CENTCOM Investigation of Deadly Pakistan Border Incident

U.S. Central Command on Monday released an unclassified version of the investigation report into the deadly Nov. 25-26 incident near Afghanistan’s border with Pakistan.

CENTCOM commander Marine Corps Gen. James R. Mattis directed the International Security Assistance Force to take a series of corrective actions after receiving the final report.

As a result of the investigation and report, Mattis directed ISAF Commander Marine Corps Gen. John R. Allen to implement the following actions as soon as possible:

  • Improve mutual trust among those working in the border areas.
  • Clarify authorities, responsibilities and standard operating procedures for command, control and communication in near-border operations and develop formal training exercises and drills.
  • Implement a program of full disclosure of all border area facilities and installations on both sides of the border, with systematic updates based on a common database and map.
  • Before conducting any operation, direct all future coalition units and formations contemplating near-border area operations to confirm all installations near the border and the planned objective.
  • To prevent friendly fire incidents, develop and share with the Pakistan military the common use of force-escalation measures such as show of force and other standard procedures.
  • Consider harmonizing ISAF and Operation Enduring Freedom rules of engagement to promote clarity and transparency.

The focus is to ease mistrust and miscommunication among those working in the Afghanistan-Pakistan border area which led to the deaths of 24 Pakistani soldiers.

“The strongest take-away from this incident,” Mattis said in a statement, “is the fundamental fact that we must improve border coordination, and this requires a foundational level of trust on both sides of the border.”

You can read the full Armed Forces Press Service article on the investigation report HERE.

Veterans, Military Charities: Where to Check Before You Give

CENTCOM Memorial Service September 11, 2011 at MacDill Air Force Base, Tampa, FL.

With 2012 fast approaching, you may be looking to make an end of the year donation to a non-profit organization that helps veterans, wounded warriors and military families. There are plenty of organizations out there helping, but Charity Navigator suggests before giving, check out the organization.

The website has a ranking of non-profit groups that Support Our Troops.

The free website rates each organization on its finances such as how much is spent on programs versus administration and fund-raising. The other areas rated are accountability and transparency. The information is clearly presented including graphs and information such as the salary of the CEO.

Here is a partial listing from Charity Navigator of some of the top rated organizations that help military families and veterans.

Fisher House Foundation 4 stars
The Navy SEAL Foundation 4 stars
Homes for Our Troops 4 stars
Special Operations Warrior Foundation 4 stars
Injured Marine Semper Fi Fund 4 stars
National Military Family Association 4 stars
Armed Services YMCA 4 stars
Puppies Behind Bars 4 stars
Hope For The Warriors® 4 stars
Operation Homefront 4 stars
Mercy Medical Airlift 4 stars
Veterans of Foreign Wars National Home for Children 4 stars
Freedom Alliance 4 stars
American Red Cross 4 stars
Southeastern Guide Dogs 4 stars
Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund 4 stars
Operation Homefront Southern California 4 stars
USO 4 stars
Admiral Nimitz Foundation 4 stars

The Charity Navigator website includes thousands of organizations and has a top 10 list of highly rated military and veterans charities with the most reviews.

There’s also an effective search engine so you can look up a charity and check out its rating, officers and finances before you give.

The American Institute of Philanthropy also released a report rating various veterans charities. Those rankings are available HERE.

And GuideStar is another website that rates non-profits, but only partial information is available unless you register.

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