Defense Contracting News Daily Megathread - Check back daily for more.

Is there interest in this sort of defense news aggregation/spergery?

  • No.

    Votes: 4 16.0%
  • Yes.

    Votes: 11 44.0%
  • OP is faggot.

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Kamov Ka-52

Stop staring and my co-axial rotors b-baka~
True & Honest Fan
kiwifarms.net
Since it seems like an arena you're familiar with; what's the usual ratio of FP to T&M/Cost-Plus contracts for DoD procurement?

You would think, but from what I hear, that is not the case. There were continuous “updates” and “revisions” to old plans. But there really hasn’t been a bottom up combined review/remake of plans and contingencies for a great power war recently.

The key word here is “combined”. Major plans like this take a fuckton of time to integrate and get people to agree on. Seriously, It will take a couple of years for this to work its way through.
I mean, based on my dealings with federal agencies when it comes to procurement, programmatic changes and the requisite politicking required to get anything done, I'm not shocked.
except that article 9 is objectively bad for the Japanese (and their allies).
While I agree, I think there's a case to be made that a strong Japan ultimately isn't in America's best interests.

Thanks again for the taking the time to put this stuff together. :semperfidelis:
 

BONE_Buddy

That Defense Sperg.
kiwifarms.net
Got nothing for you today folks, sorry.

Just here to reply to EurocopterTigre tonight.

I will be back with it tomorrow... probably.

Since it seems like an arena you're familiar with; what's the usual ratio of FP to T&M/Cost-Plus contracts for DoD procurement?
To give you a really lazy answer: It Depends.

A more detailed answer:

There are a heck of a lot more individual contracts in the "Fixed Price" bucket than in the "Cost Plus and Time & Materials" bucket. But unlike gender, DoD contracts are a spectrum. I included a document which explains the various uses of each variant.

As a general rule, if there is "developed support infrastructure" i.e. facilities already exist to manufacture said product, then it is closer to "fixed price". Most things have some semblance of infrastructure in place.

However, you have the big development projects (like the B-21 or most of the F-35) where "no infrastructure exists" meaning that capabilities to manufacture those things have to be developed. So, If you are hearing about new cutting edge military research/development on TV, it is probably a Cost Plus project.

As for a ratio... probably 10-40 to 1 in favor of Fixed Price. You have to remember that for every big name project contracts, there are hundreds of low profile logistics contracts.

Maintenance and logistics is a larger pot of money than development after all. I couldn't give you exact numbers though, I haven't gone through FY2019 budget yet.

_
See you all tomorrow, I should be back with it then.
 

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Kamov Ka-52

Stop staring and my co-axial rotors b-baka~
True & Honest Fan
kiwifarms.net
Got nothing for you today folks, sorry.

Just here to reply to EurocopterTigre tonight.

I will be back with it tomorrow... probably.


To give you a really lazy answer: It Depends.

A more detailed answer:

There are a heck of a lot more individual contracts in the "Fixed Price" bucket than in the "Cost Plus and Time & Materials" bucket. But unlike gender, DoD contracts are a spectrum. I included a document which explains the various uses of each variant.

As a general rule, if there is "developed support infrastructure" i.e. facilities already exist to manufacture said product, then it is closer to "fixed price". Most things have some semblance of infrastructure in place.

However, you have the big development projects (like the B-21 or most of the F-35) where "no infrastructure exists" meaning that capabilities to manufacture those things have to be developed. So, If you are hearing about new cutting edge military research/development on TV, it is probably a Cost Plus project.

As for a ratio... probably 10-40 to 1 in favor of Fixed Price. You have to remember that for every big name project contracts, there are hundreds of low profile logistics contracts.

Maintenance and logistics is a larger pot of money than development after all. I couldn't give you exact numbers though, I haven't gone through FY2019 budget yet.

_
See you all tomorrow, I should be back with it then.
I figured it would be mostly skewed towards fixed price, but I don't have a lot of experience with DoD contracts, thank you for humoring my procurement related autism.
 
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BONE_Buddy

That Defense Sperg.
kiwifarms.net
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“Defense Post" said:
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https://www.dvidshub.net/news/338601/exercise-yudh-abhyas-19-kicks-off-joint-base-lewis-mcchord
“Janes" said:
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U.S. Army increase cannon production capacity in historic ‘Big Gun Shop’
“Defense Blog" said:
The U.S. Army decides to increase cannon production capacity in historic ‘Big Gun Shop’ at Watervliet Arsenal in Watervliet, New York.

The oldest continuously active arsenal in the United States produces much of the artillery for the army, as well as gun tubes for cannons, mortars, and tanks.

