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November 20, 2013

News Briefs November 20, 2013

U.S. military deaths in Afghanistan at 2,153

As of Nov. 19, 2013, at least 2,153 members of the U.S. military had died in Afghanistan as a result of the U.S.-led invasion of Afghanistan in late 2001, according to an Associated Press count.

The AP count is two less than the Defense Department’s tally, last updated Monday at 10 a.m. ,EST.

At least 1,784 military service members have died in Afghanistan as a result of hostile action, according to the military’s numbers.

Outside of Afghanistan, the department reports at least 132 more members of the U.S. military died in support of Operation Enduring Freedom. Of those, 11 were the result of hostile action.

The AP count of total OEF casualties outside of Afghanistan is two more than the department’s tally.

The Defense Department also counts three military civilian deaths.

Since the start of U.S. military operations in Afghanistan, 19,475 U.S. service members have been wounded in hostile action, according to the Defense Department. AP

Navy cancels study on proposed airfield

The Navy has canceled an environmental study on a proposed airfield for jet landing practice on sites in Virginia and eastern North Carolina.

The study was suspended in 2011 while the Navy determined a home base for Joint Strike Fighter squadrons. According to a Navy news release, that decision has been delayed until at least 2017.

For more than a decade, the Navy has attempted to build an outlying landing field where jets could safely practice aircraft carrier landings.

The Virginian-Pilot reports that the Navy had been considering sites in Southampton, Surry and Sussex counties in Virginia and Camden and Gates counties in North Carolina.

Those plans had been met with opposition from citizen groups and local governments. AP

Malfunctioning drone leaves hole in U.S. Navy ship

A U.S. Navy official says a malfunctioning drone left a hole in a Navy guided missile cruiser and caused internal damage after it struck the ship during a weekend exercise off the California coast.

Lt. Rick Chernitzer says officials examined the USS Chancellorsville Nov. 18, a day after it pulled into San Diego.

The ship was tracking the unmanned aircraft during radar testing Saturday when the drone struck it.
Two sailors were treated for minor burns.

Officials have declined to comment further while the cause is being investigated.

The aerial drone was a BQM-74 series, manufactured by Aerospace giant Northrop Grumman. According to the company website, the drones can simulate enemy missiles or airplanes. AP




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Air Force photograph by TSgt. Terri Praden

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NASA image

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