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Photo: Saul Loeb / Getty

In 2017, 33 U.S. military personnel gave their lives overseas — seven more than last year. This was the first rise in U.S. casualties in six years, Buzzfeed News reports.

Big picture: Military officials and experts told BuzzFeed that they are most concerned about the military's transparency in the age of Trump. The Pentagon said in June that it would no longer release immediate information about combat deaths in Afghanistan. Many Americans and some lawmakers were not even aware of the presence of U.S. troops in Yemen, Niger and Somalia until the deaths of U.S. military personnel made headlines. And we've seen the Pentagon present deceiving troop numbers in Syria.

Why the secrecy: The U.S. military is starting to use more special forces, which make up only 5% of the U.S. military, to carry out their missions. This has led to more deaths among elite troops than conventional forces.

Perspective: In 2007, more than 1,000 U.S. troops were killed at the height of the war in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Go deeper: BuzzFeed's Vera Bergengruen's piece.

Go deeper

The Biden protection plan

Joe Biden announces his first run for the presidency in June 1987. Photo: Howard L. Sachs/CNP/Getty Images

The Joe Biden who became the 46th president on Wednesday isn't the same blabbermouth who failed in 1988 and 2008.

Why it matters: Biden now heeds guidance about staying on task with speeches and no longer worries a gaffe or two will cost him an election. His staff also limits the places where he speaks freely and off the cuff. This Biden protective bubble will only tighten in the months ahead, aides tell Axios.

Bush labels Clyburn the “savior” for Democrats

House Majority Whip James Clyburn takes a selfie Wednesday with former President George W. Bush. Photo: Patrick Semansky-Pool/Getty Images

Former President George W. Bush credited Rep. James Clyburn with being the "savior" of the Democratic Party, telling the South Carolinian at Wednesday's inauguration his endorsement allowed Joe Biden to win the party's presidential nomination.

Why it matters: The nation's last two-term Republican president also said Clyburn's nod allowed for the transfer of power, because he felt only Biden had the ability to unseat President Trump.

GOP research firm aims to hobble Biden nominees

Alejandro Mayorkas. Photo: Joshua Roberts/AFP via Getty Images

The Republican-aligned opposition research group America Rising is doing all it can to prevent President Biden from seating his top Cabinet picks.

Why it matters: After former President Trump inhibited the transition, Biden is hoping the Republican minority in Congress will cooperate with getting his team in place. Biden hadn't even been sworn in when America Rising began blasting opposition research to reporters targeting Janet Yellen and Alejandro Mayorkas.

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