Military

Like many college classes, ROTC training is mostly online because of the pandemic. But some cadets have resumed limited in-person training.

Military personnel have been voting by mail since the Civil War. This year, some polls suggest that troops' political preferences may be changing.

An aircraft carrier in open ocean pictured from the top from left
US Navy

Voting by mail is nothing new for military service members. Deployed worldwide at any of the nearly 800 foreign bases, military personnel are offered some exceptions during the elections. Some vote by fax from a battleship, and many sent their ballots weeks ago, after receiving them earlier than most voters, at least 45 days before the election. 

The 159-year-old military newspaper, which is published by the Department of Defense, has been targeted for elimination by some Pentagon leaders.

U.S. Navy Mess Attendant First Class Doris Miller speaking during his war bond tour stop at the Naval Training Station, Great Lakes, Ill. on Jan. 7, 1943.
U.S. Navy photo courtesy of the National Archives

Henry Kissinger called supercarriers "100,000 tons of diplomacy," and that power has long been reflected in the Navy's conventions for naming them. Most are named for U.S. presidents. The USS John F. Kennedy. The Reagan. The Lincoln.The Navy now is quietly charting a new course.

A supercarrier now on the drawing boards will be christened the USS Doris Miller.

The newly introduced bill would make sexual harassment a crime under military law. The measure is a response to the killing of Fort Hood Army soldier Vanessa Guillen this summer.

A group of VA psychologists across the country have formed race-based stress and trauma support groups for veterans of color.

Battleship North Carolina, Navy, Wilmington, USS
U.S. Navy, 1946

Wilmington, North Carolina is about to become the first World War II Heritage City in the United States.  President Donald Trump is expected to make the formal announcement during a visit to the Port City on Wednesday.

About 300,000 veterans lived to see this year’s 75th anniversary of V-E Day, marking the end of World War II, according to Pew Research.

Fort Bragg
Fort Bragg / creative commons

A paratrooper who is based at Fort Bragg in North Carolina has received a Purple Heart.

The Fayetteville Observer reported Tuesday that Sgt. David Scudder was wounded in Afghanistan last year.

"Top Gun: Maverick" is scheduled for release next year. But perceptions of the military and warfare have changed since the original iconic movie premiered in 1986.

The military issued a "stop movement" order in March in response to the pandemic. While the ban has been loosened, some service members and their families still can't relocate to new bases.

blue and orange light in the sky at night over a metal tower
Antonin Rémond

In 2011, U.S. and Russian leaders signed an updated strategic arms reduction treaty. Unless that agreement, New START, is renewed before February, the two largest nuclear arsenals will be unconstrained for the first time since the height of the Cold War. 

In Annapolis, Md., young men and women in crisp white uniforms and white masks are doing what students here have been doing for 175 years — taking their first steps to becoming officers in the U.S. Navy.

These exercises are a part of the traditional "plebe summer," an intensive crash course that prepares first-year students for the transition to military life. They learn how to salute and march as a unit, along with lots of new lingo: floors are called "decks," toilets are "heads," and the students are "midshipmen."

As overwhelmed health departments call for help, National Guard members have been deployed to help run COVID19 testing sites and assist nursing homes.

An empty rocking chair on a porch.
Public Domain

Nursing homes have weathered more than 100 outbreaks of COVID-19 in North Carolina. More than 40% of the state’s deaths from the virus are from residents at those facilities. Some of those facilities are state-run nursing homes for veterans, and there is now scrutiny over government accountability amidst ongoing outbreaks.

Advocates are calling attention to statistics that show Black airmen are brought up for punishment more often than their white counterparts. The Air Force says it's trying to figure out why.

Service members with HIV are suing the military over a longstanding policy that prohibits them from deploying or commissioning as officers.

More than 30 states have asked the National Guard to help safeguard the 2020 election from cyber threats.

StoryCorps

StoryCorps has been traveling around the country, collecting oral histories in person for years. The impact of COVID-19 means that the archival organization has to get creative. 

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

A paratrooper based at Fort Bragg in North Carolina has died after his vehicle rolled over in the country of Syria.

The Fayetteville Observer reports that Sgt. Bryan Mount died on Tuesday.

The VA sanctioned encampment provides basic services to homeless veterans amid the COVID-19 pandemic. It's drawn mixed reactions from homeless advocates.

Jeffries stands in uniform next to a sign that reads 'Lindsey Jefferies NC's First Female African AMerican Black Helicopter Pilot for the NC Army National Guard.'
Courtesy of Lindsey Jefferies

Captain Lindsey Jefferies was the first of her six siblings to graduate from college. As a child, her family struggled financially and was constantly on the move in search of better paying jobs and a lower cost of living. She hoped that getting a good education could be a ticket to a more secure future and set the goal of attending UNC-Chapel Hill.

Women are the fastest growing subgroup among veterans. But many view the VA Health System as a place only for men.

The Army is holding its first nationwide virtual recruiting campaign, after the COVID-19 pandemic forced it to scale back face-to-face interactions and revealed gaps in its digital outreach strategy.

President Donald Trump listens during a meeting with lawmakers on immigration policy in the Cabinet Room of the White House, Tuesday, Jan. 9, 2018, in Washington.
Evan Vucci / AP

They didn't like it when then-candidate Donald Trump criticized John McCain for being captured in combat. They were angrier when Trump, as commander in chief, abandoned Kurdish allies in the Middle East. And they were upset again last month when he threatened to deploy troops against American protesters.

Courtesy U.S. Army

A female soldier is poised to become the first to graduate from the Army’s John F. Kennedy Special Warfare Center and School at Fort Bragg and don the famed Green Beret.

Representative Elise Stefanik of New York, who’s on the House Armed Services Committee, issued a statement saying the woman had met all the qualifications and is expected to graduate July 9th. She congratulated the soon-to-be graduate on Twitter.

The recent Supreme Court decision on LGBTQ job discrimination doesn't directly affect the military's transgender service ban, but people opposed to the ban say it may help their own court fight.

Soldiers gather for a 2019 awards ceremony at Fort Bragg, N.C. The base is one of 10 that Pentagon leaders say they are open to renaming.
Joshua Cowden / U.S. Army

With the call for changing the names of 10 Southern military bases gaining momentum, the question is starting to arise in Washington  and outside of it  what names might replace those of the Confederate generals they now bear?


Even as members of the Guard and Reserve are seeing longer and more frequent deployments, they don't always receive the same retirement, education, and housing benefits as active duty troops.

Soldiers of Indiana National Guard
Sgt. 1st Class Jon Soucy

As protests surged in response to the death of George Floyd at the hands of a former Minneapolis police officer, governors and mayors in more than 20 states deployed the National Guard to control the crowds.

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