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 Post subject: Re: Military Thread
PostPosted: Thu Apr 26, 2018 7:15 pm 
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https://www.armytimes.com/news/your-arm ... gan-faith/

Quote:
A soldier just got authorization to wear a beard because of his Norse pagan faith

By: Meghann Myers   1 day ago
32.7K
Soldier gets permission to wear beard for Norse pagan faith

When the Army authorized beards for religious soldiers in early 2017, the move was a response to years of requests — and a lawsuit — from Sikh soldiers seeking to both serve and adhere to the tenets of their faith.

But the directive, technically, applied to all religions.

And that includes Norse pagans, also known as heathens, according to an undated memo from the 14th Military Police Brigade at Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri.

“I grant your accommodation, subject to the standards and limitations described below,” commander Col. Curtis Shroeder wrote to a 795th Military Police Battalion soldier, whose name is redacted from a copy of the memo circulating on Facebook.

“In observance of your Heathen; Norse Pagan faith, you may wear a beard, in accordance with Army uniform and grooming standards for soldiers with approved religious accommodations.”

Per the latest version of AR 670-1, beards with approved accommodations must be less than 2 inches long, measured from the bottom of the chin, and cannot be groomed with any petroleum-based products.

While beards are required by religious tenet for practicing Sikhs, the rules are murkier for heathens.

According to the Open Halls Project, an advocacy group for heathens serving in the military, the beard is a beloved tradition, but not a requirement.

“There is no religious requirement for beards in Heathenry,” according to a 2017 post about beards. “Sikhs are allowed to wear beards and turbans because it actually is a religious requirement of their faith that they do so. Kesh, or ‘uncut hair’ is one of the five religious requirements of baptized Sikhs. We, as Heathens, have no such religious requirement with regards to hair.”

A Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri, spokeswoman confirmed to Army Times the memo’s authenticity.

“All proper procedures outlined in Army Directives 2017-03 and 2016-34 were followed when requesting and approving this religious accommodation,” Tiffany Wood told Army Times on Monday.

Going legit

Authorizing a heathen beard is a big step in a long road for soldiers who practice Norse paganism.

As of 2015, the Army had accepted a request to add the religion to its list of faith codes, but before final approval, the Pentagon initiated a review of all religions recognized by the Defense Department.

However, the Hammer of Thor is still authorized for placement on military cemetery headstones, per a 2013 decision.

As for beards in general, the Army has not announced a final decision on authorizing facial hair across the service.

About Meghann Myers
Meghann Myers is the senior reporter at Army Times. She covers personnel, fitness, the sergeant major of the Army and various other lifestyle issues affecting soldiers.





Heathens of the US Military Unite!

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 Post subject: Re: Military Thread
PostPosted: Sun Apr 29, 2018 8:31 am 
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At least in the Army I was in, in order to be "a member of a religion" ... the "religion" in question had to meet certain standards. It had to be "registered" with the gubermint, etc. You couldn't just say, "I'm a heathen". So like my dog tags, said "No Religion". I think that mostly meant "No Chaplain" required, if I died.

And to avoid the shaving requirement, you had to have a "profile" .. i.e. a "doctors note" ... which a number of black folk did have. Apparently their skin is more sensitive and gets more irritated if they shave. Not all, but at least a few. The cases of black folk having shaving profiles was WAAAAY higher than non-black folk, in the Army I was in.

But, being an official "Heathen/Pagan" does have an attractive ring to it ... and if I was 20 something I might want to try it ... but these days I am totally in to the "I don't care" practice ....

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 Post subject: Re: Military Thread
PostPosted: Sat May 05, 2018 9:52 am 
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The US is bringing back the 2nd fleet to counter Russia...

Quote:
The US Navy has said it will re-establish its Second Fleet, as Russia becomes more assertive.

Chief of Naval Operations Adm John Richardson said the fleet, disbanded in 2011, would oversee forces on the US East Coast and North Atlantic.

He said the National Defense Strategy, published earlier this year, made it clear that the era of great power competition had returned.

The strategy makes countering Russia and China a priority.

The fleet, which was disbanded for cost-saving and structural reasons, will be based in its previous home - Norfolk, Virginia.

"Our National Defense Strategy makes clear that we're back in an era of great power competition as the security environment continues to grow more challenging and complex," Adm Richardson said in an announcement on board the USS George H W Bush at Norfolk.

"That's why today, we're standing up Second Fleet to address these changes, particularly in the north Atlantic."

Response to Russia

By Jonathan Marcus, defence and diplomatic correspondent

The re-establishment of the US Second Fleet is part of a wider strategy of re-orientating the US armed forces towards a world of renewed big power competition and away from the counter-insurgency campaigns they have been fighting over recent decades.

In this case the focus is Russia - a response to its stepped up naval activity of recent years. The new headquarters will give more coherent command arrangements for US warships operating in the Atlantic.

Nato is also planning to set up a new Joint Forces Command covering much the same region - the Americans have offered to host this in Norfolk, Virginia.

