Tuesday, July 31, 2012

World's biggest blackout: 620 million people without power in India

World's biggest blackout: More than half of India's population was without electricity Tuesday. The blackout hit  20 of India's 28 states as the power failure cascaded across the grids

 

 

 

India's energy crisis cascaded over half the country Tuesday when three of its regional grids collapsed, leaving 620 million people without government-supplied electricity for several hours in, by far, the world's biggest-ever blackout.
Hundreds of trains stalled across the country and traffic lights went out, causing widespread traffic jams in New Delhi. Electric crematoria stopped operating, some with bodies half burnt, power officials said. Emergency workers rushed generators to coal mines to rescue miners trapped underground.
The massive failure — a day after a similar, but smaller power failure — has raised serious concerns about India's outdated infrastructure and the government's inability to meet its huge appetite for energy as the country aspires to become a regional economic superpower.

Power Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde blamed the new crisis on states taking more than their allotted share of electricity.

Afghan National Army - End Strength


The Afghan military today is an all volunteer force. As of 2012 the approved end-strength for the Afghan National Army [ANA]  the projected end-strength required to support transition to Afghan security lead was 195,000 personnel by October 2012. The 195,000 end-strength goal would give Afghanistan the world's 22nd largest Army, nearly even with Taiwan's 200,000, but ahead of the 190,000 of Thailand and Brazil. Afghanistan is the 10th poorest county in the world.
In May 2012 there were reports that NATO's defense ministers had prepared a draft agenda for the may 2012 Chicago summit at a meeting on 02 February 2012. It was reported that budgetary constraints would cause the force that will soon reach its combined goal of 352,000 uniformed personnel (both Army and Police) to be rapidly cut back starting around 2015 to 228,500 [a suspiciously precise number, according to some]. This would appear to reflect a return to something like the force goals set in 2008 and achieved in 2010, implying an end-strength for the Afghan National Army of about 135,000 soldiers.
Afghan Defense Minister Abdul Rahim Wardak said "I have told them that this number is too little in comparison to forces in regional countries and they will not be able to maintain security on their own after foreign troops' withdrawal." Minister of Interior Bismillah Mohammadi told the Afghan parliament that the government would ask NATO states at the May 2012 summit to delay reduce the strength of Afghan security forces to 2017.
The initial goal was reaching a critical mass of 20,000 troops, which would imbue the ANA with considerable influence in the political landscape, was achievable, but was dependent on increased international support and improved recruitment. Also, an ANA of this size would be far from sufficient to guarantee security on a countrywide level.
The 2001 Bonn Agreement established the goal of a 50,000-person ANA and a 62,000-person Afghan Naitonal Police (ANP). The Bonn II Agreement in December of 2002 expanded the ANA target end-strength to 70,000 personnel.

Raytheon Awarded $53 Million to Advance Dual Band Radar Development

                                            Dual Band Radar (DBR) operations.

  Raytheon Company has been awarded two U.S. Navy contracts for the Dual Band Radar, the multimission air defense radar for the future USS Gerald R. Ford (CVN 78), America's next-generation aircraft carrier. Under the contracts, with a total value of $53.6 million, Raytheon will enhance the system's software to optimize power efficiency and ready the radar suite for the next phase of testing and evaluation.

"DBR is the first U.S. naval radar system capable of simultaneous, coordinated operation across two frequency ranges," said Raytheon's Kevin Peppe, vice president of Integrated Defense Systems' Seapower Capability Systems. "Leveraging proven technologies and our radar expertise that spans 70 years, DBR will be the U.S. Navy's most capable radar and a critical asset for the fleet."

CAPABILITY AND PERFORMANCE

The DBR is an advanced air defense radar that will provide superior surveillance capabilities supporting CVN 78 air operations and ship self-defense.

The radar combines the benefits of the X-band AN/SPY-3 Multi-Function Radar and the S-band Volume Search Radar (VSR), which operate together in a complementary manner. DBR provides superior performance in a broad range of environments and supports a wide variety of mission requirements, including self-defense/anti-air warfare, anti-submarine warfare, anti-surface warfare, situational awareness, land attack, naval gunfire support, surface search, navigation and air traffic control.

M1 Abrams tank builder pushes Congress to keep contract going


The M1Abrams tank has survived the Cold War, two conflicts in Iraq and a decade of war in Afghanistan. No wonder: It weighs as much as nine elephants and it’s fitted with a cannon that’s capable of turning a building to rubble from two and a half miles away. But now the machine is a target in an unusual battle between the Defense Department and lawmakers who are the beneficiaries of large campaign donations by its manufacturer.
The Pentagon, facing smaller budgets and looking toward a new global strategy, wants to save as much as $3 billion by freezing refurbishing work on the M1 from 2014 to 2017, so it can redesign the vehicle from top to bottom. Its proposal would idle a large factory in Lima, Ohio, as well as halt work at dozens of subcontractors in Pennsylvania, Michigan and other states.
Abrams manufacturer General Dynamics, a nationwide employer that’s pumped millions of dollars into congressional elections over the past decade, opposes the Pentagon’s plans. The tank’s supporters on Capitol Hill say they’re desperate to save jobs in their districts and concerned about undermining America’s military capabilities.

What the F-22 vs. the Typhoon tells us

The anti-F-22 crowd over at Wired bring up some great points about the F-22 and Typhoon. Also, they may have overlooked or just didn't get around to mentioning some other things in the big picture of air power emerging threats.

For starters, while the F-22 may face some challenges in air-to-air combat, anything less than that is going to suffer a hard time in coming anti-access threat scenarios.

With the Typhoon, consider that (except for its F-18-class airframe profile), its speed and performance mimic some of the SU-35 capability. The SU-35 is the non-stealth reference threat for the Pacific in coming years. It was designed to exploit the Raptor. However many of the SU-35 are made, expect its technology to bleed elsewhere.

One big difference between the F-22 and the Typhoon is that one of them is going to have more difficulty in a high-end SAM environment.

Ecuador, Brazil to help set up Haiti new military

Brazil and Ecuador have agreed to help Haiti set up a new army that will eventually
replace the U.N. peacekeeping force that has protected the impoverished Caribbean nation on and off since 1994, officials say.

Haiti's President Michel Martelly has been pushing the idea of reconstituting the army for almost a year, saying Haitians would prefer to have their country protected by its own troops
rather than United Nations soldiers deployed in Haiti.

Brazil's Defense Ministry confirmed it was prepared to help Haiti in everything it needs to restore its army, including military training and engineering. Ecuador has also pledged its
support, a defense ministry official said.

Typhoon's bid to UAE will include new radar technology

The UAE will get the benefits of a new technology development in the Eurofighter Typhoon if it selects the aircraft for its multi-role combat type, the European partnership said today.

 On behalf of the four core nations in the Eurofighter programme, Germany, Italy, Spain and the UK, a Request for Proposal (RFP) has been issued by NETMA (NATO Eurofighter and Tornado Management Agency) to Eurofighter GmbH for the development of an Active Electronically Scanned Array Radar (E-Scan).
Eurofighter Chief Executive Officer, Enzo Casolini said: “The timescale is to answer the RFP by October this year and to have an agreement with the nations by the end of the year. The target is to have a contract by the middle of next year and to have an E-Scan entering into service by 2015.”
Work to develop an E-Scan capability for Typhoon has been taking place between the industrial partners of Eurofighter Typhoon for some time. Receiving this RFP is a significant step to having the capability enter into service.
On the opening day of the Farnborough Air Show, UK Prime Minister David Cameron said: “The four partner nations have agreed to take the next step towards exploiting the growth potential of Typhoon

BAE wins $1.05bn defence deal

South Korea has selected British defence firm BAE Systems for a 1.3 trillion won ($A1.05 billion) project to upgrade its ageing KF-16 fighter jets.
BAE Systems' US branch beat rival Lockheed Martin to win the deal, the Defence Acquisition and Procurement Agency said on Tuesday, adding a contract would be signed later this year.
BAE Systems will upgrade the mission computers and operating systems of 134 KF-16 fighters by 2021. The agency plans to select a separate firm to upgrade the warplanes' radars.
The KF-16 is a version of the F-16 built locally under licence from Lockheed Martin in the 1990s.

China Conducts Missile Tests In Tibet

Sometime in early July 2012, China’s People’s Liberation Army conducted a high altitude exercise with a new type of surface-to-air missile somewhere in the Tibetan plateau under its Lanzhou Military Area Command (MAC). This was reported by the PLA Daily Online and also by the Tibet Online news portal on 20 July 2012.1 The report says that the exercise was carried out at a mountain pass at an altitude of 5000 metres by a mobile PLA unit, and that three missiles were successfully fired at enemy aircraft targets in the “South-east” direction. The reported also noted that for the purpose of the exercise, the PLA unit covered thousands of kilometres across the Gobi desert, mountainous terrain and glaciers experiencing adverse weather conditions. Apart from testing new equipment in the Tibetan environment, the exercise has reportedly helped the unit to gather more than a hundred technical data relating to topics like storage and maintenance of equipment, system coordination and troop mobility in the Tibetan plateau. The unit reportedly also collated ten kinds of tactical and training methods related to this missile in the terrain.
The area described by the report is possibly located somewhere east or north of Ladakh. If located east of Ladakh, it may fall under Ali (Ngari in Tibetan) area of the South Xinjiang Military District. Ali is part of the Tibetan plateau (administered by the Tibet Autonomous Region), but comes under the jurisdiction of the Lanzhou MAC headquartered in the Gansu province (See Map.) The part of Tibet lying to the east of Ali comes under the Chengdu MAC headquartered in the province of Sichuan. The Lanzhou MAC covers the entire Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region (XUAR). XUAR abuts eight countries in all—Mongolia and Russia in the North; three Central Asian countries (Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan) in the west; and three South Asian countries in the southern direction viz. Afghanistan, Pakistan (actually the disputed Pakistan-occupied Kashmir) and India (the state of Jammu & Kashmir). If located north of Ladakh, it is also possible that the exercise was conducted somewhere immediately west of Ali, which too would be just north of Kashmir and in the Karakorams presently contiguous between China and Pakistan.

India quietly gate crashes into submarine-launched ballistic missiles club?


India in April yanked open the door of the exclusive ICBM ( intercontinental ballistic missile) club with the first test of Agni-V. Now, if DRDO is to be believed, India has quietly gate-crashed into an even more exclusive club of nuclear-tipped submarine-launched ballistic missiles (SLBMs).

The annual awards function of the Defence Research and Development Organization (DRDO) on Tuesday will see PM Manmohan Singh hand over the ``technology leadership award'' to a scientist, A K Chakrabarti of the Hyderabad-based DRDL lab, for the ``successful development'' of the country's first SLBM.

``Apart from India, this capability has been acquired only by four nations, the US, Russia, France and China. Now, the SLBM system is ready for induction,'' says the award citation.

Long shrouded in secrecy as a ``black project'', unlike the surface-to-surface nuclear missiles like Agni, the SLBM may now finally come out of the closet. Called different names at different developmental phases, which included ``Sagarika'' for an extended period, the SLBM in question is the ``K-15'' missile with a 750-km strike range.

Leopards, submarines and Sukhois

Lately, there has been much news about procurement of military weapons and equipment, including Leopard tanks, submarines and Sukhoi fighter aircraft. Happily, Indonesia now has the resources to meet the needs of war and defense equipment.

 Lamentably, the procurements have been negatively received by observers, politicians and the man in the street. Criticism against the Leopard tanks procurement questioned the decision not to buy from the Netherlands, but from Germany instead. Others have questioned the usefulness of Leopard tanks in Indonesia.

The planned purchase of submarines from South Korea would, it seems, not benefit Indonesian maritime defense as the submarines have insufficient deterrence effects on neighboring countries.

The acquisition of Russian-made Sukhois and used American F-16 aircraft is criticized due to technical specifications.

The problem is that people are not given correct explanations, and whether the procurements are truly necessary or appropriate is never clarified. There is no clear explanation as to why the country requires advanced war equipment to ensure our sovereignty and defend the country.

At present, we face a variety of challenges as a nation and do not have an overview of our military strategy as a whole.

Pakistani, Afghan Officials to Discuss Cross-Border Raids


Pakistani and Afghan military officials will meet in the eastern Afghan city of Jalalabad this week to discuss the contentious issue of cross-border raids by militants, officials said on Monday.

The military officials will investigate recent attacks, discuss coordination between the armed forces of the two sides and find ways to prevent attacks on Afghan villages in future, Afghan Foreign Ministry spokesman Janan Musazai said.

Deputy Foreign Minister Jaaed Ludin and Pakistan's Ambassador to Kabul, Muhammad Sadiq, had agreed last week to explore ways to stop the attacks and to reduce tensions, Musazai said.

Ludin told the Pakistani envoy that "continuation of shelling against Afghan villages could have a significant impact on bilateral relations", according to an Afghan Foreign Ministry statement.

Pakistani military officials have rejected reports of attacks on Afghanistan from Pakistani soil and said that Pakistani Taliban fighters based in the Afghan provinces of Kunar and Nuristan had launched several strikes on border check posts and villages.

The Pakistan Army has alleged that during the past year, Pakistani Taliban fighters based in Kunar and Nuristan carried out 15 cross-border attacks that killed over 100 Pakistani security personnel and civilians.

U.S. Ready to Help Tunisia With Democracy

The 6,565 American troops memorialized at the North Africa American Cemetery here signify America’s commitment to freedom, Defense Secretary Leon E. Panetta said during a visit Jul. 30.

Panetta walked among the 2,841 graves and read the names of 3,734 Americans missing from battles that drove the Axis powers from North Africa in World War II.

In November 1942, the Allies launched Operation Torch to drive the Axis from the southern shores of the Mediterranean Sea. “After six months of fierce fighting and many lives that were lost, Tunisia was liberated from the Axis powers,” he said after placing a memorial wreath.

The North Africa campaign and the fight against Nazi Germany was one chapter in the story that has been unfolding for centuries, the secretary said. “It is the story of people struggling to overcome tyranny and oppression,” he said. “This struggle … to achieve basic human rights and freedoms is guided by a simple dream: the dream to secure a better life for our children.”

