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Monday, November 26, 2007

Officials Explain Recoupment Policy for Wounded Troops

By Jim Garamone
American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, Nov. 26, 2007 – If you are wounded in combat and discharged as a result, you will not have to pay back your enlistment bonus, Defense Department officials said here today.

“Bonuses are not recouped simply for one's inability to complete an enlistment or re-enlistment agreement through no fault of the military member,” a policy statement said.

Pentagon officials re-stated their policy after a wounded soldier in Pennsylvania received a bill from the Army. Jordan Fox was a private first class in Baqouba, Iraq, when he was wounded in the explosion of an improvised explosive device. Fox suffered vision troubles in his right eye and suffered a back injury when the bomb went off in May.

Fox was medically discharged and went home to his town near Pittsburgh. The Army sent him a letter asking him to repay $2,800 of his $7,500 enlistment bonus. He received a second letter telling him the Army would charge interest if he didn't make a payment within 30 days.

“Department policy prohibits recoupment when it would be contrary to equity and good conscience, or would be contrary to the nation's interests,” according to the Defense Department policy statement. “Those circumstances include, for example, an inability to complete a service agreement because of illness, injury, disability, or other impairment that did not clearly result from misconduct.”

Department policy on recoupment also establishes that, to the maximum extent permitted by law, the secretaries of the military departments “shall remit or cancel any and all theater debt incurred by military members who were medically evacuated from a combat zone due to injury or illness, except in the event of clear misconduct.”

Army officials said Fox will not be required to pay back any enlistment money he received. “By all accounts, his case seems to be an isolated one,” Army officials said. Anyone who does have an issue can call the Wounded Soldier and Family Hotline at 1-800-984-8523.

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A U.S. Army soldier from Delta Company, 1st Battalion, 1st Brigade, 327 Infantry Regiment, 101st Airborne Division, gets ready for a patrol in Iraq on Nov. 6, 2007. U.S. Army photo

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Fallen Paratrooper’s Family Gives School Supplies to Iraqi Girls

From Multi-National Force - Iraq:

School girls from the Dur-Mandali Primary School for Girls in the city of Balad-Ruz receive supplies from the family of fallen Paratrooper Spc. Michael Rodriguez. Spc. Rodriquez's family said he wrote home about the wonderful kids he had met and loved. Photo by 1st Lt. Scott Marler, 1st Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division (AA) Public Affairs.

BALAD-RUZ — The note read, “The school supplies that we are giving you today are from the family of a Soldier who died in Iraq, who loved the children of Iraq. His name is Specialist Michael Rodriguez.”

The speaker is Capt. James Goethals, a Civil-Military Affairs officer stationed in Eastern DiyalaProvince. The audience is a crowd of almost (100) young girls at the Dur-Mandali Primary School for Girls in the city of Balad-Ruz.

Spc. Rodriguez was assigned to 5th Squadron, 73rd Cavalry Regiment, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 82nd Airborne Division. He was killed in action in April, when multiple suicide bombers driving explosives-laden vehicles attacked his unit’s base in As-Sadah. He had written home telling his family about how much affection he had for the children he saw on patrol, and so his family turned their grief to a positive end, collecting school supplies for Iraqi children.

Capt. Goethals took over the mission of delivering the school supplies when Spc. Rodriguez’s unit rotated home this past October. He was accompanied by Capt. Tony Keller from 1st Squadron, 32nd Cavalry Regiment, the Mayor of Ballad Ruz, Mohammed Rouf Hussein and the Superintendent of Schools, Morat Kadum.

Following the presentation of the school supplies, Capt. Keller, Mayor Hussein and Superintendent Kadum spoke to the school teachers, thanking them for their service to the community and emphasizing the importance of an education, both for these children and the nation of Iraq.

Once the presentation was over, the children transitioned from the well-behaved and orderly formation to a sight similar to an American elementary school without their teachers in close attendance: running, laughing and staring in curious wonderment at the American Soldiers who accompanied the delivery. The Soldiers walked in to several classrooms, snapping pictures with the children and communicating in Pidgin English.

