Military Report - Week of March 11, 2013

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Military Report - Week of March 11, 2013

#1 Postby boardman » Sun Mar 17, 2013 1:01 pm

Military Report - Week of March 11, 2013

AF Thunderbird Schedule Cancelled
Due to the sequester, the Air Force has cancelled all aviation support to public events for at least the remainder of the fiscal year and is standing down the Thunderbirds aerial demonstration team to save flying hours to support readiness needs. This includes the cancellation of support to all air shows, tradeshows, flyovers (including funerals and military graduations), orientation flights, heritage flights, F-22 demonstration flights and open houses, unless the event includes only local static assets. Also, the Air Force has canceled the Thunderbirds' entire 2013 season beginning April 1, 2013. For more information, contact Air Force Public Affairs at ( or 703-695-9664. For information specific to the USAF Thunderbirds, call Air Combat Command Public Affairs at (757) 764-5007.
For more Air Force news, visit the ( News Center.

Sequestration Impacts Fed Employees
Because of sequestration, the Department of Defense will soon initiate furlough for its 800,000-plus civilian employees. Congressional notification is required at least 45 days from a planned furlough, with implementation anticipated for late April. Civilians will be furloughed for no more than 16 hours per pay period. Furlough will also affect benefits. Civilians must also be aware of the impact on leave accrual, benefits and Thrift Savings Plan contributions, particularly if they are planning vacations or nearing retirement. For more furlough information, visit the Office of Personnel Management website at (
To keep up with the latest sequestration news and how it affects the military, visit the ( Sequestration section on

AAFES March Madness Sweepstakes
The Army & Air Force Exchange Service is teaming with Unilever/NCAA to offer Exchange shoppers a jump on the big tournament with a new 60" LG TV in the "March Madness Sweepstakes." Exchange shoppers worldwide have the opportunity to enter the drawing between March 8 and April 8, 2013. No purchase is necessary. Participants can visit a local Exchange store to fill out one entry form per person per visit. Entrants must be 18 years or older with a valid ID and need not be present to win. All authorized Exchange shoppers are eligible to participate. Store hours and locations are listed on the website at (
For discounts for servicemembers, military families and veterans, visit the ( Discount Center.

Deal of the Week: Exclusive Savings on MSC Cruises
$599 7-night Mediterranean Cruise + Exclusive Savings for Military. ( ... 551-6?mpt=[CACHEBUSTER]) Click here for more details.

Navy Barracks Recipe Contest
Navy Nutrition is holding a recipe contest to compile an online barracks cookbook. The goal of the contest is to compile a collection of recipes that are compatible with barracks life. Each recipe may only be submitted once, but you may enter as many recipes as you like. The rules include a limit on the number of ingredients, pieces of equipment and recipe steps. There is also focus on nutritional value. Entries to the contest will be accepted in seven categories: breakfast, sandwich/wrap, snack, vegetables, starchy side, main course (entree) and sweet treat. The contest runs from now until 31 March at 11:59 p.m. Eastern time zone. For more information and contest rules, visit the ( ... ault2.aspx) Navy Nutrition webpage.

Army Also Suspends Tuition Assistance
Earlier last week the Marine Corps moved to halt tuition assistance for new enrollees in response to the sequestration. On Thursday, March 7, 2013, the Army announced they will also halt all tuition assistance enrollment. The Army sited the current fiscal challenges as the reason the Secretary of the Army approved the suspension of Tuition Assistance (TA) effective 1700 EST Friday, March 8, 2013. The suspension applies to all components and will remain effect until the fiscal situation matures.
( ... ssistance/) Visit the Military Advantage blog to see an excerpt of the Army Announcement.
( ... 21&type=ML) Let your elected officials and the DoD know how you feel about this decision.

