US Military News, Reports, Data, etc.


Monday at 7:41 AM
Dec 22, 2018
now
If the money is there, new and improved F-15s could be coming soon to the Air Force
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and
Lockheed CEO: Boeing’s F-15X won’t disrupt F-35 program
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Lockheed Martin has been given assurances by top Pentagon leaders that the F-35 program will not be negatively impacted by a potential U.S. Air Force
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, Lockheed CEO Marillyn Hewson said Tuesday.

“If they
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, it won’t be at the expense of F-35 quantities,” she told investors during an earnings call.

“I'm hearing that directly from leadership in the Pentagon, and I think that's an important point for me to make. It's not just our suspicion, but I've been told that directly.”

The U.S. Air Force is expected to roll out a plan to begin buying new F-15s in its upcoming fiscal 2020 budget release. In December,
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the service intends to purchase 12 new F-15X aircraft in 2020 for $1.2 billion.

On Friday, Gen. Dave Goldfein, the Air Force’s chief of staff, confirmed to Defense News that the service will procure new F-15s if the budget grows enough to allow it, but that the F-35 program of record would remain the same with no slowdown to the buy rate.

“I’m not backing an inch off of the F-35” Goldfein said. “The F-35 buy that we’re on continues to remain on track. And I’m not interested in taking a nickel out of it when it comes to buying anything else in the fighter portfolio.”

Goldfein added that the Air Force wants to increase fighter procurement to 72 aircraft a year.

The Air Force has about 230 F-15 "C" and "D" models currently in service, and the F-15X will replace the portion of the fleet owned by the Air National Guard, according to Bloomberg. The new F-15 model will have new radar and electronic warfare equipment, the ability to carry more weapons, and include other improvements originally designed for Saudi Arabia’s and Qatar’s F-15s.

If the service maintained a rate of one F-15X a month, it would be free to boost its F-35 production rate to 60 aircraft a year — a number that Air Force officials
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. However, the FY19 budget forecast showed that the service would likely be unable to procure the F-35 in those quantities before FY23.

“If we had the money, those would be 72 F-35s. But we’ve gotta look at this from a cost/business case.” Goldfein said. “An F-15 will never be an F-35. Never. But I need capacity.”

Hewson’s statement indicates that support for the F-35 continues to be strong both within the Air Force and among Pentagon leaders. However, earlier on Tuesday, acting Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan told reporters he wants to see “more performance” from the F-35, although he did not specify particular areas of improvement.

“I am biased towards giving the taxpayer their moneys’ worth. And the F-35, unequivocally, I can say has a lot of opportunity for more performance,” said Shanahan, a former Boeing executive.

When investors asked Hewson to respond to Shanahan’s critique, the Lockheed CEO said the company remains on the same page with the Pentagon on the need to reduce the cost per plane.

“We’re on a path to drive it to an $80 million [unit cost] for the F-35A by full-rate production,” which is projected to begin in Lot 15 with deliveries starting in 2023, Hewson said.

“So as long as we stay on our procurement rate plan — which by all accounts we’re going to continue to ramp up at the rate that we envisioned — then we’re going to continue to drive the price down."
 

stan hyd

New Member
Registered Member
Frigate competition kicks off this summer, the story below indicates the Type 26 could make a come back, will be interesting to see. Cant help think it would be awesome to see Canada/ Australia/ UK and US all rocking the same hull.

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tough
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US forces should leave Afghanistan, even if a deal with the Taliban fails
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After 18 years, the end of the United States’
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war in Afghanistan may be in sight.

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that has to be fleshed out before it becomes an agreement,” U.S. special envoy to Afghanistan Zalmay Khalilzad
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, and they feel “enough confidence” to forge ahead in sorting out the details.

The basic framework Khalilzad described trades withdrawal of U.S. troops from Afghanistan for the Taliban’s pledge, “to our satisfaction, to do what is necessary that would prevent Afghanistan from ever becoming a platform for international terrorist groups or individuals.” An American exit will also hinge on eventual inclusion of the Afghan government in the talks, as well as Taliban consent to a long-term cease-fire.

So the longest conflict in U.S. history finally may be drawing to a close, and it should come as no surprise that diplomacy is the avenue to its completion. The past two decades have made nothing so inescapably clear as the impossibility of a military solution, as invasion, occupation and nation building have thoroughly failed in Afghanistan.

That is not for lack of trying. The story of Washington’s stagnation in Afghanistan is not a tale of passivity, but recklessness and futility.

This war has cost tens of thousands of American and Afghan lives and trillions of
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— all of it
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, much of it lost or wasted. Yet, Afghanistan today
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, with anemic institutions of governance and civil society, ongoing violence, a seemingly permanent refugee crisis, and a robust Taliban presence in (if not outright control of) large portions of the country.

