Tuesday, December 5, 2017

Fw: TheList 4604

The List 4604


To All
I hope that your week has started well.
Regards,
Skip
 
This Day In Naval History – December 5
Dec. 5
1813—During the War of 1812, the frigate Congress captures the British brig Atlantic in the North Atlantic. Also on this date USS President captures schooner Comet off New York.
1862—During the Civil War, boats from the gunboat Mahaska and the converted tug General Putnam capture and destroy "several fine Confederate boats," a schooner and two sloops in branches of Severn River, MD, and bring back schooners Seven Brothers and Galena.
1941—USS Lexington (CV 2) sails with Task Force 12 to ferry Marine aircraft to Midway, leaving no carriers at Pearl Harbor. Previously, on Nov. 28, USS Enterprise (CV 6) sails from Pearl Harbor for Wake Island to ferry Marine aircraft to island.
1943—USS Narwhal (SS 167) embarks nine evacuees at Alubijid, Mascalar Bay and then sinks Japanese cargo ship Himeno Maru off Camiguin Island.
1944—USS Hake (SS 256) evacuates downed aviators and turns over all supplies that can be spared to Filipino guerilla forces ashore at Libertad, Panay, Philippines.
 
December 5
1484
 
Pope Innocent VIII issues a bill deploring the spread of witchcraft and heresy in Germany.
1776
 
Phi Beta Kappa is organized as the first American college Greek letter-fraternity, at William and Mary College, Williamsburg, Va.
1791
 
Composer Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart dies in Vienna.
1861
 
In the U.S. Congress, petitions and bills calling for the abolition of slavery are introduced.
1862
 
Union General Ulysses S. Grant's cavalry receives a setback in an engagement on the Mississippi Central Railroad at Coffeeville, Mississippi.
1864
 
Confederate General John Bell Hood sends Nathan Bedford Forrest's cavalry and a division of infantry toward Murfreesboro, Tenn.
1904
 
The Japanese destroy a Russian fleet at Port Arthur in Korea.
1909
 
George Taylor makes the first manned glider flight in Australia in a glider that he designed himself.
1912
 
Italy, Austria and Germany renew the Triple Alliance for six years.
1916
 
David Lloyd George replaces Herbert Asquith as the British prime minister.
1921
 
The British empire reaches an accord with the Irish revolutionary group the Sinn Fein; Ireland is to become a free state.
1933
 
The 21st Amendment ends Prohibition in the United States, which had begun 13 years earlier.
1934
 
Italian and Ethiopian troops clash at the Ualual on disputed the Somali-Ethiopian border.
1936
 
The New Constitution in the Soviet Union promises universal suffrage, but the Communist Party remains the only legal political party.
1937
 
The Lindberghs arrive in New York on a holiday visit after a two-year voluntary exile.
1945
 
Four TBM Avenger bombers disappear approximately 100 miles off the coast of Florida.
1950
 
Pyongyang in Korea falls to the invading Chinese army.
1953
 
Italy and Yugoslavia agree to pull troops out of the disputed Trieste border.
1955
 
A bus boycott begins under the leadership of the Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr., in Montgomery, Alabama.
1966
 
Comedian and political activist Dick Gregory heads for Hanoi, North Vietnam, despite federal warnings against it.
1978
 
The Soviet Union signs a 20-year friendship pact with Afghanistan.
1983
 
Military Junta dissolves in Argentina.
2006
 
Commodore Frank Bainimarama overthrows the government in Fiji.
2007
 
A gunman armed with a semi-automatic rifle kills 8 people at Westroads Mall, Omaha, Neb., before taking his own life.
 
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1945
 
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Pentagon Awards Heroic Sailors for Pearl Harbor Actions.
A Navy chaplain, who was credited with assisting many of his USS Oklahoma shipmates in escaping to safety, and a USS Vestal Sailor, who saved the lives of several Sailors from USS Arizona, will be awarded combat medals posthumously on the 76th anniversary of the Pearl Harbor attack. Chaplain (Lt.) Aloysius Schmitt, who was previously awarded the Navy Marine Corps Medal, will be awarded the upgraded Silver Star, and Chief Boatswain's Mate Second Class Joseph George will be awarded the Bronze Star with "V" device. Medals will be presented to members of the Sailors' families during Pearl Harbor remembrance events on Dec. 7. To learn more about Schmitt and George, read the NHHC releases.
 
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Thanks to Mike
The Test for DENSA
 
You've heard of MENSA, the group for geniuses with IQ's of 140 and above? Well, this test is similar, it's from DENSA. It's a lot more fun. Give it a try: Take this quiz, if you dare, and see how you compare.
 
Write down or remember your answers and DON'T CHEAT!!!!! Good luck!
 
Do they have a 4th of July in England? (Yes/No)

How many birthdays does the average man have?

Some months have 31 days; some months have 30. How many have 28 days?

How many outs are there in an inning?

Is it legal for a man in California to marry his widow's sister? (Yes/No)

Divide 30 by 1/2 and add 10, what is the answer?

