National Guard inaction exposes communities to lead

America’s National Guard armories host community events from weddings to school sleepovers. They also house indoor firing ranges where part-time soldiers once tested their skills. Every time someone pulled the trigger, a bullet cast off bits of lead.  The Oregonian/OregonLive’s 18-month investigation found that the Guard’s neglect allowed lead dust to build up and contaminate…

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Documents show extensive pollution on U.S. base in Japan

The largest U.S. Air Force installation in Asia is the Kadena Air Base in Japan, and according to an investigation by the Japan Times, documents show that there has been extensive pollution on the active base. The base provides work for 3,000 Japanese employees, and over 20,000 American service members, contractors and their families also…

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U.S. government wasted $17 billion in Afghanistan

The U.S. government has spent $17 billion on wasted projects and unused resources in Afghanistan, a ProPublica investigation has found. The decisions that led to wasting billions of dollars in taxpayer money on useless projects did not lead to any consequences for the officials in the State Department, the U.S. Agency for International Development or…

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Child sex abuse cases lack visibility in military

After obtaining the latest available data through the Freedom of Information Act, the Associated Press reported that of the 1,233 inmates in the military’s prison network, 61 percent were convicted of sex crimes. Child sex offenders make up the largest category of inmates in military prisons. However, it is difficult to obtain a full account of…

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CIA ethics report reveals how ‘Zero Dark Thirty’ got its information

Vice News’ investigation into CIA reports revealed that Leon Panetta, a former director of the Central Intelligence Agency, revealed unprecedented details about the classified mission to the filmmakers. According to the article, a report on ethical violations committed by the director revealed that screenwriter Mark Boal treated top CIA officials to dinners and hotel stays…

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Empty military buildings had multimillion-dollar price tags

As NATO withdraws from Afghanistan, the U.S. military is leaving behind almost $42 million in buildings that have never been used, ProPublica reports.  ProPublica used reports from the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction as a starting point for a story on how — and why — the military ignored the advice of three generals…

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Survey shows only 1 dishonorable discharge for sexual assault in the National Guard

Information obtained by NBC Washington is shedding light on how the National Guard responds to reports of sexual assault. The station sent a survey to every Guard unit in the country and received responses from 40 of the 54 units. The data provides “the first publicly available numbers on what happens to those accused of…

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N.J. National Guard’s top officers drove drunk, kept leadership positions

At least four high-ranking colonels in the New Jersey National Guard have been convicted of drunken driving since 2009, according to a story by NJ Advance Media. Three of the cases took place under the leadership of Brig. Gen. Michael Cunniff, who overseas 8,500 soldiers and airmen. Cunniff kept two of the colonels in leadership…

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Back in civilian world, military sex offenders fly under the radar

More than 240 military men and women who’ve been convicted of rape, child molestation and other sex offenses have disappeared from sex offender registries. The Scripps D.C. bureau reviewed more than 1,300 military court martial cases and civilian sex offender registries across the country. The report found military sex offenders often return to civilian life,…

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