Get Task & Purpose in your inbox
The US military has been hitting the Taliban harder since peace talks fell through, Esper says
At the direction of President Donald Trump, the U.S. military has ramped up the number of air and ground attacks against the Taliban, Defense Secretary Mark Esper said on Friday.
“We did step up our attacks on the Taliban since the [peace] talks broke down," Esper told reporters while returning from visits to Wright Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio, and Louisville, Kentucky. “The president spoke about this publicly. We did pick up the pace considerably."
In September, the president placed peace talks on hold amid continued Talban attacks. Now, the Taliban are reaping the whirlwind.
“The president did want us to pick up the response to this," Esper said. “You had the heinous attacks that the Taliban and others conducted throughout Afghanistan … in Kabul and a couple of other places."
After he suspended peace talks, which were supposed to involve the Taliban coming to Camp David, Trump indicated the Taliban were coming under increasing military pressure.
“The last four days, we have hit our enemy harder than they have ever been hit before, and that will continue," Trump said during his speech commemorating the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks.
Esper declined to provide any numbers to quantify the increase in strikes and he did not say if U.S. troops in Afghanistan are going outside the wire more often now.
“I don't want to comment in terms of detail because, frankly, I don't have that level of detail, but we did pick up the pace of attacks, as the president has spoken about, with regard to both air and ground."
Oct. 7 marks the 18th anniversary of the start of the war in Afghanistan.
Actor Mark Wahlberg will be visiting troops overseas to plug Wahlburgers, a fast-casual restaurant chain owned by the actor and his two brothers, Donnie Wahlberg, and chef Paul Wahlberg.
US troops will not burn and pillage like Genghis Khan's hordes as a result of Trump intervening in war crimes cases, Milley says
The U.S. military will not disintegrate into an undisciplined horde following President Donald Trump's recent intervention in three war crimes cases, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Army Gen. Mark Milley assured lawmakers on Wednesday.
Milley was testifying before the House Armed Services Committee when he was pressed by Iraq war veteran Rep. Seth Moulton (D-Mass.) about the president's actions in the cases of former Army 1st Lt. Clint Lorance, retired Army Maj. Matthew Golsteyn, and retired Navy SEAL Chief Eddie Gallagher.
Taliban fighters attempted to fight their way into Bagram Airfield on Wednesday by invading a medical facility just outside of the base's perimeter, a spokesman for Operation Resolute Support said Wednesday.
J.P. Lawrence of Stars and Stripes and Jim LaPorta of Newsweek first reported that the battle lasted for several hours after using car bombs to attack the hospital, which is near the base's northern corner. Helicopter and fixed-wing aircraft were reportedly used to drop ordnance on the hospital.
An armed suspect was taken into custody at Naval Air Station Corpus Christi on Wednesday morning after a brief lockdown period, according to the Texas base's Facebook account.
Though the exact nature of the incident is unclear, base officials wrote that no shots were fired and no injuries were reported.
The new defense bill would create a public database for every complaint made about privatized housing
Among the dozens of requirements outlined in the latest version of the National Defense Authorization Act is the requirement for the Secretary of Defense to create a public database for privatized housing complaints.
So, that will be... a lot.