Latest Afghanistan rotation units announced!

DOD Identifies Units for Upcoming Afghanistan Rotation
The Department of Defense today identified five units to deploy as part of the upcoming rotation of forces operating in Afghanistan.
The scheduled rotation involves elements of one infantry brigade combat team (IBCT) with roughly 3,200 personnel (1st Brigade, 82nd Airborne Division); elements of one cavalry regiment (CR) with roughly 2,050 personnel (3rd Cavalry Regiment); elements of two combat aviation brigades – one with roughly 1,700 personnel and the other with roughly 1,000 personnel (16th Combat Aviation Brigade and 12th Combat Aviation Brigade); a division headquarters element with roughly 350 personnel (1st Cavalry Division Headquarters) to rotate in spring 2014 in support of the combatant commander’s mission requirements. The deploying units include:
Brigade Combat Teams/Combat Aviation Brigades:
1st Brigade, 82nd Airborne Division, Fort Bragg, N.C.
3rd Cavalry Regiment, Fort Hood, Texas.
16th Combat Aviation Brigade, Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Wash.
12th Combat Aviation Brigade, Ansbach, Germany.
Division Headquarters:
1st Cavalry Division Headquarters, Fort Hood, Texas.
DoD will continue to announce major deployments as they are approved. For information on the respective deployments, contact the following: 1st BCT, 82nd Abn. Div., contact the 82nd Abn. Div. public affairs office at 910- 432-0661; 3rd CR, contact the III Corps public affairs office at 254-286-5139; 16th CAB, contact the 7th Inf. Div. public affairs office at 253-477-5746; 12th CAB, contact the U.S. Army Europe public affairs office at 011-49-611-705-3074; and the 1st Cav. Div. HQ, contact the III Corps public affairs office at 254-286-5139.

What a story of courage and unselfishness

During a time of year and a culture of  ”I got mine” and “Its all about me” it is very refreshing to read a awe-inspiring story of a pair of soldiers who were completely unselfish and tried to save each other’s lives, all while being willing to give up their own.

These men are true heroes and I am glad to see they were recognized as such.

e7637754-1eb5-444d-b743-0f64d5c6a584

 

Two members of the Golden Knights parachute team were tangled together, plummeting to Earth at 65 mph with little chance of survival.

One of them, Sgt. David Echeverry, was being strangled by a parachute cord. He knew that he and his teammate, Staff Sgt. Christopher Clark, couldn’t survive if they remained entwined. So in his last moments of consciousness, he pulled his release cord, hoping to give his partner a chance.

His last thoughts, he said, were of his wife, Rachel, and his two children – 3-year-old Jacob and 16-month-old Elijah.

A few seconds later, when Echeverry thought he should have been dead, he came to – and found himself dangling from Clark, who held onto Echeverry’s lines with all of his strength.

Read the whole story at http://www.stripes.com/news/us/with-parachutes-tangled-golden-knights-make-split-second-decision-to-save-life-1.257156

 

Happy Thanksgiving from Bouhammer.com

I know I have been gone or a while and I am very sorry about that. My last post was on September 11th, and it has been way to long. Part of it was because of my extremely busy work schedule and part was technical. Up until two days ago I could not even get to this website from my home network. Thanks to several calls with G0Daddy and Verizon we got it fixed and I now have access back to bouhammer.com.

Anyway, I have missed blogging and I am so glad to be back on here. This is truly therapeutic and is something I need to do.

So for my first blog after the longest period ever of being silent, I would like to wish whomever is still reading this blog, a very Happy Thanksgiving. As you gather around the table with your family and friends this Thanksgiving please take a moment and give thanks for all of those who have stood watch over the defense of our Country and continue to do so as we enjoy the holiday and our freedoms. There are tens of thousands of men and women who won’t be with their families this Thanksgiving, but hopefully will by next Thanksgiving. Pray for them as they sacrifice away from their families and for their families who I am sure are holding an empty seat for them this year.

Happy Thanksgiving!!

Just in case you didn’t know…

…but we still have our son’s and daughters fighting, bleeding and dying in Afghanistan. America is still there taking part in killing bad guys and trying to save the good ones.

DoD Identifies Army Casualty

 

           The Department of Defense announced today the death of a soldier who was supporting Operation Enduring Freedom.

