Friday, November 30, 2012

The Turkish Air Force strikes PKK in northern Iraq

The Turkish Air Force conducted a series of strikes against the bases of the fighters of the Workers Party of Kurdistan (PKK) in northern Iraq, local media reported Thursday quoting military sources.

The Turkish air force attacked anti-aircraft batteries, shelter and infrastructure Kurdish separatists in the regions of Zap, Avasin, and Metina Haftanin. Hunter-F-16 bombers were involved in the raids, according to Dogan news agency.

Until now, the Staff of the Turkish Army has not issued an official statement about the operation. No information on possible victims of the attack is not available for the moment.

The Kurdistan Workers Party has been fighting for nearly 25 years for the autonomy of the Kurds on part of Turkish territory. This conflict has already been about 40,000 deaths. The PKK terrorist organization has been recognized by the United Nations and the European Union.

India Air force Jaguar Crashes, Pilot Ejects

An IAF Jaguar strike aircraft crashed today in Sikkim in India's North-East, the third crash since April this year (the last was a MiG-21 in Western India last week). The Jaguar pilot Flt Lt Yogesh Kumar Yadav managed to eject and has only sustained minor injuries. A detachment of Jaguars is currently based at the IAF's base in Hashimara. A court of inquiry has been ordered into the crash.

Fighter jet plagiarism allegations 'offensive'

China on Thursday dismissed claims that its carrier-based fighter jets plagiarized foreign models and would make Beijing more assertive in tackling maritime disputes with neighbors.
It is at least unprofessional, if not an intentional attack, to claim China copied foreign aircraft carrier technology through a simple comparison since the laws for military development are objective, and the principles of building military equipment, the command and safeguard methods are similar, Ministry of National Defense spokesman Geng Yansheng said at a regular news conference.
Geng made the remarks in response to reports that the carrier-borne J-15 fighter jet, which made its debut in a landing and take-off exercise on China's first aircraft carrier the Liaoning on Saturday, is a Chinese adaptation of the naval version of Russia's Su-33.
"China adheres to self-dependent scientific innovation. We have sufficient know-how and capability to build and develop our own aircraft carrier," Geng said.
It is true that China used to rely heavily on imported Russian military equipment to modernize its troops, but people should not use that as an excuse to criticize Chinese people who have made tough endeavors and even sacrifices in developing the J-15's engine, fire-control system, electronics system and other key components, said the Xinhua News Agency.
Guo Xiaobing, deputy chief of the Institute of Security and Arms Control Studies under the China Institutes of Contemporary International Relations, said the "crime of plagiarism" is a severe insult to Chinese researchers including Luo Yang, head of the production phase of the J-15 who died on Sunday of a heart attack during the carrier's voyage return to base after the planes' landing exercise.
Geng said the J-15, which is still conducting related experiments and training, would equip the army in accordance with the military's schedule. Experts said it will be a while before the Liaoning can be put into operation.

Saudi Arabia keen on $130m Patriot missile deal

Saudi Arabia is seeking to order a $130m military package from the United States to help with its Patriot Missiles programme.
According to the US Defence Security Cooperation Agency, the Government of Saudi Arabia is asking for technical services to "recertify the functional shelf life of up to 300 Patriot guidance enhanced missiles and associated equipment".
The estimated cost is $130m, the Agency said, adding that the proposed sale was still to receive approval from the US Congress.
"The proposed recertification program will allow the Royal Saudi Air Defence Forces to extend the shelf life of the PAC-2 missiles in its inventory for an additional 12 years," it said in a statement.
The Agency said the principal contractor would be Raytheon Corporation, based in Massachusetts.

Most Powerful Atomic Bombs - The Mark-36 Nuclear Bomb

Now here we have the bomb which was one of the most heaviest and high yield nuclear bombs ever to be made by the United States. The making of Mark-36 was based on a number of thermo nuclear devices and chain reaction designs. It was so powerful that it was easily able to produce a yield of nearly 10 megatons. The estimated weight of the bomb was nearly 1700 pounds or more. What’s more horrifying is the fact that the makers had modified all the previous Mark-21 bombs into the Mark-36 nuclear designs. Furthermore, a number of variants of the bomb were also produced.

4 Frigates on Line for Turkish Navy

Turkey has chosen an ambitious project to follow the building of eight corvettes: this time the production of four fair defense frigates worth around $4 billion dollars, the largest ships in the inventory of the country’s Navy.

