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Obama: Signs Taliban may want a political settlement

FORT DRUM, New York — US President Barack Obama said Thursday there were signs that the Taliban may be interested in a political settlement critical to stabilizing Afghanistan after US troops come home. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton meanwhile defended what she said was Washington’s “very preliminary outreach” to the…

U.S. ready to arm Philippines amid China tension

WASHINGTON — The United States said Thursday it was ready to provide hardware to modernize the military of the Philippines, which vowed to “stand up to aggressive action” amid rising tension at sea with China. Foreign Secretary Albert del Rosario, on a visit to Washington, said the Philippines hoped to…

Petraeus won’t resign over Afghan troop withdrawal plan

WASHINGTON — The US commander in the Afghan war said Thursday he disgreed with President Barack Obama’s decision for a troop drawdown in Afghanistan but ruled out resigning in protest. General David Petraeus, the outgoing commander of the NATO-led coalition in Afghanistan, said he favored a more modest timeline for…

Group: U.S. anti-Internet piracy campaign violates First Amendment

The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) urged a federal court to return two domain names seized as part of the U.S. government’s “Operation in Our Sites,” an ongoing campaign against websites that illegally provide access to copyrighted material. “This misguided intellectual property enforcement effort is causing serious collateral damage to free…

New York expected to vote on same sex marriage bill

NEW YORK — The New York senate prepared to vote on a gay marriage law Thursday, after amending the state assembly-approved bill at the request of Republican officials, said a legislative source. If the vote takes place, it will happen at about the the same time that President Barack Obama…

Panetta to formally end ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’ policy

WASHINGTON — A formal end to the ban on gays serving openly in the US military will likely come by late July or early August, outgoing Defense Secretary Robert Gates told AFP on Thursday. Gates, revising his earlier forecasts, said in an interview that final approval to end the prohibition…

Congress to vote on curbing Libya operations

WASHINGTON — The US House of Representatives will vote Friday on a resolution aimed at limiting the US military role in Libya without undermining NATO there, Republican House Speaker John Boehner said Thursday. “This is primarily a fight between the Congress and the president over his unwillingness to consult with…

Woman arrested for videotaping traffic stop from her front yard

UPDATE: Charges dismissed against woman arrested while videotaping traffic stop A 28-year-old woman has been charged with obstructing governmental administration after refusing a police officer’s order to leave her front yard while she was videotaping a traffic stop. WHEC-TV reported that Emily Good of Rochester, New York filmed the police…

Watch live: Obama speaks to troops about Afghanistan

President Barack Obama will speak to troops at Fort Drum in New York state Thursday afternoon. The president is expected to reiterate his commitment to the Afghanistan war following the announcement Wednesday that the U.S. would withdraw 10,000 troops by the end of 2011. Fort Drum’s 10th Mountain Division is…

Marine reservist charged in U.S. military shootings

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. prosecutors on Thursday charged a Marine Corps reservist with shooting at four military buildings around Washington, including the Pentagon, and also said he appeared to be trying to build a bomb. Yonathan Melaku, 22, was charged with four counts including firing on the Pentagon and the…

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