VA Bill Introduced in Congress
Representative Jeff Miller (FL-01), Chairman of the U.S. House Committee on Veterans Affairs, and Ranking Member Mike Michaud (Maine-02) recently introduced the Putting Veterans Funding First Act of 2013. The bill would require Congress to fully fund the Department of Veterans Affairs' discretionary budget a year ahead of schedule, ensuring that all VA services will have timely, predictable funding in an era where continuing resolutions and threats of government shutdowns are all too frequent. Currently, Congress funds the medical care portion at the beginning of each fiscal year. Providing the remainder of the discretionary budget -- roughly $8 billion -- up front would make it easier for VA to plan for key investments and give Congress a greater level of oversight on multi-year funding proposals. The text of the House bill is available ( ... s/Veterans funding first.pdf) online.
For complete guides on veteran benefits, visit the ( Benefits Center.

Top Tax Tips -- Tax Center
With the start to the new year behind us, it is time to once again plan ahead for tax season. With the exception of those serving in combat zones or stationed outside the U.S, most military personnel and their families must file taxes by the traditional April 15 deadline. (;266811177 ... Read top tips in the tax center.

AF OTS Selection Results
A total of 247 men and women from across America were recently selected to attend the Air Force Officer Training School. Of those selected, 40 are enlisted members. A list of those selected is available on the ( U.S. Air Force website. For more information concerning OTS and the application process, active-duty members should contact their local education office; civilians should contact their nearest Air Force recruiter.
For more Air Force news, visit the ( News Center.

AF to Recognize Women's Contribution
The U.S. Air Force has begun a month-long recognition of women's contributions to our Air Force, putting a blue perspective to the 2013 National Women's Project theme of "women inspiring innovation through imagination. The 31-day series on the Air Force website at ( will showcase a profile each day of a woman or women's organization that made an impact over the more than seven decades of women's involvement with the Air Force and its predecessor, the Army Air Corps. The daily profiles will also be available on the Air Force Women's History Month webpage at (
For more on military history, visit the ( History Center.

AF Cancels TDY Orders, Airshows
As a result of sequestration taking effect on March 1, the Air Force is expected to absorb more than $12 billion in reductions this fiscal year. The Air Force Materiel Command will take actions immediately to implement the following: (1) prepare to implement a furlough of civilian employees of up to 22 days between April and September; (2) cancel all temporary duty travel unless directed by the AFMC commander or specifically approved in the Air Force guidance; (3) reduce weapon systems sustainment and testing; (4) implement major reductions in spending across all appropriations and programs; (5) cancel air shows, flyovers and demonstration; and (6) reduce non-mission critical education and training. As updated information becomes available, it will be posted on a special AFMC Sequestration website at (
To keep up with the latest sequestration news and how it affects the military, visit the ( Sequestration section on

Marines Sequester Tuition Assistance
The Department of the Navy released the following message outlining the immediate impact sequestration will have on Navy and Marine Corps operations and support activities. In addition to deferring ship maintenance, deployment cancellations and civilian furloughs, paragraph 3E of the message states that the Marine Corps will cease processing new tuition assistance requests. To date, this is the first benefit cut to be announced in response to the sequestration
Read more on the ( ... ssistance/) Military Advantage blog.
( ... 21&type=ML) Let your elected officials and the DoD know how you feel about this decision.

Valor Website Adds Recipients
The names of Medal of Honor recipients recognized for their battlefield valor before Sept. 11, 2001, now are listed on the Defense Department's valor website at ( Officials plan to complete a similar expansion of the Service Cross lists on the website by March 31, 2013. The website lists the name, rank and conflict of recipients of the most prestigious U.S. Military awards for valor: the Medal of Honor, Service Crosses and Silver Star Medals. For more information, visit the Military Awards for Valor--Top Three website at (
For more on military medals and awards, and how to replace them, visit the ( ... tions.html) Medals page.

