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Gen.Ray Odierno

WASHINGTON: “In the next two years,” Army chief of staff Ray Odierno said today, the service could move out on four new combat vehicles and reboot its aging inventory for a new era of war. They range from a parachute-droppable light truck for Airborne soldiers to a scout car, a light tank, and a new… Keep reading →

CSBA graphic

WASHINGTON: The Senate Armed Services Committee has joined the push to give the Army a much larger role in the Pacific. The hard part, ironically, may be getting the Army to go along. Why should soldiers do more in the Pacific, a theater traditionally dominated by pilots, Marines, and, above all, sailors? The Pacific, obviously, is… Keep reading →

Arkansas officials talk up the bond for Lockheed Martin's JLTV factory

Not every vote on a Pentagon program is cast in Washington, DC. Today, the Arkansas state legislature convened in special session to decide on an $87 million bond issue to benefit aerospace giant Lockheed Martin. The “super project” at stake — to use the Arkansas statute’s term of art — is the expansion of Lockheed’s… Keep reading →

General Dynamics Flyer-72

Can the big guys go fast? In the race to build the Army’s new Ultra-Light Combat Vehicle, General Dynamics is the second biggest competitor, after Boeing, now that aerospace giant Lockheed Martin has dropped out altogether. A traditional defense contractor that builds everything from Army tanks to Navy submarines, GD faces outsiders like commercial offroad… Keep reading →

A Vyper Adamas offorad vehicle

UPDATE: Lockheed Martin won’t compete Want a pink truck?  “If a colonel says, ‘I want to paint it pink,’ it’ll get painted pink in about five minutes,” boasts Shane Sterling, president of Vyper Adamas. That’s the kind of speed with which smaller companies can move, he says: “We don’t have the levels of bureaucracy that a… Keep reading →

John McCain

WASHINGTON: The Navy won and the Air Force lost in the markup of the Senate Armed Services Committee. Sens. John McCain and Jack Reed presided over the SASC markup of the defense policy bill, cutting $860 million from three Air Force programs — including the two of the service’s top three priorities — and moving the money… Keep reading →

army-ah-64e-apache-guardian-attack-helicopter

WASHINGTON: The Pentagon’s hardest-nosed accountants have endorsed the Army’s Aviation Restructure Initiative. ARI is a controversial cost-cutting plan which would retire the Vietnam-vintage OH-58 Kiowa scout helicopters and replace them with AH-64 Apache gunships taken from the National Guard. The Army said ARI, once fully implemented, would save $1.09 billion a year. In a document… Keep reading →

Gen. Mark Milley

WASHINGTON: Who is Army Gen. Mark Milley? A lot of the Washington sources we rely on didn’t know him. But the administration’s choice for a new Army Chief of Staff is a “soldier’s soldier” who’s spent more time in Afghanistan than inside the Beltway. Proven warriors don’t always do well in DC: Budget battles require… Keep reading →

Polaris DAGOR

On Monday, truck makers will submit data to the Army on potential candidates for the Ultra-Light Combat Vehicle. ULCV has to be big enough to carry nine fully equipped infantrymen, small enough to sling-load under a UH-60 Black Hawk helicopter, and tough enough to parachute out the back of a C-130 or C-17. UCLV is… Keep reading →

army-ah-64e-apache-guardian-helicopters

WASHINGTON: Just how bad is the Army at buying stuff? Earlier this week, the head of the Army’s utility helicopter programs called out the Army’s budget and acquisition system. Even though the Army is “100 percent behind this program,” said Col. Tomas Todd,  “it’s unbelievable what we go through,” to design, build, and starting fielding new engines for… Keep reading →

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