22 March 2018 Military News
- OIF / OND / OEF / OIR / OFS Casualty Update 22 Mar 2018 [PDF]
- Nicholson Says Situation in Afghanistan Has Fundamentally Changed AFPS 22 Mar 2018 -- The South Asia Strategy has fundamentally changed the situation in Afghanistan, and the Resolute Support mission commander believes it may provide the key for reconciliation and peace in the country.
- Powerful Afghan Governor Resigns, Ending Standoff With Ghani RFE/RL 22 Mar 2018 -- Atta Mohammad Noor, the powerful governor of Afghanistan's Balkh Province, has agreed to resign, ending a long standoff with the country's president.
- German Lawmakers Approve Troop Increase For Afghanistan RFE/RL 22 Mar 2018 -- The German parliament has approved plans to extend the country's military mission in Afghanistan.
Defense Policy / Programs
- Oklahoma National Guard Soldiers prepare for new weapons system Army News 22 Mar 2018 -- Artillerymen from the Oklahoma Army National Guard had the opportunity to fire their current weapon system one last time before they transition to a new system later this year.
- Navy to Commission New Guided-Missile Destroyer Ralph Johnson DoD 22 Mar 2018 -- The Navy will commission its newest guided-missile destroyer, the future USS Ralph Johnson (DDG 114), during a 10:00 a.m. EDT ceremony Saturday, March 24, at Columbus Street Pier in Charleston, South Carolina.
- Readout of Secretary of Defense James Mattis' Meeting with Kingdom of Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince and Minister of Defense Mohammed bin Salman DoD 22 Mar 2018
- Remarks By Secretary Mattis at enhanced honor cordon and meeting welcoming His Royal Highness Mohammad Bin Salman, Crown Prince of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, to the Pentagon DoD 22 Mar 2018 -- Presenter: Secretary Of Defense James N. Mattis; His Royal Highness Mohammad Bin Salman, Crown Prince of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia
- Pacific Partnership 2018 Kicks-Off in Yap NNS 22 Mar 2018 -- Pacific Partnership 2018, the largest annual multilateral humanitarian assistance and disaster relief (HA/DR) preparedness mission, kicked off aboard the expeditionary fast transport ship USNS Brunswick (T-EPF 6) in Yap, Federated States of Micronesia, March 21.
- US Special Forces to Order at Least 3,600 Powerful Small Glide Missiles Sputnik 22 Mar 2018 -- The US States Special Operations Command (SOCOM) is planning to buy thousands of missiles that are smaller than Hellfire missiles but more destructive.
- Nuclear Enterprise as Important as Ever, DoD Officials Tell Congress AFPS 22 Mar 2018 -- The nation's nuclear deterrence enterprise remains as important as ever in light of the return of superpower competition and rogue nation threats presented by North Korea and Iran, senior Defense Department officials told the House Armed Services Committee's strategic forces subcommittee here today.
- Senior Officials: U.S. Must Keep Pace with Adversaries in Missile Defense AFPS 22 Mar 2018 -- The fiscal year 2019 budget request for ballistic missile defense seeks to ensure the United States stays ahead of adversaries that are advancing their capabilities, defense officials said on Capitol Hill today.
- Secretary General praises the Czech Republic's commitment to NATO NATO 22 Mar 2018 -- Meeting the Prime Minister Andrej Babiš on Thursday (22 March 2018), NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg thanked the Prime Minister for the Czech Republic's strong contributions to the Alliance.
- Russian Military Reveals How US Could Intercept New Sarmat Missile Sputnik 22 Mar 2018 -- Development work on the new Russian intercontinental ballistic missile has wrapped up, with the Sarmat expected to begin its introduction into the Missile Forces in the near future.
- Russia's Aging Topol ICBMs to Be Scrapped for Gold, Silver Sputnik 22 Mar 2018 -- All of Russia's Topol mobile intercontinental ballistic missiles are due to be replaced with a modernized version of the Topol-M by the early 2020s.
