Tuesday, December 29, 2015

U.S. Army Chief of Staff GEN Milley visits Operation Fearless Guardian

Helping Ukraine Defend Itself - NATO

Fearless Guardian Phase 2 Opening Ceremony

Ukraine: The Unseen Attacks – Ukraine’s Armed Forces

U.S. Army Europe Command Video

US Army Europe:Russia's Current Posture and NATO's Response

On 9 December,Lieutenant General Ben Hodges,commander,US Army Europe,briefed reporters at the Pentagon on the current situation in Eastern Europe.The Russian snap exercises,there's never an observer there,said LTGEN Hodges.We kind of find out about them when they're happening.And so that kind of capability that they have,where you could show up at a training area in Kaliningrad or Belarus,or both at the same time,you could see that's a threat or concern that we have because of the lack of transparency.The Russians can operate on their interior lines and quickly shift forces around,so all the exercises conducted by the US and its NATO allies place a heavy emphasis on speed:the speed to recognise a potential crisis;speed to act politically;and speed of assembly and movement of troops to the point of crisis by road and rail.Speed and proper execution of operation also would depend on interoperability among all the US allies,so that's the focus of training and exercise.*
Russia hasn't allowed independent monitoring of the Minsk agreement to determine their compliance with it.Since September,there have been several cease fire violations and Ukrainians have been killed.Russia has pulled back a lot of heavy equipment from the border area,but the infrastructure remains in place and Russia could quickly ramp up if they wanted to.
In Crimea,Russia has 25,000 soldiers,a credible air defence and its Black Sea fleet which is capable of blocking US and ally access to the Black Sea where Romania,Bulgaria,Turkey and Georgia are located.
Moving westward,Russia has a significant naval and ground force in Kaliningrad,a wedge of land between Lithuania and Poland.That force could effectively cut off access to the Baltic area.Russian officials have talked about Denmark,Sweden and Romania in terms of being nuclear targets-an irresponsible use of words-so you can see why our European allies are nervous.
NATO allies are working on speed of response.The US is contributing a rotational brigade out of Fort Stewart,Georgia to the Very High Readiness Joint Task Force.About 1300 vehicles such as tanks and howitzers are set up in Romania,Bulgaria and Lithuania-the European Activity Sets-to increase speed of response.By September 2016,the US expects to add sites in Poland,Estonia and Latvia;and in Hungary by 2017.*
In Western Ukraine,about 400 US troops are training and equipping Ukrainian soldiers as part of Joint Multinational Training Group Ukraine,which also includes British,Lithuanian and Canadian trainers,LTGEN Hodges noted.*
The second phase of this US Fearless Guardian Mission to train and equip Ukrainian forces began in late November.The effort will help Ukraine better monitor and secure its border;operate more safely and effectively;and preserve and enforce its territorial integrity,said Pentagon spokesman Captain Jeff Davis,US Navy.Up to five battalions of Ministry of Defence personnel and one battalion of Special Operations Forces are being trained in this phase.The US had previously trained Ukrainian national guard forces.
About 300 US soldiers from the 173rd Airborne Brigade are doing the training.Ministry of Defence Training is at the International Peacekeeping Centre at Yavoniv;and Special Operations Forces training is at Khmelnitsky,CAPT Davis added.

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Apache Attack Helicopter Mk1 undertakes Confined Areas Flying - British Army

British SAS Selection and Training | Foreign Special Ops

UKSF - British SBS in Kabul Attack 2012

British Troops Attacked In Sangin Afghanistan - 2010

F-16 Fighting Falcons Still Fly Over Afghanistan • 455th AEW - Bagram 2015

Afghan War (Revised and Updated):NATO Special Forces Sent In as Taliban Launch Fierce Attacks - US Airmen killed and wounded

A motorcycle packed with explosives sped up to a joint US-Afghan patrol moving through a village near Bagram Air Base in Parwan Province,Afghanistan and was detonated,killing six US Airmen and wounding two others,as well as a contractor.The Airmen were serving in support of Operation Freedom's Sentinel,protecting the 455th Air Expeditionary Wing at Bagram.Among the service members killed was Air National Guard Technical Sergeant Joesph Lemm,45,a 15-year veteran of the New York City Police Department who was recently promoted to Detective on the Bronx Warrants Squad and was on his third combat tour.TSGT Lemm and one of the other Airmen,Staff Sergeant Louis M. Bonacasa,31,were with the 105th Security Forces Squadron,Stewart Air National Guard Base,New York.The other four Airmen were with various units of the Air Force Office of Special Investigations.Their bodies were received in a dignified manner at Dover Air Force Base,Delaware on Wednesday by Defense Secretary Ashton Carter and Air Force Secretary Deborah Lee James.
The Taliban claimed responsibility for the vehicle-borne IED attack in an email to the Associated Press.It brings to ten the number of US troops killed in action in Afghanistan this year.Ten others died in non-hostile incidents.*
At the same time as their VBIED attack in the north,the Taliban militants were on the rampage in Helmand Province,thier traditional stronghold in the south of the country,capturing most of the strategic Sangin district.The Taliban have captured or are contesting 12 of Helmand's 14 districts.This fighting season has seen them spreading their offensives over a broad geographic area.They have not paused for a winter break as of yet,and the Pentagon reports that the Afghan National Defence and Security Forces are mounting an uneven response.A resilient Taliban insurgency remains an enduring threat to US,coalition and Afghan forces,as well as the Afghan people,the Pentagon said.
About 100-200 ANDSF were reportedly surrounded in Sangin and taking RPG fire as they ran out of ammunition and supplies.In response to this imminent collapse of Sangin and indeed Helmand itself,a small number of NATO Special Operations Forces have been sent in to advise and assist the ANDSF on the ground.Based at Camp Shorabak about 80 km from Sangin,British and US SOFs are reportedly participating in the operation,and British Apache helicopters have been seen in the air.About 65% of Helmand is currently under Taliban control,said Helmand Provincial Council chief Mohammed Kareen Atal.More than 2,000 ANDSF have been killed in Helmand this year,he added.*
The US Army's been around for 240 years,pointed out General John Campbell,commander of US and NATO forces in Afghanistan;the Afghan Army's been around for seven years.We're trying to build an airplane in flight.*
It's a tough fight,agreed US Defense Secretary Ashton Carter,who was on a visit to Afghanistan last week,and it's far from over.
Update:ANDSF claim they have liberated their surrounded colleagues with reinforcements and recaptured the government buildings in Sangin district centre.Fighting continued in other areas of Helmand,however.
Update 2:Heavy fighting in the Sangin area flared up again and raged into Saturday,claiming the lives of 21 ANDSF troops despite two US air strikes having been called in.It wasn't enough,ANDSF members complained.As well,they were critical of their leadership.
For his part,Afghan Defence Minister Mahmood Stanekzai criticised NATO for leaving too soon when it ended its combat operations and transitioned to the Resolute Support Mission in 2014.We were overstretched,he said,but I think we will overcome.The root of the problem is,we need more enablers,training and equipment.The right kind of support will enable us to do the job.

Saturday, December 19, 2015

Special Report (Revised and Updated):Unplanned ISS Spacewalk Needed - rail car got stuck

The Mobile Transporter rail car,or "space train," that moves along with the attached Canadarm2 robot arm along a truss on the outside of the International Space Station has gotten stuck.It got within 10 cm of its target work site directly above the US laboratory,NASA said,but would go no further,perhaps because of a faulty brake handle.The MT must be checked out and repaired by the astronauts;moved to a work site;latched into place and electrically mated to the complex as a precaution for the docking of the new ISS Progress 62 cargo spacecraft on Wednesday following its Monday launch.
The unplanned spacewalk for the urgent repair will be made by American astronauts Scott Kelly,the ISS commander,who is currently on a one-year mission aboard ISS with Russian cosmonaut Mikhail Kornienko,and his colleague,flight engineer Tim Kopra,who just arrived at the ISS on Thursday.Kelly is a veteran of two ISS spacewalks,one of them just weeks ago,and Kopra had performed one during the Space Shuttle era.They began preparing their spacesuits on Friday.Kopra was aware before his Soyuz launch that he might have to make a repair spacewalk at any time during Expedition 46.The four other ISS crew members will be available to assist in preparing and monitoring the spacewalk,which it is estimated will take between three and three-and-a-half hours for the rail car repair.
NASA mission managers will meet on Sunday morning Eastern time to give the final go-ahead and decide if the walk will be made on Monday or Tuesday.The astronauts have been instructed to inspect the repair area to see if there are any other repairs they can make while they are out there.It will be the 191st spacewalk for ISS repair or assembly.Actually,they look forward to such challenges.
Update:The ISS Mission Management Team has approved the spacewalk for Monday morning beginning at 7:10 am Central time,or 8:10 am Eastern.It may be delayed,however,as astronaut Tim Kopra has to perform a fit check on his spacesuit before the spacewalk begins.If the repair is made expeditiously,the astronauts may then go ahead and route cables in advance of installation of the International Docking Adapter for the new US commercial crew vehicles;they may also open a door housing a power distribution system relay boxes just above the worksite to facilitate robotic replacement of modular components.

Astronauts Tim Peake (ESA), Tim Kopra (NASA) & Yuri Malenchenko (Roscosm...

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

F-35B Vertical Landing & Short Takeoff from Expeditionary Airfield

New US Ballistic Missile Defense System Tested Successfully (Aegis Ashore)

U.S. & German Soldiers Working Together - Weapons Familiarization Range

Watch President Obama speak on action against Islamic State group at Pen...

