Sunday, August 1, 2010

DTN News: Russia Revives Caspian Sea Monster

Defense News: DTN News: Russia Revives Caspian Sea Monster
Source: DTN News / RT
(NSI News Source Info) MOSCOW, Russia - August 1, 2010: The Russian government has commissioned the renewal of the “Caspian Sea Monster,” the legendary ground effect vehicle (GEV). Only 30 such crafts were built in the Soviet Union over two decades.
The revival of GEV production was announced by the Alekseev design and construction bureau, which used to be the leading producer of such vehicles. According to its production branch director, Evgeny Meleshko, the bureau is working on a big model. It will spend two years making the new design with the first tests to be launched in 2012.
“For our company it’s a big project, and most of our specialists will be working on it,” Meleshko told Interfax news agency.
GEVs are high-speed naval vehicles that fly just over the surface thanks to a high-pressure air cushion created by its wings. The first prototype with a wingspan of 37.6 meters and a hull length of about 100 meters could travel at 250 knots and had a maximum take-off weigh of 544 tons.
The Soviet Union produced several models, including one for amphibian troops transportation and a cruise missile carrier. There was also a project for a strategic GEV armed with ballistic missiles.
GEV developed since the 1980s have been primarily smaller craft designed for the recreational and civilian ferry markets. Germany, Russia, and the United States have provided most of the momentum with some development in Australia, China, Japan, and Taiwan. In these countries, small craft up to ten seats have been designed and built. Other larger designs as ferries and heavy transports have been proposed, though none have gone on to further development.
Some manned and unmanned prototypes were built, ranging up to eight tons in displacement. This led to the development of the "Caspian Sea Monster", a 550-ton military ekranoplan. Although it was designed to travel a maximum of 3 m (9.8 ft) above the sea, it was found to be most efficient at 20 m (66 ft), reaching a top speed of 300 kn (350 mph; 560 km/h) (400 kn (460 mph; 740 km/h) in research flight).
The Soviet ekranoplan program continued with the support of Minister of Defense Dmitri Ustinov. It produced the most successful ekranoplan so far, the 125-ton A-90 Orlyonok. These craft were originally developed as very high-speed military transports, and were based mostly on the shores of the Caspian Sea and Black Sea. The Soviet Navy ordered 120 Orlyonok-class ekranoplans. But this figure was later reduced to fewer than thirty vehicles, with planned deployment mainly in the Black Sea and Baltic Sea fleets.
A few Orlyonoks served with the Soviet Navy from 1979 to 1992. In 1987, the 400-ton Lun-class ekranoplan was built as a missile launcher. A second Lun, renamed Spasatel, was laid down as a rescue vessel, but was never finished.
Minister Ustinov died in 1985, and the new Minister of Defense, Marshal Sokolov, effectively stopped the funding for the program. Only three operational Orlyonok-class ekranoplans (with revised hull design) and one Lun-class ekranoplan remained at a naval base near Kaspiysk.
The two major problems that the Soviet ekranoplans faced were poor longitudinal stability and a need for reliable navigation.
Since the fall of the Soviet Union, ekranoplans have been produced by the Volga Shipyard in Nizhniy Novgorod.

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DTN News: Russian Navy To Receive 4 New Amphibious Planes By 2013

DTN News: Russian Navy To Receive 4 New Amphibious Planes By 2013
(NSI News Source Info) GELENDZHIK, South Russia - August 30, 2009: Russia's Navy will put into operation four new A-42 amphibious planes by 2013, a senior military official said on Friday.
The A-42 (Be-42) amphibious plane is the search and rescue variant of the A-40 Mermaid ASW aircraft, which can be used for reconnaissance and target designation during patrols over coastal and international waters. It is the largest amphibious aircraft in the world.
"The Russian naval aviation will receive four A-42 amphibious planes by 2013, with the first one to be commissioned in 2010," the deputy commander of naval aviation, Maj. Gen. Nikolai Kuklev.
He said the A-42 would become the main reconnaissance and ASW aircraft of the Russian Navy after 2015 and would replace the ageing fleet of Be-12 Mail and Il-38 May maritime patrol aircraft.
At present, Russia deploys nine Be-12 aircraft with the Black Sea Fleet and has about 40 Il-38 planes operating with the Northern and Pacific fleets.

