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Member since: Wed Mar 16, 2005, 11:12 AM
Number of posts: 60,364

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Bradley Replacement to Outweigh Abrams Tank


Bradley Replacement to Outweigh Abrams Tank
By Matthew Cox Thursday, November 15th, 2012 1:18 pm
Posted in Land

The new weight estimate, released by the Congressional Budget Office, mean that the service’s replacement for the outdated Bradley fighting vehicle would be heavier than an M1 Abrams tank and weigh more than two current Bradleys.

unhappycamper comment: Be sure to read the comments following the article.
Posted by unhappycamper | Fri Nov 16, 2012, 09:54 AM (4 replies)

Pentagon Says 75,000 Troops Might Be Needed to Seize Syria Chemical Arms


Pentagon Says 75,000 Troops Might Be Needed to Seize Syria Chemical Arms
DAVID E. SANGER and ERIC SCHMITT | New York Times | November 15, 2012

WASHINGTON — The Pentagon has told the Obama administration that any military effort to seize Syria’s stockpiles of chemical weapons would require upward of 75,000 troops, amid increasing concern that the militant group Hezbollah has set up small training camps close to some of the chemical weapons depots, according to senior American officials.

The estimated size of the potential effort, provided to the White House by the military’s Central Command and Joint Staff, called into question whether the United States would have the resources to act quickly if it detected the movement of chemical weapons and forced President Obama, as he said in August, to “change my calculus” about inserting American forces into Syria. So far Mr. Obama has avoided direct intervention into the most brutal civil conflict to emerge from the Arab Spring uprisings, and the Pentagon assessment was seen as likely to reinforce that reluctance.

The White House on Thursday declined to comment on the Defense Department’s assessment.

unhappycamper comment: 75,000... 75,000... Where have I heard that before?
. googling


Romney's Plan Could Put 75,000 Troops in Syria
John Hudson 1,691 Views Feb 23, 2012

Wednesday night's GOP debate saw a lot of tough talk when it came to intervening in Syria, but a new report by the U.S. Central Command gives an ominous view of what destabilizing the Assad regime could mean for U.S. troop deployments. During the debate, Mitt Romney publicly backed arming the Syrian rebels in a deal brokered by the U.S. with its Middle East allies. "We need to work with Saudi Arabia and with Turkey to say, 'You guys provide the kind of weaponry that's needed to help the rebels inside Syria,'" the former Massachusetts governor said. But destabilizing President Bashar al-Assad's regime risks a different kind of threat that could embroil thousands of U.S. troops: The securing of Syria's chemical warfare facilities.

According to a new report by CNN, the U.S. military has calculated that more than 75,000 grounds troops would be required to secure Syria's chemical sites if they were left unguarded or looted. The estimate was calculated by U.S. Central Command as it's tasked with considering different military responses to an escalation in Syria. Currently, the Assad regime maintains control of its chemical facilities but that could change as rebels jockey for power. And securing the country's chemical stockpile would be particularly important given its size and the risk of it falling into the hands of extremists.

"Syria probably has one of largest programs in the world," Leonard Specter of the Monterey Institute of International Studies tells CNN. "It has multiple types of chemical agents." He ticked off a number of dangerous gases including nerve gas and World War I-era gases such as chlorine and phosgene.

Last week, Director of National Intelligence James Clapper told Congress about the very real threat of the weapons getting into the wrong hands. "There would be kind of a vacuum that would lend itself to extremists operating in Syria, which is particularly troublesome in light of the large network of chemical warfare, (chemical biological weapons), weapon-storage facilities, and other related facilities that there are in Syria."
Posted by unhappycamper | Fri Nov 16, 2012, 09:40 AM (3 replies)

Tommy the C Is Doing His Thing Again - This Time On The Military

GOP senator outlines $68 billion in defense cuts
Associated Press / November 15, 2012


Coburn identified five areas that he said had nothing to do with national security yet represent a significant chunk of the annual $600 billion-plus Pentagon budget:

—Nonmilitary research, $6 billion.

—Education, $10.7 billion.

—Tuition assistance, $4.5 billion.

—Pentagon-run grocery stores, $9 billion.

unhappycamper comment: Tommy has some of the bases covered:

* Education
* Tuition Assistance
* Grocery stores

Posted by unhappycamper | Fri Nov 16, 2012, 09:26 AM (2 replies)

CIA investigates Petraeus; Pentagon wants to improve ethics


CIA investigates Petraeus; Pentagon wants to improve ethics
By Jonathan S. Landay | McClatchy Newspapers
Posted on Thursday, November 15, 2012

WASHINGTON — The CIA said Thursday that it had opened an “exploratory” investigation into the conduct of former director David Petraeus, who resigned after admitting to adultery, on the same day that Defense Secretary Leon Panetta ordered the military services to review ways to strengthen ethics standards “that keep the military well led and well disciplined.”

