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Monday, Sep 22nd

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US airman re-enlists after air force drops 'so help me God' requirement

US airman re-enlistsThe US air force has allowed an atheist airman to re-enlist after initially refusing to process the his paperwork, because he refused to sign an oath that contained the phrase “so help me God”.

The service announced the policy reversal after the American Humanist Association threatened to file suit by 19 September .

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Obama insists: No U.S. ground combat troops in Iraq

ObamaPresident Obama doubled down Wednesday on an increasingly questioned pledge: There will be no U.S. ground combat troops back in Iraq.

"I will not commit you, and the rest of our armed forces, to fighting another ground war in Iraq," Obama told troops at the U.S. Central Command in Tampa, Fla.

After a briefing with military leaders at CENTCOM, Obama said forces in Iraq and Syria must fight ground battles against the Islamic State, a jihadist group also known as ISIL and ISIS.

Obama also said the United States — which is conducting airstrikes in Iraq and planning them in Syria — will be joined by a coalition of other nations under threat by the Islamic State.

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US air force sergeant barred from re-enlisting unless he swears to God

Air Force oathThe US air force has told an atheist airman he must swear his re-enlistment oath to God or he will not be allowed to reenlist, according to the American Humanist.

The airman, who is stationed at Creech Air Force Base in Nevada, has not been identified. The service said he has until November to swear the oath required of all servicemembers, which concludes with the phrase “so help me God.”

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U.S. Air Force: Swear to God—or Get Out

Air Force AcademyIn a new, unexplained shift, the Air Force is compelling its troops to use the phrase ‘so help me God’ in their oaths or be discharged.

For years, allegations of religious intolerance have swirled around the U.S. Air Force, with officers accused both of pushing evangelical Christianity on the troops—and of hampering Christians’ practice.

Now, a new case threatens to reignite the firestorm. The Air Force has allegedly refused to allow a service member to reenlist, because he refused to use the phrase “so help me God” in his oath, the American Humanist Association asserts.

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U.S. military charter lands in Iran after mix-up

military charter lands in IranA U.S. military charter aircraft flying from Afghanistan to Dubai landed in Iran because of a misunderstanding over a flight plan, two U.S. officials confirmed Friday.

The plane was allowed to depart after spending several hours on the ground in southern Iran. The State Department later confirmed that it had landed in Dubai.

"We appreciate the efforts of all parties to help the passengers get safely to their destination," State Department spokeswoman Marie Harf said in a statement. She described the problem as a "bureaucratic issue" with the plane's flight plan.

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President Obama sending 350 troops to Baghdad

350 troops sent to BaghdadU.S. President Barack Obama authorized a request on Tuesday to send 350 more troops to Baghdad to protect diplomatic facilities and personnel.

In June, President Obama laid out a five-part plan on how the U.S. will deal with the situation in Iraq.

The White House said in a statement:  The President has made clear his commitment to doing whatever is required to provide the necessary security for U.S. personnel and facilities around the world.

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U.S. military personnel rescued after helicopter crash in Gulf of Aden

helico[pter crash gulf of adenAll 25 military personnel aboard a U.S. Marine helicopter that crashed into the Arabian Sea during a training exercise Monday are safe, a Navy spokesman said.

None of the 17 Marines or eight Navy sailors was seriously injured when the CH-53E Super Stallion hit the water while attempting to land on the USS Mesa Verde in the Gulf of Aden, near Djibouti.

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