Daily Report

Sept. 18, 2023

Cyber Bosses Seek to Exploit Full Capacity of Joint Force

Growing threats in the cyber realm have senior military and defense officials increasingly pressing to integrate the joint force across domains and combatant commands. Speaking at AFA’s Air, Space & Cyber Conference, leaders emphasized the need to be ready before future crises strike. 

Ukraine Makes Do With ‘Useful’ Western Weapons While Waiting for F-16s

While the West’s decision to train and equip Ukraine’s Air Force with American-made F-16s has garnered enormous attention, the war there is likely to remain a slugfest on the ground for months to come, U.S. military officials say. “Just giving them an F-16 is not going to immediately turn the tide and give them air superiority,” Gen. James B. Hecker, the commander of U.S. Air Forces in Europe-Air Forces Africa said at AFA’s Air, Space & Cyber Conference Sept. 13. “But it's a start.”

Radar Sweep

Search on for a Missing Marine Corps Fighter Jet in South Carolina After Pilot Safely Ejects

The Associated Press

A Marine Corps pilot safely ejected from a fighter jet over North Charleston on Sept. 17 and the search for his missing aircraft was focused on two lakes north of North Charleston, military officials said. The pilot ejected and parachuted safely into a North Charleston neighborhood at about 2 p.m. He was taken to a local hospital, where he was in stable condition, said Maj. Melanie Salinas. The pilot’s name has not been released. Based on the missing plane’s location and trajectory, the search for the F-35 Lightning II jet was focused on Lake Moultrie and Lake Marion, said Senior Master Sgt. Heather Stanton at Joint Base Charleston.

Service Was a Second Chance for the Space Force’s Enlisted Leader. He Tried to Give Others the Same Shot.


Roger Towberman vividly remembers selling his 1976 Pontiac Catalina. The one he'd curl up in for a couple of hours of sleep each night as he panhandled and chased the dreams of a musician decades earlier. The one he'd traded to a gas station attendant for a hot dinner, shower tokens, and a duffel bag to haul his belongings after it exhaled its last breaths and he had to hitchhike home.

Troops Avoid Abortion Travel Policy Fueling Tuberville Blockade


Republican Sen. Tommy Tuberville has blocked hundreds of military promotions over a single policy that allows troops access to abortions, creating turmoil within the Pentagon and even his own party. But few actually use the program. Only a small number of service members have taken advantage of the year-old rule that offers paid leave and travel reimbursement to troops seeking abortions and other reproductive care, according to the Pentagon.

‘Be Careful What You Wish For:’ DOD Official Warns Separate Cyber Force Could Pose New Challenges

Breaking Defense

While the Pentagon studies the pros and cons of standing up a Space Force-like independent cyber military service, one official warned that it could potentially pose new challenges for the department when it comes to understanding warfighting needs within the military services. “I think the question is that for people who think the cyber service is the answer to our … current challenges in cyber personnel management: be careful what you wish for,” Mieke Eoyang, deputy assistant secretary of defense for cyber policy, said Sept. 15 at a Defense Writers Group event

Production of Key Munition Years Ahead of Schedule, Pentagon Says

Defense News

Production of 155mm artillery rounds crucial to the war in Ukraine is years ahead of schedule, according to Pentagon acquisition chief Bill LaPlante. The Pentagon’s original goal was to build 85,000 of the rounds per month by fiscal 2028. It’s currently on pace to reach 100,000 per month by FY25, LaPlante said, and at least 57,000 a month by spring 2024.

Air Force Research Laboratory Delays Lunar Experiment


An experiment the Air Force Research Laboratory planned to launch in 2025 to monitor deep space is being delayed after program officials concluded that the original schedule was too ambitious. The experiment, led by AFRL’s Space Vehicles Directorate, was previously known as the Cislunar Highway Patrol System (CHPS) and was renamed Oracle. A spokesperson for AFRL confirmed Sept. 15 that Oracle’s schedule has been pushed to the right.

Defense & Aerospace Air Power Podcast: Facing the Bear

Defense & Aerospace Report

There’s a hot war in Europe, and the man in charge of United States interests in that part of the world, Gen. James “Scorch” Hecker, joins us with the latest from the forward edge. And it’s avgeek prom time in Washington; we review the Air and Space Forces Association’s Air, Space & Cyber Conference with John Tirpak of Air and Space Forces Magazine.

Pentagon Arms Ukraine with ‘Industrial-Size’ 3D Printers


You can add “industrial-size” 3D printers to the list of items the U.S. has provided Ukraine to help it combat Russian forces. The newly delivered equipment will allow Ukraine to up its game with additive manufacturing to generate spare parts for its battlefield forces, Pentagon acquisition chief William LaPlante said Sept. 15 during a think tank event in Washington.

PODCAST: Regaining the Spectrum Warfare Advantage: Industry Conversation

The Mitchell Institute for Aerospace Studies

In Episode 146 of the Aerospace Advantage podcast, Doug Birkey continues to focus on spectrum warfare with Josh Niedzwiecki, vice president and general manager of electronic combat solutions at BAE. The nation has taken too much risk in the area of spectrum warfare since the end of the Cold War, and now it’s time for the U.S. military to reset. Success demands the recruitment of industry talent who can innovate and produce the tools required to empower this mission. The talent needed to help meet these requirements takes years, even decades, to cultivate. The same holds true for the facilities and tools needed for production.

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US Air Force Celebrates 76 Years of Aiming High

Stars and Stripes

Happy birthday to the U.S. Air Force, which officially celebrates 76 years of aiming high, flying, fighting and winning on Monday, Sept. 18. On Sept. 18, 1947, the National Security Act of 1947 established the Air Force as a separate military branch. It is the second youngest branch of the U.S. armed forces after the U.S. Space Force, which was founded in 2019 and also falls under the Department of the Air Force. However, the branch’s roots trace back to 1907, when the U.S. Army Signal Corps established an aeronautical division to take “charge of all matters pertaining to military ballooning, air machines, and all kindred subjects,” according to the Air Force Historical Research Agency.