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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/

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

By: Meghann Myers   1 day ago
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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...

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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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