Thursday, April 27, 2017

Syria Blames Israel For Last Nights Air Strikes Near Damascus Airport





Al Jazeera: 'Israeli strikes' hit arms depot in Damascus

Arms depot near Damascus International airport goes up in flames after series of overnight strikes blamed on Israel.

Israeli strikes have hit an arms depot operated by the Lebanese Hezbollah group near Damascus airport, Syrian opposition sources told Al Jazeera.

Witnesses said a total of five strikes occurred near the Damascus airport road, about 25km from the capital, early on Thursday.

Syrian state TV quoted a military source saying rockets fired from Israeli territory targeted a military area in the southwestern part of the airport which caused explosions.

Read more ....

More News On Syria Blaming Israel For Last Nights Air Strikes Near Damascus Airport

Syria accuses Israel of bombing outpost near Damascus -- UPI
Syria Blames Israel for Attack on Damascus Airport -- NYT
Syria blames Israel for Damascus airport blast -- CNN
Syria: Israeli airstrikes target Hezbollah; Damascus International Airport rocked by series of blasts -- International Business Times
Israel strikes arms depot near Damascus airport: sources -- Reuters
'Huge' explosion at Damascus airport -- DW
After Damascus blasts, Israel intercepts 'target' from Syria -- AP
Huge explosion rocks Damascus airport as Israel strikes Iran-supplied arms depot -- Daily Mail
Syria war: 'Israeli strike' hits military site near Damascus airport -- BBC
Syrian war: Israel hints it was responsible for Damascus airport explosion -- ABC News Online
Strikes near Damascus ‘in line with Israel policy to stop Iran arms transfers’ – Israeli minister -- RT
Russia Calls for Restraint in Syria After Israeli Airstrikes on Hezbollah Arms Hub -- VOA

Russian Navy Intelligence Ship Has Has Sunk In The Black Sea After Hitting A Freighter



RT: Russian Navy reconnaissance ship sinks after collision in Black Sea

A Russian Navy reconnaissance ship has sunk after colliding with another vessel near the Bosporus, the Russian Defense Ministry reported.

The hull of ‘the Liman,’ a 1,560-ton reconnaissance ship of the Russian Black Sea Fleet, was breached below the waterline in the collision, the Defense Ministry said.

The Turkish coast guard said it rescued 78 people from the Russian ship, which was later confirmed by the Russian authorities.

Read more ....

WNU Editor: I am willing to bet that right now Russia is assembling a crew to go to to where the ship sunk, and to retrieve any intelligence equipment if possible. I also expect Moscow to dispatch a warship to guard the site .... if they have not done so already. On the flip side .... I am willing to bet that right now the CIA/Western intelligence agencies/etc., are scrambling personnel and equipment to go to the site and do the same thing. This is going to be interesting when they finally meet each other. On a side note .... TASS is calling this ship a "research vessel" .... Russian Black Sea research vessel collides with freighter near Bosphorus (TASS)

More News On A Russian Navy Intelligence Ship Sinking In The Black Sea After Hitting A Freighter

Russian intelligence ship SINKS as 78 soldiers are evacuated after crashing into a vessel carrying livestock off the Turkish coast -- Daily Mail
Russian Navy Ship Sinks In Black Sea After Collision With Freighter -- NBC/AP
Russian spy ship sinks off Turkey after collision -- AFP
Russian navy intelligence ship sinks after collision with freighter off Turkish coast -- Washington Post
78 Rescued as Russian Naval Ship Sinks After Collision -- NYT
Russian spy ship sinks after Black Sea collision -- UPI
Russian intelligence ship sinks off Turkey's Black Sea coast after collision, authorities say -- ABC News Online
Russian warship sinks after collision with freighter off Turkish Black Sea coast -- DW
Russian ship sinks in Black Sea after collision -- CNN
Russian Military Ship Sinks After Collision With a Freighter -- Popular Mechanics

Two U.S. Soldiers Killed Battling The Islamic State In Afghanistan



Washington Post: Two U.S. troops die battling Islamic State militants in eastern Afghanistan

Two U.S. service members were killed during operations against the Islamic State in eastern Afghanistan, the Pentagon said Thursday.

Capt. Jeff Davis, a Pentagon spokesman, said the deaths occurred overnight in Afghanistan’s Nangahar province, where a small but virulent Islamic State cell poses a threat to Afghan and U.S. coalition forces.

It was the third time this year that a member of the U.S. military has died in combat in Afghanistan. On April 8, Army Staff Sgt. Mark R. De Alencar, 37, of Edgewood, Md., was killed by small-arms fire, also in Nangahar.

