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Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Fw: TheList 4300



The List 4300
To All
A bit of history and some tidbits
Regards,
Skip
This Day In Naval History - October 26
1921 - In first successful test, a compressed air, turntable catapult, launches an N-9 seaplane.
1922 - LCDR Godfrey deC. Chevalier makes first landing aboard a carrier (USS Langley) while underway off Cape Henry, Virginia.
1942 - Battle of the Santa Cruz Island. USS Hornet (CV-8) was lost and USS Enterprise (CV-6) was badly damaged during the battle.
1944 - Battle of Leyte Gulf ends with Navy carrier and USAAF aircraft attacks on the retreating Japanese ships. U.S. forces sink many Japanese ships including 4 carriers, 3 battleships, 10 cruisers, and 9 destroyers, for a total of 26 capital ships. Afterwards Japanese fleet ceases to exist as an organized fighting fleet.
1944 - Special Task Air Group One makes last attack in month long demonstration of TDR drone missile against Japanese shipping and islands in the Pacific. Of 46 missiles fired, 29 reached their target areas.
1950 - U.S. Amphibious Force Seventh Fleet lands 1st Marine Division at Wonsan, Korea
1963 - USS Andrew Jackson (SSBN-619) launches first Polaris A-3 missile from a submerged submarine, off Cape Canaveral, Florida.
 
 
American Minute for October 26th:
    On OCTOBER 26, 1774, the Provincial Congress of Massachusetts reorganized their defenses with one-third of their regiments being "Minutemen," ready to fight at a minute's notice. These citizen soldiers drilled on the parade ground, many times led by a deacon or pastor, then went to church for exhortation and prayer. The Provincial Congress charged:
"You...are placed by Providence in the post of honor, because it is the post of danger...The eyes not only of North America and the whole British Empire, but of all Europe, are upon you. Let us be, therefore, altogether solicitous that no disorderly behavior, nothing unbecoming our character as Americans, as citizens and Christians, be justly chargeable to us." The Provincial Congress issued a Resolution to Massachusetts Bay, 1774:
"Resistance to tyranny becomes the Christian and social duty of each individual...Continue steadfast, and with a proper sense of your dependence on God, nobly defend those rights which heaven gave, and no man ought to take from us." Boston patriot Josiah Quincy stated: "Under God, we are determined that wheresoever, whensoever, or howsoever we shall be called to make our exit, we will die free men."
 
[USS Oriskany]
 
26 OCTOBER 1966
 
Alexander, Balisteri, Blakely, Boggs, Brewer, Bullard, Carter, Clements, Copple, Dilks, Donahue, Dyke, Ewoldt, Farris, Ford, Francis, Fryer, Gardner, Garrity, Gray, Hammond, Harris, Hart, Hudis, Hyde, Johnson, Juntilla, Kelly, Kern, Lee, Levy, Liste, McWilliams, Merrick, Miller, Morrisette, Nussbaumer, Shanks, Shifflett, Siebe, Smith, Spitzer, Stone, Strong, Tardio, Thomas, Tunick, Walling, Welch, Welsh.
 
Fifty officers and men, shipmates united in a deadly battle for the freedom of a desperate people, serving thousands of miles from their homes and families, dedicated to their oath to support and defend the Constitution of the United States of America ... now only names on a wall ... killed while struggling valiantly to save their ship ... written out of the history of the nation they loved by a media not worthy to kiss their feet ...
forgotten by all save their family, friends, and God.
 
Memories of the 26th of October 1966, the explosion and fire aboard USS Oriskany on Yankee Station in the Tonkin Gulf, and the men who perished there will soon die with those of us who survived; but they are forever enshrined in the Heavens where most of them once soared so high as to "reach out and touch the face of God."
 
Very respectfully submitted,
Dick Schaffert
Fighter Squadron 111 Sundowner, 1965-1968
25 October 2012
 
25 October 2016
[Oriskany Fire]

At 07:21 tomorrow morning, 26 October, I will be kneeling by the side of my bed, giving thanks to God for sparing my life 50 years earlier, at that exact moment.