If there are 3 apples and you take away 2, how many do you have?

A doctor gives you three pills telling you to take one every half an hour. How many minutes will the pills last?

A farmer has 17 sheep, and all but 9 die. How many are left?

How many animals of each sex did Moses take on the ark?

A clerk in the butcher shop is 5' 10" tall. What does he weigh?

How many two cent stamps are there in a dozen?
A plane crashes on the Canadian - US border. In which country you bury the survivors?

What is the least amount of coins it takes to make 55 cents if one of the coins is a quarter?
*************************************************** 
The Densa Test, Your Evaluation
*Give yourself one point for each correct answer.

Is there a Fourth of July in England?
Yes, it comes after the third of July.

How many birthdays does the average man have?
Just one. Mine is in Jan.

Some months have 31 days; how many have 28?
All twelve months have 28 days.

How many outs are there in an inning?
6, three per side!

Is it legal for a man in California to marry his widow's sister?
No - because he is dead!

Divide 30 by 1/2 and add 10. What is the answer?
70 (30 divided by 1/2 equals 60!)

If there are 3 apples and you take away 2, how many do you have?
2. You took them, remember?

A doctor gives you three pills telling you to take one every half hour. How many minutes would the pills last?
60 minutes. Start with the 1st pill, 30 minutes later take the 2nd, then 30 minutes after that take the 3rd. The effects of the pills may last longer than 60 minutes.

A farmer has 17 sheep, and all but 9 die. How many are left?
9, since all but 9 die.

How many animals of each sex did Moses take on the ark?
None. It wasn't Moses on the ark. It was Noah.

A clerk in the butcher shop is 5' 10" tall. What does he weigh?
A clerk in a butcher shop weighs meat!

How many two cent stamps are there in a dozen?
There are 12 two cent stamps in a dozen, just like there are 12 of anything else in a dozen.

A plane crashes on the Canadian - US border. In which country you bury the survivors?
The survivors would probably rather wait until they die to be buried.

What is the least amount of coins it takes to make 55 cents if one of the coins is a quarter?
Three coins. One is a quarter, another is a quarter, and there's also a nickel.

 
Add Your Score... How did you do?
Correct Answers: DENSA Rating
13-14: Genius
10-12: Above Normal
7-9: Normal
4-6: Slow
1-3: Idiot
None: Brain dead

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Thanks to Ted and Dutch R
MAYDAY.....MAYDAY !!!!!!!
 
 
An air traffic control tower suddenly lost communication with a small twin engine aircraft! 
 
 
A moment later the tower land line rang and was answered by one of the controllers. The passenger riding with the pilot who lost communications was on a cellular phone!
 
 
 
He yelled, "Mayday, mayday! The pilot had an instant and fatal heart attack! I grabbed his cell phone out of his pocket and he had told me before we took off he had the tower on his speed dial memory! I am flying upside down at 18,000 feet and traveling at 180 mph! Mayday, mayday!" 
 
 
 
The controller in the tower immediately put him on speaker phone! "Calm down, we acknowledge you and we'll guide you down after a few questions! The first thing is not to panic! Remain calm!"
 
 
 
He began his series of questions: 
 
Tower: "How do you know you are traveling at 18,000 feet?"
 
Aircraft: "I can see that it reads 18,000 feet on the altimeter dial in front of me!"
 
 
 
Tower: "Okay, that's good, remain calm! How do you know you're traveling at 180 mph?"
 
Aircraft: "I can see that it reads 180 mph on the airspeed dial in front of me!"
 
 
 
Tower: "Okay, this is great so far, but it's heavily overcast! So how do you know you're flying upside down?"
 
Aircraft: "The pee in my pants is running out of my shirt collar!!"
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Who says we're not crazy in Jackson, WY ??
Thanks to Doctor Rich
 
This is one of the more challenging semi-crazy ski runs at our ski area .. Teton Village, in Jackson Hole …
 
 
… but the folks here at Teton Gravity Research decided to take it to another level … way up!!
 
Hang on …
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With our thanks to THE Bear at http://www.rollingthunderremembered.com/
 
