Thursday, November 27, 2014

Giving THANKS





(picture credit)


I am thankful for each of you, my American  'family.' Every single day.








HAPPY THANKSGIVING DAY, America!


[Yes, a re-post because these truths remain the same - always]

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

UK: New counter-terrorism bill introduced



From Homeland Security NewsWire:


U.K. government's sweeping new counterterrorism bill unveiled today

26 November 2014

The U.K. government unveils today (Wednesday) sweeping new measures to combat extremism and terrorism, and tackle radicalization, in the United Kingdom. Among other measures, the new counterterrorism bill will require schools and universities to exclude radical speakers from their campuses, and give the home secretary the powers to deny entry (or re-entry) to the United Kingdom to U.K. British citizens suspected of involvement in terrorism-related activity abroad. These citizens’ travel documents will be cancelled and their names placed on no-fly lists for up to two years. Home Secretary Theresa May said: “We are engaged in a struggle that is fought on many fronts and in many forms. It is a struggle that will go on for many years. And the threat we face right now is perhaps greater than it ever has been. We must have the powers we need to defend ourselves.”


[...]


The home secretary, Theresa May, said the bill will also impose a statutory requirement on schools, colleges, prisons, and local councils to help prevent people from being drawn into terrorism.

“The organizations subject to the duty [to prevent extremist from speaking on campuses] will have to take into account guidance issued by the home secretary. Where organizations consistently fail, ministers will be able to issue directions to them which will be enforceable by court orders,” May announced....



[...]

Concerns about plans to exclude people from the UK if they go abroad to fight with extremist groups have been raised by the UK's reviewer of terror laws.
David Anderson QC said his "central concern" about the proposals first unveiled by David Cameron in early September was: "Where are the courts?"
Temporary Exclusion Orders are one of the measures in the counter terrorism bill published by Theresa May.
It also includes tougher powers to stop people going abroad to fight.
It will include plans to stop some British citizens returning to the UK, and others from leaving the country.
[...]
The new Counter-Terrorism and Security Bill includes:
  • Counter-radicalisation measures - requirements that schools, colleges and probation providers help prevent people being radicalised

  • Changes to TPIMs - Terrorism Prevention and Investigation Measures - to allow the authorities to force suspects to move to another part of the country and restrict their movement outside a certain area

  • Raising the burden of proof for imposing TPIMs from "reasonable belief" to "balance of probabilities"

  • Greater powers to stop people heading abroad to fight - includingcancelling passports at the border for up to 30 days

  • Statutory temporary exclusion orders to control return to the UK of British citizens suspected of terrorist activity

  • Tighter aviation security - requiring airlines to provide passenger data more quickly and effectively, with penalties for those failing to comply

  • A ban on insurance companies from covering ransoms







Wednesday Hero

Cpt. Nathan J. Nylander




Cpt. Nathan J. Nylander35 years old from Hockley, Texas
438th Expeditionary Wing
Jan. 23, 1976 - Apr. 27, 2011


