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Jim Webb Drops Out of 2016 Dem Race, Leaves Independent Bid Open

October 20, 2015 Jim Webb, who brought unmatched military experience to the Democratic presidential field, withdrew on Tuesday, having made barely a ripple in his party’s national-security debate. “I am withdrawing from any consideration of being the Democratic Party’s nominee for the presidency,” Webb said in a midday press conference. For now at...

Dunford in Iraq; Ban nuke cruise missiles; Saudi buys LCS; Battlefield haiku; and just a bit more.

October 20, 2015 U.S. Marine Gen. Joseph Dunford is playing down Russia’s air role in Iraq. The new Joint Chiefs Chairman just arrived in the Kurdish hub of Irbil this morning for his first visit to Iraq since taking over for Gen. Martin Dempsey. Dunford is seeking battlefield updates on Baghdad forces’ long-stalled...

Khorasan leader killed in Syria; Assad, Iran, Hezbollah, Russia team gains ground; CJCS Dunford’s first trip overseas; Woods Hole, hacked; and a bit more...

October 19, 2015 The “highest-ranking leader” of the Khorasan group was killed Thursday by a U.S. airstrike in northwest Syria, the Pentagon said Sunday. “The target of the strike near Aleppo was Abdul Mohsen Adballah Ibrahim al Charekh, also known as Sanafi al Nasr, a Saudi national and the highest ranking leader of...

AP: US knew about Kunduz hospital; Obama halts Afghanistan drawdown; SecDef hushes women-in-combat talk; Sextants return to USNA; and just a bit more...

October 16, 2015 Troubling new allegations surround the Kunduz bombing. U.S. Special Forces were reportedly tracking a Pakistani operative believed to have been using the Doctors Without Borders hospital “to coordinate Taliban activity” in the days before the facility was destroyed by a U.S. gunship, killing nearly two dozen patients and staff in...

Afghan drawdown, pushed off; Pentagon rewriting European playbook; US troops to Cameroon; 5 cool robots at AUSA; and just a bit more...

October 15, 2015 Best to leave that Afghan drawdown for the next U.S. president. The White House is set to announce plans to keep more than five thousand troops in Afghanistan after 2016. “Under pressure at home and abroad, Mr. Obama decided—following a strategy review—to maintain the current American force of 9,800 troops...

Deconfliction, take three; Debating Dems pile on Clinton; Ukraine may buy US armor; DHS wants to revive terror alerts; and just a bit more.

October 14, 2015 Clearing the air over Syria: third time’s the charm, inshallah. The U.S. and Russia today are meeting once again to discuss some kind of formal proposal for safe conduct—or, how to avoid escalating the war in Syria into a showdown between great powers. The two nations’ air forces combined fly...

DOD updates ISIS body count; Putin admits intervening for Assad; Army worries about Congress; Laser truck unveiled at AUSA; and a bit more…

October 13, 2015 Updated ISIS body count. The U.S.-led bombing campaign against the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria has killed an estimated 20,000 fighters, up from the 15,000 reported in July by the Defense Department, USA Today reports. Still, recruiting continues apace: “The overall force, the first official said, remains about where...

Russia forges anti-ISIS deal with Iraq, Syria, Iran; China, US make cyber pact; UN’s packed agenda; USAF fesses up to A-10 video; and a bit more...

September 28, 2015 Russia agrees to share info on ISIS — with Iraq, Syria, and Iran. “For the second time this month, Russia moved to expand its political and military influence in the Syria conflict and left the United States scrambling,” writes the New York Times. It’s a bigger problem than simple deconfliction:...

U.S.-trained Syrians turn traitor; Allen quits; Rocky road to the Xi-Obama summit; A good cyber pact is hard to define; and a bit more.

September 23, 2015 Train, equip, and say goodbye. “Pentagon-trained rebels in Syria are reported to have betrayed their American backers and handed their weapons over to al-Qaeda in Syria immediately after re-entering the country,” reports The Telegraph, citing “a raft of sources.” Fighters with Division 30, the anti-ISIS rebel division that was the...

Russia, Iran team up in Syria; Hit-or-miss airstrikes in Yemen; Pope cools to nukes; ‘Flab and cronyism’ in the NJ Guard; and a bit more.

September 22, 2015 Moscow, Tehran working together in Syria to shore up Assad. “Russia and Iran have stepped up coordination inside Syria as they move to safeguard President Bashar al-Assad’s control over his coastal stronghold, according to officials in the U.S. and Middle East, creating a new complication for Washington’s diplomatic goals,” writes...