Rep. McSally Questions Top U.S. Security Officials on ISIS Strategy

Swearing-in the 19th Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff

Busy Monday:General Dunford,President Obama Address National Security Challenges

To be more effective against ISIL,we need better HUMINT and vetting of Syrian opposition groups,Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff General Joseph Dunford,USMC,told the Center for a New American Security in Washington,DC on 14 December.We're going to focus on getting after ISIL's military capabilities,control of terrain and ability to export operations,while being very mindful of the complex situation that we're in.A number of things on the ground are developing positive opportunities.Moving forward,we're looking to increase the tempo and the opportunities for our partners.*
We continue to face enduring challenges of extremism in South Asia as well.The continued threat of al-Qaida requires us to keep counterterror partners for some time to come.The Ghani administration in Afghanistan is fully supportive of what we're doing.I think we have common objectives,but this summer highlighted that the Afghan National Defence and Security Forces have a ways to go.A critical part is the continuing commitment of the international community.The Warsaw Summmit in July is to reinforce commitment to the Afghan campaign,both financially and militarily,through 2020.*
It isn't just ISIL;we have a number of challenges from states as well.Russia has made significant investments in its military capabilities.They introduced new ballistic missiles and submarines this year.
We closely watch China's military capabilities and behaviour in the South China Sea.They have a large conventional capability,a growing navy and increasingly sophisticated air force.In the South China Sea,China is destabilising right now.As Admiral Harris of US Pacific Command said,The Great Wall of Sand is being developed by China in the South China Sea,referring to China's rapid island-building effort in the disputed waters.
North Korea is developing its ballistic missile and cyber capability.*
Earlier in the day,GEN Dunford stood with President Barack Obama when he spoke at the Pentagon,where the President had made a rare visit to get a briefing on the anti-ISIL Operation Inherent Resolve and meet with his National Security Council.Mr.Obama pointed out that the US and its armed forces are:
1.hunting down and taking out ISIL leaders;
2.training and equipping indigenous anti-ISIL ground forces in Iraq and Syria;
3.stopping ISIL's recruiting,financing and propaganda;and
4.negotiating an end to the Syrian civil war.
The President said he had ordered new actions with more firepower into the anti-ISIL campaign this fall,even before the ISIL attacks on Paris and the ISIL-inspired San Bernardino attack.More Special Operations Forces actions are well underway.
ISIL is dug in in urban areas and use human shields to protect themselves,so we have to be smart.We are routing ISIL out with nearly 7,000 airstrikes to date.We're taking out ISIL leaders and commanders one-by-one.If we haven't gotten you yet,you are next,the President warned.We're going out after ISIL from downtown Raqqa,Syria to Libya.In many places,they've lost the freedom to manoeuver.Since this summer,ISIL has not mounted a single successful offensive operation and has lost territory in both Iraq and Syria.In Iraq alone,ISIL has lost 40% of its territory in populated areas;while in Syria,it has lost thousands of square miles.
Immediately following his presentation,Mr.Obama sent Defense Secretary Ashton Carter to the Middle East to meet with coalition partners and secure more contributions to Operation Inherent Resolve.

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Atlas V OA-4 Launch Highlights

Supply Spacecraft Launches to the Space Station

NATO Secretary General with Deputy PM & MFA of Montenegro, 02 DEC 2015

Danish Leopard 2 Tanks Live Fire At Grafenwoehr DE - with firing line flags

Royal Danish Army at Grafenwoehr HD

Danish,British,US Troops in NATO Exercise White Sword

The interconnectedness of NATO forces in any conceivable warfighting scenario is highlighted by Exercise White Sword,which is presently underway in Oksobel,Denmark.Participating in the weeklong drills are 2nd Danish Brigade;1st Battalion Scots Guards and Coldstream Guards,British Army;and a US Army AH 64 Apache Squadron with four helicopters.The Exercise will validate the Danish Reaction Battle Group for service in the NATO Response Force 2015,Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe said.The British and US troops are being integrated into the Battle Group during the exercise as well.*
Units train together showing the Alliance,our home audience,and possible adversaries of ours that we actually do train together on a continuous basis,said Brigadier General Jens Garly,commander,2nd Danish Brigade.I think that's key.That's NATO on the ground,not in Brussels.That's NATO on the ground in the future,I think.It's the planning,the understanding,the mutual respect,knowing each other's capabilities,and you cannot do that without training together.We train together to be able to fight together.*
During White Sword,the troops will work jointly to execute missions,utilising effective communication to learn and enhance training goals,as well as send the message that NATO is resolutely enhancing security measures throughout Europe with such assurance measures,according to SHAPE.*
Any conflicts are going to require a multinational response team and therefore this exercise is one means of developing the level of interoperability between NATO members,said 2nd Lieutenant Oliver Carmichael,second in command of a Scots Guards Company.
The Scots Guards deployed the Left Bank Company,as well as attachments of B and C Companies,for a total of 135 soldiers from Mons Barracks,Aldershot,along with more than 30 armoured vehicles,including Husky,Ridgeback and Wolfhound vehicles,to form a Mechanised Infantry Company and test the high intensity operations in Denmark.*
Command and control of various manned combat units are the focus of White Sword,SHAPE added.The Exercise will improve command and expose the units to new languages,equipment,terrain and tactical procedures,leading to greater interoperability.

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

U.S. Army Special Forces Green Berets - High Altitude Jump

Evolution of Force Recon | Marine Force Recon

Delta Force Tryouts | Delta Force: Tier 1

Iraqi Special Forces In Heavy Combat Action Against ISIS In Al Anbar 2015

More US Troops Headed for Middle East - new special forces unit

Secretary of Defense Ashton Carter and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff General Joseph Dunford,US Marine Corps,testified before the House Armed Services Committee today to brief the lawmakers on the War On ISIL.Secetary Carter unveiled a new Special Operations Forces unit that will be based in Iraq.The exact number of troops in the Special Expeditionary Targeting Force was not disclosed,but they will number more than the 50 SOFs heading for Syria in a separate accompanying and enabling unit.The SETF will conduct operations in both Iraq and Syria,as opportunity dictates.The new unit will have the missions of:
1.conducting raids;
2.freeing hostages;
3.capturing ISIL leaders;and
4.gathering intelligence.
These missions have been carried out before,Mr.Carter pointed out,but this time the SOFs will be there on a standing basis.For example,there have been recent raids to liberate prisoners in an ISIL prison in Iraq and to kill ISIL leader Abu Sayyaf and capture his wife.
The SETF may operate alone or,more likely,as part of a mixed force,Mr.Carter said.It is a new way of achieving our objective-and there will be more.
The territory under ISIL control has shrunk-that's a fact,Mr.Carter insisted.There's still a lot further to go.We are gathering momentum.*
I do not believe we are limited to the 3500 US troop level currently in Iraq,GEN Dunford added.I don't feel inhibited about recommending more.I will bring these options to the Secretary and the President,regardless of what the force management numbers were in the past.*
Secretary Carter pointed out that all US forces in Iraq and Syria are now under unified command under Lieutenant General Sean McFarland,US Army in Baghdad.For example,LTGEN McFarland is now connected daily to Iraqi President Abadi and forces in Ramadi.This unity of command is really critical.*
Right now,our focus is on Ramadi,GEN Dunford told the Committee.Beiji and Sinjar have fallen;Mosul is a future operation.Probably months from now we will start to see operations in Mosul.*
The 50 SOFs in Syria are just for starters,Mr.Carter revealed.We're prepared to do more and I think the President will authorise this.It hinges on us finding the capable local forces we can enable in this way.The more we find them,the more we'll do.
We killed ISIL's Libya leader two weeks ago.We're determined to get them wherever they arise.*
GEN Dunford listed the areas of concern about ISIL activity as being Egypt;the Boko Haram ISIL affiliate in Nigeria;Lebanon;Jordan;Yemen;Afghanistan and Pakistan.*
We do need our allies to do more,Mr.Carter noted.The British are debating it;the Germans are capable of doing more,and we want them to.I hope the Paris attacks galvanise the Europeans to do more,because they need to do more.Our Gulf Arab allies have been unwilling to field their forces.Many of them weight air forces over ground forces.They need to build and wield their ground forces.

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

US Air Force Honor Guard Drill Team performs at DIA Headquarters. (Clip 4)

NATO Exercise ends in show of force

Daily News 6. November

US And Royal Marines Carry Out An Amphibious Landing

Beyond the Beltway: DIA's Missile and Space Intelligence Center (MSIC)

We Are DIA

British Officer Assumes New DIA Deputy Post;New Bethesda IC Campus Opens

On 30 October,Defense Intelligence Agency director Lieutenant General Vincent R. Stewart,US Marine Corps,announced that Air Vice Marshall Sean Corbett,Royal Air Force,United Kingdom,has been selected as the first deputy director for Commonwealth Integration (DDCI) at the DIA.It is a rotational post for the FVEY allies,or "Five Eyes," at the DIA,referring to the intelligence alliance between the US,Canada,UK,Australia and New Zealand.This alliance has drawn closer over the past 10 years for a better exchange of intelligence,assessment and burden-sharing to enhance collaboration on challenging intelligence issues.*
AVM Corbett is the RAF's senior intelligence officer and has commanded joint and single service intelligence organisations at every level.He had previously served as Chief of Intelligence,Afghanistan,and,most recently,as Assistant Chief of Staff (Intelligence),Permanent Joint Headquarters,UK.*
Earlier in October,the DIA held a ribbon-cutting for the new Intelligence Community Campus located at 4600 Sangamore Road,Bethesda,Maryland.The ICC-B is an advanced collaborative IC campus for up to 3,000 relocated intelligence staff from the Washington National Capital Area.
I believe this world-class facility is a beautiful addition to the community,said Director of National Intelligence General James Clapper,US Air Force Retired,at the ceremony.This facility is,in so many ways,the physical manifestation of intelligence integration,GEN Clapper added.*
DIA was executive agent for the ICC-B project,which involved redeveloping the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency's Sumner Campus into an integrated multi-agency site.The ICC-B has a new six-storey parking garage and a sleek glass fa├žade that creates a unified modern structure by wrapping around the three pre-existing buildings.The facility will house staff from the Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI) National Counterintelligence and Security Center;the National Intelligence University;and the DIA.Centrally located among the intelligence agencies,it is marked by the use of LED-lighting for energy conservation.As well,by redeveloping an existing campus,the IC realised a cost savings of around 60% versus the construction of new buildings.*
A combat support agency,DIA provides military intelligence to warfighters,defence policymakers and force planners in the Department of Defense and the IC.It aims to prevent strategic surprise,deter conflict and prepare to defeat future adversaries,delivering decision advantage to prevent and decisively win wars as the indispensable source of defence intelligence expertise.
The DIA's core mission capabilities are collecting,processing,exploiting and analysing foreign military and defence-related information,then producing and disseminating timely and relevant all-source analysis.It combines these with expeditionary competency in providing surge intelligence support to combatant commanders and warfighters to meet operational and tactical priority requirements.