The existing pattern of US naval operations is also due to change significantly. US Defence Secretary James Mattis insists that he wants less predictable deployments, of shorter duration. Experts say a carrier strike group is likely to be deployed more frequently in European waters.

Adm Richardson added that the fleet would "exercise operational and administrative authority over assigned ships, aircraft and landing forces".

The headquarters staff would begin with just 15 personnel, increasing to more than 200.

It has not yet been decided who will command the fleet and what assets it will include.

Norfolk has also been proposed as a host for the new Nato Joint Force Command for the Atlantic.

Nato officials say Russia has increased naval patrols in the Baltic Sea, the North Atlantic and the Arctic, and its submarine activity is at its highest level since the Cold War.

Relations between Russia and the West have deteriorated in recent months amid allegations of Russian meddling in US elections, Moscow's support for President Bashar al-Assad of Syria and the poisoning of former spy Sergei Skripal, for which the UK blames Russia.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-44014761

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 Post subject: Re: Military Thread
PostPosted: Sat May 05, 2018 3:27 pm 
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I wonder what the rest of the NATO naval forces are doing to address this threat?

I know that the British are building/deploying 2 new CVs, so good on them.

Germany is in the process of adding some ships:
—-F-125 class frigates (4 of them) but there are so many problems (for example—the ship is overweight and has a permanent list to starboard) with them the Navy has this far refused to take delivery of the first completed ship
—-6 MKS180 frigates are planned
—-2 additional Type 212A subs
—-5 additional Braunschweig corvettes

They are also acquiring 30 helicopters of various types as replacements


Not sure what France, Spain, Italy or the rest of NATO is doing. Italy probably needs more small patrol boats to deal with the influx of North African refugees that are coming in but that will be of little help against threats from Russia.

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 Post subject: Re: Military Thread
PostPosted: Thu May 17, 2018 2:46 pm 
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Finnish urban warfare capabilities

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 Post subject: Re: Military Thread
PostPosted: Fri May 25, 2018 12:12 pm 
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The best part starts at 1:40 ->

https://youtu.be/HA2oR1u27co?t=100

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 Post subject: Re: Military Thread
PostPosted: Thu Jul 19, 2018 1:35 pm 
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A rather long article but very informational:

https://warisboring.com/commandos-sans-frontieres/

Quote:
Commandos Sans Frontières

The global growth of U.S. Special Operations Forces


July 18, 2018 Nick Turse

Special Operations Forces9
In early June 2018, at a tiny military post near the tumbledown town of Jamaame in Somalia, small arms fire began to ring out as mortar shells crashed down. When the attack was over, one Somali soldier had been wounded — and had that been the extent of the casualties, you undoubtedly would never have heard about it.

As it happened, however, American commandos were also operating from that outpost and four of them were wounded, three badly enough to be evacuated for further medical care. Another special operator, Staff Sergeant Alexander Conrad, a member of the U.S. Army’s Special Forces, also known as the Green Berets, was killed.

If the story sounds vaguely familiar — combat by U.S. commandos in African wars that America is technically not fighting — it should. Last December, Green Berets operating alongside local forces in Niger killed 11 Islamic State militants in a firefight. Two months earlier, in October, an ambush by an Islamic State terror group in that same country, where few Americans (including members of Congress) even knew U.S. special operators were stationed, left four U.S. soldiers dead — Green Berets among them.

The military first described that mission as providing “advice and assistance” to local forces, then as a “reconnaissance patrol” as part of a broader “train, advise, and assist” mission, before it was finally exposed as a kill or capture operation.



And some snippets:

Quote:
Unless they end in disaster, most missions remain in the shadows, unknown to all but a few Americans. And yet last year alone, U.S. commandos deployed to 149 countries — around 75 percent of the nations on the planet. At the halfway mark of this year, according to figures provided to TomDispatch by U.S. Special Operations Command, America’s most elite troops have already carried out missions in 133 countries. That’s nearly as many deployments as occurred during the last year of the Obama administration and more than double those of the final days of George W. Bush’s White House.


Quote:
Special Operations Forces have actually been in a state of transformation ever since Sept. 11, 2001. In the years since, they have grown in every possible way — from their budget to their size, to their pace of operations, to the geographic sweep of their missions. In 2001, for example, an average of 2,900 commandos were deployed overseas in any given week. That number has now soared to 8,300, according to SOCOM spokesman Ken McGraw.

At the same time, the number of “authorized military positions” — the active-duty troops, reservists and National Guardsmen that are part of SOCOM — has jumped from 42,800 in 2001 to 63,500 today. While each of the military service branches — the so-called parent services — provides funding, including pay, benefits, and some equipment to their elite forces, “Special Operations-specific funding,” at $3.1 billion in 2001, is now at $12.3 billion. The Army, Navy, Air Force and Marine Corps also provide their special operations units with around $8 billion annually.

All this means that, on any given day, more than 8,000 exceptionally well-equipped and well-funded special operators from a command numbering roughly 70,000 active-duty personnel, reservists, and National Guardsmen as well as civilians are deployed in approximately 90 countries. Most of those troops are Green Berets, Rangers or other Army Special Operations personnel.



