Security Clearance for Service Members from FSM

Many Soldiers have been affected by this security clearance issue, myself included, so I figured it's important to inform those that are not tracking. If your MOS requires a security clearance, as of October 2007 you are required to become a US citizen to attain one and there is no other way around it. If you already have one, it is good for ten years and once it expires, you will be required to become a US citizen to get it renewed. Every Installation security offices should have a memorandum that covers this issue. As it stands right now there is no "Grandfather Law" that will save older Soldiers like me. I have a friend that works for Army Times and she was doing a research on this, but she just couldn't get to the bottom of it. She contacted many Generals and DOD employees all the way up to the pentagon and could not get a straight answer. This is very upsetting for me because I wanted to become a commissioned officer a long time ago and they wanted me to become a citizen, so I gave up that dream and now I got no other option but to become a US citizen to keep my job. So for you younger Soldiers, my advise to you is, if you are trying to make this a career, don't wait anylonger and apply for citizenship so you can have more options to go all the way up to the top of the food chain in the Military.

If you have any questions on this issue, just post them here and we will try to adress them to the best of our abilities. This a very serious issue today, many Micronesians can not even deploy, attend recruiting school or takepart in Military operations that requires a security clearance. The Department of Insullar Affair is aware of this issue but I don't think they can do anything about it besides encouraging you to become a US citizen and pursue your dreams in the Military.
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Comments

  • If micronesians can read..this should not be a problem.
  • *lol, got a smart mouth in every crowd! *heheh. 

    Bronson, the US Arm Forces opened its doors to non-citizens but it does not mean that they will take you in all the way. Homeland Security is the major reason behind this issue. You can not let others come and run your "house" unless you have some sort of assurance of their loyality. Fighting for a country is not enough, and it will never be enough!! You and your friend that works for Times will never get a str8t answer for this issue. There are things that only the top players know and the rest of us can only wonder and keep wondering why or why not. Stop fighting the system, you will only draw unwanted attention to yourself. Roll with it and follow their requirements if you do want to be a career soldier, who wants to take on an officer position. You failed to do your assignment before you signed up for the service. Did you also know that the ASVAB score that you recieve is not the score that they look at when one applies for an officer position? It is your GT score. You should have asked for all those info. before you even signed on that dotted line. Anyway, Rock Steady! Stop trying to fight the system, roll with it and follow directions or find another career. It is that SIMPLE! I left cuz I could not follow directions. *hehe

    Mahalo and God bless all Micros in the service.
  • MARSHALLESE SOLDIER RELUCTANTLY BECOMES U.S. CITIZEN
    Sergeant wanted to become officer in Army

    MAJURO, Marshall Islands (Yokwe, June 15, 2009) – Two Joint Task Force-Bravo Soldiers became U.S. citizens here June 10 in the first U.S. naturalization ceremony to take place in Central America.

    U.S. Army Staff Sgt. Damien Milne and U.S. Army Sgt. Carmen Villa raised their right hands and took the oath of citizenship reaffirming the oath they both took when they became Soldiers in the U.S. Army several years ago.

    Sergeant Milne, originally from the island of Majuro in the Marshall Islands, moved to Honolulu, Hawaii, at the age of 14 to attend high school. He said he knew from an early age that he always wanted to join the Army, but his parents insisted on a college education first.

    With a degree under his belt, Sergeant Milne did join the Army and would have been eligible to be an officer, except that he was not a U.S. citizen.

    But the choice to give up his home citizenship was not an easy one, he said.

    "I´m excited to finally do this," Sergeant Milne said before his official naturalization ceremony. "I should have done this a long time ago but I just wasn´t ready to give up my citizenship back home."

    Today, with two Iraq tours to his credit and more than seven years of Army service, the husband and father of four is a full-fledged U.S. citizen and eligible for a commission as a U.S. Army officer.

    "It still hasn´t fully sunk in yet," Sergeant Milne said after the ceremony. "But it feels good." Sergeant Villa came to the U.S. through a different path but one that also led her, ultimately, to the Army as well.

