Military Operations and Veteran News from Around the World

The Office of Communications and the Public Affairs - 9/23/2022

Stories of Note: September 23, 2022


National Security & Foreign Affairs


New York Times (Washington): Ukraine war comes home to Russians as Putin imposes draft

As President Vladimir Putin’s "special military operation” enters a new chapter, Russians are being plucked from villages for military service.


Washington Post (Moscow): Putin faces fury in Russia over military mobilization and prisoner swap

Russian families bade tearful farewells on Thursday to thousands of sons and husbands abruptly summoned for military duty as part of President Vladimir Putin’s new mobilization, while pro-war Russian nationalists raged over the release of commanders of Ukraine’s controversial Azov Regiment in a highly secretive prisoner exchange.


Washington Post (Washington): US has sent private warnings to Russia against using a nuclear weapon

The United States has kept warnings about the consequences of a Russian nuclear strike in Ukraine deliberately vague, so the Kremlin worries about the response.


The Hill (Washington): Pentagon: Putin’s nuclear threat won’t deter US aid to Ukraine

Russian President Vladimir Putin’s recent threat to use nuclear weapons will not staunch U.S. aid to Ukraine, the Pentagon’s top spokesperson said Thursday.


Military Times (Somalia): More than two dozen al-Shabab insurgents killed in US air strike

A U.S. air strike killed 27 al-Shabab militants in central Somalia earlier this week, U.S. Africa Command said Wednesday.


Military Times (Syria): US partner forces repel ISIS attack in Syria, Central Command says

U.S.-partnered Syrian Democratic Forces repelled a suicide bomb attack by Islamic State militants in Northeastern Syria early Tuesday, according to a statement from U.S. Central Command.


Fox News (Washington): US military leaders warn China could militarize the ports it owns in Latin America

U.S. military leaders are deeply concerned about a surge in Chinese-owned ports in Latin America and the Caribbean that "could benefit its military," according to a report by the U.S.-China Commission (USCC).


Government & Politics


Politico (Ohio): House GOP cuts loose candidate who misled about military service

The House GOP campaign arm is slashing a near-$1 million ad buy meant to target Rep. Marcy Kaptur (D-Ohio) — essentially walking away from what could have been an easy pickup for the party.


Fox News (Washington): Hawley probes Pentagon over 'alarming' mishandling of religious exemptions to the COVID vaccine

The Pentagon's IG said the department is in 'potential noncompliance' with standards for reviewing religious exemptions to the vaccine.


Across the Services


Stars & Stripes (Washington): Christian Coast Guard members sue over religious objections to military's coronavirus vaccine mandate

Three Christian members of the U.S. Coast Guard are suing government officials over the military’s coronavirus vaccine mandate, alleging they were unlawfully denied religious exemptions from the injection.


Stars & Stripes (Germany): Anti-omicron booster delivered to Ramstein; doses on the way to Army bases in Europe

The Pentagon's IG said the department is in 'potential noncompliance' with standards for reviewing religious exemptions to the vaccine.


Washington Post (Washington): Pentagon bedeviled by recruitment failures as solutions prove elusive

Military officials and lawmakers painted a grim picture of recruiting efforts within the Defense Department.


Stars & Stripes (Washington): Social media and influencers key to military recruitment of young people, defense officials say

The Pentagon should harness the power of social media and influencers to change young peoples’ perception of the military and entice them to enlist amid a challenging recruiting environment, defense officials told a Senate panel on Wednesday.


Dayton Daily News (Washington): Protect military bases from 'forever chemicals', senators tell SecDef

A group of senators, including Ohio's Sherrod Brown, are urging Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin to treat PFAS chemicals on military installations with greater urgency.


Military Times (Massachusetts): Migrants in Martha’s Vineyard given shelter at Joint Base Cape Cod The 48 migrants flown to Martha’s Vineyard last week by Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis have been given a safe haven at Joint Base Cape Cod, according to a press release from the Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency.


Military Times (Washington): Housing allowances are about to go up for more than 100K troops

The Defense Department’s personnel chief unveiled a list of initiatives Thursday aimed at improving quality of life for service members, including — for the second year in a row — a temporary boost in Basic Allowance for Housing for some active duty members.


Military Times (Washington): Nearly 14,000 community pharmacies leaving Tricare network next month Nearly 400,000 beneficiaries, or roughly 4% of the Tricare-eligible population, will be affected by the change.


USNI News (Washington): Navy to add 225 prevention workers in Pentagon-wide effort to stem sexual assault

Over the next year, the Navy will hire 82 workers to help provide service commands with resources for addressing military sexual trauma with a goal hiring 225 by the end of Fiscal Year 2024, the under secretary of the Navy told the House Armed Services Committee Wednesday.


The Associated Press (San Diego): Fat Leonard, fugitive in huge Navy bribery case, caught in Venezuela

"Fat Leonard,” the Malaysian defense contractor who orchestrated one of the largest bribery scandals in U.S. military history, has been arrested in Venezuela after fleeing the U.S. on the eve of his sentencing, authorities said Wednesday.


VA Topics & The Veteran Community


Washington Post (Washington): Justice Dept says it would defend Veterans Affairs medical workers in abortion cases

A recently adopted Department of Veterans Affairs policy providing abortions to veterans and their eligible relatives is legally sound and can continue, the Justice Department said.


Military Times (Washington): VA telehealth appointments may complicate vets’ community care options

Veterans Affairs officials will look at including patients’ access to telehealth services as part of their eligibility for outside care programs, a move that could dramatically change what community care options are available for veterans in coming years.


Military Times (Washington): Veterans group working to help fleeing Afghans alleges it was scammed out of hundreds of thousands of dollars

A veteran-led organization helping Afghan allies escape the Taliban was allegedly fleeced out of hundreds of thousands of dollars by companies and people, including other veterans, who promised to help nearly 200 refugees but failed to deliver, the organization claimed in a lawsuit filed in federal court this week.


Los Angeles Times (Texas): Facebook Live copied tech from combat veteran's app, jury finds in $175 million verdict

The parent company of Facebook and Instagram was ordered to pay nearly $175 million for violating patents held by the maker of a push-to-talk app founded by a former Green Beret who had sought to solve battlefield communications problems he encountered in Afghanistan.


Military Times (Ohio): 101st Airborne Division sends 500 troops to funeral for D-Day ‘legend’

More than 500 active duty soldiers from the 101st Airborne Division attended funeral services on Tuesday for former paratrooper Jim "Pee Wee” Martin, who died Sept. 11. He was 101 years old.