Military News

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Flag Day: Four Personal Perspectives

By Donna Miles
American Forces Press Service

June 13, 2008 - Tomorrow the United States observes National Flag Day, an annual tribute to the American flag, the ideals it stands for and the sacrifices made to preserve them. President Woodrow Wilson recognized during his first Flag Day address in 1915 that the freedoms the U.S. flag stands for weren't and never would be free.

"The lines of red are lines of blood, nobly and unselfishly shed by men who loved the liberty of their fellowship more than they loved their own lives and fortunes," he said. "God forbid that we should have to use the blood of America to freshen the color of the flag."

But American blood has spilled time and time again to preserve American liberties, most recently in the war against violent extremism. In this year's Flag Day Proclamation, President Bush calls on the nation to remember the troops who carry Old Glory before them "as they defend the liberties for which it stands."

"On Flag Day and during National Flag Week, we remember those in uniform whose courage and sacrifice inspire us here at home," Bush said. "We also remember the rich history of one of our oldest national symbols and reflect on our duty to carry our heritage of freedom into the future."

Four current or retired servicemembers recently shared their personal perspectives about how the flag has inspired them through their proudest as well as darkest days as a symbol of patriotism, strength and resilience.

9/11 Terror Attacks

Few Americans will forget the image of three firefighters raising an American flag over the World Trade Center ruins in New York just hours after the Sept. 11, 2001,
terrorist attacks.

But for
Army Capt. Joe Minning and his fellow New York National Guard soldiers, many of them New York City firefighters and police officers, the Ground Zero flag took on a very personal significance as they desperately sifted through the rubble looking for survivors.

"Seeing the flag raised above all of the rubble and ruins of the World Trade Center instilled a new sense of pride in me for our country," he said. "No matter what happens to the United States -- on foreign ground, on U.S. soil -- we, the American people, will always continue to move forward, rebuild and face any challenges that lie ahead"

Three years later, Minning and the "Fighting 69th" Brigade Combat Team would take that inspiration with them to Iraq, where they lost 19 soldiers securing Route Irish and its surrounding Baghdad neighborhoods during their year-long deployment.

Among those killed was
Army Staff Sgt. Christian Engledrum, a New York firefighter who, like Minning, worked amid the dust and smoke immediately following the World Trade Center attack. Engledrum, the first New York City employee to die serving in Iraq, became a symbol of the unit that went from Ground Zero to Iraq's Sunni Triangle, and after his death, to the mountains of Afghanistan.

The flag and what it represents continue to motivate unit members during their current deployment to Afghanistan as embedded trainers for the Afghan National
Army, he said.

Minning said he recognizes when he sees Old Glory flying at his tiny forward operating base there that he and his fellow soldiers are following in the footsteps of the earliest U.S. patriots and defending the same values they fought for.

"The flag is a symbol of everything the United States stands for -- from our founding fathers up until now, all that we have accomplished, and the hurtles our country has overcome," he said.

As a soldier, Minning said, he and his fellow soldiers recognize that it's up to them to continue carrying the torch forward.

"It is the American soldier who keeps the country moving forward and will never let it be taken down by any adversity. It is what we fight for and, if we fall in battle, what our coffins are draped with," he said. "And it's what we are committed to protecting and defending, no matter what the price."

The Iraq War

When thousands of people gathered in late April at the Cincinnati Red's Great American Ballpark, all eyes were on a platform at the pitchers' mound covered by the flag-draped casket of
Army Sgt. Matt Maupin.

The mourners gathered to remember the 20-year-old Army reservist who went missing more than four years earlier when his convoy came under attack in April 2004. Insurgents released a videotape shortly after the incident showing him in captivity, and his whereabouts remained unknown until the
Army found and positively identified his remains in March.

Command Sgt. Maj. Leon Caffie, the top enlisted Army Reserve soldier, was among countless people who had hoped and prayed for Maupin's safe return. As he joined the crowd in Ohio to honor and bid farewell to Maupin, Caffie looked out at thousands of hand-held flags waving in the stands, all surrounding Maupin's casket.

"It underscores the meaning and symbolism of the flag when you see it draped over the coffin of this young man who had the world going for him," Caffey said.

Maupin is among thousands of U.S. troops whose lives have been cut short at the hands of
terrorists. Back in October 1983, 241 Marines were killed when a terrorist truck bomb struck their barracks in Beirut. In June 1996, 13 airmen died during the terror attack on Khobar Towers in Dhahran, Saudi Arabia. In October 2000, 17 crewmembers from USS Cole were killed when a terrorist bomb ripped through their ship at Aden, Yemen.

Then came the September 2001
terrorist attacks on the United States and the war on terror they ushered in.

Through it all, the flag has served as an unwavering source of inspiration that's unified America, Caffie said.

"It has endured a lot -- being dragged through streets and burned and disrespected and spit on and stepped on," he said.

"And yet it has survived and served as a nucleus that brings this country together across gender, ethnic and religious backgrounds," he said. "It is the American flag that has united us and will continue to inspire patriotism in this country."

Beirut Embassy Bombing

Back in April 1983, rescue workers picking through the rubble of what had been the U.S. Embassy in Beirut following a terrorist attack uncovered the body of 21-year-old
Marine Cpl. Robert V. McMaugh. Beside his body lay the tattered remains of the U.S. flag that had once stood proudly beside his guard post in the embassy's main lobby.

McMaugh's fellow
Marine security guards draped their fallen comrade in a fresh American flag and carried him away on a stretcher. A squad of Marines snapped to attention and saluted.

"It was a poignant moment," recalled retired Chief Warrant Officer Charles W. "Bill" Henderson, a spokesman attached to 22nd
Marine Amphibious Unit in Lebanon at the time of the bombing. "Everyone had been digging and digging, then suddenly, everything stopped. Not a word was said. Seeing the body of a fellow Marine covered with the American flag, ... it was an electrifying moment."

