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Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Four-legged Soldiers keep their noses to the ground

Sgt. Richard Miller, from Floresville, Texas, a military policeman with the 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 3rd Inf. Div., encourages his specialized search dog, Gabriel, before a search exercise at Forward Operating Base Hammer Oct. 24. Miller uses Gabriel in cordon and searches, cordon and knocks, raids, route sanitation and route clearance missions to sniff out explosives, munitions, weapons and ammunition. Photo by Spc. Ben Hutto, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 3rd Infantry Division Public Affairs.

Tuesday, 30 October 2007
By Spc. Ben Hutto
3rd Brigade Combat Team Public Affairs

FORWARD OPERATING BASE HAMMER — The German shepherd trots from rock to rock, ears pricked upward and nose pointed towards the earth, intent on his mission.

Several feet away, his handler, Sgt. Richard Miller, from Floresville, Texas, a military policeman with the 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 3rd Infantry Division, silently watches as the dog gets closer to the C4 explosive he has hidden under some rubble.

The specialized off-leash search dog looks back at his handler and sits down beside the hidden explosive.

"Good boy," Miller says, walking toward Gabriel. "Good job, Gabe."

The dog's tail swings back and forth as his trainer approaches. His mission accomplished, the dog eagerly awaits his reward.

Miller focuses the dog on the explosive while he reaches into his pocket and pulls out a worn-out orange cong. He tosses it in front of the dog and watches as he snatches it up and runs back to his handler.

The next few moments are filled with praise as Miller tosses the cong and Gabriel retrieves it.

"That's the whole reason the dog does what he does," explains Sgt. Timothy Kinsey, from Pueblo, Colo., a military policeman with the 3rd Brigade Combat Team. "We work to get paid. The dogs work for their reward. Gabriel is very focused on his reward. He'll do anything for those congs."

The 3rd BCT has three working dogs and they've been extremely busy since their arrival at Forward Operating Base Hammer.

"They are doing a good job," said Sgt. 1st Class Tommy Jamison, from Elmira, Ore., the provost sergeant for the 3rd BCT. "I've had to learn about them, but they have been great assets."

Jamison explained that the battalions in the 3rd BCT had to learn how to use the dogs on combat missions.

"They were skeptical at first," Jamison said. "The Soldiers had their TTPs (techniques, tactics, and procedures) and those needed to be changed to accommodate the dogs, so that caused some friction. It was hard to explain to leaders that the dogs needed air conditioned vehicles and tents to rest, but once they saw the benefits, everyone accommodated them."

Kinsey explained that there are limits to what the dogs can do.

"Some Soldiers have a hard time understanding that the dogs have the mentality of a four year old," Kinsey said. "When a dog is tired, they are tired. I can't tell them to suck it up and drive on. They love what they do, but they have limits."

The dog's sense of smell makes them perfect for detecting hidden contraband that Soldiers can overlook.

Miller explained that a dog can register and discern 10,000 - 40,000 scents at one time.

"The best way I can explain it is that if you were to walk into a fast food place you would smell the meat cooking on the grill and the mop bucket they are using to clean up a spill," Miller said. "A dog will smell the fat in the burger charring, the meat cooking, the sesame seeds on the buns, the pickle juice, the type of perfume the cashier is wearing and a thousand different other scents all at the same time."

That sense of smell allows dogs like Gabriel and Jim to smell a coil of detonation cord under a pile of rubble from 10 feet away.

"It takes a lot of luck and good information for the dogs to be effective," Miller said. "We have to be in an area where there is something. Sometimes things can be buried too deep or they have been moved, but the dogs are very accurate if something is there."

The accuracy of the dog's ability can be directly attributed to the training that the handlers give them on a daily basis.

"Every day is a training day," Miller said. "We conduct training as often as possible. It keeps the dogs sharp and helps us maintain our rapport with them."

That rapport is critical out in the field.

