The Army is adding a low-tech test back into basic training to…

The Army is adding a low-tech test back into basic training to prepare for new threats on the battlefield For the first time in three years, Army recruits will have to pass a marksmanship test during basic training using only the backup iron sights for the M16 rifles and M4 carbines, officials said. “The test consists of a 40-round engagement at multiple targets at ranges from 50 meters to 300 meters – sometimes one target at a time; sometimes multiple targets at a time – in multiple positions: kneeling, prone supported, and prone unsupported,” Wayne Marken, of the Army’s Leader Training Brigade, told Task & Purpose.

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2 Air Force wings to re-enact D-Day on social media

CHARLESTON, S.C. - D-Day will stand for “Digital Day” this year as two Air Force wings use social media Tuesday and Wednesday as if the turning point of World War II is happening in real time, 74 years after Allied troops stormed French beaches and began to sweep toward Germany.

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Russia faces UN criticism over role in downing of Malaysian jet

Russia faced harsh criticism at the United Nations Security Council on Tuesday for its role in the 2014 downing of a Malaysia Airlines passenger jet and for its continuing involvement in the conflict in eastern Ukraine and Crimea.

Days after an investigation by Australia and the Netherlands found that a Russian missile struck the plane carrying 298 people, many of them Dutch citizens, Stef Blok, the Netherlands’ minister of foreign affairs, said that Russia was continuing to “spread impossible alternative theories” about the crash and should acknowledge its role.

“No state has the right to remain silent,” Blok said. “Quite the contrary, it has a duty to cooperate constructively, to shed light on the truth, not to obscure it with continuous mist. I call on the Russian Federation to take its responsibility.”

Echoing comments made by President Vladimir Putin in St. Petersburg last week, Russia’s U.N. envoy, Vasily Nebenzya, said his country could only trust investigations in which it is a “fully fledged participant.”

Putin rejected accusations that the Russian military bears responsibility for the crash, despite findings that the plane was brought down by a Buk missile belonging to an anti-aircraft missile brigade of the Russian army based in the western city of Kursk. Russia backs separatists in eastern Ukraine and annexed Crimea in 2014.

“There are different versions of this tragedy, but no one takes them into account,” Putin told the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum on Friday.

Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte said his country and Australia, which also lost many of its citizens on the flight, would pursue Russia over its violation of international law, adding that he expects Moscow to “fully cooperate” with the investigation.

Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 was flying over eastern Ukraine en route to Kuala Lumpur on July 17, 2014, when it was shot down. The episode sparked Western sanctions on Russia for its support of the separatists. The results of the investigation are fueling tensions with Europe in the wake of a nerve-agent poisoning of a former Russian spy in England.

U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley said the U.S. supports Australia and the Netherlands in their findings and called on Russia to withdraw from Crimea.

“Until Russia ends its outrageous actions in Ukraine, the position of the United States will not waver,” she said. “U.S. sanctions related to the invasion of Crimea will continue.”

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(With assistance from Henry Meyer and Joost Akkermans.)

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© 2018 Bloomberg News

Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

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U.S.-led coalition hits Syrian army base: Hezbollah media unit

BEIRUT (Reuters) – Warplanes from the U.S.-led coalition targeted two Syrian army positions in the eastern Syrian desert, a military media unit run by Lebanon’s Hezbollah group said early on Thursday. The unit, a Damascus ally, said the strikes took …

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Man pleads guilty after drone crashes into Space Needle

Opponents of the U.S. program to target suspected Islamic militants with unmanned drones have announced a month-long series of protests planned for April. Meanwhile, a new National Center for Policy Analysis study calls for exploring the civilian, commercial and scientific applications of drones, while taking into account privacy concerns.

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800 more troops at Fort Carson means most soldiers since Vietnam War

Fort Carson will get more than 800 new troops in the coming months as the Army adds a brigade with expertise in training foreign militaries. The move will elevate troop numbers on Fort Carson above 25,000 – the most soldiers in Colorado Springs since the Vietnam War.

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