By Miriam Raftery
February 27, 2014 (San Diego) -- A San Diego State University staff member who lost a leg in Afghanistan has been honored by the San Diego Hall of Champions. Erick McElvenny was named Challenged Athlete of the Year at the 68th annual Salute to the Champions awards ceremony on February 13 after a year that’s included accomplishments that would be daunting for many able-bodied athletes.
By Miriam Raftery
November 27, 2012 (La Mesa)—ECM writer Kristin Kjaero has asked us to post a request from a friend stationed in Afghanistan with the Army Corps of Engineers. He seeks donations of twin-sized blankets for 300 female students. Below is his letter, which tells their remarkable story.
Please read it, and consider donating new or second-hand blankets to bring some much-needed comforts to these courageous and determined young women.
October 18, 2012 -- (San Diego’s East County) – ECM World Watch helps you be an informed citizen about important issues globally and nationally. As part of our commitment to reflecting all voices and views, we include links to a wide variety of news sources representing a broad spectrum of political, religious, and social views. Top world and U.S. headlines include:
- Fresh signs of U.S. housing recovery (BBC)
- This is the biggest economic story in the world ( Business Insider)
- Man arrested after plotting federal reserve bomb, authorities say (CNN)
- Women’s issues move to forefront after debate (Washington Post)
- Romney’s missteps on Libya may hurt criticism of Obama foreign policy (Washington Post)
- Obama edges Romney in second debate: Poll (CBS)
- Conservatives assail debate moderator Crowley (CBS)
- Report: Syria using widely banned cluster bombs (Christian Science Monitor)
- Israel parliament to hold new election (UT San Diego)
- Russia moves to prosecute leader of protests (Reuters)
- Thousands of British troops to leave Afghanistan in 2013 (Reuters)
- Thousands march in Spain to protest austerity (UT San Diego)
- French president proposes banning homework (ABC News)
- Firefox 16: latest upgrade taken offline due to security (BBC)
Read more for excerpts and links to full stories.
- Senate Dems plan tax offensive (The Hill)
- U.S. beefs up Gulf naval force amid tensions with Iran (Reuters)
- NOAA: Last 12 months hottest ever (The Hill)
- U.S. delivers ‘powerful commitment’ to Afghanistan (UT San Diego)
- Has ‘organics’ been oversized? (New York Times)
- The tax man cometh to police you on healthcare (UT San Diego)
- Iran says it has plan to close Strait of Hormuz (UT San Diego)
- What does London’s LIBOR mean to the US? (NPR)
- Polonium found on Arafat’s clothes was planted (Jerusalem Post)
- New projects help 3D printing materialize (NPR)
- Officials watch for body bombs on US bound planes (ABC news)
- Occupy activists breathe new life into May Day (The Nation)
- Why you should be worried about the California mad cow case (Mother Jones)
- Number of painkiller addicted newborns soars (USA Today)
- New world trade center surpasses Empire State Building (CBS News)
- Why is safety a divisive issue for nuclear regulatory commission? (Los Angeles Times)
- Wind farms warming earth in Texas: Turbines mixing air at night could affect local climate and farming (Discovery)
- CMS: Obama healthcare law has saved seniors $34 billion on prescription drugs (The Hill)
- Romney: Osama hit was easy call (The Hill)
- Mexico passes crime victims’ law (BBC)
- 2-horse race in final stretch for Egypt presidency (Reuters)
- Ugandan army says Sudan is backingJoseph Kony’s LRA (BBC)
- Tokyo soil samples would be considered nuclear waste in U.S. (Fairewinds)
- Transcript: Obama hails 'light of a new day' in Afghanistan
- State joblessness rate dips to lowest level since ’09 (SF Chronicle)
- U.S. extends its run of strong job growth another month (NY Times)
- Drones over America: What can they see? (NPR)
- Voters blame Obama for gas prices, but experts say not so fast (Washington Post)
- Rampage in Afghanistan puts long-term US Presence in peril (Christian Science Monitor)
- Afghans urge US exit after killings; US says timetable unchanged (Reuters)
- Syrian opposition calls for international intervention (CNN)
- ‘Arab revolts led to Islamization, instability’ (Jerusalem Post)
- Israel and Gaza factions ‘agree on truce’(Al Jazeera)
- Loss of Greenland ice could become irreversible, scientists say (Los Angeles Times)
- Study: Red meat raises risk of dying; risk higher with processed meats (CBS)
By Kate Malatino
February 9, 2012 -- (San Diego’s East County) – ECM World Watch helps you be an informed citizen about important issues globally and nationally. As part of our commitment to reflecting all voices and views, we include links to a wide variety of news sources representing a broad spectrum of political, religious, and social views. Top world and U.S. headlines include:
- Group urges FTC action on Google privacy (USA Today)
- Dems fight back against GOP in contraception battle (CBS)
- Forgetting a key lesson of Watergate? (CNN)
- Child labor for Victoria’s Secret cotton examined by U.S. (Bloomberg Business)
- U.S. Brigadier General dies in Afghanistan (CNN)
- Santorum sweeps Minnesota, Missouri, Colorado (CNN)
- Mitt Romney wins overwhelming victory in Nevada caucuses (Washington Post)
- NATO vs. Syria (American Conservative)
- Syrians storm embassies after uprising's worst violence (Reuters)
- Activists: Syrian assault leaves 250 dead (NPR)
- U.N. vote on Syria fails (NPR)
- ‘Hezbollah will hit Israel if Syria attacked’ (Jerusaleum Post)
- Iran vows to hit any country that stages attack (San Diego UT)
- Thousands stranded by rising floodwaters in Australia (CNN)
- Blind doctor can see again (Jerusalem Post)
January 29, 2012 (Washington D.C.) — Friday, Representatives Duncan Hunter (R-CA) and Tim Murphy (R-PA), introduced a bipartisan resolution with 100 original cosponsors, expressing gratitude to members of the U.S. Armed Forces for their service and sacrifice in Operations Iraqi Freedom and New Dawn. The resolution is available here.
