Pentagon

Pentagon Sequestysteria

Ever since the Cold War ended, the Pentagon has been pushing to become more “flexible” and “agile,” to use two words frequently heard at Defense Department briefings and found burrowed into innumerable Pentagon …

F-35: Blade Bummer

The news that the Pentagon’s fleet of 51 F-35 fighters has been grounded because of a half-inch crack in one of its engine’s turbine blade is one of those problems that can truly be called a teething issue: it’s something that …

Ages in which the dominant weapon is expensive or difficult to make will tend to be ages of despotism, whereas when the dominant weapon is cheap and simple, the common people have a chance. Thus, for example, tanks, battleships and bombing planes are inherently tyrannical weapons, while rifles, muskets, long-bows and hand-grenades are inherently democratic weapons. A complex weapon makes the strong stronger, while a simple weapon--so long as there is no answer to it--gives claws to the weak.
— George Orwell, 1945
It had everything to do with 10 years of double-digit, year-over-year growth. There was no need to talk to each other. Everyone was happy. When we had a program that was bleeding, we cauterized the wound with money, because we had it. Expediency was the most important thing.
— Brett Lambert, deputy assistant secretary of defense for manufacturing and industrial base, explaining Wednesday why communication between the Pentagon and its contractors has been lacking in recent years.

The Picasso of Procurement

Air Force Lieutenant Colonel – and occasional Battleland contributor – Dan Ward not only has a way with words. He is, according to his new The Comic Guide to Improving Defense Acquisitions, also the Picasso of …

Sky King

Retired Air Force lieutenant colonel Dan Hampton flew nearly 4,000 hours – including 726 in combat – in an F-16 during his 20 years in the Air Force. (Battleland has flown about, um, one, including none in combat. Final brave …

Fire the Horse-Holders!

Battleland is always impressed with 20/20 hindsight, visual clarity of any sort being so unusual in the rarified circles at the top echelon of U.S. national security. Take the column in Friday’s Washington Post by physicist

Leveraging

See where GOP candidate Mitt Romney has just released a roster of more than 300 retired generals and admirals who are endorsing him for President. They range from former Army general Tommy Franks, who commanded the invasions of …

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