ROLLING THUNDER REMEMBERED… 5 DECEMBER 1967… WHEN ED RASIMUS' THUNDER ROLLS…
December 4, 2017   Bear Taylor  
RIPPLE SALVO… #639… When Major Ed Rasimus, RIP, wrote WHEN THUNDER ROLLS, he wrote for all of us… #639 is a dose of Rasimus stimulant on a slow day… but first…
Good Morning: Day SIX HUNDRED THIRTY-NINE of a return to the thunderous skies of North Vietnam and the "strategy of defeat."…
5 DECEMBER 1967… HEAD LINES from The New York Times on a sunny Tuesday on the East Coast and a cloudy, wet day over North Vietnam…
Page 1: "President Denies Others in Cabinet Intend to Leave–He Asserts That Rumors of Impending Changes Were Spread By Some Kids–Jab At Kennedy Seen–Johnson Brushes Off Race by McCarthy and Invasion Proposal By Eisenhower Response"... all covered in President's news conference... Page 1: "Johnson Names Chapman As Marines' Commandant"... "President Johnson brought an end to a fight within the Marine Corps by announcing today his selection of Lieutenant General Leonard F. Chapman Jr. as the new Marine Commandant. General Chapman, now the Assistant Commandant, will succeed General Wallace m> Greene jr., whose four-year term expires on December 13. Mr. Johnson announced his surprise selection of General Chapman at a White House news conference, with the 54-year-old general standing beside the President, seated at the Cabinet table. The President referred indirectly to the controversy that had preceded the selection by noting that he had picked for the top Marine post a general who had been highly recommended by all those whom he had been associated. Within the Marine Corps, however, the immediate reaction was that General Chapman had been selected as a compromise candidate in an attempt to heal the political factionalism within  the corps." The other two candidates for the past two months were Lieutenant General Victor H. Krulak and Lieutenant General Lewis W. Walt….
Page 1: "Dr. King Planning to Disrupt Capital In Drive For Jobs"… "The Reverend Doctor Martin Luther King Jr, announced plans today to lead an extended campaign of massive civil disobedience in Washington next year to force Congress and the Administration to provide 'jobs or income for all.' The internationally known Negro civil rights leader said a force of 3,000 demonstrators, trained in nonviolence techniques, would seek 'massive dislocation' of the capital 'until America responds to the needs of its poor.' Dr. King said the protesters recruited in 10 major cities and five rural areas, would begin 'a strong, dramatic, and attention-getting campaign.' …Dr. King advanced the view that 'angry and bitter' people would respond to nonviolence 'if it's militant enough, if it's really doing something.' He promised to spend three months in training the initial force of 3,000. These tactics have done it (won civil rights advances) before,' Dr. King said, 'and this is all we have to go on.' Continued inaction by the Federal Government, he warned will bring down 'the curtain of doom upon the nation.' "…
Page 1: Makarios Asking Guarantee By U.N. against Invasion–Cyprus Leader Replying to Thant, Hints He Wants A Role in Control of Force–Turks Uphold Regime–Greeks Send Ship to Island As First Step In Carrying Out Peace Agreement"... "The President of Cyprus Archbishop Makarios said today that guarantees against military intervention in Cyprus should be insured through the United Nations Security Council."... Page 1: "Justices To rule On Housing–Interracial Couples Suit in Suburb Puts Issue Up to Court for First Time"... Page 8: "China Opens New Drive to Bolster Mao and Lin Piao"… Page 18: "Louis Harris Poll Finds President Reverses His Popularity Loss"... "…handling of war rose from 23% to 34%, and job rating up to 43% from 39%." …Page 21: "McNamara Shift Comes as Relief to Military Leaders in Vietnam"… Page 24; "Stop The Draft Week of Protest Against draft Started by Anti-war Groups"…
GROUND WAR ("a killing business") Page 1: "Enemy Battalions Smashed in trap–U.S. Reports 235 Vietcong Slain in Mekong Delta by Allied Riverine Force"… "American infantrymen of the mobile riverine force and South Vietnamese marines surrounded a Vietcong battalion today in the Mekong Delta and virtually annihilated it. The Ninth Infantry Division said that a count of bodies showed that of the 300-man enemy force, 235 had been killed. American casualties were listed as 11 infantrymen killed and 3 Navy men killed and 66 Navy men wounded. South Vietnamese marines were reported to have suffered 15 killed and 50 wounded. The riverine force is made up of Army and Navy units quartered aboard four ships that patrol the rivers and canals of the Mekong Delta. The mobile assault forces have been successful i penetrating Vietcong strongholds previously inaccessible.
 
5 DECEMBER 1967… OPERATION ROLLING THUNDER…New York Times: No coverage of the air war. "Vietnam: Air Losses" (Hobson) There were three fixed wing aircraft lost in Southeast Asia on 5 December 1967…
(1) LT H.J. MEADOWS was flying an F-8C of the VF-111 Sundowners embarked in USS ORISKANY escorting a photo reconnaissance mission covering route 1A and was hit by automatic weapons fire. He was able to fly the stricken aircraft into the area of the SAR destroyed before ejecting. He was rescued by the SAR destroyer's helicopter. The loss was the 31st aircraft downed on the 1967 Oriskany cruise.
(2) MAJOR DONALD MYRICK RUSSELL was flying an F-105D of the 333rd TFS and 355th TFW out of Takhli on a Barrel Roll mission in Northern Laos and his 59th combat mission when hit by AAA. Inexplicably, MAJOR RUSSELL did not escape from the Thunderchief before it hit the ground. His remains were recovered in 1994 by the JTF-FA and positively identified in 1996. He is buried in New Mexico… finally…
(3) An O-1F of the 19th TASS and 504th TASG out of Bien Hao left the runway avoiding a collision with another aircraft and was damaged upon economical repair. The two-man crew survived to fly again…
 
