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Tuesday, August 21, 2018

Fw: TheList 4794

The List 4794     TGB


To All,
I hope that your week has started well.
Regards,
Skip
This day in Naval History
Aug 21
1858—The brig, USS Dolphin, captures the slave ship, Echo, with 300 Africans aboard off the north coast of Cuba. She is taken to Charleston, SC, and those saved from slavery are later sent back to Africa.
1883—The installation of the first electric lighting aboard a U.S. Navy ship is completed aboard USS Trenton.
1918—During World War I, while piloting a Navy seaplane near Pola, Ensign Charles H. Hammann lands on the Adriatic Sea to rescue Ensign George H. Ludlow, whose aircraft is shot down by Austro-Hungarian forces. Though Hammann's plane is not designed for two persons, and despite the risk of enemy attack, he successfully completes the rescue and returns to the base at Porto Corsini, Italy. For Hamman's actions on this occasion, he is awarded the Medal of Honor. USS Hammann (DD 412) and USS Hammann (DE 131) are named in his honor.
1965—Gemini V is launched. Astronauts are Gordon Cooper, Jr., USAF, (Command Pilot) and Lt. Cmdr. Charles Conrad Jr., USN, (Pilot). They complete 120 orbits in almost eight days at an altitude of 349.8 km. Recovery is by helicopter from USS Lake Champlain (CVS 39).
1980—USS Truxtun (CGN 35) rescues 42 Vietnamese refugees and USS Merrill (DD 976) rescues 62 Vietnamese refugees, over 200 miles southeast of Saigon.
1993—USS Tempest (PC 2) is commissioned at Naval Amphibious Base Little Creek, VA.
2017—The guided-missile destroyer USS John S. McCain (DDG 56) is involved in a collision with the merchant vessel Alnic MC while underway east of the Straits of Malacca and Singapore. Ten Sailors lose their lives and the ship suffers significant damage to the hull resulting in flooding to nearby compartments, including crew berthing, machinery, and communications rooms.
 
 
Thanks to CHINFO
Executive Summary:
Today's top national headlines include a Colorado man being charged with the murder of his wife and daughters, attempted Russian hacking of congressional and think tank sites, and potential for additional tariffs on Chinese goods. The USNS Carson City became the first Expeditionary Fast Transport ship to conduct operations in the Black Sea after it transited the Bosporus Trait last week reports USNI News. According to the 6th Fleet, the Carson City will be "conducting routine operations in accordance with its primary mission of providing rapid transport of military equipment and personnel in theater." Rear Adm. Jesse A. Wilson, Jr., Commander, Naval Surface Force Atlantic visited Naval Surface and Mine Warfighting Development Center. During the visit, Wilson highlighted the importance of the importance of bi-coastal Surface Warfare Advanced Tactical Training: "We must be proficient in high-end warfare and maintain a competitive advantage during this time of great power competition. Under our 'One Fight, One Navy' construct, we need to be aligned on both coasts." Additionally, Inside Defense reports that the John C. Stennis will be the first ship in its class to receive an advanced manufacturing lab consisting of four 3D printers.
 
 
Today in History August 21
1129
The warrior Yoritomo is made Shogun without equal in Japan.
1525
Estevao Gomes returns to Portugal after failing to find a clear waterway to Asia.
1794
France surrenders the island of Corsica to the British.
1808
Napoleon Bonaparte's General Junot is defeated by Wellington at the first Battle of the Peninsular War at Vimeiro, Portugal.
1831
Nat Turner leads a slave revolt in Southampton County, Virginia that kills close to 60 whites.
1858
The first of a series of debates begins between Abraham Lincoln and Stephen Douglas. Douglas goes on to win the Senate seat in November, but Lincoln gains national visibility for the first time.
1863
Confederate raiders under William Quantrill strike Lawrence, Kansas, leaving 150 civilians dead.
1864
Confederate General A.P. Hill attacks Union troops south of Petersburg, Va., at the Weldon railroad. His attack is repulsed, resulting in heavy Confederate casualties.
1915
Italy declares war on Turkey.
1942
U.S. Marines turn back the first major Japanese ground attack on Guadalcanal in the Battle of Tenaru.
1944
The Dumbarton Oaks conference, which lays the foundation for the establishment of the United Nations, is held in Washington, D.C.
