- October 25, 2019Loren B. Thompson, Ph.D
- NASSCO: The Last Major Shipyard On The U.S. West Coast Shows What It Takes To Survive (From Forbes)
National Steel and Shipbuilding Company, better known as NASSCO, is the last major shipbuilder on the West Coast. In addition to building auxiliary vessels for the Navy and expeditionary warfare vessels to support the Marine Corps, it also constructs oceangoing commercial vessels for protected domestic routes and performs repairs on ships. NASSCO, a unit of General Dynamics, needs to maintain [ Read More…]
- October 25, 2019
- Paul Steidler
- Electric Grid Cyber Protection: Seven Recent Developments To Know
Protecting America’s electric grid from cyberattacks is a formidable and evolving challenge, requiring continuous evolution and improvement. In recent weeks there have been seven notable developments. While there is no single solution or “silver bullet” to ensure the electric grid is safeguarded from cyberattacks, each of the following is an important and positive building block. Senate Legislation. On September 25, [ Read More…]
- October 23, 2019
- Loren B. Thompson, Ph.D
- The Navy’s Tomahawk Cruise Missile Is Becoming More Lethal, More Versatile (From Forbes)
The Tomahawk cruise missile is the most ubiquitous munition in the U.S. Navy, deployed on 145 warships including both surface combatants and attack submarines. Designed to precisely destroy distant, well-defended targets without causing collateral damage, Tomahawk is now being evolved to address a wider array of enemy assets. The Block V version of Tomahawk will include a maritime strike variant [ Read More…]
- October 18, 2019Loren B. Thompson, Ph.D
- Why Sell Weapons To Taiwan? Because Washington’s China Strategy Won’t Work Without It. (From Forbes)
Taiwan is about to secure its biggest arms sale from Washington in many years, including 66 F-16 fighters and over a hundred M1A2 tanks. Congressional support for arming Taiwan remains strong, and a key reason why is that if Beijing were to seize control of the island, it would unravel U.S. strategy for containing China’s rising military power. That strategy focuses heavily on a chain of islands running from Japan to the Philippines that creates chokepoints for the Chinese Navy. [ Read More…]
- October 17, 2019Paul Steidler
- The Next Postmaster General: Three Must Haves
The next Postmaster General, who will be appointed by the Board of Governors of the Postal Service, faces formidable challenges, the likes of which few CEOs or political appointees today must confront. An iconic American institution, the Postal Service is fast approaching bankruptcy. Its revenues are contracting, its business model is widely acknowledged to be broken and there is uncertainty about its mission, or in postal speak, the universal service obligation. Compounding this, Congress is avoiding dealing with major postal [ Read More…]
- October 17, 2019Paul Steidler
- Warnings From California’s Blackouts (From InsideSources)
The planned blackouts that left two million California residents without power should be a wake-up call to modernize and protect America’s power grid. This includes major investments in transformers, circuit breakers and transmission lines, 70 percent of which are more than 25 years old. It is also important to protect the grid from cyberattacks from nations, terrorists, criminals and others. Lexington Institute’s Paul Steidler has written a commentary for InsideSources about this topic here.
- October 16, 2019Daniel Gouré, Ph.D.
- DoD Leaders’ Modernization Plans Will Require Rethinking How It Partners With Industry
The Department of Defense (DoD) is on a mission to transform the way it acquires advanced military capabilities. Each of the Military Services has stood up a special organization expressly for the purpose of shortening the cycle time associated with developing and procuring new weapons systems and promoting innovation. The U.S. Army has been boldest, creating a new four-star command, Army Futures Command (AFC), for the express purpose of speeding up all aspects of modernization. The aerospace and defense industry [ Read More…]
- October 15, 2019Daniel Gouré, Ph.D.
- Army Vehicle Upgrades Could Benefit From a Common Remote Weapons Station (From RealClearDefense)
The Army’s plans to develop a new Optionally Manned Fighting Vehicle and combat robots have dominated the public discussion of ground vehicle modernization. Yet, the Army is making great strides in making the rest of its armored fighting vehicle fleets more capable. A new variant of the Abrams main battle tank and a replacement for the M-113 are entering production. The Army has initiated a program to upgrade at least three Stryker brigades with a new turret housing a 30mm [ Read More…]
- October 11, 2019Loren B. Thompson, Ph.D
- Why the Navy Needs To Speed Backfit Of Its SPY-6 Super Radar On Destroyers (From Forbes)
Raytheon has developed a modular radar for the U.S. Navy that will greatly enhance defense against airborne and ballistic threats. Officially designated as SPY-6, the radar comes in multiple variants for different warship types, depending on how much power, cooling and space they have available. One variant is intended for backfitting on destroyers already in the fleet, with the first deliveries of that variant scheduled for 2024. However, the head of the U.S. Indo-Pacific Command has recently called for accelerated [ Read More…]
- October 8, 2019Loren B. Thompson, Ph.D
- Inside The U.S. Missile Defense Agency’s Secret Next Generation Interceptor (From Forbes)
The Pentagon’s Missile Defense Agency has issued solicitations for a future interceptor capable of defeating long-range nuclear warheads. It would replace the current ground-based interceptor that is part of the only defensive system the U.S. has for protecting the American homeland from North Korean missiles. The agency has said precious little in public about the planned weapon, but a discussion with multiple informed sources indicates it will be a hit-to-kill weapon with multiple kill mechanisms capable of fitting into underground [ Read More…]
- October 7, 2019Daniel Gouré, Ph.D.
- The Implications Of Fifth-Generation Aircraft For Transatlantic Airpower: A Primer (From The Atlantic Council)
Modern warfare is undergoing a transformation as broad and complex as that which occurred in the first half of the twentieth century. To the three classic domains of warfare—land, sea, and air—space and cyber have been added. Military systems in all domains are evolving to be longer range, more precise, and highly lethal. The ability to integrate a wide range of sensors, computers, databases, and networks has resulted in the competition for military advantage shifting toward a fight to acquire, exploit, [ Read More…]
- October 6, 2019Daniel Gouré, Ph.D.
- Fighting Corruption In The Former Soviet Republics Is Critical To Western Security (From The National Interest)
The recent conversation between President Trump and Ukrainian President Zelensky has generated renewed interest in the subject of the fight against corruption in the former Soviet Republics (FSRs) and Moscow’s erstwhile allies, often referred to as post-Soviet states in Europe. Almost from their first days as independent nations, corruption has been a major problem for these countries. Corrupt practices have created an avenue for outsiders, particularly Russia, to undermine fragile institutions, blackmail leaders and influence political processes. In Ukraine, the [ Read More…]
- October 4, 2019Loren B. Thompson, Ph.D
- What USTR and Boeing Want From Europe To End The Tariffs (From Forbes)
There’s an easy way for European governments to avoid the tariffs that the U.S. Trade Representative is threatening to levy in response to illegal aircraft subsidies. All they have to do is kill the subsidies and bring their behavior into compliance with treaty obligations under the World Trade Organization. The WTO ruled a decade ago that Airbus might never have brought any aircraft to market had it not received massive, prohibited subsidies, mainly in the form of euphemistically-named “launch aid.” [ Read More…]