Thursday, July 31, 2008

"...this is what you're seeing right now; some no-kidding-hard-knuckles political wrangling going on and, quite frankly, as messy as it is it's

exactly what we're hoping for." Rear Admiral Patrick Driscoll, Deputy Chief, MNF-I Strategic Communications said today on the DoDLive Bloggers Roundtable. Rear Adm. Driscoll discussed with us the improving security environment and progressing political processes in Iraq.

On the call with us today were Grim of Blackfive, Scott Malensek from Flopping Aces, Marisa Cochrane of the Institute for the Study of War, D.J. Elliot from the Long War Journal, Jarred Fishman of the Air Force Pundit, Andrew Lubin from Get the Gouge and Proceedings, Bruce McQuain of QandO, Paul McLeary from Defense Tech International, and Jonas Hogg from The Ball Gunner.

Heads up: Pentagon Channel Update

(All Times Eastern)

1400 - Pentagon Briefing: Secretary of Defense Robert Gates and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff ADM Michael Mullen speak with reporters at the Pentagon. (Live, VoD, Podcast) Encore presentations at 1800, 0000 & 0600hrs.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

"... the golden moment was ... to train the 4th Brigade commander and his staff in the procedures they will employ in Iraq," said Gen. Garrett

Army Brig. Gen. William B. Garrett, III, commander of the Southern European Task Force (Airborne), who served as exercise director for Exercise Immediate Response 2008, joined us in a DoD Bloggers Roundtable yesterday. He told online journalists that the series of training programs and cross-cultural activities is designed to reinforce the participating militaries' existing skills, teach new ones and forge professional bonds among the forces that will serve them in future partnerships.

Joining us on the call was Andrew Lubin, Andrew's other blog sites include:, and Get the Gouge.

Friday, July 25, 2008

“The opportunity to serve and follow in our father’s footsteps was one of our dreams growing up," said Maj. LaHavie Brunson

The Brunson family, which includes retired Sgt. Maj. Albert Brunson (Father); Maj. LaHavie Brunson (Son); Lt. Col. Xavier Brunson (Son); Maj. Tavi Brunson (Son); Capt. Miryam Brunson (Daughter-in-law). Lt. Col. Kirsten Brunson (daughter-in-law) discussed their proud tradition of serving in the U.S. Army and their combined 100 years of service with bloggers.

First row: Karyn Brunson (wife of Maj. LaHavie Brunson), Maryam Brunson,
Maj. Tavi Brunson, LTC Kirsten Brunson

Second row: Maj. LaHavie Brunson, Rachel Brunson, Rebecca Brunson
(children of LTC Kirsten and LTC Xavier Brunson),
LTC Xavier Brunson

Third row: Sgt. Maj. (Ret.) Albert Brunson,
Delphine Brunson (Sgt. Maj Al Brunson’s wife).

Joining us on the call were Andrew Lubin,, and Brad Staggs,, Jarred Fishman,, and Bryant Jordan,

Thursday, July 24, 2008

"In all the events we integrate fully ... and cause our soldiers to work through those language issues." Maj. Matthew Smith

Maj. Matthew D. Smith, Commander of the 1st Battalion, 121st Infantry Regiment of the Georgia National Guard joined us today from the Republic of Georgia for a DoDLive Bloggers Roundtable. Immediate Response '08 is a multi-national exercise taking place just outside Tblisi meant to improve cooperation and facilitate operations among allies and partners in the region.

On the call with us today were Grim from Blackfive and Andrew Lubin of Get the Gouge.

"They've proven to be a capable, combat proven force." Brig. Gen. Trombitas

Brig. Gen. Simeon G. Trombitas, Commanding General, Iraq National Counter-Terror Force Transition Team of the Multi-National Security Transition Command-Iraq joined us today for a DoDLive Bloggers Roundtable. Gen. Trombitas spoke about the status of the training of the Iraq Special Operations Force and their growing capability.

On the call with us today was Grim from Blackfive, Christian Lowe with, Scott from Flopping Aces, The Long War Journal's D.J. Elliot, Chuck Simmins of America's North Shore Journal, Farook Ahmed from the Institute for the Study of War, Bruce McQuain of QandO, and Jarred Fishman of the Air Force Pundit.

"Each of the analysts is responsible to keep his eyes open and talk to a lot of people ... to collect up lessons we are learning," said Col. Mains

Col. Steven Mains, Director, Center for Army Lessons Learned (CALL) and Maj. Ty Martin joined us for a DoD Bloggers Roundtable yesterday to discuss the CALL’s Lessons Learned Integration network.

