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Monitor The Strategic Trends


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.









Barry McGuire




Military Space News, Nuclear Weapons, Missile Defense



Military Space News, Nuclear Weapons, Missile Defense


Military Space News, Nuclear Weapons, Missile Defense


India to build stealth frigates, nuclear subs

‎20 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎09:07:23 AMGo to full article
New Delhi (UPI) Feb 19, 2015
The Indian government has reportedly given the nod for construction in the country of seven stealth frigates and a half-dozen nuclear-powered submarines. According to The Times of India, the decision was made by the Cabinet committee on security and is in line with the "critical necessity" for India to bolster its overall deterrence capability. The building projects will cost as

Japan, China to resume security talks: report

‎20 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎09:07:23 AMGo to full article
Tokyo (AFP) Feb 19, 2015
Japan and China plan to resume security talks as early as April after a four-year hiatus amid simmering tensions over territorial disputes, a report said Thursday. A meeting planned for Tokyo, which would be the first since January 2011 in Beijing, will likely focus on maritime issues, Kyodo News reported, citing unnamed diplomatic sources. The talks will involve top officials from each

US, Taliban deny peace talks planned in Qatar

‎20 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎09:07:23 AMGo to full article
Kandahar, Afghanistan (AFP) Feb 19, 2015
The US and the Taliban central spokesman Thursday denied plans to hold peace talks in Qatar, contradicting earlier claims by militant leaders that contacts would resume in the Gulf state within weeks. The denials came after multiple commanders said five former members of the Taliban supreme council would soon restart contacts with US officials in Qatar to try to get peace talks on track afte

Ukraine calls for peacekeepers after rebels take key town

‎20 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎09:07:23 AMGo to full article
Kiev (AFP) Feb 19, 2015
Ukrainian President Poroshenko on Wednesday called for European peacekeepers to enforce a shattered ceasefire deal in east Ukraine after a flashpoint strategic town fell to a fierce assault by pro-Russian rebels. Some 2,500 exhausted government troops retreated from Debaltseve - a key railway hub linking the main separatist-held cities of Donetsk and Lugansk - after rebels ignored a suppos

Qatar recalls ambassador from Egypt over Libya strikes

‎20 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎09:07:23 AMGo to full article
Doha (AFP) Feb 19, 2015
Qatar recalled its ambassador to Egypt Thursday following a row over Cairo's air strikes on jihadist targets in Libya, threatening fresh divisions among Western-allied Arab states. A foreign ministry official said Doha was recalling its envoy for consultation after Egypt's delegate to the Arab League accused Qatar of supporting "terrorism", during discussions on Libya. Egypt's latest spa

Winning the Internet war is key in IS fight: experts

‎20 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎09:07:23 AMGo to full article
Washington (AFP) Feb 19, 2015
The Internet has become a crucial battleground in the fight against jihadist propaganda and Western nations need to step up their game, according to participants in a Washington meeting on countering radical groups. Experts say governments must engage in corporate-style marketing if they are to combat the Islamic State, which is using slick videos to lure foreign nationals to the battlefield

Zarif, Kerry to hold nuclear talks in Geneva: Iran

‎20 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎09:07:23 AMGo to full article
Tehran (AFP) Feb 19, 2015
Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif and top US diplomat John Kerry will meet in Geneva this weekend for talks on Tehran's nuclear programme, an Iranian official said Thursday. Iran and world powers are trying to strike a deal that would prevent Tehran from developing a nuclear bomb, a goal it denies having, in return for an easing of punishing economic sanctions. Zarif and Kerr

Syria Kurds, rebels advance into IS bastion: monitor

‎20 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎09:07:23 AMGo to full article
Beirut (AFP) Feb 19, 2015
Syrian Kurdish and rebel forces, backed by US-led air strikes, advanced on Thursday into Raqa province, where the jihadist Islamic State group has its de facto capital, a monitor said. "The YPG (Kurdish People's Protection Units) and rebel forces captured 19 villages in Raqa province," said the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights. "The US-led international coalition played a key role in

Boeing's Space Efforts to Be Managed by Newly Created Organization

‎20 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎09:07:23 AMGo to full article
Washington DC (SPX) Feb 19, 2015
Boeing has announced the creation of BDS Development, an organization within its Defense, Space and Security (BDS) unit, which will centralize its defense and space efforts. The company stated that this move will enhance its performance on the pre-production development activities that significantly influence its ability to provide customers with the right capabilities at the right time an

Moog offers "SoftRide" for enhanced spacecraft protection during launch

‎20 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎09:07:23 AMGo to full article
Dublin, Ireland (SPX) Feb 19, 2015
Moog's Dublin facility has announced the commencement of a European Space Agency (ESA) technology transfer program to protect spacecraft by reducing harsh vibration experienced during launches. The program will make Moog Dublin the European supplier of Moog's patented SoftRide, a vibration control technology that has already provided launch load alleviation for 34 satellites. Moog Dublin w

A Composite Booster Gets a Burst of Energy

‎20 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎09:07:23 AMGo to full article
Washington DC (SPX) Feb 19, 2015
Turning a rocket booster case into spaghetti sounds more like magic than engineering, but a test that did just that could be an important step in the future of human space exploration. As NASA prepares to test the massive solid rocket booster for the agency's Space Launch System (SLS) rocket in March, a team of engineers is looking even farther into the future by exploring an advanced comp

Signals to Alien Worlds Pose No Threat of Invasion

‎20 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎09:07:23 AMGo to full article
Edinburgh, UK (Sputnik) Feb 18, 2015
Using powerful radio telescopes to broadcast "greetings messages" into space will not result in an alien invasion, a chief scientist at the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence (SETI) Institute in California told Sputnik Friday. Astronomers have been listening for messages from possible alien civilizations since 1960, without any tangible success. But under a proposal, known as "Active

Virgin Galactic Opens New Design and Manufacturing Facility for LauncherOne

‎20 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎09:07:23 AMGo to full article
Long Beach CA (SPX) Feb 18, 2015
Virgin Galactic and Abu Dhabi's Aabar Investments PJS, is pleased to announce it has leased a new 150,000 square foot facility that will house design and manufacturing of the company's small satellite launch vehicle, LauncherOne. LauncherOne is a new two-stage orbital launch vehicle being designed by Virgin Galactic specifically to launch commercial or governmental satellites that weigh 50

Why Did Russian Cosmonauts Carry Shotguns and Machetes in Space?

‎20 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎09:07:23 AMGo to full article
Moscow, Russia (Sputnik) Feb 18, 2015
The popular myth about Russian spacemen traveling to space geared with weapons is actually true and the question why they did that is finally revealed. Russian cosmonauts carried a convertible shotgun which doubled as an axe and machete into space. The 'myth' about Soviet spacemen being armed with shotguns was a topic of great interest on Russian forums for the past few years. Recently it

Russian-Ukrainian Satan Rocket to Launch South Korean Satellite as Planned

‎20 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎09:07:23 AMGo to full article
Moscow, Russia (Sputnik) Feb 18, 2015
The joint Russian-Ukrainian company Kosmotras will go ahead with the launches of commercial and scientific satellites and spacecraft it had planned for 2015 using the Dnepr-1 rocket, including a South Korean Kompsat remote sensing satellite in mid-March. The March 12 launch of the Dnepr-1 carrying a South Korean satellite will go ahead as planned, a source close to the space industry told

Cyber attacks on Israel traced to Gaza: researchers

‎19 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎09:59:34 PMGo to full article
Washington (AFP) Feb 17, 2015
A series of cyber attacks against Israel since mid-2013 appears to be coming from "Arab parties located in the Gaza Strip" and elsewhere, US security researchers say. A research report by Trend Micro said the effort appears to be using "spear phishing" emails with an attachment disguised as a pornographic video. When a user clicks on the attachment, it installs malware that allows for re

Boeing to improve laser beam weapon accuracy

‎19 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎09:59:34 PMGo to full article
Albuquerque (UPI) Feb 18, 2015
A beam control system for enhanced accuracy of laser weapons on warships is to be designed and developed by Boeing under a U.S. Navy contract. Boeing said the High Power Beam Control Subsystem, or HP BCSS, will be compatible with high energy lasers using solid-state laser technology and that it envisions a system that will be compatible with laser systems other companies are designing f

State Department OKs export of armed drones

‎19 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎09:59:34 PMGo to full article
Washington (UPI) Feb 18, 2015
The United States will now allow the sale of armed unmanned aerial systems to other countries on a case-by-case basis, the State Department said. Any such sales would come with stringent conditions and only through the U.S. Foreign Military Sales program. "As other nations begin to employ military UAS more regularly and as the nascent commercial UAS market emerges, the United Sta

Modi vows to end India status as top defence importer

‎19 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎09:59:34 PMGo to full article
Bangalore, India (AFP) Feb 18, 2015
Prime Minister Narendra Modi vowed Wednesday to end India's status as the world's number one defence importer, saying he wanted 70 percent of hardware to be manufactured domestically by the turn of the decade. Speaking at the start of a major aviation industry conference, Modi told hundreds of foreign and local businessmen that his government would favour domestic firms when awarding defence

US denies Israel in the dark over nuclear talks

‎19 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎09:59:34 PMGo to full article
Washington (AFP) Feb 18, 2015
The White House on Wednesday denied keeping Israel in the dark over ongoing nuclear negotiations with Iran, but suggested its ally had cherry-picked information to bolster opposition to the deal. Amid strains in the US-Israeli relationship over negotiations to reach a landmark nuclear agreement with Iran, White House spokesman Josh Earnest rejected suggestions Israel was being frozen out.

A400M simultaneously refuels jet fighters

‎19 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎09:59:34 PMGo to full article
Marid, Spain (UPI) Feb 18, 2015
Airbus' A400M military transport and aerial refueling aircraft has successfully demonstrated refueling two F/A-18 fighters simultaneously in Spain. The company said four flights were conducted by the A400M, during which time it performed 74 contacts with fighters and dispensed nearly 30.5 tons of fuel. The refueling of the Spanish Air Force jets took place at two altitudes - 20,

Boeing praised for CH-47 support work in Britain

‎19 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎09:59:34 PMGo to full article
London (UPI) Feb 18, 2015
Boeing is bannering praise of its British subsidiary from Prime Minister David Cameron for its support of Royal Air Force CH-47 Chinook helicopters. "The Chinook support contract represents significant value for money for what is a very capable and versatile support helicopter, protecting UK interests at home and abroad," Cameron said during a visit to the Royal Dockyards in Portsmouth.

Raytheon helping to enhance P-8A Poseidon capabilities

‎19 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎09:59:34 PMGo to full article
Mckinney, Texas (UPI) Feb 18, 2015
An open, applications-based electronics architecture to allow rapid use of new capabilities on P-8A Poseidon aircraft is to be developed by Raytheon. Raytheon said that with the architecture to be developed, the capabilities could be used through third-party software applications. "The goal is to use readily available technology to quickly upgrade the P-8A's warfighting capabilit

Tens of thousands flee Myanmar conflict as aid curbed

‎19 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎09:59:34 PMGo to full article
Lashio, Myanmar (AFP) Feb 18, 2015
Nearly 90,000 civilians in northeastern Myanmar are believed to have fled clashes between troops and ethnic rebels, an official said Wednesday, as sporadic violence hampered efforts to evacuate those still trapped. Rebels fear the national army is planning a major assault following the imposition of a state of emergency in the Kokang region of Shan state on Tuesday. Whole towns and vill

Western volunteers rally to Iraq Christian militia

‎19 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎09:59:34 PMGo to full article
Al-Qosh, Iraq (AFP) Feb 18, 2015
Decked out in his US army-issued fatigues and a lip stud shining from his mouth, the young American fighter cuts an unusual figure in the northern Iraqi town of Al-Qosh. He served in the US army in Baghdad in 2006-2007 and has now returned to fight the Islamic State jihadist group with Dwekh Nawsha, a Christian militia whose name is an Assyrian-language phrase conveying self-sacrifice. T

More M1A1 Abrams tanks being modernized

‎19 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎09:59:34 PMGo to full article
Sterling Heights, Mich. (UPI) Feb 18, 2015
More U.S. Army M1A1 Abrams tanks are being modernized by General Dynamics Land Systems under a contract from the Army's TACOM Lifecycle Management Command. The work is worth $49.7 million and comes under a multi-year contract awarded in 2008, which authorized the upgrade of 435 M1A1 tanks. The M1A1 tanks are to be upgraded to thee M1A2 Systems Enhancement Package, or SEP, V2 conf

Suppose America retrenches: A thought experiment

‎19 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎09:59:34 PMGo to full article
Washington DC (UPI) Feb 17, 2015
Critics accuse President Barack Obama of being a foreign policy minimalist seeking to do the least harm - or no stupid "stuff" - rather than choosing more effective if riskier solutions. In fairness, the president was dealt the most horrible hand on taking office dating back to FDR in 1933. The wars in Iraq and Afghanistan were disasters. And the financial meltdown of 2007-2008 was th

NATO urges Russia to 'withdraw all its forces' from eastern Ukraine

‎19 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎09:59:34 PMGo to full article
Riga (AFP) Feb 18, 2015
NATO on Wednesday urged Russia to withdraw all forces from eastern Ukraine and to end its support for the pro-Moscow separatists as a ceasefire appeared to unravel. "I urge Russia to withdraw all its forces from eastern Ukraine, to stop all its support for the separatists and to respect the Minsk agreement," NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said in the Latvian capital Riga. "The

Arab states to ask UN to ease Libya arms embargo: Egypt

‎19 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎09:59:34 PMGo to full article
Cairo (AFP) Feb 18, 2015
Arab states will on Wednesday seek a UN resolution to end an embargo on weapon sales to Libya's internationally recognised government, Egypt's foreign ministry said. Cairo is pushing for action against the Islamic State group in Libya after the jihadists released a gruesome video showing the beheadings of Egyptian Christians. Jordan, a non-permanent member of the UN Security Council, wil

Kurdish forces repulse jihadist attack south of Arbil

‎19 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎09:59:34 PMGo to full article
Arbil, Iraq (AFP) Feb 18, 2015
Kurdish peshmerga forces have repulsed a major attack by the Islamic State jihadist group southwest of Iraqi Kurdistan's capital Arbil, officials said Wednesday. "The attack which was launched at 8:00 pm (1700 GMT on Tuesday) was foiled. It lasted four hours and we killed 34 IS members," Sirwan Barzani, the local peshmerga commander, told AFP. He said around 300 jihadists had attacked th

New Pentagon chief promises 'candid' advice for Obama

‎19 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎05:15:09 AMGo to full article
Washington (AFP) Feb 17, 2015
Ashton Carter was sworn as the new US defense secretary on Tuesday and pledged that he and the top brass would give President Barack Obama their "candid" advice on matters of war and peace. Carter took the oath of office in a ceremony presided over by Vice President Joe Biden, who said the Pentagon chief faced the task of ensuring the American military remained "second to none" and that the

China's Hypersonic Glide Vehicle: A Threat to the United States

‎18 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎04:22:37 AMGo to full article
New Delhi, India (SPX) Feb 18, 2015
Beijing's significant military advance has been furthered with its venture into hypersonic weapons systems. China is working on hypersonic cruise missiles for which it is working on scramjet engines and also on Hypersonic Glide Vehicle (HGV). In 2014, Beijing has conducted three test-firings of its HGV, the Wu-14. The first test-firing was conducted in January, while the second one was con

Four US littoral combat ships to operate out of Singapore by 2018

‎18 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎04:22:37 AMGo to full article
Singapore (AFP) Feb 17, 2015
Four US warships designed to fight in coastal areas similar to Southeast Asian waters will operate out of Singapore by 2018, a senior US Navy official said Tuesday, further underscoring Washington's military tilt to Asia. The "rotational deployment" of the vessels, called littoral combat ships (LCS), comes as China continues to flex its muscles in the South China Sea and tensions remain on t

Patriotism and fear as Ukraine draftees train for front

‎18 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎04:22:37 AMGo to full article
Desna, Ukraine (AFP) Feb 17, 2015
Vitaliy Karpunets crawls under barbed wire before jumping over a smoking bonfire into a trench as he fires off his Kalashnikov at an imaginary enemy. At a military training centre some 60 kilometres (40 miles) north of Kiev, Karpunets, 40, and some 5,000 other recruits are being put through their paces. The men are part of the latest wave of mobilisation that Ukraine is carrying out, ca

Russia May Finalize its Flagship Aircraft Carrier by 2025

‎18 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎04:22:37 AMGo to full article
Moscow, Russia (Sputnik) Feb 18, 2015
The construction of a flagship air carrier for the Russian Navy may be finalized before 2025, a Russian Navy spokesman said. Russia may finalize the construction of a flagship air carrier for the country's navy before the end of 2025, the Russian Navy's chief of naval aviation Major General Igor Kozhin said, according to Russian media outlets. "It will take up to ten years to wrap up

Russian Shipyard Makes History: 4 Subs Under Construction Simultaneously

‎18 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎04:22:37 AMGo to full article
Severodvinsk, Russia (SPX) Feb 18, 2015
Russia's Sevmash shipyard is simultaneously building four nuclear-powered submarines for the first time in the country's modern history. Four of the most advanced nuclear-powered submarines in the world are now simultaneously under construction at Russia's Sevmash shipyard for the first time in the country's modern history, Russia media reported. "Sevmash finished 2014 with good resu

Are Spy Agencies Funding Weather Weapon Research

‎18 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎04:22:37 AMGo to full article
Moscow, Russia (Sputnik) Feb 18, 2015
Geoengineering, according to the Oxford Geoengineering programme, is 'the deliberate large-scale intervention in the Earth's natural systems to counteract climate change'. The aim of solar geoengineering is to reflect some of the sun's energy back into space to counteract the rising global temperature caused by greenhouse gases. Carbon geoengineering aims to remove carbon dioxide from the

BAE Systems supplying mission planning system for Wildcat helos

‎18 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎04:22:37 AMGo to full article
London (UPI) Feb 17, 2015
A mission planning system customized for Britain's AW 159 Wildcat helicopters is being delivered to Britain's Ministry of Defense by BAE Systems. The system that will be used by Wildcats of the Royal Navy and Army Air Corps is called the Combined Arms Gateway Environment, or CAGE, system, which is already used on the Royal Navy's Merlin II helicopter fleet. The system is used in

Myanmar declares emergency in war-torn region as fighting rages

‎18 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎04:22:37 AMGo to full article
Lashio, Myanmar (AFP) Feb 17, 2015
Myanmar on Tuesday declared a state of emergency in a conflict-torn border region, where ferocious fighting between the army and ethnic rebels has sent thousands fleeing airstrikes and fierce gun battles. Civilians have come under fire in the deadly clashes between the army and Kokang rebels in Shan state, local officials said, in fighting that has uprooted tens of thousands in the past week

Thousands seek shelter in monastery as Myanmar army battles rebels

‎18 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎04:22:37 AMGo to full article
Lashio, Myanmar (AFP) Feb 17, 2015
Fugitives from the growing violence in northeast Myanmar described on Tuesday how they fled airstrikes and gun battles between the army and ethnic rebels, as the country's president vowed "not to lose an inch" of territory. The clashes between the army and Kokang rebels in Shan state have uprooted tens of thousands in the past week, with Beijing saying it has stepped up border controls after

Pakistan army chief holds talks with Afghan leaders on security

‎18 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎04:22:37 AMGo to full article
Islamabad (AFP) Feb 17, 2015
Pakistan's army chief General Raheel Sharif held talks in Kabul Tuesday with Afghanistan President Ashraf Ghani on boosting security and continuing operations against Taliban militants, the military said. The two praised improved relations and pledged that they would not provide a safe haven for militants from each other's countries to use to launch attacks, chief army spokesman Major Genera

Libya raids turn Egypt's Sisi into key anti-IS ally

‎18 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎04:22:37 AMGo to full article
Cairo (AFP) Feb 17, 2015
By targeting the Islamic State group with air strikes in Libya, Egypt's President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, having crushed Islamist opponents at home, has become a key ally of the West against jihadists, experts say. His warplanes bombed IS camps and weapons stores in the Libyan city of Derna hours after the Sunni extremists released a gruesome video showing masked jihadists beheading 21 Egyptia

Egypt pushes for UN-backed intervention against Libya jihadists

‎18 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎04:22:37 AMGo to full article
Cairo (AFP) Feb 17, 2015
Egypt called Tuesday for a UN-backed international intervention in Libya after launching air strikes on Islamic State group targets in the country following the jihadists' beheadings of Egyptian Christians. President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi said "there is no choice" but to create a global coalition to confront the extremists in Libya, in an interview aired by France's Europe 1 radio. Egypt'

Military chiefs in Saudi for anti-Islamic State talks

‎18 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎04:22:37 AMGo to full article
Riyadh (AFP) Feb 17, 2015
Military chiefs from around the world will gather in the Saudi capital on Wednesday to assess the battle against Islamic State extremists, diplomatic sources said. The two-day meeting, a followup to earlier talks, will gather "all the countries that are involved" in the United States-led fight against IS, including Gulf nations, one of the sources said. "I think it'll be sort of a genera

Frontline Innovation: DARPA to put Fab Lab at Navy Ship Maintenance Center

‎18 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎04:22:37 AMGo to full article
Washington DC (SPX) Feb 18, 2015
DARPA and the Navy recently agreed to locate a fabrication laboratory, or Fab Lab, at the Mid-Atlantic Regional Maintenance Center (MARMC, pronounced "mar-mack") in Norfolk, Virginia, under DARPA's Manufacturing Experimentation and Outreach Two (MENTOR2) program. The goal of MENTOR2 is to reduce logistics supply chain costs and boost defense readiness by improving training and tools for op

Ukraine rebels say no arms pull-back until 'full ceasefire'

‎17 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎05:10:59 PMGo to full article
Kiev (AFP) Feb 16, 2015
Pro-Russian rebels in east Ukraine said Monday they will only start pulling back weapons from the frontline under a peace deal once there is a "full ceasefire". "In accordance with the Minsk agreement, the withdrawal of military hardware can only happen under certain conditions and one of them is a full ceasefire," Eduard Basurin, a spokesman for the defence ministry of the self-proclaimed D

Navy satellite communications systems getting support services

‎17 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎05:10:59 PMGo to full article
Alexandria, Va. (UPI) Feb 16, 2015
The U.S. Navy has tapped SBG Technology Solutions for support of on-orbit communications capabilities for open-ocean, littoral, and naval land operations. The contract, a multi-year vehicle, was issued by the Navy Program Executive Office Space Systems, or PEO SS, under its PMW 146 program for communications satellites. The monetary value of the award was not disclosed. Un

French warship sale to Russia 'not on agenda': minister

‎17 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎05:10:59 PMGo to full article
Paris (AFP) Feb 16, 2015
The controversial sale of two high-tech warships to Russia is "not on the agenda", France's defence minister said on Monday, despite the ceasefire agreed in Ukraine last week. "It's not on the agenda," Jean-Yves Le Drian told French radio. "The President of the Republic has decided that we should not deliver these warships because the ceasefire was not in place, because there were securi

Fireworks and promotions mark late N. Korea leader's birthday

‎17 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎05:10:59 PMGo to full article
Seoul (AFP) Feb 16, 2015
North Korea celebrated the birthday of late ruler Kim Jong-Il Monday with mass fireworks, high-ranking military promotions and a rally by senior officials to pledge loyalty to current leader Kim Jong-Un. To mark the February 16 date, Kim Jong-Un promoted dozens of top military officers on Sunday and paid a midnight visit to the mausoleum housing his father's embalmed body, the North's stat

'No question at the moment' of Ukraine pulling back heavy weapons

‎17 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎05:10:59 PMGo to full article
Kiev (AFP) Feb 16, 2015
Ukraine's army is not planning to pull its heavy weapons back from the frontline late Monday, as it is meant to do under a nascent truce, because of continued attacks by pro-Russian rebels, a military spokesman told AFP. "There is no question at the moment of us withdrawing heavy weapons," spokesman Vladyslav Seleznyov said. "How can we pull back weapons if the rebels are trying to attack us

GA-ASI tests sense-and-avoid radar on Predator UAV

‎17 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎05:10:59 PMGo to full article
San Diego (UPI) Feb 16, 2015
A pre-production sense-and-avoid radar system for remotely piloted vehicles has been flight tested aboard a Predator B by General Atomics Aeronautical Systems. The successful test - the first for a fully functioning air-to-air radar on an unmanned aerial vehicle – "meets the requirements for 'due regard' operations in international airspace and advances the integration of such aircra

Taiwan names new China affairs chief after spy row

‎17 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎05:10:59 PMGo to full article
Taipei (AFP) Feb 16, 2015
Taiwan on Monday named a new minister for China affairs in an attempt to reboot cross-strait relations after a row over espionage and growing anxiety about Beijing's influence on the island. Deputy defence minister Andrew Hsia succeeded Wang Yu-chi as the chairman of the Mainland Affairs Council, which handles relations between Taipei and Beijing, after Wang resigned last week. Wang had

A journalist's journalist - Arnaud de Borchgrave

‎17 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎05:10:59 PMGo to full article
Washington (UPI) Feb 15, 2015
This morning, a legend and giant in journalism died. There will be no more like him. Arnaud de Borchgrave would have been 89 this fall. His career was the stuff of Hollywood movies, not the least of which was marrying his stunning and glamorous wife Alexandra, who has had more than enough of the "right stuff" to keep pace with her formidable and much-admired husband and his extraordinar

France tests new man-portable missile

‎17 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎05:10:59 PMGo to full article
Paris (UPI) Feb 16, 2015
MBDA's Missile de Moyenne Portée, or Medium Range Missile, has been test fired for the first time by France's military procurement agency. Direction Generale de l'Armement said the firing was performed at its site in central France and the weapon successfully demonstrated its targeting capabilities by striking its beyond-line-of-sight target at a distance of more than 4,000 yards.

Egypt strikes Libya jihadists after beheadings video

‎17 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎05:10:59 PMGo to full article
Cairo (AFP) Feb 17, 2015
Cairo has carried out air strikes against Islamic State group targets in Libya after the jihadists posted a video showing the beheadings of 21 Egyptian Christians. Egypt said a "tough intervention" was needed and with France called on the UN Security Council on Monday to "take new measures" against the jihadists in neighbouring Libya. With the air strikes, Egypt opened a new front agains

Scout armored vehicles to feature Kongsberg remote weapons stations

‎17 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎05:10:59 PMGo to full article
Oslo, Norway (UPI) Feb 16, 2015
A remote weapon station developed by a team from Kongsberg Defense and General Dynamics UK is entering serial production for Scout SV platform variants. The Protector RWS, which has been available for the main model of the armored vehicle, can replace the primary sight on the Scout Reconnaissance variant and will also be available for all vehicle variants, Kongsberg said. The var

Poland to spend billions on defence amid rumblings of war in Europe

‎16 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎02:24:16 AMGo to full article
Warsaw (AFP) Feb 15, 2015
Looking east to the bloody conflict gripping Ukraine, NATO-member Poland has kicked off an unprecedented military spending spree worth billions to overhaul its forces as Warsaw believes peace in Europe is no longer a given. The escalation of tensions with Russia over its annexation of Ukraine's Crimean peninsula and subsequent role in the crisis in that country's east has sounded the alarm o

Egypt ends US arms 'monopoly' with French jet fighter deal

‎16 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎02:24:16 AMGo to full article
Cairo (AFP) Feb 14, 2015
Egypt's decision to buy 24 Rafale jet fighters from France underscores its determination to diversify its sources of weapons and reduce its dependence on the United States, experts said. The 5.2-billion-euro ($5.9 billion) deal is a historic first foreign sale of the Rafale for France, which is set to sign the contract in the Egyptian capital on Monday. Rights group Amnesty International

Main stumbling blocks for Ukraine peace plan

‎16 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎02:24:16 AMGo to full article
Kiev (AFP) Feb 14, 2015
A ceasefire signed by Kiev and pro-Russian rebels after marathon talks between the leaders of Ukraine, Russia, Germany and France comes into force Sunday, the first step in a peace deal aimed at ending 10 months of conflict. The fragile agreement reached in Minsk Thursday is seen as the best hope to end fighting but scepticism runs high after the collapse of a similar deal and the plan is f

Hundreds protest security law in Spain

‎16 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎02:24:16 AMGo to full article
Madrid (AFP) Feb 14, 2015
Hundreds of Spaniards marched in Madrid and similar protests were called in other cities on Saturday against a government plan to toughen penalties for unauthorised demonstrations. Blowing whistles and banging drums, several hundred marched to Madrid's central Puerta del Sol square. Organisers called for similar gatherings in about 20 other cities. It was the latest in a string of protes

AFSPC thinks outside of the box

‎16 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎02:24:16 AMGo to full article
Peterson AFB CO (SPX) Feb 15, 2015
Air Force Space Command is making new waves in improvements and creativity with their cost-saving "Out of the Box Innovation" program. The purpose of the program is to collect strategically forward-thinking ideas that support critical enabling actions to allow operators and acquirers to do their jobs more efficiently, gather the appropriate subject matter experts to analyze the viability o

At least 18 dead as Taliban storm Pakistan Shiite mosque

‎16 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎02:24:16 AMGo to full article
Hong Kong (AFP) Feb 13, 2015
Grenade-toting Taliban militants stormed a Shiite mosque in northwest Pakistan on Friday, police said, in an attack that left at least 18 people dead. The incident comes two weeks after a suicide bombing at a Shiite mosque in southern Pakistan killed 61 people, the deadliest sectarian incident to hit the country in nearly two years. Police said several gunmen threw grenades before stormi

Boeing Centralizes Defense, Space Development Efforts to Improve Performance

‎16 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎02:24:16 AMGo to full article
St. Louis MO (SPX) Feb 15, 2015
Boeing is consolidating management of key defense and space development programs into a new organization to enhance its performance on the pre-production development activities that significantly influence its ability to provide customers with the right capabilities at the right time and cost. "This BDS Development organization is the next step in breaking the cost curve on our programs,"

Russian Strategic Missile Forces Begin Wide-Range Drills in 12 Regions

‎16 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎02:24:16 AMGo to full article
Moscow, Russia (Sputnik) Feb 13, 2015
Russia's Strategic Missile Forces have begun wide-range exercises in 12 regions in the country, the Russian Defense Ministry said Thursday. "Russia's SMF with more than 30 missile battalions in 12 regions in Russia (from the Tver to the Irkustsk regions) are taking part in drills. There are both mobile and stationary SMF groups participating," the ministry said in a statement. The wa

Upgrades ordered for Tiger helicopter simulators

‎16 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎02:24:16 AMGo to full article
Paris (UPI) Feb 13, 2015
Thales and its partner Rheinmetall Defense Electronics is supplying and upgrading Tiger combat helicopter simulators for France and Germany. The contract – its value was not disclosed – was awarded by the Organization for Joint Armament Cooperation, or OCCAR, a European intergovernmental organization. Under the award, Thales and Rheinmetall will upgrade 18 simulators to the l

N. Korea to hold giant, 'grand style' military parade

‎16 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎02:24:16 AMGo to full article
Seoul (AFP) Feb 13, 2015
North Korea will hold one of its giant displays of military muscle this year, the ruling Workers' Party said Friday, stressing the need for "cutting-edge" hardware to boost the nuclear-armed nation's fighting capacity. The "grand style" parade involving the army, navy and air force will be held to mark the 70th anniversary of the party's founding on October 10, according to the resolution ad

Lockheed Martin intros new sensor system

‎16 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎02:24:16 AMGo to full article
Orlando, Fla. (UPI) Feb 13, 2015
Lockheed Martin introduced sensor system that can track and target multiple targets in radar-denied environments. The multi-function system is called Legion Pod and combines Lockheed Martin's IRST21 infrared sensor with networking and data processing technology for detection and tracking targets. "Legion Pod fills a critical need for today's warfighters, providing unique detectio

In battle for Kobane, US crews recount heavy bombing

‎16 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎02:24:16 AMGo to full article
Washington (AFP) Feb 14, 2015
American pilots call it "going Winchester." That's when a warplane drops every bomb on board. And air crews for the B-1 bomber told AFP it was not uncommon in the battle for the Syrian town of Kobane, recaptured by Kurdish forces last month. The airmen, recently returned from a six-month stint flying combat missions over Syria and Iraq, recounted how American aircraft relentlessly pounde

IS seizes Iraq town near US forces: Pentagon

‎16 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎02:24:16 AMGo to full article
Washington (AFP) Feb 13, 2015
Islamic State jihadists have captured the western Iraqi town of Al-Baghdadi, putting them within striking distance of an air base where American troops are training Iraqi forces, the US military said Friday. The fall of the town, which the Pentagon played down as a minor setback, came as IS extremists launched an unsuccessful assault involving suicide bombers on the nearby Al-Asad air base.

IAI, Alpha Design Technologies in UAV deal for India

‎16 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎02:24:16 AMGo to full article
Ben Gurion International Airport, Israel (UPI) Feb 13, 2015
The production and marketing in India of mini-unmanned aerial vehicles is to be undertaken by Israel Aerospace Industries and Alpha Design Technologies. IAI said its agreement with the Indian company covers its Bird-Eye 400 and Bird-Eye 650 systems as well as other UAVs. "IAI's teaming agreement with Alpha follows India's policy for "Buy and make India," said Shaul Shahar, IAI vi



***  NEW ***





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)






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:



Thumbnail 8:38         

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...



News About Missiles

France tests new man-portable missile

‎18 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎06:20:18 AMGo to full article
Paris (UPI) Feb 16, 2015 - MBDA's Missile de Moyenne Portée, or Medium Range Missile, has been test fired for the first time by France's military procurement agency.

Direction Generale de l'Armement said the firing was performed at its site in central France and the weapon successfully demonstrated its targeting capabilities by striking its beyond-line-of-sight target at a distance of more than 4,000 yards.

"This success is the result of the coordinated efforts of both state and industrial participants," DGA said. "It (the missile) will enable the armed forces to neutralize, with a high level of precision, the many different types of target that might be confronted during operations, ensuring that collateral damage is kept to a minimum and at the same time maximizing the safety of the operator."

The MMP is a man-portable anti-armor system that can be fired by a two-man crew or from a vehicle. It is to replace the French Army's Milan missile system beginning in 2017.

Missile-maker MBDA France received a French government contract to develop the missile in 2013.



Russian Strategic Missile Forces Begin Wide-Range Drills in 12 Regions

‎18 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎06:20:18 AMGo to full article
Moscow, Russia (Sputnik) Feb 13, 2015 - Russia's Strategic Missile Forces have begun wide-range exercises in 12 regions in the country, the Russian Defense Ministry said Thursday.

"Russia's SMF with more than 30 missile battalions in 12 regions in Russia (from the Tver to the Irkustsk regions) are taking part in drills. There are both mobile and stationary SMF groups participating," the ministry said in a statement.

The war games are meant to test the troops' combat readiness, drill maneuver operations on patrol routes, actions to counter subversive and terrorist acts, as well as high-precision strikes, the defense ministry said.

The drills will involve Engineer Troops and Radiation, Chemical and Biological Defense Troops, who will respond to a mock enemy attack close to patrol routes.

On Tuesday, the Russian Pacific Ocean Fleet began week-long snap drills off the far eastern Kamchatka coast.

Russia's Strategic Missile Forces are the arm of the country's Armed Forces and the main component of it's strategic nuclear forces. Their main goals include nuclear deterrence of a possible aggression and the defeat of possible enemy's strategic objects of military and economic potential by means of nuclear missile attacks.




LRASM Prototype is Three-for-Three on Successful Flight Tests

‎18 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎06:20:18 AMGo to full article
Washington DC (SPX) Feb 10, 2015 - Initiated in 2009 in collaboration with the U.S. Navy and U.S. Air Force, DARPA's Long Range Anti-Ship Missile (LRASM) program has been investing in advanced technologies to provide a leap ahead in U.S. surface warfare capability.

The LRASM program aims to reduce dependence on intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance platforms, network links and GPS navigation in electronic warfare environments while providing innovative terminal survivability approaches and precision lethality in the face of advanced countermeasures.

After LRASM prototypes completed two successful flight tests in 2013, LRASM transitioned from a DARPA technology demonstration program to a formal U.S. Navy program of record in February 2014, with fielding set for 2018.

On February 4, the Navy, Air Force and DARPA completed another successful flight test, marking a significant step in maturing key technologies for the future operational weapon system. The joint-service team, known as the LRASM Deployment Office (LDO), conducted the test to evaluate LRASM's low-altitude performance and obstacle avoidance as part of the program's accelerated development effort.

"We are very pleased with how LRASM performed today and we are looking forward to continuing integration efforts on the Air Force B-1, followed by our Navy F/A-18, over the next few years," said Capt. Jaime Engdahl, the LDO's Navy program manager.

"We have a clear mission, to deliver game-changing capability to our warfighters in theater as quickly as possible."

During the flight from the Sea Test Range in Point Mugu, California, a B-1B bomber released the LRASM prototype, which navigated a series of pre-planned waypoints to verify aerodynamic performance. In the final portion of the flight, the missile detected, tracked and avoided an object that was deliberately placed in the flight pattern to demonstrate LRASM's obstacle-avoidance algorithms.

LRASM reflects initiatives from the Defense Department (DoD)'s Better Buying Power 3.0, which encourages rapid prototyping and other forms of innovative acquisition to keep a technological edge and achieve greater efficiency and productivity in defense spending.

"We've shown that by taking advantage of the Defense Department's evolving acquisition policy, it is possible to significantly accelerate the fielding of a high-payoff technical system for the warfighter," said Artie Mabbett, LDO director.

The LDO is developing LRASM as an air-launched offensive anti-surface warfare weapon to counter the growing maritime threats in anti-access/area denial (A2/AD) environments. Once operational, LRASM would play a significant role in ensuring military access to operate in open ocean/blue waters and the littorals due to its enhanced ability to discriminate and conduct tactical engagements from extended ranges.



US Navy Spends $302Mln on Trident Nuclear Missiles

‎18 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎06:20:18 AMGo to full article
Washington DC (Sputnik) Feb 11, 2015 - The US Navy has issued a $302 million contract to Charles Stark Draper Laboratory Inc. to repair and maintain Trident D5 nuclear missiles, according to a US Defense Department statement.

"Charles Stark Draper Laboratory Inc... is being awarded a maximum amount $302,443,626 firm-fixed-price, fixed-price-incentive and cost-plus-incentive-fee contract for the ongoing acquisition of Trident (D5) MK 6 Guidance System Repair Program with failure verification, test, repair and recertification of inertial measurement units, electronic assemblies and electronic modules," the statement, issued on Monday, said.

The Trident D5 is a submarine-launched intercontinental ballistic missile with a range greater than 4573 miles, according to the Navy.

The US ballistic missile submarine fleet consists of 14 Trident submarines that currently carry approximately 1,000 warheads, according to the Congressional Research Service.

The Navy has programs to keep the Trident missiles in operating condition capable of being deployed throughout the life of the submarines. A new submarine is expected to replace the existing fleet by 2031, according to the Congressional Research Service.

The Trident D5 contract is expected to be completed by March 31, 2019, the Pentagon statement said.




Russian Military to Fire Iskander Missiles During Pacific Ocean Drills

‎18 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎06:20:18 AMGo to full article
Moscow, Russia (Sputnik) Feb 11, 2015 - The Russian Pacific Ocean Fleet along with military forces from the country's northeast has kicked off impromptu training exercises with some of its units on the Kamchatka Peninsula with approximately 2,500 servicemen, the Eastern Military Region's press service said Tuesday.

"During the check by the headquarters of the combinations and unions, as well as by the service members of Coast Guard subunits, anti-air defense, naval aviation, security marine ships, and submarine forces, they will work out issues of joint activity during the defense of the coastline within a interspecific grouping and a number of local military drill tasks," the press service said.

The Russian military will fire Iskander-M (SS-26 Stone) theater missile systems as part of Eastern Military District exercises, the district's press service said in a statement.

The military said it was conducting field training exercises to brush up on important combat technical skills, specifically missile launches.

"Servicemen of the Eastern Military District's missile formation have begun practical training using Iskander-M complexes," the statement said.

