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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...

Pentagon sends more Syrians into battle; US, Russia open talks; Marines ask to keep women out of some jobs; Move over McCain, here comes Joni Ernst; And a bit more.

September 21, 2015 Syrian rebels: Russia’s involvement will prolong and deepen the war. “Rebels who have inflicted big losses on Syrian President Bashar al-Assad say Russia’s intervention in support of its ally will only lead to an escalation of the war and may encourage the rebels’ Gulf Arab backers to pour in more...

Decrepit weapons delayed Syrian train-and-equip effort; US searches for new options; Russian aggression reshaping arms market; Bowing to China?; And a bit more.

September 18, 2015 We may now have one reason why the Pentagon’s train-and-equip mission in Syria took so long to get up and running—and the story runs through a pile of 30-year-old weapons and a former Navy SEAL armorer who met an untimely death in Bulgaria back in June. Aram Roston, investigative reporter...

Syrian train-and-equip shocker; Assad’s forces using new Russian arms; Does the ISIS fight need a czar?; GOPers debate national security; And a bit more.

September 17, 2015 Two suicide bombers struck checkpoints in Baghdad this morning and killed nearly two dozen people in an attack the Islamic State quickly took credit for, AP reports. The bombings—carried out by attackers on foot—hit commercial areas during rush hour and, in addition to the dead, wounded another 75. The news...

Carter: Congressional Inaction on Defense Budget Is Dangerous and Embarrassing

September 16, 2015 U.S. Defense Secretary Ashton Carter gave Congress both barrels on Wednesday, calling lawmakers’ inaction on defense “a tax on how we plan and operate.” “Budget uncertainty, a decrease in defense resources, and Congressional reluctance to agree to proposed reforms — including eliminating overhead and unneeded infrastructure, retiring older platforms, and...

US may reduce Syrian training effort; Navy, Marines will open all jobs to women; UK tells arms makers to think ‘export’; Rock Island Arsenal braces for budgetary siege; And a bit more.

September 16, 2015 The White House and the Pentagon are drawing up new plans for a “scaled-back” Syrian train-and-equip program, FP’s Dan De Luce reports. “Under the proposal that is still being drafted, the rebels would focus mostly on key tasks associated with air power and communications, playing a supporting role instead of...

Navy, Marines To Open All Jobs to Women

September 15, 2015 Ray Mabus has made up his mind: there’s no job in the Navy or Marine Corps that’s going to be off-limits to women. With more than a month to go before the deadline, the Navy Secretary made it clear on Monday: he will not be requesting any exceptions to the...

Russia settles into Syria; Chinese admiral claims the South China Sea; N. Korea declares reactor restart; Dutch general slams US helo plan; And a bit more.

September 15, 2015 Russia appears to be setting up a forward air operating base in Syria, Pentagon officials said Monday. Moscow had already sent infantry and prefab houses to the site in western Syria’s port city of Latakia; more recently, Russia dispatched at least a half-dozen T-90 tanks and a raft of SA-22...

Prison break in Afghanistan; No US-Russia comms in Syria; USAF bomber will do more than bomb; Do drone strikes even work?; And a bit more.

September 14, 2015 Taliban fighters in police uniforms stormed a prison in eastern Afghanistan’s Ghazni province this morning and freed hundreds of inmates in the country’s third mass prison break in eight years, AFP reports. And “inmates had staged a protest inside the prison hours before the Taliban attack—a possible indication that the...