Here's a look at how the Defense Department is being impacted by and responding to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The proposal comes amid mounting frustration from senior administration officials over informal holds from lawmakers on arms sales to countries like Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, two close U.S. partners in the Middle East. Lawmakers have tried to block weapons sales to these countries over concerns about human rights issues and the prospect of civilian casualties, particularly with the Saudi-led coalition’s war against Iran-backed rebels in Yemen.
As opposition mounts from Capitol Hill—as well as a wider swath of civil GPS users—to the Federal Communication Commission’s approval of Ligado’s controversial 5G network, at least one of the five commissioners now says she’d be willing to consider reversing the decision.
The timing of the resignation has stirred questions inside the Pentagon and in the space industry about what it portends for the future of the Space Development Agency, a 15-month-old organization that Undersecretary of Defense for Research and Engineering Michael D. Griffin pushed hard to get stood up and he characterized as a “personal cause.”
The U.S. Air Force has released a slick new video regarding its Skyborg program, which is developing a suite of systems that will form an artificial intelligence-driven "computer brain" capable of flying networked "loyal wingman" type drones and fully autonomous unmanned combat air vehicles, or UCAVs. The video offers new insights into what the service wants out of this project, how it sees it fitting into its larger aerial combat ecosystem, and what unmanned capabilities it might serve as a stepping stone toward in the future.
Awarded under the USAF’s AFWERX program, the $499,000 contract will see the development of a coating that improves pre-flight and in-flight anti-icing properties on military aircraft and avionics.
The Air Force is leveraging emerging technologies and new legislation to accelerate acquisition decisions and streamline sustainment. Read more here.
Defense Secretary Mark T. Esper has approved a request for assistance from the Department of Homeland Security that would authorize the deployment of 4,000 U.S. military personnel at the southern border beginning in October, with more of the force coming from the National Guard.
For months, U.S. residents have seen National Guard troops fan out across communities—testing patients for COVID-19, answering calls at state unemployment offices and, more recently, standing in riot gear before Americans protesting structural racism and deaths in police custody. Those troops, many of whom hold full-time civilian jobs outside of their Guard roles, usually are called up for domestic duty by governors, not by the Department of Defense, and—just as with other state workers—their pay and benefits vary widely even as they do similar jobs.
OPINION: 'We're All Struggling with This': The Army's Top Enlisted Service Member Opens Up about Race
Sergeant Major of the Army Michael A. Grinston, the highest ranking enlisted member of the U.S. Army, discusses his upbringing in Alabama and why he sometimes felt, being biracial, he was "not Black enough for Black people."
Russia has quit a United Nations arrangement that aimed to protect hospitals and humanitarian aid deliveries in Syria from being hit by the warring parties, according to a U.N. note to aid groups seen by Reuters on Thursday. The Russian move comes after an internal U.N. inquiry in April found it was “highly probable” the government of Syria or its allies carried out attacks on three healthcare facilities, a school, and a refuge for children in northwest Syria last year.
It would take years for humans to scour the tens of thousands of hours of footage that document violations in Yemen. With machine learning, it takes just days.