COVER STORYOperation Relax: 172nd uses parades, bonfires, games to keep stress downIraq rarely conjures images of parade floats or construction workers dancing to “Y.M.C.A.” But on Sunday nearly every soldier at Forward Operating Base Kalsu was lined up along a parade route to watch and cheer as costumed comrades threw lollypops and gyrated like a new generation of Village People. • Story

U.S. troops transitioning out of Iraq’s cities crowd onto same Baghdad baseSpc. Arron Vandeventer, a sniper, sat on a folding stool cleaning his weapon while other soldiers piled their duffle bags onto bunks around him. This is home now, a warehouse-type room crammed with 40 bunk beds at Forward Operating Base Shield, near Baghdad’s former Olympic grounds between the Tigris River and Sadr City. Vandeventer arrived Monday from Suleikh, a joint U.S.-Iraqi security station that Americans are vacating as part of the plan to pull back from Iraq’s cities by June 30. • Story

A jump from the truth?A man whose accounts of landing behind enemy lines as a paratrooper on D-Day earned him ample press attention may have fabricated them, according to a newspaper report and military records. Howard Manoian, 84, had in recent years described to several newspapers, including Stars and Stripes, his harrowing jumps into France and Holland as part of Company A, 1st Battalion, 505th Parachute Regiment, 82nd Airborne Division. But military records never listed him with that unit during World War II. • Story

South Koreans play at being U.S. military during popular ‘survival games’Dressed in U.S. military uniforms and carrying guns that look eerily like M-16s and M-240s, they run through the woods or dart behind man-made obstacles. The goal is simple: Shoot the enemy, and don’t get shot. • Story

‘Normal humans wouldn’t do that’It was the deadliest single battle for American soldiers since the U.S. invasion of Afghanistan. Nine soldiers from the 2nd Battalion, 503rd Infantry Regiment’s Chosen Company lost their lives on July 13, 2008, defending a vehicle patrol base in Wanat in eastern Afghanistan. The group of soldiers who took part is turning out to be among the most highly decorated in recent memory. • Story

Spouse CallsOne night, a couple of weeks before the end of school, my oldest son said, "Hey, mom, this is the last time you’ll have to pack three lunches." He said it like he was relieving me of a burden, instead of breaking my heart. Before you say it, yes, I know that all three of my children are perfectly capable of packing their own lunches. • This week's column • Terri Barnes' blog

About the U.S. editionFor the first time since the Civil War, Stars and Stripes is returning stateside. The U.S. edition, available to local newspapers as a supplement, features some of the best content from the week’s daily overseas editions ... the top military stories from several news bureaus within Stars and Stripes’ three theaters — Europe, Pacific and Middle East — as well as coverage of military issues from the Pentagon and Capitol Hill.

Are you interested in advertising in the U.S. edition of Stars and Stripes, or seeing it your local newspaper? Contact Dan Krause at, or call him at 202-761-0910.


Sign Up for Daily Headlines

Sign up to receive a daily email of today's top military news stories from Stars and Stripes and top news outlets from around the world.

Sign Up Now