"The main thing between a trainer and a dog is their rapport," Kinsey said. "We have to notice the dog's behavior and make decisions based on that. A dog's normal temperature is between 101 and 103 degrees. If its body temperature gets up to 106, the dog starts shutting down and begins to die. Out here in the desert, that is a big risk we have to monitor."

Miller throws Gabriel's cong around a few more times before calling an end to the training session. The handler roughly shakes the dog and encourages him.

"Normally, specialized off-leash search dogs stay with the same handler their entire military career so we should be together a while," Miller said.

The 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 3rd Infantry Division, from Fort Benning, Ga., has been deployed in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom since March.

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GUIDING HANDS - An aircraft director positions an aircraft on one of the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Abraham Lincoln's steam-powered catapults during flight operations on the ship's flight deck while under way in the Pacific Ocean Oct. 27, 2007. U.S. Navy photo by Petty Officer 3rd Class James R. Evans

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In Today's News - Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Quote of the Day
"Sometimes it is entirely appropriate
to kill a fly with a sledge-hammer!"
-- Major Holdredge, USMC

News of Note
'Tis the Season
GRRR! Halloween Pedophiles
Sleeping Man Dressed as Zombie Mistaken for Corpse on Train in Germany
San Francisco to Shut Down Halloween Street Party

Operation Iraqi Freedom
U.S. to tighten rules for Iraq contractors - Video
Iraq bill would lift contractor immunity
1-15 Infantry air assault detains six suspected insurgents
Ramadi parade celebrates unity, security
Job No. 1 in northern Iraq: keep al Qaeda on ropes
MND-B Soldiers seize cache in southern Baghdad
Concerned Local Citizens lead Coalition Forces to cache location (Al Buaytha)
MND-C Soldiers attacked (Baghdad)
Iraqi Security Forces rescue sheik hostages
Four terrorists killed, 17 suspects detained during Coalition operations
Coalition Forces free hostage from al Qaeda (al Hammadi)

Homeland Security / War on Terror / Hamas-Hezbollah Happenings
Israel steps up threats to invade Gaza Strip
Spanish judge due to rule on Madrid train bombs
Spy budget, at $43.5 billion, is no secret now
Palestinians raise stakes for talks
Bomb blast near Musharraf's HQ kills 7

Troops (and Contractors) on Trial
Immunity deals 'routine' for contractors

Fallen Heroes
Furor After Ceremonial Flag-Folding Readings Pulled From Military Funerals

Other Military News
U.S. Gunships Battle Pirates Who Seized Ships Off Somalia, Mogadishu
Small Training 'Bomb' Falls From Navy Fighter Jet
Australia to collect troop DNA to help ID bodies
Bush nominates new Veterans secretary

Religion of Peace??
Saudi king gets royal welcome, jeers on UK visit

Worldwide Wackos
Major powers expected to meet on Iran this week
Marx's erupting skin may have influenced writings
Cuba warns US against regime change

Politics / Government
Waterboarding Issue SlowsMukasey's Appointment
Stay on Internet Taxes Heads to White House
Bush Blasts Democrats for Spending Bill Delays
Kucinich Doubts Bush's Stability
Bush's budget fight with Democrats deepens - Video
Democrats open fire on Clinton at debate
Bush balks at revised child health bill
Bush chides Congress on spending bills
House votes to extend Net tax moratorium
Edwards shifts focus to integrity
Democrats consider more money for war

Illegal Immigration / Border Control
Giuliani: Illegals are a federal problem

In the Courts / Crime and Punishment / Law and Order
Body of Unidentified Woman Exhumed for Testing
Love Ain't Cheap - High court to hear 'spouse theft' case
Burglar Pleads Guilty to Slaying 5 in Texas KFC Mass Murders
McCanns Accused of Using Madeleine Fund to Pay Their Mortgage
Family of Missing Illinois Woman Lisa Stebic Say Her Husband Cut Communication to Family
Teens Could Face Murder Charges After Throwing Metal Tent Pole at Father's Head
Man Charged in Death of Woman Answering Craigslist Ad
Justices Doubt Claims Against Anti-Child Porn Law
Body of Mom Who Disappeared on Jog Found - VIDEO
Mississippi death row inmate gets last-minute stay

Adventures in Political Correctness
Christian Groups Claim Pro-Atheist 'Stealth Campaign' in Nicole Kidman Fantasy Film 'The Golden Compass'
VIDEO: Does Illinois Moment of Silence Promote Religion?

