Wednesday, July 28, 2010
DTN News: Reference To Missile-Downed Helicopter In Leaked Afghanistan Reports Highlights A Threat * If the Taliban had many surface-to-air missiles, it could dramatically alter an already struggling allied war effort. Shoulder-launched missiles downed scores of Soviet helicopters in the 1980s. Source: Los Angeles Times - By Laura King and Paul Richter Reporting from Kabul, Afghanistan, and Washington (NSI News Source Info) KABUL, Afghanistan/ WASHINGTON, U.S. - July 29, 2010: Wherever there are Western troops in Afghanistan, theclatter-thump of helicopter rotors serves as the soundtrack. Choppers are the workhorses of this war, with hundreds of them moving soldiers and supplies daily across a rugged landscape. Because of the NATO force's heavy reliance on them, one of the most eye-catching revelations in a trove of classified documents posted on the Internet this week was that insurgents apparently used a portable heat-seeking surface-to-air missile to shoot down a twin-rotor CH-47 Chinook in Helmand province in May 2007, killing seven Western service members. If the Taliban and other insurgent groups possessed large numbers of these weapons, it could dramatically alter the dynamics of a war effort that already is struggling. Shoulder-launched missiles downed scores of Soviet helicopters in the 1980s, helping ragtag Afghan rebels prevail against a vastly superior force. Most experts believe that the antiaircraft threat currently posed by the insurgents is relatively limited, and that they don't have significant stocks of surface-to-air missiles, at least for now. The shooting down of choppers remains a relative rarity in the Afghan conflict, and heavy machine guns and rocket-propelled grenades are almost always found to have been used. "After nine years, if they had a lot of them, we would have seen them by now," said a U.S. official who spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak about the subject on the record. Sporadic reports of attacks with surface-to-air missiles have often turned out to involve other weapons, the official said.But portable surface-to-air missiles can be procured from many illicit sources in the region. Afghanistan's neighbors include Iran, Pakistan and China. NATO said this month that an intercepted memo from Taliban supreme leader Mullah Mohammed Omar suggested that the insurgents were redoubling efforts to obtain a variety of sophisticated armaments. "It's wartime, and our warriors are searching for new weapons," said Taliban spokesman Zabiullah Mujahid, reached by telephone.By their nature, shoulder-launched missiles — "manpads," in military parlance — are easily transportable, making them less difficult to smuggle than bulkier weapons systems. Mujahid declined to discuss any recent additions to the Taliban arsenal, but said, "It is difficult to stop weapons trafficking. The world's black market is open to us." Matt Schroeder, an analyst with the Federation of American Scientists, said it is possible that there have been more attacks on coalition aircraft than have come to light. Yet Schroeder was skeptical that shoulder-fired missiles represented a major threat because such attacks in large numbers would be likely to come to public attention. The downing of any aircraft is usually announced quickly by NATO's International Security Assistance Force. Two U.S. servicemen died last week when a helicopter was brought down by hostile fire in Afghanistan's south; the incident was disclosed by military officials within hours. "It's hard to hide the loss of a lot of aircraft," Schroeder said.Missiles being used by Afghan insurgents are generally thought to be of older Soviet and Chinese design, types that can be neutralized by common countermeasures such as diversionary flares. The missiles are not easy to aim, and sometimes can be thrown off target even by sunlight and clouds. That could account for the fact that the classified documents posted by the organization WikiLeaks referred to at least 10 suspected missiles having missed their targets, according to an analysis by Britain's Guardian newspaper. Taliban leaders have said the movement