 

Staff Sgt. Michael H. Ollis, 24, of Staten Island, N.Y., died Aug. 28, in Ghazni Province, Afghanistan, of wounds sustained when insurgents attacked his unit with an improvised explosive device, small arms and indirect fire. He was assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 22nd Infantry Regiment, 1st Brigade Combat Team, 10th Mountain Division (Light), Fort Drum, N.Y.

 

For more information the media may contact the Fort Drum public affairs office at 315-772-8286.

 

SSG Ollis is not the only casualty, I just selected his name for this post as it was announced on this R.E.D Friday.

 

Outlaw Platoon, Part II

I have already posted my review of Sean’s book Outlaw Platoon and put up the first special trailer that NRA’s Life of Duty put together. Here is the second part of that series they have produced. If you haven’t read the book yet, I hope this video along with the first and the soon to be posted third will convince you to go out and get a copy right away. Once you start, you probably won’t be able to put it down.

 

 

In 2006 Lt. Sean Parnell and the men at Third Platoon had deployed to one of the most dangerous area of Afghanistan, less than 10 miles from the Pakistani border. Their mission was to seek out enemy positions and thwart the movement of insurgent forces, into and out of the save haven of Pakistan. And was to disrupt and destroy this network at all costs. On June 10, they were under a fierce assault by the Taliban and enemy insurgents. RPGs and Mortars rained down on them, and machine gun fire seemed to come at them from all directions. If they didn’t get help soon, the outcome looked grim for Sean Parnell and the men under his leadership, known as the Outlaw Platoon.

Why a veteran is a great person to hire

I have talked about this many times on this blog, other blogs and my radio shows. In fact I can be a testament myself as to the effects of military service and how the life-skills it builds can benefit a company. Recently one of my sons turned me onto this blog from postgradproblems.com and why companies should be hiring Veterans.

First and foremost, veterans have a great attitude when it comes to work. No matter the task, they’ll get it done, or at least give it their all. They won’t show up late. They’re used to working overtime. They’re disciplined. Discipline, “the mental attitude and state of training that renders willing obedience instinctively under all conditions,” means that a veteran will do what they’re told and do it right—the first time, every time. A veteran isn’t likely to show up to work hungover on Monday, but if he does, he’ll work just as diligently, effectively, and efficiently as he would on any other day.

I love how the author even highlights the fact that even if a veteran shows up hungover they will probably still work as effectively as any other day.

Even with these benefits, and the fact that great organizations like the Chamber of Commerce’s Hire Our Heroes, HireHeroes, and companies like Buffalo Paradigm Company who are teaming up with the Better Business Bureau of Upstate NY to host a Veteran’s Job Fair as part of a Veteran’s Day 5K fund-raising run there is still ignorance on the part of many employers. Then there are groups like Get It Done Consulting who have a specialized training program for disabled veterans that gets them certified in Project Management and other business skills.

With all of those organizations and focus more awareness is needed and it is good to see it originating outside the military circles from places like postgradproblems.com. Be sure to check out and read the entire blog post at http://postgradproblems.com/why-every-business-should-hire-veterans/#DOsGBoYmwAeEoSrb.99

 

Going beyond 2014?

Just a few weeks ago all the news was talking about the Zero Option in Afghanistan, which implies that ZERO troops would be left in Afghanistan after 2014. Now we are hearing that the US and Afghanistan are nearing an agreement to keep some troops there beyond 2014 (http://www.news-leader.com/article/20130731/NEWS07/307310126/us-presence-afghanistan-extension).

That just goes to show you that either the press makes news by just guessing stuff, their inside “sources” are full of crap, or the DoD is good at “leaking” stuff to them to keep them thrown off the trail and they fall for it all the time.

Should we be there beyond 2014? Personally I say no, at least not chasing bad guys and trying to help dig wells and build schools. However we SHOULD try to establish our foothold in the region and keep some type of presence there. We still have troops in Japan, S. Korea, Germany and Italy don’t we? The administration lost its ability to negotiate a foothold in Iraq so I really hope they don’t screw this up and lose a military presence in this critical location in the world.

The Afghan Security Forces are long overdue on stepping up and TRULY taking the reins themselves, this should have happened years ago. So we don’t need to be coddling them, but we need to keep some space there to serve as a jumping-off or staging location just in case we ever need to get back into that part of the globe and straighten things out.