I had just finished shaving, was already in my flight suit, and was returning my shaving gear to my stateroom aboard the USS Oriskany on Yankee Station off Vietnam. As I stepped out of the "head" (restroom) into a passageway, I was startled by a loud alarm over the ship's 1MC:  "THIS IS A DRILL, THIS IS A DRILL. FIRE! FIRE! FIRE! FIRE ON THE HANGAR DECK." My head automatically snapped to the door leading to the hangar deck, which was only two steps to my left. I was immediately aware of heavy, acrid smoke coming underneath that door. I ran for the curtained doorway of my room, only a few steps down the passageway. I threw back the curtain to see my roommate Lieutenant Commander Norm Levy sitting up on the edge of his bunk. I tossed the shaving gear on my bunk, which was directly above his, and shouted at him:  "It's no drill, Norm, we're on fire! Let's get the hell out of here." At that moment, the ship's bugle sounded the call for GENERAL QUARTERS. Were we under attack? I was scheduled for the ALERT FIVE (ready fighter aircraft) at 07:45, which meant I needed to get to our squadron Ready Room immediately and into my flight gear. I ran down the passageway, banging on the sheet metal wall and shouting:  "IT'S NO DRILL! WE'RE ON FIRE! WE'RE ON FIRE!" I was about 10 steps short of the end of the passageway, which entered the opposite side of the hangar bay, away from my room, when I felt the concussion and heard the explosion which literally blew me out into the hangar bay. I was tumbling, then I was skidding on my back. I turned on my right side to get up and saw a huge fireball rolling across the top of the hangar bay. I ran the 50 feet further down the hangar bay deck and stumbled down the hatch to the next deck and into the passageway which led directly to Ready Room Three, and my flight gear.

The rest is history, which I've written about for years. My memorial to Norm Levy is engraved on a stainless steel plaque and entombed in the Oriskany now asleep in the deep off Pensacola, Florida. For more than 20 years after that fateful morning, when Norm Levy and so many of my shipmates perished in our fight to save the ship, I relived that event in my dreams, two or three times a night. With the help of our most merciful God, which came in the form of some wonderful personal companionships, it finally faded. Now, with His Grace, and even with a failing memory, I can recall it at will, in living color, and even smell again the deadly phosphorous smoke from the munitions locker that exploded.

I will not do that tomorrow morning at 07:21. I will be repeating the 44 names of my fallen comrades, and asking God's almighty blessings upon their heroic souls. An ungrateful nation, both the government and the people, has long forgotten them and the supreme sacrifice they so freely and valiantly made to save Oriskany ... and me! God is good, He never forgets!

Very Respectfully,

Dick Schaffert aka Brown Bear
25 October 2016
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More on Bob Hover who passed away yesterday
Bob Hoover: Top pilot who stole plane to escape WWII prison camp dies | WTOP
 
 
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From Humphrey's Solo to Thornton's Swim by  W. Thomas Smith Jr.
 
This Week in American Military History:
 
Oct. 25, 1812: The frigate USS United States under the command of Capt.
(future commodore) Stephen Decatur – hero of Tripoli and said to be the U.S. Navy's own "Lord Nelson" – captures the Royal Navy frigate HMS Macedonian under the command of Capt. John Carden in a brisk fight several hundred miles off the Azores.
 
In seven years, Decatur will be mortally wounded in a duel with Commodore James Barron.
 
 
USS United States – the first of four so-named American Navy vessels and the first commissioned warship for the new U.S. Navy – will be seized by Confederate forces in 1861 and rechristened CSS United States.
 
Oct. 26, 1909: U.S. Army Lt. (future brig. gen.) Frederick Erastus Humphreys becomes the first Army aviator to solo in a heavier-than-air craft – the Wright Flyer – following three hours of instruction by Wilbur Wright.
 
Humphreys will write:
 
"From a military standpoint, the first and probably the greatest use [of the aircraft] will be found in reconnaissance. …
 
"The next use will probably be in carrying messages. …
 
"Another time where advantage might be taken of the speed of these machines is when officers of high rank might desire to give personal supervision at a distant point of the line or to go from one point to another for a council of war. …"
 
Interestingly, Humphreys adds: "Probably a large amount of damage could be done to the personnel of the enemy when in mass, or in a raid to the storehouses and depot, by projectiles dropped from a flyer. That any could be done to fortifications or ships is doubtful."
 
Oct. 26, 1922: Lt. Commander Godfrey de Courcelles Chevalier makes the first aircraft-carrier landing on the deck of America's first carrier, USS Langley, the first of two carriers named in honor of aviation scientist Samuel Pierpont Langley.
 
Readers will recall Eugene B. Ely's first-ever airplane-landing aboard ship on Jan. 18, 1911 (Ely's landing however was on a special platform mounted on a cruiser, not a carrier).
 
Both Chevalier and Ely will be killed in plane crashes weeks after their historic firsts.
 
