Deadly fire across the temple walls (Revelation 11:2)

Israel-Gaza: Deadly fire traded across border – BBC News

Getty Images

Seven people have been killed in a flare-up of violence between Israel and Palestinian militants in Gaza.

More than 400 rockets have been fired into Israel by militants since Monday night, while Israeli aircraft have hit 150 militant targets in response.

Six Palestinians, four of them militants, died in the strikes on Gaza, while a Palestinian civilian was killed in a rocket attack in southern Israel.

The United Nations has called on all sides to show restraint.

The escalation began when an undercover Israeli special forces operation inside Gaza was exposed on Sunday. A Hamas commander was among seven militants killed in clashes, and an Israeli lieutenant colonel in the undercover unit also died.

The incident came after apparent progress in an effort by Egypt and the UN to secure a truce on the Gaza border, where more than 200 Palestinians have been killed in protests since March.

The Israeli military has been accused of using excessive force against protesters, but has said its soldiers have only opened fire in self-defence or on potential attackers trying to infiltrate its territory

How serious is the latest violence?

After a brief lull following Sunday night’s violence, a barrage of rockets and mortars was launched towards Israel late on Monday, which Israeli medics said killed one person and injured 28.

A bus, which had reportedly been carrying troops, was hit by an anti-tank missile in the Shaar Hanegev region , seriously wounding a male soldier.

Overnight, a man was killed when a block of flats in Ashkelon was hit by a rocket. He was later identified as a Palestinian from the occupied West Bank who had been working in Israel.

Eight other people were injured in the attack, including two women who the Israeli ambulance service said were in a serious condition.

In response, the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) carried out what it called a wide-scale attack against military targets belonging to the Hamas and Islamic Jihad groups.

Image copyright Getty Images

Image caption Israeli air strikes targeted the Hamas-run television station Al-Aqsa

It said they included Hamas’ military intelligence headquarters in northern Gaza and “a unique vessel” in a harbour in the south of the territory.

The building housing Hamas’s Al-Aqsa TV was also bombed after being evacuated. The IDF said the outlet “contributes to Hamas’s military actions”.

The Hamas-run Gaza health ministry said six people were killed and 25 others injured in the strikes. Four of the dead were militants and two are said to have been farmers in northern Gaza.

This is one of the most serious rounds of fighting since Israel and Hamas fought a war in 2014.

The IDF has warned it is prepared to “dial up its response” to the rocket fire, while Hamas’s military wing said it was ready to “expand the circle of fire” against Israel.

UN Middle East envoy Nickolay Mladenov said the escalation was “extremely dangerous” and that efforts were being made to pull Gaza “back from the brink”.

Escalation threatens to derail truce efforts

By Tom Bateman, BBC News, southern Israel

This latest flare-up has shown again how swiftly the pendulum can swing from the brink of a longer-term truce to the brink of all-out conflict.

For months there has been quiet but intensive shuttle diplomacy brokered largely by Egyptian intelligence officials and Nickolay Mladenov.

Hamas sought an easing of the Israeli and Egyptian blockade of Gaza amid deteriorating economic and humanitarian conditions, while Israel wanted calm on the Gaza perimeter.

Some limited results were starting to be delivered – literally, in the form of fuel for Gaza’s power plant and $15m (£12m) in cash from Qatar, which was allowed into Gaza to help fund the salaries of unpaid Hamas civil servants.

But the indirect process also came under attack from internal critics on both sides, who saw it as a sign of unnecessary compromise or weakness.

The current escalation is likely to have strengthened those voices for now.

How did the violence start?

Palestinians said they discovered an undercover Israeli unit in a civilian car about 3km (2 miles) inside the Gaza Strip, east of Khan Younis, late on Sunday.

A firefight ensued in which the Hamas commander was killed. Israel launched air strikes and opened fire with tanks on the area, witnesses said. Six other militants were killed as well as one of the Israeli special forces soldiers.

Due to the secrecy of the operation, Israel has not revealed specific details about the mission.

The IDF said, however, that the operation was “not intended to kill or abduct terrorists, but to strengthen Israeli security”.

Earthquake Assessment For The Sixth Seal (Revelation 6:12)

Earthquake Risk in New Jersey

by Daniel R. Dombroski, Jr.

