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December 21, 2014

Posts in "Procurement"

December 19, 2014

Five By Five Friday Q&A: Arnold Punaro, NDIA

bio punaro hires 220x330 Five By Five Friday Q&A: Arnold Punaro, NDIARet. Marine Corps Maj. Gen. Arnold L. Punaro is the chairman of the National Defense Industrial Association, as well as CEO of the Punaro Group. He’s also a former long-time Hill staffer.

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

December 18, 2014

A-10 Goes to War Against ISIS in Iraq, After Winning War in Congress

151274549 A 10 Goes to War Against ISIS in Iraq, After Winning War in Congress

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

December 17, 2014

Spy Blimp Opens New Front in Security Vs. Privacy Debate

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

December 15, 2014

National Security Work Done, and Still Undone, in Congressional Stretch Run

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 ($) stories. Full story

December 12, 2014

Weekly Recap: Torture Report Times Infinity, Laser Cannon, ISIS

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

Littoral Combat Ship News Has Locals Breathing Sigh of Relief

baldwin 026 040114 445x312 Littoral Combat Ship News Has Locals Breathing Sigh of Relief

Baldwin on April 1. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

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

December 9, 2014

Pentagon Contractor, Subsidiaries Hit With $434 Million in Fines

For $48 million worth of fraud on a contract to provide food and water to troops in Afghanistan, Supreme Group B.V. and its subsidiaries are paying $434 million in criminal and civil fines. Full story

December 8, 2014

Arms Control, Human Rights, Afghanistan in the Week Ahead

armed services013 060513 445x293 Arms Control, Human Rights, Afghanistan in the Week Ahead

Kilmer attends a House Armed Services Committee markup of the fiscal 2014 defense authorization bill in 2013. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Congressional votes on Defense spending and policy bills are expected this week. Wait! That’s not all! Full story

December 5, 2014

Weekly Recap: SecDef, Defauth, Diamond Dave

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

December 4, 2014

Defense Commissaries Get a Few Tweaks in Policy Bill

Coming to a Defense Department commissary near you soon, maybe: generic products. On their way out: discounted tobacco and $100 million. Full story

December 3, 2014

Adam Smith Warns That Congress Is Punting, Dangerously, on Defense Cuts

smith 207 091614 445x296 Adam Smith Warns That Congress Is Punting, Dangerously, on Defense Cuts

Smith on Sept. 16. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Amid the buzzsaw of news stories at, 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

November 25, 2014

How the Departure of Chuck Hagel Affects the Defense Agenda

On one level, the exit of Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel represents a break from what was before. On another level, nothing on the agenda will change, at least not because of his departure. Full story

November 19, 2014

A Republican Senator’s Missile Defense Wish List Post-Election

ayotte 05 030311 445x318 A Republican Senators Missile Defense Wish List Post Election

Kelley Ayotte listens to opening statements during a 2011 Senate Armed Services Committee hearing (Bill Clark/Roll Call)

With Republicans in charge of the Senate, it could be a new day for missile defense, Sen. Kelly Ayotte of New Hampshire predicted Wednesday. Full story

October 31, 2014

Weekly Recap: Obama National Security Team in Turmoil, ISIS Fight Rolls On

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.

October 30, 2014

Video: In the Cockpit of a U-2 Spy Plane, Up High and Down Low

We recently wrote how it looked like the storied U-2 spy plane would likely avert retirement 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.

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