DTN News: Modernization Urged For PLA Army To Boost Combat Capacity

Defense News: DTN News: Modernization Urged For PLA Army To Boost Combat Capacity
(NSI News Source Info) BEIJING, China - August 1, 2010: China's armed forces will continue to enhance its capabilities and military readiness to safeguard sovereignty, security and development of the nation, Defense Minister Liang Guanglie said Saturday.
Liang made the remarks while addressing a reception held in Beijing to mark the 83rd anniversary of the founding of the People's Liberation Army (PLA) on Aug. 1.
"We will continue to strengthen the PLA's capability to accomplish diversified military tasks, particularly for winning regional wars under informationized circumstances, to firmly safeguard national sovereignty, security and development," he said.
He said China's core security interest will always guide the development of the Chinese army.
He said the army should strengthen military training, adopt more high and new technology weapons and equipment, improve military logistics and increase combat capabilities by using information technology.
The PLA will actively take part in and support economic development, keep sabotage of hostile and separatist forces at bay, and contribute to the development and stability of the country, he said.
Liang, also a member of the Central Military Commission (CMC) and a state councilor, said the army will continue to devote itself to the country's complete reunification while promoting a peaceful development of relations between the Chinese mainland and Taiwan.
"We will continue to oppose separatist activities of 'Taiwan independence' forces, while firmly safeguarding national sovereignty, security and territorial integrity," Liang said.
"The PLA will enhance exchanges and cooperation with armed forces of all countries, in accordance with the principles of mutual respect, equal negotiation, and reciprocity," he said.
"The Chinese army will also actively fulfill international responsibilities and obligations, and will contribute to the world peace and development," Liang said.
In August 1927, armed forces led by the Communist Party of China held an uprising against warlords. The first day of August was later designated as the PLA's founding day.

DTN News: Australian Weapons Found In Hands Of Taliban, WikiLeaks Reveals

Defense News: DTN News: Australian Weapons Found In Hands Of Taliban, WikiLeaks Reveals
Source: DTN News / The Sydney Morning Herald by Rafael Epstein
(NSI News Source Info) SYDNEY, Australia - August 1, 2010: Australian weapons and equipment have repeatedly been discovered among Taliban stockpiles, raising fears that Afghan troops trained by Diggers have been pilfering military supplies.
Documents released by the WikiLeaks website show that in the past six years International Security Assistance Force troops have uncovered Australian mortar shells, a hand-grenade and other equipment when defusing roadside bombs and capturing Taliban weapons stores.
Australian soldiers have trained hundreds of Afghan army soldiers, and work alongside Afghan police.
Last December a NATO patrol found Australian equipment in a Taliban weapons cache, alongside AK-47 rifles and materials to make roadside bombs. The equipment found is used by Australian soldiers to ensure their safety during offensives, and if used by insurgents it could disrupt the distinct advantage held by NATO troops.
The Defence Department has asked the Herald not to publish any details identifying this equipment. The department is reviewing the tens of thousands of WikiLeaks documents and did not respond directly to the reports about Australian weapons, other than saying ''an important part of this review will be determining whether there are force protection implications for our personnel''.
Last year the US found there were incomplete records for about a third of $US4 billion ($4.4 billion) worth of US-purchased weapons used by the Afghan military.
US soldiers training Afghan forces have repeatedly complained about pilfering, with one US officer reported as saying: ''It's not, 'Let me teach you your job'. It's more like, 'How much did you steal from the American government today?' ''
Defence sources with experience of training in Oruzgan province doubted that Australian weapons were going missing. Such reports are ''probably a load of crap'', said one source. ''There may be a misunderstanding about what is being reported.''
Sources said Afghans usually use their own weapons, not Australian munitions, when trained by Australian troops.
The Taliban have been found to have used rifles, mortars and other weapons made in the US, Russia and China.
*This article "Australian Weapons Found In Hands Of Taliban, WikiLeaks Reveals - The Sydney Morning Herald by Rafael Epstein" & link to read in originality here.
*This article is being posted from Toronto, Canada By DTN News ~ Defense-Technology News, contact:
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DTN News: Kiss This War Goodbye