1945
President Harry S. Truman cancels all contracts under the Lend-Lease Act.
1959
Hawaii is admitted into the Union.
1963
The South Vietnamese Army arrests over 100 Buddhist monks in Saigon.
1968
Soviet forces invade Czechoslovakia because of the country's experiments with a more liberal government.
1972
US orbiting astronomy observatory Copernicus launched.
1976
Mary Langdon in Battle, East Sussex, becomes Britain's first firewoman.
1976
Operation Paul Bunyan: after North Korean guards killed two American officers sent to trim a poplar tree along the DMZ on Aug. 18, US and ROK soldiers with heavy support chopped down the tree.
1986
In Cameroon 2,000 die from poison gas from a volcanic eruption.
1988
Ceasefire in the 8-year war between Iran and Iraq.
1989
Voyager 2 begins a flyby of planet Neptune.
1991
Communist hardliners' coup is crushed in USSR after just 2 days; Latvia declares independence from USSR.
1994
Ernesto Zedillo wins Mexico's presidential election.
1996
The new Globe theater opens in England.
2000
Tiger Woods wins golf's PGA Championship, the first golfer to win 3 majors in a calendar year since Ben Hogan in 1953.
2001
NATO decides to send a peacekeeping force to the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia.
 
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Unsung hero - WWII LSO
Thanks to Lurch AND Dutch R.
 
 
I had not read that story. Thanks for sending it! In the story about Swede's landing, the a/c is 70 knots and the ship's speed (probably wind over the deck) was 30 kts – so, the relative aircraft landing speed was 40 knots. That may be an error. If the a/c was flying at 100 knots IAS, and the ship wind over the deck is 30 knots, that's a 70 knot landing relative speed.
 
Back in my day, carriers shot for about 28 kts wind over the deck to accommodate the jet landing speeds. Catching the wire at 105 knots relative speed for some jets required a much longer run-out that with the WWII aircraft.
 
Swede was in the Early and Pioneering Naval Aviation Association. I met him before he passed away.
 
 
 
Officer ROBIN M. LINDSEY
On October 26, 1942, at a crucial stage in the Battle of the Santa Cruz Islands
and the war in the Pacific, Lt. Robin Lindsey, USN gave a masterful performance
that remains unparalleled in Navy history. Through his efforts, irreplaceable
aviators and aircraft survived to later have a major role in winning the war.
Although he was an experienced naval aviator, what he did that day was not
accomplished in aerial combat. Instead, while standing on a small exposed
platform at the aft, port corner of the flight deck of the USS ENTERPRISE (CV-6)
he used signal paddles to direct an unusually large number of aircraft to safety.
During the battle, the ENTERPRISE's sister ship, the USS HORNET (CV-8)
sustained severe damage which ultimately proved fatal. Unable to retrieve her
airborne aircraft, their pilots were instructed to try to land onboard ENTERPRISE.
However, ENTERPRISE, fondly called the Big E by her crew had also been
badly damaged. As the HORNET's orphaned air group approached at midday,
the Big E...still on fire...was zigzagging at high speed to avoid enemy bombs and
torpedoes. Those desperate but ultimately successful maneuvers delayed
recovery of a number of aircraft woefully short of fuel. But by the end of the day,
the majority of both carriers' pilots and their aircraft had been saved.
2
It all started shortly after sunrise on Monday, October 26, 1942. Both American
and Japanese carrier-based aircraft attacked. Hits were scored by both sides.
ENTERPRISE suffered damage from three bomb explosions [see drawing,
below, showing locations].Hit #1 was just a glancing blow and
did relatively little damage to the forward, port corner of the ENTERPRISE's flight deck. Hit #2struck squarely on the ship's centerline, just aft of aircraft
elevator number one. A bomb penetrated into the hangar bay and
exploded there, causing additional explosions and large fires in
numerous compartments. Plus, it destroyed aircraft elevator number
one's machinery while the lift was in its down position, leaving a huge
opening [right] in the flight deck.
The third hit was on the starboard side, near aircraft elevator number two. It
created additional serious damage and fires. As a result, the adjacent aircraft
elevator became stuck in the down position. That left the ENTERPRISE with just
one operable elevator. But it was elevator number 3, located far aft, which could
not be utilized while aircraft were landing [see elevators' locations, below].
