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February 24, 2014

Headlines – February 24, 2014

News:

Republicans: New Pentagon budget ‘sacrifices security on altar of entitlements’ –

Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel Feb. 24 outlined a five-year Pentagon budget that would shrink Army forces to fewer than before the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, while retiring older weapons, including the U-2 spy plane and the A-10 attack aircraft. 

U.S. examines Afghanistan option that would leave behind 3,000 troops –

One of the four options President Obama is considering for a U.S. military presence in Afghanistan beyond this year would leave behind 3,000 troops, based in Kabul and at the American installation at Bagram, U.S. officials said. 

Mighty Dragon’: China’s upgraded stealth jet ready for first flight –

The third prototype for China’s J-20 “Mighty Dragon” stealth fighter jet appears to be prepared to take its maiden flight at any time.

 

Business:

Pentagon moving ahead with new vertical lift aircraft –

The Pentagon is committed to early design work on a new aircraft that will replace thousands of helicopters now used by the U.S. military, its first “clean sheet design” program in years, the Army official heading the effort said Feb. 21. 

Lockheed F-35 for Marines delayed as test exposes cracks –

On-the-ground stress testing for the U.S. Marine Corps version of Lockheed Martin’s F-35 jet may be halted for as long as a year after cracks were found in the aircraft’s bulkheads, Pentagon officials said. 

DOD to lead two new manufacturing institutes –

President Obama will announce Feb. 25 two innovation institutes, led by the Department of Defense, as part of an effort to revitalize U.S. manufacturing. 

New logistics system could help military keep tabs on volatile munitions –

Tracking items in warehouses is a big problem for the military, which cannot use radio frequency identification systems on explosives and munitions. A product jointly created by Lockheed Martin and Visible Assets Inc. could fix that problem by using magnetic tags to identify items. 

Turkey, Sikorsky sign $3.5 billion helicopter deal –

Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan announced Feb. 21 that his government and US helicopter manufacturer Sikorsky Aircraft had signed a long-dormant contract to co-produce an initial batch of 109 utility helicopters. 

Singapore could ultimately decide SABR/RACR showdown in SE Asia –

An industry source who spoke with IHS Jane’s claimed that the reason there would be no appreciable impact on the unit cost for the upgrade offered to Taiwan if the U.S. Air Force ditched CAPES is because “in reality the Taiwanese were always paying for the entire NRE; they just do not know it.” 

Time running out on Europe’s Typhoon orders –

Governments and industry are in discussions over the fate of the final order of Eurofighter Typhoon combat jets for the four partner nations involved in the program amid Germany’s plan to end its purchases early.

 

Defense:

The Pentagon has a massive leak problem. Why can’t it close the floodgates? –

The release of the Pentagon’s massive-yet-smaller budget is just weeks away, but budget decisions like the number of ships the Navy will buy or the size of the National Guard have been dribbling out in the media for months. That has pleased reporters looking for scoops and those defense officials who seek to shape the debate about weapons programs in a budget cycle that has produced much anxiety before it has even begun. But one man is not pleased: Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel.

Quadrennial Review to emphasize Middle East –

The US Defense Department’s latest military strategy review will stress the Pentagon’s commitment to the Middle East, a region that has felt jilted by numerous US actions in recent years.

Fixing Strykers falls to soldiers as Army ends repair contract –

Chief Warrant Officer 3 Jason Allen got a tongue-in-cheek warning from fellow Army mechanics when he told them he wanted to work on Stryker infantry vehicles at Joint Base Lewis-McChord.

Navy develops ‘world’s smallest guided missile’ –

As the military relies more and more on unmanned aerial vehicles to carry out pinpoint strikes, the services need smaller munitions to arm them. 

Sea Dragon helicopter: Troubled past, uncertain future –

The Navy started making plans in the late 1990s to retire the most powerful and crash-prone helicopters in its fleet.

Air Force reluctantly upgrades A-10s after Congress complains –

On Feb. 12, the Air Force’s top civilian official directed the service’s Air Combat Command to continue developing a new software upgrade for the A-10 after a complaint from Sen. Kelly Ayotte, a New Hampshire Republican. 

U.S. Air Force to launch previously classified satellite system this year –

The Geosynchronous Space Situational Awareness Program (GSAP) system will have electro-optical sensors and be based in near-geosynchronous orbit, drifting below and above the geo belt. The US Air Force will be able to control the movement of the constellation, made up of two satellites, in order to position its “neighborhood watch” surveillance. 

Air Force begins massive B-1B overhaul –

The Air Force is in the early phases of a multi-year technological overhaul and upgrade of its B1-B Lancer long-range bomber fleet which will outfit all 62 aircraft with a wide-ranging suite of new displays, computer technology and avionics, service officials said.

 

Veterans:

DOD watchdog: Medication management policy puts wounded warriors at risk for overdose –

A new report from a Department of Defense watchdog concludes that wounded warriors may be at risk for accidental prescription drug over dosage. 

Can’t hear you now! VA leaves vets waiting weeks for hearing aids –

The Veterans Affairs Department is taking weeks to provide or repair hearing aids for its patients, leaving hearing-impaired veterans at risk in the latest failure by the agency charged with caring for America’s war heroes.

Families of MIA soldiers hope for excavation at Vietnam war site –

Potential evidence related to Americans still missing after the final battle of the Vietnam War may lead to extensive excavation efforts on an island off the coast of Cambodia, giving renewed hope to the families of the missing.




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Headlines August 1, 2015

News: Marine F-35 jets deemed ready for combat – A small batch of the highly anticipated – and much criticized – F-35B Joint Strike Fighter jets have been approved for combat by the U.S. Marine Corps.   News: Reports: China to sell J-10 fighter to Iran, Syria? – Iran is rumored external link to be buying 150...
 
 

Oklahoma, Tulsa push for F-35 base at Tulsa International

If state and local officials have their way, the Oklahoma Air National Guard base in Tulsa will become the newest home of the U.S. military’s most expensive weapons system, the F-35 Lightning II. Members of an F-35 task force want the Pentagon to base the fighter aircraft at the Tulsa-based 138th Fighter Wing, located at...
 
 

Headlines July 31, 2015

News: Carter: Military leaders could arm more troops at home – Following the recent fatal shooting of four Marines and a sailor in Tennessee, Defense Secretary Ash Carter is ordering the military services to consider new policies that would enhance security for troops at home, including potentially arming more personnel.   Business: DOD weighs supplier base,...
 

 

News Briefs July 31, 2015

U.S. delivering eight newer F-16 warplanes to Egypt The United States Embassy in Cairo says the U.S. is delivering eight newer F-16 warplanes to Egypt as part of an ongoing military support package. It says in a July 30 statement that the aircraft, of the current Block 52 production variant, will be flown in from...
 
 

Headlines July 29, 2015

News: Lockheed F-35s reliability found wanting in shipboard testing – The Marine Corps’ version of Lockheed Martin’s F-35 fighter demonstrated poor reliability in a 12-day exercise at sea, according to the U.S. military’s top testing officer.   Business: Rockwell Collins to upgrade Boeing comms system – Rockwell Collins will upgrade the low-frequency transmi...
 
 

Headlines July 27, 2015

News: U.S.-Turkey deal aims to create de facto ‘safe zone’ in northwest Syria – Turkey and the United States have agreed on the outlines of a de facto “safe zone” along the Turkey-Syria border under the terms of a deal that is expected to significantly increase the scope and pace of the U.S.-led air war against...
 




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