e-7 wedgetail

Air Chiefs from US, Britain, and Australia Align on E-7 Wedgetail

The heads of the U.S., British, and Australian air forces all signed a “joint vision statement” declaring their intent to work together in developing the E-7 Wedgetail for airborne early warning and control, the U.S. Air Force announced July 17. USAF did not immediately provide Air & Space Forces Magazine with exact details of the joint vision statement, but a service release noted the agreement will cover “Wedgetail capability development, evaluation and testing, interoperability, sustainment, operations, training, and safety.” 
National Guard State partnership program

National Guard Charts New Course for Growing Overseas Partnerships

Thirty years ago, the National Guard Bureau established its State Partnership Program (SPP) by pairing 13 former Soviet bloc countries with state National Guards to bolster training and cooperation. Today, more than 100 countries around the globe are in the program, with 88 active partnerships. All 54 states, territories, and the District of Columbia have at least one partner nation. And as officials gathered for a conference at National Harbor, Md., to celebrate the anniversary, they also laid out a vision for the future of the program—one focused less on expansion and more on deeper cooperation covering more capabilities and domains. 

Radar Sweep

Software Problems Will Cut F-35 Deliveries This Year, Lockheed Says

Defense One

Lockheed Martin said it would deliver as many as 53 fewer F-35s to the U.S. military and its allies this year as it struggles to certify the software that comes preloaded on new jets. The company now expects to deliver between 100 to 120 F-35s this calendar year, down from the planned 147 to 153, CEO Jim Taiclet said on Lockheed’s quarterly earnings call on July 18.

DARPA Taps Raytheon for Next Phase of Air-Breathing Hypersonic Program


The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency has selected Raytheon and its partner Northrop Grumman to continue the development and maturation of its scramjet-powered hypersonic missile known as the Hypersonic Air-breathing Weapons Concept (HAWC). Raytheon received an $81 million contract to work on the More Opportunities with the Hypersonic Air-breathing Weapon Concept, or MoHAWC, the Pentagon announced July 15.

An American Soldier Is Detained by North Korea After Crossing Its Heavily Armed Border

The Associated Press

An American soldier facing military disciplinary actions fled across the heavily armed border from South Korea into North Korea, U.S. officials said July 18, becoming the first American detained in the North in nearly five years. Two U.S. officials said the soldier detained was Pvt. 2nd Class Travis King, who had just been released from a South Korean prison where he’d been held on assault charges and was facing additional military disciplinary actions in the United States.

SDA Racing Ahead with New, US-Based Satellite Ground Stations, Could Meet Hiccup Abroad

Breaking Defense

The Space Development Agency is planning to have the ground system for its first set of operational data transport and missile warning/tracking satellites up and running next spring, in advance of the planned September 2024 launch of the satellites themselves—to comport with guidance from the Air Force’s space acquisition czar Frank Calvelli.

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Congress May Be Wasting Money With AETP Support, USAF Chief Says

Aviation Week

Congress may be “throwing money away” if it continues to fund the U.S. Air Force’s Adaptive Engine Transition Program (AETP) development without committing to re-engine the Lockheed Martin F-35, the service’s top official says.

DOJ Puts Pressure on States to Recognize Military Spouse Job Licenses After New Law


The Department of Justice has sent out a letter reminding states to follow a law passed six months ago that allows military spouses to more easily transfer their job licenses during permanent change of station moves. Military family advocates and lawmakers told Military.com that the Department of Justice’s reminder is necessary as news of the law has been slow to make its way from Washington, D.C., to state and local licensing boards across the country.

China’s J-20 Fighter Seems to Have a New Homegrown Engine, After Years of Struggle

Breaking Defense

On June 28, video emerged of the J-20 making its first public flight equipped with a pair of Xi’an-built Woshan-15 (涡扇-15 or WS-15) “Emei” engines. (While the Aviation Industry Corporation of China has not released a statement on the video, the fact it remains up is taken as a sign the firm, and through them Beijing, want the video seen.) While not the first time the WS-15 has been equipped on the jet—it appears to have flown with one WS-15 and one older design in 2022, typical of flight testing for a new engine—the flight with two WS-15s is a sign of maturity and confidence that, after years of delays, a homegrown, advanced fighter jet engine is ready for prime time.

Here’s How the Senate Wants to Boost Military Recruitment

Military Times

The U.S. military could soon start offering community college students a new path to enlistment, thanks to a legislative provision making its way through the Senate. If signed into law as part of the annual defense policy bill, it could be one tool to help reverse a historic recruiting crisis that threatens to hollow the armed forces for years to come.

Go Deeper on Operational Imperatives

Air & Space Forces Magazine

Virtually every part of the Department of the Air Force’s drive to modernize is being shaped by Secretary Frank Kendall’s seven Operational Imperatives—lines of effort that address the most important and urgent challenges facing the Air Force today. Now, the department and industry are working together to develop solutions for each imperative, and the results will likely change the Air Force and Space Force for the next generation. Keep up with all the latest news on each Operational Imperative.

Sluggish Procurement Stalling Pentagon Progress on AI, Experts Say

Defense News

The Pentagon’s procurement process is one of several major obstacles hampering efforts to develop and apply artificial intelligence technology, a panel of AI experts told members of Congress on July 18. The 90-minute hearing, convened by the House Armed Services Committee to assess the barriers inhibiting the Department of Defense’s adoption of AI, was framed by bipartisan geopolitical anxieties.

One More Thing

Memorial To Those That Pioneered Stealth Technology Unveiled

The War Zone

A new memorial has been unveiled to commemorate those who developed the U.S. Air Force’s first low observable, or stealth, aircraft. The ‘Pioneers of Stealth’ memorial features four obelisks, each dedicated to a key program related to the dawn of stealth technology dating back to the 1970s. The memorial is located at the National Museum of the United States Air Force Memorial Park at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in Ohio.