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Saturday, Jul 30th

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US Navy to name ship after gay rights icon Harvey Milk

Harvey MilkThe United States navy will name a ship after gay rights icon Harvey Milk, the first openly gay elected official in California, according to a report by US Naval Institute (USNI) News.

LGBT activists in San Diego and San Francisco had campaigned for the navy to honor Milk and other LGBT individuals who have served in the armed forces despite being officially banned until 2011.

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Pentagon has ‘credible information’ to probe alleged US strikes on civilians

Military to probe Syria bombingThe US military says it has gathered enough material to launch an inquiry into civilian casualties, which included children, allegedly resulting from coalition airstrikes near the town of Manbij in Syria on July 19. Rights groups have slammed the deaths.

“Based on internal and external information that we have – things that we saw during the fight and things we saw in social media,” the Pentagon decided that “the information was credible enough to warrant a formal investigation,” spokesperson for the coalition against Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS/ISIL) Colonel Chris Garver told reporters on Wednesday.

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Extramarital affair, misuse of resources cost Army general his post

Gen David HaightMilitary officials have relieved a senior officer from a key post in Europe after determining he had misused government resources while having an extramarital affair, the Army has confirmed.

Army Maj. Gen. David Haight had been in charge of operations for U.S. European Command, the Pentagon’s principal command for confronting a resurgent Russia with the 28-nation NATO alliance.

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U.S. troops sent to South Sudan to evacuate embassy

Troops in South SudanAbout 40 U.S. military troops were rushed to Juba, South Sudan, to speed the evacuation of embassy personnel caught in resumed fighting, the U.S. State Department announced Wednesday.

The troops, from the U.S. Africa Command's Crisis Response Force, will protect the U.S. Embassy and help evacuate non-essential embassy staff, said Samantha Reho, spokeswoman of the U.S. Africa Command.

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U.S. to deploy 560 additional troops to Iraq in Islamic State fight

Ash CarterDuring a visit to Baghdad, U.S. Secretary of Defense Ashton Carter on Monday said the United States will deploy 560 additional troops to Iraq to assist Iraqi security forces in combating the Islamic State.

Carter's announcement follows the capture of the Qayyarah Air Base by Iraqi security forces on Saturday away from the control of the Islamic State, also known as ISIL, Daesh and ISIS. The air base, also known as Qayyarah Airfield West, is about 25 miles south of Mosul and 20 miles west of the town of Qayyarah.

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US veterans on Chilcot: we need our own Iraq war inquiry to avoid repeating mistakes

Bush and BlairFollowing the devastating British inquiry into the 2003 invasion of Iraq, American veterans and their families have warned that the US is liable to repeat the mistakes without a similarly comprehensive investigation.

The UK’s Chilcot inquiry was released on Wednesday, and while it is no secret in the US that the invasion was a failure, nothing so damning as the 2.6m-word British inquiry has been released by an independent US government body.

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Navy: SEAL Chris Kyle never earned a 2nd Silver Star

Chris Kyle: fewer awards than claimedThe Navy has concluded there is no evidence that famed Navy SEAL Chris Kyle received two of the valor awards he had claimed in his best-selling memoir, including a second Silver Star.

In an unusual move, the service has re-issued the DD-214 discharge paperwork to support the medals that the late Chief Special Warfare Operator (SEAL) Chris Kyle received during his 10-year Navy career, finding no records for two of six Bronze Stars with combat 'V' and the second Silver Star, two of which he had claimed in "American Sniper." However, the renowned SEAL sniper had earned the Silver Star and four Bronze Stars, the review confirmed.

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