Rapid Fire Evening 2011-06-27: Withdrawal Management

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* UK Defence Secretary Liam Fox is confident that the findings of the Defence Reform Unit’s report [PDF] will help tackle the financial and structural problems endemic across the Ministry of Defence (MoD). The Opposition gives its tacit support to the review of senior officer’s posts. * Outgoing Defense Secretary Robert Gates reiterates concerns made at a speech in Brussels by repeating his call that NATO’s European partners pool their defense funds to bolster declining military power. Last Friday French President Nicolas Sarkozy attributed Gates’ statement to the bitterness of a retiring man (official Elysée statement, in French). * L-3’s new majority shareholder, Relational Investors, is keen on breaking the company into smaller pieces, a trend which may be replicated across the industry as the downturn in defense spending gathers momentum. * Retired Brigadier General David Reist tells C-Span that lessons from the drawdown in Iraq will be of limited use for the withdrawal from Afghanistan. * Russia has launched a Soyuz-U rocket with a Cosmos class military satellite onboard. The satellite joins an estimated fleet of 60-70 Russian military reconnaissance satellites currently in orbit. * From this November, new recruits for Singapore’s Armed Forces will be supplied with handheld touchscreen devices like the iPad. It is anticipated that the technology can be integrated beyond basic training and into operations.

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