Is this true?

epartment of Defense Authorizes Service Stars on the Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal
DOD News 9 February 2015

The Department of Defense announced today that effective immediately, service members are authorized to wear
Service Stars on their Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medals (GWOT-EM) to represent deployments in
support of approved GWOT operations.

Undersecretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness Jessica Wright signed a memorandum authorizing the new
policy change retroactive to Sept. 11, 2001.

Only one GWOT-EM is awarded for each approved operation. For example, a service member who was awarded
the medal for an Operation Enduring Freedom deployment, and is subsequently authorized a second award for an
Operation Inherent Resolve deployment would wear a single Service Star on the GWOT-EM to denote both awards.

The five GWOT-EM approved operations are:

Operation Inclusive Dates
IRAQI FREEDOM (OIF) Mar 19, 2003 – Aug 31, 2010
NOMAD SHADOW (ONS) Nov 5, 2007 – TBD
NEW DAWN (OND) Sep 1, 2010 – Dec 31, 2011

This policy change does not adjust criteria for award of the Afghanistan Campaign Medal or the Iraq Campaign
Medal (ICM).

Full eligibility criteria for the GWOT-EM are contained in Department of Defense Manual 1348.33, Volume 2, Manual
of Military Decorations and Awards: DoD Service Awards – Campaign, Expeditionary, and Service Medals.
Additionally, each military department will prescribe procedures for service members’ requests for award of GWOT-
EM Service Stars.

The Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal is positioned above the Global War on Terrorism Service Medal
in precedence, and directly follows the Kosovo Campaign Medal.

See Also the list of associated areas of eligibility for each approved GWOT-EM operations and DoD Memorandum


If so why does it say OEF and OIF after 2005? According to HRC the GWOT-EM was no longer given to soldiers deploying to OEF and OIF effective 30 April 2005.

Yet if this new thing is real is states:

IRAQI FREEDOM (OIF) Mar 19, 2003 – Aug 31, 2010
NEW DAWN (OND) Sep 1, 2010 – Dec 31, 2011

Original Post
Yes, it is true. I received news about it from DoD e-mails and on the Army Times website

In the early days of OIF/OEF, personnel were given the GWOT-EM since there was no formally established Afghanistan and Iraq Campaign medals. When I left to Iraq in mid-2005 and re-deployed in 2006, I was awarded the Iraq Campaign Medal and I remember a MILPER message that went out stating that people could convert their GWOT-EM to a ACM/ICM award and to do that through their S1. Or vets who wanted to change their records. So if you received the GWOT-EM for Iraq and wanted an Iraq Medal instead, you will submit the paperwork to have it changed.

Remember, many who deployed to just Kuwait and other places outside of Afghanistan and Iraq were eligible for the GWOT-EM. This was happening to my battles who were going to Kuwait in 2011. An infantryman on a forum said he deployed to Cuba in support of OEF but he received the GWOT-EM since he did not set foot in Afghanistan.

It is awarded to any member of the U.S. military who has performed duty within the borders of Afghanistan (or its airspace) for a period of thirty consecutive days or sixty non-consecutive days.

Also, there were no service stars for the award until now. On my Afghanistan ribbon (as shown below), I have three campaign stars and my Iraq has two campaign stars.

Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal
The award replaces the Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal (GWOTEM) for service in Afghanistan and personnel who previously received the GWOTEM for Afghanistan service may elect to exchange the medal for the new Afghanistan Campaign Medal. Both medals may not be received for the same period of service in Afghanistan and any current Afghanistan service will only be recognized with the Afghanistan Campaign Medal.

Since the Afghanistan and Iraq Campaign Medals are no longer issued, you will now get a GWOT-EM if you go back to Iraq and Afghanistan. And if you already have the GWOT-EM, and deploy now to Iraq and Afghanistan you simply just add the service star on it. Understand?

I been to Afghanistan twice and earned the NATO medal for it but just once. You see its the lower ribbon on my rack but there is no star in it. The same was for the GWOT-EM. Now, there are stars for it for subsequent tours.
Originally posted by WIT:
I didnt know they stopped giving the ACM, when did that happen?
One of my points was that the table of time frames they using or the new GWOT-EM says even time after 2005 is elegible

Ok, I should not typed no longer issue since technically, it is still valid but with the end of Operation Enduring Freedom and the end of the combat mission in Afghanistan, it should cease just like the Iraq Campaign Medal stopped after the end of the combat mission in Iraq.

