Tuesday, May 16, 2017

TheList 4456

The List 4456

To All,
I hope you all had a great Mother's Day weekend.
This Day In Naval History - May 15
1800: The frigate USS Essex, commanded by Capt. Edward Preble, arrives in Batavia, Java, to escort United States merchant ships. During her journey, she is the first U.S. Navy warship to cross the Equator and the first U.S. man-of-war to double the Cape of Good Hope.
1942 - First Naval Air Transport Service flight across Pacific
1969 - Sinking of USS Guitarro (SSN-665)
1991 - Amphibious Task Force arrives at Chittagong, Bangladesh, for relief operations after Cyclone Marian
On this day in history (May 15):
1930: Ellen Church became the first airline stewardess.
1940: Nylon stockings went on sale for the first time in the U.S.
This Day In Naval History - May 15
1800 - CAPT Preble in Essex arrives in Batavia, Java, to escort U.S.
merchant ships
1942 - First Naval Air Transport Service flight across Pacific
1969 - Sinking of USS Guitarro (SSN-665)
1991 - Amphibious Task Force arrives at Chittagong, Bangladesh, for relief operations after Cyclone Marian
On this day in history (May 15):
1930: Ellen Church became the first airline stewardess.
1940: Nylon stockings went on sale for the first time in the U.S.
Today in History May 15
Abd-al-Rahman is proclaimed emir of Cordoba, Spain.
King John submits to the Pope, offering to make England and Ireland papal fiefs. Pope Innocent III lifts the interdict of 1208.
English navigator Bartholomew Gosnold discovers Cape Cod.
An aristocratic uprising in France ends with the Treaty of St. Menehould.
Johannes Kepler discovers his harmonics law.
The War of Spanish Succession begins.
Following the resignation of Lord Townshend, Robert Walpole becomes the sole minister in the English cabinet.
By the Treaty of Versailles, France purchases Corsica from Genoa.
Napoleon enters the Lombardian capital of Milan in triumph.
The U.S. Congress designates the slave trade a form of piracy.
Neapolitan troops enter Palermo, Sicily.
The Union ironclad Monitor and the gunboat Galena fire on Confederate troops at the Battle of Drewry's Bluff, Virginia.
At the Battle of New Market, Virginia Military Institute cadets repel a Union attack.
Emily Dickinson dies in Amherst, Mass., where she had lived in seclusion for the previous 24 years.
U.S. Marines land in Santo Domingo to quell civil disorder.
Pfc. Henry Johnson and Pfc. Needham Roberts receive the Croix de Guerre for their services in World War I. They are the first Americans to win France's highest military medal.
Ellen Church becomes the first airline stewardess.
The United States begins rationing gasoline.
Sputnik III is launched by the Soviet Union.
The last Project Mercury space flight, carrying Gordon Cooper, is launched.
U.S. Marines relieve army troops in Nhi Ha, South Vietnam after a fourteen-day battle.
Gov. George Wallace is shot by Arthur Bremer in Laurel, Maryland.
The merchant ship Mayaguez is recaptured from Cambodia's Khmer Rouge.
Soviets forces begin their withdrawal from Afghanistan.
Submitted by Holly Vanderpool and Lauren Roesner:

Random thoughts…
I read that 4,153,237 people got married last year, not to cause any trouble but shouldn't that be an even number? 
Today a man knocked on my door and asked for a small donation towards the local swimming pool. I gave him a glass of water.
I find it ironic that the colors red, white, and blue stand for freedom until they are flashing behind you.
When wearing a bikini, women reveal 90% of their body... men are so polite they only look at the covered parts.
A recent study has found that woman who carry a little extra weight, live longer than the men who mention it.
Relationships are a lot like algebra. Have you ever looked at your X and wondered Y?
America is a country which produces citizens who will cross the ocean to fight for democracy but won't cross the street to vote.
You know that tingly little feeling you get when you like someone? That's your common sense leaving your body.
Did you know that dolphins are so smart that within a few weeks of captivity, they can train people to stand on the very edge of the pool and throw them fish?
My therapist says I have a preoccupation with vengeance. We'll see about that.
I think my neighbor is stalking me as she's been googling my name on her computer. I saw it through my telescope last night.
Money talks...but all mine ever says is good-bye.
You're not fat, you're just...easier to see.
If you think nobody cares whether you're alive, try missing a couple of payments.
I always wondered what the job application is like at Hooters. Do they just give you a bra and say, "Here, fill this out?"
I can't understand why women are okay that JC Penny has an older women's clothing line named, "Sag Harbor."
My therapist said that my narcissism causes me to misread social situations. I'm pretty sure she was hitting on me.
My 60 year kindergarten reunion is coming up soon and I'm worried about the 175 pounds I've gained since then.
The pharmacist asked me my birth date again today. I'm pretty sure she's going to get me something.
I think it's pretty cool how Chinese people made a language entirely out of tattoos.
Money can't buy happiness, but it keeps the kids in touch!
The reason Mayberry was so peaceful and quiet was because nobody was married. Andy, Aunt Bea, Barney, Floyd, Howard, Goober, Gomer, Sam, Earnest T Bass, Helen, Thelma Lou, Clara and, of course, Opie were all single. The only married person was Otis, and he stayed drunk.

Submitted by Mark Logan:
Camping is where you spend a small fortune to live like a homeless person.
When you are dead, you don't know that you are dead.  It is difficult only for the others.  It is the same when you are stupid.
People my age are so much older than me.
I want to grow my own food but I can't find bacon seeds.
I just spent 15 minutes searching for my phone in my car, using my phone as a flashlight.
The difference between bird flu and swine flu is one requires tweetment and the other requires oinkment.
I don't understand how I can remember every word of a song from 1964, but I can't remember why I walked into the kitchen.

Submitted by Norm Rech:

Adult truths…
Sometimes I'll look down at my watch three consecutive times and still not know what time it is. 
Nothing sucks more than that moment during an argument when you realize you're wrong. 
I totally take back all those times I didn't want to nap when I was younger. 
There is great need for a sarcasm font. 
How the heck are you supposed to fold a fitted sheet?
Was learning cursive really necessary?
Map Quest really needs to start their directions on # 5. I'm pretty sure I know how to get out of my neighborhood. 
Obituaries would be a lot more interesting if they told you how the person died. 
I can't remember the last time I wasn't at least kind-of tired. 
Bad decisions make good stories. 
You never know when it will strike, but there comes a moment when you know that you just aren't going to do anything productive for the rest of the day. 
Can we all just agree to ignore whatever comes after Blue-ray? I don't want to have to restart my collection...again. 
I'm always slightly terrified when I exit out of Word and it asks me if I want to save any changes to my ten-page technical report that I swear I did not make any changes to. 
I keep some people's phone numbers in my phone just so I know not to answer when they call. 
I think the freezer deserves a light as well. 
I disagree with Kay Jewelers. I would bet on any given Friday or Saturday night more kisses begin with Miller Light than Kay. 
I have a hard time deciphering the fine line between boredom and hunger. 
How many times is it appropriate to say "What?" before you just nod and smile because you still didn't hear or understand a word they said?
I love the sense of camaraderie when an entire line of cars team up to prevent a jerk from cutting in at the front. Stay strong, brothers and sisters!
Shirts get dirty. Underwear gets dirty. Pants? Pants never get dirty, and you can wear them forever. 
Even under ideal conditions people have trouble locating their car keys in a pocket, finding their cell phone, and Pinning the Tail on the Donkey - but I'd bet everyone can find and push the snooze button from three feet away, in about 1.7 seconds, eyes closed, first time, every time. 
The first testicular guard, the "cup," was used in hockey in 1874 and the first helmet was used in 1974. That means it only took 100 years for men to realize that their brain is also important. (OK ladies...quit laughing.)

Submitted by Skip Leonard:
I asked God for a bike, but I know God doesn't work that way. So I stole a bike and asked for forgiveness.
Do not argue with an idiot. He will drag you down to his level and beat you with experience.
Going to church doesn't make you a Christian any more than standing in a garage makes you a car.
The last thing I want to do is hurt you. But it's still on the list.
Light travels faster than sound. This is why some people appear bright until you hear them speak.
If I agreed with you we'd both be wrong.
We never really grow up, we only learn how to act in public.
War does not determine who is right - only who is left.
Knowledge is knowing a tomato is a fruit; Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
The early bird might get the worm, but the second mouse gets the cheese.
Evening news is where they begin with 'Good evening', and then proceed to tell you why it isn't.
