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President Obama to address unrest in Ferguson

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WASHINGTON (AP) — Taking a two-day break from summer vacation, President Barack Obamamet with top advisers at the White House Monday to review developments in Iraq and in racially charged Ferguson, Missouri, two trouble spots where Obama has ordered his administration to intervene. Obama planned to issue a statement on the two crises later Monday. The president made a brief return to Washington from Martha’s Vineyard to confer with advisers…

U.S., Kurds Free Thousands Of Trapped Yazidis

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U.S. Defense officials announced Wednesday that U.S. and Kurdish operations in Iraq had “broken the siege on Mount Sinjar” in Iraq, making it possible for thousands of the Yazidi people trapped there by raiding Islamic State militants to escape, the New York Times reported. The break in the militants hold on the area resulted from U.S. airstrikes and Kurdish fighters, the paper reported. Tens of thousands of the minority group…

Obama: ‘There Is No American Military Solution To The Larger Crisis In Iraq’

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President Barack Obama spoke on the situation in Iraq on Monday, reiterating that “there is no American military solution to the larger crisis in Iraq.” “The only lasting solution is for Iraqis to come together and form an inclusive government,” Obama said, noting the U.S. has “stepped up military advice and assistance to Iraqi and Kurdish forces as they wage the fight against ISIL.” “The United States stands ready to…

Rand Paul Suddenly Goes Very Silent On U.S. Airstrikes In Iraq

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WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama on Friday announced his decision to launch limited airstrikes against Islamic State militants in Iraq, a move that was largely met with bipartisan support from congressional lawmakers. But there’s one prominent member of Congress who hasn’t had much to say at all about the airstrikes: Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.). The libertarian-leaning Republican, a potential 2016 presidential contender, has long been skeptical of entangling the U.S….

If You’re Blaming The Iraq Crisis On Obama’s Troop Withdrawal, Answer These 4 Questions

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Soon after authorizing targeted airstrikes against Islamic militants in Iraq on Thursday, President Barack Obama faced a barrage of criticism from lawmakers and pundits blaming the unfolding crisis on the Obama administration’s 2012 decision towithdraw combat troops from the region. Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), an outspoken Iraq hawk, appeared on CNN’s “State of the Union” Sunday criticizing Obama’s strategy against the Islamic State, previously called ISIS, as overly cautious. “That’s not a strategy. That’s not…

Lindsey Graham: If Obama Doesn’t Go On Offense, Terrorists Are ‘Coming Here’

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WASHINGTON — Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) doesn’t think the public has been sufficiently frightened about what is going on in the Middle East. On Sunday, he urged President Barack Obama to give a speech warning Americans that the United States faces a possible terrorist attack from Iraq or Syria. Speaking to host Chris Wallace on “Fox News Sunday,” Graham repeatedly insisted on addressing his answers to Obama instead. “So Mr….

Obama: U.S. Airstrikes, Aid In Iraq Continues With No Set ‘Timetable’

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WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama said that U.S. airstrikes have successfully destroyed Islamic State arms and equipment moving against Kurdish forces in Iraq on Saturday, just hours before he was set to depart on a two-week vacation at Martha’s Vineyard. “We feel confident we can keep ISIL from going up a mountain and slaughtering the people there,” he said in a statement from the White House. Obama said the U.S….

U.S. Launches 4 Airstrikes On Iraqi Militants

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WASHINGTON (AP) — The U.S. military says American jet fighters and drones have conducted four more airstrikes on Islamic militants in Iraq, taking out armored carriers and a truck that were firing on civilians. U.S. Central Command says the Islamic State militants were firing on Yazidi civilians taking shelter in the Sinjar mountains. In a statement, the military says the militants were firing on civilians indiscriminately. Central Command says the…

Thousands Of Iraqi Yazidis Flee To Syria After Kurds Open Safe Passage

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Kurdish forces rescued 5,000 Yazidis who were stranded on Sinjar Mountain in Northwestern Iraq and had been in danger of dying of thirst, Al Jazeera reports. “I can confirm that we succeeded in reaching the mountains and opening a road for the refugees,” said Halgord Hikmet, a spokesman for Kurdish security forces, according to Al Jazeera. More from AP: Thousands of members of a religious minority group under attack by Islamic extremists have…

White House: No End Date On Military Action In Iraq

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WASHINGTON — The White House gave vague assurances on Friday that U.S. military involvement in Iraq will be limited in nature, seeking to ease political and public concern about Americans being drawn back into another war. During his daily briefing, White House press secretary Josh Earnest repeatedly stated that the U.S. would not engage in “prolonged” efforts to beat back the Islamic State, the militant group formerly known as ISIS….

As Obama Considers Iraq Strike, White House Spokesman Fumbles Anti-Genocide Doctrine

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WASHINGTON — In 2011, the White House issued a presidential study directive that states: “Preventing mass atrocities and genocide is a core national security interest and a core moral responsibility of the United States.” At the time, the Obama administration proudly announced that, unlike prior administrations, it wanted to give the U.S. a clear framework for preventing mass killings worldwide. This commitment to genocide prevention helped explain U.S. actions in…

John Walsh Receives Calls From Montana Press To End Senate Campaign

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Two Montana newspapers, the Missoulian and The Billings Gazette, are calling on Sen. John Walsh (D-Mont.) to drop out of his U.S. Senate race because of allegations of plagiarism being levied against him. The New York Times first reported that Walsh copied and pasted sections from scholarly articles without proper attribution into a 2007 paper required for him to earn his master’s degree at the U.S. Army War College. Since the initial…

Police officers getting major military equipment “America has become a war zone”

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In a pole barn in Franklin, sharing space with a motorcycle and a boat, sat an imposing military vehicle designed for battlefields in Iraq or Afghanistan, not the streets of Johnson County. It is an MRAP — a bulletproof, 55,000-pound, six-wheeled behemoth with heavy armor, a gunner’s turret and the word “SHERIFF” emblazoned on its flank — a vehicle whose acronym stands for “mine resistant ambush protected.” “We don’t have…

21 killed in Iraq car bomb attacks

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At least 21 people were killed and 82 injured Tuesday in a series of car bomb explosions in Iraq’s capital Baghdad, an official source said. The attacks occurred in the morning when seven car bombs went off almost simultaneously in eastern Baghdad, the source told Xinhua. One of the car bombs detonated in Sadr City district in eastern Baghdad and killed a civilian and injured nine, while another car bomb…

Soldier who lost all four limbs in Iraq bomb blast receives double arm transplant

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Brendan Marrocco ‏ (center) is the first soldier tosurvive after losing all four limbs in the Iraq war has received a double-arm transplant. He was the first soldier to survive the loss of all four limbs in Iraq, and now he’s the recipient of a cutting-edge double-arm transplant. Staten Island’s own Brendan Marrocco, 26, endured the 13-hour operation on Dec. 18 at Johns Hopkins Hospital to replace the arms he…