Defense News: DTN News: Kiss This War Goodbye
(NSI News Source Info) TORONTO, Canada- August 1, 2010: IT was on a Sunday morning, June 13, 1971, that The Times published its first installment of the Pentagon Papers. Few readers may have been more excited than a circle of aspiring undergraduate journalists who’d worked at The Harvard Crimson. Though the identity of The Times’s source wouldn’t eke out for several days, we knew the whistle-blower had to be Daniel Ellsberg, an intense research fellow at M.I.T. and former Robert McNamara acolyte who’d become an antiwar activist around Boston. We recognized the papers’ contents, as reported in The Times, because we’d heard the war stories from the loquacious Ellsberg himself.
But if we were titillated that Sunday, it wasn’t immediately clear that this internal government history of the war had mass appeal. Tricia Nixon’s wedding in the White House Rose Garden on Saturday received equal play with the Pentagon Papers on The Times’s front page. On “Face the Nation” the guest was the secretary of defense, Melvin Laird, yet the subject of the papers didn’t even come up.
That false calm vanished overnight once Richard Nixon, erupting in characteristic rage and paranoia, directed his attorney general, John Mitchell, to enjoin The Times from publishing any sequels. The high-stakes legal drama riveted the nation for two weeks, culminating in a landmark 6-to-3 Supreme Court decision in favor of The Times and the First Amendment. Ellsberg and The Times were canonized. I sold my first magazine article, an Ellsberg profile, to Esquire, and, for better or worse, cast my lot with journalism. That my various phone conversations with Ellsberg prompted ham-fisted F.B.I. agents to visit me and my parents only added to the allure.
I mention my personal history to try to inject a little reality into the garbling of Vietnam-era history that has accompanied the WikiLeaks release of the Afghanistan war logs. Last week the left and right reached a rare consensus. The war logs are no Pentagon Papers. They are historic documents describing events largely predating the current administration. They contain no news. They will not change the course of the war.
About the only prominent figures who found serious parallels between then and now were Ellsberg and the WikiLeaks impresario, Julian Assange. They are hardly disinterested observers, but they’re on the mark — in large part because the impact of the Pentagon Papers on the Vietnam War (as opposed to their impact on the press) was far less momentous than last week’s chatter would suggest. No, the logs won’t change the course of our very long war in Afghanistan, but neither did the Pentagon Papers alter the course of Vietnam. What Ellsberg’s leak did do was ratify the downward trend-line of the war’s narrative. The WikiLeaks legacy may echo that. We may look back at the war logs as a herald of the end of America’s engagement in Afghanistan just as the Pentagon Papers are now a milestone in our slo-mo exit from Vietnam.
What was often forgotten last week is that the Pentagon Papers had no game-changing news about that war either and also described events predating the then-current president. By June 1971, the Tet offensive and Walter Cronkite’s famous on-air editorial were more than three years in the past. The David Halberstam article that inspired “The Best and the Brightest” had already appeared in Harper’s. Lt. William Calley had been found guilty in the My Lai massacre exposed by Seymour Hersh in 1969. Just weeks before the Pentagon Papers surfaced, the Vietnam veteran John Kerry electrified the country by asking a Senate committee, “How do you ask a man to be the last man to die for a mistake?” Most Americans had long been telling pollsters the war was a mistake. By the time the Pentagon Papers surfaced, a plurality also disapproved of how Vietnam was handled by Nixon, who had arrived in office promising to end the war.
The papers’ punch was in the many inside details they added to the war’s chronicle over four previous administrations and, especially, in their shocking and irrefutable evidence that Nixon’s immediate predecessor, Lyndon Johnson, had systematically lied to the country about his intentions and the war’s progress. Though Nixon was another liar, none of this incriminated him. His anger about the leak would nonetheless drive him to create a clandestine “plumbers” unit whose criminality (including a break-in at the office of Ellsberg’s psychiatrist) would lead to Watergate. Had Nixon not so violently overreacted that June — egged on by Henry Kissinger and fueled by his loathing of The Times and the antiwar movement — the story might have ebbed. Yes, the Pentagon Papers were labeled “top secret” — as opposed to the Afghanistan war logs’ “secret” status — but, as Richard Reeves writes in his book “President Nixon,” some 700,000 people in and out of government had clearance to read “top secret” documents. Compelling as the papers were, they were hardly nuclear code.
