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SHAW AFB SELECTED AS PREFERRED LOCATION TO HOST NEW RPA UNIT
Thursday, January 12, 2017
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MQ-9 Reaper

Source: U.S. Air Force


MQ-9 Reaper

Source: U.S. Air Force


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WASHINGTON - The Air Force has selected Shaw Air Force Base, South Carolina, as the preferred location to base a new MQ-9 Reaper group, including mission control elements.

Davis-Monthan AFB, Arizona; Moody AFB, Georgia; Mountain Home AFB, Idaho; and Offutt AFB, Nebraska, were named as reasonable alternatives and will be considered as part of the environmental impact analysis process.

"Intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance continues to be the number one most requested capability of combatant commanders and I believe adding additional RPA locations will help our efforts to retain experienced RPA operators that contribute to this vital mission," said Air Force Secretary Deborah Lee James.

The desire for additional locations for MQ-9 assignments was identified during surveys of officers and enlisted Airmen as part of Air Combat Command’s Culture and Process Improvement Program. CPIP is a series of initiatives designed to address challenges and stressors affecting the MQ-1B Predator and MQ-9 communities.

"Shaw AFB was selected because it was the best option to help us diversify assignment opportunities for personnel within the MQ-9 enterprise, provide increased opportunities for leadership from within the community, and provide flexibility to enhance integration with other organizations and capabilities," James added.

Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. David L. Goldfein echoed those sentiments, noting "remotely piloted aircraft and associated intelligence operations are and will remain a vital component for the national security of the United States and our allies. Providing additional RPA basing locations can provide greater development and quality of life opportunities so we can provide combatant commanders with the best trained operators to perform this critical mission."

The first Airmen assigned to the new group are expected to begin arriving there in fiscal year 2018 although no RPAs will be based at the location as a result of this action.

In addition to this action, the Air Force is also considering another location to host an MQ-9 wing that includes up to 24 MQ-9s, launch and recovery elements, a mission control element, a maintenance group and support personnel.

Source:  U.S. Air Force
Associated URL: http://www.af.mil/News/ArticleDisplay/tabid/223/Article/1048679/af-selects-shaw-
Source Date: January 12, 2017
Posted: 01/16/2017

 
 
GENERAL DYNAMICS AWARDED CONTRACT MODIFICATION FOR ORDNANCE DISPOSAL
Friday, January 13, 2017
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Source: GD


Source: GD


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WASHINGTON - General Dynamics Ordnance and Tactical Systems, St. Petersburg, Florida, was awarded a $15.9 million modification to a contract to exercise option year three for the demilitarization and disposal of 14,682 Multiple Launch Rocket Systems, rocket pod containers, rockets, and components.

Work will be performed in Carthage, Missouri, with an estimated completion date of March 31, 2018. Fiscal 2017 other procurement (Army) funds in the amount of $15.9 million were obligated at the time of the award. Army Contracting Command, Picatinny Arsenal, New Jersey, is the contracting activity.

Source:  U.S. DoD
Associated URL: www.defense.gov
Source Date: January 13, 2017
Posted: 01/16/2017

 
 
MILLEY: LARGER ARMY WITHOUT FUNDING TO SUPPORT IT WOULD BE 'HOLLOW FORCE'
Thursday, January 12, 2017
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Army chief of staff Gen. Mark A. Milley

Source: US Army


Army chief of staff Gen. Mark A. Milley

Source: US Army


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WASHINGTON - The Army's chief of staff Gen. Mark A. Milley believes the Army needs more Soldiers. But he also believes that growth in end strength must be paired with funding that ensures those additional Solders are trained and equipped.

"We the Army think that our capacity needs to increase," Milley said Thursday at a breakfast hosted by the Association of the U.S. Army. "We think our capability ... and we think our readiness [need] to increase. And we fully understand that's an expensive proposition for the U.S. Army."

The recent National Defense Authorization Act of 2017 puts the Army at an end strength of 476,000 Soldiers by Sept. 30, 2017.

"If we just get additional people or additional end strength, but we don't have the money, then that leads you down the road to a hollow force," Milley said. "If you increase the end strength, you have to increase the money to go with the end strength to pay for the readiness."

More people would likely be put into operational units, he said, if the Army could obtain the funding to ensure they are ready to fight. Some, he said, can go to the institutional Army, but right now combat units are undermanned.

"Units going to training sometimes are down around 80 percent or, in some cases, even lower," Milley said. "Which is not good."

Milley said he has a list of priorities for the next presidential budget. While he declined to specify exactly what's on that list, he offered hints. Air defense and ground mobility, for instance, are top priorities for the Army, he said.

The Army must increase the ground mobility capabilities of its light units, Milley said. And aviation, he said, remains "very vulnerable" against a near-peer threat.

"It's one thing to fight guerrillas and terrorists where you have almost exclusive freedom of the air, freedom of action of the air," he said. "But it's another thing to fight some near-peer ... threats. So protection of our aviation is a big deal."

A variety of initiatives are already underway to protect rotary wing aviation and extend their range, he said.

Also among his priorities are electronic warfare and nontraditional kinetic weapons like rail guns and lasers, he said, though he admitted that's "years from now."

Extending the range for a variety of the Army's firing platforms, "specifically artillery, both rocket and tube artillery" is also under consideration.

In the past, Milley has publically described his vision of the future of warfare that he believes the Army must be prepared to fight. According to his vision, that includes degraded communications environments where units may be out of contact with their leadership for days or weeks at a time.

Units of the future must be capable of operating on their own. They must be trusted to know their mission and their goals and how to achieve them.

In preparing for the future of warfare, he said, the development of command and control systems must also be a priority.

"The probability of us having the freedom of action in the electromagnetic spectrum that we have enjoyed for the last 15 years of war, for example, against terrorists, the probability of that happening against a near-peer is zero," he said. "You're just not going to have that kind of freedom of action."

Included among the systems that could face threat during near-peer competition in the electromagnetic spectrum are radios, GPS and other position, navigation, and timing systems.

"All that stuff is dependent on the electromagnetic spectrum, and the electromagnetic spectrum will come under significant stress," he said.

The Army is making advances on strategies to protect position, navigation, and time systems and developing mission-command systems that are mobile, he assured his audience.

"We're not going to be static against a near-peer competitor like we've been for the last 15 years," he said. The Army is looking to implement "systems that can move, that are hardened and protected and are resilient and reliable in high-paced, fast maneuver combat operations."

Source:  US Army
Associated URL: army.mil
Source Date: January 12, 2017
Author: C.Todd Lopez 
Posted: 01/13/2017

 

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