To steal ideas from one person is plagiarism. To steal from many is research.
A bus station is where a bus stops. A train station is where a train stops. On my desk, I have a work station.
How is it one careless match can start a forest fire, but it takes a whole box to start a campfire?
Some people are like Slinkys...not really good for anything, but you can't help smiling when you see one tumble down the stairs.
I thought I wanted a career, turns out I just wanted pay checks.
A bank is a place that will lend you money, if you can prove that you don't need it.
Whenever I fill out an application, in the part that says "If an emergency, notify:" I put "DOCTOR".
I didn't say it was your fault, I said I was blaming you.
Why does someone believe you when you say there are four billion stars, but check when you say the paint is wet?
Women will never be equal to men until they can walk down the street with a bald head and a beer gut, and still think they are sexy.
Why do Americans choose from just two people to run for president and 50 for Miss America ?
Behind every successful man is his woman. Behind the fall of a successful man is usually another woman.
A clear conscience is usually the sign of a bad memory.
You do not need a parachute to skydive. You only need a parachute to skydive twice.
The voices in my head may not be real, but they have some good ideas!
Always borrow money from a pessimist. He won't expect it back.
A diplomat is someone who can tell you to go to #e!! in such a way that you will look forward to the trip.
Money can't buy happiness, but it sure makes misery easier to live with.
I discovered I scream the same way whether I'm about to be devoured by a great white shark or if a piece of seaweed touches my foot.
Some cause happiness wherever they go. Others whenever they go.
There's a fine line between cuddling and holding someone down so they can't get away.
I used to be indecisive. Now I'm not sure.
I always take life with a grain of salt, plus a slice of lemon, and a shot of tequila.
When tempted to fight fire with fire, remember that the Fire Department usually uses water.
You're never too old to learn something stupid.
To be sure of hitting the target, shoot first and call whatever you hit the target.
Nostalgia isn't what it used to be.
A bus is a vehicle that runs twice as fast when you are after it as when you are in it.
If you are supposed to learn from your mistakes, why do some people have more than one child?

Submitted by Dave Kaney:
If I had a dollar for every girl that found me unattractive, they'd eventually find me attractive.
I changed my password to "incorrect" so, whenever I forget it, the computer will say, "Your password is incorrect."
Artificial intelligence is no match for natural stupidity.
I'm great at multi-tasking--- I can waste time, be unproductive, and procrastinate all at once.
If you can smile when things go wrong, you have someone in mind to blame.
Never tell your problems to anyone because 20% don't care and the other 80% are glad you have them.
Doesn't expecting the unexpected mean that the unexpected is actually expected?
My wife and I were happy for 20 years—then we met.
I hate when people use big words just to make themselves sound perspicacious. 
Hospitality is the art of making guests feel like they're at home when you wish they were.
Television may insult your intelligence, but nothing rubs it in like a computer.
I bought a vacuum cleaner six months ago and so far all it's been doing is gathering dust.
Every time someone comes up with a foolproof solution, along comes a more-talented fool.
Behind every great man is a woman rolling her eyes.
If you keep your feet firmly planted on the ground, you'll have trouble putting on your pants.
A computer once beat me at chess, but it was no match for me at kick boxing.
Ever stop to think and...forget to start again?
When I married Mrs. Right, I had no idea her first name was "Always".
There may be no excuse for laziness, but I'm still looking.
Give me ambiguity or give me something else.
He who laughs last thinks slowest.
Is it wrong that only one company makes the game Monopoly?
Women sometimes make fools of men, but most guys are the do-it-yourself types.
I was going to give him a nasty look, but he already had one.
Change is inevitable, except from a vending machine.
I like long walks, especially when they're taken by people who annoy me.
I was going to wear my camouflage shirt today, but I couldn't find it.
Sometimes I wake up grumpy; other times I let her sleep.
If tomatoes are technically a fruit, is ketchup a smoothie?
Money is the root of all wealth.

Somethings to think about for the week.  I hope it is a great one.
Abandoned US Military F-14 and F-4 Found in a Field. Anyone Know How They Got There?
Abandoned F-14's and F-4 - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UNLpbrTk2cs (7:13)
There must be a good story about these abandoned aircraft. Who out there in Fighter Sweep land knows?
The men in the video don't say where the planes are, but the accents imply the location is somewhere in the South. The planes have apparently been there for years—some have trees growing out of them.
It shouldn't surprise you to know that the Navy F-14s shouldn't be there. F-14s were retired from Navy service in 2006, and rather than give them away to foreign countries as excess defense articles or put them into storage, the Department of Defense simply cut them up and disposed of them.
The F-4 is an old U.S. Marine Corps F-4N Phantom II. Navy and Marine Corps aircraft are assigned Navy Bureau Numbers when they enter service, and according to one YouTube commenter, the F-4 is BuNo 152267. If true that makes it this plane, which served as a "gate guardian" at Dallas Naval Air Station, Texas. – Popular Mechanics


According to the Popular Mechanics article the F-4 in the video above is in fact USN BuNo 152267. Photo by Tom Tessier. F-4 was on display at Dallas Naval Air Station, TX
Featured image by YouTube Video Screen Capture
 One of the better comments from YouTube link:
"Before the robot hive mind enslaved humanity and disarmed us, there was a warrior called the "fighter pilot". They flew like bird's in giant metal machines and rained fire below. They wore gold wings on their chest and walked tall with their heads held high. These nameless men gladly sacrificed their own lives so others could enjoy freedom. Somewhere down the line people forgot about their sacrifices and foolishly gave up their arms for the illusion of security and prosperity. In reality they were volunteering for their own genocide, unintentionally locking themselves in cages and throwing away the key. Only after it was too late did they realize what had happened. By that time all their weapons of war had been dismantled and rendered useless, making any chance of revolution impossible. Their only options then on forward were to submit to their robot overlords or be terminated. The moral of the story is nurture your warrior class and they will keep you out of chains."
Thanks to Barrel
Sully and the electric jet.
Sully and I were together in VF-114 for a short while.  Great guy BTW.  Long story short he took an exchange tour with the Australians and stayed there getting a job with Qantas. 
I had heard bits and pieces of this incident from various Qantas crews on layovers in Asia.  I thought I would bump into him but I was always a day late or a day early.
Item Number:1 Date: 05/15/2017 CANADA - TRUDEAU ADVISER TO BECOME HEAD OF INTELLIGENCE AGENCY (MAY 15/CBC)  CANADIAN BROADCASTING CORPORATION -- Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has named the new leader of the Canadian Security Intelligence Service (CSIS), reports CBC News.   David Vigneault will assume the job on June 19, Trudeau said late last week.   Vigneault is currently serving as the assistant secretary to the Cabinet on security and intelligence matters.   He succeeds Michel Coulombe, who is retiring at the end of May following a 36-year career.   Jeffrey Yaworski, the CSIS deputy director of operations, will serve as acting director until Vigneault takes over.   Vigneault served as assistant director of CSIS from 2006 to 2010.  
  Item Number:2 Date: 05/15/2017 CENTRAL AFRICAN REPUBLIC - CIVILIANS HIDE IN MOSQUE, TRYING TO ESCAPE SECTARIAN VIOLENCE (MAY 15/DEWELLE)  DEUTSCHE WELLE -- Christian militias in the Central African Republic have attacked a border town on the Congolese border, killing up to 30 people, say United Nations officials, as reported by Deutsche Welle.   Hundreds of fighters armed with heavy weapons attacked Bangassou over the weekend, said officials and aid workers on Sunday, as cited by Reuters.   The attacks appeared to be aimed at Muslims, said the officials. The civilian death toll "could easily reach 20 to 30," said Parfait Onanga-Anyanga, the chief of the U.N. mission in the CAR (MINUSCA).   Many reportedly sought refuge in a mosque.   A nearby U.N. base was also recently targeted, leaving five peacekeepers dead. The attack promoted the deployment of extra troops on Sunday.   Peacekeepers had partly secured the town by dusk, said a MINUSCA spokesman.   The CAR has been wracked by violence since 2013, when Muslim Seleka fighters ousted then-President Francois Bozize, a Christian. That sparked reprisals from Christian anti-balaka militias
  Item Number:3 Date: 05/15/2017 COLOMBIA - U.N. MAKES DISARMAMENT OF 1ST 12 FARC FIGHTERS (MAY 15/DEWELLE)  DEUTSCHE WELLE -- The United Nations says the initial group of FARC guerrillas from Colombia has completed a U.N.-monitored disarmament process, reports Deutsche Welle.   On Friday, 12 from FARC received certificates for completing individual disarmament, said the U.N. in a statement.   The Bogota event marked the start of "a continuous process begins to certify the FARC members who are making the transition to civilian life after laying down their arms," said the statement.   About 6,800 FARC members have been in "peace zones" across the nation as part of peace deal reached last year.   Under the deal, all weapons were supposed to be handed over by May 1, but there have been delays, reported the BBC
Item Number:4 Date: 05/15/2017 EGYPT - TROOPS BATTLE LAND MINES, MILITANTS IN SINAI (MAY 15/ANADOLU)  ANADOLU NEWS AGENCY -- Attacks over the weekend in Egypt's Sinai Peninsula have left three military officers dead and eight wounded, reports the Anadolu Agency (Turkey).   On Sunday, a military vehicle hit a land mine in central Sinai, leaving one officer dead and three soldiers wounded, said a local security source.   The officer killed was a colonel, reported Reuters.   Also Sunday, two officers were killed and five soldiers injured by militants in the city of Sheikh Zuweid, the source said.   Security forces in northern Sinai have long been battling the local affiliate of the Islamic State, the Sinai Province. The terror group has killed hundreds of security personnel, according to authorities.  