I think that US overseas military deployments have swung too far.
Having some 30,000 US troops in Germany is too many.
Having US military troops deployed in 149 different countries is ridiculous.

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 Post subject: Re: Military Thread
PostPosted: Thu Jul 19, 2018 1:37 pm 
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And (linked in that article) the authorization to do this is here:

https://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/10/127e

Quote:
U.S. Code › Title 10 › Subtitle A › Part I › Chapter 3 › § 127e
10 U.S. Code § 127e - Support of special operations to combat terrorism
US Code
Notes
prev | next
(a)Authority.—
The Secretary of Defense may, with the concurrence of the relevant Chief of Mission, expend up to $100,000,000 during any fiscal year to provide support to foreign forces, irregular forces, groups, or individuals engaged in supporting or facilitating ongoing military operations by United States special operations forces to combat terrorism.
(b)Funds.—
Funds for support under this section in a fiscal year shall be derived from amounts authorized to be appropriated for that fiscal year for the Department of Defense for operation and maintenance.
(c)Procedures.—
The authority in this section shall be exercised in accordance with such procedures as the Secretary shall establish for purposes of this section. The Secretary shall notify the congressional defense committees of any material modification of such procedures.
(d) Notification.—
(1)In general.—
Not later than 15 days before exercising the authority in this section to make funds available to initiate support of an approved military operation or changing the scope or funding level of any support for such an operation by $1,000,000 or an amount equal to 20 percent of such funding level (whichever is less), or not later than 48 hours after exercising such authority if the Secretary determines that extraordinary circumstances that impact the national security of the United States exist, the Secretary shall notify the congressional defense committees of the use of such authority with respect to that operation. Any such notification shall be in writing.
(2)Elements.—A notification required by this subsection shall include the following:
(A) The type of support provided or to be provided to United States special operations forces.
(B) The type of support provided or to be provided to the recipient of the funds.
(C) The amount obligated under the authority to provide support.
(e)Limitation on Delegation.—
The authority of the Secretary to make funds available under this section for support of a military operation may not be delegated.
(f)Intelligence Activities.—
This section does not constitute authority to conduct a covert action, as such term is defined in section 503(e) of the National Security Act of 1947 (50 U.S.C. 3093(e)).
(g)Oversight by ASD for SOLIC.—
The Assistant Secretary of Defense for Special Operations and Low-Intensity Conflict shall have primary responsibility within the Office of the Secretary of Defense for oversight of policies and programs for support authorized by this section.
(h) Biannual Reports.—
(1)Report on preceding calendar year.—
Not later than 120 days after the last day of each fiscal year, the Secretary shall submit to the congressional defense committees a report on the support provided under this section during the preceding calendar year.
(2)Report on current calendar year.—
Not later than six months after the date of the submittal of the report most recently submitted under paragraph (1), the Secretary shall submit to the congressional defense committees a report on the support provided under this section during the first half of the calendar year in which the report under this paragraph is submitted.
(3)Elements.—Each report required by this subsection shall include, for the period covered by such report, the following:
(A) A summary of the ongoing military operations by United States special operations forces to combat terrorism that were supported or facilitated by foreign forces, irregular forces, groups, or individuals for which support was provided under this section.
(B) A description of the support or facilitation provided by such foreign forces, irregular forces, groups, or individuals to United States special operations forces.
(C) The type of recipients that were provided support under this section, identified by authorized category (foreign forces, irregular forces, groups, or individuals).
(D) The total amount obligated for support under this section, including budget details.
(E) The total amount obligated in prior fiscal years under this section and applicable preceding authority.
(F) The intended duration of support provided under this section.
(G) A description of the support or training provided to the recipients of support under this section.
(H) A value assessment of the support provided under this section, including a summary of significant activities undertaken by foreign forces, irregular forces, groups, or individuals to support operations by United States special operations forces to combat terrorism.
(Added Pub. L. 114–328, div. A, title XII, § 1203(a)(1), Dec. 23, 2016, 130 Stat. 2474; amended Pub. L. 115–91, div. A, title X, § 1031, Dec. 12, 2017, 131 Stat. 1550.)

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 Post subject: Re: Military Thread
PostPosted: Thu Jul 19, 2018 2:01 pm 
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Kameolontti wrote:


The best part starts at 1:40 ->

https://youtu.be/HA2oR1u27co?t=100



Wow, fantastically produced and filed video! Those overhead tank firing shots are wicked. The kicked up dust leaves a trace like particles in a cloud chamber.

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 Post subject: Re: Military Thread
PostPosted: Thu Jul 19, 2018 2:16 pm 
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chijohnaok wrote:
{Snip}

I think that US overseas military deployments have swung too far.
Having some 30,000 US troops in Germany is too many.
Having US military troops deployed in 149 different countries is ridiculous.
Don't know, having small units training and advising indigenous troops to counter our/their enemies is a lot better then what we did in Vietnam when we took over the whole operation.

As for the 30,000 in Germany, I don't know what their doing. Am sure there is some wastage, have reviews to see what's needed when and where.

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