May 25, 2024

First Woman Nominated to Lead Armed Service

Morning Coffee is a robust blend of links to news around the internet concerning the Naval Air Station Patuxent River Morning Coffee logoeconomic community. The opinions expressed here do not reflect opinions of the Leader’s owners or staff.

The Biden administration has nominated ADM Linda Fagan to lead the US Coast Guard, reports USNI News. Fagan, currently the Coast Guard’s vice commandant, will be the first woman to lead a US armed service. Fagan has been the Coast Guard’s No. 2 since June and was the first woman in the service to be promoted to four stars.

The commanding officer of the Naval Supply Systems Command Fleet Logistics Center, CAPT Albert Lee Hornyak, was relieved on Monday due to a loss of confidence “following a series of leadership and oversight failures at the Red Hill Bulk Fuel Storage Facility,” reports Navy Times. Red Hill has historically suffered fuel leaks. His ouster comes days after the Navy kicked off another investigation into another fuel release at the Red Hill facility on Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, HI. Hornyak has served as the commanding officer since August 2021, and in the past.

The Pentagon’s FY23 budget proposal assumes a 2.2% inflation rate instead of almost 8%, reports Defense News. JCS Chair GEN Mark Milley, during testimony before the House Armed Services Committee, attributed the discrepancy to a budget produced prior to the current inflation rate. Some legislators say inflation will nearly eliminate the DoD budget increase. DoD seeks $813B, which is $30B, or 4%, more than the $783B Congress appropriated for this year.

Texas Military Department leaders told the state Senate Border Security Committee they need more than half a billion dollars in state funds to continue Gov. Greg Abbott’s controversial border mission through the end of the fiscal year, reports Army Times. The cost for Operation Lone Star, which has deployed 10,000 service members, has ballooned to more than $2 billion a year. That is well beyond the $412 million the legislature budgeted for the military department’s participation in Operation Lone Star, and state officials have already transferred another $480 million to the agency to keep the lights on through the spring.

Advisers to South Korea’s president-elect seek redeployment of US strategic assets, such as nuclear bombers and submarines, to the Korean peninsula, reports Reuters. A team of foreign policy and security aides to incoming president Yoon Suk-yeol met US national security adviser Jake Sullivan this week as Yoon seeks a more constant security presence to deter threats from North Korea as it steps up weapons tests.

Al Jazeera publishes its list of main developments in the Russian invasion of Ukraine, Day 42.

Business Insider has a map of the highest-paying profession in each state.



An incident involving two Army helicopters that killed a medical evacuation pilot at a Fort Stewart, GA, airfield last week was not an accident. The service’s Criminal Investigation Division is probing the crash, Army Times reports. CAPT James Bellew died March 30 at about 2 am in an “incident” involving two HH-60 Black Hawk helicopters at Wright Army Airfield, a dual-use airport between Fort Stewart and the city of Hinesville.

Britain, the United States, and Australia on Tuesday agreed to cooperate on hypersonic weapons and electronic warfare capabilities, UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s office said, following a call between leaders of the new defense alliance, reports Reuters.

The Portland Air National Guard’s 142nd Security Forces Squadron became the first Guard unit in the nation to receive a new “robot dog” and plans to test the technology for surveillance and base security operations, reports The Oregon-based Guard unit’s “Quad-legged Unmanned Ground Vehicle,” otherwise known as the Q-UGV, can conduct video surveillance and patrol a fence line without putting airmen in danger. Robot dogs first made an appearance at active-duty bases last year, and the equipment and testing are now trickling down to the Guard.

The Army plans to experiment with drone swarms that behave like a wolf pack at an aviation-focused exercise this spring at Dugway Proving Ground, Utah, reports Defense News.

The Marines loaded 16 F-35B Lightning II Joint Strike Fighters aboard USS Tripoli (LHA-7), the Navy’s newest big deck amphibious warship, reports USNI News. This is the most ever parked on the deck and that number could grow to 18 or 20 this week – along with 500 Marines. The training exercises are aimed at identifying and building capabilities for the big deck and its crew and for Marines and their jets to conduct integrated operations at sea, something that hasn’t been done in a generation.

NavSec Carlos Del Toro has said ships that can’t combat threats to the service are dead weight — comments that come as the force seeks to decommission 24 ships next fiscal year, reports Navy Times. When asked what the Navy is doing to grow the fleet, Del Toro said it’s outfitting ships with the right capabilities to accomplish their missions — something he considers “far more significant to me than anything else.”

Jet fuel was safely removed over the weekend from a Navy aircraft that crashed in Virginia last week, killing one crew member and injuring two others, reports Stars and Stripes. The fuel was emptied Saturday from an E-2D Advanced Hawkeye that crashed near Wallops Island and the coastal town of Chincoteague while on routine operations. The Navy didn’t specify how much fuel had been removed from the plane.

For decades, USAF pilots were forced to sport drab uniform grey flying helmets while lusting after the customization offered to their Navy counterparts. In 2019, the branch decided airmen could personal their caps, but only if the artwork was removable. When MAJ Brad “Scooby” Hunt, a T-38 pilot now serving in the Air Force reserves, and his buddies at Sheppard Air Force Base in Texas couldn’t find anyone to wrap their helmets, Hunt devised a way to do it himself. Requests started pouring in from airmen stationed around the world, including some from the Middle East. Thus, “Nugget Wraps” was born.

Defense News reports the Navy must change course on cybersecurity, according to Aaron Weis, the service’s chief information officer. “We view cybersecurity as a compliance problem, and it is most definitely not a compliance problem. … A more holistic lens would emphasize active cyber management … traditional assessments of equipment, logistics, training and personnel, among other things, could find their equal in the digital domain,” Weiss said. “We have 15 years of track record that proves that the current approach to cybersecurity, driven by a checklist mentality, is wrong. It doesn’t work.” The Pentagon seeks $11.2B for cyber efforts in FY23, according to C4ISRNET.

The US EPA on Tuesday proposed banning nearly all remaining uses of asbestos, a material known to cause lung cancer when inhaled and that still lingers in millions of US homes and schools, reports Politico. There has been a decades-long effort to end the use of asbestos, a naturally occurring fiber whose heat-resistant features made it a popular choice in products like insulation, drywall, pipe coatings, roofing shingles, and vehicle brakes.


Serco Inc., Herndon, Virginia, has been awarded an $8,521,596, option modification to a previously awarded firm-fixed-price contract. This contract provides operations and maintenance support for the Ground-based Electro-optical Deep Space Surveillance System located in Socorro, New Mexico; Diego Garcia, British Indian Ocean Territory; and Maui, Hawaii. The option is funded with fiscal 2022 operations and maintenance funds. Total contract value is $61,716,063. The contracting activity is the Space Acquisition Management Delta, Peterson Air Force Station, Colorado (FA2517-20-C-0003). (Awarded April 4, 2022)

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