Syria’s S-300s are being integrated in Russia’s national nuclear C3 command and control system

 

When Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu said on Oct. 2 that the “unified” S-300 air defense systems in Syria will be installed in Syria by Oct. 20, he really meant its integration in the Russian homeland system. This element of his report to President Vladimir Putin is the key to the real import of Moscow’s response to the downing of its Il-20 spy plane on Sept. 17, for which Shoigu blamed Israel. DEBKAfile’s military and intelligence sources report that Putin seized on the disaster to establish in Syria an advanced air defense weapons system linked not only to the Russian Khmeimim Air Base in Latakia, but integrated in Russia’s own C3 command, control and communications system against nuclear attack. Continue reading

The Havana Whodunnit: What Nation Just Built An “Unprecedented” Spy Radar Base In Cuba?

https://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/inline-images/thediplomat-cuba-b-radome-construction-4-pics-2018-2m-768x595.jpg?itok=H-420xSV

A time sequence of the construction of radome containing parabolic antenna at Bejucal sigint facility. (Source: Victor Robert Lee & Digital Globe)

 

According to a new surveillance report from The Diplomat, exclusive satellite imagery from March 2017 to May 2018 reveals a newly expanded “signals intelligence” military facility near Bejucal, Cuba.

The report focuses on a massive radome sitting on top of an elevated concrete mounting structure. From satellite imagery, the structure looks like a giant golf ball, but it is actually a protective dome housing a super sophisticated radar antenna inside. As mentioned by The Diplomat, this radome is the first of its kind among the various spy antennas at Bejucal, which have been used to intercept electronic communications, ballistic missile monitoring, and tracking of satellites from the United States. Continue reading

“It’s Real, It’s Coming, It’s A Matter Of Time” – US General Warns Of Hypersonic Attack

https://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/inline-images/1-SCFT4G2YBuyfEP9O20Y6mg-970x350-1.jpg?itok=d91es-Jx

 

Air Force Lt. Gen. Samuel Greaves, director of the Missile Defense Agency (MDA), said he has the full support of Undersecretary of Defense for Research and Engineering Michael Griffin to advance the development of space-based sensors that would defend the nation from hypersonic attacks by America’s adversaries.

The Pentagon believes funding will be in place next year to begin the constellation of missile-surveillance satellites amid new warnings of hypersonic weapons being tested and deployed Russia and China. Continue reading

Lockheed Martin Awarded $929 Million Contract For Hypersonic Weapon To Counter Russia, China

https://southfront.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/06/1-66.jpg?x87222

 

Lockheed Martin, the defense company behind F-35A Lightning II, a fifth-generation combat aircraft, won a $928 million contract April 18 to develop a hypersonic missile for the U.S. Air Force that will travel more than five times faster than the speed of sound to overcome Russian and Chinese missile defense systems.

According to Lockheed Martin, under the indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity contract, the company will design and manufacture the Hypersonic Conventional Strike Weapon (HCSW), a new air-launched weapon system. The missile will be capable of speeds higher than Mach five and could render Russian and Chinese ballistic missile defense interceptors useless. Continue reading

Russia hypersonic weapon likely ready for war by 2020: US intel

https://fm.cnbc.com/applications/cnbc.com/resources/img/editorial/2018/05/15/105210155-AP_18060606970920.1910x1000.jpg?v=1526416845

In this video grab provided by RU-RTR Russian television via AP television on Thursday, March 1, 2018, a computer simulation shows the Avangard hypersonic vehicle en route to target. (RU-RTR Russian Television via AP)

 

  • Russia has successfully tested a hypersonic weapon the United States is currently unable to defend against, according to sources with direct knowledge of U.S. intelligence reports.
  • The Avangard hypersonic glide vehicle is expected to enter Russia’s arsenal by 2020.
  • The weapon could be outfitted with a nuclear warhead but would be able to create destruction even without explosives.

A Russian weapon the U.S. is currently unable to defend against will be ready for war by 2020, according to sources with direct knowledge of American intelligence reports.

