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Transforming ‘Distributed Lethality’ Strategy into Action

Transforming ‘Distributed Lethality’ Strategy into Action

The concept of “distributed lethality”—what Navy leadership has described as “holding more adversaries at risk across a wider geography”—was a recurring theme at the recent Surface Navy Association Symposium on surface warfare strategy. But the Navy needs to make clearer what it means and how will it be implemented. At the symposium, Vice Adm. Thomas Rowden said distributed… Keep reading →

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A US Air Force B-52 flies over the Pacific on a flight out of Guam. Bombers like this one challenged the Chinese air defense one earlier today.

WASHINGTON: Arsenal plane. It’s a great name, no? And the Hyper Velocity Projectile. Whoa. Fast flying swarming micro drones. Neat! There’s much more being developed, but it’s classified. Where is all this coming from? The Strategic Capabilities Office, or SCO for short. Defense Secretary Ash Carter talked up the new office in his 2017 budget preview speech… Keep reading →

Marine F-18 Hornet

CAPITOL HILL: It turns out Navy pilots like to breathe. That’s a potential problem in the Navy’s mainstay fighter, the F-18 Hornet, which is suffering failures of its On-Board Oxygen Generation System (OBOGS). While rare, a single case of in-flight oxygen deprivation could potentially kill the pilot, destroy a $30 million to $60 million aircraft, or… Keep reading →

An Army Grey Eagle testing a NERO jammer.

ALEXANDRIA: The executive committee on electronic warfare that Deputy Secretary Bob Work created last year is already reshaping the Pentagon bureaucracy. While the four-star officers and top civilians who make up the “EXCOM” itself have only met three times, executive committee co-chair Frank Kendall, undersecretary of acquisition, technology, and logistics, has created a new EW office and chosen… Keep reading →

Rep. Mac Thornberry

CAPITOL HILL: Nunn-McCurdy notifications to Congress of gross cost growth in a weapons system’s costs strike fear in the hearts of top Pentagon acquisition officials, and something like them may become law for a new set of costs — operations and support. “They should be the next frontier for acquisition reform,” former DoD Comptroller Bob… Keep reading →

F-35A climbing at Eglin Air Force Base

WASHINGTON: Frank Kendall signaled in December that the F-35 was no longer immune from budget cuts and it looks as if he knew what he was talking about. The story out this afternoon is that five Air Force F-35As will be cut from the fiscal 2017 budget request. Mackenzie Eaglen said at a Brookings Institution… Keep reading →

Missile Defense Agency photo

WASHINGTON: The US Army must play a larger role in the Pacific to deter China, one of DC’s leading defense experts is telling Congress today. That larger role requires politically and fiscally difficult decisions to build new kinds of units and base them in new places, Andrew Krepinevich told me in advance of his Capitol… Keep reading →

Navy photo

UPDATED with full DOT&E memo WASHINGTON: On Friday, a Navy official told us a critical test report on the embattled Littoral Combat Ship was “unfair.” This afternoon, we found out the Pentagon’s independent test office has already circulated a coldly scathing response. Defense Secretary Ash Carter has ordered the Navy to cut the LCS in favor of… Keep reading →

SD spoke at the Economic Club of Washington, D.C.

WASHINGTON: None of us knows many details about what’s in the last of the Obama defense budgets, but House Republicans are criticizing the sketchy outlines of the 2017 budget offered by Defense Secretary Ash Carter today. In particular, House Armed Services Committee Chairman Mac Thornberry is raising concerns that the Pentagon is not asking Congress… Keep reading →

pentagonaerial

PENTAGON: After 25 years of war in the Middle East, the Pentagon’s 2017 budget is the first driven by Russia and China. “The program has been shifted to a more acute focus on the two high-end competitors, Russia and China,” a senior defense official told Sydney in an interview ahead of Secretary Ash Carter’s budget speech this… Keep reading →

The X-47B drone plugs into an aerial refueling tanker for the first time.

PENTAGON: After more than a year of intense debate over whether the Navy’s future UCLASS drone should be a long-range stealth bomber or a lightly armed scout, the Defense Department has chosen — neither. Instead, the 2017 budget proposes a program that is less ambitious than either version of UCLASS but, to their mind, more… Keep reading →

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