While stationed in Beirut, Henderson said, he came to appreciate the flag, not just as a piece of material, but as a symbol of courage. "Each Marine (in Lebanon) wore an American flag on his shirt," he said. "It did more than show that we were Americans. It showed that we were representing this country and what it stands for: freedom for all people."

Twenty-five years later, Henderson said terrorist attacks that followed that initial salvo and the thousands of Americans who have died as a result have only deepened the flag's symbolism.

"What's behind it are the blood and tears of hundreds of thousands of soldiers who have sacrificed. The symbolism behind the flag is this long tradition of sacrifice to preserve liberty," he said.

"Yes, it is just a piece of cloth," he said. "But what it represents are the lives of thousands of Americans who have given everything for this nation -- who ask nothing in return but felt an obligation of duty to their country."

Henderson said he doesn't take disrespect for the flag lightly. "When you insult our flag, you insult the lives and the sacrifices of all the men and women who have served this country," he said.

On the other hand, honoring the flag is showing respect and appreciation for all they have done. "You are honoring everything that we, as a nation, have accomplished, what America has done, and what America represents to the world," he said.

Iranian Hostage Crisis

Now-retired Col. David M. Roeder remembers living without the freedoms he had worked to protect when he and more than 50 other Americans were taken hostage for 444 days in Iran in November 1979.

Roeder, assistant
Air Force attache to the U.S. Embassy in Tehran at the time, watched helplessly as U.S. flag burnings became almost daily media events. His captors taunted the hostages by carrying garbage from one area of the embassy compound to another, wrapped in the American flag.

Through it all, Roeder said, he never lost faith in his country or the flag that symbolizes its ideals. "When you talk about a flag, whether it's standing in a place of honor at a ceremony or draped over a casket or waving from someone's house, you're talking about a symbol," he said.

"But the importance of that symbolism is monumental. It represents what we are, wherever we are in the world," he said.

"And no matter what anyone else says about it or does to it, the flag never loses dignity. It only gains dignity, because when someone attacks the American flag, it's because they recognize all that it represents and the greatness of this country."

Twenty-seven years after his release, Roeder, now 68, holds on to that symbolism with fervor. He flies a flag at his home in Pinehurst, N.C., and a summer home in Wisconsin every day. His pickup truck has not one, but several, flag stickers on it.

Like many Americans, he was moved by the show of Old Glory nationwide in the aftermath of the 9-11 attacks, and said he wishes it had never ended. "Wouldn't it be great if you could keep that going?" he said. "It tells everyone who sees it who we are and what we stand for," he said.

The Justice for Sergeant Donald Sowma Petition Drive

On November 19,1976, Don Sowma my husband and father of our four children was shot and murdered in the line of duty as a Police Officer for the City of Cypress. Don was killed by Bobby Joe Denney of Ardmore Oklahoma, Denney was himself a former police officer from Healdton Oklahoma and his father, now deceased was a longtime County Sheriff. During a burglary, Denney dropped his gun from his waistband when he heard police outside, he crawled to the gun and found it and shot my husband as he entered the dark room.

READ ON
http://www.criminaljustice-online.com/forum19/

America Supports You: Silver Star Families Honor Caregivers

By Samantha L. Quigley
American Forces Press Service

June 13, 2008 - For the last few years, a group has fought to have wounded servicemembers recognized with a Silver Star banner for servicemembers wounded in combat, much like a Blue Star banner displayed by those with a loved one deployed on the front lines. Now, Silver Star Families of America has extended its program to honor the medics who treat those wounded on the battlefield with a certificate of appreciation.

"This is a new program for us, but we believe that it is in keeping with our mission to remember and honor our wounded," said Janie Orman, the organization's president. "Those who place their lives on the line to make sure our wounded come home should be thanked, and this is a good start."

To qualify for the certificate, the medic must have been involved in the actual treatment or transportation of wounded servicemembers while serving in a war zone from any war. This honor extends to medics, helicopter pilots, doctors, nurses or anyone directly involved in treating the wounded in a war zone defined by the Defense Department, Orman said.

Silver Star Families of America has honored seven medics to date. Nominations for this certificate can be submitted through the organization's Web site.

The organization is a supporter of America Supports You, a Defense Department program connecting citizens and companies with servicemember and their families serving at home and abroad.

MILITARY CONTRACTS June 13, 2008

AIR FORCE

The
Air Force is modifying a firm fixed price contract with Lockheed Martin Co., Lockheed Martin Aeronautics Company of Marietta Ga., not to exceed $470,000,000. This contract modification is an undefinitized contract action for the procurement of six fiscal 2009 HC/MC-130J aircraft and associated long lead material and non-recurring aircraft production effort using fiscal 2008 advance procurement funding. At this time $75,000,000 has been obligated. USAF/AFMC, Aeronautical Systems Center (ASC), 657 AESS/PK, Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio, is the contracting activity (FA8625-06-C-6456 P00037).

The
Air Force is modifying a cost plus fixed fee contract with McDonnell Douglas Corporation, a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Boeing Co., of Long Beach, Calif., for $16,300,000. This action will provide Wing Pylon and Fairing, CCP 0586. At this time $8,000,000 has been obligated. 516th AESG/PK, Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio, is the contracting activity (FA8614-04-C-2004, P00185).

Booz Allen and Hamilton, Inc. of Herndon, Va., is being awarded a cost plus fixed fee, indefinite-delivery, requirements contract for an estimated $10,562,764. This action will provide lethality and survivability analysis for Terminal Effects Division,
Army Research Laboratory. At this time $241,546 has been obligated. 55th Contracting Squadron, 55 CONS/LGCD, Offutt Air Force Base, Neb., is the contracting activity (sP0700-03-D-1380, DO: 0255).

