21 February 2018

The story of ‘Sher Bachha’: braveheart soldier who saved Poonch

By Lt Gen H S Panag

Nestled between the Betar Nala to the west and Poonch river to the south, Poonch is a historical town along the Line of Control in Jammu and Kashmir. It’s a place that occupies an important place in our military history and also one that has produced some legendary characters, including two unforgettable members of the Indian Army, who were in their own way the Rajas of Poonch.

Our logistics base for 4 Sikh in Poonch was near the old palace of its former King that was designed like a European castle. Our Officers' Mess was called Joginder Mahal and was located in the house of a former jagirdar. Outside Joginder Mahal, under a Chinar tree, were the quarters of Havaldar Raja Singh, the unit mascot of 4 Sikh - a six-foot tall (when standing), 250 kg Himalayan black bear!

State of Play: Insurgencies in India’s Northeast

Bibhu Prasad Routray

Amid relative tranquility, little rebellions are continuing in India’s northeastern region. Headed by recalcitrant rebel leaders, some of whom have no inhibitions in aligning their ambitions with that of the anti-India policies of neighbouring countries, these movements have been responsible for the occasional acts of violence and a more persisting problem of disruption and instability. Directionless and protracted negotiations between the government and the pro-talk insurgencies have not helped. Although insurgency-related fatalities have dipped, for durable peace to return, New Delhi needs to do more. 

Nirav Modi blames PNB

Nirav Modi, at the centre of the ₹11,500 crore banking fraud, has said the Punjab National Bank’s overzealousness has shut the doors on his ability to clear the dues, which he claimed were much lower than the amount stated by the bank.

In a letter to the PNB management, a copy of which PTI has seen, Mr. Modi has pegged the amount that his companies owe the bank at under ₹5,000 crore.

Media frenzy

“The erroneously cited liability resulted in a media frenzy which led to immediate search and seizure of operations, and which in turn resulted in Firestar International and Firestar Diamond International effectively ceasing to be going-concerns. This jeopardised our ability to discharge the dues of the group to the banks,” said Mr. Modi, who left the country along with his family in the first week of January.

Eye on China — 16/02/2018

Ni hao! Welcome to Eye on China, a weekly bulletin offering news and analysis related to the Middle Kingdom.

I. The Lead:

Inspections and resolutions:It’s the holiday season in China with Friday being the first day of the new Year of the Dog. Ahead of the the Spring Festival celebration, President Xi Jinping carried out a series of inspection visits. These essentially offer an opportunity to interact with people and indicate areas of priority. Xi visited a military base in Sichuan Provinceinteracting with servicemen and women. While at the base, he also stepped out to look at the launch site from where the BeiDou-3 satellites were to be sent into orbit. He talked about military modernisation and also chatted via video conference with soldiers stationed at an island in the Paracels.

Noise warfare

By Leah Burrows

In his 5th century treatise on war, Sun Tzu famously proclaimed “If you know your enemy and you know yourself, you will be victorious in numerous battles.” Of course, Sun Tzu was fighting with swords and arrows, not keystrokes and algorithms, but the principle is just as applicable to cyber warfare as it was to ancient Chinese battlefields.

Among the most vulnerable targets in cyberwarfare are deep neural networks. These deep-learning machines are vital for computer vision — including in autonomous vehicles — speech recognition, robotics and more.

China's Military Modernization Challenges US Air Power - Report

China is poised to challenge American air dominance and has already shown itself to be a formidable naval power, according to a newly published report.

In a press launch for its annual “Military Balance” report published on Wednesday, the International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS) highlighted the rapid modernization of Chinese land and naval forces and described China's progress in aerospace defense as “remarkable.”

Brexit, the US, China and the future of global trade

Anabel Gonzalez

Some years ago, the distinguished economist Richard Baldwin said: “Regional trade liberalisation sweeps the globe like wildfire”. He was right. Preferential trade agreements (PTAs) increased from 20 in 1990 to close to 300 today, and have become a key feature of the international trade policy landscape.

Every country in the world is party to at least one PTA, with Mongolia the last to join the pack when it signed a deal with Japan in 2016. But Brexit, the US withdrawal from the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), and the renegotiation of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) have been a major shock for the world trade system.

