US Troops Riding Through The Desert On A Mission With No Name


The U.S. military’s mission involving roughly 8,000 active-duty troops being deployed to the southwest border to stop asylum seekers from crossing into the United States no longer has a name.

“We are not calling it ‘Operational Faithful Patriot,’” Pentagon spokesman Army Lt. Col. Jamie Davis said on Wednesday. “We are calling it ‘border support.’”

Davis declined to say why the Defense Department has deep sixed the name “Operational Faithful Patriot” or provide any further information on the matter. The Wall Street Journal first reported on Wednesday that the border deployment is no longer named.

Roughly 5,600 active-duty troops have deployed to California, Arizona, and Texas, said NORTHCOM spokesman William Lewis. Of those, 1,265 are in California, 1,502 are in Arizona, and 2,844 are in Texas.

Another 1,100 Marines from Camp Pendleton have been notified that they will likely become part of the mission, Lewis said. They had lot left Pendleton as of Wednesday afternoon.

Those active-duty troops with spouses and children are deployed for more than a month are eligible to receive a family separation allowance of $250 per month, said Army Col. Robert Manning, a Pentagon spokesman.

But troops deploying to the U.S./Mexico border will not receive imminent danger pay or hostile fire pay, Manning said on Tuesday.

“Imminent danger pay is paid to members on duty in foreign areas, designated as such because of wartime conditions, civil war, civil insurrection, or terrorism,” Manning said. “Our military will not receive combat pay or hostile fire pay as they are not deploying to a combat area, nor are they expected to be subject to hostile fire.”

Marine Gen. Joseph Dunford, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, recently made clear that the active-duty troops on the southwestern border are strictly providing transportation as well as logistical and medical support to civil authorities.

“There is no plan for U.S. military forces to be involved in the actual mission of denying people entry to the United States,” Dunford said on Monday at Duke University. “There is no plan for soldiers to come in to contact with immigrants or to reinforce the Department of Homeland Security as they are conducting their mission. We are providing enabling capabilities.”

SEE ALSO: Trump’s Border Deployments Could Actually Harm The Military’s Readiness


On Nov, 10, 2004, Army Staff Sgt. David Bellavia knew that he stood a good chance of dying as he tried to save his squad.

Bellavia survived the intense enemy fire and went on to single-handedly kill five insurgents as he cleared a three-story house in Fallujah during the iconic battle for the city. For his bravery that day, President Trump will present Bellavia with the Medal of Honor on Tuesday, making him the first living Iraq war veteran to receive the award.

In an interview with Task & Purpose, Bellavia recalled that the house where he fought insurgents was dark and filled with putrid water that flowed from broken pipes. The battle itself was an assault on his senses: The stench from the water, the darkness inside the home, and the sounds of footsteps that seemed to envelope him.

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(U.S. Army/Pvt. Stephen Peters)

With the Imperial Japanese Army hot on his heels, Oscar Leonard says he barely slipped away from getting caught in the grueling Bataan Death March in 1942 by jumping into a choppy bay in the dark of the night, clinging to a log and paddling to the Allied-fortified island of Corregidor.

After many weeks of fighting there and at Mindanao, he was finally captured by the Japanese and spent the next several years languishing under brutal conditions in Filipino and Japanese World War II POW camps.

Now, having just turned 100 years old, the Antioch resident has been recognized for his 42-month ordeal as a prisoner of war, thanks to the efforts of his friends at the Brentwood VFW Post #10789 and Congressman Jerry McNerney.

McNerney, Brentwood VFW Commander Steve Todd and Junior Vice Commander John Bradley helped obtain a POW award after doing research and requesting records to surprise Leonard during a birthday party last month.

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(U.S. Marine Corps/Staff Sgt. Andrew Ochoa)

Editor's Note: This article by Gina Harkins originally appeared on, a leading source of news for the military and veteran community.

Hundreds of Marines will join their British counterparts at a massive urban training center this summer that will test the leathernecks' ability to fight a tech-savvy enemy in a crowded city filled with innocent civilians.

The North Carolina-based Kilo Company, 3rd Battalion, 8th Marines, will test drones, robots and other high-tech equipment at Muscatatuck Urban Training Center near Butlerville, Indiana, in August.

They'll spend weeks weaving through underground tunnels and simulating fires in a mock packed downtown city center. They'll also face off against their peers, who will be equipped with off-the-shelf drones and other gadgets the enemy is now easily able to bring to the fight.

It's the start of a four-year effort, known as Project Metropolis, that leaders say will transform the way Marines train for urban battles. The effort is being led by the Marine Corps Warfighting Laboratory, based in Quantico, Virginia. It comes after service leaders identified a troubling problem following nearly two decades of war in the Middle East: adversaries have been studying their tactics and weaknesses, and now they know how to exploit them.

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(Reuters/Carlos Barria)

WASHINGTON/RIYADH (Reuters) - President Donald Trump imposed new U.S. sanctions onIran on Monday following Tehran's downing of an unmanned American drone and said the measures would target Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.

Trump told reporters he was signing an executive order for the sanctions amid tensions between the United States and Iran that have grown since May, when Washington ordered all countries to halt imports of Iranian oil.

Trump also said the sanctions would have been imposed regardless of the incident over the drone. He said the supreme leaders was ultimately responsible for what Trump called "the hostile conduct of the regime."

"Sanctions imposed through the executive order ... will deny the Supreme Leader and the Supreme Leader's office, and those closely affiliated with him and the office, access to key financial resources and support," Trump said.

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