The public’s reaction to the Afghanistan war logs has largely been a shrug — and not just because they shared their Times front page with an article about Chelsea Clinton’s wedding. President Obama is, to put it mildly, no Nixon, and his no-drama reaction to the leaks robbed their publication of the constitutional cliffhanger of their historical antecedent. Another factor in the logs’ shortfall as public spectacle is the fractionalization of the news media, to the point where even a stunt packaged as “news” can trump journalistic enterprise. (Witness how the bogus Shirley Sherrod video upstaged The Washington Post’s blockbuster investigation of the American intelligence bureaucracy two weeks ago.) The logs also suffer stylistically: they’re often impenetrable dispatches from the ground, in contrast to the Pentagon Papers’ anonymously and lucidly team-written epic of policy-making on high.
Yet the national yawn that largely greeted the war logs is most of all an indicator of the country’s verdict on the Afghan war itself, now that it’s nine years on and has reached its highest monthly casualty rate for American troops. Many Americans at home have lost faith and checked out. The war places way down the list of pressing issues in every poll. Nearly two-thirds of those asked recently by CBS News think it’s going badly; the latest Post-ABC News survey finds support of Obama’s handling of Afghanistan at a low (45 percent), with only 43 percent deeming the war worth fighting.
Perhaps more telling than either these polls or the defection of liberal House Democrats from last week’s war appropriations bill are the signs of wobbling conservative support. The gung-ho neocon axis was predictably belligerent in denouncing WikiLeaks. But the G.O.P. chairman Michael Steele’s recent “gaffe” — his since-retracted observation that “a land war in Afghanistan” is doomed — is no anomaly in a fractured party where the antiwar Ron Paul may have as much currency as the knee-jerk hawk John McCain. On the night of the logs’ release, Fox News even refrained from its patented shtick of shouting “Treason!” at the “mainstream media.” Instead, the go-to Times-basher Bernie Goldberg could be found on “The O’Reilly Factor” telling Laura Ingraham, a guest host, that the war “has not been going well” and is a dubious exercise in “nation-building.”
Obama was right to say that the leaked documents “don’t reveal any issues that haven’t already informed our public debate in Afghanistan,” but that doesn’t mean the debate was resolved in favor of his policy. Americans know that our counterinsurgency partner, Hamid Karzai, is untrustworthy. They know that the terrorists out to attack us are more likely to be found in Pakistan, Yemen and Somalia than Afghanistan. And they are starting to focus on the morbid reality, highlighted in the logs, of the de facto money-laundering scheme that siphons American taxpayers’ money through the Pakistan government to the Taliban, who then disperse it to kill Americans.
Most Americans knew or guessed the crux of the Pentagon Papers, too. A full year earlier the Senate had repealed the 1964 Gulf of Tonkin resolution; no one needed a “top secret” smoking gun by 1971 to know that L.B.J. had lied about the Tonkin incident. The papers didn’t change administration war policy because we were already pulling out of Vietnam, however truculently and lethally (the Christmas 1972 bombing campaign, most notoriously). In 1971, the American troop level was some 213,000, down from a peak of 537,000 in 1968. By 1973 we were essentially done.
Unlike Nixon, Obama is still adding troops to his unpopular war. But history is not on his side either in Afghanistan or at home. The latest Gallup poll found that 58 percent of the country favors his announced timeline, with its promise to start withdrawing troops in mid-2011. It’s hard to imagine what could change that equation now.
Certainly not Pakistan. As the president conducts his scheduled reappraisal of his war policy this December, a re-examination of 1971 might lead him to question his own certitude of what he is fond of calling “the long view.” The Times won a Pulitzer Prize for its 1971 Pentagon Papers coup. But another of the Pulitzers that year went to the columnist Jack Anderson, who also earned Nixon’s ire by mining other leaks to expose the White House’s tilt to Pakistan in the Indo-Pakistani War. The one thing no one imagined back then was that four decades later it would be South Asia, not Southeast Asia, that would still be beckoning America into a quagmire.
*This article "Kiss This War Goodbye - The New York Times By Frank Rich" & link to read in originality here.
*This article is being posted from Toronto, Canada By DTN News ~ Defense-Technology News, contact:
Disclaimer statement
Whilst every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the information supplied herein, DTN News ~ Defense-Technology News cannot be held responsible for any errors or omissions. Unless otherwise indicated, opinions expressed herein are those of the author of the page and do not necessarily represent the corporate views of DTN News ~ Defense-Technology News.
Times Topic: Afghanistan