Threat Assessment #Fail: Al-Qaida Quietly Growing, By Design


The annual accounting to Congress of global threats to the United States made it sound like al-Qaida’s separate branches were managing to thrive independently of one another, said Bruce Hoffman, Cipher Brief expert and Council on Foreign Relations visiting senior fellow, in comments to The Cipher Brief. But Hoffman believes the Worldwide Threat Assessment presented to Congress Tuesday failed to acknowledge that al-Qaida is following a very careful and deliberate strategy to establish its separate branches as pillars on which to build future growth.

Has Turkey Gone Rogue?


When Secretary of State Rex Tillerson arrives in Ankara on Thursday, he will find Turkey unrecognizable as the ostensibly Muslim democracy and close ally that U.S. officials once held up as a model for the Islamic world. President Recep Tayyip Erdogan is poised to complete his long transformation of Turkey from a raucous -- if imperfect democracy -- to an autocracy, one ruled by caprice and fear.

The once solid U.S.-Turkish relationship has foundered on miscalculations, grievances, and increasingly divergent worldviews.

Europe Ponders How to Curb China's High-Tech Buying Spree

Source Link
By Friso Stevens

Struggling to reconcile stark differences, the Commission’s push to level the playing field is unlikely to make a dent.

Reflecting growing concern among European political elites, the European Think-tank Network on China (ETNC) published a grim report in December detailing the scale, nature, and implications of Chinese foreign direct investment in Europe. The network, consisting of Europe’s 19 leading think tanks, revealed not only a sharp increase in Chinese FDI in numerical terms — from 1.6 billion euros ($2 billion) in 2010 to 35 billion euros ($44 billion) in 2016 — it notably managed to shed light on the qualitative side as well.

Putin’s Shadow Army Suffers a Setback in Syria

By Joshua Yaffa

For the first time in fifty years, U.S. and Russian military forces have engaged in direct combat. Soldiers from the two countries last clashed during the Vietnam War, when Soviet soldiers shot down U.S. warplanes with anti-aircraft weapons. Last week, on February 7th, the two powers met again, when U.S. drones, attack helicopters, and fighter planes struck a contingent of pro-regime fighters near Deir Ezzor, a Kurdish-held city in eastern Syria. As would emerge later, among those killed were up to a hundred Russian citizens who were fighting in Syria as private military contractors, a shadowy mercenary force whose presence in Syria is not officially recognized by the Kremlin.

European Defense vs. NATO: Not the Right Fight


One year into Donald Trump’s presidency, it’s clear this White House isn’t one for carefully picking its battles. And given the president’s appetite for confrontation, it is only matter of time before the U.S. and its allies end up in a pointless fight over EU defense.

A Pentagon official this week criticized the EU’s “common security and defense policy” (CSDP) for pulling forces away from NATO, and the U.S. ambassador to the alliance warned against its provisions to protect European defense companies. This will make for awkward conversations at the Munich Security Conference this week, where the allies intend to push back against talk of a NATO divided under Donald Trump.

The ultimate rent-a-war being fought in Syria

Thomas L. Friedman

Two weeks ago, standing on the Syria-Israel border in the Golan Heights, I wrote a column positing that this frontier was the "second most dangerous" war zone in the world - after the Korean Peninsula.

I'd like to revise and amend that column. Having watched the opening ceremony of the Winter Olympics, where North and South Korean athletes marched last week into the stadium together in a love fest; and having also watched Israel shoot down an Iranian drone from Syria, bomb an Iranian base in Syria and lose one of its own F-16s to a Syrian missile; and after US jets killed a bunch of Russian "contractors" who got too close to our forces in Syria, I now think the Syria-Israel-Lebanon front is the most dangerous corner in the world.

Economic Warfare a Poor Strategy for PLO’s Abbas

By David May

It was a speech that few Middle East observers will forget. During his January 14 tirade before the PLO Central Council, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas delivered a slew of conspiratorial and anti-Semitic comments. Abbas accused Israel of deliberately creating a drug problem among Palestinians and attempted to undermine the Jewish connection to the land of Israel. The Palestinian president also threatened to “publish a blacklist of 150 companies who work with the settlements.” After Abbas’ hours-long oratory, the PLO Central Council declaredthat it would “adopt the BDS movement and call on world countries to impose sanctions on Israel,” referring to Israel as an “apartheid regime.”

