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Volume 12, Issue 13 Friday, March 18, 2011 Olympic hopeful shoots for the stars Repair work underway on Cuzco roads A Day in the Life Following the NEGB Part 2
THE WIRE | PAGE 2 TROO P ER T O TROO P ER | Trooper to Trooperfeaturing The WIRE is the official news magazine of Joint Task Force Guantanamo. It is produced by the JTF Public Affairs Office to inform and educate the Troopers of JTF Guantanamo through news, features, command guidance, sports and entertainment. The WIRE seeks to provide maximum disclosure with minimum delay with regard to security, accuracy, propriety and policy. This DoD news magazine is an authorized publication for the members of the Department of Defense. Contents of The WIRE are not necessarily the official views of, or endorsed by, the U.S. Government, the Department of Defense, or Joint Task Force Guantanamo. It is printed by the Defense Logistics Agency Document Services with a circulation of 1,000. JTF GuantanamoCommander Navy Rear Adm. Jeffrey Harbeson Command Master Chief Command Sgt. Maj. Mark Porrett Office of Public Affairs Director Navy Cmdr. Tamsen Reese: 9928 Deputy Director Air Force Lt. Col. Don Langley: 9927 Operations Officer CW2 Raymond Chapman: 3649 Senior Enlisted Leader Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Sally Hendricks: 3649The WireExecutive Editor Army Staff Sgt. Benjamin Cossel: 3499 Assistant Editor Spc. Meredith Vincent: 3651 Photojournalists: Mass Communications Specialist 2nd Class Elisha Dawkins Mass Communications Specialist 2nd Class Jason Tross Mass Communications Specialist 2nd Class Jordan Miller Mass Communications Specialist 2nd Class Wesley Kreiss Mass Communications Specialist 2nd Class Joe EbaloContact usEditors Desk: 3499 From the continental United States Commercial: 011-53-99-3499 DSN: 660-3499 E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org Online: www.jtfgtmo.southcom.mil Joint Task Force Guantanamo Senior Enlisted Leader Command Sgt. Major Mark Porrett What is your legacy of being in the JTF? When all the ceremonies are over, we depart Guantanamo and become part of the history of our service and units. We will all be replaced photos taken down and names removed from walls. The one thing that remains in our Troopers and duty stations is our leadership legacy. Troopers you did or did not do for them. Leaders should ask themselves every day: What did I do to improve my Troopers and the unit? leaders we have are informal leaders. These are the peers, support staff, outsiders, coaches and even subordinates who lead every day. Although not part of the formal chain of command or NCO Support Channel, these leaders are the ones who motivate, educate and execute orders and directives from formal leaders. Troopers willingly follow them because they want to be like them. The military cannot operate without them. There is always that one person who seems to be the best at what he or she does and we use them over and over again. They rise to become the subject matter experts we often over task and work the hardest. They should also be the ones we acknowledge and reward the most. The formal leaders of units have the orders and regulations to back them up. Its easy to lead by rank or position, but are Troopers following because they want to or have to? Leadership is not a popularity contest but a test of ones worth. Some formal leaders try and fail and others grab every minute and own it. Often, we take risk and place a great deal on our most junior leaders. Under the pressure, mentorship and drive, some become diamonds. Some may just take longer. Dont give up building leaders takes time. In a military that has been at war for over nine years, one of the most detrimental effects has been zero-defect mentality. This is the surest way for a unit to self-destruct and Troopers to seek leadership elsewhere. As we build leaders, we have to be able to take risk -allow for mistakes, of todays senior leaders made mistakes, corrected them and continued the mission. It was our leaders who allowed us those growing pains. It is part of our developmental process and worth our consideration and patience. Id ask that your take-away nugget from this article be that your leadership is your legacy and will follow you and your Troopers through your career. You will be remembered and talked about until your Troopers leave the military and sometimes after. We still talk about past military leaders and their impact on history. You are writing history every day with your actions. Thanks for what you do and have fun building your legacy. HONOR BOUND!
THE WIRE | PAGE 3 | NE W S YOU CAN USETHE WIRE | PAGE 3 | NE W S YOU CAN USEJapan turns to desperate measures to cool reactorsVoice of America News ServiceThe Japanese military is using high-pressure damaged nuclear reactors in a desperate attempt to cool down dangerously-hot fuel rods, as it acknowledges that time is running out. Earlier Thursday, the government used aerial water drops after aborting the plan a day earlier because of radiation danger to the helicopter pilots. the government had decided it could not delay the mission any further. But televised pictures showed much of the water being blown away from the target and the effort was suspended after four attempts. High radiation levels around the plant 240 kilometers north of Tokyo are making it impossible for workers to stay at the facility for more than a few minutes at a time, and initial drops had little effect. restore electricity to the plant, raising hopes to apply water to the fuel rods at the crippled plants six nuclear reactors. US advises citizens to leave The United States and other governments have advised their nationals to stay at least 80 kilometers from the plant a radius much larger than the Japanese exclusion zone and many governments are evacuating staff from embassies in Tokyo. Commanders at both issued stop movement orders to all inbound permanent change of stations personnel at their respective bases. U.S. President Barack Obama telephoned Tokyo to express his admiration for the courage of the Japanese people and renew his offer of assistance, including with the nuclear crisis. The call came hours after nuclear power has dried up in the cooling tank at Fukushimas number 4 reactor, leaving the fuel rods exposed to the air. If the rods become hot enough, they can melt or burn through their outer casing, releasing high levels of radiation into the air. Japanese nuclear Thursday they could remarks, made by U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission Chairman Gregory Jaczko. But they said water levels in the cooling tank at unit 3 are dangerously low. on citizens to save electricity as it warned of a massive power outage in the area served by the Tokyo Electric Power Company. What caused damage Normal cooling systems for the plant tsunami, which knocked out electricity to the plant and damaged emergency backup generators. electricity restored, but chief government spokesman Yukio Edano warned that even has been damaged by seawater and will have to be replaced. Three of the plants six reactors were others were shut down for maintenance. All three of the reactors that were operating have since suffered explosions that destroyed their of the units, the explosions also ruptured the inner containment chambers which protect against radiation leaks. Focus on cooling tanks But current concerns are focused on cooling tanks at all six reactors where used fuel rods are stored. For months, these remain hot enough water. Japan has evacuated more than 200,000 people from a 20-kilometer radius around the plant and advised anyone within 30 kilometers makeshift facilities amid frigid temperatures and scarce food supplies. United States is determined to do everything possible to support Japan in overcoming the He expressed his extraordinary admiration for the character and resolve of the Japanese people and discussed U.S. assistance including military assets with expertise in nuclear Aristides Return to Haiti SetVoice of America News ServiceFormer Haitian President Jean-Bertrand Aristide is set to return to Haiti immediately, despite warnings from the United States. former leader will leave late Thursday, arriving in Haiti before Sundays runoff presidential election. armed rebels in February 2004 and has been living in South Africa. Earlier Thursday, the former Haitian president a passport and Pretoria cannot hold him hostage. National Security Council spokesman Tommy Vietor says the United States return, warning it could destabilize Haiti before Sundays vote. Vietor also said U.S. President Barack Obama called South African President Jacob Zuma earlier this week to express that concern. Aristide expressed a desire to go back to Haiti after former dictator Jean-Claude Duvalier made a surprise return in January. The former Haitian leader will be accompanied by Hollywood actor Danny Glover. The actor who starred in the Lethal Weapon movies and is now chairman of the U.S.