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News stories tagged with "military"

Drum Troops Reinforce Baghdad

Since the bombing of a famous shrine in Samarra, Iraq, in Februrary, sectarian violence in the country has skyrocketed. As a response, the US military dispatched several thousand Iraqi and American soldiers into Baghdad as reinforcements. One of the units pulled into the capital was the 1st Brigade of the 10th Mountain Division. The brigade is based at Fort Drum near Watertown and has been in Iraq since last August. Its 3500 soldiers are expected to return later this summer. Before the shrine bombing, many of the brigade's units had been stationed in rural areas outside the city. Freelance reporter Ben Gilbert was embedded with some of them, and has this report on the transition to Baghdad.  Go to full article
Canadian War Museum (CWM)
Canadian War Museum (CWM)

War Museum Asks Painful Questions

Earlier in this hour, we heard a discussion of Canada's increasingly risky military role in Afghanistan. Last spring, Canada unveiled a new national war museum in Ottawa. The massive structure has a bunker-like faade that stands out in a city famous for its graceful architecture. Inside, exhibitions offer a stark and sometimes painful look at Canada's military history, from the bloody campaigns of the French and Indian Wars, to the military operations now underway in Afghanistan. As Brian Mann reports, the museum was unveiled at a time when many Canadians were already ambivalent about war -- and skeptical of America's war on terror. Brian's story first aired last May.  Go to full article

Drum Housing Results Slow in Coming

The Fort Drum population explosion, and the resulting housing crunch in Jefferson County, has been a top issue in the region for more than a year. Governor Pataki visited Watertown twice last summer with millions of dollars in grant money. Last week, a housing forum attracted both New York Senators, Congressman John McHugh, military leaders, and a host of state and local representatives. Still, the region has struggled to build new homes, as it faces an expected shortfall of 2000 units. 245 new single homes were built last year. But out of several proposed large-scale subdivisions, only one has broken ground. David Sommerstein spoke with Scott Gray, a Jefferson County legislator serving Watertown. He says obstacles like infrastructure and high construction costs have slowed plans. But he says last week's forum tackled the biggest problem - convincing investors that Fort Drum is actually here to stay.  Go to full article

Developers, Investors meet in Fort Drum Housing Forum

More than 300 developers, investors and elected officials met in Watertown on Thursday for a daylong summit aimed at solving Fort Drum's housing crunch. Both Senator Clinton and Senator Shumer spoke at the event.

An influx of nearly 6-thousand soldiers at Fort Drum has led to a severe housing shortage. Most have already arrived, but the Army estimates it still needs 2-thousand-60 single-family homes and approximately 225 two-person apartments in the Watertown area to provide housing. Then there's the problem of providing housing for low-income families displaced by the arriving soldiers.

John Deans is chair of the Fort Drum regional liaison organization. He told Gregory Warner that yesterday's forum was a good networking opportunity.  Go to full article
Freed hostage Bernard Planche
Freed hostage Bernard Planche

Drum Soldiers Find Escaped French Hostage

Soldiers from Fort Drum near Watertown were involved in the escape of a French engineer held captive in Iraq. Bernard Planche was kidnapped in Baghdad on December 5th. Planche fled from his captors Saturday. He approached members of the 10th Mountain Division who were conducting a checkpoint. Freelance journalist Bill Putnam is embedded with the 10th Mountain's 1st Brigade Combat Team in Iraq and sent us this story.  Go to full article

Troop Reduction Won't Affect Drum

The Pentagon announced Tuesday that it will drop troop levels in Afghanistan in the spring. The decision affects the 10th Mountain Division, but not soldiers based at Fort Drum. David Sommerstein explains.  Go to full article

Defense Bill Targets Drum Housing Crunch

The $450 billion defense spending bill that passed the House of Representatives early Monday morning has some measures designed to help the housing crunch at Fort Drum. David Sommerstein reports.  Go to full article

Cheney Pushes Steady Course in Iraq

Vice President Dick Cheney told troops at Fort Drum that an early withdrawal of U.S. forces from Iraq would increase the risk of terrorist attacks at home and abroad. Cheney rallied several thousand members of the 10th Mountain Division and the 42nd Infantry Division yesterday in a hangar on Fort Drum's airfield. The appearance was a part of a series of speeches aiming to shore up support for the war in Iraq at a time when public support is at an all-time low. David Sommerstein reports.  Go to full article
Bradley's Military Supply
Bradley's Military Supply

Heard Up North: Soldiers React to Vice President's Speech

If you watched Vice President Cheney's speech on TV you saw soldiers sitting behind him wearing light grey camouflage uniforms. Unlike the darker green uniforms that the Army's worn since the 1980s, these uniforms - known as ACUs - are made for desert combat. Deployed soldiers have them, but the rest of Fort Drum wasn't supposed to be issued the new uniforms until January. That all changed when Dick Cheney came to town.... Top brass gave the order to ramp up delivery, and over the weekend, Bradley's Military Supply outside Fort Drum was elbow to elbow with soldiers getting outfitted. Workers have been hearing the same noise for the last five days...  Go to full article

Cheney Brings War Message to Drum

Vice President Dick Cheney is heading for Watertown today for a meet-and-greet with troops just back from Iraq. It's part of a concerted effort to shore up public support for the Iraq war. Martha Foley reports.  Go to full article

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