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Posts Tagged pentagon
Sig Sauer beat out Glock Inc., FN America and Beretta USA, the maker of the current M9 service pistol, to win the MHS contract that’s worth up to $580 million.
“The Army determined that this MHS (full size handgun, compact handgun, ammunition, and ancillary components) was the best value in terms of its performance capability, the terms and conditions of the vendor’s proposal, and price,” according to the release.
From USA Today:
The report by a Pentagon inspector general, made public under a Freedom of Information Act request, said spy drones on non-military missions have occurred fewer than 20 times between 2006 and 2015 and always in compliance with existing law.
The inspector general analysis was completed March 20, 2015, but not released publicly until last Friday.
It said that with advancements in drone technology along with widespread military use overseas, the Pentagon established interim guidance in 2006 governing when and whether the unmanned aircraft could be used domestically. The interim policy allowed spy drones to be used for homeland defense purposes in the U.S. and to assist civil authorities.
Navy SEAL teams don’t have enough combat rifles to go around, even as these highly trained forces are relied on more than ever to carry out counterterrorism operations and other secretive missions, according to SEALs who have confided in Rep. Duncan Hunter, R-Calif.
After SEALs return from a deployment, their rifles are given to other commandos who are shipping out, said Hunter, a former Marine who served three combat tours in Iraq and Afghanistan. This weapons carousel undercuts the “train like you fight” ethos of the U.S. special operations forces, they said.
From The Washington Times:
The Pentagon is ordering the top brass to incorporate climate change into virtually everything they do, from testing weapons to training troops to war planning to joint exercises with allies.
It says the military will not be able to maintain effectiveness unless the directive is followed. It orders the establishment of a new layer of bureaucracy — a wide array of “climate change boards, councils and working groups” to infuse climate change into “programs, plans and policies.”
In response to the terrorist attack on military facilities in Chattanooga last year, the Air Force has reminded base commanders that they can authorize personnel to carry weapons on-duty and off-duty, and has established armed personnel programs to increase base security. Fox News reports, “the Unit Marshal Program enables commanders at every level to work with security forces to train Air Force members and allow them to open carry their [Beretta] M9 service pistol at their duty location. The Security Forces Staff Arming program enables more security officers to carry a government-issued weapon while on duty.”
From The Washington Post:
Vice Adm. Ted “Twig” Branch has been barred from reading, seeing or hearing classified information since November 2013, when the Navy learned from the Justice Department that his name had surfaced in a giant corruption investigation involving a foreign defense contractor and scores of Navy personnel.
Some critics have questioned how smart it is for the Navy to retain an intelligence chief with such limitations, for so long, especially at a time when the Pentagon is confronted by crises in the Middle East, the South China Sea, the Korean Peninsula and other hotspots.
From Stars and Stripes:
Capt. Simratpal Singh, 27, was granted the appearance waiver last week that will allow him to grow his beard and hair and wear a turban through at least Jan. 8, Debra S. Wada, the assistant secretary of the Army for manpower and reserve affairs, wrote in a Dec. 9 letter. Singh is the fourth Sikh soldier in recent years to be granted such uniform exemptions.
The current dress code is a result of WWII regulations that are still in effect today. There were no such requirements in the early U.S. military. Just look at all the beards on soldiers during the Civil War.
Sen. John McCain is recommending at the U.S. Army throw out its current plan to replace the M9 service pistol until it can decide upon a specific caliber and type of ammunition soldiers need.
The chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee blasted the Army’s Modular Handgun System, or MHS, effort in the latest in his “America’s Most Wanted: Indefensible” report series.
“The easiest solution would be to allow Army divisions or even brigade combat teams to select from handguns, ammunition and accessories that are already tested, approved and are being used in combat by units within the U.S. Special Operations Command and the Joint Special Operations Command,” according to the report.
From The Daily Caller:
Rep. Steve Russell of Oklahoma, himself a veteran and Ranger School graduate, has been investigating claims that Kristen Griest and Shaye Haver, the first ever female graduates of Ranger School, received special treatment. In September, he sent a letter to Army Secretary John McHugh requesting Army records relating to the women’s test scores, medical history, evaluations, and other background details that may help indicate whether they benefited from a lower standard.
But new documents, first written about by Susan Keating of PEOPLE and now obtained by The Daily Caller News Foundation, suggest the Pentagon may be playing a cat-and-mouse game with Russell, first stalling for time and then later telling Russell that the information he requested had been destroyed.
From Foxtrot Alpha:
As if they suddenly came to an epiphany, the United States Air Force brass is now admitting what many of us have been screaming about for so long: We didn’t build nearly enough F-22s, and the F-35 cannot simply pick up the slack. So why aren’t those who pushed so hard to cancel the F-22 program being held accountable?
At the same time that the Raptor was coming online and proving itself, Defense Secretary Robert Gates, of both the Bush and Obama Administrations, was calling for the F-22’s demise. This was said to be due to the aircraft cost and use as “only” an air-to-air, destruction of enemy air defense, and deep strike platform.
“A woman will graduate Ranger School,” a general told shocked subordinates this year while preparing for the first females to attend a “gender integrated assessment” of the grueling combat leadership course starting April 20, sources tell PEOPLE. “At least one will get through.”