    When she was six years old, Sergeant Villa moved with her parents to the United States from Mexico. Her parents are U.S. citizens but Sergeant Villa said they didn´t automatically change her citizenship for her. They wanted to wait until she came of age and could make her own decision about her citizenship.

    As a high school student, Sergeant Villa met several military recruiters, but it was an Army NCO who caught her attention with his attentiveness and patience in answering her questions. When she told her parents about her decision to join the Army, she said they were very supportive.

    Sergeant Villa said she has long wanted to pursue U.S. citizenship but being a Soldier has always come first for her. As a young supply specialist working a security detail in Iraq, Sergeant Villa had the opportunity to attend a large U.S. citizenship ceremony there. She said she knew then that she really wanted to take the same oath herself but she was there to do a job, not to focus on herself.

    After completing her second tour in Iraq, Sergeant Villa volunteered for a tour here in Honduras with Joint Task Force-Bravo. It was upon her arrival here that she finally contacted Mr. Emigdio Martinez of the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services office in Tegucigalpa and began taking the necessary steps to become a U.S. citizen.

    "I´m excited and thrilled that it´s finally taking place," Sergeant Villa said before the ceremony.

    Joint Task Force-Bravo Commander U.S. Army Col. Richard Juergens is just as thrilled for his two Soldiers.

    "I am so proud to watch these two fine Soldiers become U.S. citizens," the commander said. "I´m thrilled for them and I´m personally happy that I get to be a part of it."

    Sergeant Milne is a helicopter electrician assigned to JTF-Bravo´s 1st Battalion, 228th Aviation Regiment. He works on the unit´s two types of helicopters, the UH-60 and HH-60 Blackhawk and the CH-47 Chinook.

    Sergeant Villa is a unit supply specialist also assigned to the 1-228th. She is responsible for issuing and maintaining supplies in support of the unit´s airborne mission.

    Joint Task Force-Bravo is U.S. Southern Command´s quick response force in the region. The unit provides humanitarian aid in response to natural disasters throughout Central America. It also conducts medical readiness missions throughout the region in order to enhance regional cooperation and stability.
  • True.. you'll have to change citizenship if you want to make the military a career. I was assigned to a NATO unit.. but coundnt deploy with them or go to the trainings held on other parts of Europe because there was an issue with sending me using a F.S.M Passport. I stayed put at the base and accomplished nothing. When i left the NATO unit.. i have no trainings did, no deployments.. nothing. I had to go through a lot to get my TS clearance. Very hard to be a non-U.S serving in a U.S military.
  • the issue of security clearance does not affect every military occupational specialty (MOS) at this point. it is MOS discriminative, specifically on those specialties in which execution of expected functions require or may require accessability to classified information/material. this approach has paramount significance not only to the protection of our armed forces, but also carries a greater meaning in the protection of the american people and the many armedless nations, including the fsm, the US government has promised protection against foreign aggressions. the selective requirement of security clearance make every sense. perhaps, the US gov't should've initiated this requirement years ago as this is a critical step toward mitigating external risks against the livelihood of this nation.

    the domino effect of this policy is multiplicious for us, fsm citizens, serving in the US armed forces. whether the effect is negative or positive may depend on the individual fsm servicemen/women.

    first, the policy forces us to make a career decision with the option of staying in (meaning become a naturalized US citizen) or exit the military to pursue other careers in the civilian labor markets. the decision may not be as tough to junior servicemen/women serving their initial contracts as compared to those with close to 10 to more than 10 years of service. for junior servicemen/women who are against naturalization of US citizenship, it would be smart to get out, use earned educational benefits to acquire a marketable skill for use either in the US or on our homeisland. i recommend a study of our private and gov't labor markets to determine what skill is needed in order to maximize investment of your educational funds.

    second, the policy will force some of our eligible military candidates into specialties with reduced marketable skills after service, assuming that one had no interest toward investing in professional development training post military service. this means that most of our local recruits will go into combat specialties which are specialties exposed to greater risks in the contempary operational environment.

    third, for those who chose to make military service a career and intendly refused to obtain US citizenship, the ability to progress in the promotional ladder may be limited due to absence of appropriate security clearance. a reasonable person would desire to progress to the top of the military ranking hierachy. this reality poses another challenging dilemma for us. do you want to pave way for possible promotion to the top or should you accept the restrictive promotional effect of this policy?

    without the security clearance, career servicemen and women will not be able to perform all expected functions and such inabilities/deficiencies will be reflected in evaluation reports deflating one's chances of promotion to the next grade.

