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Thursday, January 11, 2018

TheList 4632




To All,
I hope that your week has been going well.
Regards,
Skip
This Day In Naval History – January 11, 2018
Jan. 11
1820—The schooner Lynx, commanded by Lt. J. R. Madison, departs St. Mary's, GA, bound for Kingston, Jamaica, to continue its service suppressing pirates. The ship is never heard from again and no trace of it or its 50 man crew is ever found.
1863—Iron side-wheel gunboat Hatteras gets duped by Confederate cruiser Alabama, masquerading as a British warship, and is sunk off the Galveston, TX, coast.
1900—During the Philippine Insurrection, the gunboat Princeton, commanded by H. Knox, takes possession of the Bataan Island group in the Philippines.
1905—The gunboat Petrel (PG 2) becomes the first U.S. Navy ship to enter Pearl Harbor, then Territory of Hawaii, by way of a newly-dredged channel.
1944—Torpedo bombing aircraft from USS Block Island (CVE 21) make first aircraft rocket attack on U-758.
 
Today in History January 11
49 BC
Julius Caesar leads his army across the Rubicon River, plunging Rome into civil war.
1843
Francis Scott Key, author of "The Star-Spangled Banner," dies in Baltimore.
1861
Alabama secedes from the Union.
1862
Lincoln accepts Simon Cameron's resignation as Secretary of War.
1887
At Fort Smith, Arkansas, hangman George Maledon dispatches four victims in a multiple hanging.
1904
British troops massacre 1,000 dervishes in Somaliland.
1916
Russian General Yudenich launches a WWI winter offensive and advances west.
1923
The French enter the town of Essen in the Ruhr valley, to extract Germany's resources as war payment.
1934
The German police raid the homes of dissident clergy in Berlin.
1941
Adolf Hitler orders forces to be prepared to enter North Africa to assist the Italian effort, marking the establishment of the Afrika Korps.
1940
Benjamin O. Davis, Sr., becomes the U.S. Army's first black general, his son would later become a general as well.
1942
Japan invades the Dutch East Indies at Borneo.
1943
The Soviet Red Army encircles Stalingrad.
1948
President Harry S. Truman proposes free, two-year community colleges for all who want an education.
1949
Negotiations in China between the Nationalists and Communists open as Tientsin is virtually lost to the Communists.
1964
A collection of previously unexhibited paintings by Pablo Picasso are displayed for the first time in Toronto.
1980
Honda announces it will build the first Japanese-owned passenger-car assembly plant in the United States--in Ohio.
1994
The Irish Government announces an end to a 15-year ban on broadcasting by the IRA and its political branch, Sinn Fein.
2003
Illinois Gov. George Ryan commutes the death sentences of 167 prisoners on the state's death row in the wake of allegations that Chicago police detective and commander Jon Burge tortured confessions from some 200 suspects over a 19 year period.
 
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ALEXANDER HAMILTON
Alexander Hamilton was born January 11 in either 1755 or 1757—the exact year is uncertain. An orphan from the Caribbean island of Nevis, he rose with astounding speed to become an aide-de-camp to George Washington, a hero of the Revolutionary War, and a member of the Constitutional Convention. As the first secretary of the treasury, he helped build the new nation's financial systems. As a leader of the Federalist Party, he helped create our political system. He was never president of the United States, but he shaped the new American nation as few other Founding Fathers did.
Because he argued for a strong central government, Hamilton is often seen as an anti-democratic figure. But he could write as memorably of natural law and human rights as any of the Founders. "The sacred rights of mankind are not to be rummaged for among old parchments or musty records," he wrote. "They are written, as with a sunbeam, in the whole volume of human nature, by the hand of the Divinity itself and can never be erased or obscured by mortal power."
One of Hamilton's greatest contributions was to help persuade Americans to accept the Constitution. With James Madison and John Jay, he wrote The Federalist Papers, a series of brilliant newspaper essays urging the Constitution's ratification. Many people predicted that the new plan for government would not work. But Hamilton believed his countrymen should put aside their differences and give it a try. "The system, though it may not be perfect in every part, is, upon the whole, a good one," he reminded them. "I never expect to see a perfect work from imperfect man." If not for Hamilton's brilliant arguments and efforts, the thirteen former colonies might have gone their separate ways.
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Thanks to Bill
GoPro: Best of 2017 - Year in Review
 
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Thanks to Bill
One of my email colleges is a civil war guy...
 
