Newscast Media WASHINGTON—Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel called Russia’s actions in Ukraine “dangerous and irresponsible” and said the tensions provoked by Moscow have probably done more to unify NATO than anything else in years.
“It has brought the world together in a way where they are isolating themselves by their actions,” Hagel said of Russia, as he took questions from Marines during a visit to North Carolina’s Camp Lejeune on Tuesday.
One service member asked the defense secretary if he envisioned the United States becoming more involved in the Russia-Ukraine conflict. Russia’s actions toward Ukraine, as well as stepped-up Russian military air flights over European airspace and plans for similar flights over the Gulf of Mexico, are “very dangerous,” Hagel said.
“The violations of sovereignty and international law that the Russians have perpetuated continue to require responses,” the defense secretary said. The United States is working with NATO “in shifting our entire rotational rapid deployment focus,” he added.
U.S. European Command chief Air Force General Philip M. Breedlove , who is also NATO’s supreme allied commander for Europe, has said Russian military equipment continues to flow across the border into Ukraine, something Russia denies.
Newscast Media TEHRAN—Iran is convinced that an attack on Syria is justification for an immediate attack on Israel. A military source that spoke on condition of anonymity told FARS News Agency, “If Damascus comes under attack, Tel Aviv will be targeted too and a full-scale war against Syria will actually issue a license for attacking Israel, the source said. “We are rest assured that if Syria is attacked, Israel will also be set on fire and such an attack will, in turn, engage Syria’s neighbors,” the anonymous source added.
FARS also reported, the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) underlined that Islamic resistance movements and Damascus are fully ready to confront and respond to any potential US attack on the Muslim country, reiterating preparedness for the worst and most dangerous scenarios.
“The Islamic resistance and Syria have prepared themselves for the most dangerous options,” PFLP-GC’s Information Dissemination Director Anwar Raja told FNA’s correspondent in Damascus on Tuesday.
He pointed to the preparedness of the Palestinian and Lebanese resistance movements to confront possible threats and aggressions in the region, and said, “If needed these two Islamic resistance movements are fully ready to carry out the necessary missions.”
Russia doesn’t have to act immediately, all Moscow needs to do is funnel weapons to Iran, which will then funnel them into Syria, and the battle is on.
Newscast Media WASHINGTON, D.C.—After a much-contested confirmation, former Nebraska Sen. Chuck Hagel took the oath-of-office as the 24th Secretary of Defense of the United States of America. Following the ceremony, Defense Secretary Hagel issued a message to all Defense Department employees, earlier today.
Hagel addressed DoD employees after being sworn in and stressed the importance of maintaining the strongest military of earth, in order to lead the international community. Here’s Hagel’s message in part:
“Earlier today I was privileged to take the oath of office to become the 24th Secretary of Defense. I am humbled by and grateful for the opportunity that President Obama and the Congress have given me to once again serve our nation.
“I am most especially grateful for the opportunity to work with all of you. Every day you work to defend America. The noble cause of your profession, your individual sacrifices, and your service inspire us all.
“As your leader, I will always do my best for our country and for all of you – and your families. As with my friends and predecessors Leon Panetta and Bob Gates, your safety, success, and welfare will always be at the forefront of my decisions. I will build on the strong foundation of teamwork built by Secretaries Gates and Panetta, as we work together. Leadership is a team business.
“I have long believed that America must maintain the strongest military on earth; we must lead the international community, with a steady and sure hand to confront threats and challenges together as we work closely with our allies and partners to advance our common interests and build a more hopeful world. We must use all tools of American power to protect our citizens and our interests; and America must engage – not retreat – in the world, but engage wisely.
“As I begin my time here at the Department I want you to know that I recognize the immense responsibility that I have, and will work hard every day to fulfill my duties as Secretary of Defense as honestly and effectively as I know how. You are the greatest force for good in the world. It is the highest honor to serve alongside you. I am proud to be part of your team. Thank you for your commitment and dedication to our country.”
Source: Department of Defense