This country is focusing on the wrong Zimmerman

While the whole George Zimmerman trial has been captivating the news over the past 5 weeks, it is over. Trayvon Martin has been buried for a while now, and even though it is sad for anyone to lose their life so young by virtue of a freak turn of events, it is over.

What is really sad is why this has all been going on there are real Heroes this country should be paying attention to. Americans who are laying down their lives for us to enjoy all the freedoms that our founding fathers have ensured for us. People like Sonny Zimmerman.

 

 

07/17/2013 10:55 AM CDT

 


IMMEDIATE RELEASE No. 517-13
July 17, 2013

DOD Identifies Army Casualty

            The Department of Defense announced today the death of a soldier who was supporting Operation Enduring Freedom.

Staff Sgt. Sonny C. Zimmerman, 25, of Waynesfield, Ohio, died July 16, in Mushaka, Afghanistan, of wounds suffered when his vehicle was attacked by a rocket propelled grenade.

He was assigned to the 1st Battalion, 506th Infantry Regiment, 4th Brigade Combat Team, Fort Campbell, Ky.

For more information, media may contact the Fort Campbell public affairs office at 931-217-5074 or 931-220-7993.

Book Review: Outlaw Platoon

The book is a must-read if you want a first-hand account of what combat was like in Afghanistan when there was only one Army Combat Brigade in all of the country trying to bring the fight to the enemy. During that time we felt and were correct in our feelings when we called ourselves the new “Forgotten War”. The US media focused on purely Iraq and forgot there was a war going on in Afghanistan. See I was there at the same time, in the same place and doing the same things that Sean and his platoon were doing. That is what made this book so personal to me, to have that extra special insight into the stories in this book. I can tell you there is no embellishment in this book and the stories, actions and experiences are valid and true.

This book will open your eyes to the things America’s sons went through without her ever knowing it. Sean talks about that first day on Bermel, and carrying the little dying girl in his arms and how he had to lock it away as his troops arrived over the following days. He takes you into monotony of every day life in a combat area. You get an idea of what life is like living in the B-huts of a remote FOB, the guys who are “heroes” back home, but are less than stellar soldiers in the field and are truly not contributing to the greater good of the mission.

Sean will also walk you though some of the darkest and horrific events that our young men and women have to experience. It is one thing to see bodies blown apart and have death all around you. As soldiers we tend to build a callous around our heart for such things, however there is pure evil in our enemies and Sean will show you an example of that in a young boy and what the enemy does to him. I consider myself able to handle about anything. I have seen, smelled, and held some of the grossest things on this planet with no problem. However even with all that it was difficult and disturbing to imagine what he and his men went through when they found this young boy stumbling down the road.

I think you will be surprised to learn about the battle after battle they went though in and around that little place called Bermel, Afghanistan. I remember being on operations and hearing Sean’s company and platoon being in contact. I remember thinking “wow those guys are getting shit on today” when I would hear their calls for air support and medevacs. I remember seeing their blown up and shot up Humvees back at the Battalion maintenance area and saying a prayer that hopefully everyone made it out alive.

Sean will also take the reader on a journey into his own tribulations and the miracle of not dying when he easily should have. Many men have quickly died from the proximity of explosives and shrapnel that Sean experienced and to read how he lived through it is truly a miracle. Couple that with how he should have sought and been given aid, but refused and what he went through after that and I am sure you will have a new-found respect for this man.

Lastly you will see not only the exterior battles that our warfighters go through in fighting with the enemy, but also the interior threats they have to deal with when the people they are forced to trust turn on them.

I have tried to wet your appetite as much as I can in order to entice you to read the book, but at the same time not give everything away. If you truly care about what our troops have went through in Afghanistan at the start of the resurgence of a deadly and determined enemy then this is a book for you. Many say they honor and are proud of our fighting men and women, but I don’t think much of America really knows what they should be proud for. This book will help you understand a little more of how awesome they are and the level of fortitude, sacrifice, courage and guts they display every day on the battlefield.

You can find it:

http://www.amazon.com/dp/0062066404

http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/outlaw-platoon-sean-parnell/1103167950?ean=9780062066404

http://www.harpercollins.com/browseinside/index.aspx?isbn13=9780062066398