3 2 1
With fires still raging forward and amidships, and with her flight deck cluttered
with aircraft that had previously landed, ENTERPRISE turned into the wind to
recover additional aircraft. Despite sporadic Japanese attacks, the crew of the
Big E worked desperately to save as many pilots and aircraft as possible.
While aircraft could ultimately be replaced if they ran out of gas and were forced
to ditch in the open sea, the loss of experienced combat pilots that might be
injured, or killed during such dangerous events was a matter of great
concern...especially to those pilots still aloft!
3
Shortly after noon that day, Robin Lindsey, the ship's Landing Signal Officer (LSO)
took up position on his small platform which was suspended
over the side of the ship from the aft, port corner of the flight deck. With a windscreen and an assistant at his back, and open netting below his feet...in case he had to dive out of the way of any errant aircraft...he swung into action.
Equipped with only a set of brightly colored signaling 'paddles', the talented naval
officer, later heralded as 'The Best Damn Waver in the Fleet' skillfully directed
dozens of aircraft to make arrested landings on an incredibly crowded flight deck.
Each aircraft that Robin Lindsey safely directed onboard the Big E caught one of
the wires stretched across the stern portion of the carrier's flight deck.
Desperate pilots nursing aircraft whose fuel gauges sometimes registered below
empty approached the stern of the carrier separated by distances much less than
authorized under normal conditions. Undaunted, Robin Lindsey lined them up
one by one, waving them safely onto the deck to be trapped [naval aviator
jargon] before turning to help the next one...already on final approach.
It was controlled chaos. When it was all over the damaged flight deck of
ENTERPRISE was crowded with 95 aircraft that had been originally embarked in
both carriers. A number of other aircraft were in the Big E's hangar bay; some of
them destroyed or damaged during the enemy bomb hits suffered that morning.
Only one plane made less than a normal landing. A F4F Wildcat,
perhaps damaged in aerial combat, experienced collapse of its landing
gear upon touching down on the Big E's flight deck. The aircraft's tail hook
and the arresting cable it had snagged kept it from going over the side.
Flight deck personnel scrambled to evade the plane when it skewed out of
control to starboard, before coming to a stop. None of the Big E's crew was
injured. The shaken but uninjured pilot walked away.
4
As each aircraft snagged one of the ENTERPRISE's eight wires,
aircraft handlers rushed in to disengage its tail hook from the cable that had prevented the landing aircraft from crashing into parked planes. Once each plane came to a stop, its wings were folded and it was manually pushed forward. Trouble was...as more and
more aircraft landed, the Big E's flight deck crew was unable to reposition them very far from the landing area. The forward third of the ENTERPRISE's flight deck and hangar deck were still in flames. Aircraft elevator numbers one or two
were still out of service. Inevitably, this situation and the overflow of HORNET aircraft resulted in the necessity of parking some of the recovered aircraft unusually far aft...so far so that some of the arresting gear wires could no longer be used. Eventually, only
the one, two and three wires remained available for use. These cables were
numbered progressively from the stern forward...just as they are today.
Robin Lindsey had to adjust his signals to additional incoming aircraft to allow
them to be trapped safely in a greatly foreshortened area in order to avoid
crashing into the mass of planes that had already landed. He did so skillfully and
successfully. But the additional aircraft that made it safely onto the Big E's flight
deck had to be parked atop the number three wire...and then the two wire.
That left only the number one wire clear and available for use. It was located aft
of the number three elevator and seldom used...never before intentionally. The
slightest miscalculation on Robin Lindsey's part could have resulted in a major
flight deck accident or...possibly...caused a plane attempting to land to suffer a
'ramp strike'.
Aircraft coming in too low to land safely had occasionally hit the rounded-down
aft end of the flight deck of aircraft carriers with often fatal results. This structural
feature was nicknamed 'the ramp'. Under normal conditions, a LSO would bring
aircraft in high enough to be well clear of the ramp and catch...hopefully... either
the number four or five wire. The other wires would normally take care of a plane
that might land too short or too long. All of which was impossible that afternoon.
5
At that point in the aircraft recovery evolution, the admiral embarked in
ENTERPRISE issued an order to cease flight operations. He didn't want to risk a
major accident that might cause the last available...albeit damaged...flight deck in
the US Navy's Pacific Fleet to be put out of action. The admiral told the carrier's
captain to 'put any remaining planes in the water'.
