Gulf war casualty found buried in Iraq

Navy pilot Michael "Scott" Speicher was called the first casualty of the 1991 Gulf War. But his true status was a mystery, and the Pentagon didn’t know whether he was dead or missing.

For nearly two decades, Speicher’s family, from outside Jacksonville, Fla., pressured the Defense Department to find an answer. Finally, the Pentagon announced Sunday that his remains had been found.

Shot down over west-central Iraq on a combat mission on Jan. 17, 1991, Speicher was declared killed by the Pentagon hours later. Defense Secretary Dick Cheney went on television and announced the U.S. had suffered its first casualty of the war.

Captured soldier fears he won’t go home

The American soldier who went missing June 30 from his base in eastern Afghanistan and was later confirmed to have been captured, said in a video posted by the Taliban that he’s "scared I won’t be able to go home."

Two U.S. defense officials confirmed to The Associated Press that the man in the video posted Saturday on the Internet is the captured soldier, but the Defense Department has not released his name. The video provided the first glimpse the public has had of the missing soldier.

North Korea threatens world with nuclear war

North Korea’s communist regime has warned of a nuclear war on the Korean peninsula while vowing to step up its atomic bomb-making program in defiance of new U.N. sanctions.

The North’s defiance presents a growing diplomatic headache for President Barack Obama as he prepares for talks Tuesday with his South Korean counterpart on the North’s missile and nuclear programs.

Bin Laden: Obama sows ‘seeds of hate’

Al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden said U.S. President Barack Obama had planted the seeds of "revenge and hatred" toward the United States in the Muslim world and warned Americans to prepare for the consequences.

Bin Laden’s remarks were aired on Wednesday by Al Jazeera television, one day after his deputy described Obama as a criminal and warned Muslims not to fall for his polished words.

The comments appeared to be a drive by al Qaeda to pre-empt a major speech to the Muslim world that Obama is due to deliver in Egypt on Thursday.

Bombing suspects planned ‘jihad’ in New York

Four men due in court Thursday to face charges of plotting to bomb Jewish sites and shoot down military planes were arrested after planting what they thought were explosive devices near a synagogue and community center, authorities say.

Officials told The Associated Press the arrests came after a nearly yearlong undercover operation that began in Newburgh, N.Y., about 70 miles north of New York City.

U.S. soldier kills five Americans in Iraq

Pentagon officials say five Americans are dead after a U.S. soldier opened fire at a U.S. base in Baghdad. They say the attacker is in custody.

The officials say the shootings happened on Camp Liberty at a stress clinic, where troops can go for help with the stresses of combat or stress from personal issues.

One senior military official in Washington says it’s unclear whether those killed are workers at the clinic or were there for counseling. He says officials also are unsure whether all the dead are members of the military.

110,600 Iraqi civilians dead since invasion

Iraq’s government has recorded 87,215 of its citizens killed since 2005 in violence ranging from catastrophic bombings to execution-style slayings, according to government statistics obtained by The Associated Press that break open one of the most closely guarded secrets of the war.

Combined with tallies based on hospital sources and media reports since the beginning of the war and an in-depth review of available evidence by The Associated Press, the figures show that more than 110,600 Iraqis have died in violence since the 2003 U.S.-led invasion.

Even with rescue, a solution remains elusive

Even in the glow of the U.S. Navy’s daring rescue of a cargo ship captain from Somali pirates, the military is still searching for a solution to the epidemic of high seas piracy.

The Navy’s effort to coordinate with other international warships and the shipping industry to crack down on cargo vessel seizures has done little to deter the onslaught of multimillion-dollar ship ransoms, Vice Adm. Bill Gortney, commander of U.S. Naval Forces Central Command, said Sunday.

How we should respond to North Korea

President Obama had warned Kim Jong Il that should he launch a long-range ballistic missile the United States would "take appropriate steps to let North Korea know that it can’t threaten the safety and security of other countries with impunity."

Last weekend, Kim went ahead with the launch anyway. Obama took the matter to the United Nations where, as expected, nothing happened.

10,000 more troops may go to Afghanistan

President Barack Obama faces a decision later this year whether to send an extra 10,000 US troops to Afghanistan, amid an escalating war against Islamist insurgents, defense officials said.

A top general and senior Pentagon official disclosed on Wednesday for the first time details of a pending request from the US commander in Afghanistan for yet more troops for a war that has already lasted more than seven years.

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