Why North Korea and Iran get accused of nuclear collusion

Jim Walsh

Iran and North Korea are often rhetorically linked, most famously in President George W. Bush's 2002 speech in which he labeled them part of an "axis of evil." In practice, however, they have been largely treated as separate challenges for American foreign policy. There are good reasons for this. The Islamic Republic of Iran and the Democratic People's Republic of Korea are in different regions, have different economies and political systems, and affect different sets of US allies.

Looking back at Eisenkot’s three years as IDF chief

Ron Ben Yishai

Analysis: It is still too early to assess Eisenkot’s performance as IDF Chief of Staff; the real test is how well the army he leads performs on the battlefield; However, it can still be said that Eisenkot is an exceptional military leader owing to the impressive amount of objectives, which he set for himself at the start of his term, which were fulfilled.

In the shadow of the latest events in the north, Lieutenant General Gadi Eisenkot is completing his three year term as army Chief of Staff. However, as is often the case, Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman extended his term an additional year. Eisenkot announced though that he will complete his service at the close of 2018, and not wait until February, 2019. 

China Warns It May Retaliate If U.S. Imposes Metal Tariffs

China said proposed U.S. tariffs on imported steel and aluminum products are groundless and that it reserves the right to retaliate if they are imposed.

The U.S. recommendations, unveiled by the Commerce Department on Friday, aren’t consistent with the facts, Wang Hejun, chief of the trade remedy and investigation bureau at China’s Ministry of Commerce, said in a statement posted on its website.

The future of education, according to experts at Davos

The future of work is going to look very different, as automation and Artificial Intelligence make many manual, repetitive jobs obsolete.

According to the McKinsey Global Institute, robots could replace 800 million jobs by 2030, while the World Economic Forum suggests a “skills revolution” could open up a raft of new opportunities.

“If we do not change the way we teach, 30 years from now, we’re going to be in trouble,” said Jack Ma, founder of Alibaba Group, China’s e-commerce giant.

International Hackers Find 106 Bugs in U.S. Air Force Websites

By Jack Corrigan

Breaking into a federal network usually gets you a one-way ticket behind bars, but sometimes hacking the government ends with a paycheck instead of a prison sentence.

The Air Force paid out nearly $104,000 to a cohort of white-hat hackers as part of Hack the Air Force 2.0, the Pentagon’s most recent bug bounty competition. During the 20-day competition, participants uncovered 106 security vulnerabilities across roughly 300 of the branch’s public-facing websites.

The debate over what Cyber Command still needs

By: Mark Pomerleau 

This is the final part of a series exploring the future of Cyber Command. For previous installments, see part one and part two.

As Cyber Command continues to mature, key government watchdogs want to ensure the organization does so in a responsible way.

As part of this effort, the House Armed Services Emerging Threats and Capabilities subcommittee, which oversees cyber, held a classified briefing with the Government Accountability Office in mid January to “discuss ongoing reviews and studies of cyberspace and cybersecurity capabilities of the Department of Defense,” a press release from the committee said.

Here's a great explanation of what the blockchain is from the person tasked with explaining it to the world


Business Insider's Sara Silverstein spoke with Jamie Smith, CEO of the Global Blockchain Business Council, at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. Smith is also the co-chair of the WEF's blockchain council . Following is a transcript of the video.

Sara Silverstein: So tell me what is the purpose of the Global Blockchain Business Council?

Jamie Smith: So the Global Blockchain Business Council is designed to specifically educate regulators on behalf of business so that they can understand what blockchain technology is and why they should care.

Here are 5 predictions for the future of our cities

In 2018, it is all but impossible to know whether you are reading this on a computer screen, mobile phone, or a tablet. However, chances are you are doing so in one of the 150 metropolitan areas that are home to every seventh person alive today.

More than half of us have chosen to live in cities, a figure that is expected to rise to 70% by 2050. In economic terms, the results of urbanization have been nothing but impressive. Cities are accountable for 80% of global GDP. For instance, the Boston-NYC-Washington corridor together with the LA region generates more than 30% of the United States’ annual output.