The sources, who spoke to CNBC on the condition of anonymity, said Russia successfully tested the weapon, which could carry a nuclear warhead, twice in 2016. The third known test of the device, called a hypersonic glide vehicle, was carried out in October 2017 and resulted in a failure when the platform crashed seconds before striking its target.

Continue reading

US Air Force Admits To Harvesting Russian Tissue

An update from yesterday’s post “Why is Russian DNA Being Collected?

 

 

A day after Russian President Vladimir Putin surprised members of Russia’s human rights council by informing them that some shadowy entity – possibly with ties to the United States – had been collecting biological tissues from Russians from different ethnic groups, the group responsible for harvesting the tissue has revealed itself.

While some initially discounted Putin’s remars as another loony conspiracy theory, as it turns out, he was right: The group responsible for the tissue collection was none other than the US Air Force, proving that yet another conspiracy theory has become a conspiracy fact. Continue reading

The U.S. Military Has Been Quietly Prepping for a “Space War” with Asia

The Air Force Thunderbirds fly over Schriever Air Force Base in Colorado

 

An elite squad of the U.S. Air Force (USAF) has been quietly preparing for a possible war with Asia.

This war wouldn’t be fought on land, sea, or even in the air.

It would take place in space.

You see, many of America’s most vital – and vulnerable – military targets aren’t cities or bases; they’re GPS satellites. And their protection has become a priority for the USAF. Continue reading

Less than half of the US bomber fleet is ready to ‘fight tonight’

A U.S. Air Force B-1B Lancer prepares to take off for a 10-hour mission from Andersen Air Force Base, Guam, into Japanese airspace and over the Korean Peninsula, July 30, 2017. (Tech. Sgt. Richard P. Ebensberger/Air Force)

 

WASHINGTON – Less than half of the bombers President Donald Trump would rely upon to be “locked and loaded” against North Korea could launch today if needed, according to the latest Air Force figures available.

That’s not a surprise to the bomb squadrons who have seen firsthand the combined effects of aircraft age, the demand of 15 years of air war operations and reduced budgets. But the numbers can be stark. Of the nation’s 75 conventional and nuclear B-52s, only about 33 are ready to fly at any given time, according to Air Force statistics. Of the 62 conventional B-1s, only about 25 are ready. With the 20 nuclear B-2 stealth bombers, the number drops further. Seven or eight bombers are available, according to the Air Force.

On a nominal basis you don’t have more than single digits of B-2s available to do anything,” said retired Air Force Lt. Gen. Dave Deptula, currently the dean of the Mitchell Institute of Aerospace.

“If anything good comes out of the North Korea crisis,” it should be a wake-up call, he said.

“It’s not just the nation’s bomber force,” that is so stretched, Deptula said. “It’s the military writ large. The U.S. Air Force is the smallest and least ready it’s ever been in history – that should get people’s attention.”

Continue reading

US Ballistic Missile Defense to Enter New Domains

 

Much has been said about the US ground-based missile defense program and the sites in place or to be installed soon in Europe and Asia. But land is not the only domain where the effort it taking place. This is the time the priority is shifting to air- and space-based systems. The US officials and military leaders believe that space is now a warfighting domain on par with air, land and sea. This is one of rare issues the administration and Congress see eye to eye on.

On June 30, President Trump signed an executive order to reinstate the National Space Council – an executive agency with Vice President Mike Pence at the helm that will be tasked with guiding US space policy during the administration. The Secretary of State and the Secretary of Defense, as well as NASA’s administrator, will serve on the council as well. Continue reading

US Air Force Grounds F-35s at Arizona Base

An F-35A Lightning II on static display at Luke AFB, Arizona, in April 2016. (U.S. Air Force/Tech. Sgt. Christopher Boitz)

 

Base officials halted local flights after five pilots experienced symptoms of oxygen deprivation.

The U.S. Air Force has grounded 55 of its F-35 Joint Strike Fighters at Arizona’s Luke Air Force base following five incidents in which pilots experienced symptoms of oxygen deprivation.

