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Daily News

April 02, 2001

April 2, 2001 -- The Army's Tank-Automotive and Armaments Command has awarded General Dynamics Land Systems a $741 million, multiyear contract to deliver 307 upgraded M1A2 Abrams tanks, the company announced today.

GDLS received the first $240 million increment on March 30, and will get the rest in annual increments over the next two years, according to an April 2 company statement.

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April 2, 2001 -- The Navy announced today that it is officially extending the second developmental phase through May for the ship that will serve as the service's 21st century destroyer. The service has given the two contractors competing to build DD-21 a $28 million contract modification to keep working on design and development until the start of phase III.

The end of phase II will result in an award by the Navy to either Litton Ingalls Shipbuilding, which is leading the DD-21 Gold Team, or General Dynamics' Bath Iron Works, which leads the Blue Team.

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April 2, 2001 -- The Army should halt production of its high-tech combat identification system until it can prove the program is affordable, the Defense Department inspector general recommends in a new report.

The Brigade Combat Identification system would be mounted on ground vehicles to help units better distinguish between friend and foe.

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March 30, 2001

March 30, 2001 -- The possible loss of access to a key band of the electromagnetic spectrum is "unacceptable" to the Defense Department, which contends in a report released today that removing military systems from the band could require as much as $4.3 billion in unbudgeted dollars through 2017.

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March 30, 2001 -- Federal Trade Commission officials have given the green light to Northrop Grumman's merger with Litton Corp., Northrop Grumman announced today.

"All U.S. and international governmental and regulatory reviews that are required for the completion of the offer to purchase all outstanding common and preferred stock of Litton have been received," Northrop Grumman said in a statement.

Last week, the companies received merger approval from the European Commission.

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March 30, 2001 -- Lockheed Martin Space Systems today announced the successful test of a component of the Airborne Laser's Beam Control/Fire Control system.

The company's subcontractor, Raytheon Electric Systems, conducted a "first light" test of the Track Illuminator Laser (TILL) one week ahead of schedule at its High Energy Laser Center in El Segundo, CA. The TILL is one of four lasers that comprise the ABL, and is the first solid-state laser to undergo such a test, Lockheed Martin said in a statement.

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March 30, 2001 -- The Defense Department announced today that Lockheed Martin has won a $110 million contract for improvements to 12 NAVSTAR global positioning system satellites, changes that will incorporate a new military signal on the satellites.

The changes will be made to the GPS block IIR satellites, according to DOD's announcement. "This modification will incorporate a second civil signal and a new military signal into the system," DOD said.

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March 30, 2001 -- The General Accounting Office has found serious problems with the Pentagon's central program for promoting and enhancing department-wide information security, according to a new report released today.

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March 29, 2001

March 29,2001 -- The chorus of voices calling for a fiscal year 2001 defense supplemental bill is growing louder. Yesterday, Rep. Ike Skelton (D-MO), ranking member on the House Armed Services Committee, said the military needs "an immediate supplemental" spending bill to keep operating and training.

During a floor speech, Skelton said he recently visited military installations along the West Coast and came back "all the more convinced of the need for a supplemental appropriation now."

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March 29, 2001 -- The Defense Department has awarded ITT a $121 million contract for the operation, maintenance and repair of communications facilities in the Middle East.

According to a Pentagon announcement, the contract, awarded March 23, covers support for a variety of Internet, e-mail and communications services at facilities in Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Qatar and Bahrain. It is scheduled to last through May 31, 2005.

ITT Industries' Systems Division of Colorado Springs, CO, won the deal, for which $12.8 million has been obligated.

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March 29, 2001 -- Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld announced today that President Bush has chosen Rear Adm. Keith Lippert to lead the Defense Logistics Agency.

Lippert, the commander of Naval Supply Systems Command and chief of the Supply Corps, will receive a third star if confirmed for the DLA post at Ft. Belvoir, VA. He will replace Lt. Gen. Henry Glisson at DLA. Glisson's next assignment has not been announced.

Lippert became commander of NAVSUP in August 1999 after serving as vice commander for two years.

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March 29, 2001 -- The Army's Patriot Advanced Capability-3 missile is scheduled to return to the air this weekend, the service said today.

The Army hopes two PAC-3 missiles can shoot down a Hera target missile and an older Patriot missile "configured as a target," the service said in a statement.

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March 29, 2001 -- Rep. Ike Skelton (D-MO) today threw his hat in the homeland security ring by introducing legislation he says would help the United States prepare a strategy to defend against domestic terrorist attacks.

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March 29, 2001 -- Oshkosh Truck Corp. has won a contract that could be worth $1 billion for various heavy trucks and trailers from the Army, the Defense Department announced today.

The sole-source deal, awarded by the Army's Tank-Automotive and Armaments Command, Warren, MI, starts out with $120.7 million but has a potential value of exactly $1 billion, according to DOD.

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March 29, 2001 -- Boeing's Joint Strike Fighter team announced today that it has successfully flown its X-32B short takeoff and vertical landing demonstrator for the first time.

The STOVL version of the JSF is slated for use by the Marine Corps and probably the Royal Air Force and Royal Navy. Boeing and Lockheed Martin are vying to become the prime contractor for the massive program.

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March 28, 2001

March 28, 2001 -- The White House opposes legislation introduced in the House last week by Rep. Mac Thornberry (R-TX) that would create a new federal agency tasked with preventing and reacting to terrorist attacks, a White House source told Inside the Navy this week.

The source told ITN in a March 26 interview that, in addition to concerns over the bill's "narrow" focus on domestic issues, the White House needs more time to decide on an approach to domestic terrorism.

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March 28, 2001 -- In putting together the fiscal year 2001 defense budget request last year, Pentagon budget planners were counting on a supplemental appropriations bill to supply funding to carry some commands through the final two quarters of the fiscal year, Pacific Command Commander-in-Chief Adm. Dennis Blair told a Senate committee this morning.

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March 28, 2001 -- The House today approved a Republican budget resolution for fiscal year 2002 that increases defense spending by $14.6 billion above FY-01 levels. The budget plan passed by a 222-205 vote.

The resolution tracks closely with the budget plan sent to Congress by President Bush last month. As did the Bush budget, the House budget adds $2.6 billion to defense research and development spending.

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March 28, 2001 -- The Defense Department should consider creating a different triad of capabilities to destroy strategic targets that de-emphasizes but does not eliminate nuclear weapons, the Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments said today.

A "residual nuclear strike" capability would be retained as one strategic triad leg, but would be joined by electronic strike and conventional strike as new legs, according to a proposal outlined in the report "Transformation of Strategic-Strike Operations."

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March 27, 2001

March 27, 2001 -- China's purchase and possible use of Russian-built Sunburn anti-ship missiles is not affecting the operations of the Navy's 7th Fleet in the Taiwan Straits, the commander of U.S. military forces in the Pacific told a Senate committee today.

China took possession of 16 Sunburn missiles in 1998 when it bought two Sovremennyy destroyers from Russia. Sunburn missiles travel at twice the speed of sound while skimming above the ocean's surface. Their ability to maneuver in flight makes them extremely difficult to track and destroy.

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