Sweden, long the major neutral power in northern Europe, has climbed quietly and elegantly out of its cozy perch to great effect since the fall of the Berlin Wall. Today, with Russia’s Vladimir Putin bearing his chest and threatening his neighbors with threats that sound awfully familiar to a lot of older Europeans, some commentators have… Keep reading →
If President Obama ever had a rationale for moving away from his personal belief in nuclear disarmament, Vladimir Putin has provided one in Crimea. Russia’s annexation is a game-changer that will likely change the strategic dynamic in Europe in ways that neither Putin nor Obama fully understands. If deterrence equals capability plus will, then… Keep reading →
The Crimean crisis continues to escalate. Ukraine’s interim government in Kiev and every country except Russia refuses to recognize the Crimean referendum. Ukraine’s interim defense minister Igor Tenyukh called on Ukrainian troops based in Crimea — some barricaded on their bases and some now held hostage by Russian forces — to prepare for war just… Keep reading →
As America winds up its 13-year war in Afghanistan, where do things stand? “I leave this Saturday night [for Helmand province] to meet the governor and the provincial police chief,” Gen. James Amos said this afternoon. “My sense is, it’s about” — and here he paused — “it’s about as good as it’s going to… Keep reading →
CAMERI AIR BASE, Italy: The Italians have been significant innovators since the beginning of the airpower era and they continue to innovate with the launch of the F-35. Their facilities here provide support not only for Italian aircraft, but mark the start of an ability to support an allied F-35 fleet operating in the Mediterranean… Keep reading →
[UPDATED] ARMY WAR COLLEGE: When the Army invited NATO officers here to discuss the “deep future” of warfare in the 2030s, the organizers ran up against a present-day problem. Current regulations forbade them from showing certain information to their allies. It was just the latest case of a chronic problem which has hindered coalition operations… Keep reading →
PARIS AIR SHOW: If you think times are tough in the United States defense world, consider that three of Europe’s biggest defense companies, where defense budgets have been on a downward trajectory for a decade, have issued a plea for help building a European medium altitude drone. In a press release sent out simulatenously in… Keep reading →
WASHINGTON: Tomorrow morning, overshadowed by sequestration, the House Armed Services Committee will hold a rare full-committee hearing on a topic that would normally be high-profile, even explosive: whether to give the Defense Department, and especially its elite special operators, broader legal authority to work with foreign forces worldwide, from Colombia to Mali to the Philippines.
To implement the administration’s January 2012 strategy, with its emphasis on supporting foreign partners rather than committing large numbers of US troops, “we need to overhaul our authorities to provide assistance to other security forces,” HASC vice-chairman Mac Thornberry told Breaking Defense. And despite the bitter partisan divisions on most other issues, he said, “there is interest — equal interest — on both sides to examine existing authorities and see how they can be improved.” Keep reading →
As the civil war in Syria escalates and threatens to overspill its borders, the US has held its hand from intervening — but not from reinforcing its frontline ally Turkey. We bring you this op-ed in praise of the Patriot missile’s role in Mideast Peace from former Rep. Geoff Davis, a former Army officer. Mr. Davis has no business connection to Patriot manufacturer Raytheon or to other companies working on the system, which is currently a contender for Turkey’s own missile defense program.
The news that the United States will send two Patriot missile batteries and 400 troops to Turkey to bolster defenses against incoming artillery from the escalating civil war in neighboring Syria is a testament both to our commitment to our allies and to our military’s readiness to deploy. It is also a testament to the success of Patriot as a proven missile system to deter attacks. Keep reading →
WASHINGTON: You think US defense spending is a mess? At least we’re not Europe.
A study out Tuesday from the Center for Strategic and International Studies warned that a decade of shrinking forces and funding is likely to continue, threatening a European defense industrial base already burdened by inefficiencies, national rivalries, and governmental tendencies to treat defense spending as “a jobs program.” Keep reading →