Vintage Part of the Memphis Belle Comes Home
Airman Ralph Barrett was cleaning out his tool box at home when he found again the part that he had found by chance four decades earlier. The part turned out to be the Memphis Belle's engine primer knob from the co-pilot's side panel - something the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force had been searching for in their efforts to restore the aircraft. Barrett returned the lost knob to the Museum and encourages those who may also have original parts from the aircraft to give them to the Museum. For more information or to donate an item, e-mail the Restoration Division Chief at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force at ( or visit the Museum's website at ( For more information on the airplane, visit the ( ... sp?id=6740) Boeing B-17F Memphis Belle Fact Sheet.

Navy Creates PTSD App
The Office of Naval Research (ONR) is co-funding an affordable, hi-tech, solution for managing stress that could help prevent post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), potentially saving billions of dollars in associated medical costs. The Stress Resilience Training System (SRTS) is an iPad app training program that teaches Sailors and Marines to understand their stress responses and manage them by learning biofeedback techniques that work for their individual needs. The game-based system will undergo field testing at the Naval Center for Combat and Operational Stress Control (NCCOSC) in San Diego in April. To view a short video that explains the game-based system and shows it in action, visit (
For more news and reviews of military apps, visit the ( App section.

Remembering the Air Force's First Woman
Staff Sgt. Esther McGowin Blake has the distinction of being the "first woman in the Air Force." Blake originally enlisted in March, 1944 in the Army Air Forces, served one year and was discharged in November, 1945. She joined the Women's Army Corps when she found out her eldest son, Lt. Julius Blake, was reported missing, a B-17 Flying Fortress pilot shot down over Belgium. At the time, Blake said that her reason for joining the WACs was the hope of helping free a soldier from clerical work to fight, thus speeding the end of the war. She reenlisted in April 1947. She then enlisted in the first minute of the first hour of the first day regular Air Force duty was authorized for women on July 8, 1948. She remained active with the Air Force until 1954 when she separated and went to work with the civil service. For more information, read the ( ... =123138026) Air Force Enlisted Heritage article on Staff Sgt. Esther McGowin Blake.
For more on military history, visit the ( History Center.

Get a List of 2013 Military Benefits
The Benefit Calculator is designed to quickly and easily connect you with your benefit information based on your military service and status. Get a list of Federal Benefits, State Benefits, National Guard State Benefits, Special Military Discounts and more. ( ... Find Your Benefits Now.

A Loan Limits for High-Cost Counties
The VA loan guaranty program does not impose a maximum amount that an eligible veteran may borrow using a VA loan but limits the maximum guaranty amount to $417,000 for 2013. However, if you live in a high-cost county the maximum changes. ( ... Get a full chart to determine the VA's maximum guaranty in your county.
Next Step: ( ... Search for lenders ready to help you use your VA Loan Benefit

Military Moves to Cut Tuition Assistance
The Army, Marines, Air Force, and Coast Guard have announced they are suspending future tuition assistance program enrollments. To date, the Navy has not made an official announcement on the subject, but many expect that announcement soon. According to reports, Congress is planning to introduce legislation that would effectively block the services from suspending tuition assistance. The legislation may be introduced sometime this week.
( ... 21&type=ML) Let your elected officials and the DoD know how you feel about suspending TA.
( ... -dominoes/) Read the Military Advantage Blog for more details and future updates.

We Need Your Feedback - Your Opinion Counts
Your opinion counts! Do you make purchase decisions for the military or a federal agency? Do you influences those decisions? If so, we'd value your input on a quick survey. ( Please click this link.

AF Reserve Activates Cyber Ops Group
The Air Force Reserve Command (AFRC) activated the first cyberspace operations group in the Air Force March 1. The 960th Cyberspace Operations Group (CYOG) is charged with providing combat-ready forces with specialized expertise in the operation and defense of Air Force and Defense Department global information grids. There are currently about 800 people working in cyber throughout AFRC, and that number is growing as the command is hiring both TRs (traditional reservists) and ARTs (air reserve technicians). Reservists or active-duty Airmen who might be interested in a cyber career should visit ( for a listing of current ART positions available.
For more veteran job news, tips, and job postings, visit the ( Veteran Jobs Center.

