acquisition

Sydney J. Freedberg Jr. photo

PENTAGON: Sen. John McCain’s push to boost the power of the four service chiefs to manage Pentagon weapons programs is coming at the “worst time” and may well lead to more increased costs and busted schedules, the military’s acquisition chief, Frank Kendall, told Breaking Defense in an interview. “The thing that bothers me the most about… Keep reading →

Joint MultiRole Bell Valor

Somebody’s finally doing something tangible about the future of Army aviation. Bell Helicopter subcontractor Spirit AeroSystems of Wichita, Kan., has started assembling the composite fuselage for the first prototype V-280 Valor, Bell’s new military tiltrotor. The Valor is sleeker, smaller, and, by design, more Army-friendly than the Bell-Boeing V-22 Osprey, which was built to fit… Keep reading →

Sen. John McCain and Sen. Jack Reed SASC hearing

CAPITOL HILL: In a bold attempt to fix the Pentagon’s creaking system to develop and buy weapons, the Senate Armed Services Committee today introduced broad changes to who controls weapons programs and tried to encourage Silicon Valley and other non-defense industries to help maintain the country’s global technological and military dominance. This is the beginning of… Keep reading →

Sen. John McCain and Sen. Jack Reed SASC hearing

UPDATED: With Thornberry Comment Supporting Reform WASHINGTON: Sen. John McCain plans a long-term review of the law underpinning the modern American military, the Goldwater-Nichols legislation that created the current chain of command from president to defense secretary to combatant commanders. “The Committee will be conducting a preliminary examination of the structure, roles, and missions of civilian… Keep reading →

f-35airforceversion

  PENTAGON: For the third year in a row, Air Force weapon programs have busted their schedules, taking longer to field, this time adding another 112 months to the 29 major weapons programs that the service monitors. It’s a pattern. In 2012, schedule performance “continues to remain problematic and shows no signs of improvement.” In 2013,… Keep reading →

Rep. Mac Thornberry

UPDATED: Here Is Bill That Thornberry Introduced On March 25 CAPITOL HILL: After over a year of preparation, House Armed Services chairman Mac Thornberry will announce Monday a plan to fix Pentagon procurement. In intentional contrast to past efforts at sweeping acquisition reforms, Monday’s child will be a relatively modest “increment one,” a committee aide… Keep reading →

F-35A head on

  UPDATED: JSF JPO Details Each Variant Costs; Provides Other Details PENTAGON: The simple lead for this story would be: F-35 costs dropped almost 2 percent over the last year. But the real lead should be: after decades of botched programs, bloated budgets, technical screwups and long delays we may be seeing what Winston Churchill might… Keep reading →

People's Liberation Army (PLA) soldiers

WASHINGTON: “We have found that the PLA suffers from potentially serious weaknesses.” That is the simple and powerful declaration of a new study of China’s military by the RAND Corp., done at the behest of the congressionally-mandated U.S.-China Economic and Security Review Commission. What are those Chinese weaknesses? The report, again, is admirably clear. “The first is… Keep reading →

Frank Kendall

CAPITOL HILL: The United States will begin serious development of prototypes for so-called sixth generation fighters — successors to the F-35 and F-22 — for the Navy and the Air Force in the 2016 budget, says the head of Pentagon acquisition, Frank Kendall. The Aviation Innovation Initiative is a new effort, not an agglomeration of existing DARPA… Keep reading →

Heidi Shyu

AUSA: The Honorable Shyu, as everyone in the military calls the head of Army acquisition, is often bright, humorous and insightful. Today, she got passionate in public, clearly frustrated at the painful limits that the automatic budget cuts known as sequestration have forced her to adopt. American military power has traditionally rested on technological overmatch. We… Keep reading →

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