Missiles

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 →

CSBA slide

Washington’s gotten used to war on easy mode. Policymakers may debate the strategic value of air campaigns in places like Syria, Iraq, and Yemen, but they assume the smart bombs will hit their targets. One bomb, one target, one boom. That assumption is no longer safe, says a new study from the influential Center for… Keep reading →

Test of a Navy Trident D5 submarine-launched ballistic missile.

CAPITOL HILL: As the Air Force train pulls out of the station, the Navy’s running alongside asking to be pulled aboard. Both services will need to replace aging nuclear missiles sometime ca. 2030. They could save money by coordinating their modernization programs — but the Air Force is on a tighter schedule and the window… Keep reading →

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WASHINGTON: Hitting a bullet with a bullet at the speed of sound — well, nowadays, that’s no big deal. Hitting a supersonic target that you can’t actually see — okay, now that’s impressive. This morning Raytheon announced its Standard Missile-6 destroyed  “a medium-range supersonic target” in a June 10 test at White Sands Missile Range in New… Keep reading →

Patriot missile launch

The Army’s missile defense force is getting a new brain. That’s the real meaning of a successful test yesterday of something called the Integrated Air & Missile Defense Battle Command System, or IBCS for (mercifully) short. IBCS doesn’t blow stuff up. A Patriot missile destroyed the target in last week’s test at White Sands Missile Range. IBCS doesn’t detect the… 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 →

Chinese DF-21 missile launchers

WASHINGTON: With new missile threats proliferating worldwide, both the House and Senate versions of the annual defense policy bill push new approaches to missile defense such as laser weapons and “boost phase” defenses that shoot down missiles just after launch. That’s also why one of Washington’s foremost thinktanks has launched a new program on the problem.… Keep reading →

Missile Defense Agency photo

WASHINGTON: North Korea can’t nuke the US, not yet. But boy dictator Kim Jong-un already has about a thousand ballistic missiles capable of reaching South Korea and, in some cases, Japan. Most are Scud-like weapons with conventional explosives but a few might be nuclear-tipped. Against a large-scale launch, former Pentagon strategist Van Jackson said this morning, the missile… Keep reading →

Typhoon haiyan satellite imagery NASA

UPDATED: Lamborn Amendment passes CAPITOL HILL: Concern about the increasingly grumpy Russian bear drives much of this year’s Strategic Forces subcommittee mark-up, from space launch rockets to nuclear warheads. But Rep. Doug Lamborn doesn’t think the draft language does enough about the resurgent threat of Russia or the rising threat of China. So when the subcommittee… Keep reading →

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CAPITOL HILL: More ships. More weapons. Less waiting. That’s the essential philosophy of Rep. Randy Forbes, chairman of the House subcommittee on seapower. In the draft National Defense Authorization Act headed for mark-up next week, he certainly seems to have gotten his way — on amphibious assault ships, submarines, land-based cruise missiles, and more. “My… Keep reading →

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