The
Air Force is modifying a cost plus fixed fee contract with General Dynamics C4 Systems of Scottsdale, Ariz., for $9,231,217. This action will exercise option 1, system demonstration, of the Telemetry, Tracking, and Commanding (TT&C) Aerospace Vehicle Equipment Increment 1 (AVE I1) contract, FA8307-06-C-0010. Option 1 will continue with the development, qualification, and certification of a National Security Agency approved Type 1 space certified Telemetry, Tracking, and Command (TT&C) Communication Security (COMSEC) solution. HQ CPSG/PK, Directorate of Contracting, San Antonio, Texas, is the contracting activity (FA8307-06-C-0010 P00011).

NAVY

American Competitiveness Institute, Philadelphia, Pa., is being awarded a $99,999,000 indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity contract for the Benchmarking and Best Practices Center of Excellence. The purpose of this effort is to identify, validate, benchmark, and facilitate the dissemination (sharing) of best-in-class practices, processes, methodologies, systems, and pre-competitiveness technologies. In doing so, enhance and promote communications, corporation, integration, and interdependency across the defense industry that will result in improvements in affordability and performance of defense platforms and weapon systems. Work will be performed in Philadelphia, Pa., and work is expected to be completed June 2013. Contract funds will not expire at end of current fiscal year: This contract was competitively procured under solicitation N00014-08-R-0001. The Office of Naval Research, Arlington, Va., is the contracting activity (N00014-08-D-0758).

General Dynamics, Electric Boat Corp., Groton, Conn., is being awarded a $29,728,013 modification to previously awarded contract (N00024-04-C-2100) for consolidated planning yard, engineering and technical support for nuclear submarines. The contract modification provides design and installation services required to support planning and execution for installation of design/configuration changes for submarines and designated support activities. The contractor will also provide material aspects of submarine design/configuration change programs to support execution of submarine major alterations. Work will be performed in Groton, Conn., (73 percent), Quonset, R.I., (12 percent), Kings Bay, Ga., (7 percent), Newport, R.I., (5 percent), and
Bangor, Wash., (3 percent), and is expected to be completed by September 2008. Contract funds $29,728,013 will expire at the end of the current fiscal year. The Naval Sea Systems Command, Washington Navy Yard, D.C., is the contracting activity.

Marsh Creek, LLC, Anchorage, Alaska, an Alaskan Native Corp., is being awarded a $28,925,233 cost-plus-fixed-fee contract for research support operations and maintenance services of the High Frequency Active Auroral Research Program (HAARP) Research Station Gakona, Alaska. The mission of the program is to conduct ionospheric research of a radio science nature in support of both Department of Defense and civilian communication, surveillance and navigations applications. This contract is a follow on effort to contract N00014-02-C-0463 operations and maintenance services of the HAARP Research Station, Gakona, Alaska, competitively awarded to BAE Systems Advanced Technologies. Work will be performed in Gakona, Alaska., and work is expected to be completed June 2013. Contract funds in the amount of $100,000 will expire at end of current fiscal year. The Office of Naval Research, Arlington, Va., is the contracting activity (N00014-08-C-0395).

McDonnell Douglas Corp., a wholly owned subsidiary of The Boeing Co., St. Louis, Mo., is being awarded a $17,594,388 modification to the previously awarded firm-fixed-price contract (N00019-04-C-0014). This modification provides for incorporation of engineering change Proposal 6251 and 6251R1 to convert 18 Lot 32 F/A-18F aircraft to EA-18G aircraft. Work will be performed in St. Louis, Mo., (70 percent),
El Segundo, Calif., (29 percent), and Mesa, Ariz., (1 percent), and is expected to be completed in September 2010. Contract funds will not expire at the end of the current fiscal year. The Naval Air Systems Command, Patuxent River, Md., is the contracting activity.

Progeny Systems Corp., Manassas, Va., is being awarded a $14,320,297 cost plus fixed fee firm fixed price contract for design agent/engineering services and supplemental hardware kits to support the
Navy's AN/UYQ-100 Undersea Warfare Decision Support System (USW-DSS). The AN/UYQ-100 USW-DSS provides an integrated near real-time Net-Centric Undersea Warfare (USW) Command and Control capability across multiple platforms. USW-DSS leverages existing communication links, networks, contact pictures and multi-platform sensor data providing an integrated capability to plan, conduct and coordinate USW operations. Options for design agent support are through fiscal 2012. This contract includes options which, if exercised, would bring the cumulative value of this contract to $66,615,225. Work will be performed in Manassas, Va., (86.2 percent) and Charleroi, Pa., (13.8 percent), and is expected to be completed by June 2009. Contract funds will not expire at the end of the current fiscal year. This contract is being awarded as a Phase III SBIR effort. The Naval Sea Systems Command, Washington Navy Yard, D.C., is the contracting activity (N00024-08-C-5206).

Rolls Royce, Bristol, England, is being awarded a $13,125,121 ceiling priced order under an existing basic ordering agreement contract (N00383-08-G-003M-5040) for procurement of turbine blades, HP ST2 used in support of the F-402 engine. Work will be performed in Bristol, England, and work is expected to be completed by December 2009. Contract funds will not expire at the end of the current fiscal year. This contract was not awarded competitively. The Naval Inventory Control Point is the contracting activity.

Lockheed Martin Maritime Systems & Sensors, Riviera Beach, Fla., is being awarded a $10,806,178 modification to previously awarded contract (N00024-05-C-6327) for one (1) AN/WLD-1(V) Remote Minehunting Vehicle Low Rate Initial Production System. The Remote Minehunting System is a high endurance, offboard, low-observable system that will be operated and maintained from surface ships. The system will use the AN/AQS-20A minehunting sensors for detection, classification, and localization of mine-like objects and mine identification. It is capable of over-the-horizon operations. The offboard vehicle has self-contained control, propulsion, power, and navigation features. It is capable of real-time communications of mine reconnaissance sensor data as well as automatic search and recording modes. Work will be performed in Riviera Beach, Fla., and is expected to be completed by January 2010. Contract funds will not expire at the end of the current fiscal year. The Naval Sea Systems Command, Washington
Navy Yard, D.C., is the contracting activity.

