Military News

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Soviet History

The January 25, 2014, episode of American Heroes Radio features a conversation with Captain S. Martin Shelton, USN (ret.), the of author of St. Catherine’s Crown.

Program Date:  January 25, 2014
Program Time: 1500 hours, PACIFIC
Topic: Soviet History

About the Guest
Captain S. Martin Shelton, USN (ret.) completed “forty plus years of military service which included active duty in the Korean and Vietnam wars, requiring that he travel throughout the world, with particular emphasis on the Far East.  S. Martin Shelton has an extensive background in Soviet and Chinese studies which fostered his interest in the 1917 Russian Revolution, the Bolshevik’s regicide of the Czar, Empress, and their five children, and the burgeoning Soviet Communist rĂ©gime. Captain S. Martin Shelton is the author of St. Catherine's Crown.

According to the book description of St. Catherine's Crown, “1917- Empress Alexandria understands that the Bolsheviks will soon topple the Czar. She charges her godson, Kirik Pirogov, to carry the imperial crown of Catherine the Great and a cache of Romanov jewelry to a secret czarist refuge in western China. Alexandra informs her youngest daughter, Grand Duchess Anastasia, of the escape route necessary to carry on the Romanov Dynasty.

Kirik and Anastasia make perilous journeys across Siberia via the Trans-Siberian Railroad. Their story is told against a background of revolution, their hardscrabble life in the Russian village, constant fear of the Soviet secret police, and unscrupulous treasure-hunters.”

About the Watering Hole

The Watering Hole is police slang for a location cops go off-duty to blow off steam and talk about work and life.  Sometimes funny; sometimes serious; but, always interesting.
About the Host
Lieutenant Raymond E. Foster was a sworn member of the Los Angeles Police Department for 24 years.  He retired in 2003 at the rank of Lieutenant.  He holds a bachelor’s from the Union Institute and University in Criminal Justice Management and a Master’s Degree in Public Financial Management from California State University, Fullerton; and, has completed his doctoral course work. Raymond E. Foster has been a part-time lecturer at California State University, Fullerton and Fresno; and is currently a Criminal Justice Department chair, faculty advisor and lecturer with the Union Institute and University.  He has experience teaching upper division courses in law enforcement, public policy, law enforcement technology and leadership.  Raymond is an experienced author who has published numerous articles in a wide range of venues including magazines such as Government Technology, Mobile Government, Airborne Law Enforcement Magazine, and Police One.  He has appeared on the History Channel and radio programs in the United States and Europe as subject matter expert in technological applications in law enforcement.

Listen from the Archive:

Program Contact Information
Lieutenant Raymond E. Foster, LAPD (ret.), MPA

352nd SOG conducts exercise at RAF Fairford

by Staff Sgt. Stephen Linch
352nd Special Operations Group Public Affairs

12/26/2013 - RAF FAIRFORD, England  -- The 352nd Special Operations Group conducted an exercise involving six aircraft and approximately 130 Airmen from Dec. 9 to 12, 2013, on RAF Fairford, England.

The exercise was designed to allow the 352nd SOG to practice and evaluate their ability to efficiently forward deploy their newest assets, the CV-22 Osprey and MC-130J Commando II.

"Before we ever did anything with these new aircraft - other than local training - we sat down and took a long time to think about all of the skill sets and all of the equipment that we would need to go on the road," said Lt. Col. Michael Thomas, 352nd Special Operations Support Squadron director of operations and exercise mission commander. "This exercise is a way to validate our efforts and identify those things before we look at venturing further from home."

The 352nd SOG received their first CV-22s and MC-130Js earlier this year. The Osprey is flown by the 7th Special Operations Squadron and combines the vertical takeoff, hover and vertical-landing capabilities of a helicopter with the long range, fuel efficiency and speed of a turboprop aircraft. The MC-130J is flown by the 67th Special Operations Squadron and flies low-visibility, single or multi-ship low-level air refueling missions for helicopters and tilt-rotor aircraft as well as resupply and transport of military forces via airdrop or airland.

According to Col. Christopher Ireland, 352nd SOG commander, they couldn't have picked a better location for the exercise.

"RAF Fairford is a perfect location for us to test our ability to forward deploy our new CV-22s and MC-130Js," Ireland said. "These new aircraft bring enhanced and new capabilities, and we greatly appreciate the opportunity to test ourselves so close to home."

The 352nd SOG is based at RAF Mildenhall, England. The unit plans and executes specialized and contingency operations using advanced aircraft, tactics and air refueling techniques to transport and resupply military forces.

Face of Defense: Sailor Gets Presidential Call on Christmas

III Marine Expeditionary Force/Marine Corps Installations Pacific

MARINE CORPS BASE CAMP S.D. BUTLER, Okinawa, Japan, Dec. 26, 2013 – Navy Senior Chief Petty Officer Vilma T. Rodriguez received a phone call from President Barack Obama on Christmas Day.

At the time of the call, Rodriguez was celebrating the holiday with friends at Camp Shields in Okinawa.

"In my 18 -- almost 19 -- years in the Navy I've never experienced anything like this," said Rodriguez, an independent duty corpsman at the Camp Kinser Group Aid Station and assigned to Combat Logistics Regiment 37, 3rd Marine Logistics Group, III Marine Expeditionary Force.

"To receive a call from the president -- it's a big deal," she added. "I felt honored that he took time to show his concern for the well-being of my family."

Obama wished Rodriguez a merry Christmas and thanked her for her hard work during Operation Damayan, the relief effort in the Philippines following Typhoon Haiyan. The Marines assembled with Rodriguez also had an opportunity to wish the president a Merry Christmas.

Calling service members on Christmas has become a tradition for the commander-in-chief, and Rodriguez was selected this year for her admirable performance during Operation Damayan.

Rodriguez provided essential medical care for the U.S. military response team, but she was also affected personally by the storm. Rodriguez, a native of Tacloban, one of the hardest-hit areas, lost her brother and cousin to the typhoon. Dealing with her own personal crisis, Rodriguez prioritized the needs of others over her own and dedicated herself to the relief effort.

Rodriguez impressed Navy Master Chief Petty Officer Eric S. Anderson, command master chief of III MEF, who nominated her for the phone call.

While working alongside Rodriguez in the Philippines, Anderson and Navy Master Chief Petty Officer Donald C. Schrader, command master chief of 3rd MLG, III MEF, both took note of her selfless attitude despite her personal loss.

"She always had a smile on her face; she was very resourceful," Schrader said. "She had her priorities all in order -- to the mission first."

Rodriguez is “a very humble person. She always puts others before herself,” he added.

"She's got a heart of gold," Schrader said.