Information operations · Information Warfare · Russia

Strategy / History / Capability Ad Hoc Update (14)

Anonymous expert compilation, analysis, and reporting.

</end editorial>

Interesting reports spanning multiple areas, including BMD, hypersonics, AI, the JSTARS recap folly (AF are right, Congress is wrong), more F-35 woes and two European instances of dishonest claims exposed.

Strategy / History / Capability Publications

Pentagon’s New Arms-Research Chief Eyes Space-Based Ray Guns – Defense One

Neutral-particle beams, a concept first tried in the 1980s, may get a fresh look under Michael Griffin.

China and Russia aggressively are pursuing hypersonic weapons: General

America’s top nuclear commander says the U.S. doesn’t have a defense system in place to counter hypersonic weapons.

We Now Know How Russia’s New Avangard Hypersonic Boost-Glide Weapon Will Launch | The National Interest Blog

Everything we know so far.

UR-100N – Wikipedia

U.S. Training For Arctic Nuclear Satellite Disaster Amid Russian Weapons Developments – The Drive

With Russia building floating nuclear reactors and possibly testing nuclear-powered cruise missiles, there are good reasons for this training.

DoD doesn’t want ‘whiz-bang’ tech if it’s no good for operations

New technologies are great, but they need to come with an operational concept that is

America is Well Within Range of a Big Surprise, So Why Can’t It See?

Editor’s Note: This is the third installment in “Off Guard,” a series on surprise in war inspired by a new CSIS study. Read the rest of the series here. It is 2020. Tensions have been rising steadily in Northeast Asia. President Donald Trump and Kim Jong Un resume exchanging insults as North Korea falls into another

How Much Does Artificial Intelligence Threaten National Security? – Defense One

One lawmaker proposed a commission to examine the emerging tech through a national security lens.

The Pentagon Wants AI To Reveal Adversaries’ True Intentions – Defense One

The U.S. military is looking to enlist game theory and artificial intelligence to fight tomorrow’s unconventional warfare tactics.

AI Has a Hallucination Problem That’s Proving Tough to Fix | WIRED

Machine learning systems, like those used in self-driving cars, can be tricked into seeing objects that don’t exist. Defenses proposed by Google, Amazon, and others are vulnerable too.

Credit Suisse: China will win the AI race due to lack of ‘serious laws’ on data protection

At present, China lags the U.S. in every area of AI development except big data, according to an Oxford University report.

The Unsettling Performance That Showed the World Through AI’s Eyes | WIRED

Artist Trevor Paglen is best known for images of the security state – drones, spy satellites and rendition planes – For a new work commissioned by the Cantor Arts Center he’s collaborated with Kronos Quartet and Obscura Digital to look under the hood of artificial intelligence and machine vision.

DARPA wants to connect human brains and machines

Neurotechnology would significantly increase the speed at which information is transferred from humans to machines, and a brain-systems interface may be a requirement to keep up with the pace and complexity of future combat zones.

France to increase investment in AI for future weapon systems

The French government also plans to create an agency for defense innovation, which will be open to European cooperation.

Intelligence official: US still leads in quantum computing … for now

Despite investments by competitors such as China, the U.S. still leads quantum computing research according to the director of the Intelligence Advanced Research Projects Activity.

Army to get THAAD and Patriot systems to communicate within two years

The one-star general in charge of the Army’s air and missile defense modernization sees a path to tying together THAAD and Patriot on the battlefield.

Congress’ new omnibus bill sets up hurdles for JSTARS recap cancellation

Congress wants the Air Force to submit a report and a reprogramming request before it will transfer money from the cancelled JSTARS recap to elsewhere.

Air Force ISR leaders ‘underestimated the pace of change and the threats’

The Air Force told lawmakers this week that it underestimated threats when assessing the fate of its ISR systems.

Boeing KC-46 delays are frustrating Air Force Secretary Heather Wilson

Air Force Secretary Heather Wilson tells lawmakers she is frustrated with Boeing over the delays and deficiencies plaguing the KC-46 tanker program, saying the company has been “overly optimistic.”

Air Force Secretary: Boeing Is Giving Its Tanker Short Shrift – Defense One

Pointing to the KC-46 program’s latest problems, Heather Wilson says the company is focusing too much on its civil aircraft.

Lockheed Ship-Killer Could Show Path To Hypersonic Missiles | Defense content from Aviation Week

Lockheed Martin’s Lrasm has conducted its sixth consecutive successful test flight as the Darpa-developed weapon heads toward initial operational capability.