DTN News: In Pakistan, Echoes of American Betrayal

Defense News: DTN News: In Pakistan, Echoes of American Betrayal
(NSI News Source Info) KARACHI, Pakistan - August 1, 2010: PAKISTAN’S premier intelligence agency, the Directorate for Inter-Services Intelligence, has been accused of many bad things in its own country. It has been held responsible for rigging elections, sponsoring violent sectarian groups and running torture chambers for political dissidents. More recently, it has been accused of abducting Pakistanis and handing them over to the United States for cash.
But last week — after thousands of classified United States Army documents were released by WikiLeaks, and American and British officials and pundits accused the ISI of double-dealing in Afghanistan — the Pakistani news media were very vocal in their defense of their spies. On talk show after talk show, the ISI’s accusers in the West were criticized for short-sightedness and shifting the blame to Pakistan for their doomed campaign in Afghanistan.
Suddenly, the distinction between the state and the state within the state was blurred. It is our ISI that is being accused, we felt. How, we wondered, can the Americans have fallen for raw intelligence provided by paid informants and, in many cases, Afghan intelligence? And why shouldn’t Pakistan, asked the pundits, keep its options open for a post-American Afghanistan?
More generally, the WikiLeaks fallout brought back ugly memories, reminding Pakistanis what happens whenever we get involved with the Americans. In fact, one person at the center of the document dump is our primary object lesson for staying away from America’s foreign adventures.
Hamid Gul, now a retired general, led the ISI during the end years of the Soviet occupation of Afghanistan and together with his C.I.A. friends unwittingly in the 1990s spurred the mujahedeen to turn Kabul — the city they had set out to liberate — into rubble. According to the newly released documents, Mr. Gul met with Qaeda operatives in Pakistan in 2006 and told them to “make the snow warm in Kabul ... set Kabul aflame.”
This would seem highly sinister except that, today, Hamid Gul is nothing more than a glorified television evangelist and, as the columnist Nadir Hassan noted, “known only for being on half a dozen talk shows simultaneously.” He is also, for Pakistanis, a throwback to the lost years of our American-backed military dictatorships, a stark reminder of why we distrust the United States.
The ISI and the C.I.A. have colluded twice in the destruction of Afghanistan. Their complicity has brought war to Pakistan’s cities. After every round of cloak-and-dagger games, they behave like a squabbling couple who keep getting back together and telling the world that they are doing it for the children’s sake. But whenever these two reunite, a lot of children’s lives are wrecked.
In the West, the ISI is often described as ideologically allied to the Taliban. But Pakistan’s military-security establishment has only one ideology, and it’s not Islamism. It’s spelled I-N-D-I-A. It will do anybody’s bidding if it’s occasionally allowed to show India a bit of muscle.
Gen. Ashfaq Parvez Kayani, the Pakistani Army chief, has just been given an unexpected three-year extension in his office, due in large part, it is said, to American pressure on Islamabad. Yet General Kayani headed the ISI during the period that the WikiLeaks documents cover. Since he became the head of the Pakistan Army — and a frequent host to Adm. Mike Mullen, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff — the number of drone attacks on Pakistani territory have increased substantially. It seems he has found a way to overcome his ISI past.
