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News Release


IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Release No: 128-04
February 26, 2004

DoD Announces Criteria for Global War on Terrorism Medals

The Defense Department announced today the final approval of the Global War on Terrorism Medals. These medals recognize the significant contributions members of the armed forces bring to bear in combating terrorism in all forms throughout the world -- for both current and future operations.

Presidential Executive Order 13289 previously authorized the medals, which come in expeditionary and service versions. The expeditionary medal is for those who deploy to designated combat areas, and the service medal is for those who serve in support of operations to combat terrorism.

Servicemembers authorized the Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal must have deployed overseas for service in the Global War on Terrorism operations on or after Sept. 11, 2001, and to a future date to be determined by the secretary of defense. Initial award of the expeditionary medal is limited to personnel deployed abroad in Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Iraqi Freedom. The area of eligibility encompasses the United States Central Command area (less the lower Horn of Africa); Middle East; eastern Turkey; Philippines; Diego Garcia; and all air spaces above the land and adjacent water areas.
Each combatant commander has the authority to approve award of the expeditionary medal for personnel deployed within their theater of operation. Under no circumstances are personnel in the United States eligible for the expeditionary medal.
Servicemembers must be assigned, attached or mobilized to a unit participating in designated operations for 30 consecutive days or 60 nonconsecutive days in the area of eligibility, or meet one of the following criteria:

  • Be engaged in actual combat against the enemy and under circumstances involving grave danger ofdeath or serious bodily injury from enemy action, regardless of time in the area of eligibility;

  • While participating in the designated operation, regardless of time, be killed, wounded or injured requiring medical evacuation from the area of eligibility; or

  • Be regularly assigned aircrew member flying sorties into, out of, within, or over the area of eligibility in direct support of Operations Enduring Freedom and/or Iraqi Freedom. Each day that one or more sorties are flown in accordance with these criteria shall count as one day toward the 30 or 60-day requirement.

Individuals authorized the Global War on Terrorism Service Medal must have participated in or served in support of Global War on Terrorism operations on or after Sept.11, 2001, and to a future date to be determined by the secretary of defense. Initial award of the service medal will be limited to airport security operations (from Sept. 27, 2001, until May 31, 2002) and to servicemembers who support Operations Enduring Freedom, Noble Eagle, and Iraqi Freedom. Each combatant commander has the authority to approve award of the service medal for units and personnel deployed to their theater of operations.

Servicemembers must be assigned, attached or mobilized to a unit participating in orservinginsupportof

designated operations for 30 consecutive days or 60 nonconsecutive days, or meetoneofthe followingcriteria:

  • Be engaged in actual combat against the enemy and under circumstances involving grave danger ofdeath or serious bodily injury from enemy action, regardless of time in the area of eligibility.

  • While participating in the designated operation, regardless of time, be killed, wounded or injuredrequiring medical evacuation from the area of eligibility.

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Battle Stars for the expeditionary and service medal, if warranted, may be applicable for personnel who were engaged in actual combat against the enemy and under circumstances involving grave danger of death or serious bodily injury from enemy action. Only a combatant commander can initiate a request for a battle star. The chairman, Joint Chiefs of Staff is the approving authority for battle stars.
Only one award of the expeditionary medal and service medal may be authorized for any individual; therefore, no service stars are prescribed. Personnel may receive both the expeditionary medal and service medal if they meet the requirements of both awards; however, the qualifying period of service used to establish eligibility for one award cannot be used to justify eligibility for the other.

The Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal will be positioned above the Global War on Terrorism Service Medal in precedence; both shall directly follow the Kosovo Campaign Medal.

Each military department will prescribe appropriate regulations for processing awarding and wearing of the medals and ribbons for their servicemembers, to include application procedures for veterans, retirees, and next-of-kin.

In consideration of new military roles in a post-Sept. 11th environment, the department developed these awards for military members to provide flexible and tangible recognition for those serving in the current war against terrorism, a war that spans the globe and includes many diverse campaigns.

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