Wednesday, June 9, 2010

PAK-FA, Latam, Def spending, ROTC

Back in January I told you about the first reported flight of the Russian Federation's fifth-generation fighter, the PAK-FA. The 74 page briefing, dated 2 Mar 10, by David Markov and Andrew Hull is full of interesting pictorials, facts and figures. It's a large file (over 5 MB). And … all should know that it is gleaned from unclassified sources. I again repeat what I said last January. Do you think the Russians will stop at building 187? How many do you think they will sell to their customers?

Secondly, GEN (R) Barry McCaffrey has done a fascinating report on Latin America and the United States to be presented on 11 June at Ft. Benning. [You may recall that GEN McCaffrey was CINC SOUTH … as well as the "drug czar."] To interest you in the piece, the United States is more interdependent with the Americas than many Americans realize. We obtain more crude oil imports (52% of U.S. imports) from this region than from the Persian Gulf, which only provides 13%.

Retired Air Force Lt Col Arthur MacFadden, an AFA member, has written an op-ed that appeared in the Chattanooga Times Free Press regarding the competition between domestic and defense spending.

Finally, I have recommended an insightful, new website to you before and will do so again now. It's called Second Line of Defense.

I check the website for updates frequently as the Senior Editorial Advisor, Robbin F Liard, has deep experience in analyzing defense issues – with time at Center for Naval Analysis and Institute for Defense Analysis. A few of the pieces which caught my attention:

An interview with Mike Rinn, VP and Director, Airborne Laser Testbed.

An op-ed by Jack Wheeler calling for an end to the ban on ROTC at some of America's most elite universities.

A slide show depicting the C-17s carrying M-ATVs into Afghanistan.

An interview with LtCol Dehner, USMC, about the new helmet designed for F-35 pilots.

For your consideration.


Michael M. Dunn
Air Force Association

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