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Chicago native Lt. Gen. Ronald Lewis removed from top Pentagon post

Lt. Genera; Ronald LewisAthree-star Army general from Chicago was removed from a top post at the Pentagon on Thursday amid misconduct allegations.

Lt. Gen. Ronald Lewis, who was profiled in a front-page story in the Tribune in January, will no longer be the senior military assistant to Defense Secretary Ash Carter, according to a Pentagon statement.


Starbucks offers free college for veteran spouses and children

StarbucksStarbucks announced it is expanding its free college tuition program to the children and spouses of its employees who have served in the military.

The company, which already offers tuition-free education to some part-time and full-time employees, extended its College Achievement Plan, which reimburses students who earn a bachelor's degree through Arizona State University's online program. The company also announced a "pay for service" benefit for active duty and reservists, which will cover up to 80 hours of pay each year for service obligations.


Decades after waging war overseas, veterans fight for a stable home

homeless veteransWhen he first showed up at a residential treatment facility in Sacramento, California, Roger Schultz’s life was a wreck. After serving as a cannoneer sergeant for five years in the early 1980s, three decades later, Schultz was living out of his truck, barely getting by.

In search of a comfortable bed and open to learning from the experiences of fellow veterans, he finally checked into a Veterans Resource Center (VRC) in July 2014.


Obama OKs sending commandos to 'assist' in Syria, senior official says

Special forces to SyriaPresident Barack Obama has approved the deployment of a small group of U.S. special operation forces to Syria, senior administration officials said Friday.

The move could see up to 50 American troops flown in to northern Syria, where they will help coordinate local ground forces in their fight against members of the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), sources told Al Jazeera.


U.S. soldier killed in special operations rescue mission in Iraq

US soldier killed in Kurdish rescue in IraqOne U.S. soldier was killed Thursday during a special operations hostage rescue mission in which 70 Kurdish hostages were freed in Iraq.

Two U.S. officials confirmed the soldier's death to CNN. American and Kurdish commandos raided an Islamic State outpost near Hawija in northern Iraq, The New York Times reported.

Prisoners were freed and several IS militants were captured.



Illegal lobbying practice got scant Pentagon attention

Illegal lobbying ignored by PentagonEarly this decade, Pentagon auditors found that a quarter of the defense contractors they examined were trying to get the federal government to pick up some of their lobbying costs — a violation of federal law that could cost taxpayers millions of dollars if the practice turned out to be widespread.  But there the inquiry stopped.

The Defense Department’s inspector general didn’t do any follow-up investigations to determine whether improper reimbursement requests had come from more companies beyond the six the initial audit had found, spokeswoman Bridget Serchak said. And the Pentagon largely kept the audit quiet — stamping it “for official use only” and releasing only a bare-bones summary that didn’t name any of the offending contractors.


US defense department eyes Colorado prisons to hold Guantánamo detainees

Colorado for Gito prisonersA team from the US Defense Department’s policy shop will spend three days this week in Colorado to determine if two prisons in the state might indefinitely hold dozens of Guantánamo detainees.

The latest round of planning in Barack Obama’s long-stalled initiative to close Guantánamo Bay currently involves inspecting a federal Supermax in Florence and a state penitentiary at Canon City to determine their eligibility for continuing the detention of men at Guantánamo whom the US will neither charge nor release.


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