Congress

Chinese artificial island landing strip

WASHINGTON: What began with a tiny artificial island built by China to stake a concrete claim in the South China Sea is fast on its way to becoming 600 acres of at least seven islands spread across the South China Sea. One of the most impressive is so-called Fiery Cross Island, the permanent structure above complete with… Keep reading →

An Ohio-class nuclear ballistic missile submarine

CAPITOL HILL: It’s a problem the US Navy wants to have, but it’s still a problem. If the service gets enough money both to build its top priority, the Ohio Replacement Program nuclear missile submarine, and to keep producing its vaunted Virginia-class attack subs, then so much new work will be hitting the shipyards so rapidly that they’ll be… Keep reading →

rep-randy-forbes-with-soldier-53889810151287459500021458917106n-1361824962

WASHINGTON: The Republican congressman who oversees the Navy actually likes Barack Obama’s 2016 defense budget — except for one small thing: It isn’t really a budget. “It would be almost a misnomer to call this a budget. It’s [just] numbers,” Rep. Randy Forbes told me this morning, in advance of tomorrow’s budget hearing. “If you… Keep reading →

140618-D-NI589-106

Bob Hale regularly demonstrated his better qualities during testimony before Congress, delivering highly complex facts and judgments about the Defense Department’s spending and budgets to the public with a knowing humor delivered with the sort of gravelly voice you’d expect from one of those old country lawyers.  Hale served as DoD comptroller from 2009 to 2014, and, before… Keep reading →

Dyson LTG Karen Army budget IMG_1870

ARLINGTON: No one knows what the 2016 budget is really going to be. In fact, no one can even plan properly for what it might be, the highest-ranking budgeteer in Army uniform made clear this morning. The uncertainty is coming at the Pentagon from two sides at the same time. On the demand side, there’s… Keep reading →

CENTCOM data analyzed by Breaking Defense

[UPDATED with McCain comment] The war is escalating. But what have six months of airstrikes against the self-proclaimed Islamic State actually achieved so far? Last week, Jordan launched its retaliation against the Islamic State for burning a Jordanian pilot alive. Yesterday, we learned ISIL had murdered hostage Kayla Mueller. This morning, President Obama formally proposed a… Keep reading →

Frank Kendall

WASHINGTON: Congressional reaction to the first tranche of proposed new acquisition laws from the Pentagon’s acquisition czar, Frank Kendall, is unenthusiastic. Kendall and Rep. Mac Thornberry, chairman of the House Armed Services Committee, have separately worked on a range of legislative and policy acquisition fixes for much of the last year. We haven’t heard much from… Keep reading →

Senate Armed Services Holds Hearing On F-35 Joint Strike Program

WASHINGTON: Nomination hearings are never just about the nominee. But today’s Senate lovefest for Ash Carter was remarkably dominated by two men who weren’t in the room: President Obama — in whose defense Carter was actually pretty tepid — and King Abdullah II of Jordan. The Obama White House has simultaneously “micromanag[ed]” the military and… Keep reading →

abrams-tank-teetering-1337297377

PENTAGON: After years of cuts and cancelled programs, tanks and other armored vehicles are beginning a comeback. In contrast to other investments in the 2016 budget request released today, the ground vehicle increases have so much congressional backing — and involve such relatively small amounts — that they’re actually likely to happen. Four tracked vehicle… Keep reading →

Apache AH-64E in Afghanistan

PENTAGON: $473 million. That’s the amount the 2016 budget request would boost spending over 2015 to modernize the Army’s aging helicopter fleet.That’s a nine percent increase in a time of shrinking budgets, swelling aviation to more than the next two modernization accounts (ground vehicles and networks) combined. But the Army’s aircraft request may be dead on arrival.… Keep reading →

Page 1 of 1812345...18