A 10–fold increase in amplitude represents about a 32–fold increase in energy released for the same duration of shaking. The best known magnitude scale is one designed by C.F. Richter in 1935 for west coast earthquakes.

In New Jersey, earthquakes are measured with seismographs operated by the Lamont–Doherty Earth Observatory of Columbia University and the Delaware Geological Survey.

An earthquake’s intensity is determined by observing its effects at a particular place on the Earth’s surface. Intensity depends on the earthquake’s magnitude, the distance from the epicenter, and local geology. These scales are based on reports of people awakening, felt movements, sounds, and visible effects on structures and landscapes. The most commonly used scale in the United States is the Modified Mercalli Intensity Scale, and its values are usually reported in Roman numerals to distinguish them from magnitudes.

Past damage in New Jersey

New Jersey doesn’t get many earthquakes, but it does get some. Fortunately most are small. A few New Jersey earthquakes, as well as a few originating outside the state, have produced enough damage to warrant the concern of planners and emergency managers.

Damage in New Jersey from earthquakes has been minor: items knocked off shelves, cracked plaster and masonry, and fallen chimneys. Perhaps because no one was standing under a chimney when it fell, there are no recorded earthquake–related deaths in New Jersey. We will probably not be so fortunate in the future.

Area Affected by Eastern Earthquakes

Although the United States east of the Rocky Mountains has fewer and generally smaller earthquakes than the West, at least two factors  increase the earthquake risk in New Jersey and the East. Due to geologic differences, eastern earthquakes effect areas ten times larger than western ones of the same magnitude. Also, the eastern United States is more densely populated, and New Jersey is the most densely populated state in the nation.

Geologic Faults and Earthquakes in New Jersey

Although there are many faults in New Jersey, the Ramapo Fault, which separates the Piedmont and Highlands Physiographic Provinces, is the best known. In 1884 it was blamed for a damaging New York City earthquake simply because it was the only large fault mapped at the time. Subsequent investigations have shown the 1884 earthquake epicenter was actually located in Brooklyn, New York, at least 25 miles from the Ramapo Fault.

However, numerous minor earthquakes have been recorded in the Ramapo Fault Zone, a 10 to 20 mile wide area lying adjacent to, and west of, the actual fault.

More recently, in the 1970’s and early 1980’s, earthquake risk along the Ramapo Fault received attention because of its proximity to the Indian Point, New York, Nuclear Power Generating Station. East of the Rocky Mountains (including New Jersey), earthquakes do not break the ground surface. Their focuses lie at least a few miles below the Earth’s surface, and their locations are determined by interpreting seismographic records. Geologic fault lines seen on the surface today are evidence of ancient events. The presence or absence of mapped faults (fault lines) does not denote either a seismic hazard or the lack of one, and earthquakes can occur anywhere in New Jersey.

Frequency of Damaging Earthquakes in New Jersey

Records for the New York City area, which have been kept for 300 years, provide good information

for estimating the frequency of earthquakes in New Jersey.

Earthquakes with a maximum intensity of VII (see table DamagingEarthquakes Felt in New Jersey )have occurred in the New York City area in 1737, 1783, and 1884. One intensity VI, four intensity V’s, and at least three intensity III shocks have also occurred in the New York area over the last 300 years.

The time–spans between the intensity VII earthquakes were 46 and 101 years. This, and data for the smaller–intensity quakes, implies a return period of 100 years or less, and suggests New Jersey is overdue for a moderate earthquake like the one of 1884.

Buildings and Earthquakes

The 1995 earthquake in Kobe, Japan, is an example of what might happen in New Jersey in a similar quake. It registered a magnitude 7.2 on the Richter scale and produced widespread destruction. But it was the age of construction, soil and foundation condition, proximity to the fault, and type of structure that were the major determining factors in the performance of each building. Newer structures, built to the latest construction standards, appeared to perform relatively well, generally ensuring the life safety of occupants.

New Jersey’s building code has some provisions for earthquake–resistant design. But there are no requirements for retrofitting existing buildingsnot even for unreinforced masonry structures that are most vulnerable to earthquake damage. Housing of this type is common in New Jersey’s crowded urban areas. If an earthquake the size of New York City’s 1884 quake (magnitude 5.5) were to occur today, severe damage would result. Fatalities would be likely.