He mentions:
The Citadel lays title to firing the first shots of the Civil War due to the battery manned by The Citadel firing on The Star of the West.
 
And then attached a link so that people who are interested can read more.
 
 
And a link about the rediscovery of the lost flag that the Citadel manned battery flew when they fired on The Star of the West.
 
 
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Thanks to Robert
"M" word... by Jeff Foxworthy
Have you ever wondered why it's OK to make jokes about
Catholics, Jews, Christians, the Pope, the Irish, the
Italians, the Polish, the Hungarians, the Chinese, the
 French (including French Canadians), the elderly, bad
golfers, men/women, blacks/whites, etc, but its insensitive
 to make jokes about the Muslims?
 Well, it's time to level the playing field and be politically incorrect, by including our friends, the Muslims, on this grandiose list.
 So Jeff Foxworthy did his part to include the Muslims on his list ...
 1. If you grow and refine heroin for a living, but morally object to the use of liquor, You may be a Muslim.
 2. If you own a $3,000 machine gun and a $5,000 rocket launcher, but can't afford shoes, You may be a Muslim.
 3. If you have more wives than teeth, You may be a Muslim.
 4. If you wipe your butt with your bare hand, but consider bacon to be unclean, You may be a Muslim.
 5. If you think vests come in two styles, Bullet-proof and suicide, You may be a Muslim.
 6. If you can't think of anyone that you haven't declared jihad against, You may be a Muslim.
 7. If you consider television dangerous, but routinely carry explosives in your clothing, You may be a Muslim.
 8. If you were amazed to discover that cell phones have uses, other than setting off roadside bombs, You may be a Muslim.
9. If you have nothing against women and think every man should own at least four, then you, too, may be a Muslim.
 10. If you find this offensive and do not forward it, you are part of the problem here in America but if you delete this,
       you are most likely a Muslim.
                Freedom Is not Free!
               INCOMING…ALWAYS HAS THE RIGHT-OF-WAY
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Thanks to CArl
 
AREA 51 AIRLINE THAT 'DOESN'T EXIST' NOW HIRING
'Active Top Secret Clearance Highly Desired'


(USA TODAY) — Are you a Las Vegas-based flight attendant looking for work and able to keep a secret(s)? Do you feel positively about working for an airline that sort of doesn't exist? Happen to have a Top-Secret clearance with the U.S. government, or think you could snag one?
If so, the perfect job just opened up.

Janet, a classified airline that runs commuter flights to some of the most secretive and closely guarded government facilities in the U.S., appears to be hiring a flight attendant. The job posting appeared recently on the website for AECOM, which operates a small fleet of aircraft out of a discreet but heavily guarded terminal at McCarran International Airport in Las Vegas.

 
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Aviation History video ..
Thanks to John…and Dr. Rich.
 
I have been watching these that past couple of days and thought that if you haven't seen it yet you would find it very interesting.
 
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Thanks to Robert
           JUST IN CASE YOU ARE BORED

When you are bored just think about a few things that don't make sense...
like:

1. If poison expires, is it more poisonous or is it no longer poisonous?

2. Which letter is silent in the word "Scent," the S or the C?

3. Do twins ever realize that one of them is unplanned?

4. Why is the letter W, in English, called double U? Shouldn't it be
called double V?

5. Maybe oxygen is slowly killing you and it just takes 75-100 years to
fully work.

6. Every time you clean something, you just make something else dirty.

7. The word "swims" upside-down is still "swims".

8. 100 years ago everyone owned a horse and only the rich had cars. Today
everyone has cars and only the rich own horses.

