Tom Bowman http://ktep.org en What's The Right Size For The U.S. Army? http://ktep.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 07:52:00 +0000 Tom Bowman 38449 at http://ktep.org What's The Right Size For The U.S. Army? Air Force Roots Out Cheaters In Ranks — As Well As Why They Did It http://ktep.org/post/air-force-roots-out-cheaters-ranks-well-why-they-did-it Transcript <p>AUDIE CORNISH, HOST: <p>From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Audie Cornish.<p>ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST: <p>And I'm Robert Siegel.<p>The Air Force has fired nine officers in connection with a cheating scandal at one nuclear missile base. An investigation found there was widespread cheating on proficiency tests at Malmstrom Air Force Base in Montana. The case involves a total of 79 officers.<p>Air Force Secretary Deborah Lee James called it a problem of leadership culture.<p>SECRETARY DEBORAH LEE JAMES: We do have some systemic issues in our missile community. Thu, 27 Mar 2014 20:05:00 +0000 Tom Bowman 37517 at http://ktep.org Air Force To Release Results Of Cheating Probe http://ktep.org/post/air-force-release-results-cheating-probe Air Force Secretary Deborah Lee James and Lt. General Stephen Wilson report Thursday on the results of an investigation involving aobut 100 nuclear missile launch officers at Malmstrom Air Force Base. Thu, 27 Mar 2014 09:05:00 +0000 Tom Bowman 37474 at http://ktep.org Following Plea Deal, General's Misconduct Gets Fine And Reprimand http://ktep.org/post/following-plea-deal-generals-misconduct-gets-fine-and-reprimand Transcript <p>AUDIE CORNISH, HOST: <p>A U.S. Army general accused of sexual assault will not face jail time. Brigadier General Jeffrey Sinclair was sentenced today at Fort Bragg in North Carolina. Sinclair could have faced a prison term of up to 18 months as part of a plea deal. Instead, he'll receive a letter of reprimand and a $20,000 fine. Some members of Congress and victims' advocates are outraged at what they see as a leniency of the sentence. Thu, 20 Mar 2014 20:28:00 +0000 Tom Bowman 37076 at http://ktep.org Decades Later, A Medal Of Honor For Hispanic-American Hero http://ktep.org/post/decades-later-recognition-vietnam-vet-who-risked-his-life At the White House on Tuesday, President Obama will award the Medal of Honor to two-dozen soldiers whose service ranged from World War II to the Vietnam War. These soldiers are being commemorated after congress mandated a review to make sure that no one was overlooked because of prejudice.<p>One of them is Santiago Erevia, who risked his life on a May afternoon in 1969, charging toward bunkers held by the North Vietnamese.<p>Erevia was a cook back in 1968, working in small restaurants in Nevada and his native Texas. Tue, 18 Mar 2014 09:24:00 +0000 Tom Bowman 36875 at http://ktep.org Decades Later, A Medal Of Honor For Hispanic-American Hero General Takes Plea Deal In Sexual Assault Case http://ktep.org/post/general-takes-plea-deal-sexual-assault-case Transcript <p>ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST: <p>Today, a plea deal in the most closely watched sexual assault case in the military. An Army general admitted to charges of mistreating a subordinate and adultery. But Brigadier General Jeffrey Sinclair will not face more serious charges. That's because the Army's case against him fell apart. We're going to hear more about what happened now from NPR Pentagon correspondent Tom Bowman. Hi, Tom.<p>TOM BOWMAN, BYLINE: Hello, Robert.<p>SIEGEL: The case against General Sinclair has become almost a symbol of the problem of sexual assault in the military. Mon, 17 Mar 2014 20:09:00 +0000 Tom Bowman 36846 at http://ktep.org Hagel To Defend Pentagon Budget Before Senate Panel http://ktep.org/post/hagel-defend-pentagon-budget-senate-panel The Pentagon's budget for next year would cut the size of the Armed Forces and begin to rein in expensive benefits, including health care. The Army would be reduced to its lowest level in years. Wed, 05 Mar 2014 11:16:00 +0000 Tom Bowman 36014 at http://ktep.org Hagel Proposes Cuts To Size And Spending of Armed Forces http://ktep.org/post/hagel-proposes-cuts-size-and-spending-armed-forces Transcript <p>ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST: <p>From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Robert Siegel.