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Nation

A3 Friday, December 2, 2016

Retired general in line for defense secretary

By LOLITA C. BALDOR Associated Press

WASHINGTON — Presidentelect Donald Trump said Thursday he will nominate retired Gen. James Mattis to be his defense secretary, making the announcement at a post-election victory rally in Cincinnati. Mattis, 66, is a Marine Corps general who retired in 2013 after serving as the commander of the U.S. Central Command. His selection raises questions about increased military influence in a job designed to insure civilian control of the armed forces. The concerns revolve around whether a recently retired service member would rely more on military solutions to international problems, rather than take a broader, more diplomatic approach. For Mattis to be confirmed, Congress would first have to approve legislation bypassing a law that bars retired military officers from becoming defense secretary within seven years of leaving active duty.

Mattis has a reputation as a battle-hardened, tough-talking Marine who was entrusted with some of the most challenging commands in the U.S. military. In a tweet last month, Trump referred to Mattis by his nickname “Mad Dog” and described him as “A true General’s General!” Mattis would be only the second retired general to serve as defense secretary, the first being George C. Marshall in 1950-51 during the Korean War. Marshall was a much different figure, having previously served as U.S. secretary of state and playing a key role in creating closer ties with Western Europe after World War II. The only previous exception to the law requiring a gap after military service was for Marshall. Although his record in combat and his credentials as a senior commander are widely admired, Mattis has little experience in the diplomatic aspects of the job of secretary of defense. Richard Fontaine, president of the Center for a New American Security, described Mattis as a defense intellectual and as a mil-

The Associated Press

In this Nov. 19 file photo, President-elect Donald Trump shakes hands with retired Marine Corps Gen. James Mattis as he leaves Trump National Golf Club Bedminster clubhouse in Bedminster, N.J. Trump said at a rally Thursday that he will nominate Mattis as defense secretary. itary leader who distinguished himself in combat. “He knows the Middle East, South Asia, NATO and other areas and has evinced both a nuanced

approach to the wars we’re in and an appreciation for the importance of allies,” Fontaine said in an email exchange. “If he were to get the nomination, I suspect that

he could attract a number of very talented people to work with him.” But Mattis hasn’t been immune to controversy. He was criticized for remarking in 2005 that he enjoyed shooting people. He also drew more recent scrutiny for his involvement with the embattled biotech company Theranos, where he serves on the board. Born in Pullman, Washington, Mattis enlisted in the Marine Corps in 1969, later earning a history degree from Central Washington University. He was commissioned as an officer in 1972. As a lieutenant colonel, Mattis led an assault battalion into Kuwait during the first U.S. war with Iraq in 1991. As head of the Central Command from 2010 until his retirement in 2013, he was in charge of both the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. In the aftermath of the 9/11 attacks, Mattis commanded the Marines who launched an early amphibious assault into Afghanistan and established a U.S. foothold in the Taliban heartland.

FROM A1

BUDGET:

“I think the intent is there,” he said. “We’re going to again review the building and see what the priorities are. I think the big thing is there’s a roof and there are some structural things that need to be looked at, and then we will have to do additional work to determine if we’re going to put a columbarium in there.” “You’ve got to draw the line,” Miller added. “Without having specifics on what it’s going to cost and if we’re going to utilize that chapel ... I think there hasn’t been a commitment to say we’re going to re-do this whole thing.”  Flatt asked why the city was not approving a $5,000 architectural assessment of the chapel. Miller, Ward 3 Alderman John Marx and Ward 4 Alderman Brian Walters said the topic was discussed in Finance & Insurance

RECOUNT:

Stein has argued, without evidence, that irregularities in the votes in all three states suggest that there could have been tampering with the vote, perhaps through a well-coordinated, highly complex cyberattack. “Verifying the vote through this recount is the only way to confirm that every vote has been counted securely and accurately and is not compromised by machine or human error, or by tampering or hacking,” Stein said in a statement Thursday. Stein’s critics, including the Wisconsin Republican Party, contend that she is a little-known candidate who is merely trying to raise her profile while raising millions of dollars. Stein has taken in nearly $7 million for the recounts, which is about twice as much as her longshot presidential campaign took in. The Wisconsin recount was estimated to cost about $3.9 million. Stein paid $973,250 for the requested recount in Michigan. Trump on Thursday objected to a recount of Michigan’s presidential votes, at least delaying the planned (today) start of the recount there until next week. The Board of State Canvassers will meet todayto hear arguments.

Committee but was never approved. “If I recall right, we didn’t have anything to support that $5,000 figure except somebody just mentioned it might cost about $5,000,” Marx said. “We didn’t have anything to support putting it into the budget except hearsay.”  “Fair enough,” Flatt replied, “Doesn’t it seem a little odd though that we’re going to do it, but we’re not approving it?”  Miller reiterated her point that the priorities of the building and its repair have yet to be put in order, and the money is in the capital outlay for the project if the project is approved.  “They need to determine who and what’s going to do it, if they’re going to put it out for bid,” she added.  “I would hate to see us continue to kick this problem down the road,” Flatt said in reply. “I understand that

The Michigan Bureau of Elections said the recount cannot proceed until two business days after the four-member, bipartisan board resolves the objection. Trump’s attorneys said Stein, who finished fourth in Michigan, is not “aggrieved” by any alleged election fraud or mistake, that a recount could not be finished on time and that her petition was not properly signed. They said Stein is asking for an expensive, time-consuming recount “on the basis of nothing more than speculation.” Stein countered that Trump’s “cynical efforts to delay the recount and create unnecessary costs for taxpayers are shameful and outrageous.” In Pennsylvania, a hearing is scheduled for Monday on Stein’s push to secure a court-ordered statewide recount, a legal maneuver that has never been tried, according to one of the lawyers who filed it. Stein’s attorneys want a forensic analysis of electronic voting machines in Pennsylvania to see if there any evidence that their software was hacked. But counties where Green Partybacked voters have sought a recount are refusing to do such forensic examinations.