Oct. 26, 1944: The Battle of Leyte Gulf – the last great naval battle of the Pacific during World War II – ends in a lopsided victory for the Americans. An epic three-day, four-part engagement fought in defense of the U.S. effort to retake the Philippines, the battle has all but ended the Japanese Navy's ability to fight as a substantive fleet. It is also history's last sea battle in which battleships engage one another in pitched battle.
 
All total, 282 U.S. and Japanese warships and 190,000 sailors on both sides have been directly involved in the battle. Four Japanese carriers, three battleships, six cruisers, 14 destroyers, and nearly 10,000 sailors have been sent to the bottom. The U.S. Navy has suffered the loss of three carriers, three destroyers, and one submarine.
 
Oct. 28, 1962: Soviet premier Nikita Khrushchev "blinks," ending the Cuban Missile Crisis.
 
Oct. 31, 1972: U.S. Navy SEAL Petty Officer (future lieutenant) Michael E.
Thornton; his commanding officer, Lt. Thomas R. Norris; and three South Vietnamese Naval commandos are conducting an intelligence-collection and prisoner-snatch operation deep behind enemy lines when they are discovered by a force that outnumbers them at least 10 to one.
 
Fierce fighting ensues. Thornton and Norris are both wounded, Norris badly.
 
As the team begins a fighting withdrawal toward the beach, Thornton learns that Norris is down, perhaps dead.
 
Thornton races back through a hailstorm of enemy fire to find and retrieve his commander – dead or alive.
 
Thornton finds Norris, kills two enemy soldiers who are standing over his wounded commander, then hoists Norris onto his shoulders and sprints back toward the beach for several hundred yards under heavy enemy fire.
 
When he hits the surf, Thornton ties Norris to his own body and starts swimming. When he sees one of the South Vietnamese commandos shot in the hip and unable to swim, Thornton grabs him too; swimming both men out to sea for more than two hours before they are rescued.
 
For his actions, Thornton will receive the Medal of Honor.
 
Norris will survive and receive the Medal himself for a previous action.
 
Thanks to Carl… A real hero's story  More on the one in yesterdays This week in Military History for Oct. 31, 1972: U.S. Navy SEAL Petty Officer (future lieutenant) Michael E.
Thornton;
 
The Incredible Rescue of LtCol Gene Hambleton
 
 
The Incredible Rescue of LtCol Gene Hambleton
.  A friend of mine who was close to Norris told me about the story of The Incredible Rescue of LtCol Gene Hambleton by Norris who survived and received the Medal himself for this rescue. He also said a book called The Rescue of BAT 21 is out that describes the rescue in detail. Something that could not be done when it happened because it was classified. It was an amazing story of a true hero. This book is a great read if you have not read it yet….skip
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Boys Don't Play 'Soldier' Anymore 
 