Read more ....

More News On Two U.S. Soldiers Killed Battling The Islamic State In Afghanistan

2 US troops killed, 1 injured in eastern Afghanistan -- AP
Two U.S. service members killed in Afghanistan: Pentagon -- Reuters
Two US service members are killed in Afghanistan during raid against ISIS -- Daily Mail
Two U.S. soldiers killed in Afghanistan anti-Islamic State operation -- UPI
U.S. soldiers killed battling Islamic State in Afghanistan -- Washington Times
Two U.S. troops killed and one wounded in Afghanistan, near where massive bomb was dropped -- L.A. Times
2 US soldiers killed fighting Isis in Afghanistan region hit by 'mother of all bombs' -- The Independent
Two US soldiers killed, one wounded in Afghanistan -- The Hill
At Least 2 U.S. Service Members Killed in Anti-ISIS Raid in Eastern Afghanistan -- NBC
2 US service members killed in Afghanistan -- CNN
2 US Troops Killed in Anti-IS Operation in Afghanistan -- VOA
2 US Army soldiers killed fighting ISIS in Afghanistan -- FOX News
2 US troops killed, 1 wounded, fighting ISIS in Afghanistan – Pentagon -- RT

The Pentagon Is Implementing A Solution To Eliminate 'Ghost Soldiers' In Afghanistan



Daily Signal: The Pentagon Has a ‘Ghost Soldiers’ Problem

Since 2002, billions of U.S. tax dollars have been spent rebuilding Afghanistan after decades of war. A big chunk of that money pays Afghan soldiers and police.

But it turns out a lot of those troops may not, in fact, exist. On “Full Measure,” we investigate how your tax money is being wasted on “ghost soldiers.”

Here’s my interview with John Sopko, who is the inspector general watching over the U.S. taxpayer billions spent to rebuild Afghanistan.

Read more ....

WNU Editor: I am sure there are going to be situations where an Afghan soldier or government worker will be in the program .... but will not show up for work. The key is on who will administer the program, and who will enforce the checks to make sure that these Afghan soldiers/government workers are on the job. If it is the same people who are abusing the program in the first place .... this will be a waste of time.

President Trump Has Given The Pentagon The Authority To Set Troop Levels In Syria And Iraq

U.S. President Trump Donald (C) dellivers remarks after attending a swearing-in ceremony for Defense Secretary James Mattis (R) with Vice President Mike Pence at the Pentagon in Washington, U.S., January 27, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Barria

Reuters: Trump gives Pentagon power to reset Iraq, Syria troop limits

President Donald Trump has given the military the authority to reset a confusing system of troop limits in Iraq and Syria that critics said allowed the White House to micro-manage battlefield decisions and ultimately obscured the real number of U.S. forces.

The Pentagon, which confirmed the move on Wednesday, said no change has yet been made to U.S. troop limits. It also stressed the U.S. strategy in Iraq and Syria still was focused on backing local forces to fight Islamic State - a tactic that has averted the need for a major U.S. ground force.

But the shift on troop limits was another sign of the greater authority Trump appears comfortable giving his military commanders to make battlefield decisions and could allow for more rapid increases in troop levels in the future.

Read more ....

More News On President Trump Giving The Pentagon The Authority To Set Troop Levels In Syria And Iraq

Trump Gives Pentagon More Flexibility on Iraq, Syria Troop -- NYT/AP
The Pentagon Will Now Get To Decide How Many Troops To Send To Fight ISIS -- Buzz Feed
Trump gives Pentagon authority to set troop levels in Syria and Iraq -- ABC
Trump to let Pentagon set troop levels in ISIS fight: report -- The Hill
Trump gives Pentagon authority to set troop levels -- CNN

Editor's Note

Injured my shoulder this morning. I have now made it a routine to go to the gym early in the morning. This morning .... I overdid it. I am grateful that I did not dislocate my shoulder .... but it hurts like hell. Gym policy is that I had to go and get it check .... and I was lucky .... my stay in the hospital was short and the prognosis simple .... do not do any upper body exercises for the next few weeks. On a bright note .... my typing skills are not impeded. Blogging will resume in the next hour, and Military & Intelligence News Briefs and World News Briefs will be posted later today.

Tweet For Today

Pentagon: Turkish Airstrike Against Kurds Put U.S. Soldiers In Danger



Washington Post: Pentagon expands rebuke of Turkey over Iraq, Syria strikes

The Turkish government gave the United States less than an hour’s notice before conducting strikes on partner forces in Iraq and Syria, the U.S. military said on Wednesday, stepping up its criticism of airstrikes the United States said endangered American personnel.