RIPPLE SALVO… #639… "When Thunder Rolled" by Major Ed Rasimus… as good as candor gets… Pages 249-50…
"Fighter pilots come in all sizes and shapes. Some are young, some old. there are sons and husbands, fathers and grandfathers flying tactical aircraft. They span the spectrum from brave to cowardly, from skilled to inept. some are eager warriors, and some are reluctant. Chance and the luck of the draw bring them together. They may fly high performance aircraft for years and never face the challenges of combat, or they may be thrust into war continuously throughout their careers. Regardless of when, where, why or how, they fight when asked to on behalf of their country. they deserved much better than they got.
"It's thirty-five years since that summer of -66, and the view of the war today is only slightly clearer than it was then. We can't define a national self-interest for involvement in Southern Asia, nor has anyone told us why we squandered such a valuable treasure of manpower and machines. We should know, but we don't. Many attempts have been made to explain it all, but they're either self-serving excuses posing as the memoirs of the senior decision makers or detailed rationales for pacifism by professors who opposed the war and taught their students to think the same way. As with so much of history, the explanation depends on the observer's particular perspective rather than the facts at hand.
"Looking at various levels of involvement in Rolling Thunder, we can see the lieutenants doing what was asked of them without question. We trusted our leaders and our senior decision makers to give us a mission with a purpose. They had a moral obligation not to waste our lives without meaning. They would decide when war was necessary and what we had to do to win it. In return for that, we would risk our lives and do the job. We would fly and fight because, as the sign in the Korat briefing room reminded us daily was the mission of the United States Air Force. All we asked was that we be allowed to win it.
"The captains and majors had the benefit of experience. Some had been in Korea and faced the challenge of overcoming their fears in that earlier war, but all of them had the hours of flying time that helped them handle the tasks thrust upon them. They fought and died, doing the job that they had been asked to do. They led the trusting lieutenants, sometimes competently, and sometimes reaching too far. Occasionally they failed, but they did the best they could.
"The colonels and generals were the failures. They let us down by failing to challenge our country's political leadership. They had an obligation to follow the orders of the duly elected administration, but they needed to demand clear tasking and reasonable rules under which to conduct the war. It's too easy to attribute the mismanagement of the war to a timid foreign policy and a reluctance to risk confrontation with the Soviets and Chinese. If one isn't willing to win, then one shouldn't risk defeat. Fighting with no purpose is the true immorality of war because it means you are asking your citizens to die for no reason other than winning the next election or making profits for a major multinational corporation. Dying for one's country is no longer noble when your country doesn't care either way about the outcome, and it becomes a travesty when your war is being waged in conjunction with the latest presidential campaign. Turn it on when you're high in the polls and turn it off when your richest contributors gather in protest. Several hundred aircrew members languishing in North Vietnam prisons? No problem. They won't be voting, and the majority of people don't think they were doing the right thing anyway."… more tomorrow…
RTR Quote for 5 December: HENRY GEORGE, The Land Question: "He who sees the truth, let him proclaim it, without asking who is for it or who is against it."…
Lest we forget…       Bear
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Item Number:1 Date: 12/05/2017 AFGHANISTAN - AIRSTRIKE KILLS COMMANDER OF TALIBAN'S 'RED UNIT,' SAYS INTEL AGENCY (DEC 05/TN)  TOLONEWS -- Afghanistan's intelligence agency says a top Taliban commander in the southern Helmand province has been killed in an Afghan airstrike, reports the Tolo News (Afghanistan).   Mullah Shah Wali, the Taliban shadow deputy governor for Helmand and commander of the "Red Unit" special operations forces, was killed last week in a special airstrike in the Musa Qala district in the southern part of the province, said a statement from the National Directorate of Security on Sunday.   Shah Wali was appointed deputy shadow governor and commander of the Red Unit three years ago by Mullah Mana, the shadow governor, the statement said.   He was directly involved in offensive operations as well as drug-smuggling and land grabs in the province, the statement said.   The unit is believed to be equipped with advanced weapons, including night-vision devices, 82-mm rockets, heavy machine guns and U.S.-made assault rifles, reported Reuters.  
