Weekly Rundown: October 12 – 18, 2019
A quick review of the major military related headlines from the last week:
Turkish soldiers and allied Syrian militiamen.
Photo credit: Zein al Rifai / AFP – Getty Images.
- Much like last week, issues in Syria continue to dominate the headlines. Turkish troops backed by local militias personnel continued to push into Syria and engage Kurdish and allied Syrian forces in combat.
- As feared, hundred and perhaps thousands of ISIS militants and their families held in detention camps in Syria have escaped, with many more expected to follow.
- Vice President Mike Pence negotiated an ostensible cease fire between Turkey and Syrian Kurds during a meeting with Turkish President Recep Erdogan on Wednesday. But Turkish artillery shelling against Kurdish controlled areas reportedly continued throughout the week.
- Worries have arisen over the American nuclear weapons stored at Incirlik Airbase in Turkey as tension between that nation and the rest of NATO continue to simmer. President Trump, however, has dismissed those fears.
An Air Force F-16 taking off from Incirlik Airbase, Turkey.
- Russian troops took over several of the bases held by US and Kurdish troops before the pullout. The departing American soldiers left behind some “welcome” messages for the incoming tenants.
- China signed a lease for the entire island of Tulagi, one of the Solomon Islands, as part of their ongoing buildup in the Pacific. The island was the site of a hard fought battle between US Marines and Imperial Japanese forces during WWII’s Guadalcanal Campaign.
- The first eleven soldiers received the Expert Soldier Badge (ESB), the Army’s new badge recognizing non-infantry soldiers who pass a series of difficult field tests.
- Retired Marine General and former Secretary of Defense James “CHAOS” Mattis has an awesome new nickname: The Meryl Streep of Generals. We think it’s a good one.
Mattis scoring some big laughs at the 2019 Al Smith Dinner.
In Case You Missed It
- Army veteran Stacey Bell shared some of the “fun” little annoyances of being “The Vet” among your friends and family.
- This Week in Military History: The name Mata Hari is synonymous with the idea of a treachorous femme fatale. But was she really a traitorous spy, or simply a scapegoat for war-wear France?
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