National Defense

National Defense is a magazine specializing in Defense topics.

Articles from Vol. 84, No. 549, July/August

Air Force Needs 'Period of Reconstitution'
Top Air Force leaders are sounding alarms about the service's fitness to wage war in the aftermath of NATO's Operation Allied Force. There are worrisome trends that indicate wear-and-tear from hectic deployment schedules is undermining the force, officials...
Army Aims for Agile Ammo Assembly
Future needs for smart weapons spark `virtual factory' Efforts by Army ammunition designers to forge industrial alliances with commercial manufacturers point to the service's desire to modernize its equipment. But they also shed light on an ongoing struggle...
Awareness of National Security Concerns Needs to Be Heightened
In last month's issue of President's Perspective, I shared with you NDIA concerns about the modernization of our military force in the context of the conflict in the Balkans. There is now another important matter for your attention because, like modernization,...
Boeing to Cut Price of C-17 Via Program Reform
The maker of the U.S. Air Force's favored long-range cargo plane, the C17, said it could lower the price tag of future purchases of the aircraft by nearly $50 million. The savings largely would result from drastic changes to the management of the program....
Caldera Vows to End Army Budget Despair
As the Army's top civilian leader sees it, the service's most daunting challenges are not in the Balkans or other overseas trouble spots, but here at home. Not only is the Army having a tough time recruiting enough soldiers to meet its quotas, but it...
Contractors Urged to Focus on 'Customer Satisfaction'
A series of prime contractor quarterly reviews kicked off by the Pentagon's acquisition chief aims, among other things, to remind industry executives that "customer satisfaction" should not be sacrificed at the expense of profits. "Across the board [at...
Cruise Missile Defense Grid Needs Eyes over the Horizon
A pair of blimps equipped with advanced sensors and linked to ground stations via cables are part of a broad U.S. effort to defend troops against cruise missiles. Aerostat balloons are no newcomers to the battlefield. They were used as early as the Civil...
Debate Continues on Export Reform, Y2K Liability
This spring has been an active legislative session and the summer is showing no signs of letting up. Following is a summary of key developments. Budget Process Overhaul Representative Jim Nussle (R-Iowa) introduced HR 853, the "Comprehensive Budget Process...
Defense Data 'Jewels' to Remain Vulnerable
The U.S. Defense Department must do more to protect its computer networks, which are increasingly critical to military operations, according to a growing consensus among defense experts. Known as "cyber attack" or "information warfare," this new style...
Defense Industry Urged to Move into Commercial Markets
Defense contractors often hear conflicting messages from Wall Street. Financial analysts, on one hand, urge these firms to diversify their sales into commercial markets. On the other hand, they generally are skeptical about the prospect of defense firms...
Defense Reform Lagging, Deputy Secretary Says
Compared to its performance in the recent air war against Yugoslavia, the Defense Department's efforts to streamline its business operations-the Defense Reform Initiative-are "not doing so well," Deputy Defense Secretary John J. Hamre told a recent Capitol...
Demilitarization Work Takes Its First Budget Hit in Years
Ironically, at a time when U.S. forces have been using enormous amounts of the most modern bombs and missiles against Yugoslavia, the armed services' stockpiles of obsolete conventional ammunition are at an all-time high and growing higher. Meanwhile,...
E-Commerce Solutions Draw Flies to the Web
As more and more people flock to the Internet to purchase goods and services, not only does the rate of web traffic increase, but so does the number of interlopers who may be waiting to stick their meat-hooks into any juicy tidbit of classified informationbe...
Energy Department Lab Launches Anti-Landmine Sting Operation
Most people do not expect the average honeybee to save human lives. Officials at the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL), however, beg to differ. Breakthrough technology developed by the lab-a division of the Department of Energy that is run...
Expectations of 'Surgical Precision' Unrealistic, Says Top Navy Leader
The growing reliance by U.S. military forces on precise weapons for pinpoint targeting is creating unrealistic expectations of "surgical precision" on the battlefield, said a top U.S. Navy official. During this year's air war against Yugoslavia, a majority...
Export Rules for Supercomputers Are Outdated, Says Hamre
Current government policies designed to protect sensitive U.S. technologies from reaching enemy hands are anachronistic and built on "thoroughly confused" notions of what constitutes a danger to national security, said John J. Hamre, deputy defense secretary....
GPS-Guided Projectile Bolsters Field Artillery
Until recently, field artillery was limited to complex calculations or laser guided rounds, relying on a human operator to guide the round to the target. Now, there is a new solution on the horizon from an area familiar to automobiles, fishing boats,...
Hackers Intensify Fears of Industrial Espionage
Frequent intrusions by hackers into critical computer networks have industry looking at stronger security measures. Primary concerns cited by industry officials include the emergence of new vulnerabilities, lack of money for computer security, and fear...
Improved Eavesdropping Satellites Sought by U.S
U.S. military officials are preparing to deploy sophisticated eyes-in-- space for tactical surveillance in an effort to supplement existing airborne platforms such as the Joint STARS and the U-2 planes. Joint STARS (surveillance and target attack radar...
