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Thursday, Mar 30th

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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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Pentagon lifts ban on transgender troops

Transgender ban lifted in militaryDefense Secretary Ash Carter announced Thursday that the military will no longer discriminate against transgender troops, knocking down one of the last barriers to service based on sex.

The move, nearly a year in the making, came despite last-minute concerns were raised by top brass about how to deal with the medical, housing and uniform issues for troops who are transitioning to the other sex.

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Air Force has lost 100,000 inspector general records

Air Force has lost 100,000 recordsThe Air Force announced on Friday that it has lost thousands of records belonging to the service's inspector general due to a database crash.

"We estimate we've lost information for 100,000 cases dating back to 2004," Air Force spokeswoman Ann Stefanek told The Hill in an email.

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Olympian and Tuskegee Airman 'Marvelous Mal' buried at Arlington

Tuskeggee Airman buried at ArlingtonMalvin Greston Whitfield, a Tuskegee airman and three-time Olympic gold medalist who went by the moniker Marvelous Mal, was buried at Arlington National Cemetery on Wednesday.

Whitfield died in November at age 91. He joined the military in World War II and served as a tail gunner during bombing missions in the Korean War. He flew 27 missions in both wars.

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U.S. says China fighter made 'unsafe' intercept of spy plane

US spy plane A Chinese fighter jet carried out an "unsafe" intercept of a U.S. spy plane on routine patrol on Tuesday in international airspace over the East China Sea, the U.S. Pacific Command said, as China again demanded an end to U.S. surveillance flights.

The intercept involved two Chinese J-10 fighter planes and a U.S. Air Force RC-135 reconnaissance plane, U.S. Pacific Command said in a statement.

TVNL Comment:  Would the US intercept Chinese spy planes carrying out surveillance flights over its territory?  Just asking...

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FBI claimed Petraeus shared ‘top secret’ info with reporters

PetraeusThe investigation that led CIA Director David Petraeus to resign and ultimately plead guilty to a criminal charge of mishandling classified information also uncovered evidence that he discussed highly classified information with journalists, according to a court document obtained Tuesday by POLITICO.

Requesting a search warrant for Petraeus' Arlington, Virginia home in 2013, an FBI agent told a federal magistrate the agency had two audio recordings in which the retired four-star Army general spoke with reporters about matters that authorities believed were "top secret."

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Derogatory discharge papers blight lives of military who report sexual assault

Emily VorlandAmy Quinn loved serving in the US navy but after she reported a series of sexual assaults, she was forced out of the military at 22 with claims she had a personality disorder.

The mental health ruling by her superiors, which her current psychiatrist says is unfounded, ruined her hope of a second career in the police and has haunted her ever since.

“The military career I was passionate about was over and I was suddenly labeled a bad apple,” she said.

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