American Airlines is charging troops for their extra baggage, a practice that forces soldiers heading for a war zone in Iraq to try to get reimbursement from the military. One of the country's largest veterans groups is asking the aviation industry to drop the practice immediately.
The U.S. has about the same number of private contractors in Iraq as uniformed service members, a new congressional report says — a history-making ratio that presents problems in keeping track of all the workers and highlights the difficulties of supporting extended military operations without a larger force.
The presence of private security companies has caused some consternation in military circles because some private guards are earning up to $1,222 a day, compared to $160 to $190 earned in pay and benefits by a midgrade military member with similar skills.
TVNL Comment: War is a racket and this one is a doozie!
Job applicants who were rejected by the Justice Department because of improper political considerations will be urged to apply for open positions, Attorney General Michael B. Mukasey told an audience yesterday.
"Two wrongs do not make a right," Mukasey told the American Bar Association yesterday in New York. "The people hired in an improper way did not, themselves, do anything wrong. It therefore would be unfair -- and quite possibly illegal given their civil service protections -- to fire or reassign them without individual cause."
Mukasey explicitly ruled out criminal prosecution of former Justice Department employees who investigators say ran afoul of civil service laws, echoing congressional testimony last month by Inspector General Glenn A. Fine.
Also today, The Times came clean on having referred to Senator McCain as a Vietnam-era "fighter pilot" when in fact he was shot down while at the controls of an A-4 Skyhawk - technically an attack aircraft rather than a fighter.
The commander of a Navy air reconnaissance squadron that provides the president and the defense secretary the airborne ability to command the nation's nuclear weapons has been relieved of duty, the Navy said Tuesday.
Cmdr. Shawn Bentley was relieved of duty Monday by the Navy for loss of confidence in his ability to command, only three months after taking the job.
But a source close to the investigation told The Associated Press that Bentley's removal regarded an undisclosed personal matter and was not related to the squadron's missions or duties. The source spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to discuss the matter.
TVNL Comment: Could it be that he won't let Bush & Cheney nuke anyone like Iran?
Concerns about foreign spies and terrorists have prompted the Homeland Security Department to set up its own counterintelligence division.
The new directive comes as the federal government increases its counterspy efforts across all agencies and raises the awareness of intelligence vulnerabilities in the private industry as well as in protecting government secrets.
In the latest sign of the rising international political stakes in the Arctic, the top U.S. Coast Guard official has revealed a planned shift in American foreign policy from scientific research to "sovereignty" and "security presence" in Alaskan waters bordering Canadian and Russian territory.
"President Bush and Karl Rove are attempting to block voter registration of at least 200,000 and possibly as much as 400,000 veterans," said Paul Sullivan, president of Veterans for Common Sense, referring to injured former soldiers from the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq in various VA treatment facilities, veterans living in the VA's nursing homes, and homeless veterans living in VA shelters.
"While the hope for 2009 is a real one, the practical effect now is that the first voters who have been suppressed by the GOP in 2008 are the wounded warriors living in the government's own facilities,"
It seems as though hemp is not only an answer to our global health problems, both for people who don't have enough to eat and for people in the western world who are malnourished from eating the wrong foods, but also an answer to our environmental crisis.
Hemp seeds are perhaps the purest, most nutritionally dense food on our planet. They are rich in vitamins and minerals, and are also the only edible seeds with gamma-linolenic acid (GLA), which is an essential fatty acid. In fact, its essential fatty acid ratio is absolutely perfect for our bodies.
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