NEW YORK - After the news that the administration ordered the organization to shutter leaked to the public, United States President Donald Trump overrode his defense secretary, vowing and continuing funding Stars and Stripes, the editorially independent newspaper of the military which covers issues related to the members of the armed forces.
On Friday, the US president tweeted that the administration will not be cutting the funds to the outlet. The tweet made by Trump came after he faced a major uproar over a report that states he disparaged the members of the military.
After sending a notification in February that they will cut the funding of the Stars and Stripes, the Defense department shared in their August 4 memo to the publisher of the outlet that they had decided to discontinue the publication of the newspaper, CNN reported.
The memo that was initially reported on Friday instructed Max Lederer, the publisher of the Stars and Stripes to provide the Defense Department a plan that dissolves the organization by January 31 in 2021.
Added on the memo also was the ceasing of publishing by the Stars and Stripes by September 30 this year, at the same that the fiscal year ends.
The spokesperson of the Defense Department deferred to the tweet of Trump when asked for a comment in an interview.
The publication Stars and Stripes was first produced at the time of the Civil War by the Union soldiers and is partially funded by the Congress. Despite the inclusion of the publication in 2021 made by the House, the Senate did not release its appropriations bill for 2021.
On the other hand, if Congress chooses to fund Stars and Stripes in the 2021 fiscal year, the news outlet will continue their publishing. But as the Congress wrestles over a budget for 2021, the Defense Department stepped in the conversation, ordering the military union's publication to shut down.
According to Portland Press Herald, Sen. Lindsey Graham defended the publication after the closure instructions coming from the Defense Department came out for the Stars and Stripes. In his written letter. The senator addressed the letter to Mark Esper, the Secretary of Defense saying that it would be premature to shut down the outlet as the Senate did not have the opportunity to voice their opinion just yet.
Graham wrote in his letter on August 26 that he urged not to take actions that will deprive individuals involved in the publication until Congress will complete the whole appropriations process.
The Senator also added that based on the history and the importance of the Stars and Stripes to the Armed Forces' members, their families, and civilian employees, he believed that the request is more than reasonable.
The spokesperson of Graham shared that the Secretary of Defense has not yet responded to the letter sent by the senator.
On the other hand, the spokesperson coming from the side of the Defense Department refused to give any comment about the letter sent by Graham.
Stars and Stripes publisher, Lederer shared on Friday that the outlet's future is very uncertain and he is prepared for any outcomes that might come out.