President Barack Obama has not yet served three full years as commander in chief, but the number of U.S. casualties in the 10-year-old Afghanistan war has now tripled since Obama was inaugurated on Jan. 20, 2009.
On that day, the total casualty count for the then-7-year-old Afghan war was 569. As of Sept. 30 of this year, it was 1,698. The 1,129 additional U.S. casualties in Afghanistan since Obama took office equals 66.5 percent of all U.S. casualties there for the duration of the war. With three months still to go, 2011 is already the second deadliest year of the war.
Cecilia Munoz, the White House director of intergovernmental affairs, compared the federal crime of being in the country illegally to jaywalking.
"If you were running the police department of any urban area in this country, you would spend more resources going after serious criminals than after jaywalkers. DHS (the Department of Homeland Security) is doing the immigration equivalent of the same thing," Munoz told the Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute (CHCI) conference on Monday.
The Iranian government is racing to launch its first Spanish-language news channel by the end of this year, which is expected to reach audiences in Latin America and Europe, a Brazilian news outlet reported.
HispanTV, the name of the upcoming Iranian channel, has already made its debut on the Web, covering news in Iran, the Americas, the United States, Canada, Middle East, Europe, Asia, and Africa and also reporting on culture, health, sports, society, economy, and technology.
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton told the Senate Foreign Relations Committee last week that even after President Barack Obama withdraws 33,000 soldiers from Afghanistan by September 2012, there will still be “twice as many” U.S. troops in the country as there were when he took office.
Although the annual federal budget deficit is expected to hit $1.65 trillion this year and the national debt is already at $14.34 trillion, House Minority Whip Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) said today he disagrees with House Speaker John Boehner’s (R-Ohio) assessment that America is broke.
“America is not broke,” Hoyer said at the Bipartisan Policy Center in Washington, D.C.. “America has extraordinary resources and we can use those resources, both intellectual and financial, to get us to a place where we are again a fiscally sound nation, a fiscally balanced nation, and future generations are not at risk.”
Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), when talking to Capitol reporters, said that Fox News makes it difficult for him to garner support for his stance on immigration reform, which includes a “pathway to citizenship” for illegal aliens already living in the country.
The senator, a member of the Judiciary Committee, said that Fox News using the word “amnesty” during the 24-hour news cycle has hindered support for his position on reforming the U.S. immigration system, which lawmakers on both sides say is broken.
“In today’s world, it’s very hard for bi-partisan agreements to be formed,” said Graham, “because those who don’t like what you’re trying to do are able to generate a lot of pushback early on, so this 24 hour news cycle makes it very, very difficult, but not impossible.
The U.S. Customs and Border Protection agency has apprehended more suspected terrorists on the nation’s northern border than along its southern counterpart, CBP Commissioner Alan Bersin said Tuesday.
“In terms of the terrorist threat, it’s commonly accepted that the more significant threat” comes from the U.S.-Canada border, Bersin told a hearing of the Senate Judiciary subcommittee on Immigration, Refugees, and Border Security.
One U.S.-Mexico border town had more civilian casualties in its drug war last year than Afghanistan had in its entire country.
In Ciudad Juarez, Mexico--which sits across the Rio Grande River from El Paso, Texas—3,111 civilians were murdered in 2010. In all of the territory of Afghanistan, where U.S. forces are at war with Taliban insurgents, there 2,421 civilians were killed
More civilians were killed last year in Ciudad Juarez, the Mexican city across the border from El Paso, Texas, than were killed in all of Afghanistan.
The 1,200 National Guard troops that are being deployed incrementally to the southwest border "will not be doing direct law enforcement," said U.S. National Guard Bureau Director of Communications Jack Harrison when asked if the forces would be interdicting drugs and undocumented immigrants.
"The two mission sets are criminal analysts and enter-identification team," Harrison told CNSNews.com. "I can tell you that guardsmen will not be doing direct law enforcement on the southwest border."
In other words, the National Guardsmen will not be used to actually stop and detain illegal aliens trying to sneak across the border into the United States.
Harrison made his comments on Friday during a "bloggers roundtable" sponsored by the Department of Defense (DOD).