Headlines – October 19, 2019

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News

U.S. conducts airstrike on American weapons storage site as troops pull out of Syria-
Two US Air Force F-15 jets conducted an airstrike targeting an American munitions storage bunker at a U.S. base in Syria Oct. 16 in order to prevent the munitions and other equipment from falling into the hands of armed groups, two US defense officials told CNN.
 
Trump says U.S. troops are ‘totally safe’ amid growing chaos in Syria-
President Donald Trump declared Oct. 16 that U.S. troops serving in Syria are “totally safe” amid fighting among local military forces thanks to “strategically brilliant” moves to pull back American assets in recent days.
 
 

Business

Three ways the Pentagon wants to make buying American weapons easier-
America sold more than $55 billion in weapons abroad in fiscal 2019, but the man in charge of those efforts hopes to increase sales as he continues to tinker with the security cooperation system.
 
Israel’s UVision to open U.S. plant to build loitering munitions-
The relative newcomer to military drones, UVision, is “working” with SOCOM, the Marines and other U.S. defense entities to sell its medium-sized drone, the Hero-120F.
 
Rafael’s simulator uses AI to help crews see the battlefield-
Israeli defense veteran Rafael showed us its new, AI-powered 360 degree transparent cockpit design, which gives two crew members sitting buttoned up inside an armored vehicle remarkable situational awareness while feeding them real-time battlefield information and data.
 
Raytheon’s pitch for precision strike, the post INF missile-
It’s one of the Army’s top priorities, the Precision Strike Missile, a weapon to replace the venerable ATACMS missile built by Lockheed.
 
Army begs industry for help to expand satcom capacity-
Army leaders want industry to help develop technologies to simplify the receivers required for access to communications satellites, including commercial broadband mega-constellations in Low Earth Orbit.
 
BAE Systems to manage open source data for U.S. Army in $437M contract-
(UPI) BAE Systems will provide intelligence support to the U.S. Army in a $437 million task order, the company announced.
  
U.S. Army has no plans to purchase more Iron Dome systems-
(UPI) The U.S. Army does not intend to purchase additional Israeli-made Iron Dome missile defense systems, but may have to, the officer leading a missile group said.
  
Raytheon clinches ‘must win’ U.S. contract for new Patriot radar-
(Bloomberg) Raytheon Co. has won a U.S. Army contest to provide a new radar system for Patriot missiles, beating out Lockheed Martin Corp. and Northrop Grumman Corp., said people familiar with the matter.
 
 

Defense

Barbara Barrett confirmed as next Air Force secretary-
The Senate on Oct. 16 approved Barbara Barrett, a former ambassador to Finland, to become the next secretary of the Air Force after a 85–7 vote.
 
Army South is ‘on the lookout’ for China, Russia, starts new strategic deployment exercise-
The Army component of U.S. Southern Command is planning to send a Stryker battalion to Chile for the first strategic deployment of that kind called Southern Vanguard.
 
U.S. Army delays Stryker-mounted Javelin missiles-
The U.S. Army is delaying the integration of Javelin anti-tank missiles onto the Stryker combat vehicle due to problems in connecting the weapon to the remote weapons station, according to Col. Bill Venable, the service’s program manager for the Stryker combat vehicle.
 
U.S. Army prepares for electronic warfare prototypes-
Within the next six months, the Army is expected to choose at least two companies for prototypes and experiments on the service’s first integrated signals intelligence, electronic warfare and cyber platform.
 
Air Force getting ready to deploy a drone-killing laser, phaser-
As the Army moves forward with plans to mount anti-drone lasers on Stryker vehicles, the Air Force is preparing to send its own vehicle-borne laser drone-killers overseas in just a few months.
 
 

Veterans

Trump mulled order to close parts of VA health system, Shulkin says in new book-
Eager for changes at the Department of Veterans Affairs, President Donald Trump toyed early on with issuing an executive order to close parts of the VA health system without consulting Congress, according to an upcoming book by his former VA secretary.
 
Why federal spending on veterans education benefits has soared nearly 250 percent-
Federal spending on veterans’ education benefits grew nearly 250 percent over the span of 10 years, an increase largely attributed to one veterans program: the Post-9/11 GI Bill.