Tom Bowman http://wvxu.org en The Marines Are Looking For A Few Good (Combat-Ready) Women http://wvxu.org/post/marines-are-looking-few-good-combat-ready-women The challenge for the Marines, and for the Army, is how to open up ground combat jobs to women in January 2016, without lowering standards.<p>And here's where things stand in the Marines.<p>Eighty-five female Marines already made it through an <a href="http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=239534349" target="_blank">infantry training course</a> last fall at Camp Lejeune, N.C., which included drills such as attacking a mock enemy force, hidden in a pine forest. Mon, 07 Jul 2014 07:16:00 +0000 Tom Bowman 28879 at http://wvxu.org The Marines Are Looking For A Few Good (Combat-Ready) Women U.S. Faces Challenges In Shoring Up Iraq's Crumbling Military http://wvxu.org/post/whats-behind-collapse-iraqs-military Rick Brennan remembers sitting around Baghdad back in 2011 with some fellow U.S. military planners. Talk turned to the Iraqi army of the future. In one scenario, they pictured the Iraqi army falling apart, splintering along ethnic lines.<p>"We painted a worst-case scenario, a nightmare scenario, that was exactly what we're seeing take place right now," Brennan says.<p>What's taking place right now is an Iraqi army under attack by the Islamist militants of ISIS, who are capturing cities in Iraq's north and west. Tue, 24 Jun 2014 20:15:00 +0000 Tom Bowman 28415 at http://wvxu.org U.S. Faces Challenges In Shoring Up Iraq's Crumbling Military Under Attack By ISIS, Iraq Agrees To Give U.S. Troops Immunity http://wvxu.org/post/under-attack-isis-iraq-agrees-give-us-troops-immunity Remember last week when President Obama said <a href="http://www.npr.org/blogs/thetwo-way/2014/06/16/322451204/militant-group-advances-in-iraq-taking-northern-iraqi-town">he planned to send up to 300 military advisers to Iraq</a>?<p>Well, the U.S. couldn't do it until the Iraqi government gave U.S. soldiers immunity from prosecution, through what's called a "diplomatic note." If those U.S. soldiers committed any crimes or had any legal troubles while advising Iraqis, the U.S. wanted to handle any prosecutions.<p>Here's what Pentagon spokesman Rear Adm. Mon, 23 Jun 2014 19:44:00 +0000 Tom Bowman 28351 at http://wvxu.org Under Attack By ISIS, Iraq Agrees To Give U.S. Troops Immunity In Obama's Iraq Plan, An Answer That Breeds More Questions http://wvxu.org/post/obamas-iraq-plan-answer-breeds-more-questions President Obama says that up to 300 U.S. military personnel will be heading to Iraq to advise Iraqi forces, not to serve in combat. But the proposal raises more questions: Will those U.S. forces heading out with Iraqi troops be armed? What are the rules of engagement? And how long will they stay? <div class="fullattribution">Copyright 2014 NPR. Fri, 20 Jun 2014 20:50:00 +0000 Tom Bowman 28268 at http://wvxu.org Obama Rules Out Ground Troops; What Else Can U.S. Do In Iraq? http://wvxu.org/post/obama-rules-out-ground-troops-what-else-can-us-do-iraq President Obama said that he will help the Iraqi military break the momentum of the militants on the march to Baghdad. The Pentagon said that one possible option could include airstrikes. But the president said that any military help must include political solutions from the Iraqi government, which has helped fuel the unrest by failing to reach out to its Sunni minority. Fri, 13 Jun 2014 20:56:00 +0000 Tom Bowman 27974 at http://wvxu.org