The Army's 'Space Cowboys' can see anywhere - We Are The Mighty
MIGHTY TACTICAL

The Army’s ‘Space Cowboys’ can see anywhere

It can sometimes be hard for commanders to get a full picture of the battlefield, whether that’s on the ground in Syria or in the forests of Colorado. The “Space Cowboys” of the Colorado Army National Guard‘s 117th Space Battalion aim to solve that problem.


Just the Facts

  • The 117th Space Battalion is the only unit of its kind in the National Guard.
  • Its 12 space support teams work with commercial and classified space-based assets to support command requirements.
  • The 117th has the highest concentration of space support teams anywhere in the Army.
  • Army Space Support Teams are made up of six soldiers — two officers and four enlisted — each with unique skills. The teams deploy around the world to enhance intelligence and operations planning abilities.
  • The Army’s ‘Space Cowboys’ can see anywhere

    U.S. Army Sgt. Rick D. Peevy, a crew chief from Alpha Company, 2nd Battalion, 135th Aviation Regiment, Colorado Army National Guard, surveys the scene while wildfires burn the training range at Fort Carson, Colo., June 12, 2008.

  • “The [space] support team allows the warfighter to see and overcome enemy forces using the most appropriate amount of lethality available to them,” said Army Sgt. Maj. Fred Korb, the 117th’s senior enlisted leader. “For example, this allows the maximum effectiveness for targeting enemy forces while limiting danger to the coalition warfighter and noncombatants.”
  • More than 55 percent of soldiers in the unit have advanced degrees.
  • “Support can include producing imagery products, deconflicting GPS issues, missile warning, missile defense, satellite communications, and space as well as terrestrial weather effects on operations,” said Army Staff Sgt. Joseph Fauskee, the noncommissioned officer in charge of one of the battalion’s space support teams.
  • The 117th’s soldiers also produce the imagery needed to support wildfire fighting efforts in their home state. This year, some of its soldiers responded to the Spring Creek fire, the third-largest wildfire in Colorado history.
  • This article originally appeared on the United States Department of Defense. Follow @DeptofDefense on Twitter.

    popular

    4 tips for you to win a real life battle royale game

    The most recent trend to take the gaming world by storm is the advent of massively multiplayer battle royale games that pit around 100 players against each other. The gameplay is simple: The player lands in a random location, picks up whatever weapons they can manage, and fights others to be the last player standing.


    While there are plenty of game mechanics that counter the tips on this list, it wouldn’t be too hard to imagine what it would take to emerge victorious should a battle royale actually happen. Who knows, maybe these real-life tactics will even help you win a game or two.

    The Army’s ‘Space Cowboys’ can see anywhere

    Dropping into Pleasant Park might not be the best idea…

    (Epic Games)

    Avoid people

    The beginning of every match has the players make a mad rush in search of randomly placed weapons. Players can generally assume that larger locations have better gear because there are more locations in which for gear to appear.

    Assuming the real-life situation is similar and gear is placed without rhyme or reason, there’d simply be no reason to pick a popular place to start. The last situation you want to find yourself in is one where you’re without weapons or protection among people who have both.

    The Army’s ‘Space Cowboys’ can see anywhere

    Maybe hide in a bunker. No one ever bothers to check the bunkers.

    (Bluehole Studio, Inc.)

    Defensive location

    Most battle royale games constrict the field of play as the game goes on, preventing players from hiding in one spot the entire time instead of, you know, actually playing the game.

    In real life, however, where isn’t any time limit, look for a place where you can watch only one avenue of approach and wait things out while the enemies dwindle.

    The Army’s ‘Space Cowboys’ can see anywhere

    “Don’t mind me. I’m just an aggressive bush. A very aggressive bush.”

    (Bohemia Interactive)

    Stealth

    The focus of the game is to outlive everyone. This also means that the last two players will need to duke it out (or let the other player die on their own) for there to be a single winner.

    You want your enemy to be focusing on the other 98 enemies around them. If you need supplies, keep a low profile. Do not draw attention to yourself. Find some way to blend into the environment so that any enemy looking for you instead looks right past you.

    The Army’s ‘Space Cowboys’ can see anywhere

    Because everything actually is a trap.

    (Mojang)

    Slow, methodical pace

    Much of what separates the games from any real-life, hypothetical scenario is the pace. If you run around having fun and you die in the game… Cool. On to the next round. Meanwhile, in real life, we’ve started wars over the question of whether there is indeed a “next round after death.”

    In real life, you’ll need to take the time to think every action through. If your current position is in more danger than another, move without drawing attention to yourself. Believe every step you take is into a trap and plan accordingly.

    MIGHTY CULTURE

    10 signs that you’re a military parent

    Military parents: we’re one great big, loving, dysfunctional family. We may have a lot of differences, but we also have a lot in common. Find out the answers we received when we asked a group of military parents to complete the statement “you know you’re a military parent when…”


    The Army’s ‘Space Cowboys’ can see anywhere

    (Pixabay)

    1. You stalk the mailman.

    You can especially relate to this when your military member is a recruit or trainee. There are no phone calls, text messages, emails coming through. If you’re waiting to hear from them, all you can do is wait until the mailman comes rolling down the street and stops at your mailbox with your fingers crossed.

    The Army’s ‘Space Cowboys’ can see anywhere

    (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Tech. Sgt. Lealan Buehrer)

    2.  Whenever you hear the National Anthem your heart fills with pride.

    You’re at a stadium sports arena for a game or concert, and you hear the national anthem. You stand a little taller, sing a little louder and you see that veteran in the audience still standing at attention all these years later and a tear trickles down your face, and can’t help but feel an enormous sense of pride.

    The Army’s ‘Space Cowboys’ can see anywhere

    U.S. Air Force photo by Sean M. Worrell)

    3. You can bring any conversation back to the fact your child is in the military.

    Parents are the best at this, aren’t we? You often sit and listen to your friends talking about their kids at college or high school, you wait for the perfect moment to tell them all about your child in the military. “Did I tell you Johnny is getting ready to deploy right now?”

    4. You wear RED on Fridays

    Remember Everyone Deployed means you wear red on Fridays to let all those serving overseas on deployment know they’re not forgotten; that a nation they’re fighting for is praying for them, is thinking of them constantly, and is proud of them.