has a number of stored Stinger missiles left over from the period of Soviet occupation, which ended more than 20 years ago. The leaked documents suggested that some of them still might have been usable. "The presumption had been that those systems that were distributed by the United States in the 1980s would be inoperable because their batteries would have run out," said Jeremy Binnie, a senior terrorism and insurgency analyst at IHS Jane's. "But [in the leaked documents] there are people reporting to have seen contrails like those left by a Stinger." Lincoln P. Bloomfield Jr., who was appointed in 2008 by the George W. Bush administration to take the shoulder-fired missiles out of circulation, said there remains a real threat from the weapons in Afghanistan, as elsewhere. "The U.S. and coalition troops in Afghanistan attract adversaries," he said. "This is among the elements in their playbook." He said that even though older missiles may have been sitting in hot, dusty warehouses for years, "sometimes they still work." Bloomfield said the U.S. government has destroyed about 28,000 of the weapons since 2002 through buyback programs and other efforts. As special envoy, he negotiated with governments to destroy the portable missiles in their arsenals, or at least to ensure that they were safe from theft. On the black market, the missiles' cost ranges from a few hundred dollars to many thousands of dollars. But at least for some insurgent factions, money may not be much of an issue. The German magazine Der Spiegel, which like the Guardian and the New York Times received advance access to the WikiLeaks documents, cited insurgent leader Gulbuddin Hekmatyar as exhorting followers to procure weapons, including surface-to-air missiles, to use against coalition forces. "Attack him with Stinger missiles!" Hekmatyar told followers in Lowgar province in 2005, according to the magazine. "No matter the cost, $150,000 or $200,000, I will pay." *This article "Reference To Missile-Downed Helicopter In Leaked Afghanistan Reports Highlights A Threat " & link to this article....click here. *This article is being posted from Toronto, Canada By DTN News ~ Defense-Technology News, contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
DTN News: U.S. Department of Defense Contracts Dated July 28, 2010 Source: U.S. DoD issued July 28, 2010 (NSI News Source Info) WASHINGTON - July 28, 2010: U.S. Department of Defense, Office of the Assistant Secretary of Defense (Public Affairs) Contracts issued July 28, 2010 are undermentioned;
DTN News: U. S. Air Force Announces F-35 Basing Proposal
(NSI News Source Info) WASHINGTON, U.S. - July 28, 2010: The Department of the Air Force announced today its proposal to base 59 F-35 aircraft at Eglin Air Force Base, Fla. This proposal is contingent upon the result of a draft supplemental environmental impact statement (SEIS), which should be released in the early fall 2010, and includes the preferred alternative (Alt. 1A) of basing the 59 F-35 aircraft at Eglin Air Force Base main base. Flight operations will also be conducted at Duke and Choctaw Fields. This decision, approved by the secretary and chief of staff of the Air Force, supports the recommendation of the 2005 Base Realignment and Closure Commission to establish the F-35 Initial Joint Training Center at Eglin. “The Air Force has completed its initial analysis of a full range of alternatives and determined that basing 59 F-35s at Eglin main base is the preferred alternative,” said Kathleen Ferguson, Air Force deputy assistant secretary for installations. “This is not a final basing decision; it is the alternative we believe will fulfill our mission responsibilities while considering economic, environmental, and technical factors. The community will be invited to comment on the alternatives presented in the SEIS.” The record of decision is anticipated to be announced following the completion of the final SEIS.
DTN News: Aerospace/Defense Headlines - News Dated Wednesday July 28, 2010 (Up-Dates #1)(NSI News Source Info) TORONTO, Canada - July 28, 2010: Defense News: Aerospace/Defense Headlines - News Dated Wednesday July 28, 2010.
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DTN News: Boeing-iRobot Team Receives New SUGV Task Order From US Army
they have received a new task order to an existing contract to provide Small Unmanned Ground Vehicles (SUGV) to the U.S. Army. The order calls for 94 new model 310 SUGV robots, plus spares, for a total value of $14.6 million.This order, the contract's fifth, brings the total units ordered by the U.S. government to 323. The existing Indefinite Delivery, Indefinite Quantity contract will run through February. "Boeing and iRobot are pleased to be working with our customers to provide this life-saving technology in response to urgent warfighter needs," said Bob DaLee, Robotics program manager for Boeing Network & Tactical Systems. "The 35-pound 310 SUGV system provides the dismounted Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) technician with the ability to perform reconnaissance during extremely hazardous EOD missions involving unexploded ordnance and improvised explosive devices." "Robots have played an important role on the battlefield for years now, and their numbers in theater are growing," said Joe Dyer, president of iRobot's Government and Industrial Robots division. "Warfighters can carry and quickly deploy the SUGV at a moment's notice, which is crucial in challenging environments such as Afghanistan. These robots are saving lives every day." Boeing and iRobot developed the SUGV family of vehicles under a strategic alliance that began in 2007. SUGV is a smaller and lighter version of the combat-proven PackBot. It is designed to give warfighters real-time awareness of critical situations and to allow them to complete missions from safe standoff distances. It is ideal for a variety of mission types, including EOD, route clearance and reconnaissance. As the prime contractor, Boeing provides program management, contracts, government-test support and quality-control support from offices in Huntsville. iRobot is responsible for engineering, government-test support, manufacturing, training and logistics services, with the majority of work conducted in Bedford, Mass. "The SUGV can increase the safety of U.S. and allied warfighters in uncertain situations," said William Boggs, director of Boeing Global Forces & Robotics Systems. "We will continue working with our customer not only to provide these valuable assets, but also to continue to refine them so the SUGV we deliver tomorrow has even more capability than the one we deliver today." iRobot designs and builds robots that make a difference. The company's home robots help people with smarter ways to clean, and its government and industrial robots protect those in harm's way. iRobot's consumer and military robots feature iRobot Aware® robot intelligence systems, proprietary technology incorporating advanced concepts in navigation, mobility, manipulation and artificial intelligence. For more information about iRobot, visit www.irobot.com. Boeing is the largest aerospace company in Alabama and one of the state's largest employers. Current company operations in Huntsville include the Ground-based Midcourse Defense program and other missile defense work, such as the Arrow system and the Patriot Advanced Capability-3 seeker, as well as work associated with Ares I, the International Space Station, Army Integrated Logistics, Brigade Combat Team Modernization, SBInet, and engineering for the 787 and the P-8A Poseidon. A unit of The Boeing Company, Boeing Defense, Space & Security is one of the world's largest defense, space and security businesses specializing in innovative and capabilities-driven customer solutions, and the world's largest and most versatile manufacturer of military aircraft. Headquartered in St. Louis, Boeing Defense, Space & Security is a $34 billion business with 68,000 employees worldwide.
Contact: Kathleen M. Cook
Boeing Network & Tactical Systems
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DTN News: Lockheed Martin Completes Milestone For U.S. Navy’s Surface Ship Electronic Defense
combatants from anti-ship cruise missile threats. The preliminary design review for the Navy’s Surface Electronic Warfare Improvement (SEWIP) Block 2 upgrade program is a significant milestone under the initial $9.9 million design contract awarded to Lockheed Martin last November. The contract includes options totaling nearly $167 million, if exercised. “Successfully completing this critical milestone further validates our low-risk path for improving the surface navy’s electronic warfare capabilities,” said Carl Bannar, vice president of Lockheed Martin Radar Systems. “By using commercial-off-the-shelf components, Lockheed Martin will provide additional cost savings and ease of maintenance to the Navy.” Under the program, the Navy is pursuing an evolutionary succession of enhancements to its AN/SLQ-32 electronic warfare (EW) system. A series of block upgrades will allow for the incremental addition of new technologies and functional capabilities. Lockheed Martin is providing a modular solution for Block 2, based on its Integrated Common Electronics Warfare System, demonstrated at sea in 2008. This approach uses commercial-off-the-shelf electronics and provides the Navy with the latest surface ship EW capabilities, as well as enhanced flexibility to upgrade the technology to address emerging threats. Headquartered in Bethesda, Md., Lockheed Martin is a global security company that employs about 136,000 people worldwide and is principally engaged in the research, design, development, manufacture, integration and sustainment of advanced technology systems, products and services. The Corporation reported 2009 sales of $45.2 billion.
