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Retired Sergeant Major outs himself as admin for US Army WTF! Moments
For an organization that is constantly shining a light on things that would rather be kept out of the public eye, the moderators of U.S. Army WTF! Moments have done a remarkably impressive job at staying anonymous.
That is, until Monday.
On the first day of the Association of the U.S. Army conference, a member from USAWTFM finally revealed himself as Sgt. Maj. Kenneth Ramos, a retired psychological operations soldier with almost 30 years total service experience, who is behind the Monday edition of WTF Nation radio and found at @WTFIOguy on Twitter.
Ramos was speaking on a panel at the annual Association of the U.S. Army conference on Monday focusing on social media, and was joined by Brig. Gen. Patrick Donahoe (@PatDonahoeArmy on Twitter), the deputy commanding general of operations with the Eighth Army in South Korea; Kelsey Cochran (@LadyLovesTaft) an Army lieutenant and public affairs officer; and Col. Steve Leonard (@Doctrine_Man), a retired former senior military strategist.
In a profession as tight-lipped as the military, it's unusual, to say the least, to find leaders willing to speak openly on social media without coming across as a public-affairs generated cyborg. Ramos specifically spoke mostly about why USAWTFM does what it does: shining a light on the some of the hysterical (and not-so-hysterical) mishaps and realities of serving in the U.S. Army.
"We've been told that we're oath-breakers or we're not doing this, it's against Army values and norms," Ramos said. "Well we're still providing assistance to veterans and their families."
When asked what values USAWTFM was upholding, Ramos said to "go down the list.
"It's my job as an operations officer — it's in my statement in the NCO creed that says, specifically — the mission accomplishment and the welfare of my soldiers. When I retired, 1.4 million people became my soldiers."
The panel got into the issue of service members talking about politics on social media — something that USAWTFM has experience with. Ramos said that they "got a bunch of crap during the election" for veering into politics, but that all they were trying to do was get news out to listeners who may otherwise have a hard time getting it.
"We get feedback from downrange, we get feedback from soldiers who are deployed," Ramos said. "It wasn't to provide any partisan type of politics, it was just to bring the news from home out to them."
And as for how it started, Ramos said a group of guys were talking about having seen a goat running at a FOB in Afghanistan. The goat was dragging an M4 and being chased by a soldier — because of course — when someone watching had an understandable enough response.
‘Take what’s inside and get it outside’ — Air Force psychologist reminds airmen of mental health resources
Kirtland Air Force Base isn't much different from the world beyond its gates when it comes to dealing with mental illnesses, a base clinical psychologist says.
Maj. Benjamin Carter told the Journal the most frequent diagnosis on the base is an anxiety disorder.
"It's not a surprise, but I anticipate about anytime in the population in America, about 20% of the population has some form of diagnosable anxiety disorder, and it's no different in the military," he said.
Leading the way among the anxiety disorders, he said, were post-traumatic stress disorder "or something like panic disorder or generalized anxiety disorder."
The DNA of a niece and nephew, who never met their uncle, has helped identify the remains of the Kansas Marine who died in WWII.
The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency announced that 21-year-old U.S. Marine Corps Reserve Pfc. Raymond Warren was identified using DNA and circumstantial evidence. Warren had been buried in a cemetery in the Gilbert Islands, where he was killed when U.S. forces tried to take secure one of the islands from the Japanese.
The Battle of Tarawa lasted from Nov. 20 to Nov. 23, 1943, and claimed the lives of 1,021 U.S. marines and sailors, more than 3,000 Japanese soldiers and an estimated 1,000 Korean laborers before the U.S. troops seized control, the agency said.
Arizona lawmakers are vowing to fight a plan by the Air Force to start retiring some of the nation's fleet of A-10 Thunderbolt II ground-attack jets — a major operation at Davis-Monthan Air Force Base — as part of a plan to drop some older, legacy weapon systems to help pay for new programs.
U.S. Sen. Martha McSally, R-Ariz., a former A-10 pilot, and U.S. Rep. Ann Kirkpatrick, D-Ariz., both vowed to fight the move to retire 44 of the oldest A-10s starting this year.
During a press briefing last week, Air Force officials unveiled plans to start mothballing several older platforms, including retiring some A-10s even as it refits others with new wings.
MOSCOW/SEOUL (Reuters) - North Korea, whose leader Kim Jong Un was filmed riding through the snow on a white stallion last year, has spent tens of thousands of dollars on 12 purebred horses from Russia, according to Russian customs data.
Accompanied by senior North Korean figures, Kim took two well-publicized rides on the snowy slopes of the sacred Paektu Mountain in October and December.
State media heralded the jaunts as important displays of strength in the face of international pressure and the photos of Kim astride a galloping white steed were seen around the world.
North Korea has a long history of buying pricey horses from Russia and customs data first reported by Seoul-based NK News suggests that North Korea may have bolstered its herd in October.
ISLAMABAD (Reuters) - A high-profile local Taliban figure who announced and justified the 2012 attack on teenage Nobel laureate Malala Yousafzai has escaped detention, Pakistan's interior minister confirmed a few days after the militant announced his breakout on social media.
Former Pakistani Taliban spokesman Ehsanullah Ehsan, who claimed responsibility on behalf of his group for scores of Taliban attacks, proclaimed his escape on Twitter and then in an audio message sent to Pakistani media earlier this month.
The Pakistani military, which had kept Ehsan in detention for three years, has declined to comment but, asked by reporters about the report, Interior Minister Ijaz Shah, said: "That is correct, that is correct."
Shah, a retired brigadier general, added that "you will hear good news" in response to questions about whether there had been progress in hunting down Ehsan.