Fort Leonard Wood

Chris McDaniel, St. Louis Public Radio

State Treasurer Clint Zweifel issued a report aiming to shore up the state’s military installations and contractors.

The report comes several months after Gov. Jay Nixon appointed Zweifel to head the Missouri Military Partnership, an initiative to bolster defense installations throughout the state. Missouri is home to several major military bases, including Whiteman Air Force Base in western Missouri and Fort Leonard Wood in mid-Missouri.

Mo. National Guard

Gov. Jay Nixonhas issued an executive order designed to help prevent military bases in Missouri from being closed or downsized.

The order creates a partnership between state and local officials and business leaders. The goal is for those groups to examine ways to keep and expand the nation's military presence in Missouri.

via Flickr/Michael R. Allen

Lambert-St. Louis International Airport is preparing for a surge in visitors as the busy travel period surrounding Christmas and New Year’s Day begins Friday.

Public Relations Manager Jeff Lea says the airport is expecting a 15 to 20 percent increase from normal passenger traffic at peak travel times over the next two weeks.

“The biggest travel day prior to Christmas for air travel is going to be Friday,” he said.

In addition, he adds that holiday travelers can expect to be flying with a significant number of men and women in uniform as well.

(NSA.gov)

Updated to correct date of dedication.

Fort Leonard Wood is dedicating a new building in honor of Missouri's first female solider killed by hostile fire.

The south-central Missouri Army base says a memorial plaque honoring Sgt. Amanda N. Pinson of St. Louis will be formally unveiled during a ribbon-cutting ceremony July 26 for the new Training Support Center.

Pinson was 21 in March 2006 when a mortar exploded in the central Iraq city of Tikrit, killing her and 22-year-old Spc. Carlos M. Gonzalez, of Middletown, N.Y. Both were based at Fort Campbell, Ky.

(Marshall Griffin/St. Louis Public Radio)

Three members of Missouri’s congressional delegation met at the State Capitol Wednesday to voice opposition to another round of base closings.

Although there are no scheduled base closings anywhere in the U.S. right now, the Obama Administration is pushing for another round of discussions that could begin as early as next year.  Congressman Todd Akin (R) from the St. Louis area says now’s not the time to close military facilities, especially in Missouri.

Durbin supports calls for repeal of Defense of Marriage Act

Some U.S Senators will be looking to repeal the Defense of Marriage Act this year.

The law prohibits federal recognition of same-sex marriages.

Ill. Democratic Senator Dick Durbin says he wants it repealed as it relates to federal benefits.

"I believe that we should have marriage equality in this county, that we should treat people fairly, that we should not discriminate against them in this circumstance," said Durbin.

The commanding general of Fort Leonard Wood says the Army is aggressively investigating sexual assault complaints.

Major General David Quantock met with reporters on Wednesday, one day after 17 current and former soldiers filed a federal class-action lawsuit accusing the Pentagon of failing to take their complaints of sexual abuse by other soldiers seriously.