Tom Bowman http://kplu.org en In Obama's Iraq Plan, An Answer That Breeds More Questions http://kplu.org/post/obamas-iraq-plan-answer-breeds-more-questions President Obama says that up to 300 U.S. military personnel will be heading to Iraq to advise Iraqi forces, not to serve in combat. But the proposal raises more questions: Will those U.S. forces heading out with Iraqi troops be armed? What are the rules of engagement? And how long will they stay? <div class="fullattribution">Copyright 2014 NPR. Fri, 20 Jun 2014 21:31:11 +0000 Tom Bowman 17304 at http://kplu.org Despite Video Of Bergdahl's Release, Questions Dog His Capture http://kplu.org/post/despite-video-bergdahls-release-questions-dog-his-capture Even as the Taliban released a video of Army Sgt. Bergdahl's release, questions continue to surround his initial disappearance. Bergdahl has said he was captured by the Taliban while lagging behind on a patrol. In a classified report produced in 2010, the Army paints him as a soldier troubled by U.S. policy, but it does not go so far as to call him a deserter. Still, many wonder whether Bergdahl planned to return before his capture. <div class="fullattribution">Copyright 2014 NPR. Wed, 04 Jun 2014 20:59:10 +0000 Tom Bowman 16963 at http://kplu.org What's The Right Size For The U.S. Army? http://kplu.org/post/whats-right-size-us-army With the U.S. military out of Iraq and winding down in Afghanistan, the U.S. Army, which peaked with a force of around 570,000 a few years ago, was supposed to drop to around 490,000 troops.<p>But U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel said that's still too big.<p>"An Army of this size is larger than required to meet the demands of our defense strategy," Hagel told a news conference in February.<p>Translation? Hagel isn't planning to occupy any countries. Fri, 11 Apr 2014 17:02:18 +0000 Tom Bowman 15937 at http://kplu.org What's The Right Size For The U.S. Army? A Medal Of Valor, 30 Years In Coming http://kplu.org/post/medal-valor-thirty-years-coming The year is 1984: A Soviet defector dashes across the Korean border — chased by North Korean troops. American troops shield him and open fire on the North Koreans. There are dead and wounded on both sides.<p>Now, 30 years later, one of those Americans is finally receiving his medal for bravery.<p>Mark Deville was just 19 on that November day in 1984, part of an American Army unit patrolling the tense border between North and South Korea.<p>Deville didn't know what he was facing. The only message was: Shots fired. Wed, 29 Jan 2014 22:07:44 +0000 Tom Bowman 13017 at http://kplu.org A Medal Of Valor, 30 Years In Coming Gen. Dempsey: Better To Get Others To Solve Their Own Problems http://kplu.org/post/gen-dempsey-better-get-others-solve-their-own-problems <em><a href="http://www.npr.org/2014/01/17/263333207/chairman-of-joint-chiefs-warns-of-disconnect-with-military" target="_blank">On <strong>Morning Edition</strong></a>, NPR's Tom Bowman profiled Gen. Martin Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.</em><p><em>Dempsey, as Tom reported, says the U.S. public, and even its leaders, know little about how military power can be used. The disconnect is most glaring when comes to this: What can the U.S. Fri, 17 Jan 2014 23:14:58 +0000 Tom Bowman 12690 at http://kplu.org Gen. Dempsey: Better To Get Others To Solve Their Own Problems Marines: Most Female Recruits Don't Meet New Pullup Standard http://kplu.org/post/marines-most-female-recruits-dont-meet-new-pullup-standard Starting Jan. 1, every woman in the Marines Corps was supposed to meet a new physical standard by performing three pullups. But that has been put off.<p>The Marine Corps announced it quietly. There was no news conference — just a notice on <a href="https://twitter.com/USMC/status/403311957136007169">its social media sites</a> and an item on its own TV show, <a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jHprAKI4NlI&list=PLcK9mGOZrMLmk_jc8ItuD9yA4nMdhsMDG">The Corps Report</a>.<p>Lance Cpl. Fri, 27 Dec 2013 16:21:06 +0000 Tom Bowman 12106 at http://kplu.org Marines: Most Female Recruits Don't Meet New Pullup Standard Women Pass Marine Training, Clear First Hurdle To Combat Role http://kplu.org/post/women-pass-marine-training-clear-first-hurdle-combat-role More than 200 Marines have been training since late September in the pine forests of North Carolina. They've been hiking for miles carrying 87-pound packs and assault rifles, sleeping in the field, attacking mock enemy positions.<p>And for the first time, women took part in the training. Thu, 21 Nov 2013 20:58:07 +0000 Tom Bowman 11210 at http://kplu.org Women Pass Marine Training, Clear First Hurdle To Combat Role As Qualified Men Dwindle, Military Looks For A Few Good Women http://kplu.org/post/qualified-men-dwindle-military-looks-few-good-women When the Pentagon said earlier this year that it would open ground combat jobs to women, it was cast in terms of giving women equal opportunities in the workplace — the military workplace.<p>But the move has practical considerations, too. The military needs qualified people to fill its ranks, and it's increasingly harder to find them among men.<p>"It's fairly common knowledge that our population of military-age young men, who qualify for the military, is declining," Joint Chiefs Chairman Gen. Mon, 25 Mar 2013 19:26:58 +0000 Tom Bowman 8142 at http://kplu.org As Qualified Men Dwindle, Military Looks For A Few Good Women