Task & Purpose Kicks Off 2018 With Big Additions To Our Editorial Team

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In 2014, we founded Task & Purpose on the belief that the military and veterans’ communities needed a publication that delivered news they care about, reported by people who have firsthand personal and professional experiences with conflict and its aftermath. This year, we’re reinforcing our commitment to community-driven investigative reporting, story-telling, and analysis of culture and current affairs by bringing on two seasoned journalists who embody our mission.


Thomas Ricks, Pulitzer Prize-winning reporter and bestselling author, will join Task & Purpose  as senior columnist, and Jeff Schogol comes aboard as senior Pentagon reporter. Additionally, James Clark, a general assignment reporter for T&P; since 2015, will shift his attention to policy as our dedicated veterans reporter based in Washington. These moves will help us expand our reporting on the people, policies, and politics that shape the lives of service members and veterans and their families.

On Jan. 16, we’ll launch The Long March With Tom Ricks, a daily column from Ricks and his contributors that will cover news and analysis of military policy, strategy, culture, and history. Ricks’ career as a military reporter has spanned four decades, including positions at The Washington Post and The Wall Street Journal, working on Pulitzer-winning teams at both papers. He is the author of six books, including his recent bestseller, Churchill and Orwell: The Fight for Freedom (May 2017). He also serves as a national security advisor for Washington think tank New America and a military history columnist for The New York Times Book Review. Ricks was previously a contributing editor at Foreign Policy, the home of his previous daily blog on military affairs, Best Defense.

In addition to Ricks’ role at Task & Purpose, as senior Pentagon reporter, Schogol will cover breaking news related to national defense and Department of Defense policy. A seasoned military journalist, Schogol comes to Task & Purpose from Marine Corps Times, where he reported on the Marines United nude-photo-sharing scandal, hazing at Parris Island, and crackdowns on toxic commanders. Throughout his 15-year career, Schogol has embedded with U.S. troops in Iraq and Haiti and worked at a variety of publications, including Air Force Times and Stars and Stripes. A graduate of Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism, Schogol will join Task & Purpose on Jan. 8.

In addition to adding new staff, Task & Purpose remains committed to being a platform for veterans, service members, and family members who have stories to tell. If you’d like to write for us, visit our Submissions page for details on sending us your ideas.

Courtesy photos
(U.S. Marine Corps/Staff Sgt. Oscar L Olive IV)

Editor's Note: This article by Gina Harkins originally appeared on Military.com, a leading source of news for the military and veteran community.

Several members of the Marine Corps' famous Silent Drill Platoon were kicked out of the service or punished by their command after someone reported witnessing them using a training rifle to strike someone.

Three Marines have been discharged in the last 60 days and two others lost a rank after the Naval Criminal Investigative Service began looking into hazing allegations inside the revered unit that performs at public events around the world.

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(U.S. Army photo by Spc. Keion Jackson).

The U.S. military will build 'facilities' to house at least 7,500 adult migrants, the Pentagon announced on Wednesday.

Acting Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan has approved a request from the Department of Homeland Security to construct the facilities, said Pentagon spokesman Army Maj. Chris Mitchell.

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(U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Brian M. Wilbur.)

Defense officials will brief President Donald Trump's national security team on a plan that involves sending 5,000 more troops to the Middle East to deter Iran, Task & Purpose has learned.

So far, no decisions have been made about whether to send the reinforcements to the region, unnamed U.S. officials told CNN's Barbara Starr.

"The military capabilities being discussed include sending additional ballistic missile defense systems, Tomahawk cruise missiles on submarines, and surface ships with land attack capabilities for striking at a long range," CNN reports. "Specific weapons systems and units have not been identified."

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The thousands of sailors, Coasties and Marines who descend on New York City every year for Fleet Week are an awesome sight to behold on their own, but this year's confab of U.S. service members includes a uniquely powerful homecoming as well.

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When an Air Force major called J.J. completed a solo flight in the U-2 in late August 2016 — 60 years after the high-flying aircraft was introduced — he became the 1,000th pilot to do so.

J.J., whose name was withheld by the U.S. Air Force for security reasons, earned his solo patch a few days after pilots No. 998 and No. 999. Those three pilots are in distinguished company, two fellow pilots said this month.

"We have a pretty small, elite team of folks. We're between about 60 and 70 active-duty pilots at any given time," Maj. Matt "Top" Nauman said during an Air Force event at the Intrepid Sea, Air, and Space Museum in New York City.

"We're about 1,050 [pilots] right now. So to put that in context, there are more people with Super Bowl rings than there are people with U-2 patches," Nauman added. "It's a pretty small group of people that we've hired over the last 60 to 65 years."

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