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Pentagon Reporters Asked Mattis About Immigration, And It Didn't Go Well
Shortly before President Trump signed an executive order ending the separation of migrant children from their parents Wednesday afternoon, reporters peppered Defense Secretary James Mattis with questions about whether the children would be lodged at U.S. military bases.
The following is a partial transcript of Mattis’ remarks to reporters before his meeting with German Defense Minister Ursula von der Leyen, edited for length and clarity.
Q: Could we ask a few questions about the border …
A: The borders?
A: I think you need to talk to another department about that. I handle the stuff beyond the border.
Q: HHS [Department of Health & Human Services] is looking at four U.S. military bases in terms of housing the migrants …
A: We’ll see what they come in with. We support DHS [Department of Homeland Security] and right now this is their lead and we’ll respond if requested.
Q: But would you allow the U.S. military to house families or children in U.S. military bases?
A: We have housed refugees. We have housed people thrown out of their homes by earthquakes and hurricanes. We do whatever is in the best interest of the country.
Q: There are a lot of questions about children being separated from their parents…
A: You’re going to have to ask about the border and the situation [inaudible] the people responsible for it. I’m not going to chime in from the outside. There’s people responsible for it. Secretary Nielson, obviously, maintains close collaboration with us. You saw that when we deployed certain National Guard units there, so she’s in charge …
Q: With all due respect, sir, they have identified four U.S. military bases that they say…
A: I’ve been working on other things today.
Q: This has been going on for several weeks. So they have identified four bases…
A: We support whatever they need.
Q: Governors are withdrawing troops from the national border due to the zero-tolerance policy. Is that something that is impacting the border security mission?
A: Not right now, no.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. Defense Secretary Mark Esper said on Friday that no U.S. troops will take part in enforcing the so-called safe zone in northern Syria and the United States "is continuing our deliberate withdrawal from northeastern Syria."
Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan earlier on Friday said Turkey will set up a dozen observation posts across northeast Syria, insisting that a planned "safe zone" will extend much further than U.S. officials said was covered under a fragile ceasefire deal.
On Tuesday at the Association of the U.S. Army's annual conference, Army families had the opportunity to tell senior leaders exactly what was going on in their worlds — an opportunity that is, unfortunately, all too rare.
A new documentary series about Clint Lorance pits the infantry officer convicted of murder against his former soldiers
The fog of war, just kills, and war crimes are the focus of a new documentary series coming to STARZ. Titled Leavenworth, the five-part series profiles 1st Lt. Clint Lorance, the Army infantry officer who was convicted on murder charges for ordering his soldiers to fire on three unarmed Afghan men on a motorcycle, killing two and wounding the third, while deployed to the Zhari district in Kandahar province, on July 2, 2012.
A big stereotype surrounding U.S. service members and veterans is that they are defined only by their military service, from buying "Dysfunctional Veteran" t-shirts to playing hard-boiled, high-octane first-person shooters like Battlefield and Call of Duty (we honestly have no idea where anyone could get that impression).
But the folks at OSD (formerly called Operation Supply Drop), a non-profit veteran service organization that aims to help troops and vets connect with each other through free video games, service programs and other activities, recently found that most of the gamers they've served actually prefer less military-centric fare like sports games and fantasy RPGs.
CEYLANPINAR, Turkey (Reuters) - Shelling could be heard at the Syrian-Turkish border on Friday morning despite a five-day ceasefire agreed between Turkey and the United States, and Washington said the deal covered only a small part of the territory Ankara aims to seize.
Reuters journalists at the border heard machine-gun fire and shelling and saw smoke rising from the Syrian border battlefield city of Ras al Ain, although the sounds of fighting had subsided by mid-morning.
The truce, announced on Thursday by U.S. Vice President Mike Pence after talks in Ankara with Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan, sets out a five-day pause to let the Kurdish-led SDF militia withdraw from an area controlled by Turkish forces.
The SDF said air and artillery attacks continued to target its positions and civilian targets in Ral al Ain.
"Turkey is violating the ceasefire agreement by continuing to attack the town since last night," SDF spokesman Mustafa Bali tweeted.
The Kurdish-led administration in the area said Turkish truce violations in Ras al Ain had caused casualties, without giving details.