Col. John Dorrian, a U.S. military spokesman, said the lead time failed to provide adequate notice to reposition American forces or warn Kurdish groups with whom the United States is partnering against the Islamic States.

“That’s not enough time. And this was notification, certainly not coordination as you would expect from a partner and an ally in the fight against ISIS,” he said, using an acronym for the Islamic State.

Read more ....

More News On U.S. Claims That Turkeys Airstrike Against Kurds In Syria And Iraq Put U.S. Soldiers In Danger

Pentagon: Turkey put US troops in danger with surprise airstrikes -- The Hill
US: Turkey gave about 20 minutes notice before Syria strikes -- ABC News/AP
Turkey Gave 'Inadequate' Warning Before Deadly Strikes: U.S. Military Spokesman -- Reuters
Turkey gave 20 minutes notice before airstrikes in Syria, U.S. officials say -- Toronto Star
US criticizes Turkey for striking Kurds in Iraq, Syria -- FOX News

Picture Of The Day

Paratrooper Jump
A Greek paratrooper jumps from a Air Force C-130J Super Hercules during a static-line airdrop as part of Exercise Stolen Cerberus IV near Megara, Greece, April 22, 2017. Approximately 40 paratroopers performed the static-line jump from the height of 1,000 feet. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Tryphena Mayhugh

As The Islamic State's Caliphate Collapses, Foreign Fighters Are Deserting


The Guardian: Isis faces exodus of foreign fighters as its 'caliphate' crumbles

Exclusive: Two Britons and one US citizen are among dozens who have surrendered or been caught at Turkish border

Large numbers of foreign fighters and sympathisers are abandoning Islamic State and trying to enter Turkey, with at least two British nationals and a US citizen joining an exodus that is depleting the ranks of the terror group.

Stefan Aristidou, from Enfield in north London, his British wife and Kary Paul Kleman, from Florida, last week surrendered to Turkish border police after more than two years in areas controlled by Isis, sources have confirmed to the Guardian.

Read more ....

WNU Editor: Many of these foreign fighters do not (or cannot) blend in with the local population, and I am sure that they know that when the fight is finally over, retribution and revenge will be the order of the day .... with these militants probably being the easiest to target.

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Could North Korea's Artillery Destroy Seoul?



Kyle Mizokami, National Interest: Could North Korea Annihilate Seoul with Its Artillery?

For most armies, artillery is just one component of an all-arms force consisting of infantry, armor and artillery. But North Korea’s curious strategic location, with the enemy capital within striking range, has turned the country’s arsenal of howitzers and rocket launchers collectively into a weapon of mass destruction, capable of reducing Seoul to rubble within days. Or does it? Has the threat to the capital by North Korea’s “King of Battle” been overstated?

During the Cold War, North Korea built up an oversized army—and artillery corps—as part of its goal of re-invading South Korea. The North Korean People’s Army Artillery Command is responsible for 12,000 pieces of tube artillery and 2,300 pieces of multiple launch rocket artillery over 107-millimeters. The majority of tube artillery are 122-, 130-, 152- and 170-millimeter units, and on the rocket side the majority are 240-millimeter units.

Read more ....

WNU Editor: In my first visit to South Korea during the 1988 Olympics, I asked a good South Korean friend of mine that of all the weapons that North Korea had which did he fear the most .... his answer was .... the artillery. Over the years .... and many trips to South Korea .... when I asked that question I have always been given the same answer.  North Korea's artillery capacity is no joke ,,,, it is their weapon of mass destruction, and they will use it to destroy Seoul.

These Unassuming Planes Are Playing A Key Role In The War AGainst Terror

USAF Special Operations PC-12 in Niger in 2012. Sputniktilt/wikicommons

The Drive: These Unassuming Planes Have Been Key Players in America's War on Terror

For years, the U.S. Air Force's 318th Special Operations Squadron's small PC-12 and C-145A aircraft supported secretive operations across five continents.

A key element that makes the U.S. military so potent is its ability to start rushing troops anywhere in the world on short notice. Massive cargo aircraft, such as the C-5 Galaxy and C-17 Globemaster III, depositing troops and equipment into or near war zones is a common image of American military deployments. But as the United States has expanded its often shadowy global fight against terrorism, a secretive fleet of small transport planes has become a vital tool in those operations.