The lasting message of the day was communicated by Capt. Keller just before going into the meeting with the teachers, mayor and superintendent: “I want to thank all of you young ladies here today for going to school. You guys are the future of Iraq. Don’t let anyone stop you from getting an education. Always remember Specialist Rodriguez.”

(Story by 1st Lt. Scott Marler, 1st Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division (AA) Public Affairs)

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A convoy of paratroopers leaves Zerok Combat Outpost to Forward Operating Base Orgun-E, going through Ambush Alley in Paktika Province, Afghanistan, Nov. 6, 2007. The soldiers are assigned to 173rd Airborne Brigade Combat Team's Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 1st Battalion, 503rd Infantry Regiment. U.S. Army photo by Spc. Micah E. Clare

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In Today's News - Monday, November 26, 2007

Quote of the Day
"Honor and shame from no condition rise;
act well your part, there all the honor lies."

-- Alexander Pope, English poet

News of Note
Operation Iraqi Freedom
U.S. and Iraq agree on talks for future relationship
Cartwright: Changes in Iraq Taking ‘Permanent Hold’
Iraqis Line Up to Join Iraqi Police Auxiliary Forces

Homeland Security / War on Terror / Hamas-Hezbollah Happenings
Report: Islamic Terrorists Wanted to Attack U.S. Base in Arizona
Bush Holds Mideast Peace Talks - VIDEO - PHOTOS
Bush: Mideast leaders open to compromise
Bush nudges Israel and Palestinians toward peace - Video
Historic city takes a role in Mideast saga
Islamist site says new Bin Laden message soon
Border search of Muslims was lawful, court says

Religion of Peace??
British Teacher Faces 40 Lashes for Naming Class Teddy Bear 'Muhammad'
Saudi official criticizes ruling on rape victim

Worldwide Wackos
UNDP Accused of Covering Up Cash Funneling to N. Korea

Homegrown Moonbats
An Inconvenient Prize: Gore Accepts White House Invite

Politics / Government
Obama Touts Modest Experience
Clinton Launches PAC Man Attack on Obama
VIDEO: Romney and Giuliani Sharpen Attacks on Records
CAMPAIGN CARL: Cameron's '08 Trail Web Log
Sen. Trent Lott to Resign by End of Year - Former House Speaker Hastert Formally Resigns
Cheney to Undergo Tests for Irregular Heartbeat - VIDEO
ABC sees 2 sides to New Hampshire debate
New poll shows Clinton trails top 2008 Republicans - Video
Oprah Winfrey to stump for Obama
Giuliani: Promote benefits of democracy
Cheney's heart restored to normal rhythm
McCain sees progress, problems in Iraq
Musharraf to retire from Pakistan army
Australia's PM-elect to say sorry to Aborigines

Illegal Immigration / Border Control
Illegal immigrants not U.S. health care burden: study
Wis. cop must leave U.S. over stolen ID

In the Courts / Crime and Punishment / Law and Order
Pennsylvania Prison Break
Mom Describes GruesomeTorture, Killing
Girl believed to be 'Baby Grace' beaten to death - PHOTOS
Texas Police Believe They Know Identity of Dead Toddler 'Baby Grace' Found in Storage Bin
Washington Redskins Safety Sean Taylor in Critical Condition After Being Shot in Leg
Beauty Pageant Officials Probe Mystery of Pepper Spray on Contestant's Gowns
TMZ: 'Bachelorette' Mary Delgado Assaulted 'Bachelor' Fiance Byron Velvick
Couple Charged in Case of Missing Child Who May Be 'Baby Grace'
Bones of Baby Found in Detroit Home; 2 Charged With Abusing Second Child
Report: Police Believe Madeleine McCann Was Murdered By 'Panicked Pedophile'
Ivy League Professor Admits Killing Wife as She Wrapped Gifts, Saying He 'Just Lost It'
Reports: Decapitated Body Found in Detroit Sewer
Cops: Couple Barbecued Baby and Hid Him in Ceiling
Lawyers Dispute Evidence in Holloway Case - PHOTOS
Mom Can Keep Baby Secret From Dad, British Court Rules
Guard, suspect shot in Georgia mall
Prosecutor: T.I. broke gun law before
Hulk's wife wants property, alimony

