op-ed

Laicie Heeley with Stimson

As the House and Senate gear up for votes in the coming days to fund the Defense Department, lawmakers are set to support a bow wave of costly nuclear weapons programs increasingly at odds with the needs of U.S. troops and the future threats that dominate their agenda. Notably for a president who famously championed… 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 →

lockheed boeing long range strike bomber

The bomber has a long and distinguished history in the Air Force and its predecessor, the Army Air Corps. When the B-17 Flying Fortress was born, it was a controversial aircraft, but proved its worth when Nazi Germany controlled a continent and only the B-17 fleet could deliver strikes inside Nazi-controlled territory, thanks to the bomber’s range… Keep reading →

Arak Heavy Water Reactor in Iran

Supporters of the Obama administration Iran deal have had a rough couple weeks. The bipartisan passage of the Corker-Mendez bill (the Iran Nuclear Agreement Review Act of 2015) out of the Foreign Relations Committee, conveyed in no uncertain terms that Congress is concerned enough about this deal to insist it have a voice. It also raises the question: how… Keep reading →

Coast Guard HQ DHS campus

A colleague and I wrote a 10-year retrospective assessment of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) in 2011, calling the organization a “colossal, inefficient boondoogle.” Amazingly, that didn’t land us on the no-fly list, probably because — even then — we weren’t the first, last or only critics of DHS. The actions and events that provided fodder for… Keep reading →

THAAD

Phil Coyle knows missile defense. He was director of Operational Test and Evaluation from 1994 through January 2001, during the darkest days of THAAD and when missile defense was a religious issue for both Republicans and Democrats. Thank goodness we had Coyle around to actually bring facts to the roiling debate then. Does Coyle think… Keep reading →

John Lehman fleet

It’s fair to say that John Lehman is the most influential Navy Secretary of the last half century. Under President Ronald Reagan, Lehman “had an almost revolutionary impact on the Navy,” according to naval expert Norm Polmar. Lehman drove hard and pushed to build what has become known as the 600-ship Navy. Lehman knows how a… Keep reading →

Poland suddenly reappeared in 1919, 120 years after it vanished from the map of Europe, sowing confusion at the Versailles Peace Conference as the great powers tried to heal the wounds of World War I. The British questioned the legitimacy of the new Polish State and the French were suspicious of Polish ambitions. Frustrated with… Keep reading →

Navy Tests Converted Guided Missile Sub

Nuclear modernization will receive at least $1.2 billion more this year than last year’s $23.5 billion if the president’s Defense Department budget request is approved. Modernization funding for nuclear weapons and their delivery systems comprise 4 percent of the defense budget and 0.6 percent of the Federal budget. These include : the Ohio-class submarine replacement program (ORP);… 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 →

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