U.S. says flight over Sea of Japan was safe, lawful
The U.S. says an Air Force reconnaissance flight over the Sea of Japan that triggered a Russian protest was conducted safely and according to international law.
Russia’s Defense Ministry protested the May 22 flight by the U.S. RC-135, saying it jeopardized air safety. The ministry summoned the U.S. military attache to complain about the incident.
Moscow says the aircraft was flying with its transponder switched off and was at an altitude used by civilian flights in that area.
U.S. Navy Cmdr. Dave Benham, a spokesman for U.S. Pacific Command, says the plane flew a routine reconnaissance mission with due regard for the safety of navigation of all aircraft, and the flight was professional and completed without incident.
The U.S. says the flight posed no risk to aircraft at any time. AP
Yale commencement includes first ROTC graduates since 1970s
Defense Secretary Ashton Carter handed out commissions to the Yale’s first ROTC graduating class in more than four decades.
Carter, a Yale alumnus, May 23 awarded 18 commissions, 14 to Yale students and four to others who trained at the Ivy League school. The military ceremony followed the awarding of more than 3,600 degrees at Yale’s 315th commencement.
ROTC programs left Yale and the campuses of several other prominent universities in the late 1960s and early 1970s in the fervor of student protests against the Vietnam War.
They were kept away until 2012, after the military ended its “Don’t ask, don’t tell” policy that had banned gays from serving openly in the armed services. The universities had said the policy violated nondiscrimination rules for campus organizations.
Carter said he is gratified to be leading the defense department in an era when society admires the military. He told the ROTC students they were bridging a divide in the campus community that had persisted for too long, and providing other Yale students with a new perspective.
“People think differently about the world when a former roommate is managing the nuclear reactor on a submarine, or a former organic chemistry classmate is serving as a combat medic, or a fellow programmer is defending our nation’s cybersecurity,” he said in his prepared remarks.
The return of the ROTC renewed a long military tradition at Yale. David Bushnell, an inventor, is credited with creating the first submarine ever used in combat while studying at Yale in 1775, and one of the original six Naval ROTC units was established at the university in 1926. AP
Boeing sells 100 planes worth $11.3B to Vietnam’s VietJet
Boeing is selling 100 aircraft worth about $11.3 billion at list prices to Vietnam’s VietJet as the airline seeks to expand its international and domestic flights.
Aircraft in deals of this size are typically sold at a discount to list prices, however.
Boeing said May 23 that the planes, all of which are 737 Max 200 models, will be delivered between 2019 and 2023.
It was the single largest airplane purchase by Vietnam, according to the Chicago company.
The deal was signed in Hanoi, Vietnam, and witnessed by President Barack Obama, who is visiting the country for the first time. VietJet will also buy $3 billion worth of airplane engines from Pratt & Whitney, a manufacturer owned by United Technologies Corp., based in Farmington, Conn. AP