The problem is not that we did too little in Afghanistan; it is that we did too much of the wrong thing at too high a price, for too long, in doomed anticipation of unachievable results. The war in Afghanistan is a “debacle of epic proportions” — as military historian Col. Andrew Bacevich (ret.)
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— for which “stalemate” is too kind a term.

Khalilzad’s announcement is a significant, if preliminary, vindication of a more realistic approach. Though this administration did not initiate
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— they began about a decade ago and have continued on an intermittent, often secretive basis in the years since — President Donald Trump’s impulse to “get the hell out” of Afghanistan and his affection for deal-making have here combined to necessary and overdue effect. The appointment of Khalilzad as the United States’ special representative for Afghanistan reconciliation last year seems to have been something of a turning point, and the challenge now will be to press forward on the basis of this week’s unprecedented progress, despite probable setbacks and the counterweight of inertia from Washington’s bipartisan foreign policy establishment.

While all Khalilzad’s negotiations deserve cheer and support, the administration would do well to remain focused on the higher-priority goal of an American exit from Afghanistan. Ideally, that exit would be accompanied by the conditions Khalilzad named: the Taliban’s rejection and policing of terrorist activity in Afghan territory, a durable cease-fire, and U.S.-facilitated intra-Afghan talks.

Still, if none of that happens — if discussions break down and the present progress is undone — the imperative of an American exit remains.

The last 18 years have demonstrated that prolonging U.S. occupation will not help Afghanistan move toward peace, let alone Western-style prosperity and democratic governance. We will not fight our way to remaking Afghanistan in the American image. And continued U.S. prosecution of this oft-forgotten war will not benefit Americans, either.

“Substantive U.S. interests [in Afghanistan] have never been other than marginal,” Bacevich noted. “In any logical ranking of U.S. strategic priorities, Afghanistan comes nowhere close to justifying the trillion-plus dollars that the United States has spent there since it first intervened.”

That will still be true even if these hopeful talks with the Taliban ultimately fail. It will still be time to stop reprising 18 years of strategic miscalculation and unrealistic expectations. It will still be time for U.S. troops to come home.
by the way I've recently read the NYT story
U.S. and Taliban Agree in Principle to Peace Framework, Envoy Says
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time will tell the rest
 
quote of the day comes from inside of (dated Jan 28, 2019)
USAF May Not Purchase Stealthy Tanker, Chief Says
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:

“The days of buying individual platforms that we then described as game changers—those days are behind us,” Goldfein said. “There actually are no silver bullets on the horizon.”
 

TerraN_EmpirE

Tyrant King
@Jura And then he goes on to talk about SPACE TANKERS!!

“I actually don’t know if the next version of tanker operates in the air or operates at low earth orbit.. I don’t know if it’s manned or unmanned, and I actually don’t care that much as long as it brings the attributes we need to win... It might sound a little bit odd that the commander of Air Mobility Command is talking to
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about development of the next tanker, but it makes perfect sense to me."
 
@Jura And then he goes on to talk about ...
... whatever, I particularly liked the chunk

"platforms that we then described as game changers"

but OK here's the complete text (
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):
The U.S. Air Force may not purchase a next-generation low-observable tanker that would support fifth-generation fighter aircraft like the
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and
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, the service’s chief of staff says.

In 2016, the head of Air Mobility Command announced KC-Z, an effort to develop a new tanker that could fly into dangerous airspace without being detected. But Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Dave Goldfein told Aerospace DAILY here Jan. 26 when questioned about a next-generation tanker or fighter that the service is no longer in the platforms business.

“The days of buying individual platforms that we then described as game changers—those days are behind us,” Goldfein said. “There actually are no silver bullets on the horizon.”

Goldfein believes future warfighting will involve a combination of platforms and sensors and how those capabilities are connected.

“I actually don’t know if the next version of tanker operates in the air or operates at low Earth orbit,” he said. “I don’t know if it’s manned or unmanned, and I actually don’t care that much as long as it brings the attributes we need to win.”

The service will look at a variety of options for future systems, including what will give the U.S. an asymmetric advantage against its adversaries.

“It might sound a little bit odd that the commander of Air Mobility Command is talking to
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about development of the next tanker, but it makes perfect sense to me,” Goldfein said.

Separately, Goldfein said the service and
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are “in a good place” with the
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after a series of tough negotiations. On Jan. 25 the service held a delivery ceremony at McConnell AFB, Kansas, where the first squadron received its aircraft.

He expects additional deficiencies and anomalies will be identified as the new aerial refueling tanker goes through operational testing.

