Headlines – December 12, 2016



Government shutdown averted with spending through April –
President Obama signed a temporary spending bill that keeps the government open and funded through April 28 and includes the Pentagon’s highest procurement priorities.
Trump transition team reviewing military rules of engagement –
President-elect Donald Trump’s transition team at the Pentagon is looking into loosening the rules of engagement for troops fighting overseas, according to a report.


Iran seals $17 billion Boeing deal, close to Airbus order –
The deal between IranAir and U.S. planemaker Boeing includes 50 narrow-body 737 MAX aircraft and 30 long-haul 777s, split equally between the 777-300ER, which is badly in need of an order boost, and the 406-seat 777-9, which is under development.
GA-ASI begins flight testing US Army’s Improved Gray Eagle UAS –
General Atomics Aeronautical Systems Inc. has begun flight testing for its MQ-1C Gray Eagle Extended Range series unmanned aircraft for the U.S. Army’s Improved Gray Eagle requirement, the company announced Dec. 8.
Former Indian Air Force chief arrested in AgustaWestland copter deal –
A former Indian Air Force chief, Air Chief Marshal Shashindra Pal Tyagi, was arrested Dec. 9 by the Central Bureau of Investigation for alleged corruption in the purchase of 12 AW 101 VVIP helicopters from AgustaWestland, a subsidiary of Italy’s Leonardo-Finmeccanica.
Norway looks south in search of Arctic-class submarine builder –
The Norwegian government will soon ratify a decision on what new submarine type will replace the navy’s aging Ula-class vessels. A decision could be made within one to two months.
NORAD awards IT contract –
S4 has been awarded a $99 million contract for IT support of North American Air Defense Command and U.S. Northern Command.
Textron chosen for F-35 electronic warfare simulation deal –
Textron has been selected by Lockheed Martin to provide a simulation system for the F-35s electronic warfare equipment.
U.S. clears transport and attack helo sales to Middle East –
The U.S. government has approved a package of transport and attack helicopters for the Middle East valued at $7.01 billion.


Mattis could be defense secretary as early as Inauguration Day –
Retired Marine Corps Gen. James Mattis could be the 26th Secretary of Defense within hours of President-elect Donald Trump taking office, the result of legislative rules pushed by Republican lawmakers as the congressional session came to close.
Philippines curtails military exercises with U.S. –
For the first time in 34 years, the U.S. and Philippines will not hold the annual amphibious joint exercise PHIBLEX in 2017, the latest sign of strain in the two countries’ relationship since Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte was elected in May.
Defense, Navy secretaries spar over budget –
The terms in office of Defense Secretary Ash Carter and Navy Secretary Ray Mabus might be nearing their ends, but the two are exchanging a final series of pot shots as the federal budget preparation season reaches its climax. Carter, in the view of many, is preparing a fiscal 2018 defense budget built around cost restrictions imposed by the Budget Control Act — commonly known as sequestration — while Mabus is defiantly submitting a Navy budget anticipating the lifting of those restrictions as the Trump administration takes over in January.
U.S. Army’s radical idea to save its tanks from enemy missiles –
The Army is asking industry to to develop moveable tank armor that, like Captain America’s shield, can stop an incoming missile.
Air Force report: Bad directions, inability to see caused fatal F-16, Cessna collision –
A midair collision between an Air Force F-16 and a Cessna occurred because both pilots couldn’t see each other and questionable directions were given to the F-16 pilot by air traffic controllers, according to an Air Force investigation report released Dec. 9.
Air Force eyes Congressional waiver from fixed-price deal on JSTARS –
The Air Force hopes to release a final request for proposals for JSTARS replacement aircraft by the end of the year, but that is becoming increasingly unlikely as the service weighs whether to move forward with changes to its contract strategy that could push fielding further into the future, the service’s top civilian said.
Marines want armed drone ASAP to escort V-22 –
When V-22 Ospreys full of Marines take to the skies 10 years from now, they could be escorted by armed high-speed drones called MUX.


VA Secretary McDonald hopes his work serves as a blueprint for the Trump administration –
Veterans Affairs Secretary Bob McDonald believes his department has seen tremendous improvements in just the last two years.