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The governor of Okinawa has approved controversial plans to relocate a US Marine base to a less populous area – but said he would keep pressing to move the base off the of the Japanese island altogether.

McCain challenges gays in military

A leading Republican senator yesterday claimed a US military study on gays was flawed and that letting them serve openly would be dangerous in a time of war.

US troops take hard line to tame rebels of Sangin

There was so much high explosive raining down it was hard to believe anyone could have survived beneath the two-hour salvo of guided artillery rounds, Hellfire missiles and strafing runs by F/A-18 warplanes and helicopter gunships.

South Korea mourns two marines killed in North attack

South Korean dignitaries placed white chrysanthemums on a funeral altar today for two marines killed in a North Korean bombardment, as the country prepared military manoeuvres with the US that have enraged the North and concerned China.

The Gun: The AK-47 and the Evolution of War, By CJ Chivers

Introduced to the world in 1947, the Kalashnikov automatic rifle changed the course of warfare

James Neal: Lawyer who put Jimmy Hoffa in jail and prosecuted the perpetrators of the Watergate cover-up

James Neal, a stocky, cigar-chomping ex-Marine, won victories on both sides of the courtroom and was involved in some of America's biggest legal battles. He successfully prosecuted the Teamsters' boss Jimmy Hoffa, as well as key Nixon administration officials for conspiracy during the Watergate scandal. He also acted for the defence for the film-maker John Landis and in the Ford Pinto and Exxon Valdez cases.

Outside Edge: Not exactly a barrel of laughs

It's bobbins. The Southampton University Hospitals NHS Trust have branded the traditional Hallowe'en game of apple-bobbing "dangerous", with consultant opthalmologist Parwez Hossain warning that "at the extreme end of the scale you could end up losing your sight". The hospital had to treat three people for injuries caused by this hardcore activity last year, including scratches on the cornea from stalks, which they suggest should be removed beforehand. They also warn against eye infections picked up from bobbing in dirty water, and recommend that children use their hands instead of their mouths to retrieve the apples, or at least wear goggles "where there is a chance of a high-velocity impact, for example with an apple". Alex Crossland-Robins, a 10-year-old from Oldham who hopes to swim at the 2020 Olympics, has been told by the local council that he is not allowed to wear goggles in the pool because he must "get used to eye contact with the water". Let's hope there's no fruit floating around.

Schwarzenegger praises 'action hero' troops

Arnold Schwarzenegger hailed British troops as the "true action heroes" today.

Wife pays tribute to Afghan death soldier

The wife of a British soldier killed in Afghanistan said today that his death would leave a "gaping hole" in his family's life.

Sangin: A quiet end to a mission of unimaginable violence

After four years and 105 deaths, UK forces have left Sangin, writes Kim Sengupta

UK troops pass control of Sangin to US forces

British forces in southern Afghanistan handed responsibility for security in Sangin to US forces, the Ministry of Defence said today.

A walk along the seafront from Southsea to the Historic Dockyard

Discover what Portsmouth is really all about on a walk along the seafront

As the US troops depart, bombs rip through Iraq

Al-Qa'ida showed that it has the strength to strike all over Iraq yesterday by making a string of attacks that left at least 56 dead, half of them policemen and soldiers, and 250 wounded, across at least thirteen cities and towns.

Afghan withdrawal date bolsters enemy says General

President Barack Obama's July 2011 date to start withdrawing troops from Afghanistan has given a morale boost to Taliban insurgents, who believe they can wait out Nato forces, the top US Marine said yesterday.

How the rest of the world has so far responded to Pakistan crisis

The world is now beginning to respond in a significant way to the almost bottomless pit of need in Pakistan. Whether – with some 20 million affected and the nation's ability to feed itself ruined for years to come – it will be enough is very doubtful.

Ex-policeman shot dead in Afghanistan

A former Northern Ireland police officer working for a security services company has been shot dead in Afghanistan.

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Independent Travel
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Seven Cities of Italy
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Prague, Budapest and Vienna
Lake Garda
Minoan Crete and Santorini
Prices correct as of 1 May 2015
'It was first time I had ever tasted chocolate. I kept a piece, and when Amsterdam was liberated, I gave it to the first Allied soldier I saw'

Bread from heaven

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Britain will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power - Labour

How 'the Axe' helped Labour

UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power
Rare and exclusive video shows the horrific price paid by activists for challenging the rule of jihadist extremists in Syria

The price to be paid for challenging the rule of extremists

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Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers

Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi

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Vince Cable interview: Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'

Vince Cable exclusive interview

Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'
Iwan Rheon interview: Game of Thrones star returns to his Welsh roots to record debut album

Iwan Rheon is returning to his Welsh roots

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Russell Brand's interview with Ed Miliband has got everyone talking about The Trews

Everyone is talking about The Trews

Russell Brand's 'true news' videos attract millions of viewers. But today's 'Milibrand' interview introduced his resolutely amateurish style to a whole new crowd
Morne Hardenberg interview: Cameraman for BBC's upcoming show Shark on filming the ocean's most dangerous predator

It's time for my close-up

Meet the man who films great whites for a living
Increasing numbers of homeless people in America keep their mobile phones on the streets

Homeless people keep mobile phones

A homeless person with a smartphone is a common sight in the US. And that's creating a network where the 'hobo' community can share information - and fight stigma - like never before
'Queer saint' Peter Watson left his mark on British culture by bankrolling artworld giants

'Queer saint' who bankrolled artworld giants

British culture owes a huge debt to Peter Watson, says Michael Prodger
Pushkin Prizes: Unusual exchange programme aims to bring countries together through culture

Pushkin Prizes brings countries together

Ten Scottish schoolchildren and their Russian peers attended a creative writing workshop in the Highlands this week
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Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The acceptable face of the Emirates

The acceptable face of the Emirates

Has Abu Dhabi found a way to blend petrodollars with principles, asks Robert Fisk