<p>And we begin this hour with Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel's plan to cut the military. At the Pentagon today, he called for a smaller Army and Marine Corps. He also suggested grounding a vintage Cold War plane and asked troops to pay more for health care and other benefits. Hagel said his budget plan offers a new post-war vision for the Pentagon. Mon, 24 Feb 2014 21:20:00 +0000 Tom Bowman 35436 at http://ktep.org Pentagon Officials To Outline Defense Budget Priorities http://ktep.org/post/pentagon-officials-outline-defense-budget-priorities Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel will outline budget priorities during a news conference on Monday. A key question for the Pentagon: How to curb growth of military pay and benefits? Mon, 24 Feb 2014 10:05:00 +0000 Tom Bowman 35381 at http://ktep.org New Military Ethics Chief Will Face A Full Plate http://ktep.org/post/new-military-ethics-chief-will-face-full-plate Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel is expected to appoint a senior officer to oversee military ethics, in response to recent high-profile ethics problems. Whoever takes the job will face a stiff challenge. Fri, 21 Feb 2014 21:00:00 +0000 Tom Bowman 35275 at http://ktep.org Hagel Concerned By Ethical Lapses In Armed Forces http://ktep.org/post/hagel-concerned-ethical-lapses-armed-forces Transcript <p>RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST: <p>The American military is trying to get to the bottom of a series of scandals. Air Force nuclear missile officers cheated on tests, Navy sailors are accused of the same, and more - enough that Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel is concerned that there's a pattern here, a problem with ethical lapses across the armed services. NPR Pentagon correspondent Tom Bowman joins us now to talk about this. Good morning.<p>TOM BOWMAN, BYLINE: Good morning, Renee.<p>MONTAGNE: Well, what is the latest? Thu, 06 Feb 2014 10:16:00 +0000 Tom Bowman 34244 at http://ktep.org Afghan Security Agreement Is Still Unsigned — Who's At Fault? http://ktep.org/post/afghan-security-agreement-still-unsigned-whos-fault Transcript <p>AUDIE CORNISH, HOST: <p>From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Audie Cornish.<p>ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST: <p>And I'm Robert Siegel. In Afghanistan, the U.S. is in a political standoff with the government of President Hamid Karzai. At issue is what's called a bilateral security agreement that would govern U.S. troops if they stay in Afghanistan beyond 2014. Fri, 31 Jan 2014 22:11:00 +0000 Tom Bowman 33917 at http://ktep.org A Medal Of Valor, 30 Years In Coming http://ktep.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 22:30:00 +0000 Tom Bowman 33765 at http://ktep.org A Medal Of Valor, 30 Years In Coming Pentagon, White House Are At Odds Over Afghanistan http://ktep.org/post/pentagon-white-house-are-odds-over-afghanistan The Pentagon is saying that it needs to keep 10,000 troops in Afghanistan after 2014 to train Afghans and maintain a counterterror mission. But military officials are once again running into interference from Vice President Joe Biden. That's nothing new: Biden in particular has for years pushed for a counterterror option of only several thousand troops, though the military says that number is far too small. The Pentagon argues that Biden's proposal would mean the U.S. forces would be largely consigned to their bases. Wed, 22 Jan 2014 21:47:00 +0000 Tom Bowman 33293 at http://ktep.org Gen. Dempsey: Better To Get Others To Solve Their Own Problems http://ktep.