While he generally keeps a low profile, General Kayani in February gave an off-the-record presentation to Pakistani journalists. His point was clear: Pakistan’s military remains India-centric. His explanation was simple: we go by the enemy’s capacity, not its immediate intentions. This came in a year when Pakistan lost more civilians and soldiers than it has in any war with India.
Yet it has become very clear that an overwhelming majority of Pakistani people do not share the army’s India obsession or its yearning for “strategic depth” — that is, a continuing deadly muddle — in Afghanistan. They want a peaceful settlement with India over the disputed territory of Kashmir and a safer neighborhood. None of the leading parties in Parliament made a big deal about India, Afghanistan or jihad in their election campaigns. They were elected on promises of justice, transparency and reasonably priced electricity.
Lately, Americans seem to have woken up to the fact that there is something called a Parliament and a civil society in Pakistan. But even so, it seems that Americans are courting the same ruling class — the military elite’s civilian cousins — that has thrived on American aid and obviously wants an even closer relationship with Washington. A popular TV presenter who interviewed Secretary of State Hillary Clinton during her visit later jibed, “What kind of close relationship is this? I don’t even get invited to Chelsea’s wedding?”
Pakistan’s military and civil elite should take a good look around before they pitch another marquee and invite their American friends over for tea and war talk. There are a lot of hungry people looking in, and the strung lights are sucking up electricity that could run a small factory, or illuminate a village. Besides, they’re not likely to know what WikiLeaks is — they’ve been too busy cleaning up after their masters’ guests.
*Mohammed Hanif, a correspondent for the BBC Urdu Service, is the author of the novel “A Case of Exploding Mangoes.”
*This article "In Pakistan, Echoes of American Betrayal - The New York Times By Mohammed Hanif" & link to read in originality here.
*This article is being posted from Toronto, Canada By DTN News ~ Defense-Technology News, contact:
Disclaimer statement
Whilst every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the information supplied herein, DTN News ~ Defense-Technology News cannot be held responsible for any errors or omissions. Unless otherwise indicated, opinions expressed herein are those of the author of the page and do not necessarily represent the corporate views of DTN News ~ Defense-Technology News.
Learning From WikiLeaks (August 1, 2010)
Times Topic:

DTN News: China Orbits Fifth Navigation Satellite

Defense News: DTN News: China Orbits Fifth Navigation Satellite
Source: DTN News / Ria Novosti
(NSI News Source Info) MOSCOW, Russia - August 1, 2010: China has successfully launched its fifth navigation satellite into orbit as part of a project to develop its own global satellite navigation system, official news agency Xinhua reported on Sunday.
The Long-March-3 rocket with the Beidou (Compass) satellite onboard was launched at 9:30 p.m. GMT on Saturday from the Xichang space center in the country's southwest.
By 2020, China plans to form a network of a total of 35 satellites, capable of providing global navigation service to users around the world.
Beidou currently provides navigation services within China and the neighboring region. After completion, the project would become an equivalent of the U.S.'s Global Positioning System (GPS), Russia's Glonass, and Europe's Galileo.