9. If you replace "W" with "T" in "What, Where and When", you get the
answer to each of them.

10. If you rip a hole in a net, there are actually fewer holes in it than
there were before.
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Thanks to Chuck
An amazing story with an incredible ending: Robert Smalls' Escape from Slavery
 
For weeks, Robert Smalls had been watching them. Noting their comings and goings. It was risky, but it was the only way his plan would work.
The year was 1862, and Smalls was an enslaved man, working on a Confederate steamship named the Planter. He had been observing the schedules of the Planter's white crew to learn if and when they would all leave the ship for an entire night. For when they did, Smalls knew what he would do: steal the ship out of Charleston Harbor in South Carolina and deliver it — along with his family, some friends and himself — to the Union. To freedom.
It was a plan as daring as it was genius, and Smalls, a 23-year-old African-American born into slavery, was determined that it would work.
The unlikely story of this remarkable man is told in Cate Lineberry's thoroughly researched new history "Be Free or Die: The Amazing Story of Robert Smalls' Escape from Slavery to Union Hero" (St. Martin's, published June 20).
"I was really impressed with his determination, his ability to overcome such incredible odds," Lineberry tells the Post. "His determination in a world that wanted to keep him down as much as possible was what drew me to the story."
Smalls was the Planter's wheelman, essentially its pilot, responsible for guiding it through the complicated waterways around the harbor. Although he was its most knowledgeable sailor, he could not operate the ship alone. He convinced his fellow black crew members to go along with the getaway — and swear to secrecy.
The crew waited for Smalls' sign, for that moment when the white officers would be gone. That moment came on May 12, 1862.
It would have been impossible to spirit the Planter through the harbor without anyone noticing, so Smalls had to make it seem as if the ship was traveling on routine business. Critical to this was the resemblance Smalls bore to the ship's white captain, one Charles Relyea. Harbor guards would need to be convinced that a white man was at the helm. As he prepared to launch the Planter into the harbor, Smalls put on Captain Relyea's straw cap.
In the early morning hours of May 13, Smalls and his crew unmoored the Planter from its berth in Charleston's Southern Wharf. Their first stop: to pick up several other escapees, including Smalls' wife, Hannah, and their children.
Their next hurdle was Fort Johnson, a Confederate stronghold. As the Planter paddled its way past the fort, the mood on board was fraught. Smalls and his group knew they had crossed a critical threshold. If at any point they were caught, they had all agreed, they would join hands and jump to their watery deaths.
If they could not be free, they would not live in slavery, either.
Somehow, they made it past Johnson.
Finally, and perhaps most terrifyingly, Smalls had to avoid the suspicion of the night watch of the famous Fort Sumter. Tense minutes ticked by as the Planter crept past the heavily armed fort.
By this point, the Planter's Captain Relyea realized that his ship was gone and was asking questions back in the harbor. But he failed to raise the alarm in time, and the Planter was able to slip past Sumter and into the channel leading to the Atlantic. As soon as they were in the clear, the crew lowered the Planter's Confederate flag and raised a white sheet in its place.
In the foggy early dawn, the Planter was intercepted by the clipper Onward, part of the Union blockade of Charleston Harbor. Initially thinking the Planter was a Confederate ironclad bent on ramming his ship, the captain of the Onward trained his ship's guns on the escaped steamer. Then he saw the white flag.
Smalls and his co-conspirators had done the seemingly impossible. Throughout this harrowing experience, one of the crew later said of Smalls, "If he lost his nerve for a single minute, no one noticed it."
When they discovered the Planter was missing, Confederate authorities were incredulous. So poor was the Southern white opinion of African-Americans, they couldn't or didn't believe that the escape of the Planter had been engineered solely by slaves. An English correspondent in Charleston wrote, "There was doubt and speculation, and finally rage and unmitigated spleen."
Word of the escape spread quickly to Union states. The New York Herald gushingly described Smalls' act as, "One of the most daring and heroic adventures since the war was commenced," a plan executed by "plucky Africans who have distinguished themselves by this gallant service." Smalls in particular became a national celebrity, an inspiration to other former slaves and a bridge between black and white communities at a time when there were few such connections.