The Iskander-M is a short-range missile system. The missiles have a range of 400 kilometers (250 miles) and can carry conventional and nuclear warheads.




Diehl's IRIS-T missile completes qualification testing

‎18 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎06:20:18 AMGo to full article
Uberlingen, Germany (UPI) Feb 9, 2015 - Diehl Defense of Germany reports it has completed guided missile qualification testing of its IRIS-T surface launched weapon.

The full performance demonstration testing of the short-to-medium range missile was conducted last month at the Overberg Test Range in South Africa and involved the use of jet target drones performing evasive maneuvers at various altitudes.

"The performance demonstration firings concluded a series of test firings as part of the IRIS-T SL system development," Diehl Defense said. "Having been contracted by the Federal Office of Bundeswehr for Equipment, Information Technology, and In-Service Support (BAAINBw), representatives of the BAAINBw as well as the German Air Force witnessed IRIS-T SL's impressive performance in full accordance with the requirements of the German Air Force."

Diehl said the first target successfully engaged was at a distance of more than 18 miles and was flying at an altitude of more than 39,000 feet. The second firing was at very close range to the launch point. The IRIS-T SL jettisoned its aerodynamic cover shortly after launch and quickly initiated a hard turn-over maneuver toward the low flying target.

In the third firing, the missile struck its drone target despite the target's dive/pull-up evasive maneuvers.

The IRIS-T SL is slated to be part of a future German Air and Missile Defense System.



Tehran Denies Iranian Missile Program is Part of Nuclear Talks

‎18 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎06:20:18 AMGo to full article
Tehran (Sputnik) Feb 05, 2015 - Iran's missile program is not part of negotiations with the 5+1 group, comprising US, Russia, China, Britain, France and Germany, on Tehran's controversial nuclear program, Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister Seyed Abbas Araqchi said, according to state media.

Araqchi's remarks came after Jen Psaki, a spokeswoman for the US Department of State, said that "Iran's missile program continues to pose a dangerous threat to the region," adding that the program was "one of the issues we are taking up" in the talks on Tehran's nuclear program.

"Iran's missile program has been discussed and will continue to be discussed as part of the negotiations," Psaki said during a daily press briefing on February 2. Earlier that day, Iran announced that it had successfully launched its Fajr (Dawn) observation satellite, using a Safir-2 rocket into space.

Psaki's remarks prompted Araqchi to say that Iran's missile program was peaceful. "The 'Safir (Messenger)' rocket which carried the Fajr satellite into the orbit (on Monday) has been designed and built by the capable hands of experts at the defense ministry's aerospace organization for space missions and in pursuit of fully peaceful goals," he said, as quoted by the Fars news agency.

"Iran's missile program is fully defensive in nature and the Islamic Republic of Iran believes that its defensive issues are not negotiable at all and it will not discuss this issue with any foreign side," Araqchi added.

Negotiations for the Iranian nuclear program have been ongoing since an interim deal was reached in November 2013. The parties were unable to reach an agreement before July 2014, extending the deadline for a final comprehensive deal until June 2015.

Iran maintains that its activities, which include the construction of a uranium enrichment plant and a heavy-water reactor, are for the purposes of producing energy, rather than the production of nuclear weapons.




Tomahawk hits moving target using synthetic guidance

‎18 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎06:20:18 AMGo to full article
China Lake, Calif. (UPI) Feb 6, 2015 - The U.S. Navy has successfully demonstrated the use of a Tomahawk cruise missile to strike a moving target through the use of synthetic guidance.

In a test off the coast of California, a Tomahawk Block IV was fired from the destroyer USS Kidd and altered its course in flight toward a moving target after receiving position updates from surveillance aircraft.

The U.S. Naval Air Warfare Center Weapons Division called the successful test a significant accomplishment.

"It demonstrates the viability of long-range communications for position updates of moving targets," said Capt. Joe Mauser, Tomahawk Weapons System (PMA-280) program manager. "This success further demonstrates the existing capability of Tomahawk as a netted weapon, and in doing so, extends its reach beyond fixed and re-locatable points to moving targets."

The Naval Air Warfare Center Weapons Division said its team used existing Tomahawk strike communications frameworks to develop synthetic guidance for the missile.

Working with NAWCWD on the project was Raytheon Missile Systems, the Office of Naval Research Advanced Sensors Technology Program and the surface warfare centers at Dahlgren, Va., and Port Hueneme.



N. Korea fires short-range missiles into sea

‎18 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎06:20:18 AMGo to full article
Seoul (AFP) Feb 8, 2015 - North Korea test-fired five short-range missiles into the sea off its east coast Sunday, raising cross-border tensions ahead of Seoul's planned joint army drills with the US.

The North fired the missiles into the East Sea (Sea of Japan) from its eastern city of Wonsan between 4:20-5:10 pm, (0720-0810 GMT) Seoul's defence ministry spokesman told AFP.

They flew about 200 kilometres (124 miles) before landing.

"We are closely watching for any signs of additional missile launches by the North," said the spokesman.

On Saturday, the North said it had test-fired an "ultra-precision" anti-ship rocket, which will be deployed across its navy "before long".

The missile tests come as South Korea and the United States prepare to start major annual joint military exercises hated by Pyongyang.

The large-scale Key Resolve and Foal Eagle exercises, which will begin in early March, look set to trigger a sharp rise in military tensions on the divided peninsula.

The Seoul and Washington also started last week a joint naval exercise involving a US nuclear submarine.

Pyongyang sees all joint US-South Korea army exercises as provocative rehearsals for invasion and has frequently demanded they be stopped.

The nuclear-armed communist country has pushed ahead with the development of ballistic missiles and rockets, despite tough sanctions imposed by the international community.

In 2012, Pyongyang demonstrated its rocket capabilities by sending a satellite into orbit, but it has yet to conduct a test that proves it has mastered the technology required for an effective inter-continental ballistic missile (ICBM) that could reach the US mainland.

Seoul's military said in January that the North had also made "significant" steps in developing technology that would allow it to mount nuclear bombs on a missile.

Pyongyang has staged three nuclear tests, most recently in February 2013 -- the first since young ruler Kim Jong-Un came to power and its most powerful to date.



Denel picks Marotta Controls for system to cool missile IR seeker

‎18 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎06:20:18 AMGo to full article
Montville, N.J. (UPI) Feb 5, 2015 - The new short-range A-Darter missile of South Africa's Denel Dynamics will feature a cooling system for its infrared seeker from Marotta Controls.

The New Jersey company said its MPACT Pure Air Compression Technology will provide the missile with a continuous flow of pure dry air to cool the seeker in all weather conditions, reducing the risk of the seeker fouling or freezing because of moisture or air impurities.

"The Marotta Controls MPACT is a significant addition to the A-Darter missile system solution," said Marcus de Jonge, A-Darter Missile Program manager at Denel Dynamics. "It provides improved operational performance including unlimited mission time for the A-Darter missile and greatly enhances the deployability of the missile system with significantly reduced life cycle costs."

A-Darter is an air-to-air missile designed by Denel in cooperation with Brazil. It can be designated to a target using the aircraft's radar, a helmet sighting system or the missile's own autonomous scan feature.

Marotta Controls said it is providing Denel Dynamics with both development and production units of the system, which are being used on Gripen fighter aircraft.

The contract from the South African company is the first international order Marotta Controls has received for MPACT.



Pakistan tests cruise missile, India its Agni-V missile

‎15 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎11:56:06 AMGo to full article
Islamabad (UPI) Feb 2, 2015 - An air launched cruise missile indigenously developed by Pakistan successfully conducted on performed on Monday a successful flight test.

Inter Services Public Relations, a media organization of Pakistan's military, said the Ra'ad missile has a range of about 207 miles and incorporates stealth capabilities.

Ra'ad flies at a low altitude, is highly maneuverable and can carry nuclear warhead or a conventional one. Additional details on missile specifications, however, were not disclosed.

The successful test immediately garnered praise from Pakistan's Director General of Strategic Plans Division Lt. Gen. Zubair Mahmood Hayat.

According to ISPR, the general called the missile test "another milestone of historic significance," it said, and a "major step towards strengthening Pakistan's full spectrum credible minimum deterrence capability."

In other regional news, Pakistan's arch-rival, India, reports it successfully test launched a nuclear capable Agni-V intercontinental ballistic missile from a mobile launcher.

The test took place on Saturday.

"This is a momentous occasion," Avinash Chander, outgoing chief of India's Defense Research & Development Organization was quoted as saying by the Hindustan Times . "It is India's first ever intercontinental ballistic missile launch from a canister and a giant leap in the country's deterrent capability."

The missile has a range of about 3,100 miles.



India tests long-range missile from mobile launcher

‎12 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎03:30:05 AMGo to full article
New Delhi (AFP) Jan 31, 2015 - India on Saturday succeeded for the first time in using a mobile launcher to test-fire a long-range missile capable of delivering a nuclear warhead deep inside rival China.

Although Saturday's launch was the third test of the Agni V missile, it was the first time the weapon had been fired from a so-called canister mounted on a truck rather than from a concrete launchpad used in previous trials.

The new delivery mechanism gives the armed forces increased operational flexibility.

"Successful test-firing of Agni V from a canister makes the missile a prized asset for our forces," Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Twitter after the test on an island off the eastern state of Orissa.

The Agni V -- developed by India's Defence Research and Development Organisation -- was first tested in April 2012.

Analysts say the Agni V has the range to strike any target on the Chinese mainland, including military installations in the far northeast.

India sees the rocket, which has a range of 5,000 kilometres (3,100 miles), as a key boost to its regional power aspirations and one that narrows -- albeit slightly -- the huge gap with China's missile systems.

Agni, meaning "fire" in Sanskrit, is the name given to a series of rockets India developed as part of a guided missile development project launched in 1983.

While the shorter-range Agni I and II were mainly developed with traditional rival Pakistan in mind, analysts say later versions with a longer range reflect the shift in India's focus towards China.

India and China, each with a population of more than one billion, have prickly relations and a legacy of mistrust that stems from a brief but bloody border war in 1962.

India, the world's biggest arms importer, is in the midst of a $100-billion defence upgrade programme.

The new right-wing government has cleared long-delayed projects worth over $16 billion since storming to power at elections in May.

Modi has pushed for greater indigenisation of its defence industry, saying India must build up its military might to the point that no other country "dare cast an evil eye" on the South Asian nation.



Pakistan test-fires nuclear-capable cruise missile

‎09 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎06:28:43 AMGo to full article
Islamabad (AFP) Feb 2, 2015 - Pakistan Monday test-fired a cruise missile capable of carrying a nuclear warhead, just over a week after its arch-rival India reached a new civilian nuclear accord with the United States.

The military described the domestically-developed Ra'ad as a "low-flying, terrain-hugging missile" which can deliver nuclear or conventional warheads to targets up to 350 kilometres (220 miles) away with "pinpoint accuracy".

The agreement reached during President Barack Obama's visit to New Delhi broke a deadlock that stalled a civilian atomic power agreement for years.

But it drew condemnation from Pakistan, which said the deal could destabilise South Asian security.

The US and India in 2008 signed a landmark deal giving India access to civilian nuclear technology. But it had been held up since then by US concerns over India's strict laws on liability in the event of a nuclear accident.

India and Pakistan are both nuclear-armed in addition to operating civilian atomic plants. They have fought three wars since independence from Britain in 1947.




Russia to Test Strategic Missile Forces in Unscheduled Drills

‎01 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎03:55:31 AMGo to full article
Moscow, Russia (Sputnik) Jan 22, 2015 - Russia has kicked off its first unannounced drills of the year for the country's Strategic Missile Forces with over 1,200 active duty servicemen in western Siberia, Russian Defense Ministry spokesman Col. Igor Egorov said Tuesday.

"During the unannounced exercises of the missile forces, a committee will study the current condition in organizing activities by the commanders in completing drills of fighting terrorism as a command unit, missile force regiments and a number of other subdivision units," Egorov said.

The exercises will include more than 20 tasks and will also train with the Emergencies Ministry's troops, as well as with Internal Ministry and Federal Security Service forces.

"There will be no less than four of these kinds of drills during 2015," Egorov added.

The drills are being held at the Uzhursky Missile Unit in the Krasnoyarsk Territory.

Earlier in January, Egorov said that the Strategic Missile Forces plan to hold more than 100 exercises throughout the year. In late December 2014, Russian Armed Forces' Chief of Staff Valery Gerasimov said that building up Russia's nuclear forces is one of the army's key tasks for 2015.




Russia Will Test Launch Iskander-M Missiles During March Drills

‎01 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎03:55:31 AMGo to full article
Moscow, Russia (Sputnik) Jan 16, 2015 - Two missile battalions of the Central Military District (CMD) will test launch a number of Iskander-M tactical ballistic missiles during exercises in southern Russia in March, CMD spokesperson Col. Yaroslav Roshupkin said Thursday.

"In early March, after the completion of military training courses, the full-size unit will take part in combat launching exercises at the Kapustin Yar testing range," Roshupkin said.

The spokesperson added that two CMD missile force battalions have arrived at a testing range in Astrakhan Region to undergo an Iskander-M command and control training course ahead of the drills.

The units were fully equipped with Iskander-M theater ballistic missile complexes last November.

Following tactical drills, the missile forces are expected to return to their home base in Orenburg Region, which is fitted with the infrastructure needed to house the Iskander-M complexes, Roshupkin said.

Also known as SS-26 Stone, the Iskander is a powerful missile strike system with "quasi-ballistic" capability in use by the Russian Ground Forces. The missiles have a range of 400 km (250 miles) and can reportedly carry conventional and nuclear warheads.

Tests of the system were successfully carried out in 2007 and it is supplied by the Mashinostroyenia military-industrial corporation under a 2011 contract with the Russian Defense Ministry.




Navy authorizes SM-6 missile for more ships

‎01 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎03:55:31 AMGo to full article
Tucson (UPI) Jan 15, 2015 - The U.S. Navy has authorized the use of long-range multi-role SM-6 missiles by more ships in the fleet equipped with the Aegis Combat Weapons System.

Raytheon, the missile's manufacturer, said the authorization affects more than 35 ships with the Aegis baseline 5.3 and 3.A.0 system series.

"SM-6 is the longest range integrated air and missile defense interceptor deployed, and its multi-role capabilities are unprecedented," said Mike Campisi, Raytheon's Standard Missile-6 senior program director. "Its use is transforming how we define fleet defense."

The SM-6 is a surface-to-air supersonic missile. It is designed to defeat manned and unmanned aerial vehicles, fixed- and rotary-wing aircraft and anti-ship cruise missiles in flight. It features active and semi-active guidance, advanced fuzing techniques and signal processing and guidance control capabilities.

Raytheon assembles the weapon at its facility at the Redstone Arsenal in Huntsville, Ala.

Details on any ramp up in production of the missiles were not disclosed by the company.

Aegis is a naval weapons system that integrates computer and radar technology to track and guide weapons to targets.



Hezbollah chief threatens Israel over Syria strikes

‎01 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎03:55:31 AMGo to full article
Beirut (AFP) Jan 15, 2015 - Hezbollah chief Hassan Nasrallah threatened in an interview Thursday to retaliate against Israel for repeated strikes on Syria and said he has missiles that can hit the Jewish state.

Nasrallah told Al-Mayadeen television that his powerful Shiite movement has had Iranian Fateh-110 missiles that could strike throughout Israel since 2006, adding that it is always ready to fight the Jewish state.

Nasrallah, a key ally of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, has sent thousands of fighters into Syria to help defend the regime.

He said that Israeli strikes on Syria "target the whole of the resistance axis", which includes Hezbollah, Damascus and Tehran.

"The repeated bombings that struck several targets in Syria are a major violation, and we consider that any strike against Syria is a strike against the whole of the resistance axis, not just against Syria," he told the Beirut-based Arab news television.

"The axis is capable of responding. This can happen any time."

Asked about Hezbollah's arsenal, Nasrallah said the group had "all (the weapons) you can imagine... and in great quantities".

He added: "We are now stronger than we ever were as a resistance movement."

Israel and Hezbollah fought a devastating war in the summer of 2006 that killed some 1,200 Lebanese -- most of them civilians -- and 160 Israelis -- most of them soldiers.

According to Pentagon officials, Hezbollah has 50,000 missiles, including some capable of reaching Tel Aviv.

The Israeli air force has carried out several raids against targets in Syria, including depots storing weapons meant for Hezbollah, since the conflict there started nearly four years ago.

The most recent strike was in December, when Israeli warplanes struck weapons warehouses near Damascus, according to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights monitoring group.

Israel has never confirmed it carried out the strikes, but it says it has a policy of preventing arms transfers to militant groups including Hezbollah.

Israeli media said, however, after the December strikes that the air force had targeted arms convoys or depots of Iranian-made rockets.

Nasrallah said in the interview that Hezbollah is ready to fight a new war against Israel in Lebanon and renewed a threat to invade the Galilee region of northern Israel.

"When the resistance (Hezbollah) leadership... asks you (fighters)... to enter into Galilee, that means the resistance must be ready to enter into Galilee and to go even beyond the Galilee."

- 'No solution without Assad' -

Nasrallah also spoke extensively on how he views the war on Syria, where his troops have played a key role since mid-2013 in helping Assad's regime reconquer territory it had previously lost to the opposition.

He said he does not believe there can be no solution to the devastating Syrian war that excludes Assad.

Gulf states, Turkey and the West have repeatedly called for Assad's ouster, while rebel groups have refused to talk to the regime so long as Assad remains in power.

Russia is a key Damascus backer, and aims to hold talks later this month. It is unclear which opposition groups will attend the meeting.



New Navy missile ready for operational testing

‎01 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎03:55:31 AMGo to full article
Patuxent River, Md. (UPI) Jan 13, 2015 - The final developmental free flight test of Raytheon's Joint Standoff Weapon C-1 has been conducted in California by the U.S. Navy.

The U.S. Naval Air Systems Command said the test involved the missile being launched from an F/A-18 at a moving maritime target. The missile destroyed the target, it said, and met all primary test objectives.

The AGM-154 Joint Standoff Weapon is medium-range precision-guided missile system and is in use with the Navy to destroy land targets. The new C-1 variant incorporates a two-way strike common weapon datalink to enable the striking of a moving maritime target.

The missile system features an imaging infrared seeker and an autonomous target capability.

The Navy said the JSOW C-1 will now enter operational testing before delivery to the fleet in 2016.

"When operational, JSOW C-1 will provide joint force commanders with an affordable, air-delivered, standoff weapon effective against both moving maritime targets and fixed land targets," the Navy said.



Russia's Strategic Missile Forces to Conduct Over 100 Drills in 2015

‎01 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎03:55:31 AMGo to full article
Moscow (Sputnik) Jan 13, 2015 - The Strategic Missile Forces (SMF) of Russia are planning to conduct over 100 drills at various levels in 2015, SMF spokesperson Col. Igor Yegorov said Sunday.

"In 2015, SMF will conduct over 100 command and staff, tactical and specialized drills. The drills will be conducted in complex and tense conditions," Yegorov told the press.

The spokesperson added that the purpose of the planned exercises is to improve the performance of troops' field training by increasing the duration of the drills. In addition, requirements for skills of all categories of servicemen will be increased.

Russia's Strategic Missile Forces are the arm of the country's Armed Forces and the main component of it's strategic nuclear forces. Their main goals include nuclear deterrence of a possible aggression and the defeat of possible enemy's strategic objects of military and economic potential by means of nuclear missile attacks.

In late December, Russia's Chief of the General Staff Valery Gerasimov cited the strengthening of the country's nuclear triad as the Armed Forces' main task for 2015.




Russia's Northern Fleet Receives S-400 Air Defense Systems: Spokesperson

‎01 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎03:55:31 AMGo to full article
Moscow (Sputnik) Jan 11, 2015 - Russia's Northern Fleet has increased its air defense capability with the addition of S-400 Triumph air defense missile systems, the Fleet's spokesperson Vadim Serga said Friday.

"A division of air defense of the Northern Fleet has adopted into service new S-400 Triumph air defense missile systems," Serga stated without giving further details.

The S-400 Triumph long- to medium-range surface-to-air missile system can engage any aerial target, including aircraft, unmanned aerial vehicles, and cruise and ballistic missiles at a distance of up to 400 kilometers (250 miles) and an altitude of up to 30 kilometers (18.6 miles).