Last year, the Pentagon revived the GWOT Expeditionary Medal as a way to recognize service members deployed to Iraq as a part of Operation Inherent Resolve. The Iraq Campaign Medal was closed at the end of 2011 with the withdrawal of U.S. combat troops.

The GWOT Expeditionary Medal was established in 2003 and for years was used mainly to recognize troops who deployed overseas in support of operations in Iraq and Afghanistan but did not actually put boots on the ground in either country. That included pilots and sailors who provided support from surrounding land and sea areas.

Meanwhile, the Pentagon is revising regulations for recognizing troops serving in Afghanistan. Troops there will likely continue to be eligible for the Afghanistan Campaign Medal, but at the moment they're technically ineligible for that award because the Afghanistan mission this year is no longer officially part of Operation Enduring Freedom.

Operations in Afghanistan involving the roughly 10,000 U.S. troops who remain were recently renamed Operation Freedom's Sentinel. Pentagon personnel officials are finalizing the paperwork that will add Operation Freedom's Sentinel to the list of approved missions eligible for the Afghanistan Campaign Medal. <---Iraq Campaign medal is listed as inactive.

Status Inactive (31 December 2011)

And yes, I wrote there were Soldiers getting the GWOT-EM after 2005; because they served in areas such as Cuba and Kuwait.
Operation Inclusive Dates
IRAQI FREEDOM (OIF) Mar 19, 2003 – Aug 31, 2010
NOMAD SHADOW (ONS) Nov 5, 2007 – TBD
NEW DAWN (OND) Sep 1, 2010 – Dec 31, 2011

Im a bit confused on this.

my deployments are 07-08 15 months
06-06 4 months
04-05 12 months

so I currently have 1 GWTSM 1 GWTEM and ICM-CS x2

I was told that if you have a GWTEM you cannot get a ICM star for the same date. with this new change does that mean I should have 3 GWTEM and 3 ICM?

SSG Confused
Can you also add the months, from and to? Also, mention, if it was Iraq, Afghanistan, Kuwait, etc.

Also, forget the Service medal. You can get that when you even serve stateside after you been on active duty for some time.

If you received the GWTEM for your Iraq 04-05 deployment, you could of later switched it to an ICM. But I rather just remain with it, since you received it for the start of the conflict and got an ICM later.

Now, lets say, you go back to Iraq now (which the ICM is now ceased), then you will add a star to your current GWTEM for that deployment. Understand?

Also, just look at your ERB in the OS section and that tells you how many your rate.

I understand that, whats the point of the GWTEM for years that everyone got ICM for. seems pointless if you cannot get both now. I see GWTEM starting from the end of the ICMP but to have them awarded at the same time as the ICM? thats what i'm confused on.
Please read the links <--Created in 2005 then retroactive <--created in 2003

When the wars started in Iraq and Afghanistan, no official campaign medal was established. The GWOT-EM was created for recognition for those deployments before the ICM/ACM was officially approved by Congress.

They made the award retroactive for those people who wanted that recognition who was still serving or left the service. It was up to the servicemember if they wanted their GWOT-EM changed to a one of those campaign medals (obviously they had to meet the requirements for service in Iraq or Afghanistan). The GWTEM ribbon was/is still given to people who went to Kuwait, Qatar (remember the SOCCENT base in Qatar shown in Transformers) or served in Cuba under OEF. Years back, you could of earned both, if you were deployed to Kuwait and then got sent north to Iraq and Afghanistan for some months, then under that scenario, you will rate both and your ERB will have the OS breakdown to reflect that. I know a SFC that did.

It is very easy to understand. You either remain with your GWOT-EM or get it changed (you go with one or the other, you cannot have both). If you do get it changed, then if you go to Iraq now, it will be your first GWOT-EM medal. If you remained with your GWOT-EM, then you simply add a campaign star to it.

You rated and earned the GWOT-EM for your 2004-2005 service. And you could have gotten it to the ICM if you wanted to. I arrived to Iraq in August 2005 and if you read that wiki, it was officially distributed in June 2005. By your date, you already re-deployed. I received the ICM when I left Iraq in August 2006. I do not have a GWOT-EM and with the number of ribbons I have, I really do not want another lol. I just earned a Korea service medal recently and if the stars align, will retire without going back downrange.

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