Special Section - Aerospace & Defense - Washington Times
Skip to content

Aerospace & Defense

The latest coverage of the Defense Department, State Department and aerospace industry.

Protesters stick posters featuring Chinese President Xi Jinping on a pillar during a demonstration in Central, the financial district of Hong Kong, Thursday, Nov. 28, 2019. China reacted furiously to President Donald Trump's signing of two bills on Hong Kong human rights and said the U.S. will bear the unspecified consequences. A foreign ministry statement Thursday repeated heated condemnations of the laws and said China will counteract. It said all the people of Hong Kong and China oppose the move. (AP Photo/Kin Cheung)

Pentagon’s top Asia official resigns

- The Washington Times

The Pentagon’s top Asia policy official resigned Thursday, officials said, creating a key void inside the Defense Department at a time when the military’s prime focus has turned to China and the Pacific region.

President Donald Trump meets with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un at the North Korean side of the border at the village of Panmunjom in Demilitarized Zone in June 30, 2019. (AP file Photo/Susan Walsh, File)

EXCLUSIVE: High-level, N.K. defector implores Trump to foment coup; tells president he’s been duped

- The Washington Times

A high-level defector from Kim Jong-un’s regime has sent a letter to President Trump warning that he has been “tricked” into believing the North Korean leader will ever denuclearize and that Washington should instead ramp up a “psychological warfare campaign” aimed at inspiring North Korea’s elites to replace the young dictator from within.

From left, French President Emmanuel Macron, U.S. President Donald Trump, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan pose during a group photo for a NATO leaders meeting at The Grove hotel and resort in Watford, Hertfordshire, England, Wednesday, Dec. 4, 2019. NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg rejected Wednesday French criticism that the military alliance is suffering from brain death, and insisted that the organization is adapting to modern challenges. (Peter Nicholls, Pool Photo via AP)

Trump discusses NATO commitments with Erdogan

- The Washington Times

President Trump met with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan for about 30 minutes early Wednesday and discussed “the importance of Turkey fulfilling its alliance commitments,” the White House said, as Ankara faces criticism for purchasing a Russian air-defense system that’s incompatible with its membership in the North Atlantic Treaty Organization.

U.S. President Donald Trump speaks during his meeting with NATO Secretary-General, Jens Stoltenberg at Winfield House in London, Tuesday, Dec. 3, 2019. US President Donald Trump will join other NATO heads of state at Buckingham Palace in London on Tuesday to mark the NATO Alliance's 70th birthday. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

Trump scolds Macron for ‘nasty statement’ on NATO

- The Washington Times

President Trump kicked off the NATO summit in London with a bang Tuesday, scolding the French president for “insulting” the alliance and calling out Germany and other countries as delinquents who must step up their defense spending or be “dealt with.”

This undated file photo provided on Friday, Nov. 29, 2019, by the North Korean government, shows North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, center, surrounded by a military unit, reacts to what it claims as a test firing of its "super-large" multiple rocket launcher in North Korea. North Korea on Tuesday, Dec. 3, has repeated claims that the Trump administration is running out of time to salvage nuclear negotiations and says it's entirely up to the United States to choose what "Christmas gift" it gets from the North. (Korean Central News Agency/Korea News Service via AP, File)

North Korea says it’s up to U.S. to choose ‘Christmas gift’

- Associated Press

North Korea on Tuesday repeated its assertions that the Trump administration is running out of time to salvage nuclear negotiations, saying it’s entirely up to the United States to choose what “Christmas gift” it gets from the North.

A pro-democracy supporter waves a flag during a rally by the advertising industry in Hong Kong on Monday, Dec. 2, 2019. Thousands of people took to Hong Kong's streets Sunday in a new wave of pro-democracy protests, but police fired tear gas after some demonstrators hurled bricks and smoke bombs, breaking a rare pause in violence that has persisted during the six-month-long movement. (AP Photo/Vincent Thian)

China to suspend U.S. Navy visits to Hong Kong over new law

- Associated Press

China said Monday it will suspend U.S. military ship and aircraft visits to Hong Kong and sanction several American pro-democracy and human rights groups in retaliation for the signing into law of legislation supporting anti-government protests in the semi-autonomous territory.

President Donald Trump smiles before addressing members of the military during a surprise Thanksgiving Day visit, Thursday, Nov. 28, 2019, at Bagram Air Field, Afghanistan. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

Military slow-walk or ‘deep state’ defiance?: Trump sees direct orders modified

- The Washington Times

Nearly a full year after President Trump first said he was withdrawing all U.S. troops from Syria and two months after he doubled down on that directive, Pentagon officials last week announced that they had restarted combat missions against the Islamic State group and “reset” inside the country with hundreds of American troops on the ground.