  Item Number:2 Date: 12/05/2017 AFGHANISTAN - TALIBAN CELEBRATES DEFECTION OF SENIOR LEADER OF ISIS AFFILIATE (DEC 05/LWJ)  LONG WAR JOURNAL -- The Taliban in Afghanistan is celebrating the defection of a deputy leader of the Islamic State's affiliate in that country, according the Long War Journal, a U.S.-based website that tracks terrorist activity.   In a video released on Nov. 30, a man identified as Mullah Abdul Razzaq Mehdi is seen encouraging others to follow his lead and leave the Islamic State. The man allegedly defected from the Taliban to the Khorasan Province, then returned to the Taliban.   The speaker in the video says he oversaw communication between ISIS officials in Afghanistan and Iraq. The U.S. maintains that Khorasan Province (Wilayat Khorasan) maintains regular and deep ties to the Islamic State's leaders.   ISIS fighters engaged in brutality contrary to the laws of war, the speaker alleged. This forced him to rejoin the Taliban, he says.   The Islamic State's ranks in Afghanistan have been depleted – especially of leaders - and has been greatly weakened, he said
Item Number:3 Date: 12/05/2017 CHINA - HIGH-LEVEL MARITIME TALKS WITH JAPAN SET FOR SHANGHAI (DEC 05/XIN)  XINHUA -- China is hosting the eighth round of high-level discussions on maritime affairs this week in Shanghai, reports Xinhua, China's state news agency.   Officials with the foreign and defense ministries as well as others from the maritime law enforcement and management departments from both countries will take part in the talks on Dec. 5 and Dec. 6, a Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman said on Monday.   The parties will exchange views on maritime issues of common concern with the goal of strengthening understanding and mutual trust, the spokesman said.   The high-level talks were established in 2012. The last round took place in Fukuoka, Japan, in June.  
  Item Number:4 Date: 12/05/2017 CHINA - J-11B FIGHTER JETS SPOTTED AT DISPUTED ISLAND; STATE MEDIA CONFIRM DEPLOYMENT (DEC 05/JT)  JAPAN TIMES -- The Chinese government has for the first time confirmed its deployment of fighter jets to Woody Island in the disputed South China Sea, according to Chinese state media cited by the Japan Times.   J-11B fighters were deployed to the island in the contested Paracel chain, according to footage shown by the official China Central Television on Nov. 29, the Global Times reported on Dec. 1.   The U.S. has previously taken note of such deployments. In April 2016, for example, Stars and Stripes cited U.S. defense officials who reported that 16 such J-11s had been sent to the island.   Known as Yongxing Island in China, Woody Island is the largest of the Paracels -- called Xisha in Chinese.   The television footage showed the aircraft landing, taking off and conducting drills, apparently over the South China Sea. It also showed at least one jet "entering a sealed hangar."   Beijing has reportedly been reluctant to station its fighters on the islands, because they are particularly vulnerable to the environmental conditions.   The hangars improve the reliability of the aircraft and resistance to the island's humidity and heat, the Chinese report said
Item Number:5 Date: 12/05/2017 CHINA - SENDING MESSAGE TO SEOUL, WASHINGTON, CHINESE AIR FORCE DRILLS NEAR KOREAN PENINSULA (DEC 05/SCMP)  SOUTH CHINA MORNING POST -- China's air force has been taking part in drills involving "routes and areas it has never flown before" in areas around the Korean peninsula, says a service spokesman, as cited by the South China Morning Post (Hong Kong).   The dates of the drills were not specified.   Chinese warplanes had ventured into new areas, including parts of the Yellow and East (Korean) seas, said the air force spokesman Monday.   The exercises reportedly included reconnaissance planes, fighter jets, an early warning and control aircraft, and coordination with surface-to-air missile units.   Such training will become a regular part of the air force's drills, he said.   The U.S. and South Korea are currently running major exercises near the Korean peninsula. Pyongyang, Beijing and Moscow have criticized those drills
  Item Number:6 Date: 12/05/2017 CHINA - Y-9 TRANSPORT COMPLETES LONG-DISTANCE EXERCISE OVER S. CHINA SEA (DEC 05/SCMP)  SOUTH CHINA MORNING POST -- China's domestically developed Y-9 transport aircraft is apparently ready for combat operations after completing an initial long-range exercise over the South China Sea, reports the South China Morning Post.   A fleet of aircraft from the Western Theater Command flew thousands of miles to simulate an airdrop over an island in the disputed sea before returning, according to a social media announcement on Dec. 2 by the People's Liberation Army Air Force (PLAAF).   The exercise took place in simulated combat conditions and without weather data or guidance from a command center, said the air force statement.   The drill was designed to demonstrate the PLAAF's ability to defend against sea-based attacks and to mobilize different theater commands in a crisis, said experts.   "The PLA is gradually improving its ability to not just employ the Southern Theater Command to execute those missions but also to demonstrate that in the event of an escalation of a crisis or prolonged conflict, it's possible for the PLA to tap forces from other theaters, even if those theaters are not fully involved," said Collin Koh, a research fellow on maritime security at the Nanyang Technological University in Singapore.   The Y-9 can carry up to 25 metric tons of cargo and has a range of about 4,850 miles (7,800 km).  
