The push to improve employment prospects for veterans after they return home is paying off - about one in every three people hired by the federal government now is a military veteran - but it's also causing confusion and resentment in both civilians looking for the same jobs and those doing the hiring.
Starting in January, Defense Secretary Carter announced Thursday, all military jobs in all branches will be open and available to women. Carter said that his decision to open all jobs to women was shared by the secretaries of the Navy, Army and Air Force and the commander of the U.S. Special Operations Command. Only one military leader, Gen. Joseph Dunford - then the Marine Corps Commandant, now Chairman of the Joint Chiefs - recommended keeping some positions closed to women.
Major Lisa Jaster, an Army Reserve officer and West Point graduate became the third woman to graduate from the Army's famed Ranger School earlier this month. She, along with Capt. Kristen Griest and 1st Lt. Shaye Haver, are the only three women to graduate from the school from the class of 19 women that began back in April.
The commanding general of First Army, Lt. Gen. Michael Tucker, shared his thoughts on the training and readiness of the National Guard and Reserve, and his plan to improve their capabilities and mobilization readiness in an interview with ArmyTimes.com. One of his biggest gripes - 39 days of training a year are not enough for an "operational reserve" force!
The push for gender equality in all branches of the US military will likely mean that women will have to register for the draft, according to Army Secretary John McHugh. Currently just males 18-25 have to register for the Selective Services System, an independent government agency. Failure to register is a felony and can limit access to things like student loans and government jobs.
Despite stretched budgets across the military, the US Marine Corps Forces Reserve will continue to give Reserve Marines opportunities to participate in international deployments and large scale exercises, to help keep Reservists busy as the active-duty Corps begins to take back some missions that they passed off to the Reserve forces over the past 14 years.
According to Lt. Gen. Jeffrey Talley, chief of the Army Reserve and commanding general of Army Reserve Command, budget cuts have been taking a toll on both the readiness and modernization of the Army Reserve - even as the demand for Reserve soldiers and their unique capabilities is on the rise.
Two House Republicans are concerned that the Commission on the Future of the Army, group that is tasked by Congress to study the future of the US Army, National Guard, and Army Reserve, may not be functioning as it was intended.
France is awarding its highest honor, the Legion of Honor medal, to the three Americans and one Briton that subdued a heavily-armed passenger that was on their high-speed train that was heading from Amsterdam to Paris with 500 passengers.