On the call was Chuck Simmons,, and Andrew Lubin,

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Marines on the Leading Edge of Change

Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff U.S. Navy Adm. Mike Mullen recently visited with marines at Camp Barber, Afghanistan. Adm. Mullen spoke to about 400 Marines, sailors, airmen and
soldiers assigned to Task Force 2d Battalion, 7th Marine Regiment, 1st Marine Division, Combined Joint Task Force, personally thanked the service members for their wartime service.

"You are on the leading edge of positive change in Afghanistan," said Adm. Mullen.

Before departing the area, Adm. Mullen commended the task force on what it has accomplished in only a few months. Although he acknowledged that the mission to train, mentor and advise the Afghanistan National Police is a "different mission" for Marines, he also noted the significance of their efforts to aid in bringing peace and prosperity to the Afghan people.

The task force, which deployed here in early April, is currently operating throughout the Helmand and Farah provinces of Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom.

(Information courtesy of Staff Sergeant Joseph L. Loewy, Public Affairs Chief, Task Force 2nd Battalion, 7th Marine Regiment Camp Barber, Afghanistan)

"They currently conduct 42 patrols per week. That's a 300 % increase in 12 months..." Capt. Paul Abraham

Capt. Paul Abraham of the United Kingdom Royal Navy is Director of the Maritime Strategic Transition Team and Senior Advisor to the Iraqi Navy. Capt. Abraham joined us for a DoDLive Bloggers Roundtable this morning to discuss the developing Iraqi Navy and their recent operational success in seizing control of the their own territorial waters and the Port of Umm Qasr.

On the call with us today was David Axe of War is Boring, Andrew Lubin from the Military Observer, Jarred Fishman from The Air Force Pundit, and Scott Malensek from Flopping Aces.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

“We plan on showcasing a number of areas ... that are vitally important to … creating future capabilities for our soldiers,” said Dr. Parmentola

John A. Parmentola, Director for Research and Laboratory Management for the U.S. Army, joined us today for an Army Bloggers Roundtable. He described the seven technology/research areas that will be discussed at the upcoming 26th Army Science Conference in December. The seven areas that will be showcased include: Autonomous Systems, Biotechnology, Immersive Technology, Nanotechnology, Network Science, Neuroscience and Quantum Information Services.

Joining us on the call today were Sharon Weinberger,; Bruce McQuan,; Science News,; Brian Wang, Next Big Future,, Tim Stevens with and Steven Hoober with Public Sector Communications,

For more information about the upcoming conference, visit

Monday, July 14, 2008

From Lt. Gen. Caldwell

Remembering Tony Snow at the Small Wars Journal.

Friday, July 11, 2008

"This is our choice, and we really enjoy what we do. And ... we take pride in it," said Col. Wilt

Air Force Reserve Lt. Col. Ronald Wilt and Master Sgt. Reserve Jeffrey Flight spoke with bloggers on the DoDLive Bloggers Roundtable today about the Air Force Reserves' firefighting mission in Southern California.

Airmen and civilians from the 302nd Air Expeditionary Group hastily move fire retardant 'slurry' June 26 after loading the red powder onto a C-130 June 26 at Chico Municipal Airport in California. The group received its first execution order to launch fire suppression missions since first arriving June 23. The Airmen waited up to three days for smoke to clear enough over the wildfire to allow for modular airborne firefighting system fire suppression drops. The group is made up of three Air National Guard units, including the 153rd AW, from Cheyenne, Wyom.; the 146th AW, from Channel Islands, Calif.; and the 145th AW, Charlotte, N.C. One Air Force Reserve unit, the 302nd AW from Peterson Air Force Base, Colo., is the only Air Force Reserve unit in the 302nd AEG.
(U.S. Air Force photo/Master Sgt. Heldwin Brito)

Both Reservists are from the 302 Airlift Wing, based out of Peterson Air Force Base, Colorado. Lt. Col. Wilt is the 302 Operations Group Commander and MSgt Flight is the 302 OG Chief Loadmaster Flight Evaluator.

Joining the call was Chuck Simmons,

"These games are essentially meant to provide soldiers with a myriad of experiences in developing situational awareness," said Dr. Goldberg

Dr. Stephen Goldberg, with the U.S. Army Research Institute for the Behavioral and Social Sciences and Robert Sottilare, Research, Development and Engineering Command's Simulation and Training Technology Center, spoke with bloggers during an Army Bloggers Roundtable yesterday about their involvement in managing research on applying new technologies to Army training, in particular the areas of virtual training environments in the 21st century.