Currently, the U.S Army has imposed new priorities, which require promoting dynamic synergies between production and strategic development needs. One such priority, the integration of сutting-edge technology in production and development, is a surface to surface strategic fires capability.

The demand in increased capacity results from the Army’s prioritization of long-range precision artillery to meet potential near-peer threats.
“Long-range artillery has been in the arsenal’s wheel house since 1883,” said, Joseph Turcotte, Watervliet Arsenal deputy to the commander. “The Army’s prioritization on long-range artillery is the push behind expanding our manufacturing capacity and driving our modernization efforts. It is imperative that we have the tools necessary to fulfill our mission to the Department of Defense and this is an important step in completing that goal.”

In response to increased workload demands, the arsenal is increasing production capacity making the ‘Big Gun Shop’ the perfect location to house new equipment on the 143-acre installation. The machines will perform a variety of manufacturing functions including turning operations, straightening and abrasive blasting.

“New requirements and more machines to produce at increased rates are what is driving this latest batch of equipment,” said Tim Fontaine, industrial engineering specialist with the arsenal’s capital improvement program.

In addition to increasing capacity, new machines being installed will future-proof the arsenal’s capabilities by ensuring the arsenal can meet tomorrow’s production requirements.

“Being able to produce future weapon systems is a primary focus when planning new machines,” said James Kardas, industrial engineer with the arsenal’s capital improvement program.

The ‘Big Gun Shop’ revitalization is the latest in a series of recent capital investment projects at the arsenal. Which, according to Watervliet Arsenal Commander Col. Milton G. Kelly, reflects the Army’s commitment to the historic arsenal.

“Investment in new machines is a testament of the Army’s faith and trust in the arsenal to perform its mission and do it well,” said Kelly. “These new machines help us become more efficient and respond to future requirements.”

Watervliet Arsenal is an Army-owned-and-operated manufacturing facility and is the oldest continuously active arsenal in the United States, having begun operations during the War of 1812. It celebrated its 200th anniversary on July 14, 2013. Today’s arsenal is relied upon by the U.S. and foreign militaries to produce the most advanced, high-tech, high-powered weaponry for cannons, howitzers and mortar systems.
The Redlegs (US Field Artillery) must be happy with all this.

BAE Systems gets $269 million contract modification for Bradley production
“Defense Blog" said:
BAE Systems Inc. has been awarded a $268,9 million U.S. Army contract modification for Bradley infantry fighting vehicle production, a U.S. Department of Defense news release states.

Work will be performed in York, Pennsylvania, with an estimated completion date of March 31, 2021, the release states.

Also added that Fiscal 2018 procurement of weapons and tracked combat vehicles funds in the amount of $268,990,416 were obligated at the time of the award.

The Bradley infantry fighting vehicle is a combat proven platform that provides outstanding survivability, mobility, and lethality and is an integral part of the U.S. Army’s Armored Brigade Combat Team (ABCT).

BAE Systems website said the newest Bradleys feature the latest digitized electronics for optimum situational awareness, network connectivity, and communication within the ABCT. Over the life of the Bradley program, there have been several survivability upgrades, including installation of underbelly protection and the Bradley Urban Survivability Kits (BUSK), further enhancing the safety of one of the most survivable vehicles in the fleet.

This past summer, the Army started live fire-testing of the Bradley Engineering Change Proposal (ECP) to evaluate the survivability of the Bradley to threat-induced ballistic shock and underbody accelerative loads. The Army completed controlled damage experiments (CDE) and started with live fire system-level tests on prototype vehicles. Full-up system-level (FUSL) events using production-representative vehicles will be completed in FY20.

In July 2019, also was spotted upgrade Bradley fighting vehicle with new track system at Yuma Proving Ground.

United States’s public broadcaster, FOX 10, quoting Test Officer at the Yuma Proving Ground, reported that a new track system is being tested on a
Bradley combat-proven platform, one that will allow tanks to be raised and lowered depending on the terrain, like a lifted Jeep.

“It gives it the ability to set a variable ride height,” said Sarah Hogan, Combat Systems Test Officer at the Yuma Proving Grounds. “Better off-road speeds, lower vibrations, so better survivability for the crew and army personnel.”

The YPG test officer provided no further details.
Bradleys get an upgrade to both the suspension and armor.

Pentagon Issues Classified RFP For New Missile Interceptor
“Breaking Defense" said:
DoD goes back to the drawing board to replace its missile interceptors. Can they make it work this time?

WASHINGTON: The Missile Defense Agency has developed a classified draft request for proposals as it tries to rapidly restart a stalled ballistic missile interceptor program designed to knock down North Korean missiles in space.

Dubbed the Next Generation Interceptor, the program will replace the Redesigned Kill Vehicle which was cancelled last month after Pentagon leadership came to the conclusion that the multi-billion dollar program just wouldn’t work.

