NEWS ABOUT: Bagram Air Force Base

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Obama Drops In on US Troops in Afghanistan

Surprise visit his 4th; won't meet with Karzai in clear snub

(Newser) - President Obama secretly slipped into Afghanistan under the cover of darkness today for a weekend visit with US troops serving in the closing months of America's longest war. Air Force One landed at Bagram Air Field, the main US base in Afghanistan, after an overnight flight from Washington. Obama... More »

US Can't Close Bagram, Either

Nicknamed the 'second Guantanamo'

(Newser) - The US is preparing to pull out of Afghanistan, but there's one fly in the ointment: the prison at Bagram air base, which has been nicknamed "the second Guantanamo," the Washington Post reports. The US currently houses 67 non-Afghan inmates there, some of whom it says are... More »

Civilian Plane Crashes at Bagram; 7 Dead

Taliban claims responsibility, but NATO says it was an accident

(Newser) - The US-led military coalition says seven people died when a civilian cargo aircraft crashed at Bagram Air Field today. In a statement, the coalition confirmed that all seven civilian crew members were killed in the incident. The Taliban quickly claimed responsibility for the crash. But the coalition denied that, saying... More »

At Last, US Hands Disputed Bagram Prison to Afghans

As John Kerry arrives in Kabul to meet with Karzai

(Newser) - John Kerry dropped in unexpectedly on Afghanistan today, as the US finally handed over control of a prison near Bagram Air Force Base, CNN reports. The transition follows long-running controversy over the site; the deal was announced a year ago, and was supposed to put Bagram in Afghan hands six... More »

US General to Troops: Karzai's Threatening Us

Afghan president's comments put military on alert

(Newser) - The US commander in Afghanistan put the troops on high alert yesterday, saying they were in extra danger after the latest salvo of anti-American rhetoric from Afghan president Hamid Karzai, including one that sounded like an outright threat, the New York Times reports. In a speech Tuesday, Karzai said that... More »

Karzai to Afghan Troops: Take Back Our Prison

President orders Afghan forces to retake control of Bagram prison

(Newser) - Afghanistan President Hamid Karzai says the US has not abided by an agreement to hand over the prison at Bagram Air Base to Afghan forces, so he today ordered those forces to take over the prison, the New York Times reports. Karzai says the two-month grace period to complete the... More »

US Military Chief's Plane Blasted by Afghan Rockets

But Army Gen. Martin Dempsey was 'nowhere near' the plane

(Newser) - Militants fired rockets at a US base in Afghanistan last night, damaging the plane of the chairman of the US joint chiefs of staff while he was on a visit. But Army Gen. Martin Dempsey was "nowhere near" the aircraft, a spokesman said today. A Taliban rep claimed responsibility... More »

Troops in Koran Burning to Be Punished, Not Charged

They're looking at something like a rank and pay drop

(Newser) - The US military will not recommend the US troops who burned Korans at an Afghanistan NATO base, sparking protests , face any criminal charges. Administrative punishments have been recommended instead, MSNBC reports. The punishment will likely involve a rank and pay drop, a letter of reprimand, or the assignment of additional... More »

US Agrees to Hand Prisoners Over to Afghans

But it will retain veto power on those released

(Newser) - The US has agreed to hand over all of its Afghan detainees to the country's government, on the condition that it will retain the right to veto any releases, officials announced today. Officially, the agreement is effective immediately, but it allows for a six-month transition to full Afghan control,... More »

2 US Troops Shot Dead Over Koran Burning

As President Obama formally apologizes for the incident

(Newser) - The Koran-burning protests sweeping Afghanistan have claimed American lives, a source tells CBS News, which reports that two US troops were shot dead this morning by "an individual wearing an Afghan National Army uniform." Four more were wounded in the attack, which occurred in the eastern Nangahar province... More »

4 Dead as Koran Protests Rage

Afghan protesters set fire to American contractors' housing compound

(Newser) - At least four people were killed and dozens wounded today as protests over the burning of copies of the Koran at Bagram Air Force Base swept across Afghanistan. Police shot and killed two demonstrators outside of Bagram, and one each in Logar Province and Kabul, Reuters reports. In the capital,... More »

Afghans Storm Bagram Over Koran Burning

Afghans outraged over reported desecration of holy book

(Newser) - Throngs of protesters rushed to the US base in Bagram, Afghanistan, this morning, following a report that troops there had allegedly burned a number of Korans. Police estimate that more than 3,000 took part in the demonstration, hurling rocks through windows and chanting, "long live Islam" and "... More »

Karzai to US: Hand Over Bagram Prison

Miffed Afghan president accuses US of human rights abuses

(Newser) - Hamid Karzai today demanded that the US give up control of its prison in Bagram by the end of the month, over what his office called "many cases of violations of Afghan Constitution … and human rights." It's a familiar demand—Afghan officials announced they had a... More »

US Still Holding Terror Suspects in Secret Jails

Suspects held up to nine weeks, say sources

(Newser) - The US military is still detaining terror suspects in a network of around 20 secret prisons spread throughout Afghanistan, interrogating them without charge for weeks at a time, sources tell the AP . For a long time the Pentagon denied the existence of such facilities, even in the face of descriptions... More »

Live Shell Removed From Soldier's Head

Air Force docs don body armor to extract live ammo

(Newser) - When a CT scan turned up a live round of ammo that could explode at any time embedded in a young Afghan soldier, Air Force surgeons knew exactly what to do: don flak jackets, evacuate nonessential personnel, and operate. The shell—part of the shrapnel that had been packed into... More »

Obama Rallies US Forces in Afghanistan

On surprise visit, president speaks to cheering crowd

(Newser) - Wrapping up his 6-hour surprise visit to Afghanistan with a speech before a crowd of service members, President Obama said today, "There's no visit that I considered more important than this visit that I'm making right now." After spending the early part of his overnight trip pressing Hamid... More »

Obama Makes Surprise Trip to Afghanistan

President meeting with Karzai, cabinet

(Newser) - President Barack Obama made a surprise visit to Afghanistan today for a firsthand look at the 8-year-old war he inherited and dramatically escalated. After an overnight flight from Washington, the president landed in Afghanistan for a stay of just a few hours, all in darkness. He flew by helicopter from... More »

Teen Afghan Prisoners Claim Abuse at US Site

Say they were beaten, photographed naked at Bagram

(Newser) - Two Afghan teenagers held prisoner by the US at the Bagram air base say American interrogators beat them, deprived them of sleep, photographed them naked, and made them look at porn to humiliate them sexually. The teens' accounts to the Washington Post have not been substantiated, but they have the... More »

Obama to Let Bagram Prisoners Challenge Detention

Representatives would amass evidence, witnesses for detainees

(Newser) - The White House plans to give some 600 detainees at a US-run prison in Kabul greater power to dispute their custody, the New York Times reports. After an expected rubber stamp from Congress, the Obama administration will send representatives to Bagram Air Base to amass evidence and witnesses for detainees.... More »

Afghan Detainees Allege Abuse at US Base

(Newser) - Many Afghans once detained by the US military at Bagram air base, north of Kabul, say they were treated similarly to abused prisoners at Abu Ghraib in Iraq, the BBC reports. “They did things that you would not do against animals let alone to humans,” a former detainee... More »

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