Chip Eschenfelder, 315-456-3328; email, firstname.lastname@example.org For additional information, visit our website: http://www.lockheedmartin.com/ms2
Lockhead Martin - Related News - Press Releases
*July 27, 2010 Lockheed Martin Announces Second Quarter 2010 Results
DTN News: $8.7-Billion Missing In Iraq Funds Source: DTN News / Reuters - Nationalpost.com (NSI News Source Info) WASHINGTO, U.S. - July 28, 2010: The U.S. Department of Defense has been unable to account properly for US$8.7-billion of Iraqi oil and gas money, funds earmarked for humanitarian needs and reconstruction after the 2003 invasion, according to an audit released yesterday. The figure is nearly 96% of the US$9.1-billion the Pentagon received from the Development Fund for Iraq (DFI), said the report from the U.S. Special Inspector General for Iraq Reconstruction (SIGIR). It described lax management of some of the billions of dollars designated for rebuilding war-shattered Iraq, where residents routinely complain about lack of electricity and other basic services more than seven years after the invasion. The DFI was established by the Coalition Provisional Authority (CPA), the U.S.-run body that took charge of Iraq after the invasion. It was meant to harness money from export sales of oil, petroleum products and natural gas, as well as frozen Iraqi assets and surplus funds from the UN oil for food program, and spend it for the benefit of Iraqis. The UN Security Council approved the creation of the fund. "Weaknesses in DoD's financial and management controls left it unable to properly account for $8.7-billion of the $9.1-billion in DFI funds it received for reconstruction activities in Iraq," the SIGIR report said. The report cited poor record-keeping and said most of the organizations at the Pentagon that received DFI funds failed to establish required Treasury Department accounts. "Our selective review shows the records were not always complete. For example, DoD could not provide documentation to substantiate how it spent US$2.6-billion," it said. The funds are separate from the US$53-billion allocated by Congress for rebuilding Iraq. "Iraq should take legal action to get back this huge amount of money," said Sabah al-Saedi, chairman of the Parliamentary Integrity Committee, according to a report by The Associated Press. The money "should be spent for rebuilding the country and providing services for this poor nation." The government of Iraq ordered the Pentagon to return DFI funds at the end of 2007. But the audit found Department of Defense organizations that were still holding and in some cases spending DFI funds. "The breakdown in controls left the funds vulnerable to inappropriate uses and undetected loss," the report said. Iraq is almost completely reliant on oil revenues to rebuild infrastructure and housing stock devastated by years of war and economic sanctions. More than 95% of the federal budget comes from the oil sector. The audit report said the Pentagon had agreed to adopt and implement by November the inspector general's recommendations to tighten up financial controls. "SIGIR believes the identified actions, if implemented as planned, will address SIGIR's concerns," according to the report. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineering and the U.S. Central Command disputed the finding, it added. The Central Command said documents that could account for the missing money were "likely" deposited at a U.S. base but retrieving it "would require significant archival retrieval efforts." The Army Corps said it had provided auditors with US$2-billion of the funds. This is not the first time allegations of missing billions have surfaced in relation to the US-led invasion of Iraq and its aftermath, the BBC reports. In 2005, the inspector general criticized the CPA for its management of an US$8.8-billion fund that belonged to the Iraqi government. A criminal investigation led to the conviction of eight U.S. officials on bribery, fraud and money-laundering charges. *This article "$8.7-Billion Missing In Iraq Funds" & link to this article....click here. *This article is being posted from Toronto, Canada By DTN News ~ Defense-Technology News, contact: email@example.com
DTN News: Aerospace/Defense Headlines - News Dated Wednesday July 28, 2010
(NSI News Source Info) TORONTO, Canada - July 28, 2010: Defense News: Aerospace/Defense Headlines - News Dated Wednesday July 28, 2010.
DTN News: Aerospace/Defense Headlines - News Dated Tuesday July 27, 2010
(NSI News Source Info) TORONTO, Canada - July 28, 2010: Defense News: Aerospace/Defense Headlines - News Dated Tuesday July 27, 2010.