A new investigative report from Reuters special enterprise correspondent Scot Paltrow details how the antiquated and error-ridden payroll system for the U.S. military is erroneously cutting soldiers' paychecks and causing terrible hardship.
Reports from the office of the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction show mind-numbing spending decisions on military facilities that will never be used. In addition there are details about multi-million dollar waste incinerators that are sitting idle — while troops continue to inhale unhealthy air from open burn pits. Robert Siegel talks to the special inspector general behind the reports, John Sopko, a former Capitol Hill counsel and organized crime prosecutor.
A new U.S. facility in Afghanistan offers 64,000 square feet of space for more than 1,000 military personnel. Finished last November, it cost tens of millions of dollars. It will never be used for its intended purpose, a military inspector says, and it could be demolished.
President Obama is considering pulling all U.S. troops out of Afghanistan by the end of next year, but the White House says no decision is imminent. Administration officials say the U.S. and Afghanistan are still talking about whether the U.S. will keep some residual force in Afghanistan after 2014.
The U.S. and Afghanistan have spent months discussing a long-term security pact that would keep as many as 10,000 U.S. troops in Afghanistan for years to come. But the New York Times and Reuters are reporting that President Obama is now considering removing all troops from Afghanistan by the end of next year. Afghan parliamentarians and officials are reacting with anger — mostly towards President Hamid Karzai. Officials say Afghanistan needs U.S. troops to stay beyond 2014 to prevent the collapse of a fragile security situation, and they blame Karzai for playing games and pushing Obama to the brink.
The U.S. has been planning to leave a small residual force in Afghanistan after 2014. But The New York Times and CNN report that the Obama administration is increasingly frustrated with Afghan President Hamid Karzai.
Sgt. Chris Cunningham has served five tours in Afghanistan, surviving some of the past decade's most horrific fighting. These days, his excitement about war has been replaced by a grim wisdom — and the heavy responsibility of teaching Afghan soldiers and honoring fallen comrades.
In the United States, education is a right for all children. For Shabana Basij-Rasikh in Afghanistan, it was something she was willing to risk her life for. She speaks with host Michel Martin about her story, and a school she co-founded in Afghanistan that helps educate young women.
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