2018年6月29日 星期五

MORNING RECON: Build Better Fleets; KC-46 Pegasus Goes Operational; Flight Safety at Offutt's 55th Wing; Navy's New Path for SWOs; Military Readiness?

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Morning Recon

Good Friday morning and welcome to MORNING RECON.  On this day in 1835, determined to win independence for the Mexican State of Texas, William Travis raises a volunteer army of 25 soldiers and prepares to liberate the city of Anahuac. Born in South Carolina and raised in Alabama, William Travis moved to Mexican-controlled Texas in 1831 at the age of 22.  

Editor's Note: We would like to apologize for our absence Thursday morning, however, the RealClearDefense team suffered a minor medical emergency. We are ever grateful for your patience and patronage.

RealClearDefense Today's Exclusive:
Today's Top Stories


Prelude to a Putin–Trump Pas De Deux 
By Kyle Wilson, The Strategist (ASPI): "As was wholly predictable, Bolton, the reputed hawk, has confirmed that the convergence of U.S. and Russian interests is sufficient to warrant such a meeting of the presidents. Attention now focuses on the form and content of the forthcoming encounter."

Pentagon Resists Push for $1B Submarine Down Payment
By Tony Capaccio, Bloomberg: "The Pentagon and the top Republican House lawmaker overseeing defense spending are united in opposing an effort to shift $1 billion from other defense projects into a down payment on two additional Virginia-class submarines that wouldn't be put under contract until 2022 and 2023."

KC-46 Pegasus Goes Operational
By Loren Thompson, Forbes: "Air Force officials stress that there is still much work to be done, but public discussion of the program is now likely to begin migrating from a focus on development challenges to the intricacies of operating the fielded aircraft."

Air Force Needs Army's Help to Best Russia's S-400 Missile Battery
By Oriana Pawlyk, DoD Buzz: ""Part of the emphasis with our multi-domain operations that we're doing with the Army is trying to find ways that we can defeat these systems together, so that we can get in there faster and be more effective sooner.""

The Navy's New Surface Warfare Officer Career Path
By Sam LaGrone, USNI News: "The plan requires more school for new officers before they report to their first ships, institutes a new testing regime through major commands and shapes the career path so SWOs spend more time at sea."

Aerojet's Solid Rocket Engine Business Teetering on the Brink
By Sandra Erwin, SpaceNews: "There are now technically two companies that still manufacture large solid rockets for military ICBMs — Aerojet Rocketdyne and Northrop Grumman Innovation Systems, which absorbed Orbital ATK in a deal that closed June 6. The industry is poised to become a monopoly, however, as Aerojet's large solid rocket motor business is on not-so-solid ground."

In-flight emergency:
An Investigation Into Flight Safety at Offutt's 55th Wing

By Steve Liewer, Omaha World-Herald: "Despite periodic overhauls and "a lot of maintenance love," the 55th Wing's 29 planes average more than 80 emergencies and aborted flights per year."


PHILIPPINES: Ambitious Armed Forces Modernization Plan
By Daniel Darling, Forecast International: "...Now, however, the Philippines' president appears inclined to heed at least some of the wishes of the AFP and provide greater funding streams to support them."


War on Peace
By Alexandra Stark, RealClearDefense: "As then-General Mattis testified before Congress in 2013, "if you don't fund the State Department fully, then I need to buy more ammunition.""

The Long Shadow of 9/11
By Robert Malley & Jon Finer, Foreign Affairs: "When it comes to political orientation, worldview, life experience, and temperament, the past three presidents of the United States could hardly be more different. Yet each ended up devoting much of his tenure to the same goal: countering terrorism."

Build Better Fleets
By Daniel Stefanus, Proceedings Magazine: "The U.S. Navy commissions ships of yesterday, unable to bring new ship designs quickly to fruition or alter production pipelines effectively in an age where emergent terrorist networks, rogue states, and rapid technological development can disrupt existing warfare paradigms in months."

The Military Readiness Crisis Is Not in Dispute – But…
By Jeff Groom, Small Wars Journal: "Implicit in these proposals is the axiom of both past and present American national security strategies: size matters. Whoever has the most soldiers and highest quality equipment wins, right?"​

AI for Good in War; Beyond Google's 'Don't Be Evil:'
By Larry Lewis, Breaking Defense: "Is it possible to deploy AI on the battlefield and still live up to the "don't be evil" standard? In fact, is it not possible that AI holds promise for saving lives, in war just as in medicine?"​

North Korean Deception, or Too-Rigid Doctrine?
By Daniel Hoffman, The Hill: "Intelligence analysts assess state and non-state actors using different paradigms. For example, the "rational actor" model assumes leadership will set and rank goals, consider options and consequences, and make the most rational tactical or strategic decision."

Creating a Bulwark Against Chinese IP Theft
By Christian Larsen, National Defense Magazine: "While penalizing China through tariffs and trade sanctions may incentivize better behavior, unlimited tariffs and sanctions can impose unwanted harm upon U.S. companies that rely on East Asian capital, suppliers and consumers. Tariffs and sanctions can also incentivize Beijing to act aggressively."
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