Smalls and his fellow escapees had dealt the South a humiliating moral and physical defeat. The Planter itself was a valuable asset; it quickly became part of the Northern fleet. The steamer was carrying several large cannons and hundreds of pounds of ammunition. These were now subtracted from the arsenal of the Confederate Army and added to the Union's. Valuable also were the Planter's human assets: 16 enslaved people, including Smalls and the other experienced members of its crew.
"What strikes me the most is the remarkable courage that it took," Lineberry says, "for someone who was illiterate, who has always been told his entire life that he's not equal to anyone else . . . to then say, 'I am not going to sit here and take this. I'm going to find a way to save my family.' "
So impressed were Union officials by Smalls' courage and intelligence, that he was brought to meet President Lincoln. He continued to prove himself a highly skilled, brave member of the Union cause, and was rewarded for his efforts by becoming the first black captain of a Navy ship. That ship was none other than the Planter.
After the war, Smalls represented South Carolina in the House of Representatives for five terms. And he learned to read and write. He died in 1915 at the age of 75, in the house where he was born. He had bought it. It was an incredible reversal of fortune for a man who had been born in bondage. Later in life, Smalls summed up his fateful flight to freedom, claiming, "Although born a slave I always felt that I was a man and ought to be free, and I would be free or die."
Smalls owner had to sell the house because of back taxes. During Reconstruction, many blacks were appointed congressmen from the former Confederate states. Smalls, certainly the most famous former slave in South Carolina, was appointed for his district. He quickly got the hang of congressional wheeling and dealing, successfully pushed through a bill appropriating money for a small navel coaling station on an island just south of Beauford. He reasoned that it expansion would help both his white and black constituents.
That little naval installation is now the United States Marine Corps training depot on Parris Island. Every marine recruited east of the Mississippi River receives his or her basic training there. They can thank------or curse----Robert Smith, whose accomplishments thus continue to have a major impact on South Carolina more than 135 years after he became famous.
Smalls staked his life on fooling hundreds of Confederate soldiers into believing he was a white man. Used to seeing the same thing day after day, they failed to pay attention to the man beneath the hat.
I hope you enjoy this read as the outcome was news to me. I had never heard the story. The Union paid him for the ship and the two cannons and he kept $1,500 for himself. He used the $1,500 to purchase the house he was born in. 
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Item Number:1 Date: 01/11/2018 CAMEROON - BOKO HARAM SUSPECTED IN DEADLY ATTACK IN NORTH (JAN 11/XIN)  XINHUA -- At least three people have been killed in an attack in the Far North region of Cameroon, reports Xinhua, China's state news agency.   The Nigeria-based Boko Haram terrorist group is believed to have made the attack, said local sources.   On Wednesday, militants attacked the Kolofata subdivision in the north, which borders Boko Haram's holdings in Nigeria. The group also raided several villages near the Mayo Moskota subdivision.   The assault was said to be related to efforts to steal food, because their own supplies are reportedly running out.   "We knew that their food stocks have been exhausted for months," a local chief told Xinhua. "One should expect such incursions from time to time
Item Number:2 Date: 01/11/2018 CANADA - SPECIAL OPS CHIEF WANTS TO RECRUIT MORE WOMEN (JAN 11/CBC)  CANADIAN BROADCASTING CORPORATION -- The head of Canada's special operations forces says he wants to recruit more women to improve effectiveness, reports CBC News.   "Having female operators would allow us to be more flexible in the battlespace," Maj. Gen. Mike Rouleau, the head of Canadian Special Operations Forces Command (CANSOFCOM), said in a recent interview. "It would allow us to be more under the radar in certain cases."   As special operations forces increase efforts against terrorists, they will need to act more like intelligence agents, rather than "door-kicking" commandos, said retired Col. Steve Day, a former commander of the elite Joint Task Force 2 (JTF-2).   Canadian allies have already identified the need for mixed-gender teams and routinely deploy men and women together for intelligence-gathering type missions, said Day.   Currently, about 14 percent of the 2,200 Canadian special operations personnel are women. Rouleau wants to increase this figure to 25 percent.   To achieve such a goal, the special operations community will need to make a cultural change to recognize the value of women in the field and the ability of elite troops to perform more than combat missions, Day said.  
