Updates on Libyan war/Stop NATO news: August 17, 2011

17 August 2011 — Stop NATO

  • Lockheed, MEADS Unveil European Interceptor Missile Battle Manager
  • South Korea Builds Supersonic Cruise Missiles To Strike Aircraft Carriers
  • South Korea To Deploy Powerful Anti-Submarine Missiles On Aegis Class Destroyers
  • Warfighting Capabilities: U.S. Applies Afghan, Iraqi Combat Experience In Massive South Korean War Games
  • Raytheon, Rafael Market U.S.-Compatible Israeli Missile Shield
  • U.S. Shelling Injures Nine Afghan Civilians, Including Seven Girls
  • Obama Dispatches AFRICOM Commander To Nigeria For Gulf Of Guinea Counterinsurgency
  • Italy: U.S. Army Africa Commander Meets With Angolan Counterpart
  • Czech Soldiers Decorated For NATO Missions In Afghanistan, Kosovo
  • Romania: Israeli Air Force Resumes Joint Training
  • Saudi Arabia, Israel: Germany Multiplies Weapons Sales In Middle East
  • Looking More Like Mussolini Every Day

Lockheed, MEADS Unveil European Interceptor Missile Battle Manager


August 16, 2011

Lockheed, MEADS officials unveil missile defense Battle Manager

HUNTSVILLE AL: Lockheed Martin and MEADS officials unveiled what they called the future of air and missile defense Tuesday in Huntsville. Much of its development was completed in North Alabama.

Developers called it the brains of the Medium Extended Air Defense System (MEADS). The Army and the Pentagon have wrangled over whether to complete the replacement for the Patriot Air Defense System, but Lockheed Martin’s ‘Battle Manager’ will soon be tested.

They rolled out the [?] for the space and missile defense conference at the Von Braun Center. Lockheed and government officials said it can detect threats in airspace, coordinate missile launchers on other tactical vehicles, and military personnel inside can make the decisions.

‘Much greater capability in terms of 360 degree coverage. Much greater capability in terms of reduced strategic lift. When you respond somewhere else in the world, you have to take this and deploy it on aircraft. The fewer aircraft used, the better off we are. We have greatly decreased the air lift requirements to deploy a MEADS system,’ said John Holly, Lockheed’s Vice President of Missile Defense Systems.

The Battle Manager is a joint project between the United States, Italy and Germany, with software development and integration done at Research Park…

Lockheed Martin and MEADS officials people said the Battle Manager has 360 degree detection capability, and can cover eight times the defended area at half the cost while using fewer military personnel.

Testing will begin at the White Sands Missile Range in New Mexico in 2012.


South Korea Builds Supersonic Cruise Missiles To Strike Aircraft Carriers


Chosun Ilbo
August 17, 2011

Supersonic Cruise Missile in Development

[Of course North Korea has no aircraft carriers…though China is now developing one.]

South Korea is developing a supersonic cruise missile that can be used to attack aircraft carriers, Aegis ships and up-to-date destroyers.

‘Think tanks like the Agency for Defense Development have been developing a supersonic anti-ship cruise missile for some years now. They’re expected to complete development in three to four years at the earliest,’ a government source said Tuesday.

The missile under development is modeled after Russia’s powerful Yakhont missile, which is 8.9 m long and weighs 3 tons, but will be smaller, the source added. It will be able to reach speeds of up to Mach 2.5, with a range of 250-300 km.

Currently, the Navy has homegrown Haesung ship-to-ship missiles with a range of 150 km and the American-made Harpoon anti-ship missiles with the same range. But they can be intercepted by short-range anti-aircraft missiles or machine guns, as they fly slower than the speed of sound.

But supersonic missiles are harder to intercept as they fly fast a few meters above the surface. Russia has been developing various models to respond to American aircraft carriers. China and Japan already have such missiles or are developing them.

The missile South Korea is developing will also be capable of hitting targets on the ground, including North Korean coastal artillery batteries and long-range artillery.


South Korea To Deploy Powerful Anti-Submarine Missiles On Aegis Class Destroyers


Korea Herald
August 15, 2011

S. Korea to deploy powerful anti-sub missile this month

-Some military experts pointed out that the new missiles are of crucial importance particularly at a time China has been beefing up its naval capabilities. China has recently tested its first aircraft carrier Varyag…Under a project, codenamed KDX-III, South Korea has built three 7,600-ton Aegis destroyers to become the centerpiece of its strategic mobile…

A Korean-made powerful anti-submarine missile is expected to be deployed on one of the Navy’s Aegis-equipped destroyers later this month in a move to bolster its maritime defense capabilities.

