Daily Report

Jan. 13, 2021
Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Army Gen. Mark A. Milley

Joint Chiefs Condemn Capitol Attack, Say Inauguration Will Proceed

The Joint Chiefs of Staff condemned the Jan. 6 siege of the U.S. Capitol by President Donald J. Trump's supporters, who were looking to interrupt the certification of electoral votes, calling the attack “a direct assault on the U.S. Congress, the Capitol building, and our Constitutional process.” Six people died as a result of injuries sustained in the riot, including two Capitol Police officers. “We witnessed actions inside the Capitol building that were inconsistent with the rule of law,” wrote the Joint Chiefs in the undated internal memo, a copy of which was obtained by Air Force Magazine on Jan. 12. “The rights of freedom of speech and assembly do not give anyone the right to resort to violence, sedition, and insurrection.”
Lloyd J. Austin III

Granting Austin’s Waiver Could Damage US Politics, Experts Tell Senators

Experts warned the Senate Armed Services Committee at a Jan. 12 hearing that approving a waiver for retired Army Gen. Lloyd Austin to serve as Defense Secretary would damage the norm of civilian control of the military and cautioned against relying on veterans to lend credibility to American politics. Senators are now in the position of deciding whether to waive that seven-year requirement for only the third time in U.S. history and the second time since 2017. It’s not only a matter of whether he has the integrity or the respect to lead, they said, but what is at stake by allowing him to do so. The question of whether Austin is truly the best candidate for Defense Secretary hung over the hearing, one week ahead of when the secretary-designate is slated to appear before the committee. The House Armed Services Committee plans to vet Austin at a similar hearing on Jan. 21.
F-16 EW Suite

Northrop Grumman EW System Could Be Installed On About 450 F-16s If Successful

Northrop Grumman bested L3 Harris to win the right to develop a Next-Generation Electronic Warfare system for Air Force F-16s, potentially worth $2.5 billion in production, the company and Air Force officials reported. The development contract is worth $250 million, and if successful, installs could begin as early as 2024. Northrop also makes the AN/APG-83 Scalable Agile Beam Radar radar, which is upgrading USAF's F-16 fleet.

Air Force, Space Force Leaders Now Vaccinated Against COVID-19

The top three leaders in the Department of the Air Force have received their first coronavirus vaccinations, as the shot rolls out across U.S. military bases worldwide. Air Force Secretary Barbara M. Barrett and Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Charles Q. Brown Jr. were both vaccinated Jan. 12, service spokeswoman Ann Stefanek said. Space Force Chief of Space Operations Gen. John W. “Jay” Raymond received the vaccine earlier in January. Chief Master Sergeant of the Air Force JoAnne S. Bass is also vaccinated, according to a Jan. 12 Facebook post. “Didn’t even feel it,” she said.

Virtual Events: Bierbauer, Cooter, Marks on Mitchell’s ‘Aerospace Nation’

On Jan.22, The Air Force Association's Mitchell Institute for Aerospace Studies will host an installment of its “Aerospace Nation” series featuring the authors of the new book “Never Mind, We'll Do It Ourselves: The Inside Story of How a Team of Renegades Broke Rules, Shattered Barriers, and Launched a Drone Warfare Revolution.” Former Central Intelligence Agency case officer Alec Bierbauer, retired USAF Col. Mark Cooter, and co-author Michael Marks give us an inside look into the story behind the armed Predator program and the dawn of unmanned warfare. The think tank will post event video on its website and YouTube page after the live event.

Radar Sweep

Snapshot: DOD and COVID-19

Air Force Magazine

Here's a look at how the Defense Department is being impacted by and responding to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Due on Inauguration Day: An Acquisition Strategy for the Air Force’s Next-Gen Battle Management System


The U.S. Air Force’s Advanced Battle Management System effort is a program like no other: a complicated and sometimes confusing web of communications, IT, and artificial intelligence systems that the service plans to continuously test and develop with the goal of connecting sensors and shooters across the joint force. But over the next few weeks, Air Force leaders are aiming to finally answer looming questions about ABMS and transition it into more of a traditional defense program, all in the hopes that both Congress and the Biden administration carry it forward.

Member of Famed Tuskegee Airmen Dies from Coronavirus

The Associated Press

One of the famed Tuskegee Airmen—the first Black pilots in the segregated U.S. military and among the most respected fighter pilots of World War II—has died from complications of the coronavirus, it was announced Jan. 8. Theodore Lumpkin Jr. was just days short of his 101st birthday.

What Will Spur Open Standards for 5G: DOD, NTIA Ask Industry

Breaking Defense

The Defense Department and the Commerce Department are seeking help from industry to set up a “challenge” competition to help accelerate development of open software for 5G networks, including potential market incentives for companies willing to eschew proprietary tech.

SPONSORED—VIDEO: 4 Principles of Agile JADC2 Development

Air Force Magazine

Innovation has always been a hallmark of the U.S. Air Force. But with the accelerating pace of technology development, the service needs a new approach to modern design to make the latest technologies profoundly more accessible.

Trump Hits Cuba with New Terrorism Sanctions in Waning Days

The Canadian Press via Military.com

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced the step, citing in particular Cuba’s continued harboring of U.S. fugitives, its refusal to extradite a coterie of Colombian guerrilla commanders, as well as its support for Venezuelan leader Nicolás Maduro.

One More Thing

That Time A B-52H Stratofortress Bomber Lost Its Tail over New Mexico but Managed to Land 6 Hours Later.

The Aviationist

On Jan. 10, 1964, Boeing civilian test pilot Chuck Fisher and his three man crew launched from Wichita, Kan., for a mission aboard B-52H serial number 61-0023. The aircraft was involved in a test mission whose purpose was to examine the effects of turbulence at varying altitudes and airspeeds. In other words the aircrew would shake, rattle, and roll the Stratofortress bomber at high speed and low altitude to record sensor data on how such conditions could affect the plane’s airframe.