Metro-East News

Roger That: U.S.-led raid on ISIS prison frees 70 hostages

Mike Fitzgerald
Mike Fitzgerald

A U.S. military special operator was reportedly been killed early Thursday morning during a secret raid on an ISIS prison in northern Iraq. The raid was conducted by U.S. and Iraqi Special Operations. As many has 70 Kurdish hostages are said to have been rescued.

The New York Times was the first to report on this classified raid, in which military officials have declined to comment. Iraqi officials have reported this raid to be a significant joint strike against the Islamic State. Iraqis reported the joint mission was carried out with the support of U.S. helicopters, airstrikes and Kurdish special operators.

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The increasingly tense relationship between Congress and the Department of Veterans Affairs was on display in a standoff Wednesday in which the department refused to allow five officials prominent in a report on misuse of authority and waste of government money to appear before the House Veterans Affairs Committee for questioning, according to the New York Times.

The department said allowing the officials to appear could jeopardize its ability to investigate the allegations.

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The White House says President Barack Obama will veto a sweeping $612 billion defense policy bill, citing objections over how the measure is funded, according to Military.com.

Obama plans to veto the bill Thursday afternoon in the Oval Office.

Obama rejects provisions in the bill that would complicate his pledge to close the U.S. detention facility at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. It’s the first time Obama has rejected the measure. Presidents have signed the bipartisan bill into law annually for more than 50 years.

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Russia's defense ministry said Tuesday it has built a giant military base in the far northern Arctic where 150 soldiers can live autonomously for up to 18 months, according to Military.com.

The ministry said the building erected on the large island of Alexandra Land, which is part of the Franz Josef Land archipelago, is 97 percent complete.

Named the “Arctic Trefoil,” or three-lobed leaf, the sprawling three-pointed structure is colored red white and blue like the Russian flag.

The base is a permanent structure located on the 80th parallel north and has an area of 14,000 square meters (150,000 square feet). The building can house 150 soldiers and stock enough fuel and food to let them work there autonomously for a year and a half, the ministry said.

Mike Fitzgerald: 618-239-2533, @MikeFitz3000

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