  Item Number:5 Date: 05/15/2017 ESTONIA - GOVERNMENT APPROVES CONSCRIPTION REFORMS, INCLUDING DELIVERING DRAFT NOTICES ELECTRONICALLY (MAY 15/BNS)  BALTIC NEWS SERVICE -- The Estonian Cabinet has approved a proposal to reform the nation's conscription system as a way to increase the number of reservists who complete mandatory military service, reports the Baltic News Service.   Future draft notices will be delivered electronically, said Defense Minister Margus Tsahkna, who made the proposal.   The Defense Ministry also wants to step up protections against draft-dodgers, in addition to the existing fine. This could include suspending the offender's driver's license, gun or hunting license, fishing card and license for recreational craft, the new service reported on Friday.   The Estonian reserve army model based on conscript service is generally working well, said Tsahkna. However, communication between the government and its citizens needs to be modern and electronic, he said.   The number of youth undertaking mandatory military service needs to grow from the current 30 percent to at least 50 to 60 percent to ensure proper functioning, the defense minister said.   The medical system for conscripts also needs to be updated, with simpler and more transparent requirements, he said
Item Number:6 Date: 05/15/2017 GUAM - FRENCH LANDING CRAFT RUNS AGROUND IN GUAM, POSTPONING MULTINATIONAL DRILL (MAY 15/GDP)  GUAM DAILY POST -- A multinational military exercise on Guam was postponed indefinitely following an accident on Friday involving a French military landing craft, according to the U.S. Navy, as reported by the Guam Daily Post.   The craft suffered damage to one of its propellers when it ran aground, said a Navy spokesman. The vessel was freed and returned to a nearby Navy base on its own power.   The exercise was then postponed. Training as part of the multinational exercise continued elsewhere in the Marianas, officials said.   U.S. Marines are training with military personnel from France, Japan and the U.K. during Exercise Jeanne D'Arc. The French-led drills began on Thursday and run through May 18.   The training is focused on strengthening strategic partnerships and exercising freedom of navigation operations, according to the U.S. Navy.   The French amphibious assault ship Mistral and frigate Courbet are participating in the drills.  
