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May 17, 2013

Headlines May 17, 2013

News

One dead in U.S. Navy SEAL training accident at Fort Knox

A U.S. Navy enlisted man was killed and as many as seven people were injured when their Humvee vehicle rolled over during a training exercise for elite SEAL forces at Fort Knox, Kentucky, a SEAL spokesman said May 17.

Obama to announce major U.S. nuclear force cuts soon

President Barack Obama is set to announce a new round of strategic nuclear warhead reductions in the near future as part of a disarmament agenda that could reduce U.S. strategic warheads to as few as 1,000 weapons.

 

Business

Northrop aims to buy back 25 percent of shares by end of 2015

U.S. arms maker Northrop Grumman said May 16 it plans to buy back 25 percent of its outstanding shares by the end of 2015, after its board of directors approved $4 billion in further share repurchases.

EADS fixes lower euro-collar rate as $5.5 billion hedges expire

European Aeronautic, Defence & Space Co., Europe’s biggest aerospace and defense company, and Safran SA used currency hedges to lock in lower exchange rates for the next four years after the euro weakened, filings show.

Airbus targets A400M military airlifter sales push at Paris show

Airbus SAS plans to use next month’s Paris air show to bolster export prospects for its A400 military cargo plane as it rushes to meet a mid-year deadline to deliver the first model to the French air force.

 

Defense

U.S. lawmakers blast Air Force moves on cancelled Northrop drone

Two U.S. lawmakers urged Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel to ensure that the Air Force complied with a law requiring the service to buy three high-altitude Global Hawk unmanned planes built by Northrop Grumman that it had tried to cancel.

The breadth and scope of military sexual assaults, as quantified in a Pentagon report

As senior military leaders and government officials grapple with how to reduce sexual assaults in the military, a Pentagon report provides details of the problem. The numbers may not add up in all cases due to rounding or smaller categories that were not included.

Policy on drone strike authorization doesn’t need to change, Defense official says

A senior Defense Department official said May 16 that the Pentagon sees no need to change the broad congressional authorization under which the military conducts lethal drone strikes against terrorist targets and estimated that the war with al Qaeda could continue for up to two decades.

DOD proposes lifting Medal of Honor limit

The Defense Department wants to repeal a decades-old law restricting a service member to receiving only one Medal of Honor, saying the “V” device added for subsequent awards seems too little for someone who has performed such a valorous act.

At Guantanamo, a costly confinement

Every day, the workers in the Guantanamo Bay kitchen cook three squares for the detainees held here. And every day, up to 100 of the 166 inmates send them back. They’re protesting their ongoing imprisonment by going on hunger strikes for what is now 100 days.

 

Technology

NASA buys into ‘quantum’ computer

A $15 million computer that uses “quantum physics” effects to boost its speed is to be installed at a NASA facility. It will be shared by Google, NASA, and other scientists, providing access to a machine said to be up to 3,600 times faster than conventional computers.

 

International

Australia: Blurred lines mar Afghanistan mission

Australia’s elite special forces have ranged far and wide across southern Afghanistan, often carrying out what are called ”kill-capture” missions against Taliban targets. If the targets are killed, that’s usually an end to it. If captured, they will be brought to a nondescript building within the sprawling Tarin Kowt multinational base in Oruzgan province, arriving handcuffed, wearing earmuffs and painted goggles to obscure their vision.

Israel: Outcry at plan to draft ultra-Orthodox

Thousands of young ultra-Orthodox men have protested against an Israeli government proposal to draft them into the military for the first time.




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