Structures have collapsed in New Jersey without earthquakes; an earthquake would trigger many more. Building and housing codes need to be updated and strictly enforced to properly prepare for inevitable future earthquakes.

More Killed Outside the Temple Walls (Revelation 11:2)

People gather Monday around a vehicle destroyed in an Israeli air strike in Gaza.Israel defends secret Gaza operation that led to death of IDF solider and Hamas commander

(CNN)The Israeli army has defended a secret operation inside Gaza that left one of its officers dead, after it was forced to pull out its soldiers in an effort that ended in the deaths of seven Palestinians, including a senior Hamas military commander.

The exchange, near the city of Khan Younis in the south of the Gaza strip, led to a barrage of rocket fire from Gaza towards Israel that injured at least 11.The sudden escalation of tensions threatens to derail recent initiatives aimed at alleviating the humanitarian situation facing Gaza’s two million residents.
The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) identified the dead Israeli soldier only as Lt. Col. M. Another officer was wounded. Army chief Lt. Gen. Gadi Eisenkot said the officer had been killed in a “very meaningful operation to Israel’s security,” adding that the army owed him “more than we can say.”
Hamas named a commander of its armed wing, the Qassam Brigades, Nour Baraka, as among the seven Palestinians killed.
Questioned on Israeli radio, IDF chief spokesman, Ronen Manelis, refused to give details of the IDF operation, but defended the decision to undertake it.
“Each of these operations is planned in the most serious manner,” Manelis said. “It is an operation that takes time to plan. Commanding it directly are the Head of Intelligence and the Chief of General Staff. We are talking about an operation that was well planned right down to the smallest of details.”
Hinting that the operation was part of a wider intelligence-gathering sweep, Manelis said, “It is the sort of thing that takes place every night, and in most instances remains under the media’s radar.”
This time, the soldiers had found themselves in a “very complicated situation,” Manelis wrote on social media.

Israeli soldiers near the southern Israel-Gaza border on Monday.

According to a statement from the Qassam Brigades, Israeli officers had entered southern Gaza in a civilian car, which was then discovered by Qassam militants led by commander Nour Baraka, who was killed along with another militant Mohammed Al-Qara, in the ensuing gun battle.
The Qassam statement said that Israeli warplanes then carried out airstrikes to provide cover while the soldiers escaped on an Israeli helicopter that had landed nearby to extract them.
Militants also said that the Israeli air force had destroyed the civilian car used in the operation, and distributed photos of what they said was the burned-out car Monday.
Hamas accused Israel of hypocrisy. Musa Abu-Marzouq, a senior member of the Hamas Political Bureau, said in a statement on Monday morning, the Israeli military operation in Gaza “exposed the Israeli occupation’s hypocritical behavior with the international community.”
A barrage of rocket fire was directed at Israel following the Palestinian deaths. The Israeli army said 80 rockets were launched from Gaza towards Israel in one hour Monday, some of which were intercepted by the IDF’s Iron Dome aerial defense system.
An Israeli bus was hit by an anti-tank missile from Gaza on Monday afternoon, the Israeli military said. One person was seriously injured, according to ZAKA, a volunteer emergency response service.
Ten other people were wounded after rockets were fired towards the town of Sderot.

Israeli security forces and firefighters gather near the bus hit by fire from Gaza.

Three people were killed and foud injured in Israeli strikes on Gaza, the Palestinian Ministry of Health said. The ministry said it had increased the level of alertness at hospitals and among ambulance units in Gaza, in anticipation of a possible escalation of hostilities.
Hamas and Islamic Jihad, the two prominent militant groups in Gaza, announced that their fighters were also on high alert. Israel blamed Islamic Jihad for the last sharp escalation over Gaza two weeks ago, accusing the group of firing dozens of rockets at Israel at the instruction of Iran.
The developments came just days after Qatar sent $15 million into Gaza in an attempt to alleviate the humanitarian crisis in the coastal enclave and reduce tensions along the Gaza border, which has seen often violent clashes between Israeli security forces and Palestinian protesters.

Relatives mourn a Palestinian man killed in an Israeli airstrike in Khan Younis, Gaza, on Monday.

