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Monitor The Strategic Trends

 Introduction:

Weapons Proliferation

      Modern Technology has made it possible for countries all over the world to possess the means for controlling their own populations and to threaten other nations with mass destruction. It no longer matters whether a nation is rich or poor, large or small, first world or third world. Almost anyone can make or purchase weapons that 50 years ago could not even be imagined.


[READ THE FULL INTRODUCTION]

 

 

 



 

 

 

 

Barry McGuire

 

 

 

Military Space News, Nuclear Weapons, Missile Defense

 

 

Military Space News, Nuclear Weapons, Missile Defense

 

Military Space News, Nuclear Weapons, Missile Defense

 
 

China commissions space tracking ship as new station readied

 
‎Yesterday, ‎July ‎21, ‎2016, ‏‎4:07:02 AMGo to full article
Beijing (Sputnik) Jul 21, 2016
China on Tuesday formally commissioned its next-generation Yuan Wang 7 ocean-going ship for tracking and controlling spacecraft, after a two-month trial period, Chinese media reported. According to the China Satellite Maritime Tracking and Control Department, the vessel will be used for maritime tracking of the Shenzhou-11 manned space mission, and the Tiangong II space laboratory mission
 

Ukraine, US aim to launch jointly-developed space rocket

 
‎Yesterday, ‎July ‎21, ‎2016, ‏‎4:07:02 AMGo to full article
Kiev (Sputnik) Jul 21, 2016
Ukraine and the United States are planning to launch a jointly-developed rocket in the coming months, as part of the two countries' space cooperation, Ambassador of Ukraine to the United States Valeriy Chaly said Monday. On May 30, head of the State Space Agency of Ukraine Lyubomyr Sabadosh said that Ukraine proposed to the United States joint development and production of rocket engines t
 

Iran speaker says US undermining nuclear deal, failing against IS

 
‎Yesterday, ‎July ‎21, ‎2016, ‏‎4:07:02 AMGo to full article
Tehran (AFP) July 20, 2016
Iran's influential parliament speaker hit out at Washington Wednesday, accusing it of disrupting implementation of last year's landmark nuclear deal and failing in the fight against the Islamic State group. Ali Larijani, a conservative who helped the nuclear deal pass in parliament last year, warned that Washington risked forcing Tehran into a path of renewed confrontation by putting obstacl
 

US navy chief vows more patrols in South China Sea

 
‎Yesterday, ‎July ‎21, ‎2016, ‏‎4:07:02 AMGo to full article
Beijing (AFP) July 20, 2016
The top US navy commander vowed Wednesday to continue patrols in the South China Sea which have angered Beijing, after an international tribunal dismissed the Asian giant's vast maritime claims. "The US Navy will continue to conduct routine and lawful operations around the world, including in the South China Sea," John Richardson said while visiting a navy base in northern China. The sea
 

Anxious wait for families of Turkey soldiers detained over coup

 
‎Yesterday, ‎July ‎21, ‎2016, ‏‎4:07:02 AMGo to full article
Istanbul (AFP) July 20, 2016
Families of some of the thousands of soldiers detained in the wake of Turkey's failed coup anxiously waited for news on Wednesday of their relatives and tried to catch a glimpse of them outside Istanbul's court house. Turkey has detained senior military figures, including 118 generals and admirals, following the coup attempt, but many of those held are also likely to have been young conscrip
 

Taiwan lawmakers, fishermen protest at disputed island

 
‎Yesterday, ‎July ‎21, ‎2016, ‏‎4:07:02 AMGo to full article
Taipei (AFP) July 20, 2016
Taiwanese lawmakers and fishermen headed to an island in the disputed South China Sea Wednesday to protest at an international tribunal ruling which undermined Taipei's claims there. Eight lawmakers from the ruling Democratic Progressive Party and the opposition Kuomintang (KMT) boarded a military plane to the Taiwan-controlled Taiping island in the Spratlys archipelago. Five fishing boa
 

Erdogan declares 3-month state of emergency in Turkey

 
‎Yesterday, ‎July ‎21, ‎2016, ‏‎4:07:02 AMGo to full article
Ankara (AFP) July 20, 2016
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Wednesday declared a three-month state of emergency, vowing to hunt down the "terrorist" group behind last week's bloody coup attempt. He has accused followers of his arch-enemy, US-based cleric Fethullah Gulen, of being behind the coup, which has led to a wave of some 50,000 arrests and sackings of suspected conspirators. The state of emergency
 

Pyongyang close to developing sub-based missile: expert

 
‎Yesterday, ‎July ‎21, ‎2016, ‏‎4:07:02 AMGo to full article
Washington (AFP) July 13, 2016
North Korea may be able to develop a submarine-based ballistic missile within a year, which would significantly increase the threat Pyongyang poses, a US expert said Wednesday. The North Koreans "will attempt or succeed in a full-range test some time in the next 12 months," Joseph Bermudez of Johns Hopkins University's US-Korea Institute in Washington said. Pyongyang may also develop a s
 

GenDyn awarded $19 million Virginia-class submarine contract modification

 
‎Yesterday, ‎July ‎21, ‎2016, ‏‎4:07:02 AMGo to full article
Groton, Mass. (UPI) Jul 19, 2016
General Dynamics Electric Boat has been awarded a $19 million contract modification for the continued development of the Virginia Payload Module, or VPM, the company said Tuesday. The funds will be used to procure two VPM pre-production setups to support the manufacturing start of the payload tubes, the company said in a statement. The VPM will comprise four large-diameter payloa
 

British nuclear submarine docks in Gibraltar after collision

 
‎Yesterday, ‎July ‎21, ‎2016, ‏‎4:07:02 AMGo to full article
Gibraltar (AFP) July 20, 2016
A British nuclear submarine docked in Gibraltar on Wednesday after it collided with a merchant vessel off the coast of the territory located on Spain's southern tip, Britain's defence ministry said. "The submarine suffered some external damage but there is absolutely no damage to her nuclear plant and no member of the ship's company was injured in the incident," the ministry said in a statem
 

Spain approves critical design review for Navantia S-80 submarine

 
‎Yesterday, ‎July ‎21, ‎2016, ‏‎4:07:02 AMGo to full article
Madrid (UPI) Jul 18, 2016
Spain's Ministry of Defense has approved the critical design review for Navantia's S-80 diesel-electric submarine, the company announced Friday. The approval represents a milestone as it will involve the end of the boat's design stage and allows the shipbuilder to move into production, the state-owned Navantia said in a statement. The sub's hull sections were expanded in April, t
 

Passive Attitude Control For Small Satellites

 
‎Yesterday, ‎July ‎21, ‎2016, ‏‎4:07:02 AMGo to full article
Bethesda, MD (SPX) Jul 19, 2016
Small spacecraft technology has come of age in the past several years. Both cost and development time have been reduced significantly, especially with the CubeSat size standard of 10 x 10 x 10 cm size and maximum mass of 1kg. Current CubeSat standards allows two or three cubes to be"stacked"to construct 2-U and 3-U CubeSats, respectively. One significant advantage of such systems is that t
 

Building a Commercial Market in Low Earth Orbit

 
‎Yesterday, ‎July ‎21, ‎2016, ‏‎4:07:02 AMGo to full article
Washington DC (SPX) Jul 14, 2016
This April marked the sixth anniversary of President Obama's landmark address on space policy at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida. In his speech, the President set out the goal of sending American astronauts to Mars in the 2030s, using a strategy that encourages innovation and entrepreneurship in space exploration through investments in new space technologies and partnerships with the priv
 

Virtek's graphene-winged Prospero drone to take flight

 
‎Yesterday, ‎July ‎21, ‎2016, ‏‎4:07:02 AMGo to full article
Waterloo, Ontario (UPI) Jul 15, 2016
Virtek Vision Interational is publicly debuting the first graphene-wing drone this week at the Farnborough Airshow, the company announced. The flight of the Prospero drone is a research collaboration with the University of Central Lancashire and the University of Manchester, Virtek said in a statement. Graphene, a sheet of carbon one atom thick, is strong while still being lightw
 

Thales launches Fulmar X drone

 
‎Yesterday, ‎July ‎21, ‎2016, ‏‎4:07:02 AMGo to full article
Farnborough, England (UPI) Jul 14, 2016
Thales debuted its new Fulmar X drone this week at the Farnborough International Air Show in England, the company announced. The new drone can be used for civil and military applications, Thales said in a statement. Fulmar X can be configured to meet the needs of different customers, featuring endurance and aerial intelligence in a small, flexible platform with low running costs,
 

Turkey rounds up plotters after thwarting anti-Erdogan coup

 
‎Sunday, ‎July ‎17, ‎2016, ‏‎2:15:23 PMGo to full article
Istanbul (AFP) July 17, 2016
Turkish authorities rounded up dozens of senior military personnel and judges in a ruthless crackdown Sunday, after thousands massed in the streets nationwide overnight to denounce a coup aimed at ousting President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. World leaders including US President Barack Obama have strongly condemned the attempted putsch but also urged Turkey to respect the "rule of law" in its afte
 

S. Korea confirms anti-missile system site

 
‎Sunday, ‎July ‎17, ‎2016, ‏‎2:15:23 PMGo to full article
Seoul (AFP) July 13, 2016
Seoul said Wednesday an advanced US missile defence system will be deployed in a remote southern county and will have the capacity to protect two thirds of the country against feared attacks from the North. The plan to deploy the powerful system, which fires projectiles to smash into enemy missiles, came last week after the United States placed North Korea's "Supreme Leader" Kim Jong-Un on
 

Moscow to raise US missile shield at NATO summit

 
‎Sunday, ‎July ‎17, ‎2016, ‏‎2:15:23 PMGo to full article
Moscow (AFP) July 12, 2016
Moscow said Tuesday it plans to discuss improving airspace safety over the Baltic Sea and the risks of a US missile shield in Europe at its summit with NATO this week. The announcement comes after a string of incidents and near-misses in Baltic Sea airspace fuelled tensions between Moscow and the alliance. Russian foreign ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said Moscow plans to raise
 

Nuclear deal holding but more work needed: Iran negotiator

 
‎Sunday, ‎July ‎17, ‎2016, ‏‎2:15:23 PMGo to full article
Tehran (AFP) July 13, 2016
Iran's nuclear deal with world powers is holding a year after it was agreed but more needs to be done to ensure its full implementation, a top Iranian negotiator said Wednesday. "The total process has been relatively satisfactory despite the difficulties that we see in the implementation," Hamid Baeidinejad told a press conference in Tehran for the first anniversary of the agreement. "We
 

Erdogan urges Turks to defend state after coup 'foiled'

 
‎Sunday, ‎July ‎17, ‎2016, ‏‎2:15:23 PMGo to full article
Ankara (AFP) July 16, 2016
President Recep Tayyip Erdogan urged Turks to remain on the streets Saturday, as his forces regained control after a spectacular coup bid by discontented soldiers that claimed more than 250 lives. After hours of chaos and violence unseen in decades, Erdogan ended uncertainty over his whereabouts, flying into Istanbul airport in the early hours where he was cheered by hundreds of supporters.
 

Fethullah Gulen, the arch-enemy of Turkey's president

 
‎Sunday, ‎July ‎17, ‎2016, ‏‎2:15:23 PMGo to full article
Los Angeles (AFP) July 16, 2016
Fethullah Gulen, the US-based cleric accused by Ankara of orchestrating the coup attempt in Turkey, has a wide following in his native country, where he enjoys support among the police and judiciary. The reclusive Islamic preacher, who lives in a tiny town in the Pocono Mountains of the US state of Pennsylvania, was immediately accused by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan of being behin
 

China vows 'decisive response' to sea provocations

 
‎Sunday, ‎July ‎17, ‎2016, ‏‎2:15:23 PMGo to full article
Beijing (AFP) July 14, 2016
China warned Thursday of a "decisive response" to provocations in the South China Sea, as it faced mounting pressure to accept an international tribunal's ruling against its claims to most of the strategically vital waters. The Philippines, which launched the legal challenge, called for Beijing to respect the decision but sought to defuse tensions saying it would send a former president to C
 

Anger, protests and bloodshed in coup-hit Istanbul

 
‎Sunday, ‎July ‎17, ‎2016, ‏‎2:15:23 PMGo to full article
Istanbul (AFP) July 16, 2016
Troops filed into Taksim Square uncertain of how they would be received. Before long, angry crowds had gathered to denounce them. In the famous square where anti-government protests took hold in 2013, a huge crowd chanted against the putsch, draped with Turkish flags across their shoulders. The scenes were reminiscent of the mass demonstrations three years ago against President Recep Tay
 

Tokyo seeks to pressure Beijing on S China Sea ruling

 
‎Sunday, ‎July ‎17, ‎2016, ‏‎2:15:23 PMGo to full article
Ulan Bator (AFP) July 16, 2016
Tokyo raised pressure on Beijing at an Asia-Europe summit Saturday to respect an international tribunal's ruling that dismissed its claims to much of the South China Sea. At a retreat outside the Mongolian capital Ulan Bator, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe told the assembled leaders that the rule of law was "a universal principle that the international community must firmly maintain," according t
 

Philippines to send envoy to China over sea row

 
‎Sunday, ‎July ‎17, ‎2016, ‏‎2:15:23 PMGo to full article
Manila (AFP) July 14, 2016
Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte said Thursday he would send ex-leader Fidel Ramos to China for talks after an international tribunal ruled against Beijing's claims to most of the disputed South China Sea. Duterte asked former president Ramos "go to China to start the talks" with Beijing after the UN-backed tribunal's ruling on the strategically vital waters, though he did not specify a
 

China must abide by same rules as everyone else: Biden

 
‎Sunday, ‎July ‎17, ‎2016, ‏‎2:15:23 PMGo to full article
Sydney (AFP) July 16, 2016
China must abide by the same international rules as everyone else, US Vice President Joe Biden warned after a UN-backed tribunal ruled against Beijing's claims in the South China Sea. The United States has no claims of its own within the vast area, but insists that all shipping has a right to pass through seas it regards as international waters. It has previously deployed aircraft carrie
 

Beijing faces S.China Sea rebuke at Europe-Asia summit

 
‎Sunday, ‎July ‎17, ‎2016, ‏‎2:15:23 PMGo to full article
Ulan Bator (AFP) July 14, 2016
Beijing faces an international dressing down Friday at a gathering of leaders from across Asia and Europe after it vehemently rejected a UN-backed tribunal's dismissal of its extensive South China Sea claims. The biennial Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM), which is celebrating its 20th anniversary, is supposed to be a venue for increasing cooperation across the Eurasian continent and exploring ways
 

