Military News

Saturday, August 22, 2015

Defense Officials Praise Troops' Actions in Train Attack

WASHINGTON, August 22, 2015 — In a statement released today, Defense Secretary Ash Carter praised three Americans for their actions yesterday on a train outside of Brussels, Belgium.

"On behalf of all the men and women of the Department of Defense, I want to thank the brave individuals, including two members of the U.S. military, who stepped forward to prevent an even greater tragedy from taking place aboard that train," Carter said.

U.S. Air Force Airman 1st Class Spencer Stone, assigned to the 65th Air Base Group, Lajes Air Base, Azores, Oregon Army National Guard Spc. Alek Skarlatos and a civilian friend were traveling together via train on personal leave. The men took immediate action to subdue an armed gunman before he could engage his automatic weapon on the train.

"My thoughts and prayers today are with those injured in the attack, including Airman 1st Class Spencer Stone, whose selfless actions saved lives. I wish him a speedy recovery," the defense secretary said.

"These men are heroes," said U.S. European Command Commander Air Force Gen. Philip M. Breedlove.

"Actions like this clearly illustrate the courage and commitment our young men and women have all the time, whether they are on duty or on leave," he said. "We are extremely proud of their efforts and now are praying for our injured airman to have a speedy recovery."

Stone, who suffered non-life threatening injuries in the attack, is currently being treated in a French medical facility.

"(Stone and Skarlatos) are two reasons why -- on duty and off -- ours is finest fighting force the world has ever known," Carter said.

Commander, U.S. Air Forces in Europe, Air Forces Africa, commends actions of Americans in French train incident

8/22/2015 - RAMSTEIN AIR BASE, Germany -- General Frank Gorenc, U.S. Air Forces in Europe and Air Forces Africa commander, shared his praise for the three Americans who took heroic measures on a train by stopping a gunman before he could engage his automatic weapon.

"I continue to learn more about the heroic actions of three brave young men on a train headed from Amsterdam to Paris. As an Airman, I also feel a sense of deep pride in the selfless response shown by all three; Airman 1st Class Spencer Stone and his friends, Oregon Guardsman Specialist Alek Skarlatos and Mr. Anthony Sadler. All three courageously stepped into a dangerous situation, and their gallant actions saved the lives of countless innocent civilians from the hands of an armed assailant. I am deeply thankful these men took action and averted tragedy, and I wish a speedy recovery to all those who were impacted by this event."

Chairman, Korean Counterpart Discuss U.S.-Korea Defense Commitment

WASHINGTON, August 22, 2015 — Army Gen. Martin E. Dempsey, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, called his Korean counterpart yesterday to discuss the unwavering commitment of the United States to Korea’s defense, according to a readout of the call released today.

Dempsey also reiterated the strength of the U.S.-Korea alliance, Navy Capt. Greg Hicks, joint staff public affairs officer, said in the readout.

The two leaders “concurred they would watch North Korea's actions closely in the coming days,” Hicks said, “and would ensure that the U.S. and ROK continue to work closely with one another to deter further North Korean provocations and defuse tensions.”

A-10s deploy to Estonia

U.S. Air Forces in Europe and Air Forces Africa

8/22/2015 - RAMSTEIN AIR BASE, Germany  -- Eight U.S. Air Force A-10 Thunderbolt IIs and approximately 170 Airmen deployed to Ă„mari Air Base, Estonia, as part of a flying training deployment in support of Operation Atlantic Resolve.

Operation Atlantic Resolve is a demonstration of our continued commitment to the collective security of NATO and dedication to the enduring peace and stability in the region.

Aircraft and Airmen from the 303d Fighter Squadron, 442d Fighter Wing, Whiteman AFB, Missouri, arrived in Estonia, 22 Aug. These reservists, along with guardsmen from three Air National Guard units, will train with their Estonian counterparts for three weeks. During this deployment, they will also participate in simultaneous but unrelated training with Finnish air forces.

All of the training will focus on maintaining joint readiness while building interoperability capabilities and demonstrating the shared commitment of the U.S. to a safe and secure Eastern Europe.

The training will include some low-level flying designed to help maintain joint readiness and strengthen our relationships within the North Atlantic Treaty Organization.