That story has a new chapter, written by the people of Tunisia, Panetta said. In January 2011, Tunisians peacefully took to the streets to demand freedom and basic human rights. “This is the birthplace of the Arab Spring, when the Tunisian people rose up in peaceful protest to demand democratic change,” Panetta said. “It not only inspired the region, it inspired the world.”

The secretary minced no words, telling the Tunisian people “that America stands with them and that we, too, are inspired by their revolution.” The United States, he said, supports the Tunisian people as they continue to strengthen their democracy.

Earlier in the day, Panetta met with Tunisian President Moncef Marzouki, Prime Minister Hamadi Jebali and National Defense Minister Abdelkarim Zbidi. He told them the United States is ready to help them strengthen their economy and talked about shared security concerns.

“I also had the opportunity in my meetings today to commend the Tunisian armed forces for the positive role they are playing in this critical time of change,” the secretary said.

The U.S. and Tunisian militaries have long been partners, and the revolution now gives the two countries the opportunity to partner more closely.

U.S. Defense Secretary: All Options Open to Stop Iran’s Nuke Program

U.S. Defense Secretary Leon E. Panetta reiterated here Jul. 30 that the United States “is prepared to exercise all options” to prevent Iran from developing atomic weapons.

Panetta spoke during a news conference at the North Africa American Cemetery and Memorial.

Panetta would not go into specifics about the options, but he did say the U.S. government believes the United Nations-imposed sanctions on Iran still have time to work.

“The international community has been strongly unified in imposing some strong sanctions on Iran,” he said. “The international community will increase the impact of those sanctions in the next couple of months.”

The sanctions are having a serious impact on Iran’s economy. While the results of that may not be obvious at the moment, Panetta said, the Iranians have expressed a willingness to negotiate.

48 hours in China can win southern Tibet: 200,000 Indian troops instant eradication

Recently, India’s sudden one-sided media the beginning of a possible war between India and were more in-depth study and exploration. But also the past few days, the cynicism of the Chinese military capabilities for possible military conflict between China and India, has made a previously different results.

China can win within another 48 hours, southern Tibet, and will be completely occupied 12 700 000 square kilometers of land in dispute. India on the one hand a large number of more troops in the disputed area of ??the actual control area, on the one hand, again a 180 degree turn! India in the end because, from the frenzy began to fear it?

Russia intends to further India’s exports of 42 Su-30 fighters

according to Itar-Tass reported, Irkutsk belong to the manufacturing group of United Airlines “Irkut” Plan 2012 in the third quarter signed a contract to India exported 42 Su-30 aircraft. This is the production of aircraft, general manager of the Irkutsk aircraft factory Alexander – Weipuliefu, told reporters. He also noted that the plant will also provide the Department of Defense 15 Yak-130, if necessary, the facility will provide

German media said that Qatar intends to purchase 200 Leopard -2 tanks


Saudi Arabia expressed interest in the purchase of military weapons do not A month later, Qatar, which seeks to purchase of 200 Leopard 2 (Leopard 2) tanks from Germany, the total price of $ 2.46 billion.
“Der Spiegel” reported that representatives of the German defense company Krauss – Maffei Wegman has been to the related issues of the arrangement agreement in the Qatari capital, and the sales to the German Prime Minister Merck Seoul’s support. However, some German lawmakers that the military procurement in violation of the guidelines to the authoritarian government of selling arms.

U.S. Says Afghans Abandoned Police Bases

Inspectors from a U.S. government watchdog agency discovered that several American-funded border police bases in Afghanistan have been largely abandoned or left unoccupied, raising questions about the coming hand-over of security duties to local forces.

Among other findings, inspectors found that one base, Lal Por 2, wasn't being used by Afghan border forces because it had no water supply, a report due out Monday states. A second, Nazyan, "may soon be uninhabitable" because of shoddy construction that caused sewage overflow.

All told, the new report by the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction found most of the facilities on three of the four bases that it inspected—each built to house 93 border police personnel—"were either unoccupied or weren't used for the intended purposes."

Monday, July 30, 2012

New Russian bomber: needless expenditure or future necessity?


On the threshold of the 100-year anniversary of the Russian Air Force, holiday events are steadily increasing in number. A round table with the participation of the most prominent Russian military analysts, devoted to the development of a potential new bomber for the Russian Air Force, has taken place in Moscow. However, while estimating the need for “aircraft of the future”, the specialists have differed in their views.
There was at least one thing on which all the participants of the round table, which was held in the Rosbalt information agency, have agreed upon: Russia should continue maintaining the existing fleet of strategic aircraft in a proper condition and continue to upgrade them. The resources for the Tupolev Tu-95MS, Tu-160, and Tu-22М3 allow these aircrafts to remain in service for many years. In these conditions, the improvement of their equipment and weapons is one of the key tasks.
Such works are under way now. The Tupolev Tu-95MS and Tu-160 fighters are undergoing modernization and the first upgraded Tu-22М3М has already been handed over to the troops. Updated aircraft can use modern weapons, including non-nuclear precision-guided munitions, which makes them very useful in case of local conflicts. It is noteworthy that Russia currently has approximately 200 long-range aircrafts, including 66 Tupolev Tu-95MS and 16 Tupolev Tu-160s (the rest are Tupolev Tu-22М3s), and it is at the very least wasteful to leave all these heavy combat aircrafts without the possibility of carrying out non-nuclear tasks in local conflicts.

Can Open Standards for C4ISR Data Collaboration be Achieved?

Lower budgets resulting in smaller troops has lead to joint C4ISR being the most crucial asset in global MoDs reserve. NATO’s ideal is to establish open standards of data collaboration where all agencies information can be combined in one database to be accessed from all NATO nations.

Sounds simple …

Yet with mounting efforts to make this ideal a reality – the biggest hurdle appears to be getting agencies to move away from a system of complete secrecy. During a recent interview at the Future ISR conference, LT Gen (ret) Johan Kihl stated: “We are not used to sharing information. On the agencies we are used to building walls and not sharing information.”

An apt description to describe not only different countries policies but even agencies all operating within that country.

Peter Grogan, Head of C4ISR UK Ministry of Defence (MoD) - British Defence Staff Washington, said recently: “Few nations will have enough sovereign collect assets; hence the need to 'share' but those who have invested in their own collect platforms will understandably want those on task supporting their own troops, not someone else's!”

Lockheed Martin-ARINC Team Submit Bid for U.S. Air Force Rapid Deployment Air Traffic Control Radar System


Industry team Lockheed Martin and ARINC has submitted its proposal for a new, transportable air traffic control (ATC) radar system that will enable U.S. Air Force and Air National Guard units to quickly establish tactical military or disaster-relief airfield operations around the world.

Under its Deployable Radar Approach Control (D-RAPCON) program, the Air Force will procure 19 ATC surveillance radar systems, which can deploy within 48 hours worldwide by C-130 aircraft and take less than six hours to set up. The total program value is expected to be more than $400 million.

"Our bid carefully balances the service's need for off-the-shelf products that reduce risk in a budget constrained environment," said Greg Larioni, vice president of radar surveillance systems at Lockheed Martin's Mission Systems & Sensors business. "We have been designing and manufacturing transportable radars for decades with more than 100 systems deployed around the world today."

The Lockheed Martin-ARINC team's solution integrates field-proven systems, including Lockheed Martin's TPS-79 tactical surveillance radar and Microprocessor-En Route Automated Radar Tracking System (Micro-EARTS), and ARINC's transportable ATC operations shelter.

Nepal and China Speak Highly of Military Ties Before PLA's 85th Anniversary

KATHMANDU | The Chinese Embassy in Nepal held a reception on Saturday in Kathmandu to mark the upcoming 85th anniversary of the establishment of Chinese People's Liberation Army (PLA).

Chinese Ambassador to Nepal Yang Houlan and Defense Attache Senior Colonel Cheng Xizhong along with representatives of the Chinese communities in Nepal and diplomats from the Chinese community in Nepal and other embassies attended the reception.

Defense Attache Cheng recalled Chinese PLA's contribution towards enhancing the comprehensive development in accordance with the principle of integrating revolutionalization, modernization and regularization and continuously accelerated revolution in military affairs with Chinese characterization.

"According to the constitution of the People's Republic of China (PRC) and other relevant laws, the armed forces of China undertake the sacred duty of resisting foreign aggression, defending the motherland and safeguarding overall social stability, " according to Cheng.

"China unswervingly maintains its belief in valuing peace above all else, advocating the settlement of disputes through peaceful means and prudence over the issue of war," Cheng said.

Similarly, Cheng also said that China and Nepal as well as their peoples have established harmonious relationship and deep friendship for a long time. "The exchanges between the Chinese PLA and the Nepalese Army have maintained an all dimensional, multi- tier and wide-ranging trend in recent years, which have laid a solid foundation for mutual trust and understanding," he said.

China and Afghanistan to Strengthen Military Ties

BEIJING | Guo Boxiong, vice chairman of China's Central Military Commission, on Friday called for enhanced military ties between China and Afghanistan while meeting with visiting Afghan Defense Minister Abdul Rahim Wardak.

Both countries have witnessed significant results in cooperation in recent years, Guo said, noting that bilateral military relations have also been boosted steadily.

Guo praised Afghanistan for its support for China on issues related to China's core interests, adding that China has consistently supported and actively participated in Afghanistan's reconstruction.

China has called on the international community to respect the Afghan people's will and will continue to provide support and assistance for the country on the basis of respect for its independence,sovereignty and territorial integrity, said Guo.

He called on the two militaries to further enhance strategic communication and strengthen pragmatic cooperation in order to contribute to bilateral strategic cooperation.

An Ideal Arms Trade Treaty from India’s Perspective

The proliferation of small arms and ammunition is a major issue that threatens the security of India. Aspects related to illicit manufacture of local country made guns, smuggling, pilferage from government stocks and a weak monitoring or surveillance mechanisms further complicate the issue. The policy brief examines the nuances of the ATT at an international and national level, and how it would aid India in combating this threat.

INTRODUCTION

A major vulnerability of India is the proliferation of illicit small arms and ammunition manufactured overseas, for use by individuals or armed groups operating in over 200 disturbed districts of the country. The threat of proliferation of illicit weapons will also grow into another untapped market: India’s young population with its disposable wealth and increasing urbanisation rate.

What then would contribute towards the growth of the illicit small arms problem in India?

• Illicit manufacture of country-made hand guns in a large numbers at small scale industrial manufacturing facilities spread throughout the country. Country-made weapons are also smuggled from across international borders. As several models of locally-made weapons use service-pattern ammunition or use re-loaded fired cases, evidently pilferages in ammunition stocks remains an un-addressed dimension of the problem.
• Losses of arms and ammunition from government stocks as well as losses by armed patrols in counter-insurgency encounters. Thefts from stocks of de-commissioned weapons and from inventories of seized weapons are potential problems.
• Weak inventory surveillance and reporting mechanism, which is not being mandatorily investigated, requires legislative initiative and correction.
• Illicit smuggling of arms and ammunition across India’s international borders, with the major ingress routes being Jammu and Kashmir, Maharashtra coastline and the North-East states bordering Myanmar and Bangladesh.

Jordan Valley Brigade Reservists Simulate Urban Warfare

Hundreds of reservists participated in last week's advanced training, which included both briefings and drills
 Reservists of the Jordan Valley Brigade participated in advanced training in urban warfare last week. Hundreds of reserve soldiers and officers took part in the two-day event, which included both briefings and exercises.

Lt. Col. (res.) Shai Aviv, one of the reserve battalion commanders involved in the exercise, explained that during the day the soldiers participated in varied classes and briefings on urban warfare, and at night they carried out a training exercise in which each battalion represented a company, concluding with a paintball simulation of warfare.

"In the actual situation, the decisive power is the Reserve Formation. Without it, we could not fight, and it must maintain the highest level of fitness," he added.

Syria and Jordan troops clash on border

JORDANIAN and Syrian forces have traded gunfire on their border.
According to a Jordanian security source, "brief" clashes broke out between the two armies in the Tal Al Sihab region after Syrian forces opened fire on some 300 refugees attempting to flee into Jordan. The Syrians had targeted Jordanian forces by mistake.
Jordanian soldiers returned fire, said the source, igniting a fierce 10-minute-long battle between the two sides.

Saudi Arabian news network Al Arabiya reported two Jordanian soldiers were injured, a claim both the source and Jordanian officials denied.
Jordanian government spokesman Smaih Maaytah denied any clashes broke out between the two sides. He said Syrian forces opened fire on refugees close to the Jordanian border, injuring several, including one child who died upon arrival at a hospital in the Jordanian border city of Ramtha.

The real-life Rambo: Brute strength of the Taliban fighter caught on camera as he brandishes TWO machine guns at once

 Taliban Rambo: The fighter shows incredible strength as he lifts the two heavy machine guns and fires them without the help of tripods


This Taliban seem to be channelling Rambo as he fires two heavy machine guns at once completely unaided.
A video clip surfaced online of the man holding up two PKM machine guns and firing them – not unlike Sly Stallone’s infamous character in the Rambo films.
The unnamed Taliban fighter is showing incredible strength as these weapons are so heavy they normally demand a tripod to hold them up.

Should India Be Building Another Carrier?

 Observers are questioning the wisdom of India’s decision to begin design work on its second homemade aircraft carrier, even as its first indigenous carrier faces more than two years of delays due to technical snags and its quest to refit a Russian-built carrier has been beset by years of delays and billions in cost overruns.
Sources said the second indigenous carrier, to be named the Vishal, will have a displacement of 65,000 tons, 25,000 tons heavier than the first indigenous carrier, called Vikrant.
Vishal will feature steam catapults, operate larger fighter aircraft, and carry an airborne early-warning (AEW) system and aerial refuelers.
An Indian Navy official said Vishal will also fly naval versions of the Light Combat Aircraft, which is in development.
The decision to go ahead with such a complex and costly project has evoked mixed reactions among analysts here.
While an Indian Navy official said India needs at least three aircraft carriers, Zachariah Mathews, a retired Navy commodore and defense analyst here, questioned the need to spend money on a second carrier at this stage.