ASEAN to keep mum on South China Sea ruling: diplomats

 
‎Sunday, ‎July ‎17, ‎2016, ‏‎2:15:23 PMGo to full article
Kuala Lumpur (AFP) July 14, 2016
Southeast Asia will not issue a statement on the rejection of Chinese territorial claims in the South China Sea by an international tribunal, regional diplomats said Thursday, blaming the no-comment on pressure by Beijing. The Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) had weighed whether to speak out on Tuesday's ruling by the Permanent Court of Arbitration in The Hague, said Southeast
 

US confirms strike on IS commander 'Omar the Chechen'

 
‎Sunday, ‎July ‎17, ‎2016, ‏‎2:15:23 PMGo to full article
Washington (AFP) July 14, 2016
The Pentagon Thursday acknowledged targeting a top Islamic State group commander, Omar al-Shishani, in an airstrike, but stopped short of confirming his reported death. The militant group itself announced Wednesday that Shishani, whose nom de guerre means Omar the Chechen, had been killed. The Pentagon had already claimed in early March that coalition forces had killed the high-profile
 

UN says Yemen talks still on despite boycott threat

 
‎Sunday, ‎July ‎17, ‎2016, ‏‎2:15:23 PMGo to full article
Kuwait City (AFP) July 15, 2016
The United Nations said Friday that the Yemeni peace talks in Kuwait were expected to resume within hours despite a government threat to boycott the negotiations. The talks will resume later Friday "or tomorrow" (Saturday), a spokesman for UN envoy Ismail Ould Cheikh Ahmad told AFP. The envoy travelled to Riyadh on Friday to meet Yemen's President Abedrabbo Mansour Hadi in an effort to c
 

Russia may test-fire its most powerful ballistic missile Sarmat near Hawaii

 
‎Thursday, ‎July ‎7, ‎2016, ‏‎11:15:57 AMGo to full article
Moscow (Sputnik) Jul 07, 2016
Russia has started large-scale preparations for flight tests of the new "Sarmat" heavy intercontinental ballistic missile which is set to join the service by 2018. The former Chief of Staff of the Strategic Missile Forces, Viktor Esin, said that the missile will replace the most powerful RS-20V Voevoda (according to NATO classification - SS-18 Satan)ballistic complexes. "These missiles hav
 

Electronic nose smells pesticides and nerve gas

 
‎Thursday, ‎July ‎7, ‎2016, ‏‎11:15:57 AMGo to full article
Leuven, Belgium (SPX) Jul 07, 2016
Detecting pesticides and nerve gas in very low concentrations. An international team of researchers led by Ivo Stassen and Rob Ameloot from KU Leuven, Belgium, have made it possible. The best-known electronic nose is the breathalyser. As drivers breathe into the device, a chemical sensor measures the amount of alcohol in their breath. This chemical reaction is then converted into an electr
 

With an eye on Russia, US and Georgia ink defence pact

 
‎Thursday, ‎July ‎7, ‎2016, ‏‎11:15:57 AMGo to full article
Tbilisi (AFP) July 6, 2016
The United States and Georgia signed a security deal Wednesday designed to shore up the former Soviet republic's defences against Russia as it waits to join NATO. US Secretary of State John Kerry and Georgian Prime Minister Giorgi Kvirikashvili inked the agreement at a ceremony in Tbilisi just two days before the annual NATO summit in Warsaw. The agreement is bitter-sweet compensation fo
 

NATO to hold new talks with Russia July 13: Stoltenberg

 
‎Thursday, ‎July ‎7, ‎2016, ‏‎11:15:57 AMGo to full article
Brussels (AFP) July 6, 2016
NATO will hold fresh talks with Russia next week, just days after a landmark alliance summit endorses a major military revamp to counter a more assertive Moscow, secretary general Jens Stoltenberg said Wednesday. "We have decided together with Russia to hold a meeting of the NATO-Russia Council (NRC)... the meeting will take place on 13 July at the NATO headquarters in Brussels, shortly afte
 

IMDO and MDA Complete Integrated Ground Test

 
‎Thursday, ‎July ‎7, ‎2016, ‏‎11:15:57 AMGo to full article
Tel Aviv, Israel (SPX) Jul 07, 2016
The Israeli Missile Defense Organization (IMDO) in conjunction with the United States Missile Defense Agency (MDA) and the United States European Command (EUCOM) successfully conducted an Integrated Ground Test which ended on June 22nd. The test validated the combined United States/ Israeli Missile Defense integrated architecture for the defense of Israel. The test was carried out by Elisr
 

Kim Jong-Un: North Korea's young leader accused of cruelty

 
‎Thursday, ‎July ‎7, ‎2016, ‏‎11:15:57 AMGo to full article
Seoul (AFP) July 6, 2016
North Korea's young leader Kim Jong-Un, who was personally blacklisted by the United States for the first time over allegations of human rights abuses, has repeatedly shrugged off pressure by the international community while asserting absolute control over the reclusive state. In his late 20s when he took over from his late father Kim Jong-Il four and a half years ago, the younger Kim was c
 

Russian Tor-M2U air defense system arrives in Siberia

 
‎Thursday, ‎July ‎7, ‎2016, ‏‎11:15:57 AMGo to full article
Ulan-Ude, Russia (UPI) Jul 6, 2016
Russia's new Tor-M2U anti-aircraft missile defense systems have arrived in Siberia's Eastern Military District. The system arrived at a tank formation stationed in the Buryatia republic, Russia's Tass news agency reported. The tank formation's air defense units had undergone retraining to qualify to work with the new system, studying the equipment, tactical and technical characte
 

State Dept. approves SM-2 missile sale to S. Korea

 
‎Thursday, ‎July ‎7, ‎2016, ‏‎11:15:57 AMGo to full article
Washington (UPI) Jul 6, 2016
The U.S. State Department has approved the proposed sale of 17 SM-2 Block IIIB missiles and missile containers to South Korea for $65 million, the Defense Security Cooperation Agency announced Tuesday. Congress was notified of the proposed sale on Friday, the agency said in a statement. The sale would also involve personnel training and training equipment, publications and techni
 

Raytheon gets $291M Sidewinder missile contract mod

 
‎Thursday, ‎July ‎7, ‎2016, ‏‎11:15:57 AMGo to full article
Washington (UPI) Jul 5, 2016
Raytheon Missile Systems has been awarded a $291 million modification to a fixed-price-incentive-firm U.S. Navy contract covering the procurement of 660 AIM-9X Block II Lot 16 Sidewinder missiles. The missiles will go to the Navy, Air Force, Army and the governments of Japan, Norway and Taiwan. The contract modification also provides for the procurement of 252 Block II Captive A
 

State Dept. approves $140M Sea Sparrow missile sale to Chile

 
‎Thursday, ‎July ‎7, ‎2016, ‏‎11:15:57 AMGo to full article
Washington (UPI) Jul 6, 2016
The U.S. State Department has approved a proposed $140 million foreign military sale of Evolved Seasparrow Missiles to Chile. The proposed sale entails equipment, training and support and was delivered to Congress on July 1, a Defense Security Cooperation Agency announcement released Tuesday states. Chile has requested 33 Evolved Sea Sparrow Missiles, six Evolved Sea Sparrow Tele
 

Blair defends Iraq war after damning inquiry report

 
‎Thursday, ‎July ‎7, ‎2016, ‏‎11:15:57 AMGo to full article
London (AFP) July 6, 2016
Former British prime minister Tony Blair's case for going to war in Iraq in 2003 was based on flawed evidence and woefully executed, a hard-hitting official inquiry pronounced on Wednesday. The long-awaited Chilcot report offered a damning verdict on Britain's role in the US-led war, detailing the flawed intelligence, questionable legal basis and inadequate preparation for the occupation.
 

Northrop receives $103M counter-IED contract mod

 
‎Thursday, ‎July ‎7, ‎2016, ‏‎11:15:57 AMGo to full article
Washington (UPI) Jul 6, 2016
Northrop Grumman has been awarded a $103 million U.S. Navy contract modification for the Joint Counter Radio-Controlled Improvised Explosive Device Electronic Warfare, or JCREW, Increment One Build One system. The firm-fixed price, cost-plus-fixed-fee and cost-only modification covers low-rate initial production in support of the sea service's Expeditionary Warfare Program Office.
 

Electric Boat gets $116 million for Virginia-class sub work

 
‎Thursday, ‎July ‎7, ‎2016, ‏‎11:15:57 AMGo to full article
Washington (UPI) Jul 5, 2016
General Dynamics Electric Boat has been awarded a not-to-exceed $116 million undefinitized U.S. Navy contract modification for work in support of Virginia-class submarines. The work will involve manufacturing of Virginia payload module and South Dakota insertion prototype materials. Work will be performed in Indiana, New York, Virginia, Kentucky, Florida, Illinois, Washington and
 

Sri Lanka aims to demilitarise island by 2018

 
‎Thursday, ‎July ‎7, ‎2016, ‏‎11:15:57 AMGo to full article
Colombo (AFP) July 6, 2016
Sri Lanka intends to become completely demilitarised by 2018, the government said Wednesday, a significant announcement that will end the army's involvement in civilian life after decades of ethnic war. Heavy deployments from the Sri Lankan army have remained in former war zones in the island's north and east since a 37-year conflict with Tamil separatists ended in May 2009. The military
 

Finland in talks to buy used S. Korea howitzers

 
‎Thursday, ‎July ‎7, ‎2016, ‏‎11:15:57 AMGo to full article
Helsinki, Finland (UPI) Jul 5, 2016
Finland is in talks with South Korea to purchase used K9 Thunder 155mm armored howitzers, Finland's Ministry of Defense announced Friday. Finland's MOD has started negotiations with Korea to procure equipment and artillery systems, the ministry said in a statement. The contract would enable the support of operational troops via artillery equipment that features long range and sol
 

New antenna brings enhanced capabilities to the battlefield

 
‎Thursday, ‎June ‎30, ‎2016, ‏‎10:16:49 AMGo to full article
Buckley AFB CO (SPX) Jun 29, 2016
The 460th Space Communications Squadron, Air Force Wideband Enterprise Terminals Program office, Tobyhanna Army Depot and Radome Services have been working together to replace an aging terminal or antenna on Buckley Air Force Base in order to increase capabilities and keep up with technological advances. "The service life of the original antenna was nearing its end and the Army has been in
 

EU should do more for its own defence: Mogherini

 
‎Thursday, ‎June ‎30, ‎2016, ‏‎10:16:49 AMGo to full article
Brussels (AFP) June 28, 2016
EU foreign affairs chief Federica Mogherini on Tuesday urged the bloc to do more in its own defence, just as leaders discussed Britain's leave vote which will result in the loss of a major military power. "As Europeans we must take greater responsibility for our security. We must be ready and able to deter, respond to and protect ourselves against external threats," Mogherini said in a polic
 

US destroyer came 'dangerously close' to Russian ship: Moscow

 
‎Thursday, ‎June ‎30, ‎2016, ‏‎10:16:49 AMGo to full article
Moscow (AFP) June 28, 2016
Russia's defence ministry on Tuesday accused an American destroyer of coming dangerously close to a Russian frigate in the Mediterranean Sea, calling the incident a "gross violation" of international agreements. "On June 17, in the east of the Mediterranean Sea, the American destroyer USS Gravely came dangerously close to a Russian warship, 60 to 70 metres from the left side, and crossed the
 

Insitu gets Coast Guard drone contract

 
‎Thursday, ‎June ‎30, ‎2016, ‏‎10:16:49 AMGo to full article
Bingen, Wash. (UPI) Jun 28, 2016
Insitu will provide a ScanEagle drone on one U.S. Coast Guard national security cutter under a contract announced by the company Monday. The contract includes three one-year options, the Boeing subsidiary said in a statement. The Coast Guard procured the services via a pre-existing multiple award contract executed by Naval Air Systems Command. The initial $4.5 million task
 

Lockheed's Q-53 shows drone tracking capability

 
‎Thursday, ‎June ‎30, ‎2016, ‏‎10:16:49 AMGo to full article
Syracuse, N.Y. (UPI) Jun 28, 2016
Lockheed Martin's AN/TPQ-53 counterfire radar recently demonstrated its ability to identify and track drones and pass that information to a command and control node, a key capability as battle spaces increasingly become crowded with new air threats, the company announced Monday. The Q-53 demonstration showed that the system can provide troops with an awareness of air threats in real tim
 

 

http://www.spacewar.com/missiledefense.html

 

News About Ballistic Missile Defense

 

S. Korea confirms anti-missile system site

 
‎Wednesday, ‎July ‎20, ‎2016, ‏‎8:08:25 AMGo to full article
Seoul (AFP) July 13, 2016 - Seoul said Wednesday an advanced US missile defence system will be deployed in a remote southern county and will have the capacity to protect two thirds of the country against feared attacks from the North.

The plan to deploy the powerful system, which fires projectiles to smash into enemy missiles, came last week after the United States placed North Korea's "Supreme Leader" Kim Jong-Un on its sanctions blacklist for the first time.

The move prompted objections from Russia and China, who accused Washington of flexing its military muscle in the region.

Tensions have soared since Pyongyang carried out its fourth nuclear test in January, followed by a series of missile launches that analysts say show the North is making progress toward being able to strike the US mainland.

The Terminal High Altitude Area Defense system, or THAAD, will be deployed in Seongju county about 200 kilometres (135 miles) southeast of Seoul, as agreed by US Secretary of Defence Ash Carter and his South Korean counterpart Han Min-Koo, according to the defence ministry in Seoul.

The deployment will be completed by the end of next year and will be able to cover up to two thirds of South Korea from North Korean missiles. It will also protect key industrial facilities, including nuclear power plants and oil depots, the ministry added.

US military bases in the South will also be protected by the missile system, but Seoul and its surrounding areas will be left out. This could mean the military deploying more US Patriot anti-air and missile defence systems in these areas, Yonhap news agency reported.

There have been protests about the system's location, with residents fearing harmful economic and environmental effects.

"We hope the people and residents in Seongju... render support" for the decision, the ministry said in a statement.

But thousands took to the streets Wednesday in Seongju town, carrying banners reading "We absolutely oppose THAAD deployment", Yonhap news agency reported.

The head of the county Kim Hang-Gon and some 10 others staged a hunger strike, cut their fingers and wrote slogans in blood on banners at the Wednesday's rally.

"The THAAD deployment threatens the livelihood of the country's 45,000 residents, 60 percent of whom are engaged in watermelon agriculture", a group against the deployment said in a statement.

North Korea threatened Monday to take "physical action" against the planned deployment of the powerful anti-missile system.