  Item Number:3 Date: 01/11/2018 CHINA - AIR FORCE RECEIVES LATEST BATCH OF Y-20 HEAVY CARGO AIRCRAFT (JAN 11/GT)  GLOBAL TIMES -- The Chinese People's Liberation Army Air Force recently accepted delivery of a batch of domestically developed Y-20 large transport aircraft, reports the Global Times.   At least five Y-20s entered service with China's Western Theater Command, according to local media.   Imagery of the aircraft showed the planes at an airport in Qionglai in Sichuan province on Dec. 9.   This was the first time so many Y-20 transports had been seen in public, media said. The plane entered service in 2016.   The new cargo aircraft will support transport missions in the Western Theater Command alongside existing Y-7 and Y-8 planes, said analysts.   The Y-20 has a maximum takeoff weight of 200 tons and can transport cargo and personnel over long ranges in all weather conditions, noted Xinhua, China's state news agency
Item Number:4 Date: 01/11/2018 COLOMBIA - AS CEASE-FIRE ENDS, ELN ATTACKS MAJOR OIL PIPELINE (JAN 11/FIN)  FINMECCANICA -- The National Liberation Army (ELN) militant group in Colombia has carried out multiple attacks against a major oil pipeline shortly after a truce with the government expired, reports Finance Colombia.   Two military personnel were injured in an apparent grenade attack on the Cano-Limon-Covenas pipeline, Colombia's second most important. Some oil also spilled, said Ecopetrol, the state-owned oil firm.   Pumping operations on the pipeline had to be suspended, reported Reuters.   The attacks were attributed to the "Jose Daniel Suarez" faction of the ELN.   The ELN is Colombia's largest armed militant group following last year's peace accord with the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC). ELN has been negotiating a peace deal with Bogota since early 2017 in Quito, the capital of Ecuador.   In response, Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos formally recalled his peace negotiator from the talks in Ecuador. The government had planned to try and extend a three-month cease-fire that expired hours before the attacks.   Santos also ordered the military to "act with force and respond to this ELN aggression
  Item Number:5 Date: 01/11/2018 ISRAEL - TERRORIST ATTACKS ON THE RISE FOLLOWING U.S. MOVE TO RECOGNIZE JERUSALEM AS ISRAELI CAPITAL, SHIN BET SAYS (JAN 11/JP)  JERUSALEM POST -- Israel's Shin Bet internal security service says there has been a significant increase in terrorist attacks since U.S. President Donald Trump recognized Jerusalem as the nation's capital in early December, reports the Jerusalem Post.   The number of violent attacks in Israel and the Palestinian territories in the West Bank and Gaza Strip tripled from 84 in November to 249 in December, according to the latest figures released by the security service.   Of the 249 attacks, 219 involved the throwing of Molotov cocktails, which Shin Bet considers terror, the newspaper said.   The most serious attacks were two stabbings of Israeli security officers by Palestinian men. The rest of the incidents were rockets and mortars fired from the Gaza Strip, shootings and improvised explosive device attacks, said Shin Bet.   The report did not specifically identify Trump's announcement as the reason for the higher rate of attacks. Many Palestinians took part in violent "days of rage" throughout December to protest the move, the agency noted.  
  Item Number:6 Date: 01/11/2018 JAPAN - TOKYO PROTESTS CHINESE WARSHIPS SAILING NEAR DISPUTED SENKAKU ISLANDS (JAN 11/KNA)  KYODO NEWS AGENCY -- The Japanese government has filed a protest with Beijing after a Chinese frigate and an unidentified submerged submarine were observed on Thursday just beyond Japanese territorial waters near the disputed Senkaku Islands in the East China Sea, reports the Kyodo news agency.   This was the first time that a submerged foreign submarine has been discovered in the contiguous zone just outside of Japan's territorial waters around the islands. The Japanese Defense Ministry said it believed the sub was Chinese.   This was only the second confirmed time that a Chinese frigate entered the contiguous zone, said a ministry official. The first occurred in June 2016.   China responded to the Japanese protest by saying it has "full historical and legal basis for sovereignty" over the islands, which it calls the Diaoyus.   The Chinese vessels were in the area to monitor the activities of two Japanese Maritime Self-Defense Force ships, said a Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman.  
