Syrian/Hizballah may call up Russian air strikes as cooperation deepens

 

Russian air crews in Syria are under new orders to respond directly and immediately to Iranian and Syrian demands for air bombardments, without confirmation from the high commands in Latakia or Moscow.

This has enormously empowered Syrian and Hizballah officers on the ground for taking the war into their own hands. It led directly to Russian planes suddenly bombing a pro-US Syrian force in the Deir ez-Zour province of eastern Syria on Saturday, Sept. 16, and accounts for Moscow’s repudiation of the attack after its confirmation by the Pentagon. Continue reading

China’s Great Leap in space warfare creates huge new threat

People’s Liberation Army (PLA) Air Force fighter pilots pose at the Jiuquan space base, in Gansu province. Photo: China Out / AFP

 

China is building an array of high-technology space arms – anti-satellite missiles, lasers, GPS jammers and killer satellites – that Beijing says will give its military strategic advantage in a future conflict with the United States.

The People’s Liberation Army now has the capability of attacking, destroying or disrupting the 500 US satellites circling the earth at heights of between 1,200 miles and 22,000 miles, according to a new study by a US think tank, the National Institute for Public Policy.

The report, on “Foreign Space Capabilities,” also reveals that China’s military has discussed plans for using space detonations of nuclear weapons to create electronics-killing Electromagnetic Pulse (EMP) attacks against orbiting satellites used by militaries for precision weapons targeting, navigation and communications. Continue reading

Amazon Web Services can Now Host the Defense Department’s Most Sensitive Data

Blackboard/Shutterstock.com

 

This week, the Defense Department granted the cloud computing giant a provisional authorization to host Impact Level 5 workloads, which are the military and Pentagon’s most sensitive, unclassified information.  Continue reading

U.S. to Remain Dependent on Russian Rocket Engines for Years Despite Billions Poured Into Domestic Alternatives

SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket is launched / Getty Images

 

Industry officials say military won’t move fully to American-built engines until at least 2024

The Pentagon will remain dependent on Russian rocket engines to launch military satellites into space through at least the mid-2020s, despite the U.S. government allocating billions of dollars to defense contractors to produce an American-made replacement.

The projection adds several years to initial targets laid out in 2014 by lawmakers and senior Air Force officials, who ordered the United States begin phasing out Russia’s RD-180 engines amid national security concerns spurred by the Kremlin’s annexation of Crimea. Continue reading

Buried in backlog, Feds give top-secret clearances to murderers, rapists

Marines assigned to the 26th Marine Expeditionary Unit embark the amphibious assault ship USS Kearsarge in Norfolk, Va., in August. The Defense Department has some 100,000 employees on temporary clearances awaiting full security reviews. Mass Communication Spec. 1st Class Deven B. King – U.S. Navy

 

“This is very, very dangerous,” said Daniel E. Payne, head of the Defense Security Service, a federal office that oversees the granting of temporary clearances.

Payne said roughly 100,000 people hold interim clearances while working for companies with Defense Department contracts or at 13,000 cleared facilities and plants around the country and as they await a full comprehensive background investigation.

“I’ve got murderers who have access to classified information. I have rapists. I have pedophiles. I have people involved in child porn,” Payne said. “This is the risk we are taking.”

Continue reading

US Nuclear Modernization Plans to Bury Existing Arms Control Regime

Courtesy: Strategic Culture Foundation

 

You may like Donald Trump or not but he will go down in history as the President who made decisions of fundamental importance for his country and the world. Nobody else but Donald Trump will determine the configuration of US future nuclear arsenal, which is to go through massive modernization. Modernizing the US’s entire nuclear arsenal would cost $400 billion by 2026, according to a figure released by the Congressional Budget Office. The United States will modernize nearly every part of its nuclear arsenal, including replacement warheads, upgraded command-and-control systems, and other improvements across the strategic triad. Kicked off in April to be finished by the end of the year, the Nuclear Posture Review is underway and the final decisions are to be taken during the Donald Trump’s tenure. Continue reading

Navy Does Not Rule Out Intentional Act in Latest Warship Collision

Lowe and behold, look who is the first to cast a stone in calling the U.S. Navy a hazard in the region. The aim is clearly to portray the military as incompetent in order to increase the likelihood of other nations pushing back, thus elevating regional resistance to an American presence with the end game being pushing America out of the Asia-Pacific.

 

USS McCain

 

China calls Navy ‘hazard’ in Asian waters

The Navy has not ruled out an intentional action behind the latest deadly collision between a Navy destroyer and a merchant ship, the chief of naval operations told reporters Monday.

“That’s is certainly something we are giving full consideration to but we have no indication that that’s the case—yet,” Adm. John Richardson, the CNO, said at the Pentagon.

“But we’re looking at every possibility, so we’re not leaving anything to chance,” he said. Continue reading

World View: Chinese Vessels Massing Near Philippines Island in South China Sea

AP Photo/Rolex Dela Pena, Pool

 

A statement by Philippines Supreme Court Senior Associate Justice Antonio Carpio warns that government must act in response to an “invasion of Philippine territory by China” in the South China Sea.