The move has also angered Beijing and Moscow, which both see it as a US bid to boost military might in the region. China on Friday said the move would "seriously damage" regional security in northeast Asia.

The US and South Korea began talks on deploying the THAAD system to the Korean peninsula in February after the North fired a long-range rocket.

South Korean authorities have scrambled to allay fears over possible trade retaliations from its largest trading partner China.

Finance Minister Yoo Il-Ho told the National Assembly Wednesday he believed China will separate politics from economic affairs and is not likely to hit the South with economic sanctions over missile system deployment.

 

 

Raytheon, Lockheed report successful Patriot tests

 
‎Wednesday, ‎July ‎20, ‎2016, ‏‎8:08:25 AMGo to full article
White Sands Missile Range, N.M. (UPI) Jul 11, 2016 - Raytheon and Lockheed Martin each reported successful tests of the Patriot Integrated Air and Missile Defense system at the White Sands Missile Range in New Mexico.

The tests involved the upgraded system, known as the Post-Deployment Build 8, or PDB-8, detecting, tracking and engaging a cruise missile surrogate target, Raytheon said in a statement.

Raytheon's Guidance Enhance Missile, or GEM-T, then destroyed a target, and a PDB-8 Patriot also destroyed a tactical fighter aircraft target.

The PDB-8 upgrade is expected to be fielded in 2018.

During the tests, the threats were manually engaged by soldiers using the shoot-look-shoot method of fire.

After the first interceptor was fired, Patriot soldiers watched to see if the cruise missile or aircraft was destroyed. The targets were each destroyed by the first interceptor.

As part of the PDB-8 testing, a Lockheed Martin PAC-3 Missile Segment Enhancement, or MSE, missile successfully intercepted a full-scale air breathing target, the company said.

The PAC-3 missile is a high-velocity interceptor that uses hit-to-kill technology to defend against incoming threats that include tactical ballistic missiles, aircraft and cruise missiles.

 

 

Moscow to raise US missile shield at NATO summit

 
‎Wednesday, ‎July ‎20, ‎2016, ‏‎8:08:25 AMGo to full article
Moscow (AFP) July 12, 2016 - Moscow said Tuesday it plans to discuss improving airspace safety over the Baltic Sea and the risks of a US missile shield in Europe at its summit with NATO this week.

The announcement comes after a string of incidents and near-misses in Baltic Sea airspace fuelled tensions between Moscow and the alliance.

Russian foreign ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said Moscow plans to raise "increasing aviation safety in the Baltic Sea region" when representatives of Russia and NATO convene in Brussels on Wednesday.

Russia's NATO-member Baltic neighbours have accused Moscow of regularly violating their airspace in recent months and flying with switched-off transponders, devices that allow radars to identify planes and prevent collisions.

President Vladimir Putin this month backed a call for all military aircraft flying over the Baltic region to keep their transponders on.

At the summit with NATO, Moscow will also "stress the risks to strategic stability that have appeared as a result of the ongoing construction of the US and NATO anti-missile system in Europe," Zakharova said.

Relations between NATO and Russia have soured since Moscow annexed the Crimea region of Ukraine in March 2014 and eastern European countries are worried that they too might be targets of Russian aggression.

NATO vowed at a summit in Warsaw last week to bolster its eastern flank to counter a resurgent Russia, agreeing to deploy four battalions in Poland and the Baltic states.

Moscow slammed the decision, accusing NATO of working to counter a "non-existent threat."

Putin said last month that Moscow will not be dragged into an arms race by NATO and accused the US-led alliance of skewering the military balance in Europe.

Russian Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu has meanwhile vowed to counter the NATO build-up by sending 2,000 items of new or modernised equipment to the country's western border flanking Baltic nations.

 

 

China protests over US deploying missile system in S.Korea

 
‎Wednesday, ‎July ‎20, ‎2016, ‏‎8:08:25 AMGo to full article
Beijing (AFP) July 8, 2016 - China lodged protests with US and South Korean ambassadors Friday over their countries' decision to deploy an American missile defence system to counter threats from North Korea, a move Beijing said would damage regional security.

The deployment of the THAAD (Terminal High Altitude Area Defence) system announced by Washington and Seoul would "will severely undermine regional strategic security and disrupt the strategic balance," foreign ministry spokesman Hong Lei told reporters.

"We strongly urge the US and the Republic of Korea to halt the deployment process," he said, adding that Beijing "has launched solemn representations with their ambassadors," without giving any more details.

The move would not aid the "denuclearisation" of the Korean peninsula, he added.

China is North Korea's largest trading partner and has been its key diplomatic protector for decades.

But relations have soured over Pyongyang's nuclear tests and long-range missile launches, with Beijing supporting UN sanctions.

Still, analysts say Beijing is concerned over any build up of US power on its doorstep and values Pyongyang as a strategic bulwark, while worrying THAAD could undermine its nuclear deterrent.

Chinese President Xi Jinping stressed the importance of "friendly relations" to a visiting North Korean official last month, even after the envoy reportedly told Chinese officials Pyongyang would continue with its internationally condemned nuclear programme.

The US and South Korea began talks on deploying the THAAD system to the Korean peninsula in February, when the North launched a long-range rocket following a fourth nuclear test in January.

They announced Friday that they had agreed to install it.

Separately, Washington this week imposed sanctions on North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un, calling him directly responsible for a long list of serious human rights abuses.

China condemned the move, with Hong telling a briefing Thursday that it opposed "public pressure, confrontation and one country's imposing unilateral sanctions on another country by citing domestic laws".

New US missile defence in South Korea: key questions
Seoul (AFP) July 8, 2016 - The United States said on Friday it would deploy a high tech missile defence system in South Korea, allowing it to fire projectiles that can smash into incoming enemy projectiles.

Here are some key questions about the Terminal High Altitude Area Defence, or THAAD, system.

Why is it being deployed?

Washington and Seoul say it is to defend South Korea from the North. While tensions on the peninsula have been high for more than six decades, relations have become increasingly strained in recent years. Pyongyang has carried out four nuclear tests as well as a series of missile launches, flexing its military muscle and making progress towards being able to strike the US mainland.

Seoul and Washington began talks on deploying THAAD in February, after the North launched a long-range rocket.

What defence does South Korea already have against the North?

Seoul already has an anti-missile defence based on the US Patriot system, but this can only target missiles at relatively low altitudes. The new system is able to hit missiles at a much greater height, making it more effective against rockets that could be carrying a nuclear warhead.

How does THAAD work?

As the "T" in the name suggests, THAAD can only intercept missiles in their terminal phase, i.e. as they move downwards towards their target, not on their way up.

It does this by using radar to detect an incoming threat, before engaging and identifying the target. Then a launcher -- which can carry up to eight interceptors -- fires a "kill vehicle" attached to the booster, which hits the incoming missile mid-air. The system can target ballistic missiles both inside and outside the Earth's atmosphere.

Why is it so controversial?

China and Russia have been saying for months that the defence system is unnecessary and would tip the balance of power in the Pacific towards the United States.

Some analysts have suggested Beijing is most concerned that THAAD would allow Washington to better track Chinese missiles in their early stages, undermining the country's nuclear deterrent.

When and where has it been used before?

The first THAAD test flight took place in 2005, according to its US-based developer Lockheed Martin. The first operational deployment was in the US island territory of Guam in 2013, and there are currently five THAAD batteries worldwide, including in the United Arab Emirates.

It is not yet clear exactly where in South Korea the system will be deployed or when it will arrive.

 

 

US to deploy missiles in S.Korea as North riled

 
‎Wednesday, ‎July ‎20, ‎2016, ‏‎8:08:25 AMGo to full article
Seoul (AFP) July 8, 2016 - The United States is to deploy an advanced missile defence system in South Korea, the two allies said Friday, as North Korea warned US sanctions against its leader amounted to a "declaration of war".

News of the unprecedented measures targeting Kim Jong-Un came as North Korea marked 22 years since the death of its founding president Kim Il-Sung, grandfather of the current "Supreme Leader".

Tensions have soared since Pyongyang carried out its fourth nuclear test in January, followed by a series of missile launches that analysts said show the North is making progress toward being able to strike the US mainland.

The US and South Korea began talks on deploying the Terminal High Altitude Area Defence system, or THAAD, to the Korean peninsula in February after the North fired off a long-range rocket.

"Based on these consultations, the (South) and the US made an alliance decision to deploy THAAD... as a defence measure to ensure the security of the (South) and its people," the allies' defence ministries said in a joint statement.

The allies have not revealed exactly when and where in South Korea the system would be deployed, saying they were in the final stages of selecting a potential venue.

The plan to deploy the powerful system, which fires projectiles to smash into enemy missiles, angered Beijing and Moscow, which both see it as a US bid to flex military muscle in the region.

Moscow said any deployment would have "irreparable consequences", while Beijing warned it would "seriously damage" regional security in northeast Asia and urged South Korea and the US to reconsider.

News of the deployment came after the US on Wednesday placed "Supreme Leader" Kim on its sanctions blacklist for the first time, calling him directly responsible for a long list of serious human rights abuses.

- 'Wartime law' -

Pyongyang lashed out at Washington on Friday, warning North Korea would instantly cut off all diplomatic channels with the US if the sanctions were not lifted.

"This is the worst hostility and an open declaration of war against the DPRK as it has gone far beyond the confrontation over the 'human rights issue,'" the foreign ministry said, using North Korea's official name.

"Now that the US declared a war on the DPRK, any problem arising in the relations with the US will be handled under the latter's wartime law," said the statement carried by the official KCNA news agency.

Kim, who took power four and a half years ago after the death of his father Kim Jong-Il, is the subject of a personality cult that permeates every aspect of life in the repressive state.

At midnight, Kim went to pay his respects at the giant mausoleum for his grandfather and father and during the day, thousands of sombrely-dressed party, government and military officials bowed and filed past the cases containing their embalmed bodies.

In the meticulously-manicured gardens outside the mausoleum, tens of thousands more -- including students, soldiers and office workers -- lined up to bow to giant portraits of the two Kims that dominate the facade of the building.

While the US sanctions naming Kim Jong-Un were more symbolic than substantive, the foreign ministry's angry reaction reflected North Korea's hyper-sensitivity to any personal attack on the ruling Kim family dynasty

North Korea often issues bellicose statements against the US, but the reference to "wartime law" is rare and analysts warned of more sabre-rattling to come over the sanctions.

"There will be a bombardment of diatribes from North Korea against the US as the military, government agencies and various social groups are likely to fall over themselves to prove their loyalty to Kim", Professor Yang Moo-Jin of the University of North Korean Studies told AFP.

China also condemned the latest round of US sanctions, saying it opposed "public pressure, confrontation and one country's imposing unilateral sanctions on another country by citing domestic laws".

New US missile defence in South Korea: key questions
Seoul (AFP) July 8, 2016 - The United States said on Friday it would deploy a high tech missile defence system in South Korea, allowing it to fire projectiles that can smash into incoming enemy projectiles.

Here are some key questions about the Terminal High Altitude Area Defence, or THAAD, system.

Why is it being deployed?

Washington and Seoul say it is to defend South Korea from the North. While tensions on the peninsula have been high for more than six decades, relations have become increasingly strained in recent years. Pyongyang has carried out four nuclear tests as well as a series of missile launches, flexing its military muscle and making progress towards being able to strike the US mainland.

Seoul and Washington began talks on deploying THAAD in February, after the North launched a long-range rocket.

What defence does South Korea already have against the North?

Seoul already has an anti-missile defence based on the US Patriot system, but this can only target missiles at relatively low altitudes. The new system is able to hit missiles at a much greater height, making it more effective against rockets that could be carrying a nuclear warhead.

How does THAAD work?

As the "T" in the name suggests, THAAD can only intercept missiles in their terminal phase, i.e. as they move downwards towards their target, not on their way up.

It does this by using radar to detect an incoming threat, before engaging and identifying the target. Then a launcher -- which can carry up to eight interceptors -- fires a "kill vehicle" attached to the booster, which hits the incoming missile mid-air. The system can target ballistic missiles both inside and outside the Earth's atmosphere.

Why is it so controversial?

China and Russia have been saying for months that the defence system is unnecessary and would tip the balance of power in the Pacific towards the United States.

Some analysts have suggested Beijing is most concerned that THAAD would allow Washington to better track Chinese missiles in their early stages, undermining the country's nuclear deterrent.

When and where has it been used before?

The first THAAD test flight took place in 2005, according to its US-based developer Lockheed Martin. The first operational deployment was in the US island territory of Guam in 2013, and there are currently five THAAD batteries worldwide, including in the United Arab Emirates.

It is not yet clear exactly where in South Korea the system will be deployed or when it will arrive.

 

 

N. Korea threatens action over US anti-missile system

 
‎Wednesday, ‎July ‎20, ‎2016, ‏‎8:08:25 AMGo to full article
Seoul (AFP) July 11, 2016 - North Korea threatened Monday to take "physical action" after Washington and Seoul announced they would deploy a sophisticated US anti-missile defence system to counter the growing menace from Pyongyang.

Seoul and Washington had on Friday revealed their decision to deploy the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) system in the South following recent North Korean missile and nuclear tests.

The two allies have not yet revealed exactly when and where the system, which fires projectiles to smash into enemy missiles, would be deployed but said they were in the final stage of selecting a potential venue.

"The DPRK will take a physical counter-action to thoroughly control THAAD... from the moment its location and place have been confirmed in South Korea," the artillery bureau of the North's military said in a statement, according to the official Korean Central News Agency (KCNA).

North Korea's military, which has "sufficient latest offensive strike means", will take "more merciless and powerful successive corresponding measures against the US keen to ignite a war by deploying THAAD", it said.

It also warned the South of "miserable self-destruction" as a consequence of deployment of the THAAD system.

"We once again warn the enemies that it is the steadfast will of the (Korean People's Army) to make merciless retaliatory strikes to reduce South Korea to a sea in flames, debris once an order is issued," the statement said.

Seoul denounced the "ridiculous threats" by the North, which had staged serious provocations including a nuclear test in January and a long-range rocket launch in February.

"North Korea must recognise who is threatening peace and stability on the Korean Peninsula and first apologise for its provocations," defence ministry spokesman Moon Sang-Gyun told reporters.

- Communications cut -

Also on Monday, the North cut all communications with the US through its office at the UN -- a rare channel of communications between the two nations that do not have official diplomatic ties.

The move was in protest at new US sanctions targeting leader Kim Jong-Un for a long list of serious human rights abuses, the first sanctions that name the leader of the isolated state.