The draft RFP was handed out to defense industry reps — on CDs — at an industry day on August 29, about two weeks after the RKV was terminated by Mike Griffin, the Pentagon’s research and engineering chief.

The RKV program was part of an ambitious technology effort helmed by Boeing — though Raytheon was building the Kill Vehicles — to replace the current Exo-Atmospheric Kill Vehicle. Both are ground-based interceptors designed to defend the US mainland against long-range ballistic missile attacks.

The cancellation came as North Korea is in the midst of a series of short-range ballistic missile tests, which experts have said is likely assisting the country in its quest to build new, more reliable longer range missiles.

While the cancellation of the RKV was a surprise, issues had been mounting for the program for years. The Missile Defense Agency said back in 2016 it expected the first RKV flight test by 2019, with fielding in 2020. The latest estimate, released earlier this year with the fiscal 2020 budget request, pushed the fielding date back to 2025.

But the program, Griffin insisted earlier this week at the annual Defense News conference, still provided the Pentagon with a return on its investment. “The money, which was spent, did not go toward hardware which will be mothballed somewhere. It went towards the acquisition of knowledge, which will inform our future,” he said.

Boeing and Raytheon also won’t have to pay back any of the billion-plus dollars the government awarded them to do the work. “We terminated for convenience, not default,” Griffin added. “There are no paybacks due, and we learned quite a lot that we’ll carry forward into the next-generation interceptor.”

The scrapping of the RKV will cost the department several years as it replaces the older interceptor, but it remains unclear just how long it will be before the Next Generation Interceptor effort kicks off, and evaluation and testing begin.

The cancellation comes as part of an overall Pentagon effort to unsentimentally scrap underperforming programs. The Army has pushed the idea further than most, holding a series of Night Court sessions which have saved more than $30 billion over the past two years. Likewise, Griffin said this week that he is deferring some work on space-based lasers because there’s no path to fielding them in the short-term, which is his priority.

“We’re looking at high-powered microwaves,” Griffin said. “We’re deferring work on neutral particle beams indefinitely. It’s just not near-enough term.” He added that he is looking to pump money into directed energy capabilities that can be ready in the next several years. “We’re focusing on nearer-term uses of directed energy, particularly lasers of higher power than we currently have,” Griffin said.
The RKV was a shitshow, perhaps a necessary shitshow, but a shitshow none the less. In the meantime, new technologies have matured that will probably make a better system on roughly the same schedule. I am very cautiously optimistic about the new development program. It will be 5-10 years before we really see the fruit of this work unfortunately. Still, we will see early signs a couple of years from now.

Report on China Naval Modernization and Implications for the U.S. Navy

“USNI" said:
The following is the Aug. 30, 2019 Congressional Research Service report, China Naval Modernization: Implications for U.S. Navy Capabilities — Background and Issues for Congress.

From the report

In an international security environment characterized as one of renewed great power competition, China’s military modernization effort, including its naval modernization effort, has become the top focus of U.S. defense planning and budgeting.China’s navy, which China has been steadily modernizing for roughly 25 years, since the early to mid-1990s, has become a formidable military force within China’s near-seas region, and it is conducting a growing number of operations in more-distant waters, including the broader waters of the Western Pacific, the Indian Ocean, and waters around Europe.China’s navy is viewed as posing a major challenge to the U.S. Navy’s ability to achieve and maintain wartime control of blue-water ocean areas in the Western Pacific—the first such challenge the U.S. Navy has faced since the end of the Cold War—and forms a key element of a Chinese challenge to the long-standing status of the United States as the leading military power in the Western Pacific.

China’s naval modernization effort encompasses a wide array of platform and weapon acquisition programs, including anti-ship ballistic missiles (ASBMs), anti-ship cruise missiles (ASCMs), submarines, surface ships, aircraft, unmanned vehicles (UVs),and supporting C4ISR (command and control, communications, computers, intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance) systems. China’s naval modernization effort also includes improvements in maintenance and logistics, doctrine, personnel quality, education and training, and exercises.

China’s military modernization effort, including its naval modernization effort is assessed as being aimed at developing capabilities for addressing the situation with Taiwan militarily, if need be; for achieving a greater degree of control or domination over China’s near-seas region, particularly the South China Sea; for enforcing China’s view that it has the right to regulate foreign military activities in its 200-mile maritime exclusive economic zone (EEZ); for defending China’s commercial sea lines of communication (SLOCs), particularly those linking China to the Persian Gulf; for displacing U.S. influence in the Western Pacific; and for asserting China’s status as the leading regional power and a major world power.