F-35 Maintenance Training Spawns USMC's First Air FTD


It's no surprise that the military operates in an increasingly joint environment today. With the introduction of the Department of Defense's newest fifth-generation fighter jet, the F-35 Lightening Bolt Joint Strike Fighter, the joint effort is at the forefront of the aircraft's maintenance training and a central effort of the 372nd Training Squadron Field Training Detachment 19.

Although based in the Florida panhandle at Eglin Air Force Base, the detachment is part of Air Education and Training Command's 82nd Training Wing, headquartered at Sheppard Air Force, Texas.

One of the unique features of the detachment is the stand up of the U.S. Marine Corps' first-ever aircraft maintenance FTD by combining F-35 maintenance training operations with the Air Force and the Navy.

Utilizing the FTD will allow the Marines to train the initial core group of F-35 maintenance cadre to staff the creation of new F-35 maintenance squadrons throughout the Corps.

"We decided that the Air Force model for maintenance training was the right way to do business," said Marine Capt. John Park, the 372nd TRS commander. "The Marine Corps, when we go to a platform, stay there for our whole careers ... so this is new to us. Having Marines move to the F-35 from the F-18 Hornet or AV-8B Harrier is unheard of, so it's a big change in our training process."

Germany Hands Over Trucks and Helmets to NATO Partner

The Parliamentary State Secretary to the Federal Minister of Defense, Christian Schmidt, recently handed over defence equipment to Hungarian Defence Minister Csaba Hende in Feldkirchen, Germany.

Ten Unimog 1300 trucks and 500 combat helmets of German Armed Forces (Bundeswehr) changed hands during a ceremony. Within the next few weeks, the equipment will be transported to Hungary and will there be prepared to enter service with the Hungarian Armed Forces.

Iran Attempts To Forge Ties With Latin America

Does Iran have nuclear weapons? Absolutely not. However, it is in the process of enriching uranium to a high-level grade capable of producing nuclear weapons, despite strong international opposition. Before the 1979 Islamic Revolution, the United States provided Iran with the material requisite to establish a civilian nuclear weapons program in an effort to create “Atoms for Peace.” However, today the issue of Iran’s nuclear propagation is one that is wrought with intense controversy.
Iran has often argued that its nuclear program is solely for peaceful purposes, but Western leaders have repeatedly rejected this argument. They contend that while a country has a natural right to arm itself and protect its citizens from external threats, national defense and domestic security should not be allowed to compromise the security of the rest of the world. International anxiety over Iran’s nuclear aspirations has long been elevated because Iran is a signatory of the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT)—an international treaty that aims to prevent the spread of nuclear weapons and technology—giving it the right to enrich uranium. However, Iran’s refusal to comply with Article III of the NPT’s safeguard agreement, requiring inspection of its nuclear equipment,[i] has not helped to assuage the anxiety. This has led to pressure in the form of sanctions against Iran and countries that deal with Iran, costing the country a number of allies and forcing Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad to forge unconventional alliances.

Cooperation Agreements or Diplomatic Zealotry?

Japan And The Tokyo Conference On Afghanistan Analysis

On 8 July 2012, a landmark international conference on Afghanistan was held in Tokyo, attended by 55 countries and 25 international organisations. The participants included important personalities as President Hamid Karzai, Secretary Hillary Clinton, UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon, Japanese Prime Minister Noda Yoshihiko, and prominent leaders from Germany, France, Australia, India, Pakistan, Iran, and so on. Organised by Japan and Afghanistan, one of the chief objectives of the conference was to pledge the support and cooperation of the international community to the development efforts of Afghanistan towards achieving self-reliance during 2015-2024 known as the Transformation Decade.
The conference, coming at the end of a series of international meetings starting from Bonn in 2011 and including the RECCA meeting in Dushanbe ( March 2012), the NATO Chicago Summit (May 2012 ) and the Heart of Asia meeting in Kabul (June 2012 ), in fact, sought to indicate a path to sustainable progress in Afghanistan after 2014 in order to demonstrate that Afghanistan would be making a stable and sustained growth after 2014.
The Conference will be remembered for the two significant documents it issued at the end of the gathering and they were the Tokyo Declaration and the Tokyo Mutual Accountability Framework ( Tokyo Framework). Both these documents are complementary to each other in terms of their long-term vision to bring peace, security and prosperity to Afghanistan. The Kabul Government and the International Community reaffirmed their resolve to consolidate their partnership from Transition to the Transformation Decade (2015-24). The Tokyo Declaration claimed that Afghanistan had already achieved substantial development in many fields such as education, health, power generation, roads, and telecommunication . Further, in the field of democratic governance, it stated that the Afghan Government had also taken significant steps like the promulgation of a new constitution, pledged a commitment to human rights including the protection of women’s rights, and to the growth of civil society and free media.

India’s Anti-Naxal Operations: Flailing Around In Name Of Strategy

It is only ironic that the acceptance of serious losses by the Naxalites comes at a time, when the security establishment is itself reeling under the after-effects of a botched-up encounter in Chhattisgarh. Given the indications that the operations against the extremists have slowed down, Naxals would get yet another opportunity to make up for their losses.
In a press release dated July 5 and released on July 17, the CPI-Maoist accepted that its “failures and shortcomings in studying the deceptive strategy of the enemy” is the reason “behind the serious losses” it is facing. It called for “preservation” of its leadership by avoiding “unnecessary losses”.
Roughly at about the same time, the top brass of the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) was busy explaining to the media that the June 29 encounter in Chhattisgarh that killed a large number of civilians, was a genuine one and at least seven of the 18 persons killed had “clear-cut criminal records” against them. Repudiating the overwhelming tenor of the media reports that the security forces had acted in a haste and had indeed indulged in a massacre of tribals unconnected to extremism, CRPF authorities insisted that even though adequate precautions had been taken to avoid loss of civilian lives, forces had to open “defensive” fire only after its own personnel came under attack from the Naxals.
In any event, negative publicity the failed encounter received was recipe for a series of brain-storming sessions within the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA). On July 13, police chiefs and MHA officials met in New Delhi to finalise a revised list of Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) to respond to situations of civilians being used as shields by the Naxalites. To much amusement, the new SOPs call for sparing villages where Naxals take refuge from encounters.

Impunity Returns To Peru

The Peruvian Supreme Court has handed down a highly controversial sentence in a case involving the members of the Colina Group death squad. According to human rights defenders and the victims in the relevant cases, the sentence is a major step backward in Peru’s tortured quest for truth and justice in cases of egregious human rights violations.The sentence refers to three crimes committed by the notorious Colina Group, a military unit responsible for a series of human rights violations between 1991 and 1992: the 1991 massacre of Barrios Altos, in which 15 people, including an eight-year-old child, were murdered and four others gravely wounded as well as the forced disappearance in 1992 of journalist Pedro Yauri and nine peasant leaders from the community of Santa.
The verdict not only reduces the sentences of renowned criminals, including former security chief Vladimiro Montesinos, but also turns on its head established jurisprudence of previous Supreme Court decisions, decisions by Peru’s Constitutional Tribunal, and rulings of the Inter-American Court of Human Rights.
The Minister of Justice Juan Jiménez Mayor, who recently became prime minister, criticized the sentence as “shameful.” Eduardo Vega, Peru’s ombudsman, stated that the verdict represented a “serious setback” in Peru’s efforts to achieve accountability for grave human rights violations and called for its rectification. President Ollanta Humala also noted his surprise at the verdict. Human rights groups have criticized the sentence and have stated that they will pursue actions domestically and internationally to challenge it.

Indonesia-Singapore Submarine Rescue Pact: Promoting Southeast Asian Naval Cooperation

In view of the ongoing quest for submarines in Southeast Asia, the recent signing of a submarine rescue pact between Indonesia and Singapore bodes well for future regional cooperative efforts among existing and future submarine operators in Southeast Asia.
By Koh Swee Lean Collin
The signing of a submarine rescue pact between Indonesia and Singapore on 10 July 2012 constitutes a pioneering move amid the ongoing regional quest for submarines. Comprising protocols for resource-sharing and development of joint operating standards, this agreement is one of a handful of new naval cooperation initiatives observed in Southeast Asia in recent years.

The Submarine in Modern Naval Warfare

The submarine is long valued for its ability to exert disproportionate impact in naval warfare. A suitably-equipped and skillfully-crewed submarine may allow a weaker navy to create problems for a stronger navy. Notwithstanding the advent of the nuclear-powered submarine, the diesel-electric powered submarine (SSK) remains relevant till this day and continues to feature in the global naval arms market. It remains an attractive choice for smaller navies seeking a credible sea denial capability.
Modern SSK designs have since evolved to incorporate new capabilities to increase their versatility and lethality. For instance, some can be armed with submerged-launch, long-range standoff weapons such as land-attack cruisemissiles. Major international submarine manufacturers nowadays also offer new SSKs equipped with air-independent propulsion (AIP) which extends submerged endurance for weeks without the need to snorkel. Dubbed the ‘poor man’s nuclear submarine’, an AIP-equipped SSK expands the range of warfighting options for a smaller navy, including a credible power projection capability hitherto unavailable in earlier SSK designs.

Hong Kong Garrison Grows


China is increasing the garrison it maintains in Hong Kong. In 1997 Hong Kong returned to Chinese control, after the 99 year lease Britain had on the territory was not renewed by China. Hong Kong was allowed to maintain some economic and administrative autonomy, but the police and military garrison are under the control of China.
Until recently the Hong Kong garrison consisted of one infantry brigade (three light and one mechanized infantry battalions), one artillery battery, one engineer battalion, one reconnaissance company (which also acts as a quick reaction force), an intelligence battalion, an armor company and some logistics units. The additions will include a Special Operations battalion, an air-defense battalion, a tank battalion and another engineer battalion.

Underwater concept car sQuba

                                               Underwater concept car sQuba
                                                      Underwater concept car sQuba

Carrier Killers for the Russian Navy: The Strategic Environment

Russia is redoubling its efforts to boost its naval nuclear deterrence and blue water capabilities. Such moves reflect Moscow's growing interest in safeguarding its natural resource interests in the Arctic and the growing military power of the Asia-Pacific region,
The growing military potential of Japan and China - and continuing territorial disputes over the Kuril island chain and Arctic Shelf - is causing Russia to increase spending on her naval nuclear deterrent and blue-water forces.
In November 2011 the Russian Ministry of Defence firmed up orders for four Project 955A Borey-A strategic missile underwater cruisers (submarines) and five Project 885M Yasen-M cruise-missile submarines. In early 2012 decisions were made to refit and modernization the Project 1144 nuclear powered cruisers and Project 949A cruise-missile submarines. By rough estimates, these commitments combined amount to US$ 10 billion.

In January 2012 Russia handed over the K-152 Nerpa fast attack submarine to the Indian navy on a ten-year lease, the deal reportedly worth US$ 0.9 billion. These and other recent moves may lead to changes in the current balance of forces in the Asia-Pacific region.

Where will the enemy be?
The period between late 2011 and early 2012 brought news of the highest-ever level of orders for naval equipment placed by the Kremlin since the collapse of the Soviet Union. Also during this period Moscow started to deliver on obligations to New Delhi on helping the long-standing ally and customer build national nuclear-deterrent and atomic-propulsion forces. In addition, this period was marked by the Kremlin leaders expressing their dissatisfaction with the deployment of US antimissile systems in Europe and promising an “asymmetric reply”.

Super Tucano will Flown Ferry to Indonesia


Super Tucano combat aircraft are scheduled to arrive in Brazil made ​​Indonesia the end of August 2012. Head of Department of Information First marshal TNI AU (TNI AU) Jonah Azman, last week, said that the aircraft was flown directly from Brazilia to Java.


"There will be ferry (to be flown direct shipping) from Brazil via Africa to Indonesia. Base in Malang later Super Tucano combat aircraft to replace the OV-10 Bronco," he said.


Nepal to ban independent trekking

Travellers wishing to trek in the Nepalese Himalayas will be required to use an official guide following a series of assaults. 

Government officials in Nepal have announced that, from September, it will be compulsory for all tourists who want to trek in the country, to be accompanied by at least one government registered porter or guide.
Trekkers travelling in groups are already required to do so, but previously solo adventurers were permitted to explore the mountains alone. The new rule is likely to come into force next month.
The decision was taken by the Ministry of Home Affairs and has been welcomed by the Trekking Agencies Association of Nepal (TAAN), which says it will help to ensure the safety of tourists and the control of illegal trekking businesses.
It follows the death of 23-year-old Belgian Debbie Maveau, whose decapitated body was found on June 14 beneath a hiking trail in the Langtang National Park, near the Tibetan border. This incident followed a number of other assaults and disappearances including that of an American, Aubrey Sacco, who went missing in 2010.

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Leopard Tank Purchase Process Completed


The Ministry of Defense claimed that the process of buying Main Batle Tank (MBT) Leopard from Germany of 100 units were completed, but in October 2012 tank unit 15 has arrived in Indonesia.

"In October 2012, coinciding HUT TNI, you already will see 15 units of the Leopard Tank," said the Head of Public Communication Center Kemhan, Brigjen TNI Hartind Asrin terganggunya respond to concerns as DPR will purchase Leopard tank due to the rejection of parts of the German parliament in Jakarta, on Friday.

According to him, the arrival of the tanks have weight of 60 tons will be coming with a total of 100 units to 2014 to come. Rejection of some members of parliament, particularly from opposition parties, not interfere with the process of buying the tank.

"The rejection of it is there, but only in small discussion. But it does not make the purchase of tanks to be canceled," said Hartind.

China's Military Attack Helicopter Independently Developed: DM Spokesman

A Chinese Defense Ministry spokesman Thursday refuted reports that China's military attack helicopter Z-10 pirated U.S. technologies, saying the helicopter's manufacturer had used independent intellectual property rights.

Defense Ministry spokesman Yang Yujun made the remarks at a monthly press conference when asked to comment on United Technologies Corp. (UTC) of the United States admitting last month to selling China software that helped Beijing develop its first modern military attack helicopter, and agreeing to pay more than 75 million U.S. dollars to the U.S. government for the export violation.