Pyongyang had earlier slammed the sanctions on Kim as a "declaration of war" and vowed to take strong retaliatory measures.

Tensions are high since Pyongyang carried out its fourth nuclear test in January, followed by a series of missile launches that analysts said showed the North was making progress toward being able to strike the US mainland.

Pyongyang also test-fired what appeared to be a submarine-launched ballistic missile a day after the THAAD announcement by Seoul and Washington, sparking swift international condemnation.

Saturday's launch followed Pyongyang's back-to-back tests of powerful new medium-range Musudan missiles on June 22 -- theoretically capable of reaching US bases as far away as Guam.

The planned deployment of the powerful anti-missile system has angered the South's neighbours including China, which said Friday the move would "seriously damage" regional security in northeast Asia.

South Korean President Park Geun-Hye however defended the move as a "purely defensive" action aimed at protecting the South.

"The international community will be aware that we have no intention to target or threaten another country... we are taking a purely defensive measure to protect our country and our people," Park said in a meeting with advisors.

She also urged support from South Koreans over the deployment of powerful weapon, in the face of growing protest in the areas said to be potential venues.

 

 

Raytheon's air and missile defense radar to be tested

 
‎Wednesday, ‎July ‎20, ‎2016, ‏‎8:08:25 AMGo to full article
Tewksbury, Mass. (UPI) Jul 7, 2016 - Raytheon has delivered the first AN/SPY-6(V) air and missile defense radar early to the U.S. Navy's Pacific Missile Range Facility in Hawaii, the company announced Thursday.

The array is now being installed in preparation for first radar light-off this month, Raytheon said in a statement, and is ready for live target tracking.

SPY-6(V) is the Navy's next-generation integrated air and ballistic missile defense radar.

The system's engineering and manufacturing development phase is now 80 percent complete, Raytheon said.

The delivery represents the latest milestone achieved on time or ahead of schedule, the company said.

Design, fabrication and initial testing of the array was completed in less than 30 months, and the system remains on track for delivery to the first DDG-51 Flight III destroyer in 2019.

SPY-6(V) is the first scalable radar using radar building blocks, each of which is a standalone radar that can be grouped to build any size radar aperature.

All the cooling, power, command logic and software are also scalable.

The radar also offers better range, sensitivity and discrimination accuracy.

 

 

Poland moves towards multi-billion-euro Patriot missile deal

 
‎Wednesday, ‎July ‎20, ‎2016, ‏‎8:08:25 AMGo to full article
Warsaw (AFP) July 4, 2016 - Polish Defence Minister Antoni Macierewicz on Monday said he would ink a letter of intent with US defence firm Raytheon to buy a Patriot missile system valued at an estimated 5 billion euros ($5.6 billion).

The EU member's previous government had said in April it planned to buy the Patriot system, but soon after coming into power in November the current conservative administration placed a question mark over the purchase.

Macierewicz himself had said at the time: "The price is much higher, the delivery time much longer... in short, this contract is practically non-existent."

On Monday Macierewicz said Poland was able to move ahead with the plan because Raytheon had pledged that 50 percent of the missile system spending would be on works "done in Poland by Polish arms firms".

"That being the case, we're signing the letter of intent," Macierewicz said, quoted by the Polish news agency PAP.

He said that meant Raytheon would be the "most likely" maker of Poland's missile defence system.

The defence ministry had said in April that it wanted to acquire eight missile batteries by 2025, with two of them to be delivered within three years of signing a deal.

The Eurosam consortium including MBDA France, MBDA Italy and France's Thales Group had been the other party in the running for the missile deal.

bo-amj/mas/pvh

THALES

RAYTHEON

 

 

IMDO and MDA Complete Integrated Ground Test

 
‎Wednesday, ‎July ‎20, ‎2016, ‏‎8:08:25 AMGo to full article
Tel Aviv, Israel (SPX) Jul 07, 2016 - The Israeli Missile Defense Organization (IMDO) in conjunction with the United States Missile Defense Agency (MDA) and the United States European Command (EUCOM) successfully conducted an Integrated Ground Test which ended on June 22nd.

The test validated the combined United States/ Israeli Missile Defense integrated architecture for the defense of Israel. The test was carried out by Elisra, a subsidiary of Elbit Systems.

The integrated architecture consisted of the Israeli Arrow Weapons System using Arrow-2 and Arrow-3 interceptors, and the David's Sling Weapon System interoperating with the United States assets consisting of Command and Control elements, Aegis ships, Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) and Patriot missile defense systems.

The David's Sling missile defense system, which was recently delivered to the Air Force, participated in the drill as part of its transition to becoming operational.

During the test, scenarios consisted of multiple missile and rocket attacks were simulated against Israel with both United States and Israel successfully employing, engaging and destroying the simulated incoming threats.

The test demonstrated the United States' commitment for the protection of Israel as well as the interoperability between the United States and Israeli integrated defense system architecture.

 

 

Saudi intercepts ballistic missile from Yemen: coalition

 
‎Wednesday, ‎July ‎20, ‎2016, ‏‎8:08:25 AMGo to full article
Riyadh (AFP) July 4, 2016 - Saudi Arabia intercepted a ballistic missile that Yemeni rebels fired towards the kingdom's southern city of Abha early Monday, the Riyadh-led coalition fighting the insurgents said.

"It was intercepted with no injuries," the coalition said in a statement, adding that the missile launcher was destroyed by Saudi air defences.

It was at least the fourth ballistic missile launched across the border since UN-brokered peace talks began in Kuwait in April between Yemen's Huthi rebels and the government of President Abedrabbo Mansour Hadi.

Fighting has continued despite a formal ceasefire in conjunction with the peace talks.

The Huthis, which Saudi Arabia says are backed by Iran, are allied with elite troops loyal to Yemen's former president Ali Abdullah Saleh.

They overran Yemen's capital Sanaa in 2014 before moving into other parts of the country, prompting the coalition to intervene with air strikes and other support in March last year.

Saudi Arabia has deployed Patriot missile batteries to counter tactical ballistic missiles which have been fired occasionally during the war.

The UN special envoy to Yemen, Ismail Ould Cheikh Ahmed, said on Wednesday that the warring parties were taking a two-week break from the peace talks which have made little headway.

The UN says more than 6,400 people have been killed in Yemen since March last year, most of them civilians.

Fighting has driven 2.8 million people from their homes and left more than 80 percent of the population needing humanitarian aid.

On the Saudi side of the frontier, dozens of civilians and soldiers died in skirmishes and artillery barrages earlier in the war.

 

 

Raytheon to conduct Patriot missile system diagnostics and repair

 
‎Tuesday, ‎July ‎12, ‎2016, ‏‎11:26:29 AMGo to full article
Washington (UPI) Jun 30, 2016 - Raytheon has received an $11 million U.S. Army contract modification for depot-level diagnostics and repair of major Patriot missile system items.

Work will be performed in Massachusetts, Oklahoma, North Carolina, Texas, South Korea, Japan, United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, Qatar, Kuwait, Germany and Turkey.

The work is expected to be completed by January 2017.

The Army Redstone Arsenal is the contracting activity.

The Patriot is a long-range, high-altitude, all-weather system that can counter threats from tactical ballistic missiles, cruise missiles, drones and advanced aircraft.

 

 

Raytheon upgrading Kuwait's Patriot air defense system

 
‎Tuesday, ‎July ‎12, ‎2016, ‏‎11:26:29 AMGo to full article
Andover, Mass. (UPI) Jun 24, 2016 - Raytheon is to modernize Kuwait's Patriot Air and Missile Defense Systems under a $523 million contract issued by the U.S. Army.

The Foreign Military Sales program award covers six Patriot fire units.

"Kuwait and other members of the 13-nation strong Patriot Partnership continue to invest in the system and trust Patriot to defend their citizens and militaries," said Ralph Acaba, Raytheon vice president of Integrated Air and Missile Defense. "Patriot is the only system in the world that is combat-proven and designed to outpace the future threat through continuous evolution."

The Patriot units will be upgraded by Raytheon to Configuration 3+, which features enhanced capability against a variety of threats, an improved identification-friend-or-foe capability and improved radar search.

The work by Raytheon is expected to be completed by 2022.

Patriot is a surface-to-air missile system for protection against cruise and tactical ballistic missiles and aircraft.

 

 

Washington hopes to wrap up anti-missile deal with SKorea

 
‎Tuesday, ‎July ‎12, ‎2016, ‏‎11:26:29 AMGo to full article
Washington (AFP) June 24, 2016 - The United States wants to wrap up discussions with South Korea on the deployment of a sophisticated defense system, the Pentagon said Friday, two days after North Korea's latest missile tests.

Seoul and Washington have for weeks been in talks about deploying the advanced US THAAD missile system in South Korea to protect against the potential threat from Pyongyang -- a move vehemently opposed by China.

"We would like to see these conversations, as I think the South Koreans would, wrapped up in an as efficient and timely fashion as possible," Pentagon press secretary Peter Cook said.

He said discussions had "progressed well," but there were still "some details to work out."

North Korea tested two Musudan medium-range missiles just hours apart on Wednesday.

The first was seen as a failure, but leader Kim Jong-Un hailed the second as a complete success.

South Korea has had reservations about THAAD -- the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense System -- primarily because of opposition from China, which sees it as a threat to its own nuclear deterrent.

Beijing also fears the presence of more US military hardware on its doorstep will further tip the balance of power in the Pacific towards Washington.

Pentagon officials spoke with South Korean and Japanese counterparts earlier on Friday to discuss the recent North Korean missile launches, Cook said.

"All three countries reiterated their strong condemnation of these launches and urged North Korea to refrain from provocative actions that undermine peace and security and instead focus on fulfilling its international obligations and commitments," he told reporters.

"The three noted that North Korea's provocations would only strengthen the resolve of the international community."

N. Korea rejects UN rebuke, warns tensions 'uncontrollable'
Seoul (AFP) June 24, 2016 - Pyongyang on Saturday rejected the UN Security Council's sharp criticism of its latest missile tests and blamed the United States for driving the divided peninsula toward an "uncontrollable extreme phase".

North Korea this week conducted its most successful tests to date of a powerful home-grown missile it hopes will one day be capable of launching nuclear attacks on the US mainland.

They drew a strong rebuke from the UN Security Council, which described the launches as "grave violations" of resolutions banning the North from developing ballistic missiles.

The 15-member council called for sanctions to be redoubled after holding an emergency meeting over the tests.

But Pyongyang rejected the criticism, calling it "a product of high-handedness wantonly violating the sovereignty of an independent state".

"This is an unreasonable deed of turning black into white," a foreign ministry spokesman said in a statement carried by state news agency KCNA.

North Korea has conducted a string of failed missile launches this year which, coming hot on the heels of its fourth nuclear test in January, have escalated international tensions.

At a rare congress of the ruling party in May, leader Kim Jong-Un vowed Pyongyang would push ahead with its nuclear weapons programme despite UN sanctions and near universal condemnation.

North and South Korea have technically been at war for decades, and Seoul has rejected recent overtures for peace talks with Pyongyang as an "insincere" propaganda ploy.

Saturday's KCNA statement blamed the US for ratcheting up tensions between the neighbours by sending weapons to South Korea.

"Its (the US's) sustained strategic mistake and rash deed are now driving the situation on the Korean peninsula to the uncontrollable extreme phase," it warned.

 

 

Raytheon awarded $365 million Aegis contract

 
‎Thursday, ‎June ‎16, ‎2016, ‏‎8:19:25 AMGo to full article
Washington (UPI) May 31, 2016 - Raytheon's Integrated Defense Systems division has been awarded a $365.8 million fixed-price-incentive, cost-plus-fixed-fee U.S. Navy contract.

The award covers production of Aegis Weapon System AN/SPY-1D(V) Radar Transmitter Group, Missile Fire Control System MK 99 equipment, as well as associated engineering services.

The contract includes options which would bring the cumulative value to $423 million if exercised.

This contract combines purchases under the Foreign Military Sales program, with the U.S. Navy paying 17 percent, South Korea paying 50 percent and Japan paying 33 percent.

The work will be performed in Massachusetts, New Jersey, Virginia and Canada, and is expected to be completed by October 2022.

Naval Sea Systems Command is the contracting activity.

 

 

Lockheed receives Aegis development contract

 
‎Thursday, ‎June ‎16, ‎2016, ‏‎8:19:25 AMGo to full article
Washington (UPI) May 27, 2016 - Lockheed Martin's Mission Systems and Training has been awarded a $62.4 million U.S. Navy contract modification for work on the Aegis combat system's development and test sites.

The exercised options include work on Aegis' technical engineering, configuration management, associated equipment and supplies, quality assurance, information assurance, and other operation and maintenance efforts pertaining to the Combat Systems Engineering Development site, SPY-1A Test Facility and the Naval Systems Computer Center.

Work will be performed in New Jersey and is expected to be completed by June 2017.

The Naval Sea Systems Command is the contracting authority.

Aegis is able to simultaneously attack submarines, surface ships and land targets while automatically protecting the fleet against cruise missiles, ballistic missiles and aircraft. Aegis Ashore is the land-based version of the ballistic missile defense system, with a facility recently opening in Romania.

 

 

Harris continues support services for missile defense systems

 
‎Thursday, ‎June ‎16, ‎2016, ‏‎8:19:25 AMGo to full article
Melbourne, Fla. (UPI) May 26, 2016 - U.S. missile warning, missile defense and space surveillance programs will continue to receive support and sustainment services from the Harris Corporation.

The work, which comes through the U.S. Air Force's exercise of contracts options, is worth a total of $106 million.

The services that will be provided to six ground-based weapons systems at 12 locations includes depot-level maintenance, repairs and upgrades, contractor logistics support and more -- to ensure the weapon systems are continually available and capable.

Additional details were not disclosed.

The Air Force in 2002 awarded Harris a five-year contract for support services in 2002. It provided for as many as 13 earned extensions. The new extension exercised is the 10th under the original contract.

US nuke force still using floppy disks: report
Washington (AFP) May 26, 2016 - America's nuclear force still uses floppy disks designed in the 1970s to coordinate some of its functions, according to a watchdog report released Wednesday.

The report by the Government Accountability Office points to a number of worryingly outdated "legacy systems" still in use across the US government that are in desperate need of upgrading.

A Pentagon command and control system that "coordinates the operational functions of the United States' nuclear forces, such as intercontinental ballistic missiles, nuclear bombers, and tanker support aircrafts," runs on an IBM Series/1 computer and uses 8-inch floppy disks, the report says.

That type of computer debuted in 1976, when Gerald Ford was in the White House.