Hamas hailed the money as a victory for the Islamist group, saying it would go to pay salaries of civil servants in Gaza, and help care for those wounded in the weekly clashes.
Netanyahu, who approved the transfer of the Qatari money through Israel into Gaza, had defended the payments, saying in Paris on Sunday before the latest round of violence that he was trying to avoid an “unnecessary war.”
Speaking to reporters, he said: “I am working in every direction to try to return the calm to the residents of the Gaza periphery and also to prevent a humanitarian crisis in Gaza. This is the decision that the [Israeli] security cabinet has made.”
But Netanyahu had also struck a note of caution, suggesting he sees a long-term arrangement with Hamas in Gaza as impossible. “There is no diplomatic solution to Gaza,” he said.

Pakistan to Counter India’s Nuclear Triad

Islamabad seeks way to respond but financial crisis complicates strategy

 India recently announced its first submarine armed with ballistic missiles and nuclear warheads has completed its first patrol.   © Reuters

ISLAMABAD — Pakistan has vowed to counter India’s successful launch of a nuclear-powered submarine, a move that has thrown off the delicate military balance between the nuclear-armed neighbors.

Islamabad said New Delhi’s latest action will intensify an arms race that could draw China into the mix. Pakistan is hemmed in by a financial crisis that could force it to turn to Beijing for military assistance.

“No one should doubt Pakistan’s resolve and capabilities to meet the challenge posed by the latest developments,” said Mohammad Faisal, a spokesman for Pakistan’s foreign ministry. Faisal’s comment came three days after Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Nov. 5 said the Arihant, India’s first domestically built nuclear-powered submarine, had recently completed its first patrol.

India plans to build three more nuclear subs. The country’s leaders say the program will complete a “triad” and give India the ability to deliver nuclear payloads from land, air and sea.

The submarines will greatly enhance India’s “second strike capability.” A submarine fleet is widely recognized as the most reliable platform that a country first hit by nuclear weapons can use to fire off a response.

Pakistani officials warn that India’s triad will force Islamabad to respond in kind so as to deter Indian decision-makers from considering the nuclear option during a future conflict.

The deployment of a nuclear submarine marks a disturbing development for the two South Asian countries. “This development will only fuel the nuclear race,” said a senior Western diplomat in Islamabad who asked not to be named.

According to the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute, India and Pakistan each possess up to 150 nuclear weapons. “India’s decision to produce nuclear-powered submarines is a major escalation in the nuclear field,” said Talat Masood, a retired lieutenant general in Islamabad. “Pakistan will certainly try to match in kind. Once you also place your nuclear weapons on submarines, which are extremely hard to detect, the nuclear decision-making becomes much more complex. There is now a major question mark on how Pakistan will respond, and also how China will respond.”

Another Western diplomat pointed out the possibility of Beijing leasing nuclear-powered submarines to Islamabad. China has been a close ally of Pakistan and has geopolitical interest to counter India’s militarily moves.

India reportedly spent more than $12 billion on the Arihant. Many experts are skeptical that Pakistan, currently suffering a balance of payments crisis, has spare billions that could be used to develop a similar submarine.

Submarine leasing is nothing new. Russia in the past leased a nuclear sub to India. “I wouldn’t be surprised if we hear one day that the Chinese have simply followed with Pakistan what Russia did with India some time ago,” the second Western diplomat said.

China has already begun deepening its ties with Pakistan’s navy. It has a contract to supply four new conventional submarines to Pakistan by 2022 and another four by 2028. This is on top of having supplied fighter jets and land-based weaponry to Pakistan’s air force and army.

Pakistan accounted for 42% of China’s total arms sales from 2000 through 2014, according to a report released by U.S. think tank Rand.

Pakistan could also consider building more nuclear bombs and placing some weapons deep underground, where they could better survive a first strike. “What is certain is that we are just not going to sit idle while India gains a nuclear edge to threaten us,” said a senior Pakistani government official who spoke on condition of anonymity. “Pakistan will have to counter the challenge of India’s home-built nuclear submarine, one way or the other.”

Siemon Wezeman, a senior researcher at the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute, said Pakistan has time to formulate a strategy as India has yet to deploy at least four ballistic-missile-carrying submarines. He said other major nuclear powers like the U.K. and France have built at least four nuclear submarines to be able to “hide at least one at any given time.”

Deep down, Wezeman said, submarines “are difficult to find and destroy.”

Pakistan and India have fought three major wars and many skirmishes during their 71-year history. They continue to deploy large military forces across the mountainous Kashmir region, which has been a flash point since 1947, when the countries became independent.

