IAVA Daily Brief 2.16.11
Posted by Isabel Black on February 14
Here are some of today's top stories and happenings at IAVA. Prefer to receive real-time updates about major stories and legislation that IAVA is tracking? Follow us on Twitter @IAVAPressRoom or subscribe at www.IAVA.org/DailyNewsBrief.
A group of US veterans who say they were raped and abused by their comrades want to force the Pentagon to change how it handles such cases. More than a dozen female and two male current or former service members say servicemen get away with rape and other sexual abuse and victims are too often ordered to continue to serve alongside those they say attacked them.
The Army has gone to great lengths to try to remove the stigma that comes with reporting depression and suicidal thoughts. But soldiers say that while the Army has stood up to a suicide prevention task force and instituted programs to deal with depression, more work needs to be done when the soldier leaves a hospital or counselor’s office. The problem seems acute in the National Guard and Reserve, where soldiers aren’t always together or near treatment facilities.
Afghanistan’s top female official began a sustained verbal assault on women’s shelters on Tuesday, accusing them of corruption and mismanagement, and insisting that the government was determined to take control of them, whether or not donors continue to give financial support. The shelters, nearly all of them supported by Western charities and governments, provide havens for women and girls fleeing sexual and physical abuse, and give the runaways an alternative to seeking help from the authorities, who often forcibly return them to their families- and sometimes subject them to further abuse.
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A bombing in the heart of Kabul shook the city Monday as militants carried out their second major attack inside the capital in less than a month, highlighting an uptick in violence that could indicate a new Taliban campaign.
A US contractor who’s continued to receive government contracts despite criticism of its work in Afghanistan got low ratings for its performance on two more high-profile projects in the war-torn country than had been disclosed previously.
The Iraqi defector whose claims that Saddam Hussein’s government had biological weapons became part of the Bush administration’s justification for the 2003 invasion of Iraq has admitted that he fabricated his story.
Three people were killed and dozens were wounded in the southern Iraqi city of Kut on Wednesday in clashes between security forces and protestors demanding better basic services.
JPMorgan Chase and Co. on Tuesday announced new programs geared toward military customers and veterans, and apologized for overcharging thousands of active-duty service members on mortgages, and improperly foreclosing on more than a dozen.
More than 150 sailors worldwide are being booted from the Navy for use or possession of the designer drug Spice.