June 4, 2020

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Supply Chain Problems Ahead for DoD

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DoD must brace for long-term supply chain problems; big mergers likely, reports Breaking Defense. Suppliers will suffer from increasing trade flow disruptions, such as container ships piling up unopened at US docks. Domestic and foreign travel/trade restrictions are slowing a wide variety of goods from crossing US borders, especially from key partners Canada and Mexico. Impacts will hit hardest on DoD’s second-, third-, and fourth-tier suppliers who sell primarily to the civil and consumer markets.

The Air Force found a way to save $7M by adjusting one plane’s windshield wipers’ mount, reports Military.com. A series of tests proved the KC-135 Stratotanker aircraft can fly more efficiently just by mounting the cockpit window’s wiper blades vertically instead of horizontally. The potential fuel cost savings: about $7 million per year.

House Armed Services leaders pledge to pass a defense bill this year, reports The Hill, even as the coronavirus pandemic keeps congressional schedules in limbo.

The Pentagon weighs replacing active duty troops on US-Mexico border with National Guard, reports CNN, returning to the use of the National Guard, as was done in previous military operations on the US-Mexico border under the Bush and Obama administrations.

DoD’s border wall funding shift hits Russia deterrence efforts, reports Defense News. The Pentagon is moving to scuttle nearly 19 more military construction projects ― including $274 million worth in Europe to deter Russia ― as a means to backfill a number of building projects at home that were deferred to pay for President Donald Trump’s border wall.

The military is closing the gap between new COVID-19 cases and recoveries, reports Military Times. With 52 service members testing positive for coronavirus on Monday, a 0.8% rise, DoD saw one of its lowest day-over-day increases since February, and an almost equal number of recoveries, with 45 troops cleared of COVID-19 on the same day.

About 50,000 service members in Japan are ordered to maintain logs of personal interactions amid pandemic, reports Stars and Stripes, to track the potential spread of the coronavirus.



The Pentagon refutes a letter from 10 senators slamming the military’s coronavirus response, stating the lack of clear guidance has put service members at risk and undermined readiness. Military.com reports, a DoD spokesman said the letter to DefSec Mark Esper “cherry-picked false and repeatedly debunked assertions that do not reflect reality.” Politico reports national security experts and some inside DoD have been critical of DefSec Esper’s response as well.

China claims its army scrambled aircraft and ships to expel a US warship from a South China Sea island chain, reports USNI News. The guided-missile destroyer USS Barry (DDG-52) conducted a freedom of navigation operation in the vicinity of the island chain off Vietnam, the Navy said, but did not encounter any unsafe or unprofessional behavior from Chinese military aircraft or warships.

There will be Purple Hearts awarded to troops injured during the Jan. 8 Iranian missile barrage on al-Asad airbase in Iraq, reports Military Times.

Soldiers and Marines die by suicide 50% more often than sailors and airmen, Military Times reports. Of 325 active-duty suicides in 2018, soldiers and Marines took their own lives 150% more often than sailors and airmen.

The Blue Angels and the Thunderbirds paid tribute to first responders in NYC flyover, reports Military Times.

The US prepares to lock down its base in Djibouti after a second contractor tests positive for coronavirus and was evacuated from the East African country, reports Stars and Stripes.

Army tweaks its new goggles to scan for fevers, reports Army Times. After adjustments to the digital thermal sensors on its Integrated Visual Augmentation System, or IVAS goggles, the Army  can now detect a fever. A version of the  goggles are being used at Fort Benning, GA, on hundreds of soldiers arriving each day to train at the post.

US Navy adds stealth destroyer, new Arleigh Burke-class warship to the fleet, reports Defense News, the first of a three-ship class of stealth destroyers delivered to the Navy nearly four years after it was commissioned.

Navy fires head of aviation training school, reports Military.com. Capt. Nate Schneider, CO of the Center for Naval Aviation Technical Training in Pensacola, FL, was relieved of command Tuesday, by RADM Kyle Cozad, the head of Naval Education and Training Command.


Vectrus J&J Facilities Support LLC, Colorado Springs, Colorado, is awarded a $17,090,690 indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity contract for base operating support (BOS) services at Naval Air Station Patuxent River, Patuxent River, Maryland; Webster Field, St. Inigoes, Maryland; Solomons Annex, Solomons, Maryland; and Point Lookout, St. Mary’s County, Maryland. The maximum dollar value including the base period and seven option periods is $190,007,916. All work will be performed in Calvert County (8%) and St. Mary’s County (92%), Maryland. The BOS services to be performed include: general information, management and administration, airfield facilities, facilities support including facility management; facility investment; integrated solid waste management; other (swimming pools); special events; and utility management, wastewater, water and environmental services. Work is expected to be complete by June 2028. No funds will be obligated at time of award. Fiscal 2020 operations and maintenance (Navy) contract funds in the amount of $17,090,690 for recurring work will be obligated on an individual task order issued during the base period. This contract was competitively procured via the Navy Electronic Commerce Online website, and seven proposals were received. The Naval Facilities Engineering Command, Atlantic, Norfolk, Virginia, is the contracting activity (N62470-20-D-0009).

UPDATE: Werres Corp., Frederick, Maryland (SPE8EC-20-D-0058) has been added as an awardee to the multiple-award contract for commercial material handling equipment, issued against solicitation SPE8EC-17-R-0002 and awarded June 9, 2017.

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