The CIA and Pentagon actions were the latest fallout from the shocking resignation of Petraeus, a retired four-star Army general, and revelations that four-star Marine Corps Gen. John Allen exchanged inappropriate emails with the woman who triggered the FBI probe that exposed Petraeus’ affair.

The military brass also has been rattled by a slew of lesser-known, more serious cases, including a one-star general recalled from Afghanistan who is facing criminal charges of sexually assaulting or committing adultery with five women. The Pentagon, however, insisted that the timing of Panetta’s directive was “coincidental.”

The FBI, meanwhile, was trying to determine if Paula Broadwell, the Army Reserve intelligence officer with whom Petraeus was romantically involved, had the security clearances needed to possess all of the classified materials found on her personal computer, according to a senior law enforcement official, who requested anonymity in order to discuss the sensitive subject.

on edit: to correct header
Posted by unhappycamper | Fri Nov 16, 2012, 08:50 AM (0 replies)

Democratic Solution To The Filibuster: Make Them Talk



Democratic Solution To The Filibuster: Make Them Talk
Ryan Grim
Posted: 11/15/2012 10:20 pm EST Updated: 11/15/2012 10:20 pm EST

WASHINGTON -- The next time a minority of senators find something the majority supports to be objectionable, they may be required to take the Senate floor and explain just why they object. And when they're done with that, they'll have to keep talking, and talking, and talking.

The most persistent advice that Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) said he gets from liberals he meets across the country is as simple as it is frustrating: "Make them actually filibuster!"

The advice grew loud enough in 2009 that Reid's office leaked a memo to HuffPost explaining why exactly Senate Democratic leaders can't force Republicans to talk out their filibuster, Mr. Smith-style. In 2011, Reid flirted with filibuster reform, but backed off at the last minute, striking a handshake deal with Republican Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) instead. That agreement -- that the two would cooperate to make sure the chamber ran smoothly -- lasted as long as one might expect.

Now, Reid is ready to pull the trigger on a change. "I was wrong," Reid said recently about his unwillingness to back a handful of junior senators who were pushing for reform.

Posted by unhappycamper | Fri Nov 16, 2012, 08:04 AM (37 replies)

Train Crashes Into Wounded Veterans Parade In Midland Texas



Midland police, fire and sheriffs respond to an accident where a trailer carrying wounded veterans in a parade was struck by a train in Midland, Texas, Thursday, Nov. 15, 2012. "Show of Support" president and founder Terry Johnson tells the Midland Reporter-Telegram that there are "multiple, multiple" injuries and organizers still are trying to account for everyone.

Train Crashes Into Wounded Veterans Parade In Midland Texas
By TERRY WALLACE 11/15/12 11:36 PM ET EST AP

DALLAS — A freight train slammed into a parade float carrying wounded veterans on Thursday, killing four people and injuring 17 others as the float tried to get through a West Texas railroad crossing on its way to an honorary banquet, authorities said.

The locomotive was sounding its horn and people were jumping off the decorated flatbed truck before the collision around 4:40 p.m. in Midland, according to witnesses and Union Pacific spokesman Tom Lange. A preliminary investigation indicates the crossing gate and lights were working, Lange said, though he didn't know if the train crew saw the float approaching.

Two people died at the scene, while two others died at Midland Memorial Hospital, City of Midland spokesman Ryan Stout said. Six people remained hospitalized Thursday night, including at least one in critical condition; the other 11 people injured have been treated and released, hospital officials said.

About two dozen veterans and their spouses had been sitting in chairs on the float, set up on the back of a flatbed tractor-trailer decorated with American flags and signs identifying each veteran, photos show.
Posted by unhappycamper | Fri Nov 16, 2012, 08:00 AM (0 replies)

Another $418 Million Dollar Fighter Jet Crash - Pilot Ejected Safely


Fighter Jet Crashes Near Florida's Tyndall Air Force Base
11/15/12 06:46 PM ET EST AP

TYNDALL AIR FORCE BASE, Fla. -- An Air Force F-22 Raptor fighter jet crashed near a Florida Panhandle highway Thursday, but the pilot was able to eject safely and there were no injuries on the ground, the military said.

The single-seat stealth fighter, part of a program that has been plagued with problems, went down Thursday afternoon near Tyndall Air Force Base, just south of Panama City on The Gulf of Mexico. The pilot received medical treatment and a section of Highway 98 that runs through the base was closed as rescuers responded.