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Russian Air Force Executes Strike On ISIL

Special Report:Russia's Massive Airstrike on ISIL

More than two dozen Russian Backfire,Bear and Blackjack bombers launched from a base in Southern Russia Tuesday night and released air-launched cruise missiles that struck the ISIL capital of Raqqa,Syria.According to Joint Task Force Operation Inherent Resolve spokesman Colonel Steve Warren,US Army,at the same time,a multi-ship formation of Russian warships in the Caspian Sea fired sea-launched cruise missiles at the same location.The missiles flew through Iraqi airspace and it was also the first time Russia had struck targets in Raqqa,COL Warren added.Russia notified the US beforehand,but didn't share its target set.The US neither cooperated nor coordinated with Russia on this strike;nor are there currently any plans to do so in the future,according to COL Warren.There is daily communication with Russia,but only to test the communications link.Right now,I see no indication they hit anything in our target set,the OIR spokesman told reporters via teleconference.*
A Russian spokesman said that the strike hit 14 important ISIL targets,including command posts that coordinate ISIL activities in Idlib and Aleppo Provinces,as well as munitions and supply depots in Northwest Syria.The Russian General Staff has developed a new plan for the air campaign involving the deployment of 25 strategic bombers,including eight Su-24 Fullback attack jets;four Su-27 Flanker fighter jets;plus the variable-sweep wing Tu-160 Blackjack and Tu-22m Backfire jet bombers and the prop Bear bombers.The Bear and Blackjack bombers carry at least 20 tonnes of weaponry.All of the aforementioned bombers have a range of thousands of miles.*
At the G20 summit in Antalya,Turkey last weekend,US President Barack Obama and British Prime Minister David Cameron reportedly encouraged Russian President Vladimir Putin to strike more ISIL targets with Russian airpower.Previously,Russia had primarily been going after opponents of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

U.S. Army Air Defense Artillery Officer

Patriot Missile Live Fire at NATO Missile Firing Installation - US,German troops in Greece

Patriot Exercise

Coast Guard Armed Helicopters

F-15C Pilots Scrambling, Take-off, Vertical Climb.

How does an air interception work? - NATO

Defending D.C.:NORAD Announces Overnight Exercise

NORAD,the North American Aerospace Defense Command,and its geographical component,CONR,the Continental US NORAD Region,will be holding training flights over the Washington,D.C. area overnight Tuesday into Wednesday from 12 am until 2 am,in support of Operation Noble Eagle,the air defence operation instituted following 9-11.Such exercises are held periodically to hone NORAD's intercept and identification operations and operationally test the National Capital Region Visual Warning System and train Joint Air Defense Operations Center (JADOC) personnel;they also ensure CONR's rapid response capability.Besides the US Air Force,the drills will include the US Coast Guard MH-65 Dolphin helicopter;Civil Air Patrol aircraft;and the participation of the FAA and the National Capital Region Command Center.The Coast Guard conducts armed helicopter overwatch as part of its counterterrorism mission.*
CONR is based at Tyndall Air Force Base,Florda,and directs both the Western Air Defense Sector (WADS) at McChord Air Force Base in Washington state and the Eastern Air Defense Sector (EADS) based in Rome,New York.CONR's principal weapons systems are the F-15 Eagle and the F-16 Fighting Falcon provided by the 10 Air National Guard fighter wings of First Air Force.CONR's assets also include the US Army 2nd Battalion 263rd Air Defense Artillery Regiment at Joint Base Anacostia-Bolling in Washington,D.C.,where the JADOC is also located.Typically a number of Canadian Forces personnel are detailed to CONR as well.*
Since 9-11,CONR's fighter aircraft have responded to more than 5,000 possible air threats in the US and flown more than 62,500 sorties supported by Airborne Warning and Control (AWACS) and air to air refueling aircraft.
EADS counters all threats with vigilant detection,rapid warning and precise tactical control of NORAD and NORTHCOM forces,with its vision being to detect and defeat the next air attack on America.*
The highly integrated air defence system of NORAD allows us to identify,track,and if necessary,engage both external and internal aerospace threats,said NORAD and US Northern Command (NORTHCOM) Commander Admiral William Gortney,US Navy.NORAD adds aerospace warning,aerospace control and worldwide maritime warning in the defence of North America.NORAD's Deputy Commander and Commander,Canadian Element is Lieutenant-General Pierre St.-Amand,CMM,CD.

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

AFGSC Blog: Malmstrom Tactical Response Force Snipers

Camp Guernsey Tactical Response Force Training

U.S. Air Force Security Forces 2012

Minuteman III ICBM Test Launch

Global strike command tests ICBM, bomber capabilities

AFGSC Command Video 2014

Deterring and Assuring:Air Force Global Strike Command's Mission and Perspective

This blog has reviewed the 2014 Air Force Global Strike Command Strategic Master Plan,which is currently in force.AFGSC is headed by Lieutenant General Stephen W. Wilson,Commander.The AFGSC is entrusted with the nation's most powerful weapons,LTGEN Wilson points out.Its Airmen see things globally,their focus inherently global and strategic.They provide the nation effective deterrence and,when called upon,rapid global strike.
AFGSC is a warfighting component,a MAJCOM of US Strategic Command that executes assigned deterrence,assurance and global strike missions.It organises,trains and equips both conventional and nuclear combat forces for the President and Combatant Commanders.ICBM forces are deployed in a nuclear deterrent role,and AFGSC bombers plan and execute deterrence and Global Power/Strike operations to provide USSTRATCOM with a viable deterrent capability.*
The strategic environment continues to present a very dynamic and uncertain picture and the number of state and non-state actors that can produce strategic effects across the spectrum of conflict is growing in both quantity and complexity.In current and future conflicts,AFGSC forces are required to survive and operate in threat environments ranging from low threat/permissive to highly contested Anti-access/Area Denial environments,according to the US Air Force Posture Statement 2013.
The Air Force's nuclear deterrent and conventional precision strike forces can credibly deny adversary objectives or impose unacceptable costs by effectively holding any target on the planet at risk and,if necessary,disabling or destroying targets promptly,even from bases in the continental United States.
AFGSC has at its disposal two numbered Air Forces,the Eighth and the Twentieth,and five Air Force Bases.Over 25,000 personnel operate,maintain and support its 450 ICBMs;24 UH-1N Air Force Security Forces helicopters;and 96 long range,nuclear-capable bombers.AFGSC B-52H bombers have been deployed to Europe in support of Operation Atlantic Resolve and NATO exercises,while its B-1B bombers have participated in Operation Inherent Resolve against ISIL.*
The era in which the US can project global military power virtually uncontested will likely end by 2030,if not before,the Strategic Master Plan projects.The potential state and non-state actors that can threaten the US and its allies across the spectrum of conflict are growing in number and increasing in complexity.This requires a greater effort by the US to work with key allies and partners to maintain peace and stability around the globe.
Nations with Weapons of Mass Destruction and advanced conventional capabilities will continue to be potential strategic threats.Foreign intelligence and security services will continue efforts to gather information on US capabilities through HUMINT,SIGINT and imagery intelligence to replicate or mitigate US military advantages.Violent and extremist terrorist groups will continue to develop indirect means to strike the US through recruitment and subversion of dissidents or through covert insertion.They will continue to pursue their goal of acquiring nuclear weapons or other WMD,the Strategic Master Plan predicts.*
The Strategic Master Plan goes on to outline in detail a number of priorities that must be met to ensure that the mission of AFGSC will be accomplished,such as the modernisation and replacement of major weapons systems and aircraft.

