Monday, July 16, 2012

This Day In Naval History - July 16 2012

--- On Mon, 7/16/12, Skip Leonard wrote:

From: Skip Leonard
Subject: The List 3154
To: skip
Date: Monday, July 16, 2012, 1:21 PM

To All,
I hope you all had a great weekend.

This Day In Naval History - July 16
1862 - Congress creates rank of Rear Admiral. David G. Farragut is named the first Rear Admiral
1912 - Rear Admiral Bradley Fiske receives patent for torpedo plane or airborne torpedo.
1915 - First Navy ships, battleships Ohio, Missouri, and Wisconsin transit Panama Canal.
1945 - First atomic bomb test at Alamogordo, NM.
Quintuple Ace Joe Foss In Air Combat [ Part One }

   Joe Foss was born in South Dakota, completed a bachelor's degree and civilian pilot flight training in 1940, and immediately enlisted in the Marine
Corps. Shortly after the Pearl Harbor attack he became executive officer of VMF-121.
   On October 9 1942 he flew his F4F Wildcat from the aircraft carrier Long Island to Henderson Field on Guadalcanal to become part of the " Cactus Air Force." He quickly absorbed VMF-212 leader Joe Bauer's tactics . . boring in close before firing at the enemy.
   Four days after his arrival he scored his first victory, a Zero, and by October 18 he was an Ace. Despite being forced out of air combat for six weeks with malaria, by early 1943 Foss TIED  Eddie Rickenbacker's WWI record of 26 enemy aircraft shot down, and was he returned to the States for a war bond tour.
   In May 1943 he received the Medal of Honor from President Roosevelt. After a stateside stint training new pilots for combat, he returned to the Pacific as commander of VMF-115 flying Corsairs.
   Foss, whose autobiography, ' A Proud American: Joe Foss', includes an excellent account of his career in the " Cactus Air Force."  He graciously agreed to be interviewed in order to help make Combat Flight Simulator 2: WW II Pacific Theatre as realistically interactve in ' dog fight '  action, as possible. m Joe Foss
Foss On ' Dogfighting .'
" Dogfights are normally over in a matter of seconds. If you   blink . . you could miss the fight.
But during the fight . . if you blink . . you could die ".
---From Foss' autobiography, A Proud American : Joe Foss
Foss, On What it takes to be a fighter pilot ..
"  The impulse and the action must be one. Skilled fighter pilots have one thing in common:
They are quick !
The airplane becomes an extension of your body . . like an arm or a leg.  If somebody's coming at you with a red-hot poker, you instinctively get out
of the way.  You don't have to think about it.

You just do it. "
In the air, whoever acts . . smartest . . and fastest is going to be the survivor.  As the Red Baron said, ' It's not the crate . . it's the man sitting in it.'
If it were not so . . the Grumman Wildcat would have been a flying dead man's coffin. "
---From Foss' autobiography, A Proud American: Joe Foss

On Saburo Sakai . .
" Saburo Sakai, top surviving Japanese ace, with whom I often shared platforms at university symposiums, told me that I was his best friend in America "
---From Foss' autobiography, A Proud American: Joe Foss
The truth about aerial combat :  [ a Foss' talk to student fighter pilots ]
   " If you're planning on this being an easy job . . you've got another think coming. You can end up dead in this line of work. War is dangerous!  If you
have any thought of  ' chickening out '. . now's the time to do it. Being any kind of pilot in enemy territory means having your life threatened on every mission ."
[ Note:  " After one of  these talks . . . thirty-six fliers self-uninitiated themselves  out of the fighter pilot training program. I didn't lose any sleep over that . .
in fact . . I was glad.  I didn't want any of those guys flying on my wing."
---From Foss' autobiography, A Proud American: Joe Foss

The following excepted from a transcript [ March, 2000 ] interview with Joe Foss by Jon Seal and Michael Ahn
Joe Foss : [ discussing the Japanese assault on Guadalcanal ] : They could see everything. They strafed, and there's nothing we
could do.  Absolutely . . we were pinned down. And our anti-aircraft people weren't that good. But I can imagine it could make
you nervous if you're under that kind of blitz. You wouldn't want to stand up there and man your gun, too well.  It wasn't too
   There was no safe place on the island. And [the Japanese] thought they could just come in on there.  They'd have gotten a
good reception of course .. so they better have some tough bozos leading the attack.  But they really thought they had us.
Interviewer: You described the shelling in your book. And it's really pretty horrific ..two nights of shelling .. non-stop.
Joe Foss: Well they thought they could wipe us off the island. But everybody was dedicated . . real dedicated . . I don't care whether you were ground pounder or what job you had.
They say, "How did you get the Congressional Medal of Honor?" and I said, " I was just surrounded by good people. They made
it possible, for those of us who were on the firing line, to produce."
"  If the airplane was shot up, you aren't going to go anyplace, and those guys fixed those suckers so that they would go. They would have to frequently change the engine [which, in those days, only lasted 70-some hours] because you were flying full throttle any time the plane was running.  It would suck that coral dust .. that would be just like ' filing'  the cylinders and piston rings, and all would go out in a hurry. "
Interviewer :  Basically you got in the cockpit, then from the moment you took off . . you were flying that plane has hard as you possibly could ?
Joe Foss : Yeah. On a scramble, you need to go full speed. Altitude advantage was the name of the game. And if you didn't get up there . . then they were coming down on you.  And they did.
   We went at it . . day after day . . where they had the advantage. The only thing we had to let us know they were coming was
the ' coast watchers' up the line. See, there's a great story about that. There's a book called 'The Coast Watchers'. Ever read that ?

