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In Today’s News April 25, 2009

Posted by Stephen Abott in News.
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  • When President Barack Obama asked Robert Gates to stay on as defense secretary, he sought continuity. And he got it.
  • The political elements are favorably aligned for military acquisition reform, senior members of the House Armed Services Committee said April 23, as they rolled out their version of legislation to overhaul how the Pentagon buys major weapons.
  • The F-22 fight is in full swing, notwithstanding comments earlier this week from Lockheed Martin’s CFO that the company will not fight down to the wire for the weapon. Sens. Saxby Chambliss and James Inhofe signaled this week that they are almost certain to keep fighting for the plane.
  • Two U.S. lawmakers who will factor prominently in the coming debate about Defense Secretary Robert Gates’ 2010 Pentagon spending request say the analysis needed to support the myriad program decisions he recently unveiled is lacking.
  • While the total defense budget should be larger in a time of war, it focuses resources and attention precisely where they are most needed: on our war fighters in Iraq, in Afghanistan – and at places like Walter Reed.
  • First, the Air Force should be eliminated, and its personnel and equipment integrated into the Army, Navy and Marine Corps. Second, the archaic “up or out” military promotion system should be scrapped in favor of a plan that treats service members as real assets. Third, the United States needs a national service program for all young men and women, without any deferments, to increase the quality and size of the pool from which troops are drawn.
  • Since January, Nashville’s 500-person crew has delivered tons of humanitarian aid, provided free medical care to hundreds of patients, helped rebuild schools and, perhaps most importantly, trained thousands of African sailors and coast guardsmen to better look after their waters.
  • OSD is considering seeking permanent separation from NASA and NOAA, its confreres in the deeply troubled and fiscally challenged program known as NPOESS.
  • Two U.S. lawmakers who will factor prominently in the coming debate about Defense Secretary Robert Gates’ 2010 Pentagon spending request say the analysis needed to support the myriad program decisions he recently unveiled is lacking.
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