Item Number:7 Date: 12/05/2017 ISRAEL - DEFENSE MINISTER CALLS OFF ARROW TEST, CITING CONCERNS WITH TARGET MISSILE (DEC 05/DN)  DEFENSE NEWS -- Concerns about the safety of a target missile prompted officials in Israel to cancel the planned test of the Arrow-3 missile interceptor, reports Defense News.   The target missile was fired on Tuesday. However, that missile – a version of the Sparrow family of missiles – began "behaving in a way that was not conforming to safety parameters determined in advance," said the director of the Israel Missile Defense Organization at Israel's Defense Ministry.   Engineers were determining why the target did not perform as expected, he said.   The trial was "neither a success nor a failure" said defense officials cited by the Jerusalem Post.   Israel Aerospace Industries is the prime contractor for the program to develop the Arrow-3, an exo-atmospheric intercepting missile. The company said future tests will continue as planned and that the decision not to test does not cast doubt on the missile interceptor's capability or that of its previous generation, the Arrow-2
Item Number:8 Date: 12/05/2017 ISRAEL - FEWER DRAFTEES IN IDF WANT COMBAT POSTS; AMONG WOMEN, TREND GOES IN OTHER DIRECTION (DEC 05/JP)  JERUSALEM POST -- The Israeli army says that more women signing up for combat jobs has helped offset an overall decline in interest among recruits for combat arms, reports the Jerusalem Post.   The shortening of mandatory military service has also allowed the army to fully staff its combat brigades, a senior officer in the Manpower Directorate said on Sunday.   Overall data reveal a slight decrease in combat recruitment this year from 2016. This trend is expected to continue, the officer said.   The main units affected are combat engineering, armored corps and artillery, he said.   Combat units are the most popular among draftees. These include the border police, air defense and Homefront Command, said the officer.   In 2017, 2,656 women enlisted in combat jobs, an increase of about 300 from the previous year.  
 Item Number:9 Date: 12/05/2017 ISRAEL - NETANYAHU TO ASSAD: WE WILL ATTACK SYRIA IF YOU LET IRAN SET UP MILITARY BASES (DEC 05/WSJ)  WALL STREET JOURNAL -- Israeli officials say Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has sent a message to Syrian President Bashar Assad, threatening to attack if Syria allows Iran to establish military bases there, reports the Wall Street Journal.   When the message was sent is not specified. The newspaper said it preceded a missile strike on Dec. 2.   Israel has not confirmed that it launched the missile that struck an arms depot near Damascus on Dec. 4. Hours after the attack, Netanyahu said "We will not allow a regime hellbent on the annihilation of the Jewish stateĆ¢€¦to entrench itself militarily in Syria."   Israel says Tehran is using its involvement in Syria to supply advanced weapons to Hezbollah.  
  Item Number:10 Date: 12/05/2017 LEBANON - UNCERTAINTY NOTWITHSTANDING, WASHINGTON KEEPS UP ITS MILITARY AID TO BEIRUT (DEC 05/AL-MON)  AL-MONITOR -- Washington is still supplying U.S. military aid to Lebanon despite the political instability in that country, reports Al-Monitor (Washington, D.C.).   U.S. defense officials have recently told Congress that the Trump administration plans to supply Lebanon with six U.S. MD-530G light attack helicopters and necessary communications equipment, valued at US$110 million; and the Scan Eagle unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV), valued at US$11.25 million.   Under President Obama, the U.S. provided Lebanon with more than US$200 million in military aid that included Bradley fighting vehicles, machine guns and night-vision goggles for Beirut's special operations teams.   The Pentagon has provided Beirut with more than US$350 over the last three years, part of a train-and-equip fund for foreign militaries fighting, among others, terrorist and criminal groups.   Some experts and observers quoted in the article praised the continued commitment to Lebanon's still-nascent armed forces. One said the process of supplying foreign military aid has been streamlined under the Trump administration.   On the other hand, critics of Lebanon's armed forces say the Lebanese military is overly reliant on the U.S. and incapable of acting against Hezbollah.   Observers wondered if recent military aid would diminish or slow after the resignation of Prime Minister Saad Hariri, later put on hold.  
Item Number:11 Date: 12/05/2017 PAKISTAN - JUD WILL COMPETE IN 2018 ELECTIONS, SAYS SAEED (DEC 05/VOA)  VOICE OF AMERICA NEWS -- A Pakistani Islamist leader who has been accused of masterminding terrorist attacks says his group will participate in the nation's general elections in 2018, reports Voice of America News.   Hafiz Saeed, leader of Jamaat-ud-Dawa (JUD), told reporters in Lahore on Sunday that the time had come to enter politics and fight for the Kashmiri cause.   JUD launched a political party, Milli Muslim League, in August.   Saeed was released from house arrest on Nov. 22.   He founded Lashkar-e-Tayyiba (LeT), which has been behind a string of attacks in India and beyond. The U.S. government and other have identified JuD as a front for the terrorist LeT