Interviewer: No.
Joe Foss:   It's a terrific story. You see, they were the ' radar ' [line of] watchers that started way up at Bougainville, where the [Japanese] ' bled through' to fly right down what we called the   gut, between the Solomon Islands. And these coast watchers   would count how many left . . then how many came back.
   So when the planes that we would hit were smoking - we couldn't stay on it 'til it crashed -  that was good enough.  That meant that sucker was out of action, and so you'd get busy on something else.
   You never had to look for targets. [We were] outnumbered six to one..  or four to one. But they were hesitant to get involved with us because we had had very good luck [with them].
   If you read this Sakai's book, you'll find that most of  the Japanese Aces ended their career there at Guadalcanal. He almost ended his .. although he was not shot up by a fighter. He made a mistake and flew up the kazoo on the dive bomber SBD, and
didn't realize the [rear gunner] was a well-fed old Iowa farm boy sitting back there, and just plastered him right in the puss.
   That's why Saburo was blind on one eye .. his right eye. Bullet went in his eye, then skimmed along inside his helmet. You look
at that helmet .. you wonder how that guy ever lived. The bullet hit his goggle; their goggles were not as nice as ours .. sort of heavy.    And it was a good thing because it deflected that .30 caliber [ other wise] it would have been .. the end of his waltz.
Interviewer: What about fear ?
Joe Foss: In combat ?
Interviewer: Yes.
Joe Foss :  In combat if you didn't get scared . . you didn't have a brain . . because you realize that it's a matter of life or death.
When someone's shooting at you . . if you don't get a thrill out of that . . you [must be] dead.
   Actually, the only time that you get over being scared was when you're in the actual combat. It's like .. if you've ever competed in sports. Once you get into the game, you concentrate on the game. Before the match you know you try to size up the enemy. Who is the other guy?
And that's the same way in combat.
   " You see those airplanes up there [Foss exaggeratingly plays nervous] "Oh .. we're just about ready to engage. But once we    got into it .. at least I for one .. wasn't shivering and shaking. I   was concentrating on getting that sucker, and trying to avoid [colliding with] the rest of the boys."
   How is it we never had  a lot of mid-air collisions ?  I don't know .. we didn't have air traffic control up there. You're going all the way .. and so is the enemy .. and you're really concentrating. That's the way it is.
   Combat on the ground is the same way. I've visited with a lot of  the hand-to-hand combat people. And they respond the same way. Once you get into it, it's just like you're going to wrestle somebody, box them, fight them. You want to win ..  but you want to kill that sucker .. wound him .. so he isn't going to get YOU.
Interviewer: How did you motivate your men to feel that way?
Joe Foss: Those of us who lived represent those that didn't. They gave their lives as simply as you go and deposit money to purchase something. They had confidence in this country .. they knew that they liked the life that they had .. with its freedom.
The freedom which the opposition didn't intend to give you…
   We were dedicated because we knew what the Germans were doing .. what the Japanese were trying to do. They wanted
world domination. They wanted to take over and tell us how we were going to live, and operate. I love this country. I knew there was going to be a war .. wanted to be in it.
Interviewer: I think it's hard for people to understand that you and the men on Guadalcanal were willing to give up their lives.
Joe Foss:   Absolutely.
Interviewer: There's a story that you tell about Roger Haberman getting wounded in combat, shipped back to the rear, and then showing up again on your doorstep. He actually going AWOL -  to get back. Why do you think he did that ?
Joe Foss:    Because . . they wanted to be . . they felt they could contribute their share. My CO,  Duke Davis flew the same day after he was wounded . . got hit on the side of the face . . the right arm, and the right leg. After the shrapnel was dug out he had all this swelling . . taped up face. But  here he was . . right back up in combat.  On the same day.
Interviewer:   So why do you think he didn't say, " You know what? I'm here, I'm just going to take off three days and heal a little bit..."
Joe Foss:   The strong belief in : " I  contribute  to  this " is their thinking. "I'm  contributing so much I don't want to let the rest of my guys down. I just want to be there . . come hell and high water ".
It's hard for some people to understand that . . their dedication to country . . they had a loyalty.
Interviewer:   " What was the difference between what they taught you in training and what you really learned when you got into combat?
Joe Foss:   Actually the training really prepared you for combat. Even though we didn't get much training compared to today. They have had so much training now, you cannot believe it. They're really prepared in comparison to what we had.
Interviewer:   When we go through the Navy training manuals, there wasn't a lot of discussion about combat.  Did you pick it up through scuttlebutt? How were you able to leverage what you learned, in combat?
Joe Foss: Well,  that first squadron of ours. The pilots averaged 213 hours total time. Most of the pilots had never flown the Grumman Wildcat. Waiting to go to combat there in San Diego . .  we had two Wildcats . .  a couple of Brewster Buffaloes and some training planes.
   When we got on the ship and sailed for overseas . . we just read manuals . . and things about what combat was all about . . from the guys like Marion Carl, and John Smith, Bob Galer.
   So later, when we got up within 300-some miles of Guadalcanal, we catapulted off a carrier and headed for combat. The enemy subs were concentrating on getting us, and we didn't want to lose our planes.
   I was the last guy off. The plane just ahead of me was flown by a Lieutenant Simpson.  The catapult hook broke. So he went .. putt . . putt . . putt . . fell off the bow of the carrier, and hit the water. That became one of the famous pictures that was taken during the war.
   There's a camera outfit out in the bow. Every plane that takes off the carrier .. they photograph it. When Simpson hit the water
. . it appears that he was running on the leading edge of the airplane. That picture was later blown up so it was about seven, eight feet tall.  And I saw it on the walls of the various officer's club . . where they showed this lone pilot running [along the wing] He got out of there fast.