  Item Number:9 Date: 01/11/2018 PAKISTAN - NATO SEEKS TO SHIP SUPPLIES TO AFGHANISTAN THROUGH GWADAR PORT (JAN 11/VOA)  VOICE OF AMERICA NEWS -- The NATO alliance has proposed to import supplies for its forces in Afghanistan through the port in Gwadar in southwestern Pakistan, reports the Voice of America News.   NATO officials put forth the idea at a recent meeting with local and international business leaders hosted by Hasil Bizenjo, Pakistan's federal minister for maritime affairs.   The Resolute Support mission in Afghanistan is dependent on ground and air routes through Pakistan to receive supplies.   Currently, NATO supplies are shipped through Karachi in southeastern Pakistan. The supplies are transported by truck on a week-long trek to Afghanistan through the northwestern Torkham border crossing.   A new route via Gwadar would allow NATO to bring supplies directly to Afghanistan's southern Kandahar province. Gwadar is connected to the Chaman border crossing with Kandahar through a new highway, which permits truck convoys to reach Afghanistan in less than 24 hours.   Further talks are planned with Pakistani and Afghan businesses and NATO representatives on the matter, Bizenjo said, without specifying a date
Item Number:10 Date: 01/11/2018 PAKISTAN - WASHINGTON DENIES MILITARY, INTELLIGENCE COOPERATION SUSPENDED WITH PAKISTAN (JAN 11/DAWN)  DAWN -- Defense Minister Khurram Dastgir Khan says Pakistan has suspended military and intelligence cooperation with the U.S., reports the Dawn (Pakistan).   The move comes after President Donald Trump alleged that Pakistan had given the United States "nothing but lies and deceit" and suspended security aid.   Khan made his comments on Jan. 9 at the Institute of Strategic Studies in Islamabad. The minister argued that the U.S. was using Pakistan as a "scapegoat" for its failures in Afghanistan.   The U.S. Embassy in Islamabad denied the claims, reported the Voice of America News. An embassy spokesman said that they had "not received any formal communication regarding a suspension
  Item Number:11 Date: 01/11/2018 TAIWAN - LONG-TERM DEFENSE PLANS INCLUDE ADVANCED WEAPONS TO DETER CHINA (JAN 11/REU)  REUTERS -- The government in Taiwan says it will use a planned long-term increase in defense spending to develop and acquire advanced weapon systems, with an eye on potential threats from China, reports Reuters.   The ruling left-leaning Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) led by President Tsai Ing Wen is working on detailed spending plans through 2025, officials with direct knowledge of the effort told the wire service.   Tsai and her advisers have met repeatedly with military leaders in an effort to boost investment in training and equipment, said one official.   Priorities include new missiles, unmanned aircraft, electronic warfare systems, fighter aircraft and ballistic missile defenses, said a Defense Ministry statement provided to Reuters.   Some of the new weapons would be produced domestically, including a plan to build eight submarines, while longer-term projects could mean new purchases from the United States.   Tsai announced in October 2017 that defense spending would grow at least 2 percent annually, with further increases possible for major procurements.  
  Item Number:12 Date: 01/11/2018 TAIWAN - MORE SKY SWORD II ANTI-AIRCRAFT MISSILES TO BE DEPLOYED TO COMBAT CHINESE JETS (JAN 11/TAINEWS)  TAIWAN NEWS -- The Taiwanese military plans to expand use of the domestically developed Sky Sword II anti-aircraft missile to help the air force deal with the threat of advanced Chinese fighter jets, reports Taiwan News.   A naval variant of the missile system is scheduled to be installed on the navy's Kang Ding-class frigates from 2020 to 2028, reported the Chinese-language Liberty Times on Jan. 10.   The air force will also modify its Ching-Kuo indigenous defense fighters to carry four Sky Sword II missiles instead of two.   The additional missile capacity will help Taiwan defend against Chinese J-20 stealth fighters and Russian-built Su-35 fighters.   The latest version of the Sky Sword II has a range of 60 miles (100 km) and a top speed of Mach 6