Multiple sources told PEOPLE:
• Women were first sent to a special two-week training in January to get them ready for the school, which didn’t start until April 20. Once there they were allowed to repeat the program until they passed – while men were held to a strict pass/fail standard.
• Afterward they spent months in a special platoon at Fort Benning getting, among other things, nutritional counseling and full-time training with a Ranger.
• While in the special platoon they were taken out to the land navigation course – a very tough part of the course that is timed – on a regular basis. The men had to see it for the first time when they went to the school.
• Once in the school they were allowed to repeat key parts – like patrols – while special consideration was not given to the men.
• A two-star general made personal appearances to cheer them along during one of the most challenging parts of the school, multiple sources tell PEOPLE.
From Marine Corps Times:
The Small Arms Modernization Strategy will focus on updating current weapons in the short-term and developing futuristic systems that could hit the fleet in the mid-2020s, according to senior officials at Combat Development and Integration Command’s Fires and Maneuver Integration Division. That has significant implications for all Marines, from door-kicking squad leaders to logisticians running convoy operations.
“We are always looking to ensure our Marines have the best weapons in terms of lethality, range and accuracy,” Chris Woodburn, a retired colonel who now serves as the deputy Maneuver Branch head for the division, told Marine Corps Times in an exclusive interview that detailed the new strategy.
Defense Secretary Ash Carter spoke with students, faculty and leaders at Syracuse University in New York this morning, describing his vision and plans for building the “Force of the Future.”
The secretary visited the university on the second day of his first official domestic trip, which began yesterday and included a stop in Pennsylvania to speak with students from his high school alma mater in Abington, near Philadelphia.
From The Washington Post:
The Pentagon is unable to account for more than $500 million in U.S. military aid given to Yemen, amid fears that the weaponry, aircraft and equipment is at risk of being seized by Iranian-backed rebels or al-Qaeda, according to U.S. officials.
With Yemen in turmoil and its government splintering, the Defense Department has lost its ability to monitor the whereabouts of small arms, ammunition, night-vision goggles, patrol boats, vehicles and other supplies donated by the United States. The situation has grown worse since the United States closed its embassy in Sanaa, the capital, last month and withdrew many of its military advisers.
From Department of Defense:
To all Department of Defense personnel:
I am honored to become your Secretary of Defense. I am proud to lead men and women who devote their lives to the highest calling – the defense of our nation. And I am grateful to follow in the footsteps of Secretary Hagel, one of our nation’s most honorable and conscientious public servants.
We live in challenging times – times that demand leadership and focus. And starting today, I will be calling on each and every one of you to help carry out three top priorities.
Our first priority is helping the President make the best possible national security decisions for protecting our country – and then implementing those decisions with our department’s long-admired excellence.
We confront a turbulent and dangerous world: continuing turmoil in the Middle East and North Africa, and the malignant and savage terrorism emanating from it; an ongoing conflict in Afghanistan; a reversion to archaic security thinking in parts of Europe; tensions in the Asia-Pacific; the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction; and intensifying threats in cyberspace.
In addressing these challenges, I have pledged to provide the President my most candid strategic advice. I will count on your experience and expertise as I formulate that advice. I will also ensure the President receives candid professional military advice.
But as we tackle the many threats to our national security, we must never lose sight of our nation’s enduring strengths – or of the opportunities to make a brighter future and better world for our children. The United States remains the strongest and most resilient nation on earth. Because of you, we have the finest fighting force the world has ever known. We have friends and allies in every corner of the world, while our adversaries have few. We have long possessed the world’s most dynamic and innovative economy. And our values, principles, and leadership continue to inspire hope and progress around the world.
Safeguarding America’s security and global leadership will depend on another of my main priorities: ensuring the strength and health of you who make up the greatest fighting force the world has ever known – our soldiers, sailors, airmen, Marines, civilians, and contractors all around the world.
I will do that by focusing on the well-being, safety, and dignity of each of you and your families. I will ensure your training and equipment are as superb as you are. And I pledge to make decisions about sending you into harm’s way with the greatest reflection and utmost care – because this is my highest responsibility as Secretary of Defense.
Honoring all these commitments also requires us to focus on building the force of the future, which is my third priority.
We must steer through the turmoil of sequestration, which imposes wasteful uncertainty and risk to our nation’s defense. We must balance all parts of our defense budget so that we continue to attract the best people – people like you; so that there are enough of you to defend our interests around the world; and so that you are always well-equipped and well-trained to execute your critical mission.
To win support from our fellow citizens for the resources we need, we must show that we can make better use of every taxpayer dollar. That means a leaner organization, less overhead, and reforming our business and acquisition practices.
It also means embracing the future – and embracing change.
We must be open to change in order to operate effectively in an increasingly dynamic world; to keep pace with advances in technology; and to attract new generations of talented and dedicated Americans to our calling.
I first arrived at the Pentagon more than three decades ago, and have had the privilege of serving 11 Secretaries of Defense in Democratic and Republican administrations. I took the oath of office this morning because I love our country and am devoted to you who defend it. And I am committed to our fundamental mission: the defense of our nation.
I look forward to leading and serving alongside you at this extraordinary moment in our nation’s history.
May God bless you and your families, and may God bless America.