August 18, 2019

Longer Military Obligations Considered for Academies

academies

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.

Service academy graduates could see longer military obligations, reports Military Times. The current eight-year service obligation for academy graduates hasn’t changed since 1996. “Since that time, the real cost per graduate has increased by nearly 20 percent,” the Senate Armed Services Committee wrote in the latest defense bill.

Government figures show $250 billion in tariffs on China won’t cover the president’s bailout for farmers, reports The New York Times, let alone compensate other industries hurt by trade tensions.

NavSec Richard Spencer symbolically takes DefSec job ahead of Mark Esper confirmation hearing, reports Military Times, to meet procedural rules that will allow Esper to make his case to Congress for promotion to the Defense Department’s top job.

Defense News reports Sen Elizabeth Warren says Pentagon nominee Esper, a former Raytheon lobbyist, must extend recusal for defense and “take additional steps” to wall himself off from that previous position. After meeting with Esper last week, Warren said she was “extremely disappointed by your unwillingness to take the steps needed to clear any ethics cloud related to your former lobbying work for Raytheon.”

UPI reports Raytheon won a $110 million contract this week to establish a cybersecurity operations center in the Middle East North Africa region, and to develop and deploy cybersecurity equipment.

North Korea says nuclear talks are at risk if US-South Korea exercises go ahead, reports Reuters.

Iran’s foreign minister says talks on ballistic missiles possible, reports Military Times, opening a possibility for talks as tensions remain high between Tehran and Washington over the collapsing nuclear deal. Meanwhile the EU continues to work to save the unraveling nuclear agreement with Iran, reports The Associated Press. The 28 EU foreign ministers insisted that recent Iranian actions surpassing uranium enrichment thresholds set in the 2015 deal did not necessarily condemn the whole agreement.

F-35 program leadership changes as Turkey’s future in program uncertain, reports USNI News. The F-35 Lightning II Joint Strike Fighter program’s civilian and military management are in the midst of a changeover just as government officials from the US and partner countries are considering ejecting Turkey from involvement in the aircraft’s manufacture and deployment.

If the US does eject Turkey from the F-35 program, contracts for the 900-plus F-35 parts currently made in Turkey could help sweeten the offers to allies that are considering buying F-35s, such as Canada, Finland, Switzerland, and Spain. Defense One reports it is common practice to sweeten export deals by offering potential customers manufacturing and co-production work and even technological know-how.

Fleet finding new sleep-sensitive watch schedules boosts crew performance and efficiency, reports  USNI News. A year and a half after surface Navy leadership demanded ships implement new work schedules to ensure sailors got enough sleep, officers aboard a destroyer say the new scheduling has made them more effective at sea and they’re not looking back.

The US Air Force’s top general gets a taste of Finnish fighter tactics, reports Defense News, riding in the backseat of an F/A-18 Hornet, observing a Finnish pilot conducting an air defense training mission. The singular experience, which capped off Chief of Staff Gen. Dave Goldfein’s first trip to Finland on July 14 and 15, highlighted the deepening relationship between the US and Finnish militaries.

An arm of the VA in Atlanta eliminated 208,272 applications from across the country for health care early this year amid efforts to shrink a massive backlog of requests, saying they were missing signatures or information about military service and income, according to records reviewed by The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

New data finds child abuse, neglect still underreported in the Army, reports Military.com.

Rep. Christopher Smith (R-NJ) wants to know if the DoD experimented with using ticks and other insects as biological weapons between 1950 and 1975, reports Task & Purpose. The congressman wrote an amendment to the House version of the fiscal 2020 National Defense Authorization Act that would require the Defense Department Inspector General’s Office to find out.

USNI News Fleet and Marine Tracker: July 15, 2019

Contracts:

Agile Defense Inc., Reston, Virginia, has been awarded a $21,044,844 firm-fixed-price contract for combined air operations center communication services. This contract provides for operations and maintenance of all air operations center communication systems. Work will be performed in the Air Force Central Command’s area of responsibility and is expected to be complete by June 2, 2020. This award is the result of a sole source acquisition. Fiscal 2019 operations and maintenance funds in the amount of $8,627,758 are being obligated at the time of award. The Air Combat Command Acquisition Management and Integration Center, Langley Air Force Base, Hampton, Virginia, is the contracting activity (FA4890-19-F-A050).

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