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Chuck Hagel: Bowe Bergdahl deal was ‘last, best opportunity’ to ensure his freedom

Taliban swap for US soldier was ‘tough call’: Hagel (via AFP) Pentagon chief Chuck Hagel staunchly defended Wednesday the swap of five Taliban detainees for a US soldier as a “tough” but necessary move to secure Sergeant Bowe Bergdahl’s release. Facing a barrage of criticism from lawmakers, Hagel said the…

Secretary of Defense Hagel: I am open to ‘reviewing’ military ban on transgender soldiers

On This Week with George Stephanopoulos this morning, Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel told Martha Raddatz that he would like to see the current ban on transgender individuals in the United States military “reviewed.” “I do think it continually should be reviewed,” Hagel told Raddatz. “I’m open to those assessments,…

Chuck Hagel first U.S. defense chief to visit Chinese aircraft carrier

QINGDAO, China (Reuters) – U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel visited China’s sole aircraft carrier on Monday in an unprecedented opening by normally secretive Beijing to a potent symbol of its military buildup. A U.S. official said the visit to the carrier the Liaoning, at a port in the northern city…

Pentagon chief Chuck Hagel seeks deal to keep 10,000 troops in Afghanistan

US Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel said Monday he hoped an accord on the future US military presence in Afghanistan would be in place by November, despite President Hamid Karzai’s refusal to be rushed. “I hope we’ll have that agreement by the end of October, because we just can’t move without…

WATCH LIVE: Secretary of State John Kerry and Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel testify in Senate about Syria

Watch as Secretary of State John F. Kerry, Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel and General Martin E. Dempsey (Chairman of the Joint Chiefs) testify before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee in an unclassified hearing about the Congressional authorization for the use of force in Syira.…

Congressmen to Hagel: Where Are the Missing War Records?

By Peter Sleeth, Special to ProPublica The top Republican and Democrat on the House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs are demanding more details from defense Secretary Chuck Hagel about lost Army field records from the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, the subject of a ProPublica investigation last year. In an unusually…

Pentagon sends troops to Jordan to counter Syria chemical weapons threat

Secretary Chuck Hagel arrives on Capitol Hill in Washington Wednesday to testify before the Senate Armed Services Committee hearing on the Pentagon’s budget for fiscal 2014 and beyond. He also talked about plans to send an Army unit to Jordan. (J. Scott Applewhite…  …

Chuck Hagel: Reform military judicial system to combat sexual assault

Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel on Monday said US commanders should be barred from overturning criminal convictions, in the wake of anger over a quashed guilty verdict in a sexual assault case. Under Hagel’s proposal, which would have to be approved by lawmakers, commanders would still have the power to alter…

Republicans can’t tell fact from fiction

In the hyper-fast modern media world, it is easy to make a mistake. Social media platforms like Twitter are full of fake accounts, rumours and outright lies. Emails, Facebook and the emergence of a million blogs mean news, or more often “news”, travels fast and demands quick decisions and little…

Jack Lew confirmed as new Treasury secretary

President Barack Obama’s former chief of staff Jack Lew was confirmed Wednesday as the next US Treasury secretary, taking over a key portfolio at a time of deadlock over the US budget and debt. The US Senate voted 71-26 — with support from 20 Republicans — to confirm Lew, a…

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