-based human rights group TransAfrica Forum, became the return to his homeland. on the TransAfrica Forum website he wanted to show solidarity with the people of Haiti and help return a leader they twice elected with overwhelming support. said the former leader has no intention of getting involved in politics and Sundays the runoff until international observers recommended he advance to the second round instead of the ruling party candidate, Jude Celestin. The observers cited fraud balloting, which took place in November. Celestin was later dropped from the runoff. The person who wins the election will succeed outgoing President Rene Preval. The United States strongly supports the current electoral process as critical to Haitis stability, following years of political turmoil and the disastrous January 2010
NE W S FROM T HE BAY | THE WIRE | PAGE 4News from the Bay Walk-to-School day promotes kids health Jewish community observes Purim Boots on the GroundWhat is the best movie youve seen since coming to Guantanamo Bay?The Dilemma. It was really funny. Religious Programs Specialist 3rd Class Jeffrey Lauber Hall Pass, it was very visually stimulating. Air Force Staff Sgt. Ramona Garcia Army Sgt. William Myers Hall Pass. Its a married mans dream and a single mans nightmare. Harry Potter 7, because it had great graphics. Air Force Staff Sgt. Archie Gerald here on Guantanamo Bay are scheduled to gather at the Rosenthals house at 7 p.m. Friday evening to observe the Jewish holiday Purim. Purim is a festival that commemorates the deliverance of the Jewish people living throughout the ancient Persian Empire from a plot by Haman the Agagite to annihilate them, as recorded in the Biblical Book of Esther, explained Air Force Staff Sgt. Archie Gerald, a Joint Task Force chaplains assistant. For more information or if you would like to bring food to the event contact Nicole at x8379. In order to promote more activity into students school day, the Parent Teacher Organization of W. T. Sampson Elementary School, in partnership with the Health and Wellness Committee, is sponsoring a through 5. Parents who would like their children to participate in the event but cannot walk with them can drop their child off at one of two Clinic parking lot, or at the Sailing Center at Children must be dropped off no later than 7:10 a.m. The walk will take approximately 22 minutes and security police will be available to ensure the childrens safety. The school is seeking volunteers to walk with participating children in the morning and to help prepare and serve a healthy breakfast for them afterward. join, but must be accompanied by an adult. Buses will run as usual for students who choose not to participate. For more information or if you are interested in volunteering, contact either at x2220.Irish Fest kicks off at Downtown Lyceum Festival kicks off at 4 p.m. at the downtown lyceum. Open to all members of the public, the festival will begin with free tasting during an Irish stew competition between Come check out Guantanamo Bays local craft artists, play lawn games from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. and childrens story time with crafts from 4:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. scheduled for 5:30 p.m., followed by Red Cross assists Japan relief efforts The Guantanamo Bay Red Cross is offering assistance to people who have loved area. Free Sprint phone cards are available to help victims families and friends stay in touch. The Red Cross is also gathering dona tions to assist with relief efforts. For procedures and pick up times, contact x2511 or x2512, or email CoganowS@ usa.redcross.org interactive booths from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m., including a kilt dash, potato smash, strong wo/man throw, tugo-war, and an Irish-style obstacle course. Irish stew and shepherds pie will be available for dinner from 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. Top off the evening with live Celtic music from Irish rock band, The Rogues. For more information on the Irish Fest, contact x4882.
THE WIRE | PAGE 5 | TROOPER FOCUS Lance Cpl. Britney Thomas recalls very clearly when she decided she wanted Ever since I can remember, Ive always wanted to join [the service,] Thomas, who works at J6 as a telecom was the hardest service for females to get into, and I said, Oh, thats the one I want. Thomas willingness to face challenges head on has inspired her co-workers and leadership, who say she has become an integral part of their team. She doesnt complain about anything and if she comes up to a wall, she works it out for herself without fuss, said Air Force 1st Troops her age would prefer to be spoonfed the answers to their problems but she always uses her resources and comes up with her own solution. J6 Current Operations Senior Gunnery Sgt. Chet Smith agrees. She is on point as a lance corporal who can be trusted with responsibility in taking care of tasks on her own, he said. Which is what leaders are looking for in their Troopers. Only 18 years old when she signed for three and half years. In that time, she has had one goal in mind: to become a has faith in her ability to reach that goal. [She] is an extremely capable and in her career, said Smith. She has a strong desire to succeed and has been setting a superior example every day That arrival was fairly recent, as Thomas has only been on Guantanamo Bay for two months. An avid snorkeler with scuba ambitions, Thomas said her has been the beaches. I want to go scuba diving, she sighs. I just dont have the time yet. spent working out, as yet another challenge has been placed in front of her. Thomas is determined to leave Guantanamo Bay a rank higher. As she climbs from junior territory, she has started thinking about what will make her a strong leader for her future Troopers. Communication is so important, she said. When I was a Pfc., I didnt have very good communication skills and I got in trouble for it. If you have good communication with your higher-ups, it will help you tremendously. with their Trooper and her skills, communication or otherwise. Her insight into the radio world has aided our telecom shop greatly, said accomplishing our mission. Her enthusiasm is very contagious, keeping often stressful work hours light-hearted and easier to manage. With four months left on the island, Thomas is feeling positive about not only the work ahead, but also the lessons she has already learned. From now on, Ive made it my mission that Im going to do my job thoroughly what will stick with me. her praise will be subdued. trooper focus Lance Cpl. Britney Thomas Bullet Bio Time in service: 3 1/2 years Hobbies: working out, snorkeling Pet peeves: ignoring junior enlisteds ideas Next goal: getting promoted, eventually becoming a drill instructor Advice to junior Troopers: Its tough. But youre not going to die.She deserves all the credit for her work, the 1st Lt. said. Even though she will probably just blush and shrug it off as no big deal. Thomas no-nonsense approach. The other day I had e-mailed her, thanking her for working through a problem wed been having, remembered she simply said, You dont have to say just who she is. She does her job and is happy to do it.
