Reviewing the Review: A UK House of Commons Defence Committee report criticizes the UK government for haste and a lack of consultation with the defense industry in its Strategic Defence and Security Review; UK MoD responds. And RUSI’s Michal Clarke offers his thoughts.
New Rules: Industry reps whose companies provide contracted services to the US government plan to meet with the Pentagon’s acquisition chief, Ashton Carter, on Thursday to discuss concerns about the DoD’s new procurement guidance affecting $200 billion per year in defense programs.
Some say it’s the role Kevin Costner should have played. Other just wish he would try, as a cross between penance and reality TV. Yes, The Postman lives in Afghanistan, where the mail must go through… and contractors are on hand to see that it does. Recent contracts include:
World Wide Language Resources in Fayetteville, NC won a $14 million fixed-fee-price contract to provide postal operations in Afghanistan including, but not limited to, Bagram Airfield, Kandahar Airfield, Lagman, Airborne, Konduz, Fenty, Salerno, Sharana, Camp Phoenix, Camp Eggers, Tarin Kowt, Farah, Shank, and Qaiat. The contract will run until Sept 8/15, with work to be performed in Afghanistan. Bids were solicited on the Web, with 4 bids received by U.S. Army Contracting Command in Rock Island, IL (W52P1J-10-C-0047).
SOC-Afghanistan in Minden, NV won a $9.3 million firm-fixed-price contract to provide U.S. mail transportation services from Bragram Airfield to Shank, Fenty, and Kabul. The contract will run Sept 9/15, with work to be performed in Afghanistan. Bids were solicited on the web with 9 bids received by U.S. Army Contracting Command in Rock Island, IL (W52P1J-10-C-0059).
Lies, Damn Lies, Statistics: As Congress consider the Obama administration’s $2 billion FY 2011 request for Iraqi security forces, the GAO says [PDF] that Iraq has a budget surplus of $52.1 billion and should pay more for its own defense; the Pentagon disputes the numbers.
The Pentagon releases new defense acquisition and procurement guidelines designed to improve efficiency; among the proposals, increased competition for defense contracts, simpler paperwork requirements, and measures to discourage frivolous contract protests.
U.S. District Judge Roger W. Titus rules that military contractors can be sued by soldiers who allege they were harmed by improper waste disposal while serving in Iraq and Afghanistan.
The Balfour-Beatty/Mccarthy joint venture in Dallas, TX received a $503.8 million firm-fixed-price contract to design and build the Fort Hood replacement hospital in Fort Hood, TX. The estimated completion date is Jan 20/14, with work to be performed at Fort Hood, TX. Bids were solicited on the Web with 8 bids received by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Fort Worth District in Fort Worth, TX (W9126G-10C-0087). The existing hospital has a shortage of operating rooms and, despite improvements, the Army believes that it does not thoroughly meet the behavioral health care and other needs of Soldiers injured in the Global War on Terrorism.
M95 and M96 MFCS systems equip mechanized 120mm mortar carriers. The M95 can be found on the tracked M1064 M113 variant, and on wheeled M1129 Strykers. The M96 equips the M577 fire direction center M113 variant. Components include the Commander’s interface (CI) for linkage and ballistic computing, a Gunner’s Display, a Driver’s Display, and the Pointing Device and Position System (PDPS). The PDPS lets the system “know” its own location, based on inertial measurement, GPS, and a vehicle motion sensor (VMS), which can all cover for each other to ensure accuracy.
UK-based BAE Systems is putting up to $2 billion worth of its North America commercial aerospace businesses up for sale – money the company might sink into expanding in emerging defense markets, the Wall Street Journal reports.
Come Together: Boeing’s defense business head says budget cuts could lead to defense industry consolidation. Is merger with Northrop Grumman possible?
Lighter Fighters: New NORTHCOM commander wants new light fighters that handle better than F-16s at lower speeds for homeland defense.
New Japan defense report supports continued presence of US forces in Okinawa, warns of China’s growing military power.
European defense giant EADS is looking to expand in the US military cybersecurity market, CEO says.
Catching Fireflies: US military labs are doling out funds to find defense applications for bioluminescence, a phenomenon that makes fireflies glow. Applications under consideration: landing zone markers for helicopters, friend vs. foe ID markers, trackers for weapons and supplies on the battlefield.
In May 2008, the U.S. Army TACOM Life Cycle Management Command awarded Navistar Defense a multi-year $1+ billion follow-on contract to provide medium tactical trucks and spare parts to the Afghanistan National Police, Afghan National Army and the Iraqi Ministry of Defense.
These trucks are based on Navistar’s severe service International 7000 Series truck, and include General Troop Transporter, POL (petroleum, oil and lubricant), water tankers, wreckers and hazardous material truck variants. In addition, Navistar was contracted to supply all required spare parts necessary to support several years of scheduled maintenance.
The MDA is expected to spend more $100 billion over the lifetime of the BMD program. The agency has come under criticism from the GAO for its lack of transparency and accountability.
“MDA’s flexible acquisition approach has limited the ability for DOD and congressional decision makers to measure MDA’s progress on cost, schedule, and testing…MDA’s baselines have been inadequate to measure progress and hold MDA accountable. However, GAO also reported that new MDA initiatives to improve baselines could help improve acquisition accountability.”
To help it improve financial accountability, the MDA is turning to 4 contractors: