Tag: Defense Department

Here’s One Reason the U.S. Military Can’t Fix Its Own Equipment

A few years ago, I was standing in a South Korean field, knee deep in mud, incredulously asking one of my maintenance Marines to tell me again why he couldn’t fix a broken generator. We needed the generator to support training with the United States Army and South Korean military, and I was generally unaccustomed […]

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Two Americans Killed in Helicopter Crash in Afghanistan

BAMIAN, Afghanistan — Two American service members were killed on Wednesday in a helicopter crash in Afghanistan, the American military in Kabul said in a statement. The military said the cause of the crash was under investigation. “Preliminary reports do not indicate it was caused by enemy fire,” read a statement from United States Forces […]

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What We Learned Today From Impeachment Inquiry Hearings

WASHINGTON — Two top national security officials offered new details about President Trump’s pressure campaign on Ukraine as they appeared for testimony during the second week of public hearings in House Democrats’ impeachment inquiry. At issue is whether Mr. Trump abused his power by holding out security aid and a coveted White House meeting from […]

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Amazon Protesting Pentagon’s $10 Billion JEDI Contract

Amazon on Thursday said it planned to officially challenge the Pentagon’s surprise decision last month to award a $10 billion cloud-computing contract to Microsoft, setting off another legal battle over the lucrative, decade-long project. Amazon said it had notified a federal court of its plans to protest the government’s decision. In a statement, a spokesman […]

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Trump and the Military: A Dysfunctional Marriage, but They Stay Together

WASHINGTON — Days after President Trump’s abrupt decision to withdraw 1,000 American troops from Syria, Gen. Mark A. Milley, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, saw a way to turn it around. The businessman in Mr. Trump had focused on the Syrian oil fields that, if left unprotected, could fall into the hands […]

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Defense Dept. Official Testified Trump Questioned Ukraine Aid in June

WASHINGTON — The White House began asking administration officials detailed questions about military assistance to Ukraine after a meeting with President Trump in mid-June, nearly a month before the aid was abruptly frozen, a top Pentagon official told impeachment investigators last month. Laura K. Cooper, a top Defense Department official in charge of Russia and […]

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DOD announces cost of living increase to retired and survivor pay

WASHINGTON – The Department of Defense just announced spending changes that may have an impact on many veterans living in Hampton Roads. According to the DOD, an annual cost of living increase is set to take effect to retired pay for military retirees and survivors during the calendar year of 2020. The DOD will give […]

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Hundreds of U.S. Troops Leaving, and Also Arriving in, Syria

WASHINGTON — Every day in northeastern Syria, waves of American troops are pulling out under President Trump’s order this month that paved the way for a Turkish offensive that included assaults on the Pentagon’s allies, the Syrian Kurds. And at the same time, a separate wave of American troops from the opposite direction is pouring […]

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Pentagon Can’t Confirm al-Baghdadi ‘Whimpering’

WASHINGTON — The country’s top military officer said on Monday that he does not know where President Trump got his information that Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, the Islamic State leader, died “screaming, crying and whimpering.” Gen. Mark A. Milley, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, told reporters at a Pentagon news conference that he […]

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Intelligence From al-Baghdadi Raid Could Reveal Trove of ISIS Clues

WASHINGTON — The intelligence material that commandos seized from the now-destroyed compound where Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi was hiding is likely to contain revelations about his leadership of the Islamic State and could provide a wealth of details about the group’s operations, current and former American officials said. But they did not expect to find intelligence […]

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Watching the Raid Was Like a Movie, the President Said. Except There Was No Live Audio.