The S-400 is expected to form the cornerstone of Russian air and missile defense by 2020 with 9 regiments already deployed across the country as of December 2014.

The bolstering of Russia's Northern Fleet with S-400 systems comes amid the country's strategy to boost its presence in the Arctic region. Russian President Vladimir Putin noted in December that the country is not planning to militarize the Arctic, but is merely taking necessary measures to ensure a secure defense in the region.

Source: Sputnik News



Marotta To Develop Power Units For Long-Range Anti-Ship Missile

‎01 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎03:55:31 AMGo to full article
Montville, NJ (SPX) Jan 11, 2015 - Marotta Controls announces that it has been selected by Lockheed Martin to develop multiple power conversion units for the Long Range Anti-Ship Missile (LRASM), which Lockheed Martin is developing as a joint program with the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, the Department of the Navy and the U.S. Air Force.

Lockheed Martin will integrate Marotta's power conversion units into various avionics LRASM is a precision-guided anti-ship standoff missile that meets the needs of the U.S.

Navy and Air Force warfighters. Capable of launch from B-1B or F/A-18E/F aircraft, LRASM is designed to fly to the target area, find and defeat the target.

Marotta's power conversion units are critical components of LRASM, converting aircraft power into reliable output power for various avionics systems within the missile.

Each power conversion unit required a careful balance of meeting performance while optimizing efficiency in the extremely demanding missile environment.

These power conversion units achieve efficiency, minimal weight and optimal thermal management through simple and proven topologies, performance based component selection, and efficient power conversion.

Under this agreement Marotta Controls will provide Lockheed Martin with qualification and Engineering, Manufacturing and Development (EMD) units.

"This is a significant program win for Marotta Controls," said Michael Leahan, senior vice president of business development and chief sales officer at Marotta Controls.

"This award is a reflection of our commitment to ensure our customers' success. We are committed to achieve our customers' objectives on this important program and have a dedicated world-class technical team focused on every aspect of program execution.

"We are honored to work with Lockheed Martin, one of the world's most respected defense companies, on this next generation missile program."

This new contract follows the trajectory of Marotta's previous successes with power conversion units for missile systems, which include the power conversion unit for the US Army's M299 Launcher Modernization program.



Lockheed Martin upgrading Army tactical missiles

‎01 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎03:55:31 AMGo to full article
Dallas (UPI) Jan 7, 2015 - The U.S. Army's Tactical Missile System is to be upgraded by Lockheed Martin to eliminate the risk of unexploded sub-munitions following destruction of a target.

Lockheed said the contract, worth $78 million, involves using the hardware of early ATACMS Block 1 missiles and then testing the upgrades performed.

The upgraded missiles would then enter production in 2016.

"ATACMS is extremely reliable and effective, and has proven itself over and over again in combat," said Ken Musculus, vice president of Tactical Missiles for Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control. "These upgrades ensure ATACMS is ready to meet our customers' needs now and in the future."

The Army Tactical Missile System is a precision surface-to-surface weapon. The Block 1 variant carries hundreds of anti-materiel and anti-personnel sub-munitions. Each missile is packaged in an assembly pod and is fired from the Multiple Launch Rocket System family of launchers.

Lockheed, which has produced more than 3,700 of the missiles, said enhancement work will be performed at company facilities in Arkansas and Texas.

Additional details on the enhancements planned were not detailed.



Taiwan launches its largest ever missile ship

‎28 ‎December ‎2014, ‏‎11:39:30 PMGo to full article
Suao, Taiwan (AFP) Dec 23, 2014 - Taiwan on Tuesday launched its largest ever missile ship Tuesday as the island strives to modernise its armed forces in response to a perceived threat from China.

The 500-tonne corvette named 'Tuo Chiang' -- 'Tuo River' -- is the first of its kind ever produced by Taiwan and was touted by defence minister Yen Ming as "the fastest and most powerful" in Asia.

Armed with 16 missiles including eight supersonic Hsiung-feng III (Brave Wind) anti-ship missiles, it will boost Taiwan's defence capabilities against its giant neighbour, which considers the island part of China's territory awaiting to be reunited by force if necessary.

"From now on, the navy's combat capabilities will reach a crucial milestone, Yen said at a launch ceremony held in the port of Suao, in northeastern Yilan county.

"The completion of the new generation of naval warship is expected to ensure security in the Taiwan Strait and protect shipping lanes," he added.

Vice Admiral Wen Chen-kuo told AFP that "the supersonic missile is very difficult to intercept"

The sleek twin-hulled ship uses stealth technology to reduce the reflection of radar waves, making it harder to detect, with a maximum speed of 38 knots per hour and a range of 2,000 nautical miles (3,704 kilometres).

It set sail briefly Tuesday to show its capabilities to reporters before returning to the port again.

The corvette is scheduled to be deployed in Taiwan waters after further tests and is the prototype of up to 11 others to be built by the navy.

Its launch comes after the US Congress passed a bill last week authorising President Barack Obama to transfer up to four Perry-class guided missile frigates to Taipei.

China slammed the deal, saying a diplomatic protest had been lodged with the US.

"We are firmly opposed to arms sales to Taiwan by the US," said Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Qin Gang.

Ties between Taiwan and China have eased markedly since Ma Ying-jeou of the China-friendly Kuomintang party came to power in 2008, ramping up trade and allowing in more Chinese tourists.

But Beijing still refuses to renounce the use of force, even though Taiwan has been self-governing since the end of a civil war in 1949, prompting the island to continually modernise its armed forces.



French tactical air defense system set for upgrade

‎28 ‎December ‎2014, ‏‎11:39:30 PMGo to full article
Massy, France (UPI) Dec 23, 2014 - The main tactical component of the French military's SCCOA2 air command-and-control system is being upgraded by ThalesRaytheonSystems.

The contract, issued by DGA, the French defense procurement agency, covers software and hardware upgrades for MARTHA -- Maillage Antiaérien des Radars Tactiques pour la lutte contre les Hélicoptères et les Aéronefs à voilure fixe -- the French Army system that merges the command-and-control situation for low, medium and high-altitude planning and tasking from the Air Force for delegation to the Army, the company said.

MARTHA offers command, coordination and optimization of the firing of all types of anti-air weapon systems, it said.

ThalesRaytheonSystems said it will strengthen the systems data security to NATO's Secret level as well as upgrade the system to provide better integration and coordination with the French Army's air defense weapon systems and helicopters.

"MARTHA allows the command and tactical control of assets in the third dimension," ThalesRaytheonSystems said. "It permanently manages mission execution and maneuvers, communicating in real time with air defense and artillery units, light aviation helicopters and intelligence assets deployed in the battlespace.

"The system makes it possible to counter air threats in a timely fashion, as well as to safely coordinate and efficiently manage the actors in the third dimension requiring real-time analysis of large volumes of data."

The monetary value of the award and the contract's period of performance were not detailed.



Poland orders more Norwegian missiles

‎28 ‎December ‎2014, ‏‎11:39:30 PMGo to full article
Kongsberg, Norway (UPI) Dec 19, 2014 - Poland is getting a second coastal defense missile squadron equipped with truck-mounted naval strike missiles from Kongsberg Defense & Aerospace.

The Norwegian company said the contract from Poland's Ministry of National Defense is worth about $175.3 million.

"This agreement proves the leading position of NSM and our position as a reliable partner and supplier to Poland," said Harald Annestad, president of Kongsberg Defense.

"Polish industry and Kongsberg successfully delivered the first NSM Coastal Defense Squadron through a close cooperation with the Polish Government. With this contract we continue our ambition of involving even more Polish companies and expand our cooperation into a broader technological arena."

Kongsberg first supplied its NSM system to Poland under a 2008 contract. Maintenance of the system is provided in partnership with WZE, or Wojskowe Zakłady Elektroniczne S.A.

The trucks radar and communications system for NSMs used in Poland are provided by Polish companies.

The NSM was originally developed for the Norwegin Navy and is operational on new Norwegian Fridtjof Nansen-class frigates and the Skjold-class corvettes.



JASSM-ER cruise missile enters full-rate production

‎28 ‎December ‎2014, ‏‎11:39:30 PMGo to full article
Orlando, Fla. (UPI) Dec 16, 2014 - The U.S. Air Force has given the go-ahead for full-rate production of Lockheed Martin's extended range Joint Air-to-Surface Standoff Missile.

JASSM-ER is an air-to-surface missile that successfully completed U.S. Air Force Initial Operational Test and Evaluation flight testing last year, achieving a 96 percent success rate -- 20 successes in 21 flights.

The cruise missile is armed with a dual-mode penetrator and blast-fragmentation warhead, an infrared seeker and Global Positioning System receiver, and has more than 2.5 times the range of the baseline JASSM, which is more than 230 miles.

"The full rate production decision demonstrates that our customer, at all levels of the U.S. Air Force, has confidence in JASSM-ER," said Jason Denney, long-range strike systems program director at Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control. "JASSM-ER provides warfighters with a first day, first strike capability in an anti-access, area-denial environment."

The JASSM-ER is integrated Air Force B-1B bombers. The baseline JASSM is integrated on the U.S. Air Force's B-2, B-52, F-16, F-15E aircraft.

Australia also deploys the 2,000-pound missile on its F/A-18A/B fighters.



Japan asks U.S. for AMRAAM sales deal

‎28 ‎December ‎2014, ‏‎11:39:30 PMGo to full article
Washington (UPI) Dec 15, 2014 - Japan has asked the United States for medium-range air-to-air missiles and associated equipment through the U.S. Foreign Military Sales program,

The Defense Security Cooperation Agency, which oversees FMS sales, notified Congress of the potential deal which is worth an estimated $33 million.

"The Government of Japan requires these missiles for national defense, regional security, inventory modernization, and U.S. interoperability," the agency said. "This sale will enhance the Japan Air Self-Defense Force's ability to defend Japan's territory and protect critical Japanese and U.S. installations.

"Japan, which currently has AIM-120C5 missiles in its inventory, will have no difficulty absorbing these additional missiles into its armed forces."

The proposed sales package is for 17 AIM-120C7 Advanced Medium Range Air-to-Air Missiles, or AMRAAMs, two captive air training missiles, containers, missile support and test equipment, support equipment and spare and repair parts.

Logistics support services, and other related elements of logistics and program support are also included.

Raytheon Missile Systems would be the principal contractor, and multiple trips to Japan involving U.S. government and contractor personnel would be required for technical reviews, support and program management.

U.S. contractor representatives would also be required in Japan to conduct modification kit installation, testing, and training.

DSCA said the U.S. State Department has given its approval for the deal.



Lockheed Martin producing more missile launch systems for Navy

‎28 ‎December ‎2014, ‏‎11:39:30 PMGo to full article
Baltimore (UPI) Dec 15, 2014 - Lockheed Martin is to continue producing its MK 41 vertical launch systems for missiles fired from U.S. Navy warships.

The contract from the Navy is worth $235 million. If all contract options are exercised, however, the value would rise to $356 million.

"We are proud to continue building these launchers and bring this significant capability to the U.S. Navy for its critical missions as we have for 32 years," said Joe North, vice president of Littoral Ships and Systems at Lockheed Martin. "The fact that the VLS can launch any type of missile from any cell brings unparalleled flexibility in addressing threats from land, air and sea."

Lockheed Martin's MK 41 VLS was first produced in 1984. It is used primarily on cruisers and destroyers. A dozen U.S. allies also use the VLS on nearly 200 ships, the company said.

"The launching system is the only one in use that can simultaneously accommodate the weapon control system and the missiles of every warfighting mission area -- anti-aircraft, anti-surface, antisubmarine and land attack. The system is designed to accept any missile into any cell," according to Lockheed Martin.



French military orders Ground Master air defense radar systems

‎28 ‎December ‎2014, ‏‎11:39:30 PMGo to full article
Massy, France (UPI) Dec 12, 2014 - The French military has ordered more than a dozen air defense radars from ThalesRaytheonSystems for coupling with NATO's Air Command and Control System.

The contract, for which no monetary figure was given, is for 12 fixed Ground Master 400 radars and four mobile tactical Ground Master 200 radars.

The Ground Master 400 is a long-range, digital 3D active electronically scanned array long-range radar for tracking aircraft and cruise missiles flying from low to high altitudes. The Ground Master 200 is a medium-range S band radar system.

ThalesRaytheonSystems said France has already acquired Ground Master radars for its military bases in Kourou, Nice and Lyon, which have been coupled with the NATO command and control system.

"ThalesRaytheonSystems is proud to be contributing with its Ground Master radars to the modernization of France's air surveillance capability, which is already underway with the delivery of these latest-generation radars for the bases in Kourou, Nice and Lyon," said Jerome Bendell, chief executive officer of ThalesRaytheonSystems France.

The radar contract also provides for through-life support of the radars and installation and civil engineering work for the 12 Ground Master 400 systems.



40,000th Javelin ant-armor missile produced

‎28 ‎December ‎2014, ‏‎11:39:30 PMGo to full article
Orlando, Fla. (UPI) Dec 8, 2014 - A joint venture company of Raytheon and Lockheed Martin is touting the delivery of its 40,000th Javelin shoulder-fired anti-armor missile system to the U.S. Army.

The Javelin is made by Javelin Joint Venture. It is a fire-and-forget system that guides itself to its target and first came into service in 1996.

"Javelin provides a real battlefield advantage for U.S. and allied warfighters," said Richard Benton, Javelin Joint Venture vice president and Javelin program manager at Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control. "Javelin's reliability, accuracy and lethality make it a key weapon in operators' arsenals.

"The attention to detail that our entire production team, including our subcontractors, give to the Javelin missile have made this significant production milestone possible."

Javelin Joint Venture said the missile has a 94 percent effectiveness rate in combat operations. Recent tests have also shown its adaptability to many platforms, including tripods, trucks and lightly armored vehicles.

The missile has an effective range of as much as 2,500 yards and is equipped with an imaging infrared guidance system.

"The Javelin Joint Venture is providing U.S. and allied warfighters with an affordable, versatile and lethal one-man-portable, anti-armor, guided missile and superior battlefield surveillance system," said John Halvey, Javelin Joint Venture president and program manager at Raytheon. "The industry and government Javelin team is committed to providing warfighters with the most advanced close combat weapons on the battlefield."



Taiwan develops new missiles to counter China's threat

‎28 ‎December ‎2014, ‏‎11:39:30 PMGo to full article
Lungtan, Taiwan (AFP) Dec 02, 2014 - Taiwan arms developers said Tuesday that new surface-to-air missiles would defend its airspace for "up to 20 years" as it aims to update weaponry to counter a perceived military threat from China.

Production of the Tienkung III (Sky Bow III), the most advanced model in a line of locally-developed air defence missiles, is slated to last from 2015 until 2024.

Parliament recently approved the budget for the Tw$74.8 billion ($2.5 billion) project.

"The missile is capable of intercepting short-range ballistic missiles, cruise missiles and fighter jets," a senior official in charge of the missile project at Chung-Shan Institute of Science and Technology, the island's arms development hub, told AFP.

"Together with US-made Patriot missiles, Tienkung III system will guard Taiwan's airspace in the next 15 to 20 years," said the official, surnamed Huang.

The institute also released a video to reporters visiting the tightly-guarded compound in northern Taiwan.

In the short film two Tienkung III missiles were fired from vertical launchers at the Chiupeng air base, soaring into the sky and destroying targets.

Huang declined to give specifications of the new missile, aimed at replacing the ageing US-made Hawk missiles -- but media speculated that Tienkung III has a range of up to 200 kilometres (124 miles).

The project is part of the island's efforts to build an air defence shield against any Chinese attacks.

According to Taiwan's defence ministry, China has more than 1,500 ballistic and cruise missiles trained on the island.

Taiwan split from China in 1949 after a civil war, but China sees it as part of its territory awaiting reunification -- by force if necessary.

Ties between China and Taiwan have improved markedly since Beijing-friendly President Ma Ying-jeou took office in 2008 and strengthened trade and other links, but fears of a Chinese invasion remain.



RAF successfully launches Paveway guided bombs from Eurofighter Typhoon and F-35

‎28 ‎December ‎2014, ‏‎11:39:30 PMGo to full article
Patuxent River, Md. (UPI) Dec 1, 2014 - The United Kingdom's Royal Air Force has completed the first in-flight test launches of the Raytheon Paveway IV precision-guided bomb from a Eurofighter Typhoon and F-35B fighter jet.

According to Raytheon, "The Paveway family of laser guided bombs has revolutionized tactical air-to-ground warfare by converting 'dumb' bombs into precision guided munitions."

"Newer versions of Paveway include GPS/INS guidance capabilities. This innovation combines the accuracy and flexibility of traditional laser-guided weapons with the all-weather capability of GPS guidance, resulting in a weapon that decreases the required sortie count and weapon inventory while simultaneously increasing the mission success rate."

"[...] Standard Typhoons can carry up to six Paveway IV weapons, which can be released simultaneously against multiple targets," simplified British Aerospace test pilot Steve Formoso to IHS Jane's 360.

The Eurofighter's successful trial run occurred at the Cape Wrath Training Center in Scotland, while the F-35B was tested at the United States Navy's Patuxent River Naval Air Station in Maryland.

"These latest trials ... help us to move confidently into the next phase of weapons testing," F-35 lead test pilot Pete Wilson told AirForce-Technology.com.

"This is another landmark moment for the Typhoon Force, and highlights the aircraft's potent swing-role capability," echoed British Wing Commander Mike Sutton from across the Atlantic.

"The swing-role capability of the Typhoon ensures that we are well equipped to respond to the challenges of contingent operations across the globe, while also maintaining the security of UK skies through the delivery of Quick Reaction Alert, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year."



Brazil, Russia in talks on air defense system

‎26 ‎December ‎2014, ‏‎12:24:12 AMGo to full article
Brasilia, Brazil (UPI) Nov 24, 2014 - Brazilian and Russian military officials have been talking medium-range air defense systems.

The Brazilian Ministry of Defense reports the talks took place in Brazil last week and were conducted by delegations led by Brig. Gershon Machado, head of Logistics at the Ministry of Defense and Gen. Sergei Babakov, commander of the anti-aircraft missile troops of the Russian Air Force.

The talks, as well as visits to Brazilian military facilities, were "to strengthening cooperation between the two countries in the air defense sector."

"Brazil and Russia have established a series of conversations over the past few years on the Brazilian armed forces' need of a medium-range air defense system, able to engage targets flying at altitudes of up to 10,000 meters (nearly 33,000 feet)," the ministry said.

"In August this year, a Brazilian delegation was in Moscow to conduct additional assessments of the Pantsir-S1 medium altitude anti-aircraft artillery system, which could be purchased by Brazil to meet this need.

By the end of this year, another delegation is expected to visit the Russian Ministry of Defense, as part of the continuation of negotiations between the two countries on the subject."



The fear and the chaos of a missile attack in east Ukraine

‎21 ‎December ‎2014, ‏‎04:25:46 AMGo to full article
Donetsk, Ukraine (AFP) Nov 24, 2014 - There was a blinding flash, then complete darkness and thick clouds of dust. A missile had just hit Ivan Balabanov's house in rebel-held east Ukraine.

Stunned, Ivan groped around in the pitch black to find his flashlight.

His ears ringing from the explosion, he took a few seconds to regain his senses and remember what was around him.

He remembered he was in one room with his daughter while his wife had been tending to their thirteen- month granddaughter in the room next door before the explosion.

"I was confused," he says. "We could not see anything."

Suddenly he heard the sound of the baby crying. Then he realised that he could make out another noise: his wife groaning in agony.

She was surrounded by debris in the hallway, her right shoulder smashed and blood flowing from where shrapnel had pierced her thigh.

But miraculously she was still standing, clutching her granddaughter -- safe and sound -- in her arms.

Some neighbours came quickly to the rescue. They placed the injured on a stretcher made from a blanket and carried her to a vehicle that set off quickly for the hospital.

- Blood and dust -

Balabanov is a small man of 64 with sad eyes, who tells his story now sitting in the middle of his wrecked living room, wrapped in a jacket that is too big for him.

Under his feet are shrapnel fragments and chunks of plaster.

His wife's dried blood can be seen on the ground mixed with the dust from the blast.