DTN News: Gasoline Shortage In Iran Threatens Regime

Defense News: DTN News: Gasoline Shortage In Iran Threatens Regime
(NSI News Source Info) TORONTO, Canada - August 1, 2010: The problem for the regime is that there is no short-term solution to the gas crisis, and all of the conflicts are interconnected and exasperate each other. The discontent will fuel the political activists. The rising fuel prices will cause more workers to be fired or go unpaid just as they face increasing need for income. The bazaar merchants will be hurt as customers become cash-strapped, the cost of products increase, and they have to pay 15 percent more in taxes to the regime that uses violence and intimidation against them. The regime can try to ration the gasoline and reduce subsidies, but the last time that was tried, in 2007, it resulted in burning gas stations.
The regime is moving quickly to try to close the window of time with which the opposition and the West can exploit this vulnerability. It has signed a $6.5 billion deal with the Chinese company Sinopec to build refineries; it plans to build a pipeline that can deliver gas to Turkey that it hopes to finish in three years; and it is hoping to double the production of gasoline by 2012. The International Energy Agency says Iran can reduce their imports by 75 percent by 2015 by expanding their production and getting rid of subsidies — but the decreasing number of fuel providers will be a major obstacle.
The Revolutionary Guards had to back out of the South Pars gas field that could bring in an additional $130 billion per year, as well as two other refinery projects. They knew it would be tough to find foreign investors for an IRGC venture, and these bold plans will have to be delayed or canceled without foreign investment. The attitude change of the United Arab Emirates is another blow to the regime, as half of Iran’s gasoline imports arrive through its territory and the country is a major trading partner.
The U.S. needs to act quickly to let any company involved in this effort know they will be sanctioned and will lose more money than they gain if they make this unwise business decision. Congress is pushing the Obama administration hard on this, but the president wants the legislation to allow him to shield companies in countries that have begun cooperating with us.
More sanctions are probably on the way. If the West wants to really stick it to the mullahs, it can target the source of about 90 percent of the regime’s export money: oil sales. One report says exports will have to end to meet rising demand inside the country by 2015.
This is not a bump in the road for the regime. The gasoline crisis is not going to end anytime soon and is going to become exponentially worse. It will be years before the regime begins decreasing its reliance upon imports, and the more time passes by, the more demand will grow. As demand grows, the regime will have to decrease its oil exports, ration gasoline, and carry the political hot potato of reducing subsidies.
The regime is on an unsustainable path and no company should be permitted to help them change that.
*This article "Gasoline Shortage In Iran Threatens Regime - Pajamas Media by Ryan Mauro" & link to read in originality here.
*This article is being posted from Toronto, Canada By DTN News ~ Defense-Technology News, contact:
Disclaimer statement
Whilst every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the information supplied herein, DTN News ~ Defense-Technology News cannot be held responsible for any errors or omissions. Unless otherwise indicated, opinions expressed herein are those of the author of the page and do not necessarily represent the corporate views of DTN News ~ Defense-Technology News.
Iran Related News;

DTN News: U.S. Army Outlines Ground Combat Vehicles Priorities

Defense News: DTN News: U.S. Army Outlines Ground Combat Vehicles Priorities
(NSI News Source Info) TORONTO, Canada - July 31, 2010: General Peter W. Chiarelli, Vice Chief of Staff of the U.S. Army describes the new Ground Combat Vehicle (GCV) "the most important combat development and acquisition decisions we will make over the next seven years". Indeed, the Army is taking this program seriously, and is doing its best to safely conduct it to successful completion. Top Army officials gathered in October and November 2009 have outlined the program to hundreds of experts from industry, research and development community to introduce the program set to dominate the market through this new decade.

