Back in April 2005, DID noted that Russia’s 2004 arms exports had risen to $5.78 billion as part of a five-year pattern of successively larger exports since 2000. Those figures appear to be stable, as Russian arms trader Rosoboronexport says that it has collected a portfolio of orders that is estimated to be worth $12 billion though 2007-2008 “We have orders for approximately $12 billion to be fulfilled by 2007-2008.”
Meanwhile, Rosoboronexport itself is changing its structure to become a state-owned corporation. It also seems to be trying to position itself as the procurement hub for domestic and international procurement of Russian weapons – one involved in export orders, defense tenders, and even new designs.
Napoleon was famous for saying that “an army marches on its stomach.” Modern warfare has not changed this logistical truth. The US Defense Logistics Agency (DLA) provides supply support, and related technical and logistics services to the U.S. military services, as well as several federal civilian agencies. Headquartered at Fort Belvoir, VA, the agency describes itself as “the one source for nearly every consumable item, whether for combat readiness, emergency preparedness or day-to-day operations.”
The DLA has now issued its FY 2006 Transformation Roadmap [PDF format], documenting the portfolio of plans and programs underway to execute DLA’s role in the US Department of Defense’s overarching transformation strategy. The roadmap lives up to its name, featuring the following DLA programs and initiatives:
The Taipei Economic and Cultural Representative Office in the United States has requested a possible sale of air-air missiles, continuation of a pilot training program and logistics support for a long-term F-16 training program in the USA worth up to $280 million.
At the same time, Taiwan’s larger defense procurement environment is being paralyzed by the deliberate actions of the Kuomintang or KMT party, despite recent Chinese threats of invasion via their infamous ‘anti-secession’ law, and widespread international fears that China’s massive military buildup could lead to more direct action after the 2008 Olympics.
POGO (the Project On Government Oversight) aren’t anti-military; there are some weapons programs they like and have defended, and they’ve been willing to change their minds based on favorable reviews from the troops. The V-22 Osprey tilt-rotor aircraft isn’t high on their list of favorable evaluations, however. POGO believes the aircraft has numerous important operational deficiencies, has sucked up enormous amounts of development dollars that could have been better spent on other projects, and offers a cost/airlift ratio that is far inferior to available helicopter options, and with less than advertised performance gains in critical zones. They’re certainly not alone in that regard; the V-22’s list of critics is a long one.
Recently, POGO reported that a V-22 experienced a double engine stall while flying through a cloud, and claimed that de-icing has been neglected during the Osprey’s tests. DID originally reported the incident based on POGO’s reports and a Reuters article. We’ve had an ongoing email exchange with the V-22 Program Office over the last few days, however, asking questions and receiving answers. NAVAIR makes a good case that POGO got its facts wrong this time, and DID presents their responses below…
eDefense Online notes [update: this publication is now offline] that the US Department of Defense (DoD) is consulting with overseas allies in developing its strategy for coping with threats, and that the issue of interoperability is front and center. They also reported on an Oct 27, 2005 Heritage Foundation presentation featuring officials from Pakistan, Australia and Canada to discuss “The QDR and the Role of America’s Allies: Principles and Issues for the Quadrennial Defense Review” (hear in streaming media), and on a multinational panel at the recent Association of the US Army conference in Washington.
L-3 Communications (NYSE:LLL) today announced its results for Q3 of FY 2005, including sales of $2.5 billion, operating income of $266.5 million, diluted earnings per share of $1.11, and net cash from operating activities of $219.0 million. All represent an increase over the same quarter last year; full details may be found in L-3’s financial release.
During Q3 2005 third quarter, L-3 also revised the aggregation of its divisions into four reportable segments, to provide a more clearly defined presentation of L-3’s businesses. The company’s reportable segments are now:
DID has been undertaking ongoing coverage of some of the debates within Europe regarding the future of its defense industries, and of the growing weakness in its defense posture. The European Parliament recently voted on the EU 2006 Budget, and once again reduced the European Commission’s proposed allocation of EUR 24 million for the Preparatory Action for Security Research (PASR) program to EUR 15 million. This move follows a similar reduction in the 2005 budget allocations. These efforts constitute the European Commission’s contribution to the wider EU agenda for addressing key security challenges facing Europe and her partners.
In 2004 and 2005, the set security priorities included protection of networked systems, protection against terrorism, enhancing crisis management, interoperability and integrated systems and improving situation awareness. The new AeroSpace and Defence Industries Association of Europe (ASD) strongly protested these cuts. The ASD is being formed in a merger of AECMA, the European Association of Aerospace Industries; EDIG, the European Defence Industries Group; and EUROSPACE, the association of the European space industry. It’s industry consolidation already!