An Army Special Forces officer was killed on Sunday in a boating accident off the coast of Destin, Florida, the Pentagon announced on Wednesday.
Sgt. 1st Class Thomas (Rusty) Robinett of 7th Special Forces Group was killed when he and another passenger were "somehow ejected from a 20-foot vessel," according to the local ABC affiliate, WEAR-TV, which said that Robinett was apparently "struck" by the vessel.
Authorities spent more than 40 hours searching for him, WEAR-TV reports. The other passenger was rescued. He was off-duty at the time of the accident, according to 1st Special Forces Command Spokesperson Maj. Beth Riordan.
Robinett enlisted in the Army in 2007, and deployed with the 7th SFG(A) to Honduras, Columbia, El Salvador, and twice to Afghanistan, according to Riordan. In 2013, Robinett won the U.S. Army Special Forces Command Best Warrior Competition, and represented Army Special Forces Operations Command in the Department of the Army's Best Warrior Competition the same year.
"Rusty was a phenomenal father, husband, son, Soldier, and brother to many in the 7th Group," 7th Special Forces Group commander Col. Patrick Colloton said in a statement. "He was one of our best. ... It was an honor having him service within the ranks of 7th SFG(A). He was a part of our family, and will not be forgotten."
He leaves behind his wife and three children, per the Pentagon's announcement.
Former Marine Commandant Gen. Charles Krulak has issued a statement urging President Donald Trump and members of Congress to oppose pardons for those accused or convicted of war crimes since, he argued, it would "relinquish the United States' moral high ground."
"If President Trump follows through on reports that he will mark Memorial Day by pardoning individuals accused or convicted of war crimes, he will betray these ideals and undermine decades of precedent in American military justice that has contributed to making our country's fighting forces the envy of the world," said Krulak, who served in the Marine Corps for more than three decades before retiring in 1999 as the 31st Commandant.
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President Donald Trump will nominate Barbara Barrett to serve as the next Air Force secretary, the president announced on Tuesday.
"I am pleased to announce my nomination of Barbara Barrett of Arizona, and former Chairman of the Aerospace Corporation, to be the next Secretary of the Air Force," Trump tweeted. "She will be an outstanding Secretary! #FlyFightWin"
The Trump administration is trying to assure Congress that it does not want to start a war with Iran, but some lawmakers who fought in Iraq are not so sure.
Acting Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Marine Gen. Joseph Dunford both briefed Congress on Tuesday about Iran. Shanahan told reporters earlier on Tuesday that the U.S. military buildup in the region has stopped Iran and its proxies from attacking U.S. forces, but the crisis is not yet over.
"We've put on hold the potential for attacks on Americans," Shanahan said. "That doesn't mean that the threats that we've previously identified have gone away. Our prudent response, I think, has given the Iranians time to recalculate. I think our response was a measure of our will and our resolve that we will protect our people and our interests in the region."
U.S. Navy/Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Brian M. Wilbur/Handout via REUTERS
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President Donald Trump warned on Monday Iran would be met with "great force" if it attacked U.S. interests in the Middle East, and government sources said Washington strongly suspects Shi'ite militias with ties to Tehran were behind a rocket attack in Baghdad's Green Zone.
"I think Iran would be making a very big mistake if they did anything," Trump told reporters as he left the White House on Monday evening for an event in Pennsylvania. "If they do something, it will be met with great force but we have no indication that they will."