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Corey Dickstein

Esper, Trump say SOUTHCOM counter-drug fight has captured 120 metric tons of cocaine, 18,000 pounds of pot

The Pentagon has flooded waters in U.S. Southern Command’s area of operations off South and Central America with a 75% increase in surveillance aircraft and 65% more ships than usual as part of the operation launched April 1, Defense Secretary Mark Esper said.

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F-22s intercept Russian military aircraft off Alaskan coast for fifth time this month

The F-22s intercepted two Russian IL-38 Dolphin maritime patrol aircraft, which flew within about 50 miles of Unimak Island, according to a statement Thursday from the North American Aerospace Defense Command, which guard’s U.S. and Canadian airspace.


Army leaders want to talk to soldiers about race issues, but won’t immediately change Confederate-named bases

The Army’s top leaders want to hear directly from soldiers amid a national conversation on racial issues and a renewed effort to strip military institutions of Confederate-linked names, which has pushed the military into the forefront of the debate.


Army investigating noncombat death of Fort Bliss soldier in Jordan

The Army is investigating the noncombat death of Spc. Nick Bravo-Regules of Largo, Fla., a 20-year-old Fort Bliss, Texas-based soldier, Tuesday in Jordan.


House panel's NDAA proposals: 3% pay boost, protections for sex-assault victims, fight against extremism

A key House subcommittee plans to give U.S. troops a 3% pay boost next year as the lower chamber of Congress drafts portions of its 2021 version of the bill that sets Pentagon policy and spending priorities, congressional staffers said Monday.


Air Force makes history by selecting woman to become next senior enlisted leader

In her new role, Chief Master Sgt. JoAnne Bass will be responsible for guiding the Air Force’s about 410,000 enlisted airmen and serving as the chief adviser to Brown and Air Force Secretary Barbara Barrett on issues facing the enlisted community.


Army, local police investigating senior enlisted soldier’s death in Virginia

Sgt. Maj. Eric M. Schmitz was the top enlisted soldier for the Army’s Intelligence and Security Command, known as INSCOM, a position he had held since 2017.


Esper to create DOD boards to study military diversity, says Pentagon must lead on the issue

Defense Secretary Mark Esper announced Thursday that he would create two new groups charged with studying racial diversity challenges in the military in an effort to make the Pentagon a leader in a national conversation on systemic racism.


F-22s intercept Russian bombers off Alaska’s coast for second straight week

F-22 Raptor stealth fighter jets were scrambled late Tuesday to intercept two Russian bomber formations flying off Alaska’s coast, the eighth such incident reported this year by U.S. military officials.


Army will try to sign up 10,000 recruits in three days

The Army, faced with a shortage of recruits amid the coronavirus pandemic, will launch an unprecedented effort later in the month to sign up 10,000 potential soldiers in three days, service officials announced Wednesday.


Military lawyers admit racial disparities in service justice systems

“This is a very grave problem that, if left unchecked, could undermine the [combat] readiness of our armed forces,” said Rep. Trent Kelly, R-Miss., a brigadier general in the Mississippi Army National Guard.


Trump confirms he wants to cut US troop level in Germany to 25,000

President Donald Trump has long called for Germany and other NATO allies to increase military spending, saying the United States bears too much of the burden for Europe’s defense.


Army’s new fitness test to be implemented in October, but scores won’t count for some time

The Army initially planned for the test to be fully implemented by Oct. 1, but with soldiers locked down due to coronavirus, the service paused physical evaluation requirements in March.


Senate committee’s NDAA version backs Pentagon proposal to strip Stars and Stripes funding

Stars and Stripes receives about $8.7 million annually in operations and maintenance funds and about $6.9 million in contingency operations funds from the federal government.


Senate panel approves $740 billion defense bill that would increase military force, boost troops' pay

The Senate Armed Services Committee on Thursday sent its version of the 2021 National Defense Authorization Act to the full Senate, approving a pay boost for troops, an increase to the military’s end strength and funding a new initiative aimed at checking China’s military power.


Senate bill would build commission to study striking Confederate names from Army bases

The Senate’s initial version of the 2021 Pentagon policy bill directs the establishment of a three-year commission charged with studying ways to strike honors to the Confederacy at military installations, Senate Armed Services Committee staffers said Thursday.


Trump says he ‘will not even consider’ stripping Army posts of Confederate names

“[M]y Administration will not even consider the renaming of these Magnificent and Fabled Military Installations,” Donald Trump wrote in a series of tweets.


CENTCOM general says he can't recommend full withdrawal until Taliban comply with accord

U.S. Central Command’s top general said Wednesday that he cannot recommend a full withdrawal of American troops from Afghanistan by mid-2021 unless the Taliban demonstrate they no longer support al-Qaida forces there.


