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Aerospace & Defense

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

Iran’s supreme leader: No talks with the U.S. at any level

- Associated Press

Iran’s supreme leader said Tuesday “there will be no talks with the U.S. at any level” — remarks apparently meant to end all speculation about a possible U.S.-Iran meeting between the two countries’ presidents at the U.N. later this month.

Taliban kill 24 at Afghan president’s rally; Ashraf Ghani unhurt

- Associated Press

A Taliban suicide bomber on a motorcycle targeted a campaign rally by President Ashraf Ghani in northern Afghanistan on Tuesday, killing at least 24 people and wounding 31. Ghani was present at the venue but was unharmed, according to his campaign chief.

President Donald Trump speaks at the 2019 House Republican Conference Member Retreat Dinner in Baltimore, Thursday, Sept. 12, 2019. (AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana)

Trump: U.S. ready to act on oil field bomber

- The Washington Times

President Trump on Sunday said there is “reason to believe” the U.S. has intelligence on who conducted the Saturday drone bombings that hit one of the world’s largest oil reserves and a key oil field in Saudi Arabia, and that the U.S. is “locked and loaded depending on verification” of who launched the attacks.

This Saturday, Sept. 14, 2019, satellite image from Planet Labs Inc. shows thick black smoke rising from Saudi Aramco's Abqaiq oil processing facility in Buqyaq, Saudi Arabia. Yemen's Houthi rebels launched drone attacks on the world's largest oil processing facility in Saudi Arabia and a major oil field Saturday, sparking huge fires and halting about half of the supplies from the world's largest exporter of oil. (Planet Labs Inc via AP)

Iran denies role in ‘unprecedented attack on the world’s energy supply’

- Associated Press

Iran denied on Sunday it was involved in Yemen rebel drone attacks the previous day that hit the world’s biggest oil processing facility and an oil field in Saudi Arabia, just hours after America’s top diplomat alleged that Tehran was behind the “unprecedented attack on the world’s energy supply.”

In this photo released by the office of the Iranian Presidency, President Hassan Rouhani speaks in a Cabinet meeting in Tehran, Iran, Wednesday, Sept. 4, 2019. (Iranian Presidency Office via AP)

Iran urges U.S. to ‘put warmongers aside’ after Bolton firing

- Associated Press

Iran’s president urged the U.S. on Wednesday to “put warmongers aside” as tensions roil the Persian Gulf amid an escalating crisis between Washington and Tehran in the wake of the collapsing nuclear deal with world powers.

This Tuesday, Sept. 10, 2019, photo provided by the North Korean government shows a test-firing from a multiple rocket launcher at an undisclosed location in North Korea. KCNA reports North Korean leader Kim Jong-un visited the site. The content of this image is as provided and cannot be independently verified. Korean language watermark on image as provided by source reads: "KCNA" which is the abbreviation for Korean Central News Agency. (Korean Central News Agency/Korea News Service via AP)

North Korea confirms 2nd test of multiple rocket launcher

- Associated Press

North Korea said Wednesday leader Kim Jong-un observed the test-launch of a super-large multiple rocket launcher, the latest in a series of weapons tests performed amid stalled diplomacy over the North’s nuclear program.

In this May 22, 2018, file photo, U.S. President Donald Trump, left, meets with South Korean President Moon Jae-in in the Oval Office of the White House in Washington, as National Security Adviser John Bolton, right, watches. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci, File)

John Bolton’s sudden ouster creates shock waves, confusion

- The Washington Times

President Trump on Tuesday jettisoned John R. Bolton, his third national security adviser in three years, after multiple clashes over policy and tactics even as the White House grapples foreign policy challenges with Venezuelan and North Korean strongmen, Iran’s nuclear defiance and fears of renewed violence in the endless Afghanistan War.

People watch a TV showing a file image of a North Korea's missile launch during a news program at the Seoul Railway Station in Seoul, South Korea, Tuesday, Sept. 10, 2019. North Korea launched at least two unidentified projectiles toward the sea on Tuesday, South Korea's military said, hours after the North offered to resume nuclear diplomacy with the United States but warned its dealings with Washington may end without new U.S. proposals. The sign reads "North Korea launched at least two unidentified projectiles." (AP Photo/Ahn Young-joon)

North Korea fires 2 projectiles after offering talks with U.S.

- Associated Press

North Korea launched two projectiles toward the sea on Tuesday, South Korea’s military said, hours after the North offered to resume nuclear diplomacy with the United States but warned its dealings with Washington may end without new U.S. proposals.

