Christmas Inside A Plow Truck

The South Dakota National Guard's Rapid City Task Force 109 dispatched snow blowers, dozers, dump trucks and more than 80 Soldiers to assist the Department of Transportation with snow removal missions throughout the state. (Photo by the South Dakota National Guard) (Released)

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New Recruits Get A Leg Up

Iraqi air force recruits march in a pass in review parade during their graduation ceremony from the basic military training Top Off course at the Iraqi Air Force Training School Dec. 28, 2009, at Camp Taji, Iraq.

The staff incorporated discipline, marching and drill during the morning sessions and academics in the afternoon.

(U.S. Air Force photo/Master Sgt. Trish Bunting)

Side By Side

Guided-missile destroyers USS Fitzgerald and USS Lassen are moored at Fleet Activities Yokosuka, Japan, as crews from both ships enjoy a holiday stand-down, Dec. 28, 2009. Fitzgerald and Lassen are two of seven Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyers assigned to Destroyer Squadron 15. U.S. Navy photo by Petty Officer 2nd Class Byron C. Linder

Convoy Security

HELMAND PROVINCE, Afghanistan (Dec. 8, 2009) Construction Electrician 2nd Class Alicia Morgan, assigned to the Naval Mobile Construction Battalion (NMCB) 74 convoy security element, provides entry control point security at a road project site. NMCB-74 has been charged with improving key convoy routes in Helmand Province, Afghanistan. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Michael Lindsey/Released)

Injured Patient From Coalition Forces In Helmand Province

U.S. Air Force pararescuemen carry an injured patient after receiving him from coalition forces in the Helmand province of Afghanistan on Dec. 8, 2009. The pararescuemen will administer medical care while transiting to a medical facility. The airmen are assigned to the 66th Expeditionary Rescue Squadron and deployed to Camp Bastion, Afghanistan. DoD photo by Staff Sgt. Angelita Lawrence, U.S. Air Force. (Released)

Masow Meeting

Farah Province Gov. Rahool Amin meets with elders from Masow village on a U.S. Marine Corps outpost in the Pusht Rod district, Afghanistan, Dec. 15, 2009. U.S. Marines, Afghan soldiers and Italian Army Task Force South members provided security for the event. The provincial governor encouraged Masow residents to support their country’s government and the coalition to bring peace, security, and prosperity to their village and surrounding communities. U.S. Air Force photo by Master Sgt. Tracy

Marine Friend

U.S. Marine Corps Lance Cpl. Autayvia K. Mitchell interacts with local children during a patrol through Tajik Khar, Garmsir, Afghanistan, Dec. 18, 2009. Mitchell is assigned to the Female Engagement Team, Easy Company, 2nd Battalion, 2nd Marine Regiment. The FET works with Afghanistan women to determine medical and humanitarian assistance needs. U.S. Marine Corps photo by Lance Cpl. Dwight A. Henderson

Snow Sprint

U.S. soldiers run through the snow after exiting a UH-47 Chinook helicopter as another lands in Shaykh Ali district in Afghanistan's Parwan province, Dec. 19, 2009. The soldiers are assigned to Task Force Cyclone. U.S. Army photo by Spc. William Henry

Shot By Sniper, US Army Medic Treats Himself

Spc. Matthew Mortensen (center), of Olathe, Kan., a combat medic with 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 10th Mountain Division, shows high spirits with Pfc. Juan Ortega (left), of Belen, N.M., and Pfc. Jorge Cruz, of Waterbury, Conn., after he was shot in the shoulder by sniper fire while on a presence patrol in Baghdad, Dec. 10. Mortensen was sent back to the United States for rehabilitation and recuperation and anticipates returning to his platoon in Iraq in February. U.S. Army photo by Pfc. Ryan Nolan, 2nd BCT, 10th Mtn. Div.

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Counter-Piracy Operations

GULF OF ADEN (Dec. 27, 2009) The 5-inch/54-caliber (Mk 45) lightweight gun of the guided-missile cruiser USS Chosin (CG 65) is fired during a training exercise. Chosin is the flagship of CTF-151, a multinational task force established to conduct counter-piracy operations off the coast of Somalia. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communications Specialist 2nd Class Matthew A. Hepburn/Released)

Final Inspection

An Aghanistan man follows U.S. Navy Chief Petty Officer David Zahm, front, and U.S. Army Staff Sgt. Alex Shelton as they conduct a final inspection on a recently completed $54,000 foot bridge in the valley of Nurgal, Afghanistan, Dec. 26, 2009. Zahm is an engineer assigned to the Kunar Provincial Reconstruction team based in Asadabad, Afghanistan and Shelton, a PRT security forces member, is assigned to the Nevada National Guard's 1st Squadron, 221st Calvary Regiment. U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. Brian Boisvert