    5. Your new favorite vacation destination is the Permanent Duty Station of your military member.

    A non-military parent may schedule their vacations to a sunny beach destination, or maybe even an amusement park. Not military parents! Our vacations are now to wherever our child is stationed, whether it’s in the desert, the cold, overseas, or wherever else our military member is living at that time. “Woo hoo, it’s time to go to 29 Palms!”

    The Army’s ‘Space Cowboys’ can see anywhere

    (USAF)

    6. You now understand and use military time and the phonetic alphabet.

    You tell your co-worker you’ll be getting off work at 1630. They look at you with a confused expression on their face and you say, “Oh, I mean 4:30 p.m. I’m sorry, I’m so used to using military time with my son/daughter in the military now.” (As an aside, this a great way to start that conversation about your child in the military – see #3 above.)

    7. You have a military t-shirt for every day of the week, along with pins and hats.

    You can’t get enough of military swag! Whether it represents the Army, Navy, Air Force, Coast Guard or Marines, you have t-shirts, hats, socks, earrings, necklaces, pins, stickers for your car. You name it, military parents have something for every occasion, and they wear or display it loud and proud.

    8. You see the proud parent of a “insert college university name here” and you laugh.

    You can’t help but giggle. Their child might have went to a top college or university, but your child is a part of the finest fighting military in the world. Go USA!

    The Army’s ‘Space Cowboys’ can see anywhere

    (U.S. Air Force photo/Senior Airman Chris Willis)

    9. You’ve become an expert at mailing out care packages where the items inside aren’t as much as the postage to send it.

    You do this especially when your military member is deployed overseas. Baking cookies, brownies, sending wipes, toiletries, etc., are all great ways to stay connected with your loved one, and often gives them something that they truly need. A lot of the time, the cost of sending the package outweighs the monetary value of what’s inside!

    10. You know that things can and will change.

    If there’s one thing a military family, including military parents, has to be, it’s flexible. Your loved one’s plans can change at the drop of a hat, so you have to learn to go with the flow and be supportive.

    There were over 250 comments from parents around the country when I asked for feedback. I could only choose 10. Which of these was your favorite? Share your comments below – we would love to read them!

    This article originally appeared on Sandboxx. Follow Sandboxx on Facebook.

    MIGHTY TRENDING

    North Korea accidentally burned a photographer alive during a missile test

    There’s a saying in the photography community, first coined by the legendary Robert Capa: “if your photos aren’t good enough, you’re not close enough.” If that’s true, there’s one North Korean photog who has the world’s best photo of a rocket launch. Sadly, no one will ever see it because the photo was burned up along with the man who took it.


    The worst part is, the Korean Central News Agency distributed video of his gruesome death for all the world to see.

    The Army’s ‘Space Cowboys’ can see anywhere

    Ow Ow Ow Ow Ow Ow Ow Ow

    No one loves testing missiles and telling the world about it more than North Korea, so it’s likely the photographer was put there on purpose. Whether or not anyone (especially the photographer) knew he was in the blast zone for the Hwasong-15 rocket is anyone’s guess.

    “The photographer who stood near Hwasong-15 missile was enveloped by fire,” said one onlooker to the incident. “I was shocked to see officials watching the launch. I did not know whether it was the fault of the cameraman or the control center. But it was impossible for leader Kim Jong-un who was at the site not to have witnessed the incident.”

    The Army’s ‘Space Cowboys’ can see anywhere

    Kim Jong-un and the Korean People’s Army rejoice at the launch of a Hwasong-15 missile test.

    As North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un and his cronies watched North Korea’s largest, most powerful Intercontinental ballistic missile test to date – and cheered on – it’s possible that up to 16 people who were in the test area were burned alive by the missile’s blast. South Korea says the KCNA broadcasts were later edited to remove the toasted photographer.

    MIGHTY TRENDING

    Everything you need to know about the protests rocking Iran

    Iran was rocked this week by the largest protests in the country since 2009.


    Pro- and anti-government demonstrators took to the streets starting Dec. 28, 2017, and gradually moved from the outer cities into the capital, Tehran, and Iran’s second-largest city, Mashhad.

    At least 20 people were dead as of Jan. 2. As of Jan.1, six people were dead in the small city of Tuyserkan, two in the city of Dorud, two in the southwestern city of Izeh, and two in Lorestan province.

    The protests have attracted global attention, and footage of the action has been shared hundreds of thousands of time on social media.

    The demonstrations became so widely publicized that Iran blocked access to Instagram and a popular messaging app used by activists to organize and discuss the protests.

    Here’s what you need to know about the demonstrations:

    Demonstrators began taking to the streets on Dec. 28, 2017.

     

    At first, they were protesting against Iran’s dire economic downturn and the skyrocketing prices of basic necessities like eggs and poultry.

    As things gained steam, however, the demonstrations took on a more political edge, with activists accusing the Iranian government of corruption and calling on Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei to step down.

    The protests drew global attention as activists began posting photos and videos of the demonstrations to social media.

     

    Footage of the action has been shared hundreds of thousands of time on social media. Some videos showed protesters chanting “Death to the dictator!” and “Death to Rouhani,” the Iranian president.

    Other footage showed activists shouting slogans like “We don’t want Islamic Republic!”

    As the demonstrations escalated, pro-government protesters flooded the streets on Saturday to counter the anti-corruption activists.

    Iranian hard-liners who support President Hassan Rouhani, Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, and the clerical establishment of the Islamic Republic came out in droves this weekend to retaliate against the demonstrators.

    Demonstrations exploded after that.

     

    Activists came out in full force after pro-government demonstrators rallied on Saturday.

    The protests moved from outer cities into Iran’s capital city, Tehran. They also shook Iran’s second-largest city, Mashhad.

    Police officers used tear gas and water cannons to disperse crowds as the demonstrations grew rowdier.

    Also Read: Iran threatens to drop missiles on US bases if White House imposes new sanctions

    And when that happened, state media was also forced to acknowledge that it had not initially reported on the protests on the orders of security officials.

    “Counterrevolution groups and foreign media are continuing their organized efforts to misuse the people’s economic and livelihood problems and their legitimate demands to provide an opportunity for unlawful gatherings and possibly chaos,” state TV said of the protests.

    But Iranian officials and state media added that citizens had the right to protest and have their voices heard on social issues.

    Two people were killed overnight, becoming the first deaths attributed to the rallies.

