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  1. Sen. Barbara Boxer, D-Calif., and Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, will introduce legislation Wednesday designed to strengthen the Pentagon's sex assault forensic examiner cadre by improving training and certification, and requiring more personnel be trained in taking DNA samples and other physical evidence following an attack. Karen Bleier / AFP

    Bill aims to strengthen forensic training in sexual assault cases

    The Defense Department must improve its procedures for investigating sexual assaults by standardizing training requirements for medical experts who examine victims and analyze rape kits, a bipartisan group of lawmakers say.

    • Jul. 30, 2014
  2. South Korea says North Korea fires 4 projectiles

    North Korea fired four short-range projectiles toward the ocean off its east coast on Wednesday in its latest in a series of missile and artillery tests, officials said.

    • Jul. 30, 2014
  3. Internal VA documents show the depth of fraudulent scheduling, manipulation of data and in some cases, intimidation of staff, to hide delays in medical care to veterans in the 6-million patient national system, according to documents provided to USA Today. Ross D. Franklin / AP

    VA manipulated vets' appointment data, audit finds

    Internal VA documents show the depth of fraudulent scheduling, manipulation of data and in some cases intimidation of staff to hide delays in medical care to veterans in the 6-million patient national system.

    • Jul. 29, 2014
  4. The Taliban released a video June 4 showing the handover of Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl to U.S. forces in eastern Afghanistan. AP

    House committee rebukes Obama over Bergdahl deal

    House Armed Services Committee members voted Tuesday to condemn President Obama for failing to consult with congressional leaders before swapping five Taliban prisoners for prisoner of war Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl.

    • Jul. 29, 2014
    • NEWS /
    Adm. William H. McRaven is seen delivering the commencement address in May at The University of Texas at Austin. The Associated Press

    SOCOM chief McRaven set to become next chancellor for University of Texas System

    University of Texas System regents on Tuesday selected one of the top U.S. military special operations leaders as the lone finalist for the job of chancellor, overseeing the system's 15 campuses and $14 billion budget.

    • Jul. 29, 2014
    • NEWS /
    Gen. Joseph Dunford testifies on Capitol Hill in Washington on July 17 before the Senate Armed Service Committee hearing on his nomination to be the next commandant of the Marine Corps. Lauren Victoria Burke/The Associated Press

    Dunford fielded tough questions on military justice before his confirmation

    Before Gen. Joseph Dunford appeared before the Senate Armed Services Committee for his confirmation hearing July 17, he answered a long list of the committee's questions on topics ranging from acquisition challenges to suicide prevention.

    • Jul. 29, 2014
  5. The Pentagon has relaxed flight restrictions on the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter fleet. Tom Reynolds / Lockheed Martin

    Some F-35 flight restrictions lifted

    The Pentagon has lifted some flight restrictions on F-35 Joint Strike Fighters, while inspections will continue for the foreseeable future, according to a Defense Department official.

    • Jul. 29, 2014
    • NEWS /
    Paul Lewis

    Former Iran hostage demands compensation from Iranians

    Paul Lewis arrived as a Marine Corps security guard at the U.S. Embassy in Tehran on Nov. 3, 1979.

    • Jul. 29, 2014
    • NEWS /
    An Air Force C-130J Super Hercules sits on the flight line at Ramstein Air Base, Germany. The body of an unidentified boy was discovered July 27 in the wheel well of C-130 assigend to the 86th Airlift Wing. Airman Kendra Alba / Air Force

    Body of young 'stowaway' found in wheel well of C-130 after Africa missions

    The body of an unidentified male between 15 and 20 years old was found in the wheel well of an 86th Airlift Wing C-130 on Sunday after the plane returned to Ramstein Air Base, Germany, from missions in Africa, officials said.

    • Jul. 29, 2014
  6. Robert McDonald holds up a copy of the Veterans Affairs Strategic Plan Framework while testifying before the Senate Veterans Affairs Committee on July 22. Win McNamee/Getty Images

    McDonald confirmed as new VA secretary

    It's been a quick courtship for Bob McDonald and there will be no honeymoon.

    • Jul. 29, 2014
  7. President Obama speaks July 29 on the South Lawn of the White House as he announces new economic sanctions against key sectors of the Russian economy in the latest move to force Russian President Vladimir Putin to end his support for Ukrainian rebels. Manuel Balce Ceneta / AP

    U.S. and EU pledge new sanctions against Russia

    The U.S. message has been clear that if Russia would not deescalate its movements and hostility in Ukraine, more sanctions would be imposed.

    • Jul. 29, 2014
  8. Medical marijuana is placed on a scale. The University of Arizona has rejected a marijuana researcher's plea to keep her job after her contract was terminated in June. Frederic J. Brown / Getty Images

    Pot-for-PTSD researcher denied reinstatement

    The University of Arizona has rejected a marijuana researcher's plea to keep her job after her contract was terminated in June.

    • Jul. 29, 2014
    • NEWS /
    In this July 22 file photo former Minnesota Gov. Jesse Ventura, center, arrives at court with his wife, Terry, and others for his defamation lawsuit against 'American Sniper' author Chris Kyle in St. Paul, Minn. Jim Gehrz/The Associated Press

    Jury awards Jesse Ventura $1.8M in defamation case against estate of 'American Sniper' author

    Former Minnesota Gov. Jesse Ventura won $1.8 million Tuesday in his two-year fight to prove he was defamed by a military sniper and best-selling author who claimed to have punched out Ventura at a bar for bad-mouthing the Navy SEALs.

