| What a grand opening
Oasis Restaurant opens at bazaar
COB BASRA" To mark exactly three months of the Oasis Bazaar at Contingency Operating Base Basra being open, the Al Moosawi Group celebrated with a grand opening of the Oasis Restaurant, Dec 26
This opening was more than just a chance to try traditional Iraqi fare; it was a way of thanking the 34th Infantry Division for all their support over the months in making the bazaar a reality
The Oasis started as a brainstorming idea to provide a cultural experience for the American Soldiers and strengthen the Iraqi economy and local businesses By working with the Al Moosawi Group, the 34th Inf Div was able to move forward with the project, said Capt Andrew Nathan, Oasis liaison officer, with the 34th Inf Div out of Minneapolis Minn
"The whole idea is, it's a campaign where you are trying to build that positive relationship between the local nationals and us," said Nathan "It's bringing us together to have a better relationship not only for the present, but for the future"
The Basrah Provincial Reconstruction Team was already working with the Al Moosawi Group and suggested a partnership to Nathan, believing the group was the best choice to represent the Iraqi start-up and the Iraqi people to provide the cultural experience Nathan was looking for in a bazaar
By August, the project was approved by Maj Gen Richard Nash, commander of Multi-National Division South, allowing Nathan to proceed with the mission
The Al Moosawi Group funded the majority of the bazaar, said Nathan and provided most of the materials Very little of it was funded by the US
Most importantly, it provides a partnership to build on
Abdul Hussain Al Matar, the bazaar manager, described it as a cultural bridge
"It is not only a business, but more of a relationship," said Abdul Hussain "The Moosawi family decided this bazaar is a window to have cooperation with our friends, the US forces and local society We try to be a bridge between the two sides and we are successful"
The grand opening of the restaurant was one more step in strengthening the relationship, said Nash
"This restaurant opening is much more than simply a dining experience It is a solid example of our valued partnership and friendship advancing to a higher level," he said "Built upon the success of the Oasis Bazaar, it offers an opportunity for both US forces and local business"
Abdul Hussain agreed that the opening is about sharing more than just food He wants the bazaar to be a place for the Soldiers to relax and meet local residents
"[We want to] be sure that when he [the Soldier] comes here not to just shop, but to relax, because it's a good chance to meet local people, have a good time, and a good experience," said Abdul Hussain
Through a translator during his speech, Abdul Hussain stressed the importance of the role the bazaar plays
"This bazaar is a place where ideas and thoughts can converge and can be exchanged between two different cultures," he said
By Spc Francesca Stanchi
December 29, 2009
Article source: http://www.theredbulls.org/article00538
Camp Ripley strikes first before wildfire season
Posted: 2017-03-24 10:19 AM
CAMP RIPLEY, Minn. - Every spring Camp Ripley begins its annual controlled burn program to help reduce the risk of wildfire during training.
"Usually the burns are completed every spring before the summer annual training season begins," said Tim Notch, training area coordinator on Camp Ripley. "However, the warmer weather conditions provide a nice opportunity for preventative burns earlier this season."
As in years past Camp Ripley will conduct controlled burns on approximately 13,000 acres of the 53,000-acre military reservation. The burns are done in coordination with the staffs of the Camp Ripley Department of Public Works and the Camp Ripley Environmental Department along with support from the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources.
Minnesota Guardsman earns recognition through Leads 2 Enlistment program
Posted: 2017-03-23 09:46 AM
DULUTH, Minn. - Pfc. Trevor Nelson received the Minnesota Distinguished Recruiting Ribbon and a Minnesota Recruiting and Retention Battalion medallion for excellence from Command Sgt. Maj. Curtis Serbus, March 18, 2017, at the Duluth Armory. Nelson earned these awards as part of the online referral system, Leads 2 Enlistment for referring four friends who have joined the Minnesota National Guard.
"I talked to some buddies in my school about the Guard. They liked the benefits, so I put their info in the app and let my recruiter take over." said Nelson. "I thought it would be fun to serve with friends and help them figure out their path in life."
Nelson is currently a senior at Cloquet Senior High School and assigned to the Recruit Sustainment Program in Duluth. He attended basic training at Fort Benning in the summer of 2016 with follow-on training in the summer of 2017 to become an infantryman.
Litchfield and Local Veteran Honor Gen. John Vessey at Armory Open House
Posted: 2017-03-10 08:50 AM
LITCHFIELD, Minn. -Bruce Cottington, a Navy veteran of WWII and Korea, donated a bronze bust of Gen. John W. Vessey, Jr. to the Litchfield National Guard unit during the armory's public open house event March 4. Cottington, a Litchfield resident, commands the Minnesota Chapter of the Veterans of Underage Military Service. VUMS members enlisted in the military prior to the minimum age requirement in order to serve their country during WWII. Cottington received the bust from Vessey, a fellow VUMS member. Both enlisted in the military at the age of 16.
The highlight of the 334th Brigade Engineer Battalion open house was the unveiling of the sculpture. The unit was very supportive when Cottington proposed donating the sculpture. The Litchfield community has always been very supportive of the National Guard over the years, so the open house was a chance to say 'thanks' to their neighbors. "This was a great opportunity to honor Bruce and to honor Gen. Vessey," said B Co., 334th Brigade Engineer Battalion Commander, Capt. Seth Goreham. Bravo Company also has a tight relationship with the local American Legion and VFW. Many Litchfield citizens are former members of Bravo Company, or the unit's predecessors A Co, 682nd Engineer Battalion, and the 849th Mobility Augmentation Company.
Camp Ripley welcomes new command sergeant major
Posted: 2017-03-08 03:29 PM
CAMP RIPLEY, Minn. - The garrison command team of Camp Ripley, family, friends and colleagues from the Minnesota National Guard attended a Change of Responsibility ceremony between Command Sgt. Maj. Mike Worden and Command Sgt. Maj. Matt Erickson, March 5, 2017, at Camp Ripley.
The ceremony was an official "passing of the sword" from one senior noncommissioned officer to the next and assumption of the duties and responsibilities that go along with the position of Garrison Command Sergeant Major.
As with many military ceremonies those in attendance welcomed Erickson as a new member of the team and bid farewell, recognized and thanked Worden for his service.