Military News

Thursday, July 17, 2008

America Supports You: Holistic Support Helps Wounded Vets Reintegrate

By Samantha L. Quigley
American Forces Press Service

July 16, 2008 - Wounded veterans and their families looking for help reentering civilian life can turn to an organization in
Huntsville, Ala., that takes a holistic approach to that task. "Still Serving Veterans" enables and empowers wounded veterans and their families by helping them reintegrate into the work force and community via counseling, coaching, guiding, job transition, and assistance in obtaining all Veterans Affairs benefits to which they are entitled, Werner W. Baker, the organization's executive director, said.

This holistic approach begins with a case manager, who documents individual needs, desires, abilities and limitations of the veteran or spouse, Baker explained. Those notations help case managers offer career development guidance and determine any other needed courses of action.

"We work with other organizations ... to help provide and coordinate our services to veterans," Baker said. "We also seek out grants in the accomplishment of these efforts."

Since the organization's start in 2006, Still Serving Veterans has worked with more than 500 veterans and families in need of counseling, job development, training and employment, with priority given to severely wounded veterans. All of those services have been provided at no cost to the participants.

Still Serving Veterans is a new supporter of America Supports You, a Defense Department program connecting citizens and companies with servicemembers and their families serving at home and abroad.

The organization hopes this affiliation will help spread the word. "[The hope is it] will allow Still Serving Veterans more visibility across the nation, thus having more veterans in need of services avail themselves [of our] services," Baker said.

MILITARY CONTRACTS July 15, 2008

NAVY

BAE Systems, Inc.,
Austin, Texas is being awarded a $49,952,872 firm-fixed price, indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity contract for procurement of Driver's Ground Mobility Visual Augmentation System (DR-GMVAS) and associated data. The DR-GMVAS is a vehicle mounted thermal imaging system that enhances visual range and image detection on the road ahead and road behind in all light and weather conditions. The system fuses infrared and low-light images and transmits the enhanced images to a monitor inside the vehicle. Work will be performed in Austin, Texas, and is expected to be completed by Jul. 2013. Contract funds in the amount of $1,394,050 will expire at the end of the current fiscal year. This contract was competitively procured with nine proposals solicited and one offer was received via FedBizOpps. The Naval Surface Warfare Center, Crane Division, Crane, Ind., is the contracting activity (N00164-08-D-JQ02).

Raytheon Corp., McKinney, Texas, is being awarded $34,078,711 modification to a previously awarded firm-fixed-price long term requirements contract (N00383-03-D-006A) to exercise a three year option period for Performance Based Logistics support for repair of H-60 AAS-44 forward looking infrared radar units. Work will be performed at McKinney, Texas, and work is expected to be completed by Sep. 2011. Contract funds will not expire at the end of the current fiscal year. This offer was not awarded competitively. The Naval Inventory Control Point is the contracting activity.

The Applied Research Laboratory at the University of Hawaii, Honolulu, Hawaii, is being awarded a $26,193,985 cost-plus-fixed-fee, indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity contract for approximately 232,200 staff hours of research and development and specialized engineering services in core competency areas: ocean environmental effects, astronomical research, advanced electro optical systems, laser, (Light Detection and Ranging) and remote sensing detection systems, and research in various engineering programs to support sensors, communications, and information
technology. These capabilities have been established and maintained at the Applied Research Laboratory, University of Hawaii and are determined to be essential to the NAVY's needs essential to support numerous specific programs managed by different technical sponsor organizations. Work will be performed in Honolulu, Hawaii, and is expected to be completed by Oct. 2008. Contract funds will not expire at the end of the current fiscal year. This contract was not competitively procured. The Naval Sea Systems Command, Washington, D.C., is the contracting activity (N00024-08-D-6323).

W. M. Schlosser Co., Inc., Hyattsville, Md., is being awarded an $11,977,000 firm-fixed price contract for design and construction of a Turbo Prop Jet Engine Test Facility at
Marine Corps Air Station New River, N.C. The facility will include four turboshaft engine test cell enclosures for testing four turbo shaft engine types: T58, T64, T400 and T700. Work will be performed in Jacksonville, N.C., and is expected to be completed by Jan. 2010. Contract funds will not expire at the end of the current fiscal year. This contract was competitively procured via the Naval Facilities Engineering Command e-solicitation website with four proposals received. The Naval Facilities Engineering Command, Mid-Atlantic, Norfolk, Va., is the contracting activity (N40085-08-C-1410).

Compass Systems, Inc.*, Lexington Park, Md., is being awarded a $9,020,396 modification to a previously awarded cost-plus-fixed-fee contract (N00421-07-C-0011) to exercise an option for research and development for various Command, Control, Communications,
Computer, Intelligence, Surveillance, Reconnaissance, and Targeting (C4ISR&T) programs, sensors, mission and targeting systems, communication suites, and small aircraft vehicle systems. These efforts are in support of the Roll-On Roll-Off Sensor System for the Contingency Airborne Response Program. Work will be performed in Yuma, Ariz., (45 percent), Washington, D.C., (25 percent), Reston, Va., (25 percent), and Patuxent River, Md., (5 percent), and is expected to be completed in Jul. 2009. Contract funds in the amount of $1,832,144 will expire at the end of the current fiscal year. The Naval Air Warfare Center Aircraft Division, Patuxent River, Md., is the contracting activity.

