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MARSOC guys on MEU

BALLSTON, VA: A soufflé is fluffy but a SOFLE – a brand new military acronym that stands for Special Operations Forces Liaison Element — is sinewy and powerful. Just ask Marine Lt. Col. Andrew Christian, who led the first such unit for the 11th Marine Expeditionary Unit during a seven month deployment to the Pacific… Keep reading →

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NATIONAL HARBOR: Navy Secretary Ray Mabus may want to move drones to the top of his priorities, but what kind of unmanned systems do the Navy and Marine Corps want to buy? Don’t think Predator or even the Navy’s new 131-foot-wingspan Triton. Imagine a swarm of buzzing, scuttling or swimming robots that are smaller but smarter. While a… Keep reading →

ISIL targets since February 4th - 31 March

Airpower sounds swift and surgical, but sometimes it’s really closer to trench warfare with wings. Earlier this week, with the smoke still rising from the retaken Iraqi city of Tikrit, Central Command released detailed data on air strikes against the self-proclaimed Islamic State. We’ve crunched the numbers, and it’s clear the eight-month-old campaign is becoming… Keep reading →

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HUNTSVILLE, ALA.: After 20 years and two costly cancelled programs, the US Army finally has a new artillery vehicle. While the ceremonial rollout isn’t till Thursday, contractor BAE Systems has already delivered the first pair of self-propelled howitzers. Oft-overlooked and blandly named, this Paladin Integrated Management program is a modest but much-needed success for the… Keep reading →

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WASHINGTON: One of America’s most respected strategists is calling for a comprehensive review of the military’s roles and missions to prepare the way for revision of the basic law undergirding the modern force, Goldwater-Nichols. The combination of an excellent quartet of lawmakers leading the armed services committees; the markedly complex and global set of threats… Keep reading →

Sydney J. Freedberg Jr. photo

HUNTSVILLE, ALA: There seems to be little support for Army Chief of Staff Ray Odierno‘s push for the four service chiefs to get greater authority over procurement — not even from the Army’s civilian head of acquisition Heidi Shyu. It’s not actually clear exactly what Odierno wants. “We’re still working through the exact authorities” in response to a congressional request for more detail, Odierno… Keep reading →

armynietouchpad

UPDATED 10:55 with Deputy Assistant Secretary Miller comments HUNTSVILLE, ALA: After 20 years of costly and cancelled programs, the US Army wants to break its weapons-buying system wide open. This time, service leaders swear, will be different from previous, failed reforms. The pinnacle of the new process will be something called the Army Warfighting Assessment,… Keep reading →

Senate side of the capitol

WASHINGTON: The hearing season is roaring ahead at full tilt, with senior officials at five defense hearings on Wednesday. Here’s our preview of some of the likely topics and issues. The most interesting to Breaking Defense readers probably will be the unique pairing of the four Army and Air Force leaders before the full Senate… Keep reading →

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CAPITOL HILL: Sequestration will literally hit Congress where it lives. If implemented, Army officials and a key senator said this morning, the Budget Control Act spending caps will require cutbacks or outright closures at bases across the country. “At the end of the day, as much as we all love our bases, we’ve going to have… Keep reading →

Scorpion by Textron 1

PENTAGON: Army Chief of Staff Gen. Ray Odierno. Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Mark Welsh. Marine Commandant Gen. Joseph Dunford. National Guard Bureau Chief Army Gen. Frank Grass. Gen. Hawk Carlisle, head of Air Force Air Combat Command. That’s a lot of stars and command authority gathered in one place and they all came together at… Keep reading →

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