Top US general voices support for transgender troops


U.S. relations with North Korea may be "charged" but tensions in the standoff remain political rather than military, the United States chairman of the joint chiefs of staff said Tuesday.

"While the political space is clearly very charged right now, we haven't seen a change in the posture of North Korean forces and we watch that very closely".

He had voiced that same view to Trump administration officials before the announcement of the trans ban's reinstatement, he said, but they obviously ignored it.

During the wide-ranging hearing, Dunford voiced support for now serving transgender troops, telling the panel that anyone who meets the military's demanding standards and is capable of deploying should be allowed to continue to serve.

Mattis has promised transgender servicemembers will not be removed from service until the panel, led by Deputy Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan and Air Force Gen. Paul Selva, the vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs, has completed its study. Officials review EU-US privacy pact Senate passes 0B defense bill MORE (D-N.Y.) whether he agrees that now serving transgender troops have served with "honor and valor", Gen. Joseph Dunford replied, "I do".

"I can promise that that will be my advice".

Asked to reassure trans individuals now serving, he continued: "I can promise that that will be my advice".

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President Trump is reportedly eager to withdraw from the Iran deal, and Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has urged the global community to unconditionally accept changes to the treaty or risk losing USA participation.

Asked to expand on his answer during testimony, Dunford said the deal was specifically created to address only Iran's nuclear program and not its missile program, its maritime threat, its support for proxies or its cyber activities. "What I've just articulated is the advice I've provided in private, and I've just provided in public".

In July, Trump announced on Twitter that he planned to ban all transgender military service, and in August he followed through by signing a presidential memo.

But critics continued to question how the medical issues related to gender reassignment can be compatible with military deployment.

A bipartisan group of senators, including Gillibrand and Armed Services Committee Chairman John McCain, R-Ariz., have introduced legislation that would protect transgender servicemembers from being removed from the military.

The chairman's words don't carry the weight of policy yet; the DoD is supposed to give the White House a recommendation next February on the fate of already-serving transgender troops. The guidance also made clear that transgender troops in uniform can re-enlist in the next several months, even as the department debates how broadly to enforce the ban Trump ordered.