THE WIRE | PAGE 6 | NEWS PSEC ALERT DONT BE A VICTIM. SHRED IT OR REGRET IT. Are you aware the JTF has a 100 percent shred policy?This means that all paper materials including computer printouts, sticky notes, handwritten notes, photocopies, trooper notebooks, unwanted mail, mailing labels and customs forms from boxes or packages, leave papers, bank statements, bills and anything work related or that has personal information should be shredded! A much-needed and welcome change is coming to the Cuzco Barracks as the shops of the Base Engineer Emergency Force began restorative work on the dirt We noticed that the road around Gold Hill Galley and Cuzco Barracks has been deteriorating so we contacted Joint Task Force Guantanamo about repairing it, said BEEF Project Planner and Operations Supervisor Coordination with the JTF and public BEEF wants to complete work outside Camp Justice or the Expeditionary Legal Complex, Humphrey explained. going to be funded and who was going to pay for the gravel, he said. Consultation with the JTF and public works department was also necessary because the BEEF needed to know the locations of sewer, water and electrical lines in the area so they are not damaged, said Humphrey. Up until now, the road has been a bumpy ride for its travelers. Some of its potholes are big enough that whenever I take a mule through, it just about throws you to the ceiling, remarked Tech. operator. the road is a safety hazard and endangers automobiles. I know some of the master-at-arms have broken motor mounts on their vehicles from hitting potholes, he said. Road refurbishment will not only generate appreciation from drivers but also pedestrians and bicyclists. People who ride bicycles, especially at night, if they hit a pothole they have a chance of really getting hurt, remarked Wilkins. Until now the BEEF tackled tasks not related to their occupation. This project offers them an opportunity to showcase their real talents. It gives us all a chance to work more in trained to do, Wilkins expressed. affords time on machinery they otherwise might not get to use. This will give some of our guys the wouldnt normally see at their home station, said Humphrey. The BEEF is borrowing machinery from A job like this involves operating a grader, water truck, roller and possibly a dump truck, Wilkins said. The road will be done in sections, allowing Humphrey wants people to know to be Be patient as the road crews get started, he advised. BEEF begins road construction at Cuzcos BarracksStory and photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Jordan Miller from using the dirt road behind the barracks while it undergoes restoration. The BEEF is completing the work.
THE WIRE | PAGE 7 | NEWS Even under Infantry standard Puerto Rican MPs lead the wayHailing from all over their island, members of the Puerto Rico National Guard came together under the standard of Company B, 1-296 Infantry to augment the 525th Police Battalion supporting operations at Joint Task Force Guantanamo. We are responsible for area security for the entire JTF, said Army Capt. Roberto Dekony, company commander. B, 1-296 Infantry is the JTF, Lt. Col. Christopher commander explained further. They provide guards at access control points for the roads leading into Camp America, personnel access to camps perimeter security and area security of the surrounding areas of the Joint Task Force. Dekony said nearly 70 percent of his Soldiers are specialty as well as members of the Puerto Rico National Guards 240th Company. The mighty 240th deployed captain said. When the Puerto Rico Guard submitted the unit for mobilization [to JTF Guantanamo], the 240th couldnt be mobilized due to dwell time deploy, Dekony said the Puerto Rico Guard tasked Bravo But another problem arose during the mobilization. Soldiers didnt have security clearances and there wasnt enough time to get them, he said. So they took all the they could from the 240th Company and put them under the 1-296 Infantry colors. While the captain noted the units overall mission, explained the amount of effort together. together was during our initial mobilization training at Camp Santiago in Puerto Rico, said 1st While at Camp Santiago, the skills learning tactics such as managing entry control points, searching vehicles and the Joint Task Force Guantanamos rules of engagement. Im very proud of all of my Soldiers they act like theyve been working together all their lives, said Dekony. From Camp Santiago, Troopers travelled to Fort Bliss, Texas where a mockup of the Guantanamo Bay facilities furthered the groups understanding of the environment they were about to enter. Everything has to be taken into consideration here, Torres said. This is the place everyone is looking at; we certainly dont want to be responsible for an international incident. To that end, Dekony said prior to arriving on Guantanamo Bay, he spelled out his expectations to his Troopers. We are going to raise the bar here, Dekony told them. Bravo Company will set the standard by which all other National Guard units coming here will be judged against. In addition to providing security for the JTF Guantanamo compound, Bravo Company Troopers serve as and provide security during the highly visible military commissions proceedings. Both Torres and Dekony have deployed to Guantanamo Bay in the past and said the living and working situation improves more and more each time. old sea huts, Dekony said. space this time and the living conditions for the Troopers have improved dramatically as well. Along with the better environment, Torres said there is much more for his Troopers to do in their off-time. and engaged when they arent working is very important, Torres said explaining with Guantanamo Bays isolation, keeping his Troopers active helps them stay out of trouble. We help organize 5k runs, play team sports and many of our Soldiers have taken on several volunteer projects earning hours toward their volunteer service medal, the Whether coming together to form a winning softball team or executing their mission, Dekony said the continuing hallmark of his Troopers is the high level of excellence they Their commitment to be the best in everything continues to impress me, he said. They are all extremely professional and there is no obstacle they cant overcome. The companys battalion commander echoed Dekonys words. They understand the importance of the Profession of Arms, said Wynder. That mind set starts with Captain Torres and resonates down to the most junior Soldiers in the unit. The level of unit pride and camaraderie that is displayed daily is unmatched. Story by Army Staff Sgt. Benjamin Cossel Photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Jordan Miller Soldiers with Company B, 1-296 Infantry, 525th Military Police Battalion conduct a security patrol around Joint Task Force Guantanamo.