"This system remains in use because, in short, it still works," Pentagon spokeswoman Lt. Col. Valerie Henderson told AFP.

"However, to address obsolescence concerns, the floppy drives are scheduled to be replaced with Secure Digital devices by the end of 2017," she added.

"Modernization across the entire Nuclear Command, Control, and Communications (NC3) enterprise remains ongoing."

According to the GAO report, the Pentagon is planning to fully replace the system by the end of 2020.

The GAO said the federal government is spending a lot more on "operations and maintenance" of its computer systems than it is on "development, modernization and enhancement."

Last year, for instance, the government spent $61.2 billion on operations and maintenance, compared to $19.2 billion in the other category.

The report also found that the Treasury Department uses "assembly language code," which was initially designed in the 1950s.

The Office of Management and Budget has started an initiative to replace the legacy IT systems, "but until this policy is finalized and fully executed, the government runs the risk of maintaining systems that have outlived their effectiveness," the report states.

 

 

Israel successfully tests missile defence system at sea: army

 
‎Thursday, ‎June ‎16, ‎2016, ‏‎8:19:25 AMGo to full article
Jerusalem (AFP) May 18, 2016 - Israel has successfully tested a maritime missile interception system dubbed the Iron Dome of the Sea, the military announced on Wednesday.

The system, which the military said can shoot down short-range rockets similar to those fired from Gaza, successfully destroyed "several" missiles, Ariel Shir, head of operational systems in the navy, said.

He said the test, which took place two weeks ago, "proved the Israeli navy's ability to protect Israel's strategic assets at sea against short-range ballistic rockets".

During the 2014 war between Israel and Hamas and other Palestinian militant groups in the Gaza Strip, Israel deployed its Iron Dome system on land to shoot down rockets fired across the border.

A similar system has been in development for several years and was revealed to the public on Wednesday.

A video provided by the army showed a rocket launcher installed on a ship firing at targets in the sky and later intercepting a missile.

Shir said they had tested the system from a ship moving at speed and it had succeeded.

"The Sea Iron Dome, as we call it, can intercept threats from a moving naval ship," he said.

He added that the system was operational now, but it would take "a little bit more time" to fully integrate into the navy's systems.

Israel has a number of assets at sea, including a major offshore gas rig around 16 nautical miles from Gaza.

Hamas has previously targeted the installation unsuccessfully.

Any damage to the rig could be potentially hugely damaging to the Israeli economy, since it provides large amounts of the country's energy needs.

 

 

US missile shield in Romania goes live to Russian fury

 
‎Thursday, ‎June ‎16, ‎2016, ‏‎8:19:25 AMGo to full article
Deveselu, Romania (AFP) May 12, 2016 - A US anti-missile defence system in Romania aimed at protecting NATO members from threats by "rogue" nations became operational Thursday, triggering Russian fury despite US insistence it does not target Moscow.

Located in Deveselu in southern Romania, the missile interceptor station will help defend NATO members against the threat of short- and medium-range ballistic missiles, particularly from the Middle East, officials said.

"Today the United States and Romania make history in delivering this system to the NATO alliance," said US commander in Europe and Africa Mark Ferguson at an inauguration ceremony with NATO chief Jens Stoltenberg.

But Russia sees the missile system as a security threat right on its doorstep, despite the US and NATO insisting it is not aimed at undermining Moscow's defences.

"According to our experts' opinion, we are convinced that the deployment of the missile defence system is truly a threat to Russia's security," Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters in Moscow.

Relations between NATO and Moscow have sharply deteriorated since Russia annexed Crimea from Ukraine in March 2014, sparking fears among other eastern European countries that they too could be the targets of Russian aggression.

Stoltenberg said the missile installation "represents a significant increase in the capability to defend European allies against proliferation of ballistic missiles" as it becomes part of a broader NATO missile shield with an installation in Poland as well.

But he stressed that the system was not aimed at Russia and in fact was not capable of intercepting Russian missiles.

"The site in Romania as well as the one in Poland are not directed against Russia. The interceptors are too few and located too far south or too close to Russia to be able to intercept Russian intercontinental ballistic missiles," he said.

- 'Purely defensive' -

The Deveselu site will host a battery of SM-2 missile interceptors and will officially be integrated into the NATO missile shield at the bloc's summit in Warsaw in July.

Work on the site began in October 2013 and is thought to have cost $800 million (700 million euros).

The Western military alliance insists the role of the missile shield is a "purely defensive" response to external threats, notably from so-called "rogue states", having referred in the past to Iran and North Korea .

The US ambassador to NATO, Douglas Lute, has described the activation of the missile system as a gesture of his country's commitment to Article Five by which all 28 NATO members pledge a one-for-all, all-for-one response to any military threat if a member invokes the treaty clause in the face of an attack.

But Russia meanwhile is bolstering its forces to counter what defence officials said was the NATO build-up close to its borders.

"It is a step towards the military and political containment of Russia," senior foreign ministry official Andrei Kelin said of the deployment, Russia's Interfax news agency reported.

Kelin warned it would "only worsen" the already-tense relations between Russia and NATO.

And Russia's ambassador to NATO, Alexander Grushko, said he was not "convinced by NATO declarations that the American anti-missile system is not aimed at Russia".

Cited by Interfax, he also condemned "anti-missile defence systems deployed in the region, always ready for combat," and "military infrastructures moving closer to Russia's borders".

Launched in 2010, NATO's anti-missile shield system -- based essentially on US technology -- involves the progressive deployment of missile interceptors and powerful radar in eastern Europe and Turkey.

The Deveselu site is part of the second phase of the project, after the deployment of radar in Turkey and four Aegis warships with anti-missile defence capacity in the Spanish port of Rota.

The third phase involves Poland.

Work on a site in Redzikowo in the north of the country is to be completed at the end of 2018. Situated some 250 kilometres (150 miles) from the Russian enclave of Kaliningrad, it will host 24 land-based SM-3 missiles as well as anti-aircraft systems.

burs-mr/mt/hmw

 

 

US, Russia step up war of words over missile shield

 
‎Thursday, ‎June ‎16, ‎2016, ‏‎8:19:25 AMGo to full article
Redzikowo, Poland (AFP) May 13, 2016 - The United States and Russia on Friday accused each other of mounting an aggressive military presence in northern Europe, with Moscow vowing to "end threats" posed by a US missile shield near its border.

The stepped-up war of words came as Poland on Friday broke ground on the northern section of a US missile defence shield launched in Romania a day earlier, which Russia slammed as a serious security threat despite US assurances to the contrary.

Russian President Vladimir Putin on Friday warned Washington that Moscow will consider measures to "end threats" from the US anti-missile systems in Europe but said it would not be engaged in a new arms race.

"Now that these anti-missile elements have been installed, we will be forced to consider putting an end to the threats emerging in relation to Russia's security," Putin told defence officials in televised remarks.

US President Barack Obama hit back hours later, warning Russia about its military build-up in northern Europe, as he hosted leaders from five Nordic countries at the White House.

"We are united in our concern about Russia's growing aggressive military presence and posture in the Baltic-Nordic region," Obama said.

Russian Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu said last week that Moscow will set up three new divisions in the west and south of the country by the end of the year to counter NATO forces close to its border.

Relations between NATO and Moscow have sharply deteriorated since Russia annexed Crimea from Ukraine in March 2014, sparking fears among other eastern European countries that they too could be targets of Russian aggression.

- NATO European shield -

Located in Redzikowo, northern Poland, and Deveselu in southern Romania, the two US missile interceptor stations are part of NATO's larger European shield, due to become fully operational by 2018.

US and NATO officials insist the system is intended to counter the threat of short- and medium-range ballistic missiles, particularly from so-called "rogue" states in the Middle East.

But with the Redzikowo station just 250 kilometres (155 miles) from the Russian enclave of Kaliningrad, Moscow views the system as a security threat on its very doorstep.

US Deputy Secretary of Defence Robert Work was on hand Friday for the start of construction on the Aegis Ashore-type missile defence facility in Redzikowo.

It will include 24 land-based SM-3 missiles as well as anti-aircraft systems.

The facility in Poland "is a US contribution to NATO missile defence," Work said at the ground-breaking ceremonies, adding that "when completed in 2018 it will be capable of defending the central and northern arc of NATO."

Work also said that "by the (NATO) Warsaw summit in July, we expect alliance leaders to declare initial operational capability for the NATO ballistic missile defence system."

"Although we joined NATO years ago, now we are seeing that NATO is truly entering Poland," Polish President Andrzej Duda said before ceremony participants took shovels in hand and began digging at the Polish air force base.

Launched in 2010, NATO's anti-missile shield system -- based essentially on US technology -- involves the progressive deployment of missile interceptors and powerful radar in eastern Europe and Turkey.

NATO and the United States said this spring that they will switch their defence doctrine from assurance to deterrence in eastern Europe in response to a "resurgent and aggressive Russia" following its annexation of Crimea.

The Pentagon said in March it would begin continuous rotations of an additional armoured brigade of about 4,200 troops in eastern Europe beginning in early 2017.

Spooked by Russian action toward Ukraine, eastern NATO members including the formerly Soviet-ruled Baltic states and Poland have lobbied the alliance to increase its presence in the region to guarantee security.

 

 

US heralds Romania missile defence system as step forward

 
‎Thursday, ‎June ‎16, ‎2016, ‏‎8:19:25 AMGo to full article
Bucharest (AFP) May 11, 2016 - A US missile defence system in Romania will become operational Thursday in a move welcomed by US officials as an "important step" but also one likely to infuriate Moscow.

The missile interceptor station in Deveselu, southern Romania, will help defend NATO members against the threat of short and medium-range ballistic missiles -- particularly from the Middle East, US assistant secretary of state Frank Rose told a news conference in Bucharest Wednesday.

But Russia has taken a dim view of the project, seeing it as a security threat on its doorstep.

"Both the US and NATO have made it clear the system is not designed for or capable of undermining Russia's strategic deterrence capability," Rose said.

"Russia has repeatedly raised concerns that the US and NATO defence are directed against Russia and represents a threat to its strategic nuclear deterrent. Nothing could be further from the truth."

The Deveselu site will host a battery of SM-2 missile interceptors and will officially be integrated into the NATO missile shield at the bloc's summit meeting to be held in Warsaw in July.

Work on the Deveselu site began in October 2013 and is thought to have cost $800 million (700 million euros).

US ambassador to Romania Douglas Lute described the activation of the missile system as a gesture of his country's commitment to Article Five by which all 28 NATO members pledge a one-for-all, all-for-one response to any military threat if a member invokes the treaty clause in the face of an attack.

"Tomorrow is a demonstration that the US, Romania and the other allies contributing to the defence system mean what Article Five says," he said.

NATO decided in 2010 to create a missile shield based on US technology. The project is due to be completed in 2020, with installations in Poland as well as Romania.

The Western military alliance insists the role of the planned shield is a "purely defensive" response to external threats.

 

 

Moscow seeks guarantees US missiles in Asia not to target Russia

 
‎Thursday, ‎June ‎16, ‎2016, ‏‎8:19:25 AMGo to full article
Bocharov Ruchei (Sputnik) May 10, 2016 - Moscow seeks legally binding guarantees that the United States' plans to deploy missile defense technologies in Eastern Asia are not directed against Russia, Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said Friday. The United States has been in dialogue with South Korea over the proposed deployment of the THAAD system over the past year. THAAD is capable of shooting down short-, medium- and intermediate-range ballistic missiles.

"As with the European segment of the US missile defense, we are told that it is not directed against us, but we have a somewhat different assessment. And if all of this is not directed against Russia, legally binding guarantees are required," Lavrov told reporters. Moscow and Beijing consider the US deployment of the Terminal High Altitude Air Defense (THAAD) anti-missile system to South Korea to be a threat to Russia's and China's security.

South Korea and the United States started discussing the deployment of THAAD systems earlier in March, in response to a successful North Korean hydrogen bomb test and launch of a satellite into orbit on board a long-range rocket. Attempts by certain countries to use the North Korean nuclear issue as a pretext to increase their military presence in the region are unjustifiable and highly dangerous, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said Friday.

"We, in turn, noted that despite the unity in regard to North Korea's missile and nuclear adventurism, the Russian Federation considers it absolutely unjustifiable and very, very dangerous to attempt to use this situation as an excuse to disproportionately increase military presence in the region," Lavrov said following talks between the Russian and Japanese leaders.

Russian President Vladimir Putin and Japan's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on Friday have dismissed North Korea's claims for a nuclear power status, Russian top diplomat Sergei Lavrov said Friday.

"They confirmed the official stance of Russia and Japan that all existing deals on removing nuclear weapons from the Korean Peninsula must be fulfilled. They agreed that both countries would refute Pyongyang's nuclear status ambitions," Lavrov told reporters.

The United States has been in dialogue with South Korea over the proposed deployment of the THAAD system over the past year. THAAD is capable of shooting down short-, medium- and intermediate-range ballistic missiles. In July 2015, North Korea said it might boost its nuclear deterrent should the United States deploy a mobile missile defense system in South Korea.

Source: Sputnik News

 

 

Romania's US missile defense system has only 'symbolic' function

 
‎Thursday, ‎June ‎16, ‎2016, ‏‎8:19:25 AMGo to full article
Moscow (Sputnik) May 10, 2016 - A US ballistic missile defense (BMD) facility in Romania is largely a political gesture rather than a military initiative, according to Stratfor founder. The installation itself came online in December but only became operational after being integrated into NATO's BMD framework.

However, the military purpose of this system remains unclear as it is designed to intercept a small number of nuclear missiles and would be completely irrelevant in case of a massive nuclear strike, according to acclaimed geopolitical forecaster and founder of Stratfor global intelligence company George Friedman.

"The problem with this is that it is unclear why a country with relatively few missiles would launch a strike at all, and totally unclear why their target would be Europe," Friedman wrote at Geopolitical Futures.

While nuclear weapons were originally developed as a substitute for massed bombing attacks, the idea of a single weapon capable of wreaking so much destruction and killing so many people quickly turned it into "the embodiment of hell," he adds. And as nuclear weapons became associated with the apocalyptic end of the world, it also became clear that a world leader would have to be completely insane to use them.

"Since World War II, no nation has used nuclear weapons for any purpose. For the US in Vietnam and the Soviets in Afghanistan, nuclear weapons had no utility. Even if they had, both countries would have accepted defeat rather than use them. The empirical reality is that of all the nations that have nuclear capability, and wish ill toward their neighbor, none have used it," Friedman remarks.

