Headlines – March 16, 2020

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Three U.S. troops among 5 wounded in another rocket attack on Camp Taji in Iraq-
Three U.S. troops were injured in a barrage of rockets that hit a base housing U.S. and other coalition troops north of Baghdad March 14 according to the Pentagon. At least two Iraqis were also injured, Iraqi officials say.
 
DOD bans all domestic travel for personnel and families amid coronavirus crisis-
Pentagon officials late March 13 announced a total domestic travel ban for all troops, civilian personnel and their families until May 11 in an effort to limit their potential exposure to the coronavirus.
 
Four Russian reconnaissance aircraft intercepted while spying on U.S. ICEX submarine exercise again-
Russian maritime reconnaissance aircraft are really interested in an ongoing U.S. submarine exercise near Alaska known as ICEX — the spy planes have been intercepted three times this week by U.S. and Canadian aircraft, according to the U.S. military.
 
 

Business

Fincantieri suspends operations amid coronavirus crisis-
As Italy’s coronavirus crisis worsens, state shipbuilder Fincantieri has suspended operations for two weeks at its Italian facilities.
 
 

Defense

U.S. keeping two carriers in Mideast, moving Patriot missile batteries into Iraq as Iran tensions mount-
The commander of U.S. Central Command told reporters at the Pentagon March 13 that the U.S. would retain two aircraft carriers in the Middle East and is in the process of moving Patriot missile defense batteries into Iraq as Iran tensions mount.
 
Congress wants answers on contamination at former U.S. air base in Uzbekistan-
Several congressional committees are stepping up pressure on the Departments of Defense and Veterans Affairs to release documents about toxic pollution at a former Uzbek air base used by U.S. troops in the aftermath of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.
 
Pentagon tightly restricting access to the building, allowing much of staff to work from home-
The world’s largest office building is shutting down to most visitors and offering broad permission to work remotely as part of enhanced precautionary measures in the face of the coronavirus pandemic.
 
When your work is classified, ‘work from home’ doesn’t work-
As millions of Americans prepare to work from home in an effort to slow the spread of the coronavirus, Defense Department managers and the companies that support them are waiting for guidance on just how they should be clearing their offices.
 
Paratroopers returning from Afghanistan enter quarantine-
More than 300 paratroopers assigned to 3rd Brigade, 82nd Airborne Division began a 14-day quarantine upon their return to Fort Bragg, N.C., from Afghanistan, unit officials said March 14.
 
Iron Dome could intercept those rockets in Iraq, but it doesn’t fit Army’s ‘grand plan’-
The urgent need to protect troops against air and missile threats was highlighted once again this week after two Americans and one Briton were killed by a volley of Katyusha rockets at Camp Taji, Iraq.
 
 

Veterans

Military medical retiree changes, cuts should halt due to pandemic: Senator-
At least one senator wants the Pentagon to delay military medical cuts and a plan to push military retirees and families off base for care in the face of the novel coronavirus pandemic.
 
Decades after battle, Iwo Jima veterans meet in Galveston-
Although stationed on a beach a mere five miles apart in 1945, Ramond Warren, of Galveston, and Ivan Hammond, of Santa Fe, didn’t know each other at the time.
 
VA insists it can handle coronavirus pandemic-
As the number of coronavirus cases in the Veterans Affairs medical system continues to rise, lawmakers are asking whether officials are fully prepared for the numerous challenges ahead.

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