23 February 2018 Military News
- OIF / OND / OEF / OIR / OFS Casualty Update 23 Feb 2018 [PDF]
- Military Strikes Hit ISIS Terrorists in Syria, Iraq AFPS 23 Feb 2018 -- U.S. and coalition military forces continued to attack the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria between Feb. 16 and yesterday, conducting 41 strikes consisting of 76 engagements, Combined Joint Task Force Operation Inherent Resolve officials reported today.
- Trump admin. says US forces can stay in Syria without Congress authorization Press TV 23 Feb 2018 -- The administration of US President Donald Trump says it needs no legal authorization from Congress to indefinitely keep American military forces deployed in Syria and Iraq, even in territories that have been cleared of terrorist fighters, according to two newly published letters written by the Pentagon and State Department.
Defense Policy / Programs
- Service secretaries say quality of schools, reciprocity of licenses should be considered in future basing decisions DoD 23 Feb 2018 -- A letter signed by all three military service secretaries outlining ways state leadership can better support service members was sent to the National Governors Association on Friday, Feb. 23.
- Navy Accepts Delivery of USNS Hershel "Woody" Williams NNS 23 Feb 2018 -- The Navy accepted delivery of its second Expeditionary Sea Base (ESB) ship, USNS Hershel "Woody" Williams (ESB 4), Feb. 22.
- USS Constitution Observes Anniversary of Victory over HMS Cyane and HMS Levant NNS 23 Feb 2018 -- USS Constitution commemorated the 203rd anniversary of her victory over Her Majesty's Ship (HMS) Cyane and HMS Levant at Pier One of the Charlestown Navy Yard, Feb. 20.
- Vietnam Ambassador to United States visits USS George HW Bush (CVN 77) NNS 23 Feb 2018 -- The Ambassador of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam to the United States Pham Quang Vinh, along with Under Secretary of the Navy Mr. Thomas Modly and the Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Southeast Asia Mr. Patrick Murphy, visited the aircraft carrier USS George H.W. Bush (CVN 77), Feb. 21.
- Innovation, National Defense Strategy, the future: CSAF at Air Force Association Air Warfare Symposium AFNS 23 Feb 2018 -- In today's complex global security environment, victory goes not to the innovator, but to the rapid integrator of new ideas, said Chief of Staff of the Air Force Gen. David L. Goldfein during the Air Force Association Air Warfare Symposium in Orlando, Florida, Feb. 23, 2018.
- Cobra Gold 18: HADR-X USMC News 23 Feb 2018 -- The HADR-X is a part of Cobra Gold 2018, an annual exercise conducted in the Kingdom of Thailand held from Feb. 13-23 with seven full participating nations.
- 1/2 Marines engage in live fire exercise USMC News 23 Feb 2018 -- Marines with 1st Battalion, 2nd Marine Regiment, 2nd Marine Division conducted platoon attacks at range G-27 Infantry Squad Battle Course Range on Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune, North Carolina, Jan. 24, 2018. The Marines conducted day and night live-fire drills to build their confidence moving forward into future operations.
- USS Carney Departs Varna, Bulgaria NNS 23 Feb 2018 -- The Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Carney (DDG 64) departed Varna, Bulgaria, Feb. 22, after a scheduled port visit.
- Navy Lays Keel of Future Littoral Combat Ship Minneapolis-Saint Paul (LCS 21) NNS 23 Feb 2018 -- The U.S. Navy held a keel laying and authentication ceremony for the future USS Minneapolis-Saint Paul (LCS 21) in Marinette, Wisconsin, Feb. 22.
- Navy Accepts Delivery of USNS Hershel "Woody" Williams NNS 23 Feb 2018 -- The Navy accepted delivery of its second Expeditionary Sea Base (ESB) ship, USNS Hershel "Woody" Williams (ESB 4), Feb. 22.
- Pentagon Wants $500 Million to Research Sixth-Gen Warplane 'Family of Systems' Sputnik 23 Feb 2018 -- The US plans to spend more than half a billion dollars on sixth-generation jet research for the "family of systems" that will eventually replace the F-35 and F-22 warplanes.