  Item Number:12 Date: 12/05/2017 SAUDI ARABIA - RESEARCH TEAM SUGGESTS AMERICAN MISSILE DEFENSES FAILED TO INTERCEPT WARHEAD FIRED AT SAUDI AIRPORT (DEC 05/NYT)  NEW YORK TIMES -- A research team of missile experts has challenged claims by the U.S. and Saudi Arabia that an U.S.-made missile defense system intercepted a Nov. 4 missile attack on the Saudi capital, reports the New York Times.   The analysts say the warhead made it through the Saudi defenses and nearly hit its target, an international airport in Saudi Arabia's capital, Riyadh. The analysts were largely from the Middlebury Institute of International Studies in Monterey, Calif.   They based their analysis on images from media and social media that show pieces of the missile's body – but not a warhead – strewn across downtown Riyadh. This suggested that missile defenses either missed the warhead or the missile entirely, they said.   The team also based their analysis that a loud explosion was heard and plumes of smoke seen near the King Khalid International Airport at 9 p.m., the same time the missile was allegedly intercepted.   The location of Patriot missile defense systems in Riyadh also suggests that the warhead from the missile traveled 12 miles past the batteries. Videos show at least five interceptors launched in what is said to be Riyadh.   Some unnamed U.S. officials have also challenged the claims that the Patriot missile defense system intercepted the missile. The body and warhead of the missile may have come apart during its flight, they suggested.   Saudi and American officials have accused Iran of supplying the missile to Houthi rebels in Yemen. Tehran denies the allegations
Item Number:13 Date: 12/05/2017 SYRIA - 'TERRORISTS' SAID TO BE BEHIND BUS BLAST IN HOMS CITY; AT LEAST 8 DEAD (DEC 05/SANA)  SYRIAN ARAB NEWS AGENCY -- At least eight people have been killed and 18 wounded in a bombing that targeted a commuter bus in Homs, the capital of Syria's province of the same name, reports Syria's state news agency, SANA.   The region's governor said on Tuesday that "terrorists" had planted the device inside the bus that was ferrying passengers around the city.   That neighborhood, Ekrima, has been targeted several times by terrorist attacks, noted China's state Xinhua news agency.   The neighborhood is mostly inhabited Alawites, President Bashar Assad's religious community, noted AFP.   Homs has been fully controlled by the government since May, after a peace deal brokered by Moscow. That was the first time in six years that Damascus was in control, noted Reuters.   There were no immediate claims of responsibility
Item Number:14 Date: 12/05/2017 SYRIA - ISIS DEFEATED IN EASTERN DEIR EZZOR PROVINCE, SAYS YPG; KURDS ACKNOWLEDGE RUSSIAN AID (DEC 05/VOA)  VOICE OF AMERICA NEWS -- Kurdish forces in Syria say they have retaken control of a strategic area from the Islamic State east of the Euphrates River, reports the Voice of American News.   The People's Protection Units (YPG) expressed appreciation on Sunday for logistical and air support from Russian forces and the U.S.-led coalition in the operation to clear ISIS from the eastern countryside of Deir Ezzor.   The YPG dominates the U.S.-led SDF alliance of Kurdish and Arab fighters.   This appeared to be the first time that Syria's Kurds acknowledged receiving direct Russian support, noted Agence France-Presse.   The statement came a day after U.S. Defense Secretary James Mattis indicated that the United States would move from arming Syrian Kurdish fighters towards holding territory.   A YPG spokesman said he hoped for more coordination with both powers, including air defense and air support.  
 Item Number:15 Date: 12/05/2017 TAIWAN - AIR FORCE WELCOMES P-3C ORIONS, RETIRES S-2T TRACKER ASW AIRCRAFT (DEC 05/TAI)  TAIPEI TIMES -- The Taiwan air force has officially retired its aging S-2T Tracker anti-submarine warfare aircraft, reports the Taipei Times.   During the same ceremony on Friday, the service inducted its newly acquired P-3C Orion maritime patrol aircraft.   Twelve Orions are replacing 11 Trackers, noted the Central News Agency (Taiwan).   Navy-operated S-70C ASW helicopters and MD500 helicopters will support the P-3C fleet, the military said.   The Orions will help deter China's rapidly growing submarine fleet, say officials.   The most recent Pentagon report on the Chinese military says Beijing has nine nuclear-powered subs, including five attack boats, and 54 diesel-electric submarines. The force is expected to grow to between 69 and 78 boats by 2020, the report said.  
Item Number:16 Date: 12/05/2017 UNITED ARAB EMIRATES - NEW PARTNERSHIP ANNOUNCED WITH SAUDI ARABIA; EMIRATI GROUPS SEPARATE FROM GCC (DEC 05/GUARDIAN)  GUARDIAN -- The United Arab Emirates has announced the formation of a new economic and military partnership with Saudi Arabia, reports the Guardian (U.K.).   A new committee aims to enhance cooperation and coordination "in all military, political, economic, trade and cultural fields, as well as others, in the interest of the two countries," said a statement by the U.A.E.'s Foreign Minister.   The partnership is separate from the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC).   The crown prince of Abu Dhabi, Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, will head the new coordination committee. Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan, deputy prime minister of the United Arab Emirates and Minister of Presidential Affairs, will serve as his deputy, according Saudi-owned al-Arabiya, citing the U.A.E.'s official press agency.   The move comes amid a summit in Kuwait of the six-body Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), noted Al Jazeera. The GCC currently includes Saudi Arabia and the Emirates, as well as Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman and Qatar.   Saudi Arabia, the U.A.E., Bahrain and Kuwait have been engaged in a blockade of Qatar since June. They accuse Doha of funding terrorist groups, a claim Qatar denies.   The new alliance is expected to supplant or weaken the existing GCC alliance, noted the Guardian.   The Saudi government has yet to officially comment on the announcement.  