Russian bombers fly within 8 miles of US airspace off Alaska, are intercepted by US F-22s

Two formations of Russian military aircraft featuring four bombers and two fighter jets flew unusually close to American airspace Wednesday morning but were intercepted by F-22 fighters off Alaska’s coast, U.S. military officials said.


Senate panel supports 3% pay boost for troops in 2021

The 3% pay raise, which if approved would go into effect in January, matches what the White House proposed in its budget recommendation. Troops received a 3.1% boost in pay last year.


Esper, Army secretary open to renaming 10 posts named for Confederate generals

Defense Secretary Mark Esper and Army Secretary Ryan McCarthy are open to starting a conversation about changing the names of 10 of the service’s posts named for prominent Confederate generals from the Civil War, Army officials said Monday.


Inquiry results into helicopter’s show of force over DC protesters expected this week; Guard going home

An investigation into the use of a D.C. National Guard helicopter over protesters Monday night in Washington could be completed this week as Guard troops from outside the city are sent home, the Army’s top civilian said.


Pentagon sends home all active-duty troops deployed near DC

The Army will leave a small contingent of the 3rd U.S. Infantry Regiment, known as the Old Guard, on alert status to respond in case demonstrations in the coming days grow violent.


Fort Bliss soldier charged in death of estranged wife whose body was found in closet

Spc. Linwood James Smith III was arrested early Wednesday morning and charged in the killing of Kerica Robinson after police investigators discovered evidence on his phone that he might have attempted to cover up her death.


South Carolina National Guard troops in DC hospitalized after lightning strike

Two South Carolina National Guard soldiers were hospitalized early Friday morning after lightning struck close to their position in Washington, D.C., where they were deployed this week in response to protests in the city, according to military and local officials.


Pentagon sending home some active-duty troops deployed near DC

Defense Secretary Mark Esper on Thursday ordered a portion of the active-duty troops he had deployed to military installations on the outskirts of Washington, D.C. to return to their home base, defense officials said.


Pentagon leaders planned to send home active-duty troops in DC area before reversing decision

The roughly 1,600 soldiers deployed this week from Fort Bragg, N.C., and Fort Drum, N.Y., to undisclosed military installations in the national capital region remained “on alert” Wednesday afternoon, defense officials said.


At Trump's command, Pentagon rushes active-duty troops to DC but prefers not to use them

Senior Pentagon officials on Tuesday said those troops — primarily military police and combat engineers — never entered Washington and are unlikely to do so unless the more than 2,000 National Guard troops operating in the city prove to be insufficient to aid the law enforcement response in the capital.


Trump urges governors to use National Guard to 'dominate;' says Gen. Milley’s in charge

Some 17,000 National Guard troops have been activated in 23 states and in Washington D.C. to aid state and local law enforcement with civil unrest operations, according to officials.


Two airmen dead in shooting at Grand Forks Air Force Base in North Dakota

The base did not identify the deceased airmen by name, but said both were active-duty members assigned to the 319th Reconnaissance Wing.


Army's 1st SFAB is headed to Colombia to boost anti-drug fight

A small team of soldiers from the 1st Security Force Assistance Brigade will deploy next week to Colombia to aid that country in its longstanding fight against drugs, defense officials announced Thursday.


Army reservist who died of coronavirus had just become a father

Sgt. Simon Zamudio died at a suburban Chicago hospital after contracting the virus, according to Army officials and an obituary announcing his death. He was assigned to the 371st Theater Movement Control Element at Fort Sheridan, Ill.


Army reservist based in Wisconsin is third service member to die from coronavirus, Pentagon says

A third U.S. service member has died from complications after contracting the coronavirus, the Pentagon said Tuesday, as reported cases among military troops surpassed 6,000 during Memorial Day weekend.


No longer too short to fly: Air Force lifts height restrictions for pilots

The Air Force's height waiver process likely stopped many people from considering pilot training, said Lt. Col. Jessica Ruttenber, who led the effort to change height standards.


DOD begins planning to reopen bases under the coronavirus ‘new normal’

The Pentagon green-lighted plans this week that could allow some commanders to ease coronavirus-driven protection measures on military bases as widespread shutdowns to mitigate the pandemic in the United States drag into a third month.


Pentagon reverses policy, will not disqualify anyone hospitalized by coronavirus from serving

The military will continue to halt recruits now experiencing symptoms or who test positive for the coronavirus from shipping to initial entrance training until they recover.


Women are making up more of the military, but are more likely to leave early, new report says

Defense Department officials have indicated increasing female recruitment and retention rates are important to ensure diversity within the ranks — especially since the Pentagon opened all jobs and units to women in 2015.


