Headlines – November 6, 2019

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News

Trump OKs wider Syria oil mission, raising legal questions-
President Donald Trump has approved an expanded military mission to secure an expanse of oil fields across eastern Syria, raising a number of difficult legal questions about whether U.S. troops can launch strikes against Syrian, Russian or other forces if they threaten the oil, U.S. officials said.
 
SecDef: China is exporting killer robots to the Mideast-
China is exporting drones that it advertises as having lethal autonomy to the Middle East, Defense Secretary Mark Esper said Nov. 5.
 
 

Business

Finland warns fighter contenders to keep their budget-busting offers real-
Finland has issued a formal notification to industry candidates in its multibillion-dollar fighter program, urging them to keep their proposals within the prescribed budget constraints.
 
Fincantieri picks former Leonardo high flyer to helm naval unit-
In a surprise pick, Italian shipyard Fincantieri has hired veteran aerospace manager Giuseppe Giordo – who has built his career selling military aircraft – to head up its naval business unit.
 
Will a new strike force stop collusion on government contracts?-
The Department of Justice launched an initiative Nov. 5 that aims to prevent trillions of dollars in government spending from being wasted on purchases where contractors rigged their bidding prices or participated in other fraudulent schemes.
 
Bell-Boeing awarded $146M for MV-22 aircraft upgrades, maintenance-
Bell-Boeing has been awarded a $146 million contract for upgrades and maintenance on MV-22 aircraft.
 
 

Defense

As possible shutdown looms, troop pay raises seem safe, but benefits could be interrupted-
Troops are set to get a pay bump next year, and despite partisan bickering on Capitol Hill and looming threats of a government shutdown, their higher paychecks seem safe, though benefits could be impacted if lawmakers in Washington fail to make a deal.
 
U.S. suspending ‘Vigilant Ace’ Korea fighter jet exercise for a 2nd year-
The U.S. military will hold limited flight exercises next month with South Korea despite suspending its larger “Vigilant Ace” exercise for the second year in a row, according to the Defense Department.
 
After 18 years, JSTARS surveillance plane is coming home from the Middle East-
After 18 years of deployments, the E-8C Joint Surveillance Target Attack Radar System (JSTARS) left the U.S. Central Command area of responsibility last month, marking the aircraft’s final mission to the region, according to a recent news release.
 
Ford aircraft carriers not ready for F-35s, so aging Vinson gets the call-
The Navy is upgrading one of its oldest aircraft carriers to be the first to fly the service’s newest plane, the F-35C, giving it a capability the service’s brand-new $13 billion carrier, the delayed and trouble-prone USS Gerald R. Ford, won’t have for years once it deploys.
 
 

Veterans

In five years, the VA has given out 200,000 doses of anti-overdose drug-
The Department of Veterans Affairs issued naloxone — a drug used to treat narcotic overdoses in emergency situations — to more than 200,000 veterans from May 2014 to September 2019, according to a department news release.
 
VA taking note of ‘alarming’ burn pit trends in WWP survey-
A disturbing trend related to exposure to burn pits while deployed, recently detailed in a Wounded Warrior Project survey, has been noted by the Department of Veterans Affairs. But more research is needed before any changes to presumptive illnesses and benefits can be considered, according to a top VA official.