An Avenger-class minesweeper at work

This is the third in our exclusive series on the crucial but neglected question of sea mines and how well — or not — the United States manages this global and very real threat. Here we’re looking at the most promising technologies, ships and aircraft that can give the United States the edge in this crucial and complex battle.… Keep reading →

PENTAGON: The Navy would get the largest budget share among the three military services in the 2014 budget submitted Wednesday, but would still see a drop in total funding from what Congress provided for this year in the final version of the continuing resolution.

The $155.8 billion requested for the Navy Department in the president’s proposed defense budget of $526.6 billion is level with the president’s 2013 request but is $11.4 billion above the request for the Air Force and $26.1 billion larger than that for the Army. Keep reading →

Iran. Gaza. Syria. Political opposition in the Emirates and adjoining states. The Persian Gulf region simmers and America may have only one carrier group deployed there at the end of this year. Should we worry?

Let’s examine the puzzle. The USS Nimitz’s planned deployment to the Persian Gulf may be delayed. That is raising concern, since the Navy will be down to just one carrier in the region during the months of December and January. Keep reading →

WASHINGTON: Defense contractors believe they must sell to foreign countries as US spending shrinks. But what’s materialized overseas so far is much too small to make up for the decline at home. So when Lockheed Martin‘s Mission Systems & Sensors unit, nicknamed MS2, convened reporters today ahead of next week’s Association of the US Army conference, they talked up their global strategy and a lot of prospects, but could offer precious few actual sales.

It’s true that Foreign Military Sales hit a record $65 billion for fiscal 2012, driven largely by Asia and the Middle East, and it’s those two regions Lockheed is targeting. Global sales help not only the company but the United States as well, claimed Michele Evans MS2’s business development chief, because they equip friends and allies with compatible equipment, keep the industrial base open, and keep production volumes up so all customers, US and foreign alike, can reap economies of scale. Keep reading →