Get Task & Purpose in your inbox
Dozens Killed Amid Clashes In Israel As US Embassy Opens In Jerusalem
At least 41 people are dead after Palestinian protestors rushed the border fence between Gaza and Israel on May 14 ahead of the opening ceremony for the U.S. Embassy in Jerusalem, the New York Times reports. More than 1,000 Palestinians were also injured.
- Israeli soldiers and snipers opened fire with on tens of thousands of Palestinian protesters as they attempted to cross the border fence into Israel, hurling explosives at and flying flaming kites over Israeli troops. The New York Times reports that protesters have been flying the kites, which are armed with crude incendiary devices, "in swarms into Israel with the aim of igniting the dry fields of rural communities on the other side of the border fence."
- "The rioters are hurling firebombs and explosive devices towards the security fence and IDF forces, and are burning tires, throwing rocks and launching flaming objects in order to ignite fires in Israeli territory and harm IDF troops," the Israel Defense Forces said in a statement.
- It is the bloodiest single day since demonstrations began seven weeks ago after President Donald Trump announced that the U.S. Embassy would be relocated from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. More than 90 people have died in the protests since they began on March 30, CNN reports.
- Tens of thousands of Palestinians in Gaza and the West Bank demonstrated on Monday in opposition to the move, which has sparked outrage across the Arab world. President Donald Trump's son-in-law Jared Kushner, ostensibly spearheading the administration's peace efforts in the Middle East, is speaking at the event, which began at 9 am EST.
- Timed to the 70th anniversary of the modern formation of the State of Israel, the Trump administration says the embassy move will result in greater stability in the region. A bigger protest along the border is planned for May 15, the anniversary of the "expulsion or flight from the newly formed Jewish state of hundreds of thousands of Arabs in 1948," according to The New York Times.
- "Today is a day of sadness," the Palestinian minister of education told The New York Times of the embassy's opening. "It's a manifestation of the power of America and President Trump in upsetting the Palestinian people and the people who have been awaiting the independence of Palestine for 70 years."
Retired Army Master Sgt. Mark Allen has died 10 years after he was shot in the head while searching for deserter Pvt. Bowe Bergdahl in Afghanistan.
Allen died on Saturday at the age of 46, according to funeral information posted online.
For U.S. service members who have fought alongside the Kurds, President Donald Trump's decision to approve repositioning U.S. forces in Syria ahead of Turkey's invasion is a naked betrayal of valued allies.
"I am ashamed for the first time in my career," one unnamed special operator told Fox News Jennifer Griffin.
In a Twitter thread that went viral, Griffin wrote the soldier told her the Kurds were continuing to support the United States by guarding tens of thousands of ISIS prisoners even though Turkey had nullified an arrangement under which U.S. and Turkish troops were conducting joint patrols in northeastern Syria to allow the Kurdish People's Protection Units, or YPG, to withdraw.
"The Kurds are sticking by us," the soldier told Griffin. "No other partner I have ever dealt with would stand by us."
Most of the U.S. troops in Syria are being moved out of the country as Turkish forces and their Arab allies push further into Kurdish territory than originally expected, Task & Purpose has learned.
Roughly 1,000 U.S. troops are withdrawing from Syria, leaving a residual force of between 100 and 150 service members at the Al Tanf garrison, a U.S. official said.
"I spoke with the president last night after discussions with the rest of the national security team and he directed that we begin a deliberate withdrawal of forces from northern Syria," Defense Secretary Mark Esper said on Sunday's edition of CBS News' "Face the Nation."'
More than 700 women and children affiliated with ISIS escape Kurdish prison camp after Turkish shelling
BEIRUT/ISTANBUL (Reuters) - Women affiliated with Islamic State and their children fled en masse from a camp where they were being held in northern Syria on Sunday after shelling by Turkish forces in a five-day-old offensive, the region's Kurdish-led administration said.
Turkey's cross-border attack in northern Syria against Kurdish forces widened to target the town of Suluk which was hit by Ankara's Syrian rebel allies. There were conflicting accounts on the outcome of the fighting.
Turkey is facing threats of possible sanctions from the United States unless it calls off the incursion. Two of its NATO allies, Germany and France, have said they are halting weapons exports to Turkey. The Arab League has denounced the operation.
Former Defense Secretary Jim Mattis is warning that it's "absolutely a given" that ISIS will come back if the U.S. doesn't keep up pressure on the group, just one week after President Trump announced the withdrawal of U.S. military forces from northern Syria.
"It's in a situation of disarray right now. Obviously the Kurds are adapting to the Turkish attacks, and we'll have to see if they're able to maintain the fight against ISIS," Mattis said in an interview on NBC's "Meet The Press," set to air on Sunday. "It's going to have an impact. The question is how much?"