How the Burkina Faso Coup Could Impact U.S. Air Force Counterterrorism Operations

A military coup in the fragile West African country of Burkina Faso may prevent the U.S. Air Force from continuing vital counterterrorism surveillance and targeting efforts in an area where Islamic terrorism is growing, the Burkina Faso vice air chief told Air Force Magazine Jan. 26. Victor Beloum told Air Force Magazine in a French-language interview on the sidelines of the African Air Chiefs Symposium in Kigali. “The United States Air Force actually is collecting intelligence and sharing it directly with Burkina Faso because we are lacking this ability."
space force exercises

Space Force Plans Two New Exercises: Polaris Hammer and Black Skies

The Space Force will debut a new training exercise this year, aimed at improving the service’s command and control capabilities, the head of Space Training and Readiness Command said Jan. 26. The event, called Polaris Hammer, will happen sometime this fall, Brig. Gen. Shawn N. Bratton said during an AFA Air and Space Warfighters in Action virtual seminar.
f-35 joint program office

New F-35 Lot 15-17 Deal Hung Up on Inflation, COVID-19 Mitigation Costs

A deal on the next three-lot buy of F-35 fighters is dragging out because Lockheed Martin and the Joint Program Office are struggling to agree on a new cost baseline, affected by inflation, the pandemic and a reduced buy from the military services, company officials said during Lockheed's quarterly earnings call Jan. 25. The company is also negotiating with the JPO on a five-year Performance-Based Logistics contract, up from a three-year version previously discussed.

KC-46 Losses Now Top $5.4 Billion as Boeing Takes a New $406 Million Charge

Boeing's losses on the KC-46 tanker now add up to over $5.4 billion, as the company took an additional charge on the program of $406 million in the last quarter of 2021. The company chalked up the loss to continued resolution of the Remote Viewing System's deficiencies, as well as supply chain shortages and labor issues stemming from the COVID-19 pandemic.

Radar Sweep

SecDef Austin Summons Hypersonics CEOs

Defense One

Amid several high-profile test failures that have slowed hypersonic weapon development, Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin has summoned the CEOs of America’s largest defense companies to the Pentagon for a face-to-face meeting next week, Defense One has learned. The purpose of the Feb. 3 meeting is to stress the urgency in fielding the fast-flying weapons as the U.S. plays catch up to recent Chinese and Russian advances.

After 5 Months, No Answers from the Air Force on Afghans Who Died Clinging to a Kabul Evacuation Flight


When footage of civilians clinging to the side of a U.S. C-17 Globemaster III and falling to their deaths at Hamid Karzai International Airport in Kabul on Aug. 16 surfaced on social media, it became one of the defining images of the American military's chaotic final days in Afghanistan. After human remains were found in the wheel well of the plane, the Air Force's Office of Special Investigations announced the following day that it was reviewing the incident. But five months later, there are still no answers from the service on what went wrong at the airfield.

Q&A: Early Observations from the Army’s Project Convergence 21

Breaking Defense

To discuss preliminary observations related to PC21 and other subjects such as satellite communications (SATCOM) for on-the-move communications, we talked with Maj. Gen. Robert Collins, program executive officer for Command, Control, Communications-Tactical (PEO C3T), and Brig. Gen. Jeth Rey, director of the Network Cross-Functional Team at Army Futures Command.

New DOD Chief Digital and AI Office to Start Work by Feb. 1


The Department of Defense’s new top artificial intelligence office will reach initial operational capability Feb. 1, the Navy’s chief data officer said Jan. 26. The new chief digital and AI officer will oversee the DOD’s chief data officer, Joint Artificial Intelligence Center and Defense Digital Service and serve as an integrator for their efforts. Navy CDO Tom Sasala said that the new office will help the DOD push forward on data initiatives and be helpful to the work his team has been doing to bring data-based decision making to the Navy.

Military Space Advocate Rep. Jim Cooper to Retire from Congress


Rep. Jim Cooper (D-Tenn.), chairman of the House Armed Services Committee’s subcommittee on strategic forces, announced Jan. 25 that he will not run for re-election in November. Cooper’s decision was expected as his current district in Nashville was redrawn by the state legislature and his seat is likely to be won by a Republican candidate. Cooper has been in office for 32 years.

Navy to Salvage Stealth F-35 that Crashed on Carrier Landing in South China Sea

ABC News

The U.S. Navy has begun to make plans to recover the F-35C fighter jet that crashed Jan. 24 after striking the deck of an aircraft carrier in the South China Sea. The jet is the most advanced stealth fighter jet in the world and would have made an enticing target for China if it had attempted to recover it from the depths of the Pacific Ocean.

US Air Force Bases Reviewing COVID-19 Rules as England Drops Restrictions

Stars and Stripes

Mask-wearing in crowded open-air and indoor public spaces, such as subways and shops, will be recommended but not required, Prime Minister Boris Johnson said Jan. 19 in an address to the House of Commons. Social distancing requirements, limits on gatherings and a legal mandate that people show a National Health Service COVID-19 pass or its equivalent for entry to venues will also end.

Lockheed and Raytheon Clash Over Aerojet but They Still Share Supply Chain Challenges

Washington Technology

Lockheed Martin, the world’s largest defense company, finds itself at a major decision point regarding its acquisition of a key supplier to the entire industry. Meanwhile, another blue chip player, Raytheon Technologies, hopes the deal does not happen. But they and the entire industry share the supply chain mega-headwind, even though they have a difference in opinion on Lockheed's proposed acquisition of Aerojet Rocketdyne. Here are how Lockheed and Raytheon Technologies talked about both items during their fourth quarter and year-end earnings calls with investors Tuesday.

One More Thing

Tuskegee Airmen Recognized with Top Gun Honor 73 years After Winning

CBS News

Members of the Tuskegee Airmen are some of the most highly decorated military pilots in U.S. history. But there was one honor that was overlooked for more than 70 years—until now. In 1949, a team from the famed all-Black Tuskegee Airmen won the first Top Gun contest, a gunnery competition among pilots from across the Air Force. But the record book listed the winner as "unknown." "They knew who won, but they just didn't want to recognize us," said Retired Lt. Col. James Harvey, a 98-year-old former fighter pilot who was part of that winning team.