In this Saturday, Sept. 7, 2019, photo, a first responders takes a break after removing a body at the site of a mass grave in Raqqa, Syria. First responders say they have pulled nearly 20 bodies out of the latest mass grave uncovered in Raqqa, the Syrian city that was the de facto capital of the Islamic State group. It is the 16th mass grave in the city, and officials are struggling with a lack of resources needed to document and one day identify the thousands of dead who have been dug out. (AP Photo/Maya Alleruzzo)

Syria’s Raqqa still finding the dead, 2 years after ISIS fall

- Associated Press

The neighbors reported a foul smell coming from the house next door. The house, which the Islamic State group had used as a school for its “cubs,” had been untouched ever since the militants were chased out of the Syrian city two years ago. Weeds grew around an abandoned car in its courtyard.

Smoke rises as Kabul residents set fire to part of the Green Village compound that has been attacked frequently, a day after a Taliban suicide attack in Kabul, Tuesday, Sept. 3, 2019. An interior ministry spokesman said some hundreds of foreigners were rescued after the attack targeted the compound, which houses several international organizations and guesthouses. (AP Photo/Rahmat Gul)

Taliban now stronger than when Afghanistan war started in 2001, military experts say

- The Washington Times

Afghanistan’s Taliban militants steadily amassed power and territory throughout its high-stakes, yearlong peace talks with the Trump administration, and they are now stronger than at any other point in the post-9/11 era, say military observers, who note a systematic plan to gain legitimacy, foment fear through violence and undercut the elected government in Kabul.

Iran's Ambassador to the International Atomic Energy Agency, IAEA, Gharib Abadi, waits for the start of the IAEA board of governors meeting at the International Center in Vienna, Austria, Monday, Sept. 9, 2019. (AP Photo/Ronald Zak)

U.N. atomic watchdog confirms Iran installing new centrifuges

- Associated Press

The United Nations’ atomic watchdog confirmed Monday that Iran is preparing to use more advanced centrifuges, another breach of limits set in the country’s unraveling nuclear deal with major powers.

Afghan security personnel arrive at the site of car bomb explosion in Kabul, Afghanistan, Thursday, Sept. 5, 2019. A large car bomb rocked the Afghan capital on Thursday and smoke rose from a part of eastern Kabul near a neighborhood housing the U.S. Embassy, the NATO Resolute Support mission and other diplomatic missions. At least three people were killed and another 30 wounded, a hospital director said. (AP Photo/Rahmat Gul)

Taliban suicide bombing kills 10 near U.S. Embassy in Kabul

- Associated Press

A Taliban suicide car bomb rocked Kabul on Thursday, killing at least 10 civilians in a busy diplomatic area that includes the U.S. Embassy — the second such attack this week that underscored Afghan government warnings that a preliminary U.S.-Taliban deal on ending America’s longest war was moving dangerously quickly.

In this Friday, April 5, 2019, file photo, President Donald Trump speaks as he visits a new section of the border wall with Mexico in Calexico, Calif. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin, File)

Trump triggers Pentagon cuts to pay for border wall

- The Washington Times

President Trump informed Congress on Tuesday that he will trigger his emergency powers to divert $3.6 billion away from the Pentagon’s facilities budget and instead use it to build more of his border wall, seeking to make as much progress as possible before next year’s election.

This satellite image from Planet Labs Inc., which has been annotated by experts at the James Martin Center for Nonproliferation Studies at Middlebury Institute of International Studies, shows a fire at a rocket launch pad at the Imam Khomeini Space Center in Iran's Semnan province, Thursday, Aug. 29, 2019. The satellite image released Thursday shows the smoldering remains of a rocket at a Iran space center that was to conduct a U.S.-criticized satellite launch. (Planet Labs Inc, Middlebury Institute of International Studies via AP)

U.S. hits Iran space agency with sanctions over missile work

- Associated Press

The Trump administration imposed sanctions Tuesday on Iran’s space agency for the first time, accusing it of developing ballistic missiles under the cover of a civilian program to launch satellites into orbit.

Afghan men carry an injured girl into the hospital after a large explosion in Kabul, Afghanistan, Monday, Sept. 2, 2019. Afghan officials say a large explosion in Kabul has targeted the Green Village compound, home to several international organizations and guesthouses. (AP Photo/Rahmat Gul)

Shattering Taliban attack in Kabul even as U.S. deal nears

- Associated Press

The Taliban on Tuesday defended their suicide bombing against an international compound in the Afghan capital that killed at least 16 people and wounded 119, almost all local civilians, just hours after a U.S. envoy said he and the militant group had reached a deal “in principle” to end America’s longest war.

South Korean protesters with images of Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe shout slogans during a rally to mark the South Korean Liberation Day from Japanese colonial rule in 1945, in front of the Japanese Embassy in Seoul, South Korea, Thursday, Aug. 15, 2019. South Korean President Moon Jae-in on Thursday offered an olive branch to Japan to end a tense trade dispute, saying Seoul will "gladly join hands" if Tokyo to accepts calls to resolve it through dialogue. (AP Photo/Ahn Young-joon)

Crumbling alliances threaten Trump’s North Korea nuclear diplomacy

- The Washington Times

South Korea’s cancellation of a key intelligence-sharing pact with Japan has triggered a growing diplomatic spat with Washington that analysts say weakens President Trump’s North Korea policy and throws into question the three-way alliance underpinning American security architecture across Asia.

