Posts Tagged ‘DOD’

Petulant President’s Resignation Response

December 23, 2018

Petulant President's Resignation Response
On Thursday, Secretary of Defense James Mattis resigned as Secretary of Defense after President Trump precipitously ordered the withdrawal of U.S. troops from Syria without Pentagon consultation. His letter of resignation is a clear-eyed, well-reasoned, stinging rebuke to Mr. Trump’s chaotic decision-making and leadership. Secretary Mattis said he would resign at the end of February to allow for a smooth transition of Defense Department leadership. President Trump responded with the  thoughtfulness and grace that has characterized his administration, posting a Tweet announcing that General Mattis will be gone by January 1st. His successor, a Trump appointee, was a Boeing executive for 30 years and, like the Commander-In-Chief, has no military experience.

More:

“Trump, Angry Over Mattis’s Rebuke, Removes Him 2 Months Early,” Helene Cooper, New York Times

Related:

“Mattis is out, and Blackwater is back: ‘We are coming,’” Tara Copp, Military Times

“John McCain Once Called Trump’s New Secretary of Defense Patrick Shanahan a ‘Fox in the Henhouse’ Over Ties to Boeing,” Ramsey Touchberry, Newsweek

“Someone please get President Trump on the golf course,” Dallas Morning News editorial

Update:

“Trump is now saying he ‘fired’ James Mattis,” Kathryn Krawczyk, The Week

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Pentagon UFO Program Revealed

December 18, 2017

Pentagon UFO Program Revealed

The Pentagon has confirmed that it ran a multi-million-dollar UFO investigation program for five years. The Advanced Aviation Threat Identification Program (AATIP) was initiated through the urging of Harry Reid, then Senate Majority Leader, influenced by a hotel billionaire and the lead singer of the rock group Blink-182.

Still, there’s justification for interest. The military had detected several unexplained aerial phenomena, including a 2004 UFO sighting by two navy pilots:

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The Pentagon Preps for Urban Growth

January 31, 2017

Growing megacities are breeding grounds for “adversaries and hybrid threats,” and the U.S. Armed Forces are unprepared, claims a video from the “Advanced Special Operations Combating Terrorism” course at the Joint Special Operations University. The privately-produced video, made public by The Intercept’s Nick Turse, is based on a 2014 Army report.

We’re surprised the footage wasn’t used by the Trump campaign.

More:

“Pentagon Video Warns of ‘Unavoidable’ Dystopian Future for World’s Biggest Cities,” Nick Turse, The Intercept

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Pentagon Won’t Punish ‘Pillow-Talk’ Petraeus

February 4, 2016

Pentagon Won’t Punish 'Pillow-Talk' Petraeus
David Petraeus, who resigned as CIA director after revelations he’d shared classified information with his mistress and biographer, Paula Broadwell, won’t be punished any further by the Pentagon, reported the Washington Post. General Petraeus pleaded guilty to a single count of unauthorized use of classified material last year in a …, um, “sweetheart deal.” Now he won’t even be demoted and will continue to receive a four-star general’s retirement benefits, including a pension of nearly $220,000 a year.

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Top image by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

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Psychology Association: Okay, We’ll Stop Helping Torturers

August 8, 2015

Psychology Association: Okay, We'll Stop Helping Torturers

“The American Psychological Association voted Friday in favor of a resolution that would bar its members from participating in national security interrogations.

The resolution by the country’s largest professional organization of psychologists passed overwhelmingly. The only dissenting vote came from Col. Larry James, a former Army intelligence psychologist at Guantanamo.”

— “Psychology Group Votes To Ban Members From Taking Part In Interrogations,” Dina Temple-Raston, NPR News

“The association’s ethics director, Stephen Behnke, coordinated the group’s public policy statements on interrogations with a top military psychologist … and then received a Pentagon contract to help train interrogators while he was working at the association, without the knowledge of the association’s board. Mr. Behnke did not respond to a request for comment.”

— “Outside Psychologists Shielded U.S. Torture Program, Report Finds,” James Risen, New York Times

Related:

“Larry James,” Center for Torture Accountability

“US torture report: psychologists should no longer aid military, group says,” Spencer Ackerman, The Guardian

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Admiral Romney’s Profit-Motive Navy

October 26, 2012

Admiral Romney's Profit-Motive Navy

“Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney has vowed to boost the size of the Navy by roughly 15 percent as part of a broader defense buildup. ‘Our Navy is smaller now than at any time since 1917,’ he complained in Monday night’s debate. ‘That’s unacceptable to me.’

But for one of Romney’s most important advisers on Navy issues, a man who oversaw a massive naval expansion for Pres. Ronald Reagan, there’s more at stake than U.S. national security. John Lehman, an investment banker and former secretary of the Navy, has strong and complex personal financial ties to the naval shipbuilding industry. He has profited hugely from the Navy’s slow growth in recent years — raising the prospect that he could make even more if Romney takes his advice on expanding the fleet.”

–“Romney’s Big Navy Guru Made Millions From Building Ships,” David Axe, Wired Danger Room

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Image (“Admiral Romney’s Navy”) by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

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USA Leaves Iraq?

December 18, 2011

USA Leaves Iraq?

The last convoy of United States troops left Iraq today, entering Kuwait and ending almost nine years of official military presence. Operation Iraqi Freedom lasted eight years, eight months and 25 days. 1.5 million troops served, 4,500 died, and 32,000 were wounded. Cost in Iraqi lives? Pick a number over 100,000.

American troops already withdrawn from Iraq are glad to be home for the holidays, though many will be re-deployed to Afghanistan. But at least Iraq is secure, right?

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Army Mules for Afghanistan?

June 6, 2011

The U.S. Army might send pack mules to Afghanistan. The logistics of supplying patrols in that rugged terrain are complex and costly, and new experimental cargo robots aren’t working out.

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Total Information War

May 12, 2011

Total Information War

The U.S. military is determined to prevail on the cyber-psycho-cultural field of battle, winning hearts, minds, and Facebook friends with global information operations. In accordance with Pentagon planning document Joint Vision 2020 (Department of Defense, Joint Vision 2020 [aka DOD JV 2020], 2000), the U.S. military will not rest until it achieves information domain dominance with tactical tweets and barrages of blog posts. The Web has been weaponized, and social media militarized. Sign up now for a career in Information Operations (IO).

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Closet Veterans

November 11, 2010

Closet Veterans 

The Washington Post is observing Veterans Day with a story previewing the Pentagon report on the “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy:

“More than 70 percent of respondents to a survey sent to active-duty and reserve troops over the summer said the effect of repealing the “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy would be positive, mixed or nonexistent, said two sources familiar with the document. The survey results led the report’s authors to conclude that objections to openly gay colleagues would drop once troops were able to live and serve alongside them.”

— “Sources: Pentagon group finds there is minimal risk to lifting gay ban during war,” Ed O’Keefe and Greg Jaffe, Washington Post.

The chief authors of the study are Pentagon General Counsel Jeh Johnson and the Commander of U.S. Forces in Europe, General Carter Ham.

 

Image by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

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