Sequestration Affects DoD Schools, Commissaries
Civilian personnel at Department of Defense Education Activity (DODEA) schools and the Defense Commissary Agency will be affected by sequestration. Teachers and support personnel at DODEA schools will be subject to the furlough. DoD civilian personnel will be furloughed one day a week from April through the end of September, unless Congress intervenes. Also, 247 commissaries worldwide will be forced to close one additional day each week, and commissary workers will also be furloughed. The furloughs will probably begin at the end of April. For more information on furloughs, visit the ( ... e-Furlough) OPM website, the ( ... oughs.html) website, the ( DODEA website, and the ( ... _19_13.cfm) website.
To keep up with the latest sequestration news and how it affects the military, visit the ( Sequestration section on

Hertz Committed to Hiring Veterans
At Hertz we share the military's values of discipline, hard work, and dedication. Start your civilian career with a company that can provide endless opportunity and a career path that lets you choose where you want to be. Whether you are looking for an entry level position or a management role, Hertz can provide the opportunities to grow, learn, and be challenged as well as provide you with the tools to succeed. Come back and join a team that appreciates all that you have done for your country and is ready to help you use your skills to better your life. ( ... Find out more.

Museum Showcases Contributions
The exhibits at the Museum in the Women's Memorial at Arlington National Cemetery depict the past, present and future of military women on active duty, in the reserves, the National Guard and U.S. Public Health Service, in addition to the Coast Guard Auxiliary and Civil Air Patrol. A signature feature of the museum is the Register, a computerized database of information on about 3,500 former military and current active-duty women who voluntarily registered. Veterans, active-duty, National Guard and Reserve servicewomen are invited to register along with cadet nurses and service organization employees who served overseas during a war. For more information, visit the ( ... =123142337) Women in Military Service for America Memorial Fact Sheet and the Memorial's website at (
For more on military history, visit the ( History Center.

Navy Inns Save You Money
Servicemembers and DoD civilians can save money on official travel (i.e. permanent change of duty station, work-related) by staying at Navy Gateway Inns & Suites (NGIS). NGIS offers lodging services for individual and group temporary duty travelers, Department of Defense (DoD) civilians, Space Available (leisure) travelers, retirees, reservists and their sponsored guests. Average lodging rates range from $32-$77, with varying rates depending on location. Non-duty reservations may be made up to 30 days in advance for up to a seven night stay by calling 877-NAVY-BED (enter the first three letters of the base) or by making reservations at the ( DoD Lodging website. NGIS partners with Navy Lodge, and reservations can be made at 800-NAVY-INN (800-628-9466) or by visiting the Navy Lodge website at (

Get $50k SGLI Supplement From $4 a Month
If SGLI isn't enough for your family, get $50k additional coverage for as low as $4 a month. Our partners offer quality coverage for less. ( Get a free quote today.

2013 Military Pay Calculator
Calculate your military pay on to see how much you'll make at your next duty station, what your next promotion is worth, and find out how much your longevity increase will be. ( ... Calculate your gross monthly income by rank, location or duty.

Women in the Air Force
March is Women's History Month. In 1942, the U.S. Army Air Corps (USAAC) took the unheard-of step of forming and employing two women's aviation units. That same year, a unit of flight nurses who had not yet quite finished their training, were sent into North Africa on Christmas Day following the Allied invasion in November of that year. In mid-1942, an increased need for World War II combat pilots favored the use of experienced women pilots to fly aircraft on non-combat missions. Two women's aviation units were created to ease this need. These two units were merged into a single group, the Women Airforce Service Pilots (WASP) program in August 1943. For more information on the history of women in the Air Force, read ( the article on the Air Force website.
For more on military history, visit the ( History Center.
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