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Jun 4, 2013

NATO to decide post-2014 force after Afghan fighting season

BRUSSELS (Reuters) – NATO is likely to wait until after this year’s fighting season in Afghanistan before deciding the size of the international military force that will remain behind after 2014 to train and assist Afghan troops, a U.S. general said on Tuesday.

Marine Corps General Joseph Dunford, head of international forces in Afghanistan, said he expected NATO defense ministers meeting in Brussels this week to further define the nature of the mission they want to perform in Afghanistan after 2014, when most foreign combat troops withdraw.

Jun 3, 2013

NATO to discuss training Libyan security forces – U.S. official

BRUSSELS, June 3 (Reuters) – NATO defence ministers
concerned about the growing presence of al Qaeda-linked rebels
in southern Libya will this week discuss the possibility of
training Libyan security forces, U.S. defence officials said on
Monday.

Libyan Prime Minister Ali Zeidan requested the assistance at
a meeting last week with NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh
Rasmussen, who raised the issue with U.S. President Barack Obama
in Washington last Friday.

Jun 2, 2013

Pentagon chief tours ship at cutting edge of U.S. pivot to Asia

SINGAPORE, June 2 (Reuters) – U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck
Hagel on Sunday toured the new combat ship at the leading edge
of the U.S. military’s pivot to Asia, a modest little vessel
whose development over the past decade has been beset by cost
overruns, mishaps and criticism.

Hagel spoke with the crew of the USS Freedom, the Navy’s
first Littoral Combat Ship (LCS), a class of shallow-draft
vessels built to patrol in coastal waters while tackling threats
like mines, quiet diesel-electric submarines and other systems
used to deny access to big warships.

Jun 2, 2013

Analysis: China turns on the charm at regional security forum

SINGAPORE (Reuters) – Senior Chinese military officials came ready to talk at a major regional security forum over the weekend, surprising delegates with a new sense of openness at a time when Beijing is making strident claims to territory across Asia’s seas.

No one expected any resolution of disputes over maritime boundaries, accusations of Chinese cyber-espionage, Beijing’s suspicions about the U.S. “pivot” to Asia or other prickly issues at the annual Shangri-La Dialogue in Singapore.

Jun 2, 2013

China turns on the charm at regional security forum

SINGAPORE, June 2 (Reuters) – Senior Chinese military
officials came ready to talk at a major regional security forum
over the weekend, surprising delegates with a new sense of
openness at a time when Beijing is making strident claims to
territory across Asia’s seas.

No one expected any resolution of disputes over maritime
boundaries, accusations of Chinese cyber-espionage, Beijing’s
suspicions about the U.S. “pivot” to Asia or other prickly
issues at the annual Shangri-La Dialogue in Singapore.

Jun 1, 2013

U.S. rebalance to Asia-Pacific gaining steam, Pentagon chief says

SINGAPORE (Reuters) – The U.S. military will devote more air power, ground troops and high-tech weaponry to the Asia-Pacific region as it moves ahead with a strategic rebalance, the U.S. defense chief said on Saturday in a speech that accused China of cyber incursions.

In remarks laying out his vision for regional security, Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel assured allies and partners at the annual Shangri-La Security Dialogue in Singapore that the United States was fully able to continue its strategic pivot to the region despite budget constraints at home.

May 31, 2013

Cyber threats pose ‘stealthy, insidious’ danger – U.S. defense chief

MILITARY AIRCRAFT, May 31 (Reuters) – Defense
Secretary Chuck Hagel said on Friday that cyber threats posed a
“quiet, stealthy, insidious” danger to the United States and
other nations, and called for “rules of the road” to guide
behavior and avoid conflict on global computer networks.

Hagel said he would address cyber security in his speech on
Saturday to the Shangri-La Security Dialogue in Singapore and
the issue was likely to come up in a brief meeting with Chinese
delegates on the margins of the conference.

May 22, 2013

Army sergeant accused of videotaping female cadets in shower

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – An Army sergeant at the U.S. Military Academy at West Point has been accused of videotaping female cadets in the shower, a defense official said on Wednesday, the latest in a series of sex-related incidents that has rocked the military.

Sergeant Michael McClendon was charged this month with four violations of U.S. military law: indecent acts, dereliction in the performance of duty, cruelty and maltreatment, and actions prejudicial to good order and discipline, Army spokesman George Wright said.

May 21, 2013

Lawmakers move to address U.S. military sex assault problem

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Lawmakers frustrated by a spate of high-profile military sexual assault cases unveiled draft proposals in the House of Representatives on Tuesday to crack down on the crime, but they stopped short the kind of overhaul sought by some officials.

The Republican-led personnel panel of the House Armed Services Committee proposed additions to the annual defense policy bill that would impose tougher penalties on people who commit sex crimes and would ensure better treatment for victims.

May 19, 2013

Training push fails to halt military sexual assault crisis

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Under pressure to fight sexual assault, the U.S. armed forces in recent years rolled out education programs about proper sexual conduct through methods like role playing and video games.

The increase in education has nevertheless failed to prevent what the nation’s top general called last week “a crisis” after the Pentagon reported a 37 percent jump in the estimated number of sexual assault cases in 2012.

    • About David

      "David has been a journalist for 30 years, based in Washington, London, New Delhi, Jerusalem and Philadelphia. He covered the first Gulf war, the Palestinian intifada and the conflict in Kashmir. Since 1998 he has been an editor and reporter in Washington, covering politics, the White House and other stories."
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