The rocket burst through the roof of his small home Saturday night, exploding in his modest kitchen.

In the more than seven months of fighting between government forces and rebels in this blighted region the terror felt by Balabanov has become a terrifying new reality for those living here.

As both sides have unleashed ageing and imprecise Soviet-made weapons at each other, civilians have paid the highest price.

More that 4,300 people -- mostly innocent local residents -- have been killed and some 10,000 more have been wounded.

No one knows who fired the missile that hit Balabanov's house.

Up until now, his district in the west of the rebel city of Donetsk -- studded with coalmines -- has got off relatively easy and shelling here has been lighter than in some other areas.

But the Ukrainian army and the insurgent fighters face off just kilometres away and the threat and distant thud of shelling remains ever present.

Despite the damage, Balabanov considers his family lucky. Like most here, he now has his own tale of lucky escape.

"A quarter of an hour earlier, we were all sitting in the kitchen," he told AFP.

"If we had stayed there, then all four of us would have been killed."

He trembled as he thought about how close three generations of his family came to being wiped out.

"It is a miracle that my wife was able to protect the baby despite all her wounds," he said.

She will soon be out of hospital, however, as there are no places left in the casualty ward for her.

Before she came back Balabanov had planned to come back to the house to start work with a few friends and neighbours clearing the debris.

They returned the day after the attack but as they set to work eight loud explosions shook around them, sending what was left of it crashing to the ground.

Once again, Ivan says, he was left lying dazed on the ground.



Elbit's anti-missile system to feature on German A400M transports

‎07 ‎December ‎2014, ‏‎03:53:32 AMGo to full article
Haifa, Israel (UPI) Nov 21, 2014 - Airbus A400M airlifters of the German Air Force are to be equipped with Elbit Systems' J-MUSIC Multi-Spectral Directed Infrared Counter Measure systems.

J-MUSIC is a high-performance, fiber-laser based DIRCM solution that enables an aircraft to defend against man-portable ground-to-air heat-seeking missiles by sending them off target.

Elbit Systems Ltd of Israel said its systems are being provided under a contract from Diehl Defense. They will be integrated into a DIRCM multi-turret to ensure 360-degree protection of the aircraft.

"We are proud of our cooperation with DIEHL Defense on DIRCM that has resulted in this initial contract for the protection of the German Air Force's A400M aircraft," said Bezhalel (Butzi) Machlis, president and chief executive officer of Elbit Systems. "Our DIRCM systems provide effective protection to the growing threat of MANPADS, and we hope that additional customers will follow and select our systems as their preferred solution."

Elbit Systems did not disclose the monetary value of the award.

The German Air Force is scheduled to receive its first A400M transport from Airbus later this year, becoming the fourth operator of the aircraft.


Destroyer simultaneously fires SM-2 and SM-3 missiles

‎20 ‎November ‎2014, ‏‎08:59:23 AMGo to full article
Kauai, Hawaii (UPI) Nov 7, 2014 - Raytheon SM-2 and SM-3 missiles were launched simultaneously from a U.S. Navy destroyer in a recent integrated air and missile defense exercise in the Pacific.

In the test by the Navy and the Missile Defense Agency, a Standard Missile-3 Block IB destroyed a short-range ballistic missile target, while two SM-2 Block IIIAs destroyed two cruise missile targets.

"This test showcases the U.S.'s ability to defend against numerous ballistic and cruise missile threats in 'raid' scenarios," said Dr. Taylor W. Lawrence, president of Raytheon Missile Systems. "No other nation in the world has the capability to do what the U.S. Navy and Missile Defense Agency demonstrated."

SM-3 Block IIA, was co-developed with Japan. It destroys an incoming ballistic missile threat in space by crashing into it. More than 200 SM-3s have been delivered to the U.S. and Japan so far. SM-3 Block IB missiles are being deployed in Romania next year as part of the Aegis-Ashore missile defense program.

Raytheon said advanced technologies used on the next-generation Block IB missile include enhanced a two-color infrared seeker and a Throttleable Divert and Attitude Control System, a mechanism that helps propels the missile toward its target.

SM-2s are fleet-area defense weapons but are also capable of extended-area air defense. The missile has been integrated with Aegis and non-Aegis combat systems with the U.S. Navy and the navies of allied countries. Among them: Australia, Canada, Germany, Japan.



Air Force orders more Paveway II Plus guided bomb kits

‎20 ‎November ‎2014, ‏‎08:59:23 AMGo to full article
Archbald, Pa. (UPI) Nov 11, 2014 - Lockheed Martin reports it has received a follow-on production contract from the U.S. Air Force for Paveway II Plus Laser Guided Bomb kits.

The $40.3 million contract is the eighth under a five-year indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity contract and involves computer control groups and airfoil groups for GBU-10 and GBU-12 bombs.

Deliveries of the kits will begin in June of next year, the company said.

Paveway is a kit attached to freefall MK-84 (2,000 lb.), GBU-12 MK-82 (500 lb.) and GBU-16 MK-83 (1,000 lb.) bombs and converts them into precision-guided weapons through the use of a nose-mounted laser seeker.

Lockheed said its Paveway II Plus kit consists of a MAU-209C/B computer control group that contains the electronic guidance system and an airfoil group to provide lift and stability to the weapon.

"Lockheed Martin is focused on continuous improvement in our current and emerging line of precision guided systems so we can deliver exceptional capability at the best value to the warfighter," said Joe Serra, precision guided systems manager at Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control. "This contract extends U.S. Air Force production at our Archbald, Pa., facility through first quarter 2016."



Exelis, Airbus offer missile warning capability for F-16s

‎20 ‎November ‎2014, ‏‎08:59:23 AMGo to full article
Clifton, N.J. (UPI) Nov 10, 2014 - Exelis and Europe's Airbus Group have partnered to provide new advanced missile warning capabilities for F-16 fighters.

Exelis, the lead U.S. contractor for the AAR-60(V)2 Missile Launch Detection System for Fighters, or MILDS F, said the system will include lightweight protection against short-range air defense missiles and man-portable air defense systems.

The system will be affordable, it said, and immediately available for deployment.

"The agreement ensures that this affordable, ready-now solution is available to U.S. customers and global allies through foreign military sales," said Joe Rambala, vice president and general manager of the Exelis integrated electronic warfare systems business. "This is another important step in advancing our electronic warfare strategic growth platform."

MILDS F, by Airbus Defense and Space, can be installed on the Pylon Integrated Dispenser System Plus by Terma. It is the only missile warning system cleared through the U.S. Air Force's Seek Eagle aircraft stores certification process to fly on the F-16.

Under their agreement, Exelis will provide maintenance and sustainment for all U.S. customer requirements for MILDS F, as well as for future foreign military sales program opportunities. It will also assume responsibility for the manufacture of system components in the United States.

"With this agreement, Exelis continues to expand its relationship with Airbus through defense and commercial solutions, including commercial aerostructures and geographical information systems." Exelis said.



Anti-missile system for airliners passes testing

‎20 ‎November ‎2014, ‏‎08:59:23 AMGo to full article
Tel Aviv, Israel (UPI) Nov 7, 2014 - An autonomous system that protects aircraft from shoulder-fired missiles is to be installed on Israeli civilian aircraft.

The system from Elbit Systems Electro-Optic is called Flight Guard and uses thermal imaging and laser-fiber technology, which creates high-intensity laser beams, according to an announcement by the Israeli Air Force and Elbit Systems.

"Flight Guard is installed on the lower part of the aircraft and contains four sensors that enable detection, identification, tracking and, ultimately, disruption of the flight path of a missile fired in the direction of the flight path of a plane on which the system is installed," the Air Force said.

"The Flight Guard' works completely autonomously and like many payloads on aerial platforms, it is not subject to the control of the aircrews and they do not receive any information from it directly."

Tests on the system by Elbit, the Ministry of Defense and Ministry of Transportation have been completed, and under contract Flight Guard will be installed on Israeli civilian aircraft, such as passenger planes.

"It is also intended to be installed on refueling and reconnaissance helicopters and jets," said Adi Dar, chief executive officer of Electro-Optic.

"This is one of the biggest experiments ever conducted in Israel," he said. The ministries "examined the system against all relevant threats, most of which I cannot elaborate on, but I can say that the system was successful in every scenario."

No information was provided as to when the system would be installed on aircraft.



Air Force orders more Griffin missiles from Raytheon

‎20 ‎November ‎2014, ‏‎08:59:23 AMGo to full article
Tucson (UPI) Nov 7, 2014 - The U.S. Air Force has given Raytheon an indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity contract for supply of Griffin missiles and support services.

The award has a maximum value of $85.5 million. The first increment was funded at $32.5 million.

"Raytheon will deliver Griffin A and B Block II/III missiles as well as test and support equipment under firm-fixed-price contract line item number along with engineering support under a cost-plus-fixed-fee contract line item number," the company said. "Work will be performed in Tucson, Ariz., and is expected to be completed by Oct. 30, 2017."

The Griffin AGM-176A features a simple user interface to guide the weapon to a target using GPS coordinates and/or laser designation. It is just 43 inches long and weighs 33 pounds.

The missile comes in two variants. The A variant is ejected from the rear of an aircraft such as the C-130 Hercules, while the B variant is a forward-fired weapon for use by helicopters and fixed-wing assets. It can also be used as a ground-launched and maritime weapon system.



Fearing US raids, Syria seeks Russian S-300s: Muallem

‎20 ‎November ‎2014, ‏‎08:59:23 AMGo to full article
Beirut (AFP) Nov 06, 2014 - Syria has asked Russia to speed up delivery of S-300 anti-aircraft missiles, concerned about a possible US attack, Syrian Foreign Minister Walid Muallem said in an interview published Thursday.

Speaking to Lebanon's Al-Akhbar newspaper, Muallem said Washington had pledged that US-led air strikes against the Islamic State group would not hit the Syrian army.

"Do we trust this commitment? For now, we realise that President Barack Obama, for domestic reasons, wants to avoid war with Syria," he told the newspaper.

"But we do not know how Obama will act under mounting pressure, and the pressure will only increase if the Republicans achieve a majority in the US mid-term elections, so we have to prepare ourselves."

The interview was conducted before Tuesday's US elections, which saw the Republicans regain control of Congress.

"This is what we explained bluntly to the Russians, and we asked them to use take advantage of the situation and provide us with advanced weapons," he said.

Asked if he was referring to S-300 anti-aircraft missiles, which Damascus has long sought from Russia, Muallem replied: "Yes, and other advanced weapons."

"We will get them and other advanced weapons in a reasonable period," he said.

"The main problem is on the road to a speedy solution, meaning the Kremlin's political approval. It is just around the corner," he added.

S-300 batteries are advanced surface-to-air weapons that can take out aircraft or guided missiles, and Russia's planned sale of the missiles to Damascus has raised international concerns.

Last September, Russian President Vladimir Putin said delivery of the weapons had been suspended "for the moment" without saying why.

His comments came after Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu paid a special visit to Russia to convince Moscow to halt the shipments.

Syria has reportedly paid a deposit of several hundred million dollars for between three to six missile system units.

The entire deal is reportedly valued at around $1 billion.

Russia is a key ally of the Syrian government and has been a staunch supporter of President Bashar al-Assad throughout the uprising that began in March 2011.

It has continued to provide other weapons, as well as credit lines and diplomatic cover to the Syrian government.

Washington last year threatened military action against the Syrian regime, but eventually settled for a deal that saw Damascus give up its chemical weapons arsenal.

Since late September, a US-led coalition has been carrying out air strikes on Syrian territory, but primarily against the Islamic State jihadist group.

Muallem said Washington had given Damascus advanced warning before the strikes began, both through its UN ambassador, as well as via Baghdad and Moscow, and pledged that the bombing would not hit the Syrian army.



New Paveway IV capability for upgraded Typhoon fighters

‎20 ‎November ‎2014, ‏‎08:59:23 AMGo to full article
London (UPI) Nov 6, 2014 - An upgraded Royal Air Force Typhoon jet fighter has demonstrated the ability to simultaneously drop multiple Paveway IV-equipped precision-guided bombs.

Raytheon UK said the simultaneous release of two Paveway IV bombs at multiple targets by the fighter during a series of flight trials was a first for a Typhoon aircraft.

The Phase 1 Enhancements package, or P1Eb, implements full air-to-surface capability onto Typhoon Tranche 2 aircraft.

"P1Eb allows Typhoon to begin realizing its air-to-ground capability using Paveway IV, while also delivering in the air-to-air arena," said Sean Cutler, deputy head of FAST Capability Acquisition at the Ministry of Defense's Defense Equipment and Support organization. "Our ability to switch between air-to-air and air-to-ground modes is a big step, providing flexibility for our pilots on operations."

Raytheon's Paveway IV is a kit attached to modified MK 82 general purpose freefall bombs, giving them precision laser guidance and GPS/inertial navigation.

The recent trials build on earlier flight trials to fully exploit the Paveway system on the Typhoon. Raytheon said the tests involved self-designation with laser guidance drops to the target and GPS-only guided releases.

The trials demonstrated the full air-to-surface capability of the P1Eb product, with the Paveway IV weapon, including self-designation with laser guidance to the target and GPS-only guided releases



Naval cruise missile set for deployment on French warships

‎20 ‎November ‎2014, ‏‎08:59:23 AMGo to full article
Paris (UPI) Oct 29, 2014 - A naval cruise missile developed by MBDA France has completed its final qualification firing conducted by the French military procurement agency, DGA, and navy.

The Missile de Croisière Naval, or MdCN, will be deployed aboard French Navy FREMM frigates beginning next year and aboard Barracuda-class nuclear attack submarines around 2018.

"Featuring a range of several hundred kilometers (miles), MdCN has been devised for striking targets deep within enemy territory," DGA said. "It complements the air-launched cruise missile, Storm Shadow/SCALP, from which it is derived."

The final qualification test took place early this week at DGA's missile test center. All requirements and objectives were met, the agency said, including the missile's range performance.

Additional technical details of the testing, however, were not disclosed.

DGA awarded MBDA the contract to build the missile in 2006. The weapon is now in low-rate production.

The French Navy intends to acquire about 150 of the cruise missiles.

In other missile developments, MBDA has designed a lightweight missile for use by helicopters to defeat small, fast boats at sea.

The missile is called the Anti-Navire Leger and is the result of an accord between France and Britain for greater defense industrial cooperation.

The fire-and-forget missile, which includes a man-in-the-loop option, uses an infrared seeker and a datalink that enables bi-directional transmission of real-time information between the helicopter and the missile.

"The missile operator receives on his monitor the same image that is 'seen' by the missile so that, during the flight, he can re-designate another target or select the missile's impact point on a larger target, like a ship," said Nicolas Duchesne, DGA's manager of the anti-ship missile program. "For example, by disabling the rudder to immobilize the ship without destroying it.

"The operator can also abort the engagement, in which case the missile will fall into the water," said Nicolas Duchesne, DGA's manager of the anti-ship missile program. "This dual capability simplifies the missile's operation, while allowing the operator to adapt its mission in real time for a measured and gradual response, which can limit collateral damage."

Further development of the missile is being pursued by French and British companies and it is expected to undergo qualification testing in 2017-2018.

The French Ministry of Defense said parts are already being machined to manufacture prototype components of the missile.

"When we have a missile with a mature definition, DGA will carry out qualification firings," Duchesne said.

Britain intends for the missile to be carried by Royal Navy Lynx Wildcat helicopters. France has yet to decide on an aircraft for the weapon's use.

MBDA's contract to develop the Anti-Navire Leger, awarded in March of this year, is managed by a French-British government team.



N. Korea researching sea-based missiles: US think-tank

‎20 ‎November ‎2014, ‏‎08:59:23 AMGo to full article
Seoul (AFP) Oct 29, 2014 - North Korea has built a test facility that may be intended to develop a marine-based ballistic missile launch capability, using submarines or surface vessels, a US think-tank said Tuesday.

While submarines carrying ballistic missiles could provide the North Korea with a survivable second-strike nuclear capability, the US-Korea Institute at Johns Hopkins University stressed that Pyongyang was likely "years" from achieving the required technology.

Reviewing recent commercial satellite imagery, the institute said a new test stand had been identified at the Sinpo South Shipyard in northeastern North Korea.

The size and design of the stand suggested it was intended "to explore the possibility of launching ballistic missiles from submarines or of a shipboard vertical launch ballistic missile capability," it said in an analysis on the closely followed 38 North website.

The analysis said it was difficult to speculate what kind of missile system the North might use on a submarine-based system, noting that existing large, liquid-fuelled missiles like the medium-range Musudan and Nodong would be difficult to adapt.

A naval version of existing short-range Scud missiles or an entirely new system might present less of an engineering challenge, but whatever system is chosen, "it is likely to take years to design, develop, manufacture, and deploy", it added.

Despite those caveats, the prospect of a second-strike capability -- the ability to survive an initial nuclear attack and hit back -- will only fuel concerns about the pace of North Korea's nuclear weapons development.

Last week, the commander of US forces in South Korea, General Curtis Scaparrotti, said the North had progressed to the point where it could probably miniaturise a nuclear device to be fitted on the tip of a missile.

"We have not seen it tested ... (but) I don't think as a commander we can afford the luxury of believing perhaps they haven't gotten there," Scaparrotti told a news conference in Washington.

A Defense Intelligence Agency report leaked last year had also concluded the North had mastered the necessary miniaturisation technology, although US officials at the time said it did not represent a consensus view of all the country's spy agencies.

The ability to fit a nuclear warhead device on a credible delivery system would be a major breakthrough for the North, which is also seen as pushing the development of an inter-continental ballistic missile (ICBM) capable of reaching the mainland United States.



Poland to buy short-range missiles amid tensions with Russia

‎20 ‎November ‎2014, ‏‎08:59:23 AMGo to full article
Warsaw (AFP) Nov 03, 2014 - NATO member Poland on Monday invited manufacturers of short-range surface-to-air missiles for technical talks for a planned military revamp amid heightened tensions with Russia.

The defence ministry said the new acquisitions will be part of a planned anti-missile shield and air defence system which is pegged to cost 7.1 billion euros ($8.8 billion).

A supplier will be chosen in 2016, according to officials.

With a population of 38 million people, central Europe's largest country had said last year it would spend 33 billion euros over a decade to upgrade its army.

But Warsaw accelerated the plan after Russia, its Soviet-era master, annexed Ukraine's Crimean peninsula in March and gave backing to pro-Moscow separatist rebels fighting in Ukraine's east.

Warsaw shortlisted French manufacturer Thales and American Raytheon in June for a medium range anti-missile and anti-aircraft system, in a contract valued at six billion euros over a decade.

Polish President Bronislaw Komorowski said in September that Warsaw was "determined to build its missile shield and air defence system... and ... uphold our obligations for the US portion of this project".

NATO's 28 members decided in 2010 to create a missile shield based on US technology. The project is due to be completed in 2020, with significant elements in Poland and Romania.

The Western defence alliance insists the role of the planned shield is a "purely defensive" response to external threats, notably from so-called "rogue states", and is in no way directed against Russia.

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

The escalation of tensions with Russia over its role in the Ukraine crisis has sounded the alarm on NATO's eastern flank in countries that were once under Moscow's thumb.

Tensions have mounted further as NATO intercepted nuclear-capable Russian bombers and other warplanes in European airspace on more than 100 occasions so far this year, three times more than in all of 2013.



U.S. Navy authorizes building of Common Missile Compartment tubes

‎07 ‎November ‎2014, ‏‎04:04:11 AMGo to full article
Washington (UPI) Oct 31, 2014 - The start of missile tube construction for U.S. and British submarines by General Dynamics Electric Boat Corp. has been authorized to begin by the U.S. Navy.

The authorization, worth $84 million, comes through a contract modification that funds a total of 17 of the tactical missile tubes -- 12 for the Royal Navy's Successor submarine; four for the U.S. Navy's Ohio Replacement submarine; and one for the Strategic Weapons System-Ashore test facility.

"This contract modification represents over five years of design and prototyping efforts between the U.S. and U.K. governments and their respective industry partners, and marks a key transition point for the joint CMC (Common Missile Compartment) effort," a statement from the U.S. Naval Sea Systems Command said.