Navy fires its top enlisted recruiter amid investigation

Master Chief Petty Officer Franklin Tiongco was removed last week from his position as the Navy’s national chief recruiter over a “loss of confidence in his judgment,” a spokeswoman said.


Space Command HQ selection is delayed until 2021; competition is opened up to new locations

The Pentagon will not decide until at least next year where to house the headquarters of its newest combatant command, U.S. Space Command, which was established last summer to control military space operations.


Space Force unveils its service flag at White House ceremony

The Space Force’s flag was designed to model the service’s official seal, which Trump unveiled himself in a tweet in January.


Military recruiting takes a digital turn during the pandemic

Because of social distancing, recruiters faced a sudden shift to telework and digital prospecting — but it has led them to rethink the art of recruiting and find innovative ways to connect.


Air Force space wing commander dies at Peterson Air Force Base

Air Force Col. Thomas Falzarano, who commanded the service’s 21st Space Wing, was found dead Tuesday at his home on Peterson Air Force Base in Colorado.


Army cancels summer cadet training for ROTC students amid pandemic

The Army will not send ROTC cadets to Fort Knox, Ky., this summer amid the coronavirus pandemic, halting annual training camps aimed at preparing them to shift from college students to second lieutenants, the service’s ROTC chief announced Tuesday.


The Pentagon has axed a Mattis directive aimed at improving fighter jet readiness

Air Force Gen. Charles “CQ” Brown wrote in testimony to senators ahead of his confirmation hearing that the Air Force was no longer holding itself to a stringent policy meant to drastically improve unusually low mission capable rates.


Contracting coronavirus won't disqualify you from serving in the military, but a hospital stay for it might

The decision to disqualify individuals who require hospitalization was made because the Pentagon assumes those individuals faced a “critical case” of the coronavirus.


Want to own the car that Patton may have ridden to victory in Europe? Here's your chance

The 1944 Dodge WC-57 Command Car 4x4 military vehicle, which is said to have been specifically modified for Gen. George S. Patton, will be sold with no reserve. However. vehicle lacks specific documentation confirming its authenticity.


Space Force unveils recruiting video featuring secret space vehicle that will launch this month

The U.S. Space Force unveiled its first official recruiting commercial Wednesday, featuring scenes from space, rockets launching, military troops in spacesuits and a glimpse of a secretive American space craft the service will launch this month.


The Pentagon wants to test random units for the coronavirus to see how many asymptomatic carriers are among its ranks

According to Pentagon data, 4,967 troops had tested positive for the disease, 1,844 have recovered, and two of its service members died of complications caused by the illness.


Army looks to return to major training exercises amid coronavirus pandemic

The Army believes many of the service’s large fighting formations can return to critical, high-level training exercises in the coming weeks at their home stations and the service’s combat training centers, senior service officials said Thursday.


Recent Marine battalion commander, 43, dies of heart attack after short illness

Lt. Col. Geoff Hollopeter, the former commander of 3rd Battalion, 5th Marine Regiment, died April 3 in San Diego after going into cardiac arrest, the 1st Marine Division announced Tuesday in a statement.


Senate Democrats rip Pentagon's coronavirus response in letter to Esper

Ten Democratic senators blasted the Pentagon’s response to the coronavirus crisis as “disjointed and slow” in a letter to Defense Secretary Mark Esper, accusing him of unnecessarily placing troops at risk.


At least 18 USS Kidd sailors have tested positive for the coronavirus

At least 18 sailors aboard the USS Kidd have tested positive for the coronavirus, Pentagon officials said Friday in announcing the Navy’s second outbreak aboard a deployed warship.


Marine commandant defends banning Confederate flag as a divisive symbol

“This symbol has shown it has the power to inflame feelings of division,” Gen. David Berger wrote in a letter to Marines. “I cannot have that division inside our Corps.”


Goldfein says the Air Force is preparing for a long-term 'new abnormal'

Gen. David Goldfein told reporters Wednesday that he has ordered an Air Force-wide "reset" for June 1, when he wants the service to find ways to increase operations tempos slowed by the pandemic.


Army expects to PCS hundreds of high-priority soldiers with new exemption to stop-movement order

The Army is working to prioritize who among the 48,000 soldiers on orders to PCS in the summer can move under the new exemption, said Lt. Gen. Thomas Seamands, the Army’s personnel chief.


Army will send recruits to basic training again after a two-week pause

The Army on Monday said it will send new recruits to basic training this week, ending a two-week pause in shipping future soldiers that was aimed at mitigating the spread of the coronavirus.


Army pledges on-post day care improvements in next 10 years

The Army is building a 10-year plan to improve its on-post day care services, which top service leaders told lawmakers would include major investments during the next five years.