MKI Systems Inc., Woodbridge, Va., is being awarded $6,068,278 for task order #0068 under previously awarded firm-fixed-price contract (M67854-02-A-9008) to provide professional support to the Joint Mine Resistant Ambush Protected Vehicle Program. The Contractor shall provide expert support directly to the Joint Program Manager (JPM) and Deputy PMs; Assistant PMs for vehicles including Cougar; RG-33; MAXXPro; RG-31; Caiman; Buffalo and MRAP II; and the following functional managers: Integration and Government Furnished Equipment, International Programs, Acquisition, Contracts, Production/Quality, Logistics, Engineering (including Spiral Development) and Test & Evaluation. Work will be performed in Stafford, Va., and work is expected to be completed in Jan. 2009. Contract funds in the amount of $6,068,278.00 will expire at the end of the current fiscal year. The
Marine Corps System Command, Quantico, Va., is the contracting activity.

DEFENSE LOGISTICS AGENCY

Saft America Inc., Valdese, N.C., is being awarded a maximum $64,892,611.68 firm fixed price, indefinite quantity contract for batteries. Using services are
Army, NAVY, Air Force and Marine Corps. There were originally four proposals solicited with two responses. This contract has a base period of two years and three one-year options. Contract funds will not expire at the end of the current fiscal year. The date of performance is Jul. 16, 2010. The contracting activity is Defense Supply Center Richmond, Richmond, Va., (SPM4LG-08-D-0013).

Air Force

The
Air Force is modifying a cost plus fixed fee with performance incentives contract with McDonnell Douglas Corp., a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Boeing Co., of St. Louis, Mo., not to exceed $6.8 million. This contract action will identify, define, design, and test a solution common to the Small Diameter Bomb, Increment I (SDB I) Guided Test Vehicle and tactical weapon in accordance with findings and recommendations for the fusing system failure investigation. The solution shall be verified to ensure that SDB I system performance is not degraded and complies with the SDB I System Performance Specification (SPS) while complying with current safety requirements. At this time $3.4 million has been obligated. 918 ARSG/PK, Eglin, Air Force Base, Fla., is the contracting activity (FA8681-06-C-0210, P00036).

Iranian Threat Justifies Missile Defense, General Says

By Jim Garamone
American Forces Press Service

July 15, 2008 - Iran's launch of a missile with a 2,000-kilometer range last week is a concrete example of the threat the world faces from missile proliferation, the chief of the Missile Defense Agency said here today.
Air Force Lt. Gen. Henry A. "Trey" Obering, said the United States is concerned specifically about the threat posed by developments North Korea and Iran are making in their missile programs.

"Iran is working on an extended-range version of the Shahab-3 and a new 2,000-kilometer medium-range ballistic missile, which they term the Ashura," the general said at a news conference.

Iran also claimed that it had successfully launched an exploratory space vehicle in February, which, analysts concluded, also was a Shahab-3.

Last week, Iran launched several short- and medium-range ballistic missiles capable of striking Israel and the U.S. bases in the Middle East. Longer-ranged missiles are capable of striking Europe.

The U.S. concern with the spread of the
technology was such that the current and previous administrations invested in fielding the missile defense program. "We needed to protect the United States and then to expand that protection for our deployed forces and our allies and friends in the European theater," Obering said.

The layered missile defense strategy melds boost-phase defense, mid-course defense and terminal-stage defense together. Various systems from ground-based interceptors, to airborne lasers to sea-based platforms provide protection against a rogue regime trying to launch one or two missiles at the United States or its allies.

U.S. officials are making great progress in integrating the missile defense systems with NATO programs, the general said. Obering discussed some of the systems' successes.

"In the boost phase, we've had great success with the airborne laser," he said. The laser is mounted in a Boeing 747 and fires through the nose of the aircraft to destroy missiles just launching.

"We have generated the power that we needed on the ground in a 747 fuselage mock-up, and we've also flown the aircraft," he said. "We've demonstrated the tracking laser performance and an atmospheric compensation laser performance. All that goes together to show that we can shoot down a boosting missile. And we're on track to do that next year in a flight test."

Thirty interceptor missiles at bases in
Alaska and California make up the only defense the United States has against long-range missiles, Obering said.

As time goes on, the general said, U.S. defense planners are concerned where countries like Iran and North Korea will go. They worry that the missile proliferators will develop more and more complex countermeasures to go along with their missiles. The agency is working to counter those moves, the general said.

Terminal-phase defense soon will receive another arrow in the quiver, as the agency prepares to deploy the Terminal High Altitude Air Defense system. The THAAD, which will come on line in the next year, shoots down missiles just inside and outside the atmosphere.

Other agency projects include the launch of two space-tracking and surveillance system satellites and a test of missile interceptors scheduled July 18, Obering said.