- EU to double funding for military force in West Africa's Sahel region Press TV 23 Feb 2018 -- The European Union is to double the budget allocated to a multi-national force in West Africa's Sahel region as part of a declared mission to crack down on militancy and human trafficking there.
- EU to Allocate $216Mln to Support Security in Africa's Sahel Region - Mogherini Sputnik 23 Feb 2018 -- The EU and its member states decided on Friday to allocate 176 million euros (about $216 million) to support the Joint Security Force of the G5 Sahel group of countries, namely Burkina Faso, Chad, Mali, Mauritania and Niger, in tackling terrorism and criminal activities, EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini said.
- India Test Fires Nuclear-Capable Ballistic Missile Dhanush From Naval Warship Sputnik 23 Feb 2018 -- This was the third test in a month of Dhanush, which is the naval version of the Prithvi missile. It has the capability to carry conventional and nuclear warheads and strike sea and land-based targets; it can hit targets at a distance of up to 350 kilometers.
- India Locally Develops FSAPDS Ammunition for T-72, T-90 Battle Tanks Sputnik 23 Feb 2018 -- The state-owned Defense Research and Development Organization (DRDO) has claimed that it conducted a series of trials for at least 10 days, which were very much successful.
- US warns Iraq of 'consequences' if it buys Russian S-400 missile systems Press TV 23 Feb 2018 -- The United States has warned Iraq, among a number of other countries, of the consequences of extending military cooperation with Russia, and striking deals to purchase advanced weaponry, particularly the S-400 surface-to-air missile defense systems.
- S Korea Agrees to Boost Military Cooperation With Switzerland, Latvia - Reports Sputnik 23 Feb 2018 -- South Korea on Friday agreed to boost military cooperation with Switzerland and Latvia at separate meetings of South Korean Defense Minister Song Yong-moo with his Swiss and Latvian counterparts, according to local media reports.
- Defense Ministry gets new deputy chief CNA 23 Feb 2018 -- The Ministry of National Defense (MND) will get a new deputy chief, Air Force Commander Shen Yi-ming (沈一鳴), to join with new Defense Minister Yen Teh-fa (嚴德發) at the top of the agency.
- Yen chosen as new defense minister for his experience: official CNA 23 Feb 2018 -- Yen Teh-fa (嚴德發) has been tapped as Taiwan's new defense minister because of his rich knowledge and experience in the field of national security, an administration source told CNA Friday.
- Control Yuan passes motion to impeach officers for missile firing CNA 23 Feb 2018 -- The Control Yuan passed Friday a motion to impeach nine naval officers involved in the July 2016 accidental firing of an anti-ship missile that hit a fishing boat, killing the captain and injuring three crew members.
- Swedish Military Cites Russian Expansionism In Bid To Boost Spending RFE/RL 23 Feb 2018 -- Sweden's military has cited an increasingly assertive Russia in a request to parliament for a major increase in the Nordic country's defense spending.
- 23 February 2018 - Daily Press Briefing by the Office of the Spokesperson for the Secretary-General United Nations 23 Feb 2018
- Daesh stashed millions of dollars during reign of terror in region: Economist Press TV 23 Feb 2018 -- A report says Daesh rose to become the "richest terrorist group in history" by stashing millions of dollars across the region before losing its territorial rule in Iraq and Syria late last year.
- Turkish military not avoiding civilians in strikes against Syria's Afrin: HRW Press TV 23 Feb 2018 -- Human Rights Watch has criticized the Ankara government's ongoing cross-border offensive in Syria's northwestern region of Afrin against the Kurdish People's Protection Units (YPG), stating that the Turkish military has failed to adopt necessary measures to avoid civilian casualties.
- U.S. Diplomat: Work With Russia On Syria 'More Challenging' RFE/RL 23 Feb 2018 -- A senior U.S. diplomat says it has become "more challenging" for Washington to work with Moscow in Syria amid Russia's resistance to a call by Western powers for a 30-day cease-fire in the war-torn country.
- Top UN officials urge stronger support for Syrians and host communities amid escalating violence UN News 23 Feb 2018 -- Senior United Nations officials on Friday called for greater support for Syrian refugees as well as the communities hosting them amid escalating violence in the war-torn country.