U.S. Air Force


The President of the United States of America, authorized by Act of Congress July 9, 1918, takes pride in presenting the Silver Star (Army Award) (Posthumously) to Captain Nathan J. Nylander, United States Air Force, for conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in connection with ground combat operations as an Advisor, NATO Air Training Command-Afghanistan/438th Air Expeditionary Wing, NATO Training Mission-Afghanistan and Combined Security Transition Command-Afghanistan during Operation ENDURING FREEDOM on 27 April 2011. On the morning of 27 April, an assailant opened fire upon United States personnel shooting seven U.S. Air Force Airmen and one American civilian contractor. Despite an extremely uncertain tactical situation, and with disregard for his own safety, Captain Nylander went to the Air Command and Control Center (ACCC), Afghan Air Force (AAF) Headquarters in response to the shooting. He responded when the gunman began shooting as he was with four other Airmen and eight Afghan personnel in a conference room adjoining the ACCC. Captain Nylander could have exited the building to safety, but chose instead to return and assist his fellow Airmen. Captain Nylander then engaged the gunman, wounding the assailant and when he remained on the floor motionless, Captain Nylander approached the other rooms. The gunman arose and went into a room across the hall from the conference room. When the gunman re-emerged into the hallway, Captain Nylander engaged the assailant again and during this exchange of gunfire, Captain Nylander sustained wounds to his left and right thighs. Although seriously wounded and bleeding heavily, he continued to engage the gunman until his weapon jammed. When he attempted to exit the rear entrance of the AAF Headquarters, he was killed by the gunman. Captain Nylander's brave actions degraded the gunman's capability and likely prevented further loss of life, including that of other U.S. personnel who remained in the AAF Headquarters. By his bold initiative, undaunted courage, and complete dedication to duty, Captain Nylander gallantly gave his life for his country and reflected great credit upon himself and upheld the highest traditions of the NATO Training Mission-Afghanistan and Combined Security Transition Command-Afghanistan, and the United States Air Force. NARRATIVE TO ACCOMPANY AWARD: Captain Nathan J. Nylander, United States Air Force, distinguished himself by gallantry performed with marked distinction as an Advisor and member of the NATO Air Training Command-Afghanistan/438th Air Expeditionary Wing, NATO Training Mission-Afghanistan and Combined Security Transition Command-Afghanistan during OPERATION ENDURING FREEDOM. On the morning of 27 April 2011, a renegade Afghan Air Force officer entered the Air Command and Control Center (ACCC), Afghan Air Force (AAF) Headquarters and opened fire with a 9-mm. pistol, shooting seven U.S. Air Force Airmen and one American civilian contractor. When the gunman began shooting, Captain Nylander was with four other Airmen and eight Afghan personnel in a conference room adjoining the ACCC. At the sound of the gunshots, he moved toward the door between the AAAC and the conference room. With Captain Bradley and Captain Cheslak providing cover, Captain Nylander evacuated the conference room. After exiting the conference room, he could have continued to safety, but chose instead to return and assist his fellow Airmen. He took up a firing position next to Captain Bradley in the hallway when the gunman emerged from the ACCC. Captain Bradley and Captain Nylander engaged the gunman with their 9-mm. pistols, wounding him at least once and possibly twice. When the gunman remained on the floor and did not move, Captain Bradley made eye contact with Captain Nylander, gave him a signal to withdraw, and then exited the building. Although the tactical situation was extremely uncertain, Captain Nylander chose to remain in the building and did not withdraw. While Captain Nylander was likely in the conference room or ACCC, the gunman got up and went into a room across the hall from the conference room. When the gunman re-emerged into the hallway, Captain Nylander engaged the gunman again with his 9-mm.. During this exchange, Captain Nylander was shot in the left thigh and sustained a grazing wound to his right thigh. Bleeding from his wounds, Captain Nylander began to move toward the rear entrance of the AAF Headquarters. Although seriously wounded and bleeding heavily, Captain Nylander continued to engage the gunman until his 9-mm. jammed. He cleared two rounds from his weapon and the final round was found jammed in the chamber. When Captain Nylander attempted to exit the rear entrance of the AAF Headquarters, he was killed by the gunman. Of his own volition, Captain Nylander chose to return to an extremely dangerous and unknown tactical situation and engage an attacker who had taken the lives of eight fellow Americans. After an initial exchange of gunfire, Captain Nylander again chose to stay, with the likely intent of aiding the fallen. Captain Nylander's brave actions degraded the gunman's capability and likely prevented further loss of life, including that of other U.S. personnel who remained in the AAF Headquarters. His distinct gallantry while engaged with a hostile attacker, exemplifies loyalty, selfless service, and personal courage. By his bold initiative, undaunted courage, and complete dedication to duty, Captain Nylander gallantly gave his life for his country and reflected great credit upon himself and upheld the highest traditions of the NATO Training Mission-Afghanistan and Combined Security Transition Command-Afghanistan, and the United States Air Force.






You can read more here



These brave men and women sacrifice so much in their lives just so that we may get to enjoy our freedom. For that I am proud to call them Hero.


Those Who Say That We're In A Time When There Are No Heroes, They Just Don't Know Where To Look


Wounded Warrior Project - Because So Many Have Come Back With Injuries, Seen And Unseen
This post is part of the Wednesday Hero Blogroll. For more information about Wednesday Hero, or if you would like to post it on your site, you can go here.



