Originally published on Wed December 17, 2014 2:56 pm
American Alan Gross, who spent five years in a Cuban prison before his release today as a humanitarian gesture, said "it's good to be home," and that he hoped the U.S. and Cuba move past their "mutually belligerent" policies.
"Two wrongs never made a right," Gross said in Washington shortly after he returned to the U.S. aboard a government plane.
Gross appeared frail but cheerful. Some of his front teeth were missing.
Gross thanked President Obama and his national security team for working toward his freedom.
Originally published on Wed December 17, 2014 2:41 pm
Updated at 2:39 p.m. ET
President Obama announced today the most significant change in U.S. policy toward Cuba in more than 50 years, paving the way for the normalization of relations and the opening of a U.S. Embassy in Havana.
Obama said "we will end an outdated approach that for decades has failed to advance our interests and instead we will begin to normalize relations between our two countries."
Even more striking, women ages 18 to 24 who are in college or trade school are less likely to report such incidents than those who aren't in school, despite the increasing number of sexual assault advocates and counselors on campus in recent years.
Originally published on Thu December 11, 2014 12:53 pm
"The report is full of crap."
That's what former Vice President Dick Cheney told Fox News in an interview about a Senate investigation that found the Central Intelligence Agency used brutal techniques to interrogate terrorism suspects and then misled lawmakers, the White House and Congress about what they were doing.
Originally published on Mon December 8, 2014 5:44 pm
The Obama administration released new guidelines today to ban racial profiling by federal law enforcement officers. The guidelines replace ones adopted by the Bush administration in 2003.
The new rules prohibit profiling based on race, ethnicity, national origin, gender, religion or sexual orientation and apply to federal officers, such as the FBI and Secret Service and any local law enforcement that work with them on task forces.
Originally published on Mon December 8, 2014 2:08 pm
The visit of Britain's Prince William to Washington, D.C. has been greeted with the excitement reserved for celebrities in a town starved of real famous people (I mean, spotting Sen. Chuck Schumer at a restaurant can lead to breathless "spotted" tweeting). Folks are disappointed that his wife, Kate, the Duchess of Cambridge, didn't make the trip down from New York City with him. But, this is D.C., and we'll take what we can get on an otherwise slow news morning.
Originally published on Wed December 3, 2014 10:30 pm
Saying that several arms of the U.S. Department of Justice have been monitoring the inquiry into the death of Staten Island resident Eric Garner, Attorney General Eric Holder said, "the Justice Department will proceed with a federal civil rights investigation of Mr. Garner's death."
Holder promised an "independent, thorough, fair and expeditious investigation."
Originally published on Wed December 3, 2014 1:00 pm
Meeting with representatives of nations that have joined the United States in its fight against the so-called Islamic State, Secretary of State John Kerry said the offensive was having "significant impact."
Originally published on Mon December 1, 2014 8:00 pm
After a day spent meeting with his Cabinet, civil rights leaders and other officials about the mistrust of police in communities of color, President Obama will ask Congress for $263 million in part to equip local police with body cameras.
Update at 6:55 p.m. ET: Other Possible Changes
As the president confirmed his plans at the White House, Attorney General Eric Holder announced he will soon release new guidelines to limit racial profiling by authorities.
Originally published on Wed November 26, 2014 8:15 am
This post was updated at 5:30 p.m. ET
Attorney General Eric Holder says "far more must be done to create enduring trust" between police and communities they serve, even as his Justice Department continues to investigate possible discriminatory police actions in Ferguson, Mo.
Originally published on Fri November 21, 2014 1:01 pm
After six years of often bitter back-and-forth with congressional Republicans over the issue of immigration, President Obama announced he has decided to go it alone by temporarily shielding up to 5 million immigrants from being deported.
President Barack Obama is pushing the limits of his authority to shield from deportation millions of immigrants illegally in the United States, but the fate of millions more will still be left unresolved.
Obama is set to announce Thursday that he is sidestepping Congress with his own action on immigration. Watch live below tonight starting at 8:00 pm.
Originally published on Thu November 20, 2014 5:40 pm
Republicans in Congress are warning President Obama against acting alone on immigration, hours ahead of a planned announcement by the president that could provide temporary relief to some of the nearly 12 million immigrants in the country illegally.
Republicans say any unilateral action on immigration by the president would mean there is no chance of passing a comprehensive immigration overhaul in Congress.
U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Samantha Power told a Connecticut audience on Monday that she’s hopeful of meaningful cooperation with Senate Republicans as the Obama administration shapes its foreign policy.
Originally published on Sat November 15, 2014 1:25 pm
Updated at 10:25 a.m. ET
Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel said today that the Pentagon is aiming to invest about 10 percent more over the next five years to upgrade the nation's nuclear deterrent, following reviews that uncovered "systemic problems" in the system.
Hagel said the U.S. was "probably looking at a 10 percent increase" in spending, according to Reuters, which said internal and external reviews have made some 100 recommendations on improving the nuclear forces.
Originally published on Thu November 13, 2014 2:58 pm
Updated at 12:55 pm. EST
Army Gen. Martin Dempsey, the top U.S. military commander, told lawmakers today that the U.S. would consider sending some U.S. troops to fight alongside Iraqi forces in more complex missions against militants of the Islamic State.
He told the House Armed Services Committee that though Iraqi forces were tackling the militants, operations such as retaking the city of Mosul or restoring the border with Syria could need help.
A new agreement between China and the United States to reduce carbon emissions will send strong signals to the global community, according to a Wesleyan professor who has studied climate change for the Obama administration.
Originally published on Thu November 13, 2014 12:30 pm
President Obama says the U.S. will sharply cut its emissions of greenhouse gases, announcing a new approach to climate change alongside Chinese President Xi Jinping. The plan also includes China's agreement to cap its emissions.
The two leaders' pledges are being called dramatic and ambitious — for the U.S., because Obama's earlier plans had called for a smaller cut in emissions, and for China, because the country had previously resisted calls for it to consider capping its emissions as it grows and modernizes.