Media in the Media / Bloggers in the News / Watching the Web
Sarkozy Storms Out of '60 Minutes' Interview, Calls it 'Stupid'

Science / Medicine and Health / Technology
Scientists Find Oldest Living Animal, Then Kill It (Jerks)
Astronauts Find Large Rip in Solar Panel - PHOTOS
Want to stop superbugs? Clean up hospitals: study
Vitamin D does not prevent death from cancer
Many older doctors plan to phase out their practice
AIDS virus invaded U.S. from Haiti: study
Computers seen selling briskly in holiday buying
France Telecom denies Google talks about handset
Scientists note brain's reaction to fear
Experts discover rare amphibian imprints

Mother Nature
Insurance group sees 14,000 claims from California fires
Embattled New Orleans district attorney quits
Noel hits Cuba; 22 dead elsewhere

Is It Bigfoot? Hunter's Photos Ignite Debate
Michigan Man Gets Probation After Pickle Assault
VIDEO: Cheerleader Trampled by Players at Game
Teenager escapes prison in suitcase
Give us your money, this is a ketchup
Traffic stop yields embalmed heads
Woman claims pet-sitter made her pig fat

Fox News
Teen Jumped Out Window to Escape Beach Fire - PHOTOS
Dumped Merrill Lynch CEO Gets $161.5M Farewell
Couple Offers Refund, Inheritance for Whoever Buys House
Pop Tarts: Vanessa Hudgens in Therapy With 'Bottom' Blues?
Canadian Toddler Lone Survivor of Plane Crash
Young Victims of Carolina Beach House Fire Remembered

Reuters: Top News
Actor and singer Robert Goulet dies at 73
French and Spanish charged over Chad children flight - Video
Savor whisky like wine, the Glenmorangie way
Guilt stops parents from kids-free vacations: survey
"American Gangster" watched Washington on set daily
Britney slammed for chaotic parenting
Consumer confidence trips up Wall St - Video
Oil slides $4 to below $90 a barrel
Dollar near record low vs euro before Fed verdict
McKesson shares rise
Goodyear, American Axle beat estimates, others lag
Transparency on the line with Fed
Rebuilding after fires a boon to San Diego
Google in talks with Verizon Wireless: sources
Fed cut seen slim help for housing
Other CEOs under microscope as Merrill chief exits
Ford, UAW talks intensify, "activity" seen in days
Merrill hit with shareholder lawsuit over subprime
Bankruptcy reform can stem foreclosures, panel told

AP World News
Methodist transgender minister may stay
Little resigns, paving the way for Torre
Britney Spears allowed visits with sons
Girardi agrees to manage Yankees
Elvis is Forbes' richest dead celebrity
Stocks slide ahead of Fed rate decision

CENTCOM: News Releases

House Armed Services Committee chairman tours command
Command focusing on improving joint fires at the brigade combat team and below
More about JFIIT
Command leadership completes Transformation Advisory Group meeting
Command moves forward with Joint Urban Fires Prototype - podcast

Multi-National Force-Iraq
Bayaa car bomb injures 2
18th Military Police Brigade assumes Iraq mission
Iraqi Army discovers cache (Hawr Rajab)

Rice, Gates Discuss Control Of Private Contractors - Video
Gates Considers Extending Two Brigades' Stay in Europe

Pilots Needed to Boost Fledgling Iraqi Air Force
U.S. Soldiers Free Hostage From al Qaeda

Iraqi Police Learn Basics During Prep Course
Coalition Troops Detain 11 Suspects in Iraq