- UN Security Council Works to Hammer Out Syria Cease-Fire VOA 23 Feb 2018 -- United Nations diplomats carried out last-minute negotiations Friday in an effort to avoid a Russian veto and adopt a resolution implementing a 30-day cease-fire across Syria and lift sieges on towns, including in the rebel-held eastern Ghouta district.
- UN Envoy Calls for Immediate Cease-Fire in Syria VOA 23 Feb 2018 -- The U.N. special envoy for Syria, Staffan de Mistura, is calling for an immediate cease-fire in Syria to stop the relentless bombing by the Syrian government, with support by its Russian ally, of civilians trapped in the besieged city of eastern Ghouta.
- UN special envoy for Syria calls for immediate truce IRNA 23 Feb 2018 -- The UN special envoy for Syria on Friday reiterated his call for immediate cease-fire amid 'horrific' bombings in besieged Eastern Ghouta, a suburb of Damascus.
- 1 killed, 15 injured due to shelling attacks on Damascus IRNA 23 Feb 2018 -- One civilian was killed and at least 15 others were injured when armed groups fired a shell on Salaheddin area in Rukn Eddin neighborhood in Damascus, a source at Damascus Police Command said.
- Pentagon Says U.S. Was Told No Russians Involved In Syria Attack RFE/RL 23 Feb 2018 -- The Pentagon says U.S. military commanders were told by their Russian counterparts that there were no Russians in a paramilitary force whose attack on a base in eastern Syria earlier this month led to a massive counterstrike by U.S. forces.
- EU, Turkey Join Call For Russia, Iran To 'Stop' Syrian Offensive RFE/RL 23 Feb 2018 -- Turkey and the European Union have joined international calls for Russia and Iran to "stop" Syrian government forces from carrying out a military offensive on the rebel-held enclave of eastern Ghouta, a suburb of Damascus where more than 400 civilians have reportedly been killed since February 18.
- Militants Fire Mortar Shells from East Ghouta at Residential Areas of Damascus Sputnik 23 Feb 2018 -- The militants fired 83 mortar rounds from East Ghouta suburb at the residential areas of the Syrian capital Damascus in the past 24 hours, the Russian Center for Syrian reconciliation said Thursday.
- Myanmar bulldozing Rohingya villages to destroy its 'crime scenes' Press TV 23 Feb 2018 -- New satellite imagery shows that the government of Myanmar is bulldozing more than dozens of already-burned-out Rohingya Muslim villages in the west of the country in an attempt to destroy evidence of violence committed by the military, rights groups say.
- Fresh threats loom over 720,000 Rohingya children 'cast adrift, trapped in limbo' - UNICEF UN News 23 Feb 2018 -- Rohingya children are facing threats either from severe weather approaching Bangladesh where hundreds of thousands are sheltered in squalid, overcrowded refugee camps, or by ongoing violence in their Myanmar homeland, the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) warned on Friday, calling urgently for scaled-up assistance ahead of the region's storm season and to address the root causes of the crisis.
- Libyans Still Waiting for Peaceful Transition 7 Yrs After Revolution VOA 23 Feb 2018 -- February marks the seventh anniversary of the Libyan revolution, but many Libyans believe there is not much to celebrate as they are still waiting for the birth of a democratic state.
- Opening of U.S. Embassy Jerusalem US Dept. of State 23 Feb 2018 -- In May, the United States plans to open a new U.S. Embassy in Jerusalem. The opening will coincide with Israel's 70th anniversary.
- US to Move Embassy to Jerusalem in May VOA 23 Feb 2018 -- The United States says it will open a new embassy in Jerusalem in May to coincide with Israel's 70th anniversary.
- Rights violations in South Sudan may amount to crimes against humanity and war crimes, concludes UN panel UN News 23 Feb 2018 -- United Nations panel on human rights violations in South Sudan documents unspeakable cruelty against civilians, not just limited to widescale brutal massacres and sexual violence but extending to individuals trying to defend themselves or their families and had their eyes gouged out, their throats slit or were castrated.
- UN Report Accuses South Sudan Officials, Military Officers of War Crimes VOA 23 Feb 2018 -- U.N. investigators say they have identified more than 40 South Sudanese officials and military officers who may be responsible for war crimes and crimes against humanity.