“It’s time to put this system into the hands of the warfighters to really wring it out,” Goldfein said. “We’re not going to leave a single stone unturned.”
 
this is interesting:
"The Navy currently ... has plans to convert “all Aegis destroyers to fully missile defense capable” status, meaning 60 ships will be able to perform the missile defense mission by 2023."
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so let's wait and see, but now I go to bed LOL
 
Jan 17, 2019
Nov 30, 2018
now
Second Fleet is becoming operational — what does that mean for you?
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(LOL personally to me it means I've read this article)
related:
VIDEO: 2nd Fleet Takes Control of First Carrier Training Event Since Standing Up Last Summer
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U.S. 2nd Fleet is getting its first crack at tactical command of forces in its newly established operating area, with the newest numbered fleet overseeing the ongoing training and springtime deployment of the Abraham Lincoln Carrier Strike Group.

2nd Fleet Commander Vice Adm. Andrew Lewis and his staff are still in the process of standing up the new command, which was officially reestablished in August. But even as the standup continues, Lewis is using the Lincoln Strike Group’s current Composite Training Unit Exercise (COMPTUEX) as a first chance to start to integrate in with the trainers – specifically Carrier Strike Group 4 – and the trainees and practice what it will be like to exert tactical control over forces at sea in the 2nd Fleet area of responsibility.

Once COMPTUEX ends, Lewis will recommend to U.S. Fleet Forces Command if the Lincoln Strike Group is or is not ready for a high-end global deployment.

“I can tell you that one of the big reasons that, from a force-generation standpoint, that 2nd Fleet was reestablished was to have that numbered fleet look at” a ship’s preparedness for deployment, Lewis told reporters at Chambers Field at Naval Station Norfolk, Va.
“I’m not obligated to make anybody feel good. If I don’t think they’re meeting the mark to deploy anywhere on the globe, then I’m going to tell [Fleet Forces commander Adm. Chris] Grady that. And it’s my responsibility, and I think that’s a good check to have in place.”

Lewis said that, under the role outlined for 2nd Fleet, he’ll have tactical control of ships from the time they hit integrated training until the time they go into maintenance. Along the way he may pass control on to other fleet commanders – U.S. 6th Fleet in Europe, for example, or U.S. 5th Fleet in the Middle East – but his ability to control forces leading up to deployment and partially during deployment will put him on par with how U.S. 3rd Fleet manages the waterfront in San Diego.

“My area of interest or area of operations is in the Atlantic writ large. [6th Fleet Commander Vice Adm. Lisa Franchetti’s] is the Mediterranean, Black Sea, down in the Gulf of Guinea, and also in the Atlantic as well,” he said, noting there was no formal seam between his AOR and 6th Fleet’s.
“So if you consider Adm. [James] Foggo, as Commander of Naval Forces Europe he has two maneuver arms in the Atlantic that he can employ: 6th Fleet and 2nd Fleet. … Similarly, Adm. Grady as [commander of naval forces] under Northern Command has two maneuver arms … in the maritime homeland defense standpoint: 2nd Fleet on the East Coast and 3rd Fleet on the West Coast.”

And U.S. Pacific Fleet has two maneuver arms as well, he said, noting the forward-based U.S. 7th Fleet and the San Diego-based 3rd Fleet that sometimes controls strike groups or surface action groups on deployment to the Western Pacific.

The fact that all these major naval commanders will have two maneuver arms will allow the Navy to be more agile at the service level, Lewis said, allowing the Navy to decide who should be commanding and controlling ship groups based on their location and mission, instead of ceding that decision to the Joint Staff level.

“One thing that has changed over the last 15, 20 years is that we used to do workups, get ready to deploy, do our COMPTUEX, and then we’d deploy somewhere and go park in a little area. That’s not how we used to operate – when I was a youngster we were operating all the time off the East Coast and then sometimes you would be operating far away – but you were always moving and always doing different things. We had kind of gone away from that mindset, and so we are shifting back to operating like that,” he said, which requires more options for naval commanders and fewer formal seams to trip up the passing of command from one numbered fleet commander to another.

Though the standup of this new numbered fleet has the potential to be complicated, Lewis said he hopes those operating under him will just focus on their mission at hand. Rather than complicating the chain of command, he said he hopes to serve as “an intermediary between them and the four-star. Which I can do, and because of my approved missions, functions and tasks I can do in a way where I can help them, add value but not add a layer of bureaucracy.”

Rear Adm. John Wade, the commander of the Abraham Lincoln Carrier Strike Group and the first to deal with Lewis as a numbered fleet commander, said he hasn’t had to do his job differently in any way as a result of operating under 2nd Fleet and that COMPTUEX has served as “really just an opportunity to train to the environment that we will see on the deployment.”

“2nd Fleet really reflects our commitment for peace and security in the Atlantic, and so as they grow in capacity and increase their capabilities, their role is increasing in these exercises but also in real-world operations,” Wade
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“So they are part of this exercise, they are part of my chain of command as we execute this training, and I’m excited about working with Adm. Lewis and his team but also gaining the benefit of operating under a three-star fleet commander as we conduct our operations.”
am wondering what the future holds for this particular numbered fleet
 

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