Is Peace in the Kosovo Region Here to Stay?
Despite the North Atlantic Treaty Organization's (NATO) overwhelming military victory in the air war against Yugoslavia, there is only cautious optimism that its peacekeeping mission will be as successful, according to various military and foreign policy...
Leaner Crews to Steer Navy to Prosperity
Undersecretary of the Navy says military business must change The U.S. Navy increasingly will expect contractors to partake in the service's efforts to cut overhead costs. New ship projects, for example, will not only focus on the merits of the ship...
Legislative Changes Boost Indian Subcontractors
Many prime contractors are disregarding the Defense Department's Indian Incentive Program when it comes to selecting subcontractors, said Pete Homer, president of the National Indian Business Association (NIBA). The Indian Incentive Program offers financial...
Marine Corps Training Drills Expand to Urban Battlefields
A series of live war games and training drills in simulated urban centers is playing a critical role in the Marine Corps' preparation for conflicts in non-traditional battle zones. The Corps is so committed to preparing for urban warfare that it staged...
Marines Welcome New Land-Water Craft
Next-generation amphibious platform to replace AAV by 2006 ee U.S. Marine Corps recently received the first two prototypes of its nextgeneration advanced amphibious assault vehicle (AAAV). The new platform will begin to replace the current AAVs in 2006....
Military Online Shoppers Need Shielded Networks
As the Defense Department increases its reliance on electronic commerce to purchase goods and services, it also must invest in advanced computer security systems, officials assert. Efforts to bring on-line transactions to every-day life at the Pentagon...
Military Recon Imagery Gains Sharper Resolution
Eastman Kodak Company, Rochester, New York, introduced a $30,000 digital camera that the company believes will capture the attention of military customers. The Air Force has been using earlier Kodak models such as the DCS 315 digital camera for reconnaissance...
Navy-Marine Exercise Tests New Communications Gear
The U.S. Navy and Marine Corps are still completing their formal analysis, but preliminary findings are positive: Recent joint exercises conducted, in part, to test new technology selected to enhance the services' ability to operate littorally-meaning...
Pentagon Claims Contractor Payments Unaffected by Y2K
Defense contractors who fear that the year 2000 millennium bug will disrupt the Pentagon's invoice-paying system can rest at ease, says the Defense Department's financial officer who oversees the operation. The Pentagon's computers that issue payments...
Pentagon Gets Mixed Results from Tactical Missile Efforts
After a brush with death following a March failure, the Pentagon's $3 billion anti-missile effort aimed at protecting troops on the battlefield, last month received a big boost. Following six consecutive misses, the Army's Theater High Altitude Area...
Pentagon Lobbies for Broader Base of Suppliers
At the Defense Department, officials increasingly recognize that the market for military equipment has become "global" much like other commercial industries such as aerospace and computers. They envision an open arms market where U.S. and foreign contractors...
Post-Military Job Searchers Must Tally Benefits Package
Departing members of the armed services seeking civilian employment should determine a marketable salary figure for their new career s by taking into account the entire benefits package they previously received, says David G. Henderson in his book, "Job...
Readers Forum
The Skinny on Picatinny I would like to take this opportunity to highlight several inaccuracies and omissions from the article by Brian McKeon of DynMeridian (p.23, April 1999). While it is true that the Joint Non-Lethal Weapons Directorate (JNLWD) has...
Russian Weapons CD-ROM Provides Unusual Details
The provider of Russia's Arms, the multi-volume catalog and encyclopedia-TommaX Inc. of Red Bank, New Jersey-has created an innovative and informative CD-ROM which goes far beyond anything offered in the printed format. There are moving, full-color videos...
Small Arms Programs Could Use More 'Jointness'
The small arms community-customers and suppliers-has seen an evolution in the way user demands are met by manufacturers' technological capabilities. This is one of the conclusions that Lt. Col. "Bud" Irish reached after three years of service as program...
Space Revenue to Skyrocket despite Streak of Launch Failures
The space industry is seeking to recover from a series of recent setbacks in the launch business. Officials said they are evaluating these failures in order to restore their customers' trust. The space industry is expected to earn $1.5 trillion in revenue...
Treaty Snarl Nags Anti-Missile Effort
Upcoming test aims to prove hit-to-kill can defeat enemy missiles Less than a year away from making a firm commitment to deploy an antimissile system to shield the United States from enemy strikes, Clinton administration and Pentagon officials face daunting...
U.S. Must Reverse Bomber Blueprint
Air Force dominated by tactical fighter community, say experts The experience of the Kosovo air campaign provides important insight into the problems with the U.S. Air Force modernization plans not because the campaign was so challenging but because...
Washington Pulse
MORE HEADACHES IN KOSOVO-NATO's top commander, U.S. Army Gen. Wesley K. Clark predicts Russia "will continue to be a problem" for the Western alliance trying to keep peace in the Yugoslav province of Kosovo. That is because Russia's military is "playing...
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