Item Number:7 Date: 05/15/2017 IRAQ - ISIS GROUND FIRE TAKES DOWN MILITARY CHOPPER NEAR MOSUL; NO FATALITIES REPORTED (MAY 15/K24)  KURDISTAN 24 -- The Iraqi military reports that one of its helicopters was shot down over the weekend by the Islamic State near Mosul, reports Kurdistan 24 (Iraqi Kurdistan).   The helicopter was hit by ground fire Saturday afternoon while supporting the Shi'ite Popular Mobilization Forces, said Brig. Gen. Yahya Rasool, a spokesman for the joint operations command. The militia, also known as Hashd al-Shaabi, were advancing against ISIS-held villages to the west of Mosul.   The pilot landed the aircraft safely and there were no fatalities, said the general.   The militia claims to have control of the main road between the towns of Qairawan and Shingal and four nearby villages
Item Number:8 Date: 05/15/2017 ITALY - NAVY TAKES DELIVERY OF ROMEO ROMEI SUBMARINE, LAST OF 4 IN CLASS (MAY 15/FINCA)  FINCANTIERI -- Italian shipbuilder Fincantieri has announced the delivery of the fourth and last Salvatore Todaro-class diesel-electric submarine to the Italian navy.   The Romeo Romei was handed over in a ceremony on May 11 at the company's Muggiano (La Spezia) shipyard, said a Fincantieri release.   The sub displaces 1,509 metric tons, is built with an amagnetic material and features advanced techniques to reduce its acoustic signature, the company said on Thursday.   Namesake Romeo Romei was an Italian submarine officer during World War II. He completed a number of successful combat missions before his boat was sunk by the British in 1941
Item Number:9 Date: 05/15/2017 IVORY COAST - MUTINOUS TROOPS SHOOTING IN ABIDJAN, BOUAKE, DALOA (MAY 15/ALJAZ)  AL JAZEERA -- Mutinous soldiers are still firing their weapons on Monday in Ivory Coast's largest cities, reports Al Jazeera (Qatar).   Shooting has been reported in Abidjan, Bouake and Daloa, noted the BBC. Troops there are defying a government demand to lay down their weapons.   In January, about 8,400 soldiers, mostly former rebels, mutinied and demanded bonuses and higher pay. The government agreed to pay 12 million CFA francs (US$19,575) for each soldier, paying each 5 million francs (US$8,150) in January.   On Friday, some mutineers dropped their demands for the remainder of the pay. By Saturday, soldiers had taken to the streets in several cities and blocked off Bouake, the nation's second-largest city.   On Sunday, Gen. Sekou Toure announced that a military operation was underway against rebelling soldiers, reported the BBC.   Shots were heard early Monday from two military camps east of the commercial capital Abidjan, said residents. Sporadic fire was also heard in Bouake as loyalist troops advanced toward the city. Fire was also heard in the west in Daloa.  
  Item Number:10 Date: 05/15/2017 NORTH KOREA - PYONGYANG CLAIMS ITS 'NEW' MISSILE CAN HIT U.S. MAINLAND WITH NUKES (MAY 15/BBC)  BRITISH BROADCASTING CORP. -- North Korea says the missile it tested on Sunday is a "newly developed ballistic missile," reported the BBC.   It can be equipped with a nuclear warhead, said Pyongyang, as reported by NBC News.   The missile was fired on Sunday morning from the northwestern town of Kusong, said U.S. officials cited by the New York Times.   It reportedly reached an altitude of 2,000 km (about 1,240 mi) and travelled about 700 km (more than 430 mi) in the sea west of Japan.   State-run KCNA reported that missile was a new surface-to-surface Hwasong-12 missile capable of carrying a large nuclear warhead. The missile can reach the U.S. mainland, claimed the agency.   Analysts said the flight data suggested that the missile could fly at least 2,800 miles at a standard trajectory, making it capable of hitting Guam.   To reach the U.S. mainland would need a long-range missile able to fly about 8,000 km (4,800 mi), with the capability to re-enter the atmosphere with stability, noted Reuters.   U.S. officials cited by Fox News initially said that the U.S. military believe North Korea launched a KN-17 medium-range ballistic missile. Pyongyang made three unsuccessful attempts to launch that missile last month.  
  Item Number:11 Date: 05/15/2017 RUSSIA - DURING DRILLS, SU-24 AIRCRAFT SIMULATE BOMBING SHIPS IN BALTIC SEA (MAY 15/INT-AVN)  INTERFAX-MILITARY NEWS AGENCY -- Russian Su-24 strike aircraft assigned to the Baltic Fleet have been training to destroy hostile ships during drills at the fleet's maritime ranges, reports Interfax-AVN (Russia).   During the exercise, Su-24 crews simulated reconnaissance missions and attacks against simulated enemy ships, a spokesman for the Baltic Fleet said on Friday.   The crews also practiced aerobatic stunts and other maneuvers to dodge simulated enemy air defenses, the spokesman said
  Item Number:12 Date: 05/15/2017 SYRIA - FOLLOWING DEAL WITH GOVERNMENT, REBELS, FAMILIES LEAVE DEVASTATED DISTRICT NEAR DAMASCUS (MAY 15/VOA)  VOICE OF AMERICA NEWS -- More than 1,500 rebels and their family members have evacuated a district close to Damascus, reports the Voice of America News.   The BBC put the number of rebels and family members who left Sunday at 2,300.   A deal between the government and rebels was finalized Saturday allowing the evacuation of the northeastern district of Qaboun.   The deal is similar to earlier agreements allowing safe passage from rebel-held territory near the Turkish border. Hundreds of rebels were evacuated last week from neighboring Barzeh and Tishrin near the Syrian capital.   Qaboun has been heavily damages from air and artillery strikes over the past three months, noted Reuters. 