C&G Boat Works, Inc.,
Mobile, Ala., is being awarded an $8,370,633 modification to previously awarded contract (N00024-07-C-2236) to exercise an option for the design and construction of one YP training craft for the U.S. Naval Academy. The YP training craft is used to train Navy midshipmen at the academy. Work will be performed in Mobile, Ala., and is expected to be completed by July 2010. Contract funds will not expire at the end of the current fiscal year. The Naval Sea Systems Command, Washington Navy Yard, D.C., is the contracting activity.

AMSEC LLC, Virginia Beach, Va., is being awarded a $7,682,783 modification (#P00025) to previously awarded indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity, cost-plus-fixed-fee contract (N00189-02-D-0037) for extension of engineering, technical, and maintenance support services for U.S.
Navy aircraft carriers and battle group support vessels as required by Commander, Naval Air Forces. Work will be performed in CONUS, and work is expected to be completed by January 2009. Contract funds will expire at the end of the current fiscal year. This contract was awarded competitively. The Fleet and Industrial Supply Center, Norfolk, Va., is the contracting activity.

ARMY

M.A. Mortenson Co.,
Minneapolis, Minn., was awarded on June 12, 2008, a $72,125,000 firm-fixed price contract for a design/build project at Fort Lewis, Wash., including two Special Operations Forces complexes. Work will be performed at Fort Lewis, Wash, and is expected to be completed by May 30, 2010. Contract funds will not expire at the end of the current fiscal year. Web bids were solicited on January 11, 2008, and two bids were received. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Seattle District, Seattle, Wash., is the contracting activity (W912DQ-07-D-0053).

AM General LLC, South Bend, Ind., was awarded on June 11, 2008, a $25,741,548.80 firm-fixed contract for reliability enhanced vehicle engineering change engineering change proposals on high mobility multi-purpose wheeled vehicles. Work will be performed in Mishawaka, Ind., and is expected to be completed by Dec. 31, 2009. Contract funds will not expire at the end of the current fiscal year. There was one bid solicited on March 17, 2006 and one bid was received. Tank-automotive and Armaments Command is the contracting activity (DAAE07-01-C-S001).

Plata/Mota Joint Venture, Chicago, Ill., was awarded on June 12, 2008, a $23,044,561 firm-fixed price contract for the design and construction of the Armed Forces Reserve Center, Organizational Maintenance Shop and unheated storage building in Lake County, Ill. Work will be performed in Lake County, Ill., and is expected to be completed by Dec. 19, 2009. Contract funds will not expire at the end of the current fiscal year. Web bids were solicited on Feb. 12, 2008 and two bids were received. The U.S.
Army Corps of Engineers Louisville District, Louisville, Ky., is the contracting activity (W912QR-08-C-0022).

PCL Construction Service, Inc., Denver, Colo., was awarded on June 12, 2008, a $20,862,500 firm-fixed price contract for the Air and Space Integration Facility at Schriever
Air Force Base. Work will be performed in Schriever Air Force Base, Colorado Springs, Colo., and is expected to be completed by April 7, 2010. Contract funds will not expire at the end of the current fiscal year. Web bids were solicited on Jan. 16, 2008 and five bids were received. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Omaha District, Omaha, Neb., is the contracting activity (W9128F-08-C-0010).

West Coast Contractors of Nevada, Inc., Reno, Nev., was awarded on June 6, 2008, a $10,470,500 firm-fixed price contract for the repair of Air National Guard Hangar Building 9 in Reno, Nev. Work will be performed in Reno, Nev., and is expected to be completed by Sept. 10, 2009. Contract funds will not expire at the end of the current fiscal year. Web bids were solicited on Dec. 5, 2007, and four bids were received. The National Guard Bureau Nevada, Carson City, Nev., is the contracting activity (W9124X-08-C-0001).

DEFENSE LOGISTICS AGENCY

Chevron Global Aviation, Houston, Texas is being awarded a maximum $16,015,179.60 fixed price with economic price adjustment supplemental, indefinite delivery, indefinite quantity contract for aviation fuel. Other location of performance is in Utah. Using service is Defense Energy Support Center. There were originally 200 proposals solicited with 2 responses. Contract funds will not expire at the end of the current fiscal year. Date of performance completion is Oct. 30, 2008. The contracting activity is Defense Energy Support Center, Fort Belvoir, Va. (SP0600-08-D-0493).

EA Industries, Inc., San Lorenzo, Puerto Rico* is being awarded a maximum $13,359,573 firm fixed price, indefinite quantity, small business set aside contract for combat utility uniforms. There are no other locations of performance. Using service is
Marine Corps. The original proposal was Web solicited with 10 responses. Contract funds will not expire at the end of the current fiscal year. This contract is exercising the second option year. Date of performance completion is June 18, 2009. The contracting activity is Defense Supply Center Philadelphia, Philadelphia, Pa. (SP0100-06-D-0361).

Face of Defense: Cartoonist Drawn to Guantanamo

By Navy Petty Officer 1st Class Gino Flores
Special to American Forces Press Service

June 13, 2008 -
Army Sgt. 1st Class Vaughn R. Larson, a syndicated editorial cartoonist, arrived here two months ago as one of 20 members from the Wisconsin Army National Guard's 112th Mobile Public Affairs Detachment. Larson is the editor of The Wire, the official weekly publication for Joint Task Force Guantanamo, which handles detainee operations at this U.S. Navy base. This mission in support of Operation Enduring Freedom provides an opportunity for Larson to use experience gained working as a newspaper editor, chief page designer and editorial cartoonist.

"We were put on alert back in January, so it wasn't much of a surprise," Larson told Editor and Publisher magazine in April. "They needed me, so I'm going."

Larson said this is his third deployment in about 20 years with the National Guard. In 1990, he deployed to Saudi Arabia as the noncommissioned officer for the three-man 132nd
Military History Detachment in support of operations Desert Shield and Desert Storm. And in 2006, he deployed as a platoon sergeant with a field artillery unit tasked with convoy security operations in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom.

