla. lake

Mother Nature
Komodo Dragon Mauls, Kills Boy, 8, in Indonesia
Cop: Missing Mom's Hubby Had 'Cold Stare'
24 New Species Found in Suriname - PICS
Purple frog among 24 new species found in Suriname
Indonesia returns rare kangaroos to wild

Baseball Manager Suspended Over Tirade
Strikers have new gripe--no sex
Dead man rides on tram all night

Other News of Note
Diary of 'Polish Anne Frank' Unveiled
Colombia frees rebel leader for peace effort
Marine Scientists Want Laser-Armed Drone

Fox News
Plane Carrying 6 Crashes in Lake Michigan
Man Who Built Up NASCAR Racing Dies
NEWS IN PICTURES: The Day in Photos
Protests for Lower Caste Spots in India - PICS
Bloodbath on 'The Sopranos'

Reuters: Top News
L.A. residents optimistic of achieving American Dream
Ritalin use doubles after divorce, study finds
Illusionist in Times Square cement box stunt
Energy fuels Asia stock rise; China slides again
Dollar steadies, euro hits record high vs yen
Gold firms, TOCOM inches down on profit taking
Dow, S&P close at records as energy shares rise
Oil at $70 as cyclone nears Mideast Gulf - Video
Dow sees improved demand, pressures
OPEC needs to boost 2nd-half output: EIA
China stocks soft landing still possible
Avaya says in $8.2 bln deal with TPG, Silver Lake
Loews bets on natural gas in $4 billion Dominion deal
Nigeria seeks $6.95 bln in new suit against Pfizer
Murdoch calls Dow Jones meeting "constructive"
Indian casinos' 2006 revenue hit $25.1 billion
Group pushes for shareholders to disclose more

AP World News
McDonald, Ducks 1 win from Stanley Cup
Yanks lose good vibe, game to White Sox
Waterston eyeing 'Law & Order' promotion
Source: Donovan wants out of Magic deal
Truex takes first career win at Dover
Actor Moore booked on suspicion of DUI
Crowe, LaPaglia may build sports stadium
Seacrest a laughmaker in 'Knocked Up'
Stocks eke out gain after China drop
Seattle Career Fair - June 7th
Polmar: Russia Tests Improved Missile
Play Military Trivia and Win an iPod
The Web's Best Equipment Guide
Check Out the Latest Video News

CENTCOM: News Releases

Transformational program demonstrates developing logistics support concept
Noble Resolve 07-1 yields new opportunities for experimentation - podcast

Multi-National Force-Iraq
First women graduate from Kirkuk police academy
Construction complete on “Safe Neighborhood” project in Adhamiyah
Why I Serve - TSgt. Randolph Maltbia
Freedom Journal Iraq Episode 661
Press Briefing, May 29
Pentagon Press Briefing, May 23
Suspected EFP facilitator detained
Surge affecting more than security in Baghdad: Electricity Supply
MNF-I condemns terrorists’ tactics
Construction complete on ‘Safe Neighborhood’ project in Adhamiyah
Local Iraqi government leaders focused on essential services in Baghdad

Gates, Karzai Share Optimism About Afghanistan
Gates Visits New Afghan Commando Training Site
Pace Promotes Future Cooperation with Malaysia
Video Shows ID Cards of Missing Soldiers
Vice Chairman Plans to Retire in August
Coalition Raids Lead to Detention of Suspects

More Headline News
Physical Therapy Turns Things Around for Amputees
Diyala Iraqis Turn to Coalition, Government
Charges Dismissed Against Canadian at Gitmo
Engineers Improve Iraqi Water, Sewer Services
Secretary to Assess Progress in Afghanistan

Military News
Army Helps Prepare Hurricane States for Season
Joint Forces Ready for Red Flag-Alaska
Wright Flight Program Takes Youth to New Heights

War on Terror
Seven Soldiers Killed
Search for Soldiers Continues
Forces Detain Militants
Soldiers Killed, Wounded in Iraq
Iraqis Assume More Control

America Supports You
Group Honors Wounded
Grant Helps Group Expand Services
Golf Tourney Honors Troops
Pace, NASCAR Honor Troops
Photos: Pace, NASCAR Honor Troops

New Pentagon Channel Show Helps Make Troops ‘Fit for Duty’
Program Helps Recruits with College
Dover Gets First Globemaster
Marines Practice Communication Skills

