26 May 2017
2017/05/24 – Iraq: US military admits failures to monitor over $1 billion worth of arms transfers – Amnesty International
The US Army failed to keep tabs on more than $1 billion worth of arms and other military equipment in Iraq and Kuwait according to a now declassified Department of Defense (DoD) audit, obtained by Amnesty International following Freedom of Information requests.
The military transfers came under the Iraq Train and Equip Fund (ITEF), a linchpin of US-Iraqi security cooperation. In 2015, US Congress appropriated USD$1.6 billion for the programme to combat the advance of IS.
Amnesty International’s research has consistently documented lax controls and record-keeping within the Iraqi chain of command. This has resulted in arms manufactured in the USA and other countries winding up in the hands of armed groups known to be committing war crimes and other atrocities, such as IS, as well as paramilitary militias now incorporated into the Iraqi army.
How insane is it to understand that as long as this war has persisted, in 2015, we still allocating money to send them more weapons.
10 Mar 2017
Remember the Yemen raid mentioned at Trump’s speech to Congress… and the soldier’s widow was honored? Trump had mentioned how it was a successful raid.
US tries to ID hundreds of al Qaeda contacts thanks to Yemen raid – CNN
Several US officials told CNN Thursday that the US is now taking action to locate and monitor hundreds of people or “contacts” found as part the intelligence retrieved during the deadly raid last month in Yemen targeting al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula.
The terabyte’s worth of intelligence gathered from computers and cell phones is now being reviewed at the National Media Exploitation Center outside Washington, which analyzes documents, electronic media, cell phones, video and audio tapes seized on overseas missions.
Thanks to all who are serving and have served in the past. Keep up the good work.
3 Mar 2017
US launches fierce attacks against Al Qaeda in Yemen – South China Morning Post
The United States carried out another wave of strikes against al Qaeda in Yemen overnight, residents and US officials said on Friday, in the latest sign of increasing US military focus on a group whose strength has grown during Yemen’s civil war.
2 Mar 2017
US got names of al Qaeda operatives during raid that killed Navy Seal – NY Post
US forces scored the names of hundreds of al Qaeda operatives from the January raid in Yemen that took the life of Navy SEAL Ryan Owens, officials said Thursday.
The names were found on computers and cellphones that are still being examined by the National Media Exploitation Center outside Washington, CNN reported.
Army Gen. Joseph Votel, who oversees US troops in the region, has maintained that the mission was “successful” despite Owens’ death.
Owens’ widow received a nice tribute from the President during the Joint Session of Congress. The dad is still pretty salty and did not attend the event.
9 May 2016
Army shrinks to smallest level since before World War II
The Army’s latest headcount shows that nearly 2,600 soldiers departed active service in March without being replaced, an action that plunges manning to its lowest level since before World War II.
During the past year the size of the active force has been reduced by 16,548 soldiers, the rough equivalent of three brigades.
End strength for March was 479,172 soldiers, which is 154 fewer troopers than were on active duty when the Army halted the post-Cold War drawdown in 1999 with 479,424 soldiers, the smallest force since 1940, when the active component numbered 269,023 soldiers.
The latest official demographics from the Defense Manpower Data Center shows that in addition to the 479,172 soldiers who were on active duty April 1, the Army’s reserve forces totaled 548,024 soldiers, for a total force of 1,027,196 soldiers.
The drawdown master plan calls for a Total Army of 980,000 soldiers on Sept. 30, 2018.
I am OK with this – especially with how much we are in debt – as long as they can get the job done when circumstances warrant.
8 Feb 2016
Pentagon orders commanders to prioritize climate change in all military actions
The Pentagon is ordering the top brass to incorporate climate change into virtually everything they do, from testing weapons to training troops to war planning to joint exercises with allies.
A new directive’s theme: The U.S. Armed Forces must show “resilience” and beat back the threat based on “actionable science.”
The Department of Defense last issued a broad directive on climate change in July. It declared climate change an “urgent and growing threat to our national security” and blamed it for “increased natural disasters.”
Climate change must be integrated in:
- Weapons buying and testing “across the life cycle of weapons systems, platforms and equipment.”
- Training ranges and capabilities.
- Defense intelligence surveillance and reconnaissance.
- Defense education and training.
- Combatant commander joint training with allies to “assess the risks to U.S. security interests posed by climate change.”
- Joint Chiefs of Staff collaboration “with allies and partners to optimize joint exercises and war games including factors contributing to geopolitical and socioeconomic instability.”
So, the climate is now top priority over any military action. Who defines what harms the climate? Probably the EPA. So the same sludge of regulations that has our economy slowing down will now slow down the military as well.
How many more days of this do we have? 300+ minimum? Ugh.
13 Jan 2016
Something strange about this whole event. The presence of cameras and videos, and the quick release of the people without incident… sounds like some sort of propaganda effort. It just seems staged to me.
Kerry Thanks Iran: Troops Were Well Taken Care Of, Peacefully Resolved Due To Nuclear Deal
KERRY: I want to thank the Iranian authorities for their co-operation and quick response. These are always situations that everybody here knows have an ability, if not properly guided to get out of control and I’m appreciative for the quick and appropriate response of the Iranian authorities. All indications suggest or tell us that our sailors were well taken care of and provided with blankets and food and assisted with their return to the fleet earlier today. And I think we can all imagine how a similar situation might have played out three or four years ago and in fact, it is clear that today this kind of issue was able to be peacefully resolved and officially resolved and that is a testament to the critical role that diplomacy plays in keeping our country safe, secure and strong. And that is really at the core of what I am here to talk about today.
The Iranians are friendly. They fed them and kept them warm and let them go peacefully. They aren’t mean and nasty.
Diplomacy keeps our country safe? I would like to know what level of diplomacy was used.