Shaking Before the Sixth Seal (Revelation 6:12)

GOOCHLAND, VA — Two small earthquakes rumbled the Goochland area Nov. 9, the same region where a 5.8 earthquake in August 2011 originated that was felt up and down the East Coast, and caused damage to hundreds of homes and structures including the Washington Monument in Washington D.C.

The first 2.4 magnitude earthquake occurred at 11:25 a.m. about 23 miles west northwest of Richmond, while a second quake nearby came about 20 minutes later and was recorded as a magnitude 2.5, according to the U.S. Geological Survey.

Past Virginia Quakes

Earthquakes happen when there is movement below the Earth’s surface on fault lines. They can occur anywhere in the U.S. and usually last less than a minute, according to FEMA.
Most recently, a quake on Nov. 30, 2017, about 6 miles northeast of Dover, Delaware, was felt from Baltimore to Washington, D.C., and Fairfax County. The initial report was for a 4.4-magnitude quake but the USGS later scaled it back to 4.1.

A 2.4 magnitude earthquake rattled parts of Virginia on Aug. 25, 2017, according to the USGS. The temblor was registered with the epicenter located 6 kilometers from Goochland, Virginia, near Richmond, experts say.

On March 12, 2017, a 2.3 magnitude quake was registered with the epicenter located 6 kilometers from Goochland, Virginia, near Richmond. The USGS reports that people in Rockville, Maryland, felt the quake. And on Dec. 22, 2016, a 2.2 magnitude earthquake was registered with the epicenter located 18 kilometers from Ashland, Virginia. A 2.3 quake centered nine miles south of Louisa, Va. and 27 miles northwest of Short Pump, Virginia, was reported about 18 months ago.

Since at least 1774, people in central Virginia have felt small earthquakes and suffered damage from infrequent larger ones, the USGS noted. The largest damaging earthquake (magnitude 5.8) in the seismic zone occurred in 2011. Smaller earthquakes that cause little or no damage are felt each year or two.

The 5.8-magnitude quake felt by Northern Virginia hit August 23, 2011, when, as the USGS notes: “Tens of millions of people all over the East Coast and southeastern Canada suddenly felt the earth shaking from the largest earthquake in that area since the M5.8 earthquake in 1944 near Cornwall and Massena, New York.

When the earth stopped shaking, more than 148,000 people reported their experience of the earthquake on the Did You Feel It? Web site representing an area occupied by one-third of the U.S. population.”

That quake did millions of dollars in damage, including to the National Cathedral, the Armed Forces Retirement Home, and the Washington Monument in Washington D.C., as well as minor to major damage to almost 600 residential properties.

The 5.8 earthquake was centered near the town of Mineral, Va., about 65 km northwest of Richmond at a depth of about 6-8 km.

Forming the Nuclear Arm of Babylon the Great

Democrats next year will control the gavels for the defense and foreign policy committees in the House for the first time since 2010.

The party has been itching to check on a host of issues, from his relationship with Saudi Arabia to the ballooning defense budget.

But to get legislation through Congress, House Democrats will need to work with the Senate, which is still in Republican hands. And the chairmen poised to lead the defense and foreign policy panels in the upper chamber are seen as staunch Trump allies.

Here are the top foreign policy and defense fights to watch in a divided Congress:

U.S.-Saudi relations

Lawmakers in both parties have been eyeing ways to punish Saudi Arabia over the killing of U.S.-based journalist and Saudi critic Jamal Khashoggi.

House Democrats have said responses should include an end to U.S. military support for the Saudi-led coalition in neighboring Yemen’s civil war. Democratic lawmakers were already opposed to U.S. backing because of civilian casualties, but Khashoggi’s murder has given the issue new urgency.

Rep. Adam SmithDavid (D-Wash.), who’s poised to be chairman of the House Armed Services Committee, and Rep. Eliot (D-N.Y.), in line to lead the House Foreign Affairs Committee, are among the top Democrats who have signed on to a bill that would end military support for Saudi Arabia.

But Republicans have said the Yemen civil war and Khashoggi killing are two separate matters. Continuing support in the civil war, they argue, is imperative to countering Iran, which supports the rebels in Yemen.