A statement on the website of the Undersecretariat for Defense Industries (SSM) on Nov. 22 cited the need to procure air defense frigates for the Navy that would provide defense against the classical and modern munitions fired by aircraft and other platforms, command and control, early warning, reconnaissance, surface warfare, underwater warfare and electronic warfare and air defense warfare.
It said the feasibility studies of the frigates had been completed and a “project model” would now be devised for the frigates to be procured. The model is expected to be a manufacture model by a private naval shipyard, but the complexity of the frigate would probably need the contributions of a foreign company.

The TF2000 project, as the name implies, was designed before 2000, but was delayed due to financial limitations at the time. Procurement officials now say that especially after the completion of the Milgem project - the first naval project for the building of eight corvettes - the time is ripe for the design of the first Turkish frigate.

Corvettes are the smallest of warships, and Turkey, which does not have coasts on oceans, has plenty of corvettes and frigates, but no larger warships, like destroyers or cruisers.

Thai navy deflects allegations of irregularities

The Royal Thai Navy yesterday countered the opposition's allegation of irregularities surrounding the navy's scheme to modernise combat systems on two frigates.
ADM Thaweewut Pongpipat, a special adviser to the navy who serves as chairman of the committee implementing the scheme, said Defence Minister Sukumpol Suwanatat had nothing to do with the changes made to the procurement of the combat systems.
ACM Sukumpol had inquired with the navy about the changes, which were solely the navy's decision, said ADM Thaweewut.
The navy had changed from the New Generation Dagaie System (NGDS) revolving decoy system by Sagem to the non-revolving Soft Kill Weapon System (SKWS) by Terma because the first choice required too much space to be fitted to the frigates and cost a lot more, he said.
Saab AB, which was awarded the navy contract to upgrade the combat systems, had inspected the frigates and determined that the Sagem's NGDS could not be fitted to the warships due to a lack of room, said ADM Thaweewut.
The non-revolving decoy system, on the other hand, could be installed in a position that allows for ideal coverage in combat, he said.

Audit Says Kabul Bank Began As ‘Ponzi Scheme’

Kabul Bank became Afghanistan’s largest financial institution by offering the promise of modern banking to people who had never had a saving or checking account. What it really dealt in was modern theft: “From its very beginning,” according to a confidential forensic audit of Kabul Bank, “the bank was a well-concealed Ponzi scheme.”
Afghan and American officials had for years promoted Kabul Bank as a prime example of how Western-style banking was transforming a war-ravaged economy. But the audit, prepared this year for Afghanistan’s central bank by the Kroll investigative firm, gives new details of how the bank instead was institutionalizing fraud that reached into the hundreds of millions of dollars and obliterated Afghans’ trust after regulators finally seized the bank in August 2010 and the theft was revealed.
Going further than previous reports, the audit asserts that Kabul Bank had little reason to exist other than to allow a narrow clique tied to President Hamid Karzai’s government to siphon riches from depositors, who were the bank’s only substantial source of revenue.
At one point, Kroll’s investigators found 114 rubber stamps for fake companies used to give forged documents a more legitimate look. And the auditing firms used by the bank never took issue with loan books that were “almost entirely fraudulent,” Kroll found, recommending that the Afghan government explore suing the last such auditor, A.F. Ferguson & Co., a private Pakistani firm with a franchise under PricewaterhouseCoopers.

Germany will reduce its troops in Afghanistan by a third in 2013

The German government on Wednesday approved a new plan to reduce troops in Afghanistan, decreasing third military presence in the country in 2013. Under this plan, the number of troops in Afghanistan will increase from 4900 to 3300 by the end of the year between 2013.Cette reduction in the withdrawal program implemented by Germany, which provides for the return of all combat troops by the end of 2014.

U.S. Closes Forward Operating Base Tillman

An ending in Afghanistan: U.S. closes Forward Operating Base Tillman

 Just a few short miles from the Pakistani border, on a plateau above the Afghan village of Lawara, sits a small U.S. fire base named after army ranger Pat Tillman. Now, the United States is shutting down the base, according to a report in The Hill.

The former NFL superstar’s life and death have, in a way, followed the twists and turns of America’s war in Afghanistan. Tillman’s decision to leave his NFL career in 2002 to enlist and fight in Afghanistan made him a symbol of America’s sense of duty and national purpose after the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001. His shocking 2004 death in a firefight that was only later revealed to be friendly fire, a fact possibly covered up by senior military figures, symbolized for many Americans, at a time when the war in Iraq was rapidly disintegrating, the tragedy and perhaps the folly of those wars. In 2006, the army named Forward Operating Base Tillman in his memory.
Now, once more, Tillman’s fate seems to mirror that of the war in which he served and died, as the U.S. army quietly, and to little fanfare or attention, withdraws from Forward Operating Base Tillman, part of the larger drawdown from a war that seems to get far less public attention in the United States than it once did.

