Arrested soldier joined Army to learn how to kill black people, prosecutors say

In today's Federal Newscast: A now-discharged Ft. Bragg soldier, active on social media, is under arrest for alleged extremist activity. If you have social skil...

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  • The FBI has arrested a soldier stationed at Ft. Bragg, saying in court documents he had numerous social media accounts tied to extremist activity. Prosecutors said he used one of those accounts to proclaim he only joined the Army so he could learn how to kill black people. The specific criminal charges against Killian Ryan involve allegations that he lied on background investigation forms. The Army says he was discharged for “serious misconduct” late last month. (Federal News Network)
  • The Department of Homeland Security is going on a major hiring spree for people with certain social skills. DHS is launching a new initiative aimed at hiring hundreds of technologists to help improve customer experience. The agency is looking for people with product management and CX expertise.” No government experience is required. DHS wants to improve experiences for those using services ranging from air travel to immigration benefits. The agency has more than 1 billion interactions with the public every year. (Federal News Network)
  • The Marine Corps, like much of the military, is in need of service members. Now it says it’s willing to go to the negotiating table for them. The Marine Corps’ deputy commandant said the service is making recruiting and retention a top priority. To do that, the Corps is thinking about what kind of bargaining chips it can offer Marines to stay in the service. That may include being more flexible on assignments, career changes, bonuses and other benefits. The changes are part of the Marine Corps’ overall transformation. Since 2019, the service has been working to become more agile and to attract more talented employees. The goal is to become a force of the future that can stay ahead of near-peer competitors. (Federal News Network)
  • Earlier this year, the military eased some of its restrictions on people with HIV serving in the military. However, six Democratic senators think the Defense Department has not gone far enough. The lawmakers said DoD should allow people who are HIV positive, but with no detectable virus load, to come into the military. Current policy only allows for service members who have HIV and no detectable load to stay in the military. The request comes as the military is in need of recruits to meet its end strength goals.
  • Quantum computing is not here yet, but the National Security Agency wants the owners, operators and vendors of national security systems to be ready when it arrives. NSA released a suite of “post-quantum algorithms” that will eventually be requirements for national security systems, along with a series of deadlines for the transition. The timelines vary depending on implementation, though NSA does provide a final end date. The guidance said transition to the new algorithms should be completed by 2035. (Federal News Network)
  • The U.S. Forest Service is restarting its prescribed fire program. The practice has been on hold since May, when a prescribed burn in New Mexico got out of control and burned more than 500 square miles. The Forest Service said it still sees the burns as a critical tool to keep forest debris from building up to dangerous levels, but from now on, they’ll only be allowed under a new system of extra safeguards. (Federal News Network)
  • The population of women veterans reached about two million by fiscal 2021. As the numbers increased, so have the number of those women facing homelessness and housing insecurity. A recent report from the Government Accountability Office said female veterans need better support services. Feedback from women getting help from a program called, “Veterans Affairs’ Supportive Services for Veteran Families,” reported low scores for customer service. The program serves more than 11,000 women veterans every year.
  • Federal retirement claims went down in August. Over 1,000 fewer federal employees submitted retirement claims last month than in July. The monthly average processing time also decreased, down to 87 days from 92 in July. The Office of Personnel Management reported that its backlog of claims held steady at nearly 30,000, while its goal is 13,000. (Federal News Network)
  • The National Archives has a new plan for helping agencies preserve official text messages and other digital records. A draft bulletin explains how the Archives will expand its role-based “Capstone” approach to other types of electronic messages. Under Capstone, emails sent by senior officials at agencies are automatically scheduled for permanent transfer to the National Archives and Records Administration. NARA said that approach can also be used for texts, chat and other instant messages. The Archives is seeking feedback on the draft bulletin through September 30.
  • Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Army Gen. Mark Milley will host President Biden at an observance ceremony on Sunday morning, September 11 at the National 9/11 Pentagon Memorial in honor of the 184 people killed in the 2001 terrorist attack on the Pentagon. The ceremony, which is not open to the public, allows the family members of those lost in the terrorist attack to observe the memory of their loved ones.

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