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MATTIS URGES CONGRESSIONAL SUPPORT FOR ADDITIONAL $30 BILLION FOR DEFENSE
Wednesday, March 22, 2017
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Defense Secretary Jim Mattis

Source: US DoD


Defense Secretary Jim Mattis

Source: US DoD


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WASHINGTON - The $30 billion in requested additional defense funding for fiscal year 2017 would be used to strengthen the military and protect the nation against emerging global security challenges, Defense Secretary Jim Mattis said on Capitol Hill March 22.

At a hearing of the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Defense, Mattis warned that hesitation in investing in defense would deepen the "strategic mismatch between our future security and the military means to protect our people and freedoms."

The secretary appeared at the defense budget and readiness hearing with Marine Corps Gen. Joe Dunford, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

"The security situation facing our country has become more challenging," Mattis said. "The looming threats have outstripped the level of resources we have been allocating to defense."

President Donald J. Trump's request for the additional $30 billion represents the first step in a three-part, multi-year effort to restore readiness, Mattis explained.

This year's budget appropriation, including the requested additional $30 billion, is needed to "get our aircraft back in the air, our ships back to sea, and our troops back in the field with refurbished or new equipment and proper training," the defense secretary said.

"We base this request on a realistic appreciation of the capacity we need to fight and win on the battlefield," he said, noting the next phases of the effort focus on fiscal year 2018 and several years beyond.

The department is aware of the sacrifices of the American taxpayers in making the additional funding for fiscal year 2017 possible, Mattis said. The department takes the responsibility of being wise stewards seriously."

The $30 billion in additional funds include a base budget request of $24.9 billion and an overseas contingency operations budget request of $5.1 billion.

The additional $30 billion funding request brings to $619.2 billion the amount requested by the Defense Department for fiscal year 2017, according to the DoD comptroller’s office.

Mattis highlighted the importance of military support of diplomatic efforts, saying diplomatic solutions are the preferred options.

"Our military must ensure that the president and our diplomats always negotiate from a position of strength," he said. "Global threats require a global response, applying the full weight of our own and our allies' power, allies which are also increasing their defense outlays."

Military deterrence, the defense secretary said, is only credible if military strength is sufficiently formidable that allies can confidently align with the United States in tempering adversaries' designs.

The global security challenges threatening national security interests are numerous, Mattis outlined to the senators.

"We see Russia and China seeking veto power over the economic, diplomatic and security decisions of nations on their periphery," he said. "Terrorist groups murder the innocent and threaten peace in many regions and target us."

In addition, the secretary noted North Korea’s "reckless rhetoric and provocative actions" with its nuclear activities.

"This situation calls for our department to maintain a safe and secure nuclear deterrent and a decisive conventional force that can also fight irregular enemies since our military must be able to counter all threats facing us," Mattis said.

The defense secretary acknowledged "hard choices" will have to be made in funding the department.

"With the help of the Congress, I believe we can build a force that is more lethal, without placing an undue burden on the American economy," he said.

But, in order to do so, DoD needs a "sustained commitment from Congress in the form of additional funding and regular on-time budgets," Mattis said.

Source:  US DoD
Associated URL: defense.gov
Source Date: March 22, 2017
Author: Lisa Ferdinando DoD News 
Posted: 03/23/2017

 
 
VCSAF: POTENTIAL YEARLONG CR FORCES $1.3B CUTS
Wednesday, March 22, 2017
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Air Force Vice Chief of Staff Gen. Stephen Wilson

Source: US Air Force


Air Force Vice Chief of Staff Gen. Stephen Wilson

Source: US Air Force


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WASHINGTON - Air Force Vice Chief of Staff Gen. Stephen Wilson discussed readiness, force structure and modernization of the Air Force at the McAleese/Credit Suisse "Defense Programs" Conference in Washington, D.C., March 22, 2017.

"We need congressional support to prevent a year-long continuing resolution," he said. "A year-long CR forces me ... to solve a $1.3 billion math problem in late April ... and that will force us into actions similar to what was taken in 2013 for sequestration."

Wilson explained a potential year-long CR would affect readiness, result in halting civilian hiring, limit flying hours and prevent the start of 60 new programs.

"The demand for airpower is insatiable and I predict it will only increase, so being there, being always there, comes at a cost," Wilson said. "To ensure we remain ready to defeat both the high and low-end threats to our national security, we are making significant investments in our people, nukes, space, cyber, combat air forces and infrastructure."

In addition, he stressed the need for technological investments as rapid global technological advancements continue.

"Artificial intelligence can help us by being able to go through volumes and volumes of data," he said. "So, we have pilots that are in fact quarterbacks of a command and control apparatus that are able to sense and understand the situation and take the fight to the enemy. That’s where big data and artificial intelligence, coupled with our technology, is going to take our Air Force in a decade or so."

Wilson also discussed multi-domain command and control, and the Air Force’s key role in that future.

"We must be prepared to win decisively," Wilson said. "We owe that to our nation, joint teammates and our allies."

"Winning in future high-end conflicts depends on which side can command and control forces in a degraded and contested environment, while denying the enemy the ability to do the same," he explained. "We are going to put the enemy in the horns of multi-dilemmas so if he is able to affect one area, then I can bring effects across any of the other domains: air, land, sea, space, cyberspace and undersea."

Enhancing multi-domain command and control is Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. David Goldfein’s third focus area, which he outlined in a paper released in March. According to the paper, evolving command and control capabilities will require "new thinking, new training and perhaps new technologies or new ways to use older technology."

Source:  US Air Force
Associated URL: af.mil
Source Date: March 22, 2017
Author: Staff Sgt. Jannelle McRae 
Posted: 03/23/2017

 
 
LOCKHEED MARTIN-BUILT SBIRS SUCCESSFULLY TRANSMITTING IMAGES
Thursday, March 23, 2017
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Artist's rendition of a SBIRS satellite

Source: Lockheed Martin


Artist's rendition of a SBIRS satellite

Source: Lockheed Martin


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SUNNYVALE, Calif. - From its final orbit location 22,000 miles above the equator, the third Lockheed Martin-built Space Based Infrared System (SBIRS) satellite recently sent its first images back down to Earth, a milestone known as "first light."

The satellite was launched on Jan. 20 aboard a United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket and is the third in a series of Geosynchronous Earth Orbit (GEO) satellites that the U.S. Air Force uses to provide faster and more accurate missile warning data to the nation and its allies. The satellite reached orbit, where it successfully completed deployments of its sun-tracking solar arrays, antenna wing assemblies and light shade.

The constellation is operated by the next-generation SBIRS ground station at Buckley Air Force Base, Colorado. GEO Flight 4, the next satellite in the series, will undergo final assembly, integration and test at Lockheed Martin's satellite production facility in Sunnyvale, California, prior to its launch planned for later this year.

After finally overcoming the hurdles that faced the program, SBIRS has entered its production phase. As such, Forecast International expects SBIRS GEO spacecraft to be delivered throughout the decade.

The Air Force has also begun investigating a follow-on to the SBIRS system. The service issued a Request for Information (RFI) in April 2014 to begin the process of gathering the necessary information to start development of a satellite network that will serve between 2025 and 2040. The USAF is studying a number of options for SBIRS follow-ons. It will likely include a combination of complete satellites and hosted payloads. The service may also use a disaggregated mission profile, in which mission elements are split between multiple satellites.

Source:  Lockheed Martin
Associated URL: http://news.lockheedmartin.com/2017-03-22-First-Light-Lockheed-Martin-Built-SBIR
Source Date: March 23, 2017
Author: b. Ostrove, Analyst 
Posted: 03/23/2017

 

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