20 August 2018 Military News
- OIF / OND / OEF / OIR / OFS Casualty Update 20 Aug 2018 [PDF]
- Operation Roundup Continues to Target ISIS Remnants AFPS 20 Aug 2018 -- Combined Joint Task Force Operation Inherent Resolve and its partners continue to pursue the lasting defeat of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria in designated parts of Syria and Iraq, task force officials reported today.
- US military helicopter crashes in Iraq; one dead, several injured Press TV 20 Aug 2018 -- A member of the US-led coalition purportedly fighting the Daesh Takfiri terrorist group has lost his life and several others sustained injuries when an American helicopter crashed on a counter-terrorism mission in Iraq.
- Afghan president announces 3-month conditional ceasefire with Taliban People's Daily 20 Aug 2018 -- Afghan President Ashraf Ghani on Sunday announced a conditional three-month ceasefire with the Taliban starting on Monday.
- Afghan Taliban reject President Ghani's ceasefire proposal Press TV 20 Aug 2018 -- The Taliban militant group has rejected an Afghan government offer of a three-month ceasefire, saying it would continue with its attacks to bring under control the country's strategic regions.
- Taliban Rejects Kabul Cease-Fire Offer After Seizing Hostages RFE/RL 20 Aug 2018 -- The Taliban has reportedly rejected an offer by the Afghan government for a cease-fire, with militant commanders vowing to carry on their attacks after Taliban fighters in the north seized nearly 200 hostages from a convoy of passenger buses.
- Taliban Accepts Invitation to Attend Reconciliation Talks in Moscow - Reports Sputnik 20 Aug 2018 -- The Taliban movement has accepted Russia's invitation to attend the Moscow format of Afghan reconciliation talks scheduled for September 4, The Wall Street Journal reported on Monday, citing people familiar with the matter.
- UN mission welcomes Afghan government's announcement of Eid holiday ceasefire UN News 20 Aug 2018 -- After a surge in hostilities in Afghanistan over the past weeks, the UN Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) welcomed on Monday the Government's announcement of a conditional ceasefire for the Eid al-Adha holiday and called on warring parties to use this "momentum" to put an end to the conflict.
- No Afghan Cease-Fire Until Taliban Announcement VOA 20 Aug 2018 -- Afghanistan's government says it will not accept the Taliban's ceasefire unless it is officially announced.
- Erik Prince Again Touts Plan to Privatize US War in Afghanistan VOA 20 Aug 2018 -- A plan by billionaire American businessman Erik Prince to privatize the U.S. war in Afghanistan is reportedly receiving renewed interest within the Trump administration, even though Afghan officials continue to criticize it as misguided.
Defense Policy / Programs
- Success of Air Force logistics begins with Sheppard AFB training mission AFNS 20 Aug 2018 -- Lt. Gen. Leo Marquez, often referred to as the "godfather of logistics" in the Air Force, once said, "If our aircraft, missiles, and weapons are the teeth of our military might, then logistics is the muscle, tendons, and sinews that make the teeth bite down and hold on– logistics is the jawbone!"
- USS Essex Concludes CARAT with Port Visit to Malaysia NNS 20 Aug 2018 -- The amphibious assault ship USS Essex (LHD 2) and embarked 13th Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU) arrived in Kota Kinabalu, Malaysia for a port visit after participating in Cooperation Afloat Readiness and Training (CARAT) Malaysia 2018, August 19.
- Russia to Conduct Tests of Upgraded Pantsir-SM System by End of 2019 – Rostec Sputnik 20 Aug 2018 -- Russia plans to carry out acceptance tests of a modernized Pantsir-SM surface-to-air missile and anti-aircraft artillery weapon system with an extended range before the end of 2019, while flight tests for an upgraded missile may take place this year, Russian state corporation Rostec CEO, Sergey Chemezov told Sputnik.