Conventional wars, "waged by helicopters, armored fighting vehicles and well-trained infantry firing wire-guided missiles at tanks," are a much more probable threat than a nuclear attack, according to Friedman.

However, the US continues to display a "fixation with complex weapons designed to handle improbable threats," while Poland and Romania consider the BMD system a symbol of US commitment to protect them, the forecaster concludes.

Source: Sputnik News

 

 

China, Russia rap US missile defence plan in S. Korea

 
‎Thursday, ‎June ‎16, ‎2016, ‏‎8:19:25 AMGo to full article
Beijing (AFP) April 29, 2016 - China and Russia on Friday rapped US plans to put a missile defence system on the Korean peninsula, less than 24 hours after Pyongyang twice tested rockets thought to be capable of reaching American territory.

A series of missile tests and nuclear blasts by North Korea have pushed Seoul into talks with Washington about deploying the United States' sophisticated Terminal High Altitude Area Defence System (THAAD), which fires projectiles to smash into enemy missiles.

Beijing fears that the presence of more US hardware on its doorstep will further tip the balance of power in the Pacific towards Washington.

"We both are gravely concerned about the US's likely deployment of the THAAD system in South Korea," Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi said at a briefing with his visiting Russian counterpart Sergei Lavrov.

"The move goes beyond the actual defence needs of relevant countries," Wang said.

"It will directly affect the strategic security of China and Russia respectively if it is deployed," he added.

Lavrov condemned Washington for using the North's tests as "an excuse, as a pretext" to deploy what he called Washington's "global antiballistic missile defence".

This week's North Korean rocket tests failed, but Pyongyang has now made three bids in two weeks to test-fly a Musudan missile, which is capable of striking US bases on the Pacific island of Guam.

"The current situation on the peninsula is indeed in a highly dangerous period," Wang said.

He added that proper implementation of UN resolutions barring the North from developing any ballistic missile-related technology is key to bringing the country to the negotiating table.

China is the North's biggest trading partner and its key aid provider.

South Korean military officials say the North is desperate to register a successful launch ahead of next week's ruling party congress, at which leader Kim Jong-Un is expected to take credit for pushing the country's nuclear programme to new heights.

In recent months, the North has claimed a series of major technical breakthroughs in developing what it sees as the ultimate goal of its nuclear drive -- an intercontinental ballistic missile capable of delivering a warhead to targets across the continental United States.

The achievements trumpeted by Pyongyang have included miniaturising a nuclear warhead to fit on a missile, developing a warhead that can withstand atmospheric re-entry and building a solid-fuel missile engine.

Last Saturday, it successfully tested a submarine-launched ballistic missile -- a move that was promptly condemned by the UN Security Council.

Lavrov also backed Beijing's stance that territorial disputes in the South China Sea "should not in anyway be internationalised" and should be resolved by direct negotiations between countries.

An international tribunal is expected to rule soon on a case brought by the Philippines over the issue, which has seen tensions mount between Beijing and Washington.

China claims nearly all the strategically vital sea, despite completing claims from Southeast Asian neighbours including the Philippines, Vietnam, Malaysia and Brunei.

 

 

Army developing new air defense system

 
‎Sunday, ‎May ‎29, ‎2016, ‏‎8:34:19 AMGo to full article
While Sands Missile Range, N.M. (UPI) Apr 28, 2016 - The U.S. Army has been conducting a series of tests on the capabilities of a new air defense system in development.

The system is called the Integrated Fire Protection Capability Increment 2-Intercept, or IFPC Inc 2-I, which is to protect soldiers from aircraft, cruise missiles, unmanned aerial systems, and artillery weapons, including rockets and mortars.

"If you go back and take a look at what has happened in terms of the threat over the last couple years you'll find that UAS systems and cruise missiles have really become a problem," said Col. Terrence Howard, program manager for Cruise Missile Defense Systems. "So we've got to introduce materiel solutions that can address multiple threats."

The IFPC Inc 2-I system under Army development is to integrate into the Army Integrated Air and Missile Defense system, or AIAMD, a networked air defense control system also currently going through testing at White Sands Missile Range in N.M., for a plug-and-fight capability using multiple systems and radars on a network to address whatever threat situation is encountered.

Several tests of IFPC Inc 2-I were held this month and last to demonstrate the system's ability to launch various missile types and its ability to connect to the AIAMD system and use its Integrated Battle Command System.

The IBCS is a computer system that allows a small number of soldiers to better manage and control a complex air defense network composed of different radars and missile systems.

"(It's about) integration of a lot of existing capability," said Tamera Adams, chief engineer with the Army's Cruise Missile Defense Systems projects. "It's kind of like if you're trying to put together a new stereo system in your house. You're buying speakers from this vendor, a turntable from another and a DVD player from another. You're trying to put them together to get the best capability for your house."

The Army's Multi-Mission Launcher, or MML, mounted onto a truck, is a visible feature of the new IFPC Inc 2-I. The launcher carries 15 modular missile launch tubes on a turret system. Tubes of the MML enable allow customization of the missile load.

During the testing of the system, Hellfire Longbow and AIM-9X Sidewinders utilizing the IBCS and sensor data from a Sentinel radar unit have been fired, The MML has also conducted a ballistic test of the Miniature Hit-to-Kill missile for use against rocket, artillery and mortar threats, the Army said.

IFPC Inc 2-I is a joint collaborative effort between the Army's Program Executive Office for Missiles and Space's Cruise Missile Defense Systems Project Office and the Army Aviation and Missile Research, Development, and Engineering Center.

 

 

Planned US Missile Defense Units in Asia-Pacific Threaten China, Russia

 
‎Tuesday, ‎May ‎17, ‎2016, ‏‎9:55:39 AMGo to full article
Moscow (Sputnik) Apr 20, 2016 - The planned deployment of units of the US missile defense system in the Asia-Pacific region poses a threat to China and Russia and undermines global security, Russian Deputy Defense Minister Anatoly Antonov said.

"The point is that if this small element becomes a part of a missile defense system across the world, then, of course, it will strike down and undermine the system of global security. In fact, it strikes down or even nullifies China's nuclear deterrent force and causes damage to strategic stability, including of the Russian Federation," Antonov told the CCTV broadcaster and the Xinhua news agency in an interview.

According to the deputy minister, Russia also takes a negative view of the fact that the United States uses its military ties with a number of states to establish a missile system on their territory.

"There are not only zero differences between China and Russia, both permanent members of the UN Security Council, but there is a common position to strengthen regional peace and international security. China and Russia are not cooperating against someone in the military sphere. Our cooperation is aimed at strengthening the security of our countries, including with regard to the international obligations of China and the Russian Federation," Antonov said.

The United States has continued to expand its ballistic missile defense systems over the past year. In Europe, the United States recently installed such systems in Romania and plans to do the same in Poland in 2018.

Russia has continuously called on the international community to address the global expansion of the US missile defense shield.

Source: Sputnik News

 

 

Lockheed Martin tests Aegis on Australian destroyer

 
‎Tuesday, ‎May ‎17, ‎2016, ‏‎9:55:39 AMGo to full article
Adelaide, Australia (UPI) Mar 30, 2016 - A Lockheed Martin integrated test team has started installing an Aegis combat system aboard Australia's first Hobart-class air warfare destroyer.

The team includes specialist technicians from the United States as well as technicians trained in Australia for the air warfare destroyer program.

"This milestone is a significant step towards an increase in the Royal Australian Navy's maritime security capabilities through the seamless integration of the Aegis combat system to defend against advanced air, surface and subsurface threats," said Commodore Craig Bourke, CSC, RAN Program manager, Air Warfare Destroyer. "With more than 100 Aegis-equipped ships deployed worldwide, Australia is joining a family of allied nations that continues to push the boundaries of innovation with adaptable and affordable capabilities that meet the warfighter's multi-mission needs."

Aegis is an integrated weapon that combines advanced computer and radar technology to track and guide missiles to a target.

The Aegis combat system for Australia is in the Baseline 8 configuration, which integrates commercial-off-the-shelf technology and open architecture into the combat system. It is equipped with SPY-1D(V) radar and is paired with the MK 41 Vertical Launching System.

 

 

S. Korea, US open missile shield talks

 
‎Tuesday, ‎May ‎17, ‎2016, ‏‎9:55:39 AMGo to full article
Seoul (AFP) March 4, 2016 - South Korea and the United States were set to open talks Friday on the possible deployment -- vehemently opposed by China -- of an advanced US missile defence system to counter the growing threat from North Korea.

South Korea's defence ministry said initial discussions would focus on potential locations, as well as cost-sharing and a timeline for installation of the THAAD system.

The system fires anti-ballistic missiles into the sky to smash into enemy missiles either inside or outside the Earth's atmosphere during their final flight phase.

The interceptor missiles carry no warheads, instead relying on kinetic energy to destroy their targets.

Seoul and Washington announced their intention to begin formal talks on its deployment following Pyongyang's long-range rocket launch on February 7, which was widely regarded as a covert ballistic missile test.

The first official meeting has been on hold amid fierce opposition from China and Russia, with Beijing warning the deployment had the potential to "destroy" relations with Seoul.

China sees THAAD as a threat to the effectiveness of its own nuclear deterrent, arguing that it could be used to monitor Chinese missile launches as far inland as Xian in the northwest.

The defence ministry in Seoul stressed Friday that any deployment would be solely aimed at countering North Korea's "increasing nuclear and missile threats".

"North Korea has continued its nuclear tests and long-range missile provocations and defied South Korea and the international community's deterrence efforts," the ministry said.

China is South Korea's most important trade partner and -- in deference to Beijing's sensitivities on the issue -- South Korea had previously declined to formally discuss bringing in THAAD.

But North Korea's continued testing -- and Beijing's previous resistance to imposing harsh sanctions on Pyongyang -- triggered a change in Seoul's stance.

There is already a THAAD battery stationed in Guam, and Japan, the US's other key ally in the region, is also considering taking on the system.

 

 

Israeli Air Force deploying 'David's Sling' missile defense system

 
‎Tuesday, ‎May ‎10, ‎2016, ‏‎1:06:40 AMGo to full article
Jerusalem (UPI) Mar 3, 2016 - The David's Sling missile defense system is being delivered to the Israel Air Force ahead of the system's full deployment.

"After a series of concluding trials of the David's Sling aerial defense system, Israel's Missile Defense Organization at the Defense Ministry, together with the U.S. Missile Defense Agency, began delivering major components of the system to the Israeli Air Force," Israel's Ministry of Defense said in a statement.

"David's Sling will allow Israel to more effectively defend against the wide range of current and future threats to its civilians."

The report of the ministry action appeared in the Times of Israel , an online newspaper.

David's Sling, also known as Magic Wand, is for use against tactical ballistic missiles, medium- to long-range rockets and cruise missiles. It was developed by Israel's Rafael Advanced Defense Systems and Raytheon with funding from Israel and the United States.

The system completed a final set of major tests last December and was declared operational.

The Times of Israel said it will take several weeks for all of the components to be delivered beginning with the radar, interception and command and control systems.

"In the near future, the process of testing all of the system components and the final declaration by the Air Force that the system is ready for use will occur," according to the ministry.

 

 

US Missile Defense Outdated

 
‎Tuesday, ‎May ‎10, ‎2016, ‏‎1:06:40 AMGo to full article
Washington DC (Sputnik) Mar 03, 2016 - The global geopolitical environment has changed, but the US missile defense strategy has stayed the same, making Washington vulnerable to new nuclear challenges, a US analyst wrote.

The US has invested billions in missile defense technology because it believes that the capability to defend against ballistic missiles will help mitigate nuclear risks to Washington and its allies in the 21st century.

The approach is based on the 2010 Ballistic Missile Defense Review (BMDR) which may now prove to be ineffective, Ivanka Barzashka, a nuclear security specialist at Stanford University, wrote in an article for The National Interest.

The author pointed out that the three basic premises of the posture are now being challenged by a new strategic environment.

The first premise was that nuclear threats posed by regional actors had increased, and the new missile defense strategy would help reduce them. However, last year a final deal on the Iranian nuclear program was reached. In October 2015, Tehran tested a ballistic missile without a nuclear warhead.

However conventional weapons pose no strategic threats to the US, especially if relations between Iran and the West normalize. As for North Korea, the situation is worse. Pyongyang wants the world to fear its mounting nuclear capabilities. In January it was reported that North Korea had conducted another nuclear test, the article read.

The second premise was that the nuclear risks posed by Russia had significantly decreased since the Cold War era. The BMDR reads that the US and Russia are "no longer enemies" and there is "no significant prospect of war between them."

But after Crimea reunited with Russia in 2014 that assessment changed. According to Barzashka, "the risk of military confrontation in Eastern Europe has increased, and with it, the risk of nuclear use."

The third premise was that US nuclear deployment would not increase nuclear risks, even though Russia and China strongly opposed the US program. Russia has insisted that the US global defense plan would undermine global stability. Moscow also warned of a new arms race and has threatened countermeasures if Washington did not limit the program, the analyst wrote.

The US has labelled Russia's rhetoric as "politically motivated" and hoped that it would be able to avoid countermeasures from Moscow. However, now "Russia is doing exactly what it has said it was going to do" - modernizing its nuclear arsenal and developing a new aerospace defense system. China has also opposed America's strategy and plans to deploy THAAD to South Korea.

"Today's world is different. It's not like the Cold War. ... In today's world, missile defense might increase some nuclear risks while decreasing others. It might be stabilizing in one context but destabilizing in another," the analyst pointed out.

A new US administration will revise the military strategy, and its nuclear part is likely to be revised too, according to the article.

"This raises many controversial questions. Is it worth building a missile defense system in Europe against Iran? Should regional defenses target Russia? Are verifiable limits to US and Russian missile defense capability desirable?" Barzashka wrote.

According to him, reassessment of these points should constitute the basis for a new US missile defense strategy.

Source: Sputnik News

 

 

China Interfering in THAAD Deployment Decision Process Preposterous

 
‎Tuesday, ‎May ‎10, ‎2016, ‏‎1:06:40 AMGo to full article
Washington (Sputnik) Feb 26, 2016 - The intervention by China in negotiations about US deploying its THAAD anti-ballistic missile defense system in South Korea is senseless, US Pacific Command (PACOM) Commander Harry Harris said in a briefing on Thursday.

"We are having the discussions now [about THAAD deployment]," Harris stated. "China's interference in a decision that is to be made between alliance partners, the Republic of Korea and the United States, is preposterous, especially when you consider that THAAD is not a threat to China."

Earlier on Thursday, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi said Beijing is concerned over US plans to deploy the elements of the THAAD system to South Korea.

Yi also suggested that China's concerns should be taken into consideration.

Earlier in February, the US Department of Defense said Washington and Seoul planned to begin talks on deploying the THAAD system to South Korea to defend the region against North Korea's development of ballistic missiles capable of carrying nuclear weapons.

earlier report
China Concerned Over USPlans to Deploy THAADSystem in South Korea

Beijing is concerned over US plans to deploy the elements of THAAD missile defense systems on the territory of South Korea, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi said Thursday.

Earlier in February, Pentagon said that Washington and Seoul planned to begin talks on deploying the THAAD anti-ballistic missile system to South Korea to defend the region against North Korea's development of ballistic missiles capable of carrying nuclear weapons.

"We think that the China's concerns regarding security should be taken into consideration and China should be provided with reasonable explanations. I do not think that we ask for too much. It is a sound position," Xi said, speaking at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in the United States.

Tensions over North Korea's nuclear and ballistic missile programs escalated after Pyongyang said on January 6 that it had successfully carried out a hydrogen bomb test, triggering condemnation from the international community.

On February 7, North Korea launched a satellite atop a long-range rocket, defying a UN Security Council resolution which bans Pyongyang from launching rockets that could be used as ballistic missiles carrying nuclear warheads.

Source: Sputnik News

 

 

S. Korea dismisses China warning on US missile system

 
‎Friday, ‎April ‎29, ‎2016, ‏‎11:16:13 AMGo to full article
Seoul (AFP) Feb 24, 2016 - South Korea Wednesday dismissed China's warning that the planned deployment of a US missile defence system could damage ties, stressing that it was to counter "growing threats" from North Korea.

"The deployment of the Terminal High Altitude Area Defence system (THAAD) is a measure of self-defence against growing nuclear and missile threats from North Korea," presidential spokesman Jeong Yeon-Guk said.

Jeong said the issue would be "decided in accordance with security and national interests," adding that "China will have to recognise the point."

The remarks came after Chinese ambassador Qiu Guohong warned Tuesday that installation of the THAAD system on the Korean Peninsula could "destroy" relations between Beijing and Seoul.

Qiu, in a meeting with Kim Jong-In, the leader of opposition Minju party, also warned that it would be "hard" to mend the ties once damaged, the party spokesman said Tuesday.

China has repeatedly protested since Washington and Seoul announced plans to deploy the missile defence in the South, in response to North Korea's recent nuclear test and rocket launch.

But Tuesday was the first time that a Chinese diplomat or official has warned of the effect on diplomatic ties with Seoul.

South Korea's foreign ministry summoned Qiu to make him clarify the comment, Yonhap news agency said, citing a ministry official.

"Qiu sincerely clarified the circumstances around the meeting (with Kim)...and what he actually said then," the official quoted by Yonhap said without elaborating further.

The THAAD system fires anti-ballistic missiles to smash into enemy missiles either inside or outside the Earth's atmosphere during their final flight phase.

The interceptor missiles carry no warheads, instead relying on kinetic energy to destroy their targets.

The allies announced their intention to begin talks on its deployment following Pyongyang's long-range rocket launch on February 7, which was seen by the US and its allies as a covert ballistic missile test.

South Korea's defence ministry said it expects official talks on THAAD to begin next week.

 

 

Russian expert says THAAD deployment in S. Korea to raise regional tension

 
‎Friday, ‎April ‎29, ‎2016, ‏‎11:16:13 AMGo to full article
Moscow (XNA) Feb 23, 2016 - The deployment of an advanced U.S. missile system in South Korea in the wake of the launch of a satellite by the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) earlier this month could raise tension in the region, a Russian expert warned Thursday.

The deployment of Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) "will lead to a dangerous increase in tension between the United States and a number of Northeast Asian nations," Yevgeni Kim told Xinhua in an interview.

Kim, a senior researcher at the Center for Korean Studies of Russian Academy of Sciences, said the move is aimed at Russia and China, rather than at the DPRK as it claimed.

Washington and Seoul started earlier this month to negotiate the deployment of THAAD to South Korea in response to the launch of a satellite by the DPRK.

The launch, which took place about a month after Pyongyang claimed it had successfully tested its first hydrogen bomb, raised serious concerns around the world as many considered it was a test of a ballistic missile that could be used to launch a nuclear weapon.

Kim said that though the United States cited DPRK' move as a pretext for deploying THAAD, it is the DPRK's two bigger neighbors that THAAD is targeted.

The THAAD system was designed to intercept intercontinental ballistic missiles at an altitude of over 50 km, but if the DPRK wanted to use nuclear weapons against South Korea, it would use rockets that fly at much lower altitudes, Kim said.

"The deployment of the THAAD missile defense system in South Korea is not directed against the DPRK. DPRK's nuclear activity is just an excuse," Kim said.

Kim recalled the United States and the Soviet Union signed the Anti-Ballistic Missile treaty in 1972, which for a number of years contained the development of new missile defense systems.

However the treaty was terminated as the United States withdrew in 2002.

"Now the United States is talking more and more about new missile defense areas and about the need for a global missile defense system," Kim said.

He also noted that the United States had not abandoned its plan to deploy missile systems in Europe even after the alleged Iranian missile threat, which the systems are said to counter, was gone.

"Now they are applying the same pattern for the Korean peninsula," he said.

Kim suggested that the deployment of the THAAD system in South Korea is aimed at intercepting Russian and Chinese ballistic missiles that could be launched in retaliation against a possible U.S. nuclear strike.

"It is a step that undermines the global balance of power, and the existing security system in Northeast Asia," Kim said.

BOX China opposes deployment of THAAD in S. Korea: vice FM
Seoul - China unequivocally opposes the deployment of the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD), an advanced U.S. missile defense system, in the Republic of Korea, Vice Foreign Minister Zhang Yesui said here Tuesday.

Xinhua interviewed Zhang on the sidelines of the seventh high-level strategic dialogue between the foreign affairs ministries of China and South Korea.

Zhang said that the current situation on the Korean Peninsula is both extremely complicated and extremely sensitive. China has always steadfastly sticked to the denuclearization of the peninsula and tried to maintain peace and stability on the peninsula, always having been committed to solving the issue through dialogue and negotiation.

China supports efforts at the United Nations Security Council to agree on a new and forceful resolution as soon as possible, he said.

"Sanctions are not an end in themselves," Zhang said. "We still would have to find a fundamental solution through dialogue and talks."

He said China is seriously concerned over the intention of the United States and South Korea to hold talks on deploying THAAD in South Korea.

Pyongyang launched a satellite-carrying rocket, which Seoul sees as a cover for a long-range ballistic missile, on Feb. 7, after conducting its fourth nuclear test on Jan. 6.

The United States and South Korea said they have decided to discuss the deployment of THAAD. As one of the most advanced missile defense systems in the world, THAAD can intercept and destroy ballistic missiles inside or just outside the atmosphere during their final phase of flight.

Zhang said the deployment of such a system would exacerbate regional tensions and seriously harm China's strategic security interests as well as the security interests of other countries in the region.

China clearly opposes the deployment of THAAD in South Korea, he said.

"We are hoping that the related parties would seriously consider the concerns of China and be prudent with what they do," he said.

Source: Xinhua News Agency

 

 

US missile system in S. Korea would hurt Seoul-Beijing ties: envoy

 
‎Friday, ‎April ‎29, ‎2016, ‏‎11:16:13 AMGo to full article
Seoul (AFP) Feb 23, 2016 - China's ambassador to South Korea warned Tuesday that the planned deployment of a US missile defence system in the country could damage Beijing-Seoul ties, possibly irreparably.

Once damaged, it would be "hard" to normalise relations between the two former Cold War enemies, ambassador Qiu Guohong said, according to a spokesman for South Korea's main opposition Minju party.

Qiu made the remarks when he met Minju party head Kim Jong-In at parliament. A spokesman for the Chinese embassy said the Minju party's briefing on the meeting to journalists was accurate.

"It has taken much effort to develop China-South Korea ties to this degree. But these efforts could be destroyed in an instant because of one issue," Qiu said in reference to the planned deployment of the advanced US missile defence system in South Korea.

China has repeatedly protested since Washington and Seoul announced plans to instal the Terminal High Altitude Area Defence system (THAAD) in the South, in response to North Korea's recent nuclear test and rocket launch.

But Tuesday was the first time that a Chinese diplomat or official has warned of the effect on diplomatic ties with Seoul.

Qiu repeated Beijing's argument that the THAAD deployment would "greatly undermine" China's security interests, cause instability and spark a regional arms race.

"(South Korea) should consider whether its own security, under these circumstances, could be guaranteed," Qiu said.

China fought alongside North Korea against the South and its allies during the 1950-53 war.

It established diplomatic ties with Seoul only in 1992 but is now the South's top trading partner.

Earlier on Tuesday South Korea's defence ministry said Washington and Seoul had postponed the signing of an accord, originally due on Tuesday, on setting up a joint working group to discuss details of the THAAD deployment.

The delay comes as Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi is set to visit Washington from Tuesday to meet his US counterpart John Kerry for possible talks on the controversial missile defence system and on North Korea.

The THAAD system fires anti-ballistic missiles to smash into enemy missiles either inside or outside the Earth's atmosphere during their final flight phase.

The interceptor missiles carry no warheads, instead relying on kinetic energy to destroy their targets.

The allies announced their intention to begin talks on its deployment following Pyongyang's long-range rocket launch on February 7, which was seen by the US and its allies as a covert ballistic missile test.

China's foreign ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying warned Monday the deployment of THAAD should not be used as a front to "undermine China's own legitimate (security) interests".

The South's defence ministry reiterated Tuesday that the US system only targets North Korean missiles and that its deployment was an issue between the two allies.

The ministry said it expects official talks on THAAD to begin next week once the two sides set up the joint working group later this week.

 

 

US missile system in S. Korea would hurt China's interests: Beijing

 
‎Monday, ‎April ‎25, ‎2016, ‏‎6:41:33 AMGo to full article
Beijing (AFP) Feb 15, 2016 - The possible US deployment of a missile defence system on the Korean peninsula in response to Pyongyang's ballistic missile programme would threaten China's strategic interests, Beijing said on Monday.

Washington and Seoul will begin talks about the Terminal High Altitude Area Defence System (THAAD), they said a week ago following a surprise nuclear test and satellite launch by the hermit kingdom that raised fresh concerns about its weapons ambitions.

"We are firmly opposed to the relevant country's attempts to damage China's strategic and security interests, with the nuclear issue as an excuse," foreign ministry spokesman Hong Lei told a regular briefing.

China was "seriously concerned about the possible deployment of the THAAD system", he added, saying it "covers a range that is far beyond the needs of defence of the Korean peninsula".

Beijing argues that the THAAD deployment would trigger an arms race in the region.

The system fires anti-ballistic missiles into the sky to smash into enemy missiles either inside or outside the Earth's atmosphere during their final flight phase.

The interceptor missiles carry no warheads, instead relying on kinetic energy to destroy their targets.

China summoned the South Korean ambassador in Beijing following the country's announcement that it would begin talks with the US, expected as early as this week.

"We will not allow our legitimate rights and national security interests to be damaged," Hong said.

China has long urged a resumption of talks over North Korea's nuclear programme, arguing that sanctions are not an end in themselves.

The government-published China Daily said in an editorial Monday that new United Nations measures "should truly bite" -- but added that the proposed THAAD deployment could prevent agreement on a resolution.

The potential collapse of North Korea is a perennial worry for Beijing, which sees it as a buffer against the US military presence in South Korea and worries that instability could unleash a flood of refugees across its border.

Washington says it will not sit down with Pyongyang until the country takes steps towards halting its nuclear programme, a position that Beijing argues has led to the current impasse.

For its part, the US has long called for Beijing to use its role as one of Pyongyang's most important economic lifelines to pressure the country into changing its behaviour.

 

 

Moscow warns US over missile system deployment to S. Korea

 
‎Monday, ‎April ‎18, ‎2016, ‏‎5:53:38 PMGo to full article
Moscow (AFP) Feb 10, 2016 - Moscow on Wednesday warned that Washington's deployment of a US missile defence system to South Korea could spark an arms race in the region.

South Korean and US defence officials said last week they would begin formal talks on the deployment of the Terminal High Altitude Area Defence System (THAAD) system in response to North Korea's recent nuclear and missile tests.

"The appearance of elements of the US global missile defence system in the region -- which is characterised by a very difficult security situation -- can provoke an arms race in Northeast Asia and complicate the resolution of the nuclear problem on the Korean peninsula," said the Russian foreign ministry.

"On a more global scale, this step can increase the destructive influence of the US global missile defence system on international security and stability."

The foreign ministry reiterated that Pyongyang's nuclear and missile tests "could not but inspire strong condemnation" but accused Washington of using them to expand its missile defence system.

The US insists that the defence system is a deterrent necessitated by the North's advancing ballistic missile programme.

China has also argued it would undermine stability in the delicately balanced region.

Pyongyang has said that the deployment of a missile defence system would be a Cold War tactic to "contain" China and Russia.

The THAAD system, in service since 2008, includes truck-mounted launchers, radars, interceptor missiles and global communications links.

Five THAAD batteries are currently operational, according to the Pentagon's Missile Defense Agency, and two more were ordered in 2014.

North Korea's rocket launch last week, widely seen as a disguised long-range missile test, sparked international fury and prompted an agreement at the UN Security Council to slap new sanctions against the increasingly defiant state.

The launch, which violated multiple UN resolutions, came just weeks after Pyongyang carried out its fourth nuclear test.

 

 

US deploys more Patriot missiles in S. Korea

 
‎Saturday, ‎March ‎26, ‎2016, ‏‎11:53:00 PMGo to full article
Seoul (AFP) Feb 13, 2016 - The United States has temporarily deployed an additional Patriot missile battery in South Korea following North Korea's recent nuclear test and long-range rocket launch, US Forces Korea said Saturday.

The move came as the two allies plan to start detailed discussions on bringing in an advanced, high-altitude US missile defence system opposed by China as early as next week.

"This deployment is part of an emergency deployment readiness exercise conducted in response to recent North Korean provocations," the US Forces Korea said in a press statement, referring to the temporary roll-out of a Patriot missile battery, which was flown from Fort Bliss, Texas this week.

"Exercises like this ensure we are always ready to defend against an attack from North Korea," said Lieutenant General Thomas Vandal, commander of the US Eighth Army.

The newly deployed Patriot battery is conducting ballistic missile defence training with the Eighth Army's 35th Air Defense Artillery Brigade at Osan Air Base, some 47 kilometres (30 miles) south of Seoul.