FEA T URE | THE WIRE | PAGE 8 THE WIRE | PAGE 8 Story and photos by Army Staff Sgt. Benjamin CosselHe wants markers, the AWC seems to Around the rotunda, through a series of the markers. No markers yet, the ops chief explained. Dont know when theyll be here but they arent here yet. Thats the way it goes, the AWC said as he walks back to the rotunda. They ask for it, we try to get it for them but its never fast enough. The AWC goes back to the block and informs the detainee the markers havent arrived yet, but he reassures the detainee they will be in soon. The detainee is clearly not happy with the situation, but the AWC cant really worry about his hurt feelings at the moment. Class Arabic to English is about to start and he has to move several detainees into the classroom. Part Two a Day in the Life Looking over the schedule, the AWC calls ahead to the guards on a block to detainee. Peering through the window, the to be moved. After a semi-lengthy process of moving detainees, class is ready to start. of several classes offered at the facility. The classes serve two purposes, the AWC explains. Detainees learn to speak English while at the same time, the classroom setting acts as something of a social hour for the detainees. Detainees on the block dont get to see detainees (from another block ) unless its during class, the AWC said. So, especially when we moved detainees here from other camps, some days it seemed like a family reunion. Already closing in on noon, the AWC dispatches two guards to prepare lunch but theres a problem. One of the guards explains to the AWC that a block refuses to hand over their trash from breakfast. What? he responded incredulously. They wont give us their trash from this morning, the guard reiterates. Go get the watch commander and see if he can talk to them, the AWC orders. Anything, anything they can do to mess up the rhythm, to throw a wrench into the system, they will do, the AWC said. The watch commander goes in and talks to the residents of the block. After a bit of back trash. The war of bullets may be transpiring but inside the walls of the detention facilities of Guantanamo Bay is a war of minds and wills. Outside the camp, a guard is sitting at one of the several metal tables that serve as a At the conclusion of A Day in The Life, part 1 in last weeks edition of The Wire, the assistant watch commander on duty had just left a block after discussing several items including a cancelled phone call with a detainee. As part 2 of our article begins, the AWC takes a request from a detainee .. one small example of the many requests the guard force tries to accommodate each and every day.
THE WIRE | PAGE 9 | FEA T URES break area. He takes a long pull from a cigarette and slowly exhales Its not too bad really, the young guard said. His body says hes all of 19 or so but his eyes indicate years beyond his physical age. The shifts are pretty reasonable and guard explains. He works out a lot on his off time and tries to take advantage of the many recreational aspects of life on Guantanamo Bay. Pretty much anything you can do to take your mind off being here, of dealing with the detainees and the games they play, you do, he said. Crushing out his cigarette, the guard wanders back into the camp to try to get on one of the three computer stations in the break room. Tomorrow a new set of guards fresh from work. Already the break room can barely handle Theres just not enough computers in there for all of us, he says. Hopefully Ill be able to get on one and try to talk to my family back home. And with the words home the doors to the camp unlock and the guard slides inside. The remainder of the day is reasonably Army uniform is causing a stir amongst the detainees in this Navy-run facility. Who is he? Why is he here? What is going on? the detainees ask at every opportunity. The AWC assures them nothing is going on, nothing is changing, theres nothing to worry about. and presents a new wrinkle in the day-to-day operations of the facility, the detainees see as a tactical shift on the part of the guards. Its all part of the chess match that takes place here every day. The AWC leaves the rotunda and heads home, he must do a shift hand-off with the oncoming AWC. The two Sailors compare notes. The off-going AWC, making sure unclips his duty belt and takes the radio ear piece out of his ear. Outside, evening colors is sounding in the distance and the off-going shift stands fades, the guards make their way to cars or stand at bus stops waiting for a ride home. They joke and kid with each other in the rough and tumble manner familiar to anyone whos ever put on a uniform. Tonight theyll go home, theyll go to the gym, theyll hang out and try to let the days events slip off of them. Tomorrow, they will do it all over again.
FEA T URE | THE WIRE | PAGE 10 This time last year, Aviation Electricians Mate 3rd Class Brandon Smith had no idea what rugby was. Instead he was busy training for his return to NCAA football. That all changed when Guantanamo Bay Rugby Club Coach Steve Lynch approached him after and convinced him to try rugby.Story and photos by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Jason Tross Navy Aviation Electricians Mate 3rd Class Brandon Smith, recently selected to play for USA Rugby and try out for the US Olympic Rugby Team, traps a loose ball during Guantanamo Bay Rugby Club team practice Sunday.
