They’ll See the Big Board!: The Russian air force will join its U.S. and Canadian counterparts in the first-ever joint air defense exercises Aug 8-11. NORAD will manage the event, which will involve simulated hijacking of commercial flights by terrorists.
Chinese Exercises: China is conducting major air defense exercises in Shandong and Henan provinces involving more than 10,000 troops from the naval and army aviation units and land-based air defense forces, as well as 100 aircraft, including the J-10 fighter.
Deeper Cuts: QinetiQ, formerly the state-owned UK Defense Research Agency, plans to cut 325 jobs, most of them at the firm’s Boscombe Down military aircraft testing facility, on top of 391 layoffs announced in July.
Bloodhound supersonic car unveiled. No, it won’t deploy to any front lines. But its driving force is an RAF Wing Commander. And it’s a freakin’ supersonic car! ‘Nuff said.
It’s the human factor. British commando hit 3 times, continues to lead engagement and evacuates his wounded over 4+ hours. Just a reminder that the gear we cover isn’t everything – though Lt. Anrude is pretty chuffed about his helmet…
When You Assume… : Boston University professor and former US Army colonel challenges assumptions of the US defense establishment in new book.
Textron subsidiary AAI Corporation recently announced that Italy’s Ministry of Defense Directorate of General Aeronautical Armament will buy 4 RQ-7B Shadow 200 systems for the Italian Army, under a EUR 51 million (about $64 million) contract. The systems are being bought “for deployment alongside NATO forces,” which presumably involves Italy’s sector in northwestern Afghanistan [PDF]. The buy was reportedly a multi-vendor competition, and AAI will partner with select Italian defense suppliers, including RIGEL International Engineering & Consultancy Agency. System deliveries are expected to begin in 2011.
Alternate QDR: “We cannot reverse the decline of shipbuilding, buy enough naval aircraft, recapitalize Army equipment, buy the F-35 requirement, purchase a new aerial tanker, increase deep strike capability, and recapitalize the bomber fleet just by saving $10-15 billion dollars that the Department of Defense hopes to save through acquisition reform.”
BAE Systems recently announced that they will modernize 11 DDG-51 Arleigh Burke Class guided missile destroyers that are home ported in Norfolk, VA, under a potential $365 million contract with the U.S. Navy. The contract includes an initial one-year award, plus 4 option years. When asked, a BAE Systems Ship Repair spokesman explained that: