Headlines – December 3, 2018



Victims look to punish Iran for attacks against U.S. troops in Iraq –
A lawsuit seeks to hold the Islamic Republic of Iran accountable to the tune of $10 billion for weapons, materials, training and other support that led directly to the death or mutilation of more than 1,000 U.S. troops from 2004 to 2011.
Days of secret military operations may soon be over. Does that matter? –
In the age of social media and increasingly available connectivity, experts say it is becoming more and more challenging for the U.S. military to conduct operations under a cloud of darkness.


Contractors charged in plot to defraud US in multibillion-dollar project at Bagram –
A grand jury charged three businessmen from Virginia with scheming to defraud the U.S. government by routing supplies for a multibillion-dollar contract through Iran, according to an indictment unsealed Nov. 29.
U.S. government, Boeing to help Japan upgrade missile, electronic warfare capabilities for F-15 jets –
Japan’s planned upgrade of its Boeing F-15 Eagle fighter jets will involve support from the United States and Boeing, the Japanese Defense Ministry has confirmed.
Saab puts marketing effort for Swordfish maritime plane on hiatus –
Over the past two years, Swedish aircraft manufacturer Saab has put its advertising muscle into promoting a maritime patrol aircraft it called Swordfish.
Japanese acquisition officials reveal next steps in search for advanced fighter jet –
Japan is pushing ahead with research and development into advanced fighter jet technology, despite uncertainty over its acquisition strategy for a next-generation fighter and questions about the degree to which Japanese industry will be involved in the program.
U.S. clears 162 Abrams tank upgrades for Morocco, HIMARS for Poland –
The U.S. State Department cleared Nov. 29 the potential sale of support and upgrades for a Moroccan order of 162 Abrams tanks, a sale that could potentially be worth $1.26 billion.
Italy F-35s reach initial operating capability –
Italian Air Force F-35s have reached initial operating capability,Gen. Alberto Rosso, the country’s air force chief, said Nov. 30. The announcement marked the first time the aircraft has achieved the milestone in Europe.
U.S. military is genetically engineering new life forms to detect enemy subs –
The Pentagon is also looking at living camouflage, self-healing paint, and a variety of other applications of engineered organisms, but the basic science remains a challenge.


U.S. has dropped more munitions in 2018 in Afghanistan than it has in any year in over a decade –
The United States dropped more bombs and other munitions in Afghanistan during the first ten months of 2018 than in any other full year since documentation began, new Air Force data shows.
Mattis sees progress in Afghanistan, but no plans for troop drawdowns –
Defense Secretary Jim Mattis said he is focused on finding an end to the war in Afghanistan, but that doesn’t involve withdrawing U.S. military forces from the country soon.
Survey finds strong support for military members, less support for military funding –
Americans still enjoy overwhelming confidence in the U.S. military, according to a new survey by the Ronald Reagan Presidential Foundation. But defense lawmakers warned that that support shouldn’t be taken for granted.
Is Trump really going to cut defense budget? –
For military planners, the biggest question heading into 2019 is whether the president’s proposed $700 billion defense budget plan is a negotiating ploy or a sincere target.
Mattis: Cutting defense will not help deficit –
Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis on Dec. 1 threw his weight behind an op-ed from two top Republicans calling for greater funding for the Defense Department — and lining himself against Trump administration guidance to cut fiscal year 2020 defense spending.
U.S. lawmakers tangle over nuclear arsenal, Russia treaties –
Half of all Republican senators are urging President Donald Trump to take heed of Russia’s growing nuclear weapons capability as the New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty’s expiration date approaches — just one of many partisan salvos this week in Washington’s fight over the nuclear arsenal and its scope.
When totalitarian regimes play by different rules in tech, here’s how U.S. military can compete –
The United States faces a conundrum: it must develop advanced technology capabilities that enhances the military but do so at a pace fast enough to compete against totalitarian regimes that play by different rules.
Republicans blast Trump’s Pentagon budget cuts as ‘dangerous’ –
The chairmen of the House and Senate Armed Services Committees on Nov. 30 implored President Donald Trump to boost defense spending plans in fiscal 2020 over already announced targets, arguing the lower funding levels will undermine recent improvements in military readiness.
DOD gets request for 4,000 troops to stay on Mexico border through Jan. 31 –
The Department of Homeland Security has asked the Pentagon to keep active-duty forces on the U.S.-Mexico border through Jan. 31, defense officials familiar with the request confirmed to Military Times.
U.S. Army’s second security force assistance brigade is activated and preparing to deploy next year –
The second of six eventual security force assistance brigades officially stood up at Fort Bragg, N.C., on Nov. 29, as did its parent Security Force Assistance Command.
Rocket, air defense units added to U.S. Army’s inventory in Europe –
A long-range artillery unit was reactivated on Nov. 30, just two days after the Army added a new air defense battalion to its inventory in southern Germany.
New helo masks will better protect against chemical, radiological attacks –
The U.S. Air Force has rolled out a new, updated mask for helicopter air crew members that the Air Force says will better protect airmen in case of chemical, biological, radiological or nuclear attacks.


Remains of soldier killed in Chosin Reservoir battle now returning home –
The remains of a New York soldier killed during the Korean War 68 years ago are scheduled to be returned for burial in his upstate New York hometown.
Remains of WWII pilot are first of the 27 Tuskegee Airmen still listed as MIA to be identified –
The remains of a New York pilot killed during World War II are the first of the 27 Tuskegee Airmen listed as missing in action to be identified, the Pentagon announced Nov. 29.