MARA, Chad — From Yemen to Syria to here in Central Africa, the Trump administration is relying on Special Operations forces to intensify its promised fight against the Islamic State and other terrorist groups as senior officials embrace an Obama-era strategy to minimize the American military’s footprint overseas.
In Africa, President Trump is expected to soon approve a Pentagon proposal to remove constraints on Special Operations airstrikes and raids in parts of Somalia to target suspected militants with the Shabab, an extremist group linked to Al Qaeda. Critics say that the change — in one of the few rejections of President Barack Obama’s guidelines for the elite forces — would bypass rules that seek to prevent civilian deaths from drone attacks and commando operations. [Full Report]
Drew VachalNYT: Using Special Forces Against Terrorism, Trump Seeks to Avoid Big Ground Wars
A leading military advocacy group offered its support to Defense Secretary James Mattis in a public message Monday, but also asked him to help ease some of the hardship caused by the burden of sequestration.
“Military families need your commitment to provide the necessary support to promote family readiness,” the National Military Family Association wrote in a message to Mattis, a retired Marine general who is beginning his first full week of work in the Trump administration. “Military family support and services should not be casualties of budget battles on Capitol Hill, and we are ready to arm you with the information to justify their necessity and end sequestration.” [FULL REPORT]
Drew VachalAdvocacy group asks Mattis to back military families, fill key DoD jobs fast
I just read that you’re speaking at the SHOT show in Las Vegas this week. VERY disappointing. There are already too many guns in this country, and too much faux patriotism surrounding the second amendment. I can’t believe you’d risk your good name associating with a bunch of gun nuts. You’ve lost a fan.
Well, hi there Marla. And Happy Sunday!
It’s true, I’ll be in Vegas this week, addressing a roomful of people who like to shoot guns. I’m not sure what I’m going to say yet – probably the same thing I tell anyone who invites me to discuss the various ways we might close America’s skills gap. But one things for sure – while I’m at there, I’m going to make sure I see my friends at The SEAL Family Foundation.
WASHINGTON — The Navy upgraded 17 medals on Friday to sailors — most of them SEALs — for bravery they exhibited in clandestine missions conducted since the Sept. 11 terror attacks.
Navy Secretary Ray Mabus upgraded nine Navy Crosses and eight Silver Stars, the second- and third-highest awards for valor that the service awards its troops. The names of most of the SEALs were not released to protect them and their families, and because many of them remain on active duty…. FULL REPORT
Drew VachalSeveral Navy SEALs receive medal upgrades
The Naval Special Warfare Command welcomed 13 new SWCC graduates,2 spouses and 1 fiance for their special graduation dinner. There were 120 attendees in total, traveling from Kailua, HI, Carbondale, CO, Houston, TX, Redding, CT, Saint Charles, IL and many more states across the country. Congratulations to these fine young gentlemen for their determination to get where they are today and to their families who helped them prepare for this journey.