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August 01, 2001

Aug. 1, 2001 -- The Bush administration's increased emphasis on military space and missile defense programs bodes well for Orbital Sciences Corp., the company's chairman and chief executive officer said today.

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July 31, 2001

P> DDR&E Nominee Calls 3 Percent S&T Spending Goal 'Adequate and Realistic'

July 31, 2001 -- The administration's nominee for defense research and engineering director said today that the Defense Department's intent to increase science and technology spending to 3 percent of the defense budget is a realistic goal, but added that DOD must continue to balance S&T needs with other budget requirements.

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July 31, 2001 -- The White House Office of Management & Budget is circulating a draft base closure bill that lays out a process similar to previous BRAC rounds and doesn't appear to change any of the environmental requirements the military must adhere to in cleaning up closing bases, according to a source familiar with the document. Last week, a Pentagon spokesman said DOD hoped to send legislative guidelines on new base closings to Congress before its August recess.

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July 31, 2001 -- The Defense Department has awarded Boeing a $485 million contract for the engineering and manufacturing development of the C-130 Avionics Modernization Program, as well as a separate $1 billion contract for aircraft modifications, support, and other services that will complement the AMP upgrades, according to a July 30 DOD statement.

In June, the Air Force announced that Boeing was chosen, pending Defense Acquisition Board approval, for the C-130 AMP program. Boeing beat Lockheed Martin, the C-130's manufacturer, as well as BAE Systems and Raytheon.

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July 31, 2001 -- U.S. and British military aircraft patrolling the no-fly zone above southern Iraq have seen a sharp increase in the number of instances this year in which Iraqi forces attempted to shoot them down compared to the year before, a Pentagon official said today.

Iraqi anti-aircraft batteries -- be they gun or missile -- "have shown over the course of all of calendar year 2001 a considerably more aggressive stance in trying to bring down a coalition aircraft," Defense Department spokesman Rear Adm. Craig Quigley said.

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July 31, 2001 -- A Pentagon panel has found that certain aspects of the Bush administration's national missile defense plans may not be compliant with the 1972 Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty, a Defense Department official said today.

DOD spokesman Rear Adm. Craig Quigley told reporters that the Pentagon's ABM Treaty Compliance Group "found some instances where there is at least a question in the review group's mind as to whether or not the proposed activity would remain in compliance with the treaty."

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July 30, 2001

July 30, 2001 -- Egypt has asked to continue its coproduction of M1A1 Abrams tanks, the Defense Security Cooperation Agency said late last week.

The proposed deal would cover 100 M1A1 kits and other equipment for a total estimated cost of $590 million, according to the agency, which informed Congress of the request July 27.

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July 30, 2001 -- Fitch Inc., a debt rating agency, said Friday that it has assigned United Defense LP a debt rating indicating some credit risk after the company took out three loans totaling $850 million. Fitch cited concerns over the company's vulnerability to the Defense Department's ongoing review of major acquisition programs including the Bradley, Crusader and DD-21.

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July 30, 2001 -- Northrop Grumman's navigation systems division will provide data terminals for the British Bowman battlefield communications system, the company announced today. Northrop Grumman will provide the terminals under a teaming agreement with CDC Systems U.K.

The deal could be worth more than $180 million for Northrop, depending on customer requirements and options, according to the July 30 statement.

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July 27, 2001

July 27, 2001 -- An Army initiative to fully staff all active units has met with mixed results, according to a General Accounting Office report released today.

GAO evaluated an initiative created by Army Chief of Staff Gen. Eric Shinseki in October 1999 to staff all active units at 100 percent with personnel at authorized grades and skills over fiscal years 2000-2003.

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July 27, 2001 -- The Defense Department told Congress this week that it has declared three weapons of mass destruction civil support teams "fully mission capable."

The teams, designed to respond to terrorist attacks involving nuclear, biological or chemical weapons, engendered controversy earlier this year when the Defense Department inspector general released a report declaring the program was plagued by management, doctrine, training and certification problems.

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July 27, 2001 -- Three House democrats today ratcheted up their opposition to building a new site for the National Missile Defense system at Ft. Greely, AK, telling the Pentagon's top missile defense official that the Defense Department should not use fiscal year 2001 military construction funding to begin breaking ground until Congress has had time to consider the legal and environmental implications of building such a site.

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July 26, 2001

July 26, 2001-- Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld has begun turning his attention to major weapon systems after six months of reviewing military strategy and budget priorities, according to Pentagon officials.

Rumsfeld continues to refrain from making major decisions on the future of those systems while awaiting the results of the Quadrennial Defense Review, Defense Department spokesman Rear Adm. Craig Quigley told InsideDefense.com today.

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July 25, 2001

July 25, 2001 -- The Air Force is considering a reduced presence in Iceland as a means of saving money, the service secretary told lawmakers today.

During budget drills earlier this year, the Air Force considered a total of seven major cost-saving moves before deciding on only two for the fiscal year 2002 budget request, Air Force Secretary James Roche told the Senate Armed Services strategic forces subcommittee. A reduction of the Air Force presence in Iceland was one of the deferred proposals, he said, and the move likely will be pushed during next year's budget cycle.

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July 25, 2001 -- The president has nominated Adm. James Ellis for the position of commander in chief of U.S. Strategic Command, the Defense Department announced today.

Ellis is the commander of U.S. naval forces in Europe and commander-in-chief of Allied Forces, Southern Europe. If confirmed for the STRATCOM post, he would replace Adm. Richard Mies, who has been at the command since June 1998.

A STRATCOM spokesman could not say immediately what Mies will do next.

STRATCOM is headquartered at Offutt Air Force Base, NE.

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July 25, 2001 -- The deputy director of the Defense Modeling and Simulation Office will assume the role of director in September, the agency announced.

Capt. Michael Lilienthal, the deputy since May 24, 1999, will take over for Army Col. Forrest Crain on Sept. 4, according to a DMSO statement.

This will be Lilienthal's second tour of duty as director; he led the office, which was founded in 1991, in the early 1990s, the statement notes.

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July 25, 2001 -- Sen. Joseph Biden (D-DE), chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, said today he will pursue an aggressive and wide-ranging agenda in panel hearings this fall. Those hearings will continue Biden's examination of the Bush administration's missile defense plans as well as other national security threats the senator feels are not getting enough attention in light of the focus on missile defense, a Biden spokesman told InsideDefense.com.

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July 24, 2001

July 24, 2001 -- Pentagon officials do not know when they will lift the current restriction to public access computer sites as they continue to battle the "Code Red" computer worm, Pentagon spokesman Rear Adm. Craig Quigley said today.

The Defense Department's information condition was raised one step last Friday from normal to Alpha, he told reporters.

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July 23, 2001

July 23, 2001 -- The Pentagon's upper ranks were fleshed out a bit more late last week with the swearing-in of a new operational test and evaluation director and deputy under secretary of defense for logistics and readiness.

Thomas Christie started work in the OT&E slot late last week. He replaces the outspoken Philip Coyle, who left the office in January.

Diane Morales is the new logistics and readiness deputy to Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition, Technology and Logistics Pete Aldridge, the Defense Department announced today.

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July 20, 2001

July 20, 2001 -- The Defense Department announced yesterday it has selected six foreign systems for consideration under the Foreign Comparative Test program, including a multi-bandwidth submarine antenna and a driver's vision enhancer the Army will consider.

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