Department of Defense

Updated at 6:54 p.m. ET

The Trump administration has notified Congress that it plans to divert $3.8 billion from the Defense Department's budget to build the border wall.

This is in addition to more than $11 billion that's already been identified to construct more than 500 miles of new barriers along the southern U.S. border with Mexico. That includes money that Congress has appropriated and funding that was previously diverted from military construction and counternarcotic operations.

Updated at 9:30 a.m. ET

At the direction of President Rodrigo Duterte, a fierce critic of the United States, the Philippines announced Tuesday that it would scrap a security pact that allows American forces to train there.

Duterte's foreign secretary, Teodoro Locsin Jr., tweeted Tuesday that the Visiting Forces Agreement with the U.S. would be terminated — a move that could have consequences for a counterinsurgency against Islamist extremists in the country's south.

Updated at 2:11 p.m. ET

Two U.S. service members were killed and six more wounded during an attack on a joint operation between American and Afghan forces on Saturday in eastern Afghanistan.

Early indications suggest that the two service members were killed in what's known as a green-on-blue attack, in which Afghan forces or infiltrators turn their weapons on U.S. and coalition troops.

Defense Secretary Mark Esper says the U.S. has the constitutional authority to strike Iranian proxies in Iraq and Iran on the Islamic Republic's home soil in retaliation for attacks on American forces.

Updated 8:38 p.m. Sunday ET

The Trump administration is planning to announce on Monday that more than 20 Saudi students receiving military training in the United States will be sent back to their home country, according to two U.S. officials familiar with the matter.

The expulsions come in the wake of a Pentagon review of the Saudi officer who opened fire last month at a naval base in Pensacola, Fla., leaving three young sailors dead and wounding eight others.

Updated at 7:43 p.m. ET

Secretary of Defense Mark Esper announced on Monday that some forces are being repositioned inside Iraq, not leaving the country.

Two other U.S. officials told NPR that some are going to Kuwait temporarily.

Updated at 11:50 p.m. ET Sunday

As thousands of mourners flooded the streets of Iran on Sunday to mourn the death of Gen. Qassem Soleimani, a series of dizzying developments convulsed the Middle East, generating new uncertainty around everything from the future of U.S. forces in Iraq to the battle against ISIS and the effort to quell Tehran's nuclear ambitions.

Amid the fallout of the U.S. drone strike on Friday that killed Soleimani, Sunday saw the following whiplash-inducing developments unfold almost simultaneously:

The Senate voted 81-11 to approve a $1.4 trillion spending package that will fund the federal government through the end of September 2020.

The broad spending agreement was broken into two separate bills that passed the House earlier this week. The legislation now heads to President Trump for his signature. White House counselor Kellyanne Conway told reporters on Tuesday that Trump will sign the legislation, avoiding the threat of another government shutdown.

A federal judge in California ruled Wednesday that the Trump administration may not divert $3.6 billion in Defense Department funds for construction of the wall on the southern border.

A U.S. Navy sailor shot and killed two civilian employees of the Defense Department and wounded a third before killing himself at Hawaii's Pearl Harbor military installation.

Rear Adm. Robert Chadwick, commander of Navy Region Hawaii, said the shooting occurred near Dry Dock 2 in the Naval shipyard at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam.

Chadwick said the male shooter "has tentatively been identified as an active-duty sailor assigned to USS Columbia," a nuclear-powered Los Angeles-class fast attack submarine.

It may seem counter-intuitive and head-scratchingly odd, but Congress nearly always approves defense spending bills before the armed services committees — which actually oversee the Pentagon — vote on how the money will be spent.

Not this year.

Congress was in a generous mood when it passed a spending bill last week, giving the military at minimum an additional $61 billion and boosting its overall budget to $700 billion this year.

Updated at 4:15 p.m. ET

President Trump's budget will propose a $54 billion increase in defense spending, while slashing domestic programs by the same amount. The president told the nation's governors on Monday that his plan "puts America first," and that "we're going to do more with less, and make the government lean and accountable to people."

Defense Secretary James Mattis said on Sunday that he disagreed with President Trump's recent declaration that the press is "the enemy."

At a rally in Cincinnati on Thursday night, President-elect Donald Trump said he would select retired Marine Corps Gen. James Mattis to lead the Defense Department, filling a key role in the incoming administration. Mattis, 66, is famous for both his blunt talk and his engaging leadership in recent U.S. conflicts.

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