- US Not Yet Training Turkish Forces for Joint Patrols in Syria VOA 20 Aug 2018 -- U.S. service members have not yet started training Turkish forces for joint patrols near the volatile Syrian city of Manbij, despite U.S. Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis telling reporters last week that he expected them to start by Sunday night.
- Xi requires strengthening CPC leadership, Party building in military People's Daily 20 Aug 2018 -- President Xi Jinping has called for efforts to comprehensively strengthen the leadership of the Communist Party of China (CPC) and the Party building in the country's armed forces to ensure a solid political guarantee for the building of a strong military.
- Beijing opposes Washington's military report People's Daily 20 Aug 2018 -- China has voiced strong opposition to a report by the US Defense Department on China's military and security developments, saying it misinterprets China's strategic intentions and hypes a so-called Chinese military threat.
- Indian Scientists Solve Major Glitch in Homegrown Anti-Tank Nag Missile Sputnik 20 Aug 2018 -- The Helicopter Launched Nag (HELINA) missile had a problem locking onto the heat signature of a tank target in very hot conditions as the target's heat signature merged into its surroundings. The problem has been solved with the help of an upgraded 640x512px focal plane array infrared imaging seeker.
- India Tests Glide Bombs, Allegedly More Precise, Cheaper Than Missiles Sputnik 20 Aug 2018 -- Smart anti-airfield weapons (SAAWs) can hit a variety of ground targets using precision navigation and are more precise and cheaper than missiles, the Defense Research and Development Organization claimed. The glide bomb is expected to lower the Indian Air Force's dependency on imported air armaments.
- India's 5th-Gen Fighter Jet Expected to Make Maiden Flight in 2032 - Reports Sputnik 20 Aug 2018 -- The Advanced Medium Combat Aircraft (AMCA), India's modern stealth fighter jet, is expected to make its maiden flight in 2032, local media reported Monday, citing a defense source.
- Russia Hopes to Sign S-400 Missile Contract With India in October - Official Sputnik 20 Aug 2018 -- All technical and economic aspects of the contracts with India on the delivery of S-400 air defense systems and Project 11356 frigates have been coordinated, Russia is hoping to sign both contracts in October, Director of the Russian Federal Service for Military-Technical Cooperation (FSMTC) Dmitry Shugaev told Sputnik.
- Iran's indigenous air defense system at final stage IRNA 20 Aug 2018 -- The Iranian air defense system, dubbed Bavar 373, which has more capabilities compared to the Russian-made S-300 is at its final test-fire stage, an official with the defense ministry said.
- Missiles, nuclear deal separate issues: Iran to Germany IRNA 20 Aug 2018 -- Iran's missile program and the nuclear deal are two separate issues with the former being non-negotiable, the Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman said Monday with a reference to German Chancellor's recent remarks.
- Hezbollah unveils Khaibar 1 missile IRNA 20 Aug 2018 -- For the first time, Hezbollah Movement unveiled Khaibar-1 missile which had been used in the 33-day war against the Zionist regime in 2006.
- 20 August 2018 - Daily Press Briefing by the Office of the Spokesperson for the Secretary-General United Nations 20 Aug 2018
- Yemeni forces hit Saudi military base in Najran with ballistic missile Press TV 20 Aug 2018 -- Yemeni army forces, supported by allied fighters from Popular Committees, have fired a domestically-manufactured ballistic missile at a military base in Saudi Arabia's southwestern border region of Najran in retaliation for the Saudi regime's military campaign against their crisis-ridden homeland.
- Yemenis kill 4 Saudi military forces IRNA 20 Aug 2018 -- Four Saudi military forces including one officer were killed during an attack by Yemeni forces on Asir region, southwest of Saudi Arabia.
- Saudi airstrike kills 13 Yemeni fishermen IRNA 20 Aug 2018 -- Some 13 Yemeni fishermen was killed and four other wounded off the coast of the western province of Hudayadah in an airstrike by the Saudi-led coalition on Sunday.
