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December, 2017


Civil Rights Groups Sue HUD To Relocate Welfare Recipients To Affluent Neighborhoods


Low-income families in parts New Jersey will have the opportunity to move to better neighborhoods with better schools starting next year, after a federal judge this week directed the immediate implementation of an Obama-era desegregation rule. Bergen, Passaic, Monmouth and Ocean counties are among 23 metro areas that will have to change how federal housing subsidies… Read More

Is The Iran Protest Demonstrations A ‘Start Of A Big Movement’?


The unrest in Iran is just “the beginning of a big movement” that could be more widespread than the demonstrations of 2009, the Nobel Peace Prize-winning Iranian lawyer Shirin Ebadi said in an interview Sunday. “I think the protests are not going to end soon. It seems to me that we are witnessing the beginning of… Read More

Seven Celebrities Who Made Fools Of Themselves In 2017

Samantha Bee 2017

The year 2017 was hardly a “best foot forward” period for Hollywood celebs. The entertainment industry became increasingly political and aggressive toward average Americans during the first year of the Trump presidency — and celebs made fools of themselves as they abandoned common sense amid their red-hot anger over the results of the 2016 presidential election.… Read More

Twelve Key Events Of The World In 2017

Vladimir Putin and Emmanuel Macron (2017-05-29) 04

From the inauguration of US President Donald Trump to the exodus of Rohingyas from Myanmar, here are 12 events that marked 2017. – A year of Trump – On January 20 Republican billionaire Donald Trump, 70, is inaugurated as US president, vowing: “America first.” Suspicions of collusion between his election campaign and Russia dog the start… Read More

Somalia: Increasing Pressure Being Put On al-Shabab By US Air strikes

Greater Somalia

The United States military says its support for the Federal Government of Somalia is making an impact in a year in which the Trump administration increased attacks against al-Shabab militants. In 2017, the U.S. conducted at least 34 strike operations against al-Shabab and a militant splinter group supporting the Islamic State, according observers of U.S. military… Read More

‘Vanity Fair’ Gets Blowback From The Left-Wing On Hillary Article

Vanity Fair June 1914b

Though most people would agree Vanity Fair is no friend to conservatives, the publication was candid this week in its thoughts about two-time failed presidential candidate Hillary Clinton — much to the dismay of its left-leaning base. The fashion magazine has been posting political New Year’s resolution videos, all meant to be humorous in one way… Read More

China Waives Taxes To Induce Foreign Firms To Stay


China will temporarily waive income taxes for foreign companies on profits they reinvest in the country as Beijing battles to retain foreign firms and investment. The finance ministry announced Thursday the new tax policy, which will apply retroactively from January so businesses will be able to take advantage of the exemption for this year’s taxes. The… Read More

US Air Force Participates in PACANGEL – Military Humanitarian Assistance


 Airman Builds Medical Relationships in Vietnam

Air Force Maj. (Dr.) Cody Butler, a physical therapist and commander of the 78th Medical Group Clinical Medicine Flight, poses in the clinic set up in the government community center in Tam Ky, Quang Nam Province, Vietnam, Nov. 30, 2017. Butler was in Vietnam as part of a team seeing patients and building relationships with local physicians during the humanitarian assistance engagement Operation Pacific Angel Vietnam 2017. Air Force photo by Jonathan Bell

ROBINS AIR FORCE BASE, Ga., Dec. 28, 2017 — An Air Force physical therapist stationed here was one of 50 U.S. team members who recently spent more than two weeks in Tam Ky, Quang Nam Province, Vietnam, seeing patients and building relationships with local physicians.

“Each day we bused out to a government community center where we provided family health, pediatric care and physical therapy assistance and dental care,” said Maj. (Dr.) Cody Butler, commander of the 78th Medical Group Clinical Medicine Flight.

“We would start seeing patients at about 7:30 in the morning and ran all day long,” Butler said.

Humanitarian Assistance Engagements

His efforts were part of Operation Pacific Angel Vietnam 2017 — the last of four humanitarian assistance engagements that made up PACANGEL 17.

The program, which has been going on for a decade now, ensures that the militaries of various countries in the Pacific region are able to work together should a humanitarian assistance need arise. One of Robins Air Force Base’s physicians was given the opportunity to take part in the program, which is typically only attended by members of U.S. Pacific Command.

“I saw between 50 and a hundred patients a day,” Butler said. “To put that in perspective, I see about 10 to 15 a day while working at Robins.”

Air Force Maj. (Dr.) Cody Butler, a physical therapist and commander of the 78th Medical Group Clinical Medicine Flight, poses with other members of his engagement team in Tam Ky, Quang Nam Province, Vietnam, Nov. 30, 2017. Butler was in Vietnam as part of a team seeing patients and building relationships with local physicians during the humanitarian assistance engagement Operation Pacific Angel Vietnam 2017. Air Force photo by Jonathan Bell

Building Relationships

The overall goal of PACANGEL was to try and build international relationships with the people of Vietnam. In addition to medical care, the team was able to go on a few evening excursions and experience the country outside of the treatment areas.

