23:21 GMT31 October 2020
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    Reports that US President Donald Trump wants to delegate more authority on the use of military force does not represent a policy change or an attempt to avoid responsibility for anti-terror operations gone awry, White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer told reporters.

    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — Earlier on Wednesday, The Daily Beast reported that Trump was considering delegating even more authority to allow military leaders to launch new raids against Daesh terrorist group (outlawed in Russia) without specific presidential approval. The move comes, the report claimed, after Trump failed to accept responsibility for a raid in Yemen in January that led to the death of a Navy SEAL.

    "It’s a philosophy rather than a change in policy," Spicer said when asked about Trump delegating more authority to military leaders in places like Yemen. "There is certain action that requires Presidential sign-off. The way the military works… there are certain things that have to be signed off by the President.'

    Spicer also pushed back against any suggestion that Trump was allowing generals more leeway to insulate himself from the kind criticism he received after the US Special Forces raid in Yemen that resulted in the death of a US Navy SEAL.

    Spicer said that Trump intends to closely follow the advice of his generals, which he characterized as a change from the way former President Barack Obama made decisions on military actions, and said of the current crop of military leaders that, "he [Trump] chose these highly qualified individuals because he believes in their expertise and their understanding of the issues."

    According to the Daily Beast report, US commanders in declared war zones have broad authority to make decisions without presidential approval but not countries like Libya, Somalia, or Yemen.

    Former Defense Intelligence Agency Officer Rick Francona told CNN on Wednesday that commanders should get presidential approval if they want to conduct missions in countries the United States does not currently have permission to operate in.

    The raid that resulted in the death of US Navy Seal William "Ryan" Owens was planned by the outgoing Obama Administration but was delayed while US Special Forces waited for a moonless night. The delay held up the raid past January 20, which required Trump to also give his assent.

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    Tags:
    military, Daesh, Donald Trump, US
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