When that order was issued, Navy legend has it that Robin Lindsey ignored the
order and told his telephone talker to pull the plug on his sound-powered
headset; thus effectively isolating those on the LSO platform from the admiral.
There is no record of what the ship's commanding officer thought about this
situation. But it is known that when Robin Lindsey continued to bring planes in for
landing, risking a courts martial, and the ship's skipper...a qualified naval aviator
himself...kept the ENTERPRISE on a steady course, heading into the wind
The few aircraft still aloft were fighters that had maintained a
Combat Air Patrol (CAP) for hours over the Big E, keeping the Japanese
at bay during the recovery operation. Their leader, Lieutenant Stanley W.
'Swede' Vejtasa ordered the other CAP aircraft to land first. Robin
Lindsey guided them into the very small deck space still available.
When at last it became his turn, Swede Vejtasa [right] was
'flying on fumes'. To make things more difficult, only the
center portion of the number one wire was available. In
addition to the limited deck area forward of that wire, the
other CAP aircraft had been parked to either side of the
center of that vital arresting device...and also on top of
it...because there was no place else for them to be
situated.
6
There was a very real danger that Swede Vejtasa's aircraft would stall out on
final approach due to lack of fuel and crash into the ship's stern or in its turbulent
wake...possibly even damaging the ship's rudder or propellers. Or overshoot that
last wire and set off more explosions and fires amidst the mass of aircraft parked
on the flight deck; many of which still had ordinance hanging from their wings.
It appeared to be an impossible situation to many present that day. But not to
Robin Lindsey or Swede Vejtasa...
The latter was a superb combat flyer, considered by many as the finest carrier
aviator in the fleet in 1942. Earlier that day he had shot down seven Japanese
aircraft during a single mission, setting a record for naval aviators. More
importantly, he had total confidence in the LSO 'waving' abilities of his close
friend and fellow aviator, Robin Lindsey.
As Swede Vejtasa flew up the carrier's wake with wheels, flaps and tail hook
down, and cockpit canopy pushed back, he glanced briefly ahead to see that an
impossibly small open space available for him on the Big E's flight deck. His
aircraft, flying at its normal landing speed of 70 knots was closing fast on his
intended landing spot as the carrier steamed into the wind at 30 knots.
Quickly, he refocused his eyes on the individual perched on the LSO platform,
waving two brightly colored paddles. At just the right moment, Robin Lindsey
gave Stanley Vejtasa the 'hi dip' signal. The pilot responded by dropping the
nose of his aircraft slightly, then resumed a 'nose high' attitude. That
caused his aircraft to reduce altitude by about ten to twenty feet without a
reduction in power.
Then the LSO's paddles flashed quickly into the classic 'cut' signal. The pilot instantly responded, cutting his throttle. Later, as Swede Vejtasa recalled:
"At that instant, I was looking right at the ramp." His stoutly built aircraft literally dropped out of the sky, smartly snagged the number one wire...and
made a very short run forward until the arresting gear
stopped its progress...without hitting anything! With absolutely no place to go, its wheels were chocked right where it had stopped.
In the catwalks lining both sides of the Big E's flight deck, sailors applauded and
cheered the virtuoso performance by Robin Lindsey which they had just
witnessed. Shortly thereafter, the two friends shook hands on the flight deck.
7
But on the flag bridge, Robin Lindsey's feat was not as well appreciated as on the
flight deck. He was ordered confined to his quarters for defying authority. While
contemplating his career, he received a visitor. Commander John G. Crommelin,
the ENTERPRISE's Executive Officer came to congratulate him, bearing an
'unauthorized' beverage.
John Crommelin, a bit of a maverick himself, who once ignored a superior's order
and got away with it, promised Robin Lindsey his punishment would be light.
Truth be told, the XO wanted his gifted LSO back on duty as soon as possible.
He also asked Robin Lindsey what else he could do in appreciation of the LSO's
amazing achievements. The LSO audaciously declared that he'd like to have the
battle flag that flew over the Big E that day. The flag was duly delivered to him,
no doubt without the admiral's knowledge.
