Tuesday Defense Brief

Defense

The U.S. Army is warning that it may face at least $17 billion in near-term cuts if Congress doesn’t get the nation’s fiscal house in order by a self-imposed March deadline to forestall sequestration, and the $500 billion in automatic cuts that it will force upon the Department of Defense. – Defense News

The leading defense industry trade group says it’s hopeful that a deal will be reached next month to avert across-the-board spending cuts despite growing pessimism in Congress that the cuts will take effect. – DEFCON Hill

BAE Systems said Monday it will lay off 300 workers at facilities across the United States, two-thirds of which will occur in New Hampshire. The defense contractor said the layoffs were necessary due to the budget cuts the Pentagon is facing as it plans to reduce $487 billion from its budgets over the next decade. – DEFCON Hill

With the war winding down, the budget tightening, and new threats on the rise, there’s a crying need for strategic insight. If, at such a moment, the 2014 QDR and the accompanying Congressionally appointed panel are as unproductive as their predecessors, there are growing grumbles among Congressional Republicans to kill the review process altogether. – AOL Defense

Less than two weeks after an engine problem grounded all F-35B jump-jet variants, officials believe the problem has been isolated and the jets will soon resume testing. – Defense News

The Pentagon has begun laying off many of its 46,000 temporary and contract workers and delaying maintenance on aircraft and ships to slow spending due to fears it may be hit by new budget cuts, Deputy Defense Secretary Ashton Carter said on Friday. – Reuters

What is being crammed down the gullets of the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines and Coast Guard…is irresponsible policy of an ungrateful and unserious president and Congress. Their actions today will create higher risk for our pilots, sailors and soldiers and lead to a military that one day might find it impossible to carry out the tasks demanded of it by its civilian masters. – Politico

In short, there is no reason for this change. It doesn’t make the military stronger, and risks making it weaker by undermining the factors crucial for combat effectiveness. – TWS

The War

The State Department on Monday reassigned Daniel Fried, the special envoy for closing the prison at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, and will not replace him, according to an internal personnel announcement. – New York Times

An Army judge on Monday denied any talk of the CIA’s detainee interrogation program during pretrial proceedings for the five accused 9/11 conspirators, but not before admonishing U.S. officials for censoring unclassified information during the hearing. – DEFCON Hill

Foreign Armies East

Taiwan urged the United States on Jan. 28 to honor an agreement to supply submarines to replace its current elderly fleet, as a U.S. congressional group visited the island to evaluate defense needs. – AFP

China’s new heavy-lift transport aircraft and a successful missile interception test are key steps in expanding the strength and reach of China’s armed forces, analysts and state media said Jan. 28. – AFP

Turkey’s number-two naval commander retired on Monday in what some took as proof of deepening frustration in the military high command over the jailing of hundreds of their colleagues. – Reuters

China is covertly working with North Koreans to modernize Egypt’s short-range missile systems, raising new concerns among United States intelligence officials about the arms programs of the Muslim Brotherhood-affiliated government in Egypt. – Washington Free Beacon

Israel is warning of possible military intervention in Syria to prevent chemical or biological weapons from falling into the hands of militant groups. – Washington 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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