Following the briefings the industry responded to the Army's request for information, delivering over 150 'white papers' that discuss the manufacturer's views of the feasible approaches that could meet the Army's requirements. The Army is expected to publish the Request for Proposal (RFP) in February and, based on industry responses, award two or three contracts for prototype development by late 2010.

This program is not going to be short, or cheap. After the demise of the Future Combat System's (FCS) Manned Ground Vehicle (MGV shown in the drawing above), the Army is embarking on a program less ambitious, but also more connected to the new realities of modern military requirements. According to General Chiarelli, the focus is on improving warfighter survivability while maintaining decisive advantage over the adversaries, through the 'superiority of the network'. To sustain this advantage over many years, the new vehicle should be based on 'open architecture', primarily in the use of electronic systems, enabling 'plug and play' enhancements and future growth.

Can GCV Benefit from MGV Legacy?

The Ground Combat Vehicle will differ from the MGV in many aspects. According to Col. Brian McVeigh, Product Manager for manned systems integration, the Army is still seeking a 'balanced' design but with an emphasis on system survivability for vehicle and crew (defined as 'force protection'), mobility and versatility over its entire service life. McVeigh was the program manager of the MGV and, since the establishment of GCV program as a Major Defense Acquisition Program (MDAP) is heading the new vehicle program. McVeigh confirmed the new design could leverage part of over US$3 billion invested in the development of the FCS family of vehicles. In fact, over 40+ specific technologies were identified as mature enough for integration in the GCV and will become available to the industry.

Such derivatives could be address broader system architecture and design perspective, as well as software and hardware elements matured through testing and development. While the design and development is expected to be more linear and straightforward than the MGV, McVeigh expects some side tracks for evaluating specific technologies in parallel to the vehicle's development. Some technologies could also be integrated as they mature, in future incremental updates, through the service life of the vehicle. These could include advanced propulsion technology, future networking solutions, situational awareness appliqué, turret and weapon systems and selection and integration of the future hit avoidance systems (HAS). Such active and passive protection measures will be integrated with the vehicle when they are ready.

Other important elements are transportability, safety and mobility – lessons learned from the Mine Resistant Ambush Protected (MRAP) vehicle program. To avoid the pitfalls experienced with the MRAP, the GCV should be designed with manageable gross vehicle weight, and provide for adequate payload capacity in the near term and growth potential, and have automotive characteristics for on road and off-road mobility, stability, handling and safety. Cross-country mobility is expected to equal the Bradleys' and is considered primarily to preclude being restricted to existing road networks, rather than sustaining maneuver warfare in open terrain.

Army evaluation teams experience software applications simulating part of the crew station of the MGV. This computer-rich vehicle was designed around the core network-integrated system, in contrast, the GCV will be designed as a conventional armored vehicle. Photo: US Army

The Army is assessing the capability gap with its current and future vehicles to provide the baseline for revising its requirements for the future vehicles. The Army is expected to maintain enhanced versions of the M1A2 main battle tanks, the Stryker Infantry Combat Vehicles, and some of the Bradley Infantry Fighting Vehicles (IFV). The Army is considering different approaches to phase out the M-113 Armored Personnel Carriers, which could involve utilization of MRAPs as well as the introduction of utility versions of the new Joint tactical Light Vehicles (JLTV).

According to Col McVeigh, the army is seeking the replacement of the Bradley with the GCV, at a later phase; its capabilities could be expanded further, to other mission packages. This approach is less radical than the MGV 'family of vehicle', developed from the baseline as a 'networked combat vehicle' which could be operated by a crew of two. The GCV takes a step back into reality - being less complex it will be manned 'traditionally' by a crew of three, with space for additional nine infantrymen. It will be equipped with advanced vehicle electronics, but integrate the current generation of command, control and networking systems. These could be upgraded incrementally in the future to take advantage of next generation networking solutions as they become available.

*This article is being posted from Toronto, Canada By DTN News ~ Defense-Technology News, contact: