“I would hope we’ll see some decisions about how to move out soon” on the long range strike system, Pentagon acquisition chief Ashton Carter said Wednesday at AFA’s Air & Space Conference. He called the LRS a “complex mosaic of electronic attack, ISR, strike, stand-in, standoff, manned, unmanned [capabilities]” requiring a lot of work in cost tradeoffs that is going on department-wide. “In so many places in the department, we’ve lost the knack for doing that. Not in the Air Force, in connection with this project. And that’s the work that [Defense Secretary Robert Gates] deserves to see before he makes decisions on that.
A majority of panelists convened by the Atlantic Council to assess the situation in Ukraine believe that Russia will have enough forces—and recent practice in Belarus—to invade Ukraine within a month. A senior Air Force official concurred, saying the service expects the conflict soon.