Andrea's Feed
Mar 5, 2015

Pentagon to focus more on hack-proofing weapons

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Cyber attacks on U.S. weapons programs and manufacturers are a “pervasive” problem that requires greater attention, the top U.S. arms buyer said Thursday, saying that he would add cybersecurity to the Pentagon’s guidelines for buying weapons.

“It’s about the security of our weapons systems themselves and everything that touches them. It’s a pervasive problem and I think we have to pay a lot more attention to it,” Defense Undersecretary Frank Kendall told Reuters after a speech to the American Society of Naval Engineers in Washington.

Mar 5, 2015

U.S. considering possible Middle East missile defense: general

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. military is considering sending its THAAD missile defense system to the Middle East, a senior U.S. Army general said on Wednesday, citing what he called an urgent need to respond to foes with missile systems and the will to use them.

General Vincent Brooks, head of U.S. Army Pacific Command, said no decisions had been made about deploying a U.S.-owned Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) battery in the Middle East or South Korea, another region where he saw an urgent need given the threat posed by North Korea.

Mar 4, 2015

U.S. Air Force launches push to recruit more women and minorities

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. Air Force on Wednesday kicked off a drive to attract and retain more women and minorities, including a push to increase the number of female officers and pilots.

Air Force Secretary Deborah James announced nine measures that she said were critical to ensuring the Air Force’s success, such as a web-based mentoring system, longer deferrals for deployments after pregnancy, and a 30-percent target for the percentage of females in the officer applicant pool, up from 25 percent.

Mar 3, 2015

U.S. budget caps could complicate Israel’s missile funding request

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Mandatory caps due to resume this year for the U.S. defense budget could complicate Congress’ ability to honor Israel’s request for $317 million in extra funding for missile defense programs on top of $158 million already requested by the White House.

U.S. lawmakers continue to strongly support Israel, but congressional aides said Israel’s push for over $475 million in U.S. funding for missile defense programs in fiscal 2016 could run into trouble if Congress does not ease or rescind budget caps on the overall level of the U.S. defense budget.

Mar 2, 2015

Lockheed sees shift in focus on infrastructure cybersecurity

WASHINGTON, March 2 (Reuters) – Lockheed Martin Corp
, the Pentagon’s No. 1 supplier, said it has seen a “sea
change” in demand for cybersecurity services in critical
infrastructure areas such as energy, oil and gas, and financial
institutions over the past 18 months.

Increased media coverage, more sharing of data about cyber
attacks, tighter government regulations, and growing concerns
about the fiduciary duties of corporate boards and chief
executives have stoked that demand over the past 18 months, said
Chandra McMahon, vice president of commercial markets for
Lockheed’s Information Systems security services.

Feb 28, 2015

Exclusive: U.S. Air Force eyes 28 launches, shared investment for next rockets

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. Air Force may kick off a multibillion-dollar competition for 28 launches of government satellites this spring to help end U.S. reliance on Russian-built rocket engines, according to an Air Force document seen by Reuters on Friday.

The Air Force’s Space and Missile Systems Center mapped out the possible tender, which would include government and private sector investment, in a request for information sent to selected companies on Feb. 18, with responses due March 20.

Feb 27, 2015

U.S. Air Force says new bomber essential, vows to control costs

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The Air Force urgently needs a new long-range bomber to replace its aging fleet and will keep costs at or below a $550 million cap for each warplane, top U.S. officials told lawmakers on Friday.

Air Force Secretary Deborah James said the Air Force understood that runaway costs had to be contained, and noted that a sharp reduction from the planned purchase of 80 to 100 bombers would send the price of each aircraft spiraling higher.

Feb 26, 2015

U.S. Navy opens door to more orders of Boeing jets

WASHINGTON, Feb 26 (Reuters) – The U.S. Navy on Thursday
opened the door to further purchases of Boeing Co F/A-18
fighter jets and EA-18G fighter jets, saying it may ask
lawmakers to finance the planes as part of a list of “unfunded
priorities” to be sent to Congress.

More orders would help Boeing extend its St. Louis F/A-18
production line beyond 2017, but congressional aides and defense
officials said it remained unclear if Congress would ultimately
fund more jets at a time when it has yet to reach agreement
about removing budget caps that are due to resume in 2016.

Feb 26, 2015

Bid for more US defense funds gets chilly House reception

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. military officials seeking a big boost in defense spending received little encouragement on Thursday from a House panel reviewing their bid for more funds, with one lawmaker saying the extra money would have to be cut “with you or … without you.”

Representative Rodney Frelinghuysen, a senior member of the Appropriations Committee in the House of Representatives, chided President Barack Obama for proposing a $534 billion Pentagon base budget that “ignores the law” by exceeding federal spending caps by nearly $35 billion.

Feb 25, 2015

Air Force seeks rethink of 2019 deadline for new U.S. rocket engine

WASHINGTON, Feb 25 (Reuters) – The U.S. Air Force on
Wednesday said it will release plans within months for replacing
the Russian-built RD-180 motors that now power some rockets used
to launch military satellites into space, but said it would
likely miss a 2019 congressional deadline to start using a new
U.S. engine.

Air Force Secretary Deborah James told the Senate
Appropriations Committee’s defense subcommittee that failure to
extend the 2019 deadline could lead to swapping one monopoly
provider of rocket launches for military satellites for another.