Last week, Trump announced he would withdraw the roughly 2,000 US troops from Syria, citing the highly disputed claim that the Islamic State group had been “defeated.” Following the backlash from many national-security experts, Trump suggested he was open to using Iraq as a staging point for another intervention in Syria, “if we wanted to do something.”
McCaffrey also criticized Trump, who did not meet with Prime Minister Adil Abdul-Mahdi during the trip, for snubbing the leader of Iraq.
…”Announcing we’re going to use it as the site from which we’ll conduct combat operations in other nations, I mean, it’s just inciting Iraqi sovereignty concerns.”
He also criticized one of Trump’s falsehoods about the military: the claim that US troops received their first pay raise “in more than 10 years” under his administration.
The plaintiffs received notification just days before Thanksgiving, denying their discharge appeals despite compliance with fitness assessments and medical treatment, as well as strong support from commanding officers.
…The lawsuit challenges the Pentagon’s discriminatory deployment policies, which prevent servicemembers living with HIV from deploying outside the United States without a waiver. For years, these policies have restricted the opportunities of servicemembers with HIV. Now these same deployment restrictions are being used to justify separating servicemembers solely based on HIV status.
The “Deploy or Get Out” policy, unveiled by the Trump administration in February 2018, directs the Pentagon to identify servicemembers who cannot be deployed to military posts outside of the United States for more than 12 consecutive months and to separate them from military service. Since current U.S. military policy identifies servicemembers living with HIV as non-deployable, they face immediate discharge under this Trump policy.
On an August morning at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, the medical treatment facility was holding a mass casualty drill. Personnel acting as the injured streamed in.
Across the base, unbeknownst to the medical staff, a second active shooter drill was taking place, with a second set of people pretending to be injured.
Then a real injured person came on the scene: someone who worked at the medical facility hurt their ankle jogging on base, and called another employee screaming and crying.
…In the confusion, someone in the emergency room called the Base Defense Operations Center reporting a real active shooter. Events spiraled from there.
“A breakdown of communication led to a completely uncoordinated and ineffective combined response that could have resulted in serious injury or property damage,” the Air Force said in a report summarizing the findings of its investigation into the incident.
…Units from the Dayton area and the state of Ohio responded en masse.
At the same time, authorities on base requested a SWAT team.
…Air Force security went into the hospital. And when one airman encountered a locked door, five shots were fired.
Other people in the hospital heard those shots, and more calls went out to 911.
Though the incident commander quickly learned that Air Force security had fired the shots, 50 other civilian responders didn’t get the message, the report said, “breached the front door of the hospital and entered with weapons drawn.”