NATO

Sir Peter Westmacott, the British Ambassador to the United States.

THE WATERGATE: United we stand, Great Britain’s ambassador to the US insisted today. Despite all the strains on the Atlantic alliance — post-Snowden backlash against American spying, rising anti-EU sentiment in Britain, German dependence on Russian energy — the US, the UK, and their continental European allies stand together against what he called Russian “hybrid… Keep reading →

Observer, Mentor, Liaison Team members, Maj. Jim Hickman and Latvian army Maj. Juris Abolins, patrols through the village of Nishagam, in Konar province, Afghanistan alongside members of the Afghan national army, March 18. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Matthew Moeller) http://www.nationalguard.mil/news/archives/2009/03/033009-Afghanistan.aspx

LATVIAN EMBASSY, WASHINGTON: “We are neighbors of Russia and we have always been realists,” Ambassador Andris Razans told me. “Sometimes we might be characterized as alarmists, troublemakers, etc., but I think we are realists.” Even as President Obama exchanges tense words with Vladimir Putin on the sidelines of today’s D-Day anniversary ceremony, many Americans and… Keep reading →

Reaping the Benefits of a Global Defense Industry

The U.S. defense industry, being reshaped by declining post-war budgets, globalization, and the increased pace of technological change, must work with the Pentagon and take proactive steps to maintain our historic preeminence on the battlefield. Our industry does not easily embrace change. In fact, history demonstrates that shifts in the defense industry have largely been… Keep reading →

swedish soldier in afghanistan

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 →

DF-SC-82-03570

  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 →

Ukraine CIA map

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 →

Gen. James Amos, Commandant of the US Marine Corps, speaking at the Carnegie Endowment this afternoon.

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 →

F-35 Wing Assembly Cameri Italy

  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 →

A Croatian soldier and a Minnesota National Guardsman train together for Afghanistan.

[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 →

The MALE UAV designed by BAE Systems and Dassault Aviation is on display at Paris Air Show

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 →

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