“The Department of Defense’s increased engagement with commercial companies in recent years clearly demonstrates the critical role [biotechnology, artificial intelligence, quantum science, advanced materials], and other technologies will play in future military systems. Unfortunately, DOD has struggled to adopt commercial technology at scale, in large part due to its industrial-age acquisition practices,” writes Jerry McGinn, executive director of the Center for Government Contracting in George Mason University’s School of Business and a former senior DOD acquisition official.
In the wake of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, and Moscow’s use of its veto to scuttle an initial response by the United Nations, some U.S. lawmakers have called for revoking the country’s permanent seat on the U.N. Security Council. Experts said they understand the anger and frustration but that it’s not possible to expel Russia—nor would it be wise to shut down a communications channel at a time of high tension.
Scores of aspiring fighters have expressed on social media their interest in joining the fight against Russia in Ukraine. Most of those interviewed by Military.com claim to be U.S. veterans, some saying they are en route to Poland or packing their bags, though none of their stories could be verified. Others said they plan to go but are awaiting their passports.
“Among the mysteries of Russia’s slower-than-expected advance into Ukraine is the apparent absence of the kind of small drones that Russian forces have put to increasingly good use in recent campaigns and military drills. But there is still reason to believe that Russia’s drones are being more widely used in Ukraine than is realized and that their effects are being masked by other flaws in the current campaign’s execution,” writes Samuel Bendett, an adjunct senior fellow at the Center for a New American Security and an adviser at the CNA Corporation.
A top Russian space official said any cyberattacks on the country’s satellites would be considered “a cause for war” while denying that a control center had been taken down by hackers. The warning followed claims by a group of hackers that it shut down the satellite operations of Roscosmos, Russia’s civilian space agency.
The Air Force Life Cycle Management Center has announced that hundreds of the service’s F-16s will receive a comprehensive package of modifications and upgrades. The modifications are intended to keep the aircraft effective against modern and emerging threats and to help keep it in the air for the remainder of its extended operational life.
Aerospace manufacturer Boeing has begun using 3D printing to ramp up its production of a Wideband Global SATCOM or ‘WGS’ satellite for the Space Force. Working as part of a $605 million contract, Boeing is in the process of building the Space Force’s next-gen WGS-11+, a system with much greater mission support and anti-jamming capabilities than its predecessors. By introducing 3D printing into the comms satellite’s production workflow, the firm anticipates being able to drastically reduce the device’s lead time, from up to 10 years down to just five.
Every 18 months, U.S. and French Air Force senior military authorities meet to discuss operations and long-term requirements in a framework known as “operator engagement talks.” These discussions are generally meant, according to the official USAF description, to “share air, space, and cyberspace lessons-learned to improve interoperability and integration,” as well as to “strengthen and expand alliances and partnerships.” On Feb. 19, Breaking Defense sat down with Lt. Gen. Frédéric Parisot, No. 2 in the French Air and Space Force (FASF), as he was ending his three-day visit in the United States in that capacity.
The Army announced that it would begin allowing new Active-duty recruits the opportunity to select their first duty station after completing basic training. The new enlistment option includes more than 5,600 vacancies in 17 different career fields, including infantry, cavalry scouts, aviation, and information technology.