- UN migration agency reports rise in displacement in northern Mali UN News 23 Feb 2018 -- A resurgence of communal violence and armed conflict in recent weeks has led to an increase in the number of internally displaced persons (IDPs) in northern Mali, the United Nations International Organization for Migration (IOM) reported on Friday.
- Turkey Summons Dutch Envoy, 'Fiercely' Condemns' Armenia Genocide Vote RFE/RL 23 Feb 2018 -- Turkey's Foreign Ministry summoned the top Dutch envoy in the country on February 23, a day after lawmakers in the Netherlands voted to recognize the mass killing of Armenians under the Ottoman Empire during World War I as "genocide," the Turkish state-run news agency Anadolu reported.
- Int'l Donors Pledge More Than $500M for West Africa's Sahel VOA 23 Feb 2018 -- The European Union and other international donors pledged more than half-a-billion dollars Friday to support a multi-national military operation in Africa's vast Sahel region, which has fallen prey to smugglers, human traffickers and terrorists in recent years.
- Ukraine's Military Chief Warns Of 'Wide-Scale Aggression' By Russia RFE/RL 23 Feb 2018 -- The commander of Ukraine's armed forces has warned of possible "wide-scale aggression" by Russia against his country.
- UNHCR Calls on Rwanda to Investigate Refugee Deaths VOA 23 Feb 2018 -- The U.N. refugee agency is calling on Rwandan authorities to investigate police culpability in the deaths of at least five Congolese refugees during a recent protest of food ration cuts.
- U.S. Special Counsel Files New Charges Against Ex-Trump Aides RFE/RL 23 Feb 2018 -- The U.S. special counsel investigating alleged Russian interference in U.S. politics has filed updated criminal charges against two former top campaign aides of President Donald Trump.
- Former Trump Campaign Associate Pleads Guilty in Russia Probe VOA 23 Feb 2018 -- Rick Gates, a former associate of President Donald Trump's 2016 election campaign, pleaded guilty Friday to conspiracy and lying charges related to Special Counsel Robert Mueller's investigation into Russian interference in the election.
- Afghan TAPI Construction Kicks Off, But Pipeline Questions Still Unresolved RFE/RL 23 Feb 2018 -- Executives and regional leaders gathered for a ground-breaking ceremony for Afghanistan's section of the Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India (TAPI) gas pipeline on February 23 in the western Afghan city of Herat.
- Afghan, Pakistani, Indian officials launch Turkmen natural gas pipeline Press TV 23 Feb 2018 -- The Afghan president and Pakistani prime minister have inaugurated a 1,814 kilometer gas pipeline that will carry Turkmenistan's natural gas to Afghanistan as well as Pakistan and India after its construction officially began on the Afghan-Turkmen border.
- Leaders Mark Start Of Work On Afghan Section Of TAPI Pipeline RFE/RL 23 Feb 2018 -- Leaders and senior officials from Afghanistan, Turkmenistan, Pakistan, and India have inaugurated the start of work on the Afghan part of a multibillion-dollar pipeline project that they hope will meet the region's energy needs.
- Leaders To Mark Start Of Work On Afghan Section Of TAPI Pipeline RFE/RL 23 Feb 2018 -- Leaders of Afghanistan, Turkmenistan, Pakistan, and India were expected on February 23 to inaugurate the start of work on the Afghan part of a multibillion-dollar pipeline project that they hope will meet the region's energy needs.
- Construction Begins on Afghanistan Section of International Gas Pipeline VOA 23 Feb 2018 -- Leaders of Afghanistan, Turkmenistan, Pakistan and its arch rival India jointly inaugurated construction work Friday on the Afghan section of a long-delayed multibillion-dollar gas pipeline connecting the four nations, raising hopes for regional cooperation and peace.
- Djibouti seizes Dubai-operated port, angering Emirati firm Press TV 23 Feb 2018 -- The Horn of Africa country of Djibouti has seized control of a container terminal that had been leased out to Dubai Ports World (DP World) for 30 years.
