– Breaking Defense – One of the oddest military drones aborning reinvents a stillborn technology from 1951. It turns out the unmanned aircraft revolution is resurrecting configurations that were tried more than a half century ago but proved impractical with a human pilot inside. A case in point: Northrop Grumman’s new Tern, a drone designed to do everything armed MQ-1 Predators or MQ-9 Reapers can, but to do it flying from small ships or rugged scraps of land – i.e., no runway needed.
– Aviationist – Less than three weeks after losing a MiG-29, it looks like the Russian Navy has lost another aircraft during Admiral Kuznetsov operations: a Su-33 Flanker.
– Proceedings – Decoupling naval intelligence from the information warfare community is key to ensuring the Navy maintains maritime superiority.
– Proceedings – Much has been written about the emergence of “hybrid warfare” in a variety of global scenarios, notably in the Russian invasion of Ukraine and annexation of Crimea. To date, this largely has been confined to land warfare, in terms of both actual practice and theoretical discussion. That is about to change, and we will see the emergence of maritime hybrid warfare over the coming decades, perhaps sooner. Now is the time for the U.S. Navy to begin thinking about these scenarios and how to counter them, both for our own forces and on behalf of allies, partners, and friends in the global maritime coalition.
– National Interest – The brief but bloody naval war that occurred in 1982 over the Falkland Islands, known as the Malvinas in Argentina, is typically viewed as a triumph of British naval power. A Royal Navy task force managed to beat off heavy air attacks to take back the South Atlantic archipelago from Argentine troops. For most of the war, a lone Argentine diesel submarine, the San Luis, opposed the Royal Navy at sea. Not only did the San Luis return home unscratched by the more than two hundred antisubmarine munitions fired by British warships and helicopter, but it twice ambushed antisubmarine frigates. Had the weapons functioned as intended, the British victory might have been bought at a much higher cost.
– VOA – Vietnam is lengthening a military runway on a tiny islet to help hold off a larger, more aggressive China for control in Asia’s widest-reaching sovereignty dispute as other claimants keep quiet or seek negotiations. The government in Hanoi is extending the runway on one of the Spratly Islands, a disputed archipelago in the South China Sea, from 762 to 1,005 meters and building new hangars, according to the U.S. think tank Center for Strategic and International Studies. The longer runway would allow easier access for the air force’s maritime surveillance aircraft, it said. Historic use of the sea, strong national pride and a history of deadly conflicts are motivating Vietnam to fortify more than two dozen islands in the chain.
– PressTV – Iran’s Navy Commander Rear Admiral Habibollah Sayyari says the country’s naval forces should have a far-reaching arm in the high seas, adding that they will sail across the Atlantic in the near future.
– USNI News – When amphibious warship USS Wasp (LHD-1) deploys the first time from its new homeport in Japan in late 2017, it’ll ship out with some extras: a squadron of Marine F-35B Lighting II Joint Strike Fighters, three guided-missile destroyers, a Marine general and a Navy admiral.
– Defense One – In a proof-of-concept experiment, data passed instantly from a Marine Corps fighter allowed a shipboard Aegis system to shoot down a drone.
– USNI News – The Marine Corps in recent years has grappled with how to remain a “fight-tonight” force without enough ships to take Marines where they need to go – but a Navy effort to redesign its future fleet and an incoming administration dedicated to growing the Navy may bode well for solving this long-standing problem.
– CIMSEC – In spite of Brazil’s political crisis, the Brazilian Navy has continued with its ambitious project of domestically constructing a new fleet of submarines, including a nuclear-powered platform. The first Scorpène-class submarine is expected to be launched in 2018, an important development though a couple of years behind schedule. However, the question remains: does Brazil require today, or will it require in the foreseeable future, an advanced submarine fleet?
– AP – One after another, fighter jets catapult from the flight deck of the USS Eisenhower, a thousand-foot (305-meter) American aircraft carrier, afterburners glowing amber above the blue Persian Gulf, on their way northwest to join the fight in Iraq and Syria against the Islamic State group.
– USNI News – A combination of faults on Russia’s carrier and an unexpected total engine shutdown led to a Russian pilot ditching his fighter in the Mediterranean Sea last week.
– Free Beacon – China is escalating a campaign of military maritime coercion against Japan’s Senkaku Islands, according to Japanese intelligence data disclosed as part of a joint Pentagon-Japan research program.
– Washington Post – The Kremlin has brushed off Western concerns about its deployment of cutting-edge missile systems in its Kaliningrad enclave, saying that the North Atlantic Treaty Organization was the one disrupting the strategic balance with its plans to put antimissile defenses on Russia’s borders. But the Russian arsenal on the Baltic, some of which has been tested in Syria, is potentially a game-changer.
– Defense News – Near the top of US Pacific Fleet commander Adm. Scott Swift’s concerns is China’s People’s Liberation Army Navy (PLAN), and close behind is the country’s burgeoning Coast Guard. But a third government-controlled seagoing force, the little-known and somewhat mysterious maritime militia, is drawing increased attention.
– CIMSEC – On 25 October 2016, the Spanish-flagged merchant tanker Galicia Spirit came under fire when a rocket-propelled grenade (RPG) was fired at it from a small speedboat that had interdicted the vessel. The tanker was then attacked with small arms fire. The merchant vessel escaped catastrophic damage, and was able to continue its journey onward. However, only two days later, the liquefied natural gas (LNG) tanker Melati Satu was attacked in the same area, also with RPGs. The Tuvalu-flagged Melati Satu’s crew sent out a distress call, were rescued by a Saudi Arabian naval vessel, and were subsequently escorted to safety. Both ships had been traversing the Bab el-Mandeb strait between south-western Yemen and north-eastern Djibouti. This small waterway must be negotiated to access or egress the Egyptian-controlled Suez Canal, which sits at the northern end of the Red Sea.
– BBC – Britain’s defences are at risk amid uncertainty over plans to replace the “woefully low” number of Royal Navy warships, MPs have warned.
– Breaking Defense – Marines are famously aggressive, but a new battle plan from a leading thinktank makes Iwo Jima look low-risk. The Center for Strategic & Budgetary Assessments’ proposed concept of operations is imaginative, exciting and more than a little scary.
– The Guardian – Foreign Office decision set to cause enormous disappointment for thousands deported in 1971 to make room for US military base.
– USNI News – The Navy is set to deploy unmanned buoyancy gliders from its guided missile destroyers in an effort to expand its anti-submarine warfare edge.
– Ukraine TV – Russian aircraft carrier ‘Admiral Kuznetsov’ battle group is easily identified from space due to its smoke trace. ‘Landsat 8′ satellite captured the Russian Navy carrier battle group in the Mediterranean on photo, Military Aviation News website ‘Alert 5’ informs. On the picture taken on November 8 the carrier’s smoke plume was visible from space. Ukrainian military analyst and blogger Olexandr Kovalenko explained the reason of this effect.
– The Atlantic – James Fallows writes that China has become repressive in a way that it has not been since the Cultural Revolution. What does its darkening political climate—and growing belligerence—mean for the United States?
– BBC – Australian, Canadian and US warships are helping with evacuations and supplying aid to the New Zealand town of Kaikoura after a series of tremors.
– National Interest – President Elect Donald Trump, correctly understanding the current strategic environment, is committed to building a 350 ship Navy.