Diagram Suggests Iran Working On Bomb

Iranian scientists have run computer simulations for a nuclear weapon that would produce more than triple the explosive force of the World War II bomb that destroyed Hiroshima, according to a diagram obtained by the Associated Press.

The diagram was leaked by officials from a country critical of Iran's atomic program to bolster their arguments that Iran's nuclear program must be halted before it produces a weapon. The officials provided the diagram only on condition that they and their country not be named.
The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) -- the Vienna-based nuclear watchdog for the United Nations -- reported last year that it had obtained diagrams indicating that Iran was calculating the "nuclear explosive yield" of potential weapons.
A senior diplomat considered neutral on the issue confirmed that the graph obtained by the AP was one of those cited by the IAEA. He spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to discuss the issue.
The IAEA report mentioning the diagrams last year did not give details of what they showed.
The diagram seen by the AP shows a bell curve -- with variables of time in microseconds, and power and energy both in kilotons -- the traditional measurement of the energy output, hence the destructive power of nuclear weapons.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Czech Military Wants To Purchase Black Hawks To Replace Its Russian-Built Helicopters

The Czech military is interested in the purchasing Black Hawk helicopters that are to replace its Russian-built helicopter fleet, Czech media are reporting. The maintenance costs of the Russian helicopters are considered too high, according to the reports.

“We will opt for smaller, multipurpose machines to be used for the transportation of the wounded and a small number of people as well as fulfilment of supportive tasks including fire,” Czech chief of staff Petr Pavel told the daily Lidove Noviny. It is expected 20 to 30 helicopters will be purchased.

How do you say "Iron Dome" in Korean?

Israeli launchers are barely cooled, they are already interested! Seoul could be the first export customer of Israeli system "Iron Dome". This mobile air defense system has been for the IDF, the real star of the operation "Pillar of defense" against Hamas in Gaza. Because according to Israeli figures, "Iron Dome" has been proven and a rate of successful interceptions that over 90%! From November 14 to 23, five batteries deployed intercepted hundreds of Hamas rockets fired into Israeli territory, saving many lives. Developed by Israeli industrial Rafael, the first export customer of the interception system of medium range would be the United States, a time interested in using in Afghanistan to protect U.S. bases. But disengagement is the agenda, discussions stopped.

Rebounding is today South Korea could become the purchaser. The purchase of "Iron Dome" would by Seoul as part of a broader agreement, in which Korean shipyards Daewoo provide four maritime patrol 1000 tons worth $ 400 million. But the North Korean threat is it similar to Hamas? First "Iron Dome" is not suitable for intercepting ballistic missiles, a real threat to Seoul (Taepodong missiles, Nodong ...). Still not a ballistic missile North has referred the south. And the United States, which have nearly 30,000 soldiers on the spot, should deploy THAAD batteries (Terminal High Altitude Area Defense) and more Patriot systems.

Lockheed Tests New Laser Against Rockets, UAVs

Lockheed Martin Demonstrates New Ground-Based Laser System In Tests Against Rockets and Unmanned Aerial System

SUNNYVALE, Calif. --- Lockheed Martin today announced that it has successfully demonstrated a portable, ground-based military laser system in a series of tests against representative airborne targets. Lockheed Martin developed the Area Defense Anti-Munitions (ADAM) system to provide a defense against short-range threats, such as rockets and unmanned aerial systems.

Since August, the ADAM system has successfully engaged an unmanned aerial system target in flight at a range of approximately 1.5 kilometers (0.9 miles) and has destroyed four small-caliber rocket targets in simulated flight at a range of approximately 2 kilometers (1.2 miles).

"Lockheed Martin has invested in the development of the ADAM system because of the enormous potential effectiveness of high-energy lasers," said Doug Graham, Lockheed Martin's vice president of advanced programs for Strategic and Missile Defense Systems. "We are committed to supporting the transition of directed energy's revolutionary capability to the war fighter."

Sunni Leaders Gaining Clout In Mideast

New York Times
November 28, 2012
Pg. 1

News Analysis

Sunni Leaders Gaining Clout In Mideast

By Neil MacFarquhar
RAMALLAH, West Bank — For years, the United States and its Middle East allies were challenged by the rising might of the so-called Shiite crescent, a political and ideological alliance backed by Iran that linked regional actors deeply hostile to Israel and the West.
But uprising, wars and economics have altered the landscape of the region, paving the way for a new axis to emerge, one led by a Sunni Muslim alliance of Egypt, Qatar and Turkey. That triumvirate played a leading role in helping end the eight-day conflict between Israel and Gaza, in large part by embracing Hamas and luring it further away from the Iran-Syria-Hezbollah fold, offering diplomatic clout and promises of hefty aid.
For the United States and Israel, the shifting dynamics offer a chance to isolate a resurgent Iran, limit its access to the Arab world and make it harder for Tehran to arm its agents on Israel’s border. But the gains are also tempered, because while these Sunni leaders are willing to work with Washington, unlike the mullahs in Tehran, they also promote a radical religious-based ideology that has fueled anti-Western sentiment around the region.
Hamas — which received missiles from Iran that reached Israel’s northern cities — broke with the Iranian axis last winter, openly backing the rebellion against the Syrian president, Bashar al-Assad. But its affinity with the Egypt-Qatar-Turkey axis came to fruition this fall.
“That camp has more assets that it can share than Iran — politically, diplomatically, materially,” said Robert Malley, the Middle East program director for the International Crisis Group. “The Muslim Brotherhood is their world much more so than Iran.”
The Gaza conflict helps illustrate how Middle Eastern alliances have evolved since the Islamist wave that toppled one government after another beginning in January 2011. Iran had no interest in a cease-fire, while Egypt, Qatar and Turkey did.
But it is the fight for Syria that is the defining struggle in this revived Sunni-Shiite duel. The winner gains a prized strategic crossroads.
For now, it appears that that tide is shifting against Iran, there too, and that it might well lose its main Arab partner, Syria. The Sunni-led opposition appears in recent days to have made significant inroads against the government, threatening the Assad family’s dynastic rule of 40 years and its long alliance with Iran. If Mr. Assad falls, that would render Iran and Hezbollah, which is based in Lebanon, isolated as a Shiite Muslim alliance in an ever more sectarian Middle East, no longer enjoying a special street credibility as what Damascus always tried to sell as “the beating heart of Arab resistance.”
If the shifts seem to leave the United States somewhat dazed, it is because what will emerge from all the ferment remains obscure.

Improve network security defense with NEXThink

Among the various networks managed by DIRISI , telecom operator Joint Department of Defense, the network INTRADEF is certainly larger. This is the current working network, classified Restricted Distribution. There is also a park rather heterogeneous, including software and hardware versions are spread over 5 years, with users (and administrators) more or less rigorous. Park user control is therefore unclear.

This network is obviously secure. Security solutions are deployed on servers and active elements of the network. But on workstations, USB ports are not locked while in the past, a tattoo, got a virus sas was necessary to connect a USB key. And especially in recent years, a mail gateway can communicate with the Internet. Obviously if this stream is filtered, the network is less compartmentalized. therefore the ministry has decided, as part of the defense in depth recommended by ANSSI, complete security solutions through a market to control in compliance and continuous use of network stations INTRADEF.

This is the Swiss company NEXThink with its eponymous software won the tender . It is a utility less than 500kb, which was installed on each PC, will collect a number of information and send it for analysis and visualization on a server. It allows you to supervise first large networks (active services and software versions ...), but also to control any abnormal behavior of client stations, the first sign of a viral infection or a virus attack.

India Investigating Tatra Trucks Deal

Government has taken cognizance of alleged irregularities in purchase of Tatra trucks.

Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) has been requested to investigate comprehensively into alleged irregularities in purchase of Tatra trucks. CBI has registered a case on 30.3.2012 under Section 120 B read with 13(2) r/w 13(1)(d) of Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988 against one of the owners of the Company and unknown officials of Ministry of Defence, BEML Limited and unknown persons of TatraSipox UK limited.

Bangladesh : Two French helicopters inducted into Army Aviation fleet

Two French made multi-role high speed twin engine helicopters have been inducted into the Army Aviation fleet increasing significantly the disaster management support capability of Bangladesh Army.

The two modern helicopters have been enrolled into the Army Aviation through an auspicious commissioning ceremony held at Army Aviation Complex at Tejgaon Old Airport Wednesday morning.

Finance Minister AMA Muhith was the chief guest at the ceremony while Army Chief Gen. Iqbal Karim Bhuiyan also spoke on the occasion.

Army Aviation, the integral flying organ of Bangladesh Army, operates both fixed wing and rotary aircrafts in its fleet for undertaking tasks like troops’ transportation, conduct of para dropping and rappelling exercise for army, aerial movement of logistics and combat supply.

Army Aviation is also now set to participate in UN peacekeeping operation with its helicopters fleet to further augment foreign exchange earning effort by Bangladesh Army.

K-15 test off Andhra coast next month

After the successful trial of AD interceptor missile, DRDO is readying for the developmental trial of submarine- launched ballistic missile K-15 from an underwater platform off the Andhra Pradesh coast in the second week of December.