- Manila Summons US Ambassador as Duterte Called 'Threat to Democracy' in Report Sputnik 23 Feb 2018 -- The US intelligence community labeled the President of the Philippines, Rodrigo Duterte, a "threat to democracy" in their Worldwide Threat Assessment report, a move that has added to the already strained relations between the two countries.
- Cambodian PM Vows to Bash Aussies on Their Own Soil VOA 23 Feb 2018 -- An Australian parliamentarian says he has sought the intervention of federal police in response to threats from Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen to beat citizens of the country on their home soil.
- gTreasury Announces Largest North Korean Sanctions Package Targeting 56 Shipping and Trading Companies and Vessels to Further Isolate Rogue Regime US Treasury 23 Feb 2018 -- The U.S. Department of the Treasury's Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) today announced the largest North Korea-related sanctions tranche to date, aimed at disrupting North Korean shipping and trading companies and vessels to further isolate the regime and advance the U.S. maximum pressure campaign. Today's action targets one individual, 27 entities, and 28 vessels located, registered, or flagged in North Korea, China, Singapore, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Marshall Islands, Tanzania, Panama, and Comoros. Today, Treasury, along with the U.S. Department of State and U.S. Coast Guard, also issued an advisory alerting the public to the significant sanctions risks to those continuing to enable shipments of goods to and from North Korea.
- Press Briefing by Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin on North Korea Sanctions The White House 23 Feb 2018
- Trump announces 'largest ever' tranche of North Korea sanctions Press TV 23 Feb 2018 -- US President Donald Trump has announced what he called America's "largest ever" tranche of sanctions against North Korea, in an attempt to increase pressure on the nuclear-armed country.
- Trump Announces 'Largest Ever' Sanctions on North Korea VOA 23 Feb 2018 -- After announcing what he called the "largest ever" set of sanctions against North Korea, U.S. President Donald Trump on Friday threatened a "phase two" if the measures aren't effective.
- US Imposes 'Largest Ever' Set of Sanctions Against North Korea Sputnik 23 Feb 2018 -- The US president is set to announce new sanctions against 56 vessels, trade entities, and shipping companies that are aimed at maximizing pressure on Pyongyang, which has recently held talks with Seoul to ease the ever-growing tensions on the Korean peninsula and sent its athletes to the 2016 Winter Olympics in South Korea's Pyeongchang.
- US plans bans on North Korea, South invites sanctioned official Press TV 23 Feb 2018 -- The United States is reportedly set to unveil a large package of sanctions against North Korea, even as Pyongyang is continuing to engage its main rival Seoul in pursuit of peace.
- North Korea blasts UN chief as 'henchman' of US Press TV 23 Feb 2018 -- North Korea has dubbed United Nations Secretary General Antonio Guterres as a "henchman" of the United States, after he expressed support for US-led sanctions against Pyongyang during the Munich Security Conference last week.
- North Korea Brands UN Secretary General a 'Henchman' of the United States Sputnik 23 Feb 2018 -- The decision of the head of the UN to endorse economic sanctions against North Korea has provoked a sharp retort from the country's representatives, who accused him of being an American lackey.
- Top commander vows to prevent recurrence of Pasdaran Ave. incidents IRNA 23 Feb 2018 -- Chief of Staff of the Iranian Armed Forces Major General Mohammad Baqeri on Thursday underlined that the powerful defenders of national security will never allow recent incidents in northern Tehran to be repeated.
- Taiwan replaces foreign minister, China policy chief (update) CNA 23 Feb 2018 -- Taiwan's government announced a long-rumored reshuffle of top Cabinet posts Friday, with the country's foreign and defense ministries and top agency for China policy all getting new leaders.
- Government reshuffle lineup announced CNA 23 Feb 2018 -- Presidential Office Secretary-General Joseph Wu (吳釗燮) is to replace David Lee (李大維) as foreign minister, while Lee will lead the National Security Council (NSC), government officials announced Friday.
- Is Turkey Using Infrastructure Projects to Stifle European Criticism? VOA 23 Feb 2018 -- When the first jet airplane lands Monday at Istanbul's newest airport, it will mark a milestone in what analysts see as a Turkish drive to accomplish with contracting dollars what it has not been able to achieve with traditional diplomacy.
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