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Asteroid Redirect Mission: Crew Segment

NATO Special Operations Forces (SOF) in Exercise Trident Juncture 2015

The Real Martians Moment: The Heat is On

Testing the Most Powerful Engine for NASA’s Space Launch System

Michoud ‘Busy Place’ for Building NASA’s Space Launch System

New NASA Report Clarifies the Mission To Mars

NASA has released an intricate roadmap of its central manned spaceflight mission:"NASA's Journey To Mars:Pioneering Next Steps in Space Exploration."According to NASA Administrator General Charles Bolden,US Marine Corps Retired,the report,which was reviewed by this blog,consists of additional details about our journey to Mars and how we are aligning all of our work in support of this goal.The plan presents three thresholds of challenges,each more difficult than the last as the distance from Earth increases:
1.Earth Reliant Exploration is centered on the International Space Station,where the world class microgravity laboratory is testing technologies and advancing human health and performance research that will enable deep space,long duration missions.
2.Proving Ground:NASA will learn to conduct complex operations in a deep space environment that is just days from Earth.Primarily,this means cislunar space,or that volume of space which is around the Moon.Cislunar space features multiple possible staging orbits for future deep space missions.In this phase,NASA will advance and validate capabilities needed for humans living and working at vast distances from Earth,such as at Mars.This phase is linked to the upcoming Orion Exploration Mission flights and the Asteroid Redirect Mission.
3.The Earth Independent threshold builds on the previous two to enable Mars missions,possibly to low-Mars orbit or one of the Martian moons before an eventual landing on Mars.*
This strategy charts a course toward horizon goals,while delivering near-term benefits and defining a resilient architecture that can accommodate budgetary changes;political priorities;new scientific discoveries;technological breakthroughs;and evolving partnerships,said Dr.William Gerstenmeier,NASA Associate Administrator for Human Exploration and Operations.The ultimate goal is enabling humans to thrive beyond Earth for extended periods of time,leading to a substantial presence in deep space.The near-term missions have a cadence of compelling and integrated human and robotic missions providing for an incremental buildup of capabilities for more complex missions over time.At least one crewed mission per year is envisioned for the Proving Ground,cislunar phase.
The Proving Ground phase begins in 2018 with Exploration Mission 1,the first integrated test of the new Space Launch System rocket and Orion spacecraft,including the SLS launch performance;Orion's heat shield performance following return from deep space;and deep space navigation.
Exploration Mission 2 will be the first crewed mission for Orion,featuring the addition of the Exploration Upper Stage and the possibility of co-manifested payloads within the EUS-to-Orion launch vehicle adapter,such as pressurised modules for habitability.*
Beyond these initial cislunar missions,the Asteroid Redirect Mission introduces Solar Electric Propulsion,which utilises energy from the sun to accelerate ionised propellant to very high speeds,to provide thrust for months or years-transporting big loads with far less propellant than with chemical propellant,extending the deep space exploration capabilities critical for Mars and beyond.
Deep space acronyms mentioned in the report include EDL-Entry,Descent and Landing;ISRU-Insitu Resource Utilisation;SEP-Solar Electric Propulsion;EUS-Exploration Upper Stage;and ECLSS-Environmental Control and Life Support Systems.NASA emphasises that its Mission to Mars is for all of humanity and international in character, relying heavily on partners from the ISS missions and more,as well as space industry partners.For example,the European Space Agency is providing the test Service Module that is stacked beneath the Orion spacecraft.

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Preparing for Trident Juncture - Danish Infantry Units

First Australian F-35 Lands at Luke Air Force Base! - 12-14

Military Clips - We Own the Night - Training with U.S. and Australian Sp...

Beijing angered by US warship patrol | DW News

Guided Missile Destroyer USS Lassen (DDG 82) Live-Fire Training

Challenging China:USN Guided-Missile Destroyer

Tensions are near boiling point in the South China Sea following a US Navy guided-missile destroyer's patrol within a 12 mile limit claimed by China.The USS Lassen (DDG 82) drew shadowing from a Chinese PLA Navy guided-missile destroyer and naval patrol boat,as well as bridge-to-bridge warnings from the Chinese vessels,when it patrolled off Subi and Mischief Reefs,where China has built artificial islands.The patrol lasted two hours.*
The two reefs the Lassen patrolled off of are part of a series of island-building projects China has been working on in the region,constructing facilities on them believed suitable for military use,such as airstrips long enough for fighter jets and a harbour that can handle Chinese warships.Both Subi and Mischief Reefs have military length airstrips on them,according to satellite imagery.*
The US doesn't accept a 12 mile limit off of manmade islands.Along with other Asia-Pacific nations such as the Philippines and Vietnam,the US insists the South China Sea is international waters that are critical shipping lanes.The Lassen's patrol,which lasted two hours,is the first of a series of American freedom of navigation exercises in the face of China's territorial claims,a US official promised.*
If the US continues this,China counters,it might have to expand its capabilities.The US illegally entered the waters.The military will take all necessary steps to protect the nation's security.China criticised what it feels is the US coercive action that seeks to militarise the South China Sea region.It will firmly defend China's territory sovereignty,security and its lawful and proper maritime rights and interests.China will firmly respond to deliberate provocation from any country,said Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Lu Kang.*
The USS Lassen is homeported in Yokosuka,Japan.Its armament includes Harpoon,Tomahawk and Standard missiles;a Mk45 5-inch/62-caliber gun;and Mk32 dual surface vessel torpedo tube launchers.

Thursday, October 22, 2015

Inside the Night Raid on ISIL by Kurdish and US Special Forces - tactical details not on TV

At the request of the Kurdish Regional Government,Kurdish counterterrorist troops,backed by US Special Operations Forces,staged a raid in the early hours of Thursday on an ISIL prison in Kirkuk Province,seven kilometers north of the ISIL stronghold of Hawija in Northern Iraq.Dozens of US troops participated in the operation.Intelligence had been received indicating the prisoners' execution by ISIL militants was imminent.The raid was approved by Secretary of Defense Ashton Carter.
The raid began as five US helicopters left Irbil,the capital of Iraqi Kurdistan,to provide troop transport,intelligence and airstrikes for the operation.Attack helicopters strafed the prison area before the raid to block approaches for any potential ISIL reinforcements;after the raid,the helos destroyed the prison.
Once inserted in the prison,the Kurds came under intense attack.Seeing the Kurds pinned down and taking hits,their US advisors engaged the miltants.One of the US special operatives was wounded in the firefight and airlifted to an Irbil hospital,where he died-the first American to die in combat in Iraq since the US withdrew its forces in 2011.The battle lasted two hours.
Killed was Master Sergeant Joshua L. Wheeler,39,of Roland,Oklahoma.A member of the 2nd Battalion,75th Ranger Regiment,Joint Base Lewis-McChord,Washington state,he was assigned to Army Special Operations Command,Fort Bragg,North Carolina.MSGT Wheeler had served more than 12 combat tours in Iraq and Afghanistan-one of the most experienced and valiant members of the SOFs.
About 70 prisoners,among whom were around 20 Iraqi Security Forces members,were freed during the raid.All of the prisoners were reportedly Arabs.More than 20 of the ISIL Islamist extremists were killed in the operation and five were captured.The US gleaned valuable intelligence on ISIL from the raid,said Pentagon spokesman Peter Cook.*
In May,US SOFs had staged a raid in Syria and killed a senior ISIL leader,Abu Sayyaf of Tunisia.

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

NATO exercise begins in Italy

Preparing for Trident Juncture - The Canadian Boarding Officer

British Army Training The Peshmerga - Iraq

Germany army continues training Kurdish Peshmerga forces

German military sends plane with weapons for Kurdish Peshmerga forces

Iraqi forces, militia seize most of Beiji refinery

War On ISIL:New Chairman Visits Iraq;ISF Reclaim Beiji;A-10s Deployed

A number of developments in the War On ISIL are in the news.Yesterday,General Joseph Dunford,USMC,new Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff,visited the Iraqi city of Irbil in the north of the country while on the first trip of his tenure,having previously stopped in Israel and Jordan.In Irbil GEN Dunford met with Iraqi Kurdistan President Masoud Barzani at the Kurdish White House.
I hope coming here so soon after I assumed my new position indicates how important this endeavour is to us,GEN Dunford said.And upfront I want to thank you for your cooperation and the bravery of your forces.*
At the Kurdish Training Coordination Center in Irbil,which is under Italian command,journalists were briefed on the training regimen by a senior coalition officer.There are currently 4200 Kurdish Peshmerga fighters in training at the three training areas.Coming off the front line just 60 kilometers away,they are trained for 5-6 weeks before re-entering the battlefield.The training is tailored to the specific needs of the units.
Besides Italy,other NATO countries contributing to the force of about 300 instructors are Norway,the UK,Germany,the Netherlands and Hungary-plus NATO partner Finland.The Kurdish Peshmerga's infantry skills are reinforced,and they are taught the capabilities of new weapons coming into their system and how to function as a unit.Other topics include marksmanship;counter-ground tactics;combat medicine;manoeuvering as a unit;and forward observing.A special emphasis is placed on dealing with IEDs,which cause 80-85% of Kurdish casualties.Tactics,techniques and procedures against the devices are instilled.
The officer said he was impressed with the brave,dedicated and coherent units of the Kurdish forces.Both in Iraq and Syria,they have become a critical ground combat element of Operation Inherent Resolve,assisted by close air support from the OIR coalition.Up to 5,000 Kurds can be trained at one time.*
In the west,eight brigades of Sunni tribal militias are being trained for the effort to retake capital city Ramadi and the rest of Anbar Province.Iraqi Security Forces and militias have encircled Ramadi as a first step in retaking the city,where some 600-1,000 ISIL militants are based.*
In Salahuddin Province,Central Iraq,a major offensive by Iraqi Security Forces-principally the counterterrorism service-along with federal and local police,plus Iranian-backed Shia paramilitary militias,and aided by OIR coalition close air support,has been mounted to clear the province of the ISIL Islamist extremists.It is seen as a precursor operation to the looming battle for the ISIL northern stronghold of Mosul.Last week,the ISF and partners retook the strategic Beiji oil refinery and today,20 October,announced the recapture of Beiji city itself from ISIL.*
On the Syrian front,the US Air Force has just deployed 12 A-10 Warthog ground attack aircraft to Incirlik Air Base,Turkey,to assist in the OIR Syria campaign.These will enhance close air support to the YPG Kurdish Forces and the Syrian Arab Coalition as they battle ISIL.

Thursday, October 15, 2015

NATO Secretary General on President Obama's announcement on Afghanistan,...