THE WIRE | PAGE 11 | FEA T URE Ive been playing for only about six months now and as far as experience goes, I pretty much love it, said Smith. I got out here with Coach Lynch and he showed me everything I need to know. Now were trying to take this to the next level the USA Rugby team and hopefully go to the Olympics. Last month, Smith received a letter from USA Rugby Head Coach Al Caravelli inviting him to join 19 other hand-selected athletes from across the United States as they build years. said Lynch. He had incredible speed and The International Olympic Committee recently added rugby to the 2016 Summer Olympic roster. Now the USA Rugby National Team is putting together a group of athletes who normally plays safety on the football mentioned to Coach Caravelli that I had a guy we could develop over a period of time before the tryouts and get him ready for the 2016 Olympics, said Lynch I thought Brandon was someone he should put on his radar. Thats just what happened. Smith began training with Lynch, turning the football prodigy into a rugby prodigy. It was basically the football aspect that I liked so much, said Smith. Im such a big football guy. He got me into it using that. transition him into the new sport. He pretty much transfers everything to football so I can understand rugby better, laughed Smith. Now hes just got me hooked on it. Smith trains with Lynchs Guantanamo Bay Rugby Club a mix of players ranging in age from 16 to 30 and representing Navy, strong showing of high school students from W.T. Sampson School. We are all in the learning stages so we just play to the best of our abilities and work on whatever Coach is teaching us, said Smith. We get out here and he pretty much pushes through drills and we run around and scrimmage each other and have fun. No one really played it before, but now that were getting into it its great! For Smith, whether training for the Olympics or spending time with Guantanamo the game. Challenge is the big thing about it for me, said Smith. Its the challenge of, hey lets try something else and see what a whole other sport is about. Its one I never heard of until I got to Guantanamo and met Coach [Lynch]. The fun is just beginning for Smith. Before he can call himself an Olympian, hell have to prove himself with the USA Rugby team at practice. If all goes well, then comes the real fun. The practice is going to be at Chula Vista, Calif. at the Olympic Training Center, said Smith. After that I could be going to London and Scotland if I make the team. I really hope I make the team. Smith, who still dreams of being a professional football player, dodges a defender during rugby practice Sunday.
AT YOUR SERVICE | THE WIRE | PAGE 12 In The TrenchesPetraeus: Afghan transition will have long-term impact WASHINGTON, D.C. As the transition approaches for Afghan forces to begin taking responsibility for security in their country, actions in the coming months will commander of NATO and U.S. forces in Afghanistan said Wednesday. Gen. David H. Petraeus told the House Armed Services Committee that each step in the process, set to culminate with Afghan forces having the security lead throughout the country by the end of 2014, must be closely coordinated and irrevocable. Well get one shot at transition, and we need to get it right, he said. The coalition has increased its efforts to enable the Afghan governments work to improve governance, economic development and the provision of basic services, Petraeus said. These are essential elements of the effort to shift delivery of basic services from provincial reconstruction teams and international organizations to Afghan government elements, he explained. Afghan-led reintegration of reconcilable insurgents must be an important element of the strategy, Petraeus said, noting that the NATOled International Security Assistance Force is assisting Afghan government initiatives, including the recently established Afghan high peace council and provincial reintegration councils. Indeed, we recognize that we and our Afghan partners cannot just kill or capture our way out of the insurgency in Afghanistan, the general said. In fact, some 700 former Taliban authorities, and some 2,000 more are in various stages of the reintegration process. All of these efforts are part of a comprehensive civil-military approach, he explained, in which ISAF coordinates with international organizations, diplomatic missions in Afghanistan, and the Afghan government and security forces. We have also sought to ensure that we minimize loss of innocent civilian life in the course of our operations, he added. A recent United Nations study found that civilian casualties resulting from ISAF actions decreased by more than 20 percent in 2010, though the number of coalition forces increased by more than 100,000, Petraeus noted. Despite the reduction in civilian casualties, he said, several tragic incidents in recent weeks prompted him to order a review of use of force at all levels of ISAF and among attack helicopter air crews. I also reemphasized instructions on reducing damage to infrastructure and property to an absolute minimum, he said. security responsibility will transition to Afghan lead, Petraeus said. In keeping with the principles adopted by NATOs North Atlantic Council, he added, the pace of transition will be determined by conditions on the ground. According to the NATO principles, transition will see our forces thinning out, not just handing off, he said, telling the lawmakers that some forces freed up by transition will be reassigned to other locations in Afghanistan or to training Afghan army and police forces. Similar processes are also taking place as we commence transition of certain training and institutional functions from ISAF trainers to their Afghan counterparts, he said. As the security transition unfolds, he said, ISAF must focus not just on the year ahead, but on the goal of full security responsibility transfer by the end of 2014. Indeed, we need to ensure that we take a Capt. Garrett Gingrich (2nd from left), commander, Charlie Company, 1st Battalion, 133rd Infantry Regiment, speaks with Mehirulla Muslim (2nd from right), the Nurgaram district sub-governor, in the Nurgaram district of Nuristan province, Afghanistan, on Feb. 21, 2011. photo by Air Force Chief Master Sgt. Richard SimonsenKaren Parrish American Forces Press Servicemonths ahead enable long-term achievement in the years ahead, Petraeus said. ISAF has begun to look beyond 2014 to establishing U.S. and NATO strategic partnerships with Afghanistan, he said. All of this is enormously reassuring to our Afghan partners, and of considerable concern to the Taliban, he said. An enduring commitment by the international community to Afghanistan, he added, is important to insurgents recognition that reconciliation, rather than continued their goal. Petraeus said four funding issues are key to sustaining progress in Afghanistan. I am concerned that levels of funding for our State Department and partners will not them to build on the hard-fought security achievements of our men and women in uniform, he said, adding that for civilian efforts in Afghanistan could jeopardize the overall mission. I offer that assessment noting we have just completed a joint civil-military campaign plan between U.S. Forces Afghanistan and the U.S. embassy. Second, Petraeus said, he deeply appreciates funding for additional capabilities such as surveillance assets and all-terrain mine-resistant, ambush-protected vehicles for coalition forces. Commanders Emergency Response Program and reintegration program funding have likewise been instrumental to the overall counterinsurgency effort, he said. Third, the World Bank and the Asian Development Bank, he said, are the largest donors to Afghanistan after the United States, and have been critical to construction of the Ring Road and the Uzbek-Afghan railroad. We need these critical enabling institutions, and further U.S. support for them will ensure that theyre able to continue to contribute as Finally, funding for development of Afghan security forces and their resulting gains in the process of transition, Petraeus said.
