Topic: Policy

The F/A-18 Hornet Mark Fox flew when he faced a MiG during Operation Desert Storm being restored to display at the Naval Aviation Museum in Pensacola. Photo courtesy of Fox.

30 Years On, Veterans Recall the Desert Storm Air War

People tend to remember Desert Storm as a short, easy war. Compared with the “forever” wars, that makes sense: a 100-hour blip in the annals of history.
Brandon Alt, right, was one of at least six Marines and Navy corpsmen who deployed from Camp Pendleton, California, to Afghanistan in 2010 who later developed seizures or seizure-like episodes. Photo courtesy of Brandon Alt.

Mystery Seizures Haunt Marine Units a Decade after Deployment

Seizures among veterans are surging. Some blame PTS and TBI. Others blame toxic exposures.
Master Sgt. Darryl Sterling, 332nd Expeditionary Logistics Readiness Squadron equipment manager, throws trash into a burn pit at Joint Base Balad, Iraq, in 2008. Photo by Senior Airman Julianne Showalter, courtesy U.S. Air Force.

“It’s so inaccurate”—How the VA Is Failing to Track Veterans Burn Pit Claims

VA figures show an astonishingly low rate of approval of burn pit claims: Of the 10,588 claims, 2,360 veterans had their benefits granted and 8,228 were denied.
Caption: The Silent Drill Platoon performs at Quantico’s Lejeune Hall. According to the Corps, the platoon “exemplifies the professionalism associated with the United States Marine Corps.” Photograph by Gunnery Sgt. Ezekiel Kitandwe

Senior Marine Corps Counsel Ridicules Sexual Assault Survivor at Court-Martial Hearing

Defense attorneys alleged unlawful command influence, that Marines denied the defendant due process. Judge described Corps’ behavior as “a step too far.”
Sgt. Josh Wilkinson, a military police soldier with the 29th Military Police Company, Maryland Army National Guard, conducts a simulated shoplifting search during a Joint Multinational Readiness Center exercise rotation in Hohenfels, Germany, on Nov. 2. The soldiers are preparing to deploy to Kosovo. Photo by Sgt. Zachary M. Zippe, courtesy of the U.S. Army National Guard.

“Everybody We Deal With Is Trained to Kill”—Why Don’t We See Widespread Police Brutality in the Military?

Police brutality on military bases is rare but reports show that veterans are 2.9 times more likely to fire their weapons than civilian law enforcement.
The “Dirty Bastards” quick reaction force, made up of both American and Italian soldiers, poses at Forward Operating Base Lavaredo in Afghanistan in 2012. Photo courtesy of Nate Tilton.

How Being “In on the [Racist] Joke” Silences Service Members

Service members often feel compelled to laugh along at racist jokes and comments.

Camouflaged as Polling Workers, National Guard Presence During Primaries Fuels Worries of Militarized Presidential Election

“Our goal was to make sure that you couldn’t tell whether it was a Guardsman or a volunteer,” said a spokesperson, of the deployments to polling stations. 

“It Would Be a Mistake to Underestimate Russia”: The New Cold War That’s Emerging in the Arctic

As Arctic ice shrinks, and climate change makes routes easier to traverse, a military struggle for control looms. Russia is already trying to claim it.
Can the Pentagon Lead the Tech Sector Again?

Can the Pentagon Lead the Tech Sector Again?

Silicon Valley was built on defense dollars, but bureaucracy and a rise of Big Tech and startups have left the U.S. military behind in defense acquisitions.