Afghan War:Ongoing Need For Counter-Terrorism Requires Indefinite US,NATO Involvement

I will not allow Afghanistan to be used as a safe haven to attack Americans,said President Barack Obama,his closely cropped hair looking grayer than ever,at a White House briefing announcing that US troops-and very likely NATO forces-will remain in that nation at least into 2017 and the next presidency.For Mr.Obama,the altered course was nothing less than letting go of his cherished and long-stated goal of bringing all but 1,000 US troops home from the 14-year-long conflict by the end of 2016.Now,the current number of 9800 must stay on for most of next year,and 5500 on into 2017,so long as conditions on the ground permit the drawdown to continue.These troops will be posted to three bases:Bagram Air Base in Kabul;Jalalabad in the East (which ISIL desires to make its capital);and Kandahar.These bases will give us presence and reach,and are a key piece of the counter-terrorist strategy.The troops will have the same twofold mission:training and assisting Afghan forces;and supporting the counter-terrorist mission against al-Qaida remnants.*
Note:it's being reported that special forces have just carried out a big raid on an al-Qaida training camp inside Afghanistan.*
Afghan forces have continued to step up.They are fighting bravely and tenaciously.They continue to hold most urban areas;at the same time,they are still not as strong as they need to be in such areas as intelligence,logistics,aviation and command and control.*
This year,25 Americans,both military and civilian,have been killed in the war,the President noted.We understood the Taliban would try to exploit our withdrawal.More al-Qaida have come in,and we're beginning to see ISIL.As your Commander-in-Chief,I believe this mission is vital to our national security interests in preventing terrorist attacks against the US and our people.Given what's at stake,I am firmly convinced we should make this extra effort.After so many years of war,Afghnistan will not be a perfect place.There will continue to be contested areas.If we were to fail,it would endanger the security of us all.This modest but meaningful extension of our presence can make a difference.This is not the first time those adjustments have been made;it probably won't be the last,the President admitted.*
Al-Qaida networks or other networks that might harm us;force protection;the ability of our embassy to operate effectively:those things all factor into this decision.We're going to continue to make adjustments;and we will continue to evaluate this-and so will the next president.We're going to be a steady partner for them,President Barack Obama promised.*
Defense Secretary Ashton Carter said he has already started contacting US allies to encourage their participation in the new plan.For his part,NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg praised President Obama for deciding to extend a substantial US military presence in Afghanistan beyond 2016.
Update:German Chancellor Angela Merkel has strongly welcomed President Barack Obama's decision to keep a significant number of US troops in Afghanistan beyond 2016,hailing it as a strong signal by the United States.The German Defence Ministry in turn announced that Germany would also keep the same number of troops in Afghanistan for the time being,saying the understanding always was that the Allies would leave Afghanistan together.

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Go Signal Video US Army

Why Signal? US Army

Preparing for Trident Juncture – Scouts Battalion, Estonia

Preparing for Trident Juncture - The German Operations Officer

Raven Rock Mountain Complex - Site R

Confronting Chaos:Army Signal Corps Unit Prides Itself on Sensitive Mission

In 1944,the US Army established the 3364th Signal Service Battalion to be part of the worldwide support structure for garrison and field forces during World War II.It served ably in this capacity until 1946,receiving the Meritorious Unit Commendation streamer (American Theater).It was deactivated in 1946,but served again from 1959-68,redesignated as the 114th Signal Brigade and an Army Reserve Unit.Yet another life began in 2003,when it was reactivated as a unit of the 21st Signal Brigade and assigned the 50-year-old sensitive mission of the 1111th Signal Battalion,which was deactivated at that time.The 114th received for the first time its own distinctive unit colours,insignia and coat of arms.The coat of arms features an erect black stallion under a lighting bolt chevron,with the inscription "Signal Masters of the Rock" above and beneath the stallion.*
The current commander of the 114th,Lieutenant Colonel Jason M. Winterle,is familiar with sensitive missions,having served in Military Intelligence battalions in the Republic of Korea and at Fort Lewis,Washington state,which is now Joint Base Lewis-McChord.The mission of his present unit,the 114th Signal Battalion,based at Fort Detrick,Maryland,is to provide and defend Network Operations for theater-based communication systems,networks,and enterprise services and Visual Information services enabling Command and Control in Department of Defense and National Military Command Center (Raven Rock Mountain Complex) during full spectrum operations.*
The Raven Rock Mountain Complex-Site R,is also known as "the Underground Pentagon,""the Rock" and "a nuclear bunker."Indeed,it is buried inside the super-hard granite of Raven Rock Mountain,one of the three great blast-hardened bunkers of the US Government,the others being the Federal Emergency Management Agency's Mount Weather Emergency Operations Center,Virginia,and the US Air Force's Cheyenne Mountain Complex,Colorado (NORAD).All three were born of the Cold War fear of a nuclear apocalypse.*
Raven Rock,designated as both the Alternate Joint Communication Center and Alternate National Military Command Center (War Room),continues serving to this day as the Pentagon's nerve center in times of chaos or total war.Apart from the Joint Staff facility,the Army,Navy and Air Force each maintain an emergency center there.In a time of crisis,reportedly at least 2,000 troops and civilians could be housed in the self-contained,six-storey bunker for an extended period,its storerooms stocked to the hilt with MRE rations if fresh food runs out.Above each of the aboveground entrance portals that lead to the two-blast hardened doors,one for pedestrians and one for vehicles,are two weapons portals from which to repulse ground assaults.*
Topping the mountain is Site RT,which is an antenna farm with both microwave and satellite communication antennas,plus the buildings staffed by the 114th Signal Brigade.Also aboveground are a security center;fire station;entrance gates;helipad and wastewater treatment plant.*
Within the bunker are reportedly at least five three-storey buildings which house living quarters;two power plants;a Presidential Suite;a health clinic;chapel;mess hall and barber shop,along with a bowling alley and fitness center.There is even a small shop selling tee shirts,among other goods.A tunnel leads from the bunker to Camp David,the presidential retreat in nearby Maryland,and there are resevoirs for both industrial and domestic water.That being said,judging from photos spirited out of these sites,the overall ambience of such bunkers is professional,spartan and even gloomy in the spaces outside the buildings.After all,it is a doomsday bunker.All the more reason to admire the military men and women,as well as the steadfast civil servants,who are more than able and willing to serve there.*
Most famously,former Vice President Dick Cheney took refuge at Raven Rock following the 9-11 attacks,to keep him separate from President George W. Bush,so they wouldn't both have been be killed in an attack on Washington.

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

First US deployment of high tech drones in Europe

British Royal Navy prepares for Trident Juncture

NATO Members (animation)

Afghan And U.S Special Forces In Heavy Combat Action With Taliban In Afg...

Afghan War:General Recommends Against President's Plan

General John F. Campbell,US Army,commander of US and NATO forces in Afghanistan,testified before the Senate Armed Services Committee today in one of his periodic briefings on the war to US lawmakers.Soon the Obama administration must decide whether to stick to the President's current plan of a drastically reduced US military presence after 2016 or not.
Based on conditions on the ground,I do believe we have to provide our senior leadership with options different from the current plan-absolutely,GEN Campbell said.The courses of action I have provided provide options to adjust that.We're not going to put options forward that wouldn't lead to success.Presence means influence.*
The Afghans and coalition were surprised when the Taliban were able to take Kunduz.They were able to come in and take over from within the city.Mostly police were defending Kunduz when the Taliban attacked.There are small isolated pockets that continue to fight.I don't think the Taliban intended to stay.They melted away when the Afghan National Army arrived.*
Logistics and sustainment are hard for the Afghan National Army-they are hard even for the US Army.As for their air force,they have two functioning Mi-35 attack helicopters.They have several Mi-17 helicopters.Close air support helicopters are a key gap.We got a late start on their air force.*
To conduct counterterrorism effectively,it would have to be outside of Kabul,not from the US embassy.The current plan reduces the US military presence to 1,000 troops based at the embassy in Kabul by the end of 2016.*
I do not see the same ethnic infighting I saw in Iraq.In Northern Helmand Province,the ANDSF had some issues,but they took Musa Qala and Kunduz back.Afghans are fighters,and,sir,they're warriors.Without a doubt,they deserve US and NATO support.*
We knew this fighting season was going to be tough because this was going to be the first year the Afghan National Defence and Security Forces were on their own.The ADNSF actually started the fighting season in February.There was no lull.The ANDSF didn't have time to regroup over the winter as they previously had.*
Up in Nangarhar Province,we've see the rise of Daesh (the Arab term for ISIL).They want to expand into Khorasan Province and set up Jalalabad as their capital.You see a lot of the TTP,the Pakistani Taliban,go over to Daesh,as well as disaffected Afghan Taliban members.It's a change of tee shirt.Iran is providing money and weapons to the Taliban-mostly in the West and Herat area-to fight Daesh.*
I am comfortable with the resources I have to provide force protection for the US and NATO forces I have.*
The Haqqani Network faction of the Taliban in Pakistan is responsible for the VBIEDs,or vehicle-borne IEDs-as well as the suicide vests and attacks on civilians.We've got to continue to keep the pressure on Pakistan to stop them,GEN Campbell told the senators.*

Thursday, October 1, 2015

Taliban Still Striving To Conquer Kunduz,Despite an Overnight Setback - launch new offensive in Badakhsan Province

Heavy fighting for control of Kunduz,Afghanistan continued overnight Wednesday,with Afghan National Defence and Security Forces retaking the city centre,assisted by their NATO advisors.Combat operations continued on Thursday,however,with the Taliban reportedly still controlling certain government buildings outside the city centre.NATO troops were photographed in Kunduz during the day Thursday riding in the back of a truck.It isn't known if the NATO forces got into anymore firefights with the Taliban as they did Wednesday morning near the airport,but heavy US airstrikes were reported overnight by Kunduz residents.At least five US airstrikes have been carried out in support of the ANDSF.*
Some city residents witnessed a Taliban counterattack on Thursday,as the militants rode into town in stolen vehicles wearing ANDSF uniforms.These jihadists in disguise were said to have pushed at least some of the Afghan troops back to the city's outskirts.
The Taliban looted banks and commandeered several military and civilian vehicles and weapons when they seized Kunduz early Monday,so could conceivably sustain their mission for some time.*
The importance of this battle is underscored by NATO's firm,swift response,sending special forces to the front lines and even engaging the enemy in ground combat as needed,as well as providing close air support.The whole scenario being played out in Kunduz calls into question President Barack Obama's plan to withdraw almost all US troops by the end of 2016.Afghanistan Chief Executive Dr.Abdullah Abdullah told Reuters that,as far as I understand,the views of those US Army generals and officers on the ground in Afghanistan,as well as our own security and military leadership,is that maintaining a level of force beyond 2016 is necessary.
Update:By Friday morning,ANDSF were going house to house in Kunduz,seeking Taliban holdouts who are using civilians as human shields.One resident reported that other militants were firing at people indiscriminately from tall buildings.Overall,the city was back under Afghan control with scattered pockets of resistance remaining and residents still sheltering in their homes.
The NATO contingent of US,British,German and Dutch troops are based at the airport just outside the city with the ANDSF,should any further help be needed.
The Taliban are being accused by Amnesty International and the Afghan government of having committed war crimes during their Kunduz occupation,including rape,torture and extrajudicial execution.The Islamist extremists were targeting women in particular,enlisting young boys to help them find residents on their hit list.
Meanwhile,the Taliban have expanded their offensive in the North by swarming Warduj district in Badakhsan Province.The militants overwhelmed multiple checkpoints in district villages,achieving supremacy by the end of day Friday,with the police headquarters falling at about 6 pm local time.
The district borders Tajikistan,Pakistan and China.