Consistent with these goals, observers believe China wants its navy to be capable of acting as part of a Chinese anti-access/area-denial (A2/AD) force—a force that can deter U.S. intervention in a conflict in China’s near-seas region over Taiwan or some other issue, or failing that, delay the arrival or reduce the effectiveness of intervening U.S. forces. Additional missions for China’s navy include conducting maritime security (including antipiracy) operations, evacuating Chinese nationals from foreign countries when necessary, and conducting humanitarian assistance/disaster response (HA/DR) operations.

The U.S. Navy in recent years has taken a number of actions to counter China’s naval modernization effort. Among other things, the U.S. Navy has shifted a greater percentage of its fleet to the Pacific; assigned its most-capable new ships and aircraft and its best personnel to the Pacific; maintained or increased general presence operations, training and developmental exercises, and engagement and cooperation with allied and other navies in the Pacific; increased the planned future size of the Navy; initiated, increased, or accelerated numerous programs for developing new military technologies and acquiring new ships, aircraft, unmanned vehicles, and weapons; begun development of new operational concepts (i.e., new ways to employ Navy and Marine Corps forces) for countering Chinese maritime A2/AD forces, and signaled that the Navy in coming years will shift to a more-distributed fleet architecture that will feature a smaller portion of larger ships, a larger portion of smaller ships, and a substantially greater use of unmanned vehicles.The issue for Congress is whether the U.S. Navy is responding appropriately to China’s naval modernization effort.
The referenced PDF is attached, It is one of the very few halfway readable papers that goes through the modern threat of the PLAN and China’s Anti-Naval forces. It is 35 pages.

Air Force Touts B-1B Bomber's Potential To Carry Huge Hypersonic Missiles And External Stores

I will be posting this story in A&H general. There are two reasons for this, If I am going to go through the work to reformat the article into something forum readable, I want it to have a large audience. Number 2, I have a massive soft spot for the B-1B.
_
I almost put this in the dishonorable mentions category. It is so stupid it hurts. It is a bunch of tech illiterate boomers telling other tech illiterate boomers not to do something that they don’t know how to do.
Don’t Hack Back: Call The FBI & They’ll Call NSA
“Breaking Defense" said:
“The average time it takes to discover a data breach is about six months,” said Hickey, a deputy assistant attorney general at the Justice Department specializing in cybersecurity and China. By the time you realize you’ve been hacked, it’s too late to “hack back" and shut down your attacker.

INSA: In the popular imagination there’s this image “of the beleaguered IT professional at a company who sees the data on a large plasma screen slipping out of the company’s network, and it is just out of his reach,” Adam Hickey said. “If only he could go delete it from the server to which it was transferred, he could save the company.”

There’s just one problem with this scenario of “active defense,” often called “hacking back” — It never happens.

“The average time it takes to discover a data breach is about six months,” said Hickey, a deputy assistant attorney general at the Justice Department specializing in cybersecurity and China. So, by the time you realize you’ve been hacked, said Hickey and other experts speaking to the annual Intelligence & Security Alliance Conference, it’s too late to “hack back” and shut down your attacker.

Even if you could figure out who really stole your secrets — and attribution is something even intelligence agencies struggle to do with high confidence, said NSA general counsel Glenn Gerstell — they’ve already copied your data as many times as they want, to as many places as they want. No amount of cyber-vigilantism on your part is going to undo that.

In other words, hacking back is not just locking the barn door after the horse has bolted. It’s locking the barn after the horse has fled, died, and been rendered into glue.

So what should you do? Pick up the phone and call the FBI, Gerstell and Hickey said.
“It Just Doesn’t Work”

“Microsoft does not condone hacking back,” agreed Microsoft security exec Rich Boscovich. “It just doesn’t work.”

Even if you actually catch an attack in progress, trying to hack your attacker back isn’t the best way to stop them, Boscovich said. While tracing the attack all the way to its origin is immensely difficult, he explained, it’s fairly straightforward to figure out the immediate source of the bits and bytes coming into your network. Those are coming from specific IP addresses, which are administered by a specific Internet hosting service, whose contact information is publicly listed.

“You pick up the phone and you call them,” Boscovich said. Tell a hosting service that one or more of their accounts is using their IP addresses for malicious activity, he said, and, in his experience, the hosting service almost always shuts it down.

Even if the hosting company itself is shady, Boscovich went on, the fear of being publicly exposed and blacklisted can scare them into shutting down the offending account. Why? Because if a hosting service gets a reputation for hosting hackers, more and more internet service providers will simply block all traffic to and from its IP addresses, killing its business.

Yes, Microsoft has a decade-old reputation for aggressively defending its interests online. But as hackers grow more sophisticated, hiding their real origin and routing attacks through unsuspecting third parties, Microsoft has found cooperation is the best approach.

