Sep 17, 2007
Arms fair showcases hi-tech battlefield gear. The Defence Systems & Equipment International exposition in London this week features plenty of vendors showcasing tanks, guns and other traditional weapons. Nearby are booths devoted to sensors, microprocessors, software packages and rugged laptops designed to help fewer soldiers get more done, more efficiently. "I can easily foresee a future where we can achieve a 75% reduction of troops at risk," says Joaquin Salas of U.S. truck builder Oshkosh, which is working on unmanned ground vehicles. "We are in discussions with the military to see when they might want to test this capability." Sep 12, 2007
Senate defense appropriators gave some details about their fiscal 2008 spending package, which includes full funding for the Army's Future Combat Systems. The panel also cut $310 million requested for missile defense, including $85 million from the proposed Czech radar and Polish interceptor missile requests. "The funds can be used better in other areas," Chairman Daniel Inouye, D-Hawaii, said, speaking of several changes made to the request. The package gives more than requested for raising military and civilian employees' pay and for strengthening military health care, while cutting the budgets of weapons programs not performing as expected. Sep 12, 2007
Blakey criticized for taking AIA leadership role. Marion Blakey, outgoing head of the FAA, is being criticized for accepting the position of president and CEO of the Aerospace Industries Association. Ethics watchdogs point out that the AIA lobbies the FAA on spending and policy issues. Blakey said she has been "scrupulously careful" to follow ethics rules, adding that member firms of AIA compete directly against each other, providing an incentive for her not to support any single company. Sep 11, 2007
Japan to fund stealth fighter study. Japan's Y4.8 trillion ($41.4 billion) defence budget request for fiscal year 2008 includes an initial Y15.7 billion allocation from the nation's air. Sep 10, 2007
U.S. signs new defense trade agreement with Australia. The U.S. and Australia have agreed to loosen restrictions on sales of U.S. armaments to Australia. Once finalized, the treaty will allow prescreened firms to export approved defense technology to Australia without going through the current licensing process. Instead, the firms will notify the State Department that the sale has taken place. The treaty must still be approved by the Senate...