Before this deployment, Larson told E&P that he reviewed the work of Bill Mauldin, who drew cartoons while serving in
World War Two.

To draw his own cartoons, Larson said, he first draws "roughs" in pencil and then draws the final idea selection on "Bristol" board. He inks the cartoon using a traditional artist pen that resembles a fountain pen and uses a technical pen to ink the lettering.

The cartoon is then scanned, and Larson adds color using computer software. The entire process takes about four hours, he said.

Larson said the cartoons he draws as a civilian reflect local or state issues for a small stable of newspaper clients in Wisconsin, including the Wisconsin State Journal of
Madison and the Freeman of Waukesha.

Cartooning on issues relevant to Guantanamo Bay is more challenging, he admitted.

"I was building a list of cartoons to include in the JTF publication during this deployment, following approval from the chain of command," Larson said. "But there's a lot of operational sensitivity, and it's pretty tricky to include anything that might portray a personal opinion in an official
military publication."

Larson, a finalist in the national Fischetti cartooning competition in 2000, said he may resume sending cartoons to his clients.

"It all depends on what kind of time I have," he told E&P. "My first responsibility is to the unit."

After this deployment, Larson hopes to return to The Review, a weekly newspaper in his hometown of Plymouth, Wis., which promised that his job will be there when he returns. "They've been nothing short of wonderful," he told E&P.

(
Navy Petty Officer 1st Class Gino Flores serves with Joint Task Force Guantanamo.)

Guard, Earnhardt Teams Join Up at NASCAR Event

By Air Force Master Sgt. Mike R. Smith
Special to American Forces Press Service

June 12, 2008 - Hours before his seventh-place start and fourth-place finish in NASCAR's Sprint Cup Pocono 500 at Pocono Raceway here June 9, Dale Earnhardt Jr. looked fresh and rested as he visited National Guard members at an infield area. Earnhardt, dressed in a T-shirt, jeans and sneakers, took 15 minutes out of his busy race day for an exclusive interview with The On Guard, the National Guard's official newspaper, and to sign a few autographs and hang out with 18 new enlistees in the Pennsylvania
Army Guard.

Then he climbed into the blue and white No. 88 National Guard Chevy Impala to endure the heat of competition under the watchful eyes of thousands of his
military and civilian fans.

"I hope they are well. I hope they are making the best of the situation," Earnhardt said about Guard members serving in Iraq, Afghanistan and at home. "We appreciate everything they do for us. We're working, we're racing, we're having our freedoms and enjoying our lives in part for what they accomplish."

Guard members returned similar sentiments to Earnhardt after he finished the grueling 500-mile, four-hour race in the car where temperatures were comparable to a pizza oven, with track temperatures in the mid-90s.

Literally, it was the hottest race of the season for Earnhardt and the No. 88 Guard car team, who held their third position in the Sprint standings and claimed their sixth top-five finish and 10th top-10 finish this season.

Considering the unknowns Earnhardt faced going into this season with a new team and new sponsors, including the National Guard, he said he feels "pretty good" with what's been accomplished so far.

He is the hottest driver for Hendrick Motorsports even though he is the new member of that team, which includes Jimmie Johnson, who has won the last two season championships. Johnson is in sixth place.

"We still got other things we want to accomplish," Earnhardt said before the race. "[There's] quite a bit more left in the season, but we're in a good position. I feel like this is definitely one of the best opportunities I've had to chase after the championship, to win a championship, so we're trying to put ourselves in the best position to do that when it comes time for that last 10 [races]."

Earnhardt has steadily introduced himself to the Guard this year. Asked to compare
military service to auto racing, he said it takes a certain level of commitment to succeed in auto racing as well as in the military.

"There's a lot of similarities between the two when you're talking about what you have to sacrifice and what you have to give up to have success, some of the things you put yourself through early on to get to the end of the road," Earnhardt said.

One new Guard soldier,
Army Pvt. Kyle Fernandez, got to ask Earnhardt a question as he stood under the shade of the Guard RV's large awning.

"It was a great privilege," Fernandez said. "I knew I would have opportunities, but [I didn't think they would include] speaking to Dale Earnhardt Jr."

Fernandez leaves for basic training next month. He and 17 other new Guard members repeated their enlistment oaths at the grandstand before the race, carried in their state flags, unfurled the American flag, and watched Earnhardt navigate the 2.5-mile triangular track during the race.

"It's a unit experience for them," said Sgt. 1st Class Garfield McFarlane, readiness noncommissioned officer for the Pennsylvania Guard's Recruit Sustainment Detachment in Wilkes-Barre. McFarlane prepares new recruits for basic training.

Earnhardt's mechanics and pit crew members said they regularly take time at the races to speak with Guard members.

"I'm just thrilled that these guys enjoy themselves watching this," said crew chief Tony Eury Jr. "We love to see the guys and hear their experiences. Dale Jr. and I have met them, and we get letters from over there, and that's always a good thing."

Pit crew coach and No. 88 tire changer D.J. Richardson said the crew enjoys spending time with visiting Guard members. "Every week we meet a bunch of them," he said. "For a lot of them, it's their first time here, and it's pretty cool to see how they react to what we do."

When the race started, Earnhardt immediately positioned himself into the top five. He "pitted" several times during the race, which allowed Eury, Richardson and other team members to make quick handling adjustments and tire changes. Earnhardt fell to 33rd after pitting on Lap 121. He quickly steered his way back through the pack, but complained about how the "dirty air" made it difficult to pass. Still, Earnhardt was in second place with 17 laps to go, and he held onto fourth place in the race won by pole-sitter Kasey Kahne.

"It was hot today -- very, very hot and not a fun day," Earnhardt said. "We were pretty good at the start of the race; then I got a little bit loose, then a little bit tight there in the middle part and lost a lot of track position. But we gained it back with a little bit of strategy in the pits. It's going to get hotter in the car the next couple of months."

