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Ben Wolfgang

Ben Wolfgang

Ben Wolfgang covers the Pentagon, military and foreign affairs for The Washington Times.

Previously, he covered energy and the environment, Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign in 2016, and also spent two years as a White House correspondent during the Obama administration.

Before coming to The Times in 2011, Ben worked as political reporter at The Republican-Herald in Pottsville, Pa.

He can be reached at

Articles by Ben Wolfgang

Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin, center, arrives on the aircraft carrier USS Nimitz, Thursday, Feb. 25, 2021, at sea. Austin told sailors on the USS Nimitz Thursday that he hopes to avoid long ship deployments like the more than 10 months they just spent at sea. But as he made his first aircraft carrier visit as Pentagon chief, he acknowledged the competing demands for American warships around the globe as he wrestles with security threats from China in the Pacific and Iran in the Middle East.  The Nimitz, which left its homeport of Bremerton, Washington, last April, has been at sea for nearly 300 days, including several weeks of pre-deployment exercises.  (AP Photo/Lolita Baldor)

How the Pentagon is combating the latest emerging threat: 'Extremism' in the ranks

The Pentagon is trying to root out political "extremism" in the ranks, but its definition is so broad and blurry that some retired officers and military analysts fear it could inadvertently sweep up traditional Catholics, Republicans and others who aren't racist or violent but simply embrace conservative, pro-life politics. Published March 7, 2021

This Dec. 29, 2019, aerial file photo taken from a helicopter shows Ain al-Asad air base in the western Anbar desert, Iraq. At least 10 rockets targeted a military base in western Iraq that hosts U.S.-led coalition troops on Wednesday, March 3, 2021, the coalition and the Iraqi military said. It was not immediately known if there were any casualties. (AP Photo/Nasser Nasser, File)

Iraq base bombed again after U.S. retaliatory strike

A burst of at least 10 rockets targeting the Ain al-Asad airbase early Wednesday resulted in no direct U.S. troop casualties, but the Pentagon later revealed that an American contractor working with the base had suffered a "cardiac episode" and died while taking cover from the attack. Published March 3, 2021

Pentagon lays out big tab to keep up with China

The U.S. military must invest heavily in high-tech radar, space-based weapons detection systems, long-range artillery and a host of other 21st-century capabilities to keep at bay an increasingly aggressive China, the Pentagon told congressional leaders this week in a sweeping new funding proposal. Published March 2, 2021

In this Feb. 9, 2021, photo provided by the Department of Defense, Hickam 15th Medical Group hosts the first COVID-19 mass vaccination on Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam. By the thousands, U.S. service members are refusing or putting off the COVID-19 vaccine, as frustrated commanders scramble to knock down internet rumors and find the right pitch that will convince troops to take the shot. Some Army units are seeing as few as a third agree to the vaccine, others are higher. (U.S. Air Force Tech. Sgt. Anthony Nelson Jr./Department of Defense via AP) ** FILE **

Pentagon chief Austin pushes troops to get COVID-19 vaccine

Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin on Wednesday pushed U.S. troops to accept the COVID-19 vaccine when it's offered to them, the latest effort by the Pentagon to combat a stubbornly high rate of refusal within the armed forces. Published February 24, 2021

Congress demands answers on Biden team's Iran talks during Trump's term

Top Republicans in Congress called on the State Department Tuesday to immediately explain why key Obama-era diplomats now serving in the Biden administration held backchannel talks with Iran during the Trump years, saying it's crucial that the public learn more about Democrats' closed-door shadow diplomacy with Tehran. Published February 23, 2021

President Joe Biden speaks during a virtual event with the Munich Security Conference in the East Room of the White House, Friday, Feb. 19, 2021, in Washington. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

Pressure builds on Biden as Iran outreach backfires

The Biden administration came under pressure from all sides Monday in its push to restart nuclear talks with Iran, as leaders in Tehran threatened to dramatically ramp up uranium enrichment programs while officials in China and Israel laid out their own wildly different blueprints for how Washington should handle the tense diplomatic standoff. Published February 22, 2021

In this Feb. 1, 2020, file photo Democratic presidential candidate former Vice President Joe Biden smiles as former Secretary of State John Kerry, left, takes the podium to speak at a campaign stop at the South Slope Community Center in North Liberty, Iowa. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik, File)

EXCLUSIVE: Biden team colluded with Iran to foil Trump diplomacy

President Trump in 2019 sought to open a back channel of communication with top Iranian officials and saw the U.N. General Assembly meeting in September as a potential opportunity to defuse escalating tension with Tehran, but the effort failed. Published February 21, 2021

President Joe Biden arrives for a virtual event with the Munich Security Conference in the East Room of the White House, Friday, Feb. 19, 2021, in Washington. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

Biden: 'I welcome' competition with China; U.S. and Europe will win

The U.S. and its European partners abroad can compete with China in the 21st century and come out victorious, and Washington should "welcome" that high-stakes geopolitical and economic fight, President Biden said Friday in a sweeping foreign policy speech in which he sought to close the book on the Trump era and recast America's role in the world. Published February 19, 2021

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg speaks during a media conference, after a meeting of NATO defense ministers in video format, at NATO headquarters in Brussels on Thursday, Feb. 18, 2021. (AP Photo/Virginia Mayo, Pool)

NATO ministers' summit punts on Afghan troop decision

The U.S. and its NATO allies are deadlocked about their military future in Afghanistan, with a key May 1 withdrawal deadline fast approaching and no clear signals from either Washington or Brussels on the path forward. Published February 18, 2021

Republicans rip Biden administration's move to new talks with Iran

Top Biden administration officials said Thursday that the U.S. would accept an invitation from the European Union to join multilateral talks with Iran, extending an olive branch that could pave the way for Washington to re-enter a landmark global nuclear deal with Tehran or craft another to take its place. Published February 18, 2021