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Marine Corps Commandant On Thousand Oaks Mass Shooting Suspect: That's No Marine
The commandant of the Marine Corps has an important message regarding the Wednesday's mass shooting in a California bar: Marines don't murder innocent people.
Marine Commandant Gen. Robert Neller condemned the "despicable actions" of Ian David Long, the 28-year-old Marine veteran who shot and killed 12 people at a bar in Thousand Oaks, California, on Wednesday, in a Thursday tweet:
Note the use of "ex-Marine" instead of "former Marine" here. That, according to Corps officials, was a deliberate dig at Long.
"They say 'once a Marine, always a Marine' because the title of Marine is something you earn. You can give it away, and you can walk away from it in your actions and deeds," Marine Corps HQ spokesman Lt. Col. Eric Dent told Task & Purpose. "This is by deed."
"This guy presumably murdered people," Dent added. "That's not what Marines do."
The vast majority of veterans go on to serve honorably after they leave the U.S. armed forces, Dent explained, applying their military experience to the benefit of their community and country. Long, in the eyes of Corps officials, did the complete opposite.
"The message when we choose 'ex' over 'former' is that you walked away from all those things that make us stronger together, that make us a family," Dent said. "When you do these despicable things, you're not doing them as a Marine."
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."
Defense Secretary Mark Esper said Sunday he and the Pentagon will comply with House Democrats' impeachment inquiry subpoena, but it'll be on their own schedule.
"We will do everything we can to cooperate with the Congress," Esper said on CBS' "Face the Nation." "Just in the last week or two, my general counsel sent out a note — as we typically do in these situations — to ensure documents are retained."
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.