THE WIRE | PAGE 13 | AT YOUR SERVICE THE WIRE | PAGE 13 | AT YOUR SERVICE On The DeckSEOUL U.S. military assets continue to converge on Japan, hoping to deliver humanitarian assistance while being careful not to expose servicemembers to radiation leaking from the crippled Fukushima Dai-ichi power plant. We continue to monitor the winds closely, moving our ships and aircraft as necessary to avoid the wind line from the Fukushima Power Plant, U.S. 7th Fleet spokesman Cmdr. Jeff Davis said in an e-mail. Aircraft and aircrews returning from missions ashore are being monitored carefully for contamination, and are conducting decontamination procedures as necessary when it is detected, he said. Davis said the USS Ronald Reagan delivering 17 tons of supplies including food, water and blankets to hard-hit areas of northeastern Japan. To date, 25 tons have been delivered, he said.Military monitors radiation as Troops deliver humanitarian aidIn addition, strike group aircraft conducted three coastal search-and-rescue sorties on Tuesday. The strike group, which is continuing operations Wednesday off the east coast of Honshu, includes the cruiser USS Chancellorsville; destroyer USS Preble; combat support ship USNS Bridge; along with guided-missile destroyers USS Fitzgerald, USS Curtis Wilbur. sea south of the disaster site. On Tuesday morning, Davis said, sensitive instrumentation on USS George Washington pier-side in Yokosuka detected low levels of radioactivity from the Fukushima plant. While there was no danger to the public, Commander, Naval Forces Japan recommended limited precautionary measures for personnel and their families on Fleet Activities Yokosuka and Naval Air Facility Atsugi, including limiting outdoor activities and securing external ventilation Jon Rabiroff Stars and Stripessystems as much as practical. These measures are strictly precautionary in nature, he continued. We do not expect that any United States federal radiation exposure limits will be exceeded even if no precautionary measures are taken. 53 helicopters embarked, picked up about 300 Japan Ground Self-Defense Force personnel and 90 vehicles Tuesday in Tomokomai, Hokkaido, and was scheduled to deliver them to Ominato, on the island of Honshu. Davis said the USS Essex, USS Harpers Ferry and USS Germantown, with the continue en route to the area and are expected Thursday. Given the radiological and navigation hazards on the eastern coast of Honshu, the ships will take position in the Sea of Japan on the west coast of Honshu, where they will be in the best position to launch disaster relief missions over land, Davis said.New performance evaluation requirements go into effect 286/10. The evaluation form NAVPERS 1616/27 (Revision Aug. 2010) Evaluation and Counseling Record for E7 through E9, also known its use will continue as usual. 286/10 changed the promotion recommendation rules for E-5 Sailors and aligns them with E-6 Sailors under the same recommendarecommendations may increase by one for each Early Promote An update to NAVFIT98A known as Version 29 was grade is available for download from the Navy Personnel Command (NPC) website. Service members should verify they are using Version 29 by checking About NAVFIT98A under the help tab in NAVFIT98A, which will display Version 188.8.131.52. Validating reports with the new NAVFIT98A version will help ensure commands comply with the new promotion recommendation rule and help eliminate common errors in preparing reports, said Jim Price, director of NPCs Performance Evaluation Division.Navy Personnel Command Public Affairs Servicemembers assigned to various commands along the Gulf Coast take the E5 advancement exam. Photo by Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Demetrius Kennon
AT YOUR SERVICE | THE WIRE | PAGE 14 milled about the area and watched as the unit systematically closed in from across the tarmac toward the airports facilities. Like cats waiting for their prey, they waited patiently for just the right moment to attack. exercise at the Twentynine Palms Airport, just minutes from the Combat their upcoming deployment as Battalion Landing Team 2nd Battalion, Expeditionary Unit. The seizure exercise was part of a larger training 2-7. positioned improvised explosive devices and suicide bomber vests in an with E Company, 2/7, absorbed the assault, then trained their massive base and house units, but also for bringing in supplies to friendly forces, Marines seize Twentynine Palms Airport in exerciseInside the Jar Marines and sailors with Company C, 2nd Battalion, 7th Marine Regiment, in collaboration with local City of Twentynine Palms, March 4, 2011. photo by Cpl. Andrew S. Avitt is why it is also crucial to practice taking control of these favorable facilities from enemy forces. We came in to take these buildings; we landed multiple birds on the operator with Co. E, 2/7. As soon as security was set, we started pushing The helicopters lifted off, but stayed close and circled just a few hundred feet above the area, waiting for the call to drop down and retrieve In a real world airport seizure, not everyone would be the enemy and not all hostile individuals would be armed. Trainers made it tougher to distinguish friend from foe, by dressing all roles players in jeans and T-shirts. The element of unpredictably and free-thinking role players adds to the After sustaining light casualties and taking control of the airport, the unit called in a notional medical evacuation, another skill the unit needed to battalion landing team, whose responsibilities could include spearheading to have, Graham said. You could be going to Afghanistan one minute, and a week later being doing something like this in another country. In less than an hour, all hostile role players were either dead or subdued well and were successful in accomplishing their mission. and swooped away into a clear blue sky. Cpl. Andrew S. Avitt Marine Corps Air Ground Combat Center Twentynine Palms
