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U.S. intelligence officials have determined a Russian effort is underway to create a pretext for its troops to further invade Ukraine, and Moscow has already prepositioned operatives to conduct "a false-flag operation" in eastern Ukraine, according to the White House.

Maj. Gen. Kevin Vereen, head of Army Recruiting Command, told AP that shuttered schools and the competitive job market over the past year have posed significant challenges for recruiters. So heading into the most difficult months of the year for recruiting, the Army is hoping that some extra cash and a few other changes will entice qualified young people to sign up.

Presidents Joe Biden and Vladimir Putin spoke Thursday amid growing alarm over Russia's troop buildup near Ukraine, a simmering crisis that has become further complicated in recent days as the Kremlin has stepped up its calls for security guarantees and test fired hypersonic missiles to underscore its demands.

It was not clear when the launch happened or what devices the carrier brought with it. Iran aired footage of the blastoff against the backdrop of negotiations in Vienna to restore Tehran's tattered nuclear deal with world powers. An eight round had been underway this week and is to resume after New Year's holidays.

The review, done by Air Force Lt. Gen. Sami Said and endorsed by Austin in November, found there were breakdowns in communication and in the process of identifying and confirming the target of the bombing, which killed 10 civilians, including seven children. But he concluded that the strike was a tragic mistake and not caused by misconduct or negligence.

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The boat, Just Lookin, called authorities at 4:22 a.m. to report the vessel had been taking on water and radio failures, according to the Coast Guard.

For Veterans Day, a group of Democratic lawmakers is reviving an effort to pay the families of Black service members who fought on behalf of the nation during World War II for benefits they were denied or prevented from taking full advantage of when they returned home from war.

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While the discussion mainly focused on the overwhelming economic impact the military has in the Palmetto State, recurring concerns that base commanders stressed were the lack of affordable housing in many cities and school rankings that aren't as strong as in other states that attract veterans and active-duty service members.

An Islamic State suicide bomber struck at a mosque packed with Shiite Muslim worshippers in northern Afghanistan on Friday, killing at least 46 people and wounding dozens in the latest security challenge to the Taliban as they transition from insurgency to governance.

Gen. Mark Milley, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, refused to say what advice he gave President Joe Biden last spring when Biden was considering whether to keep any troops in Afghanistan. But he told the Senate Armed Services Committee it was his personal opinion that at least 2,500 were needed to guard against a collapse of the Kabul government and a return to Taliban rule.

As of Thursday, about 4,000 migrants remained under the bridge between Del Rio and Mexico, Department of Homeland Security officials said. The number peaked sharply on Saturday, as migrants driven by confusion over the Biden administration's policies and misinformation on social media converged at the crossing. Food, shelter and medical care were being provided to those who need it officials said.

China has bristled at the moves, and the growing tensions between Beijing and Washington prompted U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on the weekend to implore U.S. President Joe Biden and Chinese leader Xi Jinping to repair their "completely dysfunctional" relationship, warning they risk dividing the world.

Chicago-based aerospace giant Boeing Co. will invest $200 million to begin manufacturing the U.S. Navy's latest unmanned aircraft at MidAmerica St. Louis Airport in a project that could add more than 150 jobs on the company's southwest Illinois campus, according to an announcement scheduled for Friday.

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