Defense Briefing Monday


The U.S. military has updated its plans for a potential strike against Syria after intelligence showed that the regime has filled aerial bombs with deadly sarin gas in at least two locations near military airfields, a senior U.S. official said Friday. – CNN’s Security Clearance

“We’re long past the point of doing more with less,” said the blunt-spoken Under Secretary of the Navy, Robert Work. “We are going to be doing less with less in the future.” But with a continuing resolution, sequestration in three weeks, and to-be-determined defense cuts a likely part of any “grand bargain” to avert the fiscal cliff, how much less is maddeningly unclear. So it’s impossible to make intelligent plans or choices. – AOL Defense

The Pentagon is considering cutting more than $100 million from the Army’s massive effort to replace its outdated Bradley fighting vehicle. – DoD Buzz

Titans of defense and foreign policy who shaped America’s military policies for the past three decades are on their way out of Congress — leaving a void at exactly the wrong time, Pentagon watchers fear. – Politico

The Navy has positioned two more warships in the Pacific to monitor North Korea’s upcoming long-range missile launch. – Washington Times

Everybody, it seems, wants to put a second Virginia-class nuclear submarine back in the fiscal 2014 budget, keeping the service and its industrial suppliers on a two-boats-per-year building schedule. But if an agreement isn’t reached before too long, a wonky, inside-the-Beltway disagreement on the kind of money used to pay for the sub could kill it, scuttled by an impasse over funding mechanisms. – Defense News

Interview: Sen. Joe Lieberman is taking his last stand for the military budget—which, he says, has already been terribly eviscerated—before he retires after 24 years in the upper chamber. For the independent (former Democrat) from Connecticut, time is running out as we approach the fiscal cliff. – National Journal

The War

A measure granting the government expansive power to intercept electronic communications in the United States without a warrant is set to expire this month, setting up a sharp debate in the Senate over how to balance privacy against national security. – Washington Post

The lone Syrian rebel group with an explicit stamp of approval from Al Qaeda has become one of the uprising’s most effective fighting forces, posing a stark challenge to the United States and other countries that want to support the rebels but not Islamic extremists. – New York Times

American authorities are examining whether the leader of a post-revolution terror network in Egypt played a role in the September 11 attack on the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi, Libya, according to a U.S. official with direct knowledge of the investigation. – CNN’s Security Clearance

A senior commander for Al Qaeda has been killed in an American drone strike in North Waziristan, the restive tribal area along the border with Afghanistan, Pakistani security officials said Sunday. – New York Times

A steadily deteriorating security situation in Iraq, punctuated by internal squabbles among the country’s leaders and a resurgent al Qaeda, is creating concern on Capitol Hill. – DEFCON Hill

The U.S. military has detained more than 200 Afghan teenagers who were captured in the war for about a year at a time at a military prison next to Bagram Airfield in Afghanistan, the United States has told the United Nations. – Associated Press


Sens. Joseph Lieberman (ID-CT) and Susan Collins (R-ME) write: The new Congress must take up this issue, and pass comprehensive legislation to defend our nation against this gathering cyberthreat. If it doesn’t, the day on which those cyberweapons strike will be another “date which will live in infamy,” because we knew it was coming and didn’t come together to stop it. – New York Times

About Courtney Messerschmidt

Is a personae for the contact, co creator, poster girl and correspondent of GrEaT sAtAn"S gIrLfRiEnD a collective of diplopolititary junkies. A real girl, she is an annoying, arrogant, audacious, bloodthirsty, conniving, cool, cruel, deceitfully sweet, discombobulated, flirtacious, jealous, hedonistic, lazy, machiavellian, manipulative, militaristic, self absorbed, self aggrandizing, self centered, semi charmed, semi retarded, shallow, spoiled, stuck up, high maintainance ne'er do well pixie with a penchant for immense libraries, depleting strategic cash reserves and wrecking cars every 10 months. Super saavy history and current events. My superior intellect and easy going smartassticness armed with a chaotic emotion meter gave me a formidable ability to be independently dependent. Currently exiled in Hillbillyland, I wield a vocabulary far above my tiny tiny weight class and have traveled widely including Europe, the Middle East and Alabama. I like Am Ex, Carte Blanche, Discover, Mastercard, Ray Bans, Visa and devouring American Dollars in alarming quantities.
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