Official portrait - Lt. Gen. David Thompson

Space Force’s No. 2 Officer Tests Positive for COVID-19

Vice Chief of Space Operations Gen. David D. Thompson tested positive for COVID-19 on Oct. 28, the Department of the Air Force announced that evening. “He took the test today after learning that a close family member, with whom he had contact, tested positive for the virus,” the email states. Thompson is quarantining and working from home. Chief of Space Operations Gen. John W. “Jay” Raymond, Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Charles Q. Brown Jr., and Air Force Secretary Barbara M. Barrett have not tested positive for the new virus within the past 24 hours and will not quarantine.
CSAF at Hoover

Brown: USAF’s Too Focused on Chinese Assets, Not Enough on Intent

The Air Force has an inadequate understanding of China as a potential adversary, service Chief of Staff Gen. Charles Q. Brown Jr. warned Oct. 28. Brown, speaking during a Hoover Institution virtual event, said that while the National Defense Strategy outlines China as a key potential adversary, the USAF is too focused on how many planes the People’s Liberation Army Air Force has, how many rockets they can fire, and how far they can fly. The service needs to “start broadening and deepening our thinking of how the PRC operates, how the People’s Liberation Army Air Force operates. How they think, how they make decisions,” he said.
Pegasus sunrise

Boeing Reports $67M KC-46 Charge, But Expects Tanker Program to Turn Around

Boeing will pay another $67 million out of pocket for the KC-46 program, a cost attributed to COVID-19-related cost overruns and productivity deficiencies, though company leaders say the tanker won't be a “drag” on the company’s bottom line much longer. In a third quarter earnings call with investors, Boeing disclosed the charge as part of an overall $6.8 billion decrease in revenue for Boeing’s Defense, Space & Security division. The charge comes as the company is redesigning the tanker’s problematic remote vision system and is facing another delivery delay. “The tanker’s been a drag on us for three or four years in every way you can think of with respect to investors, but we are beginning to clear the hurdle with our customer with respect to performance in their fleet and their need for that tanker,” Boeing CEO David L. Calhoun said on the call.
First Air Force pilot hits 1,000 flight hours in F-35

Hill Airman Makes USAF History in the F-35A

Lt. Col. Jared “Vic” Santos, 388th Fighter Wing special projects manager, recently became the first USAF Airman to accrue 1,000 flying hours in the F-35A Lightning II fighter jet, the wing announced. Santos hit the milestone during an approximately two-hour, “four-on-six tactical intercept” training sortie Oct. 22 over the Utah Test and Training Range, according to a release.
48th FW welcomes home deployers

Lakenheath F-15Es Return From Middle East Combat Deployment

F-15Es and Airmen from RAF Lakenheath, U.K., returned home after a six-month deployment to the Middle East where the “Bolars” flew more than 8,500 hours supporting combat operations in the region. The 492nd Fighter Squadron, supported by the 492nd Aircraft Maintenance Unit and the 48th Operational Support Squadron, deployed in May and dropped about 350 precision-guided munitions in support of the ongoing Operation Inherent Resolve, targeting the Islamic State group in Iraq and Syria, according to a release.

Virtual Events: Guastella on Mitchell’s ‘Aerospace Nation,’ and More

On Dec. 8 at 9:30 a.m. EST, the Air Force Association's Mitchell Institute for Aerospace Studies will host USAF Deputy Chief of Staff for Operations Lt. Gen. Joseph T. Guastella for a discussion about how the service is maintaining aircraft and pilot readiness, the development of the Advanced Battle Management System, and what it means to optimize force structure design to counter future threats as part of the think tank's "Aerospace Nation" series. Advanced registration is required. Click here to sign up for 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.

US, Japan Militaries Launch Keen Sword 21 Exercise

Navy Times

U.S. Indo-Pacific Command forces teamed up with units from the Japan Self-Defense Force and launched exercise Keen Sword 21 on Oct. 26—bringing together approximately 9,000 service members from the U.S. Navy, Air Force, Army, and Marine Corps.

Israel To Get Direct Access To SBIRS Sats & More F-35 Capabilities; Esper Visiting

Breaking Defense

The United States, pressed by Israeli Defense Minister Benny Gantz in Washington last week, will grant Israel direct access to highly classified satellites such as the missile detection birds known as SBIRS and ensure Israel gets critical defense platforms in a very short time by using production slots planned for the U.S armed forces.