President Donald Trump called the active-duty troops deployed to the southwest border “proud” to be doing their jobs, and he said not to worry about them missing Thanksgiving.
“These are tough people,” Trump told reporters on Tuesday. “They know what they’re doing and they’re great, and they’ve done a great job. You’re so worried about the Thanksgiving holiday for them. They are so proud to be representing our country on the border. They are proud to be defending our nation.”
The president did not indicate how long the active-duty mission in support of civil authorities would last. He repeated his past claims — without providing evidence — that the human caravans of Central American asylum seekers headed toward the United States included hundreds of dangerous criminals.
“Our soldiers are doing an incredible job,” Trump continued. “If you look at the walls that they’re building and if you look at all of the barricades that they’re putting up, they’ve done a great job.”
It is unclear how much longer the nearly 6,000 active-duty troops on the U.S./Mexico border will remain there. Army Lt. Gen. Jeffrey Buchanan, who is in charge of the mission, told Politico on Monday that he has not seen any indications that troops will remain deployed to the border beyond Dec. 15.
However, U.S. Army North issued a statement on Tuesday that appeared to backpedal Buchanan’s comments.
“We may shift some forces to other areas of the border to engineering support missions in California and other areas," the statement said. “No specific timeline for redeployment has been determined.”
The Pentagon has estimated that keeping roughly 5,900 active-duty troops deployed to the border through Dec. 15 will cost $72 million, Army Col. Rob Manning, a Defense Department spokesman, said on Tuesday.
Also Tuesday, Trump ignored a reporter who asked if retired Adm. William McRaven – who planned the successful Osama bin Laden raid – is a hero, and asked when he will visit deployed U.S. troops.
“I can’t hear your question,” Trump told the reporter. “I can’t hear you. Your voice is not – I don’t know Adm. McRaven.”
A small unmanned aerial vehicle built by service academy cadets is shown here flying above ground. This type of small UAV was used by cadets and midshipmen from the U.S. Air Force Academy, the U.S. Military Academy and the U.S. Naval Academy, during a Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency-sponsored competition at Camp Roberts, California, April 23-25, 2017. During the competition, cadets and midshipmen controlled small UAVs in "swarm" formations to guard territory on the ground at Camp Roberts. (U.S. Air Force photo)
Drones have been used in conflicts across the globe and will play an even more important role in the future of warfare. But, the future of drones in combat will be different than what we have seen before.
The U.S. military can set itself apart from others by embracing autonomous drone warfare through swarming — attacking an enemy from multiple directions through dispersed and pulsing attacks. There is already work being done in this area: The U.S. military tested its own drone swarm in 2017, and the UK announced this week it would fund research into drone swarms that could potentially overwhelm enemy air defenses.
I propose we look to the amoeba, a single-celled organism, as a model for autonomous drones in swarm warfare. If we were to use the amoeba as this model, then we could mimic how the organism propels itself by changing the structure of its body with the purpose of swarming and destroying an enemy.
Soldiers from 4th Squadron, 9th U.S. Cavalry Regiment "Dark Horse," 2nd Armored Brigade Combat Team, 1st Cavalry Division, are escorted by observer controllers from the U.S. Army Operational Test Command after completing field testing of the Armored Multi-Purpose Vehicle (AMPV) Sept. 24, 2018. (U.S. Army/Maj. Carson Petry)
The Army has awarded a $575 million contract to BAE Systems for the initial production of its replacement for the M113 armored personnel carriers the service has been rocking downrange since the Vietnam War.
President Donald Trump has formally outlined how his administration plans to stand up the Space Force as the sixth U.S. military service – if Congress approves.
On Tuesday, Trump signed a directive that calls for the Defense Department to submit a proposal to Congress that would make Space Force fall under Department of the Air Force, a senior administration official said.