    That number grew to 12 deaths by Monday and at least 20 by Tuesday.

    In addition to the 20 reported deaths, hundreds of protesters have been arrested since Thursday. One Iranian, who requested anonymity, told Reuters there was a heavy police presence in Tehran.

    “I saw a few young men being arrested and put into police van,” he said. “They don’t let anyone assemble.”

    On Sunday, Telegram CEO Pavel Durov said on Twitter that authorities had cut off access to the app.

     

    “Iranian authorities are blocking access to Telegram for the majority of Iranians after our public refusal to shut down … peacefully protesting channels,” he wrote.

    Activists were using Telegram to organize and discuss the protests, and they also used Instagram to share photos and videos of the demonstrations.

    State media confirmed that both Instagram and Telegram had been blocked, with a source saying it was done as a safety measure.

    The Iranian government is denying responsibility for the deaths and unrest.

     

    Authorities said Iranian security forces were not responsible for the deaths and instead blamed Sunni Muslim extremists and foreign actors.

    Rouhani said demonstrators had the right to protest the government, and he also acknowledged that some of the protesters’ grievances were legitimate. He added, however, that the demonstrations should not devolve into violence or anti-government chants.

    “The USA is watching very closely.”

    US President Donald Trump weighed in on the unrest this weekend.

    “The entire world understands that the good people of Iran want change, and, other than the vast military power of the United States, that Iran’s people are what their leaders fear the most….” he tweeted. “Oppressive regimes cannot endure forever, and the day will come when the Iranian people will face a choice. The world is watching!”

    “Big protests in Iran,” he later added. “The people are finally getting wise as to how their money and wealth is being stolen and squandered on terrorism. Looks like they will not take it any longer. The USA is watching very closely for human rights violations!”

    Trump continued tweeting about the Iran protests on Tuesday, writing, “The people of Iran are finally acting against the brutal and corrupt Iranian regime. All of the money that President Obama so foolishly gave them went into terrorism and into their “pockets.” The people have little food, big inflation and no human rights. The U.S. is watching!”

     

    Nikki Haley, the US ambassador to the United Nations, said: “The Iranian government is being tested by its own citizens. We pray that freedom and human rights will carry the day.”

    Rouhani pushed back on Trump’s remarks, saying the US president had no right to sympathize with protesters because he “called the Iranian nation terrorists a few months ago.”

    MIGHTY MOVIES

    ‘First Man’ director wants to show the sacrifices that military families made as astronauts braved the unknown

    Three months ago, Navy SEAL and NASA Astronaut Chris Cassidy slogged through the dirt roads of Normandy with a 44lbs rucksack on his back. Captain Cassidy and several dozen other SEALs (myself included) had just swam 11 miles through the English channel to commemorate the pre-D-Day mission of the first Naval Commandos. The 11-mile swim / 25-mile ruck run on the 74th anniversary of D-Day had a purpose: to raise money for fallen SEALs and their families.

    It was an act of service for those who had died in service.


    Cassidy, who earned a Bronze Star in Afghanistan, sweated out this epic charity challenge in the middle of training for another kind of walk — one that will take place at 17,000 miles per hour, 400 kilometers above the earth’s surface. If all goes well, Cassidy will return to space and conduct a spacewalk to make repairs on the International Space Station. But, in the midst of endless days of preparation and training, he took time to honor his military roots — a heritage he shares with a long line of astronauts before him. Captain Chris Cassidy said,

    It’s truly been an honor to have a role in our nation’s manned space program. We have had astronauts and cosmonauts living continuously on the International Space Station for the last 18 years which has only been possible because of the Mercury, Gemini, and Apollo programs. That history is also deeply intertwined with the military. Personally, I love how in both our nation’s space program and military, laser focus on mission success is balanced with detailed planning and operational rick controls. It’s also an amazing feeling to be among such motivated and talented people.

    That heritage is one of the centerpieces of the new blockbuster film, First Man, featuring Ryan Gosling starring as NASA Astronaut Neil Armstrong. People know Armstrong as the man who walked on the moon; they often don’t know that Armstrong was a decorated Navy fighter pilot and Korean War veteran.

    The Army’s ‘Space Cowboys’ can see anywhere

    Neil Armstrong in 1964, while in training to be an astronaut.

    (NASA)

    The film is largely focused on Armstrong’s life and the mission to get to the moon — but it explores a theme familiar to military audiences: the challenge of maintaining a family while deploying to do dangerous work. The film depicts Armstrong’s family and their sacrifice, particularly that of Armstrong’s wife, Janet. And it shows scenes that any military family has faced: how to speak to your children about the danger of the mission; the enormous stress before the deployment; the uncertainty while your loved one is far away. All of this is shown with raw and real emotion.

    What was true then and is true now is that service member families often bear a heavy and overlooked burden during times of conflict. While First Man is primarily a movie about the first moon walk, it’s important to remember that that mission, and the space program in general, was the byproduct of a conflict: the Cold War and the tension between the USSR and the US. The frontlines of the early space race were the frontiers of space, and its foot soldiers were military test pilots who strapped themselves to rockets and ventured into the stratosphere in service of their country.

    The Army’s ‘Space Cowboys’ can see anywhere

    Apollo 11 astronauts with families, 1969

    (Ralph Morse for LIFE)

    I had an opportunity to speak with Academy Award-winning director Damien Chazelle (the director behind the smash-hit films La La Land and Whiplash) and ask him about these themes of the connection between military service and the space program:

    1. Tell us a bit about the inspiration behind ‘First Man’

    After I made Whiplash, I was approached by producers Wyck Godfrey, Isaac Klausner, and Marty Bowen about the idea of doing a movie on Neil Armstrong. I didn’t know much about space travel and didn’t know what my angle would be. But I started reading Jim Hansen’s incredible book, First Man, and started to think of Neil’s story as a story about the cost of great achievement — similar to what I had looked at in Whiplash, only on a much bigger canvas.

    What was the toll that the mission to the moon took? I was awed by the sacrifice, the patriotism, the ambition, and the vision that made the impossible possible — and the reminder that it was human beings who did it, ordinary people thrust into extraordinary circumstances and overcoming daunting odds — and even great tragedy — to accomplish something for the ages.

