Category Archives: Veterans Affairs

Updated: History of U.S. Policy and Law on Gays in the Military

Updated: History of U.S. Policy and Law on Gays in the Military

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On June 26, the U.S. Supreme Court struck down provisions in the 1996 Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA). The restrictions in the act prevented federal employees in same sex marriages from receiving federal benefits. The Pentagon and the rest of the government will now sort through the ruling and the changes to federal law.

“The Department of Defense welcomes the Supreme Court’s decision today on the Defense of Marriage Act,” Secratary of Defense Chuck Hagel said in a Wednesday statement.
“The department will immediately begin the process of implementing the Supreme Court’s decision in consultation with the Department of Justice and other executive branch agencies. The Department of Defense intends to make the same benefits available to all military spouses — regardless of sexual orientation — as soon as possible. That is now the law and it is the right thing to do.” Read More

Document: Pentagon Sequestration Impacts In Detail

Document: Pentagon Sequestration Impacts In Detail

From the introduction from the June Department of Defense Report on the Joint Committee Sequestration for Fiscal Year 2013: This report summarizes the financial impact on the Department of Defense discretionary budget authority in Fiscal Year (FY) 2013 as a result of the Joint Committee Sequestration directed in the Presidential Order of March 1, 2013. Read More

Think Tanks Call For Massive Pentagon Personnel Cuts Under BCA

Think Tanks Call For Massive Pentagon Personnel Cuts Under BCA

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Four D.C. think tanks took a crack at cutting the Pentagon's budget under sequestration. CSBA Image

Four D.C. think tanks took a crack at cutting the Pentagon’s budget under sequestration. CSBA Image

Four D.C. think tanks took a crack at balancing the Department of Defense’s budget if the Pentagon has to weather ten years of ten percent across-the-board sequestration budget cuts sequestration on Wednesday.

The consensus of the four (American Enterprise Institute, Center for a New American Security, Center for Strategic and International Studies and Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessment) was unanimous.

First, cut the Department of Defense’s civilian employees – including shipyard and depot workers. Then reduce the services’ end strength – particularly the Army’s. Read More

Iraq War Deserter, Mother of Four to Face Trial Today

Iraq War Deserter, Mother of Four to Face Trial Today

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An undated picture of U.S. Army Pfc. Kimberly Rivera. Amnesty International Photo

An undated picture of U.S. Army Pfc. Kimberly Rivera. Amnesty International Photo

A previous version of this story reported Pfc. Kimberly Rivera will be sentenced in Ft. Collins, Colo., today. In fact, Rivera’s court martial begins today. She has not been convicted in the matter. USNI News regrets the error. 

U.S. Army Pfc. Kimberly Rivera will face desertion charges on Monday prior to an expected court martial in Ft. Carson, Colo., according to a report in The Gazette of Colorado Springs. Read More

Pentagon Cancels Controversial Unmanned and Cyber Medal

Pentagon Cancels Controversial Unmanned and Cyber Medal

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The new Distinguished Warfare Medal annouced in February at the Pentagon. DoD Photo

The canceled Distinguished Warfare Medal annouced in February at the Pentagon. DoD Photo

The Pentagon is cancelling a controversial medal designed to recognize contributions of unmanned aerial vehicle pilots and cyber troops, according to a Monday memorandum signed by Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel obtained by USNI News. Read More

USMC Commandant: 'You Can't Surge Trust'

USMC Commandant: ‘You Can’t Surge Trust’

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Commandant of the Marine Corps Gen. James Amos addresses the Sailors and Marines assigned to the newly commissioned amphibious transport dock ship USS Arlington (LPD-24) on April, 6 2013. US Navy Photo

Commandant of the Marine Corps Gen. James Amos addresses the Sailors and Marines assigned to the newly commissioned amphibious transport dock ship USS Arlington (LPD-24) on April, 6 2013. US Navy Photo

“We are not sure how that is going to play out,” the commandant of the U.S. Marine Corps said about events in Afghanistan and Pakistan as the United States and NATO complete their withdrawal from combat operations in 2014 as he launched into an around the globe assessment of threats from North Korea’s “no sense of stability” to pirates in the Gulf of Aden and the Straits of Malacca facing the nation now. Read More