“We’re changed the way we operate… doing much closer private-public cooperation, working closely with US law enforcement, European law enforcement,” Boscovich said. Rather than rely on technological solutions, he said, “most of it is relationship-based.”

That’s the Justice Department’s experience as well, Hickey chimed in. “It is amazing to me how much we get from the FBI’s relationship with law enforcement around the world,” he said. “That gets us more than hacking back.”

So going to FBI doesn’t just bring in the bureau. It brings your problem to the attention of a whole array of federal agencies — and beyond them, foreign allies — that have far more information, and much more legal authority to act, than any private company can dream of.
The NSA’s Role

Those agencies include the notoriously far-seeing National Security Agency, although Gerstell was quick to emphasize his agency plays a supporting role. NSA will gather intelligence, he said, but then it hands it over to others to take action. the FBI handles targets in the United States, the military’s Cyber Command handles those beyond America’s borders.

Now, this demurral might be disingenuous. NSA has long conducted cyber attacks, not just surveillance — although much of the offensive capability may have been transferred over time to Cyber Command. Whatever the truth of what NSA can actually do, however, it’s not likely to roll out its big guns to take revenge just because your company got hacked.

What NSA is doing, however, is creating — or rather re-creating — a Cybersecurity Directorate as a single point of contact for other federal agencies, foreign allies, and the private sector.

“The NSA has for decades had a cybersecurity and information assurance mission,” Gerstell told reporters after the panel, “but the activities in particular of the 2018 election — as well as the general growth in cyber mischief — have convinced us it’s important for us to have one integrated focal point within the National Security Agency to deal with the cybersecurity threats.”

Again, the new NSA Cyber Directorate does not “hack back.” Its role, Gerstell explained to reporters after the panel, is to “obtain information in a very quick time; engage as appropriate, where we have the authority to do so, with the private sector and other federal government agencies; and then turn that information over to those parties who are able to tae action on it, whether it’s the FBI for law enforcement purposes, or US CYBERCOM for military activities, or other parts of the federal government.”

The new cybersecurity directorate officially opens its doors October 1st, though it won’t be fully up and running until Dec. 31st, director-to-be Anne Neuberger told the Billington Cybersecurity Summit yesterday. That’s because there are “thousands” of NSA employees across previously separate fiefdoms and specialties who need to be brought together to work side by side, literally “sitting together” for the first time, she explained to reporters afterward.

“That’s where full operating capability is,” Neuberger said, “and some of these shifts will take us a couple of months to do.”

Neuberger is a former financial sector cybersecurity expert — experienced in protecting billions of digital dollars — who went on to lead the NSA side of the Russia Small Group formed to secure the 2018 federal elections from foreign interference. She and the agency have learned a lot from those experiences.

“We’ve heard a lot of feedback that some of the information we would share — for example, IP addresses, domain names [being used by an adversary] —are temporary and by the time they’re shared, they’re no longer useful,” Neuberger told the Billington conference. “So it’s a shift to say.. .when we share threat information at the unclassified level, there needs to be more context. What are the overall goals of the actor? How do they pull together those goals, using an exploit, using a particular infrastructure to launch against a particular set of targets?”

The formal mechanisms for sharing this information are “the easy part,” Neuberger said. “What’s more challenging is creating the urgency, the operationalization of intelligence, to rapidly share while something is still relevant.”

“Ideally, she said, “we are sharing the threat information to prevent an attack.”
That sounds a lot better than hacking back.
I mean, come on guys, it isn’t that hard not to act like a stereo-type.

Dishonorable Mentions (for stuff that doesn’t warrant the time or effort to post a transcript, but I still want to post a barb or two about it.):

Girl’s message for equality received in a big way: Green Army women figurines are on the way
https://www.armytimes.com/off-duty/military-culture/2019/09/06/girls-message-for-equality-received-in-a-big-way-green-army-women-figurines-are-on-the-way/
Now they are little green army people. I don’t know how anyone is actually going to be able to tell the little green women apart from the little green men.

C-17 crew stops at Trump’s Scottish golf resort en route to Kuwait
https://www.airforcetimes.com/news/your-air-force/2019/09/07/c-17-crew-stops-at-trumps-scottish-golf-resort-en-route-to-kuwait/
Insinuations of Trump using the military to keep his resort afloat. Because obviously the President is personally forcing Military members to stay at his resort against their will.

How Not to Run the World
Bolton Derangement Syndrome. People are saying that Bolton has been sidelined, I doubt it. Bolton is a hammer, a tool to be used for a very specific job. When he is not needed he is not deployed.

EDIT: Boomered a spoiler.
 