Robin Lindsey, US Naval Aviator #5739 continued to serve through the rest of
the war, both as a Landing Signal Officer and also flying in combat. He remained
in the Navy after World War II and served as a squadron commander onboard
carriers during the Korean War. He retired in 1960 with the rank of captain. At
some point in time thereafter, he donated the well worn 48-star battle flag that
flew over ENTERPRISE when he became "The Best Damn Waver in the Fleet"
to the Naval Museum in Pensacola. It remains on display there today, behind a
huge model of CV-6. Robin Lindsey passed away in 1984 at age 71.
ENTERPRISE (CV-6) survived the Battle of the Santa Cruz Islands. After being
quickly repaired, she returned to combat operations and served throughout the
rest of the war in the Pacific, becoming the Navy's most decorated ship during
World War II. Declared surplus in 1947, this stout ship languished at the Brooklyn
Navy Yard while dedicated former crew members vainly tried to raise enough
money to turn her into a memorial. Instead, the Big E was scrapped in 1958.
8
Swede Vejtasa continued to fly combat during World War II. Awarded the Navy
Cross three times, he finished up his wartime career as an instructor. During the
Korean War, he was the Air Officer in the Newport News-built USS ESSEX (CV-
9). After a series of other naval aviation assignments, he served as the second
skipper of the USS CONSTELLATION (CVA-64), followed, appropriately enough,
by a tour of duty as the Commanding Officer of Naval Air Station Miramar...home
of the famed 'Top Gun' school for fighter pilots. Swede Vejtasa retired in 1970
with the rank of captain. He passed away in 2013 at age 98.
The Battle of the Santa Cruz Islands was considered a tactical victory for the
Japanese, since they lost fewer ships in that engagement than the US Navy. But
two of their carriers were heavily damaged and spent months out of action. When
they returned to the fight, they were met by ENTERPRISE and several newer
American carriers. After that, the carrier war in the Pacific was never in doubt.
In addition to hundreds of combat-experienced Japanese pilots lost during the
Battle of Midway four months previously, the action in late October of 1942
resulted in the deaths of an additional 150 Japanese pilots; many of whom were
unable to land on their carriers. Japan's naval aviation corps never recovered
from those losses. American casualties were far less
during the Battle of the Santa Cruz Islands, despite the inability of
HORNET to recover her own aircraft. A total of ten American pilots were
killed during the Battle of the Santa Cruz Islands. Had it not been for Robin Lindsey's
skill and determination, who knows how many might have been lost...
9
Legend and Legacy of the LSO
Twenty years before Robin Lindsey's singular achievement, the idea for
someone being stationed onboard an aircraft carrier to help guide pilots to a safe
landing came about more through frustration than design.
A nervous pilot who had not landed on a carrier previously made several futile
attempts to land onboard the Navy's first carrier; the USS LANGLEY (CV-1). The
LANGLEY's acting skipper, a qualified naval aviator, was standing on the aft, port
corner of the carrier's flight deck to assess such landing attempts.
Impatient, at one point he grabbed the white hats from two sailors and held them
above his head...to signal to the errant aviator that he was always coming in too
high. Then he lowered them, guiding the novice to his first carrier landing.
Additional signals were soon created to indicate if a pilot was coming in too fast or too slow, not lined up properly, or not in proper (i.e., nose high/wings level)
configuration. Signal flags...and later...brightly colored paddles replaced the sailor caps. A precarious platform at the edge of the LANGLEY's flight deck [right] was built for this purpose.
Thus was born on the deck of the LANGLEY the Landing Signal Officer (LSO)
concept. The practice of waving flags or paddles led to LSO's being nicknamed
'Wavers'. Refinements over the next three decades...well into the jet age...
included a published set of standard landing signals. LSO's at first verbally
critiqued landing attempts, then later evaluated them in writing. In addition,
landing attempts were first recorded by motion picture cameras...later by video.
These refinements allowed pilots to improve their skills...and also to record any accidents resulting from the always dangerous practice of landing high speed jet
aircraft on the rolling/pitching deck of a fast moving aircraft carrier. In the dramatic example shown on the right, a LSO can be seen running for his life as a
plane makes a fatal ramp strike.
10
By the mid-1950s, American aircraft carriers were being built with angled flight decks and outfitted with optical landing systems [example depicted on the right]. Initially, it was
thought this invention would allow a pilot to land without help from a LSO. However, accident rates actually increased when the human factor was removed
from the equation.
Once the optical landing system was augmented by a LSO in direct radio contact
with each pilot attempting a carrier landing, the accident rate dropped
significantly. That combination proved especially effective during night
operations.
The US Navy maintains a formal school for prospective LSOs. Located at NAS
Oceana in Virginia, it is the only institution of its kind in the world. Students from
the Navy and Marine Corps that are already qualified carrier pilots, as well as
flyers from several foreign counties receive hands-on, real time training using a
computerized system called the Landing Signal Officer Trainer (LSOT).
The LSOT is a fully functioning, full-size mock-up of an actual shipboard LSO
platform and associated equipment. Instructors can adjust this sophisticated
device to simulate all types of naval aircraft, different carrier flight deck
configurations, rough sea conditions and other environmental extremes to
maximize student training. When graduates of this school go back to the
fleet to practice their newly acquired skills, they proudly wear this US Navy LSO patch
with its rather unique and impolite motto. To the best of my knowledge, the Navy's LSO
School has no other identification. Too bad. In my opinion, I think they should give the
school a proper and appropriate name...say, something like:
THE ROBIN M. LINDSEY LSO SCHOOL
Bill Lee
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Item Number:1 Date: 08/21/2018 AFGHANISTAN - MILITANTS LAUNCH ROCKET ATTACK DURING PRESIDENT'S EID SPEECH (AUG 21/KP)  KHAAMA PRESS -- Authorities say they have killed the militants behind rocket attacks in Kabul, reports the Khaama Press (Afghanistan).   The rockets targeted the Presidential Palace and Green Zone as President Ashraf Ghani gave a speech on Tuesday celebrating the Muslim holiday of Eid al-Adha, reported the Tolo News (Afghanistan).   "If they are thinking the rocket attack will keep Afghans down, they are wrong," said Ghani, as the rockets shook the room.   Officials said at least 12 rockets were fired at the compound. Residents counted as many as 22.   Security forces cordoned off the city's Eidgah neighborhood, where the rockets were believed to have been fired from. Police and troops moved in, firing rocket-propelled grenades at the attackers. A military helicopter also took part in the operation.   The initial attack occurred around 9 a.m., local time. Residents reported shootings and explosions until about 12 p.m.   The attack was believed to have been carried out by three militants, using two vehicles loaded with rockets, said the Ministry of Interior. All are believed to have been killed.   Kabul police officials told BBC News that militants had fired mortars at the presidential palace.   Two security personnel were injured in the attack, said the ministry.   There were no claims of responsibility. A Taliban spokesman denied that his group was involved in the attack.   The assault comes two days after Ghani proposed a Eid cease-fire, similar to a truce that occurred during the month of Ramadan.   On Monday, two Taliban commanders told Reuters that the group would reject the offer
Item Number:2 Date: 08/21/2018 BRAZIL - 12 KILLED IN MAJOR RIO SECURITY OP (AUG 21/REU)  REUTERS -- At least 12 people have been killed in security operations in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, reports Reuters.   Five civilians and a soldier were killed on Monday in a shootout following a raid in the northern part of the city, said the army.   A second shootout killed six suspected gang members near a bridge linking Rio with the neighboring city of Niteroi.   On Monday, the military launched a major operation against violent drug gangs in the Alemao and Mare favelas, reported Sky News (U.K.).   Around 4,200 soldiers, 70 police officers and armored vehicles and aircraft took part in the operation.   The soldier killed on Monday was the first since the government ordered the army into Rio in February. Civilian casualties have not been uncommon.   The operation was launched after a record 64,000 people were murdered in Brazil in 2017.  
