July 21st, 2013
06:41 AM ET

Former commander of US Central Command cautions against U.S. military involvement in Syria without an endgame

Editor's note: This is one in a series of stories and opinion pieces surrounding the Aspen Security Forum. which took place from July 17 to 20 in Aspen, Colorado. Security Clearance was a media sponsor of the event.

By CNN's Alison Harding

A former commander of U.S. Central Command said the United States needs to determine an endgame in Syria before it takes further military action in the beleaguered country.

In a panel moderated by CNN’s Wolf Blitzer, retired Gen. James Mattis told the Aspen Security Forum on Saturday that escalated involvement in Syria by the U.S. military would lead to “a full-throated, very, very serious war.”

FULL POST

Post by:
Filed under: Gen. Mattis • Syria
U.S. sending floating naval base through the Suez Canal
File photo of the USS Ponce before it was refitted for long-term duty in the Persian Gulf.
June 21st, 2012
06:05 PM ET

U.S. sending floating naval base through the Suez Canal

 By Barbara Starr

A U.S. warship designed as a floating base for naval special forces is scheduled to transit through the Suez Canal for the first time as early as Friday, Navy officials say.

The USS Ponce, an amphibious transport ship, recently finished a complete overhaul that now has it configured to operate as a floating staging platform for the military. It is being launched into the oil shipping lanes at a time of heightened tensions across the region, U.S. Navy officials told CNN.

The ship began approaching Suez on Thursday and is expected to enter the canal shortly on its way to the Persian Gulf. FULL POST

Congress Wars: Battle for the defense budget
May 28th, 2012
02:00 AM ET

Congress Wars: Battle for the defense budget

By Mike Mount, Senior National Security Producer

In what is shaping up to be a classic congressional right vs. left fight over defense and war funding, both the House and Senate are gearing up to battle over some expected and not-so-expected items in the 2013 National Defense Authorization Act.

On Thursday, the Senate Armed Services Committee passed its version of the bill, showing its hand to members of the House of Representatives on what it felt should be authorized for military spending.

The act authorizes spending limits and sets defense policy, but it does not actually appropriate the funds.

The committee version must still pass a full Senate vote. The House signed off on its bill this month. While a date has yet to be announced, both the final House and Senate versions will go through extensive negotiations to hammer out a final version of the legislation, expected in the fall.

Both bills have numerous amendments that will be debated and fought over in the coming months. Keep an eye on these five if you like political fireworks.

FULL POST

March 28th, 2012
04:49 PM ET

First U.S. and Pakistan military meeting since deadly strike

By Nasir Habib reporting from Islamabad

Top U.S. and Pakistani military officials held face-to-face meetings in Islamabad on Wednesday in the first high-level talks since NATO airstrikes killed two dozen Pakistani soldiers in November.

Gen. James Mattis and Gen. John Allen discussed "bilateral matters, professional interests and the emerging geo-strategic situation of the region" with Gen. Khalid Shameem Wynne, the chairman of Pakistan's joint chiefs of staff, according to a statement from the Pakistani military.

Mattis is the chief of the U.S. Central Command, while Allen commands the International Security Assistance Force in Afghanistan. The meeting lasted "for some time," the Pakistani statement said.

Read the whole story here

Post by:
Filed under: Afghanistan • Gen. Mattis • Military • Pakistan