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Search Tags: military
The popular public TV children's show, "sesame Street", is trying to help the children of military service members cope with long deployments overseas, serious injury, and even death. The Sesame Workshop is helping the "talk, Listen and connect" program with free materials, and even fully-equipped child-friendly playrooms that will be sent to military hospitals, libraries, child care and family support centers.
University of California researchers show that lesbians were discharged under the military's "don't ask, don't tell" policy at a much higher rate than gay men. Reuters reports every military branch dismissed a disproportionate number of women in 2008 under the policy banning openly gay service members. But the discrepancy was particularly marked in the Air Force, where women were a majority of those let go under the policy, even though they made up only 20 percent of personnel.
A new Web-based program is helping military pilots and aircrews fight fatigue. Research has shown that as fatigue goes up, cognitive effectiveness goes down, and the risk of an accident increases exponentially. "We want to stop that before it even gets to the pilots," said a military spokesperson. The Fly Awake or Work Awake program allows flyers and their schedulers to add crew members to flight and schedule rest times based needs of the mission and the crew to avoid fatigue and accidents.
Military spouses in need of work -- especially when their husbands or wives have to redeploy -- will have an extra resource in finding their next job. The Office of Personnel Management has approved new hiring guidelines that allow military spouses to be quickly hired for civilian jobs they're qualified for. OPM says its not a preference, but a way to help military families cope with the hardship of transfers.
Army aviators — the soldiers who fly attack missions, ferry troops and supplies and evacuate the wounded — are in ever-increasing demand even as America eyes the exits in Afghanistan. The Afghanistan conflict, which marked its 10th anniversary Friday, is in many ways a helicopter war.
Another controversy is brewing. A video called "collateral murder" has been posted at wikeleaks.org. It appears to show a group of unarmed men being fired on by U.S. military forces in Iraq in July of 2007. Reuters is reporting a Senior U.S. miltiary official confirms the video is authentic and came from an Apache helicopter gunsight. Reuters says among those believed to be killed in the attack was Reuters photographer Namir Noor-Eldeen and his driver. Two children also were wounded.
What next on Don't Ask Don't Tell? According to the Associated Press, the Pentagon's chief legal counsel says a nine-month study on gays in the military will likely review rules for troops on certain sex acts. The Uniform Code of Military Justice prohibits those acts even among consenting adults and married couples. Pentagon General Counsel Jeh Johnson, who is helping to lead a study on the military's "don't ask, don't tell" policy, said he planned to review all related aspects of the military legal code.
The U.S. military is planning to set up new training centers inside Pakistan where American special operations trainers would work with Pakistani forces close to the Afghan border battle zone. A U.S military official says the new centers would supplement two already operating in Pakistan, and they would be used to accelerate and expand the training of Pakistani forces considered key to rooting out al-Qaida leaders hiding along the mountainous border.