  Item Number:13 Date: 05/15/2017 SYRIA - ISIS WITHDRAWAL LEAVES VACUUM NEAR BORDER WITH IRAQ, JORDAN; FSA VIES WITH GOVERNMENT FORCES FOR REGION (MAY 15/REU)  REUTERS -- Syrian troops and pro-government forces have been moving in large numbers to a desert region close to the border with Iraq and Jordan, say rebel sources cited by Reuters.   In recent months, the Free Syrian Army (FSA) has made progress against ISIS in the south, seizing a large stretch of territory from the town of Bir Qassab, about 30 miles southeast of Damascus that reaches close to the border with Iraq and Jordan. The region is known as the Syrian Badia.   On Monday, the rebels said that the army and allied Iran-backed militias had reached the town of Sabaa Biyar, close to the strategic Damascus-Baghdad highway.   The Islamic State recently pulled out of the area, and government forces are trying to prevent it from falling under the control of the Western-backed Free Syrian Army (FSA), the rebels said.   "They have sent big reinforcements from artillery, to tanks and armored vehicles," said an FSA spokesman. "The regime's plan is to reach the Iraqi-Syrian border and cut the road on our advance further toward the northeast against ISIS's strongholds there after they lost territory in the Badia," he added.   The Syrian army wants to link up with Iraqi paramilitary groups across the border, said the rebels.  
  Item Number:14 Date: 05/15/2017 SYRIA - MONITORING GROUP, ACTIVIST REPORT CIVILIAN DEATHS CAUSED BY COALITION STRIKES (MAY 15/CBS)  CBS NEWS -- Syrian activists say a U.S.-led coalition airstrike in an Islamic State-held town in northern Syria has killed a number of civilians, reports CBS News.   An activist group called Raqqa is Being Slaughtered Silently said 22 died in the Sunday attack in Raqqa province that hit farm workers.   Meanwhile, an airstrike early Monday hit a residential area in the town of Albu Kamal in Deir Ezzor province, close to the border with Iraq, said the U.K.-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights.   ISIS still controls Raqqa city, its de facto capital in Syria, and eastern areas of the province
Item Number:15 Date: 05/15/2017 UGANDA - PRESIDENT EXPECTED TO USE TROOPS TO COMBAT INVESTOR CORRUPTION (MAY 15/MON)  MONITOR -- President Yoweri Museveni has given the Ugandan military the job of battling corruption at the Uganda Investment Authority and restoring the confidence of foreign investors, reports the Monitor (Kampala).   Within the next few weeks, Gen. David Muhoozi, the Ugandan defense chief, will name a team that will report to the president through State Investment and Privatization Minister Evelyn Anite, said an unnamed source.   On May 5, Museveni instructed Anite to set up a new anti-corruption office at UIA headquarters and a toll-free "hotline" to allow investors and the public to report corruption to the military, the newspaper reported on May 10.   The soldiers will also handle complaints about delays in approving investment projects, Anite said.   The president also wants to eliminate bail for those arrested for demanding bribes, the minister said.   Labor Minister Herbert Kabafunzaki was arrested in April following allegations that he solicited a bribe from an investor, noted the Monitor.  
  Item Number:16 Date: 05/15/2017 UKRAINE - SAUDIS, TURKS, UKRAINIANS AGREE TO DEVELOP MARITIME PATROL VARIANT OF AN-132 (MAY 15/UKROB)  UKROBORONPROM -- Ukrainian aviation firm Antonov has agreed to develop a maritime patrol variant of its An-132 cargo aircraft in cooperation with Saudi and Turkish firms, reports Ukroboronprom, the Ukrainian defense holding company.   Antonov signed a memorandum of cooperation on May 10 with Taqnia Aeronautics of Saudi Arabia and Havelsan in Turkey during the IDEF exhibition in Istanbul.   Antonov and Taqnia have been working together since 2015 on the development and production of the An-132 transport, a modernization of the Soviet-era An-32, noted Ukroboronprom.  