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spiritofamermaid

happiest fish in the water
kiwifarms.net
I was doing some research for a book and stumbled into learning about hydrofoil ships, which sounded super cool (ships that act like flying fish?). Are they still making them, or has that project been scrapped/only Norway wants to have that tech?
 
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YW 525

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kiwifarms.net
TUCSON, Ariz. (KOLD News 13)
An A-10C Thunderbolt II on a training mission accidentally fired a rocket near Tucson early Thursday, Sept. 5.

Davis-Monthan said the rocket, a M-156, hit an uninhabited and remote area near Mount Graham. D-M said it happened in the Jackal Military Operations Area, which is located approximately 60 miles northeast of Tucson.

The M-156 has a warhead that emits smoke and is usually used for targeting, according to several sources.

There were no injuries, damages or fires from the launch.

The incident, which happened around 10:40 a.m., is under investigation.

The A-10C Thunderbolt II was assigned to the 354th Fighter Squadron from the 355th Wing.
Nothing super crazy about this story but it allows me to make a great book recommendation.

cc.png

Command and Control was part of a university course I took a couple years ago. By discussing and dissecting America's near misses, the author shows how modern nuclear procedures formed. You'll also be pretty fucking stressed out by the end. Remember to tether your sockets to your body. With that said I do have a question: does anyone know of any books like Command and Control that take a deep look at the Soviet nuclear program and its growing pains?
 

BONE_Buddy

That Defense Sperg.
kiwifarms.net
[/QUOTE]
“Defense Talk" said:
“Military Times" said:
“Defense News" said:
“Defense One" said:
“DVIDS" said:
“Defense Blog" said:
“Alert 5" said:
“Combat Aircraft" said:
Not much to talk about today. Sunday’s are usually light on content.

As per usual with War Zone articles, because formatting would take me 20 minutes, you are just going to have to click through.


U.S. Army demonstrates cutting-edge ETAK system for air defense Soldiers
“Defense Blog" said:
The U.S. Army has demonstrated cutting-edge Enhanced Target Acquisition Kit, or ETAK, that is designed to provide day, night and degraded visual environment target acquisition and tracking for man-portable systems for Warfighters.

According to a statement issued by U.S. Army Space and Missile Defense Command, Soldiers in Europe demonstrated the ETAK during the Sabre Guardian exercise earlier this year.

Members of SMDC have developed the Enhanced Target Acquisition Kit, or ETAK, to provide day, night and degraded visual environment target acquisition and tracking for man-portable systems.

“ETAK augments the Soldiers’ existing equipment so they are able to see at night and receive sensor tracks to cue the Soldier to the location of the threat,” said Justin Novak, SMDC Future Warfare Center computer engineer.

ETAK is designed to leverage existing combat equipment to provide air space situational awareness, early warning, and rapid sensor assisted acquisition and tracking capabilities to dismounted Soldiers over tactical networks.

The kit was developed by the command’s U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command Capability Manager for Strategic Missile Defense’s Prototyping and Experimentation
Branch in two increments. The first is a rail sight mount for the weapon, and the second is a sensor-based cueing system.

In tandem, the kit cues a Soldier to the vicinity of the target using the sensor and then enables positive identification and tracking of the target via the night optic. ETAK capitalizes on Army investments leveraging the latest generation night optics and augmented reality display technology. ETAK is field mountable and dismountable and does not degrade the capabilities of the existing system.

“The goal of ETAK is to increase the Soldiers’ capability to acquire and engage targets with man-portable weapons,” Novak said. “In addition to being able to acquire targets, the system is also able to show where friendly units are. This capability will help reduce the possibility of having a friendly fire incident on the battlefield. And in the future, other man-portable systems may be able to take advantage of these enhanced capabilities.”

The Prototyping and Experimentation Branch developed this capability from concept to prototype demonstration. In coordination with multiple program executive offices, ETAK leverages existing equipment, government manufacturing capabilities and commercial hardware to rapidly produce an inexpensive prototype.

The branch then leveraged the Air and Missile Defense Prototyping Framework to integrate Solders’ existing equipment and tactical data feeds to rapidly produce and demonstrate a prototype in field conditions.

“The Future Warfare Center has been very supportive in giving me the tools and leadership support at the highest level to be able to develop ETAK from a concept and turn it into a reality,” Novak said.

This modular framework is multi-platform, which is substantiated by repurposing tactical processing modules built for common computer operating systems and reusing them within the other operating system. This technology is currently being assessed by operational units to address gaps in current systems.

“Looking across available technologies, I came up with this concept by blending available technologies for the Soldiers’ benefit,” Novak said. “This concept utilizes augmented reality gaming technology to provide Soldiers awareness of their surroundings without having to take their eye off of potential adversaries or other objectives they may be focused on.