    The Army’s ‘Space Cowboys’ can see anywhere

    The crewmen of the Apollo 11 lunar landing mission leave the Kennedy Space Center’s (KSC) Manned Spacecraft Operations Building (MSOB) during the prelaunch countdown. Astronauts Neil A. Armstrong, commander; Michael Collins, command module pilot; and Edwin E. Aldrin Jr., lunar module pilot, ride the special transport van over to Launch Complex 39A where their spacecraft awaited them. Liftoff was at 9:32 a.m.

    (NASA)

    2. What’s woven through the movie are themes of duty and sacrifice. And as a Navy veteran myself, I could identify not just with the astronauts (especially Neil, Navy pilot), but with their families and what they went through. Can you talk a bit about those themes and how they affected your work on this?

    The family aspect was paramount — showing these famous events through the eyes of not just Neil, but his wife Janet and his sons, Rick and Mark. How did they all cope with the demands of the job? Funerals were a normal part of life. Two of Neil’s closest friends died while he was in the program. Neil himself almost died several times. And yet, balanced with the danger and the risk, he and Janet also had to take out the trash, clean the pool, make breakfast for their kids. That combination of the intimate and the epic, and the selfless way Neil and Janet confronted all of it, was extraordinary to me.

    But I also think it’s worth remembering, as you note, that Neil had been in the Navy. He was someone who believed deeply in service for country. He risked his life in the Korean War. He became a test pilot to forward our understanding of aeronautics, to contribute to knowledge. He went to space to keep seeking those answers. This is someone who was not acting in his own self-interest, who was not seeking fame or fortune. This is a man who believed, in all aspects of his life, that his duty to the mission came first, and without that willingness to risk it all and to sacrifice it all I don’t believe the moon landing ever would have happened.

    3. Can you talk a bit about Janet Armstrong and her role?

    Ryan and I were lucky enough to meet with Janet and spend time with her. She was an incredible woman, and the stories she told us and memories she shared with us were invaluable. Like Neil, Janet was tough — she had a grit to her that I think made her uniquely qualified for her role in the space program. It’s worth remembering that astronaut wives like Janet played an enormous part in the overall endeavor of going to the moon: they were the ones to had to find the balance between space and home, between the demands of their husbands’ work with the lives of their kids and the necessities of home. They had to do it all while putting on a smile for the cameras — even when they couldn’t know for sure if their husbands would ever return from space. One of my greatest joys in making this movie was in watching Claire Foy embody Janet’s spirit and resilience and pay tribute to such an amazing person.

    The Army’s ‘Space Cowboys’ can see anywhere

    The Apollo 11 crewmen, still under a 21-day quarantine, are greeted by their wives, Janet Armstrong, Patricia Collins, and Joan Aldrin.

    (NASA)

    4. There’s a scene in the film where Neil Armstrong is talking to his boys about what’s about to happen — the mission and the risks. Can you give us a sense of what you were thinking with that scene and what you wanted to convey?

    That’s a scene that many families across the country have their own version of: the mom or dad about to go off to work, and the knowledge that he or she may not come back. It again speaks to a willingness to sacrifice in the name of service that I find awe-inspiring. In this movie’s case, the scene at the dinner table between Neil and Janet and their boys Rick and Mark was almost word-for-word what actually happened. Janet insisted to Neil he talk to his kids and explain to them what he was doing and what the risks were; much of the scene was taken verbatim from Rick and Mark Armstrong’s recollections. It was a tremendously important scene for all of us — a moment where the characters have to come to a stop and confront the dangers of what they are doing, and what it all means.

    5. The military and the space program have a long joint history. At the simplest, a lot of veterans became astronauts. The SEAL community, which I’m a part of, for example is proud of the fact that there are two astronauts currently in training who are SEALs. Did that joint history play into your research at all, or the end product?

    It did, in several ways. First, I liked to think of the film as almost a war movie. The moon mission was initially a product of the Cold War, and the astronauts who risked their lives for their country were all former or current servicemen. The dangers were almost combat-like, too — this was not the glossy, glamorous, sleek-and-easy space travel I grew up seeing in movies. These capsules were like old tanks and submarines; the rockets carrying them out of the atmosphere were essentially converted missiles. The dangers were front and center — and, with them, the immense bravery required to face them.

    The Army’s ‘Space Cowboys’ can see anywhere

    This photograph of astronaut Neil A. Armstrong, Apollo 11 commander, was taken inside the Lunar Module (LM) while the LM rested on the lunar surface.

    (NASA)

    6. The film’s story and title come from James Hansen’s biography of Neil Armstrong, but I was curious: Did you have any other creative influences that helped you make this — books, films, etc?

    Yes, many! As I alluded to, certain war movies were big inspirations: Saving Private Ryan, Paths of Glory, The Deer Hunter. Movies about submarines like Das Boot. I also read as many books on the subject matter as I could — one of my favorites was “Carrying the Fire” by Mike Collins, who flew with Neil on Apollo 11. “Deke!” by Deke Slayton and “Failure Is Not An Option” by Gene Kranz were also key. And, finally, documentaries! The archival material shot by NASA, much of which is compiled in incredible films like For All Mankind and Moonwalk One. Documentaries of the period like Salesman and Hospital and Gimme Shelter. An amazing documentary by Frederick Wiseman, about training at Vandenberg Air Force Base, called Missile. All of these taught and inspired me.

    First Man, starring Ryan Gosling, arrives in theaters October 12, 2018.

    Kaj Larsen is an award-winning journalist whose work has appeared on CNN, ABC, CBS, NBC, Fox, VICE, Huffington Post, and numerous other outlets. He also served as a US Navy SEAL earning the rank of Lieutenant Commander and completing multiple deployments in the Global War on Terrorism. His family member, Judith Resnick, was the second American woman in space and was killed on launch during the 1986 Challenger space shuttle explosion.

    MIGHTY MOVIES

    How ‘Game of Thrones’ went WW2 in the penultimate episode

    Major spoilers ahead for Season 8 Episode 5.

    I mean character spoilers, though. Turn back if you have enjoyed watching Daenerys Targaryen rise from being sold and raped to become the just ruler of Slaver Dragon Bay before returning to Westeros and fighting alongside her people. In The Bells, Daenerys goes from being the Breaker of Chains to Queen of the Ashes in an instant, destroying all of King’s Landing and, of course, the internet.

    She’d already won the battle…so why did she do it?

    Let’s talk about Fat Man and Little Boy.


