FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. — Rosalyn Kane spends her days reading book after book in her apartment at The Palace at Coral Gables, an independent living facility. She hasn’t had a face-to-face conversation with her daughters in two months, nor has she eaten a meal with her friends. She worries about getting the new coronavirus, but she wants a social life again.“It’s been hard,” Kane said. “It’s been two months but it seems a lot longer to us.”Over the weekend, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis issued an executive order that extends the ban on visitors to long-term care facilities in the state for another 6...
The US military has deployed more heavy bombers and fighter jets to protect withdrawing American and coalition troops from Afghanistan, which have so far sustained no direct attacks, the Pentagon said Thursday.
"Less than one week in, the drawdown is going according to plan," Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin told reporters.
Pentagon Joint Chiefs Chairman Mark Milley said that to defend the departing troops, six B-52 long range bombers and 12 F-18 fighters have been ordered to supply contingency support.
He said that while the Taliban insurgents groups launch between 80 and 120 attacks every day against Afghan government targets, since the withdrawal began on May 1 "there have been no attacks against US and coalition forces."
Nearly 20 years after invading the country to remove the Taliban from power and pursue Al-Qaeda following the September 11, 2001 attacks, last month US President Joe Biden ordered the final withdrawal of 2,500 US service members and 16,000 civilian contractors.
Biden set a deadline for the pullout of the the anniversary this year of the September 11 attacks.
Austin and Milley underscored that although the US continues to work closely with the Afghan security forces, the relationship will shift with the pullout.
US support will continue via funding and "over the horizon logistics" -- military support from US bases and ships located hundreds of miles away, Austin said.
Milley stressed that, amid widespread expectations that the Taliban could seize power from the government in the wake of the US pullout, the demise of Afghan forces should not be presumed.
"The Afghan National Security Forces and the Government of Afghanistan at this time remain cohesive," Milley said. "The president of the United States' intent is to support both."
Milley added the United States is in ongoing talks with the Afghan government on how to keep its air force going to provide effective support to government troops on the ground.
The Afghan air force depends heavily on foreign technicians who are included in the 16,000 contractors that are being pulled out.
"A lot of that is going to be dependent on the security conditions ont he ground," said Milley.
"The intent is to keep the Afghan air force in the air, and to provide them with continued maintenance support," he said.
The US military has no plans to shoot down an out -of-control Chinese rocket now hurtling towards Earth, Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin said Thursday.
"We have the capability to do a lot of things, but we don't have a plan to shoot it down as we speak," Austin told journalists.
Pentagon experts expect the body of the Long March 5B rocket, which fell out of orbit after separating from Beijing's space station, to fall to the surface some time around Saturday or Sunday.
But exactly when and where it will land is still difficult to predict.
"We're hopeful that it will land in a place where it won't harm anyone. Hopefully in the ocean, or someplace like that," Austin said.
He suggested that the Chinese were negligent in letting the rocket body fall out of orbit.
"I think this speaks to the fact that, for those of us who operate in the space domain, there's a requirement, or should be a requirement to operate in a safe and thoughtful mode," said Austin.
There is a need to "make sure that we take those kinds of things into consideration as we plan and conduct operations" in space, he said.
© 2021 AFP
The Federal Election Commission is no longer investigating whether hush money payments to Stephanie Clifford, also known as Stormy Daniels, violated election law.
"The FEC has formally dropped its case looking to Trump payments to Stephanie Clifford via Michael Cohen in 2016. The FEC Office of General Counsel had recommended further investigation," New York Times correspondent Shane Goldmacher reported Thursday.
NEW: The FEC has formally dropped its case looking to Trump payments to Stephanie Clifford via Michael Cohen in 201… https://t.co/VwMBpDu6EE— Shane Goldmacher (@Shane Goldmacher)1620336376.0
Here is the response letter from two of the Democratic commissioners: "The Commission therefore did not have enoug… https://t.co/xdUjkkoOVz— Shane Goldmacher (@Shane Goldmacher)1620336564.0
Summary of Cooksey and Trainor reasoning, from their letter: "In sum, the public record is complete with respect t… https://t.co/04ChzPAzny— Shane Goldmacher (@Shane Goldmacher)1620336727.0
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