Islamic State insurgents chose to yield ground, [WaPo] rather than fight Iraqi and Kurdish forces whose effort to take back an important dam near Mosul is backed by US airstrikes. But ISIL reportedly booby-trapped buildings, and is still close by.
US Army Col. Joel Rayburn says that Iraq is almost out of time [WaPo], and explains just how messy its disintegration would be. Ali Khedery of the NY Times talks about Iraq’s last chance, but sees some good news in the new Prime Minister.
Meanwhile the Taliban are attacking Afghan forces with the aim of taking and holding positions, with hundreds of fighters making a push [Reuters] in Logar, near Kabul.
Lockheed Martin announced it has completed the acquisition of Zeta Associates – a software and communications firm – for an undisclosed amount of pocket change (at least at LockMart’s scale). Lockheed Martin has been shedding employees in past years, but they’ve also increased the rate at which they acquire small firms lately, often in security and energy fields that complement and somewhat look like defense.
DARPA’s Tactical Technology Office (TTO) is organizing a proposer’s day on Sept. 5 in Arlington, VA to discuss the Ground X-Vehicle Technologies (GXV-T), an effort to improve crew survivability in ground vehicles otherwise than by adding heavy passive armor.
Here is the slide deck [PDF] recently presented to industry participants by the US Marines Program Manager Advanced Amphibious Assault (PM AAA) on the Amphibious Combat Vehicle (ACV) 1.1 acquisition with its updated requirements and schedule. A draft RFP should be posted in October, with the final document ready next spring.
India is ramping up [Tribune] its defense presence along its border with China.
The RAND Corporation reviews China’s efforts to develop relationships in South and Central Asia:
“China’s management of its relations with neighbors to the west in the 21st century has been quite impressive. Beijing’s response to the daunting problems it confronts in Central Asia and western China has been to skillfully project an image of great strength and outward confidence to mask extreme weakness and inner insecurity: an Empty Fortress strategy. Through deft use of high-profile diplomacy and modest military exercises, combined with growing economic clout, Beijing has promoted the image of a powerful and benevolent China.”
East Asia Forum explains that Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe faces political headwinds to implement his cabinet’s self-defense constitutional interpretation into actual legislation.