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Tuesday, November 25, 2014

WELCOME HOME

Because we love our Medics!!!



























From MoD:


Members of the public gathered to welcome back more than 200 military medics from Afghanistan as they paraded through York and attended a Thanksgiving Service in York Minster on Saturday. In the picture, soldiers from 34 Field Hospital on parade in Duncombe Place, York city centre. [Picture: Sergeant Si Longworth RLC, Crown copyright]




WELCOME HOME.  Thank you all for your Service.....

WW2 Hero: Phyllis Latour Doyle to receive French Legion of Honour





















From Daily Mail: 


 Former British wartime spy, 93, is finally recognised for her part in liberating France from Nazi occupation after decades spent keeping her wartime service a secret



By Stephanie Linning
23 November 2014

A former British wartime spy will this week be recognised for her part in liberating France from Nazi occupation - 70  years after she was parachuted behind enemy lines.



Phyllis Latour Doyle spent years gathering information on German positions and risked her life to send 135 coded messages back to Britain before the country's 1944 liberation.



For decades, the 93-year-old kept her heroic actions secret - only telling her four children about her wartime service 15 years ago.




But Mrs Doyle, who now lives quietly in New Zealand, will be publicly recognised for her service when she receives the Legion of Honour, France's highest decoration, on Tuesday.



It will be presented but the French ambassador to New Zealand as part of the commemorations for the 70th anniversary of the battle of Normandy....







Monday, November 24, 2014

SECDEF Hagel official statement on 'resignation'

(source:  NY Daily News 2013)


From the DoD:

IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Release No: NR-589-14
November 24, 2014

Statement by Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel

To the men and women of the Department of Defense:

I wanted to take this opportunity to let you know that this morning, President Obama accepted my letter of resignation. I have agreed to continue to serve as Secretary of Defense until my successor is confirmed by the United States Senate.


You should know I did not make this decision lightly. But after much discussion, the President and I agreed that now was the right time for new leadership here at the Pentagon.


I want you to know that I am immensely proud of what we have accomplished together. We have prepared ourselves, our Allies and the Afghan National Security Forces for a successful transition in Afghanistan. We have taken the fight to ISIL and, with our Iraqi and coalition partners, have blunted the momentum of this barbaric enemy. We have come to the aid of millions of people around the world who have suffered the ravages of natural disaster and of disease. We have worked tirelessly to sustain our all-volunteer force that has given so much during 13 years of war. And we have bolstered enduring alliances and strengthened emerging partnerships, all the while setting in motion important reforms that will prepare this institution for the challenges facing us in the decades to come.


Most importantly, we have helped keep this country and our fellow citizens safe. We have sustained the blessings of liberty our ancestors secured and upheld the oath we took.


That work will continue. It must continue. The world is still too dangerous, the threats too numerous, for us to lose focus. And even as I promised the President my full support going forward, so, too, do I promise that I will work hard to support you right up until my last day in office. I owe you that.


There will be time later to say farewell. For now, please know how much I respect and admire your service and that of your families. As I gather with my own family this Thanksgiving holiday -- a luxury I realize not all of you will enjoy -- it will be the privilege of having worked with you these last two years for which I will be most grateful.

Thank you for all you do for this country. God bless you. Happy Thanksgiving.

Rest In Peace, Craftsman Kyle Sinclair



From CBC:

Kyle Sinclair died in 'freak accident' at CFB PetawawaCraftsman Kyle Sinclair, 27, of Barrie, Ont., worked at CFB Petawawa since July
24 November 2014



Craftsman Kyle Sinclair died after a "freak accident" while doing routine mechanical work on an armoured vehicle at Garrison Petawawa, CBC News learned Sunday.



His section commander told CBC News Sinclair, 27, was working on the armoured vehicle, called Coyote, in a building hangar when a "very rare, freak accident" happened. There was not an explosion and nothing fell on Sinclair, the section commander added.

Other soldiers, who are trained in CPR, rushed to help him but were unable to regain a pulse, DND confirmed. Sinclair died in hospital late Friday night.

The section commander said a private parade would be held on Monday in Sinclair's honour....


My heart goes out to all who know and love Craftsman Sinclair.