Mid Week Defense Briefing

General David H. Petraeus, USA (Ret.) writes: The ideas that enabled progress during the surge are, in many respects, the very ideas that could help Iraq’s leaders reverse the tragic downward spiral that we have seen in recent months. As we discovered in the run-up to the surge of 2007, a singular focus on counterterrorist operations will most likely fail to stem the violence gripping Iraq. If Iraq and the Iraqis are to have yet one more opportunity to move forward, they would likely find it useful to revisit the entire array of approaches pursued in 2007 and 2008. – Foreign Policy

The long-planned move of thousands of Marines from Okinawa to new bases on Guam as part of a strategic pivot of U.S. forces to Asia could be threatened by budget cuts, lawmakers were told Tuesday. – DOD Buzz

The oldest nuclear bomb in the U.S. arsenal is being modernized with a precision-guidance kit and more modern safety features, Pentagon and Energy Department officials told Congress on Monday. – Washington Free Beacon

The Marines say the V-22 tilt rotor aircraft has deployed and flown “with properly trained and equipped combat ready Marines and mission capable aircraft” over the last six years. – Breaking Defense

In a sign of a potentially expanded role for U.S. special forces in Africa, the Pentagon is considering sending V-22 Osprey aircraft to a base in Uganda for American and African forces to use in assaults on The Lord’s Resistance Army, a messianic group led by Joseph Kony, a warlord African forces are trying to capture with the help of the United States. – CNN’s Security Clearance

The U.S. Army and Marine Corps Joint Light Tactical Vehicle (JLTV) remains a top priority for both services, although officials are hinting that the program could suffer setbacks if Congress fails to approve adequate funding for fiscal 2015. – Aviation Week

Opening up the combat arms career fields for women will result in a new array of job-specific physical standards that will apply to both men and women, the Pentagon’s top personnel and readiness official said Tuesday. – Military Times

The National Commission of the Structure of the Air Force is weighing a proposal to merge the Air Force Reserve and Air National Guard, but hasn’t found much support from the leadership of either branch. – Military Times

GPS navigation: Can’t live without it, can’t trust it. That’s the problem facing military planners as they try to sort through the increasing reliance of equipment and troops on positioning data from satellite networks at a time when the vulnerabilities of GPS are becoming more apparent. – Defense News

A Washington think tank is sounding the alarm in a report released Monday that concludes today’s military — its promotion process, professional military education and assignment practices — may be setting up senior leaders for future failure. – Military Times

Former Senators Jon Kyl and Joe Lieberman write: It has been nearly 70 years since we and our allies met at Bretton Woods, N.H., to lay the foundation for the modern global economy. Then, as now, the strength and global presence of the American military promised that what was agreed upon would be implemented and that the stability necessary for economic investment would be guaranteed. The enormous growth since then shows how closely American prosperity is tied to American military strength and global leadership. All that is now at risk. – Politico

The War

As terrorism increasingly becomes a tactic of warfare, the number of attacks and fatalities soared to a record high in 2012, according to a new report obtained exclusively by CNN. – CNN

Interview: To better understand the nature of that threat and the lessons of a decade of war, Defense One contributor and National Journal senior correspondent James Kitfield spoke with Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn, director of the Defense Intelligence Agency. – Defense One

The U.S. apprehension of a Pakistani Taliban commander last month came during a failed attempt by Afghan officials to form an alliance with his militant group, a Western official said on Tuesday, confirming some details in a New York Times report. – Reuters

When U.S. commandos grabbed a former al Qaeda operative in Tripoli this month, American forces were just hours away from potentially launching a more dangerous covert raid to capture a militia figure facing charges in the deadly Benghazi terror attack, U.S. officials tell CNN. – CNN’s Security Clearance

One of the more popular guessing games in Washington these days is how many U.S. and NATO troops will stay in Afghanistan past the planned 2014 withdrawal to protect the war’s gains. But now there’s growing concern that there won’t be enough of a foreign presence to protect billions of dollars of aid money from being wasted or stolen. – Defense One

The Nigerian insurgent group Boko Haram struck five military locations during an attack last week, officials said Tuesday as details trickled out of the remote region, escalating a war for control over the volatile country’s hinterlands. – Wall Street Journal (subscription required)

Foreign Armies East

The U.N. Security Council gave the go-ahead on Tuesday for troops to be sent to Central African Republic to protect a U.N. political mission in the virtually lawless country where a senior aid official said half the population needs help. – Reuters

Egyptian military operations against militant Islamist groups in the Sinai Peninsula have not been affected by the Obama administration’s decision to withhold shipments of attack helicopters, tanks and missiles to the Cairo government, administration officials told Congress on Tuesday. – Defense News

Kenyan soldiers sent to protect civilians looted shops while al Qaeda-linked militants killed scores of people during a siege at a Nairobi shopping mall last month, the army admitted on Tuesday. – Reuters

Starting next month, select draftees inducted into Israel’s Armored Corps will undergo training for eventual deployment in new multi-discipline companies designed to support future battalions of main battle tanks (MBTs). – Defense News

North Korea is continuing to significantly upgrade a long-range missile launch facility, the expert website 38 North said in a Monday report that analyzes recent satellite photographs. – Global Security Newswire

Pakistan’s counterinsurgency efforts suffered a serious blow with the loss of an AH-1F Cobra gunship. The fleet is aging fast as it is heavily deployed in harsh terrain along the border with Afghanistan. – Defense News

Forces loyal to President Bashar al-Assad have used partial sieges to root out rebel forces from residential areas during the civil war. But a recent tightening of blockades around areas near the capital is causing starvation and death, residents and medical staff say. – Reuters

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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