My Q-14 Theory

Bill Sweetman, the freshly-shaven editor of Defense Technology International, asks on the Ares (as in, the mythical God of War; not, as in, the NASA space vehicle) blog: what is the Q-14? This is a good question. All unmanned aerial vehicles are designated by the letter "Q", as in RQ-1 Predator, RQ-5 Hunter, RQ-7 Shadow, […]

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CW Makes a Comeback

Cheers to Sharon Weinberger at Wired’s Danger Room for unearthing the air force’s not-so-secret-anymore interest in reviving non-lethal chemical weapons for the Global War on Terror. However, after reading the text of the report, I don’t see that there’s much to be alarmed about. Here’s the paragraph that describes the extent of what’s really being […]

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Et tu, Libya?

Thumbing through my weekly copy of Space News, I spotted a fascinating Peter de Selding article. For six months in 2006, the satellite comunications service provided by Thuraya of Abu Dhabi was jammed. Thuraya executives believed the source was the US or Israel, both of whom at the time were waging warfare against insurgents and […]

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Data Point: 0.90%

From 2000-2006, ‘real’ (read: adjusted for inflation) US defense spending grew at an average annual rate of 5.45%. Not bad. From 2007-2011, real US defense spending is projected to grow at an average annual rate of 0.90%. Ouch. This data comes courtesy of the US Government Accountability Office, which published its (very helpful) Assessments of […]

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The C-17 Revolts!

Let me get this straight: In 2004, the Air Mobility Command (AMC) said the air force needed 222 C-17s In 2005, the Office of the Secretary of Defense overulled the air force, insisting that the production line be capped at 180 In 2006, Congress gave the air force an extra 10 aircraft anyway, partly overruling […]

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A400M Takes A Break

Bad news last week for the Airbus A400M. Flightglobal.com reports that the turboprop-powered military transport — and Europe’s best hope for knocking the C-130J and the C-17 out of business — will enter final assembly in Spain three months late. The news comes shortly after US Air Force leaders took the unusual step of singling […]

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More about Jane’s

I just received this comment from "J", which I love so much I’m posting for all to enjoy: Although I have also enjoyed Jane’s information products, I have always found their price range to be overly inflated. Maybe they are the best in town, but the mid-to-lower range of analysts can’t afford their work. As […]

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Goodbye, Mr. Jane

Why does my employer, Jane’s Information Group, exist? This is not an academic question. It is now public knowledge that the company founded 109 years ago by Fred T. Jane has been put up for sale by its current owners: the Woodbridge company. The winning bidder should be named within a few months, and until […]

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Fraternal Twins: C-17 and F-22

The C-17 and the F-22 have a lot in common. As aircraft development programs, they both: were born in the late 1980s, survived a painful upbringing through the early- to late-1990s and had reached maturity at about the turn of the century cost about the same. It’s about $62 billion to deliver 185 F-22s, including […]

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War Trash

One of the worst things about the current war is the creation of so many would-be war correspondents. I am referring to the ones who get an "embed" and think this makes them the second-coming of Ernie Pyle, who, by the way, is still the best who ever lived. When I think of a war […]

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