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Daily News

November 10, 1999

Nov. 10, 1999 - Army officials expect to spend $13.5 million to replace a bearing assembly in the tails of about 400 Apache helicopters, a job that should take between eight and 10 months, a Defense Department spokesman said yesterday.

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Nov. 10, 1999 - House and Senate lawmakers have created an independent commission to perform a top-to-bottom review of the National Reconnaissance Office, the secretive DOD organization that buys and operates the nation's spy satellites.

The goal of the 11-member commission is to ensure that the U.S. intelligence community is acquiring "the most efficient, technologically capable, and economical satellite collection systems," according to language included in the recently released fiscal year 2000 intelligence authorization conference report.

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CHINA

Nov. 10, 1999 - Sens. James Inhofe (R-OK) and Bob Smith (R-NH) are asking the Pentagon for several documents related to retired Adm. Joseph Prueher's dealings with China when he was the commander of all U.S. forces in the Pacific. Prueher is President Bill Clinton's nominee to be the next ambassador to China and was approved by the Senate Foreign Relations Committee on Nov. 3. No date has been set for a full Senate vote on the nomination.

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Nov. 10, 1999 - South Korea has asked to buy $4.2 billion worth of Patriot Advanced Capability-3 missile systems, according to the Defense Department. The potential foreign military sale was one of three announced by the Pentagon yesterday.

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November 09, 1999

The Army's Multiple Launch Rocket System, built by Lockheed Martin, was successfully test-fired last week using a European-produced AT-2 rocket, the company said in a statement.

The M270A1 version of the MLRS launcher, which features improved fire control and mechanical systems, fired six of the German AT-2 rockets "to demonstrate the ability of the improved launcher to fire the munition," the statement added. "This was the first time the rockets have been fired from the improved MLRS M270A1 launcher."

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November 08, 1999

Sen. Tim Hutchinson (R-AK) today (Nov. 8) was named the chairman of the Senate Armed Services personnel subcommittee, his first chairmanship.

"The personnel subcommittee oversees many of the military's most critical issues, including recruitment and retention," Hutchinson said in a statement. "I'm looking forward to the challenges and responsibilities of chairing this committee and playing an active role in strengthening our armed forces."

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Northrop Grumman announced late last week that it successfully completed live-fire tests of an advanced, laser-based Directional Infrared Countermeasures (DIRCM) system.

The tests of the Wanda/Viper/Multi-Imaging Multi-Spectral configuration of the DIRCM system were conducted between Sept. 30 and Oct. 22 at the Army's White Sands Missile Range in New Mexico.

"Data confirm that the system met and exceeded all expectations," the contractor said in a Nov. 4 statement.

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The Army announced today (Nov. 8) that its fleet of Apache helicopters will "undergo a one-time inspection and possible replacement" of a tail rotor system component cited as the cause of a January crash that resulted in the loss of a helicopter and minor injuries to two crew members.

The inspection and replacement initiative may keep half the Apache fleet grounded for a year, Inside the Army reported today. Late last week, the service was preparing a safety-of-flight message mandating inspection before any aircraft can be flown again, according to ITA.

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