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Bulletin:NATO Special Forces Battle Taliban Near Kunduz,Afghanistan

An undisclosed number of NATO troops were sent to Kunduz to support Afghanistan in a non-combat role.That said,they also maintain the right to defend themselves.Early Wednesday morning,coalition special forces advisors,while advising and assisting elements of the Afghan security forces,encountered an insurgent threat in the vicinity of Kunduz airport at approximately 1:00 am,30 September,according to Colonel Brian Tribus,US Army,spokesman for US and NATO forces in Afghanistan.This was done out of self-defence.When they encountered the threat,they defended themselves.The NATO troops also called in a third airstrike on the Taliban,COL Tribus said.*
An anonymous senior Afghan security official said that about 100 US special forces,heavily armed and wearing night vision equipment,had fought off the Taliban when they threatened to breach the airport,where a large number of Afghan National Defence and Security Forces are holding out.The US troops returned to the airport following the engagement.*
A Western military source,also anonymous,said the NATO contingent sent to advise and assist the ANDSF in Kunduz included US,British and German troops,although the German government said their forces withdrew the same day they arrived.

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Afghanistan: Taliban fighters seize centre of Kunduz, freeing hundreds o...

Ukraine Backs NATO Drills: Ukraine to participate in NATO's largest ever...

Road to TRJE15 - Large NATO Exercise Underway

Afghanistan - AH-64 Apache Helicopter Airstrike Destroys Taliban Positio...

Prisoners escaping after the Taliban freed them from a Kunduz city prison

Afghan War:Provincial Capital Falls To Taliban - US air support sent in

In the pre-dawn hours of Monday,hundreds of Taliban militants and foreign fighters from as far afield as China and Central Asia streamed into the provincial capital of Kunduz in the far north of Afghanistan,apparently facing little resistance from the NATO-trained Afghan National Defence and Security Forces.Afghan President Ashraf Ghani said the ANDSF were being restrained to avoid civilian casualties.The Taliban have been using civilians as human shields,Mr.Ghani explained.The assault came from all directions,taking the ANDSF and local officials by surprise.
President Ghani said the ANDSF mounted a counterattack,retakng some government buildings including the new police headquarters and the prison.
Initially,the militants had liberated as many as 6oo prisoners from the Kunduz prison,several of them Taliban fighters.They also captured a TV station and took the central square of the capital of Kunduz Province,raising their flag,and setting up checkpoints to seal the city off.It was an unprecedented victory for the Islamist extremists in their nearly 14 year-long war with Afghan and NATO forces,the first provincial capital they have managed to seize,and is a statement by their new leader Mullah Akhtar Mansour,who replaced Mullah Omar following the latter's death in a Pakistan hospital two years ago.*
There are no US troops in the area,but German soldiers control a major base in nearby Mazar-i-Sharif.The Taliban have made the north a focus of this fighting season,and control large swaths of it.The ANDSF have been stretched to the limit trying to resist the Taliban,largely without NATO ground forces to help them since December 2014.The US does provide some counterterrorist troops and occasional air support,as they provided for the ANDSF on Tuesday.Colonel Brian Tribus,spokesman for US and NATO forces in Afghanistan,said the US airstrike was to eliminate a threat to coalition and Afghan forces in the area.US F-16 aircraft struck Taliban positions on the outskirts of the city.The militants had carried out an ambush on ANDSF,placed IEDs and cut power lines.They also destroyed parts of a key artery from Kabul,the Baghlan-Kunduz highway,blocking ANDSF reinforcements from arriving.On Tuesday evening,heavy fighting erupted when they attacked the airport that ANDSF and officials had fallen back to.*
Speaking at the UN in New York,Afghan Chief Executive Dr.Abdullah Abdullah said the presence of terrorist sanctuaries and support networks in neighbouring Pakistan continue to cause trouble in Afghanistan.Militants cross into Afghanistan and indiscriminately victimise our citizens.*
Kunduz Province borders the Central Asian nation of Tajikistan.
Update:Tuesday night,the US conducted a second airstrike in Kunduz.Taliban positions near the airport were struck.

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Sea Breeze Military Drills Bring U.S. And NATO To Ukrainian Shores

NATO Opens New Regional Headquarters

USAF F-15 Launches

Russia Still Arming Ukraine Rebels Despite Truce: NATO Chief | Military.com

Russia Still Arming Ukraine Rebels Despite Truce: NATO Chief | Military.com

Cooper's Hawks Raising Young in a Neighborhood Near You - NM Game&Fish

Nature Note:Cooper's Hawk

Along a section of the Monocacy River in Northern Maryland,the riverbanks are forested,providing wildlife habitat and buffering the waterway from the intense development and agriculture just beyond.The vegetation also stabilises the banks,preventing harmful erosion here in the Chesapeake Bay watershed.Abundant small mammals such as the gray squirrel are thriving along the riverbanks and the urban forest of mature trees,both coniferous and deciduous.These small furbearers are in turn sustaining predators such as the Cooper's hawk (Accipter cooperii).
Indeed,as I make my way along the hilly Mid-Atlantic terrain of the Northern Piedmont Ecoregion just east of the northern extension of the Blue Ridge Mountains,a Cooper's hawk makes several forays against the squirrels from its perch in a large deciduous tree in a backyard.It stoops on the squirrels,but they are agile enough to evade the swift and powerful hawk's razor-sharp talons.It may take the hawk upwards of a dozen tries or more before it finally succeeds in catching breakfast.The squirrels are very aware of the hawk's presence and tactics,and are usually fast and cagey enough themselves to avoid them,so most of them will live to stash another acorn for the approaching winter.
The hawk also preys on the songbirds that inhabit the riverine and urban forest,but of course they are not as much of a meal as a squirrel would be.
The Cooper's hawk breeds from British Columbia all the way over to Nova Scotia,and south to Florida and Costa Rica,wintering as far north as New England and BC.

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

F-22 Raptors Takeoff From Germany

Inflight Refueling • KC-135 Stratotanker To B-1B Lancer

B 1 Bomber Taxi & Takeoff To Bomb Islamic State in Kobani Syria Nov 2014

RAF Tornado GR4 Strike Aircraft Refuel Over Iraq During Operation Shader...

PRIDE OF NATO Royal British Air Force Tornado Military Aircraft

CENTCOM Update:The War On ISIL - plus Australia's first Syria strike

On Friday,11 September,US Central Command spokesman Colonel Patrick Ryder,US Air Force,gave a progress report on Operation Inherent Resolve to journalists via teleconference.The OIR coalition's support continues to enable indigenous forces by applying pressure on ISIL's key command and control areas;logistics nodes;staging areas;and lines of communication.A special focus has been the Beiji and Ramadi areas,COL Ryder said.For example,one recent airstrike targeted a key ISIL staging area and weapons depot just west of Ramadi in a soccer stadium.
The Beiji oil refinery is still being contested,with both ISIL and the Iraqi Security Forces bringing in reinforcements.From 2-9 September,13 coalition airstrikes took out a number of ISIL personnel there;nearly 100 vehicles;and several weapons and supply caches,according to COL Ryder.ISIL continues to put up a fight,but we assess they have lost several hundred fighters and continue to reinforce failure by sending in additional forces.*
Besides airstrikes,the OIR coalition Building Partner Capacity sites have trained around 13,000 ISF since the operation began,with 4,000 more troops currently in training.We have seen graduates of this program subsequently operate effectively in areas around Ramadi and other parts of Iraq,such as the Iraqi forces trained in large scale IED clearing who are reducing ISF and civilian casualties.
On another front,the advise and assist mission continues to enable ground forces in Iraq by helping with planning ground operations;intelligence sharing;integrating air support into operations;logistics planning;command and control;and communications.*
In Syria,the OIR coalition's train-and-equip programme continues training vetted Syrian opposition force recruits,with a fourth class recently having begun their training.It's important to keep in mind this programme is still in its early stages and the forces trained are expected to be additive in nature.This will further contribute to what's already being done by the Syrian Kurds,Arabs and other anti-ISIL forces.*
In the latest airstrikes in Syria,fighter and remotely piloted aircraft conducted 4 sorties.Near Dayr Ar Zawr,2 sorties struck an ISIL crude oil collection point and destroyed an ISIL excavator.Near Kobani,a sortie destroyed an ISIL artillery piece.Near Mara,a sortie struck an ISIL tactical unit.*
In Iraq,attack;bomber;fighter;fighter attack;and remotely piloted aircraft conducted 14 airstrikes coordinated with the Iraqi government.Among them,near Beiji,4 sorties struck 1 large and 2 small ISIL tactical units and destroyed 6 ISIL buildings;3 ISIL vehicles;an ISIL anti-aircraft artillery piece;and an ISIL structure.
Near Ramadi,2 sorties destroyed 4 ISIL weapons caches;an ISIL armoured personnel carrier;and an ISIL vehicle-borne IED.Near Tuz,a sortie struck an ISIL tactical unit and destroyed an ISIL fighting position.*
The Iraq airstrikes were carried out by the US;Australia;Canada;Denmark;France;Jordan;the Netherlands;and the UK.
The Syria airstrikes were carried out by the US;Bahrain;Canada;Jordan;Saudi Arabia;new participant Turkey;and the UAE.
Update:On Tuesday,Australia revealed it had conducted its first airstrike in Syria on Monday 14 September.Two RAAF Hornets identified an ISIL armoured personnel carrier hidden in an ISIL compound,according to Defence Minister Kevin Andrews.One of the Hornets attacked the APC with a precision guided weapon,destroying it.
Last week,Prime Minister Tony Abbott said Australia was extending its OIR airstrikes from Iraq into Syria at the request of the US.Australia has been conducting Iraq airstrikes for about a year.