- Saudi Arabia - TOW 2B (BGM-71F-Series) Missiles DSCA 22 Mar 2018 -- The State Department has made a determination approving a possible Foreign Military Sale to Saudi Arabia of TOW 2B (BGM-71F-Series) missiles for an estimated cost of $670 million. The Defense Security Cooperation Agency delivered the required certification notifying Congress of this possible sale today.
- Saudi Arabia - Royal Saudi Land Forces Ordnance Corps Foreign Military Sales Order (FMSO) II Case DSCA 22 Mar 2018 -- The State Department has made a determination approving a possible Foreign Military Sale to Saudi Arabia of a Royal Saudi Land Forces Ordnance Corps Foreign Military Sales Order (FMSO) II Case for an estimated cost of $300 million. The Defense Security Cooperation Agency delivered the required certification notifying Congress of this possible sale today.
- Saudi Arabia - Continuation of Maintenance Support Services (MSS) DSCA 22 Mar 2018 -- The State Department has made a determination approving a possible Foreign Military Sale to Saudi Arabia of equipment and services for the continuation of the Maintenance Support Services (MSS) contract that supports the Royal Saudi Land Forces Aviation Command's (RSLFAC) fleet of AH-64D/E, UH-60L, Schweizer 333 and Bell 406CS helicopters for an estimated cost of $106.8 million. The Defense Security Cooperation Agency delivered the required certification notifying Congress of this possible sale today.
- Turkish F-16 Fighter Jet Crashes in Nevsehir Province Sputnik 22 Mar 2018 -- An F-16 fighter jet of the Turkish Air Force crashed in the central part of the country, the General Staff of the Turkish Armed Forces said Thursday.
- Indian Navy's Remote-Piloted Spy Drone Crashes Due to Engine Failure Sputnik 22 Mar 2018 -- Israeli Aerospace Industries' MK-II Spy Drone is capable of flying 18 hours at a stretch and the Indian Navy used to deploy it at a height of 20,000 feet above the sea level.
- India Successfully Tests BrahMos Cruise Missile - Defense Ministry Sputnik 22 Mar 2018 -- India successfully tested a supersonic cruise missile BrahMos on Thursday, the country's Defense Ministry said, adding that this would help India to enhance its security.
- Royal Navy prepares for future UK fishery patrols UK MOD 22 Mar 2018 -- The Royal Navy has taken delivery of the first of their next-generation Offshore Patrol ships which will support monitoring and protection of UK fisheries after we leave the EU.
- Farewell Remarks to the Department US Dept. of State 22 Mar 2018 -- Remarks by Rex W. Tillerson, Secretary of State
- Department Press Briefing - March 22, 2018 US Dept. of State 22 Mar 2018
- 22 March 2018 - Daily Press Briefing by the Office of the Spokesperson for the Secretary-General United Nations 22 Mar 2018
- UN: Saudi Arabian Airstrikes in Yemen Kill, Maim Civilians VOA 22 Mar 2018 -- Saudi Arabian airstrikes are to blame for most civilian deaths and injuries in Yemen, says a report submitted to the United Nations Human Rights Council by the U.N. Secretary-General and High Commissioner for Human Rights.
- Pentagon chief calls on Saudi crown prince to cease Yemen aggression Press TV 22 Mar 2018 -- US Defense Secretary Jim Mattis has called upon Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman to find an "urgent" political solution to the devastating three-year-old conflict in neighboring Yemen, which has claimed the lives of thousands of people and left the impoverished nation's infrastructure in ruins.
- 17 killed or wounded in fresh Saudi strikes on Yemen's Sa'ada Press TV 22 Mar 2018 -- At least 17 civilians, including women and children, have been killed or wounded when Saudi warplanes targeted residential areas in Yemen's northern province of Sa'ada as the Riyadh regime presses ahead with its deadly bombardment campaign against the conflict-plagued country.
- Yemenis fire missile at Saudi oil giant Aramco's HQ in Najran Press TV 22 Mar 2018 -- Yemeni forces have fired a ballistic missile at the Saudi state oil giant Aramco's headquarters in the Persian Gulf country's southwest in retaliation for Riyadh's fatal campaign against Yemen.