December 11, 2011 (Washington, DC) --U.S. Representative Duncan Hunter (CA-52), a member of the House Armed Services Committee, has been named to the congressional conference committee that will negotiate differences between the House and Senate versions of the Fiscal Year 2012 National Defense Authorization Act.
September 11, 2011 (Washington DC) -- The House of Representatives has approved an amendment to the National Intelligence AUthorization Acts to combat roadside bombs in Afghanistan.
The amendment, introduced by Congressman Duncan Hunter (R-El Cajon, a member of the House Armed Services Committee, instructs the Director of National Intelligence and the Secretary of Defense to establish a strategy to identify and counter network activity and operations in Pakistan and Afghanistan relating to development and use of improvised explosive devices (IEDs).
BREAKING NEWS: 31 AMERICANS REPORTED KILLED IN HELICOPTER SHOT DOWN BY TALIBAN IN AFGHANISTAN; VICTIMS INCLUDE SEAL TEAM SIX
By Miriam Raftery
August 6, 2011 (San Diego)—A NATO helicopter was shot down today during a conflict with the Taliban in Afghanistan, killing 31 U.S. soldiers and seven Afghans in the deadliest single incident in the 10-year war, Reuters reports. ABC News reports that 25 Navy Seals were on board, plus seven Afghan Special forces soldiers, five crew members and an interpreter.
According to the Associated Press, most of those killed were from Seal Team Six, members of the same unit that killed Osama Bin Laden in Pakistan in May. It is not yet known whether any of the victims may have trained at the Navy Seals base on Coronado. The Pentagon confirms the crash occurred but has not yet released the death toll pending investigation.
Poll shows strong public support for plan; Rep. Hunter visits Afghanistan to meet with military officers
By Miriam Raftery
June 29, 2011 (San Diego) – A Gallup Poll shows 72% of Americans support President Barack Obama’s plan announced last week to withdraw thousands of U.S. troops from Afghanistan this year. Just 23% opposed the troop drawdown plan, and some want to see an even faster troop withdrawal.
Congressman Duncan Hunter (R-El Cajon), a veteran of the Afghanistan and Iraq Wars and member of the House Armed Services Committee, visited Afghanistan this week and met with General David Petraeus. He has voiced support for troop withdrawals, citing erosion of public support. But he called for a shift in focus toward counter-terrorism utilizing special operations forces, intelligence gathering capability and air assets.
August 22, 2010 (San Diego’s East County) – I hope you’ll take heart from this inspiring news. After writing an article about the plight of flood victims in Afghanistan facing starvation, including women and girls at literacy schools founded by East County’s own Rescue Task Force, I received this heart-warming letter from RTF leaders Gary Becks and Andrea Stone:
“Miriam, you win the Motivating Journalism prize for the day... Probably for the next couple years! Sent your article to our board members and a number of supporters last night. Have just received a commitment to match up to $10,000 in donations …I was / am so impressed at reading your article…Thank you - you have touched many lives... and hearts.”
Hundreds of thousands now face starvation as crops, soils washed away
Rescue Task Force seeks help to save lives of Afghan women & girls at literary schools
By Miriam Raftery
August 19, 2010 (San Diego) –“The same floods that are hitting Pakistan are hitting Afghanistan. It’s just horrific,” said Gary Becks, founder of Rescue Task Force, a San Diego-based nonprofit that has its roots in East County.
Becks has led relief efforts in some of the worst disasters on earth including the Asian tsunami, Hurricane Katrina, major earthquakes, and the Cedar Fire. But the scale of devastation in Afghanistan goes far beyond even those catastrophes. Threats from the Taliban make relief efforts dangerous—and with farmlands washed away, the very survival of the Hazara people is at stake.