The much awaited test, scheduled for the last week of November, was postponed owing to inclement weather triggered by a deep depression in Bay of Bengal early this month. DRDO scientists are reportedly contemplating two trials of K-15, one from a pontoon (replica of a submarine) and another from a submarine.

Defence sources said the nuclear capable missile will be tested for the first time from a submarine positioned undersea off  Visakhapatnam coast. If everything goes as planned, the missile will be fired any time between December 6 and 8.

The DRDO is eyeing for the successful trial of the missile as few countries have the triad of firing nuclear-tipped missiles from air, land and undersea. The other countries, which have the capability include Russia, the USA, France, Britain  and China.

 “Scientists are working over time and constantly cross-checking the system, including the launch platform. We want to achieve near-zero circular error probability (CEP) accuracy,” said a defence scientist.

The indigenously developed K-15 missile is about 10 metres in length and about a metre in diameter. Its launch weight is about 10 tonnes. This missile uses solid propellant and can carry a conventional payload of about 500 kg to one tonne and also be fitted with tactical nuclear warhead. After its induction, the missile will equip the country’s first nuclear-powered submarine ANS Arihant.

Saudis seek U.S. defense equipment buy

Saudi Arabia is seeking a U.S. Foreign Military Sales Order II to provide funds for blanket requisition of spare parts and other items for armored vehicles.

The blanket requisition in support of the country's M1A2 Abrams tanks, M2 Bradley Fighting Vehicles and High Mobility Multipurpose Wheeled Vehicles would come under the Cooperative Logistics Supply Support Arrangement between the countries and has an estimated cost of $300 million.

"This proposed sale will allow the Royal Saudi Land Forces Ordnance Corps to continue to purchase needed repair parts to maintain their fleet of M1A2S Abrams Tanks, M2 Bradley Fighting Vehicles and High Mobility Multipurpose Wheeled Vehicles, construction equipment, and support vehicles and equipment," the U.S. Defense Cooperation Agency said.

Northrop Grumman to Supply Navigation Systems for Indian Coast Guard Vessels

Northrop Grumman Corporation (NYSE:NOC), is to supply advanced shipboard navigation systems for 20 fast patrol vessels for the Indian Coast Guard. The fast patrol vessels will be built at Cochi Shipyard Ltd., India.
Under the contract, awarded through the company's Indian reseller Marine Electricals Ltd., Northrop Grumman's Sperry Marine business unit will provide a navigation package including VisionMaster™ Total Watch™ multifunction displays, electronic chart display and information system (ECDIS), autopilot, magnetic compass and the new NAVIGAT 3000™ fibre optic gyrocompass. The contract also includes spares, factory testing and engineering support services. The first shipset delivery is expected in late 2012. Deliveries will continue into 2015.
"These integrated bridge system components will provide the Indian Coast Guard the most advanced shipboard navigation systems available today," said Alan Dix, managing director of Northrop Grumman Sperry Marine. "We look forward to delivering products that will help secure India's coastline for years to

44 Skyhawks For Sale

The SIBAT department of the Israeli Ministry of Defense is calling defense entities, militaries and countries from around the world and inviting them to acquire the fleet of Skyhawk aircraft which have been in IDF service since the 1960s.
The Skyhawk was the first fighter aircraft that the United States agreed to sell to Israel, and the Israeli Air Force began using the aircraft in 1967. Today, the aircraft are used for combat training and instruction in the framework of the IAF’s  flight course, and the sale comes as part of the preparation for when the IAF receives the new Italian M-346 trainer aircraft.
During the recent operation Pillar of Defense in Gaza, the IAF used the Skyhawk aircraft for casting notices above the Gaza Strip. The Ministry of Defense is interested in selling the 44 Skyhawk aircraft for several

Russia, India to hold joint naval exercise off Mumbai coast

Three Russian warships will enter Mumbai today to hold joint naval exercises, code-named 'INDRA', with the Indian Navy from December 2.

The two-day naval exercises will be held off the coast of Mumbai from December 2 where the Indian side would be represented by Delhi Class destroyer INS Mysore and Tabar Class guided missile frigate along with different types of aircraft in the force, Navy officials said here.

The Russian side has come with destroyer Marshal Shaponishkov, fleet tug ship Alatau and fleet tanker Irkut for the exercises, they said.

Navies of India and Russia have been engaging each other in joint drills for the last few years. The Armies of the two sides also hold their drills under the same codename INDRA.

