May 9, 2018

Headlines – May 9, 2018


Did military hide real mission of the Niger ambush from Congress? –
U.S. Sen. Tim Kaine is accusing the military of hiding from Congress its true mission in a Niger ambush last October that ended in the deaths of four American Green Berets.
DOD exploring medevac options for special operations forces within Yemen –
The U.S. military is looking for contractors to provide airborne casualty evacuation services for special operations forces working “primarily within Yemen.”


Mattis’ infantry reformer blasts weapons makers to quit stalling and make a better, more lethal rifle –
The lead man tasked by Defense Secretary Jim Mattis with transforming everything infantry and close combat on May 8 challenged industry and government leaders to put a leap-ahead rifle in his boss’ hands in less than two years — or else.
FAA needs money as drones, risks increase, industry head says –
The head of the Aerospace Industries Association is calling on the Trump administration and Congress to increase funding for both NASA and the Federal Aviation Administration, particularly with a surge in commercial drone activity expected in coming years.
Leonardo invests $5 million in laser division –
The diode of the future is not here yet, but defense giant Leonardo hopes to make them soon. On May 7, the company announced an investment of $5 million into Lasertel, its custom laser diode division based in Tucson, Ariz.
Swiss eye stealth-nixing radar to protect Alpine valleys –
Swiss defense officials say they are monitoring progress in the field of passive radar, a technology with the potential to track stealthy aircraft, as the country plans a multibillion-dollar upgrade of its air defenses.
White House to hold artificial intelligence meeting with companies –
The White House will convene a meeting on Thursday on the future of artificial intelligence in U.S. industry with major companies including Facebook,, Google parent Alphabet Inc and Oracle Corp as well as senior government officials. Intel Corp CEO Brian Krzanich and the chief technical officers of Ford Motor Company and Boeing are due to take part, the White House said May 8.


Putting Marines at risk: How shocking flight medic training gaps could endanger grunts on the ground –
In December 2016, two Naval aviators in an EA-18G Growler suffered catastrophic injuries after their cockpit pressure system malfunctioned, causing an explosive decompression.
U.S. Navy’s Costliest Warship Suffers New Failure at Sea –
The Gerald R. Ford, the U.S. Navy’s costliest warship, suffered a new failure at sea that forced it back to port and raised fresh questions about the new class of aircraft carriers.
SOCOM snipers will ditch their bullets for this new round next year –
Top special operations snipers will replace their 7.62mm sniper rifles with a caliber that doubles their hit probability at 1,000 meters, increases their effective range by nearly half, reduces wind drift by a third and has less recoil.
This piece of gear conquers a problem that’s always plagued helicopter pilots –
Over the decades, helicopter pilots have improved their craft with advances in night vision, helmet-connected targeting systems.
Army says it needs $2 billion more per year for the big six: Over half of it for air, missile defense –
Looking to spend billions more on its top modernization programs, the Army is changing things up by spending those dollars in places that might come as a bit of a surprise.
Navy boosts number of women on submarines –
Eight years after the Navy announced a policy change allowing women to serve on submarines, there are 93 women aboard Pacific Fleet vessels, including nine officers on two Virginia-class submarines at Pearl Harbor, the undersea service said.
With older F-35s ‘on life support,’ wing struggles to train pilots –
One of the busiest F-35 Joint Strike Fighter training units is hoping the U.S. Air Force can help relieve some of the pressures of training student pilots with ineffective resources. The 33rd Fighter Wing, the leading training wing for F-35 student pilots, hopes it will receive additional F-35A aircraft, along with considerable upgrades to its existing fleet, to keep up with training demands, said Col. Paul Moga, commander of the 33rd Fighter Wing.
Former U.S. Air Force head details decision to cut maintenance budgets in 2013 –
With the U.S. military facing a rising tide of aviation mishaps, the decision to cut maintenance budgets in 2013 continues to loom large as a potentially historic moment for the Pentagon.
After string of fatal crashes, Air Force orders safety stand down –
In the wake of a series of troubling aircraft mishaps and crashes ? several of which have been fatal ? Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Dave Goldfein has ordered a one-day safety stand down for all flying and maintenance wings.
Air Force targets weapons integration, logistics in second round of light attack demo –
The Air Force has kicked off the second phase of its light attack experiment, which could pave the way for the service to begin buying either the AT-6 or A-29.


House panel supports Agent Orange coverage for ‘Blue Water’ Navy veterans –
House lawmakers approved legislation Tuesday to extend Agent Orange benefits to approximately 90,000 sailors who served off the coast during the Vietnam War.
Lawmakers advance VA health care overhaul, medical marijuana research for vets –
House lawmakers advanced plans to increase veterans’ access to private-sector doctors, expand caregiver stipends to more former military families and increase medical marijuana research for veterans care in a flurry of votes before the House Veterans’ Affairs Committee May 8.

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