Russia’s nuclear underwater drone is real and in the Nuclear Posture Review

Defense News – A draft of the Pentagon’s Nuclear Posture Review confirms the existence of an underwater nuclear drone made and operated by Russia, a capability the U.S. Defense Department had not previously publicly acknowledged.

The Dimensions of Russian Sea Denial in the Baltic Sea

CIMSEC – Recent actions by the Russian military all point toward conveying the message that Russia does not want the presence of foreign militaries in Baltic Sea waters and is capable of taking countermeasures to exert its sovereignty in the region.

China defends deployment of naval ship to Japan-claimed islands

UPI – China defended the deployment of a naval vessel to the Japan-claimed Senkakus, also known as the Diaoyutai Islands, after Japan issued a warning about the latest move from Beijing’s military.

LCS Grows Teeth, At Last…

Breaking Defense – The Littoral Combat Ship is finally about to get the capabilities envisioned for it at the start, 15 years ago.

Navy Has No Plan to Introduce New Ammo for DDG-1000

Defense News – It’s been more than a year since the Navy decided to cancel procurement of an expensive new ammunition for its Zumwalt-class destroyers, but the service is still pondering how to best replace the munition.

INS Arihant left crippled after ‘accident’ 10 months ago

The Hindu – Indigenous nuclear submarine INS Arihant has suffered major damage due to ”human error” and has not sailed now for more than 10 months, say sources in the Indian Navy. Arihant is the most important platform within India’s nuclear triad covering land-air-sea modes.

New Icebreaker Will Have Space, Power For Weapons

Breaking Defense – The Coast Guard’s new heavy icebreaker will have space, weight, and electrical power set aside to carry offensive weapons.

Dr. John Kuehn on the Navy’s General Staff

CIMSEC – Professor John Kuehn’s new book, America’s First General Staff: A Short History of the Rise and Fall of the General Board of the U.S. Navy, 1900-1950, is a detailed and fascinating look at how the U.S. Navy’s General Board began at the turn of the 20th century and evolved into what would become the core of U.S. naval planning and strategy.

The Course To A 355 Ship Navy Is Becoming Increasingly Challenging To Plot

War Zone – The Navy talks big surface fleet dreams but it is going to take some serious planning and tough decision making to realize those dreams.

Navy’s next amphibious warship to get laser weapon

Defense News – The U.S. Navy will test a new laser weapon aboard the San Antonio-class amphibious ship Portland as early as this fall.

Lawmakers chide Navy, DOD, on step back from transparency

Defense News – Two lawmakers who oversee defense policy took aim at a years-long walk-back of U.S. Navy transparency, calling on the Navy to declassify ship inspection results and end an information chill spurred by U.S. Navy and Defense Department memos over the past year.

French Rafale Fighters to Deploy on Carrier USS George H.W. Bush This Spring

USNI News – France is sending 350 sailors and naval aviators to deploy with a U.S. Navy aircraft carrier this spring as their nuclear-powered carrier finishes scheduled maintenance

US Navy Wants to Hire Contractors to Fly Their Own MQ-9 Reaper Drones in Afghanistan

War Zone – The Marine Corps task force in Helmand Province has an urgent requirement for the unmanned aircraft.

U.S. Navy, Textron to Weaponize Unmanned Craft for Surface Warfare

USNI News – The Navy is working on adding a number of anti-surface weapons to an unmanned surface vehicle that so far has been used as a passive platform for mine countermeasures.

Surface Navy boss: To fix the fleet, reduce commitments and give us more ships

Defense News – The U.S. Navy’s top surface warfare officer has said the military must ease the burden on the service if it’s to fix issues that came to light after a pair of collisions that took the lives of 17 sailors last summer.

Navy’s Warfighting ‘Renaissance,’ ‘Obsession’ With Great-Power War

Breaking Defense – Despite collisions this summer that killed 17 sailors and called into question basic seamanship skills, the Navy is undergoing a ‘renaissance’ in high-end warfighting capabilities, the commander of Naval Surface Forces says. New weapons, improved training, and a growing cadre of surface warfare specialists — veritable “Jedis” — are making the fleet more lethal more quickly than he’d expected, Vice Adm. Thomas Rowden told reporters ahead of the Surface Navy Association conference here.

Making China Great Again

New Yorker – As Donald Trump surrenders America’s global commitments, Xi Jinping is learning to pick up the pieces.

Navy’s cruiser replacement won’t be a cruiser, says surface warfare chief

Defense News – The U.S. Navy’s surface fleet is developing a new class of ship that will replace the cruisers — but it’s not another cruiser.

Frigate Design Awards By April; $950M Max, VLS Mandatory

Breaking Defense – By the end of March, the Navy will award four to six contracts for “conceptual” designs of a future frigate. That ship that must cost under $950 million, have “Grade A shock hardening” on key systems to survive blasts, and carry at least 16 Vertical Launch System cells to defend itself and nearby vessels.

New Photos Of Boeing’s MQ-25 Tanker Drone On The Ramp In St. Louis

War Zone – The images give us our first view of the entire aircraft, as well as a sense of its overall scale.

Drone Swarm vs. Russian Base in Syria

Global Guerrillas – The Russians have been using drone swarms against the Ukrainians to good effect (blowing up ammo dumps). Here’s one being used against a Russian base on the coast of Syria.

India cancels minesweepers deal with South Korea

Indian Navy – India has terminated a long-pending $5 billion deal to locally build minesweepers in technical collaboration with Kangnam Corporation of South Korea on the grounds of high costs and compliance issues.

In a Chess Game with Putin, the Polish City of Gdansk Is Our Queen

National Review – When Russia invades the Baltic, Gdansk will be the key to NATO’s response.

How the heroin trade explains the US-UK failure in Afghanistan

The Guardian – After 16 years and $1tn spent, there is no end to the fighting – but western intervention has resulted in Afghanistan becoming the world’s first true narco-state.