Dubbed a ‘submarine killer,’ the Hongsangeo missile with a range of 30 kilometers is regarded as one of South Korea’s key strategic weapons…Hongsangeo means red shark in Korean.

‘Late last month, the Navy finished the installment of the launch system for Hongsangeo missiles on the destroyer, the Sejong the Great. Starting from Aug. 8, it began its final tests (on the system),’ Rep. Song Young-sun of the minority Future Hope Alliance party said in a press release.

‘Should there be any problems with the test results, the missile is to be deployed on it later this month. As it has a range of 30 kilometers, its operational deployment has a great meaning (in terms of maritime security).’

Song belongs to the National Assembly’s National Defense Committee.

Some military experts pointed out that the new missiles are of crucial importance particularly at a time China has been beefing up its naval capabilities. China has recently tested its first aircraft carrier Varyag…

In collaboration with LIG Nex1, a local defense firm, the state-funded Agency for Defense Development spent nine years developing the missile since 2000 with a budget of 100 billion won ($92.5 million).

After launch, the missile flies to the area above where the target submarine is operating. The missile then deploys a torpedo, which then dives into the water to track and destroy the target submarine. The 5.7-meter-long missile carries a price tag of around 2 billion won.

The Navy reportedly seeks to deploy the Hongsangeo missile on the country’s second Aegis destroyer, the Yulgok Yi Yi, by the end of this year and on the third one, the Seoae Ryu Seong-ryong, next year.

Under a project, codenamed KDX-III, South Korea has built three 7,600-ton Aegis destroyers to become the centerpiece of its strategic mobile…


Warfighting Capabilities: U.S. Applies Afghan, Iraqi Combat Experience In Massive South Korean War Games


U.S. Army
August 15, 2011

Eighth Army trains for full-spectrum operations in UFG
By Walter T. Ham IV, Eighth Army Public Affairs

Eighth Army will hone its full-spectrum warfighting capabilities during Exercise Ulchi Freedom Guardian, Aug. 16-26, 2011, in South Korea

YONGSAN GARRISON, South Korea: The U.S. Army’s top operational headquarters in South Korea will train with its Republic of Korea counterparts to confront and defeat a variety of external threats during Exercise Ulchi Freedom Guardian, Aug. 16-26.

Eighth Army, together with its Republic of Korea, or ROK, allies and joint partners, will train for full-spectrum operations through multiple computer-based scenarios which include mission command, sustainment, and protection against chemical, biological, nuclear and radiological threats.

Ulchi Freedom Guardian, or UFG, is an annual command post exercise that will also leverage the lessons learned from the U.S. military’s combat operations in Iraq and Afghanistan.

‘UFG provides us the opportunity to hone our warfighting capabilities, train new team members, enhance the interoperability of the United States and Republic of Korea military forces, and continue to improve the combat readiness of the alliance,’ said Eighth Army Commanding General Lt. Gen. John D. Johnson.

UFG is one of the largest computer simulation exercises in world, involving units and personnel from bases in the United States and across the Pacific region.

The exercise is named after Ulchi Mundeok, an early Korean military leader.


Raytheon, Rafael Market U.S.-Compatible Israeli Missile Shield


August 16, 2011

Raytheon Teams with Rafael to Market Iron Dome Weapon System

-Raytheon and Rafael are also teaming on the David Sling Weapon System, which is a mobile, land-based missile defense program, and the Blue Sparrow missile defense targets program.

TUCSON, Ariz. – Raytheon Company and Rafael Advanced Defense Systems Ltd have teamed to market the Iron Dome weapon system in the United States. Rafael developed the original Iron Dome to provide protection against rockets, artillery and mortar attacks.

The program has completed flight test trials, and the weapon system is currently used in Israeli population centers…based on an Israeli Ministry of Defence decision.

‘Iron Dome complements other Raytheon weapons that provide intercept capabilities to the U.S. Army’s Counter Rocket, Artillery, and Mortar initiative at forward operating bases,’ said Mike Booen, vice president of Raytheon Missile Systems’ Advanced Security and Directed Energy Systems product line. ‘Iron Dome can be seamlessly integrated with Raytheon’s C-RAM systems to complete the layered defense.’

Raytheon and Rafael are also teaming on the David Sling Weapon System, which is a mobile, land-based missile defense program, and the Blue Sparrow missile defense targets program.