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we do have a commitment, as we’ve all agreed here tonight, to do something. If that’s not done in the next year, then I think we should all be very disappointed with ourselves for our hollow commitment to that structure.” “I think the fact that we put some money aside is a commitment which we have not done in the past,” Genisot said. “I think we need to determine what those dollars would go for first, but rather than put zero in the budget and not approve anything, I think we have made some commitment to look at this.”  Overall, the council unanimously approved the City of Marinette tax levy, 2017 operational budget and a series of budget transfers from various funds to others. Ward 5 Alderman Wally Hitt and Ward 6 Alderman Peter Noppenberg were not in attendance at the special meeting and did not vote. 

TAX ROLL:

ments, statements and accounts on file or of record regarding assessments and comes back with deficiencies that need to be corrected. All the municipalities in Menominee County were scheduled for an AMAR in 2015 and again in 2020. The 2015 Menominee City tax roll was found to have several deficiencies, which were reported to the city. Former contracted assessor Mari Negro was hired part-time to handle the city’s assessing department and to submit and handle a corrective action plan. The action she took to resolve those issues in the 2016 tax roll was further reviewed by a contractor hired by the state, and found deficient in some areas, which led to the recommendation to seize the 2016 tax roll as well. Negro resigned effective Oct. 31. Gittus explained that problems with the 2015 tax roll needed to be corrected in the 2016 assessment. The state’s plan of action, when it discovers problems, is “forward thinking,” she explained. “In the case of the 2016 tax roll, the problems weren’t fixed, so it was seized and we will hand it back corrected to allow the city to move forward.” Those corrections will make the 2017 tax roll accurate. The 2015 tax roll will be returned at the same time as the corrected 2016 roll, but without any changes will be made to it, she said. Frick said VanderVries will begin his task by reviewing the status of the 2016 tax roll and then determine best “how to correct those deficiencies.” He is not contracted to do any other cases than the city of Menominee and is expected to complete his work sometime in February, prior to the March Board of Review, Gittus said Tuesday. City Manager Tony Graff said Tuesday he expects VanderVries to make one or more trips to Menominee during his review of the assessment roll. VanderVries is a Level IV (Master) assessor who covers the cities of Portage, Zeeland and Dowagiac, as well as the townships of Hersey, Sheridan and New Moran. He is also the equalization director for VanBuren and Oceana counties.

Advent Festival of Lessons & Carols

WINKLER:

incorporate a piece of scrap from the junk yard visibly into the handle. Once the handle was attached, the blade had to withstand chopping four coconuts in half. Winkler’s knife, the Fender Micarta Blade Camp Chopper, easily chopped through the fruit. “You got some clean cuts,” said judge Jason Knight, a master bladesmith who has been making knives for 15 years. “Your edge geometry is perfect, well done.” After the round of testing, only two moved on to the final competition which took the contestants to their home forges to create a Dayak war sword, the Pandat, within a five-day span. The Pandat is a south eastern Asian war sword, Winkler explained.  “It has never been used as a tool, only for war,” he said. “It originates from the Dayak people of northwest Borneo and has a single-edge blade with an iron hilt. It has no real handle, just a piece of iron that passes through the bottom. The sheath is usually made of wood and decorated with traditional art patterns. It’s easier to cut through things with an upward cut, since it will produce a higher balance than a downward cut.” Winkler received special permission to use the Southern Ohio Forge and Anvil’s (SOFA) shop because his space was to small for the film crew. Over five days, he made the weapon from scratch. “I intended to leave hammer marks to make it look

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authentic,” he said. “I tried to come up with different handle materials, but settled on Rosewood because it was native to the island.” The finale consisted of three tests on the weapon — sharpness, kill and strength. The sharpness test required judge Doug Marcaid, edged weapon combat specialist who also designs some of the world’s deadliest blades, to cut through a web of ropes. Winkler’s easily beat this challenge. Next, the weapon needed to cut straight through a deer carcass. “It cut cleanly through,” Winker said. “It cut through without any problem.” The final test entailed the Pandat to be hooked into a machine where it needed to cut through sugarcane. “It made it three quarters of the way through,” he said. “It was a tough decision for the judges to make between the two of us.” According to judge David Baker, who is a world-renowned swordsmith who specializes in recreating some of the world’s rarest edged weapons, this competition was the tightest they’ve ever had. “I’m a huge fan of authentic looking weapons,” he said. “I think by leaving those forge marks in your blade, you created something that to my eyes look authentic. Beyond that it’s a real performer, it’s a beautiful piece of work.” Winkler said he really enjoyed the experience. “It was really great,” he said. “I got to watch it with my kids and their families.”

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