Department of Defense

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Pentagon Officials' Phones Were Wiped of Jan. 6 Texts

Watchdog group demands investigation

(Newser) - The post-Jan. 6 phone-wiping apparently extended to the Pentagon as well as Homeland Security and the Secret Service , according to court documents. The watchdog group American Oversight says that in response to litigation, the Department of Defense and the Army have confirmed that the phones of officials including former acting...

Russia Plans 'Graphic' Video of Fake Ukrainian Attack: US

Staging could include actors and corpses, though Pentagon doesn't release proof

(Newser) - Russia plans to make a video in which Ukraine appears to be attacking, US officials said Thursday their intelligence shows. The video could be released as a justification for an invasion of Ukraine by Russian forces, ABC News reports. The staging could be elaborate. "We believe that Russia would...

US Places 8.5K Troops on High Alert for Ukraine

Move is intended to reassure allies, Pentagon says

(Newser) - Saying "it's very clear the Russians have no intention right now of de-escalating," a Pentagon spokesman announced Monday that 8,500 US troops have been placed on high alert. Should Russia invade Ukraine, most of them would join a NATO response force that hasn't yet become...

Pentagon Warns About 'Likes' on Extremist Content

Defense Department updates guidelines for military personnel

(Newser) - Alarmed that military personnel took part in the Capitol riot in January, Pentagon officials issued new guidelines Monday about participation in extremist organizations. At the same time, the military reported that the number of active service members involved in extremism is increasing, CBS News reports. The guidelines don't prohibit...

Religious Exemption Requests on Vaccine Go Nowhere

Pentagon didn't expect 12K applications

(Newser) - When the Pentagon announced in August that all service members would have to be vaccinated against the coronavirus, it said they can seek religious exemptions. More than 12,000 military service members have done that, the AP reports, but so far, not one exemption on religious grounds has been granted....

6-Year ID Project for Victims of USS Oklahoma Is Complete

92% of the victims from Pearl Harbor attack were identified, with 33 remaining 'unknowns'

(Newser) - A six-year project to identify the crew members killed on the USS Oklahoma when it sank during the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor has ended with 33 people still unidentified, the military revealed this week. However, 355 sailors and Marines were identified from dental records or DNA samples supplied by...

Trump's Ex-DOD Chief Sues Pentagon Over Memoir

Mark Esper says Defense Department is blocking parts of his manuscript it thought were 'too candid'

(Newser) - Mark Esper's memoir, A Sacred Oath, is due out in May from William Morrow, but readers may not see everything he originally included in its pages, thanks to the Pentagon. The former defense secretary in the Trump administration is now suing the agency he once led, claiming that sections...

Pentagon Group to 'Mitigate' UFO Threats

Critic argues investigative body will only 'maintain UAP/UFO secrecy'

(Newser) - There's a new team of experts patrolling the skies for UFOs. The Pentagon on Tuesday announced the creation of a new body to investigate unidentified flying objects, now labeled "unidentified aerial phenomena," after a federal government report published in June failed to explain 143 of 144 sightings...

Pentagon Plans for Operating on a Hotter, Drier Planet
Pentagon Plans
for a Hotter Planet

Pentagon Plans for a Hotter Planet

Defense proposal calls for adapting but not for cutting its own fossil fuel use

(Newser) - A new Pentagon plan calls for incorporating the realities of a hotter, harsher Earth at every level in the US military, from making worsening climate extremes a mandatory part of strategic planning to training troops how to secure their own water supplies and treat heat injury. The Pentagon—whose jets,...

CIA Warned About Civilians Seconds Before Drone Hit

Word came too late to stop the missile that killed 10 people

(Newser) - A Hellfire missile was on its way to its target, a white Corolla in Kabul, when the CIA realized there were civilians in the area, maybe even children in the vehicle. The agency issued an urgent warning to the US military seconds before the missile struck, killing 10 civilians, seven...

