Calling it a "critical moment" in Afghanistan, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry is pushing for a partial recount in the country's presidential elections amid alleged vote fraud.
"We are in a very, very critical moment for Afghanistan," Kerry told reporters. "Legitimacy hangs in the balance. The future potential of the transition hangs in the balance. So we've a lot of work to do."
A group of Central American migrant children who made the perilous journey through Mexico into the U.S. are staying now in the New Haven area. They're among the estimated 50,000 unaccompanied youngsters who have inundated the U.S. border since last October.
It's turning into the largest influx of asylum seekers on U.S. soil since the 1980 Mariel boatlift out of Cuba.
Since October, more than 52,000 children — most from Central America and many of them unaccompanied by adults — have been taken into custody. That's nearly double last year's total and 10 times the number from 2009.
The White House said it's asking Congress for $3.7 billion to address the humanitarian crisis along the border with Mexico.
The statement said the funds would cover domestic enforcement, repatriation and reintegration of migrants, transportation costs, additional immigration judges, prosecutors and litigation attorneys to "ensure cases are processed fairly and as quickly as possible."
A surge in migrants to the U.S. southwest border has prompted President Obama to ask Congress for $2 billion in emergency funding to combat the problem. His request comes one year after a Senate immigration reform bill was passed, and then stalled, in the U.S. House.
Originally published on Fri June 27, 2014 12:17 pm
When President Obama announced last week that he was creating a federal task force to investigate the nation's vanishing bee colonies, the moment provided newly minted Press Secretary Josh Earnest an opportunity to crack one of his first jokes on the job.
"When I walked out here today, I knew I was going to be handling a range of sensitive issues," he told reporters. "I didn't know I was going to be talking about the birds and the bees."
Well, the U.S. couldn't do it until the Iraqi government gave U.S. soldiers immunity from prosecution, through what's called a "diplomatic note." If those U.S. soldiers committed any crimes or had any legal troubles while advising Iraqis, the U.S. wanted to handle any prosecutions.
The United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit has released a long-secret memo in which the Obama administration lays out its legal reasoning for launching a drone attack on an American citizen overseas.
The legal justification concerns the drone strike that killed Anwar al-Awlaki, a U.S. citizen who the United States claims was tied to plots against the U.S. and played a key role in al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula.
Originally published on Mon June 23, 2014 11:48 am
As Sunni militants make gains against Iraq's Shiite-led central government, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry paid a previously unannounced visit to Baghdad to meet with Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki on Monday.
Maliki has been criticized for not being more inclusive of Sunnis and Kurds in his government — a change the Obama administration is calling for as part of any plans for military support.
President Barack Obama said the U.S. is prepared to take targeted military actions in Iraq if they would help fight a growing threat from extremist militants. He also said the U.S. is ready to send as many as 300 military advisers to Iraq.
President Obama has ruled out the use of ground troops in Iraq, saying any action will be "targeted and precise" but must be accompanied by political action by Iraqis to end sectarian divisions.
"We will not be sending U.S. troops back into combat in Iraq, but I have asked my national security team to prepare a range of other options that could help support Iraq's security forces," Obama said from the south lawn of the White House.
A Black Hawk helicopter swoops in to pick up Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl in a valley in Afghanistan, in a video of the handover of the American prisoner of war that was posted online early Wednesday. The Pentagon says it's reviewing the video; a spokesman says there's no reason to question its authenticity.
NPR's Steve Inskeep interviewed President Obama on Wednesday about foreign policy, including his approaches to Syria, Ukraine and China, as well as his remaining White House priorities and his effort to close Guantanamo Bay prison. A full transcript of the interview follows:
American leadership in the 21st century will be defined in part by the nation's military strength, "but only in part," President Obama said in a wide-ranging interview with NPR about his foreign policy priorities.
Echoing themes he expressed during a speech Wednesday to West Point graduates, Obama emphasized the importance of international norms and alliances in addressing challenges such as Russia, China and Syria.
A day ahead of a big foreign policy speech at West Point tomorrow, President Obama is making public his plan to pull troops out of Afghanistan.
Obama is largely taking the recommendation of his generals and plans to leave 9,800 troops in Afghanistan for one year beyond the withdrawal of combat forces in December. By the end of 2015, that number will be halved with troops consolidated in the Kabul area, and their primary mission will not be combat but counter-terrorism.
This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm Rachel Martin. This coming week, Veterans Affairs Secretary Eric Shinseki is expected to update President Obama on a nationwide review on VA facilities. Many VA hospitals have been accused of covering up long wait times for veterans and cooking the books to hide these delays. Shinseki announced yesterday that some VA clinics would enhance their capacity and the administration would also make it easier for veterans to get more of their care from private facilities.
Three years ago, members of the President’s Committee on the Arts and Humanities identified eight of the lowest-performing schools in the country, and enrolled them in a new program called the Turnaround Arts Initiative. The goal: to prove that arts education could improve academic achievement and overall school culture.
Anybody found to have manipulated or falsified Veterans Affairs records "will be held accountable," President Obama said Wednesday. The president condemned the reported widespread problems at the VA, defending Secretary of Veterans Affairs Eric Shinseki.
Obama spoke after he and Shinseki met in the Oval Office Wednesday morning with White House deputy chief of staff Rob Nabors, who since last week has been detailed to work with the VA. Neither of those men attended the president's news conference.
John Dean was one of the monumental figures of the Watergate era. The former White House counsel has been widely praised for helping to uncover the misdeeds of the Nixon administration, but was also called the "master manipulator of the cover-up" by the FBI. Dean served prison time after pleading guilty to obstruction of justice and was disbarred.
We’re live from the Hartford Hilton, part of InPractice, a conference put on by the Hartford County Bar Association. Their special guest is John Dean, former White House Counsel during the Nixon administration. Dean is credited with cooperating with investigators, and linking President Nixon to the Watergate scandal. He was also called, by the FBI, the “master manipulator of the cover up.”
Dean pleaded guilty to obstruction of justice, and spent four months in jail. He has faced decades of questions and criticism about his role. The story he’s here to tell lawyers is about the Legacy of Watergate, and what it means for today’s legal profession.