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Airborne Soldiers & Heavy Cargo Drop into the Arctic

Coast Guard Cutter Waesche Begins First Alaska Patrol - national security cutter

Flight Operations Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson Red Flag 14-2 USAF/RAAF

Russia in the Arctic - a cause for concern?

Little Diomede Island is the last US possession before entering Russian territory just a few miles away.If the Eskimos that live there venture too close to Russia,Russian border guards in watchtowers yell at them or even fire warning shots.There are no US troops on Little Diomede.The Eskimos help keep an eye on Russia with a spotting scope.US Air Force fighter jets from Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson,Alaska intercept any Russian aircraft approaching US airspace.*
There's not an enormous amount of concern in the US military about what Russia is doing on the ground in the Arctic,says Stephen Lee Myers,New York Times correspondent.The US Coast Guard is strained by the resources it has to deploy in the Arctic.From the NATO perspective,it's not necessarily provocative.What is,is Russia's aggressive air patrolling along the Arctic and Baltic.It's an era of testing and provocation.*
Marlene LaRuelle of George Washington University says the Russian FSB Arctic Brigade is a Coast Guard of the border.It would be a very modest thing with 50-60 people up there for search and rescue if anything happened.What's going on is more domestic,managing crisis more than anything else.
Apart from Murmansk,the focus for Russia is primarily domestic security.Russia's not just concerned with oil and gas,but mineral extraction as well to support Arctic cities.Our only infrastructure in the Arctic is the US Coast Guard seasonal presence.We don't have the aspirational view that the Russians do.*
We're starting to see the Russian facilities are dual use,but we don't know what use.We need to get our arms around it.We're starting to see warning signs,cautioned Heather Conley of the Center for Strategic and International Studies.*
According to Russia's official RIA Novosti news agency,former Soviet bases in the Arctic are being reactivated in response to renewed NATO interest in the region.The airstrip in Novaya Zembla can now accommodate fighters and part of the North Fleet is establishing quarters there.A new far north military group of two brigades totaling 6,000 soldiers will be deployed in Murmansk and then the Yamal-Nenets autonomous region.Radar and ground guidance systems are planned for Franz Josef Land in Novaya Zemlya,Wrangel Island and Cape Schmidt.The FSB is increasing the number of border guards on Russia's northern perimeter.*

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Taliban Attacks on US & NATO Special Forces Base in Afghanistan ABC News

U.S. Soldiers Dodge Taliban Fire in the Open

F-22 Raptors Landing At Spangdahlem Air Base, Germany

Afghan War:Pitched Battle With Taliban - special tactics airmen killed

Late on Tuesday 25 August,Taliban militants overran Musa Qala district centre in Helmand Province,Afghanistan,after a weeklong assault.Musa Qala is strategically important;the whole province would be under threat if Musa Qala remained in Taliban hands,including the provincial capital Lashkar Gah,an Afghan official said.Afghanistan has about 300 district centres.
Heavy fighting between the Taliban and Afghan National Defence and Security Forces erupted as the district centre and surrounding villages were overrun.Mohamed Sharif,administrative chief of Musa Qala District,said they abandoned his office,police headquarters and the central hospital.They also asked for reinforcements several times without success.Eventually more soldiers and police arrived from Kabul and were supported by NATO airstrikes,as well as NATO advise and assist personnel.
We can confirm the US has conducted multiple kinetic strikes in Musa Qala over the past 72 hours,NATO said.The warplanes struck the army and police headquarters in Musa Qala.On 30 August,the ANDSF said it had recaptured Musa Qala district centre,inflicting huge casualties on the Taliban and re-establishing control there.Up to 220 Taliban were killed,while 33 ANDSF were killed or wounded.US airstrikes alone had killed up to 40 Taliban on 26 August.Over the weeklong Taliban assault,there were 18 US airstrikes;additionally,there had been 380 other airstrikes between January and July,indicating a much wider air campaign in Afghanistan than had been previously thought.*
Even as the battle of Musa Qala progressed,on 26 August two US Air Force special tactics airmen serving in Operation Freedom's Sentinel were killed near Camp Antonik,Helmand Province.They had stopped their vehicle at a checkpoint and two men in ANDSF uniforms opened fire on them,the Air Force said.NATO service members returned fire,killing the gunmen.It isn't clear if the incident was related to the Taliban assault on Musa Qala;it is under a joint US-Afghan investigation.
Those killed were US Air Force Academy graduate Captain Matthew D. Roland,27,of Lexington,Kentucky;and Staff Sergeant Forrest B. Sibley,31,of Pensacola,Florida.They are survived by their parents.Both men were combat controllers who had served multiple tours in sensitive areas.SGT Sibley had been awarded four Bronze Stars,including one with V-device for valour.
Both airmen were qualified in terminal attack control;and were also certified as static line jumpers,free fall jumpers and combat scuba divers.Special tactics airmen integrate,synchronise,and control air and space power to enable global access,precision strike and personnel recovery for special operations.

F-22 inaugural deployment to Europe U.S. Air Force Article Display

F-22 inaugural deployment to Europe U.S. Air Force Article Display

Tuesday, August 25, 2015


Boeing - KC-46A Pegasus Tanker Aircraft First Flight | Military Videos

Special Operations PJ • U.S. Air Force Pararescuemen

B-1 Bomber & F-22 Raptor Refuel During ISIS Airstrikes

F22 Raptor with F15 at Raf Fairford 14/07/2008

US Air Force Briefing - new bomber,tanker,F-22s for Europe

Secretary of the Air Force Deborah Lee James and Chief of Staff General Mark Welsh briefed reporters at the Pentagon Monday on the major programmes and issues the US Air Force is dealing with.The new long-range strike bomber,reportedly designated the B-3,will be intended to replace the B-52H and B-1B aircraft starting in the mid-2020's and over the next 25 years,GEN Welsh said.The B-52's going to try to make 100 years,but we really should take a look at that.We're at the point today where we don't have enough planes to keep our air crews trained.We have four types of planes that are over 50 years old.*
Secretary James spoke about the new air refueling tanker,the Boeing KC-46A Pegasus,which is based on the 767 airliner.Its first Air Force flight has been delayed by a month because an incorrect fuel substitute was placed in the fueling boom.It was already flown briefly by Boeing in December 2014.Boeing still believes it will deliver 18 aircraft by August 2017,Ms.James said.The margin in the schedule is all but gone.Would there be any operational impacts?It's a disappointing delay,but any cost overruns will not be borne by the government.*
As to whether the US could effectively respond to an Iranian crisis,GEN Welsh said our job is to be ready.I'm confident that the US military would be able to complete any mission that was assigned.
On North Korea having a missile that can strike the US,we know where North Korea is going toward.I think it's something we have to watch.They may have a missile capable of reaching the West coast.Certainly they have a missile capable of reaching Hawaii or US facilities in the Pacific,and that's our main concern.Whether they can deliver a payload with them,that's something beyond my understanding.*
The impending deployment of F-22 Raptors to Europe in light of Russian aggression in Ukraine was addressed by Secretary James.The timing and basing details are classified.The F-22 is part of the European Reassurance Initiative.It's an air-to-air capability.We need to be able to interoperate with the Eurofighter,for example,and that's what this training is for.*
We will get to F-35A initial operational capability next year,GEN Welsh promised.The new Gen 3 helmet has just been delivered.It is much more than a helmet.It is a workspace,providing situational awareness of the battlespace.All the people flying the F-35 since I've been here,the three years,say I want to use it.It's pretty incredible,amd they're very adaptable.
In Iraq and Syria,dynamic targeting,or an aircraft loitering until it is assigened a target,is not a new approach.We don't want to drop bombs indiscriminately.If we can't get the targeting done,we bring the aircraft home and they try again in the next sortie.*
Talks with Turkey are ongoing about a second Turkish air base,apart from Incirlik,being used in search and rescue operations for the anti-ISIL air campaign,Operation Inherent Resolve,Ms.James added.
The seven Air Force jobs that women cannot yet qualify for are currently being evaluated.These are difficult jobs,mostly in the special operations forces,and based on the reports I'm getting,I'm optimistic.We in the Air Force lead the services in the number of jobs women can qualify for,Secretary James pointed out.*