"China's attack helicopters and their engines are all self-developed, and have proprietary intellectual property rights," said Yang, adding that the so-called piracy "is far from truth."

Russia Is Stockpiling Drones to Spy on Street Protests


                          A Zala 421-06, a drone that can fly for 90 minutes at 6,500 feet above sea level

Small surveillance drones are starting to be part of police departments across America, and the FAA will soon open up the airspace for more to come. This drone invasion has already raised all kinds of privacy concerns. And if you think that's bad, across the ocean, Russia seems hell-bent on outdoing its former Cold War enemy.
Russia's leading manufacturer of unmanned aerial vehicles, Zala Aero, has provided the Russian government with more than 70 unmanned systems, each containing several aircraft. According to an article published yesterday on Open Democracy Russia, the Kremlin's romance with drones started in 2006, when the Interior Ministry deployed a Zala 421-04M to monitor street protests at a G8 summit in St. Petersburg. The Russian government has also bought drones from Israel.
Vladimir Putin himself is ready to jump on the drone bandwagon. "We need a program for unmanned aircraft. Experts say this is the most important area of development in aviation," he said in early June. "We need a range of all types, including automated strike aircraft, reconnaissance and other types." Indeed, Russia is going to allegedly spend around $ 13 billion on unmanned aerial vehicles through 2020.
According to its Zala executive  Maksim Shinkevich, almost every Interior Ministry air group has a drone these days. Their favorite one? The Zala  421-08M, a 5.5-pound, 31-inch wingspan unmanned vehicle equipped with a camera that can fly for 90 minutes at almost 12,000 feet. At the right angle, a drone like this can take a quality snapshot of a car's license plate. What about, say, a protester's face? "Capturing faces in any detail would however require a very heavy drone with a good camera; more precisely, with a heavy, specialized platform," Shinkevich told Open Democracy Russia.

Under restrictions, F-22 fighters arrive in Japan


A group of U.S. F-22 stealth fighters arrived in Japan on Saturday in what the Air Force hopes will be a step toward proving that its prized aircraft are safe after a mysterious oxygen problem that was making pilots sick.
The F-22s arrived at Kadena Air Base from the United States and were expected to remain on the base, on Japan's southern island of Okinawa, for several months. Japanese media said eight of the aircraft had arrived by Saturday evening. Another four were expected to arrive later. Base officials were not immediately available for comment.
The F-22, manufactured by Lockheed Martin Corp., is the Air Force's most advanced stealth fighter. It was built to evade radar and is capable of flying at faster-than-sound speeds without using afterburners.
But the fleet has been under tight flight restrictions since mid-May because pilots were reporting dizziness and other symptoms of hypoxia.
The Air Force says the deployment to Japan is a first step toward returning to normal. Before they left, the Air Force said the aircraft would take a special route to ensure they had possible landing sites along the way and would fly at lower altitudes, where the cockpit oxygen issue is less problematic.

India Army conducts successful user trial of BrahMos

In a bid to give a cutting edge to its missile prowess, India today successfully test fired BrahMos supersonic cruise missile from the integrated test range at Chandipur off Odisha coast.
The missile with a flight range of up to 290 km is capable of carrying a conventional warhead of 300 kg, a defence official said, adding the missile, a surface-to- surface Army version, was test fired as part of user trial by the Army.

The cruise missile was test fired from a ground mobile launcher from launch complex-3 of ITR at about 1030 hours and all data was retrieved for analysis, defence sources said.

"It was an experimental flight and the missile was tested successfully," ITR Director M V K V Prasad said. The two-stage missile, the first one being solid and the second one ramjet liquid propellant, has already been inducted into the Army and Navy and the Air-Force version is in final stage of trial, he said.

While induction of the first version of sophisticated Brahmos missile system in the Indian Navy commenced from 2005 with INS Rajput, it is now fully operational with two regiments of the Army.

Bradley command post vehicle BCP

Bradley tracked command post vehicle BCP
BAE Systems


The Bradley BCP is a Command Post tracked armoured vehicle based on the chasis of the armoured infantry fighting vehicle Bradley. The Bradley BCP is manufactured and marketed by BAE Systems land and Armaments. The Bradley is the finest combat vehicle system in the world. Its firepower, mobility and survivability keeps our soldiers safe and able to dominate the enemy no matter the terrain, temperature or threat. The Bradley’s proven durability and commonality of design reduces the logistics burden, while enhancing battlefield performance to meet a variety of mission requirements in close-combat, urban scenarios and open-combat situations. The Bradley Command Post (BCP) features the latest digitized electronics for optimum situational awareness, network connectivity and communication within the Heavy Brigade Combat Team. The Bradley BCP provides an unmatched capability for Brigade and above Commanders to move to the decisive point on the battlefield under all conditions.

MK49 MOD 0 gun weapon system

MK49 MOD 0 gun weapon system
Remote operated small arms mount
General Dynamics

http://www.gdatp.com/factsheets/a081_mk49.pdf

GR Dynamics, LLC, a joint venture between General Dynamics Armament and Technical Products and RAFAEL Armament Development Authority, has developed the MK49 MOD0, a remote operated small arms mount for naval applications.

The MK49 can accommodate a variety of weapons, including the M2HB 12.7mm machine gun, the MK49 7.62mm Minigun and the MK19 grenade machine gun. The mount employs an infrared sighting system with the ability to automatically track detected threats and provide day, night and low visibility detection capabilities. The system enables the operator to remain concealed within the ship, providing enhanced safety.
The MK49 has been selected by United States Special Operations Command for use on naval special
warfare combatant craft and by the U.S. Navy for its Shipboard Protection System. The mount is ideal for independent installation on larger vessels or integration with a mast-mounted detection and
engagement system.

Syrian Fateh 110 series tactical ballistic missile



Syrian SS-1C Scud-B SRBM Short Range Ballistic Missile

                      Syrian SS-1C Scud-B SRBM Short Range Ballistic Missile




Syrian Fateh A-110 variant M-600 SRBM short range ballistic missile

                                    A-110 variant M-600 SRBM



Saturday, July 28, 2012

Cocaine Is Now Flowing Unchecked Through Venezuela


    Radar data collected by the United States government shows what are believed to be illicit drug flights, mostly between Venezuela and Central America. Country names have been added. Joint Interagency Task Force South 

The Venezuelan government has trumpeted one major blow after another against drug traffickers, showing off barrels of liquid cocaine seized, drug planes recovered, cocaine labs raided and airstrips destroyed.
But a visit this month to a remote region of Venezuela’s vast western plains, which a Colombian guerrilla group has turned into one of the world’s busiest transit hubs for the movement of cocaine to the United States, has shown that the government’s triumphant claims are vastly overstated.
Deep in the broad savanna, one remote airstrip the government said it had disabled in a recent army raid appeared to be back in business. The remains of two small aircraft set on fire by the army had been cleared away. Traffickers working with the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, which operates with surprising latitude on this side of the border, appeared to have reclaimed the strip to continue their secret drug flights shuttling Colombian cocaine toward users in the United States.
There were no signs that soldiers had blasted holes in the runway or taken other steps to prevent it from being used again.