‘The Iron Dome teaming builds on our decade-long, ongoing cooperation with Raytheon Missile Systems to provide air and missile defense solutions,’ said David Stemer, Rafael executive vice president and general manager of Rafael’s Missile Division. ‘Iron Dome delivers a leap-ahead, affordable capability for future customers.’

Rafael designs, develops, manufactures and supplies a wide range of advanced defense systems. These leading edge products include naval, air and ground precision weapons, electro-optic systems, electronic warfare systems, C4I and unmanned systems, acoustic defense systems, armored protection, breaching munitions and space technologies.


U.S. Shelling Injures Nine Afghan Civilians, Including Seven Girls


Pajhwok Afghan News
August 16, 2011

A dozen civilians injured in Kunar clash
By Khan Wali Salarzai

ASADABAD: A dozen civilians, including women and children, were wounded during a clash between Taliban and international troops in the eastern province of Kunar, officials said on Tuesday.

The incident took place late on Monday night when militants stormed an International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) base from a nearby mountain in the Qalawoon area of Narang district.

Governor Syed Fazlullah Wahidi told Pajhwok Afghan News some shells landed in civilian houses, injuring six children, four women and two men. He would not say who fired the shells.

Asadabad Civil Hospital Director Dr. Farooq Sahak confirmed receiving 12 injured people from the district. The wounded were in stable condition, he added.

Shells fired by US troops landed in two houses, including one of a government servant, wounding seven girls and two men, said Dr. Momin, the victims’ attendant.

Area people, meanwhile, urged militants and ISAF troops not to clash near residential areas.

The ISAF media office in eastern Afghanistan said the troops targeted the area from where they were attacked. The civilians were injured by Taliban-fired shells, it alleged.

A Taliban spokesman, Zabihullah Mujahid, claimed NATO-led troops had suffered casualties in the attack. The soldiers targeted civilians in retaliatory fire, he said.


Obama Dispatches AFRICOM Commander To Nigeria For Gulf Of Guinea Counterinsurgency


Nigerian Bulletin
August 16, 2011

Security: Obama dispatches Army Chief to Nigeria – Tribune

The commander of the United States Africa Command (AFRICOM), General Carter F. Ham, dispatched to Nigeria by President Barack Obama to get first-hand information on Nigeria’s defence and security-related challenges, arrived in the country on Monday.

The arrival of the army chief was confirmed to the Nigerian Tribune by the US Embassy in Abuja. He took over command of AFRICOM on March 9, 2011.

The itinerary of General Ham revealed that he will hold a high-level meeting with Nigeria’s top military chiefs, including Minister of Defence, Dr Bello Mohammed and the Chief of Defence Staff, Air Chief Marshal Oluseyi Petinrin.



Daily Trusr
August 16, 2011

Insurgency – U.S. Pledges Support for Military
Misbahu Bashir

The Commander of the United States-Africa Command (AFRICOM) General Carter F. Ham said the US is prepared to train the Nigerian armed forces on how to tackle insurgency.

The military join task force was accused of using excessive force in handling militancy in the Niger Delta region and the Boko Haram unrest in Maiduguri.

General Ham said yesterday at a press briefing in Abuja there are ranges of options for the security agents to look at in handling civil strife…

He said the US is willing to conduct joint operations with Nigerian military on handling civil strife ‘if Nigeria wants.’

General Ham has held discussions with the National Security Adviser Andrew Azazi and is expected to also to meet with the authorities of the defence ministry, the chief of defence staff as well as the leadership of the ECOWAS peace and security directorate.

The discussions will provide the Commander facts of the US-Nigeria military relationship and Nigeria’s military priorities for the future.

The AFRICOM conducts joint exercise s with Nigerian armed forces to improve military operations and conduct. He said the Command is currently working together with the navy to provide security in the Gulf of Guinea.


Italy: U.S. Army Africa Commander Meets With Angolan Counterpart


U.S. Army Africa
August 16, 2011

Angolan military leader sits down with U.S. Army Africa command team
By Mindy Anderson, U.S. Army Africa Public Affairs

VICENZA, Italy: To mark the beginning of a growing relationship with Angola, General Lucio Amaral, commander of the Angolan Land Forces, recently spent three days with U.S. Army Africa Commander Maj. Gen. David R. Hogg at Caserma Ederle in Vicenza, Italy.

Amaral participated in three briefings, met with 173rd Airborne Brigade Combat Team Soldiers, and made site visits to USARAF’s Skills Engagement Center, Contingency Command Post, and the Current Operations Integration Center.

