Archive for December, 2008

Santa’s new ride – for high threat environments

Merry Christmas from all at Threat Axis.

Santas new ride

Santa's new ride (for high threat environments)

 

Missile Defense Test gotcha


Vandenberg_Launch_04

Originally uploaded by DanDawson

Lost in the initial euphoria of a successful MDA test at the beginning of this month – was the fact that this wasn’t the “realistic” test that it was supposed to be.

During the announcement of the test – it came out that the countermeasures that were supposed to be part of this test – did not deploy.

This may sound silly or naive – but if we can’t get countermeasures to work on a simple test missile (with all of the time to prep the attempt) – can we realistically expect that a minor power has been able to integrate a successful countermeasure into their ballistic missile?

 

Japanese KC-767 damaged

According to the DEW Line blog over at FlightGlobal – one of the two 767 airborne tankers delivered to the JASDF was damaged during an emergency landing earlier today.

DEW Line has link to Japanese statement – and someone’s attempt to translate the statement to English.

 

Global Hawk – High Altitude Long Endurance (HALE) UAV

Earlier this summer – Military.com/DefenseTech.org published a story saying the Air Force was not ready to retire the U-2 in favor of the Global Hawk.

The key argument – was that the U-2 could collect more info during a single flight – due to a larger payload and more electrical power (more sensors) – than the Global Hawk.

The Pentagon has said it will not retire the U-2 at least until the Global Hawk Block 30, which will carry the Advanced Signals Intelligence Payload, is flying.

According to a Northrup-Grumman press release back in January 2008 – the first Block 40 fuselage was supposed to come off the assembly line back in September.

The fact that the Air Force transferred two early model Global Hawk’s to NASA earlier this year – seems to indicate that that some serious fuselage changes are needed for the later modifications (and that these changes cannot be retrofitted to the earlier models).

Additionally – the on again off again potential sale of the Global Hawk to Korea – maybe back on again. I bet it will only be a Block 20…..

 

History – Remember Pearl Harbor

I think the quote is perfect. As recent events in the US have shown, if you don’t pay understand history – and mistakes others made before hand – you will quickly become history.

 

A NATO look at Georgia

Previously, we posted commentary about the ironies in the Georgia-Russia situation.  In August, ThreatAxis pointed out that we should not necessarily assume that Russia was the bad guy in that conflict – something we are prone to do because of past history – but that we should rather take an unbiased, courageous look at both sides of the equation – that perhaps Georgia might even actually be the aggressor here!  With world opinion headed the other way, it was an aggressive stance for us to take.

Interestingly, as time passes, it’s looking more and more like we were dead right.

Today the International Institute for Strategic Studies said that the “balance of evidence suggests that Georgia started this war.” The comments were made by Dr. John Chipman, the Director-General of the IISS.  For a long time, NATO has been considering whether to offer membership to Georgia – something that this writer is strongly opposed to – and something which now the IISS and others are also suggesting might be bad.  To unilaterally accept Georgia into NATO would accomplish very little positive.  It would, however, antagonize Russia, and plunge NATO into what is barely a step away from a civil war.

But, the west loves to antagonize Russia.  In another previous post, ThreatAxis outlined the ongoing problems in perceptions with Russia, and took the stance that maybe the Cold War really was over (imagine that!).  Now, it seems that others are noticing this glaring truth as well.  In the same speed, Dr. Chipman said that “There have been major errors of presentation of policy towards Russia. The US and Nato have in the past told Russia to accept whatever was happening. There was no give and take.”

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