Cost of F-35 Block 4 Upgrade Quadruples But May Not Suffice

Luftwaffe chief dismissed over F-35 support | Jane’s 360

The Chief of the Luftwaffe is to leave his position in large part due to his support for a German procurement of the Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II Joint Strike Fighter (JSF), Jane’s has learned. Lieutenant General Karl Müllner will leave his position by the end of May, with the news of his retirement breaking just two days after Germany’s defence secretary, Ursula von der Leyen, was sworn in for another term. Jane’s understands that Gen Müllner’s outspoken public support for the JSF as a successor to the German Tornado fleet was pivotal in the decision for his early retirement. “The Luftwaffe considers the F-35’s capability as the benchmark for the selection process for the Tornado replacement, and I think I have expressed myself clearly enough as to what the favourite of the air force is,” Gen Müllner told Jane’s and other media in November 2017. The Chief of the Luftwaffe’s active support of the JSF clashes with current Ministry of Defence planning, which prefers a successor solution involving the Eurofighter Typhoon.

Belgian F-16 Replacement Program In Turmoil | Defense content from Aviation Week

Belgium’s future fighter program has been thrown into turmoil after it emerged that cheaper options to extend the life of the country’s F-16s had been hidden.

Boeing’s Next-Gen Super Hornet Will Be (Sort Of) Stealthy | Defense content from Aviation Week

Boeing is about to start an exhaustive effort to transition the U.S. Navy’s carrier air wing to the new-and-improved Block III Super Hornet.

Sukhoi Su-57 – The Anti-Stealth Game Changer. – Full Afterburner

UAWire – Media: India disappointed with Russian Su-57 fighters

The Russian-Indian program to develop and produce fifth-generation fighter aircraft (FGFA) is in danger because the Indian Air Force believes …

UAWire – Shoygu: Russia to begin mass production of combat robots

At the conference Russia is a country of opportunities, Russian Defense Minister Sergey Shoygu announced that Russia is planning to begin mass …

Czech minister puts hold on Israeli radar deal over NATO concerns

The government will not sign a much-awaited contract to purchase eight ELM-2084 multimission radars unless they are interoperable with NATO’s air defense system.

Saab’s GlobalEye swing-role surveillance aircraft goes airborne

The Swedish company says it remains on schedule to deliver an order of three of the modified Bombardier Global 6000 jets to the United Arab Emirates.

The Army Wants a New Tank to Take On Russia and China | The National Interest Blog

The Army is massively speeding up its early prototyping of weapons and technology for its Next-Gen Combat Vehicle.

China promotes new anti-tank missile carrier for Iraqi Armed Forces – Defence Blog

The China North Industries Corporation (Norinco) now offers its new anti-tank missile carrier for Iraqi Armed Forces. According to a local source, Chinese company offers advanced anti-tank missile system, mounted on the chassis of the 8×8 VN1 wheeled armoured personnel carrier. The new anti-tank missile carrier is armed with a light version of the HJ-10A missiles (Chinese clone of the Israeli Spike NLOS). The new vehicle also was displayed during the sixth edition of International Defense Exhibition (IQDEX-2018) held in Baghdad, in March.

BAE Systems to provide U.S. Army with new night vision goggles and thermal weapon sights – Defence Blog

The U.S. Army has placed two orders totaling $97 million for BAE Systems to provide new night vision goggles and thermal weapon sights, which together will enable soldiers to rapidly and covertly acquire targets in all weather and lighting conditions. The orders are part of a previously announced five-year contract for the Army’s Enhanced Night Vision Goggle III and Family of Weapon Sight-Individual (ENVG III/FWS-I) program. “Aiming to provide the most technically advanced and lightweight solution possible, our goggles allow soldiers to quickly detect and engage targets for a tactical edge,” said Marc Casseres, director of Precision Guidance and Sensing Solutions at BAE Systems. “When fully integrated with the FWS-I weapon sight, the combined solution provides superior imagery and a target acquisition capability that can greatly increase mission success and survivability.”

Airmen in Army uniforms? Air Force could switch to OCP as soon as October

The Air Force could start switching to the Army’s Operational Camouflage Pattern uniform as early as this fall, according to slides that have leaked online.

The US Military Is Making Lasers Create Voices out of Thin Air – Defense One

In the next three years, the military hopes to have a direct energy weapon that can produce something like speech from thin air, an effect similar to a …

For Special Operations Forces, Fighting WMD Means Getting Deeper Into Enemies’ Leadership and Decision-Making – Defense One

SOCOM is getting more intel and gear as it settles into its role as the Pentagon’s anti-WMD coordinator.