The United States welcomes the decision by the Government of Belgium to purchase thirty-four new F-35 fighter aircraft. Belgium is now poised to fly the F-35 alongside its closest NATO Allies and longtime partners. The United States is proud of our enduring air partnership with Belgium, a country whose air power has contributed to the Defeat ISIS campaign in Iraq and Syria, and NATO’s Baltic Air Policing mission. With Belgium’s commitment to the F-35 program, its five-star aerospace industry will continue to expand as it supports this 5th generation aircraft, which was jointly developed with European partners. Belgium’s participation in the F-16 program has been a cornerstone of our modern transatlantic defense partnership. We look forward to continuing this partnership for many decades to come with the F-35 program.   more...
By Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Samantha Montenegro
U.S. 5th Fleet Public Affairs

ARABIAN GULF -- The U.S. Navy and Coast Guard completed a trilateral exercise with Iraqi navy and Kuwaiti navy partners in the Northern Arabian Gulf, August 15.

Guided-missile destroyer USS The Sullivans (DDG 68) leads a formation of ships, including Cyclone-class patrol crafts USS Tempest (PC 2) and USS Chinook (PC 9), U.S. Coast Guard Island-class patrol cutter USCGC Monomoy (WPB 1326), a Kuwaiti naval vessel and an Iraqi naval vessel during a trilateral exercise with Iraq and Kuwait. The exercise is a surface engagement between the U.S. Navy and Coast Guard, and the Iraqi and Kuwaiti navies focused on improving proficiency in maritime security tactics to help ensure the freedom of navigation throughout the U.S. 5th Fleet area of operations. (U.S. Navy Photo by MC2 Lucas Askew/Released)

The exercise focused on improving collective proficiency in maritime security tactics between the three nations and ensuring the freedom of navigation throughout the U.S. 5th Fleet area of operations. Participants included the guided-missile destroyer USS The Sullivans (DDG 68), U.S. coastal patrol ships USS Tempest (PC 2) and USS Chinook (PC 9), U.S. Coast Guard Island-class patrol boat USCGC Monomoy (WPB 1326), Iraqi navy patrol boat P 303, and Kuwaiti navy patrol boat KNS Al-Garoh (P 3725). The Sullivans led command and control of each event throughout the exercise.

WASHINGTON -- Defense Secretary James N. Mattis met with top Argentine defense officials in Buenos Aires yesterday to reaffirm the long-standing defense relationship between the United States and Argentina, chief Pentagon spokesperson Dana W. White said.

Defense Secretary James N. Mattis meets with Argentinian Defense Minister Oscar Aguad during his visit to Buenos Aires, Argentina, Aug. 15, 2018. U.S. Embassy photo.

Mattis, Defense Minister Oscar Aguad and Lt. Gen. Bari del Valle Sosa discussed a broad range of defense issues, White said in a statement summarizing the meeting.

Yleem D.S. Poblete
Assistant Secretary, Bureau of Arms Control, Verification and Compliance
Conference on Disarmament
Geneva, Switzerland
August 14, 2018

Thank you, Mr. President. Thank you, all.

Mr. President, I would like to bring to the attention of this body a matter related to outer space that is of great concern to my government and that relates to space security.

Outer space is a frontier that inspires us and unites us more than anything else. Photographs of faraway galaxies inspire us to dream big. New discoveries about the planets in our solar system that help us unlock mysteries here on Earth stretch our minds beyond the limits of our Earth-bound existence. And every rocket that we launch proves that the sky is not the limit.

What we choose to do in space, like every frontier, plays a vital role in the lives of our people and the future of our nations here on Earth. It accelerates scientific discovery, spurs groundbreaking innovations, fuels our economies, and quite literally creates the jobs of the future.

In the United States, in the Mojave Desert, there is a company that will carry the first generation of space tourists to the edge of the Earth’s atmosphere to peer into the cosmic expanse. And as we continue to push further into our own solar system, new businesses and entire enterprises will be built to seize the infinite possibilities before us.

By Jim Garamone
DoD News, Defense Media Activity

WASHINGTON — Forces battling the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria continue to make progress. However, the environment in Iraq and Syria is complex and the defeat-ISIS forces require continued support, coalition officials said today.

Children stand outside their home in a village near Dashisha, Syria, July 19, 2018. Residents of local villages are enjoying an increased sense of freedom and security since the defeat of ISIS in the area. Combined Joint Task Force-Operation Inherent Resolve is the global coalition to defeat ISIS in Iraq and Syria. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Corey Hook

Army Col. Sean Ryan, the spokesman for Operation Inherent Resolve, spoke to Pentagon reporters about progress being made against the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria. He spoke via satellite from Baghdad.

"We must protect those who protect us. When our service members are in uniform, it is our obligation to ensure that they have the finest equipment, the finest training, care, and resources— better than any military on earth."
President Donald J. Trump

REBUILDING OUR MILITARY: President Donald J. Trump is continuing to deliver on his pledge to rebuild our military by signing legislation authorizing $716 billion for our national defense.

President Trump is signing the John S. McCain National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year 2019, authorizing $716 billion for national defense.
The Administration worked in close partnership with Congress to complete the NDAA.
This is the earliest in the year Congress has completed an NDAA in over two decades.
The NDAA helps develop a more lethal and resilient force, and grows the size of our forces by authorizing an increase of 15,600 troops across the Army, Navy, Air Force, and Marine Corps.
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