Tag Archives: Military

Venezuela's parliament tries to lure military into disavowing Maduro

Venezuela's parliament tries to lure military into disavowing MaduroVenezuela’s opposition-controlled but powerless National Assembly stepped up its battle with President Nicolas Maduro on Tuesday by offering an amnesty to anyone from the military who joins it in disavowing the socialist leader. The “amnesty law” would extend also to civilian government officials who collaborate “in the restitution of constitutional order,” parliament said. The row between the legislature and Maduro has intensified since the socialist leader was sworn in last week for a second term of office in the crisis-hit country, after he won snap elections in May that were boycotted by the opposition and dismissed by the United States, European Union and Organization of American States as a fraud.



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U.S. eyes Taiwan risk as China's military capabilities grow

U.S. eyes Taiwan risk as China's military capabilities growThe senior U.S. defense intelligence official, who spoke to reporters on condition of anonymity, did not predict that China’s military, known as the People’s Liberation Army (PLA), would take such a step but said such a possibility was the top worry as China expands and modernizes its military capabilities. “The biggest concern is that … they are getting to a point where the PLA leadership may actually tell Xi Jinping that they are confident in their capabilities,” the official said, referring to China’s president. Pressed on whether the official was referring to Chinese confidence in its capabilities to be able to successfully win a battle with Taiwan, the official said, “Well, specifically that would be the most concerning to me.” Taiwan is only one of a growing number of flashpoints in the U.S.-China relationship, including a trade war between the countries, U.S. sanctions on the Chinese military, and China’s increasingly muscular military posture in the South China Sea.



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White House sought military strike against Iran

White House sought military strike against IranThe White House demanded that the military draft plans for strikes on Iran after attacks in Iraq last year, sparking concern at the Pentagon and State Department, The Wall Street Journal reported Sunday. The report said the move came after a mortar attack launched by an Iran-linked group on the Baghdad diplomatic quarters home to the US embassy in September. It added that the NSC also requested options to respond with strikes in Iraq and Syria.



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U.S. Military Trusted More Than Google, Facebook to Develop AI

U.S. Military Trusted More Than Google, Facebook to Develop AIMore than two-thirds of those surveyed said they had either “no confidence” or “not too much confidence” in Facebook developing A.I., a report from the Center for the Governance of AI, part of the Future of Humanity Institute at the University of Oxford, said. The public was significantly more skeptical about Facebook than other tech companies working on cutting-edge A.I. research, according to the survey. Among technology companies, Microsoft Corp. was the most trusted, with 44 percent of people saying they had either “a great deal of confidence” or “a fair amount of confidence” in its ability to create A.I. that wouldn’t pose risks, the survey found.



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US military confirms airstrike killed USS Cole bombing suspect Jamal al-Badawi in Yemen

US military confirms airstrike killed USS Cole bombing suspect Jamal al-Badawi in YemenOn Oct. 12, 2000, two suicide bombers drove a small boat loaded with explosives into the hull of the USS Cole, killing 17 sailors.



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U.S. court rules for Trump on transgender military limits

U.S. court rules for Trump on transgender military limitsThe U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit overturned a decision by a federal judge in Washington, D.C., that blocked the policy, saying it likely violates the constitutional rights of transgender recruits and service members. President Donald Trump announced in March that he would endorse a plan by former Defense Secretary Jim Mattis to restrict the military service of transgender people who experience a condition called gender dysphoria. The appeals court victory is limited because other federal courts issued injunctions against the policy, which applied nationwide.



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US military deletes tacky New Year’s Eve tweet about being ‘ready to drop’ a bomb

US military deletes tacky New Year’s Eve tweet about being ‘ready to drop’ a bombIt's so easy to party to excess at the end of the year — to get caught up in the year-end revelry and the excitement of turning a page on the calendar. Some people get so caught up in the fun they go out and get hammered. Others gather in Times Square to watch the ball drop while they try not to freeze to death. Meanwhile, the arm of the US military that oversees the nation's nuclear weapons arsenal decided to get in on the fun in its own way — by sending out a humorous tweet about how big its bombs are. A tweet that, okay, wasn't actually funny at all. It has since been deleted and the military has also taken the extra step of apologizing for it.

Welcome to 2019.

It all started when US Strategic Command (@US_Stratcom on Twitter) sent out this admittedly inappropriate New Year's Eve-themed tweet. We're including this shared version of the tweet, since the original has been deleted:

twitter.com/ChrisMac1270/status/1079889859374768128

"What kind of maniacs are running this country?" Walter M. Shaub Jr. tweeted incredulously in response. He was formerly the head of the US Office of Government Ethics until his resignation in 2017.

As part of the since-deleted tweet, US Strategic Command also included a video with it that showed a B-2 stealth bomber dropping two GPS-guided bombs. Words like "Stealth" and "Lethal" popped up on the screen during the clip, which was reportedly viewed more than 120,000 times.

According to The New York Times: "The video in the original tweet shows a B-2 stealth bomber dropping a GBU-57 Massive Ordnance Penetrator. The GPS-guided bomb weighs tens of thousands of pounds and is designed specifically to penetrate thick concrete that protects entrenched structures such as underground bunkers and weapon storage sites.

"Stratcom is one of the American military's 10 unified commands. While some of those commands oversee operations in a specific region, like the Middle East or Africa, Strategic Command oversees specific capabilities, such as the Air Force's bomber wings that can strike anywhere in the world, encrypted communications or the tracking of global weapons of mass destruction."

Which, again, is the kind of military entity you would expect to be judicious in its communications and chest-thumping (of which one would hope there certainly wouldn't be any). So it's probably no surprise that the command deleted the tweet about being "ready to drop" something much bigger than the Times Square ball and quickly sent out this as an apology:

twitter.com/US_Stratcom/status/1079881433072717824

Happy New Year!



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As Mattis exits, he tells U.S. military to keep 'faith in our country'

As Mattis exits, he tells U.S. military to keep 'faith in our country'Mattis, who had been seen as a stabilizing factor in U.S. defense policy, is due to transfer authority near midnight to his deputy, Patrick Shanahan, a former Boeing Co executive. Mattis, a retired Marine general who has often shied from the spotlight, did not have any sort of departure ceremony when he left the Pentagon, leaving his farewell memo as his final public remarks as defense secretary.



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Iraqi warplanes strike Islamic State leaders in Syria: military

Iraqi warplanes strike Islamic State leaders in Syria: militaryIraqi warplanes hit a meeting of Islamic State leaders near Deir al-Zor in Syria on Monday, destroying the building they were gathered in, the military said in a statement, without giving further details about the militants targeted. The statement said F-16 fighter jets carried out the raid around al-Sousa village in eastern Syria, as “30 leaders from Daesh (Islamic State) gangs” met in the building. The strike came a day after Iraq’s government hinted at greater involvement for its armed forces in Syria as the U.S. begins withdrawing troops from the country.



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Did the U.S. Military Just Admit Victory in Afghanistan Is Impossible?

Did the U.S. Military Just Admit Victory in Afghanistan Is Impossible?"These are two sides that are fighting against one another, and neither one of them will achieve a military victory at this stage."



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