With Congress wrapping up its work this week, Five By Five spoke with him for the industry perspective on what Congress did this year, what it didn’t do and what it might do next. (The interview is edited slightly for clarity and length.) Full story
A U.S. flight technician checks the body of a A-10 Thunderbolt parked on the tarmac at the Namest air force base near Brno where it is taking part in joint NATO military exercises in 2012. (Radek Mica/AFP/GettyImages)
The A-10 was one of the biggest and most controversial weapons systems on the chopping block in Obama’s budget, and Congress refused to do the chopping last week. Now, the close air support plane commonly known as the Warthog is firing at ISIS in Iraq. Full story
The argument gets tiresome because it’s not necessarily either/or, of course, but that doesn’t mean that there isn’t sometimes a conflict: “Security vs. privacy” is back at it with the media getting a peak Wednesday in Maryland at the new spy blimp (technically, aerostat) meant to detect incoming cruise missiles on the East Coast. Full story
It’s been an exceptionally hectic stretch run for Congress. For such an unproductive 113th session, a great deal has sped up as the finish line nears, likely this week. Here’s a rundown of what’s happened on the national security and foreign policy fronts, and some of what still hasn’t happened, with links to CQ.com ($) stories. Full story
It was a bonkers week in the national security world. We had the Senate Intelligence Committee report on Bush administration-era detention and interrogation practices dominating the news to such a degree that the mammoth “cromnibus” spending bill for the Defense Department and other agencies was overshadowed. Even a video of a real life laser cannon – a laser cannon!!!! – couldn’t steal much of the spotlight. Full story
Late Thursday afternoon, the Pentagon announced that the troubled littoral combat ship, designed to operate in coastal areas, would be upgraded to a small surface combat ship rather than eliminated. The news was welcome in a few parts of the country. Full story
There were two obviously major storylines this week: A new Defense secretary is on the way, and the fiscal 2015 defense policy bill hit the streets. There were plenty of other stories elsewhere, too. Full story
Amid the buzzsaw of news stories at CQ.com, here and elsewhere about specific parts of the newly completed fiscal 2015 defense authorization bill, this big picture take might have been overlooked: The top Democrat on the House Armed Services Committee is sounding the alarm that Congress is playing a risky game with weapons systems, other cost savings and the budget under current law. Full story
It was an eventful week before the midterm elections, both around the globe and within the United States’ borders. Here’s some of what we covered, and some of what you might have missed elsewhere.
Important. We wrote about how ISIS continues to evolve as an organization, as well as how the cost of the war against the group is rising. We also wrote about how anonymous administration officials keep shooting Democrats in the foot at exactly the time when they need it least.
Neat. We provided video of a super soldier suit, plus video of a ride in a U-2 cockpit.
Inside the Building. Technocrat had a talk with Chris Calabrese of the Center for Democracy and Technology about the 1986 Electronic Communications Privacy Act, and dipped into how Orbital Sciences’ rocket explosion could impact military rocket procurement. The Container ran a number of items about airline security.
Outside the Building. The New York Times had a splashy story about the Obama administration’s national security and foreign policy team being under duress, filled with anecdotes that generated headlines in and of themselves. One of those was about Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel taking issue with the White House on Syria policy, which the Los Angeles Times then expounded upon in their own piece.
We recently wrote how it looked like the storied U-2 spy plane would likely avertretirement yet again this year, as well as about how the plane is difficult to land and flies so very, very high. Watch the video above to see what it looks like from the cockpit when the U-2 gets way, way up there, then check out the view from a chase car during the landing.
If you want to watch another U-2 landing as viewed from a chase car, here’s a taste. Then, for another view from 70,000 feet, try here or here, with the second link offering some testimonials from U-2 pilots.
And if you want to read about the U-2′s competition in the Obama fiscal 2015 budget, McClatchy recently penned a feature on the Global Hawk.