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2 Dead, 20 Hurt in Va. Tornado

Twister touched down in Cape Charles

(Newser) - Two people have been confirmed dead after a tornado struck a campground in Cape Charles, Va., WTKR reports. At least 20 more were injured in what the Virginian-Pilot describes as "a fast moving storm that blew across the Eastern Shore this morning, toppling trees, injuring campers and blowing over... More »

'Enduring Freedom' Claims 2000th US Fatality

Cpl. Taylor J. Baune of Andover, Minnesota, has the grim distinction

(Newser) - "Operation Enduring Freedom" has officially claimed its 2,000th American life, with the death of Cpl. Taylor J. Baune of Andover, Minnesota, yesterday, CNN reports. Baune died in combat, according to the Minneapolis Star Tribune , but no other details are available. He had just gotten married in March. More »

The Last American Killed in Iraq

David Hickman, 23, was last of some 4,500 to die

(Newser) - On Nov. 14, just a month before the final US troops left Iraq, a 23-year-old soldier lost his life to an improvised explosive device. David Emanuel Hickman was the last American to be killed in a war that cost some 4,500 Americans their lives, the AP reports. With the... More »

That 'War' Thing? So Passé

Battle between world powers no longer profitable

(Newser) - Not to jinx anything, but massive wars between world powers are really going out of style. "These prototypical wars have become increasingly rare, and the world hasn’t seen one since the three-week invasion of Iraq in 2003," argue Joshua S. Goldstein and Steven Pinker in the New ... More »

Crime Killing Far More Than War: Study

It is easily the biggest source of armed violence

(Newser) - You’re a lot more likely to be shot by a criminal than by an enemy combatant, according to a new international study. Crime is a drastically larger source of armed violence than war, the 2011 Global Burden of Armed Violence report concludes. Of the 526,000 people killed violently... More »

Marines: Let Us Wear Memorial KIA Bracelets

Troops frustrated at inconsistent ban

(Newser) - Lance Cpl. Glenn Payne used to wear a bracelet carrying the name of a close friend who was killed in action in Afghanistan—until he was ordered to take it off. Marine Corps policy sees such KIA bracelets as unauthorized jewelry, but the ban on them is enforced inconsistently—and... More »

Witnesses Recount Helicopter Tragedy

Chinook burst into flames, crashed in pieces

(Newser) - As soon as the Chinook helicopter carrying 30 American troops and eight Afghans was hit by a rocket-propelled grenade fired from a hillside, it burst into flames, a witness tells the AP . "After it started burning, it crashed. It came down in three pieces. We could see it burning... More »

Was Crashed Copter's Rescue Mission Necessary?

Investigators probing that question

(Newser) - A heartbreaking twist in the helicopter tragedy that claimed 38 US and Afghan lives: The rescue mission the troops were en route to may not even have been necessary. Special Operations forces in the remote Tangi Valley requested assistance after coming under fire from "several" insurgents, even though they... More »

NATO: Taliban Rocket Likely Downed Helicopter

Officials working to recover every single piece

(Newser) - The helicopter that crashed over the weekend in Afghanistan, killing 30 US troops and eight others, was likely shot down by a Taliban rocket, NATO forces said today. Though the Taliban was quick to claim responsibility, Western officials had been tight-lipped until today's announcement, Reuters notes. The Navy SEALs... More »

US Sees Iran's Hand in Iraq Violence

June the deadliest month in two years

(Newser) - June was the deadliest month in two years for US troops in Iraq, with 15 killed in various attacks—and the US thinks Iran is to blame. Military officials think Iran is handing militia groups more sophisticated weapons, like rockets, armor-piercing grenades, and improved jam-resistant roadside bombs, the Washington Post... More »

North Korean Attack Killed 2 Civilians

Two marines also killed, 18 others wounded

(Newser) - Rescuers sifting through the wreckage left by North Korea’s artillery assault on Yeonpyeong Island found the burned bodies of two civilians today—the first civilian deaths reported from the skirmish, the AP reports. Two South Korean marines were also killed, and another 18 people wounded in the attack; 30... More »

1 Dead, 5 Hurt in Afghan Protests Against Karzai, US

Police 'warning shots' hit crowd of protesters

(Newser) - Afghan police today fired into a crowd of rock-hurling anti-American demonstrators chanting "Death to America," "Death to Christians," and "Death to Karzai" in Kabul today. One was killed and at least five injured, two from gunshots. The US Koran-burning controversy has stirred days of outrage... More »

The Long History of How We Care for Our Dead

Bringing them home is a fairly modern idea

(Newser) - In the Seminole Indian Wars of the early 1800s, only those families who could afford the cost of sending their dead relatives' remains home would receive them; the rest were buried where they took their last breath. Today, some 5,000 fallen soldiers have been flown home from Iraq and... More »

1000th US Serviceman Killed Was On Second Tour

Marine nearly lost his leg on first Afghanistan tour

(Newser) - Here's a name to think about on Memorial Day: Jacob Leicht. This week, the Marine became the 1,000th US serviceman killed in Afghanistan by AP's count. But his story goes beyond that: He was on his second tour of duty when he stepped on an explosive and was killed... More »

US Deaths in Afghanistan Reach 1,000

Suicide bomber's attack in Kabul kills 5

(Newser) - A suicide attack in Kabul that killed five US troops today has brought the American death toll in the war to 1,000, reports the New York Times . In an extended look at the unwanted milestone, the Times notes that it took 7 years to reach the first 500 deaths... More »

Lollypop-Like Device Lets Blind Soldier 'See'

Camera sends current to tongue; brain can visualize

(Newser) - A lollypop-like device hooked up to a video camera is allowing a British soldier blinded in Iraq to “see” with his tongue. Craig Lundberg, 24, wears sunglasses with the camera embedded, the Guardian reports; the camera then turns his surroundings into electric currents sent to Lundberg’s tongue, and... More »

Latest Palin Controversy Is Lefty Hokum

Bloggers rip her bracelet, but it's not what they think

(Newser) - A column on Sarah Palin’s black bracelet has the lefty blogosphere in a full-flamed fury—but it’s a misguided “hit piece,” William Jacobson tut-tuts. Though the bracelet is sometimes used to memorialize a relative or comrade killed in military action (as veteran Eric Robinson writes in... More »

Haitians Pile Bodies in the Streets

Thousands expected lost, including archbishop and UN official

(Newser) - Haitians piled bodies along the devastated streets of their capital today after a powerful earthquake yesterday destroyed most of Port-au-Prince, reducing to rubble schools, shacks, the National Palace and the UN peacekeeping headquarters alike. Untold numbers were still trapped. It seemed clear that the death toll from the magnitude-7.0... More »

Afghanistan '09 Twice as Deadly as Iraq for US

Military expects further rise in casualties

(Newser) - This has been the first year since the Iraq war began that more Americans troops were killed in Afghanistan than Iraq, and next year is expected to be even worse. Some 319 American troops have died in Afghanistan this year, compared with 148 for Iraq, USA Today reports. More »

US Death Toll in Afghanistan Doubles Over '08

310 have died so far; experts think surge will worsen losses

(Newser) - A bomb has killed the 310th US soldier to die in Afghanistan this year, making the total number of 2009 casualties exactly twice that of the 155 lost in 2008. And though this has been the deadliest year of the war for the US, military officials tell the AFP that... More »

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