Pentagon Calls Off Deal With Microsoft That Went to Court

Amazon complained about cloud computing contract that could pay $10B

(Newser) - The Pentagon said Tuesday it canceled a disputed cloud computing contract with Microsoft that could eventually have been worth $10 billion. The Defense Department will instead pursue a deal with both Microsoft and Amazon and possibly other cloud service providers, the AP reports. "With the shifting technology environment, it...

12 CIA Agents on 3 Continents Treated for 'Havana Syndrome'

That's just so far this year; total cases number more than 130: reports

(Newser) - More than 130 US personnel within the CIA, State Department, Defense Department, and other agencies have suffered ailments, including what could be permanent brain damage, as a result of mysterious incidents that began five years ago—far more than the 60 cases that have been publicly disclosed. That's according...

FEMA Asked DOD for Help on Vaccines. The DOD Delivered

Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin has OK'd the deployment of 1K troops to vaccination sites

(Newser) - The Pentagon will deploy troops to assist getting Americans vaccinated against COVID-19, the White House said Friday. Coronavirus senior adviser Andy Slavitt announced that Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin has approved a request for assistance from the Federal Emergency Management Agency, per the AP . It means about 1,000 active-duty military...

Trump Made 'Misguided' Space Command Call: Governor

Colorado's Jared Polis says HQ is being moved as a Trump reward to Alabama Sen. Tommy Tuberville

(Newser) - Tommy Tuberville, Alabama's newest GOP senator, may have just seen a big nod from President Trump, at least according to Colorado Gov. Jared Polis. The Democratic governor and other leaders from both parties in his state are slamming a decision to relocate Space Command headquarters from its temporary digs...

From All 10 Ex-Defense Secretaries, an 'Exceptional' Op-Ed

They note Biden has won, warn the military has no place getting involved in any election disputes

(Newser) - "The time for questioning the results has passed; the time for the formal counting of the electoral college votes, as prescribed in the Constitution and statute, has arrived." So reads an unusual op-ed that appeared Sunday in the Washington Post , co-signed by all 10 living ex-defense secretaries. The...

Biden's Pentagon Pick Already Controversial

Lloyd Austin is only recently retired from the military

(Newser) - President-elect Biden will nominate retired four-star Army general Lloyd J. Austin to be secretary of defense, according to four people familiar with the decision who spoke to the AP . If confirmed by the Senate, Austin would be the first Black leader of the Pentagon. Biden selected Austin over the longtime...

Flournoy May Not Be a Shoo-In for Defense After All

Sources tell Politico that Biden is still mulling his options for defense secretary

(Newser) - President-elect Joe Biden is hard at work making picks for his administration, with reports already circulating on his choices for secretary of state, Homeland Security chief, and director of national intelligence, among others. But one key role tied to national security is still up in the air: secretary of defense,...

NATO Chief Responds to Trump's Troop Cuts

ISIS could take advantage of the vacuum in Afghanistan, secretary-general says

(Newser) - President Trump's plan to reduce US forces in Afghanistan and Iraq in the next two months drew a warning Tuesday from NATO. "The price for leaving too soon or in an uncoordinated way could be very high," said Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg, per the BBC . He said Afghanistan...

Frontrunner for Biden Defense Chief Would Make History

Michele Flournoy, who served at Pentagon under Obama, would be first woman in role

(Newser) - As President-elect Biden starts to make picks for his administration, one name being floated for a Cabinet position would be a historic one. The Hill reports that a frontrunner to head the Defense Department is Michele Flournoy, who served as the department's undersecretary of defense for policy under President...

Pentagon Bans Confederate Flag, but Not in a Typical Way

New policy lists what flags can be shown at military installations, not which ones can't

(Newser) - After weeks of wrangling, the Pentagon on Friday will ban displays of the Confederate flag on military installations, in a carefully worded policy that doesn't mention the word "ban" or that specific flag. The policy, laid out in a memo obtained by the AP , was described by officials...

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