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Heritage Foundation

Mark Esper, Washington Insider, Will Be Quiet Army Secretary

Posted by Sydney J. Freedberg Jr. on


WASHINGTON: Third time’s (hopefully) the charm for the Trump Administration when it comes to candidates for Army Secretary. After the withdrawals of Vincent Viola, a billionaire with no government experience, and Mark Green, a Tennessee politician with a controversial track record, Trump has picked an experienced Washington insider, Mark Esper. Esper probably is unlikely to… Keep reading →

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Will THAAD Deployment Roil Or Calm Troubled Pacific?

Posted by Sydney J. Freedberg Jr. on


WASHINGTON: The deployment of improved US missile defenses to Korea, THAAD, comes at a time of growing disorder across the region. There is one constant in this equation but three major unknowns. The constant is the THAAD system itself, whose capabilities — almost six times the maximum range of current Patriot missile defenses and roughly five… Keep reading →

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Future of Army Combat: McCain Wants Ambition, Army Offers Caution

Posted by Sydney J. Freedberg Jr. on


  CAPITOL HILL: Sen. John McCain wants an ambitious plan for new ground vehicle designs and new kinds of combat units from the Army. So does the Heritage Foundation, which has provided much of the brain power for the Trump administration. But the Army isn’t on board: Burned by past program meltdowns like FCS and GCV.… Keep reading →

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If Trump Wants Lower F-35 Costs, He Should Compete F135 Engine

Posted by John Venable on


Donald Trump has bemoaned the “over budget, behind schedule” F-35 program. He opened his first press conference as president-elect with a vow to do “big things” to bring down the aircraft’s cost and improve performance. That will take more than jaw-boning. Applying heat to Lockheed will reduce costs to a degree, but it would take another… Keep reading →

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2017 Forecast: Trump Loves Marines (Too Much?)

Posted by Sydney J. Freedberg Jr. on


WASHINGTON: Donald Trump’s election is mostly good news for the Marine Corps — but there are a couple of important caveats. Both his campaign promise to increase Marine combat battalions by 50 percent and his public lambasting of the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter could cause problems for Marine Corps leaders as they struggle to explain… Keep reading →

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Army Wants To Buy Back Guard Apaches In 2018: VCSA Allyn

Posted by Sydney J. Freedberg Jr. on


WASHINGTON: Army budgeteers are laboring mightily to fund four National Guard attack helicopter battalions in their 2018 request, if Congress doesn’t add the money for 2017, the service’s vice-chief said today. The Army also has “a resourcing strategy” to restore an 11th Combat Aviation Brigade — a mix of attack and utility helicopters — to… Keep reading →

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US Must Do More In South China Sea, Urges Sen. McCain

Posted by Sydney J. Freedberg Jr. on


SINGAPORE: In a clear message to the Obama Administration, our Pacific partners and to China, Sen. John McCain says the US military is not doing enough to challenge Chinese claims in the strategic South China Sea. Nor is the US doing enough to ratify the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade pact, a vital economic objective in the… Keep reading →

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Carter: ‘Yes’ To Arms Sales To Vietnam; DoD Won’t Elaborate

Posted by Sydney J. Freedberg Jr. on


WASHINGTON: One word from Defense Secretary Ash Carter yesterday opened the door to US arms sales to Vietnam, a former enemy turned potential ally against a rising China. The administration has tiptoed towards easing the ban on lethal weapons sales ever since Vietnamese president Truong Tan Sang met with Obama in 2013, but Carter’s statement… Keep reading →

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Chinese Scarborough Shoal Base Would Threaten Manila

Posted by Sydney J. Freedberg Jr. on


UPDATED with Sen. McCain & Dean Cheng comments WASHINGTON: If China builds an artificial island on the disputed Scarborough Shoal, Sen. Dan Sullivan warned today, it will complete a “strategic triangle” of bases that can dominate the South China Sea. At this morning’s Senate Armed Services Committee hearing, Sullivan displayed a map (above) of the region… Keep reading →

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Dems May Refuse To Support HASC NDAA: Our Markup Preview

Posted by Colin Clark on


WASHINGTON: Mac Thornberry, chairman of the House Armed Services Committee, wants to boost funding for readiness and modernization and he’s using a budgeting gimmick in the defense policy bill to do it that is prompting much head shaking. (A similar gimmick led to a short-lived presidential veto last year). Colin’s bet is that, should the Senate… Keep reading →

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