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Articles written by Robert Burns

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US: Time to expand the international coalition against IS

MUNICH, Germany (AP) — The top Pentagon official said Friday he foresees a "bigger and stronger" American-led international coalition combatting the Islamic State group globally as the U.S. withdraws its troops from Syria. Pat Shanahan, on his...

 

Pentagon official assures Iraqis of limited US military role

BAGHDAD (AP) — The top Pentagon official assured Iraqi leaders Tuesday that the U.S. will stick to its limited military role in Iraq, a message aimed at recent talk by some Iraqi politicians of forcing a U.S. troop withdrawal. Pat Shanahan, the...

 

US expected to announce treaty withdrawal as soon as Friday

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Trump administration is poised to announce Friday that it is withdrawing from a treaty that has been a centerpiece of superpower arms control since the Cold War and whose demise some analysts worry could fuel a new arms race....

 

Report: Afghan forces still shrinking, security gaps growing

WASHINGTON (AP) — As the Trump administration pushes for peace in Afghanistan, a new U.S. watchdog report says Afghan security forces are shrinking, gaps in security are growing, and the Taliban are largely holding their own despite a surge in...

 

Trump suspends arms treaty to focus on China, Russia threats

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Trump administration is pulling the plug on a decades-old nuclear arms treaty with Russia, lifting what it sees as unreasonable constraints on competing with a resurgent Russia and a more assertive China. The move announced...

 

US intel heads list North Korea, not border, as threat to US

WASHINGTON (AP) — Directly contradicting President Donald Trump, U.S. intelligence agencies told Congress on Tuesday that North Korea is unlikely to dismantle its nuclear arsenal, that the Islamic State group remains a threat and that the Iran...

 

US starts withdrawing supplies, but not troops, from Syria

WASHINGTON (AP) — The U.S. military said Friday it has started pulling equipment, but not troops, out of Syria as a first step in meeting President Donald Trump's demand for a complete military withdrawal. The announcement fueled concern about how...

 

Trump gives new Pentagon chief a taste of his world view

WASHINGTON (AP) — On his first working day in charge of the Pentagon, Pat Shanahan got a taste of President Donald Trump's scattershot way of looking at the world. As Shanahan sat to Trump's left at a Cabinet meeting at the White House, the...

 

Mattis' final words from Pentagon: 'Hold fast' with allies

WASHINGTON (AP) — Jim Mattis ended one of history's more turbulent tenures as defense secretary on Monday by re-emphasizing a key difference with President Donald Trump and encouraging Pentagon employees, civilian and military, to "hold fast" in...

 

Mattis outlines strategic hazards facing next Pentagon chief

WASHINGTON (AP) — The extraordinary resignation letter that Defense Secretary Jim Mattis handed to a surprised President Donald Trump was not just a product of two years of accumulating frustration with an impulsive boss, but an outline of the...

 

Pentagon scrambles on Syria exit amid withdrawal outrage

WASHINGTON (AP) — Military leaders were scrambling Thursday to devise a swift but safe departure of troops from Syria, as outraged lawmakers appealed to President Donald Trump to reverse an abrupt withdrawal order that rattled Washington's allies...

 

Mattis says he has extra authority to use military on border

WASHINGTON (AP) — Defense Secretary Jim Mattis said on Wednesday the White House has given him explicit authority to use military troops to protect Customs and Border Protection personnel, with lethal force if necessary, at the southwest border. Th...

 

AP FACT CHECK: Trump's case for Saudi solidarity

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump vastly inflated the value of planned Saudi investments in the U.S. on Tuesday, as he explained why he's "standing with Saudi Arabia" despite the conclusion of his intelligence officials that the kingdom's...

 

Trump criticizes war hero for not killing bin Laden sooner

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump has ignited a firestorm of criticism and charges that he is politicizing the military by faulting a war hero for not killing al-Qaida leader Osama bin Laden sooner. Trump took verbal shots at retired Adm....

 

A look at the troops being sent to US-Mexico border

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump ordered troops to the border in response to a caravan of migrants slowly making its way through Mexico toward the United States and still about 900 miles away, with many dropping out. Here's what we know so...

 

At turning point, US urges Yemen cease-fire, political talks

WASHINGTON (AP) — At an apparent turning point in one of its hardest foreign policy challenges, the Trump administration is demanding a cease-fire and the launch of U.N.-led political talks to end the Saudi-Iran proxy war in Yemen. Defense...

 

Trump says border troops could hit 15K, surprising Pentagon

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump said Wednesday that the number of military troops deployed to the U.S.-Mexican border could reach 15,000 — roughly double the number the Pentagon said it currently plans for a mission whose dimensions are...

 

Trump sending troops to border, an issue that fires up base

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Trump administration is planning to dispatch at least 800 active-duty troops to the southern border at the direction of a president who has sought to transform fears about immigration into electoral gains in the midterms as a...

 

Trump space force plan is grounded in real needs but hazy

WASHINGTON (AP) — With his demand that the Pentagon create a new military service — a Space Force to assure "American dominance in space" — President Donald Trump has injected urgency into a long-meandering debate over the best way to protect U...

 

US and South Korea again call off a major military exercise

SINGAPORE (AP) — The United States and South Korea are scrapping another major military exercise this year, a Pentagon official said Friday, citing a push for diplomatic progress with North Korea. The top Pentagon spokeswoman, Dana W. White, said...

 

US defense secretary sees the enduring costs of Vietnam War

BIEN HOA, Vietnam (AP) — U.S. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis is getting a firsthand look at the enduring costs of fighting the Vietnam War. Mattis visited an air base north of Ho Chi Minh City that was heavily contaminated in the late 1960s and...

 

Packages with suspected ricin sent to Pentagon, Navy chiefs

WASHINGTON (AP) — Authorities at a Pentagon mail screening facility found two envelopes suspected of containing ricin, a poison made from castor beans, and turned them over to the FBI for further analysis, officials said Tuesday. One envelope was...

 

White House sets 'new direction' in biodefense strategy

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Trump administration on Tuesday released a new biodefense strategy that it said takes a more comprehensive approach to preparing the nation for deliberate biological attacks and natural outbreaks of infectious disease. The...

 

US and Chile agree to cooperate on cyber security

SANTIAGO, Chile (AP) — U.S. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis and his Chilean counterpart have signed an agreement pledging closer cooperation in combating cyber threats. Mattis and Defense Minister Alberto Espina held a signing ceremony Thursday after...

 

Mattis says further Taliban assaults likely in weeks ahead

BOGOTA, Colombia (AP) — Western-backed Afghan defenses will not break under the weight of Taliban violence in advance of scheduled parliamentary elections in October, U.S. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis said. In his most detailed comments on the...

 

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