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Military Pro LLC
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Dedicated to supporting the Military Professional with information, tools and software.
Dedicated to supporting the Military Professional with information, tools and software.

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The U.S. currently has more seapower aimed at Iran in the Persian Gulf than in the fleets of most countries on Earth, Iran included. But that was just the Navy cracking its knuckles.

In the next few months, the Navy will double its minesweeper craft stationed in Bahrain, near Iran, from four to eight. Those ships will be crucial if Iran takes the drastic step of mining the Strait of Hormuz, one of the global energy supply’s most crucial waterways. Four more MH-53 “Sea Stallion” helicopters, another minesweeping tool, are also getting ready for Bahrain, to give the U.S. Fifth Fleet early warning for any strait mining.

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Maintain Operational Security (OPSEC) by limiting use of location-aware apps and geo-tagged photos

Want a good justification? Consider this...

"When a new fleet of helicopters arrived with an aviation unit at a base in Iraq, some soldiers took pictures on the flightline, he said. From the photos that were uploaded to the Internet, the enemy was able to determine the exact location of the helicopters inside the compound and conduct a mortar attack, destroying four of the AH-64 Apaches."

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Final voyage of the USS Enterprise

The USS Enterprise, at 1,123 feet the longest ship in the U.S. Navy, saw its first action 11 months after its commissioning, when it was to dispatched to enforce a blockade of Cuba during the Cuban Missile Crisis in October 1962. It participated in strikes on North Vietnam in the 1960s and '70s. In 2001, Enterprise was one of the first ships to respond to the September 11 terrorist attacks, as its warplanes dropped 800,000 pounds of bombs on Afghanistan during Operation Enduring Freedom, the Navy said.

The carrier and its crew of 3,100 left Norfolk Naval Station in Virginia on Sunday in the ship's 22nd deployment. The ship's air wing and other naval staff aboard add another 1,500 personnel.

It will be deployed in the Navy's Sixth Fleet and Fifth Fleet areas of operations, which cover Europe, Africa and the Middle East, including current hot spots Iran and Syria.

"Enterprise is as ready and capable as she has ever been throughout her 50 years," the ship's commanding officer, Capt. William C. Hamilton, said in a statement. "The ship and crew's performance during work-ups demonstrates that the world's first nuclear-powered aircraft carrier has never been more relevant."

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The X-37B Orbital Test Vehicle, which looks like a miniature unmanned version of the space shuttle, was launched March 5, 2011, from Cape Canaveral, Fla. At the time, Air Force officials offered few details about the mission, saying that the space plane simply provided a way to test new technologies in space, such as satellite sensors and other components.

It was slated to land 270 days later, in November, on a 15,000-foot airstrip at Vandenberg Air Force Base northwest of Santa Barbara. But the Air Force extended the mission and never announced a new landing date.

The X-37B now orbiting the Earth is the second launched by the military. The first X-37B was launched in April 2010 and landed 224 days later on its own -- fully automated -- at Vandenberg.

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Two probes of the Afghan Air Force, or AAF, are under way—one led by the U.S. military coalition and another by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, officials said.

"The nature of the allegations is fairly dramatic and indicated that [AAF officials] were transporting drugs on aircraft and transported weapons not owned by the government of Afghanistan for the use of private groups," said U.S. Army Lt. Gen. Daniel Bolger, commander of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization Training Mission-Afghanistan, the command that is establishing and financing Afghan security forces, including the AAF. Gen. Bolger cautioned that the investigation was still preliminary and the allegations couldn't be proved at this stage.

As part of the inquiry, the military also is looking into whether the alleged transporting of illegal drugs and weapons was linked to an April incident in which an AAF colonel gunned down eight U.S. Air Force officers at Kabul Airport. In a 436-page report released by the U.S. Air Force in January about the killings, several American officials are quoted as mentioning that the shooter, Col. Ahmed Gul, was likely involved in the transportation of illicit cargo and wanted to shut down a probe into it.

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At a White House news conference, Obama described the shelling and other attacks on civilians and rebel fighters by forces loyal to Syrian President Bashar Assad as "heartbreaking and outrageous."

But President Obama made it clear that he is not prepared to send U.S. forces to try to stop the carnage in Syrian cities and towns, or to help overthrow Assad, as some Republicans in Congress have urged.