“Repurposing this technology and allowing industry to mature it gives the Soldier a decisive advantage by benefiting from industry-matured technology without the taxpayer funding the integration of mature components versus a brand new technology forward,” he added.

ETAK is designed to improve defense of Army forces worldwide with enhanced day, night, and low-visibility situational awareness, acquisition, and engagement capability; digital fire control for man-portable systems. It also leverages Soldiers’ existing combat equipment and Army training programs with minimal added weight by using a common power source. SMDC is in the process of transitioning this technology to a program office for procurement and fielding.

“My hope is that ETAK will cause our adversaries to think twice before attacking as any Soldier could have this capability at the ready,” Novak said.
A proper name and shame:
https://www.amnesty.org.uk/press-releases/arms-companies-are-washing-their-hands-their-responsibilities-new-report
Arms companies are 'washing their hands of their responsibilities' - new report

“Brit-Bong Bitching" said:
22 companies - including BAE Systems and Rolls-Royce - failing to undertake adequate human rights due diligence despite war crimes risk
Findings come after court ruled UK arms sales to Saudi Arabia were unlawful

‘Not one of the companies we contacted was able to demonstrate adequate human rights due diligence’ - Patrick Wilcken


As the global arms industry prepares to set up shop at the DSEI arms fair in London this week, a new report today by Amnesty International reveals that the world’s biggest arms companies - including Airbus, BAE Systems and Raytheon - are failing to undertake adequate human rights due diligence which could prevent their products from being used in potential human rights violations and war crimes.

Governments’ human rights obligations to regulate the international arms trade are laid out under the UN Arms Trade Treaty and regional and domestic legislation, but Amnesty’s report says that the role of companies in the supply of military goods and services is being overlooked, despite the often inherently dangerous nature of their business and products.

For its new 68-page report - Outsourcing Responsibility - Amnesty contacted 22 arms companies from 11 countries asking them to explain how they meet their responsibilities to respect human rights under internationally-recognised standards.

Fourteen of the companies failed to respond at all (see below), while of the eight that did - Airbus (Netherlands), BAE Systems (UK), Leonardo (Italy), Lockheed Martin (USA), Raytheon (USA), Rolls-Royce (UK), Saab and Thales (France) - none was able to adequately explain how they meet their human rights responsibilities and demonstrate proper due diligence. A full list of responses is available here.

Many of the companies investigated for the report have made millions from supplying arms and services for the Saudi Arabia/UAE-led coalition’s campaign in Yemen, where the coalition is accused of committing war crimes and serious human rights violations.

BAE Systems, Boeing, Lockheed Martin and Raytheon, among others, have been integral to the coalition’s Yemeni war effort, arming a fleet of combat aircraft that has repeatedly struck civilian objects - including homes, schools, hospitals and marketplaces. None of these companies explained what human rights due diligence they had undertaken to assess and address the risks of supplying arms and services to the coalition.

In one instance Amnesty traced a bomb remnant from the site of an airstrike in Sana’a - which killed six children and their parents in 2017 - to Raytheon’s manufacturing plant in Arizona. When Amnesty asked Raytheon what steps it had taken to investigate and respond to this incident, the company said: “Due to legal constraints, customer relations issues … Raytheon does not provide information on our products, customers or operational issues.” Raytheon added that prior to export, military and security equipment is “subject to a multifaceted review by the US Department of State, Department of Defence and Congress”.

Meanwhile, the UK arms company BAE Systems described Amnesty’s conclusions as “false and misleading”, adding that BAE applies “measured and appropriate policy and process of its own in respect of compliance with laws and regulation” through its Product Trading Policy. However, when questioned on human rights due diligence in relation to BAE’s trade with Saudi Arabia, the company said: “Our activities in Saudi Arabia are subject to UK government approval and oversight.”

For its part, the Italian company Leonardo said that Amnesty’s conclusions were “not completely fair” and that the company did carry out human rights due diligence which went beyond compliance with national licensing laws and regulations. However, the company did not explain how these policies work in practice in concrete situations - for example, in exports to the Saudi Arabia/UAE coalition for use in the Yemen conflict.

Amnesty is calling on defence companies to vet clients’ past performance against human rights benchmarks; build high expectations of compliance with international human rights law into contracts; continuously monitor and periodically audit client performance; and use leverage to influence the behaviour of clients.
Patrick Wilcken, Arms Control Researcher at Amnesty International, said:
“The role of arms companies in deadly conflicts marred by serious human rights violations has been the elephant in the room for too long.
“While states like the UK are - rightly - being pursued in the courts for their reckless arms deals, the corporations who profit from supplying arms to countries involved in these conflicts have largely escaped scrutiny.