Item Number:13 Date: 01/11/2018 TUNISIA - ARMY DEPLOYED TO CITIES AS VIOLENT PROTESTS AGAINST AUSTERITY MEASURES CONTINUE (JAN 11/GUARDIAN)  GUARDIAN -- The Tunisian army has been deployed in several cities after a third night of violent protests against price and tax increases, reports the Guardian (U.K.).   About 600 protesters have been arrested since the anti-government demonstrations began on Monday, officials said. Around 330 people "involved in acts of sabotage and robbery" were arrested on Wednesday night, said an Interior Ministry spokesman.   The protests were ignited by government-imposed price and tax increases that will raise the cost of basic goods, but which Tunis says are vital to reduce a growing deficit and meet the demands of international lenders.   Troops were sent to Thala, near the Algerian border, after demonstrators burned down the national security building, forcing police to retreat from the town, said witnesses cited by Reuters.   The army has also been deployed in Sousse, Kebeli and Bizert to protect government buildings
  Item Number:14 Date: 01/11/2018 USA - F-35B TO MAKE 1ST DEPLOYMENT WITH 13TH MEU (JAN 11/MCT)  MARINE CORPS TIMES -- The Marine Corps F-35B Lightning II stealth fighter will soon deploy with a continental U.S.-based unit for the first time, reports the Marine Corps Times.   Marine Fighter Attack Squadron 211 (VMFA-211), based at Marine Corps Air Station Yuma, Ariz., is set to deploy with the 13th Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU) later this year.   The 13th MEU is preparing for a six-month intensive workup before deploying with an amphibious task force.   The F-35Bs will be stationed on USS Essex (LHD 2) for the deployment, officials said
Item Number:15 Date: 01/11/2018 USA - NEW FRIGATE DESIGN COULD COST NEARLY $1 BILLION (JAN 11/DN)  DEFENSE NEWS -- The U.S. Navy has set a cost limit of $950 million per ship for its new frigate program, reports Defense News.   This is about half the cost of an Arleigh Burke-class Flight IIA destroyer and nearly twice the price tag of the littoral combat ship.   The FFG(X) program is one of the Navy's top priorities for 2018. Plans call for the warship to have between 16 and 32 vertical-launch missile tubes and an over-the-horizon, anti-ship missile capability.   The cost ceiling could weed out some of the more expensive contenders for the program, such as Navantia's offering or the Type 26 design from BAE Systems. Both designs are expected to cost at least $1 billion, said Jerry Hendrix, a retired Navy captain and analyst at the Center for a New American Security in Washington, D.C.   Austal USA and Lockheed Martin are offering designs based on their littoral combat ships, while Huntington Ingalls Industries is believed to have proposed a redesigned variant of the U.S. Coast Guard's Bertholf-class national security cutter.   Fincantieri is offering a variant of the European multi-mission frigate (FREMM), which is in service with the French and Italian navies
Item Number:16 Date: 01/11/2018 USA - WASHINGTON SEEKS FEWER CONSTRAINTS ON NUCLEAR WEAPONS, MORE 'USABLE' WARHEADS (JAN 11/GUARDIAN)  GUARDIAN -- The Trump administration wants to loosen constraints on the use of nuclear weapons and to develop a new a low-yield nuclear warhead for Trident intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs), according to a former U.S. official, who has seen the latest draft of the new nuclear posture review, cited by the Guardian (U.K.).   The review, being prepared by the Pentagon, proposes a modified version of the Trident II D-5 ICBM with only part of its standard warhead in an effort to deter Russia from using tactical warheads in a conflict in Eastern Europe, said Jon Wolfsthal, who was a special assistant to Barack Obama on arms control and nonproliferation.   The draft document expands the situations in which the U.S. might employ nuclear weapons, including as a response to a non-nuclear attack that causes mass casualties, or aimed at critical infrastructure or nuclear command-and-control sites.   The plan is also expected to include efforts to reintroduce a sea-launched cruise missile to counter a new ground-launched cruise missile that the U.S. has accused Russia of developing in violation of the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty, said Wolfsthal.   The nuclear posture review is scheduled to be published at the end of the month.   One goal of the document is to "send a clear deterrent message to Russians, the North Korean and the Chinese," Wolfsthal said.   Critics say the proposal to make smaller, more "usable" nuclear weapons could make nuclear war more likely.   The modified Trident warhead, with just the primary (fission) part of its thermonuclear warhead, was "totally unnecessary" since the U.S. already has low-yield weapons, including B61 gravity bombs and air-launched cruise missiles, in its inventory, said the former Obama official .
 
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