Face of Defense
Vietnam Vet's Last Flight
Navy Was Natural Choice
‘Mail Call’ More Frequent

Gates, Karzai Share Optimism About Afghanistan’s Course - Story

Iraq’s Busiest Trauma Center Sees Progress - Story
Marines Block Euphrates River to Insurgents - Story
Guard Detachment Racks Up High Numbers - Story
Soldiers Build School, Business in Southern Iraq - Story

Engineers Complete Water Pump Stations
Joint Forces' Operation Succeeds in Al Kut
Iraqi, Coalition Forces Open Municipal Center
Movie Theater Helps Marines Relax in Haditha
Civil Affairs Help Make a Difference for Iraqis
Marine Engineers Hone Demolition Skills

Medical Techs Keep Troops Mission-Ready
New Water Drilling Rig Arrives In Djibouti
German Navy Donates Vehicles, Suppport

Reporters Visit Bagram Airfield for Media Day
Task Force Anzio Takes on New Command

Renewal In Iraq
Iraq: Security, Stability
Fact Sheet: Progress and Work Ahead
Report: Strategy for Victory in Iraq
Iraq Daily Update
This Week in Iraq
Multinational Force Iraq
State Dept. Weekly Iraq Report
'Boots on the Ground' Audio Archive
Weekly Reconstruction Report (PDF)
Iraq Reconstruction

Afghanistan Update

Fact Sheet: Budget Request
Fact Sheet: Terror Plots Disrupted
Waging and Winning the War on Terror
Terrorism Timeline
Terrorism Knowledge Base

Bost/Laskar Ghurian Herat Kabul Qandahar

Ansbach Aschaffenburg Berlin Berlin-Tempelhof Berlin/Schonefeld Bremerhaven
Darmstadt Frankfurt Frankfurt/Main Freiburg/Breisgau Garmisch
Garmisch-Partenkirchen Geilenkirchen Gelnhausen Giessen Kitzingen
Hanau Am Main Heidelberg Mainz Mannheim Nurnberg Stuttgart Trier
Wiesbaden Wurzburg


Agana Agana Heights Agat Andersen AFB Asan Barrigada

Al Azamiyah Al Basrah Al Hillah Al Karkh Al Kazimiyah Al Kut
An Nasiriyah Baghdad Baqubah Mosul Najaf Nineveh Tall Kayf

Kadena Air Base Okinawa Tokyo Yokohama

Today in History
1661 - Isaac Newton is admitted as a student to Trinity College in Cambridge.
1794 - Congress prohibits U.S. citizens from serving in foreign armed forces.
1863 - The raider CSS Alabama captures the clipper Talisman in the Mid Atlantic.
1912 - U.S. Marines invade Cuba.
1940 - The Battle of France begins.
1944 - The first B-29 bombing raid occurs; one plane is lost due to engine failure.
1945 - The U.S., Great Britain, France, and the U.S.S.R. declare supreme authority over Germany.
1950 - The U.S. undermines the legal foundations of segregation.
1956 - A federal court rules racial segregation on Montgomery buses unconstitutional.
1968 - Sirhan Sirhan shoots Senator Bobby Kennedy, who dies the next day.
1977 - The Apple II, the first personal computer, goes on sale.
1980 - The Soyuz T-2 is launched, transporting two cosmonauts to the Salyut 6 space station.
1991 - The Space Shuttle STS 40 (Columbia 12) is launched.

1825 - Jabez Lamar Monroe Curry, educator (Rep-AL)
1878 - Francisco (Pancho) Villa, Mexican revolutionary / guerrilla leader

1864 - Confederate Brigadier General William E. "Grumble" Jones, in battle at Piedmont, WV
1916 - Horatio H. Kitchener, British General
1988 - Clarence M. Pendleton chairman of the Commission on Civil Rights

Reported Missing in Action
Haines, Collins H., USN (NJ); RF8G shot down, released by DRV March, 1973 - retired from as a Captain - alive and well as of 1998

Ibanez, Di Reyes, USMC (CA); KIA, body not recovered

McManus, Truman Joseph, USMC (CT); KIA, body not recovered

Cavaiani, Jon R., US Army SF (CA); (w/Jones), released by PRG March, 1973, retired as a Sergeant Major - alive as of 1998

Jones, John R., US Army SF (TX), KIA, body not recovered (w/Cavaiani)

Kraner, Davis Stanley, USN (CA); KIA, body not recovered

Payne, Kylis Therod, USN (MD); KIA, body not recovered

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