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Roger That: Air Force secretary vows to keep housing allowance for dual-military couples

News-Democrat

The Air Force is still fighting to stop Congress from cutting the Basic Allowance for Housing for dual-military couples, Secretary Deborah Lee James told airmen last week, according to Air Force Times.

“We have been very vocal with members and staff that we oppose this provision as we think it's unfair to certain airmen. We will keep up our efforts,” she posted on Facebook in answer to questions during a social media town hall. Stopping the proposal is one of her top priorities, she said.

The controversial proposal would limit most dual-military couples to a single housing allowance for both individuals, which could affect almost 80,000 service members, the Pentagon has said.

The proposal is currently in the Senate version of the National Defense Authorization Act, but not in the House version, as the two chambers try to compromise on a single version of the bill. Prominent military and civilian leaders – including President Obama – have come out against the proposal.

Determined to find more money to pay for the incoming F-35 Joint Strike Fighter, top Air Force officials are seriously considering plans to dump its F-16 fleet, a move that occurs amid stiff opposition in Congress to the Air Force’s latest attempts to kill the A-10 Warthog, according to the War Is Boring blog.

The cuts were necessary to free up funds for the incoming F-35 Joint Strike Fighter, the Air Force argued in a April 2015 memo to the House Armed Services Committee. More specifically, if the flying branch couldn’t retire A-10s at Hill Air Force Base in Utah, it would send the base’s Vipers to the boneyard instead.

After swift criticism from lawmakers, the Air Force recalled the memo, claiming it had not cleared the paper for release.

A new twist on an old military slogan is offering up a serious message to armed service members in the information age, revealing heightened concern about targeting by social media-savvy groups like ISIS, according to ABC News.

“Loose tweets destroy fleets” is the phrase offered up in a recent operational security notice from the U.S. Air Forces Central Command Public Affairs team. It’s a spin on the old phrase printed on propaganda posters by the U.S. military during World War II, “loose lips sink ships.”

Contact reporter Mike Fitzgerald at mfitzgerald@bnd.com or 618-239-2533.

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