    Hiroshima Atomic Bomb (1945) | A Day That Shook the World

    www.youtube.com

    On August 6, 1945, the United States released a nuclear weapon over the Japanese city of Hiroshima, killing 140,000 people. Three days later, the U.S. dropped a second bomb, this one over the city of Nagasaki, killing 40,000 more instantly, while thousands more would die of radiation poisoning.

    Eight days later, Japan formally surrendered to the Allied forces, effectively ending World War II.

    Last night on Game of Thrones, Daenerys Stormborn defeated the military protecting Cersei Lannister…but she made the choice to raze King’s Landing and the Red Keep to the ground with dragonfire anyway.

    Why?

    [rebelmouse-proxy-image https://media.rbl.ms/image?u=%2FuHccXYrGRIFNe.gif&ho=https%3A%2F%2Fi.giphy.com&s=97&h=f443aa9a5f2614dfa658a1838da7cdbe855119d547922e94e5a67c8e9a1a80fb&size=980x&c=2417663613 crop_info=”%7B%22image%22%3A%20%22https%3A//media.rbl.ms/image%3Fu%3D%252FuHccXYrGRIFNe.gif%26ho%3Dhttps%253A%252F%252Fi.giphy.com%26s%3D97%26h%3Df443aa9a5f2614dfa658a1838da7cdbe855119d547922e94e5a67c8e9a1a80fb%26size%3D980x%26c%3D2417663613%22%7D” expand=1]

    The only reasoning I can accept is that she needed to demonstrate the full capabilities of her power so that none would challenge her again. Her logic is that a weapon of mass destruction is justified to ultimately save the lives of the rest of the kingdom.

    In other words, she made the decision to nuke Japan to end the war.

    Also read: How Daenerys used tactics that made the Red Baron famous

    If you’re like me and you’ve been thrilled to watch the strongest most bad ass female protagonist ever and she’s your Khaleesi and your Mhysa and, yeah, she burns her enemies a little but whatever who wouldn’t then yes, this hurts.

    Many people have argued that this was not an out-of-character arc.

    To those people I say Drogon can eat you all…but here we are.

    The Army’s ‘Space Cowboys’ can see anywhere

    She had her reasons.

    When American scientists successfully employed an atomic bomb in 1945, President Harry S. Truman was faced with a decision. He tasked a committee of advisors to deliberate whether to use the bomb against Japan (by then, Germany had already surrendered). Ultimately, the men decided to use the bomb rather than prolong the war.

    The alternative was an invasion of Japan, which would have cost (American) money and lives.

    Truman always stood by his decision.

    Also read: 7 secret weapons Allied soldiers would’ve faced while invading Japan

    If Daenerys Targaryen truly believes that she is not only the rightful ruler of the Seven Kingdoms, but also the best ruler, then it is conceivable that she would pursue victory at all costs. In the episodes leading up to her conquest of King’s Landing, she realized that she didn’t have the support or loyalty of the North that was promised to her by the Starks — not even from her lover-turned-rival Aegon Targaryen Jon Snow.

    So I guess in her hangry moment up there on her battle buddy she decided she would have to show everyone what she was capable of — so that fear would cause them to comply.

    This will obviously not go over well from the holier-than-thou Starks in what promises to be the crankiest series final ever.

    The Army’s ‘Space Cowboys’ can see anywhere

    See you next week.

    Articles

    Top Army leaders may kill ‘Death by Powerpoint’

    In a move geared to reduce the bureaucratic overhead for soldiers who’re supposed to get straight to the business of fighting wars, Sec. of the Army Eric Fanning and Chief of Staff Gen. Mark Milley announced a plan to cut down on PowerPoints and other mandatory briefings suffered by soldiers throughout the world.


    The Army’s ‘Space Cowboys’ can see anywhere
    Secretary of the Army Eric Fanning and Chief of Staff Gen. Mark Milley during a press conference at AUSA. (Photo: Ward Carroll)

    Federal News Radio originally reported the top Army leaders’ comments during the 2016 Association of the U.S. Army annual meeting in Washington, D.C.

    “We essentially made a decision that if it’s Army-directed — which, unfortunately, a lot of it is — then we’re going to leave it up to the commanders to figure out how to get their soldiers trained,” Fanning said, “rather than have them walk through the mandatory PowerPoints we create at headquarters and send out to you in the field.”

    So local commanders would get the option of skipping certain training classes to focus on preparing for war. This wouldn’t necessarily result in less training for soldiers, but it would result in more targeted training. An infantry squad would be more easily found in the field than a classroom.

    And anyone in the Army could testify that units spend too much time in briefing halls, theaters, and chapels doing PowerPoints. Yes, there are so many troops who need so many classes that it is routine for chapels to be used for briefings and PowerPoint presentations.

    Milley shared how bad the list of required classes had grown.

    “At the end of the day, the last document I saw was 12 pages of single-spaced, nine-point type listing all of the activities a company commander and a first sergeant have to do, mandated by us. It’s nuts. It’s insane,” he said.

    Unfortunately for company commanders, Milley and Fanning seem to have been specifically discussing requirements from the Department of the Army and made no mention of requirements from other levels of command.

    MIGHTY CULTURE

    The Navy wants to know who secretly uploaded videos of sailors to Porn Hub

    The US Navy is trying to find out who secretly filmed dozens of service members in a bathroom and shared the videos on the porn website Porn Hub, US military officials told NBC news.


    An agent from the Naval Criminal Investigative Service found the videos on Porn Hub earlier this month. Some of the videos showed sailors and marines in uniform with visible name patches, NBC reported. The individuals didn’t know they were being recorded and officials were not aware of any sexual acts in the videos.

    “We received a removal request from the Naval Criminal Investigative Service to remove the material in question and we did. We are currently working alongside them to assist them with their investigation,”Blake White, Vice President of Pornhub, said in a statement to Insider and other outlets. “Here at Pornhub, we immediately remove any content that violates our terms of use as soon as we are made aware of it.”

    The clips, which have since been removed, also included civilians.

    The officials believe the videos were taken through a peephole in a bathroom, according to NBC.Some of the individuals in the videos were assigned to the USS Emory S. Land, a vessel that supplies submarines and is assigned to a port in Guam, the officials told NBC.

    A message left by Insider for a Navy spokesperson was not immediately returned.

    In the statement, White said that PornHub employs a team to scan for and remove content that violates their terms of service.

