February 16, 2018

Headlines – February 16, 2018


It’s official: DOD releases new ‘deploy or get out’ policy –
The Pentagon on Feb. 14 released its new policy on military lethality, which will begin separation procedures for service members who have been non-deployable for the last 12 months or more.


South Korea’s K2 tank to run on German transmission –
South Korea’s K2 main battle tank is to be equipped with a German transmission system, a part of the tank’s powerpack that includes a locally-developed engine.
ST Kinetics prepping to hand over bid in U.S. Army’s vehicle competition –
ST Kinetics is nearly ready to hand over its sample vehicle to the U.S. Army as part of a bid in the service’s Mobile Protected Firepower competition, the company has announced. The Singapore-based firm is partnering with SAIC and CMI Defence in the competition.
NATO’s tanker, AWACS programs see membership increase –
Canada has decided to rejoin NATO’s Airborne Warning and Control Systems program, while Belgium has agreed to buy into the alliance’s tanker program — a pair of moves expected to strengthen NATO’s indigenous air capability.
Philippines terminates $234 million helicopter contract with Canada –
The Philippines has formally canceled its contract with Canada for the purchase of 16 Bell 412 helicopters, according to Jane’s 360.
India launches defense programs worth $2.48 billion –
India’s Ministry of Defence has launched a number of new defense programs, one of which seeks to fulfill a critical small arms requirements worth $2.48 billion. But military services are concerned about the delivery time frame, citing the government’s slow procurement track record.
Former Safran helo engine chief to lead Airbus Helicopters –
Airbus has appointed Bruno Even as CEO of the Airbus Helicopters unit, with the executive taking up the senior post April 1, the parent company announced Feb. 14.
Corker lifts hold on arms sales to Gulf nations in Qatar row –
The powerful Senate Foreign Relations Committee chairman is lifting his eight-month hold on U.S. arms sales to Gulf Cooperation Council member states, which he levied to pressure a resolution with Qatar.
U.S. warns against ‘protectionism’ with new EU defense agreement –
A top American diplomat is concerned that a new European Union defense agreement could lead to “protectionism” that could ice American firms out of sales in Europe.
General Dynamics’ $9.6 billion deal shows how much size matters for tech work –
When information-technology providers fight for U.S. government contracts, they’re finding more and more that size matters.


Looming national security crisis: Young Americans unable to serve in the military –
The military depends on a constant flow of volunteers every year. According to 2017 Pentagon data, 71 percent of young Americans between 17 and 24 are ineligible to serve in the United States military. Put another way: Over 24 million of the 34 million people of that age group cannot join the armed forces — even if they wanted to.
American funding to deter Russia may not grow next year, Mattis says –
A special fund set up for European requirements is not guaranteed to grow again next year after it received a nearly $2 billion increase in the fiscal 2019 budget request, U.S. Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis said Feb. 13.
Missile Defense Agency asks for $700 million to bolster hypersonic defense –
While ballistic and homeland missile defense have grabbed the headlines in recent months due to the growing threat from North Korea, leaders from the Missile Defense Agency outlined Feb. 12 how the Department of Defense is preparing for future threats that could challenges the current ballistic missile defense system.
McCain second-in-command found guilty of dereliction charge –
The former second-in-charge of the destroyer John S. McCain was found guilty Monday of dereliction in the performance of duties for his part in the Aug. 21 collision that killed 10 sailors.
Marines are flying more than the Air Force –
The Marine Corps’ aviators have increased their monthly flight hours per pilot, and are now flying substantially more than Air Force pilots, military officials said.


VA secretary promises to go along with IG recommendations, despite disagreements –
Veterans Affairs Secretary David Shulkin said he will go along with all of the recommendations in a scathing inspector general’s report criticizing an overseas trip last summer, even though he still strong disagrees with the findings.
Second-oldest Pearl Harbor survivor, Jim Downing, dies at 104 –
Downing, who served aboard the USS West Virginia, sprayed saltwater on ammunition stored on the deck to prevent further explosions during the 1941 attack. In the aftermath, he memorized the names of men killed and wrote to their families.
Report blasts VA secretary for improper gifts and travel, lying to cover up scandal –
A Veterans Affairs inspector general report on Wednesday blasted department Secretary David Shulkin for improperly accepting gifts, misrepresenting travel plans, and using a VA worker “as a personal travel concierge to plan tourist activities” during a controversial overseas trip last spring.

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Headlines – December 14, 2018

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News Briefs – December 14, 2018

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Virgin Galactic photograph

Richard Branson welcomes astronauts home from Virgin Galactic’s first spaceflight

Virgin Galactic photograph VSS Unity takes to the skies for her first space flight. History was made and a long-anticipated dream realized in Mojave, Calif., Dec. 13 as Virgin Galactic’s SpaceShipTwo, VSS Unity, landed from h...