Latest Mark Esper News

In this image made from UNTV video, Tommy Esang Remengesau Jr., President of Palau, speaks in a pre-recorded message which was played during the 75th session of the United Nations General Assembly, Wednesday, Sept. 23, 2020, at UN headquarters in New York. The U.N.'s first virtual meeting of world leaders started Tuesday with pre-recorded speeches from some of the planet's biggest powers, kept at home by the coronavirus pandemic that will likely be a dominant theme at their video gathering this year. (UNTV via AP)

At UN, island nation of Palau speaks to interconnected world

Sep. 23, 2020 3:24 PM EDT

UNITED NATIONS (AP) — As one of the smallest countries on earth, the Pacific island nation of Palau doesn't always get to command the world's attention. But every nation gets to take the world stage at the U.N. General Assembly's premier annual meeting, and Palau President Tommy E. Remengesau Jr. used his...

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo speaks during a news conference to announce the Trump administration's restoration of sanctions on Iran, Monday, Sept. 21, 2020, at the U.S. State Department in Washington. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

Alone among nations, US moves to restore UN Iran sanctions

Sep. 21, 2020 5:48 PM EDT

WASHINGTON (AP) — The United States slapped additional sanctions on Iran on Monday after the Trump administration's disputed unilateral weekend declaration that all United Nations penalties eased under the 2015 nuclear deal had been restored. The announcement came in defiance of nearly all U.N. members,...

FILE - In this Sept. 19, 2019 file photo, an F-35 fighter jet arrives at the Vermont Air National Guard base in South Burlington, Vt., United States. Israeli Defense Minister Benny Gantz is headed to Washington on Monday, Sept. 21, 2020, for talks with his U.S. counterpart on maintaining Israel’s qualitative military edge in the Middle East following its historic normalization agreement with the United Arab Emirates. Since the agreement was announced last month, the UAE has made no secret about its desire to acquire F-35 warplanes and other advanced U.S.-made weaponry. (AP Photo/Wilson Ring, File)

Israeli defense chief heads to US to discuss military edge

Sep. 21, 2020 12:22 PM EDT

JERUSALEM (AP) — Israeli Defense Minister Benny Gantz headed to Washington on Monday for talks with his U.S. counterpart on maintaining Israel’s qualitative military edge in the Middle East following its historic normalization agreement with the United Arab Emirates. Since the agreement was...

In this photo released by the U.S. Air Force, Capt. Ryan Vickers stands for a photo to display his new service tapes after taking his oath of office to transfer from the U.S. Air Force to the U.S. Space Force at Al-Udeid Air Base, Qatar, Tuesday, Sept. 1, 2020. Space Force, the first new U.S. military service since the creation of the Air Force in 1947, now has some 20 members stationed at Qatar's Al-Udeid Air Base in its first foreign deployment. (Staff Sgt. Kayla White/U.S. Air Force via AP)

US Space Force deploys to vast new frontier: Arabian Desert

Sep. 21, 2020 2:01 AM EDT

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — The newly formed U.S. Space Force is deploying troops to a vast new frontier: the Arabian Peninsula. Space Force now has a squadron of 20 airmen stationed at Qatar's Al-Udeid Air Base in its first foreign deployment. The force, pushed by President Donald Trump,...

A beam of light is seen over the Pentagon, as part of the Towers of Light Tribute marking the 19th anniversary of the 9/11 attack on the Pentagon, Wednesday, Sept. 9, 2020, in Washington. (AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana)

Pentagon rescinding order to shutter Stars and Stripes paper

Sep. 10, 2020 6:10 PM EDT

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Defense Department is rescinding its order to shut down the military’s independent newspaper, Stars and Stripes, in the wake of a tweet late last week by President Donald Trump vowing to continue funding the paper. In an email to Stripes’ publisher Max Lederer, Army Col....

Air Force awards $13.3 billion contract for nuclear missiles

Sep. 8, 2020 7:26 PM EDT

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Air Force on Tuesday awarded a $13.3 billion contract for engineering and development work on a replacement for the Minuteman 3 missile, which has operated continuously for half a century as a key part of the nuclear force. Critics call the replacement project wasteful and dangerous....

President Donald Trump listens to a reporter's question during a news conference on the North Portico of the White House, Monday, Sept. 7, 2020, in Washington. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

Trump: Pentagon leaders want war to keep contractors 'happy'

Sep. 7, 2020 9:51 PM EDT

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump said Monday that top Defense Department leaders want to keep waging wars in order to keep defense contractors “happy.” Trump continues to fight allegations that he made offensive comments about fallen U.S. service-members, including calling World War I...

President Donald Trump speaks during a signing ceremony with Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic and Kosovar Prime Minister Avdullah Hoti, in the Oval Office of the White House, Friday, Sept. 4, 2020, in Washington. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

Trump won't let Pentagon close Stars and Stripes newspaper

Sep. 4, 2020 11:10 PM EDT

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump said Friday that he won't allow the Pentagon to cut funding for the military's independent newspaper, Stars and Stripes, effectively halting Defense leaders' plan to shut the paper down this month. “The United States of America will NOT be cutting funding to...

In this image provided by the U.S. Navy, sailors aboard the guided-missile destroyer USS Michael Murphy (DDG 112) render honors to Battleship Missouri Memorial during the official ceremony for the 75th anniversary of the Japanese surrender that ended World War II, Wednesday, Sept. 2, 2020, in Honolulu, Hawaii. (Petty Officer 1st Class Devin Langer/U.S. Navy via AP)

75th anniversary of end of WWII is mostly virtual amid virus

Sep. 3, 2020 12:20 AM EDT

HONOLULU (AP) — When Japanese military leaders climbed aboard the USS Missouri in Tokyo Bay on Sept. 2, 1945, the battleship was packed with U.S. sailors eager to see the end of World War II. On Wednesday, the 75th anniversary of the surrender, some of those same men who served the United States weren't...

In this image from video provided by the U.S. Army, then-Sgt. 1st Class Thomas Payne is interviewed as a winner of the 2012 Best Ranger competition at Fort Benning, Ga., on April 16, 2012. Payne will receive the Medal of Honor, the U.S. military’s highest honor for valor in combat, for actions during a daring 2015 raid in Iraq that rescued about 70 hostages who were set to be executed by ISIS militants, The Associated Press has learned. Sgt. Maj. Payne will receive the honor in a White House ceremony on the 19th anniversary of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. (Lori Egan/U.S., Army via AP)

Soldier to receive Medal of Honor for Iraq hostage rescue

Sep. 2, 2020 4:07 PM EDT

DELRAY BEACH, Fla. (AP) — An American soldier who helped rescue about 70 hostages set to be executed by Islamic State militants in Iraq has been approved to receive the Medal of Honor for actions during a daring 2015 raid, The Associated Press has learned. Sgt. Maj. Thomas “Patrick” Payne, a...