The likely incoming chairman of the House Armed Services Committee told reporters before Trump announced the Syria withdrawal that he did not think that Mattis is losing influence in the Trump administration.
“I think he’s losing allies,” Rep. Adam Smith (D-Wash.) told reporters at a Dec. 12 Defense Writers Group breakfast. “His influence is probably as great as it’s been but John Bolton is a more problematic national security advisor than H.R. McMaster.”
Without McMaster, former Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, and White House Chief of Staff retired Marine Gen. John Kelly, there are fewer people in the White House with which Mattis can work, Smith said.
The situation is analogous to an episode of “The Office,” in which the two main characters go away for a trip, Smith said.
“Oscar in the office says when Jim and Pam are on their honeymoon: ‘There’s a very delicate balance between crazy and sane in the office and with Jim and Pam away on vacation the balance has shifted in a bad direction.’ That’s similar to the way I look at the White House.”
Two airmen were administratively punished for drinking at the missile launch control center for 150 nuclear LGM-30G Minuteman III intercontinental ballistic missiles at F.E. Warren Air Force Base in Wyoming, the Air Force confirmed to Task & Purpose on Friday.
Two F-35A Lightning II Joint Strike Fighters recently flew a mission in the Middle East in "beast mode," meaning they were loaded up with as much firepower as they could carry.
The F-35s with the 4th Expeditionary Fighter Squadron took off from Al Dhafra Air Base, United Arab Emirates to execute a mission in support of U.S. forces in Afghanistan, Air Forces Central Command revealed. The fifth-generation fighters sacrificed their high-end stealth to fly with a full loadout of weaponry on their wings.
The U.S. Senate closed out the week before Memorial Day by confirming Gen. James McConville as the Army's new chief of staff and Adm. Bill Moran as the Navy's new chief of naval operations.
McConville, previously vice chief of staff of the Army, was confirmed on Thursday along with his successor, Lt Gen. Joseph Marin. Moran, currently vice chief of naval operations, was confirmed Friday along with his successor, Vice Adm. Robert Burke.
The Pentagon is producing precisely diddly-squat in terms of proof that Iran is behind recent attacks in the Middle East, requiring more U.S. troops be sent to the region.
Adm. Michael Gilday, director of the Joint Staff, said on Friday that the U.S. military is extending the deployment of about 600 troops with four Patriot missile batteries already in the region and sending close to 1,000 other service members to the Middle East in response to an Iranian "campaign" against U.S. forces.