D.W. Wilber | Oct 22, 2014
Whatever happened to war heroes ? As a small boy I remember watching over and over with rapt attention the movie 'To Hell and Back', the story of Audie Murphy, America's most decorated hero of World War II. Feeding the imagination of a small boy with visions of heroic deeds and medals on my chest, countless times I went on to storm the beaches of Normandy in my own back yard. In my childish mind I fought through the jungles of Burma with Merrill's Marauders and defeated the Japanese. Whether it was flying alongside Pappy Boyington's Black Sheep in the Pacific, or in the jungles of Guadalcanal with Medal of Honor winner John Basilone by my side, I helped defeat America's enemies countless times as a boy growing up.
When I was young I remember hearing the stories of American war heroes being told to me by my father and uncles. To me people like Audie Murphy, John Basilone, and Pappy Boyington were people I wanted to emulate. Someone to grow up and be like. That they might have faults or shortcomings as human beings was a concept far beyond the thought processes of a small boy. What mattered to me was that they fought, and sometimes died heroically on the field of battle. Fighting on the side of good against evil. That still matters to me much more than any personal failings they might have had. 
When birthdays and Christmas came along I frantically tore open the wrapped packages rejoicing over the bag full of plastic soldiers, toy tanks, and jeeps contained within. Beneath the bed in my room I kept all my military equipment. My small plastic helmet was neatly stowed within easy reach. The toy Tommy Gun cleaned, well oiled, and ready for action. And water balloon hand grenades by the dozen. All the gear that a young boy needed to wage battle against our foes. 
I like to think that I grew up to be a normal, well adjusted adult, suffering not from PTSD as a result of the wars and battles of my youth. Playing 'Soldier' didn't really seem to have any adverse effect on me at all. Unfortunately the heroes of my youth haven't fared as well over the years. 
It seems that war heroes just don't have a place in our society anymore. Serving your country, and in some cases making the ultimate sacrifice just isn't in vogue. It doesn't fit into the politically correct world in which we live. Hollywood chooses to portray soldiers nowadays as psychopaths and maniacal killers reminiscent of the invading Mongol hordes of old. The movie industry seeks out and magnifies the negative when dealing with historic military figures. Focusing on their failings and dark side, Hollywood releases films that make little money, but certainly project the social and political agenda that is more important to them.
In the heat of politics some of our own elected officials have compared our current crop of war heroes to many of the worst enemies of our past, with little regard to how that might play to the brave men and women fighting and dying daily on our behalf. It would seem that political expediency trumps support for the troops nowadays in Washington, though some politicians will still try to pay lip service in supporting the Armed Forces. 
Nowadays it seems to be a real hero you have to have done some sort of volunteer work. Like opening a homeless shelter, counseling battered women, or involvement with some other social endeavor. Certainly worthy of recognition and appreciation, but worthy of the title 'Hero' ? I'm not sure that it fits. 
Recently when I asked a college student if they knew who Audie Murphy was they hadn't a clue. I got answers ranging from "a comedian" to "Isn't he running for some office or something ?". And when I told them the story of his service in World War II, and the acts he performed which earned him the Medal of Honor, they responded "Cool", and then moved on. There was no real interest in who Audie Murphy was, or in the courage displayed by one of America's greatest war heroes.
What has happened to us ? 
I think maybe it's time for our politically correct, warm and fuzzy society to let our kids play 'Soldier' again. They need to learn about people like Audie Murphy, John Basilone, and Pappy Boyington. They need to understand and appreciate that self-sacrifice has value in our society. It's not 'all about me' that matters. Real Americans have sacrificed and died throughout our history and are still doing so now, so that the clueless college students, as well as those old enough to remember but who seem to have forgotten, can all pursue the more and more elusive American dream. 
So maybe buying toy soldiers, tanks, and Tommy Guns for our kids isn't such a bad thing after all. Perhaps they'll be like many from my generation who grew up playing 'Soldier', 'Cops and Robbers', and Cowboys and Indians', well adjusted and unaffected by all the 'gun battles' fought as a child. And just maybe one day your Kids will tell their children about Audie Murphy, John Basilone, and Pappy Boyington. And maybe even who Leroy Petry, Salvatore Giunta, and Dakota Meyer were.
And maybe they'll understand that heroism matters.
 
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Thanks to Bill
After my prostrate exam, the doctor left.
Then the nurse came in.  As she shut the door,she whispered the three
words that no man wants to hear: 'Who Was That?'
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Being airborne approximately thirty minutes on an outbound evening Aer
Lingus flight from Dublin, the lead flight attendant nervously made
the following painful announcement in her lovely Irish brogue . . .
 
 
 
"Ladies and gentlemen, I'm so very sorry, but it appears that there
has been a terrible mix-up ... one minute prior to take-off, by our
catering service ... I don't know how this has happened, but we have
103 passengers on board and ... unfortunately, we only received 40
dinners ... I truly apologize for this mistake and inconvenience.
 
When the passengers' muttering had died down, she continued ...
"Anyone who is kind enough to give up their meal so that someone else
can eat, will receive free, unlimited drinks for the duration of our 4 hour flight.
 
Her next announcement came about 2 hours later ... "If anyone would
like to change their minds, we still have 40 dinners available."
 