Iran acknowledges rocket explosion, says test malfunctioned

- Associated Press

Iran acknowledged for the first time on Monday that a rocket at its Imam Khomeini Space Center exploded after satellite photos showed the blast last week, with an official saying a technical malfunction during a test caused the explosion.

Iran warns of ‘strong step’ from atomic deal if no new terms

- Associated Press

Iran will “take a strong step” away from its 2015 nuclear deal with world powers if Europe cannot offer the country new terms by a deadline at the end of this week, a government spokesman said Monday as top Iranian diplomats traveled to France and Russia for last-minute talks.

Afghan security forces arrive during a fight against Taliban fighters in Kunduz province north of Kabul, Afghanistan, Saturday, Aug. 31, 2019. The Taliban have launched a new large-scale attack on one of Afghanistan's main cities, Kunduz, and taken hospital patients as hostages, the government said Saturday, even as the insurgent group continued negotiations with the United States on ending America's longest war. (AP Photo/Bashir Khan Safi)

Envoy says U.S.-Taliban deal would see 5,000 troops leave first

- Associated Press

A U.S. envoy said Monday the first 5,000 U.S. troops would leave Afghanistan within five months’ time under a deal with the Taliban that has been reached “in principle” but still needs President Trump’s approval. Zalmay Khalilzad showed the draft to the Afghan president after declaring that they are “at the threshold of an agreement” on ending America’s longest war.

A view of the Grace 1 super tanker with the name "Adrian Darya 1" over the place where "Grace 1" had already been blackened out is seen in the British territory of Gibraltar, Saturday, Aug. 17, 2019. The shipping agent for an Iranian supertanker caught in a diplomatic standoff says the vessel is ready to depart Gibraltar in "24 to 48 hours," despite a last-minute effort by the United States to seize it again. (AP Photo/Marcos Moreno)

Destination remains obscure for Iran oil tanker sought by U.S.

- Associated Press

An Iranian oil tanker pursued by the U.S. on Friday again listed its destination as Turkey but the Turkish foreign minister added to the confusion by saying the vessel is headed to Lebanon - statements that were promptly denied in Beirut.

President Donald Trump watches with Vice President Mike Pence and Defense Secretary Mark Esper as the flag for U.S. space Command is unfurled as Trump announces the establishment of the U.S. Space Command in the Rose Garden of the White House in Washington, Thursday, Aug. 29, 2019. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

Trump revives U.S. Space Command

- The Washington Times

President Trump revived the U.S. Space Command in a formal White House ceremony Thursday, putting the commander-in-chief a step closer to launching a military branch focused on the final frontier.

U.S. President Donald Trump (left) and Russian President Vladimir Putin (right) leave the stage together at the conclusion of their joint news conference at the Presidential Palace in Helsinki, Finland, on July 16, 2018. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais) **FILE**

Schumer to Trump: ‘Under no circumstances’ can Russia rejoin G-7

- The Washington Times

Senate Democrats told President Trump on Tuesday to drop his idea of welcoming Russia back into Group of Seven nations, saying Vladimir Putin’s interference in U.S. elections and forays in the Ukraine, United Kingdom and Syria make him wildly unfit to rejoin the club of industrialized nations.

Russian President Vladimir Putin speaks at a meeting with members of the Security Council in the Kremlin in Moscow, Russia, Friday, Aug. 23, 2019. Putin ordered the Russian military to ponder a quid pro quo response after Sunday's test of a new U.S. missile banned under a now-defunct arms treaty. (Alexei Nikolsky, Sputnik, Kremlin Pool Photo via AP)

Putin orders Russia to respond after U.S. missile test

- Associated Press

Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered the Russian military on Friday to work out a quid pro quo response after the test of a new U.S. missile banned under a now-defunct arms treaty.

In this Monday, Aug. 12, 2019, file photo, plumes of smoke rise after an explosion at a military base southwest of Baghdad, Iraq. A fact-finding committee appointed by the Iraqi government to investigate a massive munitions depot explosion near the capital Baghdad has concluded that the blast was the result of a drone strike. A copy of the report was obtained by The Associated Press Wednesday, Aug. 21, 2019. (AP Photo/Loay Hameed, File)

U.S. officials confirm Israeli strike in Iraq

- Associated Press

U.S. officials have confirmed that Israel was responsible for the bombing of an Iranian weapons depot in Iraq last month, an attack that would mark a significant escalation in Israel’s years-long campaign against Iranian military entrenchment across the region.