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

NATO Allies strengthen partnerships - Latvia

Agile Spirit 2015: Building defence skills in Georgia

USMC M1A1 Abrams Firing from Hull-Down Positions

USMC Black Sea Rotational Force - Mortar & Squad Attack

US Marine Corps Augments European Presence - response to Russian threat

In light of the continued heavy fighting in Eastern Ukraine between Russian-backed separatists and Ukrainian forces,as well as the presence of Russian troops themselves in Ukraine,tension remains high in Eastern Europe.In response,the US Marines are augmenting their Black Sea Rotational Force,a integral part of NATO's policy of assuming a more robust defence posture to deter Russian aggression,with a Combined Arms Company.
On 16 August,the Marines received a shipment of tanks,artillery and light-armoured reconnaissance vehicles at Bremerhaven,Germany to support NATO allies and international partner countries,said Captain Richard Ulsh,Marine Corps Forces Europe.The equipment was accompanied by the CAC's 160 Marines and will be transported to Bulgaria by rail to demonstrate our allies' and international partners' ability to move heavy equipment across the region to support operations during a crisis,CAPT Ulsh pointed out.
The CAC will be based at the Novo Selo Training Area in Bulgaria.The transport of a Marine Combined Arms capability in the Black Sea region has fostered improved communication and coordination with the allied force and its partners,said Lieutenant Colonel John Sattely,director of logistics for US Marine Corps Forces Europe and Africa.The result of this collaboration and coordination is that the various agencies and organisations involved are familiar with each other now,rather than learning about one another after a crisis happens,LTCOL Sattely explained.*
The Black Sea Rotational Force is a semi-annual rotation of Marines and Sailors able to respond to a broad range of military operations in the US European Command's area of responsibility.It is based at the Mihail Kogliceanu Air Base,Romania.*
Marine Corps Commandant General Joseph Dunford,who will soon become the next Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff,addressed the Russian threat at his recent confirmation hearing before the Senate Armed Services Committee:
My assessment today is that Russia presents the greatest threat to our national security.Russia is not just threatening;it is actually doing it.It is a nuclear power that could pose an existential threat to the US, and their recent acts are nothing short of alarming,GEN Dunford observed.There is concern about Putin engaging in asymmetric instigation in the Baltics and elsewhere in Europe.It is critical for our allies to keep to 2% of GDP defence spending,and to improve their intelligence,surveillance and reconnaissance capabilities,as well as their strategic airlift and cyber capabilities,GEN Dunford told the Senate Armed Services Committee on 9 July 2015.

Tuesday, August 11, 2015


U.S. Special Ops & Afghan Special Forces night raid to kill capture Taliban

Afghanistan War - Marines In Heavy Combat Firefight With Taliban

Brazen Attacks Rock Kabul,Afghanistan - Green Beret killed

Taliban militants penetrated the outer perimeter of Camp Integrity,a NATO base in Kabul,Afghanistan and HQ for the US Army Green Berets.The intruders detonated a bomb and engaged in a firefight with security forces,killing a decorated Green Beret,Master Sergeant Peter Andrew McKenna,35,of the 1st Battalion,7th Special Forces Group,with small arms fire.MSGT McKenna,of Bristol,Rhode Island,was a 17-year Army veteran who had served in Iraq as well,receiving a Bronze Star with V device for heroism in combat operations,as well as the Meritorious Service Medal and Army Commendation Medal.On Independence Day,he was presented with a flag that had flown over the US Capitol by Senator Jack Reed,D-Rhode Island.*
The Taliban assault was part of a wave of terrorist attacks last Friday through Monday in the Afghan capital Kabul.Two other US troops were wounded in the Camp Integrity attack.Eight Afghan contractors and four militants also died in the battle,which was within hours of an attack on the police academy in Kabul,in which 20 cadets were killed and 24 others wounded at he academy gates.
In yet another incident Friday,a truck bomb devastated an entire city block of the Kabul residential neighbourhood Shah Shaheed,killing 15 and wounding 240 more.On Monday,a vehicle-borne IED hit a crowded entrance to Kabul International Airport,killing at least 5 and wounding 16 others.Over the four-day period,almost 70 were killed and hundreds wounded by the Islamist extremists.*
Afghan President Ashraf Ghani complained that the Pakistanis failed to prevent the Taliban from congregating and planning the attacks in Quetta,Pakistan.They elected and installed their new leader there,Mullah Akhtar Mohammad Mansour,whose predecessor,Mullah Omar,had died in a Pakistani hospital 2 years ago.
The current fighting has seen heavy clashes between the Afghan National Security Forces,supported by their NATO trainers,advisors and US counter-terrorist forces,and the Taliban.

Tuesday, August 4, 2015

F-35 Lightning II Aerial Refueling By KC-130J Super Hercules

F-35 Lightning II jets in vertical night landing tests - Royal Navy

How the F35B Lightning II works - Ministry of Defence

F-35B: The Road to U.S. Marine Corps IOC

Marine Corps Aviation:F-35B Squadron Goes Operational

On 31 July,the US Marine Corps declared initial operational capability for the first squadron of Lockheed Martin F-35B Lightning II aircraft.Undersecretary of Defense for Acquisition,Technology and Logistics Frank Kendall hailed the event as a significant milestone in the continued evolution of the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter program.The decision was made following a thorough operational readiness inspection,which assessed the Marine Corps' ability to employ this complex weapon system in an operational environment.This accomplishment is an affirmation that the F-35 program is on track to deliver essential 5th generation warfighting capabilities to our US services and international partners,Mr.Kendall said.*
Marine Fighter Attack Squadron 121,VMFA-121,is based in Yuma,Arizona.It has 10 F-35Bs in the Block 2B configuration with the requisite performance envelope and weapon clearances,to include the training,sustainment capabilities and infrastructure to deploy to an austere site or a ship,Marine Corps Commandant General Joseph Dunford said.It is capable of conducting close air support,offensive and defensive counter-air,air interdiction,assault support escort and armed reconnaissance as part of a Marine air-ground task force or in support of the joint force.
The F-35B conducted flight operations for 7 weeks at sea aboard an L-class carrier;participated in multiple large force exercises;and executed a recent operational evaluation which included multiple live ordnance sorties,GEN Dunford certified.*
The F-35B will replace the AV-8B Harrier,F/A-18 Hornet and EA-6B Prowler.More than 50 F-35B pilots have been trained and qualified,and about 500 maintenance personnel have been certified to assume autonomous,organic-level maintenance support for the aircraft,the USMC said in a press release.*
The British Royal Navy is also acquiring the F-35B for its new aircraft carrier HMS Queen Elizabeth,and RN pilots and maintenance crews have been training alongside US Navy and Marine Corps personnel.*
GEN Dunford has been confirmed by the US Senate as the next Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.*
Lockheed Martin (LMT)

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

HAF F-16 | Dusk Takeoffs with Afterburner | Volos Airport | Loud F16 in...

F-22 Raptors Takeoff From Southwest Asia Air Base - massive launch

U.S. Marine F-18 Pilot Readying For Sortie

CENTCOM Gives Iraq Campaign Update-Iraq receives F-16s

The first 4 of the Iraqi Air Force's 36 new Lockheed Martin F-16 Fighting Falcons have arrived at Balad Air Base,Iraq,their pilots and crews having undergone extensive US Air Force training in Arizona.The NATO platform aircraft gives the IAF the interoperability necessary to conduct operations with coalition forces,said US Central Command spokesman Colonel Patrick Ryder,USAF in a teleconference with reporters on 24 July.
COL Ryder also gave an assessment of the Iraqi Security Forces' recent progress against the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant.They are in the process of isolating Ramadi in Anbar Province,to conduct a deliberate clearing operation to retake the provincial capital city,COL Ryder noted.The counterattack began on 12 July,and since then,76 Operation Inherent Resolve airstrikes have weakened ISIL by targeting enemy positions,weapons caches and equipment.ISIL is resisting by using vehicle bombs,suicide bombers and other tactics to slow the ISF advance,as well as by circulating propaganda to mitigate their losses and overstate operational performance.CENTCOM is encouraged by the ISF well-developed and comprehensive plan they have put together and executed.
The majority of Beiji is now under ISF control,although its oil refinery,the largest in Iraq,is still being contested.In the North,the Kurdish forces hold their defensive lines from Sinjar to the north side of Mosul,then down to the north of Kirkuk aginst ISIL's harassing attacks centered between Sinjar and Mosul.Since 12 July,coalition aircraft have conducted 16 dynamic airstrikes on enemy personnel,weapons and equipment in the Mosul area.
Overall,we've removed hundreds more fighters from the battlefield in Iraq and Syria,including numerous ISIL leaders and facilitators.This inevitably reduces the organisation's effectiveness and forces them to make tough choices on how and where to apply resources,COL Ryder concluded.*
Among the latest airstrike results as of 28 July:
Fighter,fighter-attack,bomber and remotely-piloted aircraft conducted airstrikes in Syria.Near Hasakah,7 sorties destroyed 4 ISIL fighting positions,a staging position,a bunker,a motorcycle and a structure.
Near Aleppo,2 sorties destroyed a vehicle,7 fighting positions and a bunker.*
There were 23 airstrikes in Iraq approved by the Iraqi Ministry of Defence:
Near Beiji,3 sorties struck 2 tactical units and terrain,denying ISIL a tactical advantage,and destroying 2 buildings.
Near Makhmur,3 sorties destroyed 19 fighting positions,10 tunnels and 3 vehicles.
Near Mosul,2 sorties destroyed 2 fighting positions and a vehicle.
Near Ramadi,6 sorties destroyed an excavator,2 fighting positions,a resupply truck,a mortar position,an anti-aircraft artillery weapon,a vehicle and a structure.
Near Sinjar,5 sorties destroyed a vehicle,a heavy machine gun,5 fighting positions and a light machine gun.
Those participating in the Iraq strikes included the US,Australia,Canada,Denmark, France,Jordan,the Netherlands and the UK.
Participating in the Syria strikes were the US,Bahrain,Canada,Jordan,Saudi Arabia and the UAE.*
Lockheed Martin (LMT)