Philippines navy ship being prepared for voyage

BRP Ramon Alcaraz, the second Hamilton-Class Cutter acquired by the Philippines from the US, is being prepared for its voyage to the Philippines by early 2013.
The ship, formerly called the USCGC Dallas, was a Coast Guard high endurance cutter commissioned in 1967 in New Orleans and was decommissioned in March 2012.
Named after war hero Commodore Ramon Alcaraz--a distinguished Philippine Navy Officer during the Second World War who was awarded the Silver Star for shooting down 3 Japanese planes off Bataan in 1942--the ship was formally transferred to the Philippine government, under its first Filipino Commanding Officer Ernesto Baldovin, on May 22.
Baldovino and 85 Filipino Navy officers and crew will be part of the sailing crew in its tentative journey to the Philippines by spring next year.
The ship’s 14 officers and enlisted men and women are also undergoing training under the US Coast Guard.
The ship was reportedly purchased to conducting patrols for extended periods of time as it can withstand heavy weather and rough water conditions.

China to receive Su-35 fighter aircraft from Russia

Russia's state-run arms exporter, Rosoboronexport has signed a preliminary agreement with the Chinese Ministry of National Defense (MND) for the sale of Sukhoi Su-35BM multi-role fighter aircraft.

A total of 24 advanced Su-35 fighters will be supplied to the People's Liberation Army Air Force (PLAAF) under the potential $1.5bn contract.

The contract is expected to be signed either in 2013 or 2014.

Details of the agreement were discussed by Russian defence minister Sergey Shoygu and Chinese president Hu Jintao during a recent meeting held in Beijing, as reported by Taipei Times.

In March 2012, an undisclosed defence industry official was cited by Russia's local daily Kommersant as saying that both parties initially agreed on the sale of 48 Su-35 aircraft under a $4bn deal.

The Su-35 sale, originally requested by China in 2011, was denied by the Russian Government fearing reverse engineering and copying of the fighter, similar to that of the Su-27SK aircraft.

Moscow alleges that China reverse engineered the Su-27SK and secretly developed an indigenous variant, the J-11B, after securing a $2.5bn production license to build 200 Su-27SK aircraft, dubbed the J-11A, using Russian-supplied kits in 1995.

India, Israel Defence Secretary-level talks from December 3

India and Israel are expected to discuss the progress in their joint military projects including air defence systems and specialised radars during Defence Secretary-level talks starting on December 3 here.
Israeli Defence Ministry's Director General Maj Gen Ehud Shani will be in India to take part in the meeting of Indo- Israel Joint Working Group on defence cooperation with Defence Secretary Shashikant Sharma, ministry officials said here.
The two countries, who have developed very close military ties in the last 10-15 years, hold this meeting annually and discuss the ongoing and future military cooperation projects.
The two countries are working on several important projects including the Rs 10,000 crore Long Range Surface to Air Missile programme for the Navy and the Medium Range Surface to Air Missile project for the Army.

China Prepares To Replace Carrier Pilots With Software

A Chinese aviator, flying a Chinese made J-15 fighter, made the first landing and takeoff from a Chinese aircraft carrier just two months after the ship was commissioned (on September 25th). The first Chinese aircraft carrier, the Liaoning is a 65,000 ton, 305 meter (999 feet) long ship that had spent over a year on sea trials. During that time Liaoning was at sea for about four months. This was all in preparation for flight operations. Last year China confirmed that the Liaoning will primarily be a training carrier. The Chinese apparently plan to station up to 24 jet fighters and 26 helicopters on the Liaoning and use the ship to train pilots and other specialists for four or more additional carriers.

Five years ago the Chinese Navy Air Force began training carrier fighter pilots (or "aviators" as they are known in the navy). In the past Chinese navy fighter pilots went to Chinese Air Force fighter training schools, and then transferred to navy flight training schools to learn how to perform their specialized (over open water) missions. Now, operating from carriers, and performing landings and take-offs at sea, has been added to the navy fighter pilot curriculum. The first class of carrier aviators has finished a four year training course at the Dalian Naval Academy. This included learning how to operate off a carrier, using a carrier deck mock-up on land. Landing on a moving ship at sea is another matter. The Russians warned China that it may take them a decade or more to develop the knowledge and skills needed to efficiently run an aircraft carrier. The Chinese are game and are slogging forward. The first landing and takeoff was apparently carried out in calm seas. It is a lot more difficult in rough weather (when the carrier is moving up and down and sideways a lot) and at night. The latter, called “night traps” is considered the most difficult task any aviator can carry out, especially in rough weather.

Meanwhile the U.S. Navy, which has had aircraft operating from carriers for nearly a century, is seeking another way to deal with carrier operations. To this end, last year the navy conducted a successful test of the X-47B UCAV (unmanned combat air vehicle) landing software. This was done by having an F-18D use the software to make a completely automated landing on a carrier. The two pilots in the F-18 did not touch the controls, and were there in case something went wrong with the software. The navy plans to have an X-47B make a carrier landing and takeoff within a year.

