Archive for the ‘Land’ Category

Russian Inflatable Decoys

HERE is a Gallery of pictures of different Russian military hardware decoys.

I like the claim on the 7th slide that says the decoys appear to be real even to thermal or IR sensors.



The staff at ThreatAxis was appalled today to learn of the fatal shooting of four police officers in a Washington State coffee shop that the BBC and others are calling an Execution.


The report said that at least one gunman walked into a coffee shop and started shooting. A sheriff’s spokesman said the attack was "like an execution".  The four officers were working on their laptops, minding their own business, probably just doing paperwork, when the attack occurred.  Only the officers were shot by the assailant, nobody else was targeted or injured. It is clear that this was an open attack on local law-enforcement officers.


It seems to this correspondent that the United States already has enough troubles with threats abroad, and doesn’t need this type of behavior from its own citizens. Of course, such an assertion would fall upon deaf ears: the assailant clearly didn’t even care about those people working to protect him and his town on just a local level; how could such a one care about his country or the larger problems that threaten us all? 


This type of apathetic, sociopathic behavior feeds right in to the terrorists’ mindsets and goals.  By striking out without warning, without provocation, in a place where there was an expectation of safety, this person has lowered himself to the level of terrorist, and has struck a blow against the people of Washington and the people of the United States, on behalf of the radical terrorist organizations worldwide who seek to destroy the United States completely.


We were fighting enemies from without, how tragic that we must also look for enemies within.


Our hearts and condolences go out to the people of Parkland, Washington, their police department, and the families of the four officers who were senselessly killed today.




As one ThreatAxis member makes last minute preparations tonight before departing to Afghanistan tomorrow, this correspondent has been given to wonder about the apparent attempts of the United States to focus more on Afghanistan… and less on Iraq.

Media and other groups around the world are just beginning to notice this trend.  Ever a leader, the BBC reported on this very issue, outlining several of the problems faced by the United States and its allies during the coming months.

The issue is twofold. First, Iraq. There can be no doubt that the war in Iraq was grim. Former President George W. Bush sacrificed his own political career and reputation being what he was supposed to be: a leader listening to his people. Americans have quickly and conveniently forgotten that they are all complicit in the Iraq war to some degree: On September 12th, 2001, everyone was calling for retribution, and crying out in favor of war.  Regardless of any political niggling that may have come later, regardless of perceptions about weapons of mass destruction, President Bush did not push America into war.  America pushed the President into war.

And into war they went.  Iraq is now ostensibly “free” – free of its tyrranical and genocidial dictator, at least – but the official analysis of the security situation there remains “fragile, reversible, and uneven” throughout Iraq.  This key phrase says it all. Right or wrong, the United States went in to Iraq, and this brings with it responsibility to do what is possible to rebuild the nation for its innocent civilians.  The dictator was evil, the terrorists were obviously there… but the civilians were still innocent.  The people who are yammering for their “troops to come home” are the same irresponsible yet ultimately responsible people who were screaming for war and retribution seven years ago.

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Global Hawk – High Altitude Long Endurance (HALE) UAV

Earlier this summer – 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…..


The last soliders to die in WW1

The BBC has posted an excellent article here about the last soliders to die in World War 1.  These individuals died within moments of the ceasefire and armistice declared that would bring an end to the war, in innocent, non-combat, yet still all-too-fatal situations.  This amazing article is well worth the read and the time to review.


There is much we can learn from history, which is why the work of our historians is so valuable.  In this case, I am struck by the tragic lack of safety experienced by these men who thought that now, certainly, finally, they were safe.  I am also struck by the magnitude of loss that can occur as a result of the decisions made by individuals, whether out of aggression, fear, communications delays or failure, or just plain fatigue.


As we approach the 90th anniversary of the end of World War I, let us remember all those who gave their lives, in combat or perceived safety, for the freedom we enjoy now, and the peace we may yet experience in our lifetimes.  And let us remember those who still fight, with the hope that they may achieve that peace we all seek.  Our hearts and gratitude go with you all.


Pictures from Russian Victory Day parade (earlier this year)

Found on Flickr via the Military Vehicles group.

Would have liked to see more of the SU-34.  Looks like a variant of the Su-27, but if it is replacing the Su-24, it is for mid-long range Air to Ground.


Ammo – Cannister/Case

(this subject is near and dear to a close friend’s heart (and trigger finger) so I thought I would explain what it actually is for readers who aren’t familiar with it)

From Wikipedia;

Canister shot (or case-shot) was a kind of anti-personnel ammunition used in cannons. It was similar to grapeshot in which the canister round’s effect is similar to that of a giant shotgun shell. Canister shot has been used since the advent of gunpowder-firing artillery in Western armies; however, canister (or case) shot saw particularly frequent use on land and at sea in the various wars of the 18th and 19th century.


The canister round is also known as a case (hence the alternative name of case shot sometimes used for canister shot) and is still used today in modern artillery, particularly in the main armament of tanks. The effect is to turn a large-calibre gun on an armoured fighting vehicle into a giant shotgun. This can be used against enemy infantry even when in proximity to friendly armoured vehicles. The most recent use has been in the 120mm main gun on the American M1 Abrams tank.

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US Army Human Terrain System in Disarray

US Army Human Terrain System in Disarray

Millions of Dollars Wasted, Two Lives Sacrificed*

by John Stanton

John Stanton is a Virginia-based writer specializing in national security and political matters. His latest book is Talking Politics with God & the Devil in Washington, DC. Reach him at cioran123[at] * Part II of this subject to follow at a later date.
According to sources, United States Army brigade commanders privately believe that the US Army’s TRADOC Human Terrain System (HTS) program is a “joke” and completely unnecessary. The HTS program is publicly supported by brigade military commanders, and Secretary of Defense Robert Gates, only because it is a “pet project” of the currently
politically popular US Army General David Petraeus.

BAE Systems, the prime contractor on the project, has repeatedly been pressured by the HTS program manager and his staff to hire individuals who are not field-experienced ethnographers/anthropologists, but rather Google-fed political and social scientists. In two cases, pre-security clearance award investigations revealed that one candidate recommended for hire by senior staff was a felon. The other candidate had health problems that would have compromised the functions of a deployed Human Terrain Team (HTT). BAE Systems has been the punching bag for the poor decision-making of HTS program managers and advisors.

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