United States Army

Photo Of The Day

Photo: Burton Historical Collection, Detroit Public Library Photograph from the mid-1870s of a pile of American bison skulls waiting to be ground for fertilizer.

Photo: Burton Historical Collection, Detroit Public Library
Photograph from the mid-1870s of a pile of American bison skulls waiting to be ground for fertilizer.

How Many Bison Skulls Might Be In The Photo?

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Wednesday Weapons – Robot Trucks

You’ve all heard of Google’s autonomous vehicles, well now the US Army is trialling ¬†autonomous trucks.

U.S. Army convoys will soon be able to roll into even the roughest of unfriendly foreign urban areas and combat zones without the worry of loss of life, thanks to new technology that will make large vehicles fully autonomous.

In demonstrations earlier this month at Fort Hood, Texas, the U.S. Army Tank-Automotive Research, Development and Engineering Center (TARDEC) and Lockheed Martin demonstrated the ability of the¬†Autonomous Mobility Appliqu√© System (AMAS), which gives¬†full autonomy to convoys to operate in urban environments. In tests, driverless tactical vehicles were able to navigate hazards and obstacles including pedestrians, oncoming traffic,¬†road intersections,¬†traffic circles and¬†stalled and passing vehicles.¬† Read more »

Whale Week What Was

682zoomWe started our Saturday by paying our respects to¬†Norman Schwarzkopf Jr., the hard-charging US Army general whose forces smashed the Iraqi army in the 1991 Gulf War. ¬†He died aged 78. ¬†At The Standard 2012 Worst Political Blog Mike Smith is told some home truths about long term grass-roots Labour families heading for the Greens. ¬†A quick vid on how to put out a boat fire the Kiwi way is next, followed by a vote for Best Minister. ¬†The winner, at 52%, is Judith Collins. ¬†The Whale Week That Was summarised all the stories this blog covered in the previous seven days. ¬†A quite active Saturday Debate (for the time of year especially) led a post calling for nominations for Best Political Blog. ¬†Those who see WOBH as any sort of threat to them (and those that don’t too), should take heed of this Malcolm Tucker quote: “marshal all the media forces of Darkness to hound them to an assisted suicide”.¬† A CNN piece showing Teachers in Utah taking a class on gun use shows some common sense around the gun debate. ¬†A reader has taken yesterday’s US Fiscal Cliff graphic and created one for New Zealand – great work. ¬†As Cameron Slater predicted from the outset, the Aussie Hoax DJs will not face charges. ¬†The NZ Herald continues to amuse – this time a car crashed into a poll. ¬†The blog then introduces us to two sexy taxidermists showing you don’t have to look like a front row forward to deal with dead animals. ¬†And you’d think we’re picking on an incompetent NZ Herald, and you would be right. ¬†This time they have Jesse Ryder beating himself at Eden Park in Wellington. ¬†Then a hilarious story about a Queensland woman who fell into the longdrop and was there for two hours before being discovered by her husband. ¬† Turns out that during the Falklands War the French tried to send missiles to Argentinia behind Margaret Thatcher‘s back. ¬†Commerce first eh? ¬†The last post of the day highlights a report of a man holding up a Countdown Supermarket with a hammer. ¬†Our readers get fired up about the idea of hammer banning.

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Army Blimp spotted airborne

Mashable

The US Army is now flight testing their LEMV:

A football field-sized blimp belonging to the U.S. Army was spotted over New Jersey skies Tuesday.

Dubbed the Long-Endurance Multi-Intelligence Vehicle, or LEMV, it’s the army’s latest aerospace project,Wired reported. YouTube user jmeriney revealed the blimp in a video he posted on Wednesday.

Made by military aircraft manufacturer Northrop Grumman, the LEMV is designed to be a lighter-than-air cargo surveillance airship that can fly without a pilot.

It can float above combat zones for 21 days straight, and is equipped with high-tech sensors that can monitor insurgents from above, the Wall Street Journal reported. While the blimp can only travel up to 30 miles an hour, it consumes 10 times less fuel than other vehicles with comparable assets.

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First Military Exercises for 27 years

ŠĒ• NZ Herald

Good to see that our troops will be visited by 76 US military personnel for the forst combat exercises in 27 years:

New Zealand’s defence ties with the United States are set to reach a new milestone with the arrival of 76 US military personnel for the first combat-focused joint exercise on New Zealand soil in more than 27 years.

And New Zealand’s defence ties with Nato are also high on the Government’s agenda with talks scheduled at the Beehive today with Nato’s top military man, US Admiral Jim Stavridis, the Supreme Allied Commander, Europe.

The Defence Minister, Jonathan Coleman, last night announced the joint military exercise involving 35 US Marines and 41 US Army personnel to take part in an exercise dubbed Alam Halfa, after a World War II battle in Egypt in 1942.

Since the accelerated friendship between New Zealand and the US was announced in the Wellington Declaration 16 months ago, joint exercises have stepped up. But until now they have had a humanitarian or non-combat focus.

Exercise Alam Halfa marks the first traditional military exercise since the reprisals against New Zealand for its anti-nuclear legislation included a ban on joint exercises, without a special waiver.