    FYI, by end of next year, the army AG specialties which includes finance and administration will require security clearnace and thus US citizenship in order for one to be considered for award of any of these specialties. Non-citizens will be forced to reclassified into specialties without this requirement or initiate necessary action to meeting this requirement.

    while some may not like this policy, it is important to understand the reasons behind its creation, implementation, and ultimately its desired effect - protection of our people. keep in mind that the option to exit the military service is always available for those who may opt to exercise this right according to governing regulations.
  • I got a TS and I handle TS info and I am not a U.S citizen. Receiving and distributing classified/sensitive info. MOS is 74B. It was a long and exhausting process to get that TS clearance. I was at one time given the option to change my MOS because they dont think I can get a TS, but I got it.

    I swear, Im not a spy!
  • Small world- short time! Things have really changed- will continue to do so- in such a short time.

    I remember in Desert Storm, 1991, I was yanked out of my MOS and did an 88M's job, driving around the head of my S2/3 (intelligence and operation) section as well as our Group Commander. As such I was required to get a TS clearance as well. It took my intel officer about two months to find the loophole for me to get cleared.

    I did. And I was able to do my job for the duration of my stay in the desert.

    I never asked about the specifics (of my ability to obtain a TS) but I did my job: processing, planning and implementing classified that an "FSMer" would otherwise not have been able to.

    It's amazing how so suddenly things have become "difficulty." But I guess that's just how the high speed world operates now.

    Anyhow, happy posting!
  • Ready?,

    Seriously,how do you get security clearance if you are not a US citizen?.I'm a civilan(FSM citizen) working for Dept of defense(DOD) contractor in Cali.I was release from $80,000.00 dollar job with lockheed Martin beacsue i can't get top secret clearance.let me know how you did it.
  • ooops.typo error.i mean by "civilian"
  • Danokin...

    Somehow, I got my clearance while I was still in basic training. They thought it was a mistake. They looked at the location I was recruited and assumed I was U.S citizen or a U.S National... They said for me to reclass for a different MOS and to redo my clearance. I went to JAG with a a civilian Jamaican co-worker that helped me get a civilian Investigator since JAG is also saying I must reclass and redo my clearance. This investigator flew and met up with every single relative I have in the states. They Contacted some of my relatives back home. Civilian investigator came back and was able to provide proper documents that got me my clearance. I guess to get a TS.. dont go to JAG to get help.. try and get it from the civilians. Thats how i was able to get mine.
  • Ready?

    According to what I read on the military site at About.com, a foreign national is not allowed to possess a security clearance of any type. Only a US citizen is allowed to possess a security clearance. You're definitely lucky.
  • yea bron,,rite now i have issues with security clearance,,am a 13D station here in ft.sill..
  • drive_on

    Sorry to here that, but here are some options; become a citizen or reclass, it all depends on what you wanna do, complete your term and get out or make a career out of this. Whatever you decide I wish you the best of luck. Keep in mind, if you decide to just reclass, your options will be very limited, you won't be able to deploy and as a NCO you will be required to read OPORDERS, maps and so forth; which requires some level of classifications. Here is my advice, don't wait too long 'cause it might impact career progression, and do not let them try to tag you with an interim like they did me through out my whole career. If you are worried about giving up your micronesian citizenship, I advice not to, until you're ready to go back to the islands then you worry about it, that is if anybody asks, which is not likely. If you have any questions on the proceedings just email me; I am fighting the same battle and its almost over so everything is still fresh. Here is my email bronson007@islandersdomain.com

