Headlines – July 22, 2020

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SECDEF: ‘We’re not going to be stopped by anybody’ from operating in South China Sea-
Nobody will stop the U.S. military from operating in the South China Sea, according to Defense Secretary Mark Esper.
 
South China Sea: Chinese air force ‘sends warning’ to U.S. Navy with live-fire drills-
China’s air force held live-fire drills and sent more fighter jets to its base on disputed Woody Island in the South China Sea last week, as the U.S. Navy steps up drills and freedom of navigation operations in the region.
 
Trump is determined to bring home U.S. military forces from somewhere-
When President Trump spoke with Pentagon leaders early last month about U.S. troop levels in Afghanistan, he was anxious for a hefty reduction by Election Day in November, according to U.S. officials familiar with the discussion.
 
House defense bill strips Confederate base names, curbs president’s powers in troop deployments-
In a strong bipartisan vote, House lawmakers on July 21 passed their $740.5 billion plan for the annual defense authorization bill, including provisions for a hefty military pay raise next year, new restrictions on the president’s war powers and requirements that the Defense Department rename bases honoring Confederate leaders.
 
 

Business

DARPA issues solicitation for moving-target recognition project-
The U.S. Defense Department’s advanced research arm issued a broad agency announcement July 15 for technology that would use algorithms to identify moving military ground vehicles.
 
Navy issues $14M more for continued Knifefish testing-
General Dynamics will continue providing engineering support for the U.S. Navy’s Knifefish, an unmanned undersea mine hunter, as the service looks to increase testing and evaluation before entering full-rate production.
 
The best defense is defense-
Lockheed Martin’s second-quarter results show why it is a great company to own during a pandemic.
 
Industry set to weigh in on U.S. Army’s latest OMFV plan-
The U.S. Army is asking industry to provide feedback on its updated Optionally Manned Fighting Vehicle program before it finalizes a solicitation for its fourth and latest attempt at fielding a new infantry fighting vehicle to replace its M2 Bradley Fighting Vehicle fleet.
 
Lockheed Martin may go shopping if defense budgets fall next year-
If defense spending goes down in the coming year—expected because of large COVID-19 bailout packages—it could be an opportunity for Lockheed Martin, company President and Chief Executive Officer James D. Taiclet said July 21.
 
 

Defense

Esper: ‘No orders’ issued to remove forces from South Korea-
The U.S. defense secretary said July 21 he has not issued orders to remove American forces from South Korea, but he did leave the door open for such a move in the future.
 
U.S. Navy to develop drone deployment strategy-
The U.S. Navy’s top officer has ordered his staff to develop a comprehensive strategy to field unmanned systems in the air, on the water and under the sea over the coming years.
 
House proposal could give Naval ranks to Space Force-
Space Force ranks could soon mirror those in the Navy, under a House provision that would make the Space Force dump the Air Force’s system for the sea service’s.
 
 

Veterans

Plan to discourage for-profit schools from targeting military students advances-
In an attempt to curb for-profit colleges’ targeting of military students, House lawmakers on July 20 voted to reclassify how military tuition assistance money is counted in funding formulas for higher education federal aid.
 
Congress approves bill giving federal support to veterans treatment courts-
A bill that would help give a second chance to veterans who’ve committed nonviolent crimes has moved to the president’s office to be signed into law.
 
Plan to boost housing improvement grants for disabled veterans poised to become law-
House lawmakers on July 20 easily passed legislation designed to give additional grants for housing upgrades to disabled veterans, sending the measure to the president to be signed into law.
 
87-year-old Korean War veteran graduates high school-
A Korean War veteran who dropped out of high school during his junior year in 1952 to join the U.S. Air Force and became a pilot during the war has finally received his high school diploma at age 87.
 
Severely disabled veterans will soon be eligible for bigger adaptive housing grants-
Congress on July 20 approved legislation that raises the amount of money awarded to severely injured veterans to make their homes disability-friendly and increases the number of times they can apply for the benefit.
 
 
 

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