Headlines – November 26, 2018

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News

Army Ranger killed in combat operations in Afghanistan –
The Pentagon on Nov. 25 released the name of the soldier killed this weekend in Afghanistan.
 
Mattis explains new roles, authorities at border –
Hours after the White House signed a directive late Nov. 20 expanding the authorities of U.S. troops at the Mexican border, Defense Secretary Jim Mattis met with reporters at the Pentagon to explain what the new policies mean for the domestically deployed forces.
 
 

Business

Czech Republic to boost spending on land weapons in 2019 –
Czech Defence Minister Lubomir Metnar has announced the ministry’s acquisition plans for 2019. Next year, the country aims to purchase 210 infantry fighting vehicles, multi-purpose helicopters, and mobile air defense radars (MADRs), among other systems.
 
Italy’s Piaggio Aerospace requests receivership amid lagging drone deal –
Italy-based Piaggio Aerospace has asked the Italian government to be put into receivership due to “the state of insolvency of the company,” with unions and politicians blaming delays in an expected drone order from the Italian Air Force.
 
State Department clears $944 million in missiles for Japan, NATO –
The U.S. State Department cleared a trio of foreign military sales Nov. 19, with an eye on arming some of America’s closest partners.
 
CASC expands Tian Lei precision missile family with TL-4 ATGM –
China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation has expanded its Tian Lei (Sky Thunder) family of precision guided missiles with the ground-based short-range Tian Lei-4 (TL-4) anti-tank guided missile.
 
Czech MoD seeks light 4×4 vehicles for airborne battalion –
The Czech Ministry of Defence plans to procure a fleet of 4×4 lightweight vehicles to fulfil an urgent requirement for the Army of the Czech Republic to equip an airborne battalion planned for activation in 2020.
 
Naval Group increases industrial participation in UAV, MCM projects –
Naval Group and Atmos UAV have signed a letter of intent (LOI) to integrate the latter’s vertical take-off and landing unmanned systems for naval use.
 
 

Defense

U.S. military is putting new observation posts in northern Syria –
The U.S. military will begin putting observation posts in northern Syria to help Turkey secure its border from the threats wandering through the war-torn country.
 
Pentagon shrinks key U.S.-South Korean military exercise –
A key military exercise between the U.S. and South Korea will go ahead next year — but in a diminished form, in order to not interfere with ongoing political negotiations with North Korea.
 
Here’s how troops, veterans could be affected by the latest government shutdown threat –
Lawmakers will face yet another threat of a partial government shutdown when they return to Capitol Hill this week, but this one carries much less significance for military families and veterans than many of the last showdowns.
 
Changes coming for Pentagon’s ‘tape test,’ body composition policies –
The Pentagon expects to have a decision on changes to the dreaded “tape test” by next summer, potentially overhauling one of the main ways it evaluates service members’ fitness and body composition.
 
Government asks high court to hear transgender military case –
The Trump administration asked the Supreme Court on Friday to issue an unusually quick ruling on the Pentagon’s policy of restricting military service by transgender people.
 
Federal watchdog report chides Navy for submarine maintenance snafus –
A scathing audit by the Government Accountability Office has found that chronic and persistent maintenance delays continue to dog the Navy’s fleet of 51 attack submarines, costing taxpayers $1.5 billion for boats that sat idle.
 
U.S. Navy may have to choose between new ballistic missile subs or 355 ship fleet –
The Navy could be forced to make hard choices sooner rather than later when it comes to finding the money to replace its aging ballistic missile submarines or reach its goal of having a fleet of 355 warships, a panel of security and budgetary experts said this week.
 
First hurricane-evacuated F-22s return to Florida –
Six F-22 Raptors, which were evacuated days before Hurricane Michael ravaged Tyndall Air Force Base in Florida, returned to the state on Nov. 20.
 
Marines want a binocular night vision device for troops now –
The Marines are looking for a quicker way to see better in the dark to fill a short-term need while they wait for the Army’s advanced version of night vision devices.
 
 

Veterans

Post-9/11 GI Bill payment delays nearly over, VA leaders promise –
Blaming old computers and unanticipated software challenges, the Department of Veterans Affairs saw its pending claims inventory from Post-9/11 GI Bill participants peak in mid-September at 207,000, three times higher than normal for the start of a fall semester.
 
Confirmation of new Veterans Affairs CIO takes new urgency in light of recent GI Bill benefits problems –
A key remaining piece of business for the Senate in the final weeks of the 115th Congress will be confirming a new head of technology issues for Veterans Affairs, a post that has come under greater scrutiny with the ongoing problems processing GI Bill benefits this fall.