- May 18, 2018Daniel Gouré, Ph.D.
- The U.S. Army Could Revolutionize Long-Range Fires (From RealClearDefense)
In recent testimony before the Senate Armed Services Committee, Army Secretary Mark Esper revealed that Long-Range Precision Fires (LRPF) is his service’s top priority. Currently, the Army has a multi-phased program designed to first improve and then transform the capabilities of its artillery, rocket and missile systems. According to Dr. Thomas Russell, Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Army for Research [ Read More…]
- May 18, 2018
- Loren B. Thompson, Ph.D
- Critical U.S. Military Sites Can’t Cope With A Prolonged Power Outage (From Forbes)
In 2008, the Defense Science Board warned that vital U.S. military installations were too dependent on a fragile commercial power grid, and that backup plans in the event of a prolonged outage were inadequate. Today, ten years later, nothing much has changed — except perhaps that cyber threats to the grid have increased. The military still gets 99% of its [ Read More…]
- May 15, 2018
- Loren B. Thompson, Ph.D
- Boeing’s Big Day: WTO Clears Way For Massive Penalties In Long-running Aircraft Subsidies Case (From Forbes)
On May 15, the World Trade Organization issued its final and definitive ruling on a case brought by the U.S. Trade Representative against European aircraft subsidies in 2006. The ruling is a huge win for Boeing, America’s biggest exporter, opening the way for Washington to impose billions of dollars in tariffs on European goods as a way of forcing compliance [ Read More…]
- May 14, 2018Daniel Gouré, Ph.D.
- A Competitive Strategy To Counter Russian Aggression Against NATO
The world has entered a new era of great power competition. The 2017 U.S. National Security Strategy declared After being dismissed as a phenomenon of an earlier century, great power competition returned. China and Russia began to reassert their influence regionally and globally. . . They are contesting our geopolitical advantages and trying to change the international order in their favor. Building off the concept of a renewed great power competition, the U.S. National Defense Strategy took a broad view [ Read More…]
- May 14, 2018Loren B. Thompson, Ph.D
- What Does It Take To Be A Top Operative For The Defense Industry In Washington? (From Forbes)
The defense industry depends on the federal government for all of its sales, so contractors are very careful about picking who will run their Washington offices. A look at the top operatives at Boeing, General Dynamics and Lockheed Martin suggests that certain qualities are valued above all others: deep knowledge of how the government operates, a well-developed network of capital connections, an ability to reach across the political aisle regardless of party affiliation. Like the CEOs to whom they report, [ Read More…]
- May 10, 2018Daniel Gouré, Ph.D.
- U.S. Army Could Build An Integrated Air And Missile Defense Now (From RealClearDefense)
The U.S. Army has an ambitious program, called the Integrated Battle Command System (IBCS), which seeks to network the Army’s entire suite of air and missile defense systems: Patriot, Terminal High Altitude Area Defense, Integrated Fire Protection and eventually short-range air defense. Frankly, IBCS is overly ambitious and too expensive. It was conceived during the period of Army acquisition hubris that produced such debacles as the Future Combat System. IBCS has already missed its original goal of 2018 for an [ Read More…]
- May 8, 2018Loren B. Thompson, Ph.D
- Rocket Motors On Nuclear Missiles Become A Test Case For Trump Industrial Policy (From Forbes)
The White House will soon release a comprehensive study of the defense industrial base that warns against letting domestic sources of vital military items shrink to a “single point of failure.” However, that is precisely where the industrial base for large solid rocket motors may be headed if the Air Force doesn’t adjust its approach to competing a replacement for the aged Minuteman III missile. Large SRMs, as they are called, are essential to the nation’s nuclear deterrent and various [ Read More…]
- May 7, 2018Paul Steidler
- The President’s Postal Service Task Force: Seven Things To Know And Watch
Through executive order, President Donald Trump has created a Postal Service task force to “develop recommendations for administrative and legislative reforms” and to report its findings by August 10. The task force is comprised of senior administration officials including Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, Budget Director Mick Mulvaney and Attorney General Jeff Sessions. Postal Service reform is long overdue and should be an urgent bipartisan priority. Without prompt action, taxpayers could face a roughly $100 billion bailout. The financial security of [ Read More…]
- May 3, 2018Daniel Gouré, Ph.D.
- Navy’s Next Generation Network Will Not Meet Warfighters’ Needs (From RealClearDefense)
The leadership of the U.S. Navy is virtually unanimous in identifying their networks as one of the linchpins for success in future high-end warfare. Admiral Richardson, Chief of Naval Operations (CNO), recently expressed the view that “there are plenty of examples in history where just the power of networking [platforms] together creatively, adaptively, brings actually more power to that force.” The Navy’s new concept for Distributed Maritime Operations takes the idea of creatively, adaptively networking its platforms and systems to [ Read More…]
- May 2, 2018Loren B. Thompson, Ph.D
- Time Is Already Running Out On The U.S. Army’s Long-Delayed Modernization Surge (From Forbes)
The U.S. Army is missing the opportunity that President Trump’s election has provided to thoroughly modernize its combat systems. Rather than moving out quickly to accelerate the procurement of new weapons already in the pipeline, it is frittering away time reorganizing and transforming its business practices. By the time the Army gets around to bending metal in a big way, the Trump defense buildup will be over and another modernization opportunity will have been lost. I have written a commentary [ Read More…]
- May 2, 2018Daniel Gouré, Ph.D.
- A Real Missile Gap Is Looming In Hypersonic Weapons (From The National Interest)
A new “missile gap” is emerging, one that is based in fact. This is the disparity between the United States and its main competitors, Russia and China, in the field of hypersonic weapons systems. A hypersonic vehicle is one that moves through the atmosphere at a minimum speed of five times that of sound, or Mach 5. Hypersonic weapons systems could dramatically alter the existing balance of conventional military power forces between the United States and its major competitors. They could [ Read More…]
- April 26, 2018Loren B. Thompson, Ph.D
- Boeing CEO Dennis Muilenburg Has A Strategy That Will Work In Good Times And Bad (From Forbes)
Boeing’s impressive earnings beat in the first quarter of 2018 reflects a company that is operating at the top of its game. However, there is a lot more to the Boeing story than what is happening right now. CEO Dennis Muilenburg has fashioned a long-term strategy for the company that will minimize cyclicality in revenues and returns while growing the enterprise across all of its addressable aerospace markets. I have written a commentary for Forbes here.
- April 26, 2018Daniel Gouré, Ph.D.
- Modernizing NATO’s Nuclear Capabilities Must Outweigh Industrial Base Considerations (From RealClearDefense)
Germany is a key player in NATO’s nuclear-sharing arrangements. In order to maintain this role, the Luftwaffe needs to acquire a nuclear-capable F-35 to replace its aging fleet of Tornado strike aircraft. The Russian threat is too dire and the need to restore the credibility of NATO’s extended deterrent too pressing to tolerate industrial base arguments, however specious. NATO solidarity, the sanctity of the collective defense commitment and the need to prioritize modernization of the Alliance’s nuclear deterrent trump outdated [ Read More…]