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Item Number:1 Date: 10/26/2016 AFGHANISTAN - ISIS FIGHTERS EXECUTE DOZENS OF CIVILIANS IN GHOR, SAY PROVINCIAL OFFICIALS (OCT 26/CNN)  CABLE NEWS NETWORK -- Islamic State militants have kidnapped and killed 30 civilians in Afghanistan's western Ghor province, says a provincial official cited by CNN.   The civilians, along with two flocks of sheep, were abducted as they collected firewood in the mountains, said a spokesman for the provincial governor on Wednesday.   There was an ISIS attack on Tuesday near Feroz Koh, the provincial capital, and Afghan police killed an ISIS commander. The militants killed the civilians in revenge, said the spokesman, as reported by Reuters.   Other accounts described the incident differently and said 23 were killed.   The executions were carried out by a former Taliban unit of 150 that defected to ISIS, said the officials
Item Number:2 Date: 10/26/2016 AFGHANISTAN - TALIBAN ATTACK CAPITAL OF WARDAK PROVINCE, CUT HIGHWAY BETWEEN KABUL AND KANDAHAR (OCT 26/REU)  REUTERS -- Afghan officials say Taliban fighters have cut off a key highway linking Kabul to the southern city of Kandahar, reports Reuters.   On Wednesday, the insurgents attacked Maidan Shahr, the capital of Wardak province, about 28 miles from Kabul, said officials.   Fighting was still going outside the town and the main highway was blocked, said a spokesman for the provincial governor later in the day.   The Taliban issued a statement, saying it had seized government buildings and ambushed military reinforcements.  
 Item Number:3 Date: 10/26/2016 ANGOLA - ZAMBIAN DEFENSE OFFICIALS DISCUSSING BORDER ISSUES IN EXTENSIVE TALKS IN LUANDA (OCT 26/APA)  ANGOLA PRESS AGENCY -- Angolan and Zambian defense officials are in Luanda, the Angolan capital, for talks on border issues, reports the Angola Press Agency.   The Joint Standing Committee on Defense and Security of the Angolan and Zambian Experts began the three-day meeting on Monday.   The agenda covers border issues such as security, legality, immigration, illegal trafficking and others.   The meeting is being co-chaired by Angola's Secretary of State for National Defense Adm. Santos Rufino and Zambian Permanent Secretary Standy Mwale.  
  Item Number:4 Date: 10/26/2016 COSTA RICA - DONATED CHINESE Y-12E TRANSPORTS READY TO WORK FOR SECURITY FORCES (OCT 26/XIN)  XINHUA -- Costa Rica's security forces have taken delivery of two Y-12E light transport aircraft donated by China, reports Xinhua, China's state news agency.   The aircraft were handed over on Monday at the headquarters of the Aerial Surveillance Service (SVA) in San Jose, Costa Rica's capital, after being ferried from China.   The SVA can handle various missions missions, including combating drug-trafficking and search-and-rescue duties.   Other planned uses are for humanitarian duties and combat against organized crime, reported IHS Jane's Defence Weekly.   The Y-12Es are able to land on nearly all terrains, which is ideal for operations in remote parts of Costa Rica, officials said.   Four Costa Rican pilots and six mechanics previously traveled to China for training on the Y-12E
Item Number:5 Date: 10/26/2016 FRANCE - HOLLANDE KEEPS AIRCRAFT CARRIER IN MED UNTIL DECEMBER TO BACK MOSUL OFFENSIVE IN IRAQ (OCT 26/AFP)  AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE -- The French government has extended its aircraft carrier mission in the eastern Mediterranean Sea to back the offensive against the Islamic State-held Iraqi city of Mosul, reports Agence France-Presse.   The Charles de Gaulle carrier will remain in the region until mid-December, said a statement from the office of President Francois Hollande on Wednesday.   The carrier was deployed in September for what was then believed to be a one-month mission.   The extension decision was made after a review of the "military, humanitarian, political and security-related issues tied to the reconquest of Mosul," the statement said
Item Number:6 Date: 10/26/2016 IRAN - REVOLUTIONARY GUARDS SHOW OFF NEW DRONE, BOAST IT CAN BLOW UP TARGETS ON LAND OR AT SEA (OCT 26/TASNIM)  TASNIM NEWS AGENCY -- The paramilitary Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) in Iran says it has developed a "suicide drone," reports the Tasnim news agency (Tehran).   The new unmanned aerial vehicle is primarily designed for surveillance and cannot be equipped with missiles, said the IRGC on Wednesday.   However, the drone can carry "heavy payloads of explosives for combat missions to launch suicide attacks."   "Flying at a high cruising speed near the surface of the water, the aircraft can collide with the target and destroy it, either a vessel or an onshore command center," said the news agency, which is close to the IRGC.   The Guards say the UAV can fly as low as two feet above the water at around 160 miles per hour. It can also reportedly go as high as 3,000 feet.   The system will be equipped with an advanced military camera capable of operating at night and in wet conditions, according to IRGC.   Agence France-Presse carried a photograph of the UAV being displayed in Tehran
Item Number:7 Date: 10/26/2016 IRAQ - FOREIGN 'SUICIDE SQUADS' BEING SENT TO MOSUL FROM RAQQA, SYRIA; REPORTS ABOUND OF ISLAMIC STATE EXECUTIONS (OCT 26/CNN)  CABLE NEWS NETWORK -- Islamic State reinforcements in the form of "suicide squads" have been sent from Syria to embattled Mosul in northern Iraq, say witnesses cited by CNN.   Hundreds have arrived in the ISIS stronghold over the past two days, said the witnesses on Wednesday.   Witnesses say the new arrivals came from Raqqa, the Islamic State's de facto capital in Syria; they are said to be foreign fighters equipped with light weapons and suicide belts.   Terrorists have also been spotted rigging bridges across the Tigris River with explosives and preparing vehicle-borne improvised explosive devices.   The United Nations human-rights office has received reports of summary executions of civilians in Mosul, the Voice of America News reported. Almost 80 civilians and 50 former Iraqi police officers have been reportedly killed since Oct. 19, said U.N. officials.   Other accounts, including one by the International Business Times, said that 284 civilians were executed north of Mosul last week.  
Item Number:8 Date: 10/26/2016 ISRAEL - SOLDIER INJURED IN DRIVE-BY SHOOTING FROM LEBANON, SAYS IDF (OCT 26/HA)  HAARETZ -- The Israeli military says one of its soldiers was wounded near the border by gunfire from a vehicle in Lebanon, reports Haaretz (Israel).   Soldiers building defenses near the town Israeli town of Metula were involved in a drive-by shooting, said the Israel Defense Forces on Wednesday.   The Israeli soldiers returned fire, said the military. The car was later identified and hit by another unit, said the IDF. There were no immediate reports of casualties.   The Lebanese military denied the incident took place, with sources saying the soldier was a victim of friendly fire.   The United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL) told Reuters its forces were now in the area and had begun an investigation
  Item Number:9 Date: 10/26/2016 RUSSIA - KEEL-LAYING SET FOR NEW CORVETTE IN ST. PETERSBURG (OCT 26/RUMOD)  RUSSIAN MINISTRY OF DEFENSE -- The Russian navy is about to begin the construction on a new class of corvettes in St. Petersburg, reports the Russian Ministry of Defense.   The keel for the Dersky, the first Project 20386 corvette, will be laid on Oct. 28, on the eve of the 320th anniversary of the Russian navy, the ministry said in a release on Tuesday.   The new corvette will feature stealth characteristics, modern anti-ship and anti-submarine warfare capabilities and an air defense missile system, said the service.   A Russian power plant and unique radar system will also be fitted.   The Dersky will be able to carry a helicopter and unmanned aerial vehicles, the ministry said.  
 Item Number:10 Date: 10/26/2016 RUSSIA - NAVY TAKES DELIVERY OF VELIKI NOVGOROD DIESEL SUB (OCT 26/TASS)  TASS -- Another new diesel submarine has been delivered to the Russian navy, reports Tass (Russia).   The Veliki Novgorod completed all certification tests and was handed over to the Black Sea Fleet on Tuesday, said a shipyard official at the Admiralty Shipyards in St. Petersburg.   The boat is the fifth of six Project 636 submarines, also known as the Novorossiysk class.   The first two were delivered in 2014, and the third in 2015. The sixth, Kolpino, is expected to be delivered on Nov. 25, 2016.   A contract signed in September 2016 covers six more subs of the class by 2021 for the Pacific Fleet.  
Item Number:11 Date: 10/26/2016 SOMALIA - ASSASSINS GUN DOWN SENIOR ARMY OFFICER IN MOGADISHU (OCT 26/SHABELLE)  SHABELLE MEDIA NETWORK -- A search continues for the killers of a senior Somali intelligence officer on Monday.   Al-Shabaab militants killed the army officer in Mogadishu, the capital of Somalia, reports the Shabelle Media Network (Mogadishu).   Two men armed with pistols shot and killed Gen. Abdulaziz Araye in the Waberi district of the capital on Monday afternoon, said witnesses.   The gunmen then fled the scene.   Al-Shabaab later claimed responsibility for the attack
  Item Number:12 Date: 10/26/2016 SOMALIA - PEACEKEEPERS MOVE OUT, AL-SHABAAB MOVES INTO ANOTHER TOWN (OCT 26/REU)  REUTERS -- Al-Shabaab militants have gained control of yet another Somali town after African Union peacekeepers and government troops abandoned it, reports Reuters.   The terrorist group said on Wednesday it took over Tiyeeglow in the south near the Ethiopian border.   The group entered "the minute the Ethiopian troops left early this morning," said an Al-Shabaab statement. The Ethiopian and Somalian troops moved to Hudur, the capital of the Bakool region, the group said.   Tiyeeglow links Bakool to the HIiran region, where Al-Shabaab has taken over three towns this month.   The Ethiopians have recently pulled out of several such towns. Observers believe the withdrawals are related to domestic unrest by anti-government protests, reported Africa News.  
Item Number:13 Date: 10/26/2016 SOUTH KOREA - DEFENSE MINISTER GOES BACK TO PARLIAMENT FOR MORE FUNDING TO COUNTER N. KOREA (OCT 26/YON)  YONHAP -- The South Korean military is looking for additional funding to strengthen the country's defenses against possible North Korean threats, reports the Yonhap news agency (Seoul).   On Tuesday, Defense Minister Han Min-koo requested another US$626 million for the 2017 defense budget. The initial budget request was for US$35.6 billion and represents a 4 percent increase over 2016, according to the Defense Ministry.   The increase would quickly give the nation the capability to counter growing provocations by the North, the defense minister said.   Plans call for spending US$24.9 billion on operational and maintenance costs, with US$10.8 billion for upgrading combat capabilities.  
  Item Number:14 Date: 10/26/2016 SPAIN - RUSSIAN FLOTILLA DRAWS DIPLOMATIC FIRE FOR RESUPPLYING PLANS IN SPANISH PORT EN ROUTE TO SYRIA (OCT 26/RFE/RL)  RADIO FREE EUROPE/RADIO LIBERTY -- The Spanish Foreign Ministry says it is reviewing a request that would allow Russian warships to resupply at Spain's exclave of Ceuta in North Africa, reports Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty.   Various military and political figures have condemned the potential aid by a NATO member to warships headed for Syria, noted the Daily Telegraph (U.K.).   An eight-vessel Russian flotilla, including the aircraft carrier Admiral Kuznetsov, was due to arrive in Ceuta on Wednesday, reported the El Pais newspaper. Russian vessels have refueled there on a case-by-case at least 60 times since 2011.   The flotilla is expected to join around 10 other Russian vessels off the coast of Syria, said diplomats cited by Reuters.   On Tuesday, NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg expressed his concern that the Russian ship might help target civilians in the rebel-held parts of the Syrian city of Aleppo. The city has been under heavy bombardment by Russian and Syrian government forces in recent weeks.   "The latest stopover requests are being reviewed at the moment based on the information we are receiving from our allies and from Russian authorities," said the Spanish Foreign Ministry
  Item Number:15 Date: 10/26/2016 SRI LANKA - JOINT DRILLS WITH INDIA IN AMBEPUSSA STRESS COUNTERINSURGENCY OPERATIONS (OCT 26/IPIB)  INDIA PRESS INFORMATION BUREAU -- The Indian and Sri Lankan militaries have started a joint exercise at the Sinha Regimental Center in Ambepussa, Sri Lanka, reports the India Press Information Bureau.   The Mitra Shakti drills, which began on Oct. 24 and conclude on Nov. 6, emphasize simulated counterinsurgency and counterterrorism operations under a United Nations mandate.   The Indian contingent includes a platoon from the Rajputana Rifles, while Sri Lanka is sending a platoon from the Sinha Regiment.   This is the fourth edition of the Mitra Shakti exercise, which began in 2013 as part of a program of bilateral defense cooperation.  
  Item Number:16 Date: 10/26/2016 SYRIA - GOVERNMENT HELOS DROPPING BARREL BOMBS ON TURKISH-BACKED REBELS, SAYS ANKARA (OCT 26/BBC)  BRITISH BROADCASTING CORP. -- A Syrian government helicopter reportedly has dropped barrel bombs on Syrian rebels supported by Ankara, reports the BBC, citing Turkish officials.   The helicopter bombed Turkish-backed rebels in the village of Tal Nayif, southeast of Dabiq, killing two and wounding five, according to various officials and media reports on Wednesday.   The date of the alleged barrel-bomb attack was not specified.   "This kind of attack will not stop our fight against [Islamic State]," said Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu on Wednesday. The Turkish-backed rebels will continue to advance against the ISIS-held town of al-Bab, about 9 miles from their current position, he said.   This is the first time Syrian forces and the Turkish-backed rebels have clashed, noted Reuters.   Turkey launched its Operation Euphrates Shield in August to push ISIS and Syrian Kurdish forces from its border.   Damascus last week called the presence of Turkish troops a "dangerous escalation and flagrant breach of Syria's sovereignty" and threatened to shoot down any Turkish warplanes entering its airspace.  