  Item Number:17 Date: 12/05/2017 UNITED KINGDOM - SEEKING FEMALE RECRUITS, BRITISH SPECIAL AIR SERVICE MAY MAKE ENTRY STANDARDS EASIER (DEC 05/GUARDIAN)  GUARDIAN -- Unnamed sources say the elite British Special Air Service (SAS) is considering modifying its challenging entry tests to increase the chances that women can join, reports the Guardian (U.K.).   Then-Prime Minister David Cameron last year removed a ban on women in close combat roles. The government indicated that it wanted all close combat units to be open to women by 2019.   One source told the Sunday Times (London) that there is a "determination to get women into the special forces."   All SAS applicants must complete an initial fitness test. These include long marches over mountainous terrain while carrying heavy packs. Critics say the tests discriminate against women, noted Metro (London). Some maintain that the tests are not necessary to select candidates with the attributes required to succeed.   Female recruits might be allowed to carry lighter loads and given more time to complete the marches, said the sources.   The six-month selection process is considered one of the most grueling in the world. The pass rate can be as low as 8 percent in a year.   Successful candidates go on to complete jungle training in Belize and interrogation tests elsewhere.   The MoD declined to comment on the Times report.  
  Item Number:18 Date: 12/05/2017 USA - PENTAGON ACQUISITION CHIEF AIMS AT COORDINATED DEFENSE R&D (DEC 05/D1)  DEFENSE ONE -- The head of acquisition for the Pentagon says she is working on a new effort to coordinate the Defense Dept.'s research and development projects, reports Defense One.   Ellen Lord, the undersecretary for acquisition, technology and logistics, indicated in a speech that she is putting together a list of desired technologies to coordinate the work being done by the Pentagon, as well as U.S. laboratories and government-funded research centers.   "We think that we have to make choices and focus in a limited number of areas and put our funding on it," Lord told reporters at the Reagan National Defense Forum over the weekend in Simi Valley, Calif.   The goal of the modernization program is to ensure that the department and military services are all on the same page in developing "a strategy that gives us greater overmatch against our adversaries," she said.   "In order to do that -- particularly with constrained budgets -- we need to have a very tight strategy that makes choices and makes sure we are taking all of our resources, all of our funding, and aligning those," said the undersecretary.   The plan will coordinate projects funded by military service labs, federally funded research-and-development centers and the Office of the Secretary of Defense, according to Lord, who said the strategy is expected to be completed in 2018
Item Number:19 Date: 12/05/2017 USA - TOP GENERAL SEES FUTURE BATTLES IN MEGACITIES; NEW ARMY VEHICLE WILL HAVE TO REFLECT THIS (DEC 05/ANS)  ARMY NEWS SERVICE -- The head of U.S. Army Force Command (FORSCOM) predicts that future conflicts will likely take place in megacities and says the service's planned Next-Generation Combat Vehicle (NGCV) must be able to fight in that environment, reports the Army News Service.   There are currently 25 megacities across the world, with this figure expected to double by 2035, Gen. Robert Adams said last week at the Future Ground Combat Vehicles summit in Livonia, Mich. A megacity is defined as a city with 25 million or more inhabitants.   The Army expects to start receiving the NGCV in 2035, he said.   Operations in the Middle East have validated the value of combat vehicles in urban areas, as well as revealing vulnerabilities, the general said. The NGCV is intended to address those shortcomings.   The vehicle must also help cut the supply line, thus allowing maneuver forces to move more quickly and with greater agility, said Abrams.   The general said this could be achieved through a hybrid propulsion system that reduces the need for fuel convoys; diagnostics that support field maintenance; and rugged components.   Other potential capabilities include reactive armor; active protection systems; artificial intelligence; autonomy and/or teaming; advanced target sensors; lasers; precision, extreme range lethality; and room for future upgrades.   All of these capabilities are unlikely to be built into the initial NGCV, Abrams noted. The goal is to give industry the go-ahead to build the most capable system possible using existing technology and in line with Army doctrine, he said.  
  Item Number:20 Date: 12/05/2017 YEMEN - SALEH'S SON DEMANDS REVENGE ON HOUTHIS WHO KILLED HIS FATHER (DEC 05/REU)  REUTERS -- The son of Yemen's former president Ali Abdullah Saleh has urged his father's supporters to take revenge on the Houthis who killed him on Monday in Sanaa, reports Reuters, citing Saudi Arabia's al-Ekbariya TV.   The son was quoted as telling Yemenis to "take back Yemen from the Iranian Houthi militias," saying he would lead the effort personally.   Ahmed Ali Saleh, 45, has been been living in Abu Dhabi with little freedom of movement. He arrived in the Saudi capital, Riyadh, on Monday.   The son is the former head of Yemen's Republican Guards, an elite security force, noted Reuters.   The former president was killed by Houthi rebels near his palace. He ruled Yemen almost unopposed from 1990 to 2012.   The longtime leader recently renounced his alliance with the Iranian-backed rebels and raised the possibility of cooperating with the Saudi-led coalition fighting the Houthis.
 
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