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Jun 22, 2015

U.S. won’t let Russia “drag us back to the past” – Pentagon chief

BERLIN, June 22 (Reuters) – The United States and its allies
won’t let Russia “drag us back to the past”, U.S. Defense
Secretary Ash Carter said in an address in Berlin on Monday, as
he accused Moscow of trying to re-create a Soviet-era sphere of
influence.

Russia’s intervention in Ukraine has put NATO allies in
eastern Europe on edge and triggered a series of military moves
by the NATO alliance, including an acceleration of exercises and
the creation of a NATO rapid response force.

Jun 22, 2015

Pentagon chief planning for longer-term rift with Russia

BERLIN (Reuters) – The United States and its NATO allies are preparing militarily for the prospect that their rift with Russia could outlast President Vladimir Putin, U.S. Defense Secretary Ash Carter said on Sunday.

Russia’s intervention in Ukraine has put NATO allies in eastern Europe on edge and triggered a series of military moves by the alliance, including an acceleration of exercises and the creation of a NATO rapid response force.

Jun 21, 2015

Pentagon chief to push U.S. allies to ditch ‘Cold War playbook’

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. Defense Secretary Ash Carter will urge NATO allies to “dispose of the Cold War playbook” during a trip to Europe this week, as the alliance adapts to a new kind of threat from Russia in the east and Islamic State to the south, U.S. officials said.

Carter heads first to Berlin, where he is expected to call for a more muscular global security role from Germany, Europe’s largest economy. Germany remains hesitant to deploy troops abroad, seven decades after the end of World War Two.

Jun 17, 2015

U.S. weighs near-term Assad military retrenchment in Syria

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The United States and its allies are weighing the possibility that Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, under growing military pressure, may soon narrow his focus on defense of more limited areas of the country, the top U.S. general said on Wednesday.

Losses in the north, east and south have put Assad under more military strain than at any point in the four-year-old war, which has killed more than 200,000 people and displaced millions, according to United Nations data.

Jun 17, 2015

U.S. urges ‘greater commitment’ to war effort from Baghdad

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The United States called for a “greater commitment” from Iraq’s government on Wednesday in the fight against Islamic State as it lamented Baghdad’s failure to deliver enough soldiers for training and underscored the need to empower Sunni tribesmen.

U.S. Defense Secretary Ash Carter told a congressional hearing that the U.S. military had hoped to train 24,000 Iraqi security forces by this fall but had only received enough recruits to train about 9,000 so far.

Jun 17, 2015

U.S. calls for ‘greater commitment’ from Iraq’s government

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The United States called for a “greater commitment” from Iraq’s government on Wednesday in the fight against Islamic State as it lamented Baghdad’s failure to deliver enough soldiers for training and underscored the need to empower Sunni tribesmen.

U.S. Defense Secretary Ash Carter told a congressional hearing that the U.S. military had hoped to train 24,000 Iraqi security forces by this fall but had only received enough recruits to train about 9,000 so far.

Jun 11, 2015

U.S. military considering more Anbar-style hubs in Iraq: officer

NAPLES, Italy (Reuters) – The United States is considering replicating the creation of a new U.S. military hub in Anbar elsewhere in Iraq as the campaign against Islamic State advances, the top U.S. military officer said on Thursday.

“It’s another one of the options that we’re considering,” General Martin Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, told a small group of reporters before landing in Naples, Italy, acknowledging that might require more troops.

Jun 9, 2015

U.S. military chief seeks to reassure Israel on Iran threat

JERUSALEM (Reuters) – America’s top general sought to reassure Israel on Tuesday of “unshakable” U.S. military support, despite deep strains in political relations over the prospect of a U.S.-led nuclear deal with Iran and differences over Israeli-Palestinian diplomacy.

U.S. General Martin Dempsey, on a visit to Israel, said he shared a core Israeli fear that sanctions relief for Iran following a nuclear agreement would allow Tehran to give more money to its military and its guerrilla proxies.

Jun 9, 2015

U.S. weighs more Iraq training sites but no strategy overhaul

JERUSALEM (Reuters) – U.S. President Barack Obama is weighing expanding the number of training sites for Iraqi forces as a way to bolster the battle against Islamic State, the top U.S. military officer said on Tuesday, a move that could mean deploying more U.S. forces.

But General Martin Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, told a small group of reporters that Obama’s requests for options in Iraq left intact a U.S. military strategy that has so far kept U.S. ground troops off the front lines.

Jun 5, 2015

U.S. quietly starts channeling arms from $1.6 billion fund to Iraq

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The United States has quietly started delivering promised arms for Iraqi soldiers from a $1.6 billion fund approved by Congress last year, officials said, following mounting Iraqi frustration over the pace of coalition assistance.

The Pentagon said long-awaited equipment from the Iraq Train and Equip Fund (ITEF) started being fielded about two weeks ago and was moving as fast as possible. Officials noted extensive, previous arms transfers under different U.S. authorities.

    • About Phil

      "Phil Stewart has worked for Reuters since 1998 and reported from more than 30 countries, including Afghanistan, Iraq, Pakistan, Russia, Saudi Arabia, China and Egypt. Before becoming a Washington D.C.-based military affairs and intelligence reporter, Phil covered terrorism, foreign affairs and the Vatican from Rome from 2004 until mid-2009. He has also previously been based in Colombia and Brazil as a foreign correspondent. Before joining Reuters, Phil covered U.S. politics out of Washington D.C. for States News Service. He earned his BS in international relations from Georgetown University's School of Foreign Service. He speaks English, Spanish, Portuguese and Italian. ..."
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