iraq

F-22 refuels during attacks on Syria and ISIL

America was surprised last summer by the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant’s (ISIL) lightning offensive. After 25 years of flying and fighting around the world. the Air Force’s Air Combat Command was able to rapidly shift portions of its Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (ISR) network towards Iraq, launching 80 ISR missions over Iraq in the first… Keep reading →

Sydney J. Freedberg Jr.

CAPITOL HILL: UPDATE BEGINS The administration’s nominee for Marine Corps Commandant, Lt. Gen. Bob Neller, set off a firestorm from Sen. John McCain this morning. After two hours of an otherwise congenial confirmation hearing, the Senate Armed Services Committee chairman erupted over Neller’s description of the current administration strategy against the Islamic State. That strategy relies on airpower and advisors… Keep reading →

COCOM map2

In his 1940 book, The New World Order, H.G. Wells wrote, “I think that in the decades before 1914 not only I but most of my generation – in the British Empire, America, France, and indeed throughout most of the civilized world – thought that war was dying out.” That assertion now seems naïve, even childish.… Keep reading →

Obama speaks at WH on Syrian chemical weapons

Mitt Romney recently offered a PowerPoint presentation at his annual ideas festival in Park City, Utah to highlight President Barack Obama’s 20 worst foreign policy mistakes, grist for his argument that Obama is “the worst foreign policy president in history,” and Hillary Clinton a well-traveled but mistake-prone former “Secretary of Schlep.” In this election season… Keep reading →

Selected plus-ups in the HASC draft of the National Defense Authorization Act

WASHINGTON: If anyone at the White House had hoped the new chairman of the House Armed Services Committee would be more compliant than his predecessor, the defense bill out today should end their illusions. Sure, Rep. Mac Thornberry has consulted closely with the Pentagon and his ranking member on issues like acquisition reform. But Thornberry’s draft… Keep reading →

ISIL targets since February 4th - 31 March

Airpower sounds swift and surgical, but sometimes it’s really closer to trench warfare with wings. Earlier this week, with the smoke still rising from the retaken Iraqi city of Tikrit, Central Command released detailed data on air strikes against the self-proclaimed Islamic State. We’ve crunched the numbers, and it’s clear the eight-month-old campaign is becoming… Keep reading →

IMCMEX 2013

This is the second in our exclusive series on the crucial but neglected question of sea mines and how well — or not — the United States manages this very real global threat. Only 4.7 percent of the US Navy’s 275 warships are dedicated to mine warfare. Those small numbers face Iran’s several thousand naval mines, North Korea’s 50,000, China 100,000 or… Keep reading →

Army Patriot missile launch

ARLINGTON: Hitting a bullet with a bullet is an astounding feat. But now that US missile defenses can do it routinely, we’re realizing it’s not enough. As technology spreads around the world, more countries are getting larger numbers of more capable missiles. A cash-strapped America can’t afford to shoot down each incoming threat with a… 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 →

Australia to join combat operations against Islamic State in Iraq

  Washington often grumbles about its allies and their contributions — or lack thereof — to the common defense. But some allies are making key investments in 21st century weapons to operate against 21st century threats. A good example is the Royal Australian Air Force  (RAAF) and its operations against ISIL in Iraq. The RAAF strike force flew… Keep reading →

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