Between 2011 and 2013, aircraft from the U.S. Air Force’s 318th Special Operations Squadron flew more than 3,000 hours across five continents. The sorties included everything from basic cargo deliveries to air dropping supplies onto remote combat outposts and even psychological warfare.

Read more ....

WNU Editor: If you want an unassuming airplane to transport personnel .... this is it.

Full U.S. Senate Receive Briefing At The White House On North Korea



CNN: Senators: Little learned during rare all-hands North Korea briefing

(CNN)Nearly every US senator attended an unusual all-hands meeting on North Korea at the White House Wednesday, though afterward few said any new information emerged about the increasingly tense US standoff with Pyongyang.

Nonetheless, members of both parties said they were reassured by the hour-long administration update, which President Donald Trump appeared at only briefly before handing the session off to his top national security aides.

"It was a sobering briefing, and an important opportunity for the entire Senate to hear the emerging plans of the Trump administration to confront what is a very real threat to our security," said Sen. Chris Coons, a Democrat from Delaware.

Read more ....

More News On The U.S. Senate Receiving A Briefing At The White House On North Korea

White House briefs senators on ‘very grave threat’ from North Korea -- Washington Post
Senators Told North Korea Nuclear Threat Is Urgent -- Washington Free Beacon
Senators hauled to White House for rare classified briefing -- Politico
Trump and top administration officials warn senators about the need to 'remove' the 'grave threat' posed by North Korea – as legislators decamp to the White House for unprecedented top-secret briefing on hot spot -- Daily Mail
Full Senate, in rare move, goes to White House grounds for classified North Korea briefing -- L.A. Times
The Senate Took a Bus Trip to the White House North Korea Briefing -- US News and World Report
Trump team softens war talk, vows other pressure on NKorea -- AP
Trump Administration: Military Preparations 'Underway' for North Korea -- TIME
U.S. says strategy on North Korea centers on sanctions, open to talks -- Reuters

Unrest In Venezuela -- News Updates April 26, 2017



NPR: Dueling Rallies Rack Caracas After Death Toll Inches Toward 30 In Venezuela

It has been just under a month since dissatisfaction with Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro erupted into massive protests — but if Wednesday's street skirmishes in Caracas are any indication, the unrest is unlikely to end soon.

Nearly 30 people have been killed in the demonstration since the end of March, when the pro-Maduro Supreme Court tried to nullify an opposition-dominated legislature — but then quickly backpedaled.

Opposition leaders announced three of the deaths Wednesday, according to The Associated Press, which reports that the total death toll has climbed to 29. Reuters and the BBC place that number at 27 and 26, respectively.

Read more ....

Unrest In Venezuela -- News Updates April 26, 2017

Venezuela death toll hits 29, protesters battle security forces -- Reuters
Venezuelan forces use tear gas to block latest protest march -- AP
Fresh clashes, deaths in Venezuela political struggle -- AFP
Venezuela: Protesters and police clash at opposition march -- BBC
Venezuela protesters hit by tear gas, vow to keep pressure on government -- Washington Post
As Venezuela pledges to arm civilians, experts worry that criminals will acquire military’s weapons -- South China Morning Post
How Venezuela's revolutionary dream descended into chaos -- Ryan Brading, The Independent

Update: Venezuela to quit Organization of American States (Al Jazeera)

Commentaries, Analysis, And Editorials -- April 26, 2017



Tyler Rogoway, Drive: It's Far Too Soon For The Military Option When It Comes To North Korea

As war drums grow louder, the US and its allies are encircling North Korea with military might. Meanwhile, the White House is about to brief the US Senate as to its plans.

The potential for a real showdown between the United States and North Korea seems to be manifesting itself via grand displays of force on and around the Korean Peninsula. The US is very publicly loading additional firepower into the region, and North Korea doesn't seem ready to tamp down on their own form of high-profile militarism—nor on their rhetoric towards the US and its allies in the region.

After what seemed to be an embarrassing false start, the White House is in the process of laying the groundwork for something big regarding America's dealings with Pyongyang. This could amount to anything from garnering support for a large shift in policy towards the reclusive military state, to a preemptive strike aimed at taking out the Kim regime's nuclear and ballistic missile programs. But whatever it is, it is supposedly going to be presented in what will be an unprecedented style of briefing for the entire US Senate at the White House on Wednesday.

Read more ....

