Fort Riley practices for disaster

Here are recent headlines about the military in Kansas:Fort Riley ¢ 1st Infantry Division( It’s a scary scenario, a terrorist attack at Fort Riley. But it’s a reality check for these soldiers and hospital crews to see if they can handle it. Soldiers hurt, screaming. It’s the chaotic aftermath of an attack. It’s pretend, but Fort Riley emergency officials aren’t joking about the possibility. “It could happen. It’s a real possibility.” They do this mock mass casualty exercise several times a year. “They train as realistically as possible,” said Lisa Medrano of Irwin Army Hospital. “This is exactly how it would be handled in a real situation.”(Washington Post) Muslim leaders sign ‘reconciliation’ pact: Sunni and Shiite local leaders in southwestern Baghdad signed on Thursday an agreement intended to halt sectarian violence and attacks on American and Iraqi troops on the condition that security forces limit their raids and offensive operations. The 12-point “reconciliation document between Muslims” was the result of two months of negotiations between U.S. soldiers and local power brokers in southwestern Baghdad, an area that has become an important base for Shiite militiamen but has also seen attacks by Sunni insurgents. The agreement, signed in a conference room inside the U.S.-protected Baghdad International Airport compound, was an example of what has become a widespread effort by the U.S. military to encourage local leaders to make peaceful commitments in the absence of momentum toward national reconciliation by Iraqi politicians. “The people in this room are leading the process for all of Baghdad,” said Lt. Col. Patrick Frank, commander of the 1st Infantry Division’s 1st Battalion, 28th Infantry Regiment, which operates in the area. “You are the hope for the entire city.”Kansas National Guard(Garden City Telegram) Local soldiers headed for Iraq: Today marks the beginning of about a year of work for some 430 soldiers with the Kansas Army National Guard. Soldiers with the 1st Battalion, 161st Field Artillery, including several from Garden City, left for Salina this morning for premobilization training, with an Iraq deployment date of early next year. Sgt. Hendrik Rijfkogel said about two dozen soldiers left from Garden City. Sgt. Alex DeLeon, 45, from Ulysses, stood with his family this morning in front of the Kansas National Guard Armory. They laughed and hugged. They prayed. “I wish I could have my uniform. I would go with you,” Robert DeLeon told his brother.