    • Jul. 29, 2014
    • NEWS /
    Theodore 'Dutch' VanKirk visits a veteran's group in 2009 in Macon, Ga. Tom VanKirk says his 93-year-old father died July 28 at the retirement home where he lived in Georgia. The elder VanKirk was the last surviving member of the Enola Gay crew. Beau Cabell / AP

    Last crew member of Enola Gay dies

    The last surviving member of the crew that dropped an atomic bomb on Hiroshima, hastening the end of World War II and forcing the world into the atomic age, has died in Georgia.

    • Jul. 29, 2014
    • NEWS /

    17,000 troops' debt relieved in settlement with loan company

    About 17,000 service members tricked into predatory loans could see their debts erased under a settlement announced by federal and state regulators Tuesday.

    • Jul. 29, 2014
  9. Admiral: World getting 'numb' to North Korean missiles

    Amid concerns about its development and testing of nuclear weapons, North Korea may be lulling the world into largely accepting its advances in missile technology, the admiral in charge of American forces in Asia and the Pacific said Tuesday.

    • Jul. 29, 2014
  10. Secretary of State John Kerry speaks to reporters Tuesday at the State Department in Washington, during a news conference with Ukrainian Foreign Minister Pavlo Klimkin. Cliff Owen / AP

    Lavrov and Kerry talk about Cold War-era arms deal

    Russia's Foreign Ministry says the chief diplomats from Russia and the United States have discussed the situation in Ukraine and the fulfillment of a Cold War-era arms control deal that the U.S. has accused Russia of violating.

    • Jul. 29, 2014
  11. House and Senate negotiators have approved a compromise bill to spend about $17 billion to overhaul the Department of Veterans Affairs. Agreement by the 28-member conference committee was needed to move the bill to the full House and Senate. AFP

    Conference committee OKs $17B VA health care bill

    House and Senate negotiators have approved a $17 billion compromise bill to overhaul the Department of Veterans Affairs and reform a program scandalized by veterans' long waits for health care and VA workers falsifying records to cover up delays.

    • Jul. 29, 2014
    • NEWS /

    Military Times returning to Navy exchanges overseas in August

    Sailors stationed overseas will soon see copies of Military Times newspapers for sale in Navy exchanges again.

    • Jul. 29, 2014
  12. Follow-through on keeping armored personnel carriers for the Afghan Army rapid strike battalions equipped and ready has been lacking, the special inspector general for Afghan reconstruction said in a report issued Tuesday. Textron

    Afghan quick reaction force slowed by logistics failures

    A specially trained and equipped Afghan Army quick reaction force is in danger of having its vehicles fall into disrepair, and its soldiers miss out on training due to an inability to supply much-need spare parts and training, a Congressionally-mandated w

    • Jul. 29, 2014
  13. House Veterans' Affairs Committee Chairman Rep. Jeff Miller, R-Fla., joined by Senate Veterans' Affairs Committee Chairman Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., left, speaks during a news conference Monday on Capitol Hill. J. Scott Applewhite / AP

    Miller faces sales job on $17B VA bill in the House

    Before being elected to Congress, Rep. Jeff Miller was a real estate broker.

    • Jul. 29, 2014
    • NEWS /
    Retired Army Sgt. 1st Class Billy Costello, center, who lost his right leg while stationed in Afghanistan, helps transplant coral Monday in the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary off Big Pine Key, Fla. Costello is one of a dozen wounded veterans in the Keys helping transplant corals on a special section of the reef, permitted to Mote Marine Laboratory, and set aside as a remembrance area for fallen American service personnel. AP via Joe Berg/Florida Keys News Bureau

    Vets, teens transplant corals in Florida Keys

    A dozen wounded veterans submerged in the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary to help transplant corals on a special section of the reef set aside as a remembrance area for fallen American service personnel.

    • Jul. 29, 2014
  14. Republican Senate candidate Joni Ernst has returned from two weeks of training with the Iowa National Guard to a midterm election race against Democrat Bruce Braley that has become a competitive contest in the battle for Senate control. Charlie Neibergall / AP

    Pig-castrating Senate candidate returns from Guard duty

    Republican Senate candidate Joni Ernst has returned from two weeks of training with the Iowa National Guard to a midterm election race against Democrat Bruce Braley that has become a competitive contest in the battle for Senate control.

    • Jul. 29, 2014
  15. House to vote on slimmed-down bill for border

    House Republicans have agreed to vote on a slimmed-down bill to address the immigration crisis on the U.S.-Mexico border by sending in National Guard troops and speeding unaccompanied migrant youths back to Central America.

    • Jul. 29, 2014
  16. Calif. governor takes dig at Texas Guard plan

    California Gov. Jerry Brown took a not-so-subtle dig at Texas' decision to deploy National Guard troops to the border, saying Monday that he expects it to be a short-lived measure and that 'wiser minds will prevail.'

    • Jul. 29, 2014

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