U.N. News
Kidman backs U.N. drive to end violence against women
U.N. arms embargoes can be potent symbol: study

Media in the Media / Bloggers in the News / Watching the Web
Hollywood writers and studios resume contract talks - Video
London transport sacks announcer for spoof messages
Web site ranks stupid holiday gifts
MySpace plans Facebook-style news feeds - Video
XM boss says not interested in Imus
Fox Interactive to extend ad network
VH1's `Salt-N-Pepa Show' tackles Jena 6

Science / Medicine and Health / Technology
Hospital Fined for Brain Surgeries on Wrong Side of Head
Capital has severe HIV epidemic, report finds
Broadway talks go all night; strike continues
Routine HIV testing may benefit teenagers
Dinosaur find dries Australia water project
Gates grant seen helping wipe out polio
Doc delivers 4 sets of twins in 24 hours

Mother Nature
Moderate quakes hit western and southern Mexico
Little milk, exercise hurts kids' bones

News from My Neck of the Woods
English-Only Policy Protested
Rain slows holiday air travel in East

Farmer Cuts Off Right Arm With Pocket Knife to Save Life
Announcer sacked over spoof messages
Not even Santa's elves can count on job security
Cyclist nabbed for motel hallway ride

Other News of Note
Steve Fossett's Wife Asks Ill. Court to Declare Him Dead
Group launches new Nazi hunt in South America

Fox News
FOX Business: Wall Street Mixed on Retailer Numbers
Pop Tarts: Disney Diva: Vanessa Hudgens Too Hot for 'High School'?
Hayden Panettiere GQ Magazine's Obsession of the Year

Police hurt in 2nd night of Paris suburb unrest - Video
12 Days of Christmas to cost true loves 3.1 pct more
Oil falls $1 a barrel on OPEC, stock market drop
Nikkei falls 2.1 percent as exporters sold on yen and Wall St
Citigroup shares below $30
Gold steadies as weak dollar offsets credit woes
Dollar struggles near 2-1/2-year low vs yen
More pain before any gain
Merrill tells employees its strategy is sound
Retail stocks slump as Black Friday joy fades
Office supply woes deepen as Newell warns on fourth quarter
Good Christmas sales ahead for cellphones: Gartner
HSBC backs SIVs with $35 billion
JPMorgan to cut about 100 subprime jobs

AP World News
Brown leads heading to 'Dancing' finale
Yankees and Twins talking about Santana
McCartney spotted with Arquette in UK
Stocks slide on fresh credit concerns
Quiet Riot lead singer Kevin Dubrow dies
Retailers see strong holiday start

CENTCOM: News Releases

USJFCOM garners cutting edge technology award - podcast
New USJFCOM super computer will enhance command efforts - podcast
Command continues preparations for multinational effort
More about Multinational Experiment 5 Allied Command Transformation, U.S. Joint Forces Command honor outgoing commander, welcome new leader
Read Gen. Mattis' remarks - podcast - photos
Commands bring together experimentation leaders

Multi-National Force-Iraq
New Roadway Under Construction in Dhi Qar Province
Coalition forces target al-Qaeda senior leaders, two terrorists killed (Bayji)
DoD Identifies Army Casualty (Jisr Naft)
Concerned citizen’s tip leads to large cache find in Adhamiyah
Iraqis construct Fallujah’s first-ever sewage system
Iraqi, Coalition Forces engineers repair Tigris River Bridge
Ten detained as Coalition forces disrupt al-Qaeda in Iraq operations (Tigris River Valley)