White House officials fear getting drawn into another armed conflict, especially in an election year. They view the Syrian regime as a more formidable military challenge than the one presented by the army of the late Libyan dictator Moammar Kadafi, which took more than seven months to defeat. There is also far less international support for intervention in Syria than there was for Libya.

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General James Mattis, commander of U.S. Central Command, told a Senate hearing Tuesday that Iran has not been dissuaded by international sanctions regarding its controversial nuclear program. He also said Iran has been sending weapons and experts to Damascus to keep Syrian President Bashar al-Assad in power.

“Iran and its surrogates continue to orchestrate violence worldwide as evidenced by its plot to kill the Saudi ambassador here in Washington, D.C. Iran presents the most significant regional threat to stability and security. It's reckless behavior and bellicose rhetoric have created a high potential for miscalculation.”

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The Navy's railgun program is moving forward. Instead of relying on chemical propellants like gunpowder, the railgun uses an electromagnetic pulse to create strong magnetic fields that propel the conductive bullet on a sliding metal sled and out of the barrel - at 4,500 to 5,000 miles per hour and as far as 100 nautical miles away in about 5 minutes, with possible future expansion to 220 miles, according to ONR.

The Navy’s most advanced shipboard gun in operation today, the 5-inch,54-caliber lightweight gun, has a range of about 13 nautical miles, Klunder said. The Advanced Gun System (AGS), which is currently being developed for the Navy’s Zumwalt-class destroyer, is expected to have a range of nearly 60 nautical miles.

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The National Infantry Foundation petitioned Congress six years ago to authorize the creation of a coin specifically honoring the Infantry. That legislation was passed and signed by the president in 2008. However, since the U.S. Mint only produces two such commemorative coins each year, production of the coins was scheduled for this year.

Congress authorized the U.S. Mint to strike up to 350,000 of the commemorative silver dollars, said Cyndy Cerbin, director of communications for the National Infantry Foundation, in a press release Feb. 13. The foundation, a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization, supports and operates the museum.

The coins will be offered in proof and uncirculated quantities and will cost between $44.95 and $54.95, Cerbin said in the release.

The coins will be sold only this year, so people are encouraged to pick one up if they are interested and tell their friends about the opportunity.

Individuals can purchase the coin online at www.usmint.gov/catalog by clicking on the "Commemoratives" tab. Or, save on shipping by buying it at the Soldier Store inside the museum in Columbus, GA.

For directions to the museum or more about the coin, visit www.nationalinfantrymuseum.com

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Honoring the Fallen

If you've ever had the honor and pleasure of attending a military dining event, there is one toast given to our fallen comrades. While there are slight variations to the script used for the toast, the sentiment remains the same: to honor those that are unable to be with us.

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Perhaps as you entered the hall this evening, you noticed a small table, set for one ‐ in a place of honor. Please allow me to explain.

The military caste is filled with symbology. This table is our way of symbolizing the fact that members of our proud profession are missing from our midst and are unable to be with us this evening. It symbolizes those killed or missing in action. They are commonly referred to as KIA or MIA. However we call them comrades.

This table ‐ set for one ‐ is small. It symbolizes the fate of one of our own, be it a marine, a soldier, a sailor, an airman or a coast guardsman, missing or alone against his oppressors, and the singular life given in defense of our nation.

The table cloth is white, symbolizing the purity of their intentions to respond to their country's call to arms.

The single rose, displayed in a vase, reminds us of the families and loved ones of our comrades‐in‐arms ; who keep the faith, awaiting the return of those who are prisoners of war or missing in action.

The yellow ribbon ‐ tied so prominently on the vase ‐ is reminiscent of the yellow ribbons worn upon the lapels and breasts of thousands who bear witness with their unyielding determination, to demand a proper accounting of our missing.

A slice of lemon is on the bread plate, symbolizing their bitter fate. There is salt upon the bread plate, symbolic of tears their families' shed.

The wine glass is inverted as they will not toast with us tonight.

The chair is empty for they will not be joining us here this evening.
Remember ‐ all of you ‐ who have served with them and called them comrades; for surely they have not forsaken you.

Ladies and gentlemen, if you have not done so, please, charge your glasses with water, for wine is not a luxury they enjoy.
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