Observation Posts

U.S.Marines assigned to the 2nd Combat Engineer Battalion work into the night to finish construction on two observation posts in Helmand province, Afghanistan, Dec. 18. The posts were placed along roads areas where improvised explosive devices have been found to maintain surveillance. U.S.Marine Corps photo by Lance Cpl. Walter D. Marino


Spc. Courtney Brown delivers one of two tractors Task Force Marne Soldiers brought to farmers in Sununi, Iraq. Photo credit Pfc. Crystal M. O'Neal

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Surprise Telephone Call

AFGHANISTAN (Dec. 24, 2009) Petty Officer 3rd Class Luis Tun-Ake receives a surprise telephone call from President Barack Obama at Forward Operating Base Sharana, Afghanistan. Tunake is from Denver, Colorado and is serving with a Provincial Reconstruction Team in Paktika Province. U.S. Air Force Photo by Staff Sgt. Dallas Edwards (Released)

Georgia Air Guard Teams With Fighting 48th In Afghanistan

U.S. Air Force Capt. Roger M. Brooks IV, from Marietta, Ga., commander of a twelve-man Joint Terminal Attack Controllers team, takes coordinates at an Afghan Border Police observation post in the mountains of the Achin District of eastern Afghanistan’s Nangarhar province, Dec. 20, as an ABP tower guard provides over watch.

(U.S. Army Photo/Sgt. Tracy Smith)

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Christmas Day Replenishment

GULF OF ADEN (Dec. 25, 2009) The Military Sealift Command fleet replenishment oiler USNS Pecos (T-AO 198) sends food and supplies to the amphibious assault ship USS Bonhomme Richard (LHD 6) during a Christmas day connected replenishment-at-sea. Bonhomme Richard is the command platform for the Bonhomme Richard Amphibious Ready Group and is supporting maritime security operations in the U.S. 5th fleet area of responsibility. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Joseph Seavey/Released)

‘Taliban Hotel’ Destroyed


U.S Army Sgt. Joshua Smith (left), infantryman, and 1st Lt. Kevin Jewell, Jr., a platoon leader, both from the 1st Squadron, 40th Cavalry Regiment, 4th Brigade Combat Team, 25th Infantry Division, out of Fort Richardson, Alaska, clear and search the “Taliban Hotel,” a safehouse utilized by insurgent fighters infiltrating Afghanistan, Dec. 18.

The 1-40th Cav. Rgt. Soldiers partnered with the 707th Explosive Ordnance Disposal team, out of Fort Lewis, Wash., and Afghan National Security Forces to level the safehouse.

(U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt. Stephen J. Otero)

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Bagrams Busy Flightline

BAGRAM AIRFIELD, Afghanistan -- Airmen perform a final ammo inspection on an F-16 Fighting Falcon from the 79th Expeditionary Fighter Squadron Dec. 26, 2009. The F-16 provides a relatively low-cost, high-performance weapon system for the United States and allied nations. (U.S. Air Force photo/Senior Airman Felicia Juenke)

Kosina Rebuilding

An Iraqi man shuts down his heavy construction equipment to take a break, from cleaning up debris in a village, Kosina, Iraq, Dec. 10, 2009. The village was leveled by a vehicle born improvised explosive device in early August, and is currently being rebuilt. (U.S. Army photo by Pfc. Ali Hargis/Released)

Wasp Returns

NORFOLK (Dec. 22, 2009) Line handlers stand by as the amphibious assault ship USS Wasp (LHD 1) returns to Naval Station. Wasp completed a three-month deployment supporting Southern Partnership Station-Amphib in the Southern Command area of responsibility with Destroyer Squadron (DESRON) 40 and embarked Security Cooperation Marine Air-Ground Task Force. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist Third Class Brian Goodwin/Released)

Christmas Mail

ARABIAN SEA (Dec. 24, 2009) Sailors aboard the aircraft carrier USS Nimitz (CVN 68) sort through 34,400 pounds of mail delivered Christmas Eve. The Nimitz Carrier Strike Group is on a routine deployment to the region. Operations in the U.S. 5th Fleet area of operations are focused on reassuring regional partners of the United States commitment to security, which promotes stability and global prosperity. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class David Mercil/Released)

JSTARS Navigation

U.S. Air Force Capt. Ronald Alligood, a 7th Expeditionary Air Command and Control Squadron joint surveillance target attack radar system (JSTARS) navigator stationed at Robins Air Force Base, Ga., sets up an orbit course for JSTARS to fly at a location in southwest Asia on Dec. 18, 2009. Setting up an orbit course maximizes the radar coverage JSTARS will receive during this mission. JSTARS is a command and control platform that conducts ground surveillance to support attack operations and contributes to the disruption of enemy forces. DoD photo by Staff Sgt. Angelita Lawrence, U.S. Air Force. (Released)