“Not one of the companies we contacted was able to demonstrate adequate human rights due diligence. Not only does this show an alarming indifference to the human cost of their business, it could potentially expose these companies and their bosses to prosecution for complicity in war crimes.


“Defence giants are washing their hands of their responsibilities by arguing that, once their goods are shipped, they no longer have any control over how they are used. This argument doesn’t stand up, legally or ethically - it’s high time companies started taking responsibility for their decisions.


“If it is impossible to avert the risks that arms will be used for human rights abuses, companies should avoid or cease supplying weapons.


“Most companies who responded to Amnesty made the argument that responsibility for human rights assessments lies with their home states through the arms licensing process.


“But government regulation does not exempt companies - no matter what sector they operate in - from carrying out their own human rights due diligence. Hiding behind governments is not good enough - especially when licence decisions have been shown to be flawed, and governments issuing licences are themselves being challenged over their role in war crimes and other violations.”
The 14 companies that did not respond

Meanwhile, the other 14 companies - Arquus (France), Avibras (Brazil), Boeing (USA), Dassault Aviation (France), Elbit Systems (Israel), Embraer (Brazil), Heckler and Koch (Germany), General Dynamics (USA), Herstal Group (Belgium), Norinco (China), Northrop Grumman (USA), Remington Outdoor (USA), Rosoboronexport (Russia) and Zastava (Serbia) - did not respond to Amnesty’s requests.

Amongst other issues, the Russian arms exporter Rosoboronexport has supplied military equipment to the Syrian armed forces, who stand accused of numerous war crimes and crimes against humanity; rifles made by Zastava have been traced by Amnesty to a horrific mass execution in Cameroon; while armoured vehicles made by Arquus (formerly Renault Trucks Défense) supplied to Egypt have been used to brutally crush dissent.
Due diligence under UN principles

Under the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights, all companies have a responsibility to respect human rights and undertake human rights due diligence to identify, prevent, mitigate and account for how they address both their potential and actual human rights impacts. In relation to the defence sector, this means companies must assess and address human rights risks and abuses arising in all aspects of their business, including how clients such as national armies and police forces use their weaponry and related services.

The primary purpose of due diligence is to avoid causing or contributing to human rights abuses. Therefore, if a company cannot prevent or adequately mitigate adverse human rights impacts, it should avoid or cease supplying the relevant arms and related services. These responsibilities exist over and above compliance with national laws and regulations - such as state licensing systems - aimed at protecting human rights.

Failure to carry out adequate human rights due diligence increases both reputational and legal risks for an industry that supplies high-risk products to dangerous environments. Legal concepts of “corporate complicity” in and the “aiding and abetting” of international crimes continue to evolve and could in the future apply to arms companies that continue supplying weapons in the knowledge that they may be used to commit or facilitate serious violations of international human rights or humanitarian law.

Ah, yes… The whole “gun maker is responsible for their customer’s decisions” shtick. All of these companies have gotten approval from their home countries to sell to these people, in fact sometimes (especially for the US) the equipment is bought by the home nation and then sold or “sold” to another customer without the expressed consent of the company. Further more, wouldn’t you want those “”brutal”” countries defense dollars going to your defense companies instead of Russia or China?

But hey, I don’t expect Amnesty International out of the UK to understand nuance, good business, or the necessary nature of violence.

Interestingly, There is no author credit. The website itself has some potential to be watched for more content for a community watch thread or occasional mockery post on A&H.

  1. LGBTI progressive activism https://www.amnesty.org.uk/issues/lgbti-rights
  2. Being the resistance to Trump https://www.amnesty.org.uk/issues/united-states-america
  3. Banning hate-speech https://www.amnesty.org.uk/free-speech-freedom-expression-human-right

There is a bunch of “good” stuff there if one of you want to take it up.
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I was doing some research for a book and stumbled into learning about hydrofoil ships, which sounded super cool (ships that act like flying fish?). Are they still making them, or has that project been scrapped/only Norway wants to have that tech?
Eh… The only true hydrofoil ships that I know about that were in the USN was the Pegasus class (https://navy-matters.blogspot.com/2015/06/pegasus-class-hydrofoils.html). They were retired in 1993. They were costly for what they were, and our allies they these ships were being designed for decided that they didn’t want them, and dropped the support for the program.

Beyond that, I don’t know any off the top of my head. Perhaps someone else who lurks around here can give you more.
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BONE_Buddy

That Defense Sperg.
kiwifarms.net
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Pinging @EurocopterTigre http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/defense-news/global/~3/G0_JSPFMwRI/
 
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BONE_Buddy

That Defense Sperg.
kiwifarms.net
I will be back with the "curated" article transcripts in a while.
“War Zone" said:
“UPI" said: