The U.S. military's mishap problem is older than you probably realized: Of the nearly 30,000 U.S. service members wounded in Afghanistan and Iraq during a 12-year period at the beginning of the forever wars, a full third were injured in non-combat incidents, according to a new study — and that proportion is only expected to grow in the coming years.
Shit happens — a lot: An analysis of Department of Defense Trauma Registry data published in the medical journal JAMA Surgery found that 34.1% of total casualties and 11.5% percent of all deaths from January 2003 to December 2014 occurred in non-combat conditions.
Unintentional falls: The largest proportion of so-called "non-battle injuries" (NBIs) occurred due to, well, falling. Some 1,283 service members died from unintentional falls, followed by car crashes and machinery or equipment accidents.
This isn't because of the sequester: Lawmakers have pointed to the 2011 Budget Control Act as a root cause of the Class A mishap epidemic that has rankled the Air Force and Navy in recent months — and 66.3% and 48.3% of those services' respective casualties were due to NBIs. But the time span of the report covers nearly a decade in the pre-freeze spending environment, too.
It's only going to get worse: Based on their analysis, the researchers posit that the proportion of NIBs among all U.S. casualties in Iraq and Afghanistan will grow to 41% by 2022 — and that's assuming "stable battlefield conditions," an assessment that lays the burden of the U.S. military's recent mishap crisis on the sequester.
On the flipside, lawmakers took a moment last month to set up an independent commission to get to bottom of the DoD's worsening mishap crisis. Those results will likely arrive in 2022. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
An Oregon Air National Guard F-15C Eagle that made an emergency landing on Wednesday ditched its entire arsenal of live air-to-air missiles before touching down at Portland International Airport, The War Zone reports.
President Donald Trump announced in December that he would withdraw all U.S. troops from Syria, but Sen. Lindsey Graham has since made a strong push to keep a small residual force along the Turkish border along with troops from European allies.
The former Navy SEAL among a group of eight men arrested earlier this week in Port-au-Prince on weapons charges says he was providing security work "for people who are directly connected to the current President" of Haiti.
"We were being used as pawns in a public fight between him and the current Prime Minister of Haiti," said Chris Osman, 44, in a post on Instagram Friday. "We were not released we were in fact rescued."
It's a photo for the ages: a Marine NCO, a Greek god in his dress blues, catches the eye of a lovely young woman as her boyfriend urges her on in distress. It's the photographic ancestor of the much-loved "distracted boyfriend" stock photo meme, made even sweeter by the fact that this is clearly a sailor about to lose his girl to a Devil Dog.
Well, this photo and the Marine in it, which hopscotched around Marine Corps Facebook and Instagram pages before skyrocketing to the front page of Reddit on Thursday, are very real.
The photo shows then-Staff Sgt. Louis A. Capozzoli — and he is absolutely not on his way to steal your girl.