The warning was triggered when Rep. Gary Alejano said that the military reported early last week that Chinese vessels appeared to be massing north of Pag-asa Island (Thitu Island), a Philippine territory. The Philippines maintains a small population of about 100 people on Pag-asa Island in order to guarantee that it maintains its sovereignty. Continue reading

Iran Sending Warships to Atlantic Ocean Amid Massive New Military Buildup

Iranian military ship and light replenishment ship are seen docked for refueling / Getty Images

 

Iran boosts war spending by $500 million after U.S. issues sanctions

Iran is preparing to send a flotilla of warships to the Atlantic Ocean following the announcement of a massive $500 million investment in war spending, according to Iranian leaders, who say the military moves are in response to recent efforts by the United States to impose a package of new economic sanctions on Tehran. Continue reading

Unarmed Russian Air Force jet overflies the Pentagon, Capitol, CIA

(CNN) An unarmed Russian Air Force aircraft overflew the US Capitol, the Pentagon, Central Intelligence Agency and Joint Base Andrews at low altitude on Wednesday as part of a longstanding treaty that allows the militaries of the United States and Russia to observe the other from the air, according to two people familiar with the flight.

The flight was part of the Treaty on Open Skies, which allows military aircraft from the United States and Russia and other nations to fly aerial observation flights to observe military sites of the 34 signatory nations.

Continue reading

Pentagon alarmed by Turkey’s plan to buy Russian S-400 air defense system

Russian S-400 air defense system

 

The United States has raised concerns over NATO ally Turkey’s plan to purchase an advanced air defense system from Russia.

Pentagon spokesman Capt. Jeff Davis told a press briefing in Washington on July 31 that the S-400 system Turkey plans to buy may have inconsistencies with other equipment used by NATO. Continue reading

Modernizing America’s Nuclear Capabilities Is a Must

A Minuteman III intercontinental ballistic missile in its silo in Whiteman Air Force Base, Missouri, circa 1980. (Image source: U.S. Department of Defense)

 

 

  • In 1989, America had 1,000 nuclear missile silos, and a small number of additional bomber and submarine bases and submarines at sea, facing 13,500 Soviet warheads. Today, the U.S. has 450 such silos facing 1,750 Russian warheads. That is a switch from a ratio of 13 Russian warheads to every U.S. missile silo, to a ratio of 4 Russian warheads to every U.S. missile silo. Getting rid of Minuteman ICBMs would reverse that progress and make the ratio even worse, with 175 Russian warheads to every U.S. missile silo. How is that an improvement?
  • The U.S. “cannot afford to delay modernization initiatives” while the “American people and our allies are counting on congressional action to fund our nuclear enterprise modernization efforts.” — General Robin Rand, the commander of the Air Force Global Strike Command.
  • America’s ability to defend itself is at stake.

In April 2017, the Pentagon launched the U.S. Defense Department’s legislatively mandated quadrennial Nuclear Posture Review to determine American policy, strategy and capabilities. The process now underway involves testimony from experts arguing over how the estimated $27 billion spent annually (growing over the next decade by an additional $10 billion a year) on America’s nuclear arsenal should be allocated. Continue reading

Military building for info warfare

The U.S. Missile Defense Agency will take greater control of the Ground-Based Midcourse Defense missile system from Boeing at the end of this year, according a spokesman. This is a major shift in oversight. (Department of Defense)

 

Air Force Gen. Paul Selva, vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, told the Senate this week that the military is taking steps to improve its capabilities for countering and conducting information warfare — the use of cyberattacks and influence operations.

The Pentagon “must continue to improve its ability to exploit cyberspace as a pathway for information operations to affect adversary perceptions, decisions and actions in support of strategic ends,” Gen. Selva said in written policy statements to the Senate Armed Services Committee.

The four-star general testified at a nomination hearing for a second term as vice chairman. Continue reading

Pentagon Furious After Turkey Leaks U.S. Base Locations In Syria: “Hard Not To See This As A F-You”

 

So much for NATO-alliance members working for the common good.

In a move that has angered the U.S. for obvious reason, Turkey’s state-run news agency Anadolu Agency has leaked the precise locations of U.S. bases in northern Syria. The move – which exposes the exact locations of American soldiers on the front lines in the war-torn nation – has sent the ongoing feud between the two NATO allies to new lows. As Bloomberg details, in reports published in both Turkish and English on Tuesday, Anadolu provided detailed information about 10 U.S. bases in northern Syria, including troop counts and a map of the U.S. force presence in the Turkish version. Continue reading

AP Exclusive: U.S. Tightens Security on Nuclear Inspections

FILE – In this June 24, 2014 file photo, a gate is closed at an ICBM launch control facility in the countryside outside Minot, N.D., on the Minot Air Force Base. The Pentagon has thrown a cloak of official secrecy over assessments of how safely and securely its nuclear weapons are operated, maintained and guarded, closing a window onto an already obscure part of the military with a history of periodic inspection failures and lapses in morale. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel, File)

 

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Pentagon has thrown a cloak of secrecy over assessments of the safety and security of its nuclear weapons operations, a part of the military with a history of periodic inspection failures and bouts of low morale.

Overall results of routine inspections at nuclear weapons bases, such as a “pass-fail” grade, had previously been publicly available. They are now off-limits. The change goes beyond the standard practice of withholding detailed information on the inspections. Continue reading