WASHINGTON — In describing the death of Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi on Sunday, President Trump used dramatic, even cinematic language to portray the daring American commando raid that brought down the Islamic State leader who, the president said, died “screaming, crying and whimpering.” Mr. Trump described the video footage he watched from the White House Situation […]

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How Commandos Could Quickly Confirm They Got Their Target

WASHINGTON — When President Trump announced on Sunday morning that a special forces raid had resulted in the death of the Islamic State leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, he said two things that might have sounded contradictory. One was that Mr. al-Baghdadi, cornered in a tunnel by American forces, had detonated a suicide vest and that […]

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C.I.A. Got Tip on al-Baghdadi’s Location From Arrest of a Wife and a Courier

WASHINGTON — The surprising information about the Islamic State leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi’s general location — in a village deep inside a part of northwestern Syria controlled by rival Qaeda groups — came following the arrest and interrogation of one of Mr. al-Baghdadi’s wives and a courier this past summer, two American officials said. Armed […]

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Microsoft Wins Pentagon’s $10 Billion JEDI Contract, Thwarting Amazon

The Department of Defense has awarded a $10 billion technology contract to Microsoft, in what was a closely scrutinized contest after President Trump said he might intervene in the hard-fought commercial battle. The decision, announced Friday, was a surprise because Amazon had been considered a front-runner to win the 10-year contract for the Joint Enterprise […]

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U.S. Could Send Troops to Guard Oil Fields in Syria, Esper Says

BRUSSELS — Defense officials said on Friday that the Pentagon was considering sending additional troops to guard eastern oil fields in Syria against the Islamic State, another potential lurch in President Trump’s zigzagging military policy in the country. Speaking at a news conference in Brussels, Defense Secretary Mark T. Esper said that the United States […]

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Pentagon Pushes Tech Industry to Help U.S. Retain Military Edge

SAN FRANCISCO — Pentagon officials have been holding private discussions with tech industry executives to wrestle with a key question: how to ensure future supplies of the advanced computer chips needed to retain America’s military edge. The talks, some of which predate the Trump administration, recently took on an increased urgency, according to people who […]

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Read the Trump Administration’s Warning Letter to Laura Cooper

WASHINGTON — The White House has declared that the executive branch will not cooperate with the House’s impeachment inquiry, but some officials have nevertheless provided testimony to Congress about what they know about whether President Trump’s attempts to pressure the Ukrainian government into investigating his political rivals were a quid pro quo in return for […]

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Update Complete: U.S. Nuclear Weapons No Longer Need Floppy Disks

Rest easy, people of Earth: The United States’ nuclear arsenal will no longer rely on a computer system that uses eight-inch floppy disks, in an update the Defense Department has cast as a step into the future but which some observers might be surprised to learn was required at all. The system, called Strategic Automated […]

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Contradicting Trump, Ukraine Knew of Aid Freeze Before It Became Public

KIEV, Ukraine — To Democrats who say that President Trump’s decision to freeze a $391 million military aid package to Ukraine was intended to bully Ukraine’s leader into carrying out investigations for Mr. Trump’s political benefit, the president and his allies have had a simple response: There could not have been any quid pro quo […]

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U.S. Is Quietly Reducing Its Troop Force in Afghanistan

KABUL, Afghanistan — The United States is already reducing the size of its troop force in Afghanistan despite the lack of a peace deal with the Taliban, at a time when President Trump has expressed reluctance to remain engaged in costly wars abroad. In a news conference on Monday, the top American commander in Afghanistan, […]

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The Army Is Looking for a Few Good Art Experts

It’s no secret that the war-ravaged nations where American soldiers have been enmeshed in conflict for nearly two decades are home to many of civilization’s oldest and most prized antiquities and cultural treasures. But in the heat of battle in Afghanistan or Iraq, how are troops to know whether they are taking their positions behind […]

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Trump Said to Favor Leaving a Few Hundred Troops in Eastern Syria

WASHINGTON — President Trump is leaning in favor of a new Pentagon plan to keep a small contingent of American troops in eastern Syria, perhaps numbering about 200, to combat the Islamic State and block the advance of Syrian government and Russian forces into the region’s coveted oil fields, a senior administration official said on […]

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Pentagon Chief Makes Unannounced Visit to Afghanistan

KABUL, Afghanistan — Defense Secretary Mark T. Esper traveled to Afghanistan on Sunday, in his first visit to the country since being confirmed as Pentagon chief amid uncertainty about the administration’s strategy following the collapse of peace talks with the Taliban. His unannounced trip came weeks after the lead American negotiator during the talks, Zalmay […]

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