CRASH

It’s conventional wisdom to declare that offense will always beat defense in cyberspace, because the Internet was designed with access in mind, not security. It’s a technological problem with strategic consequences as Russian and Chinese hackers rob us blind. But now DARPA, the agency that invented the Internet, is tried to reverse that situation by redesigning computer hardware and software from the ground up to make it more secure from hackers.

If the Defense Advanced Research Project Agency’s effort, called the CRASH program, succeeds, it could pave the way for new technologies that could make both government and private-sector computers not only more resistant to attack but also able to self-repair any damage that took place. Keep reading →


WASHINGTON [Corrected at 6 pm Friday]: The latest crash of a V-22 tiltrotor may be a black mark on the aircraft’s safety record, but it won’t bring down the program. Despite literally decades of criticism — which is now certain to flare up again — there’s simply too much budgetary momentum, political support, and, yes, operational value to the V-22.

Yesterday evening, a CV-22 — the Air Force Special Operations version of the Osprey — crashed in Florida. (The 1st Special Operations Wing aircraft was based out of Hurlburt Field, part of Eglin Air Force Base in Florida). The five people aboard were injured and taken to local hospitals, but the Air Force announced this afternoon that none of their injuries was life-threatening; four crewmen were listed as stable and one in “guarded” condition. [Updated Friday 3:45 pm: Two of the crewmen were released from hospital Friday; three remain hospitalized]. The wing commander, Col. James Slife, said in a press conference there was no general safety issue apparent that would require grounding the CV-22 fleet. Keep reading →

Reaping the Benefits of a Global Defense Industry

Greg Sanders CSIS photo

  As the Defense Department’s budget goes down, the number of contracts awarded without competitive bids is going up. The share of contracts awarded without competition has risen from 39 percent in 2009 to 42 percent in 2012, according to a report I co-authored with Jesse Ellman and Rhys McCormick on DoD Contracting Trends. The news for… Keep reading →

CV-22 – USAF Special Ops version of Marine V-22 Osprey – crashes in Florida, five injured but, thankfully, no dead: http://bit.ly/LC4pTm SydneyFreedberg

A YouTube video of an American AH-64 Apache attack helicopter crashing in Afghanistan has gone viral, with commentators expert and otherwise chiming in on the pilot’s mistakes and appropriate punishments. The International Security Assistance Force told the Pentagon-supported newspaper Stars and Stripes that they “believe the video shows a crash which occurred in Paktika province on Feb. 6” and which is now under investigation, but ISAF has been otherwise unforthcoming. The video shows the gunship swooping low over a U.S. outpost, then coming round for another pass that takes it too low, bouncing over the snowy ground and ultimately flipping over. Online speculation is rife that the pilot was showing off rather than conducting legitimate training maneuvers, and it seems unlikely any commander would authorize such dangerously low passes over friendly troops outside of a life-or-death combat situation, but hard facts are hard to find. Keep reading →