"We're interested in how to design, develop and utilize those technologies within a distributed setting, so having soldiers at different locations be able to, you know, essentially dial in to the same environment and carry out training together, even though they're not co-located," said Goldberg.

Goldberg and Sottilare explained a virtual training opportunity that they will be conducting with the United Kingdom next week.

"We're involved in right now that's going to actually take place next week is kind of the crawl part of a three- phase effort, is we're working with researchers and soldiers in the United Kingdom, and we're going to be bringing them via a distributed game into an environment to carry out some military operations together as a coalition at the very lowest level. So next week we'll be rescuing the embassy personnel from some small, unknown country," said Goldberg.

"Minerva’s focus is on basic research and developing the skills in academia," said Dr. Thomas Mahnken

Dr. Thomas Mahnken, deputy assistant secretary of defense for policy planning, joined us on a DoDLive Bloggers Roundtable yesterday to discuss the Minerva initiative. This initiative is an effort to build the Department of Defense’s capacity in social science to reach out to the academic community in social science on topics of interest to national security both present and future.

Joining us on the call was Steven Corman,, Sharon Weinberger,, and Noah Shachtman,

Thursday, July 10, 2008

“We’re getting very positive feedback from the local communities with our FDD-trained police officers," Col. Cuddy

Army Col. John Cuddy, commander of the Regional Police Advisory Command-South in Kandahar, Afghanistan, spoke with bloggers yesterday during a DoDLive Bloggers Roundtable about challenges and progress with the focused district development (FDD) reform program for Afghan police.
The FDD program rotates district police forces through eight weeks of rigorous training, and Cuddy said almost 800 police in southern Afghanistan have completed the course since its inception.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

"We want to continue to provide the same quality of care and support to our warriors in transition and their family," Col. Keenan

Col. Jimmie Keenan, Chief of Staff of the Warrior Care and Transition Office spoke to us during a DoDLive Bloggers Roundtable today about the policy changes made to ensure warrior care is fully staffed and warriors in transition receive care that fits the Soldier's needs.

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

"The best avenue to approach this is to just look at the art of the possible ..." Maj. Gen. Jerry Cannon

Maj. Gen. Jerry Cannon, the new Director of the Civilian Police Training Team for the Multi-National Security Transition Command - Iraq spoke to us about his first month on the job during a DoDLive Bloggers Roundtable today. A Michigan National Guardsman Maj. Gen. Cannon brings over 38 years experience as a civilian police officer, county sheriff, and U.S. Army military policeman to the position.

On the call with us was DJ Elliot of the Long War Journal, Dave Dilegge of the Small Wars Journal, Bruce McQuain from QandO, and Jarred Fishman of the Air Force Pundit.

Celebrating The All Volunteer Force

It all began July 1, 1973.

"Our nation is fortunate that so many talented and patriotic young people have stepped forward to serve, and that so many of them have chosen to continue to serve."
Defense SecretaryRobert M. Gates

Why do they volunteer? Find out here.

Pentagon Channel Highlights

(All Times Eastern)

1100 - Pentagon Briefing: Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff ADM Michael Mullen speaks with reporters at the Pentagon. (Live, VoD, Podcast) Encore presentations at 1800 & 0000hrs.

1300 - Pentagon Briefing: Deputy Under Secretary of Defense for Military Personnel Policy Bill Carr speaks with reporters at the Pentagon on the signing of a policy revision to standardize recruiting waivers. (Live, VoD, Podcast) Encore presentation at 0600hrs.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Pentagon Channel Update

(All times Eastern)

1400 - Pentagon Briefing: Today's briefing on standardizing recruiting waivers has been postponed.

Pentagon Channel Highlights

(All Times Eastern)

0930 - Pentagon Re-enlistment Ceremony: The Army conducts a re-enlistment event in the Pentagon Center Courtyard in honor of the 35th Anniversary of the All-Volunteer Force. (Live, VoD)

1400 - Pentagon Briefing: Deputy Under Secretary of Defense for Military Personnel Policy Bill Carr speaks with reporters at the Pentagon on the signing of a policy revision to standardize recruiting waivers. (Live, VoD, Podcast) Encore presentation at 1800hrs.