‘Angola is a very important country in south central Africa, and because of their history we haven’t really done a lot with them,’ said Lt. Col. Ulises Calvo, desk officer with USARAF’s Security Cooperation Directorate.

‘We hope that’s going to change this year, and if you look at the activities we have planned for the next couple of years with them, I think it’s the start of a good, growing relationship,’ he said.


Czech Soldiers Decorated For NATO Missions In Afghanistan, Kosovo


Czech News Agency
August 16, 2011

Czech troops decorated after return from Afghanistan, Kosovo

-Deputy Defence Minister Michael Hrbata who decorated the soldiers said more than 2000 Czech troops took part in the military´s foreign missions last year. In Afghanistan, there are about 700 Czech troops now, he said.

Namest nad Oslavou: Forty Czech soldiers who have returned from the Afghan and Kosovo missions were decorated at the Namest air base today.

Nineteen Czech pilots spent the past four months in Kabul, training local pilots on the helicopters of the Afghan National Army.

Rudolf Straka, commander of the Czech pilots, said his team operated at Kabul airport.

He said the security situation started worsening after the departure of the coalition armies was announced.

Straka was deployed in Afghanistan for a third time, before this he operated in Bosnia and Herzegovina…

Two of the Czech pilots suffered light injuries when their helicopter had an accident. When they were landing, the helicopter got into a dust cloud.

Deputy Defence Minister Michael Hrbata who decorated the soldiers said more than 2000 Czech troops took part in the military´s foreign missions last year. In Afghanistan, there are about 700 Czech troops now, he said.


Romania: Israeli Air Force Resumes Joint Training


Romania Business Insider
August 16, 2011

Israeli Air Force, back to Romania for training after helicopter crash last year
Irina Popescu

The Israeli Air Force returned to Romania earlier this month for training in joint Israel-Romania aviation exercises, for the first time since an Israeli military helicopter crashed in Romania last year, according to the Israel Defense Forces (IDF). The training exercises took place across Romania and in the Carpathian Mountains. Throughout the two-week joint aviation exercises, the Israel Air Force’s Hercules squadrons mastered mountain navigation in the face of complex, unfamiliar topography and irregular weather, according to IDF.

In 2010, a Sikorsky helicopter crashed in the Romanian Carpathian Mountains, causing the death of six IDF soldiers and one Romanian soldier. Sikorsky squadrons did not participate in this summer’s joint aviation exercises held in Romania.


Saudi Arabia, Israel: Germany Multiplies Weapons Sales In Middle East


United Press International
August 15, 2011

Germany boosts arms sales to Mideast

BEIRUT, Lebanon: All of a sudden, it seems, Germany has become a key arms supplier in the Middle East despite stringent export controls that have inhibited weapons sales in the past.

Germany is providing 200 Leopard 2A7+ main battle tanks built by Munich’s Krauss-Maffei Wegmann and Rheinmetall to Saudi Arabia as well as Dolphin-class submarines produced by Howaldtswerke Deutsche Werft of Kiel, owned by ThyssenKrupp, to Israel.

And now, in a bizarre twist, Israel and Germany are jointly developing the Pilum smart air-to-ground missiles to be sold with the Eurofighter jet in service with Saudi Arabia and other countries.

The Eurofighter, also known as the Typhoon, is produced by a consortium of British, German, Italian and Spanish companies.

NATO forces employ the twin-engined Eurofighters for their air campaign against Gadhafi’s beleaguered regime.

These days, 70 percent of German defense manufacturers’ products are sold abroad.

The Stockholm International Peace Research Institute, which monitors global arms sales, says Germany ranks third among top arms suppliers after the United States and Russia.

Figures released by the Berlin government indicate Saudi Arabia, one of the world’s most prolific arms buyers, has been among Germany’s top 20 military customers even though its main source of arms is the United States and Germany considers the Middle East a conflict zone.

‘Deals involving the export of missile parts, machine guns, munitions and artillery shells to Riyadh were approved – even in the years when Germany was led by a coalition government made up of the center-left Social Democrats and the Green Party in 1988-2005,’ the German news magazine Der Spiegel observed in July.

But the Leopard tank deal, unveiled in July, a month after it was quietly approved by Merkel’s government, was a game-changer.

The Leopard contract alone is worth an estimated $2.85 billion. That’s about one-fifth the value of all Germany’s global arms exports in 2009, of which arms sales to Saudi Arabia totaled $167.9 million.

