I beg my colleagues to sit down and let’s work this out. Veterans are dying. This is not a policy, academic issue here. This is the very lives of the men and women who are serving. — Sen. John McCain, on the battle in Congress over how much to spend on reshaping the troubled Veterans Affairs Department. Though the House and Senate overwhelmingly approved separate bills in June to speed up veterans’ access to care, they still disagree on the price tag, and it’s unclear whether the legislation will pass in the few days left before Congress adjourns for its August recess. (via latimes)
US Experts Deployed To Landmine-Contaminated Areas Of Flood-hit Serbia, Bosnia
Clearing a swathe (ES14E3) - IHS Jane's 360 -
New robotic arm created for remote clearance of IEDs
Tackling an explosive problem in our nation’s capital -
President Barack Obama said in a 2013 policy statement, Countering Improvised Explosive Devices, “The use of improvised explosive devices threatens U.S. interests by killing, injuring, and intimidating citizens and political leaders around the world, inflicting damage on U.S. forces on the battlefield, and disrupting transportation and the flow of commerce.”
It’s 4:30 P.M., early December 2004, and a caravan of Humvees rumbles out of Camp Victory carrying Staff Sergeant Jeffrey S. Sarver and his team of bomb-squad technicians from the U.S. Army’s 788th Ordnance Company.
As Sarver’s team bounces down Victory’s rutted roads, the convoy passes a helipad where Chinooks, Black Hawks and Apaches thump in and out, some of them armed with laser-guided missiles and 30-millimeter cannons that fire fist-size shells. Sarver sees the Bradley and Abrams tanks sitting in neat rows, like cars at a dealership, their depleted-uranium bumpers aligned with precision.
All that lethal hardware is parked, more or less useless against the Iraqi insurgency’s main weapon in this phase of the war: improvised explosive devices made from artillery shells, nine-volt batteries and electrical tape—what the troops call IEDs.
As they leave the front gate, Sarver is in high spirits.
He grabs the radio and sings out in his West Virginia twang, “Hey, ah, do you want to be the dirty old man or the cute young boy?” “I’ll be the boy,” comes the response with a laugh. It’s Sarver’s junior team member, Specialist Jonathan Williams.
"Okay, cute boy. This is dirty old man, over." "Roger, ol’ man. We’re en route to the ah-ee-dee."
The Man in the Bomb Suit: The Story That Inspired The Hurt Locker
M79 round found near Ratchada courts | Bangkok Post: breakingnews
Pentagon Budget-Cutting Plans Sure To Draw Flak -
Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel is proposing to cut the size of the Army and to take steps that trim military pay and benefit costs. “We must now adapt, innovate, and make difficult decisions,” he says.
EOD: We Take Too Long To Respond Because Fuck You -
There are other units in front of you. We were on another call. None of that matters, because fuck you, that’s why.
“Six months ago, Taylor [Morris] was serving our nation in Afghanistan. And as a member of an Explosive Ordnance Disposal Team, his job was one of the most dangerous there is: to lead the way through territory littered with hidden explosives; to clear the way for his brothers-in-arms.
On May 3rd, while out on patrol, Taylor stepped on an IED. The blast threw him into the air. And when he hit the ground, Taylor realized that both his legs were gone. And his left arm. And his right hand.
But as Taylor lay there, fully conscious, bleeding to death, he cautioned the medics to wait before rushing his way. He feared another IED was nearby. Taylor’s concern wasn’t for his own life; it was for theirs.
Eventually, they cleared the area. They tended to Taylor’s wounds. They carried him off the battlefield. And days later, Taylor was carried into Walter Reed, where he became only the fifth American treated there to survive the amputation of all four limbs.
Now, Taylor’s recovery has been long. And it has been arduous. And it’s captivated the nation. A few months after the attack, with the help of prosthetics, the love and support of his family, and above all his girlfriend Danielle, who never left his side, Taylor wasn’t just walking again. In a video that went viral, the world watched he and Danielle dance again.
I’ve often said the most humbling part of my job is serving as Commander-in-Chief. And one of the reasons is that, every day, I get to meet heroes. I met Taylor at Walter Reed. And then in July, at the White House, I presented him with the Purple Heart. And right now, hanging on a wall in the West Wing is a photo of that day, a photo of Taylor Morris smiling wide and standing tall.
I should point out that Taylor couldn’t make it here today because he and Danielle are out kayaking. In Taylor we see the best of America—a spirit that says, when we get knocked down, we rise again. When times are tough, we come together. When one of us falters, we lift them up. In this country we take care of our own—especially our veterans who have served so bravely and sacrificed so selflessly in our name. And we carry on, knowing that our best days always lie ahead.”
—President Obama on Veterans Day
Pvt. Joseph Freemanmerna, an Army student at Naval School Explosive Ordnance Disposal (NAVSCOLEOD), works with a fuse removal adaptor on the base fuse of a bomb while practicing tape and line procedures Feb. 22, 2012. NAVSCOLEOD, located on Eglin Air Force Base, Fla., trains over 1,800 students a year from the Army, Navy, Marine Corps, Air Force and other U.S. government and civilian agencies, as well as international students from partner nation militaries. The school educates students on Explosive Ordnance Disposal procedures for conventional, chemical and biological, and nuclear ordnance. U.S. Navy Photo by Ensign Elizabeth Allen.
and in a couple of months i will know eight instructors there…yay EOD family!