How can policy keep pace with the Fourth Industrial Revolution?

Agile governance is needed in an era when blockchain and AI are changing life as we know it. 

In today’s era of transformative scientific and technological advances, businesses are not only creating new products and services. They are reshaping industries, blurring geographical boundaries and challenging existing regulatory frameworks.

The Army's next network strategy: halt, fix, pivot

By: Mark Pomerleau 

The Army submitted a report to Congress last month, as mandated by the 2018 defense authorization bill, that requested the Army’s strategy for “modernizing air-land ad-hoc, mobile tactical communications and data networks.”

Following a highly contentious review, the Army announced last year it would make major changes to its tactical network, the $6 billion program known as Warfighter Information Network, citing operational concerns.

Having Your Cake and Eating It Too: The Paradox of Readiness and Modernization in the US Army

By: Eric Altamura

The recently published National Defense Strategy states that, “without sustained and predictable investment to restore readiness and modernize our military to make it fit for our time, we will rapidly lose our military advantage.”[i] Secretary of Defense James Mattis reinforced this point to the Senate Armed Services Committee this past week, testifying that budget uncertainty since the passing of the 2011 Budget Control Act (BCA) has “negatively impacted military readiness” and resulted in a “failure to modernize our military.”[ii]

20 February 2018



NEW DELHI (AP) — India and Iran said Saturday that they would step up cooperation in combatting extremism, terrorism and drug trafficking in Afghanistan in an effort to restore peace and stability to the war-wracked country.

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, right, talks to Iranian President Hassan Rouhani, left, during later's ceremonial reception at the Indian presidential palace in New Delhi, India, Saturday, Feb. 17, 2018. Rouhani, who is on three days state visit to India has strongly criticized the Trump administration's recognition of Jerusalem as Israel's capital and urged Muslims to support the Palestinian cause. Hassan Rouhani also lashed out at the United States for imposing a ban on travelers from six largely Muslim countries. 

What ISRO will spend Rs 107.83 billion on

ISRO needs next generation launchers and new facilities to manufacture and launch them, including a new launch pad at the Sriharikota spaceport.

T E Narasimhan reports.

The Centre has allocated Rs 107.83 billion for the Department of Space for the financial year 2018-2019, against Rs 91.55 billion in the revised estimates for 2017-2018.

The allocation includes about Rs 89.63 billion for various space-related projects of the department, and also the targets to be achieved in the next fiscal year.

While the general perception is that the allocation should be more, considering the fact that the Indian Space Research Organisation is trying to increase its launches, experts pointed out this should be looked at in the backdrop of ISRO's efforts to form partnerships with private companies and the growing revenue of Antrix, the commercial arm of the government space agency.

Pakistan borrows $500 million from China to shore up its reserves

In January, the country took a total of $704 million worth of new loans, taking foreign borrowings to $6.6 billion in just seven months of this fiscal year

Pakistan has contracted another foreign commercial loan of $500 million from the Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (ICBC) to shore up its depleting reserves.

The Express Tribune reported that with the new borrowing the Chinese financial institution's contribution to supporting a strong rupee against the US dollar increased to $1 billion in just three months.

Concerns voiced over ‘hybrid wars’ in region

PESHAWAR: Speakers at a session here on Monday expressed concerns over the ongoing ‘hybrid wars’ at the behest of superpowers in the region.

“No arms, ammunition, tanks and missiles etc are used in hybrid wars by the warring parties but they try to keep each another off-balance,” said Dr Khalilur Rehman.

The in-house discussion on the topic was held at Area Study Centre, University of Peshawar. Dr Khalil said that the idea of hybrid war resided in the grey-zone between black and white, which meant neither war nor peace. He said that it was a low intensity, multidimensional and fifth generation conflict designed to weaken the opponent.

The Backlash to Belt and Road

By Andrew Small

When Beijing announced its One Belt, One Road initiative five years ago, the global reaction was immediate and pronounced. OBOR, as it became known, was hailed as a transformative effort to deploy China’s economic might in service of its strategic goals. By going out of their way to reject analogies to the United States’ Marshall Plan in Europe, Chinese leaders in fact invited the comparison. Chinese ports, pipelines, roads, and railways would expand commercial, investment, and infrastructure linkages from Asia to Europe. They would build new markets, integrate poorly connected regions, and stabilize the Chinese periphery. Ultimately, they would lay the groundwork for a Sinocentric global order.

