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military

Updated at 1 p.m. ET

President Trump says that Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, the founder and leader of the Islamic State, has been killed after a U.S. special operations mission targeted him in northwest Syria. Trump declared that U.S. forces have brought "the world's No. 1 terrorist leader to justice."

Describing a dangerous and daring nighttime raid, the president said after eight helicopters flew across Russian airspace, U.S forces located their target and blew a hole in a wall of Baghdadi's compound, fearing the main entrance was booby-trapped.

Updated at 6:49 p.m. ET

All U.S. forces involved in the anti-ISIS fight will withdraw from northeast Syria in the coming days, according to two U.S. officials close to the conflict. Only a small garrison of U.S. troops will remain at al-Tanf near Syria's border with Iraq and Jordan.

The troops in border areas are endangered by Turkey's incursion against Kurdish-led forces. The move is a sudden change in policy by the Trump administration.

The growing divide between President Trump and many of his fellow Republicans over his decision to move U.S. troops in Syria out of the way of a Turkish incursion threatens his delicate alliance with the congressional GOP at a time when he needs their support more than ever, party strategists say.

Some of Trump's closest allies, however, say the division may ultimately help him with an impeachment fight.

Updated at 7:30 p.m. ET

Kurdish allies of the U.S. say President Trump's decision to pull troops from the Syria-Turkey border is "shocking" and deflating — and they warn that the U.S. is duplicating a mistake it made in Iraq, where it has ceded partial control to Iran.

Within hours of the announcement from the White House late Sunday, local Kurdish forces on the ground confirmed to NPR that U.S. soldiers began leaving bases in Tel Abyad and Ras al Ayn, in Syria near the Syria-Turkey border.

Former wives and partners of servicemen who survived domestic abuse told their harrowing stories before the House Armed Services military preparedness subcommittee as they pressed for more attention to and resources for the growing problem within the armed forces.

"We are here today because domestic violence has become a forgotten crisis in our military," chairwoman Jackie Speier, D-Calif., said in her opening remarks before the military preparedness subcommittee.

The U.S. military court and prison at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, have cost more than $6 billion to operate since opening nearly 18 years ago and still churn through more than $380 million a year despite housing only 40 prisoners today.

The Trump administration has started the arduous process of canceling $3.6 billion in military construction projects to fund its plans to build a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border.

Defense Secretary Mark Esper began notifying lawmakers Tuesday which projects will be canceled in their districts. Top Democrats immediately blasted the plan.

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., was among the first lawmakers to say his district will be impacted by the funding cuts, for the U.S. Military Academy at West Point.

The children of some U.S. military members and government workers overseas will have a harder time getting citizenship under a Trump administration policy announced Wednesday.

The changes will affect a relatively small number of people. But the announcement touched off widespread confusion and outrage — with immigrant and veterans' advocates questioning why the administration would change the rules for people who are serving their country.

Flags Lowered To Honor Ohio Soldier Killed In Afghanistan

Jul 31, 2019
J. Stephen Conn (Flickr)

Gov. Mike DeWine has ordered flags in parts of the state lowered to half-staff to honor an Ohio soldier killed in Afghanistan.

President Trump announced he planned to repeat his 4th of July salute to the military next year as a trio of Senate Democrats called for an investigation into how much the Washington, D.C., event cost the taxpayers.

"It was a wonderful day for all Americans and based on its tremendous success, we're just making the decision and I think we can say we've made the decision to do it again next year, and maybe we can say, for the foreseeable future," Trump said at an event at the White House on Monday.

President Trump hailed America's military and declared that "our nation is stronger today than it ever was before" in a Fourth of July speech with patriotic themes underscored by flyovers from fighter jets and displays of tanks near the stage at the Lincoln Memorial.

Washington observers were watching to see whether Trump would take the highly publicized speech into politics, but instead, the president highlighted heroic military tales and implored Americans to "stay true to our cause."

The Trump administration wants to scale back a program that protects undocumented family members of active-duty troops from being deported, according to attorneys familiar with those plans.

The attorneys are racing to submit applications for what is known as parole in place after hearing from the wives and loved ones of deployed soldiers who have been told that option is "being terminated."

The Defense Department announced it is deploying 1,000 more U.S. troops to the Middle East "for defensive purposes" amid growing tensions with Iran.

Acting U.S. Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan said Monday in a statement that the action, meant to address air, naval, and ground-based threats, comes after "a request from the U.S. Central Command (CENTCOM) for additional forces."

The Trump administration has blamed Iran for a series of attacks on oil tankers in the Gulf of Oman.

"They won back this ground for civilization," President Trump said of the Allied troops who took part in the massive D-Day invasion 75 years ago today. Trump stood on a stage near Omaha Beach in northern France, alongside French President Emmanuel Macron and other world leaders who thanked U.S. veterans and their allies for preserving liberty.

The National Museum of the United States Air Force near Dayton is marking the 75th anniversary of D-Day Thursday. There's a wreath-laying ceremony and flyover by two C-47s, the main transport aircraft used on D-Day.

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