    Good luck and God bless
  • generally speaking all ncos piggyback on their Chain of Command(a succession of commanders starting at the CO to the president of the United States) security clearance and authority. The last I check(1999), all FAS troops are exempt from the 7 year window allowed to none citizens. Ok, that was like 10 yrs ago when I bumped into you at Camp Casey, South Korea :).
  • ....
  • I dont know why it is hard to get one but rest assure you that you are not the only one running into this situation. i do have been try to get one or actually let me re-phrase that,at first i went to shcool for my MOS and it turned out during my training for my MOS, i was told that i have to reclass to another MOS that does not require a TS clearance. I went back and my commanding officer told me the situation and told me that he will look into it. Now the next day i was going to start the paper work for the reclassffication and they got a call,saying that i am elegible to hold that MOS . Now 6 years later i was told that in order to keep my current MOS,i have to become a citizen.I started the paper work as soon as possible and 3 months later i got my citizenship.Kinda hard to give up your citizenship but i tought about it long and hard but come to realize that i made the right choice. I think in the near future i will be able to apply for a better future. Like you said it is a personal choice does not affect our loyalty to our mother land. i believe we will continue to hold a bright and better future with the US for god knows how long. God Bless America and the FSM.
  • Okay yeah....I'm currently having the same problem and have a question too. My question to whomever can anwer it is...Where to you go to start this citizenship? I am in the army for about 19 months so far and currently in the E4 rank. In a few months I will get my five and my noncitizenship status has risen up few questions. If I'm not mistaken, If you're a Kosraean citizen you can have 2 citizenship...a US citizenship and a Kosraeanship. The reason why I'm saying this is to encourage our fellow Islanders in the army not feel betrayed just by applying to other citizenship. I am pretty positive your home Island would never kick your ass out of your mother island just because you have a different citizenship in hand. lol. So yeah I am the only one in my platoon here in Irag who doesn't have a security clearance and I want to know where to start this process of getting my paper work started for my citizenship.
  • i think chuukies in the militay are sexy.
  • hey, i'm chuukese and i'll take that as a compliment.

    break.

    sialat,
    If you are from fsm and in the military, you're not automatically a us citizen. you need to apply and go thru all the process.
    i just became one last year. good luck.
  • Bron, you are absolutely right. i was a recruiter and i was suprised when I saw the AR has changed. For my fellow FSMers AR 601-201 covers the security clearance issue for non-US Citizen. Like my friend Bron stated, we have two options, RECLASS or NEUTRALIZED...its free so why not..
  • blackjack... the correct term is naturalized...not neutralized...

    sialat...talk to your nco about it. he should be able to direct you to the unit rep who can answer questions you have regarding the citizenship process. by the way alokoa ramsey says aloha from hawaii... good luck out there. be safe. we're all praying for the safe return of all soldiers in the theater.
  • god bless your service!!!

    I am about to take the Oath in few weeks to become a citizen. What will happen to my status as a Micronesian citizen and the properties in my name on the Island?
  • you have to ask yourself why it's good enough to join the military as a non citizen, yet to get a security clearance, you need to become a US citizen. I mean, it becomes very very personal at this point. As Micronesians, we represent a proud people that hail from the pacific region. That is unique in itself. That is your heritage. Now, becoming US citizen, you will be one among millions who are non white US citizens. For job security ( in the military and elsewhere ) that may be a necessity. But you have to really think in through. Do it for the right reasons, ones that you can be comfortable with for the rest of your life. I personally think that becoming a soldier and having sworn to " protect the constitution against all enemies, foreign and domestic" should be enough to get you a clearance. I mean your basically swearing to die in the line of duty to protect a constitution that will not protect you as a non citizen. You're an expendable " brown body " whose fulfilling perhaps the most honorable kind of work there is, in essence you're being told that you're not good enough as a non US citizen to get a clearance. Like I said earlier, this decision comes down to each individual. The answers to the rights and wrongs within the process can only be provided by you, as you are the one who will be affected. Good luck!
  • sialat,

