American military forces are about to lose a special tax break. As of 2006, says US European Command, US troops stationed in Turkey no longer will be exempt from paying federal taxes. The Pentagon stations nearly 2,000 troops there, including several hundred airmen at Incirlik Air Base. EUCOM announced the bad news last week. The change comes about because Turkey, as of Dec. 31, won’t anymore be considered a front-line state in support of the war in Iraq. The Pentagon terminated that status. The tax break had been in effect since January 2003.
The F-35 Joint Program Office has officially announced plans to issue multiple sole-source contracts to Pratt & Whitney to upgrade the fighter’s F135 engine—a widely expected move after Pentagon officials indicated they would do so earlier this year instead of developing an entirely new engine.