THE WIRE | PAGE 15 | AT YOUR SERVICE(Compiled from AF News Service stories) Nearly 100 Combat Shadows from the 353rd Special Operations Group at support relief operations, one day of northeastern Japan. The 353rd SOG is able to conduct search and rescue operations, transport emergency relief supplies, survey and open landing zones, provide emergent medical care to injured people and assist the Japanese government and other relief agencies with a variety of highly trained support personnel for humanitarian assistance operations. Japan, was shaken violently by the Our focus is on the recovery of the base and assisting our Japanese allies. We will do whatever it takes to get us both on our feet again, and Rothstein, 35th Fighter Wing commander, said. Our Airmen and family members aided in recovery efforts almost which was the tsunami that swept ashore afterwards. The tsunami operations, and the second is to act as a logistical hub for humanitarian relief and rescue workers. The base was assisted in this effort by the In addition to an RQ-4 Global Hawk remotely piloted aircraft from deployed to capture high-resolution, broad-area imagery. The broad, synoptic collection of large land mass and littorals are On the WingAirmen respond to Japan quake, tsunami HURLBURT FIELD (AFNS) -The Air Forces only Air and Space Operations Center formal training unit recently earned its second consecutive highest compliance inspection rating from the Community College of the Air Force. Defense Department command and control, or C2, enlisted service members can earn college credits through the CCAF. Soldiers, Sailors their service college. The formal training unit earned the rating based on the Principles of Accreditation from the Commission of Colleges, Southern Association of Colleges and Schools. College credit available to command and control graduates Colonel Thomas compared the imagery to medical X-rays. Its like a personal injury; immediately after the event, one must determine where and how they have been injured, he said. Our mission serves that function.. At Yokota Air Base, near Tokyo, more than 60 Airmen and base building for use by transiting relief personnel. The cleanup effort attracted not just Airmen, but it also brought in base dependants, young and old. It feels good to volunteer, said Ty Hoopes, a fourth-grade Boy Scout volunteer. Hawaii. Brig. Gen. Scott West, 13th Air Force vice commander, traveled with this group. First and foremost our prayers are with Japan, General West said. They are resilient and capable. (But) well be there so long as our allies ask us to. During 2010, the 505th trained more than 85,000 Soldiers, Sailors, The nine accredited courses are: -Intel, Surveillance and Recon Technician Course, 5 credit hours -Combat Plans & Operations Technician Course, 4 credit hours -Network Administrator Course, 3 credit hours -Systems Administrator Course, 6 credit hours -Airspace Course, 9 credit hours -Interface Control Operator Course, 7 credit hours -Personnel Recovery Coordination Cell Course, 6 credit hours -Academic Instructor Course, 3 credit hours at Misawa Air Base, Japan. The squadron has moved 254 tons of cargo and 329 passengers since Operation Tomodachi (Friend) started in response to a devastating earthquake and tsunami that hit Japan March 11. photo by Staff Sgt. Marie Brown
THE WIRE | PAGE 16 AT YOUR SERVICE | Coast to coastCoast Guard News Service old Coast Guard Cutter Acushnet was decommissioned during a ceremony Friday, The Acushnet was originally commissioned as a Diver Class Fleet Rescue 9) for the U.S. Navy Feb. 5, 1944. As the oldest ship in the service, the Acushnet was crowned Queen of the Fleet after the decommissioning ceremony of the Coast Guard Cutter Storis on Feb. 8, 2007. The designation will now pass to the Coast Guard Cutter Smilax, a 100-foot inland construction tender commissioned in 1944 During the course of the cutters service, Acushnet crews have received the following awards for exemplary service: World War Coast Guard Unit Commendations, Commendations, seven Coast Guard E Coast Guard Special Operation Ribbons. Coast Guard repatriates 86 Haitian migrants to Cap Haitien, HaitiCoast Guard News Service Guard Cutter Bear repatriated 86 Haitian migrants to Cap Haitien, Haiti, Thursday. aircraft crew from Coast Guard Air foot sail freighter off the northern coast The Bear crew launched its embarked the exact position of the sail freighter. The Bear crew, along with the crew of safely transferred all migrants to the Bear. Among the Haitian migrants, there were 71 adult males, 12 adult females and three children. Once aboard a Coast Guard cutter, migrants receive food, water, shelter and basic medical care.Coast Guard announce DHS Small Vessel Security Strategy Implementation PlanCoast Guard News ServiceWASHINGTON, D.C. U.S. Coast Guard and U.S. Customs and Border Protection at the Homeland Security Studies and Analysis Institute, Arlington, Va., Friday to discuss and announce publication of the Department of Homeland Security Small Vessel Security Strategy Implementation Plan. The Small Vessel Security Strategy Implementation Plan outlines the methods and actions other threats to attack U.S. maritime ports, shores and waterways. The plan maps how existing programs and stakeholders will work together, and what research and development implement the 2008 Small Vessel Security Strategy. Approximately 17 million small vessels use our nations waters for a wide variety of We have consulted closely with our federal, local and private sector partners throughout the nation to ensure that this security strategy is effective while preserving freedom of The Small Vessel Security Implementation Plan is an essential part of national resilience, said Thomas S. Winkowski, assistant commissioner, Customs and Border Protection Field Operations. This plan will provide government and private sector stakeholders with the guidance necessary to fully implement the Small Vessel Security Strategy and further protect our nation from terrorism and other threats. The 2008 Small Vessel Security Strategy was designed to enhance maritime security and safety by increasing partnerships with the small vessel community and public and private sectors in order to enhance maritime domain awareness; leveraging technology to enhance the ability to detect and interdict small vessels that pose a maritime security threat; and enhancing cooperation among international, federal, state, local, and tribal partners and the private sector. The Small Vessel Security Strategy Implementation Plan was developed in close collaboration with DHS components, state and local governments, and private sector
| MIND, BODY & SOULTHE WIRE | PAGE 17 GTMO Religious ServicesDaily Catholic Mass Mon. Fri. 5:30 p.m. Main Chapel Vigil Mass Saturday 5 p.m. Main Chapel Mass Sunday 9 a.m. Main Chapel Catholic Mass Saturday 7:30 p.m. Troopers Chapel Sunday 7:30 a.m. Troopers Chapel Church of Christ Sunday 10 a.m. Chapel Annex Room 17 Seventh Day Adventist Saturday 11 a.m. Room B Iglesia Ni Christo Sunday 5:30 a.m. Room A Pentecostal Gospel Sunday 8 a.m. Room D Liturgical Service Sunday 10 a.m. Room B General Protestant Sunday 11 a.m. Main Chapel United Jamaican Fellowship Sunday 11 a.m. Building 1036 Gospel Service Sunday 1 p.m. Main Chapel GTMO Bay Christian Fellowship Sunday 6 p.m. Main Chapel Bible Study Wednesday 7 p.m. Troopers Chapel The Truth Project Bible study Sunday 6 p.m. Troopers Chapel Protestant Worship Sunday 9 a.m. Troopers Chapel Islamic Service Friday 1:15 p.m. Room C Jewish Service Friday 7 p.m. Chapel Annex LORIMI Gospel Sunday 8 a.m. Room D LDS Service Sunday 10 a.m. Room A Mind Body & SoulMaintaining your values... even when it hurtsLt. Cmdr. Marc McDowell NEGB Command ChaplainHe . who keeps his oath, even when it hurts. -Psalm 15:4b Why do we post the Value of the Week on signs at intersections in the