Posts Tagged ‘Medal of Military Valour’
- DefMin MacKay in Brussels for NATO Meeting (1) – He’s back from a defence ministers’ meeting with this to say about Libya: “…. “Since the crisis began in Libya, Canada has been actively engaged in responding to requests for evacuation and for humanitarian assistance,” said Minister MacKay. “Canada has also emphasized the importance of NATO planning, so the Alliance can stand ready to respond to humanitarian crises as required.” Minister MacKay informed Canada’s allies that Her Majesty’s Canadian Ship (HMCS) Charlottetown is joining the NATO Operation ACTIVE ENDEAVOUR, patrolling the Mediterranean Sea in response to the crisis in Libya. The ships of NATO and other like-minded nations will be monitoring shipping and providing a maritime presence during this time of ongoing instability in North Africa. “Canada is standing with our allies to monitor the current situation in North Africa and will keep working with our allies as the situation continues to develop,” said Minister MacKay. “The versatility of HMCS Charlottetown and her crew allows Canada to be ready at a moment’s notice to carry out humanitarian missions and whatever mandate the international community calls for.” ….”
- NATO’s read of what happens next in & around Libya: “NATO Defence Ministers …. agreed to increase the presence of NATO Maritime assets in the Central Mediterranean using ships from two of NATO’s Standing Maritime Groups. “It has been decided to increase the presence of NATO maritime assets in the Central Mediterranean under the command of Supreme Allied Commander Admiral Stavridis, “said the Secretary General, Anders Fogh Rasmussen, in a news conference following the meeting. “These ships will improve NATO’s situational awareness which is vital in the current circumstances and they will contribute to our surveillance and monitoring capability, including with regard to the arms embargo established by the UN Security Council Resolution 1970”. Admiral Stavridis will determine the number of ships required to provide this enhanced presence and it is expected that these ships, drawn from the Standing NATO Maritime Group and the Standing Mine Countermeasures Group, will begin moving to the region in the very near term. Defence Ministers also agreed to have more detailed planning options for humanitarian assistance and support to the arms embargo. “We have also directed NATO military authorities to develop, as a matter of urgency, detailed planning with regard to humanitarian assistance and , provided there is a further UN Security Council Resolution, more active measures to enforce the arms embargo”, the Secretary General highlighted. The topic of a possible no-fly zone over Libya was also discussed and it was agreed that further planning will be required in case NATO were to receive a clear UN mandate ….”
- DefMin MacKay in Brussels for NATO Meeting (2) – He also did a bit of work with the Americans there as well. “…. While in Brussels, Minister MacKay and U.S. Secretary of Defense Robert M. Gates also took the opportunity to sign a joint Statement of Principles for a Space Situational Awareness Partnership, building on the long history of close defence cooperation between the two countries ….” What are those principles? Here’s what they were when Australia signed on to the partnership in November of last year.
- NATO DefMins on Afghanistan: At the same NATO defence ministers’ meeting, the gang decided on which areas in Afghanistan can be protected by Afghan security forces. Here’s the NATO-speak version: “….Ministers took a crucial step towards the implementation of Transition – the process by which security responsibility for Afghanistan is gradually transferred to Afghan leadership. The recommendation will now be conveyed to the Afghan government to decide on the areas that will initiate transition. Transition will commence only once it has been approved by the Afghan government and announced by President Karzai. They endorsed the recommendations of the Joint Afghan NATO Inteqal (Transition) Board for the first areas to be transitioned to Afghan lead. In doing so, NATO has taken its own decision to move to Phase 4, or the Transition Phase of the operation, in those recommended areas ….” Here’s the easier MSM version: “NATO defence ministers on Friday endorsed a list of the first cities and provinces where Afghan police and soldiers will take control of security — a key element in the West’s exit strategy from the decade-old war. The areas include the provincial capitals of Lashkar Gah, Herat and Mazar-i-Sharif, as well as all of Bamiyan and Panshir provinces, and Kabul province except for the restive Surobi district. The list was provided by officials and diplomats who spoke on condition of anonymity due to the sensitivity of the issue ….”
- GG presents valour, other decorations (anonymously) to Canadian special forces troops for work in Afghanistan.
- Taliban Propaganda Watch: Protest alleged in Kandahar over civilian casualties, and other claimed attacks.
- F-35 Tug o’ War PM visits Ontario high-tech company to highlight jobs coming from F-35 buy (more), and companies in the biz “saluted” PM, saying F-35 is good news.
- Lasers, even the hand-held ones, are not a joke – they CAN damage peoples’ eyes. “A 26-year-old man accused of pointing a green laser at the Winnipeg police whirlybird says he didn’t realize it was dangerous. Sheldon Friesen had just wrapped up a shift as a cook early Thursday and noticed a helicopter circling near his West End street. He said he recently bought a laser pointer with a green beam for 99 cents on eBay and wanted to test it out. “Just to see the distance. You point it up into the sky and see the beam go forever. I don’t know how far forever is, so I see something in the sky that’s worth reflecting, well why not?” he said. Friesen got something of an answer — fast. From about 1,000 feet up in the sky, the police chopper crew quickly zeroed in on a suspect with a laser, while officers on the ground were dispatched to the 200-block of Toronto Street. “There was about three cars in about five minutes. They weren’t really impressed. They were trying to figure out why I did it,” Friesen said. “It was supposed to be for simple entertainment rather than having to cause someone danger like that.” ….” More on this from the Winnipeg Free Press here.
….to the latest batch of troops awarded military valour decorations. While all the actions described were intense, a battle on May 6, 2008 has led tothe largest number of valour awards this round:
Warrant Officer David George Shultz, S.M.V., C.D.
Star of Military Valour
On May 6, 2008, a Kandahar Provincial Reconstruction Team patrol was ambushed in the Zhari district of Afghanistan. At the first sign of contact, Warrant Officer Shultz formulated and executed a flanking manoeuvre to neutralize the insurgent position. After securing the area and providing a situational report, the patrol was attacked again. Regardless of the risks, Warrant Officer Shultz plunged into intense enemy fire to assess the situation, direct his soldiers and engage the enemy. He repeatedly re-entered the danger zone to extract casualties and execute the patrol’s fighting withdrawal. His leadership and courage inspired his soldiers and prevented further casualties.
Master Corporal Paul D. Rachynski, M.M.V.
Medal of Military Valour
On May 6, 2008, a Kandahar Provincial Reconstruction Team patrol was ambushed in the Zharey district of Afghanistan. After neutralizing the initial threat, Master Corporal Rachynski selflessly led both Canadian and Afghan soldiers through heavy insurgent fire to rejoin his besieged patrol. Master Corporal Rachynski’s determination and calm under fire allowed his patrol to evacuate the wounded and execute a fighting withdrawal with no further casualties.
Corporal Anthony J. R. Rotondi, M.M.V.
Medal of Military Valour
On May 6, 2008, a Kandahar Provincial Reconstruction Team patrol was ambushed in the Zharey district of Afghanistan. While exposed to intense enemy fire, Corporal Rotondi assisted two seriously injured fellow soldiers and relentlessly returned fire to allow first aid and casualty evacuation. Corporal Rotondi’s bravery and perseverance in the face of a determined enemy were inspirational to those around him and helped save the lives of fellow soldiers.