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SecDef calls for culture of dignity, respect

Posted May 9, 2013 by Jim Garamone

WASHINGTON (AFPS) — Allegations of misconduct against an Air Force officer in charge of the service’s sexual assault prevention and response effort underscored the importance of Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel’s effort to prevent sexual assault across the military. Hagel began his Pentagon news conference Tuesday by discussing the incident in which the officer was arrested by Arlington…

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Hagel eliminates Distinguished Warfare Medal

Posted April 18, 2013 by Jim Garamone

WASHINGTON (AFNS)  – Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel has eliminated the Distinguished Warfare Medal, DOD officials announced today. Instead, the military will recognize service members who directly affect combat operations without being present through distinguishing devices that will be affixed to already existing awards. Soon after being sworn in as defense secretary Feb. 27, 2013, Hagel asked…

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DOD requires more base closings, official says

Posted March 29, 2013 by

WASHINGTON (AFNS) — The Defense Department possesses more real estate than it needs and is looking to close additional bases and installations in the United States and abroad, a senior DOD official told a House panel March 14. Air Force leaders agree, according to Kathleen I. Ferguson, acting assistant secretary of the Air Force for installations, environment and logistics….

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New process cuts GI Bill claims processing times

Posted March 22, 2013 by

WASHINGTON (AFNS) — As part of its ongoing transformation from paper-based to electronic claims processing, the Department of Veterans Affairs has continued to improve the automated payment of benefits for Veterans participating in the Post-9/11 GI Bill education program. As a result, VA is now providing benefit payments to currently enrolled students in an average…

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Hagel orders review of sex assault case, convening authority

Posted March 14, 2013 by Jim Garamone

WASHINGTON – Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel has directed two separate reviews to ensure that the U.S. military justice system is appropriately protecting victims of sexual assault as well as dispensing justice to the accused, Pentagon Press Secretary George Little said here today. The orders are an outgrowth of a case against Air Force Lt. Col….

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If sequestration triggers, furloughs begin in late April

Posted February 28, 2013 by Jim Garamone

WASHINGTON (AFNS)  — If sequestration is triggered next week, unpaid furloughs for civilian Defense Department employees will start in late April, Pentagon officials said here today. Sequestration is a provision in budget law that will trigger major across-the-board spending cuts March 1 unless Congress agrees on an alternative. DOD Comptroller Robert F. Hale told reporters…

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Panetta signs memo extending benefits to same-sex partners

Posted February 14, 2013 by

WASHINGTON (AFNS) — Calling it “a matter of fundamental equity,” Defense Secretary Leon E. Panetta today signed a memorandum to the service secretaries and the Pentagon’s top personnel official extending benefits to same-sex partners of service members. Here is the secretary’s announcement of the policy change: “Seventeen months ago, the United States military ended the…

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DOD photo by U.S. Navy Petty Officer 1st Class Chad J. McNeeley
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DOD leaders: budget deadlock could spark readiness crisis

Posted February 7, 2013 by Karen Parrish

Issuing perhaps their strongest warnings yet, Pentagon leaders yesterday said the budget impasse threatens to create a military readiness crisis.

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MilPDS to shut down for upgrades

Posted February 7, 2013 by Senior Airman Saphfire Cook

The Military Personnel Data System will be shut down for upgrades and migration to the Defense Information Systems Agency Defense Enterprise Computing Center March 4-27. Airmen who are PCSing, retiring, separating, re-enlisting or extending in the month of March must complete all related actions before the scheduled upgrades. “Members are asked to be proactive and…

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(DOD photo by Erin A. Kirk-Cuomo)
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Defense Department expands women’s combat role

Posted January 31, 2013 by Claudette Roulo

WASHINGTON — Following a unanimous recommendation by the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Defense Secretary Leon E. Panetta today announced the end of the direct ground combat exclusion rule for female service members.

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