China’s Rising Profile in South Asia 2018

by Dan Southerland

China has expanded its presence in the Indian Ocean, causing India to respond with a military build-up and far-reaching diplomatic contacts with potential allies.

During and after the time that Indian troops ended a more than two-month-long Himalayan standoff with Chinese soldiers in the remote kingdom of Bhutan’s Doklam Plateau last August, nationalistic feelings have been running high in India.

In what some Indians refer to as “Post-Doklam Development,” India has been ramping up infrastructure projects along its long and poorly demarcated border with China.

Are China’s Arctic endeavours walking on thin ice?

Over the past two decades, the intensification both of Arctic regional relations and of Beijing’s efforts to be recognised as a ‘near-Arctic state’ has generated concern about Chinese intentions in the region. 

On 26 January 2018, Beijing released China’s Arctic Policy — a White Paper that outlines China’s views of the Arctic region, its role within it and the goals and principles underpinning its Arctic activities. China issued the Policy in part to alleviate some of the concerns about Chinese Arctic involvement (namely, that China will undermine Arctic states’ sovereignty, will disregard the livelihoods of those who reside there and will threaten environmental stability in its quest to secure greater access to the Arctic’s resources and shipping routes). 

China vs. America - Uniformity vs. Diversity

by Frank Li

China and America are diametrically different, from history to ideology. In this post, I will highlight a key difference between them: China's uniformity vs. America's diversity.

1. The Roman Empire vs. the Chinese Empire

The image below highlights the key difference between the Roman Empire and the Chinese Empire.

Simply put, while the Roman dream of uniformity was always elusive, the Chinese successfully implemented their uniformity rule of ruling more than 2,000 years ago. As a result, not only was the Chinese Empire at least as powerful as the Roman Empire, including the Byzantine Empire (aka "the [Eastern] Roman Empire"), it also lasted much longer.

Chinese Government Gave Money to Georgetown Chinese Student Group


A statue of John Carroll, founder of Georgetown University, sits before Healy Hall on the school's campus August 15, 2006 in Washington, DC. Georgetown University was founded in 1789 and it is the oldest Catholic and Jesuit university in the U.S. 

Founded in the early 2000s, the Georgetown University Chinese Students and Scholars Association hosts an annual Chinese New Year gala, organizes occasional academic forums, and helps Chinese students on campus meet and support each other. The group has also accepted funding from the Chinese government amounting to roughly half its total annual budget, according to documents and emails obtained by Foreign Policy.

China Isn't America's Enemy, at Least Not Yet

James Stavridis 

In HBO’s “Game of Thrones,” the most impressive single force on a very complex battlefield is the trio of dragons mastered by Queen Daenerys Targaryen. As she says, “We will lay waste to armies and burn cities to the ground!” The symbol of China, of course, is the dragon. The U.S., whose symbol is the eagle, will need to learn to fly in uneasy company of the dragon in the decades ahead. These metaphors can fly independently, but they are going to have to deconflict the airspace.

China’s ‘New Silk Roads’ reach Latin America

Source Link

A sharp, geoeconomic shift took place last month in Santiago, Chile at the second ministerial meeting of a forum grouping China and the 33-member Community of Latin American and Caribbean States. 

The Chinese Foreign Minister, Wang Yi, told his audience that the world’s second-largest economy and Latin America should join efforts to support free trade. This was about “opposing protectionism” and “working for an open world economy,” he said.

Can Airstrikes Alone Tackle Islamic State in Libya?

By: Avery Plaw, Allan Pilch

In the last four months of 2017, the United States resumed bombing Islamic State (IS) targets in Libya. On September 24, 2017, U.S. African Command (AFRICOM) announced it had conducted airstrikes against an IS training camp on September 22 at 7:06 PM, killing 17 militants and destroying three vehicles (U.S. African Command, September 24, 2017). According to AFRICOM, the training camp, located 150 miles southeast of the city of Sirte, was hit by a half-dozen “precision strikes” launched from B-2 bombers and Reaper Drones. It also claimed that the terrorist group was stockpiling weapons at the camp, hosting foreign fighters and plotting more attacks in Libya and elsewhere.

