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Britain/U.K. | China | Daily Rapid Fire | Forces - Naval | India | Issues - International | Northrop-Grumman | Surface Ships - Combat | USA

China’s Second Carrier Will be Home-built

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* Press reports seem to confirm ongoing rumors that China is building its 2nd aircraft carrier in Dalian. * China may give itself more leeway than Western countries in getting cozy with authoritarian regimes, but that is not working out so well. * USPACOM commander Admiral Locklear, in his speech at the Surface Navy Association Conference last week, expressed the hope that China would become a “net provider of security” but was adamant that American “historic dominance” was diminishing in the Asia/Pacific region. India * The Ministry of Defence wants to scrap INS Vikrant: not the new carrier under construction in Kochi, the old one (R11) bought from the UK in 1957. * India’s procurement rules may be about to leave 13 major surface combatants without naval guns. The problem is a rule that cancels single-bidder competitions, coupled with foolish contract structuring that deterred supplier bids. The same underlying contract issue is also stalling India’s Rafale fighter buy. * The Observer Research Foundation, an Indian think tank, looks at how detente between the US and Iran will ease Indian-Iranian trade, while Pakistan struggles to close a pipeline deal with Iran. Middle East * After Qatar, the UAE plans to introduce […]

* Press reports seem to confirm ongoing rumors that China is building its 2nd aircraft carrier in Dalian.

* China may give itself more leeway than Western countries in getting cozy with authoritarian regimes, but that is not working out so well.

* USPACOM commander Admiral Locklear, in his speech at the Surface Navy Association Conference last week, expressed the hope that China would become a “net provider of security” but was adamant that American “historic dominance” was diminishing in the Asia/Pacific region.

India

* The Ministry of Defence wants to scrap INS Vikrant: not the new carrier under construction in Kochi, the old one (R11) bought from the UK in 1957.

* India’s procurement rules may be about to leave 13 major surface combatants without naval guns. The problem is a rule that cancels single-bidder competitions, coupled with foolish contract structuring that deterred supplier bids. The same underlying contract issue is also stalling India’s Rafale fighter buy.

* The Observer Research Foundation, an Indian think tank, looks at how detente between the US and Iran will ease Indian-Iranian trade, while Pakistan struggles to close a pipeline deal with Iran.

Middle East

* After Qatar, the UAE plans to introduce compulsory military service for its males aged between 18 and 30.

Lobbying at Work?

* The Pentagon is considering reversing its earlier decision to terminate Global Hawk Block 30, at the expense of U-2 funding.

Gates vs. UK

* Former US SecDef Robert Gates elicited strong reactions across the pond, with Prime Minister rejecting Gates’ statement that Britain is set to lose “full spectrum military capabilities.” Some of the reactions in the British press: UK is still spending too much | the real question is whether UK is spending on the right things | Britain’s freedom depends on military strength.

Google Glass

* Today’s video features Thad Starner, a researcher at Georgia Institute of Technology who’s the technical lead of Google’s Project Glass, who’s confident wearable computing will continue its push in the mainstream:

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