- Turkey to push away YPG from borders if no deal reached with US: Cavusoglu Press TV 22 Mar 2018 -- Turkey warns that it will move to push the US-backed Kurdish militants away from Syria's Manbij if it does not reach an agreement with the US on a plan to remove them from the northern border town.
- Use of chemical weapons, under any circumstances, unjustifiable and abhorrent – UN UN News 22 Mar 2018 -- Alarmed at persistent reports of chemical weapons use in Syria, the United Nations Secretary-General has called on the Security Council to demonstrate unity and resolve in response to bringing to justice those who use.
- Syrian militants start leaving Ghouta town after evacuation deal with govt. Press TV 22 Mar 2018 -- The foreign-backed militants have begun withdrawal from a key town in Syria's Eastern Ghouta suburb after reaching a deal with the government, which is close to a full victory in the region.
- Militants left over 40 tons of chemical weapons in Syria: Russia Press TV 22 Mar 2018 -- Militant groups have abandoned chemical arms production facilities and over 40 tons of chemical weapons after retreating from different conflict zones in Syria, a Russian defense ministry official says.
- Around 1,500 Militants to Be Withdrawn From Syria's Harasta - Source Sputnik 22 Mar 2018 -- The Syrian authorities are preparing for the evacuation of around 1,500 militants and their families from the Syria's Harasta, located in the embattled Damascus suburb of Eastern Ghouta, a local source told Sputnik on Thursday.
- Syrian Rebels Evacuating Part of Eastern Ghouta VOA 22 Mar 2018 -- More than 1,500 Syrian rebel fighters and their families are evacuating a town in the besieged Damascus suburb of eastern Ghouta as the army moves closer to recapturing the entire capital.
- 2 Hamas security forces killed in raid to arrest bombing suspects Press TV 22 Mar 2018 -- Two Hamas security forces and the main suspect in last week's bombing against Palestinian prime minister have been killed in a raid in the besieged Gaza Strip when Hamas forces attempted to arrest two suspects.
- Suspect in Attempted Murder of Palestinian PM Dies of Wounds After Arrest Sputnik 22 Mar 2018 -- The prime suspect in the attempted assassination of Rami Hamdallah, whose motorcade came under bomb attack in the Gaza Strip last week, was captured by Hamas security force members after a deadly fight.
- Somali explosion kills at least 14 people, injures several others Press TV 22 Mar 2018 -- A car bomb has killed at least 14 people and injured several others near a hotel in the Somali capital Mogadishu, the country's security sources say.
- At Least 14 Killed in Mogadishu Car Bombing VOA 22 Mar 2018 -- At least 14 people were killed Thursday when a car packed with explosives blew up in Mogadishu, the Somali capital.
- Lake Chad Basin: Areas reclaimed from Boko Haram must be stabilized, Security Council told UN News 22 Mar 2018 -- It is critical to shore up areas of Africa's Lake Chad Basin freed from the grip of Boko Haram, the United Nations Deputy Secretary-General told the Security Council on Thursday, as she also called for efforts to rebuild the lives of women and girls that have suffered at the hands of the terrorist group.
- UN mission will leave Liberia with great potential for lasting stability, democracy - UN deputy chief UN News 22 Mar 2018 -- As part of her visit to Liberia Amina Mohammed, United Nations Deputy Secretary-General, celebrated the successful closure of the UN mission there, which she said set the stage for sustained peace in the months and years ahead.
- Congolese Refugees Fleeing to Uganda Recount Horrors VOA 22 Mar 2018 -- The wave of ethnic violence sweeping through northeastern Democratic Republic of Congo has forced tens of thousands of people from their homes. Nearly 50,000 have crossed into Uganda.
- Trump Declares Willingness to be Interviewed by Special Counsel VOA 22 Mar 2018 -- U.S. President Donald Trump on Thursday indicated willingness to testify before the special counsel investigating Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election and other matters.
- Nunes Statement on Approval of Russia Report US House of Representatives Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence 22 Mar 2018 -- House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence Chairman Devin Nunes issued the following statement today after the Committee approved the final report on its Russia investigation:
- US Has Not Found Evidence of Trump Campaign's Collusion With Russia Sputnik 22 Mar 2018 -- The US House of Representatives Intelligence Committee said in a statement on Thursday that it voted to end its probe into allegations of Russia's meddling in the US election and release its findings and recommendations.
