About 2,100 soldiers at Fort Polk in Louisiana will deploy to Iraq later this year to take over the mission to train and advise Iraqi security forces fighting Islamic State militants following the fall of Mosul, the Army announced Thursday.
The soldiers with the 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 10th Mountain Division will replace the 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 82nd Airborne Division in the fall in a regular rotation of troops, according to an Army news release. The 82nd Airborne’s 2nd Brigade has spent about seven months in Iraq, advising the Iraqi forces as they faced the toughest portion of the battle for Mosul, ISIS’s once Iraqi capital.
The Iraqi government declared victory over ISIS in Mosul, the country’s second largest city, on July 10 but reports of some fighting against remnants of the terrorist group there continued through Thursday. The U.S.-led Operation Inherent Resolve coalition reported a pair of airstrikes on ISIS targets around the city on Wednesday.
Once Mosul is fully cleared of ISIS, the Iraqi forces still have several battles left to eliminate the militants from their country. The United States has pledged to leave its forces in Iraq and support the country’s security forces throughout those fights.
That likely means 3rd Brigade soldiers could aid the Iraqis as they work to clear the ISIS-held towns of Tal Afar, about 40 miles west of Mosul, Hawija in northern Iraq and al-Qaim, along the Euphrates River at the Syrian border.
The 3rd Brigade, 10th Mountain Division soldiers have been training for several months in preparation for the rotation, said Maj. Gen. Walter E. Piatt, the division’s commander. The training included a monthlong operation at Fort Polk’s Joint Readiness Training Center.
The United States acknowledges having about 5,200 troops officially deployed to Iraq, but officials have said hundreds more are in the country at any given time on temporary assignments.
Army Gen. Stephen Townsend, the Operation Inherent Resolve coalition commander, said July 11 that he anticipates the United States will maintain its military footprint in Iraq through ISIS’s defeat. He added the Pentagon is in talks with the Iraqi government about keeping some troops in the country after ISIS is eliminated.
The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs paid $13,000 over a three-month period for a senior official's biweekly commute to Washington from his home in California, according to expense reports obtained by ProPublica.
Staff Sgt. John Eller conducts pre-flights check on his C-17 Globemaster III Jan. 3 prior to taking off from Hickam Air Force Base, Hawaii for a local area training mission. Sgt. Eller is a loadmaster from the 535th Airlift Squadron. (U.S. Air Force photo/Tech. Sgt. Shane A. Cuomo)
CUCUTA, Colombia — The Trump administration ratcheted up pressure Saturday on beleaguered Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro, dispatching U.S. military planes filled with humanitarian aid to this city on the Venezuelan border.
U.S. Secretary of Defense Patrick Shanahan speaks at the annual Munich Security Conference in Munich, Germany February 15, 2019. REUTERS/Andreas Gebert
ABOARD A U.S. MILITARY AIRCRAFT (Reuters) - Acting U.S. Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan said on Saturday he had not yet determined whether a border wall with Mexico was a military necessity or how much Pentagon money would be used.
President Donald Trump on Friday declared a national emergency in a bid to fund his promised wall at the U.S.-Mexico border without congressional approval.
A pair of U.S. Navy Grumman F-14A Tomcat aircraft from Fighter Squadron VF-211 Fighting Checkmates in flight over Iraq in 2003/Department of Defense
Since the sequel to the 1986 action flick (and wildly successful Navy recruitment tool) Top Gun, was announced, there's been a lot of speculation on what Top Gun: Maverick will be about when it premieres in June 2020. While the plot is still relatively unclear, we know Tom Cruise will reprise his role as Naval aviator Pete "Maverick" Mitchell, and he'll be joined by a recognizable costar: The iconic F-14 Tomcat.
It looks like the old war plane will be coming out of retirement for more than just a cameo. A number of recently surfaced photos show an F-14 Tomcat aboard the USS Theodore Roosevelt, alongside Cruise and members of the film's production crew, the Drive's Tyler Rogoway first reported earlier this week.