A soldier stole a 155mm artillery round during training and nobody noticed for 6 years

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A soldier stole a 155mm artillery round and concealed it among his possessions before admitting to the theft six years later, according to an Army Crime Report for Fiscal Year 2018 that was obtained by Task & Purpose.


According to the report, an unidentified service member in 2015 admitted to stealing an M107 155mm artillery round and an AN/PEM 1 Laser Bore Light during a unit training exercise back in 2009.

Arms, Ammo, and Explosives (AA&E) "is most vulnerable to theft, diversion, and loss when out of secure storage," the report said. "Personnel who are responsible for the inventory and accountability of AA&E should be made aware of the importance of accurate receipt, dispatch, and inventory records."

A soldier assigned to 2nd Battalion, 12th Field Artillery Regiment, 1st Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division, prepares M107, 155mm projectile ammunition for an M777 Howitzer during calibration at the National Training Center, Fort Irwin, Calif., on Sept. 10, 2015. (U.S. Army/Spc. Ashley Marble

The six-year disappearance of a high-explosive projectile isn't the only alarming theft of ammo and explosives highlighted in the report.

In 2018, military police found more than 1,000 rounds of ammo (mostly 9mm rounds and several dozen 5.56mm rounds) "during an unrelated call" to MPs about God-knows-what.

That same year, the Army discovered that an unidentified Defense Department contractor "improperly stored" roughly 15 million pounds of explosive material and submitted forged documents to the U.S. government.

Luckily for us, the report has a solid piece of advice that encompasses these three incidents: commands "are responsible for establishing written plans that address actions to counter theft, pilferage, of damage of AA&E."

Look people, you're members of the most powerful fighting force in the history of mankind. If you can't keep track of guns, ammo, and explosives, how can you really expect regional allies like, say, the Afghan National Defense and Security Forces to do the same?

Oh wait.

World War II veteran and Purple Heart recipient Maj. Bill White, who at 104 is believed to be the oldest living Marine, has received a remarkable outpouring of cards and support from around the world after asking the public for Valentine's Day cards. "It hit me like a ton of bricks. I still can't get over it," he said. (CLIFFORD OTO/THE RECORD)

STOCKTON — Diane Wright opened the door of an apartment at The Oaks at Inglewood, the assisted care facility in Stockton where she is the executive director. Inside, three people busily went through postal trays crammed with envelopes near a table heaped with handmade gifts, military memorabilia, blankets, quilts, candy and the like.

Operation Valentine has generated a remarkable outpouring of support from around the world for retired United States Marine, Maj. Bill White. Earlier this month, a resident at The Oaks, Tony Walker, posted a request on social media to send Valentine's Day cards to the 104-year-old World War II veteran and recipient of the Purple Heart.

Walker believed Maj. White would enjoy adding the cards to his collection of memorabilia. The response has been greater than anyone ever thought possible.

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Editor's Note: This article originally appeared on Radio Free Europe/Radio Free Liberty.

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The comments by Suhail Shaheen on January 18 to the Dawn newspaper come after negotiators from the Taliban and the United States met for two days of talks in Qatar.

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The three Americans killed in a C-130 air tanker crash while fighting Australian bushfires on Thursday were all identified as military veterans, according to a statement released by their employer, Coulson Aviation.

The oldest of the three fallen veterans was Ian H. McBeth, a 44-year-old pilot who served with the Wyoming Air National Guard and was an active member of the Montana Air National Guard. McBeth "spent his entire career flying C-130s and was a qualified Instructor and Evaluator pilot," said Coulson Aviation. He's survived by his wife Bowdie and three children Abigail, Calvin and Ella.

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The Pentagon moved a total of $35 trillion among its various budget accounts in 2019, Tony Capaccio of Bloomberg first reported.

That does not mean that the Defense Department spent, lost, or could not account for $35 trillion, said Bryan Clark, a senior fellow with the Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments think tank in Washington, D.C.

"It means money that DoD moved from one part of the budget to another," Clark explained to Task & Purpose. "So, like in your household budget: It would be like moving money from checking, to savings, to your 401K, to your credit card, and then back."

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