Tyndall Air Force Base in Florida “took a direct hit from Hurricane Michael” and base leaders do not know when it will reopen, the base posted on its Facebook page.on Thursday.
Recovery teams have found “widespread catastrophic damage” to the base and “widespread roof damage to nearly every home” in areas of base housing, according to the base’s most recent Facebook post.
Video of the base shows extensive wreckage. The high winds tossed around aircraft in static displays as if they were toys. Air Force spokeswoman Ann Stefanek said she was unaware of any injuries or fatalities as a result of the hurricane, which was a Category 4 storm when it slammed into Tyndall on Wednesday.
There was no word as of Thursday about whether Tyndall’s runway had been damaged by the hurricane, Stefanek told Task & Purpose.
“The base is closed and I don’t expect it to open in the very near future,” she said.
Gen. Mike Holmes, head of Air Combat Command, issued a video message on Thursday telling Tyndall airmen and their families who evacuated ahead of the storm that it is not safe to return to the base.
“I’m glad that you evacuated, I’m glad you followed the guidance, and I hope you that you’re in a safe and comfortable place,” Holmes said. “If you are, please stay there. In the hours and days to come, we’ll know more about the conditions at Tyndall and we’ll know more about when you can come back.”
Members of Marine Heavy Helicopter Squadron 462, Marine Aircraft Group 16, 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing, and 1st Transportation Support Battalion, 1st Marine Logistics Group, prepare a seven-ton Medium Tactical Vehicle Replacement (MTRV) to be lifted by a CH-53E Super Stallion at Marine Corps Air Station Miramar, Calif., on Jan. 16, 2019. (U.S. Marine Corps/Lance Cpl. Clare J. McIntire)
If you are in the market for any size of military surplus vehicle, keep an eye on GovPlanet. The online auction house is about to start selling U.S. Navy and Marine Corps surplus M1161 ITV Growlers and seven-ton Medium Tactical Vehicle Replacement trucks.
(From left to right) Chris Osman, Chris McKinley, Kent Kroeker, and Talon Burton
At least four American veterans were among a group of eight men arrested by police in Haiti earlier this week for driving without license plates and possessing an arsenal of weaponry and tactical gear.
Police in Port-au-Prince arrested five Americans, two Serbians, and one Haitian man at a police checkpoint on Sunday, according to The Miami-Herald. The men told police they were on a "government mission" but did not specify for which government, according to The Herald.
They also told police that "their boss was going to call their boss," implying that someone high in Haiti's government would vouch for them and secure their release, Herald reporter Jacqueline Charles told NPR.
What they were actually doing or who they were potentially working for remains unclear. A State Department spokesperson told Task & Purpose they were aware that Haitian police arrested a "group of individuals, including some U.S. citizens," but declined to answer whether the men were employed by or operating under contract with the U.S. government.
A marble statue memorializing the founder of the U.S. Army Airborne was set on fire Thursday in North Carolina, and museum officials believe it happened because vandals confused it for a Confederate memorial, according to the Dunn Daily Record and other media outlets.
A top Senate Republican and fierce ally of President Donald Trump reportedly exploded at Acting Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan recently about the U.S. military's plans to withdraw all troops from Syria by the end of April.
"That's the dumbest f******g idea I've ever heard," Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) reportedly replied when Shanahan confirmed the Trump administration still plans to complete the Syria withdrawal by April 30.
Later, Graham told Shanahan, "I am now your adversary, not your friend."