“It was interesting to see things like memorials and Viet Cong tunnels from their standpoint, where everything was, ‘The war against the Americans,’” Butler said. “So it was interesting seeing this communist country with statues and pictures of their leader Ho Chi Min everywhere as we’re trying to break the ice with these people.”

Butler said he interacted with some of the local Vietnamese physicians.

“In Vietnam, physical therapy is not well utilized — people can’t afford it,” he said. “So, being able to teach these physicians some techniques and tricks of my trade, and then seeing them try it on patients, it was really neat to see them now have another option of care to provide to their patients.”

PACANGEL 17 conducted humanitarian assistance engagements in Bogo City and San Remigio, Northern Cebu Province, Philippines; Northern and Western Divisions, Fiji; and Gorkha, Nepal.

Butler said that by participating in humanitarian missions such as this, the Air Force is able to reinforce its capabilities to deliver assistance to areas that need it.

“You typically think of the pilots or launching satellites as making the difference,” he said. “But even us medics, we’re there to soften the hearts of the people and provide a service that only we could offer.”

[Source: Jonathan Bell, 78th Air Base Wing/US DoD -/- Media Relations]
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Report: ‘Mapping The Swamp’ Shows Government Is Costlier Than You Think

USA-Old Post Office Pavilion0

James P. Cochrane is paid $250,335 annually as chief marketing and sales officer for the U.S. Postal Service (USPS), making him the highest paid public relations employee of the federal government. The USPS lost $5.1 billion in 2016. Right behind Cochrane is Stephen Katsanos, who pulls down $229,333 as a public affairs official for the Federal… Read More

Terror Attack On Shi’ite Muslim Center In Kabul Kills At Least 40

Section of Kabul in 2011

A suicide attack on a building in the Afghan capital housing a Shi’ite Muslim cultural center with ties to Iran, has killed and wounded dozens of people. Nusrat Rahimi, a deputy spokesman at the interior ministry, confirmed to VOA that 40 people were killed and 30 more wounded and he expects the casualty toll will increase.… Read More

Russia: Saint Petersburg Blast Was ‘Act Of Terror’

Palace Square, Saint Petersburg, Russia

Russian President Vladimir Putin on Thursday said an explosion that tore through a Saint Petersburg supermarket, wounding 13 people, was an act of terror, as footage of the suspected bomber spread on the internet. Speaking at a meeting with military officers in the Kremlin, Putin ordered the nation’s security services to “act decisively” and “liquidate bandits… Read More

ISIS Being Rooted Out Of Caves In Southern Syria

Coalition Partner Forces Clear ISIS Caves in Southern Syria

Free Syrian Army technical in the eastern Qalamoun Mountains

SOUTHWEST ASIA, Dec. 27, 2017 — In partnership with coalition forces, the Maghawir al-Thawra conducted a series of ground clearance operations Dec. 23 to drive Islamic State of Iraq and Syria terrorists out of the Hamad Desert in southern Syria, Combined Joint Task Force Operation Inherent Resolve officials reported today.

The Maghawir al-Thawra, a vetted Syrian opposition force, has been fighting ISIS in the tri-border area of Iraq, Syria, and Jordan since 2015, according to officials.

Ongoing successful operations follow previous engagements earlier this month, in which the Maghawir al-Thawra, also known as MaT, killed several ISIS terrorists in the 34-mile de-confliction zone recognized by the coalition, Russia the Syrian regime, officials said.

“The combined operations are a result of many hours of planning, building trust and close cooperation between coalition Special Operations Forces and the MaT,” said Army Maj. Gen. James B. Jarrard, the commander of Operation Inherent Resolve’s Special Operations Joint Task Force.

Terrorists Lose Weapons Storage Sites

Operations have disrupted ISIS’ freedom of movement by clearing several caves the terrorist organization has historically used to store weapons, explosives and communications equipment, officials said.

The ISIS terrorists were using the area to transit from the Euphrates River Valley, where they have enjoyed relative freedom of movement while fleeing the coalition’s successful Syrian Democratic Forces partners, according to officials.

Recent defeat-ISIS operations conducted by the MaT confirm the de-confliction zone remains inhospitable to the terrorists, officials said.

“ISIS has repeatedly surfaced in the Hamad Desert,” Jarrard said. “However, inside the de-confliction zone, our partner forces have successfully thwarted ISIS’ movements.”

The cave clearing operations highlight the MaT’s professionalism, tactical skill and their overall impact as an effective security force within the de-confliction zone, officials said.

[Source: US Department of Defense -/- Media Relations]
[Photo Credits: inserted by (credits embedded)]

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