Think the U.S. military has a lot of drones now? Just you wait. The Pentagon has just released its 30-year plan for buying and developing warplanes. And in a development that should come as no surprise, the future the military anticipates for its Air Force, Army, Navy and Marine Corps air fleets — together numbering more than 5,500 warplanes — is more robotic than ever.
Archive of May 2011
Sam’s Southeast Asia Round-Up
Thailand and Cambodia’s impasse over the Preah Vihear temple continues. Cambodia opposes Thailand’s request that the United Nations Education, Scientific, and Cultural Organization delay a decision on the management plan for areas surrounding the temple until Thailand and Cambodia had come to an agreement on the nearby border.
What began as a carefully orchestrated drug raid by Arizona police ended in chaos, bloodshed and outrage. Now, a young Marine veteran is dead, leaving his wife and two young boys to mourn for him on this Memorial Day, after he made it through two tours in Iraq.
Peter’s Atlantic Round-Up
Spanish authorities uncovered a big sanctions-busting deal this week after raids in Barcelona and Madrid. The bust concerns the export of nine Bell-212 helicopters to Iran and chopper parts to Venezuela. The aircraft could be converted for military uses and thus are banned by U.N. sanctions. Furthermore, the parts were being exported to Venezuela without the proper permits. The total value of the choppers and parts comes to well over 100 million Euros.
After a long delay, on May 24, the U.S. National Aeronautics and Space Administration finally unveiled its plan for human spaceflight, once the 30-year-old space shuttle program ends in July.
Ratko Mladic is fit enough to appear at the War Crimes Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY), in The Hague.
The experimental four-legged, pack-hauling robots aren’t gonna be ready for duty at the front anytime soon. So the Army is considering a big step backward in front-line logistics.
Media have been waiting outside the gate at Scheveningen prison in The Netherlands, in the hope of filming the arrival of accused Serbian war criminal, Ratko Mladic.
Robert’s Latin America Round-Up
State energy firm Petroleos de Venezuela (PDVSA) has been sanctioned by the United States for supplying $50 million worth of oil reformer product to Iran. PDVSA will not be able to compete for U.S. government contracts, will not be able to raise financing through the Export-Import Bank of the United States (although Ex-Im Bank has not lended to Venezuela since 2003), and will be restricted from licensing controlled technology. However, the sanctions will not revoke earlier licenses or stop Venezuelan oil exports to the U.S. or sales through PDVSA’s subsidiary Citgo. “The real significance has to be found in the psychological, political effect of the measure,” former PDSVA executive Gustavo Coronel said to the Associated Press. “It constitutes the first real move of the Obama government against Chavez’s Venezuela.”