Government Shutdown Takes NFL off American Forces Network


Air Force said it would attempt to reschedule as many games as it could once the shutdown was over.

With the federal government shutting down at midnight Saturday, there were a number of changes to the routine that men and women in the armed forces have grown accustomed to following.

Republicans branded the confrontation a "Schumer shutdown" and argued that Democrats were harming fellow Americans to protect "illegal immigrants".

Message to Chuck, this is not exactly a victor when it comes to public relations. Due to the way a government shutdown works, the TV network that carries National Football League playoff games for troops overseas will not operate until further notice.

As part of the shutdown, the American Forces Network, which allows US armed forces to watch American TV around the world, has been unavailable since a standoff over immigration policy caused the shutdown Friday night at midnight.

Both games were to be shown on the Armed Forces Network, but the shutdown took the network off the air.

The AFC championship game is at 3:05 pm between the New England Patriots and the Jacksonville Jaguars, while the Philadelphia Eagles take on the Minnesota Vikings in the city of brotherly love at 6:40 pm.

Both championship games will be available at United Service Organization (USO) facilities worldwide courtesy of a free NFL Game Pass provided by the league, according to Mark Maske of the Washington Post. The network provides eight television, 12 radio, and nine streaming Internet radio services to military audiences in 168 countries and US Navy ships at sea around the world.

All of AFN's social media channels displayed the same message on Saturday alerting viewers that services are unavailable due to the shutdown.

The American Forces Network, which provides entertainment and command information to American military overseas and was scheduled to telecast the AFC and NFC title games, stopped broadcasting Saturday in Europe, Stars and Stripes reported. "No NFL divisional championship games ... flawless timing ..."