Afghan, Coalition Forces Detain Six Suspects

Afghan Troops Take Lead in Operations
Combat Engineers Mentor Afghans

Troops Work to Battle Remaining Fires
Defense Logistics Agency Supports California Wildfire Relief Effort
Special Report: Military Helps Fight Wildfires
Wildfires Photo Gallery
C-130 Firefighters Face Challenges
Airmen Conduct Aerial Assault on Fires
Air Force Wildfire Coverage
Official Calls Response ‘Awe-Inspiring’
Defense Personnel Hit Wildfires Hard

Landstuhl Medical Facility Keeps Promise to Provide Best Care

Nurse Rejoins Air Force

Oboe Player Joins Fight
Soldier Lures ‘Finicky' Fish

Wounded Find Renewal In Caribbean Adventure
Kayaking Trip Heals Wounded Veterans

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

National Hurricane Center

Today in History
1270 - The 8th - and final - Crusade is launched.
1888 - The first ballpoint pen is patented.
1905 - With the "October Manifesto," Russian Tsar Nicholas II grants civil liberties.
1918 - Slovakia asks for the creation of a Czechoslovakian state.
1919 - Baseball league presidents call for the abolishment of the spitball.
1922 - In Italy, Mussolini forms his cabinet.
1930 - Turkey and Greece sign a treaty of friendship.
1938 - Orson Welles panics a nation with the broadcast of "War of the Worlds."
1939 - The U.S.S.R. and Germany agree on partitioning Poland.
1941 - The Germans torpedo the USS Reuben James, despite the fact that the U.S. is not involved in the war.
1944 - Anne Frank is deported from Auschwitz to Bergen-Belsen.
1945 - The U.S. government announces the end of shoe rationing.
1948 - In Donora, Pennsylvania, smog kills 20 and sickens 6,000.
1953 - Dr. Albert Schweitzer and General George C. Marshall win the Nobel Peace Prize.
1954 - The Defense Department announces the elimination of all segregated regiments.
1956 - Israel captures the Egyptian militay post at El-Thamad.
1961 - The Soviet Party Congress unanimously approves a resolution removing Josef Stalin's body from Lenin's tomb in Red Square.
1961 - The Soviet Union tests a 58-megaton hydrogen bomb.
1965 - Fireworks explosions kill 50 in Cartagena, Colombia.
1967 - The U.S.S.R.'s Kosmos 186 and 188 make the first automatic docking & Venmera 13 launch.
1975 - Juan Carlos assumes power in Spain; the NY Daily News runs the headline "Ford to City: Drop Dead."
1976 - Jane Pauley becomes the news co-anchor of the Today show.
1979 - NASA launches the space vehicle S-203.
1980 - Honduras and El Salvador settle their boundary dispute; NASA launches Satcom-4.
1985 - The 22nd Space Shuttle Mission (61-A; Challenger 9) is launched.
1991 - A Middle East peace conference begins in Madrid, Spain.

- John Adams, Declaration of Independence signer, second U.S. President (1797-1801)
1821 - Feodor Mikhailovich Dostoevski, Russian novelist / short-story writer
1830 - Confederate Major-General John S. Bowen
1873 - Francisco Madero, Mexican revolutionary, president (1911-13)
1893 - Charles Atlas, body builder
1918 - Ted Williams, Baseball great (Red Sox - AL MVP '46, '49; Triple Crown '42, '47)
1939 - Grace Slick, rock vocalist (Jefferson Airplane-White Rabbit)
1946 - Robert L. "Hoot" Gibson, USN/astronaut (STS 41B, 61C, 27)
1969 - Brittany Gae Thompson, Miss Oregon-America (1991)

- Sir John Abbott, PM of Canada (1891-92)
1991 - William Shea (Shea Stadium namesake)

Reported Missing in Action
Page, Jasper N., USAF (MS); first to escape out of SVN, November, 1965 - alive and well as of 1998

Sakamoto, Hideako (Japan); released January, 1974

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