There were questions that the deal could jeopardize Germany’s delicate relations with Israel, which remain heavily influenced by the Holocaust.

German media even mused whether Berlin had sought Israel’s approval for the tank deal, as it had with the United States. Israel has been non-committal on the issue.

Israeli Deputy Foreign Minister Danny Ayalon said during a visit to Berlin: ‘It’s in the nature of such matters that one does not speak about them publicly. But I can assure you we fully and completely trust Germany’s government.’

That’s no doubt because Merkel’s coalition is supplying Israel’s expanding navy with three more Dolphin submarines, reputedly capable of launching nuclear-tipped cruise missiles, at heavy discounts.

These will double the strength of Israel’s submarine fleet and reinforce its strategic reach, particularly against Iran.

The Jerusalem Post said Israeli defense analysts don’t see the Leopards as a threat. ‘What ostensibly took place,’ it observed, ‘was that Berlin updated the Israeli government and Israel simply said nothing.’


Looking More Like Mussolini Every Day


Gulf Daily News
July 27, 2011

Looking like Mussolini
By Sherwood Ross

President Obama alleges ‘the tide of war is receding’ in Afghanistan, thus allowing him to reduce US forces there by 10,000 this year, but the fact is Allied strength has been rising, not falling.

That’s because the 10,000 US fighters Obama plans to bring home by the end of this year have been replaced in advance, so to speak, by troop surges of Nato allies and other nations.

What the New York Times of June 23 called Obama’s ‘Rapid Troop Cuts’ is not only hardly ‘rapid’ but is part of an overall strategy for continuing a pointless, illegal, 10-year-long war whose casualty rates are higher than ever!

There are more than 40 countries that have dispatched troops to Afghanistan and a majority have increased their forces since July 2009, according to nation-by-nation reports.

The UK, for example, from July 2009 to June 2011 increased troops from 9,000 to 9,500, up 500; Spain from 780 to 1,550, up 770; Germany from 4,050 to 4,800, up 750; Italy from 2,800 to 3,900, up one,100; Canada, from 2,800 to 3,000, up 200; Czech Republic from 340 to 500, up 160; Bulgaria from 470 to 600, up 130; Poland from 2,000 to 2,500, up 500; Romania, from about 1,000 to 2,000, up 1,000; and France, from 3,100 to 3,900, up 800.

No wonder Obama can make a token withdrawal in force: he has already largely replaced his announced troop cuts for 2011 with foreign fighters.

Some nations convinced by Obama’s open appeals or behind-the-scenes arm-twisting are: Albania, 210; Armenia, 40; Austria, 3; Azerbaijan, 94; Belgium, 507; Bosnia and Herzegovina, 55; Bulgaria, 602; Croatia, 320; Denmark, 750; Estonia, 163; Finland, 156; Georgia, one; Greece, 162; Hungary, 383; Iceland, four; Ireland, seven South Korea, 426; Latvia, 139; Lithuania, 237; and Luxemburg, 11, Macedonia, 163; Malaysia, 31; Mongolia, 74; Montenegro, 36; the Netherlands, 192; New Zealand, 191; Norway, 406; Portugal, 133; Singapore, 21; Slovakia, 308; Slovenia, 80; Sweden, 500; Tonga, 55; Turkey, 1,786; the UAE, 35; and Ukraine, 55. (The Dutch pulled out their troops in December 2010).

Additionally, Obama’s commanders have the support of 94,000 troops of the Afghan National Army and perhaps 100,000 US contractors, thousands of whom are armed.

And if the tide of war is ‘receding,’ as Obama claims, why are civilian casualties at an all-time high? Since Obama took office, Afghan civilian deaths have soared. In 2008, under president Bush, in his last year in office they were 2,118; in 2009, they rose to 2,412; and last year to 2,777. Does this sound to you like the war is winding down?

According to Wikipedia, counting US and International Security Assistance Force deaths, ‘2010 was the deadliest year for foreign military troops since the US invasion in 2001, continuing the trend that has occurred every year since 2003.’ Does this sound to you like the war is winding down?

In its report of June 23, the New York Times says, ‘Most American forces are expect to leave Afghanistan by 2014.’

At the rate Afghan civilians are dying, if past is prologue, Obama’s decision means some 6,000 more civilians are liable to be killed.

Since he said the US had largely achieved its goals in Afghanistan, what is the point of prolonging the war for another three years?

Obama’s plan is not a peace plan. It is a war plan. Ditto for his attacks on Libya, Pakistan and Yemen. He looks more like Mussolini every day.

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