"The OR (Ohio Replacement) program will provide the nation with its most survivable leg of the strategic deterrence triad. The program is harnessing 50-plus years of SSBN design and operational experience with the cost-control and production lessons of the Virginia-class attack submarine program, thereby providing the nation and its allies with an assured sea-based strategic deterrent at the best possible cost."

A joint U.S.-U.K. multi-year program for the nuclear submarines will eventually see a total of 241 missile tubes manufactured for the two navies.

Each Common Missile Container is about 45 feet tall and weighs about 50 tons. The U.S. Navy said the height is that of a four-story building.

Construction of the first Ohio Replacement submarine is expected to begin in 2021.



Raytheon touts success of its enhanced Griffin C missile

‎07 ‎November ‎2014, ‏‎04:04:11 AMGo to full article
Paris (UPI) Oct 28, 2014 - Raytheon's Griffin C missile has completed its development phase with flight tests to demonstrate its readiness for deployment on Littoral Combat Ships.

The Griffin C features increased range -- three times the 12.5 miles of the Griffin B Block II deployed on Coast Guard patrol boats -- mid-flight retargeting capability, and a dual-mode seeker.

In three flight tests at the Yuma Proving Grounds in Arizona, Griffin C's in-flight target update system was on the mark.

The capability, the company said, makes the missile vital for naval forces facing swarming boat threats that may be intermingled with non-hostile vessels, such as cargo ships.

"With its extended range motor, Griffin C's increased capability addresses the need for a longer range missile with in-flight retargeting," said Dr. Thomas R. Bussing, vice president of Advanced Missile Systems at Raytheon Missile Systems.

"Because they often operate in a high-traffic, littoral waters, naval warfighters must make split-second decisions to engage or disengage targets. By enhancing an already tested and fielded system, we can deliver a missile with significantly improved capabilities at lower costs and risk."

In addition to its naval uses, Raytheon's Griffin missile system has demonstrated rapid integration onto land and air platforms.

Raytheon announced the test results from the Euronaval International Naval Defense and Maritime Exhibition in France.



India chooses Israel over US for $525m missile deal: defence sources

‎07 ‎November ‎2014, ‏‎04:04:11 AMGo to full article
New Delhi (AFP) Oct 26, 2014 - India has chosen to buy anti-tank guided missiles from Israel, rejecting a rival US offer, as the right-wing government clears projects worth $13.1 billion to modernise its ageing military, official sources said Sunday.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi's government will buy 8,356 Spike missiles and 321 launchers from Israel in a deal worth 32 billion rupees ($525 million), defence ministry sources told AFP.

The government is moving to speed up long-delayed defence orders and bolster its military. The Israeli deal comes after recent firing along India's border with nuclear-armed rival Pakistan and tensions with giant neighbour China.

The procurement deals, worth 800 billion rupees ($13.1 billion) in total, were cleared at a meeting of India's Defence Acquisition Council, headed by Defence Minister Arun Jaitley, on Saturday.

"It (the council) has cleared a deal for Spikes," a defence ministry official, who asked not to be named, told AFP.

"It's a fire and forget kind of missile," the official said, referring to the fact the missile locks onto targets before firing.

"You can say there was a rival bid from the US for its Javelin missiles," the official said, adding that India's army trialled the Spike missiles "successfully last year".

India, the world's biggest arms importer, is in the midst of a $100-billion defence upgrade programme and cleared proposals worth nearly $3.5 billion in June.

Nationalist leader Modi, who stormed to power at elections in May, has said India must build up its military might to the point that no other country "dare cast an evil eye" on the South Asian nation.

A series of corruption scandals under the previous government had brought defence procurement to a near standstill.

Modi and US President Barack Obama agreed on greater defence cooperation during a meeting in Washington last month, when the US reportedly lobbied for its Javelin missiles.

"The DAC (Defence Acquisition Council) took the decision based on purely technical reasons and based on hard facts. It had been on the agenda for some time," another unnamed defence ministry official told AFP.

"The process of bringing them (equipment) here will be done over a period of time, in stages," he added without giving details.

The council also agreed to go ahead with locally building six submarines, in collaboration with a foreign partner, in a project worth $8.2 billion, according to local media reports on Sunday.

French, Russian, German and Spanish firms are interested in partnering with India for the project, according to the Hindustan Times.

The government has raised the foreign investment cap on India's defence industries to speed up the military's modernisation.

Twelve Dornier aircraft will also be bought for the navy and 362 infantry combat vehicles, the local reports said.

Indian soldiers were this month embroiled in days of deadly tit-for-tat firing along the border with Pakistan, while tensions were also hiked at a remote border frontier in September during a stand off with Chinese troops.



SM-6 interceptors down targets using remote targeting data

‎07 ‎November ‎2014, ‏‎04:04:11 AMGo to full article
Tucson (UPI) Oct 24, 2014 - U.S. Navy Standard Missile 6 interceptors recently destroyed low-altitude supersonic and subsonic targets using remote data for targeting.

Raytheon, maker of the RIM-174 Standard Extended Range Active Missile, said the interceptors were fired from the cruiser USS Chancellorsville as part of an "engage and remote" scenario in which the interceptors were launched using data from another cruiser in the area before the Chancellorsville's own radar had even detected the targets.

The first SM-6 launched intercepted a low-altitude, short-range supersonic target. The second intercepted a low-altitude, medium-range subsonic target.

"Advanced warning and cueing from another sensor or ship allows the U.S. Navy to take full advantage of SM-6's over-the-horizon capability," said Mike Campisi, Standard Missile-6 senior program director. "Now the warfighter does not have to wait until the threat is knocking at the door to take it out.

"Targets are destroyed much sooner and one ship can defend a much larger area."

The SM-6 is designed for over-the-horizon use against fixed- and rotary-wing aircraft, unmanned aerial vehicles and cruise missiles. It was first deployed by the Navy last year.

More than 130 of the interceptors are now in service.



BAE Systems Australia producing more missile decoy systems

‎07 ‎November ‎2014, ‏‎04:04:11 AMGo to full article
Richmond, Australia (UPI) Oct 23, 2014 - BAE Systems says it is producing more Nulka active missile decoys for the Royal Australian Navy and U.S. Navy ships.

The decoys are being produced under a follow-on order worth nearly $44 million. The order is the 16th consecutive order for the system and brings the total of Nulka decoys delivered by the company to more than 1,400.

"This contract continues our provision of the world's most advanced soft-kill anti-ship missile defense system to the Royal Australian Navy and the United States Navy," said BAE Systems Director Aerospace Steve Drury. "I'm looking forward to continuing our long-term and strategically aligned partnership with both navies."

The Nulka comes from an Australia-U.S. collaborative effort. The rocket-propelled decoy hovers in mid-air and draws incoming missiles away from their surface vessel targets. It is deployed on more than 140 surface combat ships in the U.S., Canadian and Australian navies.

Australian companies Milspec Engineering, Thales Australia and Varley are involved in production of the system.



Successful test for India's Nirbhay cruise missile

‎04 ‎November ‎2014, ‏‎04:33:40 PMGo to full article
New Delhi (UPI) Oct 21, 2014 - The second test flight of India's Nirbhay long-range cruise missile achieved all its mission objectives, the India Defense R&D Organization reports.

The missile, the first Indian cruise missile designed and developed locally, flew 621 miles in a 70-minute flight.

"The missile maintained an accuracy better than 10 meters (32.8 feet) throughout its path and covered a distance of more than 1,000 km," said Dr. Avinash Chander. "The successful indigenous development of Nirbhay cruise missile will fill a vital gap in the war fighting capabilities of our armed forces."

The Nirbhay was developed by India's ADE, or Aeronautical Development Establishment. It was first flight tested in March of 2013 but the demonstration was terminated after a component malfunction and a deviation from its flight path.

The Nirbhay is a subsonic weapon. It weighs about 2,200 pounds and is expected to enter full production in 2016.



Raytheon receives production order for laser-guided missile

‎04 ‎November ‎2014, ‏‎04:33:40 PMGo to full article
Tucson (UPI) Oct 17, 2014 - New laser-guided Maverick air-to-surface missiles are set for Raytheon's production line under a $49.5 million contract from the U.S. Navy.

The new enhanced missile, designated the AGM-65E2/L, was developed by Raytheon as a result of a joint U.S. Air Force and Navy program.

Among its features are: a digital laser seeker; new software that reduces the risk of collateral damage; advanced flight algorithms for improved performance in a variety of operational situations; and compatibility with F/A-18, AV-8B, F-16 & A-10C aircraft.

"The enhanced Laser Maverick provides the U.S. warfighter with even greater capabilities that will meet today's and tomorrow's threats," said Mike Jarrett, Raytheon Air Warfare Systems vice president. "This is the latest step for this impressive weapon as we continue to work to ensure that future requirements are met."

Raytheon said the Navy contract contains an option for additional missiles, which if exercised would bring the total contract value to $54.9 million.



Taiwan tests submarine-launched missiles: report

‎31 ‎October ‎2014, ‏‎05:08:46 AMGo to full article
Taipei (AFP) Oct 19, 2014 - Taiwan's navy successfully test-fired two anti-ship missiles from a submarine, in the first such exercise since the weapons were acquired from the United States, local media reported Sunday.

The Harpoon missiles were launched from Hai Hu (Sea Tiger), a Dutch-built conventional submarine, during a drill last week, the Liberty Times and the United Daily News said, citing unnamed naval sources.

Taiwanese navy started taking delivery of the missiles last year to arm two submarines.

The missiles, which have a range of 150 nautical miles (278 kilometres), would boost the attack capabilities of the two submarines previously only armed with torpedoes with a limited range, the naval sources were quoted as saying.

The defence ministry declined to comment on the reports.

Taiwan, which already has Harpoons installed on frigates and F-16 fighter jets, ordered the submarine-launched missiles in 2008 as part of a $6.5 billion arms sale that sparked strong protests from Beijing.

The deal also included advanced interceptor Patriot missiles and Apache attack helicopters.

Ties between Taipei and Beijing have improved markedly since Ma Ying-jeou of the China-friendly Kuomintang party came to power in 2008 promising to boost trade links and allow more Chinese tourists to visit the island. Ma was re-elected in 2012.

But Beijing still sees the island as part of its territory awaiting reunification, by force if necessary, even though Taiwan has governed itself since 1949 at the end of a civil war.

China has repeatedly threatened to invade Taiwan should the island declare formal independence, prompting Taipei to seek more advanced weapons, largely from the United States.



BAE Systems rocket conversion kit a hit with Australians

‎31 ‎October ‎2014, ‏‎05:08:46 AMGo to full article
Arlington, Va. (UPI) Oct 14, 2014 - BAE Systems' Advanced Precision Kill Weapon System, which converts 2.75-inch standard rockets into laser-guided weapons, has been tested by Australia.

The Advanced Precision Kill Weapon System, or APKWS, was demonstrated in live-fire testing with the Belgian Forges de Zeebrugge rocket carried by Tiger helicopters of Australia's army and navy.

"Through its long track record of success with the U.S. military, the APKWS technology has always been used with a Hydra rocket," said David Harrold, director of precision guidance solutions at BAE Systems. "This demonstration highlights the unique mid-body design and versatility of the APKWS technology by showcasing the ease of deployment on the FZ rocket and its native launcher."

During the ground-based live fire event, the APKWS-equipped FZ rockets were seven-for-seven in destroying their targets, BAE Systems said. No modification had been required for the APKWS guidance kit for integrate with the FZ rocket.

A second round of tests are scheduled for next month by the Australian Army, which could lead to the APKWS rocket fielding on the Army's Airbus Tiger Armed Reconnaissance Helicopter and Navy's MH-60R Seahawk platforms -- both made by Airbus -- as early as next year.

"The APKWS laser-guided rocket is an easy-to-use, cost-effective, and flexible system," said Maj. David Paterson, Rotary Wing Flight Commander of the Australian Army's Aircraft Stores Compatibility Engineering Squadron. "Delivering this capability to our troops while leveraging existing equipment is a significant accomplishment that will greatly expand and enhance our military helicopters' mission success."



Lockheed orders more cruise missile bodies from Exelis

‎31 ‎October ‎2014, ‏‎05:08:46 AMGo to full article
Salt Lake City (UPI) Oct 9, 2014 - Lockheed Martin has contracted Exelis to manufacture composite-material bodies and structures for more than 400 air-to-ground cruise missiles.

The award, for production Lot 11 and Lot 12 of the Joint Air-to-Surface Standoff Missile is a follow-on contract and carries a value of about $20 million.

"We believe this contract is a reflection of our customer's confidence in Exelis as a trusted and capable supplier," said Mike Blair, vice president and general manager of Exelis Aerostructures. "Our shared commitment to operational excellence began more than a decade ago, and we are prepared to deliver on this contract with the same product integrity our customer expects."

JASSM is a long-range precision guided weapon used by the United States and the air forces of Australia and Finland. The JASSM has a range of more than 230 miles. The missile's extended range variant can fly more than 620 miles.

Exelis said it will fabricate the missile structures using automated composite braiding and resin-transfer mold technologies.

Additional details of the contract were not disclosed.







News About Ballistic Missile Defense

BAE Systems providing support for Army's Space and Missile Defense Command

‎18 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎06:20:17 AMGo to full article
Arlington, Va. (UPI) Feb 11, 2015 - BAE Systems reports it will provide hardware, software, and systems integration support for the U.S. Army's Space and Missile Defense Command.

The services will be for the command's Battlespace Command and Control Center for a period of two years for a total estimated value of $23 million.

Under the contract, BAE Systems will upgrade mobile training suites and provide systems and network administration support to the Non-Organic Radar Access program, minimizing the downtime of critical systems. The support will also improve the capability to analyze and manage increasing volumes of data.

"Our experts are helping U.S. forces quickly identify ground, air, space, and undersea threats to national security," said Mark Keeler, vice president and general manager of Integrated Electronics and Warfare Systems at BAE Systems. "We're enhancing system readiness and increasing the warfighter's ability to process information that's critical to protecting our men and women in uniform."

BAE Systems said it was issued the award under an indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity contract it has held for the past six years.



Pentagon Asks for $9.6Bln to Counter Missile Threat From Iran, North Korea

‎18 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎06:20:17 AMGo to full article
Washington DC (Sputnik) Feb 05, 2015 - The Obama administration asked for $9.6 billion to counter the increasing threat from North Korea and Iran.

The US Department of Defense has requested $9.6 billion in the 2016 budget year to counter "a maturing long-range missile threat from North Korea and the potential threat from Iran," the Associated Press reports.

"The US Military remains deeply engaged around the world," Pentagon said in its $585-billion defense budget proposal, citing Russian activities in Ukraine, Ebola and the rise of the Islamic State as the three main geopolitical challenges the US faces. The DoD also said that the agency must address both current and emerging challenges, including cyberattacks, rising China and threats to space assets.

The Pentagon's base budget has increased by 7.7 percent from last year, reaching $534 billion, which makes it the largest in US history, according to the Associate Press. However, the $51-billion funding for overseas contingency operations is a 21 percent decrease compared with the 2015 budget year, the news agency said.

The current defense budget proposal ignores the cap of $499 billion, imposed by Congress.

On Monday, US President Barack Obama unveiled a nearly $4-trillion budget for fiscal year 2016, which must be approved by Congress to take effect.




China voices concern about US missile defence in S.Korea

‎18 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎06:20:17 AMGo to full article
Seoul (AFP) Feb 4, 2015 - China expressed concern about the possible deployment of an advanced US missile defence system in South Korea during talks Wednesday between their defence chiefs, Seoul military officials said.

Washington is considering whether to instal the politically sensitive THAAD (Terminal High-Altitude Area Defence) system in the South, a close US ally which hosts 29,000 American troops.

US officials have tried to portray any THAAD system based in South Korea as non-threatening. It is designed to shoot down ballistic missiles at a higher altitude with a "hit-to-kill" approach.

At talks in Seoul with his South Korean counterpart Han Min-Koo, Chinese defence minister Chang Wanquan expressed "concern" at the US move, Han's office said.

In response, it said, Han clarified South Korea's position that there have been no formal discussions about the THAAD deployment. The office declined to disclose details.

South Korea has been reluctant to take part in a proposed US-led regional missile defence system because China and Russia view it as a threat to their security.

It was the first time that a ranking Chinese official had publicly raised the THAAD issue with South Korea, according to Yonhap news agency.

The ministers agreed to establish a hotline between them as soon as possible, Yonhap said, adding related talks would probably begin next week.

Last year South Korea and China signed a memorandum of understanding to set up the hotline, but it has yet to be finalised.

The two have been operating telephone hotlines between their navies and air forces since 2008 to help prevent accidental clashes.

China, despite being North Korea's sole major ally, has gradually strengthened military cooperation and exchanges with South Korea.

The United States, in its strategic "pivot" to Asia, has boosted its military presence in the region, a move that has alarmed China.



US Missile Defense Agency Spends $58 Million on New Facility in Alabama

‎18 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎06:20:17 AMGo to full article
Washington DC (Sputnik) Jan 30, 2015 - The United States has spent about $58 million on a large Missile Defense Agency facility construction at the Von Braun Complex in the US state of Alabama, the agency has announced in a statement.

"The 225,000 square foot facility has office space to accommodate more than 900 employees...The construction cost of Von Braun IV was approximately $58 million," the US Missile Defense Agency's Wednesday press release said.

Earlier in the day, the agency's Deputy Director Kenneth Todorov officiated at a ribbon-cutting ceremony, which marked the opening of the complex in Huntsville, Alabama.

"This new facility will increase the Agency's efficiency and effectiveness by consolidating the majority of MDA's Huntsville workforce into one central location," Todorov was quoted as saying in the release.

The Von Braun Complex will now accommodate 5,500 personnel from both MDA and the US Army Space and Missile Defense Command, who will thus be working together on one campus, according to MDA.




US delivers second radar defense system to Japan

‎18 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎06:20:17 AMGo to full article
Washington (AFP) Dec 26, 2014 - The United States has sent a second missile defense radar system to Japan, the Pentagon said Friday.

The new Army Navy/Transportable Radar Surveillance system (AN/TPY-2) aims to "enhance sensor coverage for ballistic missile defense of Japan and the US homeland," the Defense Department said in a statement.

The United States has said it wanted its allies to enhance their missile defenses to help protect against a belligerent North Korea.

North Korea's nuclear and ballistic missile program is a major security concern in the Pacific region and beyond.

"We will continue to emphasize the importance of developing regional ballistic missile defense systems," Joints Chief of Staff vice-chairman James Winnefeld said earlier this year, emphasizing that cooperation would "result in better performance than individual countries acting alone."

"This is a very politically sensitive topic for several of our regional allies, but progress in this area would only increase our confidence in the face of persistent North Korean provocations," he added.

Dubbed the Kyogamisaki Communications Site, the new radar will be located in Kyogamisaki, some 375 miles (600 kilometers) west of Tokyo. The existing radar system is in Shariki, in northern Japan.

The facility was tested and constructed in Japan by the US military in cooperation with Japan, the Pentagon said.



Raytheon given $2.4B FMS contract for Patriot fire units

‎18 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎06:20:17 AMGo to full article
Tewksbury, Mass. (UPI) Dec 23, 2014 - Qatar is being supplied by Raytheon with new-production Patriot Air and Missile Defense System fire units, the company announced.

The U.S. Foreign Military Sales contract for the equipment is worth $2.4 billion.

"This award is yet another example of the trust countries around the world place in the combat-proven Patriot," said Dan Crowley, president of Raytheon's Integrated Defense Systems business.

"As our customer base continues to grow, our global partners benefit from the shared costs for system upgrades and enhancements through Raytheon's unique Engineering Services Program. This ensures that Patriot remains at the highest level of readiness to counter current and evolving threats anywhere in the world."

Patriot provides protection against a full range of advanced threats, including aircraft, tactical ballistic missiles, cruise missiles and unmanned aerial vehicles and is used by 13 countries.

Qatar will use the air defense system as a cornerstone its advanced integrated air and missile defense capability. Raytheon was recently contracted by the U.S. Air Force to build an Air and Missile Defense Operations Center for Qatar that will integrate U.S. defense systems such as the Patriot, and early warning radars with European air defense systems operated by the country.