Item Number:17 Date: 05/15/2017 UNITED ARAB EMIRATES - U.S. STATE DEPT. CLEARS US$2 BILLION DEAL FOR MISSILE DEFENSE INTERCEPTORS (MAY 15/DSCA)  U.S. DEFENSE SECURITY COOPERATION AGENCY -- The U.S. State Dept. has approved a potential sale of air and missile defense interceptors to the United Arab Emirates, reports the U.S. Defense Security Cooperation Agency.   The proposed US$2 billion deal covers 60 Patriot Advanced Capability 3 (PAC-3) missiles with canisters and 100 Patriot Guided Enhanced Missile-Tactical (GEM-T) missiles, the agency said on May 11.   The possible sale also includes canisters, tools and test equipment, spare and repair parts and associated technical and logistics support.   The missiles would improve the ability of the U.A.E. to meet existing and future air and missile threats, said the DSCA
Item Number:18 Date: 05/15/2017 USA - GENERAL ATOMICS TOUTS SUCCESSFUL TESTS OF GUIDED RAILGUN PROJECTILES (MAY 15/GA)  GENERAL ATOMICS -- General Atomics Electromagnetic Systems has successfully tested hypersonic projectiles with an upgraded guidance electronics unit, reports the California-based firm.   The new projectiles were successfully fired from the company's Blitzer 3 megajoule railgun multiple times during the trials at the U.S. Army Dugway Proving Ground, Utah, the company said.   The enhanced guidance electronics unit features a new battery configuration and a GA-EMS-developed guidance, navigation and control software. The equipment survived launch accelerations of more than 30,000 gs during the tests, said a company release on May 10.   The evaluation also demonstrated a continuous two-way data link between the in-flight projectiles and the ground station. A new lightweight sabot was also tested.   The company did not provide test dates.   General Atomics is privately developing the Blitzer railgun and hypersonic projectiles.   Another series of trials is planned for later this year using the 10 megajoule Blitzer railgun, company officials said
Item Number:19 Date: 05/15/2017 USA - RONALD REAGAN CARRIER STILL IN YOKOSUKA; DEPARTURE DELAYED BY REPAIR PROBLEM (MAY 15/S&S)  STARS AND STRIPES -- Monday's planned departure of the Ronald Reagan carrier from Japan has been delayed because of an unspecified maintenance issue, says the U.S. Navy, as reported by the Stars and Stripes.   The Ronald Reagan completed sea trials on Friday and is in port in Yokosuka, where it has been undergoing maintenance.   The Navy said that "a material issue" was found that required repairs. There is "no impact to the safety of the carrier," said the statement.   "Details are still being coordinated and will be dependent upon the length of the repair," the Navy said.   This delays the Ronald Reagan, its embarked air wing and multiple accompanying ships.   The Ronald Reagan is scheduled to replace the Carl Vinson strike group near the Korean Peninsula, said the Navy earlier this month
Item Number:20 Date: 05/15/2017 USA - USAF'S 492ND SPECIAL OPERATIONS WING STANDS UP AT HURLBURT FIELD, FLA. (MAY 15/AFNS)  AIR FORCE NEWS SERVICE -- The U.S. Air Force has inactivated the Air Force Special Operations Air Warfare Center (AFSOAWC), replacing it with the newly activated 492nd Special Operations Wing (SOW), reports the Air Force News Service.   The ceremony took place on May 10 at Hurlburt Field, Fla. As the 492nd SOW stood up, the 492nd Special Operations Group and 492nd Special Operations Training Group were activated under the wing.   The new unit bridges Air Special Operations Command's lineage. The 492nd SOW dates back to World War II, with the establishment in 1943 of the 801st Bombardment Group at Harrington Field, England. A year later, the unit was re-designated as the 492nd Bombardment Group, as a cover for the secret Operation Carpetbagger.   The Office of Special Services, the predecessor to the CIA, used the 492nd BG to arm the French resistance. During the war, the unit delivered more than 5,000 tons of supplies, said the Air Force.   The 492nd SOW provides commands with education through the U.S. Air Force Special Operations School, flight testing of AFSOC's entire fleet, aircrew enhanced ground training and other services, the service said.

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