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Rapid Fire July 20, 2012: Cooperation in the Pacific – Or Not

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* The Australian and US navies signed a deal to work on biofuels together. This follows talks back in February between the US Navy’s Director for Operational Energy and the Australian Institute for Bioengineering and Nanotechnology. The US Navy’s efforts in that domain have met some opposition in Congress and elsewhere. * CSIS’ PacNet explains [PDF] why the ASEAN meeting last week didn’t end with a joint statement for the first time ever in the 45 years since the Association of Southeast Asian Nations was created. The substance, put bluntly: Chinese heft and hubris. This hints at continued territorial bullying in the South China Sea. * A US Navy CENTCOM MH-53E Sea Dragon crashed yesterday in Oman with a crew of 5 onboard. Three have been safely recovered while search is ongoing for the two still missing. * RAND looks at how the US Marines’ Expeditionary Units (MEUs) deal with support personnel and equipment shortfalls created by limitations in lift capacity. * The scale of the MRAP program and the logistics around it can be intimidating. The Defense Logistics Agency (DLA) says it has $856 million worth of parts in inventory. They buy about $13M-15M worth of parts every week […]

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