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August 28, 2012

News Briefs – August 28, 2012

Iran could open military site to visits

 

Iran could allow representatives from nonaligned nations to visit a military site that the U.N. nuclear watchdog suspects has housed nuclear experiments.

Access for diplomats and others to the Parchin base would be an attempt by Iran to show openness during this week’s Non-Aligned Movement gathering, but it would certainly not satisfy U.N. demands.

U.N. nuclear inspectors have been pressing for wider access to Parchin, southeast of Tehran, to probe suspicions that Iran carried out explosive tests with possible nuclear trigger applications.

The Aug. 27 report by the state-owned yjc.ir news website quotes Deputy Foreign Minister Mohammad Mahdi Akhounzadeh as saying Iran may consider opening to the site to delegates from the 120-nation group. The gathering ends Friday.

The West suspects Iran is pursuing a nuclear weapons program. Tehran denies the charge. AP

 

Israel develops bullet proof grenade

 

Israel Military Industries says it has developed a unique grenade that doesn’t explode when hit by shrapnel, bullets or even if exposed to fire.

Moshe Elert, a senior official with the state-owned defense company, said Aug. 27 the new mechanism could save soldiers’ lives. He would not elaborate on how it works.

He said it was developed after two soldiers were killed in 2010 when a grenade one was carrying was hit by a bullet and exploded. Elert says there have been many similar cases around the world, and the new technology is being sold to other friendly armies.

He says Israel began using the new grenades in recent months.

He said the technology also makes it easier to store and transport the grenades. AP

 

Soldiers, Marines punished for misconduct

 

The Defense Department has given administrative punishments to six Army soldiers for burning Qurans at a U.S. base in Afghanistan, and to three Marines for urinating on the corpses of Taliban insurgents. There were no criminal charges.

Discipline against a Navy sailor in the Quran burnings was dismissed. The Marine Corps says it will announce discipline against other Marines in the urination case later.

The two incidents of misconduct, both revealed earlier this year, enraged Afghans, and the Quran burning triggered riots in the street.

The exact punishments were not disclosed. Administrative punishments could include demotions, extra duty, forfeiture of pay, or a letter in their file. They could also stall any future advancement and end their military careers. AP

 

Pentagon checking SEAL raid book for secrets

 

The Pentagon is reviewing a copy of a soon-to-be-published account of the raid that killed Osama bin Laden, checking for leaks of classified information.

Pentagon spokesman George Little said Aug. 27 the Pentagon “received the manuscript and we are looking at it.”

The book, “No Easy Day,” is scheduled for publication on Sept. 11.

The author, a former Navy SEAL who participated in the raid, did not submit the book until now for pre-publication review that is required by the military secrecy agreements officials say he signed.

A special operations advocacy group, Special Operations-OPSEC, that is criticizing President Barack Obama over alleged leaks and other matters, asked the attorney general to block the book’s release until the government can make sure it reveals no classified information. AP

 

Age discrimination unproven in Boeing sale

 

A federal appeals court has ruled that former employees failed to demonstrate a pattern of age discrimination by Boeing and Spirit AeroSystems.

Ninety former Boeing workers claimed they lost their jobs because of their age when the Chicago-based aerospace manufacturer sold its commercial aircraft operations in Kansas and Oklahoma to Onex Corp. in 2005.

Onex formed Wichita-based Spirit AeroSystems to handle those former Boeing operations.

In its Aug.27 ruling, the 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals upheld a district judge’s 2010 ruling that there is too little evidence to put the case before a jury.

The appeals court found that the hiring practices did not unfairly hurt older workers and that they failed to show the companies intended to interfere with their pension benefits. AP

 




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