The National Security Agency is challenging those who want to overhaul its surveillance operations. A special panel has sent a report to the White House on how NSA programs should be changed. The group was established by the president following revelations about NSA eavesdropping.
The Obama administration reiterated its long-held position that Robert Levinson was not "a U.S. government employee when he went missing in Iran" in 2007. The assertion comes a day after The Associated Press reported that Levinson was on a rogue mission for the CIA.
A compromise defense bill is making its way through Congress. The authorization measure deals with everything from sexual assault in the military to the detention facility at Guantanamo Bay to operations in Afghanistan.
Community and charity groups are scrambling to provide care where the VA is failing veterans who left the military with less-than-honorable discharges. Many of these groups have extensive experience with the problem; they say tens of thousands of Vietnam veterans faced the same problem.
Michael Hartnett joined the Marines because he wanted to be a tough guy. But deployments to the first Gulf War and Somalia left him haunted by nightmares. He turned to booze; after a bad-conduct discharge he fell into drugs for more than a decade. Three years ago, he convinced a military board to upgrade his discharge. That change in status gave him the chance he needed. Now he's studying to be a social worker so he can help other vets.
Veterans with "other than honorable" discharges lose benefits like the GI Bill for school or a VA home loan. But they also can't get VA health care and disability compensation, even for the PTSD that may have caused the bad discharge. Such veterans have a few avenues of appeal, but none is simple.
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