WBEZ | Marines http://www.wbez.org/tags/marines Latest from WBEZ Chicago Public Radio en Morning Shift: How service members seek conscientious objector status http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift-tony-sarabia/2013-07-24/morning-shift-how-service-members-seek-conscientious <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//main-images/Marine-Flickr- United States Marine Corps Official Page.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>Now that the armed forces is voluntary enlistment, we may think that service members no longer seek conscientious objector status. That&#39;s not the case. We learn more about the application process for conscientious status.</p><script src="//storify.com/WBEZ/morning-shift-29.js?header=false"></script><noscript>[<a href="//storify.com/WBEZ/morning-shift-29" target="_blank">View the story "Morning Shift: How service members seek conscientious objector status " on Storify</a>]</noscript></p> Wed, 24 Jul 2013 07:54:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift-tony-sarabia/2013-07-24/morning-shift-how-service-members-seek-conscientious In Afghanistan, Flowers Call The Shots http://www.wbez.org/story/2011-05-13/afghanistan-flowers-call-shots-86496 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//0" alt="" /><p><p>For years the Sangin District in southern Afghanistan has been one of the deadliest areas of operation. For the British, who controlled the area until U.S. Marines replaced them last year, the focus was securing the road that ran along the Helmand River, on the edge of the lush farm fields.</p><p>The Marines have taken a different approach since then. They have pushed deep into the river valley from the desert to get at the heart of Taliban control and movement.</p><p>Poppy is a key crop here, and in a way, flowers fuel the fight: The Taliban earn hundreds of millions of dollars from the drug trade, which supplies 90% of the world's raw opium used for heroin. Locals rely on the work it generates. But the government wants to end poppy production. So the locals, who need the work, support insurgents who will protect it. It's a deeply ingrained catch-22.</p><p>There are rules, even in the drug trade: Since farmers need to work the fields, fighting between the Marines and the Taliban are almost non-existent during the harvest, which happens at the same time every year, in May. It is a function of local economics, not a truce. Fighting could resume at any given moment. And it will.</p><p>Just like every other year, there is a strange quiet overseas right now in Sangin. The Taliban have, more or less, unplugged its IEDs (improvised explosive devices) and is lying low. NPR photographer David Gilkey, who was just embedded with the Marines, says that a nearby market — typically bustling — has been completely empty. Everyone, he says, is at work in the lush, green fields.</p><p>This is good news for the Marines: A lull in fighting provides an opportunity for face-time with the Afghan people. It's the Marines' main mission, after all, to secure the local population.</p><p>"But there is a tepid trepidation to all of this," says Gilkey. Just last year, more than 25 Marines were killed — and more than 150 wounded — in the fighting that followed poppy season. IEDs could be plugged back in at any given moment. And the Marines must be ready.</p><p>It's quite the juxtaposition: This idyllic scene of children roaming fields of flowers, and the knowledge that somewhere out there, insurgents could be stuffing bombs below the soft, fertile soil. For the Marines, it's a game of wait-and-see. Wait and see when the fighting starts again. Wait and see if anything changes as a result of Osama bin Laden's death. Wait and see what the next season may hold. Copyright 2011 National Public Radio. To see more, visit <a href="http://www.npr.org/">http://www.npr.org/</a>.<img src="http://metrics.npr.org/b/ss/nprapidev/5/1305292947?&gn=In+Afghanistan%2C+Flowers+Call+The+Shots&ev=event2&ch=97635953&h1=Taliban,Afghanistan,Marines,Afghanistan+Dispatch,Daily+Picture+Show,The+Picture+Show,Photography,World,Home+Page+Top+Stories&c3=D%3Dgn&v3=D%3Dgn&c4=136213445&c7=1149&v7=D%3Dc7&c18=1149&v18=D%3Dc18&c19=20110513&v19=D%3Dc19&c20=1&v20=D%3Dc20&c31=126926031,125938638,125936966,125406348,125399052,97635953&v31=D%3Dc31&c45=MDA0OTc2MjAwMDEyNjk0NDE4OTI2NmUwNQ001"/></p></p> Fri, 13 May 2011 08:00:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/story/2011-05-13/afghanistan-flowers-call-shots-86496 Marines: "It Doesn't End The War For Us" http://www.wbez.org/story/2011-05-02/marines-it-doesnt-end-war-us-85944 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//npr_story/photo/2011-May/2011-05-02/afghanistan_7139837-copy_custom.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>The news of Osama bin Laden's killing was met with cautious excitement by many men from Bravo Company, 1st Battalion 5th Marines in Helmand River Valley — allegedly one of the most dangerous regions of Afghanistan.</p><p>The event is a "notch in the belt," one Marine told NPR photographer David Gilkey, who is embedded with the group. The reigning sentiment was that this is positive, but that the fight goes on:</p><p>Here's what some of the Bravo Company marines had to say about the killing of bin Laden:</p><p><blockquote></p><p>"We're still here in Afghanistan, Sangin is still very hostile, especially where we're at here, the enemy is still going to fight us, and we have to maintain our composure — not get complacent. Just because we took out the head honcho doesn't mean these guys are gonna throw up their arms and be done with it."</p><p>"There's still a lot of work that needs to get done here. It's a huge step in the right direction ... but we still need to finish our mission. ..."</p><p>"There's always gonna be insurgency, it's never gonna end. ... This fight's definitely gonna be a hard one to win, but I don't think it's impossible."</p><p>"What happens tomorrow? We're gonna just do the same thing. We're gonna wake up and keep doing what we're doing every single day until we're out of here. Because we've got a job here. We've got a mission to complete. And that's what we're gonna do."</p><p>"I think that everyone's gonna be real happy about the fact that it's one bad man that can't hurt anybody else, but ... It's one more day. ... It didn't end the war for us. ... I think everybody's just gotta stay focused on what they're doing."</p><p></blockquote> Copyright 2011 National Public Radio. To see more, visit <a href="http://www.npr.org/">http://www.npr.org/</a>.<img src="http://metrics.npr.org/b/ss/nprapidev/5/1304359948?&gn=Marines%3A+%22It+Doesn%27t+End+The+War+For+Us%22&ev=event2&ch=97635953&h1=Pakistan,Osama+bin+Laden,Afghanistan,Marines,Editor%27s+Pick,The+Picture+Show,World,Home+Page+Top+StHome+Pageories&c3=D%3Dgn&v3=D%3Dgn&c4=135920261&c7=1149&v7=D%3Dc7&c18=1149&v18=D%3Dc18&c19=20110502&v19=D%3Dc19&c20=1&v20=D%3Dc20&c31=128701661,126934618,125938638,125936966,125399149,97635953&v31=D%3Dc31&c45=MDA0OTc2MjAwMDEyNjk0NDE4OTI2NmUwNQ001"/></p></p> Mon, 02 May 2011 12:30:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/story/2011-05-02/marines-it-doesnt-end-war-us-85944