    The company also uses “Vobile, a state of the art third party fingerpringing software,” to make sure new uploads don’t match videos that have already been removed from the site, White said.

    This isn’t the first time that US service members have been targeted by voyeurs looking to share nude photos of them online.

    In a 2017 scandal, the US Marine Corp. opened an investigation after hundreds of nude photos of female service members from every military branch had been posted to an image-sharing message board.

    The discovery of the photos and investigation resulted in a change in US Marine and Navy laws banning revenge porn.

    Violators who are found to have shared an “intimate image” of a colleague without their consent can face consequences ranging from administrative punishments to criminal actions.

    This article originally appeared on Business Insider. Follow @BusinessInsider on Twitter.

    Articles

    This is the only unit to see combat in every major conflict since WWI

    There are hundreds (if not thousands) of numbered units throughout the military, many with storied histories and with extensive combat roles since the United States military began operating on the world stage in the early 20th Century. The U.S. Army’s 3rd Infantry Regiment can trace its lineage all the way back to the American Revolution. The 1st Infantry Division can claim to be the longest continuously serving division in the U.S. military. Even the U.S. Navy has the famed USS Constitution, the oldest commissioned sailing ship in the fleet. However, no unit has been deployed to every major conflict of the last one hundred years except for one — the 5th Marine Regiment.


    The Army’s ‘Space Cowboys’ can see anywhere
    Lance Cpl. Seth H. Capps, a member of the United States Marine Corps Silent Drill Platoon, drinks out of Devil Dog Fountain following the 93rd anniversary of the Battle for Belleau Wood May 30. (Photo By Cpl. Bobby J. Yarbrough)

    The 5th Marine Regiment’s story begins on June 8, 1917, when it was activated in Philadelphia as part of the United States’ buildup for World War I. The Regiment was assigned to the 4th Marine Brigade, which became a part of the U.S. Army’s 2nd Division. The 5th would establish itself in Marine Corps lore for its actions at the Battle of Belleau Wood in the spring of 1918. They would also fight at places such as Aisne and St. Mihiel, as well as the Meuse-Argonne Offensive.

    During the regiment’s service in France, it earned its nickname, “the Fighting Fifth,” and was awarded the French Fourragère for receiving three Croix de Guerre citations, a decoration members of the 5th Marines still wear today. The unit also had five folks (3 USMC, 2 USN) receive the Medal of Honor.

    The Army’s ‘Space Cowboys’ can see anywhere
    A Collier’s drawing of Belleau Wood, circa 1921

    The next major action for the Fighting Fifth was battling their way across the Pacific in World War II. The 5th landed on Guadalcanal on August 7, 1942 and endured four months of grueling combat on there before being relieved with the rest of the division on December 9, 1942. For their efforts during Guadalcanal, the 5th Marines and the entire 1st Marine Division received their first Presidential Unit Citation.

    After a rest and refit in Australia, the 5th Marines returned to combat in the late stages of Operation Cartwheel in late December 1943. They landed at Cape Gloucester, New Britain and would fight there until February 1944 when they were relieved by the 40th Infantry Division. The Marines had another period of rest and refit before encountering their greatest challenges of the war, at Peleliu and Okinawa.

    The 5th Marines entered combat on Peleliu on September 15, 1944. Unbeknownst to them, the Japanese changed their tactics from attempting to stop landings at the beach to fortifying the entire island and creating a defense in depth. The lack of this knowledge would cost the Marines dearly. After the seizure of the airfield, the rest of the division set about clearing the remainder of the island.

    By late October, the 5th Marines were the only regiment still combat effective and their commander, Col. Harold Harris, turned to siege tactics to remove the Japanese, telling his officers “be lavish with ordnance and stingy with men’s lives.” The Marines handed over operations of the island to the 81st Infantry Division and moved on to prepare for the invasion of Okinawa.

    The Army’s ‘Space Cowboys’ can see anywhere

    The 5th Marines final action of the World War II was at Okinawa, where they landed along with the rest of the 1st Marine Division and 6th Marine Division on April 1, 1945. They were able to quickly clear the northern part of the island but Japanese resistance to the south would require extraordinary effort to reduce. The fight on Okinawa made places like Sugar Loaf Hill and Shuri Castle famous.In all of World War II four Marines from the 5th were awarded the Medal of Honor. Following the fall of Okinawa and the Japanese surrender,  the 5th was sent to China for occupation duty.

    War soon found the 5th Marines again when they were deployed as part of the Provisional Marine Brigade to the Pusan Perimeter in South Korea to shore up defenses against the invading North Koreans. The Fighting Fifth then rejoined their World War II counterparts, the 1st and 7th Marines, in reforming the 1st Marine Division to take part in the landings at Inchon and the liberation of Seoul.

    That winter the 5th Marines fought for their lives at the “Frozen Chosin” Reservoir. When the situation looked bleak and the Marines were falling back Gen. Oliver Smith told his command, “Retreat, Hell! We’re not retreating, we’re just advancing in a different direction!”

    After their withdrawal from North Korea, the 5th Marines remained in the war and would hold off the Chinese attempts to break the Main Line of Resistance until the armistice in July 1953. The heroic efforts of the 5th Marines garnered ten more Medals of Honor and another Presidential Unit Citation. The regiment left Korea in 1955.

    The Army’s ‘Space Cowboys’ can see anywhere

    Peacetime would not last long for the 5th as just over a decade after leaving Korea they were deployed as part of the troop buildup in Vietnam in May 1966. The 5th Marines and the rest of the 1st Marine Division would spend six years battling the North Vietnamese Army and Vietcong. Their fighting spirit would make their name known once again, this time at places like Huế during the Tet Offensive. During the Vietnam War, seven members of the regiment received the Medal of Honor before returning to Camp Pendleton in 1971.

    The 5th Marines returned to combat once again against the forces of Saddam Hussein in 1991 as part of Operation Desert Storm. 1st Battalion served as part of Task Force Ripper, while the 2nd and 3rd Battalions joined later and participated in the Liberation of Kuwait. The 5th Marines returned to the Middle East in 2003 as part of the Invasion of Iraq where they spearheaded the Marine Corps efforts. After defeating Iraqi forces, the 5th Marines remained in Iraq until October 2003, conducting security and stability operations. They would return to Iraq two more times, each time completing a 13-month deployment. Beginning in 2009 separate battalions of the 5th Marines began deployments to Afghanistan until the deployment of Regimental Combat Team 5 in 2011. 2nd Battalion was the last to deploy serving with RCT 6 in 2012.

