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Marines: F-35B Joint Strike Fighter Ready For War

Marines: F-35B Joint Strike Fighter Ready For War

WASHINGTON: The first variant of the most expensive weapons program ever is now officially ready for combat. In one of his last acts as Marine Corps Commandant, future Joint Chiefs Chairman Gen. Joseph Dunford announced today that the Marine model of the Joint Strike Fighter, the F-35B vertical take-off and landing (VTOL) version, has achieved… Keep reading →

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Lt. Gen. Vincent Stewart DIA

PENTAGON CITY: We’ve all heard about social media and its influence on international affairs and national security. The Arab Spring blossomed when a Tunisian man’s self-immolation was shared online and sparked uprisings that have yet to subside. But you don’t really think of social media as a useful tool for detecting weapons and their use. After… Keep reading →

Chinese artificial island landing strip

CAPITOL HILL: Adm. John Richardson sailed through his Senate confirmation hearing this morning. But two ominous issues breached the surface, hinting at growing conflict between the administration and Hill Republicans over how to handle China. Richardson, an experienced submariner nominated for Chief of Naval Operations, deftly dodged the difficult questions from Senate Armed Services Committee: Does US-China… Keep reading →

Sydney J. Freedberg Jr.

WASHINGTON: Randy Forbes pretty much looks like a hawk. The House seapower subcommittee chairman has fought for a bigger battle fleet with long-range drone bombers, called for China to be kicked out of the international RIMPAC wargames and blasted the Obama administration for its lack of a tough Pacific strategy. But does that mean China… Keep reading →

uscapitoleast

The House and Senate Armed Services committees are locked in an important battle to determine how much acquisition reform this year’s National Defense Authorization Act will embrace and what kinds of changes the Pentagon will be subject to. Sen. John McCain is pushing sweeping changes to how the Pentagon buys its weapons, including provisions that… Keep reading →

US Navy photo

TYSON’S CORNER: New laser technology looks promising as a way to shoot down Chinese-style massed missiles. But laser projects have overpromised and underdelivered for decades, from Reagan’s Star Wars in the eighties to the Airborne Laser, canceled in 2011. Now proponents must convince the skeptics — particularly in Congress — that this time is different. “Right… Keep reading →

A computer-generated image of a Royal Navy F-35B taking off vertically from the new carrier HMS Queen Elizabeth, which will be commissioned July 4th.

WASHINGTON: Prompted by the recent increase in aggressive actions by Russia, Britain’s head of defense procurement says his country is shifting its strategy in reaction. “We are refreshing our national risk assessment, which is influencing our national security strategy,” said Philip Dunne. It is the first time since 2010 that the U.K. has reviewed its strategy,… Keep reading →

Defense Department phot

  WASHINGTON: The US Army is deploying extra stocks of heavy weapons to Europe to deter Russia’s increasingly naked aggression. These are the most advanced ground weapons America can field — but the tanks and other heavy fighting vehicles in this buildup are the same ones we had the last time the Russians were a danger, back… Keep reading →

Marines perform first F-35B vertical take-off, landing at Eglin

UPDATED with Frank Kendall’s vote of confidence WASHINGTON: During the Marine’s recent operational readiness test of the F-35B, four of the Marine aircraft went up against nine enemy aircraft. “It went very poorly for the bad guys,” Lt. Gen. Jon Davis, deputy commandant for aviation, told me this afternoon. Davis provided few details, saying they… Keep reading →

Osprey formation

The V-22 Osprey will reach the eight-year mark in its operational deployment history this September. The Osprey-enabled assault force is redefining ways to think about the insertion and withdrawal of force and new ways to engage, prevail and disengage. The program has reached a critical turning point – can the Osprey be purchased by allies, and be… Keep reading →

A flight of Aggressor F-15 Eagles and F-16 Fighting Falcons fly in formation over the Nevada Test and Training Ranges on 5 June, 2008. The jets are assigned to the 64th and 65th Aggressor squadrons at Nellis Air Force Base, Nev. The Aggressor mission is to prepare the combat air forces, joint and allied aircrews for tomorrowÕs victories with challenging and realistic threat replication, training, academics and feedback.
(U.S. Air Force photo/ Master Sgt. Kevin J. Gruenwald) released

Many observers of the US military would agree that the best ideas are often not to be found among its generals and admirals. If you want to find good and disruptive ideas in the military, you get to know the majors and colonels. One of the standard comments you’ll hear about smart colonels is that they… Keep reading →

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