Sudden death of South Korea’s first trans soldier sparks military to step forward to inclusion

South Korea’s first known trans soldier, Byun Hee-soo, 23, was found dead at her home on March 3. She was the first in South Korea to have had gender reassignment surgery while in the military. South Korea’s Minister of National Defense Suh Wook said research on military service by transgender individuals is necessary, a milestone in the LGBTQ rights movement in one of the least inclusive countries in East Asia where even the incumbent president, a former human rights lawyer, openly opposed homosexuality in 2017.

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Despite no new defense deal, U.S. Forces Korea did not issue a furlough notice to South Korean employees

United States Forces Korea’s failure to notify approximately 9,000 South Korean employees at the end of January as legally required if they may be facing furloughs may signal that a new defense cost-sharing deal is underway between the Biden administration and South Korea, a U.S. Naval War College expert says.

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Biden says diplomacy is the “center of our foreign policy” in first major speech at a federal agency

President Joe Biden made clear Thursday in his dual speeches at the State Department— his first visit to a federal agency as president— that his administration recognizes it cannot promote democracy without shoring up alliances that have frayed and being tough on authoritarian regimes.

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Illinois Lawmakers React to Attack on the Capitol

Illinois House and Senate members condemned the violent assault on the U.S. Capitol Wednesday as a “shameful chapter in our nation’s history” and “a coup” when pro-President Donald Trump mobs ransacked the Capitol and temporarily derailed Congress’ process of certifying electoral votes.

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