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Encouraging words for Saranac Lake veterans' center

The Department of Defense is focusing more attention on post traumatic stress disorder, estimating that over 300,000 veterans of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan suffer from PTSD. Thousands of them are "civilian soldiers" -- members of the Army Reserves and National Guard.

The Department of Veterans Affairs says combat vets are more likely to commit crimes or suffer effects of psychological trauma. Military officials are actively looking for new ways to help them heal and rejoin civilian life.A group in Saranac Lake hopes Patriot Hills, a new vets' center proposed for the village, will be a good fit. This week, they got some encouraging words from the Army national Guard's medical commander. Martha Foley has more.  Go to full article
NY Times correspondent Jim Dao

Fort Drum's 1-87th: bellwether on progress in Afghanistan

The front page of yesterday's New York Times featured a photograph of Fort Drum Sergeant Brian Keith. He's crying and clutching his wife and six month-old son, moments before leaving them for Afghanistan. The Times is profiling the 1-87th Infantry Battalion of Fort Drum's 1st brigade as a window into the war there. Senior military correspondent Jim Dao was embedded with the unit for its first month of a year-long deployment in Kunduz, a relatively quiet city where violence appears to be escalating. Dao wrote the 1-87th will be "waging a different kind of war" - training Afghan police and helping to strengthen the local government. I spoke to Dao in April, just as the unit was leaving Fort Drum. He checks in again today. Dao says the Fort Drum soldiers arrived in Kunduz and immediately began building relationships with the local police.  Go to full article

North Country soldier orients military leaders in Afghanistan

A major reorganization of NATO's southern command in Afghanistan is underway as thousands of fresh US troops arrive in Kandahar. The units are part of President Obama's surge strategy and will play a key role in securing the Taliban stronghold.

Members of the 10th Mountain Division are among the new soldiers to arrive there. The green arrivals need to get oriented, especially those higher up in the chain of command. That task falls to people like Army Captain Sean Kane of Lake Placid. Kane's with Fort Drum's 1st Brigade.

He returned from Afghanistan last week. He told reporter Chris Morris he's enjoying a couple weeks of relaxation with his fiancée after his deployment.  Go to full article
Congressman Bill Owens (D-Plattsburgh) talks with constituents

Town hall meeting with Rep. Owens gets personal

People from across the North Country voiced some very personal concerns at Congressman Bill Owens' town hall meeting in Watertown yesterday.

The issues facing...  Go to full article
Specialist William Seo (center) with local staff

Drum soldier helps poor Afghans

The life of a deployed soldier is usually a mix of grueling activity and mind-numbing waiting. There's very little free time for individual pursuits. That's why Fort Drum...  Go to full article
Sgt. Jason Goodman of Morristown

Behind the scenes in a well-equipped Army troop

At a media briefing last Friday, Fort Drum commander James Terry updated the status of the 1st Brigade. The brigade based at the Army base near Watertown deployed to...  Go to full article
Maj. Gen. James Terry, Fort Drum's commander

Ft. Drum commander discusses strategy & mental health, in Afghanistan and on post

Fort Drum's commander says the Army post near Watertown is the busiest he's ever seen it. Major General James Terry told reporters at a media briefing Friday that the 10th...  Go to full article

Saranac Lake as soldiers' haven

A broad-based coalition of community leaders and veteran advocates are working to bring a first-of-its-kind retreat and reintegration facility for veterans, active military...  Go to full article
<em>NY Times</em> correspondent Jim Dao

Fort Drum troops have key role in Afghanistan surge

4,500 soldiers with Fort Drum's 1st Brigade are in the process of shipping out to Afghanistan. They'll be stationed in the northern part of the country for a year. They'll...  Go to full article
Greg Mortenson with school children who raised $8,000 in a Pennies for Peace program

"Three Cups of Tea" brings hope to Fort Drum

This month, planes are leaving Fort Drum's Wheeler-Sack airfield with soldiers bound for Afghanistan. About 4,000 troops of the 10th Mountain Division's 1st Brigade are a...  Go to full article

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