The crash was on Tyndall land and no one on the ground was hurt, said Air Force Sgt. Rachelle Elsea, a spokeswoman for the base where F-22 pilots train.

The Air Force said the plane went down in a wooded area near the highway.
Posted by unhappycamper | Fri Nov 16, 2012, 07:48 AM (0 replies)

They are not "Heroes"


They are not "Heroes"
By Dave Lefcourt
OpEdNews 11/14/2012 at 10:10:01

In America, our media has engaged in triumphalism and extolled our military so often as "heroes", they present it as almost "shocking" when those "heroes" all too human frailties are discovered and their "heroism" becomes tarnished over tawdry sexual escapades.

"King David" Patraeus of unjustified "surge" fame in Iraq is the latest "hero" emperor caught almost literally without his clothes in an admitted extramarital affair and has resigned as CIA director.


Lest we forget the military extolling former pro football player turned Army Ranger Pat Tillman who was portrayed by the military as a hero when he was killed in Afghanistan in 2004, but his death was later discovered as a result of "friendly fire". Then a year earlier during the Iraq invasion of 2003, PFC Jessica Lynch was also portrayed as a hero by the military after being captured by Iraqi forces, kept as a POW and then later rescued by U.S. Special Forces. Lynch testified in Congress in 2007 honestly saying she never fired her weapon and was never engaged in combat, thus refuting the hero status earlier conferred upon her by the military.

Then there are the photos and videos of G.I.'s torturing Iraqi detainees at Abu Ghraib in Iraq. These episodes were attributed to a few low ranking non-coms acting on their own when if fact their actions were Bush administration officially authorized torture (enhanced interrogation techniques). Those officials were never held accountable for their transgressions.
Posted by unhappycamper | Thu Nov 15, 2012, 11:37 AM (3 replies)

U.S. Stealth Fighter Pilot Raises Questions About F-35 and F-22 Purchase – Cost Is Too High



Over $650 million dollars of fighters.

U.S. Stealth Fighter Pilot Raises Questions About F-35 and F-22 Purchase – Cost Is Too High
November 14, 2012. 10:18 am


The latest critic of the U.S. Air Force’s ambitious — and pricey — plan for an all-stealth fighter fleet is one of the flying branch’s top stealth pilots.

Writing in the Air Force Research Institute’s Air & Space Power Journal, Lt. Col. Christopher Niemi, a former F-22 test pilot who later commanded a frontline squadron of the radar-evading jets, says the Air Force is making a big mistake by buying only the most expensive stealth fighters — namely, the F-22 and the newer F-35.

“An all-stealth Air Force fighter fleet deserves reconsideration,” Niemi asserts (.pdf). ”Stealth technology demands significant trade-offs in range, security, weapons carriage, sortie generation, and adaptability. Stealth provides no advantage in conflicts such as those in Afghanistan or Iraq (since 2003), and (despite its obvious utility) it cannot guarantee success in future struggles with a near-peer adversary.”

“Most importantly,” Niemi adds, “the cost of F-22s and F-35s threatens to reduce the size of the Air Force’s fielded fighter fleet to dangerously small numbers, particularly in the current fiscal environment.”
Posted by unhappycamper | Thu Nov 15, 2012, 10:11 AM (5 replies)

Lockheed Told It Must Put F-35’s Success Over Profit


Lockheed Told It Must Put F-35’s Success Over Profit
By Tony Capaccio - 2012-11-14T05:00:02Z

Lockheed Martin Corp. (LMT) executives must put improving performance of the F-35 fighter, the Pentagon’s costliest program, over immediate profit, the military’s purchasing chief said.

“We want to know that when they come to us with an initiative or proposed solution to a problem that it’s motivated by the welfare of the program” and not “focused on a short- term business goal they are trying to accomplish,” Frank Kendall, undersecretary of defense for acquisition, told reporters yesterday at the Pentagon.

The company is in the midst of prolonged negotiations with the Pentagon on orders for the fifth batch of F-35s, and the program has faced cost overruns and testing delays. Kendall said yesterday the resignation Nov. 9 of Lockheed’s incoming chief executive officer, Christopher Kubasik, because of a relationship with a subordinate won’t hurt the company’s dealings with the Pentagon.

“Lockheed has dealt with the situation appropriately” as it’s an internal matter, Kendall said. “We are adult professionals. We come to things with our own business perspectives, and we can meet and work out deals. This stuff isn’t personal.”
Posted by unhappycamper | Thu Nov 15, 2012, 09:49 AM (6 replies)
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