Item Number:5 Date: 08/21/2018 IRAQ - SHI'ITE MILITIAS BEGIN TO WITHDRAW FROM CITIES LIBERATED FROM ISIS (AUG 21/ASHARQ)  ASHARQ AL-AWSAT -- The Popular Mobilization Forces (PMF) militias in Iraq have ordered their members to withdraw from Iraqi cities and other areas liberated from the Islamic State terrorist group (ISIS), reports Asharq Al-Awsat (London).   On Monday, leaders of the PMF ordered their fighters to leave Salahuddin, Anbar and Nineveh provinces and close any PMF offices and headquarters.   Any members who continue to operate on behalf of their external supporters will be considered an enemy force, said PMF Deputy Commander Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis.   The PMF played an important support role in liberating a number of Iraqi cities from ISIS. However, the mostly Shi'ite forces receive significant Iranian support and have been implicated in a number of reprisal killings in majority Sunni cities and towns.   The move was likely linked to ongoing talks between Omani, U.S. and Iranian officials on reducing the Iranian presence in Syria and Iraq, one analyst told the newspaper
Item Number:6 Date: 08/21/2018 IRAQ - U.S. SPECIAL OPS HELICOPTER GOES DOWN DURING ANTI-ISIS RAID (AUG 21/NEWEEK)  NEWSWEEK -- A U.S. soldier has been killed in a helicopter crash during operations in Iraq, reports Newsweek.   The MH-60 Black Hawk helicopter, flown by the elite 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment, crashed in an undisclosed location early Monday morning.   The helicopter was returning to its base after a joint raid with Iraqi forces as part of ongoing counterterrorism operations against the Islamic State.   There was no evidence that hostile fire was involved, said a Pentagon spokesman. Three personnel were evacuated for additional medical treatment, reported the Stars and Stripes. It was not clear if the evacuated troops were American.   The military has launched an investigation to determine the cause of the crash.   Since May, Combined Task Force-Operation Inherent Resolve has been continuing clearing operations in the middle Euphrates River Valley and along the border with Syria
Item Number:10 Date: 08/21/2018 RUSSIA - ISIS CLAIMS UNSUCCESSFUL ATTACKS IN CHECHNYA (AUG 21/TASS)  TASS -- Several attackers have been killed and at least three police officers injured in a coordinated series of attacks in Chechnya claimed by the Islamic State terrorist group (ISIS), reports Russia's Tass news agency.   The attacks began Monday when two armed teenagers attacked a police station in Shali, reported the Independent (U.K.). Both attackers were killed before they could enter the building.   In a small village nearby, a young man detonated an explosive near a police checkpoint. The bomber survived the blast and was recovering in the hospital, reported London's Daily Telegraph. There were no other injuries.   In Grozny, the Chechen capital, a small explosion was reported downtown.   Shortly afterwards, a driver in a Mercedes attempted to hit two traffic police officers. Police opened fire and killed the assailant. Three officers were reportedlty injured.   In a statement published by its affiliated Amaq news agency, ISIS claimed responsibility for the attack. The terror group said that several police were killed in the attack but these claims have not been substantiated.   All of the attackers were between the ages of 11 and 17, said the Chechen information minister
  Item Number:12 Date: 08/21/2018 SWEDEN - GRIPEN JET CRASHES AFTER BIRD STRIKE; PILOT EJECTS SAFETY (AUG 21/LOCAL)  THE LOCAL -- A Swedish JAS 39 Gripen fighter jet has crashed in the southern Blekinge region, reports the Local (Sweden).   The fighter went down Tuesday 5 miles (8 km) north of Ronneby after hitting a bird at an altitude of 3,300 feet (1,00 m), government officials told the TT News Agency (Sweden).   The pilot ejected safely and was taken to the hospital. He was in good condition, the officials said. There were no casualties on the ground.   The crash is under investigation.  
Item Number:16 Date: 08/21/2018 YEMEN - U.S. LASER-GUIDED BOMB USED IN DEADLY STRIKE ON BUS (AUG 21/CNN)  CABLE NEWS NETWORK -- The United States supplied the bomb used by the Saudi-led coalition in an airstrike in Yemen that killed 40 children earlier this month, reports CNN.   The school bus was hit by a 500-pound (227-kg) GBU-12 Paveway II laser-guided bomb manufactured by Lockheed Martin.   It was sold as part of a U.S. State Dept.-sanctioned deal, the news channel said.   The Pentagon declined to confirm the report. The Defense Dept. says it does not make targeting decisions for the coalition, noted the Guardian (U.K.).   Sales of that munition to Saudi Arabia were halted by the Obama administration in 2016.   President Donald Trump overturned the ban in March 2017.   The U.S. has come under pressure for its support of the coalition fighting the Houthi rebels in Yemen, which includes aerial refueling, weapons sales and targeting advice.
 
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