The exercise will involve about 1500 Defence Force personnel and begin in Linton the day after Anzac Day, ending in Waiouru 10 days later. The frigate Canterbury will also be involved at Napier.

US Ambassador David Huebner said the “centrepiece” of the year would be in June when US Marines, including a Marine band, would visit New Zealand to commemorate the 70th anniversary of the arrival of American forces to help to defend the South Pacific in World War II.

But do they stop skiddies?

The US Army has developed kevlar grundies for combat:

When it comes to the many “life-changing” injuries that can result from an IED blast, the loss of a limb is probably the first one that springs to mind. But injuries to the pelvic region that leave soldiers with the inability to have children can obviously be just as devastating. That’s why the U.S. Army has developed a Pelvic Protection System – dubbed “Kevlar boxers” or “combat underpants” by some soldiers – to protect dismounted soldiers patrolling Afghanistan roads.

The U.S. Army developed the Pelvic Protection System after taking a lead from British forces that employed “Blast Boxers” made by Cardiff-based military accessories provider BCB International. The U.S. version consists of two layers of protection – a Tier I protective under-garment – or “PUG” – and a Tier II protective outer-garment – or “POG.”

Worn like shorts, the PUG is worn under a soldier’s ACU (Army Combat Uniform) pants and can be worn over the top of, or in place of underwear. It has a breathable, moisture wicking material on the outer thighs and knitted Kevlar along the inner thighs to protect the fleshy parts of the thigh and the femoral artery. Additional knitted or woven Kevlar is located over the groin. The fabric has been tested to ensure it won’t melt or drip when exposed to extreme heat.

 

Fisking Broken-arses

I hate it when I read stories like this one in the DomPost. Not because people have lost their jobs but because it is nothing but employter bashing. So time for a little fisking.

A Porirua factory has shed three long-serving workers, who leave with redundancy payments of just $1000 to feed their families.

They’re lucky they got that much.

Mr Tuangalu said the union had spent six years trying to lift him off the minimum wage and include a redundancy deal in the workers’ contracts, which would have seen him leave with about $11,000.

One has to ask what Mr Tuangalu did to lift HIMSELF off the minimum wage. Did he re-train himself in anything? Did he add value to the factory processes? Nah, of course he didn’t he just sat their feeding a machine and expected the union to lift his pay. There is a reason this fellow is getting the arse, he is lazy and after six years hasn’t managed to progress his sorry self even one dollar above the state enforced minimum wage.

“I know that factory better than my wife, I think. I feel like I built this place. There’s no words to explain it. I’ve got a massive headache. You just feel unappreciated.”

Uhmmmm….need I remind you you got wages for all that time pal. Wages is a shorter word for appreciated.

Mr Tavita’s wife is on a waiting list for heart surgery and they have three preschool children. His most pressing concern was paying the rent on his Housing New Zealand home.

So what, thems the perils of nine years of Labour, constatnly voting Labour and nver bettering yourself all the while working at a minimum wage job waiting for “appreciation”. Plus WTF was he thinking of having three children while in such a parlous financial position.

“I don’t know how I’m going to look after my kids. Since I first came to this country [in 1987], I’ve never been on a benefit.”

Ahhh……you could always go back.

Employment lawyer Andrew Scott-Howman said 15 years ago most contracts had “some element of redundancy compensation” but now, because employers were not obliged to offer it, most did not.

Please tell me how it is good for a company that can’t afford to keep a staff member on to pay them to to fuck off tomorrow? Didn’t think you could.

“The employer’s not in any breach of anything that I can see but, from a moral perspective, a lot of Kiwis would say that doesn’t sound like a fair go.”

To quote a former Prime Minister, “Diddums”

Managing director Angelus Tay blamed the global slump and increased material costs. “I feel very sorry for the people. I try to tell them if things improve we will try to get them back.”

The trio were entitled to one week’s notice of job loss, three weeks’ pay – they get about $550 a week before tax – and holiday pay.

The $1000 was not part of their contract and, over the years, he had used his own money to help his employees through financial problems, he said.

Oh, so the boss, far from being a complete arse actually gave them more than they were entitled to. Knock me down woth a feather, where is the story here?

“If I can, I would have given them more, but I can’t.”

Yep and still the DomPost gives you a serve.

A tearful Mary Tuangalu said she was angry the company had not taken the workers’ long service into account. “They’ve put their heart and soul into it. They have families now [and] we’re coming into Christmas. “

Oh FFS dry your eyes….your husband got paid for all the years…..tighten up, things are going to get rough.

Porirua Deputy Mayor Litea Ah Hoi said she would help to fast-track the men into benefits under a joint council and Social Development Ministry scheme.

The company had “taken 16 years of Aki’s life … To be offering $1000 for 16 years of service is absolutely disgusting.”

uhmm no actually the company did no such thing. Aki of his own free will entered into an amployment relationship where he was paid wages for his work for 16 years. He hasn’t improved his situation and as things have got tighter the company has decided his economic usefulness to them has ended and that he costs them more money than he can make the company.