    The Army’s ‘Space Cowboys’ can see anywhere
    Cpl. Brian Conley of 5th Marine Regiment, 1st Marine Division drinks from the Devil Dog Fountain in the town of Belleau, France, May 26.After participating in the Memorial Day ceremony at the Belleau cemetery the Marines of 5th Marine Reg. walked to the town of Belleau to spend time with the locals and French marines to strengthen French-American relationships while memorializing losses in the battle of Belleau Wood. (Official Marine Corps photo by: Cpl. Daniel A. Wulz)

    In the nearly 100 years since the 5th Marine Regiment was first formed, 24 Marines from the regiment have received the Medal of Honor, second only to the 7th Marines 36 recipients. The 5th Marines have also been a part of the 1st Marine Division when it received all nine of its Presidential Unit Citations, as well as earning two of its own during the Korean and Vietnam Wars. According to the Marine Corps website, the 5th Marines are the most decorated regiment in the Corps.

    MIGHTY TRENDING

    China’s new nuclear bomber isn’t actually about nukes

    China’s much-hyped but never-before-seen H-20 nuclear bomber has reportedly made “great progress” in its development recently and may even fly publicly in a 2019 military parade.

    But while China bills the mysterious jet as a modern answer to the US’ airborne leg of its nuclear triad, a close read of Beijing’s military and nuclear posture reveals another mission much more likely to actually draw blood.

    Though the jet remains an absolute unknown with only concept-art depictions in existence, let’s start with what we know. China describes the H-20 as a “new long-distance strategic bomber,” which recent imagery suggests will take a stealthy delta-wing design.


    An Asia Times profile of the H-20 cited Chinese media as saying “the ultimate goal for the H-20” is an “operational range to 12,000 kilometers with 20 tons of payload.”

    “A large flying wing design … is one of the only aerodynamic ways of achieving the broadband all-aspect stealth required for such a design,” Justin Bronk, an aerial combat expert at the Royal United Services Institute, told Business Insider.

    Only one nation on earth operates a large stealth bomber, and that’s the US. But the B-2 has never launched a nuclear bomb, instead it’s been used as a stealthy bomb truck that can devastate hardened enemy targets with massive payloads on a nearly invisible platform.

    The Army’s ‘Space Cowboys’ can see anywhere

    A possible prototype image of China’s mysterious H-20 bomber.

    According to Lawrence Trevethan, a researcher at the China Aerospace Studies Institute, which works with the US Air Force, that’s what China’s H-20 will likely do as well.

    “I see the H-20 as a nearly exact replacement for the H-6 (China’s current theoretically nuclear-capable bomber),” Trevethan told Business Insider.

    Ignore the nuclear mission

    Trevethan, an expert on China’s nuclear posture, pointed out that the H-6 never trains with nuclear bombs. China’s nuclear-missile capable submarines have never had a verified nuclear deterrence patrol. China’s nuclear weapons are not kept mated atop missiles, unlike Russia and the US.

    And there’s a simple reason why, according to Trevethan: Nuclear weapons are expensive and mutual nuclear war has never happened.

    Instead, conventional war happens — and happens all the time.

    Trevethan called the H-20 a bomber “that might actually contribute to a military victory in a war fought as its [nuclear] doctrine imagines. “

    Bronk agreed, saying the “biggest impact of a B-2 style capability for the PLAAF [China’s air force] would be much greater vulnerability of bases such as Guam and Kadana to conventional precision strikes.”

    Currently, the US has Aegis and THAAD missile defenses in Guam and its Japanese bases, which pose a threat to China’s fleet of missiles. But the US has no established defense against a stealth bomber, which China will likely seek to exploit with the H-20.

    The Army’s ‘Space Cowboys’ can see anywhere

    Throughout the 1960s, US B-52 nuclear-capable bombers stayed airborne and ready to launch nearly around the clock.

    (US Air Force photo)

    Not built for cold wars

    Instead of a simple air-based nuclear deterrent, like the US and Russia maintain, spend tons of money on, and hope to never use, China’s H-20 looks more like a bomber that actually plans to fight wars. (The US’ bomber fleet, both nuclear and non-nuclear, fights in wars, but never in a nuclear capacity.)

    China’s defensive nuclear posture also allows it more leeway in a shooting war. If the US and Russia got into a battle, and either side saw ballistic missiles heading for the other, it would have to assume they were nuclear missiles and retaliate before it faced utter destruction.

    But with no missiles ready to go and a much smaller stockpile, China can fire missiles at US bases and ships without giving the impression of a full-on nuclear doomsday.

    By fitting the H-20’s concept into China’s nuclear posture, it comes across as more of a credible conventional strike platform meant to beat the US back in the Pacific rather than a flying nuclear threat.

    This article originally appeared on Business Insider. Follow @BusinessInsider on Twitter.

    MIGHTY TACTICAL

    US Air Force shows off B-1B weapons expansion

    The 412th Test Wing, along with Air Force Global Strike Command and industry partners, held an expanded carriage demonstration with the B-1B Lancer bomber at Edwards Air Force Base, California, Aug. 28, 2019. The demonstration showcased the feasibility of increasing the B-1B weapons capacity to integrate future advanced weapons.

    The two potential programs — external carriage and long bay options — would allow the B-1B to carry weapons externally, significantly increasing its magazine capacity for munitions, as well as adding larger, heavier munitions, such as hypersonic weapons.

    “The purpose of the demonstration was to show that we’re still able to move the bulkhead from the forward intermediate bay to the forward location; increasing the intermediate bay capacity from 180 inches to 269 inches,” said Lt. Col. Dominic Ross, B-1B program element monitor, AFGSC. “Additionally, we demonstrated that we can still carry weapons externally on six of the eight hard points, which increases our overall carriage capacity.”


    Ross said the expanded capabilities will be conventional only, keeping the aircraft compliant with New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty, or New START.

    Lt. Gen. Richard Clark, chief of staff for Strategic Deterrence and Nuclear Integration, Headquarters Air Force, along with Gen. Tim Ray, AFGSC commander, and other government and industry partners, were briefed on the potential expanded capabilities and how they would be able to adapt to future requirements.

