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U.S. Trains New Iraq Defense Dept.

American officials are helping Iraqis build a new, civilian-controlled defense department ahead of the U.S. transfer of sovereignty to Iraqis in July. U.S. officials have little time left to train dozens of officers from Iraq's old army -- long accustomed to working under a dictatorship -- how armed forces work in a democracy. NPR's Eric Westervelt reports.

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Eric Westervelt is a San Francisco-based correspondent for NPR's National Desk. He has reported on major events for the network from wars and revolutions in the Middle East and North Africa to historic wildfires and terrorist attacks in the U.S.