- Syrian army fortifies positions around al-Safa hills, Sweida IRNA 20 Aug 2018 -- Syrian Arab Army units and the allied forces continued operations against Daesh (ISIS) dens and fortifications in al-Safa hills, the last stronghold for the takfiri terrorist organization in Sweida province's eastern badiya (desert), SANA reported.
- Over 13m Syrians need humanitarian aid IRNA 20 Aug 2018 -- US Agency for International Development Administrator Mark Green said on Monday that over 13 million Syrian civilians are still in need of humanitarian aid.
- Hundreds of Syria displaced civilians return to their houses IRNA 20 Aug 2018 -- Hundreds of civilians who had been displaced from their houses in towns and villages in the southern countryside of Aleppo Province are turning back after the Syrian Arab Army had cleansed them of terrorism.
- US refusal to reconstruct Syria ploy to impede refugees return: Lavrov Press TV 20 Aug 2018 -- Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov says the United States' refusal to participate in the reconstruction of war-torn Syria is aimed to "artificially slow down" the return of Syrian refugees to the their home country.
- After US, UK stops funding militants amid Syria victory Press TV 20 Aug 2018 -- After the US, the UK is to stop funding militants in Syria amid a growing government push to retake the last militant-held areas in the Arab country.
- Syria: WHO appeals for funding to sustain critical health care for millions trapped by conflict UN News 20 Aug 2018 -- With conflict raging in northwest Syria, the United Nations health agency has appealed for $11 million to provide life-saving care to parts of Aleppo, Hama, Idleb and Lattakia governorates.
- Trump Calls Mueller's Russia Probe a 'National Disgrace' VOA 20 Aug 2018 -- U.S. President Donald Trump has assailed special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation into Russia meddling in the 2016 presidential election as "a National Disgrace!"
- Venezuela slashes five zeros from newly issued bank notes Press TV 20 Aug 2018 -- Venezuela has dropped five zeros from its new banknotes in a move which President Nicolas Maduro claims will tame the country's hyperinflation.
- Possible Chinese President Visit to Pyongyang Raises Doubts on Sanctions VOA 20 Aug 2018 -- Reports that Chinese President Xi Jinping will visit North Korea in September raise questions about whether Beijing will ease sanctions against Pyongyang, as relations between China and the U.S. grow increasingly tense over trade.
- 'Death Threat' From Iran's Religious Heartland Intensifies Debate Over Rohani Government RFE/RL 20 Aug 2018 -- A perceived death threat against President Hassan Rohani within the seminary of the holy Shi'ite city of Qom has led to controversy in Iran, with some calling it a disaster for the seminary -- home to thousands of influential clerics and theology students -- and others demanding an investigation.
- Iran: US Action Group a psychological war IRNA 20 Aug 2018 -- Iran's Foreign Ministry spokesman described the US new anti-Iran measure titled Iran Action Group as a 'psychological and economic war' in line with Washington's longstanding hostility toward Tehran.
- Every madman thinks all other men mad: Iran's FM spokesman to US' Bolton ISNA 20 Aug 2018 -- Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Bahram Qassemi responded to US' National Security Adviser, John Bolton's claims about Iran's intention to meddle US' Congress election, saying, every madman thinks all other men mad.
- Iran urges Europe to act as U.S. threats to reimpose oil sanctions People's Daily 20 Aug 2018 -- Iran's Foreign Minister called for Europe's pragmatic steps to save Iran's interests under the 2015 international nuclear deal as the United States threatened to reimpose sanctions on the country's crude oil exports, Tasnim news agency reported on Sunday.
- Europeans must bear expenses for long-term interests: Iran FM Press TV 20 Aug 2018 -- Iran's Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif says European countries must be ready to bear the expenses if they want to safeguard their long-term interests in the face of the United States' law-breaking behavior after quitting a nuclear deal with Iran.
- Dollar out, Yuan in: Iran changes benchmark currencies Press TV 20 Aug 2018 -- Iran has removed the US Dollar from its official currency rate reporting platform and replaced it with China's Yuan in an effort that the media in Tehran say could be a key step toward ditching the greenback in trade.