The brigade has its own two Patriot battalions. One Patriot battalion is reportedly composed of four batteries.

Just hours after North Korea launched a long-range rocket that both condemned as a disguised ballistic missile test, South Korea and the United States announced their intention to start discussions on deployment of the Terminal High Altitude Area Defence System (THAAD).

The Pentagon has since stressed that it would like the system to be deployed in South Korea "as quickly as possible".

A senior South Korean defence ministry official said Friday detailed discussions on THAAD deployment would kick off as early as next week.

China and Russia argue that it would trigger an arms race in the region, with Beijing voicing its "deep concern" over the deployment.

South Korea had previously declined to formally discuss bringing in THAAD in deference to the sensitivities of China, its most important trade partner.

But North Korea's continued missile testing and frustration with Beijing's resistance to imposing harsh sanctions on Pyongyang apparently triggered a change in Seoul's stance.

 

 

AMEC receives contract to support Aegis Ashore in Poland

 
‎Wednesday, ‎March ‎2, ‎2016, ‏‎1:22:17 PMGo to full article
Washington (UPI) Feb 11, 2016 - The U.S. Army awarded AMEC Programs a $182.7 million contract with options to support the Aegis Ashore missile defense system in Poland.

For the contract, AMEC Programs received funds covering Fiscal 2015 and 2016 military construction in addition to research, development, testing, evaluation and procurement.

The construction of the Aegis Ashore system is part of the European Phased Adaptive Approach Phase III, which aims to boost land-based missile defense capabilities for NATO allies against long-range ballistic attacks.

The EPAA program is divided into four phases. Phase I began in 2011, and focused on short and medium-ranged ballistic missile threats. Phase II began in 2015, and saw the development of a missile defense interceptor site in Romania.

Under Phase III, an Aegis Ashore is scheduled to be installed in Poland to support the defense of northern Europe.

 

 

US missile shield spotlights divisions on handling N. Korea

 
‎Wednesday, ‎March ‎2, ‎2016, ‏‎1:22:17 PMGo to full article
Seoul (AFP) Feb 8, 2016 - Official moves towards the deployment -- fiercely opposed by China -- of a US missile defence system in South Korea highlight the inherent dangers of disunity in dealing with North Korea's growing military threat, analysts say.

Hours after North Korea's long-range rocket launch on Sunday, South Korean and US military officials announced they would begin formal discussions on placing the Terminal High Altitude Area Defence System (THAAD) on the North's doorstep.

The rationale was a clear necessity to upgrade the defence posture of the South Korea-US military alliance "against North Korea's advancing threats," said Yoo Jeh-Seung, Seoul's deputy defence minister for policy.

Yoo's reasoning is hard to fault in the wake of the North's fourth nuclear test on January 6 and Monday's rocket launch, which was widely regarded as a covert ballistic missile test.

"This nuclear testing coupled with the testing of ballistic missile technology ... was always likely to strengthen the argument that South Korea needs to bolster its missile defences," said Ben Goodlad, principal weapons analyst at IHS Aerospace, Defence and Security.

But beyond the strategic logic lies a diplomatic imperative, which suggests an eventual THAAD deployment may be less motivated by what North Korea is doing and more by what China is not doing.

- China consequences -

China is North Korea's main diplomatic protector, and both Washington and Seoul have been pressing Beijing to take a tougher line with Pyongyang over its nuclear weapons programme.

But China, wary of the consequences of a collapsing North Korea on its border, has resisted punitive sanctions before, and looks set to do so again as the UN Security Council debates its response to Pyongyang's latest provocations.

According to Joel Wit, a senior fellow at the US-Korea Institute at Johns Hopkins University and the founder of its North Korea website, 38North, frustration with China's stance has driven forward the possibility of deploying THAAD in South Korea.

"This is a way of sending a signal to China that what North Korea does has real consequences, including consequences for Beijing's own security interests," Wit said.

China's response to that signal was swift and unequivocally negative.

While it only managed a rather muted expression of "regret" over the North's rocket launch, it was quick to voice its "deep concern" at the prospect of South Korea introducing the US missile system.

- Beijing's warnings -

Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying said such a move would escalate tensions on the Korean peninsula, undermine regional peace and stability, and set back efforts to address the North Korean nuclear situation.

"We demand the countries concerned be prudent," Hua said.

China sees THAAD as a threat to the effectiveness of its own nuclear deterrent, arguing that it could be used to monitor Chinese missile launches as far inland as Xian in the northwest.

China is South Korea's most important trade partner and -- in deference to Beijing's sensitivities on the issue -- South Korea had, until now, declined to formally discuss bringing in THAAD.

Instead it had concentrated on developing an indigenous missile defence system for intercepting short to medium range ballistic missiles, using primarily Patriot-type interceptors.

At the same time, South Korean President Park Geun-Hye has made strenuous diplomatic efforts to court China, building a personal rapport with President Xi Jinping in the hope of developing a genuine strategic partnership.

Ties have significantly improved as a result but, on the key issue of dealing with North Korea, Park's diplomatic initiative has not achieved the desired results.

The net result, after the North's latest nuclear test and rocket launch, is the opening of formal talks on THAAD deployment.

- Disunity dangers -

"It's a message to China that if you won't deal with North Korea, we will go our way," said Paul Carrol, program director for the nuclear disarmament and global security organisation Ploughshares Fund.

"And clearly there's a danger there, because unless China and the US can get on the same page with a common approach to North Korea, there won't be any progress and the situation will only get worse," Carroll said.

"THAAD is partly about the US reassuring South Korea that it has its back, but at the same time there must be a broader picture discussion with China about how to handle North Korea," he added.

There is already a THAAD battery stationed in Guam and the other key US ally in the region, Japan, is also considering taking on the system.

"The pressure for the US to reaffirm and extend its deterrent protection to its allies is only going to grow, and there's a real potential for regional tension and instability there," said Wit.

"Instead of curbing North Korea's nuclear ambitions, we get an arms build-up instead," he added.

 

 

S. Korea, US to discuss deployment of US missile system

 
‎Wednesday, ‎March ‎2, ‎2016, ‏‎1:22:17 PMGo to full article
Seoul (AFP) Feb 7, 2016 - South Korean and US defence officials said Sunday they would begin formal talks on the deployment on the Korean peninsula of a US missile defence system to counter the growing threat from North Korea.

The announcement followed a North Korean rocket launch that the US and its allies condemned as a covert ballistic missile test.

"It has been decided to formally start talks on the possibility of deploying the THAAD system to South Korea as part of steps to bolster the missile defence of the Korea-US alliance," said Yoo Jeh-Seung, the South's deputy defence minister for policy.

There has been speculation for years about the deployment of the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) system -- one of the most advanced in the world -- to the South, one of Washington's main Asian allies.

The US insists that it is a deterrent necessitated by the North's advancing ballistic missile programme, while China and Russia argue that it would undermine stability and could trigger an arms race in a delicately balanced region.

"The Korea-US alliance had no choice but to take such a defence action because North Korea staged a strategic provocation and is refusing to have a genuine dialogue on de-nuclearisation," Yoo said in a joint briefing with Lieutenant General Thomas Vandal, commander of the US Eighth Army based in the South.

Vandal argued that it was "time to move forward" with the THAAD issue, claiming there was "growing support" in the South for its deployment.

Pyongyang says any such move would be a Cold War tactic to "contain" China and Russia.

But Yoo stressed the THAAD system -- if deployed -- would "operate only regarding North Korea".

 

 

US hopes to send anti-missile system to SKorea 'as quickly as possible'

 
‎Friday, ‎February ‎26, ‎2016, ‏‎8:35:29 AMGo to full article
Washington (AFP) Feb 8, 2016 - The US military wants to send a sophisticated missile defense system to South Korea "as quickly as possible," the Pentagon said Monday as it seeks to counter an ever-defiant North Korea.

After Pyongyang's launch of a long-range rocket on Sunday, South Korean and US military officials said they would start formal discussions on placing the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense System (THAAD) on the North's doorstep.

Though the launch saw North Korea successfully blast a satellite into orbit, the United Nations and world powers quickly condemned the action as evidence Pyongyang is continuing to develop an intercontinental ballistic missile capable of striking the US mainland.

The launch came only weeks after North Korea carried the latest in a series of underground nuclear tests.

"Without getting into a timeline, we'd like to see this move as quickly as possible," Pentagon spokesman Peter Cook said of a possible THAAD deployment.

"We are beginning the consultations now and in the current days with the South Koreans, and we expect that this will move in an expeditious fashion."

America's highly deployable THAAD system fires anti-ballistic missiles into the sky to smash into enemy missiles either inside or outside the Earth's atmosphere during their final flight phase.

The interceptor missiles carry no warheads, instead relying on kinetic energy to destroy their targets.

While China firmly opposes the deployment of such anti-missile hardware so close to its borders, the move to place THAAD in South Korea underscores Washington's frustrations with Beijing's failure to take a tougher line with Pyongyang over its nuclear weapons program.

Cook stressed the missile defense system was in no way meant to pose a threat to China.

"If the THAAD system were deployed to the Korean Peninsula, it would be focused solely on North Korea, contribute to a layered missile defense that would enhance the alliance's existing missile defense capabilities against potential North Korean missile threats," he said.

"This is a defensive system put in place. We don't believe it should pose any kind of concern to the Chinese."

- Rapidly deployable -

A US defense official told AFP the anti-missile system could be deployed within one to two weeks of a deployment order.

"Once... decisions are made, that (timeframe) is possible," the official said, speaking on condition of anonymity.

The THAAD system, in service since 2008, includes truck-mounted launchers, radars, interceptor missiles and global communications links.

Five THAAD batteries are currently operational, according to the Pentagon's Missile Defense Agency, and two more were ordered in 2014.

One of these is permanently based in Guam, home to a large US military base in the Pacific, to protect against any North Korean missiles.

About 28,500 US troops are stationed in South Korea and the two forces have very close military ties.

Cook said an eventual THAAD deployment would be operated by US forces in South Korea.

"The United States remains fully committed to the security of our allies in the region and we will take all necessary steps to defend ourselves and our allies and respond to North Korean provocations," he said.

 

 

 

 

 

DVD Price R 899.00

 

Session Listing

Introduction and Isaiah 1

Introduction. Case against Judah.

Isaiah 2 - 5

A Vision of the Coming Kingdom. Israel, the Lord’s vineyard. The

Nation’s Judgment and Exile.

Isaiah 6 - 7

Isaiah’s New Commission. Confederacy of Rezin and Pekah. The Sign

of the Virgin.

Isaiah 8 - 9

Overthrow of Damascus and Samaria. Christ’s Birth.

Isaiah 10 - 12

Predicted Judgment upon Assyria. A Future Kingdom.

Isaiah 13 - 14

Babylon. Babylon’s Defeat. Lucifer’s Pride and Rebellion.

Isaiah 15 -18

Moab’s Devastation. Damascus will Fall. Ethiopia.

Isaiah 19 - 22

The Doom of Egypt. A Burden about Jerusalem.

Isaiah 23 - 27

A Burden about Tyre. Isaiah’s “Little Apocalypse” Chapters.

Session Listing

Isaiah 28 - 30

Prophetic warning concerning Ephraim and Judah.

Isaiah 31 - 35

Future Kingdom Blessings. Focus on Jerusalem.

Isaiah 36 - 39

Historical Parenthesis. Hezekiah and Rabshakeh.

Isaiah 40 - 42

How Many Isaiahs? Cyrus Predicted. Jesus Christ the Servant.

Isaiah 43 - 44

God’s Blessing on His people. The Rise of Cyrus.

Isaiah 45 (and the Gap Theory)

Cyrus to Restore Jerusalem. God created the Earth “not in vain.”

 The Gap Theory.

Isaiah 46 - 48

Babylon, the Pride of the Caldeans.

Isaiah 49 - 51

The Restoration of Israel. Vision of the Kingdom Age.

Session Listing

Isaiah 52 (and Acts 8)

Messianic Theme. The Ark of the Covenant. The Ethiopian Treasurer

in Acts Chapter 8. The Mercy Seat.

Isaiah 53 (Part 1)

The Holy of Holies of the Old Testament.

Isaiah 53 (Part 2)

The Fulcrum of the Entire Universe.

Isaiah 54 - 59

Israel, the Restored Wife. Idolaters rebuked.

Isaiah 60 - 62

Sin. Kingdom Age. The Two Comings of Christ. Kingdom Blessings.

Isaiah 63

Day of Vengeance. Isaiah Prays for Redemption of Israel.

Isaiah 64 - 66

A New Wine. New Heaven and New Earth. Judgment and Hope.

 

 
 

DVD Series - R 799.00
( 8 Discs)
 

 

 

 

SPECIAL OFFER

 

PRICE R 159.00

 

 

 

 

Iranium DVD

The movie Mahmoud Ahmadinejad doesn't want you to see

 

 

 

Riots in the Middle East, bloodshed and the overthrow of a Dictator. Does this sound like the Middle East in 2011?  Try 1979, the year the Shah was overthrown in Iran.  Is it possible history is about to repeat itself as Islamic Fundamentalists replace the Arab dictatorships of the Arab world?  What lessons can we learn from the Iranian revolution and the threat this nation currently poses to Israel and the Western world.

In this Documentary you will be taken back to the events of 1979 and the history of terrorism and conflict that has developed since then to bring Iran on it's current nuclear path.  You will learn about the EMP (Electro Magnetic Pulse) threat to America, Iran's current treatment of it's own citizens and  Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's obsession with the 12th Imam of Islam.

Although the Stuxnet virus may have slowed down it's nuclear program, it is only a matter of time before Iran crosses the nuclear threshold.  How will a nuclear Iran change the Middle East?  Saudi Arabia has already threatened to develop its own program (or buy one from Pakistan) in response. Iran's nuclear program could be one of the greatest challenges of the 21st century as the potential for nuclear devices to fall into the hands of terrorists increase.  This video will help you to see the emerging challenge we all face in a new urgency.  

Iran had attempted to shut down screenings of this movie in Canada but the Canadian government took a stand and showed this DVD despite the threats.  Find out why Iran is attempting to stop this movie from being seen around the world.

For a more detailed look at this DVD in relationship to current events we encourage you to watch Sean Hannity's interview with the producer here:

 

 




 
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Robotic Weapons - Chuck MIssler

In this segment, Chuck Missler discusses the use of robotic weapons. This segment comes from "The Hybrid Age" briefing pack recorded in 2011 and pu...

 

 

 
 
 

Nuclear Weapons, Proliferation and Policy Doctrine

 

 

 

News About Wars On Planet Earth

 

 

 

 

 


 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


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