The X-47B made its first flight two years ago. It was four years ago that the navy rolled out its first combat UAV; the 15 ton X-47B. This pilotless aircraft has a wingspan of 20 meters (62 feet) whose outer 5 meter (15 foot) portions fold up to save space on the carrier. The X-47B carries a two ton payload and will be able to stay in the air for twelve hours. The U.S. is far ahead of other nations in UCAV development, and this is energizing activity in Russia, Europe and China to develop similar aircraft. The U.S. Department of Defense wants the new UAV combat aircraft in service by the end of the decade, some twenty years ahead of a schedule that was planned in the 1990s. The F-35 is expected to cease production in 2034, more than a decade after the first combat UAVs, that can match F-35 performance, enter service.

It's not just the Americans that are going in this direction. Two European consortiums are building competing designs for armed UAVs. These UAVs would not enter service until late in the next decade. It's similar to the U.S. X-45 and X-47 combat UAVs, although intended more for combat support jobs performed by the American Reaper (recon and light strike duties). There are several European combat UAV projects. Russia and China announced that they were working on several similar designs.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

South Korean Naval Cruise Missiles Deployed

The Republic of Korea Navy reportedly now has advanced upgraded long-range cruise missiles in service, with enough range to reach all parts of North Korea.
Speaking to news agency Yonhap, a South Korean military official confirmed that two of the navy's destroyers have become equipped with Hyanmu-3C (also spelt ‘Hyanmoo') missiles. These are likely Sejong the Great class destroyers, of which there's three in service.
These missiles have a 1,500 kilometre range and are said to be so accurate that, even when covering these kinds of distances, they can strike within about 10 feet of their intended targets.

Naval Cruise Missiles Deployed

According to the representative - whose identity was not revealed - with the naval cruise missiles deployed, South Korea has in part issued a reply to North Korea's recent reinforcements in this maritime area.
In particular, there are concerns over the role to be played by a new military hovercraft launching-base, which North Korea's just finished. Vessels launched from this site might be used in anger against South Korean islands sited close to the North/South border - an area that's already hosted several vicious clashes in recent years.
The Hyanmu/Hyanmoo series remain the only South Korean cruise missiles to have seen active service. Translated into English, Hyanmoo/Hyanmu means, literally, ‘Guardian of the Northern Sky'.

A Chinese-made K-8 training airplane crashed during an air force flying exhibition on Tuesday in Venezuela

Venezuela (AP) A Chinese-made K-8 training airplane crashed during an air force flying exhibition on Tuesday and the military helicopter sent to rescue the pilots also went down, authorities said.
The two pilots in the K-8 aircraft successfully ejected before the crash and none of the crew of the Cougar helicopter were injured, authorities said.
Venezuela's information minister, Ernesto Villegas, said the Chinese-made plane plummeted to the ground near a military parade at Libertador Air Base in the central state of Aragua.
He said in a message posted on his Twitter that the cause of the crash was mechanical failure and it occurred as pilots participated in an exhibition to celebrate the anniversary of Venezuela's air force.
Venezuela's Air Search and Rescue Service announced that a Cougar helicopter also crashed during an operation to rescue the pilots.

Pakistan’s Ghauri Nuclear Missile Test-Launched

Pakistan has test-launched a medium-range, nuclear-capable ballistic missile design named the Ghauri or Hatf-V.

That's according to a statement released on 28 November 2012, which said the firing took place at an unspecified location and described the missile involved as having an 800+ mile range.

The statement added that the Ghauri test launch served to reinforce Pakistan's defence capabilities and that it concluded an exercise designed to ensure that the country's Army Strategic Force Command was operationally deployable.

Ghauri Missile Launch

Overseeing the Ghauri missile launch was Pakistan's National Command Centre, ‘through the medium of the National Command Authority's fully automated strategic command and control support system', officials explained. It's this National Command Authority that watches permanently over Pakistan's nuclear weapons stock.

Once the Army Strategic Force Command's training had finished, approval was given by Raja Pervez Ashraf and Asif Ali Zardari - Pakistan's Prime Minister and President, respectively - who singled-out ‘the proficient handling of the weapon system in the field and the accuracy of the training launch.'