- China using Iranian ships to avoid US oil sanctions Press TV 20 Aug 2018 -- China has reportedly started to use Iranian ships to transport crude oil to its refineries to avoid the impacts of US sanctions against the Islamic Republic.
- Iran: Total has officially withdrawn from South Pars Press TV 20 Aug 2018 -- Iran's Petroleum Minister Bijan Zanganeh says French energy giant Total has officially left the country, ending speculations over whether it would stay to finish a gas project following the return of US sanctions against the Islamic Republic.
- France's Total Leaves Iran Amid Sanctions Threat From U.S. RFE/RL 20 Aug 2018 -- Iran's oil minister says the French oil-and-natural-gas company Total has "officially left" Iran amid threats by the United States to impose sanctions against companies that do business in the country.
- Iran Calls on EU, Russia and China To Speed Efforts On Saving Nuclear Deal RFE/RL 20 Aug 2018 -- Tehran has urged the European Union, Russia, and China to accelerate their efforts to salvage a 2015 nuclear deal between Tehran and world powers after the accord was abandoned by U.S. President Donald Trump on grounds that it was "deeply flawed."
- Bolton, Netanyahu Call For 'Greater Pressure' On Iran RFE/RL 20 Aug 2018 -- Tehran has urged the European Union, Russia, and China to accelerate their efforts to salvage a 2015 nuclear deal between Tehran and world powers after the accord was abandoned by U.S. President Donald Trump on grounds that it was "deeply flawed."
- 'Not Negotiable': Tehran Warns Merkel Not to Link Its Missile Program to JCPOA Sputnik 20 Aug 2018 -- In November 2017, French President Emmanuel Macron called for the amendment of the the 2015 Iran nuclear deal to include Tehran's ballistic missile activity.
- Tehran Looks to Replace France's Total as Firm Quits Iran Sputnik 20 Aug 2018 -- Iranian Oil Minister Bijan Zanganeh said that France's Total has officially left Iran, according to Iranian state TV.
- FM Zarif Slams US 'Addiction to Sanctions', Says Iran Won't Revise Nuclear Deal Sputnik 20 Aug 2018 -- Earlier, Iran's Foreign Minister warned Washington against maintaining the "simplistic and impossible idea" of halting Tehran's oil exports by means of sanctions, adding that otherwise the US would face "consequences."
- Trump Aide: US Wants European Allies to Apply Pressure on Iran VOA 20 Aug 2018 -- U.S. President Donald Trump's national security adviser on Monday called the international nuclear agreement with Iran a "wretched deal" and said the United States is working to persuade European allies to apply more pressure on Iran.
- Two Individuals Charged for Acting as Illegal Agents of the Government of Iran US Dept. of Justice 20 Aug 2018 -- An indictment was returned today charging Ahmadreza Mohammadi-Doostdar, 38, a dual U.S.-Iranian citizen, and Majid Ghorbani, 59, an Iranian citizen and resident of California, with allegedly acting on behalf of the government of the Islamic Republic of Iran by conducting covert surveillance of Israeli and Jewish facilities in the United States, and collecting identifying information about American citizens and U.S. nationals who are members of the group Mujahedin-e Khalq (MEK).
- Pakistan to ban jailed former prime minister from traveling abroad Press TV 20 Aug 2018 -- Pakistan will bar jailed former prime minister Nawaz Sharif, convicted of corruption, and his daughter Maryam from traveling abroad, the government says.
- In maiden speech, new Pakistan PM vows to target graft, govt. expenses Press TV 20 Aug 2018 -- Pakistan's newly-elected Prime Minister Imran Khan has vowed in his first speech to the nation to fight corruption and cut government expenses, calling on the rich to pay taxes in support of the poor and help decrease the country's reliance on loans and foreign aid.
- Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan's Cabinet Sworn In RFE/RL 20 Aug 2018 -- Pakistan's 21-member cabinet has been sworn in, a day after newly elected Prime Minister Imran Khan vowed in a televised speech that his government would cut spending, end corruption, and repatriate public funds.
- New Pakistani Prime Minister Says Debt Crisis One of Country's Key Issues Sputnik 20 Aug 2018 -- New Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan delivered Sunday his first speech as the country's head of the government. Key points of the speech were later posted on the prime minister's Facebook page.
- Pakistan: Rival India Hints at Revival of Talks VOA 20 Aug 2018 -- Pakistan disclosed Monday that neighboring India has hinted at the possibility of the two nuclear armed nations reviving long-stalled talks.
- Indiana Man Sentenced to 15 Years for Distributing Information on Explosives and Poisons for Use in a Terror Attack US Dept. of Justice 20 Aug 2018 -- Marlonn Hicks, 31, of Crown Point, Indiana, was sentenced today to 15 years in prison, to be followed by 3 years of supervised release, for distributing information regarding the manufacture and use of explosives, with the intent that the information be used for and in furtherance of a crime of violence.
- Multiple Daesh-claimed attacks injure policemen in Chechnya Press TV 20 Aug 2018 -- Several officers have sustained injuries in multiple terrorist attacks in various locations in Russia's Chechnya Republic, the region's leader says.
- Several Police Wounded In Chechnya Attacks Claimed By IS RFE/RL 20 Aug 2018 -- Russian investigators say they have launched investigations into three separate attacks that wounded several police officers in the North Caucasus region of Chechnya.
- Taiwan hoping for further cooperation with U.S. in space exploration CNA 20 Aug 2018 -- President Tsai Ing-wen's (蔡英文) visit to the U.S. National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) space center in Houston, Texas Saturday has sparked hope in Taiwan for further collaboration with the United States in the field of space exploration.
- MAC slams China over its criticism of Tsai's overseas tour CNA 20 Aug 2018 -- Taiwan's Mainland Affairs Council (MAC) bashed China on Monday over its criticism of President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) and her recent trip overseas, saying that such a reaction will not help improve cross-Taiwan Strait relations.
- Turkey takes complaint against additional US steel and aluminum tariffs to WTO Press TV 20 Aug 2018 -- The World Trade Organization (WTO) says Turkey has initiated a dispute complaint with the Swiss-based intergovernmental trade court against additional metal tariffs imposed by the United States on the Anatolian country over the detention of an American pastor.
- Erdogan: Attack on economy no different from attack on Turkey's flag Press TV 20 Aug 2018 -- President Tayyip Erdogan has resembled an attack on Turkey's economy to a strike against its flag or call to prayer, saying the campaign aims to bring "Turkey and its people to their knees."
- Erdogan Says Turkish Currency Under 'Attack' RFE/RL 20 Aug 2018 -- President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has said that Turkey's currency crisis is the result of an "attack" on his country's economy.
- Turkey Files Complaint Against US Tariffs in WTO Amid Escalating Tensions Sputnik 20 Aug 2018 -- US-Turkish bilateral relations have deteriorated over Brunson's detention in Turkey in 2016. The pastor was since released from prison in late July and placed under house arrest.
- Erdogan: Attack on Turkish Economy is No Different From Attack on Flag Sputnik 20 Aug 2018 -- Amid the rapid fall in lira's price, the Turkish president said on Monday that those who seel to make Turkey give up through exchange rate will soon see they are mistaken.
- Angola to Rebury National Icon and Rebel Leader Savimbi VOA 20 Aug 2018 -- Angola's government has said it will soon exhume and give a "dignified burial" to Jonas Savimbi, a national icon killed at the end of the nation's lengthy and brutal civil war.
- Mali Must Bolster Security, Governance, Analysts Say VOA 20 Aug 2018 -- In winning a second term as Mali's president on Thursday, Ibrahim Boubacar Keita has another chance to tackle challenges ranging from curbing insecurity to improving the legal system and economy, analysts say.
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