Commentaries, Analysis, And Editorials -- April 26, 2017

As North Korea Speeds Its Nuclear Program, U.S. Fears Time Will Run Out -- David E. Sanger and William J. Broad, NYT

Thunder Run to Seoul: Assessing North Korea’s War Plan -- Raymond Farrell, RCD/Modern War Institute

Podcast: What North Korea wants -- Reuters

McCain wants a European-style US military buildup in Asia -- Travis J. Tritten, Washington Examiner

Trump’s Middle East -- Blake Franko, National Interest

The Iran Nuclear Deal: Worse Than We Imagined -- Michael Ruben, Commentary

Attack on Afghan base a reminder: Taliban pose the greater threat -- Scott Peterson, CSM

Is Philippines offering Beijing an olive branch over South China Sea? -- Kristin Huang, South China Morning Post

U.S. Actions in the South China Sea Violate International Law? -- Mark J. Valencia, The Diplomat

Russian Polls Do Mean Something After All -- Leonid Bershidsky, Bloomberg

Americans Are Not Ready to Go to War for Ukraine -- Christopher A. Preble, National Interest

Europe Sticks With Socialism -- Leonid Bershidsky, Bloomberg

How Venezuela’s Revolutionary Dream Descended Into Chaos -- Ryan Brading, RCW

At 100 Days, Trump's No Russian Stooge or Fascist -- Eli Lake, Bloomberg

Donald Trump's Unintelligible Presidency -- Amy Davidson, The New Yorker

World News Briefs -- April 26, 2017 (Evening Edition)

A U.S. military commander (R) walks with a commander (C) from the Kurdish People's Protection Units (YPG) as they inspect the damage at YPG headquarters after it was hit by Turkish airstrikes in Mount Karachok near Malikiya, Syria. REUTERS/ Rodi Said

Reuters: Turkish army, Kurdish militia exchange fire across Syria border

Turkey's military outposts on the border with Syria came under fire from Kurdish militia across the frontier, the army said on Wednesday, a day after Turkish warplanes bombed groups in northeastern Syria and Iraq affiliated to the outlawed Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK).

Four outposts of the Turkish army along the Syria border were attacked on Wednesday with artillery and mortar shells, the army said.

Three of the attacks were carried out from territory held by the U.S.-backed Kurdish YPG militia, while the other originated from a region under the control of the Syrian government. There were no casualties but minor material damage.

Read more ....

MIDDLE EAST

Turkey says US, Russia informed of strikes on Kurd militia.

Turkey air strikes on Kurds in Syria and Iraq spark US concern. Turkish jets strike Kurdish fighters in Syria, Iraq's Sinjar.

Iraqi forces seize ancient site of Hatra from IS.

Iraqi troops capture largest neighborhood in western Mosul. Iraqi troops capture largest neighborhood in western Mosul.

Syrian government made Sarin used in Khan Sheikhoun, France says. France: Assad government behind chemical attack.

U.S. Navy's USS Mahan has close encounter with Iranian ship.

Iran's Khamenei says next president should be less engaged with West.

Saudi fire stops 'rebel boat bomb' from Yemen.

U.N. conference seeks $2.1B for Yemen humanitarian aid.

UN eyes new Yemen peace talks by end of May.

Hamas in Gaza says it won't be cowed by Abbas' threats.

Turkey arrests a thousand police accused of links to US-based cleric Gulen. Turkey arrests 1,000 in raids targeting Gulen suspects.

Israel says it uncovered planned mass cyber attacks.

ASIA

Bangladesh to build hundreds of mosques with Saudi cash.

China urges end to US-S.Korea military exercises.

North Korea performs live-fire drill on military anniversary as US solidifies Peninsula presence.

U.S. sends THAAD system to South Korean site in move blasted by presidential front-runner Moon.

China demands South Korea remove THAAD defense system. China urges withdrawal of US missile defence system in South Korea.

Residents of China fear radiation from North Korea nuclear tests.

Air China to resume flights to Pyongyang after three-week suspension.

Afghan official: Taliban kill 8 police in northern province.

India Maoist attack survivor recalls ordeal.

India struggles to fend off Maoist menace.

India bans social media in Kashmir amid violent unrest.

AFRICA

Egypt's Sisi to accept courts' decision on island transfers.

20 killed in clashes in DR Congo's Kasai region: UN.

South Sudan forces launch new offensive: UN.

US forces to pull out of CAR amid ongoing hunt for Kony.

New South Sudan fighting displaces 25,000 people

Anti-terrorism laws have ‘chilling effect’ on vital aid deliveries to Somalia .

Smugglers become lifeline for the starving in South Sudan.

Ethiopia enters its seventh month of emergency rule.