The pilots “reported physiological incidents while flying” but a backup oxygen system turned on, allowing them to land safely, Capt. Mark Graff, an Air Force spokesman at the Pentagon, said in an email Friday afternoon.

Continue reading

US Air Force to deploy five Global Hawk UAVs to Japan

The USAF plans to deploy five units of the RQ-4 Global Hawk UAV (seen here) to Japan from May to October 2017. (USAF)

 

The US Air Force (USAF) plans to deploy five Northrop Grumman RQ-4 Global Hawk unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) and approximately 105 personnel, currently based at Andersen Air Force Base on Guam, to Yokota Air Base in Japan from May to October 2017. Continue reading

F-35 programme remains at risk at SDD conclusion, chief Pentagon test official warns

…and just a few weeks ago it was warned here that the F-35 program was touted as combat ready — out of rushed haste, not confidence.

 

Key Points

  • The Pentagon’s director of operational testing has warned that the F-35 programme is still at risk of failing to deliver its full combat capability at the conclusion of SDD
  • The USAF and the USMC have declared IOC with interim 3i combat software, while the USN has said that it will wait until 3F software is complete

Continue reading

U.S. Air Force laments that it’s short of pilots

http://www.mcclatchydc.com/news/nation-world/national/national-security/gk0q14/picture94922912/ALTERNATES/FREE_960/AirForce_01

A member of the U.S. Air Force stands in front of an F-22 Raptor at Seoul Airport in South Korea, on Oct. 19, 2015. The Air Force says it faces an imminent shortfall of 700 pilots by the end of 2016. SeongJoon Cho Bloomberg

 

 

The U.S. Air Force faces a shortfall of 700 fighter pilots by the end of the year and as many as 1,000 pilots within a few years, Air Force officials said Wednesday.

“It is a crisis,” said Gen. David Goldfein, the Air Force chief of staff. “Air superiority is not an American birthright. It’s actually something you have to fight for and maintain.”

Aggressive hiring by commercial airlines has helped thin the ranks of Air Force pilots, and lengthy deployments overseas, long separations from family and reduced flying time when back on U.S. soil have exacerbated the problem, Goldfein said.

Continue reading

The Pentagon’s controversial plan to hire military leaders off the street

https://i1.wp.com/www.gannett-cdn.com/-mm-/f5165edfa19bcf273643df7b3770f5690bca06dd/r=x404&c=534x401/http/cdn.tegna-tv.com/-mm-/8ccbc30965c00e95ac50d4a3f2832ba0b63838f3/c=376-689-2484-2274/local/-/media/2016/06/16/GGM/MilitaryTimes/636017026399599248-INSTANT-OFFICER-3000.jpg

Lateral entry, if approved, could open a door for civilians to join the military’s senior officer ranks. Some leaders want to explore this idea for enlisted military jobs, too.(Photo: John Harman/Staff)

 

Defense Secretary Ash Carter wants to open the door for more “lateral entry” into the military’s upper ranks, clearing the way for lifelong civilians with vital skills and strong résumés to enter the officer corps as high as the O-6 paygrade.

The idea is controversial, to say the very least. For many in the rank-and-file military, it seems absurd, a bewildering cultural change that threatens to upend many assumptions about military life and traditional career paths. But while it’s not universally embraced, there is interest in Congress and among some of the military’s uniformed leaders — even, they say, in exploring how the services could apply this concept to the enlisted force.

This is a key piece of Carter’s “Force of the Future” personnel reform. Unveiled June 9, it aims to help the military bring in more top talent, especially for high-tech career fields focused on cyber warfare and space. Advocates say it will help the military fill important manpower shortfalls with highly skilled professionals and, more broadly, create greater “permeability” between the active-duty military and the civilian sector. Continue reading

New US nuclear-capable cruise missile expected to proceed

A US Air Force (USAF) programme to develop and field a new nuclear-capable Long-Range Stand-Off (LRSO) cruise missile has undergone a Pentagon review and appears poised to proceed to development soon. Continue reading