Tests have indicated the systems are working.

"Overall, since 2001, we have now conducted 35 of 43 successful hit-to-kill intercepts," Obering said.

America Supports You: Marine Parents to Learn, Bond at Conference

By Samantha L. Quigley
American Forces Press Service

July 15, 2008 - Hundreds of
military family members will gather next week for Marine Parents United's 5th Annual Marine Family Conference, where they'll have opportunities aimed at helping them better understand military life. "The conference will provide educational and social opportunities to encourage attendees to both understand and support their Marine and the commitment he [or] she made to the [Marine Corps]," said Joyce Gilmour, the organization's treasurer.

The conference fulfills
Marine Parents United's mission statement of hosting an annual educational and networking conference to offer guidance to Marine families, though each year's event is open to anyone interested in attending, she said.

This year's event, which is being held in the Metro Washington area, begins July 23 and ends July 27.

Participants will take part in educational workshops, including how to recognize post-traumatic stress disorder and the issues surrounding its diagnosis. The audience will hear from a clinical psychologist and a representative of a ministerial nonprofit troop-support group.

Other workshops will offer tips on the best ways to support a servicemember and how to find troop-support organizations most beneficial to a specific situation. Participants also can learn about combat injuries and advancements in rehabilitation technologies as well as what the life of a
Marine is like "from recruitment to retirement," from Marine Gunnery Sgt. Will Price.

Though the last presentation focuses on the life of a Marine, Gilmour said she believes anyone will learn more about military life from Price.

The conference is set to offer some less academic events as well.
Marine Parents United will screen HBO's "Alive Day Memories: Home From Iraq," and host a two-hour live radio broadcast titled "Talk With Heroes."

The weekend includes a good bit of socializing, as well.

Tours will enable participants to visit various historical
military sites around the nation's capital. One of these outings will take the group to Arlington National Cemetery where, as in years past, the group will honor the nation's fallen warriors.

"This year we will have a dove release at Section 60, and then will be placing a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknowns," Gilmour said. Section 60 is the area of Arlington National Cemetery dedicated to servicemembers who lost their lives in Iraq.

This is just one of the events that will give participants a chance to get to know each other better, and the bonds formed during the weekend endure, she said.

"There will be a lot of time to get to know other people from all over the United States, swap stories and share experiences," she added. "Some folks are just beginning the rollercoaster ride of a
military family, [but] lots of us are at different parts of the journey."

Registration for the conference is still open at $150 for the whole weekend and can be completed through the
Marine Parents United Web site. "The fee covers [conference space] rental at the hotel, food and audiovisual equipment," Gilmour said.

Those attending and wanting to stay at the Westfields Marriott Washington Dulles, where the conference is being held, should call Gilmour directly. Her contact information is available on the Marine Parents United Web site.

Marine Parents United is a supporter of America Supports You, a Defense Department program connecting citizens and companies with servicemembers and their families serving at home and abroad.

Language Program Launches Web Site to Aid Deploying Troops

By John J. Kruzel
American Forces Press Service

July 15, 2008 - A Defense Department program that provides cultural and linguistic training to soon-to-deploy
military personnel has activated a new Web site. Launched this month, the Defense Language Institute Foreign Language Center's new online resource offers deploying servicemembers easier access to hundreds of linguistic materials, free of charge, according to a DLIFLC news release.

Language lessons can be viewed, downloaded, and ordered at www.dliflc.edu under the "Products" tab. Aspiring students must register and receive DLIFLC account approval before placing an order.

Among other curricula, the Web site offers Language Survival Kits: pocket-size booklets with audio CDs in more than 30 languages that outline common greetings,
military commands, medical vocabulary and other useful phrases in the native tongue of the students' destination.

The
Monterey, Calif.-based language institute also offers new Headstart language DVD programs that use cutting-edge technology and computer animation to teach 80 hours of self-paced lessons and are designed to teach survival phrases in Iraqi Arabic and in Afghan Dari and Pashto, the release states.

The institute is a component of a comprehensive Defense Department language roadmap published in January 2005 and the National Security Language Initiative that President Bush proposed a year ago.

Gail H. McGinn, deputy undersecretary of defense for plans, oversees the Defense Department's foreign-area officer program, a linguistics initiative that embeds cultural and linguistic specialists with
military members in their region of expertise.

McGinn said language has a unique ability to connect U.S. operators with their foreign counterparts and local civilians.

"To be able to communicate with the people, to understand what they're saying, to understand what they're thinking, to understand what their habits are and the correct way to interact with people is incredibly important," she said during an interview with American Forces Press Service in December.

The cooperation among federal agencies, Congress and the White House on linguistic initiatives underscores the increasingly prominent role language skills play in U.S. missions at home and abroad.

"Deficits in foreign language learning and teaching negatively affect our national security, diplomacy,
law enforcement, intelligence communities and cultural understanding," a National Security Language Initiative fact sheet on the State Department Web site states.

"The NSLI will dramatically increase the number of Americans learning critical need foreign languages ... through new and expanded programs from kindergarten through university and into the work force," according to the fact sheet.