The new Patriot fire units provide increased computing power and radar processing, improved man-machine interface and reduced life-cycle costs, Raytheon said.



US Ballistic Missile Defense Needs More Testing

‎18 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎06:20:17 AMGo to full article
Washington DC (Sputnik) Dec 18, 2014 - The proposed placement of ballistic missile interceptors on the US East Coast has the advantage of providing more time and distance to shoot down an enemy missile, but still has a lot of shortfalls and needs to be tested further, missile experts have told Sputnik.

"The argument for East Coast sites is that it opens up the battle space, meaning it provides more time and distance during which you might be able to down an enemy missile," senior fellow at the Center for Arms Control and Non-Proliferation Phillip Coyle explained in an interview with Sputnik Tuesday.

The US Missile Defense Agency (MDA) is currently conducting a study mandated by Congress to identify potential East Coast ballistic missile defense sites.

The East Coast sites would be part of a layered monitoring and defense system which already includes 26 interceptors located in Alaska and four in California, with plans to add 14 interceptors by 2017.

Coyle said MDA has advocated a "shoot-look-shoot strategy", when a missile is identified, fired upon, and in case it is not destroyed, the interceptors would fire again to increase the chances of a kill.

"The firing doctrine is that you would have to shoot more than one interceptor at each incoming missile in order to have a reasonable chance of success," Coyle said, critiquing in-flight interceptor performance.

Riki Ellison, the chairman of the Missile Defense Advocacy Alliance, told Sputnik Tuesday that missile interceptors need to be tested and perfected first, before any East Coast defense sites are established.

"The number one priority is to make these systems work the best they can," Ellison said, stressing that there are still things that need to be fixed, such as radar and censor capabilities, to make the system reliable.

"The Missile Defense Agency has to fix the system first or make it better," the expert emphasized, adding that after several years without tests, US missile defense needs more tests to "evolve the system and demonstrate its ability".

According to both Ellison and Coyle, the US missile defense system would be able to destroy only a limited number of incoming ballistic missiles (one or two) and is aimed primarily at addressing the potential threat of attacks from North Korea or Iran.

Coyle pointed out that the system could be used against an accidental launch of a ballistic missile by China or Russia as well.

The 2015 National Defense Authorization Act passed by the US Congress late last week does not authorize funding for the actual planning and design of East Coast missile defense sites.

The Pentagon has said they do not require the East Coast sites, but Congress asked MDA to study possible missile defense location sites last year. According to MDA, the study is set to be completed by the end of 2015.




Israel, US in abortive missile defence test

‎18 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎06:20:17 AMGo to full article
Jerusalem (AFP) Dec 16, 2014 - Israel and the United States on Tuesday tested the Jewish state's Arrow 3 ballistic missile interception system, the defence ministry said, with local media reporting the trial was cut short.

"A target missile was successfully launched and tracked by the Arrow Weapon System, as part of the planned joint testing programme," the ministry said in a statement, providing no further details.

A defence ministry official was quoted by the Jerusalem Post website as saying the test was "neither a success nor a failure".

"The first part of the launch involved tracking the target missile, which was fired over the Mediterranean Sea towards Israel" in a simulated attack on Israeli airspace, Yair Ramati told the Post.

But it was decided mid-test not to fire the Arrow 3 interceptor missile, he said, citing unsuitable test conditions.

"This is not the first time that not all conditions are met for a trial," Ramati said.

The two countries carried out similar tests in September and January, and in 2013 as Washington was considering military action against Syria.

The Arrow Ballistic Missile Defence System, designed to counter long-range missiles, has successfully intercepted missiles similar to Iran's Shihab-3 in a variety of test conditions.

Israel has been working on upgrading its missile defence capabilities to defend against long- and short-range incoming projectiles.

The Arrow project was first launched in 1988 as part of the then Star Wars programme under late US president Ronald Reagan that was abandoned in 1993.

The Jewish state accuses its arch-foe Iran of seeking to develop a nuclear weapon, a charge that Tehran denies.



Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty Between USSR, US in Details

‎18 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎06:20:17 AMGo to full article
Moscow (Sputnik) Dec 16, 2014 - On December 13, 2002, US President George W. Bush announced that the United States will unilaterally withdraw from the Anti-Ballistic Missile (ABM) Treaty with the USSR. The Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty (ABM Treaty) between the Soviet Union and the United States was signed on May 26, 1972 in Moscow and entered into force on October 3, 1972.

The treaty barred the parties from deploying anti-ballistic missile systems that could cover the entire territory of their countries, or providing a base for such broad-range defense.

The Treaty obligated the parties to limit their deployed ABM systems to two sites: one within a circle of 150-kilometer radius around the national capital, and the other within a circle of 150-kilometer radius around intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) silo launchers.

Within each of these sites the parties could deploy no more than 100 ABM launchers and no more than 100 ABM interceptor missiles.

These limitations did not apply to ABM systems used for development or testing, nor those located within agreed test ranges, where each party could have no more that a total of 15 ABM launchers. In addition, the treaty also limited the number and capacity of ABM radars.

The treaty allowed the deployment of fixed land-based defense ABM systems only. Both counties undertook not to develop, test, or deploy sea-based, air-based, space-based and mobile land-based ABM systems or components.

The parties also agreed not to develop, test or deploy ABM launchers for firing more than one ABM interceptor missile at a time from each launcher, as well as automatic or semi-automatic or other similar systems for rapid reload of ABM launchers.

The parties pledged not to transfer to other states and not to deploy outside their national territory ABM systems or their components limited by the ABM Treaty.

Compliance with the treaty was to be assured using national technical means of verification in a manner consistent with generally recognized principles of international law.

The treaty was of unlimited duration, but stipulated that each party had a right to withdraw if it decided that extraordinary events related to the subject matter of the treaty had jeopardized its supreme interests.

On July 3, 1974 the parties signed in Moscow a Protocol to the ABM Treaty, which reduced the number of sites to one per party. The Soviet Union pledged not to deploy ABM systems or their components around ICBM silo launchers, and the United States pledged not to deploy ABM systems or their components around the national capital.

For 30 years, the ABM Treaty served as the foundation of the existing system of international agreements on the limitation and reduction of strategic offensive weapons. Russia consistently advocated the continuation of the treaty. Its value has been repeatedly recognized by the international community. For three years in a row, the UN General Assembly overwhelmingly voted for a resolution to support the continuation of and compliance with the ABM Treaty at its 54th, 55th and 56th sessions in 1999-2001.

On December 13, 2001, President George W. Bush announced that the United States was unilaterally withdrawing from the Treaty. On June 13, 2002, the Treaty became invalid.

Source: Sputnik News



New Russian Space Anti-Ballistic Missile System On-Track for 2020: Engineer

‎18 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎06:20:17 AMGo to full article
Moscow (Sputnik) Dec 09, 2014 - An improved early warning system in space for detecting ballistic missile launches will be in place by 2020, a chief engineer from the Russian defense corporation Almaz Antey said Monday.

"In the development of the space echelon, everything necessary has been accepted and the technical solutions have been tested, and we expect that the low-Earth orbit space echelon early warning ballistic missile system in its improved form will by 2020, or even earlier, provide the necessary characteristics of a constant warning of ballistic missile launches," Pavel Sozinov said during a conference.

The possibilities to detect moving targets have significantly improved in recent years, Sozinov stated, speaking of the creation of an identification system over the territory of Russia at medium and high altitudes.

When it comes to detecting enemy targets at low and very low altitudes, "the possibilities at this perimeter are, of course, very limited," the chief engineer said.

Sozinov also noted that the Russian defense industry has made significant progress in the creation of fuel for interceptor missiles and thermal barrier coatings that can withstand heat up to 3,500 degrees Celsius.

The creation of a unified space-based ballistic missile warning system in Russia was announced by Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu in October.

The system is set to replace Soviet-made ballistic missile early warning systems and will comprise next-generation space vehicles and modernized space centers that would ensure control over satellites and allow automatic information processing.

Source: Sputnik News



Chinese Hypersonic Strike Vehicle May Overcome US Missile Defense: Expert

‎09 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎06:28:42 AMGo to full article
Beijing (Sputnik) Dec 08, 2014 - Igor Korotchenko, Director of the Center for the Analysis of the World Arms Trade told Sputnik on Friday that China's successful testing of a Hypersonic Strike Vehicle (the HGV) demonstrates the country's potential to affect US national security in a serious way.

"US anxiety is centered on the fact that China is actively experimenting with weaponry that is based on hypersonic speed, which is nearly impossible to intercept using currently-available US missile defense systems," Korotchenko told Sputnik.

It had been reported earlier that China had conducted another test of the HGV, dubbed the WU-14 by the Pentagon, an ultra-high speed vehicle capable of travelling up to eight times the speed of sound. Earlier tests of the vehicle had shown it capable of carrying nuclear warheads at a speed of over Mach 10, or 12,359 kilometers per hour.

The experimental weapon, which is designed to thwart anti-ballistic missile countermeasures, is capable of approaching its target at a relatively flat glide, reducing the likelihood of detection and the ability of any foe to launch countermeasures. The serialized production of such a delivery system would also extend the range of existing Chinese intercontinental ballistic missiles by up to a third.

Korotchenko noted that the creation of these HGVs by China "demonstrates the country's capability of creating the necessary technology to [negatively] affect US national security."

"At present, China's defense industry is informed by the concept that the United States is the country's main enemy. The Chinese military's development plans, the configuration of Chinese forces, and the country's desire to build a carrier fleet -all of this is taking place in the context of its rivalry with the United States," Korotchenko said.

"Therefore, the negative commentary which may be found in the American media is a reflection of the fact that the US is coming to realize the extent of the growth in China's military capabilities, and is alarmed by it," the expert added.

Korochenko noted that Russia too is actively working on the development of hypersonic technology, recently 'unfreezing' developments which had been stopped in the 1980s due to the collapse of the Soviet Union. Among the companies presently working on this task is the state corporation Tactical Missiles Corporation JSC.

Source: Sputnik News



Raytheon building air and missile defense center for Qatar

‎01 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎03:55:30 AMGo to full article
Tewksbury, Mass. (UPI) Dec 8, 2014 - An air and missile defense operations center that will integrate U.S. and European defense and radar systems is to be designed and built for Qatar by Raytheon.

The work, which carries a maximum value of $75.6 million, comes under an undefinitized contract action for a Foreign Military Sales contract.

The ADOC, the first in the Gulf region, is part of the Qatari armed forces modernization and recapitalization effort announced earlier this year. In addition to providing the capability to integrate U.S. and European air defense systems and radars, the system will be integrated with Qatar's Raytheon-made air operations center.

"This contract reinforces the depth of our systems integration capability and expertise in integrated air and missile defense," said Raytheon's Dave Gulla, vice president of Integrated Defense Systems' Global Integrated Sensors business area. "The ADOC will have the latest command and control, cyber, and information assurance capability in partnership with the Air Force to enhance regional security and meet the State of Qatar's requirements."



India test fires nuclear capable strategic missile

‎01 ‎February ‎2015, ‏‎03:55:30 AMGo to full article
Mumbai, India (XNA) Dec 03, 2014 - India on Tuesday test-fired its nuclear capable strategic missile Agni-4 from a test range off eastern state of Odisha's coast. Supported by a mobile launcher, the sleek missile was flight tested from the launch complex-4 of Integrated Test Range at Wheeler Island, at about 10:20 a.m. local time, local media reported.

The test conducted by the specially formed Strategic Force Command was successful, Ravi Kumar Gupta, director of the Directorate of Public Interface, Defence Research and Development Organisation, was quoted as saying.

The sophisticated surface-to-surface missile is equipped with modern and compact avionics to provide high level of reliability, sources said.

According to media reports, the Agni-4 missile is equipped with state of the art Avionics, 5th generation On Board Computer and distributed architecture, and has the latest features to correct and guide itself for in-flight disturbances.

The accurate Ring Laser Gyro based Inertial Navigation System and highly reliable redundant Micro Navigation System ensures the vehicle reach the target within two-digit accuracy, the reports said.

This is the second test of the missile this year. It was successfully tested from the same place on Jan. 20.




Ballistic Missile Launches Detected by Russia's Aerospace Defense

‎28 ‎January ‎2015, ‏‎02:56:21 AMGo to full article
Moscow, Russia (Sputnik) Dec 03, 2014 - Russia's Aerospace Defense Forces (ADF) have detected the launch of three foreign ballistic missiles, Major General Anatoly Nestechuk, the deputy chief of the Space Command, said.

"We've detected a foreign ballistic missile launch this morning, and another two similar launches were detected the day before yesterday - that is exactly the kind of job our crews perform," Major General Nestechuk said.

He also added that Russia was notified about these launches beforehand, but the fact that they were successfully detected illustrates the high combat readiness level and professionalism of the ADF.

Russia's Aerospace Defense Forces were formed on December 1, 2011.

They are responsible for air and missile defense, as well as for launches and the control of satellites.




U.S Navy sending Aegis-equipped destroyers to Japan

‎26 ‎December ‎2014, ‏‎12:24:11 AMGo to full article
Washington (UPI) Oct 22, 2014 - Two U.S. Navy destroyers with ballistic missile defense capabilities are being forward deployed to Japan, the U.S. Navy announced.

The ships with Aegis systems are the USS Benfold (DDG 65) and USS Milius (DDG 69), both of which are currently homeported in San Diego, Calif.

The two ships will become part of the Forward Deployed Naval Forces based at Yokosuka, Japan.

The USS Benfold will deploy to Japan next summer, while the USS Milius will make the move in the summer of 2017.

"The move directly supports the announcement made by Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel in April of this year that the Navy would commit to sending two additional BMD-capable ships to the defense of Japan by 2017," the Navy said in reporting the re-basing.

The Navy said the two destroyers will have completed all midlife modernization before the change. They will be equipped with the latest Aegis Baseline 9 combat system, which includes state of the art air defense, ballistic missile defense, surface warfare and undersea warfare capabilities. Other upgrades will include a fully-integrated bridge, improved machinery, damage control and quality of life improvements, an advanced galley and commercial-off-the-shelf computing equipment.

"As part of their Aegis combat systems, each ship is outfitted with the Mark-41 Vertical Launch System for multiple types of guided missiles and is capable of defensive and offensive operations against aircraft, cruise missiles, ballistic missiles, surface ships, submarines and shore targets, the Navy said.

"These U.S. BMD-capable forces, combined with the sea-based missile defense systems operated by their counterparts in the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force, as well as the new TPY-2 radar at Kyogamisaki, Japan, scheduled to start operations later this year, provide the U.S.-Japan alliance a regionally responsive missile defense capability.

"They also represent a significant improvement in capability and will provide the FDNF with greater capacity in all mission areas including regional ballistic missile defense and ballistic missile defense of the Homeland."

In addition to the two ship augmentation of the Navy's 7th Fleet forward operating force, the Navy intends to send another Aegis-equipped destroyer to Japan in early 2016.

The USS Barry (DDG 52) will swap out with the USS Lassen (DDG 82), which has been based in Japan for about a decade.

The announced movement comes as the Navy continues a strategy to focus naval capabilities on the Asia-Pacific region, where vital sea lanes, potential gas and oil deposits and a growing Chinese navy feature prominently.

China and Japan are in dispute over ownership of the Senkaku Islands in the East China Sea. China is also in dispute with Vietnam, the Philippines, Malaysia and Brunei over the Spratly Islands in the South China Sea.

Japan and the United States are currently in the process of revising their guidelines for mutual defense, which will feature enhanced capabilities and responsibilities in the face of shared threats in the region. Part of that equation is a decision by the government of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to reinterpret the country's pacifist constitution to allow Japan's self-defense forces to physically defend its allies and officially engage in collective self-defense.

In other Asian news, South Korea's military is reportedly considering the procurement of two additional early warning aerial surveillance aircraft.

The country's Yonhap news agency said the intention to augment the air force's fleet of Boeing 737-based Peace Eye airborne early warning and control aircraft is apparently aimed its new air defense zone and claims of sovereignty over a reef and islands off its southern coat.

The possible acquisition appears a response to China last year unilaterally declaring an air defense identification zone that included the reef and islands as well as the Senkaku Islands. In declaring the zone, China imposed regulations governing the use of the air zone and maritime waters within it.

"For surveillance over the KADIZ (Korean Air Defense Identification Zone), we are seeking to secure two more such planes over the long term," the agency quoted an unidentified air force official.



U.S. holds test on Aegis tracking capability

‎26 ‎December ‎2014, ‏‎12:24:11 AMGo to full article
Washington (UPI) Oct 21, 2014 - The U.S. military has demonstrated that Lockheed Martin's Aegis weapon system can destroy a ballistic missile solely on tracks from remote airborne sensors.

Results of the demonstration by the Ballistic Missile Defense Agency and the Navy will be used to enhance the Ballistic Missile Defense System and support the advancement of Phase 2 of the Phased Adaptive Approach for missile defense in Europe, where a land-based variant of Aegis is to be deployed.

In the technology test, a medium-range ballistic missile target was launched on Oct. 16 from a range facility in Hawaii. The USS John Paul Jones, positioned west of Hawaii, detected and tracked the missile with its onboard AN/SPY-1 radar using the Aegis Baseline 9.C1 (BMD 5.0 Capability Upgrade) Weapon System.

Several fire control, discrimination, and engagement functions were also exercised, as well as an unmanned aerial vehicle equipped with a multi-spectral targeting system.

No Standard Missile-3, however, was actually launched against the target.

"Program officials will evaluate system performance based upon telemetry and other data obtained during the test," MDA said.

The United States earlier this month inaugurated an Aegis Ashore base in Romania, from where missiles will protect deployed U.S. troops and NATO members from ballistic missiles. The system is expected to begin operations in Romania next year.



Russia to Create Space-Based Ballistic Missile Warning System

‎07 ‎December ‎2014, ‏‎03:53:31 AMGo to full article
Moscow (RIA Novosti) Oct 21, 2014 - Russia will create a space-based ballistic missile warning system capable of detecting launches of existing and test missiles, Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu said Thursday.

"The creation of an integrated space system is one of the key directions in which Russian nuclear deterrent forces will be developed.

"As a result, we will be able to detect sea and ground launches of various types of ballistic missiles, including prototypes," Shoigu said.

According to the defense minister, the system will replace Soviet-made ballistic missile early warning systems.

The integrated space system will comprise next-generation space vehicles and modernized space centers that would ensure control over the satellites and allow for automatic information processing.


Source: RIA Novosti



Lockheed Martin and Northrop Grumman Deliver Payload for Fourth SBIRS Missile Defense Early Warning Satellite

‎07 ‎December ‎2014, ‏‎03:53:31 AMGo to full article
Sunnyvale CA (SPX) Oct 21, 2014 - Prime contractor Lockheed Martin and payload provider Northrop Grumman have delivered the payload for the fourth Geosynchronous Earth Orbit (GEO) satellite of the U.S. Air Force's Space Based Infrared System (SBIRS).

The payload, delivered on Sept. 30, will now be integrated with the SBIRS GEO-4 satellite bus in final assembly, integration and test at Lockheed Martin's Sunnyvale, California satellite manufacturing facility.

The SBIRS program delivers timely, reliable and accurate missile warning and infrared surveillance information to the President of the United States, the Secretary of Defense, combatant commanders, the intelligence community and other key decision makers.

The system enhances global missile launch detection capability, supports the nation's ballistic missile defense system, expands the country's technical intelligence gathering capacity and bolsters situational awareness for warfighters on the battlefield.

The SBIRS GEO-4 payload includes highly sophisticated scanning and staring sensors, which will provide the satellite with improved infrared sensitivity and a reduction in area revisit times over the legacy constellation. The scanning sensor will provide a wide area surveillance of missile launches and natural phenomena across the earth, while the staring sensor will be used to observe smaller areas of interest with superior sensitivity.

"The completion of this payload is a critical milestone keeping us on schedule for delivering the SBIRS GEO-4 satellite to the Air Force in 2016," said Louie Lombardo, director of Lockheed Martin's SBIRS Follow-on Production (SFP) program.

"This payload delivery -- the third of four payload deliveries for the SBIRS SFP program in the past 15 months -- further demonstrates that SBIRS is in the regular cadence of full production."

