US, Coalition Strikes Recede to the Lowest Amount in Anti-ISIS Air War

US and coalition airstrikes against ISIS in April reached their lowest monthly total since the war began in 2014, with just 90 strikes taking place. Statistics released June 30 by Air Forces Central Command showed that the number of strikes in April was just one-tenth that of the previous month, but combat operations continued despite US-backed forces declaring victory over the group’s physical caliphate in March. Read the full story by Brian Everstine.

Strategic Air Bases Receive First Counter-UAS Systems

Several Air Force installations with strategic assets are now armed with systems to protect against small unmanned aircraft that might loiter nearby. Steve Wert, the Air Force’s digital program executive officer helping to roll out counter-UAS systems, recently said the service had fielded initial capabilities to an undisclosed number of US Strategic Command and Air Force Global Strike Command sites. He described the new systems as “a command-and-control capability integrated with some detection and some jamming.” The systems provide “a composite suite of options” to sense and defeat drones attempting to enter restricted airspace around nuclear, space, electronic warfare, long-range strike, and missile defense resources, Air Force spokeswoman Laura McAndrews told Air Force Magazine. Read the full story by Rachel S. Cohen.

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Trump Stops at Osan on Heels of Summit with Kim

President Donald Trump addressed American troops at Osan AB, South Korea, on June 30, the same day he became the first sitting US President to step foot in North Korea. “We had a great meeting,” Trump told hundreds of US service members and their families at Osan following his third meeting with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un. “We are in this together and want to get this thing solved. It has been going on a long time.” Kim said Trump’s historic crossing into North Korean territory was “an expression of his willingness to eliminate all the unfortunate past and open a new future,” according to translated remarks he made at a joint press conference with Trump and South Korean President Moon Jae-in at the Demilitarized Zone. Read the full story by Jennifer-Leigh Oprihory.

USAF Shortens Tours for Special Duty Assignments

The Air Force is shortening tour lengths for several special duty assignments following input from airmen and career field managers who called for a reduction in time spent in these positions. Military training instructors, military training leaders, Air Education and Training Command technical training instructors with certain Air Force Specialty Code prefixes, and professional military education instructors located stateside will now serve three-year tours instead of four, according to an Air Force release. Recruiters, however, will remain in the four-year tour because “building and maintaining community outreach efforts” is critical to recruiting success, according to the release. “The Air Force is committed to returning our experienced and professional workforce to their operational career fields and reducing the unique stressors associated with these special duty tours,” Second Air Force commander Maj. Gen. Timothy Leahy said in the release. Airmen assigned to these positions on or after July 1 will receive the three-year assignment, and those already serving in the position have 30 days to either accept a three-year tour or stick with their original four, according to the release. Airmen surveyed earlier this year reported that “assignment fatigue” increased at about the three-year mark of a tour, with issues of shift work, demands outside duty hours, and time away from their operational career fields the primarily causes of stress, according to the Air Force. —Brian Everstine

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A story in the July 1 Daily Report included the incorrect title for retired Air Force Lt. Gen. Trey Obering. He is an executive vice president at Booz Allen Hamilton and the company’s directed energy lead. We have updated the original story.



EXCLUSIVE: Countries May Begin Backfilling US Troops in Syria Within Weeks, Envoy Says

In an exclusive interview, Amb. Jim Jeffrey also confirmed a breakthrough agreement that could restart the Geneva peace process. Defense One

Afghan Taliban Say Latest Talks with US are “Critical”

The Taliban said June 30 the latest round of peace talks with the United States are “critical” as the two sides “rewrite” a draft agreement in which American forces would withdraw from Afghanistan in exchange for guarantees from the insurgents that they would fight terrorism. Associated Press

AFRL Puts New Technologies into Space Aboard World’s Most Powerful Launch Vehicle

The Air Force Research Laboratory successfully put new technologies into space June 25 as part of the Department of Defense Space Test Program (STP-2) mission, managed by the Air Force Space and Missile Systems Center at Los Angeles AFB, Calif. USAF release

NATO Nations Strive to Standardize Training Systems

Technology in the training and simulation field is advancing so rapidly that some militaries in the NATO alliance are having a hard time grasping how to best use it, experts recently said. National Defense Magazine

Contractor Agrees to Pay $4.2M to Settle Suit over Wages

Federal prosecutors say a defense contractor has agreed to pay $4.2 million to settle allegations it had submitted false claims related to employee wages for work at a US Air Force base in Oklahoma. Associated Press via US News & World Report

One More Thing

The Pentagon has a Laser that can Identify People from a Distance—by Their Heartbeat

Everyone’s heart is different. Like the iris or fingerprint, our unique cardiac signature can be used as a way to tell us apart. Crucially, it can be done from a distance. It’s that last point that has intrigued US Special Forces. MIT Technology Review