• The Pentagon is announcing a new $1.3 billion package of long-term military aid to Ukraine on Wednesday, including four air defense systems and an undisclosed number of drones. The new assistance comes on the heels of a meeting Tuesday by defense and military leaders from around the globe to discuss ongoing efforts to give Ukraine the weapons it needs in its battle to retake territory seized by Russian forces. The new aid is being provided under the Ukraine Security Assistance Initiative. It includes money for four National Advanced Surface-to-Air Missile System, or NASAMS, and munitions for them.

    July 19, 2023
  • The U.S. is sending additional fighter jets and a warship to the Strait of Hormuz and Gulf of Oman to increase security in the wake of Iranian attempts to seize commercial ships there. The Pentagon says the USS Thomas Hudner, a destroyer, and a number of F-35 fighter jets will be heading to the region. Defense officials last week announced the deployment of F-16s to the area over the past weekend and there have been A-10 attack aircraft there for nearly two weeks in response to the Iranian activity. The latest deployments come after Iran tried to seize two oil tankers near the strait early this month, opening fire on one of them.

    July 17, 2023
  • The House has passed a sweeping defense bill that provides a pay raise for service members but strays from traditional military policy with Republicans add-ons blocking abortion coverage, diversity initiatives at the Pentagon and transgender care.

    July 14, 2023
  • The Army officer tapped to be the service’s next chief of staff is outlining his plan to fix what he described as the service’s top challenge — rebuilding recruiting — as it becomes clear the Army will again fall short of its enlistment goal. Gen. Randy George, vice chief of staff of the Army, told the Senate Armed Services Committee on Wednesday that the service is looking at short and long-term ways to improve how recruiters are chosen and deployed. He wants to better tailor marketing to attract young people. George’s confirmation is uncertain at best, due to a Senate dispute over military nominations.

    July 12, 2023
  • President Joe Biden’s pick to serve as America’s top military officer is warning senators of the difficulties posed by any potential conflict in Asia and describing how he would use lessons learned from the Ukraine war to help the U.S. military prepare. But Air Force Gen. CQ Brown Jr. may not be able to apply those lessons anytime soon. His nomination to be the next chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff is among more than 260 that are being stalled by a Republican senator in protest over Pentagon policy that pays for travel when a service member has to go out of state for an abortion or other reproductive care.

    July 11, 2023
  • The U.S. Marine Corps is without a confirmed leader for the first time in a century as Gen. David Berger stepped down as commandant and a Republican senator is blocking confirmation of his successor. Berger took over in July 2019, and must leave the job after four years. Gen. Eric Smith, the assistant commandant, has been nominated to be the next leader, but will serve in an acting capacity because he hasn’t been confirmed. Sen. Tommy Tuberville of Alabama has stalled all senior military nominations because he disagrees with Pentagon policy that funds travel for service members to go out of state for an abortion or other reproductive care.

    July 10, 2023
  • The Pentagon is announcing its plans for tightening protections of classified information following the explosive leaks of hundreds of intelligence documents that were accessed through security gaps at a Massachusetts Air National Guard base. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin has directed that all secure rooms where classified information is stored and accessed get increased levels of physical security, additional controls to ensure documents aren’t improperly removed, and electronic device detection systems. The security upgrades come as a lone airman, Jack Texeira, is accused of leaking highly classified military documents in a chatroom on Discord, a social media platform that started as a hangout for gamers.

    July 05, 2023
  • A former FBI analyst has been sentenced to nearly four years in prison for keeping classified documents at her home in North Kansas City, Missouri. Kendra Kingsbury pleaded guilty in October to two counts of unlawfully retaining documents related to national defense. She was sentenced Wednesday to three years and 10 months in federal prison. Federal prosecutors said Kingsbury held a high level security clearance, which gave her access to national defense and classified information. During her employment from 2004 to December 2017, she took 386 sensitive government documents home. Prosecutors say she has declined to provide a motive. She was most recently living in Garden City, Kansas.

    June 22, 2023
  • The Pentagon says it overestimated the value of the weapons it has sent to Ukraine by $6.2 billion over the past two years, resulting in a surplus that will be used for future security packages. The total surplus is about double early estimates. Pentagon spokeswoman Sabrina Singh says a detailed review of the accounting error found that the military services used replacement costs rather than the book value of equipment that was pulled from Pentagon stocks and sent to Ukraine. As a result, the department has additional money to use to support Ukraine as it pursues its counteroffensive against Russia.

    June 20, 2023
  • A U.S. Army base in western Louisiana has been renamed in honor of Sgt. William Henry Johnson, a Black veteran of World War I and a Medal of Honor recipient. While serving in France in 1918, Johnson was wounded 21 times while he fought off a German night raid. His brave actions were recognized nearly a century later when he was awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor in 2015. Fort Johnson was previously named after a Confederate commander, Leonidas Polk. The names of nine Army posts that commemorated Confederate officers are being changed as part of the military’s efforts to address historic racial injustice.

    June 13, 2023
  • Hopes have been dashed for an imminent end to a Senate standoff that has delayed the promotions of more than 200 military officers and could delay the confirmation of President Joe Biden’s pick for chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. Republican Sen. Tommy Tuberville of Alabama has been blocking the nominations to pressure the Defense Department to rescind a policy that reimburses service members who have to travel out of state for abortions and other reproductive care. A proposal to hold a Senate debate over Pentagon abortion policies was seen by some senators as the best prospect for getting Tuberville to lift those holds, but his office said Monday that Tuberville was opposed.

    June 12, 2023
  • The Air Force has announced the permanent location for many more U.S. Space Force units — and none of them are in Huntsville, Alabama. This suggests the service may be moving ahead with at least part of the design it originally sought for the new force before it became entangled in politics. Four more Space Force missions will now be based in Colorado Springs, a notable choice during a larger and now politicized battle over where to locate the permanent headquarters of U.S. Space Command. Colorado Springs, which is housing Space Command’s temporary headquarters, was the Air Force’s preferred location. But Donald Trump, in the final days of his presidency, selected Alabama instead.

    May 31, 2023
  • The Air Force fighter pilot tapped to be the next chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff got his call sign by ejecting from a burning F-16 fighter jet high above the Florida Everglades and falling into the watery sludge below. It was January 1991, and then-Capt. CQ Brown Jr. had just enough time in his parachute above alligator-full wetlands. He landed in the muck, which coated his body. That's how the man nominated to be the country’s next top military officer got his call sign: “Swamp Thing.” President Joe Biden announced he was nominating Brown for the chairman's job during a Rose Garden event on Thursday.

    May 25, 2023
  • President Joe Biden is expected to announce Air Force Gen. CQ Brown Jr. to serve as the next chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. Brown is a history-making fighter pilot with years of experience in shaping U.S. defenses to meet China's rise. If confirmed by the Senate, Brown would replace the current chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Army Gen. Mark Milley, whose term ends in October. It would be the first time that both the Pentagon’s top military and civilian positions were held by African Americans. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin is the Pentagon’s current top civilian.

    May 05, 2023