Court upholds treason charges against Zambia's opposition leader .

South Africa's nuclear deals unlawful, court rules.

Tanzania expels UNDP head Awa Dabo.

EUROPE

U.S., European military chiefs call for better data-sharing against terrorism.

France election: Macron heckled by pro-Le Pen workers. Le Pen upstages Macron in battle for blue-collar votes.

British PM May's Conservatives take 23 point poll lead, matching Thatcher landslide: Ipsos MORI.

Austria interior minister Sobotka calls for indefinite extension of border controls .

Ukraine cuts electricity to rebel areas, Russia steps in.

Lavrov warns of consequences in deploying US global missile defense system.

Poll: Increasing number of Russians see inequality between poor, rich.

EU launches legal action against Hungary over education law. Hungary education law: EU to take legal action amid university row.

AMERICAS

Trump team softens war talk, vows other pressure on NKorea .

Trump proposes major tax cuts, 15% corporate rate.

Donald Trump invites entire Senate to White House for North Korea briefing.

Canada says ready to come to NAFTA talks 'at any time'.

Nafta report sends Peso reeling.

White House readies order on withdrawing from NAFTA.

Three more shot dead in Venezuela amid protests; 24 total killed. Venezuela anti-government protesters paralyse major roads as more die.

Venezuela threatens to withdraw from OAS. UPDATE: Venezuela says it will initiate its withdrawal from the Organization of American States .

Mexico talks tough to Trump as border wall funding appears to stall.

Gunmen possibly make off with millions in deadly Paraguay heist.

For first time, more L.A. residents believe new riots likely, new poll finds.

TERRORISM/THE LONG WAR

IS using weaponised drones to defend Syria's Tabqa: monitor.

ISIS leaders ‘negotiate merger’ with other terrorist groups – FSB head . Militants have de-facto created new global terrorist network - Russian FSB.

Russian General Staff: West ignores Moscow’s offers to pool efforts to fight terror.

Stampeding wild boars kill 3 Islamic State militants in Iraq.

Trump pick for CIA's top lawyer weighs in on interrogations .

ECONOMY/FINANCE/BUSINESS

Twitter gets lift from uptick in user numbers.

Trump administration to unveil tax plan with big cuts for business.

Death of giant rabbit adds to United Airlines woes.

US to enter LNG global export market with Golden Pass.

The Islamic State Is Waging War Against The Taliban In Afghanistan

A screen grab shows unidentified Afghans claiming to represent the Islamic Organization of Great Afghanistan, which they say is ready to fight for the ISIS. Radio Free Afghanistan/ Radio Free Europe Radio Liberty

Khaama Press: 91 killed in Taliban and ISIS militants clash in North of Afghanistan

At least 91 insurgents have been killed as deadly clashes erupted among the Taliban insurgents and the loyalists of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) terrorist group.

According to the local government officials, the majority of the casualties were inflicted to the Taliban insurgents.

Provincial governor’s spokesman Mohammad Reza Ghafoori said the clashes started in Darzab district on Tuesday and still continue between the two sides.

He said at least 76 Taliban insurgents and 15 ISIS militants have been killed so far, citing the preliminary information received by the government.

Read more ....

Update: ISIS in Afghanistan is attacking the Taliban, killing dozens (AP)

WNU Editor: These are Afghan government reports .... but this is not the first time that reports of Taliban - ISIS battles have been reported.

Is North Korea's Special Forces A Dangerous Threat?

North Korean special forces soldiers march during a military parade marking the 105th anniversary of the birth of the country’s founding father, Kim Il Sung, in Pyongyang, North Korea, on April 15. (Reuters)

Washington Post: North Korea’s Special Operations forces are numerous, mysterious and formidable

Dozens of Special Operations troops marched in North Korea’s military parade this month, covered from head to toe in green, brown and black camouflage. Carrying variants of the Kalashnikov rifle with high-capacity “helical” magazines, they shouted slogans in support of Kim Jong Un, seemingly delighting the North Korean leader as he watched.

The scene underscored a long-held understanding about Pyongyang’s military: Special Operations troops have an outsize role. An assessment of those forces will likely come up Wednesday when the Trump administration hosts an unusual White House briefing for lawmakers about North Korea’s military capabilities, as Washington pressures Pyongyang to halt its advancing nuclear weapons program.

Read more ....

Previous Post: A Look At North Korea's Special Forces (April 17, 2017)

WNU Editor:  I do not know if they are a serious threat, but North Korea's special forces did look very formidable in North Korea's military parade this month.