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Stephanie Gaskell

Deputy Editor/Senior Reporter Government Executive--Atlantic Media Stephanie Gaskell is deputy editor and senior reporter for Defense One. She previously covered the Pentagon for Politico. Gaskell has covered war, politics and breaking news for nearly 20 years, including at the Associated Press, the New York Post and the New York Daily News. She has reported from Iraq, Afghanistan, Guantanamo and the World Trade Center site after 9/11. She has also launched and edited two blogs, War Zone and The War Report.
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Will Afghanistan Become the ‘Forgotten War’ Again?

October 6, 2014 On Oct. 7, 2001, nearly a month after the Sept. 11 attacks, the State Department sent a cable to Pakistan asking Islamabad to pass a message to the Taliban warning that “it is in your interest and in the interest of your survival to hand over all al-Qaeda leaders." The ...

Report: Mortars Land in Baghdad’s Green Zone

October 6, 2014 This story has been updated with comment from the State Department. After weeks of sustained air strikes in Iraq, Islamic State fighters have reportedly hit Baghdad’s international zone with mortars on Monday. The so-called “Green Zone” is in the heart of the city and lies along the Tigris River. The ...

Congress Backs Strikes in Syria, But Emphasizes Allied Support

September 23, 2014 Members of Congress threw their support behind President Barack Obama’s decision to launch a military air strike campaign against Islamic militants in Syria—but with one warning: keep our allies in the fight. “The visible, public involvement of Arab and Muslim nations is crucial to long-term success against ISIS. While Western ...

Air Strikes in Syria Are ‘Only the Beginning’

September 23, 2014 It wasn’t quite “shock and awe,” but the United States is firmly back at war in the Middle East. After conducting nearly 200 air strikes in Iraq, the U.S. military, along with a handful of other Arab nations, have begun a targeted air campaign against Islamic extremists inside Syria. This ...

US Begins Air Strikes in Syria

September 22, 2014 This article has been updated. The U.S. military is conducting air strikes in Syria. "I can confirm that U.S. military and partner nation forces are undertaking military action against ISIL terrorists in Syria using a mix of fighter, bomber and Tomahawk Land Attack Missiles,” Pentagon spokesman Rear Adm. John Kirby ...

With a New Afghan Leader in Place, Is a US Troop Deal Next?

September 22, 2014 After nearly six months in election limbo, Afghanistan has new president. Now he just needs to sign a bilateral security agreement and a force of nearly 14,000 U.S. and NATO troops will be able to stay beyond the formal conclusion of the war at the end of this year. President-elect ...

Gen. Allen To Manage Obama's Strategy Against the Islamic State

September 11, 2014 President Barack Obama has picked retired Marine Corps Gen. John Allen to coordinate the effort to destroy the Islamic State, U.S. officials said Thursday. The Associated Press reported that Allen, who helped create and foster the Anbar Awakening in western Iraq in 2007, a unique relationship where Sunnis joined the ...

Pentagon Confirms US Air Strike Killed Al-Shabab Leader

September 5, 2014 A U.S. air strike in Somalia on Monday was successful in taking out the leader of the terrorist group al-Shabab, Pentagon officials confirmed. "We have confirmed that Ahmed Godane, the co-founder of al-Shabab, has been killed,” Pentagon spokesman Rear Adm. John Kirby said in a statement on Friday. U.S. intelligence ...

US Strike Against Al-Shabab Leader Reflects Obama’s Counterterrorism Strategy

September 2, 2014 The intelligence was solid and pointed to a facility just south of Mogadishu. A truck reportedly carrying al-Shabab leader Ahmed Abdi Godane was heading there. So on Monday, the Pentagon deployed both manned and unmanned aircraft and fired off several Hellfire and precision-guided missiles on the target—with no U.S. troops ...

Iraqi Prime Minister Maliki Agrees To Step Down

August 14, 2014 With his country descending into further chaos every day as Islamic extremists threaten the future stability of Iraq, Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki announced Thursday that he would step down. His resignation paves the way for Haider al-Abadi to become Iraq’s next leader. Abadi was nominated earlier this week by Iraqi ...