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Search Tags: Pentagon & Beyond
Russia is developing a new intercontinental ballistic missile mounted on a railway car. Government officials say their stated goal is to counterbalance U.S. weapons in the pipeline. Col. Gen. Sergei Karakayev, the chief of the military's Strategic Missile Forces, told Russian news agencies that the new weapon will be much easier to camouflage than its predecessor. The Soviet-designed railway missiles were dismantled in 2005. So what does this mean for the Cold War? Many say it never ended.
Two Guantanamo Bay prisoners have been sent back Saudi Arabia. U.S. officials say 35-year-old Saad Muhammad Husayn Qahtani and 48-year-old Hamood Abdulla Hamood were transferred after a security review. Neither man had been charged with a crime. U.S. records show both were suspected members of al-Qaida and were considered to be at high risk of rejoining the terror group if released.
Terry Lee Loewen, a 58-year-old avionics technician allegedly spent months studying the layout of the Mid-Continent Regional Airport in Wichita, Kansas. The FBI says he was looking at flight patterns and other details as he planned a suicide car-bomb attack. The FBI says he developed a plan with other conspirators and Loewen, who lives in Wichita had been under surveillance for 6 months and was planning the attack to support al Qaida.
Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel said Thursday that the U.S. will continue to support the moderate opposition in Syria, but non-lethal aid will be suspended until the U.S. can get a clear assessment on the status of warehouses of military equipment that may have been seized by extremist Islamic militants. The U.S. and Britain suspended the aid after opposition fighters from conservative Islamic rebel brigades seized warehouses containing U.S. military gear that was intended for the main Western-backed moderate rebel group.
The U.S. Army Space and Missile Defense Command/Army Forces Strategic Command (USASMDC/ARSTRAT) for the first time used a vehicle mounted high energy laser to successfully engage more than 90 mortar rounds and several unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) in flight. This occurred during multiple test events of the Army High Energy Laser Mobile Demonstrator (HEL MD) conducted between November 18 and December 10 at the High Energy Laser Systems Test Facility, White Sands Missile Range, N.M.
The chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff is warning Congress that failure to act on a defense policy bill before year's end would create more uncertainty for the military. Army Gen. Martin Dempsey wrote to House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., and other leaders urging prompt action and detailing special pay, bonuses and other authorities that would expire if the bill slips to January.
The Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Martin Dempsey is concerned about the next generation of military recruit being endangered by bad or illegal behavior online. He told reporters in his own words, "I worry a bit about ... the young men and women who are now in their teens, who probably underestimate the impact of their persona in social media". The problem is so pervasive, military officials have been considering the idea of giving people a second chance.
The U.S. invaded Afghanistan following the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks to go after al-Qaida, which was being sheltered by the Taliban. The longest and costliest war in U.S. history has proven deeply unpopular at home and among its allies, who also have said they will not commit any troops after 2014 unless the security deal is signed.
The U.S. has halted shipments out of Afghanistan, because protesters are a threat to truckers from who drive along part of the route in neighboring Pakistan. The Associated Press reports, "there have been anti-U.S. demonstrations in Pakistan in recent days calling for an end to the American drone program that targets militants. So U.S. officials said Tuesday that they had ordered truckers under U.S. contract to park at holding areas inside Afghanistan temporarily to avoid going there."
The U.S. Navy has sent two advanced P-8A Poseidon patrol aircraft to Japan. U.S. military officials say their jobs will be to improve U.S. capability to hunt submarines and other vessels in waters near China as tension in the region mounts. Last month China established an air defense identification zone covering islands in the East China Sea controlled by Japan and claimed by Beijing. In a few days four more of the aircraft will arrive.