    “It increases the magazine capacity of the B-1B. Currently we can carry 24 weapons internally. Now it can be increased to potentially 40 based on what type of pylon we would create,” Ross said. “This gets the B-1 into the larger weapons, the 5,000 pounders. It gets it into the hypersonics game as well.”

    The Army’s ‘Space Cowboys’ can see anywhere

    Lt. Col. Dominic Ross, B-1B program element monitor, Air Force Global Strike Command, provides a brief on the expanded weapons load that a new B-1 configuration could carry during a B-1B expanded carriage demonstration at Edwards Air Force Base, California, Aug. 28, 2019.

    The Army’s ‘Space Cowboys’ can see anywhere

    Lt. Col. Dominic Ross, B-1B program element monitor, Air Force Global Strike Command, provides a brief on the B-1B expanded carriage at Edwards Air Force Base, California, Aug. 28, 2019.

    (US Air Force photo by Giancarlo Casem)

    The Army’s ‘Space Cowboys’ can see anywhere

    Lt. Col. Dominic Ross, B-1B program element monitor, Air Force Global Strike Command, explains a bulkhead modification to the B-1B bomber that allowed it to carry a notional hypersonic missile mock-up attached to a B-52H Conventional Rotary Launcher during a B-1B expanded carriage demonstration at Edwards Air Force Base, California, Aug. 28, 2019.

    The Army’s ‘Space Cowboys’ can see anywhere

    US Air Force weapons load crews conduct a training exercise on a B-1B Lancer with inert munitions at Al Udeid Air Base, Qatar, Sep. 13, 2018.

    (US Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. Ted Nichols)

    The Army’s ‘Space Cowboys’ can see anywhere

    US Air Force weapons load crews conduct a training exercise on a B-1B Lancer with inert munitions at Al Udeid Air Base, Qatar, Sep. 13, 2018.

    (US Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. Ted Nichols)

    The Army’s ‘Space Cowboys’ can see anywhere

    US Air Force weapons load crews conduct a training exercise on a B-1B Lancer with inert munitions at Al Udeid Air Base, Qatar, Sep. 13, 2018.

    The Army’s ‘Space Cowboys’ can see anywhere

    US Air Force weapons load crews conduct a training exercise on a B-1B Lancer with inert munitions at Al Udeid Air Base, Qatar, Sep. 13, 2018.

    (US Air Force Tech. Sgt. Ted Nichols)

    The Army’s ‘Space Cowboys’ can see anywhere

    US Air Force weapons load crews conduct a training exercise on a B-1B Lancer with inert munitions at Al Udeid Air Base, Qatar, Sep. 13, 2018.

    (US Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. Ted Nichols)

    The Army’s ‘Space Cowboys’ can see anywhere

    US Air Force Airman 1st Class Osvaldo Galvez operates a jammer at RAF Fairford, June 2, 2018.

    (US Air Force photo by Senior Airman Emily Copeland)

    The Army’s ‘Space Cowboys’ can see anywhere

    Air Force Tech. Sgt. Clayton Moore and Tech. Sgt. Micheal Lewis attach an inert Mark 62 Quickstrike mine to the bomb racks in a B-1B Lancer at RAF Fairford, June 2, 2018.

    (US Air Force photo by Senior Airman Emily Copeland)

    The Army’s ‘Space Cowboys’ can see anywhere

    US Air Force Staff Sgt. Sergio Escobedo closes the crew-entry ladder at RAF Fairford, England, June 1, 2018.

    (Air Force photo by Senior Airman Emily Copeland)

    “I was very adamant about making that happen because it was something that I wanted to have happen the whole time I was flying it,” Ross said. “I was ‘full afterburner’ to make sure we got this thing to where we are at, and to hopefully continue on to make it a reality.”

    This article originally appeared on Business Insider. Follow @BusinessInsider on Twitter.

    MIGHTY TRENDING

    Suicide prevention: How can you get involved?

    Suicide is one of the most challenging societal issues of our time, and sadly, one that affects those who served our Nation at alarming rates. For Veterans, the suicide rate is 1.5 times higher and the female Veteran suicide rate is 2.2 times higher than the general population.

    There is good news: suicide is preventable and working together, we can create change and save lives.

    On March 5, 2019, President Trump signed Executive Order 13861 establishing a three-year effort known as the President’s Roadmap to Empower Veterans and End a National Tragedy of Suicide (PREVENTS). Under the leadership of The White House and VA, the PREVENTS Office and cabinet-level, interagency task force were created to amplify and accelerate our progress in addressing suicide. The roadmap was released on June 17, 2020.


    In July, PREVENTS launched a centerpiece of the initiative: the Nation’s first public health campaign focused on suicide prevention, REACH. This campaign is for and about everyone because we all have risk and protective factors for suicide that we need to recognize and understand. REACH provides the knowledge, tools, and resources that we need to prevent suicide by educating ourselves so that we can REACH when we are in need – so that we can REACH to those who feel hopeless. REACH empowers us to reach beyond what we have done before to change the way we think about, talk about, and address emotional pain and suffering.

    As a member of the VA community, you are in a position to REACH out to Veterans who may be at risk during this difficult time. We all need support – sometimes we need more.

    How can you get involved?

    Take the PREVENTS Pledge to REACH: Make a commitment to increase awareness of mental health challenges as we work to prevent suicide for all Americans. Visit wearewithinreach.net to sign the pledge and challenge your friends and colleagues to do the same. PREVENTS is planning a month-long pledge drive during September, Suicide Prevention Month. Please join us!

    Veterans can also help lead the way as we work to change the way we think about, talk about and address mental health and suicide. Veterans can give us their perspective and provide guidance as we reach out to those in need. To that end, the PREVENTS Office is launching a first-of-its kind, national survey on Sept. 2, 2020, that will give us invaluable feedback from Veterans and other stakeholders, including Veterans Service Organizations, Veterans’ families and community organizations. The survey will help us learn what are our Veterans’ most pressing needs. In addition, the answers we receive will help us understand how Veterans want to receive important information on mental health services and suicide prevention.

    Please help us by taking the survey at PREVENTS Survey and encourage everyone you know to take it. Filling out the survey takes less than 5 minutes! The PREVENTS survey will be available from Sept. 2-30.

    This article originally appeared on VAntage Point. Follow @DeptVetAffairs on Twitter.

    Do Not Sell My Personal Information