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Trump travels to Dover AFB to honor 2 soldiers killed in Afghanistan insider attack
President Donald Trump and members of his administration traveled to Dover Air Force in Delaware on Monday evening for the dignified transfer of the remains of two Army Special Forces soldiers killed in an insider attack in Afghanistan on Saturday.
- Sgt. Javier Jaguar Gutierrez and Sgt. Antonio Rey Rodriguez, both 28, were assigned to 3rd Battalion, 7th Special Forces Group (Airborne) at Eglin Air Force Base, Florida.
- The two soldiers were killed on Saturday when an Afghan soldier opened fire on a combined U.S.-Afghan special operations team that was meeting with district leaders in the country's Nangarhar Province.
- Six U.S. service members have been killed in Afghanistan since the start of the year.
From left, General Counsel of the Army James McPherson, President Donald Trump, Army Chief of Staff Gen. James C. McConville, Vice President Mike Pence, Sgt. Maj. Michael Grinston and Deputy Secretary of Defense David Norquist(Associated Press/Steve Ruark)
- Trump was accompanied by Vice President Mike Pence, who stood with his hand over his heart as the transfer cases containing the remains of Gutierrez and Rodriguez were carried from a C-17 Globemaster III and placed in a transport vehicle.
- "These are terrible sacrifices for the families. And these guys are heroes, they're real warriors and did a great job for the American people," National Security Adviser Robert O'Brien told reporters, per the Associated Press. "These are tough times. It's tough for the president but he thinks it's important to be there for the families and recognize them."
- Trump had previously traveled to Dover with reporters in November when he receive the remains of two soldiers — Chief Warrant Officer David Knadle and Chief Warrant Officer Kirk Fuchigami Jr. — after they were killed in a helicopter crash in Afghanistan's Logar Province.
Though the Army has yet to actually set an official recruiting goal for this year, leaders are confident they're going to bring in more soldiers than last year.
Maj. Gen. Frank Muth, head of Army Recruiting Command, told reporters on Wednesday that the Army was currently 2,226 contracts ahead of where it was in 2019.
"I will just tell you that this time last year we were in the red, and now we're in the green which is — the momentum's there and we see it continuing throughout the end of the year," Muth said, adding that the service hit recruiting numbers in February that haven't been hit during that month since 2014.
KABUL/WASHINGTON/PESHAWAR, Pakistan (Reuters) - The United States and the Taliban will sign an agreement on Feb. 29 at the end of a week long period of violence reduction in Afghanistan, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and the Taliban said on Friday.
Active-duty service members, Reservists and National Guard members often serve side-by-side performing highly skilled and dangerous jobs, such as parachuting, explosives demolition and flight deck operations.
Reservists and Guard members are required to undergo the same training as specialized active-duty troops, and they face the same risks. Yet the extra incentive pay they receive for their work — called hazardous duty incentive pay — is merely a fraction of what their active-duty counterparts receive for performing the same job.
A bipartisan group of lawmakers, led by U.S. Rep. Andy Kim, D-3 of Moorestown, are partnering on legislation to correct the inequity. Known as the Guard and Reserve Hazard Duty Pay Equity Act, the bill seeks to standardize payment of hazardous duty incentive pay for all members of the armed services, including Reserve and National Guard components.
Another Marine was hit with jail time and a bad-conduct discharge in connection with a slew of arrests made last summer over suspicions that members of a California-based infantry battalion were transporting people who'd crossed into the U.S. illegally.
Some Fort Bragg paratroopers who left for the Middle East on a no-notice deployment last month came home Thursday.
About 3,500 soldiers with the 82nd Airborne Division's 1st Brigade Combat Team were sent to Kuwait beginning Jan. 1 as tensions were rising in the region. The first soldiers were in the air within 18 hours of being told to go.