Midday Roundup: The U.S. military's hot, nuclear mess
by Lynde Langdon
Posted 5/22/14, 12:21 pm
Loose nukes. There are 450 nuclear missiles locked away in silos around the United States, and the unit tasked with guarding them is a hot mess. An investigation by The Associated Press found leadership problems, training lapses, breakdowns in discipline, and low morale in the nuclear missile corps. Most notably, the Air Force’s 341st Missile Wing at Malmstrom Air Force Base in Montana failed a drill last summer that simulated the hostile take over of a missile launch silo.
OK, it’s a coup. After months of political gridlock paralyzed the government, the Thai military seized control of the country earlier this week and declared martial law. The military leaders wavered for a few days about what would happen next, but they announced on television today that they had, indeed, seized power from the country’s leaders. They plan to initiate government reform to bring the government back to working order, though how they do it remains to be seen. The leaders have unsuccessfully tried to mediate between politicians on both sides of the deadlock. The conflict in Thailand is a classic case of an invigorated rural majority emerging from poverty and accusing the established middle and upper classes of corruption and oppression.
Free at last. A 25-year-old woman has reunited with her family 10 years after her mother’s ex-boyfriend abducted her. Isidro Garcia, 41, allegedly held the girl captive and forced her to marry him and have his child. The woman, whose name has not been released, came to the country illegally in 2004 to live with her mother and sister. She told police her captor said she would be deported to Mexico if she tried to escape. She lived as the man’s wife in Santa Ana, Calif., until recently, when she connected with her sister on Facebook and decided to go to the police. Neighbors said the two lived under false identities, held service jobs at nearby businesses, attended church, and hosted parties for the neighborhood children.
Deadlock. Will the civil war in Syria ever end? Desperate to push both sides toward resolution, the UN Security Council tried today to refer the crisis to the International Criminal Court. In keeping with their ongoing support for the government of President Bashar al-Assad, Russia and China both vetoed the resolution. The International Criminal Court would have been responsible for investigating possible war crimes committed by both sides in the civil war that has created a humanitarian crisis.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.