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Stand-To: Procedure prior to first light to enhance unit security, a daily compendium of news, information, and context for Army leaders.

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STAND-TO! Edition: Monday, August 13 2012

Today's Focus:

The Legion of Merit

Senior Leaders are Saying

Ladies and gentlemen, we bless ourselves with the hope that everything is going to be OK in this country, but frankly, it doesn't mean a damn thing unless we're willing to fight for it. The fact that you're here tells me that you are willing to fight -- to fight for that dream that brought my parents to this country, to fight for a strong America, [for] the future, and to fight for, most importantly, a government of, by and for all people.

- Defense Secretary Leon E. Panetta, speaks to the Soldiers and Airmen based at Niagara Falls Air Reserve Station, Aug. 9.

Panetta: National Guard, Reserve key to defense strategy

What They're Saying

This isn't the Civil War. This isn't World War II. You're not charging up. You are running a small business with [about two hundred] people and you're trying to make sure everything is moving as it should be. That requires communication and using all the tools necessary, your intelligence tools, your fires networks, talking to your battalion commander, talking to your platoons that are lower than you, talking laterally to your fellow company commanders so that the battalion mission can move forward. But you've got to be in command and control, that's what command is.

- Capt. Christopher Combest, a system manager for the Mission Training Center from the Brigade Modernization Integration Division.

Soldiers begin command post training for NIE 13.1

A Culture of Engagement

Calendar

150 Years: The Battle of Gettysburg: The American Civil War

July 27- Aug. 12: London 2012 Olympics, visit Army.mil: U.S. Army Olympians site.

August

Antiterrorism Awareness Month

Aug 1: Army Day
Aug 26: Women's Equality Day Related site: Army.mil: Women in the Army
September

National Preparedness Month
National Hispanic Heritage Month
Suicide Prevention Month
Sept. 11: Patriots Day
Sept. 16 POW/MIA Recognition Day
Sept. 25: Gold Star Mothers Day

Today's Focus

The Legion of Merit

What is it?

When the U.S. Army created the Legion of Merit in 1942 to recognize meritorious service, it became the first American decoration awarded to citizens of other nations. It has since been presented to thousands of U.S. allies and partners from more than 30 countries. In addition to military leaders, kings, presidents and prime ministers are among those honored with the LOM.

What has the Army done?

The LOM is more than a medal. It is a means of honoring allied leaders for supporting the shared objectives of America's alliances, and a vehicle for strengthening partnerships and building coalitions. U.S. Army Europe has presented LOMs to hundreds of deserving leaders from across its 51-country area of responsibility to salute their achievements and create bonds of service that encourage further multinational engagement and pay dividends in theater security cooperation strategy, training and force interoperability. In recent months, for example, Austrian Army Chief of Staff Gen. Edmund Entacher Gen. Ants Laaneots, former commander of the Estonian Defence Forces and Poland's Land Forces commander Lt. Gen. Zbyigniew Glowienka and II Mechanized Corps commander Maj. Gen. Jerzy Biziweski, have earned the medal.

What continued efforts does the Army have planned for the future?

Adm. James Stavridis, commander of U.S. European Command and NATO Supreme Allied Commander Europe, has encouraged innovation in building partner capacity and theater cooperation efforts that support EUCOM's strategy of active security. USAREUR's presentations of the LOM and annual Legion of Merit Conference are innovative ways of supporting that goal. Each year for more than three decades the conference has brought together dozens of active and retired LOM recipients from across Europe, all highly regarded and influential in their respective nations -- to build relationships that promote shared objectives.

Why is this important to the Army?

Partnerships and alliances are vital to 21st-century forces that must take on hybrid, often nontraditional and non-state threats as part of multinational coalitions. In a speech to the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace in May, Gen. Martin E. Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said building partners in the North Atlantic alliance and others is a cornerstone of current U.S. defense strategy. USAREUR and U.S. Army engagement through innovations such as the Legion of Merit, along with state-of-the-art training and exercises, has helped assure peacetime and contingency access to resources vital to today's battles and built coalitions ready to fight and win side by side. As a result of USAREUR's engagement, today 90 percent of the forces in Afghanistan come from the European theater.

Resources:

U.S. Army Europe

U.S. European Command partnerships site

George C. Marshall European Center for Security Studies

Naval Postgraduate School Global Center for Security Cooperation

Institute of Heraldry Legion of Merit page

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