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Daily News Brief December 7, 2016

dnbAn Air Force first sergeant helps a parent choose a tricycle during the annual toy drive at Eglin Air Force Base, Fla., on Friday. The drive collected about 2,000 toys for military families in need of assistance during the holidays. Samuel King Jr./Air Force | Military Times >>

Today’s Top Stories

Gaines filed the proposal in response to Los Angeles Times reporting that nearly 10,000 soldiers were ordered to repay large enlistment bonuses — and slapped with interest charges, wage garnishments and tax liens if they refused — after audits revealed extensive overpayments by the California Guard at the peak of the wars last decade. | The Los Angeles Times >>

Fox Sports 1 president Jamie Horowitz and his wife Kara, hosted a fundraiser for Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America (IAVA) organization on Friday evening at their Pacific Palisades home. | The Hollywood Reporter >>

“We don’t know when we are going to be there but we will be heading to Flint,” Wes Clark Jr., who helped organize the thousands of veterans who flooded into Standing Rock in recent days, told MLive.com. “This problem is all over the county. It’s got to be more than veterans. People have been treated wrong in this county for a long time.” | Fusion >>

Iraq and Afghanistan

With Afghan armed forces and their NATO allies already struggling to cope with the Taliban insurgency across much of the country, the prospect of an expanding Islamic State group has alarmed authorities and the U.S. military. | Reuters >>

A crater in the ground is all that remains of the living room where the family once hosted neighbors and relatives for tea. Nearby, a crumbling stairway rises from the rubble, leading to nowhere. Darkening storm clouds gather above where the bedroom should have been. | NBC News >>

Fifteen years, half a trillion dollars and 150,000 lives since going to war, the United States is trying to extricate itself from Afghanistan. Afghans are being left to fight their own fight. A surging Taliban insurgency, meanwhile, is flush with a new inflow of money. | The New York Times >>

Military Affairs

The announcement, first reported by USA Today, is part of a review of all Silver Stars and service crosses awarded since Sept. 11, 2001. As part of the review, the Navy has also determined that an unspecified number of Silver Stars will be upgraded to Navy Crosses. | Stars and Stripes >>

Carter made the announcement during a bilateral meeting with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, who on Monday said he would visit Pearl Harbor in late December — making him the first Japanese leader to pay tribute to victims of Japan’s Dec. 7, 1941, attack. | UPI >>

The test, which will take place in the Jacksonville, Florida, area, is in the planning phase. The clinics will be run by Navy corpsmen, said Vice Adm. Forrest Faison III, the Navy surgeon general, during a Dec.1 session at the conference of the Association of Military Surgeons of the United States, held just outside Washington, D.C. | Military Times >>

#VetsRising

But if you think this happened by accident, think again and read Hernandez’s story, which will surely inspire you. Born in a small town in Puerto Rico, Hernandez didn’t exactly fit in at school. While his academic performance was poor, he knew early on he had another calling in life. | Forbes >>

Luthy, a disabled Air Force vet, had been struggling to find work since he needed his service animal, a dog named Charlotte, to be with him. But he got hired for a part-time job at a Lowe’s in Abilene, Texas. Hiring Luthy meant Lowe’s was also hiring Charlotte. “We were interviewing people for his position. And he was one of the applicants. And so he showed up for the interview and he had Charlotte with him,” Jay Fellers, a human resource manager at Lowes, told CNN affiliate KRBC. | KTLA >>

On Saturday night, Southwest flight #4494 from Chicago was diverted to Denver due to a potential security threat on board. Navy Veteran David Ward was among the 170 people on the flight and said he noticed something strange about the man sitting across the aisle from him. | News3LV >>

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