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Pushing back against Putin...Military sexual assault debate set...SAT revisions

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WASHINGTON (AP) — The State Department is turning up the rhetorical heat on Russian President Vladimir Putin for statements about the situation in Ukraine that the U.S. says are lies. For example, Putin has denied that Russian troops advanced into Ukraine's strategic Crimea region. The State Department calls Putin's claims the most "startling Russian fiction" since some of the works of Dostoyevsky. In Paris, Secretary of State John Kerry held meetings with his Russian counterpart.

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Senate is heading for a showdown over legislation to curb sexual assaults in the military by stripping senior commanders of their authority to prosecute rapes and other serious offenses. Despite an epidemic of sexual assaults, the Pentagon opposes the measure. It argues officers should have more responsibility for the troops they lead. A vote could come as soon as tomorrow but will face a Republican filibuster.

NEW YORK (AP) — There's been a shakeup at Target over the security breach that that allowed hackers to steal credit card numbers and other personal data of millions of the retailer's shoppers last year. Beth Jacob, who has overseen everything from Target's web site to its internal computer systems as Chief Information Officer since 2008, has resigned. One independent retail analyst says Jacob was the fall guy for Target's security issues.

UNDATED (AP) — Researchers have modified genes in the blood cells of a dozen HIV patients to help them resist the AIDS virus, and say the treatment seems safe and promising. The treatment is aimed at imitating the natural immunity to HIV that some people have because of a gene. In the study, researchers removed some of the HIV patients' blood cells, altered them in the lab to mimic what the gene does, and infused them back into the patients. The treatment seems safe and there are signs the new cells are resistant to infection with HIV.

WASHINGTON (AP) — The SAT college entrance exam is undergoing sweeping revisions. The essay will be optional and some vocabulary words will be dropped in favor of words more commonly used in school and on the job. College Board officials say the update — the first since 2005 — is needed to make the exam more representative of what students study in high school and the skills they need to succeed in college and afterward.

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