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Defense Secretary Hagel Resigns

Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel has officially announced his resignation on Monday, the first Cabinet official to leave following midterm elections that left Democrats the minority in both the House and the Senate. Defense Secretary Hagel, who served as an enlisted soldier during Vietnam, faced numerous challenges during his almost 2-year term.

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Afghanistan IG: Nation Building "Abysmal Failure"

The man in charge of holding government agencies responsible for their work (or lack thereof) in Afghanistan, John Sopko, has described America's 13-year mission building attempt there as "an abysmal failure".

According to this article on Stripes.com Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction Sopko spoke to reporters on Tuesday, and pulled no punches in describing the waste and mismanagement he has seen.

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Proposed Change to Military Retirement Could Be Popular

A 200+ page study performed by the RAND Corporation, a nonprofit policy think tank, shows that a sweeping overhaul of the military retirement system could be quite popular to many soldiers.

The plan most popular to soldiers, according to the RAND report, would give soldiers retiring with 20 or more years of service a one-time "transition pay" lump sum immediately upon separation. This payout would be around two to three years' basic pay, and in return the monthly "working-age retirement" (under 65) would be capped at a maximum of 25% of basic pay.

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VA Secretary McDonald: More than 1,000 Employees Facing Discipline

The new Veterans Affairs Secretary Robert McDonald is making good on his promise to hold employees and supervisors accountable, and in an interview on 60 Minutes mentioned that the VA is considering disciplinary action against more than 1,000 employees.

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Pentagon Advises Employees to Remain Vigilant

The Pentagon's internal security agency, the Pentagon Force Protection Agency, sent out an internal memo to its personnel last week that they could potentially be targets for ISIL or other terrorist groups, and to take appropriate precautions.

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Army Soldiers Take Top Honors

Last week was a great week for the US Army and a few of its members, as several won and placed in various physical and job-related competitions.

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Soldier Employment Protection Law Turns 20

An important law to just about every Reserve and National Guard soldier, the Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act, signed into law in 1994, turns 20 years old this month.

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Women in the Military: Progress Made, But Still A Long Road

During a panel discussion at 2014 Military Reporters and Editors Conference in Washington DC, representatives of the Army, Navy, Air Force, and Marine Corps discussed the current status of women in the military. The current number of positions open to women is incredibly high, but efforts are still being made in all branches to discover what additional jobs should still be coed.

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MilitaryTimes.com Survey Reveals Soldiers Against Returning to Iraq

An online poll done by MilitaryTimes.com asked 2,200 active-duty soldiers, sailors, and airmen:

“In your opinion, do you think the U.S. military should send a substantial number of combat troops to Iraq to support the Iraqi security forces?”

A surprisingly large number - 70% - answered "No". This survey was done over the summer and finished in August, as US air strikes against ISIS forces in Iraq began.

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Don't Give Money to Soldiers That Email You!

I just got off the phone with Dawn. It seems that she was emailed by someone claiming to be a US soldier wanting to come home to get married. He told Dawn that he needed money and asked if she would help him. She then received emails from someone claiming to be from the US Army listing the fees that must be paid before they can send the soldier home. She has sent over $5000.

And it was all a lie. Read on and share with your friends before any of them also get hooked.

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