  Item Number:17 Date: 10/26/2016 TURKEY - MOSCOW, ANKARA CONTINUE TO SHARE MILITARY INTEL ON SYRIA, SAYS TURKISH FOREIGN MINISTER (OCT 26/TASS)  TASS -- The Russian and Turkish militaries are exchanging intelligence on the conflict in Syria, reports Russia's Tass news agency.   "We say that in the context of the Euphrates Shield operation we cooperate with all parties fighting against Islamic State," Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu told the domestic 24 Canali TV. "Now that relations with Russia have normalized, we have an efficient mechanism of information exchange on all topics."   The code name used by the minister refers to the cross-border operation by Turkey and allied groups in the Syrian conflict.   Turkey is also sharing information on Syria with other countries, including the international coalition and Persian Gulf countries, said the minister.   Such "cooperation is beneficial" and necessary to avoid problems, said Cavusoglu
  Item Number:18 Date: 10/26/2016 USA - MARINES EYE LARGE SHIP-BASED UAV FOR RANGE OF MISSIONS; REQUIREMENTS BEING DEVELOPED (OCT 26/USNIN)  USNI NEWS -- The U.S. Marine Corps is developing a new ship-based unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) for long-range, long-endurance capabilities, reports USNI News.   The initial capabilities document for the Marine Air-Ground Task Force (MAGTF) UAS Expeditionary (MUX) program was approved earlier this month by the Joint Requirements Oversight Council.   The service says it needs a Group 5 UAV to fly at medium to high altitudes. It can weigh more than 1,300 pounds (590 kg). Such requirements make them complex to launch and recover.   The program aims to fill seven capability gaps: MAGTF command, control, communications and computing with spectrum agile data routing; early warning; persistent fires; escort; electronic warfare; intelligence, surveillance, target acquisition and reconnaissance (ISTAR); and tactical distribution, according to the Marines.   The potential schedule anticipates an analysis of alternatives that will be completed in late 2018.   Prototypes and evaluation work could be completed by 2021, with engineering and manufacturing development concluding in 2027. Initial operational capability could then follow in 2029, according to service officials.   Other requirements for the new UAV include runway independence, likely a rotary-wing or tilt-rotor aircraft able to take off and land on Navy ships, said Lt. Col. Noah Spataro, the UAV capabilities integration and requirements officer under the deputy commandant for combat development and integration.   The Marines will review a range of commercial and defense products that could meet its needs. However, the program will likely require a full development process, said Spataro.  
  Item Number:19 Date: 10/26/2016 USA - NAVY TO SEND BIG DECK AMPHIB TO JAPAN; WASP HAS BEEN MODIFIED FOR F-35B OPERATIONS (OCT 26/NTIMES)  NAVY TIMES -- The U.S. Navy has announced that the amphibious assault ship USS Wasp will relocate from Norfolk, Va., to Sasebo, Japan, next year, reports the Navy Times.   The warship will join the Navy's forward-deployed forces in Japan, replacing her sister USS Bonhomme Richard, which will return to San Diego for an overhaul, said a U.S. Fleet Forces Command release on Monday.   The Wasp has been modernized to accommodate the Marine Corps' F-35B Lightning II short-takeoff-and-vertical-landing (STOVL) fighters.   The Wasp's relocation coincides with the activation of the Corps' first Japan-based F-35B squadron, said the Fleet Forces Command.   The shift is also part of the Navy's effort to increase its presence in the Pacific.  
Item Number:20 Date: 10/26/2016 USA - USAF WILLING TO PAY RETENTION BONUSES OF $175,000 TO KEEP CERTAIN EXPERIENCED UAV PILOTS (OCT 26/AFT)  AIR FORCE TIMES -- The Air Force has authorized and offered significant retention bonuses for some experienced airmen who fly unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), reports the Air Force Times.   The critical skills retention bonus provides $35,000 annually, for a total of $175,000, to qualified UAV pilots who agree to a five-year active-duty service commitment or $35,000 for an additional year of commitment if they are already receiving a similar bonus, the Air Force said late last week.   Eligibility is limited to pilots in the 18S special operations remotely piloted aircraft (RPA) pilot career field; 11U pilots who started on manned aircraft and permanently transferred to UAVs; 11X pilot; 12U RPA combat systems officers; or 13U RPA air battle manager specialties.   Those personnel must also see their undergraduate RPA or flying training commitments expiring in fiscal 2016 or 2017, according to a service release on Oct. 21.
 

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