Tom note: Here is the ninth entry in our 10 Long March posts for 2018, the 2nd most-read item of the year, which originally ran on April 11, 2018. These posts are selected based on what's called 'total engaged minutes' (the total number of time spent reading and commenting on an article) rather than page views, which the T&P editors see as a better reflection of Long March reader interest and community. Thanks to all of you for reading, and for commenting–which is an important part of this column.

This past Friday, an AH-64 Apache helicopter crashed during a training mission at Fort Campbell, Kentucky, the latest in a slew of deadly mishapsfrom across the services in the past week. The accident comes on the heels of a damning report from the Military Times, documenting an alarming rise in accidents stretching back over four years. The Army, for its part, has seen relatively constant accident rates over the past four years, according to its official safety magazine, Flightfax, with accident rates between FY2013 and 2017 hovering between 0.72 and 1.52 Class A accidents per 100,000 flying hours — far lower than anything Army Aviation has seen since it began tallying accidents in the early 1970s (p. 123).

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Casperassets.rbl.ms

Benjamin Franklin nailed it when he said, "Fatigue is the best pillow." True story, Benny. There's nothing like pushing your body so far past exhaustion that you'd willingly, even longingly, take a nap on a concrete slab.

Take $75 off a Casper Mattress and $150 off a Wave Mattress with code TASKANDPURPOSE

And no one knows that better than military service members and we have the pictures to prove it.

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U.S. Air Force/Master Sgt. Barry Loo

Every day, millions of young people swap selfies on Snapchat, update their status on Facebook, and swipe right on love interests on Tinder.  For millennials, social media is essential for a 21st Century social life — but for 62-year-old political scientist Eliot A. Cohen, it apparently means the end of the human civilization as we know it. For malevolent actors ranging from the government of Vladimir Putin to the recruiters of the Islamic State, social media is a weapon which can undermine American democracy and even topple entire governments.  

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International Security Assistance Force HQ Public Affairs/Petty Officer 1st Class Mark O'Donald

There are plenty of articles explaining the growing civil-military divide in America.  Service members often feel civilians don’t understand them, and there’s plenty of truth to that – fewer than half of Americans report interacting with an active duty service member or spouse within the course of a year.  

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This past Friday, an AH-64 Apache helicopter crashed during a training mission at Fort Campbell, Kentucky, the latest in a slew of deadly mishaps from across the services in the past week.  The accident comes on the heels of a damning report from the Military Times, documenting an alarming rise in accidents stretching back over four years.  The Army, for its part, has seen relatively constant accident rates over the past four years, according to its official safety magazine, Flightfax, with accident rates between FY2013 and 2017 hovering between 0.72 and 1.52 Class A accidents per 100,000 flying hours -- far lower than anything Army Aviation has seen since it began tallying accidents in the early 1970s (p. 123).    

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AP Photo/The Augusta Chronicle, Jackie Ricciardi

Direct-sales businesses are prevalent in military communities, as military spouses and even some service members try to either launch full-time jobs or just make some extra cash on the side. These sorts of businesses raked in nearly $36 billion in sales in 2015 and have become so prevalent on military bases that one Duffel Blog, a military humor site, referred to the small army of scented-candle and oil-sales representatives as “SCENTCOM”.

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