Lockheed Martin Gains U.K. Nuclear Submarine Work With Babcock


Lockheed Martin Corp. (LMT) (LMT) and Babcock International Group Plc (BAB) will take over support activities involving the U.K.’s Vanguard submarine-based nuclear deterrent under a contract signed today.
The U.K. Ministry of Defence finalized a 15-year agreement with the ABL Alliance for support of the Trident weapon system at the Royal Naval Armament Depot in Coulport and the Strategic Weapon Support Building at Faslane, the defense ministry said in a statement. The contract is valued at 150 million pounds ($236 million) over its duration, a defense ministry spokesman said.
AWE Plc, based in Reading, England, will act as the prime contractor. The company, owned equally by Lockheed Martin, Serco Group Plc (SRP), and Jacobs Engineering Group Inc. (JEC) (JEC), also runs the U.K. Atomic Weapons Establishment under a government-owned contractor-operated arrangement.
The Trident support contract is part of a wider U.K. defense ministry initiative to shift work to the private sector and reduce the government’s work force. The defense ministry decided last year to outsource the Trident work after a three- year review period.

US Navy to christen ninth San Antonio-class LPD


The US Navy will christen the ninth San Antonio-class amphibious transport dock ship 'Somerset (LPD-25)' tomorrow at the Huntington Ingalls Industries (HII) shipyard in Avondale, Louisiana.
Powered by four turbo-charged diesel engines to cruise at a speed of 22k, the San Antonio-class ship is 684ft-long with a displacement capacity of 24,900t, overall beam of 105ft and navigational draft of 23ft.
Capable of accommodating a landing force of 800 troops, the ship's flight deck is designed to carry two Sikorsky CH-53E Sea Stallion helicopters, six Bell AH-1W Super Cobra helicopters, four Boeing Vertol CH-46 Sea Knight helicopters or two Boeing Bell MV-22 Osprey tilt rotor aircraft.
It is designed to provide enhanced fighting capabilities, such as advanced command-and-control suite, increased lift-capabilities in the capacity for carrying vehicles cargo and provides improved ship-survivability for the crew.

Indian aircraft carrier INS Vikramaditya to take part in the Russian Navy Day Parade


NS Vikramaditya, the Indian Navy’s (IN) aircraft carrier, will take part in the Russian Navy Day parade to be held in the Arctic port city of Severomorsk this Sunday. The aircraft carrier is currently undergoing marine tests with the Russian Navy’s Northern Fleet, ahead of its induction in to the IN. Located in the Barents Sea coast, Severomorsk is the main naval base of the Russian Navy’s Red Banner Northern Fleet, responsible for the maritime security of the North-western portion of the Eurasian nation.
Currently the INS Vikramaditya is undertaking several drills in the Barents Sea, operated by seamen from the Russian Navy. Local media reported that in addition to the naval servicemen, staff and officials from the Russian shipbuilder JSC PO Sevmash, as well as Indian Navy officials are also onboard the ship.

China, RI begin missile talks

China and Indonesia have started talks on the ambitious local production of C-705 anti-ship missiles
as part of Indonesia’s efforts to achieve independence in weapons production.

The defense cooperation reflects strengthening ties between both countries amid heightening tension in the South China Sea involving China and a number of Indonesia’s ASEAN neighbors.

Defense Ministry chief spokesman Brig. Gen. Hartind Asrin said that the initial talks were conducted during the first China-Indonesia defense industry cooperation meeting held in Jakarta on Wednesday.

The ministry’s defense potential director general Pos M. Hutabarat hosted the Chinese delegation which was led by Liu Yunfeng, a deputy director general at the Chinese State Administration for Science, Technology and Industry for National Defense (SASTIND).

“The meeting discussed various efforts to improve cooperation between the defense industries of both countries,” Hartind said on Thursday. “We’ve already prepared an area for the [missile] production site that faces the open sea for trials.”

Hartind said the C-705 had a range of 120 kilometers.

Tajikistan Seals Afghan Border

Tajikistan has closed all crossing points on the border with Afghanistan amid a controversial armed conflict in the east of the republic, the Asia Plus news agency reported on Saturday.
Khushnud Rakhmatullayev, head of the State National Security Committee Border Guard press service, said the decision was made due to the ongoing “special operation” in Tajikistan’s Gorno-Badakhshan Autonomous Region.
Tajik security officials have said 30 militants, including eight Afghan citizens, were killed and 40 were detained during the operation against a mafia-style group believed to be behind the murder of Abdullo Nazarov, chief of the Tajikistan National Security Committee, who was killed on July 21.
Dushanbe denies any casualties among civilians, but the opposition media reported about over 200 dead, including security officers and civilians.
Tajik opposition activists claim that the conflict was actually an attempt by President Emomali Rakhmon to suppress opposition in the region. They have accused Tajik authorities of using Nazarov’s murder, and the recent attacks on government officials, as a pretext for an ethnic cleansing campaign, and an attempt to re-establish control over the region which has long been known as a fiefdom of local warlords.

Argentina condemns military exercise "with missile launch" in the Falklands


The Argentine government condemned "the military exercises that the UK carries out missile launch" from the Falkland Islands, which he described as a "threat" to Latin America, reported official sources.
The Foreign Ministry said in a statement rejected this kind of practice after today to be disseminated through local media a notice of the Argentine Naval Hydrographic Service, issued on July 12 that warned of exercises planned missile launches between 16 and July 27 in the Falklands, whose sovereignty claims the South American country.
Spokesmen for the Argentine Ministry of Defense told Efe that "it is the first time" reporting of such exercises in the Falklands.
"Britain threatens once again to Argentina and Latin America to set missile exercises in the South Atlantic. The move threatens the safety of all ships that are in the area," said the Foreign Ministry in note.
These "illegal maneuvers" UK "are" contrary to UN resolutions, urging both countries to the negotiating table for the sovereignty of the islands under British rule since the British occupation in 1833, said the government of Cristina Fernandez.

American Vs Russian Air Force: Which of The Two You Like More?



Asian Defence News

DND wants frigate with 'surface-to-air' missile power

MANILA, Philippines - Defense spokesperson Peter Paul Galvez announced on Friday that one of the frigates to be acquired by the Philippines will have "surface-to-air" capabilities. That is, the ship will have the capability to fire missiles, guided by radar or heat sensors, at airborne targets.
"Aside from this, our latest frigate will have heavier gun armament and other equipment that will make it very effective in patrolling and securing the country's waters," Galvez said in Filipino.
He declined to state the particular country the Philippines will acquire this ship but stressed that acquisition will be done through a government-to-government transaction.
The Philippines has taken on a new sense of urgency to upgrade its naval capabilities as tensions continue to rise around the West Philippine Sea (South China Sea). US President Barack Obama's announced "pivot" for America towards the Pacific has stirred greater naval activity on the part of China, triggering cross-border problems between the Asian superpower and the Philippines, Vietnam, Japan, South Korea, and Russia across the East and South China Seas. Against this backdrop, the Philippine Navy has been exposed to be glaringly ill-equipped to patrol and protect its own shores. 

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