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Army study recommends more sleep for recruits at basic, which drill sergeants will absolutely not disregard or anything
(Reuters Health) - Soldiers who experience sleep problems during basic combat training may be more likely to struggle with psychological distress, attention difficulties, and anger issues during their entry into the military, a recent study suggests.
"These results show that it would probably be useful to check in with new soldiers over time because sleep problems can be a signal that a soldier is encountering difficulties," said Amanda Adrian, lead author of the study and a research psychologist at the Center for Military Psychiatry and Neuroscience at Walter Reed Army Institute of Research in Silver Spring, Maryland.
"Addressing sleep problems early on should help set soldiers up for success as they transition into their next unit of assignment," she said by email.
Adrian and colleagues surveyed 1,577 soldiers during the 10-week basic combat training at weeks 1, 3, 6, and 9 to see whether they were experiencing sleep problems or any issues with mood disorders, anger, or attention.
About 61% of the soldiers in the study never had a sleep problem. Another 13% started out with sleep issues but recovered during training, while 20% developed sleep problems during training and about 7% had chronic sleep issues throughout the study.
Compared to soldiers who never had sleep problems, those who recovered from initial sleep problems started out with higher psychological distress, anger reactions and attention problems but steadily improved throughout training, the study found.
Those who developed sleep problems during training or had chronic sleep problems had slower improvements in psychological distress and a decline in attention throughout the study. And the group with chronic sleep problems also had increasing anger issues throughout the study.
Sleep problems have long been linked to poor mental health, emotional regulation, cognitive function, and job performance, the researchers note in Sleep Health. But little is known about how sleep problems among people in high-risk occupations like firefighting and policing might impact their job performance, or the safety of people they're charged with protecting.
The current study wasn't a controlled experiment, so it can't prove sleep problems caused issues with mood, attention or anger reactions. Another limitation is that researchers relied on soldiers to accurately recall and report on any problems with sleep, attention, anger or mood. And the study didn't assess sleep duration or underlying factors that might lead some soldiers to develop sleep problems while others did not.
"There is evidence that both reduced hours of sleep and poor quality of sleep are associated with adverse mental health and cognitive functioning," said Sanford Nidich, director of the Center for Social and Emotional Health at Maharishi University of Management Research Institute in Fairfield, Iowa.
"The results of this current study on soldiers undergoing basic combat training provide further support on the connection between sleep quality and mental health, especially in the areas of anger reaction and attention," Nidich, who wasn't involved in the study, said by email. "While it is difficult to conclusively determine cause-and-effect from this study, it is clear that both quality of sleep as well as adverse mental health issues need to be addressed in terms of prevention and treatment."
Military personnel, like civilian adults, need approximately 8 hours of sleep per night for optimal job performance, said Dr. Hohui Wang, a psychiatry researcher at the University of California San Francisco who wasn't involved in the study.
"Persistent insomnia negatively impacts cardiometabolic and neurocognitive functions, and is associated with future development of PTSD, depression and anxiety," Wang said by email.
The Marine lieutenant colonel who was removed from command of 1st Reconnaissance Battalion in May is accused of lying to investigators looking into allegations of misconduct, according to a copy of his charge sheet provided to Task & Purpose on Monday.
President Donald Trump just can't stop telling stories about former Defense Secretary James Mattis. This time, the president claims Mattis said U.S. troops were so perilously low on ammunition that it would be better to hold off launching a military operation.
"You know, when I came here, three years ago almost, Gen. Mattis told me, 'Sir, we're very low on ammunition,'" Trump recalled on Monday at the White House. "I said, 'That's a horrible thing to say.' I'm not blaming him. I'm not blaming anybody. But that's what he told me because we were in a position with a certain country, I won't say which one; we may have had conflict. And he said to me: 'Sir, if you could, delay it because we're very low on ammunition.'
"And I said: You know what, general, I never want to hear that again from another general," Trump continued. "No president should ever, ever hear that statement: 'We're low on ammunition.'"
This 400-pound feral hog is one of more than 1,200 that have invaded a Texas Air Force base since 2016
At least one Air Force base is waging a slow battle against feral hogs — and way, way more than 30-50 of them.
A Texas trapper announced on Monday that his company had removed roughly 1,200 feral hogs from Joint Base San Antonio property at the behest of the service since 2016.
In a move that could see President Donald Trump set foot on North Korean soil again, Kim Jong Un has invited the U.S. leader to Pyongyang, a South Korean newspaper reported Monday, as the North's Foreign Ministry said it expected stalled nuclear talks to resume "in a few weeks."
A letter from Kim, the second Trump received from the North Korean leader last month, was passed to the U.S. president during the third week of August and came ahead of the North's launch of short-range projectiles on Sept. 10, the South's Joongang Ilbo newspaper reported, citing multiple people familiar with the matter.
In the letter, Kim expressed his willingness to meet the U.S. leader for another summit — a stance that echoed Trump's own remarks just days earlier.
Constant deployments broke the Air Force's B-1 fleet. Now the service is facing a major bomber shortfall
On April 14, 2018, two B-1B Lancer bombers fired off payloads of Joint Air-to-Surface Standoff Missiles against weapons storage plants in western Syria, part of a shock-and-awe response to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad's use of chemical weapons against his citizens that also included strikes from Navy destroyers and submarines.
In all, the two bombers fired 19 JASSMs, successfully eliminating their targets. But the moment would ultimately be one of the last — and certainly most publicized — strategic strikes for the aircraft before operations began to wind down for the entire fleet.
A few months after the Syria strike, Air Force Global Strike Command commander Gen. Tim Ray called the bombers back home. Ray had crunched the data, and determined the non-nuclear B-1 was pushing its capabilities limit. Between 2006 and 2016, the B-1 was the sole bomber tasked continuously in the Middle East. The assignment was spread over three Lancer squadrons that spent one year at home, then six month deployed — back and forth for a decade.
The constant deployments broke the B-1 fleet. It's no longer a question of if, but when the Air Force and Congress will send the aircraft to the Boneyard. But Air Force officials are still arguing the B-1 has value to offer, especially since it's all the service really has until newer bombers hit the flight line in the mid-2020s.