‘D at best’: Body fat experts grade the tape test

It’s a question many in uniform ask themselves every time some busybody is stretching that ugly yellow tape around them. And for good reason. Promotions are at stake. Careers are on the line. And as the military downsizes, those considered overweight are getting jettisoned by the services in increasing numbers. Figuring out who is too fat to fight, however, is easier said than done. Just because you weigh more than most troops doesn’t mean you’re necessarily fat. Or unfit — everyone knows that guy who looks chunky but can bench press a Mini Cooper, and outrun it, too. Read more about the tape test in this week’s Army Times, on sale now.

Hagel: Workplaces checked for ‘degrading’ images of women

Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel has ordered a close-up and comprehensive inspection of all military offices and workplaces worldwide to root out any “materials that create a degrading or offensive work environment.” The extraordinary searches will be similar to those the Air Force conducted last year and prompted officers to scour troops’ desks and cubicles in search of photos, calendars, magazines, screen-savers, computer files and other items that might be considered degrading toward women. The inspections will now target soldiers, sailors and Marines. They come amid heightened concern about sexual assault in the military and a new Defense Department report that suggests more than 70 troops every day experience some type of sexual assault. Find out more in the May 20 issue of Army Times.

Budget woes may force BRAC, oust up to 80,000 reservists

The Army has been forced to cut a lot of soldiers, training and services over the past year — and the coming year isn’t looking any better. The service is facing a variety of vulnerabilities. Involuntary separations are on the horizon. Money designated for training and procurement will be used to pay other bills, leaving readiness at “significant risk.” Post reductions are underway, and closures are likely. Read the leader testimony in the latest Army Times.

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