President Donald Trump points while eating during a surprise Thanksgiving Day visit to the troops, Thursday, Nov. 28, 2019, at Bagram Air Field, Afghanistan. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

Trump surprises U.S. troops in Afghanistan on Thanksgiving, announces new talks with Taliban

- The Washington Times

President Trump made a surprise visit to Afghanistan on Thursday to serve Thanksgiving turkey to U.S. troops and meet with Afghan President Ashraf Ghani. During the visit, his first to Afghanistan, Mr. Trump announced that he has restarted peace talks with the Taliban and would like to slash the number of American troops there from roughly 14,000 to 8,600.

Ousted Navy Secretary Richard Spencer publicly clashed with President Trump over whether Chief Petty Officer Edward Gallagher, who served eight combat tours during his two decades as a Navy SEAL, would be allowed to retain his Trident pin, which symbolizes membership in the elite unit. (Associated Press/File)

Richard Spencer out as Navy secretary after clash with Trump

- The Washington Times

Navy Secretary Richard V. Spencer was fired Sunday after apparently proposing a secret deal with the White House regarding the fate of Chief Petty Officer Edward Gallagher, leading to a loss of “trust and confidence” in the Navy leader among top officials inside the Pentagon.

Navy Special Operations Chief Edward Gallagher leaves a military court on Naval Base San Diego. (AP Photo/Gregory Bull, File)

Trump overrules Navy on Edward Gallagher case

- The Washington Times

President Trump widened a rift with top U.S. military commanders Thursday by publicly ordering the Pentagon to abandon a process that could have resulted in booting Navy SEAL Edward Gallagher out of the elite unit — an unexpected power play by the commander in chief that has left the Navy in what one former senior Pentagon official called a “no-win situation.”

In this Sept. 28, 2019, file photo, Afghan President Ashraf Ghani speaks to journalists after voting at Amani high school, near the presidential palace in Kabul, Afghanistan. President Ghani said Tuesday, Nov. 12, his government has released three Taliban figures in an effort to have the insurgents free an American and an Australian professor they abducted in 2017. (AP Photo/Rahmat Gul, File)

Afghan president: 3 Taliban released for held U.S., Australian

- Associated Press

Afghan President Ashraf Ghani on Tuesday announced that his government has released three prominent Taliban figures in an effort to get the insurgents to free two university professors — an American and an Australian — they abducted three years ago.

Defense Secretary Mark Esper talks to the media with Qatar Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Defense Khalid Al Attiyah at the Pentagon in Washington, Wednesday, Nov. 6, 2019, in this file photo. (AP Photo/Cliff Owen) **FILE**

Pentagon: Mark Esper not lobbying Trump on court-martial cases

- The Washington Times

Pentagon officials are rejecting reports that Secretary of Defense Mark T. Esper has tried to convince President Trump not to intervene in a series of high-profile legal cases of U.S. military members who have been convicted of serious crimes, such as former Navy SEAL Eddie Gallagher.

U.S. military convoy drives the he town of Qamishli, north Syria, by a poster showing Syrain President Bashar Aassad Saturday, Oct. 26. 2019. A U.S. convoy of over a dozen vehicles was spotted driving south of the northeastern city of Qamishli, likely heading to the oil-rich Deir el-Zour area where there are oil fields, or possibly to another base nearby. The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, a war monitor, also reported the convoy, saying it arrived earlier from Iraq. (AP Photo/Baderkhan Ahmad)

Trump OKs wider Syria oil mission, raising legal questions

- Associated Press

U.S. officials say President Trump has approved an expanded military mission to secure an expanse of oil fields across eastern Syria. That raises a number of difficult legal questions about whether U.S. troops can launch strikes against Syrian, Russian or other forces if they threaten the oil.

In this photo released by the official website of the office of the Iranian Presidency, President Hassan Rouhani speaks in a ceremony to inaugurate Azadi Innovation Factory in Pardis technology park in west of Tehran, Iran, Tuesday, Nov. 5, 2019. Rouhani announced on Tuesday that Tehran will begin injecting uranium gas into 1,044 centrifuges, the latest step away from its nuclear deal with world powers since President Donald Trump withdrew from the accord over a year ago. (Office of the Iranian Presidency via AP)

Iran’s president says nation to fuel centrifuges in new step away from nuclear deal

- Associated Press

Iran will start injecting uranium gas into over a thousand centrifuges at a fortified nuclear facility built inside a mountain, the country’s president announced Tuesday in Tehran’s latest step away from its atomic accord with world powers since President Trump withdrew from the deal over a year ago.

Kurdish forces withdraw from from an area near Turkish border with Syria, overseen by the Russian forces, near the town of Amuda, Sunday, Oct. 27, 2019. Kurdish fighters killed one Turkish soldier and wounded five others amid a shaky truce in northern Syria, Turkey's army said Sunday, bringing its military death toll to 11 since the launch of its cross-border operation. (AP Photo/Baderkhan Ahmad)

Joint Turkish and Russian patrols begin in Syrian region

- Associated Press

Turkey and Russia launched joint patrols Friday in northeastern Syria, under a deal that halted a Turkish offensive against Syrian Kurdish fighters who were forced to withdraw from the border area following Ankara’s incursion.