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IAVA Daily News Brief – July 27, 2016

dnbA Navy SH-60 Seahawk helicopter recovers a member of the Japan Maritime Self Defense Force (JMSDF) Explosive Ordnance Disposal unit from Mutsu Bay off the coast of Japan during the 2JA 2016 Mine Countermeasures Exercise (2JA-16 MCMEX), July 20, 2016 | Military Times >>

Today’s Top Stories

Addressing the Veterans of Foreign Wars national convention in Charlotte, North Carolina, McDonald said veterans wait an average of five days for primary care, six days for specialty care and two for mental health services, but VA plans to reduce those further by the end of the year. | Military Times >>

“The VA scandals that have occurred are widespread and totally inexcusable,” Mr. Trump said to a cheering crowd, before laying out his broad plan to reform the department, including a promise to get personally involved to help individual veterans. | The Wall Street Journal >>

In a letter Tuesday to the secretary of Veterans Affairs, Florida Rep. Jeff Miller requested a briefing on all VA services received by Army reservist Micah Johnson, who shot and killed five Dallas cops and wounded nine other law enforcement officers in a July 7 attack on a peaceful downtown protest. | ABC News >>

Iraq and Afghanistan

Saad Emarati was one of the founders of the IS group’s Afghanistan-Pakistan branch, and led several attacks against the Taliban and the government. Afghan officials say he was one of about 120 suspected militants killed in an operation in Kot district. It comes days after a bomb attack in Kabul claimed by IS killed 80 people.| BBC >>

The U.S. military denied reports Monday that Islamic State militants had downed a warplane in Iraq’s Anbar province. The terrorist group also known as ISIS claimed it killed all U.S. crewmembers abroad the plane. | International Business Times >>

It said government forces had killed hundreds of insurgents in the past two months in assaults on Daesh strongholds in the eastern province of Nangarhar, which straddles the highway from Kabul to the Pakistani city of Peshawar. | Reuters >>

Military Affairs

The service on Tuesday said soldiers from the 1st Combat Aviation Brigade, 1st Infantry Division, at Fort Riley, Kansas, will head overseas sometime after this month and before October, along with aircraft including AH-64 Apache attack helicopters and UH-60 Black Hawk utility choppers. | Military Times >>

As with pilots, part of the Air Force’s plan to address the issue is to provide cash incentives to attract and retain maintainers. Earlier this year, the Air Force outlined an initial enlistment bonus plan to give brand-new maintenance and avionics airmen a cash boost. The service added 43 new Air Force Specialty Codes to the initial enlistment bonus list. | Air Force Times >>

A picture circulating online shows a black and white recruitment poster promoting joining the Navy as the ultimatePokémon-catching opportunity. “The US Navy has the ability to take you around the world, allow you to play Pokémon Go, and help you achieve the goal of becoming a Pokémon master!” | Quartz.com >>

#VetsRising

Small-business owners are the piston that drives the U.S. economy, experts say, and throughout the Metrocom, in Converse and other cities, many of those small businesses are owned and operated by veterans. | My San Antonio >>

Prior to joining Ratcliffe’s staff, Jordan served in Operation Iraqi Freedom III from 2006 to 2007. He then served as a Military Technician for the DoD-USARC from 2009 to 2016. He was also deployed in support of Task Force Rita and Task Force Katrina. He said he felt called to join the military following the 9/11 terrorist attacks. | TXK Today >>

“Years ago, we called this shell shock. … During World War I and II, and in Korea, our boys were transported by train, or boats, and they went with people they knew. The whole BG unit went at one time and served in (the) same place and did the same thing. When they came home, they had the same amount of time as downtime to settle, relax, coordinate with other buddies and peers, and talk back and forth. (It would be) maybe a couple weeks in transportation, instead of just hitting computer buttons (and redeploying),” Zulch said. | Sentinel-Tribune >>

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