This Week in National Insecurity: Do Ask, Do Tell Edition

| Fri Jul. 22, 2011 12:45 AM EDT
Photo illustration by Adam Weinstein; Civil War by US National Guard/Flickr Commons, flag by obeeah13/Flickr Commons

Got a debt-ceiling migraine, America? Here's your martial medicine: All the latest developments from the national security world, sure to ease your budget deficit hangover.

The sitrep:

  • Not all Republicans are against entitlements. Take Alabama, which still collects a special property tax on behalf of its war veterans. Its Confederate war veterans. ("Broadly speaking, almost all taxes have their start in a war of some sort," a historian explains.)

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  • Back in 2007, a Marine adviser exposed how the service was ignoring troop requests for life-saving mine-resistant vehicles because they might compete with Humvees and other big-ticket items on the Corps' wish list. The Marines responded by yanking that whistleblower's security clearance. But now, several nonprofits are spearheading a public drive to restore the truth-teller's job and reputation. Here's how you can help.
  • Why did the freshman congressman call the senior congresswoman "vile, unprofessional, and despicable" and "not a lady"? Because THE ARMY, that's why.
  • The bad news: Mullah Omar is not, repeat, not dead. Online rumors had him dying of a heart attack, because a Taliban leader's two natural enemies are infidels and arterial plaque. The good news: Nothing's more embarrassing for an insurgent than getting his website hacked, right? Right?
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