The same medium-range ballistic missile (MRBM) has been launched on previous occasions, apparently from 1998 onwards.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Teaching an Old Dog New Tricks: Taiwan’s F-16 Upgrade

With a deal on new fighters seemingly halted, Taiwan is increasing the capabilities of its existing fighter aircraft. 
 Taiwan's plans to upgrade its 145 Lockheed Martin F-16 combat aircraft and its on-again off-again pursuit of 66 new-build F-16C/Ds have taken a couple of interesting turns in recent months – turns entirely related to the U.S. Air Force's (USAF) own upgrade of about 300 of its newer F-16s.
The USAF upgrade program has been thrust upon it by the continuing delays to Lockheed Martin's F-35 Joint Strike Fighter, which was supposed to replace the F-16 (among other aircraft) but has run into numerous delays. In the meantime, the USAF's F-16s will get an upgrade – called the Combat Avionics Programmed Extension Suite (CAPES) – that includes a new active electronically scanned array (AESA) radar, a new center display unit and the ALQ-213 electronic-warfare (EW) system.
This matters to Taiwan because of the Republic of China Air Force's own U.S. $5.3 billion upgrade program for its 145 F-16A/Bs, which was agreed to with Washington in September 2011. In August 2012 Taiwan signed a letter of agreement stating it would follow the USAF's radar selection, and like the USAF, it has also chosen original equipment manufacturer (OEM) Lockheed Martin to carry out the upgrades. By contrast, South Korea recently chose BAE Systems to upgrade its KF-16 fleet.

Australia and Papua New Guinea Complete Naval Exercise

Defence ties between Australia and Papua New Guinea were strengthened during Exercise Paradise in waters off Cairns.

Two Royal Australian Navy heavy landing craft, HMA Ships Labuan and Tarakan, spent a week at sea with two PNG Defence Force patrol boats,  HMPNG Ships Moresby and Rabaul.  Armidale-class patrol boat HMAS Bundaberg also contributed to the exercise while in transit to border protection operations.

Lieutenant Commander Steve Woodman, Commander Minor War Vessel Sea Training, said the annual exercise is an important opportunity to develop teamwork between our two nations.
“During Paradise, our vessels undertook a range of exercises that became progressively more challenging and tested the seamanship and mariner skills of all participants,” LCDR Woodman said.

Philippine Air Force’s - Delivery Time for 21 Refurbished Huey Expected Not Later than March 2013

21 Huey choppers to boost PAF’s operations
The 21 refurbished Huey helicopters seen to be added to the Philippine Air Force’s list of assets, will not only boost the aviation wing’s capability and military operations but will also be of use to the upcoming 2013 elections, the Department of National Defense said Monday.
Undersecretary for Finance, Munitions Installations and Materiel Fernando Manalo said the Air Force requested additional helicopters as they are anticipating an increase in air mobility requirements due to election-related flights in various parts of the country.
He also said that the project was already in the pipeline as early as 2011, when then PAF Commanding General, Lt Gen Oscar Rabena, requested President Benigno S. Aquino III for additional Hueys. The said helicopters are also urgently required during calamity and disaster operations.
According to a recent report of the Defense Acquisition System (DAS) assessment team, there are only 16 fully/partial mission-capable Hueys in the PAF inventory. Currently, the PAF is 51 units short of reaching its ideal number of operational combat utility helicopters.
“The acquisition of CUHs aims to address the capability shortfall on the number of utility helicopters in order for the PAF to efficiently perform their missions. Utility helicopters are deployed all over the Philippines and have proven to be the most effective platform for the internal security operations (ISO) and the Internal Peace and Security Plan (IPSP) campaign,” Manalo said.
“With the present national security condition, the acquisition of additional combat utility helicopters to augment the existing UH-1H ‘Huey’ fleet is imperative. The PAF’s primary helicopter is the Huey, which falls under the light lift category. Having been the workhorse of AFP tactical operations for many years, the Huey fleet has succumbed to natural attrition due to structural stress and aircraft accidents,” he added.

Monday, November 26, 2012

China launches Yaogan-16 naval surveillance satellite

China launched a Long March rocket Sunday and successfully orbited a Yaogan observation satellite believed to be on a naval surveillance mission, according Chinese state media and independent analysts.

A Long March 4C rocket lifted off at 0406 GMT Sunday (11:06 p.m. EST Saturday) from the Jiuquan launching base in northwest China. The three-stage rocket placed the Yaogan 16 payload into a 680-mile-high orbit with an inclination of 63.4 degrees, according to U.S. military tracking data.

Launch occurred at 12:06 p.m. Beijing time, the state-run Xinhua news agency reported.

The satellite was designed by the China Aerospace Science and Technology Corp., a state-owned space contractor, according to the Xinhua news agency.

Xinhua reported Yaogan 16 is “designed for a variety of uses, including technological experimentation, land resource surveying, agricultural yield estimation and disaster prevention and reduction.”

But the launch of Yaogan 16 and its orbit suggest similarities to a satellite mission launched in March 2010, which consisted of three spacecraft flying in close formation. Experts believe the satellites track ship movements with optical and radar observation instruments.


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