Not a Land Grab

The Air Force’s push to be executive agent for medium- and high-flying unmanned aerial vehicle is connected to a study being prepared by Lt. Gen. David Deptula, the service’s intelligence chief, on how the Air Force and the other branches may wish to restructure rationalize the intelligence field. The Air Force expects the report to aid talks with the other services in the run-up to the next budget cycle. Deptula’s report is due in June. “This is not a land grab on all ISR,” a senior USAF official said Monday, but he added, somebody has to step in and put some order to the chaos. In UAVs alone, eliminating a redundant set of requirements, contracting and production for two unique aircraft with the same purpose could save $1.7 billion over the future years defense plan. “Even if that number is only half right,” the official said, $900 million in savings is “not an insignificant number.”