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 19:26:00 +0000 Tom Bowman 33012 at http://ktep.org Gen. Dempsey: Better To Get Others To Solve Their Own Problems Gen. Dempsey Disputes Gates' Characterization Of Obama http://ktep.org/post/gen-dempsey-disputes-gates-characterization-obama The nation's top military officer, Gen. Tue, 14 Jan 2014 22:29:00 +0000 Tom Bowman 32780 at http://ktep.org Gen. Dempsey Disputes Gates' Characterization Of Obama Gates Memoir Tests Civilian-Military Rules Of Engagement http://ktep.org/post/gates-memoir-tests-civilian-military-rules-engagement Former Defense Secretary Robert Gates' new book, <em>Duty, Memoirs of a Secretary at War</em>, paints a picture of a White House suspicious of military leaders and their motives.<p>In the book, Gates criticizes both President Obama and Vice President Joe Biden over issues like the Afghanistan war. It's a case study of civilian-military tensions that are as old as the Republic.<p><strong>A President Wary Of Being Boxed In</strong><p>Gates takes the reader inside the White House, where a debate was on about whether to send more troops to Afghanistan. Sat, 11 Jan 2014 16:27:00 +0000 Tom Bowman 32592 at http://ktep.org Gates Memoir Tests Civilian-Military Rules Of Engagement The Pentagon Weighs Its Options In Syria And Iraq http://ktep.org/post/pentagon-weighs-its-options-syria-and-iraq Transcript <p>ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST: <p>From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Robert Siegel.<p>AUDIE CORNISH, HOST: <p>And I'm Audie Cornish. We begin this hour with the rising violence in both Syria and Iraq and American military options in the region. A group linked to al-Qaida has been fighting in Syria, battling the regime of Bashar al-Assad. Tue, 07 Jan 2014 22:39:00 +0000 Tom Bowman 32322 at http://ktep.org Marines: Most Female Recruits Don't Meet New Pullup Standard http://ktep.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 08:24:00 +0000 Tom Bowman 31659 at http://ktep.org Marines: Most Female Recruits Don't Meet New Pullup Standard House OKs Wide-Ranging Defense Authorization Bill http://ktep.org/post/house-oks-wide-ranging-defense-authorization-bill A compromise defense bill is making its way through Congress. The authorization measure deals with everything from sexual assault in the military to the detention facility at Guantanamo Bay to operations in Afghanistan. Fri, 13 Dec 2013 12:52:00 +0000 Tom Bowman 30808 at http://ktep.org China's Military Buildup Reignites Worries In Asia, Beyond http://ktep.org/post/chinas-military-buildup-reignites-worries-asia-beyond China has been building up its military strength for some time now, and pushing ever farther from its coastline and into international waters. The real concern now is for miscalculation — particularly with Japan — that ends up in gunfire.<p>Just six months ago, the Pentagon released its annual report on China's military. Its defense budget was growing. The country was building more stealthy aircraft and submarines. Thu, 05 Dec 2013 08:17:00 +0000 Tom Bowman 30249 at http://ktep.org China's Military Buildup Reignites Worries In Asia, Beyond When Most U.S. Forces Leave Afghanistan, Contractors May Stay http://ktep.org/post/when-most-us-forces-leave-afghanistan-contractors-may-stay Should the Afghan government sign a security agreement, the U.S. plans to keep between 6,000 and 9,000 American troops in Afghanistan even after the U.S. and NATO's combat mission officially ends late in 2014.<p>Beginning in 2015, the remaining troops would train Afghan soldiers and mount operations against any remnants of al-Qaida.<p>But they wouldn't be the only ones who stay behind: U.S. troops would almost certainly be outnumbered by civilian contractors.<p>Ever since the U.S. Thu, 28 Nov 2013 21:02:00 +0000 Tom Bowman 29894 at http://ktep.org When Most U.S. Forces Leave Afghanistan, Contractors May Stay Women Pass Marine Training, Clear First Hurdle To Combat Role http://ktep.