As Trump confounds, Mattis seen as quiet champion among NATO allies

By Phil Stewart and Robin Emmott WASHINGTON/BRUSSELS, July 9 : U.S. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis will only play a supporting role to President Donald Trump at this week’s NATO summit – an event that by definition is focused on heads of state from the trans-Atlantic alliance. But Mattis’ small part belies his high standing among […]

Mattis calls Tillerson firing a ‘Washington D.C. story’

By Phil Stewart WASHINGTON, Mar 16 : Defense Secretary Jim Mattis said on Thursday that Rex Tillerson’s firing as U.S. secretary of state did not come up during his talks overseas this week, describing interest in the issue as largely a “Washington, D.C., story.” In his first public remarks on the matter since President Donald […]

Mattis: Don’t restrict US support to Saudi-led forces in Yemen

By Phil Stewart WASHINGTON, March 15 : – Defense Secretary Jim Mattis defended U.S. military support to Saudi Arabian-led coalition forces in Yemen on Thursday as he explained a personal appeal to lawmakers who are considering whether to end Washington’s involvement in the devastating conflict. The Trump administration has been warning Saudi Arabia since last […]

Mattis says too early to tell if Olympic thaw between Koreas will lead to results

By Idrees Ali ROME, Feb 11 : U.S. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis said on Sunday it was too early to tell whether a diplomatic detente between the two Koreas at the Winter Olympics would lead to results, but the move had not driven a wedge between Washington and Seoul. North Korean leader Kim Jong Un […]

Mattis praises Vietnam’s “leadership” on North Korea sanctions

By Phil Stewart and James Pearson HANOI, Jan 24 : U.S. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis praised Vietnam on Wednesday for adhering to sanctions against North Korea, saying at the start of a two-day visit to Hanoi that its leadership on the issue came despite the costs associated with lost trade. “I have to pay my […]

Mattis eyes moving away from arming Syrian Kurdish fighters

By Idrees Ali ABOARD A U.S. MILITARY AIRCRAFT, Dec 2 : US Defense Secretary Jim Mattis said on Friday that as offensive operations against Islamic State in Syria entered their final stages, he expected the focus to move towards holding territory instead of arming Syrian Kurdish fighters. Speaking with reporters on a military plane en […]