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No opting out of enlistment for opponents of gays in military: Sec. of Defense Gates

FORWARD OPERATING BASE DWYER, Afghanistan (Reuters) – Defense Secretary Robert Gates bluntly told Marines on Sunday that they won’t be able to opt out of their enlistment just because they disagree with a government decision to end a ban on gays serving openly in the military. Gates, who is on…

US may set date to pull out Afghan troops

FORWARD OPERATING BASE DWYER, Afghanistan — The US’s looming decision on troop drawdowns in Afghanistan could include a timeline for pulling out 30,000 “surge” forces deployed last year, Defense Secretary Robert Gates said Sunday. Speaking to US Marines at a base in the southern province of Helmand during a visit…

F/A-18 fighter crashes in California: US Navy

WASHINGTON – A US F/A-18 fighter jet crashed on Wednesday in California near a naval air base, a Navy official said. The crash occurred at about 12:00 pm (1900 GMT) “in a field near Naval Air Station Lemoore” in California’s rural central valley, the official, who spoke on condition of…

Rebels close in on oil town as NATO set to take charge

TRIPOLI – Rebels battled on to the eastern oil town of Ajdabiya Thursday as plans firmed for NATO to take over coalition operations after Tripoli came under attack for a sixth day and death tolls mounted. France promised to continue air raids “for as long as necessary,” and Italy offered…

Gaddafi strongholds bombed as Misrata ‘overrun’

TRIPOLI – Moamer Kadhafi’s Tripoli compound was rocked by blasts late Monday, his southern strongholds targeted and a navy base bombed as international criticism mounted over the air assault on Libya. Rebels, meanwhile, said they were under intense attack by Kadhafi’s forces in the city of Misrata near Tripoli and…

Revealed: Air Force ordered software to manage army of fake virtual people

Update (below): HBGary Federal among bidders These days, with Facebook and Twitter and social media galore, it can be increasingly hard to tell who your “friends” are. But after this, Internet users would be well advised to ask another question entirely: Are my “friends” even real people? In the continuing…

Guantanamo prisoner dies while exercising: military

MIAMI – An Afghan prisoner collapsed and died at the Guantanamo detention center after working out on an exercise machine, the U.S. military said on Thursday. Awal Malim Gul, who was accused of being a Taliban commander and al Qaeda associate, died at the Guantanamo Bay U.S. Naval Base on…

Guantanamo detainees stage peaceful protests daily

WASHINGTON – Guantanamo detainees have been holding daily peaceful protests against the jail’s continued existence, despite pledges from US President Barack Obama to shut it down, a lawyer said Friday. Lawyer Ramzi Kassem said he had learned from a client held at the US naval base that the protests had…

Facebook intern maps world via online ‘friends’

A Facebook intern interested in seeing how political borders affect friendships around the globe has created a map of the world by sampling data from the social network’s 500 million user base. The map displays friendships as lights on a deep blue background. The eastern half of the United States…

Blast near Afghan military base, casualties: source

KABUL (Reuters) – An explosion outside a military base used by foreign forces in southeastern Afghanistan killed “some people” and wounded at least four Afghan soldiers on Sunday afternoon, an Afghan military source said. It was not clear how many people died in the incident in Gardez, capital of Paktia…

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