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 21:29:00 +0000 Tom Bowman 29484 at http://ktep.org Women Pass Marine Training, Clear First Hurdle To Combat Role Afghan Elders Will Decide Future Of U.S. Troops After 2014 http://ktep.org/post/afghan-elders-will-decide-future-us-troops-after-2014 Some 3,000 Afghan elders will assemble on Thursday in Kabul to consider a new security agreement with the U.S. The document will spell out the rules for American forces in Afghanistan troops after their combat mission ends in December 2014. U.S. officials say between 6,000 and 9,000 US troops would remain to train Afghan security forces and conduct counter-terror missions against al-Qaeda and other anti-government forces. That counter-terror mission remains a sticking point, though most other issues — like potential criminal liability of Americans in Afghanistan — have been resolved. Tue, 19 Nov 2013 22:37:00 +0000 Tom Bowman 29364 at http://ktep.org UN Report Puts Afghan Opium Poppy Cultivation At Record High http://ktep.org/post/un-report-puts-afghan-opium-poppy-cultivation-record-high Transcript <p>ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST: <p>From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Robert Siegel.<p>AUDIE CORNISH, HOST: <p>And I'm Audie Cornish.<p>The poppy crop in Afghanistan has hit record levels, a sign that the drug trade there continues to rise. That's according to the latest numbers from a United Nations report out today. The U.S. warns that a boost in opium production will provide more money for Taliban insurgents.<p>As NPR's Tom Bowman reports, those rising numbers come despite billions of dollars spent to eradicate the poppy plant.<p>TOM BOWMAN, BYLINE: First, the numbers. Wed, 13 Nov 2013 22:07:00 +0000 Tom Bowman 28957 at http://ktep.org Why Does The NSA Keep An EGOTISTICALGIRAFFE? It's Top Secret http://ktep.org/post/why-does-nsa-keep-egotisticalgiraffe-its-top-secret What do the following words have in common?<p>SHARKFINN<br />KEYSTONE<br />DISHFIRE Sun, 10 Nov 2013 12:34:00 +0000 Tom Bowman 28727 at http://ktep.org Why Does The NSA Keep An EGOTISTICALGIRAFFE? It's Top Secret Pakistani Taliban Leader Believed Dead In U.S. Drone Strike http://ktep.org/post/pakistani-taliban-leader-believed-dead-us-drone-strike The leader of the Pakistani Taliban is reported to have been killed by a U.S. drone strike. Hakimullah Mehsud's group is believed responsible for attacks across Pakistan. He is also implicated in the attack that killed seven CIA employees at a CIA base in Afghanistan in late 2009. Mehsud has been reported to have been killed before, but sources are confident this time. Fri, 01 Nov 2013 21:51:00 +0000 Tom Bowman 28228 at http://ktep.org Case Of Marines Desecrating Taliban Bodies Takes A New Twist http://ktep.org/post/marine-controversy-afghanistan-takes-new-twist In a case that caused a major stir last year, a YouTube video surfaced showing Marines in Afghanistan joking and laughing as they urinated on three dead Taliban fighters. The Marines involved in the July 2011 incident in the southern province of Helmand were disciplined.<p>It seemed the case was over, but now it has taken a strange twist. There are allegations that the Marines' top officer, Gen. Thu, 31 Oct 2013 08:00:00 +0000 Tom Bowman 28056 at http://ktep.org Case Of Marines Desecrating Taliban Bodies Takes A New Twist In Afghanistan, An Uncertain Role For U.S. After 2014 http://ktep.org/post/afghanistan-uncertain-role-us-after-2014 Transcript <p>MELISSA BLOCK, HOST: <p>From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Melissa Block.<p>AUDIE CORNISH, HOST: <p>And I'm Audie Cornish.<p>Another fighting season is coming to an end in Afghanistan and American and Afghan leaders are trying to determine whether U.S. troops will remain beyond the next fighting season in 2014. Fri, 25 Oct 2013 21:30:00 +0000 Tom Bowman 27767 at http://ktep.org Women Break New Ground In Marine Infantry Training http://ktep.org/post/women-break-new-ground-marine-infantry-training Female Marines have been training for the past month at Camp Lejeune, trying to make it through infantry training. They've got a month to go, including a 12-mile hike with a heavy pack. They're the first ones ever to handle the training, part of an effort to integrate women into combat positions by 2016. Tue, 22 Oct 2013 08:50:00 +0000 Tom Bowman 27498 at http://ktep.org