- Cambridge Analytica Played Roles in Multiple African Elections VOA 22 Mar 2018 -- Long before its controversial roles in the 2016 Brexit vote and U.S. presidential election, Cambridge Analytica influenced elections in Africa.
- Kremlin Calls Johnson Likening Putin To Hitler 'Disgusting' RFE/RL 22 Mar 2018 -- Russian President Vladimir Putin's spokesman has said that British Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson's comparison of Russia's hosting of the World Cup with the 1936 Olympics in Nazi Germany was "disgusting" and "unacceptable."
- Theresa May to EU leaders of Russia's 'threat' Press TV 22 Mar 2018 -- British Prime Minister Theresa May will warn European leaders of Russia's "threat" to the EU member states after accusing Moscow of using the Novichok nerve agent on the UK soil.
- May To Warn EU Leaders Russian Threat 'Doesn't Respect Borders' RFE/RL 22 Mar 2018 -- Britain's Prime Minister Theresa May said she would tell other European Union leaders that they must unite to counter a threat from Russia that "doesn't respect borders."
- Britain Opens Inquest Into Russian Businessman's 'Murder' RFE/RL 22 Mar 2018 -- A British court has opened an inquest to establish the circumstances surrounding the death of Russian businessman Nikolai Glushkov, who was found at his home in London earlier this month.
- UK Court Allows Blood Samples to be Taken from Skripals for OPCW Testing Sputnik 22 Mar 2018 -- Moscow has repeatedly demanded that London should abide by the Convention on the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons and provide Russia with access to the samples of the nerve-agent which was allegedly used to poison Sergei Skripal and his daughter.
- UK Prime Minister Announces Nerve Agent Type in Skripal Poisoning Investigation Sputnik 22 Mar 2018 -- UK Prime Minister Theresa May said that UK experts identified the substance used in the incident of the poisoning of former Russian intelligence officer Sergei Skripal in Salisbury as belonging to the Novichok group of nerve agents, the UK government said Thursday in a statement.
- N Korean top diplomat arrives in China after talks in Finland Press TV 22 Mar 2018 -- A senior North Korean diplomat has arrived in China following a visit to Finland, where he held informal talks with officials from South Korea and the United States over a possible summit between North Korean leader Kim Jong-un and US President Donald Trump.
- N Korea to Convene Supreme Assembly Ahead of Talks With S Korea - Reports Sputnik 22 Mar 2018 -- North Korea will convene a meeting of the Supreme People's Assembly (SPA), the country's legislative body, on April 11 in Pyongyang, just weeks ahead of the planned high-level summits with South Korea and the United States, the North's state media said on Thursday.
- Trump's Unorthodox North Korea Diplomacy Begins at Top VOA 22 Mar 2018 -- U.S. President Donald Trump's sudden decision to meet with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, without first working out the framework of a nuclear deal, could produce a historic agreement, but it would come at the beginning of a long negotiation process.
- U.S., Europeans Wary As They Discuss Creating Iran Nuclear Side Deal RFE/RL 22 Mar 2018 -- The United States has had "constructive" talks with France, Britain, and Germany about creating a side agreement to the Iran nuclear deal but is making contingency plans should the effort fail, the lead U.S. negotiator has said.
- Malta Orders Iranian Bank Chairman To Step Down After U.S. Files Sanctions Case RFE/RL 22 Mar 2018 -- Malta's financial regulator has ordered the Iranian chairman of a bank investigated by slain journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia to step down following his arrest in the United States on charges of evading U.S. sanctions on Iran.
- World needs a better understanding of China, "Voice of China" can help People's Daily 22 Mar 2018 -- Recently, the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China issued a plan on deepening the reform of the Party and state institutions. The plan includes the creation of a new central radio and television network that will be known under the name "Voice of China." It is the combination of China Central Television (including China Global Television Network), China National Radio, and China Radio International, and it will serve as an institution directly under the State Council.