(
Air Force Master Sgt. Mike R. Smith serves at the National Guard Bureau.)

Army Invention Saves Severely Injured Servicemembers' Lives

By Elaine Wilson
Special to American Forces Press Service

June 13, 2008 - A new lifesaving standard of care has garnered the U.S.
Army Institute of Surgical Research here a prestigious recognition: invention of the year. The innovation, called Damage Control Resuscitation of Severely Injured Soldiers, was named one of the Army's "Top Ten Greatest Inventions of 2007."

"The American Association for Trauma Surgeons calls this one of the biggest improvements to trauma care in the last 10 years," said Michael Dubick, senior research pharmacologist for the Institute of Surgical Research. The invention is aimed at saving severely injured soldiers with internal injuries that cannot be compressed using a tourniquet or other device, Dubick said.

The institute focused its attention on severely injured soldiers after analyzing data from an autopsy study that showed 79 percent of servicemembers killed in combat died of hemorrhage, and 70 percent had an injury that couldn't be compressed.

"We needed to find a better way to stop bleeding," Dubick said. "In theater, there was no solution for people with noncompressible injuries."

The innovation involves the fluid resuscitation process, in which IV fluids and blood products are used to stabilize a patient's physiology. The standard method is to administer IV salt solutions in an amount that is three times the patient's blood volume. If the patient is still bleeding, blood transfusions are given to restore lost blood.

In most cases, this method is effective for wounded troops, but for some severely injured warriors, the massive volume of fluids and blood can create a negative effect, Dubick said.

"The body has only a finite amount of clotting factors," he explained, "and a large volume of fluids can dilute those clotting factors, which reduces their ability to slow down or stop the bleeding."

Under the new standard of care, fluid resuscitation with salt solutions is limited, which keeps the blood pressure from rising too high and "popping" newly formed blood clots. In addition, blood volume is restored using plasma as the primary resuscitation fluid, along with packed red blood cells.

But rather than using the standard of four times the amount of red blood cells to plasma, "we use a ratio of 1-to-1 of plasma to red blood cells," Dubick said.

Dubick said early use of a clotting factor called "rFVIIa" also has been beneficial. The factor normally is used for hemophiliacs, but it has proven beneficial for severely injured warriors. Other blood products, such as platelets and "cryoprecipitate," are used as needed.

The reduction in fluids not only increases the patient's short-term chances of survival, but also helps long-term treatment, since "there is less fluid built up in organs, and surgeons have a better field of operation," Dubick said.

While the innovation is gaining recognition stateside, it already has had a striking impact in the combat theater, decreasing the mortality rate from 65 to 17 percent.

The impact of this change in the standard of care is so striking, Dubick said, that "some liken this standard of care to the first time someone applied antibiotics."

The
military innovation also is gaining civilian attention.

"We've met with over 26 civilian centers and are working with 16 of them," Dubick said.

As word of the lifesaving measure begins to spread, Dubick said, he and his fellow scientists already are looking ahead, working with a company to produce freeze-dried plasma. In its natural state, plasma has a limited shelf life and is subject to temperature requirements.

The scientists also would like to develop a shelf-stable artificial blood with clotting factors that would enable medics to provide early intervention at the site of injury, Dubick said.

"The majority of patients bleed to death in the first five to 10 minutes," Dubick said. "We believe that procedures like this one can save soldiers who survive beyond 10 minutes -- keep them alive long enough to get to the hospital and to surgery. It's a remarkable innovation."

Dubick's team for the project includes Jill Sondeen and Charles Wade, from the Institute of Surgical Research; Philip Spinella, Brooke
Army Medical Center; Army Maj. Jeremy Perkins, Walter Reed Army Medical Center, Washington, D.C.; Air Force Maj. Matthew Borgman, Wilford Hall Medical Center; and Army Col. John Holcomb, ISR commander.

The invention was the only medical innovation to make the
Army's Top Ten cut, and marks the third year of the last four that the Institute of Surgical Research has made it to the Top Ten list. The winning programs are selected based on their impact on Army capabilities, inventiveness and potential benefit outside the Army.

U.S.
Army Institute of Surgical Research http://www.usaisr.amedd.army.mil/

(Elaine Wilson works at the Fort Sam Houston Public Information Office.)

MILITARY CONTRACTS June 12, 2008

AIR FORCE

The
Air Force is modifying a firm fixed price contract with McDonnell Douglas Corp., a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Boeing Co., of Long Beach, Calif., by increasing it to $114,000,000. This action procures multiple retrofit change modifications which brings Block 13 fielded aircraft configurations to a Block 17 aircraft configuration, the configuration of the production aircraft being delivered. At this time the amount obligated has been increased to $51,300,000. 516 AESG/SYK, Wright-Patterson AFB, Ohio, is the contracting activity (FA8614-04-C-2004, P00240).

DEFENSE LOGISTICS AGENCY

Mansfield Oil Co.,
Gainesville, Ga.* is being awarded a maximum $9,323,878 fixed price with economic price adjustment contract for fuel deliveries. Other locations of performance are in Maryland, Virginia, Ohio and Kentucky. Using services are Army and federal civilian agencies. The original proposal was a full and open solicitation with 23 responses. Contract funds will not expire at the end of the current fiscal year. Date of performance completion is Jul. 31, 2010. The contracting activity is Defense Energy Support Center, Fort Belvoir, Va. (SP0600-05-D-4057).

Leemon Oil Co., Inc., DBA RKA Petroleum Co., Romulus, Mich.*, is being awarded a maximum $8,840,619 fixed price with economic price adjustment contract for fuel deliveries. Other locations of performance are in Maryand, Virginia, Ohio, District of Columbia, Indiana, and Kentucky. Using services are
Army, Navy, Air Force, Department of Defense and federal civilian agencies. The original proposal was a full and open solicitation with 23 responses. Contract funds will not expire at the end of the current fiscal year. Date of performance completion is Jul. 31, 2010. The contracting activity is Defense Energy Support Center, Fort Belvoir, Va., (SP0600-06-D-4001).

