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The US military built another multimillion-dollar building in Afghanistan that no one used

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Unlike many buildings commissioned by the U.S. in Afghanistan, the new military warehouse facility in Kandahar was well built, an inspector general investigation concluded.

There was, however, one glaring problem: no one was around to use the gleaming, $14.7 million complex. The four warehouses and an administration building were empty, because the intended occupants, the Defense Logistics Agency, had already ended their mission in Kandahar.

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The Army had decided to send DLA home in August 2013, six months before the warehouses were completed. The project, however, “continued uninterrupted,” without any attempts to reevaluate or downsize it, according to a report by the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction, or SIGAR. Instead, the military added $400,000 of modifications to the buildings 2014 knowing DLA would never use it, SIGAR wrote in a report released today.

In the end, the facility finished two years behind schedule and cost $1.2 million more than anticipated.

As combat operations in Afghanistan concluded in 2014, a familiar pattern emerged with the military’s construction projects: They were routinely over budget, past deadline and often never used.

ProPublica previously reported on the $25 million, 64,000-square-foot headquarters built for the U.S. Marines in Helmand province. That building, tricked out with luxe modifications, went unused for similar reasons, but the military has nonetheless deemed its construction “prudent.” The military declined to discipline anyone involved with what came to be called “64K.”

This type of wasteful spending and the military’s seeming nonchalance about it came up this month as part of Marine Gen. Joseph Dunford’s confirmation as Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, the top position in the military. Dunford, while in charge of Afghanistan operations in 2013, ordered and signed off on an investigation into the 64K building that SIGAR said was shallow, flawed and remiss in not holding anyone accountable.

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Sen. Claire McCaskill, D-Mo., asked Dunford in writing whether, given SIGAR’s findings, he is “concerned that the investigation into this matter was inadequate.”

Dunford must respond to written questions from McCaskill and the rest of the Senate Armed Services Committee before his confirmation is approved.

Meanwhile, by December, the Kandahar warehouse complex will be turned over to the Afghan government with air conditioning and fire suppression systems that, like 64K, are too sophisticated for them to use. And it’s unclear whether the Afghans want or have the money to make use of it.

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Oprah erects 26 billboards around Louisville — demanding the cops who killed Breonna Taylor get arrested

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Media mogul Oprah Winfrey continues to keep people talking about the killing of Breonna Taylor by the Louisville Metro Police Department.

"For the first time ever, just last week, Oprah Winfrey dedicated the cover of her magazine to someone other than herself -- Breonna Taylor. Now, that cover will be all over Louisville in the form of billboards big and small," WLKY-TV reported Thursday.

"She and the O Magazine team say they are amplifying Taylor's story and the fight for justice by erecting 26 billboards across the city. That's one for every year of her life," the station reported.

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Trump’s vendetta against TikTok is a veil for his anti-China and anti-free speech views

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Last week, President Donald Trump announced that he was planning on banning TikTok, a video-sharing social networking service owned by the Chinese company ByteDance. Shortly after he said this, the American multinational technology company Microsoft announced that it would attempt to purchase TikTok's US operations arm, although Trump has only given the company until Sept. 15 to pull this off.

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2020 Election

Eric Trump predicts his dad will win re-election: ‘The polls are looking great — you see it every day’

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One of President Donald Trump's children appeared on Fox News on Thursday to predict that his father would win re-election in November.

"Well listen, I think, um, I think we're looking really good," Eric Trump told Sean Hannity.

"The polls are looking great -- you see it every single day," Trump claimed. "The enthusiasm is tremendous."

"We're going to win," he predicted. "My father is going to win this election."

The prediction was offered the same day that NBC News released their first battleground map, showing Joe Biden on pace to win 334 Electoral College votes, Trump set to win 125 Electoral Votes, with 79 too close to call.

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