Arab Israeli Conflict
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Trump announced Shanahan's appointment in a tweet, calling the former Boeing Co executive "very talented."
"Because you have a right to a Secretary of Defense whose views are better aligned with yours on these and other subjects, I believe it is right for me to step down from my position," Mattis wrote.
"This is a coward and he is not a man by any definition that we use in the Department of Defense," US Defense Secretary Mattis said.
After a three-year war with Islamic State, Washington wants to ensure the militants do not re-emerge
Qatar has broken its isolation not only in the region through outreach to Iran and Turkey but also in Washington, illustrating how it put together a successful strategy.
By SETH J. FRANTZMAN
Turkey's four-day-old campaign aims to crush US-backed Kurdish YPG fighters in an air and ground offensive on Syria's Afrin region and has opened a new front in Syria's multi-sided civil war.
US Defense Secretary Jim Mattis says US is shifting to stabilizing eastern Syria, which will mean more diplomats and contractors.
This is the first time the US defense secretary has said that there would be an increase of diplomats in the parts of the country retaken from Islamic State militants.
Syrian Kurdish groups have been the main partner on the ground for a US-led coalition fighting against Islamic State in northern and eastern Syria.
One key aim for Washington is to limit Iranian influence in Syria and Iraq, which expanded during the war with Islamic State.
Iran denies seeking nuclear weapons and says it has no plans to build nuclear-capable missiles.
Analysts and experts wonder what the future holds and if the US role has succeeded and is necessary.
The conflict in the Middle East stems not from religious division, Israel's defense minister said, but the fight between radicals and moderates.
By MICHAEL WILNER
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