Taking the Temperature of the Ukraine Conflict

As highlighted in the 2018 Annual Forecast, progress toward a deal to deploy U.N. peacekeepers to intervene in the conflict in Eastern Ukraine is distinctly possible. Recent signs of compromise over other aspects of that conflict, such as prisoner exchanges, indicate that the forecast is on track.

The idea of deploying U.N. peacekeepers to Eastern Ukraine was broached several months ago amid growing intensity in diplomacy surrounding the conflict between Russian-backed separatists and pro-government forces there. This weekend's Munich Security Conference will offer a chance for more talks over the issue, but given the differences of opinion over the size, scope and mission of any U.N. force, there's no guarantee that an agreement will be struck. But some signs of compromise over the peacekeepers issue — and the opportunity offered by the security gathering that will attract representatives from key powers — make real movement on the issue a possibility.

Iran, Russia, and China's Central Role in the Venezuela Crisis

by Joseph M. Humire

U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson just completed, by most accounts, a successful visit to Latin America. He began his five-nation tour by invoking the Monroe Doctrine and suggesting the Venezuelan military could manage a "peaceful transition" from the authoritarian leader Nicolás Maduro. This reminded several regional observers of President Trump's suggestion last year of a possible "military option" for Venezuela, hinting at possible U.S. or multilateral intervention to stop the country's collapse.

Russian lost 300 mercenaries killed or wounded during battle in Syria last week: sources


MOSCOW (Reuters) - About 300 men working for a Kremlin-linked Russian private military firm were either killed or injured in Syria last week, according to three sources familiar with the matter.

A Russian military doctor said around 100 had been killed, and a source who knows several of the fighters said the death toll was in excess of 80 men.

The timing of the casualties coincided with a battle on Feb. 7 near the Syrian city of Deir al-Zor where, according to U.S. officials and associates of the fighters involved, U.S.-led coalition forces attacked forces aligned with Moscow’s ally, Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

Putin’s Pocket Army? The Rise of Russian Mercenaries in Syria

By David Isenberg

Russia is taking America’s use of privatizing war to the next level–hired guns who are off the books and unaccountable to the people.

If you think the media has been saturated with news about Russia think again. While thoughts might run to Robert Mueller’s probe into possible Russian collusion with the Trump election campaign, I refer to something possibly far worse: the development and expansion of Russia’s private military companies (PMC) and its implications for the global spread of armies for hire by great powers and multinational corporations alike.

U.S.-Turkish Relations Continue to Rapidly Deteriorate

Robbie Gramer
Foreign Policy

The Trump administration appears to have pulled relations with NATO ally Turkey away from a “crisis point” after a slew of high-level meetings over the past week. But sharp disagreements on everything from the war in Syria to Russia’s role in the Middle East make it unlikely that the United States can restore warm ties any time soon with a country long seen as the southern flank of the Western alliance in Europe.

“We’re not going to act alone any longer. We’re not going to be U.S. doing one thing and Turkey doing another,” Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said at a press conference on Friday in Ankara after meetings with Turkish officials, including Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu and President Recep Tayyip Erdogan .

Admiral warns US must prepare for possibility of war with China

Ben Doherty

Harry Harris says China’s military might could soon rival US power ‘across almost every domain’, and warned of possibility of war. 

The navy admiral nominated to be the next US ambassador to Australia has told Congress America must prepare for the possibility of war with China, and said it would rely on Australia to help uphold the international rules-based system in the Asia-Pacific.

In an excoriating assessment of China’s increasingly muscular posture in the region, Harry Harris said Beijing’s “intent is crystal clear” to dominate the South China Sea and that its military might could soon rival American power “across almost every domain”.

Navy Sees ‘Difficult Times’ With Recruiting Goals for Nuclear, Cyber Sailors

By: John Grady

Sailors stand watch in the Fleet Operations Center at the headquarters of U.S. Fleet Cyber Command/U.S. 10th Fleet.

A previous version of this post contained a story that had previously run in USNI News last month. It now contains the correct story from the Feb. 14 hearing before the Senate Armed Services personnel subcommittee.