"This is an unprecedented production rate of sophisticated infrared payloads for operational deployment," said Anne Ostroff, vice president of the Military/Civil Space and Ground business area, Northrop Grumman. "The performance of payloads on-orbit has been excellent and demonstrates unique capabilities that are needed to address current and evolving threats."

The SBIRS architecture includes a resilient mix of satellites in GEO, hosted payloads in Highly Elliptical Orbit (HEO), and ground hardware and software. The GEO-1 and GEO-2 satellites have been launched and both received Air Force Space Command Operational Acceptance in 2013, with performance that matches, and in some cases exceeds, requirements.

GEO-3 recently completed acoustic testing and is currently undergoing thermal vacuum testing. In June 2014, the Air Force contracted Lockheed Martin for full production of GEO-5 and GEO-6.

The SBIRS team is led by the Remote Systems Directorate at the U.S. Air Force Space and Missile Systems Center. Lockheed Martin is the SBIRS prime contractor, while Northrop Grumman is the payload provider. Air Force Space Command operates the SBIRS system.



Missile Defense Agency orders THAAD system components

‎07 ‎December ‎2014, ‏‎03:53:31 AMGo to full article
Dallas (UPI) Oct 16, 2014 - Ground components for a key element of U.S. Ballistic Missile Defense System are to be manufactured and delivered by Lockheed Martin.

The U.S. Missile Defense Agency contract for Terminal High Altitude Defense system equipment covers interceptor launchers, support equipment, fire control and communication spares, and launcher spares.

The contract value is $124.6 million.

"THAAD provides the warfighter with the requisite deployability, combat power and lethality to counter current and emerging ballistic missile threats around the globe," said Richard McDaniel, Lockheed Martin vice president for THAAD. "The Lockheed Martin team is totally committed to meeting the growing demand for THAAD's unique strategic capabilities."

THAAD is a missile system for shooting down short, medium, and intermediate ballistic missiles in their terminal phase. The interceptor missile carries no warhead. It directly strikes the incoming enemy missile to destroy it. It is currently deployed on the U.S. island of Guam.

Lockheed notes the THAAD interceptor system has performed 11 successful missile intercepts in 13 flight tests since 2005.

Work on the contract will begin in 2016 and be completed the following year. Lockheed Martin facilities in Texas, Alabama, Florida, California and Arkansas will be involved in the project.



Aegis Ashore ballistic missile defense facility established in Romania

‎07 ‎December ‎2014, ‏‎03:53:31 AMGo to full article
Deveselu, Romania (UPI) Oct 14, 2014 - The U.S. Navy has established a support facility in Romania as part of NATO's overall ballistic missile defense system.

The Naval Support Facility in Deveselu. Romania, was officially established earlier this month during an establishment and assumption of command ceremony.

It will become operational next year, the Navy said.

"This is a historic occasion because ballistic missile threats to the U.S. and our allies are real and growing," said Rear Adm. John Scorby, commander, Navy Region Europe, Africa, Southwest Asia. "Fortunately, NATO's capabilities and defenses against these threats are also real and growing."

The missile defense shield for Europe, called Aegis Ashore, was originally proposed by then-President George W. Bush and is now is part of the U.S. plan for a phased deployment of a missile defense umbrella in Europe for defense against ballistic missiles.

The system being established uses nearly the same technology used on U.S. Navy Aegis-capable guided-missile destroyers and cruisers for detecting, tracking and destroying in-coming missiles.

The Navy said NSF Deveselu will utilize both a SM-3 missile interceptor battery platform and an Aegis SPY-1 radar platform. The SM-3 missiles will have no offensive capability and only target incoming ballistic missiles launched by hostile countries.

"Naval Support Facility Deveselu will be a crucial component in expanding the effectiveness of NATO's overall ballistic missile defense system," Scorby said. "It will also address the threat posed by short and intermediate range ballistic missiles to U.S., European and Allied personnel and assets throughout the region."

A facility similar to that in Romania is planned for Poland. Currently the Navy plans for a total of four Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyers to be based in Spain to bolster the ballistic missile defense system for Europe.

NSF Deveselu is about 430 acres in size at a former Romanian military base. It will feature a fire-control radar deckhouse with an associated Aegis command, control and communications suite.

Its SM-3 missiles and launch modules and be manned by U.S. military personnel. U.S. government civilians and support contractors will also be located at the facility.



US Rear Admiral to head missile shield base in Romania

‎07 ‎December ‎2014, ‏‎03:53:31 AMGo to full article
Bucharest (AFP) Oct 10, 2014 - US Rear Admiral John Scorby was Friday named commander of a base in Romania that will form part of a NATO ballistic missile shield system which has drawn Russia's ire.

The Deveselu base in southern Romania is slated to be operational next year. It will house SM-3 interceptor missiles and radar equipment.

"Today's ceremony is an important milestone as we improve our ballistic missile defence capability in Europe," said Scorby, commander for the Navy Region Europe, Africa, Southwest Asia.

"Our continued close work with our Romanian partners exemplifies how crucial our European allies are to building up NATO's overall ballistic missile defense system," he said.

NATO's 28 members decided in 2010 to create a missile shield based on US technology. The project is due to be completed in 2020, with installations in Romania and Poland.

The Western military alliance insists the role of the planned shield is a "purely defensive" response to external threats, notably from so-called "rogue states", and is in no way directed against Russia.

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



SBIRS GEO-4 payload ready for integration

‎07 ‎December ‎2014, ‏‎03:53:31 AMGo to full article
Sunnyvale, Calif. (UPI) Oct 8, 2014 - The payload for a Geosynchronous Earth Orbit satellite of the U.S. Air Force's Space Based Infrared System has been delivered, Lockheed Martin reports.

The payload, delivered by Lockheed Martin and Northrop Grumman to Lockheed's satellite manufacturing facility, will be integrated with the SBIRS GEO-4 satellite bus in final assembly.

Lockheed Martin is the prime contractor for the satellite system, while Northrop is the payload provider.

The SBIRS program of the U.S. Air Force consists of multiple satellites to deliver timely, reliable and accurate missile warning and infrared surveillance information to the President of the United States, the Secretary of Defense, combatant commanders, the intelligence community and other key decision makers.

It supports the U.S. ballistic missile defense system, expands technical intelligence gathering and improves battlefield situational awareness.

The payload delivered, for the fourth GEO satellite, includes scanning and staring sensors, which give the satellite enhanced infrared sensitivity. Wide-area surveillance of missile launches and natural phenomena and observation of smaller areas with superior sensitivity will also be provided by the payload package.

"The completion of this payload is a critical milestone keeping us on schedule for delivering the SBIRS GEO-4 satellite to the Air Force in 2016," said Louie Lombardo, director of Lockheed Martin's SBIRS Follow-on Production program. "This payload delivery -- the third of four payload deliveries for the SBIRS SFP program in the past 15 months -- further demonstrates that SBIRS is in the regular cadence of full production."

The GEO-1 and GEO-2 satellites, which have been launched, have both received Air Force Space Command Operational Acceptance. GEO-3 recently completed acoustic testing and is currently undergoing thermal vacuum testing.

Lockheed Martin received an Air Force contract in June for full production of GEO-5 and GEO-6.



Poland urges NATO to push ahead with missle shield

‎28 ‎November ‎2014, ‏‎01:22:31 AMGo to full article
Warsaw (AFP) Oct 06, 2014 - Poland on Monday urged NATO's new secretary general to push ahead with a missile shield system amid the West's worst standoff with Russia since the Cold War.

"We firmly support the creation of this (missile shield) system as a pan-NATO one because only this makes deep sense both politically and in terms of defence," Poland's President Bronislaw Komorowski said at a joint press conference with NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg.

"Poland is determined to build its missile shield and air defence system -- it's important not only for Poland -- and we uphold our obligations for the US portion of this project," Komorowski said.

Stoltenberg, who chose Warsaw for his first foreign visit, said Poland "was a key contributor to our missile defence system."

The new NATO chief said last week that Russia must reverse course in Ukraine but stressed that the alliance remains ready to have a constructive relationship with Moscow.

Poland said last year it would spend 33.6 billion euros ($43.3 billion) to set up its own missile shield.

NATO's 28 members decided in 2010 to create a missile shield based on US technology. The project is due to be completed in 2020, with significant elements in Romania and Poland.

The Western defence alliance insists the role of the planned shield is a "purely defensive" response to external threats, notably from so-called "rogue states", and is in no way directed against Russia.

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

The escalation of tensions with Russia since January over its role in the Ukraine crisis has sounded the alarm on NATO's eastern flank in countries that were under Moscow's thumb during the Soviet era.

Tension mounted further after Russian President Vladimir Putin was quoted last month as saying that "if I wanted, Russian troops could not only be in Kiev in two days, but in Riga, Vilnius, Tallinn, Warsaw or Bucharest, too."

Stoltenberg, who took over as NATO chief last week, insists that Russia must reverse course in Ukraine but stressed that the alliance remains open to a constructive relationship with Moscow.



Saudi Arabia seeks billion-dollar air defense deal

‎28 ‎November ‎2014, ‏‎01:22:31 AMGo to full article
Washington (UPI) Oct 2, 2014 - More than 200 Patriot Air Defense Systems with PAC-3 enhancement may be sold to Saudi Arabia under the U.S. Foreign Military Sales program.

The U.S. Defense Security Cooperation Agency, which acts as the middle man for FMS deals, said in its required notification to Congress the possible deal carries a value of $1.750 billion.

"The proposed sale will help replenish Saudi's current Patriot missiles, which are becoming obsolete and difficult to sustain due to age and the limited availability of repair parts," the agency said.

"The purchase of PAC-3 missiles will support current and future defense missions and promote stability within the region."

The Saudi shopping list is for 202 Patriot Advanced Capability-3 missiles with containers, PAC-3 telemetry kits, fire solution computers and launcher station modification kits. Also included are missile round trainers, Patriot automated logistics systems kits, spare and repair parts and ground support equipment.

Technical and logistics support services and other related elements of logistics and program support would also be part of the deal.

"The program will contribute to the foreign policy and national security of the United States by helping to improve the security of a partner which has been, and continues to be, an important force for political stability and economic progress in the Middle East," DSCA said.

The principal contractors would be Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control and Raytheon.



Israel taps Raytheon for Iron Dome interceptor components

‎24 ‎October ‎2014, ‏‎06:13:59 AMGo to full article
Tucson (UPI) Oct 1, 2014 - Components for Israel's Iron Dome defense system are to be supplied by Raytheon under a $143 million award.

The contract was awarded to the company by Rafael Advanced Defense Systems Ltd., with which Raytheon has had a co-marketing agreement since 2011.

The components will specifically be for Iron Dome's Tamir interceptor for use against incoming artillery, rockets and mortars.

"Iron Dome has proven itself time and again by protecting Israel's population from incoming rockets, artillery and mortars," said Dr. Taylor W. Lawrence, Raytheon Missile Systems president. "The sourcing of Tamir interceptor components in the U.S. will go a long way to ensuring sufficient volumes of available Tamir missiles for Israel's defense."

Raytheon said it will use its technology resources and supplier network to provide a second source of supply for essential Iron Dome interceptor components.

The Iron Dome system began operating in 2011 and has so far chalked up more than 1,000 successful intercepts.

The United States has provided Israel with funding for the Iron Dome -- an estimated $700 million since 2011.

"The partnership between the (U.S.) Missile Defense Agency and the Israeli Missile Defense Organization has been extraordinary," said DiDi Yaari, chief executive officer of Rafael Advanced Defense Systems. "We're very appreciative of the U.S.'s support for this life-saving system. Maintaining Iron Dome's supply gives Israelis great peace of mind."



US plans Patriot missile sale to Saudi Arabia:Pentagon

‎15 ‎October ‎2014, ‏‎04:33:59 AMGo to full article
Washington (AFP) Oct 01, 2014 - The United States plans to sell Patriot missile batteries to Saudi Arabia worth $1.75 billion and long-range artillery to the United Arab Emirates valued at about $900 million, the Pentagon said Wednesday.

The Defense Department informed Congress of the potential arms sales this week as fighter jets from both of the Gulf states took part in a US-led air campaign against the Islamic State (IS) group in Iraq and Syria.

The Saudi government had requested the purchase of 202 Patriot Advanced Capability (PAC)-3 missiles -- the most sophisticated version of the Patriot anti-missile weapons -- as well as a flight test target, telemetry kits and other related equipment, the Defense Security Cooperation Agency said in a statement.

"The proposed sale will help replenish Saudi's current Patriot missiles which are becoming obsolete and difficult to sustain due to age and the limited availability of repair parts," the agency said.

"The program will contribute to the foreign policy and national security of the United States by helping to improve the security of a partner which has been, and continues to be, an important force for political stability and economic progress in the Middle East," it added.

Both Kuwait and Qatar already have purchased the PAC-3 weapons, which are designed to knock out incoming ballistic missiles as well as enemy aircraft and cruise missiles using ground radar.

Gulf countries in recent years have invested heavily in missile defense weapons, radar as well as air power, mainly as a hedge against Iran which they view as a regional threat.

The Patriot missiles, manufactured by Lockheed Martin, have an estimated range of up to 300 kilometers (186 miles) and have more advanced radar than the older systems.

Separately, the Defense Department notified lawmakers about a planned sale of 12 High Mobility Artillery Rocket Systems (HIMARS) Launchers to the United Arab Emirates for nearly one billion dollars.

The system "will improve the UAE's capability to meet current and future threats and provide greater security for its critical infrastructure," the Defense Security Cooperation Agency said. The weapons, which deliver precise and powerful artillery fire at a long range, would also bolster the UAE military's ability to operate with US forces, it said.

Congress has 30 days to raise objections to the potential arms sales. Without any move to block the deals, the US government can then negotiate contracts with the two countries.



Raytheon producing backup components for missile defense radar

‎15 ‎October ‎2014, ‏‎04:33:59 AMGo to full article
Tewksbury, Mass. (UPI) Sep 19, 2014 - Major sub-components of the AN/TPY-2 Ballistic Missile Defense system's radar are being built as backups to keep the radars running during maintenance periods.

Raytheon said the two trailer-sized sub-components it is building are the Electronic Equipment Unit and the Cooling Equipment Unit.

The EEU contains the processors of the AN/TPY-2 system with upgrades that enable the radar to rapidly discriminate threats from non-threats. The CEU keeps the radar operating at the optimal temperature, and distributes power to the system.

Construction of additional EEU and CEU units will enable the Missile Defense Agency to rotate sub-components out of the field for depot-level upgrades without having to temporarily shut down the radar system, Raytheon said.

"The AN/TPY-2 ballistic missile defense radar is a strategic asset which helps protect the people and things that matter 24/7/365," said Raytheon's Dave Gulla, vice president of Integrated Defense Systems' Global Integrated Sensors business area.

The AN/TPY-2 provides long-range acquisition, precision tracking and discrimination of all classes of ballistic missiles and can be deployed around the world in either terminal or forward-based mode. In terminal mode it is the fire-control radar for the THAAD missile defense system.

The contract from the Department of Defense for the two sub-systems is worth $53 million.

Raytheon said it is now constructing the equipment but gave no details as to when they will be delivered.



Raytheon providing ongoing support for Patriot air defense system

‎15 ‎October ‎2014, ‏‎04:33:59 AMGo to full article
Tewksbury, Mass. (UPI) Sep 12, 2014 - The U.S. Army has given Raytheon a $109 million contract for ongoing engineering services and support for the Patriot Air and Missile Defense System.

Work under the contract for the Army and Foreign Military Sales customers will include system analysis, software development, testing and logistics support, and other country-specific system requirements.

Raytheon said the work will be performed at its facilities in Massachusetts, Alabama and New Mexico.

"Customers around the world will benefit from the maintenance and upgrades that result from this contract -- especially the technical baseline improvements designed to counter evolving threats," said Ralph Acaba, vice president of Integrated Air and Missile Defense at Raytheon's Integrated Defense Systems business. "The U.S. Army recognizes the importance of investing in Patriot sustainment, especially given the instability in the world today."

Raytheon did not disclose additional details of the contract, which was issued by the U.S. Army Aviation and Missile Command, Redstone Arsenal, Ala.



Israel, US test upgraded Arrow 2 missile interceptor

‎15 ‎October ‎2014, ‏‎04:33:59 AMGo to full article
Jerusalem (AFP) Sept 09, 2014 - Israel and the United States on Tuesday successfully conducted a joint test of an upgraded Arrow 2 ballistic missile interception system over the Mediterranean Sea, the defence ministry said.

"An Arrow 2 missile was launched and performed its flight sequence as planned," the defence ministry said in a statement, with a spokesman confirming the system had been upgraded.

The two countries carried out similar tests in January, and in September last year, as Washington was considering military action against Syria.

Russia's defence ministry earlier released a statement reporting a missile launch from the Mediterranean Sea towards the eastern Mediterranean coast.

The Arrow Ballistic Missile Defence System, designed to counter long-range missiles, has successfully intercepted missiles similar to Iran's Shihab-3 in a variety of test conditions.

Israel has been working on upgrading its missile defence capabilities to defend against long- and short-range incoming projectiles, and speeded various projects after being hit by Iraqi Scud missiles during the 1991 Gulf War.

The Arrow project was first launched in 1988 as part of the then Star Wars programme under late US president Ronald Reagan that was abandoned in 1993.

The Jewish state accuses its arch-foe Iran of seeking to develop a nuclear warhead, a charge that Tehran denies.



INFORMS Study on Iron Dome Asks: What Was its Impact?

‎11 ‎October ‎2014, ‏‎07:18:05 AMGo to full article
Catonsville MD (SPX) Sep 03, 2014 - A new study published by The Institute for Operations Research and the Management Sciences (INFORMS) examines the strengths and weaknesses of the Iron Dome system, which Israeli authorities have credited with saving lives during the recent conflict with Hamas.

Modeling Short Range Ballistic Missile Defense and Israel's Iron Dome System is by Michael J. Armstrong of the Goodman School of Business, Brock University, in Ontario, Canada. It appears in the Articles in Advance section of the INFORMS journal Operations Research.

The study examines the previous Israel-Gaza conflict of November 2012, but Prof. Armstrong can apply the same method to the recent 2014 conflict to obtain several points of interest:

1.The Israeli military claimed to have intercepted 83% of urban-bound rockets in 2014, slightly lower than 2012's 87%.

2.If Iron Dome worked as claimed, then it prevented about 1778 Israeli casualties in 2012, and 525 in 2014, more than the savings from airstrikes against rocket launchers. This made an invasion of Gaza six to eight times less valuable for Israel.

3.If instead its interception rate was as low as critics argue, then the system made little impact.

4.Imperfect rocket categorization by the Iron Dome systems could partly explain the differences between the supporters' and critics' estimates of the interception rates.

5.Gaza militants could have inflicted far more damage by concentrating their rockets into fewer larger salvos, but this may have been counter-productive given Israel's air strikes.

6.Counterbattery fire by the militants against Iron Dome sites would not have been worthwhile given the rockets' low accuracy.

7.System success depends on the number of simultaneous inbound missiles. As salvo sizes increase, losses first rise slowly, but then climb drastically. The better the batteries perform, the larger that jump will be.

8.The rocket fire was 34% less accurate this year than in the previous conflict. Only 21% of rockets hit towns or were intercepted along the way in 2014, versus 32% in 2012.

9.Iron Dome reduced human losses from rocket hits, but not economic losses from rocket threats. In 2012 Israel lost $240 million in GDP, or $159 thousand per rocket fired. Estimates for 2014 are around $1.3 billion, or $387 thousand per rocket fired.

10.After 2012, Israel spent $200 million to resupply its batteries, about $475 thousand per rocket intercepted, or $112 thousand per casualty avoided. This year it allocated $225 million of American aid for this resupply, so $389,000 for each rocket intercepted, or $429,000 per casualty avoided.

Professor Armstrong is available for interview. He can expand on some of his findings and share opinions on the ways that military and economic strategists can potentially leverage the study's findings to answer questions such as:

What could have caused the rocket fire accuracy and interception success rate to be lower this year than in the prior conflict?

Why do the economic costs and losses differ between 2012 and 2014, and what do they suggest about missile defense?

What do defense planners and political leaders need to keep in mind when relying on this kind of interception system?




















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