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Staff Sgt. Mario Tenario, Company A, 1st Battalion, 187th Infantry Regiment, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division trains Afghan National Army soldiers how to inspect equipment.

Considered one of the most dangerous countries in the world, Afghanistan has been wracked by continuous war for over three decades. The U.S., U.K., Australia, France, and Afghan United Front began Operation Enduring Freedom on October 7th, 2001 in response to the September 11th attacks in the U.S. The mission focused on the the overthrow of the Taliban government, as well as the ouster of Al Qaida and it leaders, including Osama Bin Laden. With over a decade of combat, it has become the second longest war in the U.S. history. The conflict has resulted in over two thousand U.S. troops killed.

With the death of Bin Laden, the U.S. is formulating plans for withdrawal from the region. President Obama has announced an end to combat operations, but an unknown number of troops will likely remain in the country after the 2014 deadline. Afghanistan is currently seeking financial assistance from other countries to assist in the reconstruction process.

Afghanistan has been populated for millennia, seeing the rise and fall of empires, kingdoms, and religions. Islam -- which influences much of its current culture and politics -- is the most popular religion in the region. The current estimated population is over 30 million, with Pashtun and Tajik as the two largest ethnicities.

Marine Recon Tries New Detachment Concept

Marine Recon Sniper | Jul 30, 2014

MARSOC took four platoons and the whole Recon command structure from Force Recon, the part normally tasked by the Marine Expeditionary Force commander for high-level missions. MARSOC originally deployed with the MEU with MEU support but reported to the theater special operations command. That setup caused resentment in that Marines had the b... more

GAO: DoD Personnel With Tax Debt a Potential Risk

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Stars and Stripes | Jul 29, 2014

A vast number of Department of Defense personnel eligible for security clearance levels of secret or higher owed more than $730 million in back federal taxes as of June 30, 2012, according to a report issued Monday by the Government Accountability Office. About 83,000 DOD military and civilian employees and contractors owe three-quarters of... more

Pentagon: F-22 Whistleblower Inquiry to Finish

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 | Jul 31, 2014

More than two years after a Hampton-based F-22 pilot's career stalled when he and a colleague spoke out about life-threatening problems with the Air Force's newest fighter jet, Pentagon investigators say they'll complete their investigation of his treatment in August. U.S. Sen. Mark Warner met Tuesday with officials of the Department of Defense... more

New Way to Get Mail Overseas Faster

military mail | Jul 31, 2014

Service members and their families can soon expect faster forwarding times on mail sent through the US Postal Service to APO addresses after they move. The Postal Service is revamping how address changes are filed and continuing its push to move all overseas personnel to a standardized address system -- a move that will save millions of dollars... more

Air Force: Stowaway Triggers Security Review

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Associated Press | Jul 31, 2014

WASHINGTON — The Air Force's top civilian and uniformed leaders said Wednesday the failure to prevent a teenager from stowing away aboard a military cargo plane, apparently while on an airfield in the African nation of Mali, was a serious security lapse. The boy's body was found and removed from the plane at Ramstein Air Base in Germany on Sund... more

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