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Army rejects Bowe Bergdahl's appeal accusing Trump of unlawful command influence
An Army appeals court has rejected Bowe Bergdahl's claim that President Trump's public description of him as "a no-good traitor who should have been executed" and other comments on the disgraced soldier's case were substantial enough to alter the course of his court-martial proceedings despite evidence of unlawful command influence (UCI).
In a 2-1 ruling, a trio of Army Court of Criminal Appeals judges determined that while Trump's frequent invocation of Bergdahl in the White House rose to the level of "some evidence" of UCI, the "cumulative effect could not reasonably be perceived by the disinterested member of the public as improper command influence or otherwise indicative of an unfair proceeding."
The judges heard arguments from Bergdahl's attorneys earlier this month that Trump's comments about the case as president constituted "apparent" UCI, evidence of which has led judges in several recent cases to overturn convictions on appeal, by making it it impossible for the soldier to "get a review by a convening authority liberated from the toxic comments of the president of the United States."
During Bergdahl's original court-martial proceedings in February 2017, Army Col. Jeffery R. Nance ruled that Trump's statements on the campaign trail (and, therefore, a private citizen) didn't rise to the level of UCI, but he did delay Bergdahl's sentencing so he could carefully weigh the issue after Trump referred back to his previous comments after becoming president.
"I don't have any doubt whatsoever that I can be fair and impartial in the sentencing in this matter," Nance told the AP. "[But] the member of the public that we are interested in maintaining confidence in the military justice system... is going to be influenced by context."
Bergdahl was was sentenced in 2017 to reduction in rank from sergeant to private, forfeiture of $10,000 in pay and a dishonorable discharge. On Twitter, Trump called the sentence"a complete and total disgrace to our Country and to our Military."
The White House doctor still under investigation for doling out pills like a ‘candy man’ is now running for Congress
Ronny Jackson, the former White House physician and retired Navy rear admiral who had a short run as the nominee for the Department of Veterans Affairs in 2018, now plans to run for a seat in Congress.
University of Phoenix to pay $191 million for lying to troops about its close ties with major companies
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The University of Phoenix, which is owned by Apollo Education Group, has agreed to pay $191 million to settle charges that it falsely advertised close ties with major U.S. companies that could lead to jobs for students, the Federal Trade Commission said on Tuesday.
The University of Phoenix will pay $50 million to the FTC to return to consumers and cancel $141 million in student debt.
Some of the advertisements targeted military and Hispanic students, the FTC said.
As UCF research associate Shane Reynolds guides his avatar over a virtual minefield using his iPad, small beeps and whistles reveal the location of the scourge of the modern war zone: Improvised Explosive Devices, or IEDs. He must take his time to sweep every last inch of the playing field to make sure his character doesn't miss any of the often-deadly bombs.
Despite his slow pace, Reynolds makes a small misstep and with a kaboom! a bomb blows up his player, graphically scattering body parts.
The Navy has posthumously awarded aviator and aircrewman wings to three sailors killed in last week's shooting at Naval Air Station Pensacola.
"The selfless acts of heroism displayed by these young Sailors the morning of Dec. 6 are nothing short of incredible," Chief of Naval Air Training Rear Adm. Daniel Dwyer said in a statement.