Pentagon: Nearly 5,000 service members, DOD-affiliated individuals infected with coronavirus

Army Gen. Mark Milley, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said Tuesday that the department aimed to improve its testing capacity from about 8,700 test per day to about 65,000 within 45 days.


Pentagon allows service members to keep more leave time amid pandemic

Troops have been largely locked in place since Defense Secretary Mark Esper issued his first stop-movement order March 16 for the United States, which barred official travel including permanent-change-of-station moves.


Thornberry wants Pentagon to launch $6 billion initiative to deter Chinese influence in the Pacific

Rep. Mac Thornberry proposed that Congress include more than $6 billion in its 2021 National Defense Authorization Act to begin an Indo-Pacific Deterrence Initiative.


Army: Soldiers who can’t PCS should stay in current housing, seek legal advice if needed

Service officials acknowledged Wednesday that, in some cases, soldiers might run into problems with housing, and the Army is working to help troops mitigate issues that they could face with landlords at either their current locations or their planned next duty stations.


Pentagon’s halt on travel to be extended as DOD leaders try to ramp up coronavirus testing

The Defense Department’s stop-movement orders that have halted all nonessential travel for troops, their families and DOD civilian workers will be extended past its May 11 expiration date, Defense Secretary Mark Esper said Tuesday.


DOD-wide coronavirus cases surpass 4,500, up 26% over the weekend

The latest data showed cases of coronavirus continue to rise across all of the military’s services. But Pentagon policy to restrict data about cases at individual military installations makes it difficult to determine where other outbreaks might have occurred.


Pandemic could deepen Air Force’s pilot shortage, general says

The coronavirus pandemic comes just as Air Force leaders believed they were getting a handle on the pilot shortage.


F-22s intercept Russian maritime patrol planes off Alaska’s coast

U.S. Air Force F-22 fighter jets intercepted a pair of Russian maritime patrol planes some 50 miles off the western coast of Alaska’s Aleutian Islands on Wednesday in what military officials believe was a test of U.S. capabilities amid the coronavirus pandemic.


Army Research Lab scientists developing drones that can be fired from a grenade launcher

The drones could be lifesavers for soldiers in places such as Afghanistan, where mountains often conceal the location of enemy fighters and their movements.


Pentagon OKs special, incentive pay for troops who can't meet requirements during pandemic

Special and incentive pay impacted by the guidance includes programs such as Hazardous Duty Incentive Pay and Aviation Incentive Pay.


Pentagon announces eighth coronavirus death among DOD-linked people

The latest death included in the Defense Department’s daily tally of coronavirus cases was that of a defense contractor who worked at Robins Air Force Base in Georgia.


White House should call on Pentagon to do more to fight the coronavirus, House Armed Services chairman says

The White House should enlist more help from the Pentagon as it battles the spreading coronavirus pandemic that has left Americans largely homebound, the chairman of the House Armed Services Committee said Tuesday.


Coronavirus pandemic could delay Pentagon spending, policy bill, HASC chairman says

The coronavirus pandemic could delay federal funding bills, including the annual Pentagon spending and policy law, if the outbreak continues to paralyze American life into the summer months, a top House lawmaker on defense issues said Tuesday.


Army halts sending recruits to basic training amid coronavirus pandemic

The Army on Monday stopped sending recruits to initial entrance training amid the coronavirus pandemic that has restricted movement for troops worldwide and placed millions of Americans under stay-at-home orders, service officials announced.


Coronavirus cases in the US military surpass 1,500

More than 1,500 U.S. service members had tested positive for the coronavirus, marking a substantial jump over the weekend in confirmed cases among active-duty troops, the Pentagon said Monday.


Lawmakers call for probe into firing of virus-stricken aircraft carrier's commander

Lawmakers on Friday called on the Pentagon’s inspector general to investigate the Navy’s decision to fire the commander of a coronavirus-stricken aircraft carrier after his letter demanding help was leaked to the news media.


The entire Army National Guard is now on a single digital pay system for the first time

All 332,000 soldiers in the Army National Guard for the first time are using one personnel system — a modern digital pay and human resources platform that last week replaced 54 separate paper-based programs, service officials said Thursday.


Navy works to remove 2,700 more crew of USS Roosevelt as coronavirus spreads

Capt. Brett Crozier warned the outbreak could kill some sailors, and that “if we do not act now, we are failing to properly take care of our most trusted asset — our sailors.”


Senior leaders visit Air Force Academy after two cadets die in suspected suicides

The trip came amid a Pentagon-mandated halt to all but essential military travel in an effort to curb the growing coronavirus pandemic, which has sickened more than 700 U.S. service members worldwide.