GOP senators have talked about sanctions as a possible response. Sen. Jim Risch (R-Idaho), who is expected to take over the Senate Foreign Relations Committee from retiring Sen. Bob Corker (R-Tenn.), signed on to a committee letter last month triggering a sanctions determination by the administration.

But Risch is a Trump loyalist who is seen as much more likely to be deferential to the president than Corker. Trump, who has fostered a close relationship with the Saudis as central to his Middle East strategy, has waffled on how to respond to the Khashoggi killing.

On Tuesday, Trump said he’d have a “stronger opinion on that subject over the next week.”

Space Force

The Trump administration has said it wants the establishment of a “Space Force” included in next year’s defense policy bill. That position has contributed to increasingly diverging opinions between House and Senate lawmakers.

Republicans in the Senate — who were initially skeptical of creating a separate branch of the military for space — have appeared more open to the idea since Trump got involved.

Senate Armed Services Committee Chairman James Inhofe (R-Okla.), a Trump ally who will keep the gavel in the next Congress, has said he has an open mind but is awaiting more cost details.

The Senate may lose one of its most vocal Space Force critics, albeit on the Democratic side. Sen. Bill Nelson(D-Fla.), who led the chamber’s opposition to a similar plan from the House last year, is fighting for his political life in a reelection race that appears headed toward a recount.

Meanwhile, Democrats in the House have grown more entrenched in their opposition to Space Force ever since Trump injected himself into the debate.

Smith, who supported the House’s space corps plan last year, came out against Space Force in September. He said that while he believes the military needs to do a better job of prioritizing its presence in space, a separate branch is not the most cost-effective way to do so.

Space Force still has some key Democratic support in the House. Rep. Jim Cooper (D-Tenn.), who worked alongside Rep. Mike Rogers (R-Ala.) to lead the chamber’s space corps push, said in September that he hopes Trump’s involvement doesn’t “ruin the debate” about it.

Defense budget

Smith has said this year’s defense budget of $716 billion is “too high,” and in a Thursday letter announcing his run for chairman he vowed to target “inefficiency and waste” at the Pentagon.

The Washington Democrat has argued that lawmakers need to start making tough choices about spending and taxing as rising deficits have been compounded by the GOP’s 2017 tax-cut law.

Defense hawks and the Pentagon pushed for the $716 billion to help address what they characterized as an urgent readiness crisis. Few Democrats argue that the military is not facing readiness issues, but Smith has said the military needs to be “smart” about how it spends its money. He has cited the Navy’s 355-ship goal, saying the focus on a number is flawed logic because “capability matters.”

Senate Republicans argue that defense cuts would reverse any readiness progress that’s been achieved. They say the budget needs to continue the growth trend from the past two years in order to fully emerge from the readiness hole.

Asked by The Hill in October about the potential House-Senate split and the looming return of budget caps, Inhofe expressed confidence that the defense budget would at least stay flat.

“We have to catch up,” Inhofe said. “We have to keep that up, or all that we have done in catching up in those last two fiscal years will go out the window. So that’s not just going to happen.”

But in this case, Democrats may actually have an ally in Trump, who recently ordered his administration to propose a $700 billion defense budget for fiscal year 2020 — a $16 billion cut from this year and $33 billion less than the initial plan for 2020.

Nuclear weapons

One of Smith’s longtime concerns has been the U.S. nuclear arsenal. He opposed the Obama administration’s modernization plans, arguing they weren’t affordable.

With the Trump administration’s Nuclear Posture Review calling for new capabilities, Smith has stepped up his criticism, vowing to scrutinize the nuclear budget to look for savings in the overall defense budget.

In his Thursday letter, Smith said Democrats must “take substantial steps to reduce America’s overreliance on nuclear weapons.”

Adding to Democrats’ nuclear anxiety is Trump’s intention to withdraw from a Cold War-era arms accord with Russia known as the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty. Smith and Engel wrote a letter to the administration last month warning they “will neither support, nor enable, a precipitous course of action that increases the risk of an unconstrained nuclear arms race.”

Congress is limited in its power to prevent Trump from withdrawing from the treaty, but it could block funding for any new missiles that would be out of compliance with the accord.

Inhofe backed the administration’s Nuclear Posture Review and is unlikely to support reduced funding for weapons in the defense policy bill. Risch, meanwhile, issued a statement of support after Trump announced withdrawal from the INF Treaty, saying “the time has come to set the treaty aside.”