camps? Perhaps it is because we all need to be reminded of them. Perhaps they remind us to uphold the oaths we took in order to perform our duties with honor. Yet the signs are easily ignored. Sort of like the trays of vegetables in the galley. I know they have good nutrition, but I usually ignore them because the taste is no comparison to the fast foods. Whats needed is something to augment the taste. I like to use soy sauce as my taste-augmentation of choice; it makes everything better except ice cream. Core values stick when people live them. Who, in your lifetime, has demonstrated one I saw this happen very simply and clearly. The story is as follows: In 1975, American veterans were returning from the war in Vietnam, starting new lives and carrying the values and burdens from their time in service into their work and personal lives. During this time, I worked for retired Navy Chief the Navy and especially with the Chiefs I have come to understand much more about his sense of values, in both professional and personal life. However, the event in his life that sealed his place as one who illustrated a core value came after his second retirement. One of his prized possessions was his deceased fathers 63 baby-blue Chevy Impala. He kept it in a storage building and drove it occasionally as needed. Several people made offers to buy it but he had no interest in selling it at any price. He enjoyed maintaining it, likely remembering days gone by and good memories of his father. Jim was suffering from an age-related disease process perhaps Alzheimers which caused serious memory lapses. On any given day he could be into the afternoon before his mind was clear. On one such day a stranger came to his door early in the Jim acknowledged that he had it and the man made him an offer. Jim accepted. The stranger was delighted at both the prospect of buying the car as well as the price. When he returned later, Jim didnt know the man. However, as they talked he realized the stranger had come earlier and it was obvious he had given his word about selling the car, albeit in a different state of mind. Since his word was his bond he honored the agreement, although it was for all intents and purposes not his true mind or intention. He sold the car that he inherited from his father. Jim held his honor to be more valuable than any possession. He demonstrated what the psalmist said a few millennia before: he kept his oath even when it hurts. This example I think puts Loyalty, Commitment, Honor and the other values in real time. Perhaps you know of examples you to allow them to motivate and inspire you, and allow them to do the same for those around you: tell your story.
AT T HE MOVIES | THE WIRE | PAGE 18Movie Review Rango both the movie and the character are far from pretty. In a world where everything is digitized, greenscreened and glossed over, animated movies are getting trampled in the race to stay relevant. That is partially what stands the ugly, scaly, warted and completely uncuddly bunch in Rango apart they seem to be drawn more from an animators bad acid trip than a childs bedtime story. The centerpiece of Rango is, of course, Rango himself. In a vocal performance that once again displays his diverse talents, Johnny Depp keeps Rango in high-gear, talking and thinking at lightning speed, willing the audience to keep up. Those who are familiar with Depps eclectic background should catch glimpses of his unforgettable turn as Raoul Duke in Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas. Hunter S. Thompson would be proud. owners car and shattered all over the desert of Dirt, a sad, lonely Western town where there is very little hope and even less water. With his bugged out eyes, kinked neck and tropical Hawaiian shirt, Rango does a bad job blending in with the townsfolk. Its rather likes being the center of attention (get the irony?) and soon he is telling lie after lie to gain the towns respect and admiration. Fans of spaghetti Westerns are in for a treat. There are traces of The Quick and the Dead, High Noon, and even a cheeky appearance by Clint Eastwood (ok, its really the Spirit of the West, voiced by Timothy Olyphant in a poncho, but come on...) Joining Depp and Olyphant are Isla Fisher as Beans, the tough, high-strung lizard whos desperately clinging to her daddys ranch; Ned Beatty as the wheelchairRoadkill, a wise armadillo. But my favorite is Rattlesnake Jake. You want something to creep into your spine and scare the crap out of you? Check out Bill Nighys delivery as the terrorizing Jake. Pure awesome. Word on the street is instead of having the actors record their parts separately in the studio like usual, director Gore Verbinski brought the cast together and had them dress up in costume. Without a comparison, its impossible to know whether or not the stunt made a difference. But there is an energy and zing to their deliveries that makes me think it did. Witty and unusual, snappy and fun, Rango is overall a trippy theatrical treat. Aside from moments of lunacy, (check out the owls I loved the owls) it is deep down a story about one lizards existential journey. Can Rango stop lying about being a badass rings pretty close to home. Spc. Meredith Vincent PG 107 min. 18 22 21 20 19 23 24 IRISHFEST *no movie* Country Strong (PG-13) 8 p.m. The Dilemma (PG-13) 8 p.m. Just Go with It (PG-13) 8 p.m. Unknown (PG-13) 8 p.m. Hall Pass (R) 8 p.m. No Strings Attached (R) 8 p.m. True Grit (PG-13) 10 p.m. Hall Pass (R) 8 p.m. Country Strong (PG-13) 8 p.m. Just Go with It (PG-13) 8 p.m. Unknown (PG-13) 8 p.m. Rango (PG) 8 p.m. The Rite (PG-13) 10 p.m. The Dilemma (PG-13) 10 p.m.Downtown Lyceum Camp Bulkeley Rango (PG) 8 p.m. The Rite (PG-13) 10 p.m
| THE LAS T WORDTHE WIRE | PAGE 19 Members of the United States Senate Select Committee on Intelligence visited Joint Task Force Guantanamo, March 11. photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Jordan Miller.Congressional Visit
REMEMBERING THE LAST OF A GENERATION GETTING IT JUST RIGHT Master at Arms 1st Class Josh Bright of Naval Expeditionary Guard Force sets up his golf ball at the 3 Club Golf Tournament, Saturday, March 12. photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Elisha Dawkins. SEASON ENDING JUMPER The 2011 winter basketball regular season came to an end Tuesday, March 15 with games at Denich Gym. photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Joe Ebalo. FOUNDATION FOR FUN Joint Task Force Guantanamo Seabees lay concrete for a new servicemembers recreation center at Camp America, March. 15. photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Joe Ebalo. CHOW TIME Detainees of Camp 6 sit rapt in lunch-time conversation, Wednesday March 16. photo by Army Staff Sgt. WATCHING FROM THE WATER U.S. Coast Guard Maritime Safety and Security Team (MSST) 91114 patrols the Guantanamo Bay coastline, March 10. photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Jordan Miller.