Naval Academy Hosts Middle East Talks

First Troop Redeployment Under Way
Teams Seek Long-Term Answers
Brigade Works With Shiia, Sunni Groups - Video
Improvements Pave Way for Projects
U.S. Soldiers Train Future Iraqi Police
Operation 'Marne Courageous' Kicks Off
Platoon Helps Neighborhood Shopkeepers
Iraqis Build Fallujah’s First Sewage System
Coalition Targets Enemy in Tigris River Valley
Iraqi Security Forces Grow Stronger

Defense Officials Explain Recoupment Policy
Unit in Task Force First to Receive New MRAPs
Guard Delivers Early Gifts to Children

Marines Provide Disaster Relief in Bangladesh

Afghan Commandos Detain Taliban Extremists

Young NCO Cares for Fellow Soldiers' Welfare

Texans Help Caregivers
Realtors Spread Spirit

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

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

Bost/Laskar Ghurian Herat Kabul Qandahar


National Hurricane Center

Today in History
1703 - Bristol, England is damaged by a hurricane; the Royal Navy loses 15 warships.
1716 - Boston is the site of the first American exhibition of a lion.
1778 - Captain Cook discovers Maui (Sandwich Islands).
1789 - First national thanksgiving.
1832 - In NYC, the first streetcar railway in America starts operating.
1885 - 1st meteor photograph
1924 - Mongolian People's Republic proclaimed
1940 - Nazis force 500,000 Warsaw Jews to live in a walled ghetto.
1941 - Lebanon gains independence from France.
1949 - India adopts a constitution as a British Commonwealth Republic.
1950 - China enters the Korean conflict, sending troops across the Yalu River.
1965 - France launches its first satellite, the 92 lb (42 kg) A1-capsule (Asterix).
1973 - Nixon's personal secretary, Rose Mary Woods, tells a federal court she accidentally caused part of an 18-minute gap in a key Watergate tape.
1974 - Approximately 140 die when a suspension bridge collapses in Nepal.
1975 - A Federal jury finds Lynette "Squeaky" Fromme guilty of attempted assassination.
1982 - Yasuhiro Nakasone is elected PM of Japan, succeeding Zenko Suzuki.
1983 - Heathrow Airport is robbed of 6,800 gold bars, worth $38.7 million.
1985 - The 23rd Space Shuttle Mission (61-B, Atlantis 2) is launched.
1988 - Alexander Volkov, Sergei Krikalev and Jean-Loup Chretien launch; Pioneer-6 makes its closest approach to Earth since its 1965 launch (1.87 M km).
1990 - Mikhail Gorbachev tells Iraq to get out of Kuwait.
1991 - Condoms are handed out to thousands of NY High School students.

1607 - John Harvard England, clergyman/scholar, major benefactor & namesake to Harvard University
1792 - Sarah Moore Grimk‚ American antislavery / women's rights advocate
1832 - Mary Edwards Walker, doctor / women's rights leader
1876 - Willis Haviland Carrier, developer of air-conditioning equipment
1894 - Norbert Wiener, mathematician / discoverer of cybernetics
1912 - Eric Sevareid, newscaster (CBS Weekend News)
1922 - Charles M. Schulz, cartoonist (Peanuts)
1937 - Boris Yegorov, cosmonaut (Voskhod 1)
1938 - Tina Turner (Anna Mae Bullock), singer (Proud Mary)
19?? - My sister! Happy Birthday, Melissa!
1981 - Jamie Fiske, liver transplant recipient

1883 - Sojourner Truth, abolitionist, women's rights advocate
1939 - James Naismith, Basketball inventor
1970 - B.O. Davis, Sr., first Black general

Reported Missing in Action
Brennan, Herbert O., USAF (NE); F4C shot down (bombardier / navigator, w/Condit)

Condit, Douglas C., USAF (OR); F4C shot down (pilot, w/Brennan), remains ID'd January, 1993
Hartness, Gregg, USAF (TX); O2A shot down (pilot)

Beutel, Robert D., USAF (IL); F4D shot down (backseater to Steadman)

Steadman, James E., USAF (CO); F4D shot down (pilot, w/Beutel)

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