In other news, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) says Iran is still holding up their end of the nuclear daal.
Meanwhile, the Pew Research Center found that only 25 percent of Christian evangelicals believe we should accept refugees into the country. That's the least amount of support of any religious, political, or minority group.
Finally, the New York Times has the previously unreported details of the confrontation on February 7th in which hundreds of Syrian troops and Russian mercenaries were killed by American forces.
I recommend reading the whole thing to appreciate the scope of what really happened. This was a much bigger deal than previous reports suggested; reports that made it sound like a minor, accidental skirmish. It seems impossible to me that the Russians didn't know who were they fighting.
By early evening, more than 500 troops and 27 vehicles — including tanks and armored personnel carriers — had amassed.
In the American air operations center at Al Udeid Air Base in Qatar, and at the Pentagon, confounded military officers and intelligence analysts watched the scene unfold. Commanders briefed pilots and ground crews. Aircraft across the region were placed on alert, military officials said. [...]
At the outpost, American soldiers watched a column of tanks and other armored vehicles turn and drive toward them around 10 p.m., emerging from a neighborhood of houses where they had tried to gather undetected.
A half-hour later, the Russian mercenaries and Syrian forces struck.
The Conoco outpost was hit with a mixture of tank fire, large artillery and mortar rounds, the documents show. The air was filled with dust and shrapnel. The American commandos took cover, then ran behind dirt berms to fire anti-tank missiles and machine guns at the advancing column of armored vehicles. [...]
American warplanes arrived in waves, including Reaper drones, F-22 stealth fighter jets, F-15E Strike Fighters, B-52 bombers, AC-130 gunships and AH-64 Apache helicopters. For the next three hours, American officials said, scores of strikes pummeled enemy troops, tanks and other vehicles. Marine rocket artillery was fired from the ground.
Programming note... I'm signing off early today because I'm heading out to catch the first showing of Solo: A Star Wars Story, but first I need to rest. I drank a little too fast last night and slept like shit so I'm basically roadkill. See you tomorrow.