PAPCO, Inc., Virginia Beach, Va.*, is being awarded a maximum $5,462,917.38 fixed price with economic price adjustment contract for fuel deliveries. Other location of performance is in Virginia. Using services are
Army, Navy and United States Coast Guard. The original proposal was a full and open solicitation with 23 responses. Contract funds will not expire at the end of the current fiscal year. Date of performance completion is Jul. 31, 2010. The contracting activity is Defense Energy Support Center, Fort Belvoir, Va., (SP0600-05-D-4059).

Exxon Mobile Aviation, Fairfax, Va., is being awarded a minimum $73,454,282 fixed price with economic price adjustment contract for gasoline and fuel oil. Other locations of performance are various DOD locations in Japan. Using services are
Army and Air Force. There were originally 6 proposals solicited with 6 responses. Contract funds will not expire at the end of the current fiscal year. Date of performance completion is Jul. 31, 2011. The contracting activity is Defense Energy Support Center, Fort Belvoir, Va., (SP0600-08-D-1256).

Asia Resource Partners (KK), Tokyo, Japan, is being awarded a minimum $11,664,250 fixed price with economic price adjustment contract for fuel oil. Other locations of performance are various DOD locations in Japan. Using services are
Army and Air Force. There were originally six proposals solicited with six responses. Contract funds will not expire at the end of the current fiscal year. Date of performance completion is Jul. 31, 2011. The contracting activity is Defense Energy Support Center, Fort Belvoir, Va., (SP0600-08-D-1260).

NAVY

Harris Corp.,
Palm Bay, Fla. is being awarded a $17,490,006 initial order under a indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity, firm-fixed-pricecontract for Multi-Band Shipboard Satellite Communications Systems; Unit Level Variant. This contract will allow the Program Executive Office-Command, Control, Communications, Computer, Intelligence and Space, Navy Communications Program Office, PMW-170 to acquire Ku/X-band terminals, providing SATCOM connectivity capability to the Fleet. This contract includes five one-year ordering periods and has a total estimated value of $76,912,991. Work will be performed in Palm Bay, Fla. and is expected to be completed by Dec. 2008. If delivery orders are placed throughout the five one-year ordering periods, work could continue until Dec. 2012. Contract funds will not expire at the end of the current fiscal year. This contract wascompetitively procured with using full and open competitive procedures via the Space and Naval Warfare Systems Center E-commerce website, with six offers received. The Space and Naval Warfare Systems Command, San Diego, Calif., is the contracting activity (N00039-08-D-0005).

Lockheed Martin Services, Inc., dbs Lockheed Martin Aircraft and Logistics, Greenville, S.C., is being awarded a $9,382,803 modification to a previously awarded firm-fixed-price, indefinite-delivery/ indefinite-quantity multiple award contract (N00019-05-D-0013) for additional Special Structural Inspection-Kits (SSI-K) for the P-3 aircraft. Work will be performed in Greenville, S.C., and is expected to be completed in Jun. 2010. Contract funds will not expire at the end of the current fiscal year. The Naval Air Systems Command, Patuxent River, Md., is the contracting activity.

Douglas E. Barnhart, Inc., San Diego, Calif., is being awarded an $8,336,295 firm-fixed-price contract to repair barracks, building 570, Phase V at the
Marine Corps Recruit Depot San Diego, Calif. The newly renovated facility will improve the quality of life and quality of training of the new recruits. Work will be performed in San Diego, Calif., and is expected to be completed by Apr. 2009. Contract funds will not expire at the end of the current fiscal year. This contract was competitively procured with five proposals solicited and three offers received. The Naval Facilities Engineering Command, Southwest, San Diego, Calif., is the contracting activity (N62473-06-D-1059).

Joseph Chow and Associates,* San Francisco, Calif., is being awarded a maximum $7,500,000 (base and options - with a guaranteed minimum of $5,000) firm-fixed-price, indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity architect/engineering contract for renovation/repair and new construction of facilities in the Naval Facilities Engineering Command (NAVFAC) Southwest area of responsibility (AOR). The work to be performed provides for engineering studies and site investigation reports to support new development on raw land, or re-development of existing developed sites; preparation of Requests for Proposals (RFP) for Design-Build Projects; preparation of fully designed plans and specifications for Invitation for Bid (IFB) projects; other engineering designs, studies, reports, cost estimates, evaluations, and construction support services. Work will be performed at various
Navy and Marine Corps facilities and other government facilities within the NAVFAC Southwest AOR including, but not limited to Calif., (87 percent); Ariz., (5 percent), Nev., (5 percent); Colo., (1 percent); N.M., (1 percent) and Utah, (1 percent), and work is expected to be completed Jun. 2009 (Jun. 2013 with exercised options). Contract funds will not expire at the end of the current fiscal year. This contract was competitively procured via the NAVFAC e-solicitation websitewith 11 proposals received. The Naval Facilities Engineering Command, Southwest, San Diego, Calif., is the contracting activity (N62473-08-D-8620).

ARMY

Sabre Defence Industries, LLC, Nashville, Tenn., was awarded on Jun. 11, 2008, a $5,062,099.00 firm fixed price IDIQ contract for 4,952 each M16A3 rifles to support the U.S.
Navy. 702 each for the U.S. Marine Corps, M16A4 Rifles to support the U.S. Marine Corps, U.S. Army, and Foreign Military Sales Customers. Work is to be performed in Nashville, Tenn., and is expected to be completed by Dec. 31, 2010. Bids were solicited via the Web with nine bids received. TACOM LCMC, AMSTA-LC-WSC-C, Rock Island, Ill., is the contracting activity (W52H09-08-D-0293).

