Saying that the U.S. is not looking for Iraq to be an ally, Vice President Biden told NPR's Robert Siegel this afternoon that the U.S. now views that country as a partner.
"We're looking for a stable, democratic government that is not beholden to anyone in the region and is able to be secure within its own borders and have its own policy ," he said during an interview in Washington's Eisenhower Executive Office Building, adjacent to the White House.
The final American troops are set to leave Iraq in a matter of days. Just a few thousand remain, and they will be heading south toward Kuwait β the starting point for a war that began nearly nine years ago.
The last American military unit out of Iraq will be part of the 1st Cavalry Division from Fort Hood, Texas. The division fought in some of the war's toughest battles and suffered nearly 300 killed.
The mountains along the border between Afghanistan and Pakistan would be cruel enough without the war raging on below β cliffs drop from 8,000-foot peaks that are spotted with only a few trees among the rocks.
But Afghanistan's eastern border has become the focus of the conflict as militants plot their attacks inside Pakistan, then slip across the rugged frontier to carry them out.
In Afghanistan's southeast Paktika province, Forward Operating Base Tillman looks across toward Pakistan over craggy peaks that American troops have nicknamed "Big Ugly" and "Big Nasty."
Originally published on Tue December 13, 2011 4:26 pm
Remember when the space shuttle β aka "space truck" β was going to make make trips into Earth orbit a routine thing? It really didn't turn out the way people had hoped. Now there's a new pretender to throne, another team ready to try and make bring flights into space a little closer to an everyday reality.
Hart County's school superintendent is arguing that a new test that Kentucky high school students will take for the first time next spring will treat evolution as fact, not theory, and will require schools to teach that way. Superintendent Ricky D. Line raised the issue in recent letters and email messages to state Education Commissioner Terry Holliday and Kentucky Board of Education members. Line wants them to reconsider the "Blueprint" for Kentucky's new end-of-course test in biology.
This time of year, you might be thinking about what sort of gift or tip you'd like to offer your child's teacher for Christmas.
In Alabama, they won't let you get away with that kind of illegal behavior.
Alabama's new ethics law, which took effect in March, bans nearly all gifts to government workers β not just elected officials, but all state, county and municipal employees. That includes schoolteachers, as a lengthy opinion from the state ethics commission makes clear.
Danville City Commission accepted the resignation of Police Chief Jay Newell on Monday. Newell, who served as chief of the department for four years, was granted voluntary reassignment to his previous position as a patrol officer. He cited personal health concerns as the primary reason for the decision.
Local school officials around Kentucky will soon find out how much money they stand to lose in a $57.5 million shortfall to state education funding.Β Education Commissioner Terry Holliday told superintendents in an email Friday that the Kentucky Department of Education would announce mid-year cuts later this month.