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Archive for October 25th, 2007

Deployed soldiers participate in mass re-enlistment ceremony.

18 October 2007
By Sgt. Marcus Butler
4th Brigade Combat Team (Airborne)
25th Infantry Division
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BAGHDAD, Oct. 18, 2007 — One hundred forty-one paratroopers decided to stay Army in a mass re-enlistment ceremony held on Forward Operating Base Kalsu, Iraq, Oct. 14. The paratroopers from 4th Brigade Combat Team (Airborne), 25th Infantry Division, made the decision to continue their service in the Army after being deployed for over a year.

Maj. Gen. Rick Lynch, commanding general of Multi-National Division–Center, made a special trip to FOB Kalsu to lead the oath of enlistment for these paratroopers.

“To re-enlist this many paratroopers after being deployed for a year is truly amazing,” said Master Sgt. Douglas Goodwin, senior career counselor for the 4th BCT (Abn.), 25th Inf. Div. “It says a lot about the leadership and the patriotism of these paratroopers.”

After the ceremony, Lynch thanked each paratrooper and posed for pictures. To this date, the Spartan Brigade has re-enlisted nearly 1,300 soldiers; approximately 70 percent of them have decided to stay with the brigade for another tour.

“Soldiers are special people and to see these paratroopers making a commitment to continue serving their country when the operational tempo is so high proves they trust in their leadership,” Goodwin said. “It also shows how much they believe in what they are doing and stand proud as United States paratroopers ready to defend our country against the ever-growing threat of terrorism.”

Photo – One hundred forty-one paratroopers from 4th Brigade Combat Team (Airborne), 25th Infantry Division, re-enlisted Oct. 14 on Forward Operating Base Kalsu, Iraq, in a ceremony conducted by Maj. Gen. Rick Lynch, commanding general of Multi-National Division–Center. U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Marcus Butler.

Source: US CentCom.

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Two C-17 air crews completed a record airdrop, simultaneously dropping supply loads in Afghanistan.

17 October 2007
By Staff Sgt. Trevor Tiernan
U.S. Central Command Air Force Combat Correspondent Team
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BAGRAM AIR BASE, Afghanistan, Oct. 17, 2007 — Two U.S. Air Force C-17 crews recently completed a mission for the history books with one of the largest single airdrops in Afghanistan since Operation Enduring Freedom began.

“What sets this mission apart from previous ones is this is the first time we’ve used two aircraft to drop simultaneously on the same drop zone in the AOR (area of responsibility),” said Tech. Sgt. Marvin Mosley, a loadmaster on the Oct. 11, 2007, mission.

It also was the first time in combat that cargo has been air-dropped in a formation scenario. The two C-17 Globemaster III aircraft from the 817th Expeditionary Airlift Squadron dropped more than 60 bundles of cargo, weighing more than 85,000 pounds, over the Paktika province in southeastern Afghanistan.

U.S. Air Force Lt. Col. Brian Robinson, Air Mobility Division chief, Combined Air and Space Operations Center, said the drop contained supplies needed to operate through the winter, said. Poor road conditions leading to the forward operating base and force protection concerns drove the decision to make an airdrop, Robinson said. “Airdrop[s] could deliver all the supplies in two to three minutes using the C-17s and minimize [coalition forces’] exposure on the ground and in the air,” said Robinson.

The crews flew from Manas Air Base, Kyrgyzstan, to pick up the cargo at Bagram Airfield before heading to the drop zone. Air Force Capt. Ryan Orfe, one of the pilots on the mission, said the airdrop not only got the needed supplies to the troops well ahead of harsh winter weather, but also helped keep convoy drivers out of harm’s way.

“Hopefully we’re doing good and taking convoys off the road,” said Orfe. “That seems to be where a lot of the attacks on our troops come from. The more we can keep [the convoys] off the road, while at the same time keeping ourselves safe flying at higher altitudes … it’s a win-win for everybody.”

Photo- A second Air Force C-17 Globemaster drops Combat Delivery System bundles just a few hundred feet above another set floating down to coalition soldiers waiting below, Oct. 11, 2007. U.S. Army photo by Spc. Micah E. Clare.

Source: US CentCom.

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