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1. Md. lawmakers approve veterans’ driver’s licenses. Maryland’s General Assembly has voted unanimously to create a “veteran” status on Maryland driver’s licenses.
2. Obama administration asks that large cross remain as war memorial. The Obama administration is asking the Supreme Court to allow a 43-foot-tall cross that serves as a war memorial to remain atop Mount Soledad near San Diego, arguing the cross that has been there since 1954 is not an endorsement of religion.
3. Record storage offered to vets. Veterans coming off active duty are urged to keep their discharge papers handy and to take advantage of a program offered by Peoria County, Ill., that would allow those who served on active duty to store their discharge papers, known as DD-214s, at the recorder’s office.
4. Panetta plane incident more serious than first disclosed. New details of the incident Thursday in Afghanistan involving Defense Secretary Leon Panetta’s plane and a stolen vehicle speeding across the tarmac — coming at a time of increased violence directed at NATO and U.S. forces — was more serious than U.S. officials originally let on.
5. Congress: No money for Pacific troop moves until study is complete. Despite an end-of-the-month congressional deadline, the Secretary of the Navy told a Senate committee Thursday he does not know whether a contractor has been hired yet to conduct an independent review of plans to relocate thousands of Marines from Japan to Guam.
6. Female Marines aim to blend in, but be visible enough to set an example. Female Marines don’t like people to focus on their gender. They’re just Marines, they say. But some who have been “the first” — to fly with an all-woman Marine One crew, to serve with a female engagement team in Afghanistan — said they’ve realized the importance of setting a positive example and showing other young women the opportunities available to them in the military.
7. The journey home: A bittersweet return caps costly deployment. As Pfc. Garrett Schneider and nearly 300 other soldiers stood waiting to enter the hall for the Fort Drum homecoming ceremony, a serenity settled within him. He’d worked too hard, had too many close calls and lost too much to rush this. He wanted the moment he had longed for to slowly unfold.
8. ACLU suit against VA over homeless vets may proceed, judge says. Los Angeles Times A federal judge Friday declined to dismiss the ACLU Foundation of Southern California’s lawsuit against the US Department of Veterans Affairs over the agency’s alleged failure to provide housing and services for thousands of mentally impaired veterans.
9. Legislators to meet with VA officials on Lafayette clinic. The Daily Advertiser Louisiana legislators will meet with officials from the US Department of Veterans Affairs next week to discuss plans for a VA clinic in Lafayette. Earlier this week, the VA announced that the entire process would have to start over because of problems …
10. US Congress to probe denials of Filipino war veterans’ claims. Inquirer.net A congressional committee on veterans’ affairs will start an investigation to verify why compensation claims of Filipino World War II veterans have been denied by the United States government. In particular, the Disability …