Although President Donald Trump has made clear that he wants U.S. troops to leave Syria as soon as possible, Defense Secretary James Mattis said on Monday that the president has not indicated he wants to withdraw from Afghanistan.
“We’re there to do a job. We’re not there to stay forever,” Mattis told reporters Monday at the Pentagon. “The job comes first. As a matter of fact, we have a number of nations adding forces as we speak. The missions are on track.”
ISIS has carried out suicide bombings in Kabul that have killed nearly 100 people within a week. A U.S. service member was killed Monday in Eastern Afghanistan and another service member wounded during combat.
When asked if ISIS’ attacks in Kabul show that the terrorist group has the initiative, Mattis said emphatically: “No. They set off a bomb among innocent people.”
The Taliban delayed announcing the start of their spring offensive until April 25 because they were “taken aback” by the U.S. commitment to stay in Afghanistan and Afghan President Ashraf Ghani’s offer for peace talks, Mattis said.
“We anticipated that they would do their best to try to bring bombs right into Kabul,” he said. “This is the normal stuff by people who cannot win at the ballot box, so they turn to bombs. This should be completely expected. It’s what they do.”
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The U.S. Coast Guard Legend-class maritime security cutter USCGC Bertholf (WMSL 750) pulls into Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, Hawii, U.S. to support the Rim of the Pacific (RIMPAC) 2012 exercise in this June 29, 2012 handout photo. (U.S. Navy/Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Jon Dasbach via Reuters)
The United States sent Navy and Coast Guard ships through the Taiwan Strait on Sunday, the military said, as the United States increases the frequency of movement through the strategic waterway despite opposition from China.
The voyage risks further raising tensions with China but will likely be viewed by self-ruled Taiwan as a sign of support from Washington amid growing friction between Taipei and Beijing.
U.S. President Donald Trump departs on travel to Palm Beach, Florida from the White House in Washington, U.S., March 22, 2019. (Reuters/Carlos Barria)
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Special Counsel Robert Mueller's report on Russian meddling in the 2016 election did not find that any U.S. or Trump campaign officials knowingly conspired with Russia, according to details released on Sunday.
Attorney General William Barr sent a summary of conclusions from the report to congressional leaders and the media on Sunday afternoon. Mueller concluded his investigation on Friday after nearly two years, turning in a report to the top U.S. law enforcement officer.
Read Barr's letter to congressional leaders below:
This is a developing story and will be updated with new information as it becomes available.
CARACAS (Reuters) - Two Russian air force planes landed in Venezuela's main airport on Saturday carrying a Russian defense official and nearly 100 troops, according to a local journalist, amid strengthening ties between Caracas and Moscow.
A flight-tracking website showed that two planes left from a Russian military airport bound for Caracas on Friday, and another flight-tracking site showed that one plane left Caracas on Sunday.
If the Marine Corps is serious about getting ready to take on a near-peer enemy like China in the future, then it's time to fold its 13-year-old special operations command and apply those resources elsewhere.
At least that's the argument one retired Marine officer made this week while presenting ways the service can better prepare for large-scale naval operations – and it's causing quite a stir in the Marine Corps special operations community.