Having struggled last year to meet its recruiting goals, the Navy’s personnel chief sees “difficult times ahead” in attracting and keeping sailors and officers as the sea service expands the fleet in the coming years.

Ethical hackers discover 100 vulnerabilities in U.S. Air Force systems


So-called white-hat hackers discovered more than 100 vulnerabilities in Air Force networks in the second round of the service’s "bug bounty" program, according to figures released on Thursday.

The program, called Hack the Air Force, invited security researchers to find and report vulnerabilities in the service’s government systems and rewarded them for doing so.

More than two dozen hackers from around the world discovered 106 vulnerabilities in Air Force networks, which earned them nearly $104,000 combined, bug bounty platform HackerOne announced on Thursday. 

Defeating Digital Discombobulation: Options in Countering Online Disinformation Campaigns

“Fake news”, “disinformation”, “misinformation”; since the 2016 US presidential elections, these terms have exploded into the public lexicon, bringing awareness to a longstanding problem of online communication: when anyone can publish anything, how do we know anything is true?

Focusing on the main types of audiences for disinformation is perhaps the cleanest way to approach solutions to the problem of disinformation. There are three audience types for disinformation: those who’ll buy the message, those who may not buy the message but can be temporarily convinced or confused by it, and those who refuse to believe. In short, they are the Convinced, the Confused, and the Skeptics.


John Amble

Artificial intelligence. Quantum computing. Nanotechnology. The Internet of Things. Blockchains. Neuroscience. Biotech.

We live in a world of rapid technological development, in these and many other areas. Frontiers are being pushed further and further at a faster and faster pace. And there’s a broad consensus that, in a military context, the way we fight and the environments we fight in will change as a result. But that’s where the consensus stops. We simply don’t know the degree to which war will change. And yet, success in future wars might ultimately hinge on our ability to meaningfully explore those complicated questions today. That’s what we do in this episode of the MWI Podcast, which features two guests who have studied these issues deeply. Retired Maj. Gen. David Fastabend and Mr. Ian Sullivan have been heavily involved with efforts to conceptualize the future of warfare, undertaken largely by the Army’s Training and Doctrine Command, where Sullivan is the assistant G-2 for ISR and futures.

Reconnaissance, Raids and Sabotage: Employment of reconnaisance in future land warfare

by James Lewis

As the most adaptable, robust and reliable Intelligence, Surveillance, Reconnaissance (ISR) source of the battalion commander, Reconnaissance and Sniper Platoon (RS PL) has the primary mission of providing information on the enemy and battlespace environment in order to support infantry operations. Primarily conducted Forward of the Forward Edge of the Battlespace Area (FOFEBA), these operations have a critical shaping effect on the entirety of the battlespace. The actions of those force elements operating well forward of any friendly positions, and quite often behind those of the enemy, will continue to have a disproportionate effect to what can be achieved by an element from the fighting echelon of the same size. This disproportionate effect will only be multiplied with the implementation of Plan KEOGH.

The Revolution in Civil-Military Affairs

By Anthony Cordesman

The U.S. has learned many lessons in its wars in Afghanistan, Iraq, and Syria—most of them the hard way. It has had to adapt the strategies, tactics, and force structures designed to fight regular wars to conflicts dominated by non-state actors. It has had to deal with threats shaped by ideological extremism far more radical than the communist movements it struggled against in countries like Vietnam. It has found that the kind of “Revolution in Military Affairs,” or RMA, that helped the U.S. deter and encourage the collapses of the former Soviet Union does not win such conflicts against non-state actors, and that it faces a different mix of threats in each such war—such as in cases like Libya, Yemen, Somalia and a number of states in West Africa.

An app to keep paratroopers glued to their phones

By: Kelsey Atherton 

U.S. Army paratroopers assigned to the 173rd Brigade Support Battalion, 173rd Airborne Brigade, descend onto Juliet Drop Zone in Pordenone, Italy, during an airborne operation from a U.S. Air Force 86th Air Wing C-130 Hercules aircraft Jan. 18, 2018.

A parachute is a carefully engineered mess of cloth and string, gently lowering its occupant to the ground. A paratrooper is a person who takes that same trusted parachute, and then jumps out of a plane into a combat zone, and, in theory, is ready to fight as soon as he hits the ground.