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Obama expected to name Joint Chiefs head Monday

WASHINGTON (AFP) – President Barack Obama is expected to name General Martin Dempsey as his new chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff on Monday, a US source said. The source, familiar with Obama’s announcement but speaking on condition of anonymity, said Obama was “expected” to name Dempsey to the…

Hackers penetrate U.S. defense contractors’ security networks

Reuters is reporting that unknown hackers have broken into the networks of Lockheed Martin and other major defense contractors and may have gained access to sensitive information on present and future weapons systems. Reuters had reported earlier on Friday that “Lockheed Martin, the Pentagon’s No. 1 supplier, is experiencing a…

Obama nominates Panetta to head Pentagon, Petraeus to head CIA

WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama on Thursday formally nominated Leon Panetta as his new secretary of defense and David Petraeus, who commands the international force in Afghanistan, as Panetta’s successor at the CIA. Obama had first said he planned to nominate Panetta and Petraeus on April 28, just days before…

House approves $690 billion defense budget

WASHINGTON — The US House of Representatives passed a $690 billion Pentagon budget Thursday that bars American ground forces in Libya and limits the Obama administration’s powers on handling Guantanamo detainees. Lawmakers voted 322-96 in favor of the budget plan which met the Defense Department’s request for $119 billion to…

IMF chief Strauss-Kahn released on bail

NEW YORK – Ex-IMF chief Dominique Strauss-Kahn was indicted Thursday on sexual assault charges but ordered released on bail by a New York judge after agreeing to house arrest and to post $1 million in cash. He also had to put up a $5 million bond, surrender all travel documents…

‘Historic’ budget cuts bill actually increased 2011 spending by $3 billion: CBO

WASHINGTON – The fiscal 2011 funding bill roundly hailed for its “historic” spending cuts actually raised government spending by more than $3 billion, according to a new report. The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office concluded Monday evening, “Total discretionary outlays in 2011 will be $3.2 billion higher as a result of…

U.S. soldier wins new hearing in Afghan murder case

SEATTLE (Reuters) – A military judge has granted a defense request to reopen pretrial evidentiary proceedings for one of the five soldiers in Washington state charged with killing Afghan civilians in cold blood. Dan Conway, the civilian lawyer for Army Private Andrew Holmes, said he was notified on Monday that…

Doctors turned ‘blind eye’ to Guantanamo torture: study

WASHINGTON (AFP) – US Department of Defense doctors and psychologists whose duty was to care for inmates at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, concealed evidence of intentional harm and torture, said a study. The findings, published in the peer-reviewed journal PloS Medicine, come in the wake of a host of secret US…

GOP-tapped law firm backs out of DOMA defense

WASHINGTON – The law firm tapped by House Republicans to defend the Defense of Marriage Act abruptly backed out of the case on Monday, citing an “inadequate” vetting process for the engagement. “Today the firm filed a motion to withdraw from its engagement to represent the Bipartisan Legal Advisory Group…

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