Graduation Doesn't Mean Stop Learning, Vice Chairman Tells NDU Grads

By Air Force Master Sgt. Adam M. Stump
Special to American Forces Press Service

June 12, 2008 - Graduating from a
military university shouldn't be the end to a servicemember's learning, the vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff said during the National Defense University graduation at Fort Lesley J. McNair here today. Marine Corps Gen. James E. Cartwright was the keynote speaker, telling the graduates he had "bad news" for them on their celebratory day.

"If you think this is the end of education and you've learned it all, you are sorely mistaken, and there will be a problem as you move into the future," Cartwright said. "You will be irrelevant, and you will be the only one who doesn't know it. You must stay educated. You must continue to do what you have done this year. You must do it on a self-paced approach, and you must do it in a formal approach. Absent that, you will not be able to credibly lead the people we are recruiting."

He said the quality of recruits during his time in the
military has improved dramatically, partially due to moving away from a conscript-type force.

"Much of our recruitment program was set aside by federal judges," the vice chairman said, citing the formerly common practice of judges telling young men before them to choose between going to jail or joining the
Marine Corps. "It was a very different force."

Cartwright said some "very brave uniformed people at the top" decided to create the all-volunteer force. He said recruiting enlisted members out of high school and abolishing the draft completely changed the makeup of the enlisted force. On the officer side, the vice chairman said, the
military university system and education with industry have created the same type of change, and only education could have done it.

The general told the graduates -- U.S. and foreign officers, along with other government officials -- that he expects them to be the
leaders the military needs.

"I have an expectation that you'll leave here, go back to your units, and advance the capabilities of national and global
security," the general said. "That expectation is one that I will hold you to."

The vice chairman said part of that is leading the troops under their command.

"Those who you lead will have an expectation of you that you will have to meet," Cartwright said. "Their expectations of you are probably higher than mine. That's not a bad thing."

Cartwright said many of the
military universities are having their graduation around the same time. He also noted that some uniformed servicemembers are completing internships with businesses. While what they learned is important, Cartwright said, the people the graduates have met along the way will be among the most advantageous parts of their completed education.

"We're very proud of our joint heritage and where we're going as a joint force," Cartwright said. "But modern warfare today and as we move to the future will be much more about our interagency colleagues and our international colleagues. They will define how we fight war in the future. They will define how we prevent war in the future. It is us with them in a partnership that will have the best opportunity to solve the world's problems. Joint is important, but not as important as the relationships you have built here with your international and interagency colleagues."

The general said those relationships must be nurtured as the graduates move on to leadership positions and that they must be prepared to do whatever's necessary in their role as
leaders.

"You must remain flexible, you must remain credible, and you must be ready to do the unexpected," Cartwright said. "Innovation has to be part of your mind set. There is no playbook for what you're going to be asked to do on the battlefield."

(
Air Force Master Sgt. Adam M. Stump is assigned to the Joint Chiefs of Staff Public Affairs Office.)

Motorcycle Refresher Required for Redeploying Infantry Troops

By Donna Miles
American Forces Press Service

June 12, 2008 -
Army Maj. Gen. Rick Lynch lost too many soldiers during the 3rd Infantry Division's third and longest deployment to Iraq. But now that most of the division is finally home, Lynch told the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff yesterday he's not willing to take a single additional casualty to a motorcycle accident. "I refuse to think that a soldier could deploy to combat for 15 months, then come home and get killed on a motorcycle," Lynch said during Navy Adm. Mike Mullen's visit here yesterday.

So Lynch, an avid motorcyclist who parks his prized Harley-Davidson in front of the division headquarters, requires every single soldier under his command to take an hour-and-a-half motorcycle refresher course before hitting the road on two wheels.

"Nobody's touching their motorcycle until they go through the refresher course," Lynch said.

The requirement makes good sense as troops reintegrate into the garrison environment after a tough deployment as part of the surge force, he said.

Lynch, who's been cycling for 30 years, took the refresher course himself during his first day back to Fort Stewart earlier this month.

The course includes a spin at the post's newly acquired motorcycle simulator -- the only one of its kind, not just in the United States, but in North America, Jim McCullough, installation safety director, told Mullen yesterday.

"It's pretty high-speed," Col. Todd Buchs, Fort Stewart's garrison commander, said of the full-sized device that looks like it belongs in either an arcade or amusement park. "It lets soldiers get refresher training to sharpen up those perishable skills they may have lost while they were gone before they hit the road again."

At $143,000, Lynch said, the simulator is worth every penny.

"We don't know how many lives we've saved, but we know it's had an impact," Buchs said.

Three division soldiers have been in motorcycle accidents since the division began redeploying in late March. In two of the three accidents, the motorist -- not the soldier -- was at fault, Buchs said.

Motorcycling has become increasingly popular Armywide, particularly in light of high gas prices. Officials report more than 33,000 motorcycles currently registered on
Army posts.

At Fort Stewart, soldiers are "buying them left and right" now that they're home from combat, Buchs said. All must undergo mandatory training offered through the post safety office in coordination with the Motorcycle Safety Foundation.

Post officials recognize they're trying to buck an alarming trend. Twenty soldiers were killed in motorcycle accidents during the first six months of fiscal 2008 alone, according to
Army Combat Readiness Center data. That's more than twice the number killed during the same period last year, officials said.

Last year, the Defense Department lost nearly 100 servicemembers in motorcycle accidents.

These numbers reflect a nationwide upward trend. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration statistics show motorcycle fatalities have more than doubled during the last 10 years nationwide.

The Motorcycle Safety Foundation reports that more than half of all motorcycle accidents involve another vehicle, and more often than not, the motorcyclist is not at fault.

Lynch said he's going the extra mile to help protect his soldiers, particularly when they're first back from a deployment. He requires all returning soldiers to wait 48 hours before driving a car and limits them to within 100 miles of Fort Stewart for a short period after that as they readjust.

"These soldiers have been through a lot and achieved a lot, but now they're home," he said. "And after deploying to combat for 15 months, I don't want to lose them in an accident at home."