The special medal for the Pentagon’s drone operators and cyberwarriors didn’t last long. Two months after the “distinguished warfare medal” for troops that don’t set foot on the battlefield was announced, Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel has concluded that it was a bad idea. Some veterans and some lawmakers spoke out against the award, arguing that it was unfair to make the medal a higher honor than some issued for valor on the battlefield.
After ordering a review of a policy announced by his predecessor, Leon E. Panetta, Hagel said Monday that he concluded no such medal was needed. Instead, he said, a “device” will be affixed to existing medals to recognize those who fly and operate drones.
Devices are used by the Pentagon to add a specific form of additional recognition when troops are lauded for exceptional performance.
— Ernesto Londoño
A federal judge has denied a motion for emergency relief from a hunger-striking Guantanamo Bay detainee whose lawyers said he is on the verge of death and is being denied medical care.
U.S. District Judge Thomas Hogan ruled Monday in Washington that he didn’t have jurisdiction over issues relating to conditions of confinement at the U.S. military prison in Cuba. Government lawyers denied that Musa’ab Omar al-Madhwani, a Yemeni, was being denied appropriate care. They also noted that no detainee at Guantanamo Bay has ever died during a hunger strike despite several such strikes over the years, including protests by individual detainees that have lasted years.
Those on prolonged hunger strikes are force-fed by the military. Detainees and guards clashed violently over the weekend at the facility where dozens of inmates are on hunger strike.
— Peter Finn
Some women who are at high risk of breast cancer, including those with a family history of the disease, should consider taking drugs to reduce their chances of getting cancer, a U.S. health advisory group said.
The drugs, tamoxifen and raloxifene, are known to prevent cancer by blocking the effects of estrogen, according to the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force, which released the draft recommendations on its Web site.
— Bloomberg News
Justices stay out of gun debate: The Supreme Court declined on Monday to hear a challenge to a strict New York law that makes it difficult for residents to get a license to carry a concealed handgun in public. The court did not comment in turning away an appeal from five state residents and the Second Amendment Foundation.
— Associated Press