- China pledges retaliation as Trump prepares to announce new tariffs Press TVd 22 Mar 2018 -- In a new warning to Washington, Beijing pledges tit-for-tat measures should the US choose to slap trade sanctions against China over what it calls "the theft" of American intellectual property.
- EU Lawmakers Slam Brussels Over Belarus Policy RFE/RL 22 Mar 2018 -- Thirty-five members of the European Parliament have criticized the European Union's position toward Belarus in a letter, saying that the bloc's relationship with Minsk is centered on economic cooperation, trade, and assistance instead of being focused on human rights, democracy, and the rule of law.
- State Department Terrorist Designation of Joe Asperman US Dept. of State 22 Mar 2018 -- The Department of State has designated Joe Asperman as a Specially Designated Global Terrorist (SDGT) under Section 1(b) of Executive Order (E.O.) 13224. E
- State Department Terrorist Designation of Katibat al-Imam al-Bukhari US Dept. of State 22 Mar 2018 -- The Department of State has designated Katibat al-Imam al-Bukhari (KIB) as a Specially Designated Global Terrorist (SDGT) under Section 1(b) of Executive Order (E.O.) 13224.
- U.S. opposes unilateral action in cross-strait affairs: official CNA 22 Mar 2018 -- The U.S once again reiterated Wednesday that it opposes any unilateral action that alters the status quo across the Taiwan Strait, in response to reports of China's aircraft carrier entering Taiwan's air defense identification zone (ADIZ).
- Taiwan's diplomatic efforts remain fraught: new foreign minister CNA 22 Mar 2018 -- Taiwan's diplomacy has always been difficult and under huge pressure from China, despite the previous Kuomintang (KMT) administration's recognition of the "1992 consensus," the nation's new foreign minister said Thursday.
- Savchenko Stripped Of Immunity In Ukraine, Detained Over 'Terror Plot' RFE/RL 22 Mar 2018 -- Ukrainian security officers have detained Nadia Savchenko, a lawmaker and former captive of Russia who is accused of plotting to blow the roof off the parliament building in a "terrorist" attack.
- Ukrainian Investigators Detain Lawmaker Savchenko in Parliament's Building Sputnik 22 Mar 2018 -- Ukrainian investigators have read out their suspicions against Ukrainian lawmaker Nadezhda Savchenko and detained her inside the Ukrainian parliament's building, a Sputnik correspondent reported.
- Pro-Putin Biker Group Visits Republika Srpska On 'Russian Balkans' Tour RFE/RL 22 Mar 2018 -- Nearly two dozen members of the pro-Kremlin motorcycle group Night Wolves have visited Banja Luka, the administrative center of Bosnia's predominantly Serb entity, Republika Srpska, as part of what they are calling a "Russian Balkans" tour.
- Turkmen Elections Look Like Next Step Toward Dynasty RFE/RL 22 Mar 2018 -- As astounding as it may sound to those familiar with Turkmenistan's previous parliamentary elections, it's true: For once, there's something interesting about the Turkmen parliamentary elections.
- Slovak President Appoints Pellegrini As New Prime Minister, Approves New Cabinet Sputnik 22 Mar 2018 -- Slovak President Andrej Kiska on Thursday appointed Peter Pellegrini as a new prime minister and approved his list of new government members.
- Maldives Leader Lifts State of Emergency - Presidential Office Sputnik 22 Mar 2018 -- Maldives President Abdulla Yameen announced Thursday that he would not extend the state of emergency that was imposed 45 days ago against the backdrop of a political crisis in the country, the presidential office said in a statement.
- Drought and conflict leave millions more hungry in 2017 - UN-backed report UN News 22 Mar 2018 -- Driven largely by climate disasters and conflict, levels of acute hunger surged in 2017, leaving some 124 million people across 51 countries facing hunger crises –11 million more than the previous year, according to a new United Nations report.
- Nearly 8 Million Ethiopians Need Emergency Food, Water VOA 22 Mar 2018 -- Ethiopia is appealing for $1.6 billion to provide emergency and long-term aid for 7.88 million people affected by drought, floods and conflict. U.N. officials presented their humanitarian and disaster resilience plan.
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