Idaho Citizen Soldiers are preparing for a year-long deployment in support of Operation Enduring Freedom. The Army National Guard’s Company A, 1-168 General Services Aviation Battalion will head first to Fort Hood, Texas for training. Then the soldiers will travel to Afghanistan for ten months.
Nearly four thousand Northwest-based soldiers are about to deploy for nine months to Afghanistan. The Army’s 2nd Stryker Brigade received a formal send off Friday at Joint Base Lewis-McChord near Tacoma Washington. The departure comes amid continuing fallout from the case of suspected Afghan shooter Sgt. Robert Bales.
As an Army band played, soldiers in fatigues lined up by battalion on a parade field. In the stands sat, proud and worried family members like Wendy Mertka. She fought back tears as she spoke of her son’s first deployment.
One of the quirks of the internet age is how some home videos become unexpected global sensations. In 'net lingo, it's called "going viral." This week's examples of that genre include a humorous clip of house cats and neighborhood wildlife gathered on a porch in the remote Aleutian town of Unalaska.
When Pam Aus heard a bald eagle squawking outside of her house this week, she knew it was the right time to break out the video camera.
YouTube video soundtrack: "Okay, I keep hearing these calls for me. I open my door and, oh, Mr. Eagle keeps calling me."
Today is Bowe Bergdahl’s 26th birthday. The Army Sergeant from Idaho was captured by enemy forces in Afghanistan in June 2009. Speaking on the House floor, Rep. Wendy Jaquet (D-Ketchum) said this is Bergdahl’s third birthday in captivity. “And he’s been there for that long, and I would ask you to just keep him in your prayers and in your hearts today and hopefully he’ll get home pretty soon.”
Boise Fire Chief Dennis Doan says there were two explosions at an underground Micron utility room. Doan says seven workers were injured, all with minor injuries, the worst of which was a laceration to the arm.
Doan reports no chemicals or hazardous materials were released as a result of the explosion.
Emergency responders are in the process of packing up to leave.
We'll have more on this story during All Things Considered beginning at 3:30.
The Department of Defense reports an Idaho soldier has died in Afghanistan. Sergeant Daniel Brown of Jerome died last week in Kandahar province. He died after his unit was attacked with an improvised explosive device.
He was assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 8th Infantry Regiment, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division, Fort Carson, Colorado.
Brown’s family says he loved football and baseball. He felt a call to join the Army after the September 11 terror attack. The 27-year-old leaves behind a wife and their 3-month old twin daughters.
The case against Staff Sgt. Robert Bales will likely move to Joint Base Lewis-McChord . The 38-year old Washington-based soldier was charged with 17 counts of aggravated murder and other crimes. Bales is accused of massacring Afghan villagers earlier this month. He could face the death penalty if convicted.
A scandal over PTSD diagnoses at Madigan Army Hospital has triggered an Army-wide Inspector General investigation. That’s according to the Secretary of the Army, John McHugh.
He was questioned at length Wednesday by Washington Senator Patty Murray. She noted that 40 percent of soldiers who were evaluated by a special psychiatric team at Madigan had their Post Traumatic Stress Disorder diagnoses downgraded or reversed.
The lead attorney for the western Washington soldier accused of killing 16 Afghan civilians says his client has gaps in his memory about the night of the massacre. Seattle lawyer John Henry Browne met with Staff Sergeant Robert Bales Monday for seven hours at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas. That’s where Bales is being held in pretrial detention. After the meeting, Browne told reporters that his client’s state of mind is “confused.” “He doesn’t remember everything of the evening in question. That doesn’t mean he has amnesia.”
A federal judge released a doctor’s report today on health care at Idaho’s oldest and largest prison. Dr. Marc Stern wrote the study. Stern “found serious problems with the delivery of medical and mental health care” at the Idaho State Correctional Institution. Stern believes that “authorities are deliberately indifferent to the serious health care needs” of the inmates.
Human rights advocates in north Idaho don’t expect a white supremacist to get very far in his bid for sheriff. Shaun Winkler is a candidate in the Republican primary for Bonner County’s top law enforcement office. Winkler’s critics say the best strategy is to ignore him.