2018年4月24日 星期二

MORNING RECON: Making the F-35B Even Deadlier; Army’s Pursuit of Electromagnetic Railguns; Britain's New Pacific Presence; U.S. Drone Base in Niger

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Morning Recon

Good Thursday morning and welcome to MORNING RECON.  On this day in 1863, the Union army issues General Orders No. 100, which provided a code of conduct for Federal soldiers and officers when dealing with Confederate prisoners and civilians. The code was borrowed by many European nations, and its influence can be seen on the Geneva Convention. The orders were the brainchild of Francis Lieber, a Prussian immigrant whose three sons had served during the Civil War.
Today's Top Stories


How Macron Can Win Over Trump on Iran
By Richard Goldberg, Politico EU: "It's no secret that France never liked the Iran nuclear agreement, formally known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA)."

Army's Pursuit of Electromagnetic Railguns Heats Up
By Jon Harper, National Defense Magazine: "General Atomics has been awarded a contract to develop electromagnetic railgun technology for the Army as the service pursues cutting-edge weapons to take on advanced adversaries."

Air Force's Biggest Weakness May Be How It Buys Satellites
By Loren Thompson, Forbes: "The Air Force's space community is in a near panic over recent advances that Russia and China have made in space. The problem isn't that Moscow and Beijing are matching the performance of U.S. military satellites -- it's that they are fielding systems for degrading or destroying our satellites."

War Cloud: Jedi to Deploy Backpack Servers to Front Line
By Sydney Freedberg, Breaking Defense: "The Defense Department's 10-year, $10 billion cloud computing contract isn't just a huge information technology initiative. It's also a weapon system."

How 1 Revolutionary New Technology Is Making the F-35B Even Deadlier
By Dave Majumdar, The National Interest: "The new up-gunned ESG concept adds an enormous amount of anti-surface and anti-air capability the amphibious unit—especially when the firepower the Aegis-equipped destroyers is combined with the F-35Bs."

Marines Zero In On Requirements for Future MUX Unmanned Aerial Vehicle
By Megan Eckstein, USNI News: "The Marine Corps has refined its vision for a large sea-based unmanned aerial system (UAS) after honing in on capability gaps the Marines most urgently need to fill."

Air Force Reports Second Mishap in 8 Days for Alaska-Based F-22s
By Oriana Pawlyk, DoD Buzz: "An F-22 from the 90th Fighter Squadron, 3rd Wing, experienced engine failure April 6 during a routine training flight at Tyndall Air Force Base, Florida, days before another F-22's belly skid at Naval Air Station Fallon, Nevada."

Where U.S. Special Forces Buy Their Weapons
By Jacqueline Detwiler, Popular Mechanics: "The second most fun thing about SOFIC is the expo floor: 95,000 square feet of tanks, radios, rovers, ropes, tactical wet suits, parachute simulators, carbon-fiber rifles, search-and-rescue Sea-Doos, underwater breathing apparatuses, "pyrotechnic products" that look uncomfortably like cartoon bombs, and at least one snow motorcycle."

Military Health System Acknowledges Risk
By Steve Sternberg, U.S. News & World Report: "The U.S. News report, published Thursday, examined data from every Military Health Service hospital worldwide from 2012 through 2016 and found that surgeons at virtually every hospital perform complex procedures in such small numbers that they may be putting their patients at risk."

Veteran Who Survived Blast Receives Unusual Penis Transplant
By Lauran Neergaard, AP: "Saying they wanted to address "an unspoken injury of war," Johns Hopkins University surgeons rebuilt the man's entire pelvic region — transplanting a penis, scrotum and part of the abdominal wall from a deceased donor — in a highly experimental 14-hour operation last month."


U.S., AFRICA: U.S. Builds Drone Base in Niger
By Carley Petesch, AP: "On the scorching edge of the Sahara Desert, the U.S. Air Force is building a base for armed drones, the newest front in America's battle against the growing extremist threat in Africa's vast Sahel region."

UNITED KINGDOM: Majority of British F-35B Fleet to Arrive in U.K. This Summer
By George Allison, UK Defence Journal: "Today's 617 Squadron, currently training with the UK's 15 F-35B Lightning jets in America, will move to the UK with a number of aircraft to their new home at RAF Marham this Summer."

ISRAEL, IRAN: Is Israel-Iran Clash Imminent?
By Ben Caspit, Al-Monitor: "Senior members of the Israeli security establishment are predicting that the month of May will be one of the most volatile periods in the current era. Maj. Gen. (Res.) Amos Yadlin, the former head of the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) Military Intelligence Directorate, said in an interview published April 22, "I have not seen a May this dangerous since May 1967.""


Tactics and the Human Factor
By Connor Love & Jeff Hubler, Modern War Institute: "Gen. Robert Brown, commander of U.S. Army Pacific, echoed this sentiment in his 2014 Human Dimension white paper: "Material solutions alone will not provide the decisive edge against the complex array of rapidly adapting threats we face." However, here we are, four years later, with no major changes in the way we develop, train, or enhance the cognitive and social abilities of our soldiers."

Disrupting Psychological Processes That Support Terrorist Acts
By Noel Palmer, War Room: "Research shows that terrorists and their supporters are much more like us than we probably wish to believe, suggesting that most of them are psychologically normal – not psychopaths. Therefore, understanding the routine psychological processes at play should inform current approaches to deterring terrorism."

Britain's New Pacific Presence
By Cleo Paskal, the interpreter: "Last week, the U.K. announced it was establishing diplomatic representation in nine countries: Lesotho, Swaziland, the Bahamas, Antigua and Barbuda, Grenada, St Vincent and the Grenadines, Samoa, Tonga and Vanuatu. From an Oceanian perspective, this might be a game changer."

The UAE's Divisive Strategy in Yemen
By Kelly F. Thornberry, Terrorism Monitor: "Yemen has become a major battleground for the United Arab Emirates (UAE). The UAE provides the second largest force in the Saudi-led military coalition fighting in the country. While the coalition came about to halt the advances of the Iran-backed Houthi rebels, however, the UAE has since focused on its own agenda."

Chinas Territorial Stratagem
By S.A. Cavanagh, Small Wars Journal: "China's Aggressive Move to Occupy the Spratly regional waters through Reclamation has proved an effective stratagem, for projection of political, economic and military power."

Rivalry in Rejuvenation?
Seeking New Paradigms for U.S.-China Strategic Competition

By Elsa B. Kania, Strategy Bridge: "Looking to the future, the U.S. must not fear but rather should embrace a new era of competition."

Kim Jong Un Is 'All-In.' What's Next for Korea?
By Gordon Chang, The Cipher Brief: "There's a dark purpose in Kim Jong Un's proffered moratorium on nuclear and ballistic missile testing announced over the weekend. Kim, with the apparent complicity of South Korea's President Moon Jae-in, seeks to eventually merge his state into the South  – and drive out U.S. troops from the peninsula."
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