    Get with your S1 NCOIC or better yet go through your squad leader and platoon daddy to obtain a citizenship packet from the S1. You may have to fly in to Bagdad for the naturalization ceremony once your packet gets approved but that'll be like a mini vacation for you if you're in the suck. It may be faster for you being that you're an FAS citizen but don't take my word for it. That's just my opinion. It took about 3 months for each of my two soldiers to get theirs approved.
    I'd highly recommend seeing your S2 immediately upon acquiring your citizenship to put in for a clearance or an interim at the least. Let me know if you have any additional questions k.
  • Hey guys and ladies,

    I faced the same situation way back in 1989. It was my third year in the USAF, got a CDC Pacesetter award, was enrolling in Officer Training School thru the Bootstrap program but got stuck because of my non-citizenship status. In my AFSC (Air Force equivalent to MOS), to even re-up you had to be a US Citizen because of sensitivity issues, TS, S, etc. Also, to even become a full-fledged NCO (which begins at E-4) you had to be a US citizen.

    Well, I went down to the US Immigration office in the State where I was stationed and found out that I couldn't become a US citizen because our own government, the FSM, did not allow its citizens to relinquish their citizenships.

    So I wrote a letter to our leaders at that time and there just was no way or procedure in place that could allow that. Remember, this was in 1989, a few years after the creation of the FSM and as such our immigration laws were not fully established or advanced enough that allowed us this option.

    So, to make a long story short, I got out because there was no way I could become naturalized. I got the full shaft of the deal because of situations beyond my control.

    So for you newbies serving now in the Armed Forces, talk to you 1st Sergeants, your Base Counselors (they had 'em in the Air Force, don't know the equivalent in the Army) for they are there for these purposes.

    Good luck and choose wisely!
  • I got one before becoming a naturalized. I got it when stationed in Germany in preparation of OIF I in 2003. I am ready to leave the military. Options for employment on the market is limited if one is not a citizen...I am glad I went that route..
  • ...not only that you have limited options for employment. World News telling us that the G.I's are having problem psychologically ever before. Some acquired cancer from all the chemicals, dust, and human blood, mostly the Marines and the Armies. Have you call the funeral home yet..."?
  • sialat,

    The "jar heads" had to attend a class on how to become a US citizen first, then they pass out the forms. You start with your Co. Gunny, 1st Sgt, Sgt Maj, then your Batallion/Regiment CO. You'll need your SRB or copy those pertinent personal info, go visit the CID then turn it in. They'll call you to confirm and verify certain things. Once your application is complete they'll call you and set up an "interview" date. It's easier to do it while you're still in the service because former Prez Bush signed an executive order which cuts down on the waiting period.

    I failed to meet the requirements on becoming an officer because I'm not a US citizen. There's no way around it.

    On getting a security clearance; I know in the Corps a US citizen is a must but I'm talking Pre OIF/OEF.
  • i feel for all of you as i had gone down the same route myself... but here is the thing. Have we (FAS) ever turn our back on U.S. who is being leaking out TS info abt Military and Pentagon? Last i know, it was a top level military who a U.S Citizen ... buttom line, its an individual choice: U.S Citizen or Not... I think our leaders should also look into this as well! thatz my 2cents.
  • Not sure why FSM citizens are having problems obtaining a security clearance(SC), propably not a TS but a secret, there should be no reason why. We are considered as far as for recruitment US citizens. If you've filled out a SC form, you will notice that the code FM (FSM for short) is considered a state. Each one of us at the point of enlisting was put under a background investigation and eligibility for a SC. Since we're all still in service, eligibility still stands, all you need to do is ensure to update your investigation upon entering your half way point(that is, if your a careerist) 10 years of service. I for one was preping for deployment and was found inelegible because my interm SC was expired. I have re-newed my secret clearance while keeping my FSM citizenship. If your having problems, which you should not, call or visit your security manager(your S-2 should point you to the right direction). Go straight to the source rather then routing it up your chain of command, for they too are mis-understood. Semper Fi!!
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