   And for good reason, because that carrier was right behind him.  And if that carrier gets close it sucks you down in the screws and chews you up so there's nothing left.  But a destroyer was right behind him and got him out . . just that quick.
  Then the next sensation I got was when I saw the bomb holes and artillery marks around Guadalcanal.  You had to be concent-
Interviewer: Did you have any expectation of what you were going to see before you saw it  ? Were you expecting a fully-formed

Joe Foss : No, I knew it would just be a hole in the jungle. I wasn't expecting anything else. I  think some of our incoming planes
got shot at by our own people, they were a little nervous as we were coming in . . But they missed.
Then I knew the people on the ground gave us a great reception. Boy they were yelling . . glad to see us.
   John Smith met us. He was one of the top Aces . . 16 or 19 airplanes to his credit. And so I said to John: " Are you 'old' veterans going to show us around  ?  He just says . . "Tomorrow . . YOU  WILL  BE  A VETERAN !"
Interviewer : Chilling . . Later, what were the things you would tell a new pilot ?
Joe Foss: My advice to them was . . just stay alert . . or this will be your last place.  But to tell somebody about aerial combat, I
would say,  is an ignorant joke. You got to actually witness and be " in it. "
You do things in aerial combat that destroy your own airplane.

   You can't consider . . how this is going to affect the aircraft. You wouldn't do . . the stuff that you do . . except when some-body's after you [ or you're after them ] then you must put out 100% . . is the only way I can describe it.
I had a terrific wingman :  Boot Furlow.
    Boot, he had to anticipate what I was going to do. That's the toughest job, to be a wingman. You've got to watch what the guy
ahead of you is doing . . try to stay as close as you could.  But of course we were madly scissoring, a maneuver that was invented
by Jimmy Thach and Jimmy Flatley . . the Thach/Flatley weave.
Interviewer :  Do you remember when you first heard about that maneuver?
Joe Foss :   Yeah, every day we had briefing sessions on the carrier going over, trying to tell us about it. Actually they didn't take much time to get ' everything' in there . . they were just men of few words . . short and to the point.
Interviewer :  Did you understand it  ?  It's a fairly complex.
Joe Foss :  It never concerned anybody. And we got so good you could do it in the clouds.
Interviewer  :  You mentioned in your book that people didn't talk about getting killed.
    In the sorriest situation that I was in . .  I never figured that I would get killed. I got scared . . but I didn't feel that this is the
end of the waltz for me. I will always remember that one time I got shot down. The guys were yelling :  ' Bail out ! Bail out !"
[over the radio]. I didn't know my airplane was smoking . . I had just been hit by a shell in the oil cooler.
   And so on the ground Colonel Joe Renner was looking up, and he said [over the radio], " Whoever that is . . bail out."  He thought it was fire, see, and that the airplane was going to blow up.

  Then when I was ready to go. I looked up and here [a Zero was] just peeling off . . coming right at me. I had already unhooked my communication and belt . . but then I hooked up and got my safety belt back on real quick, I guarantee you.
    And that guy hit me again . . BRRRR . . it really rattled it. Then a second [Zero] got me.  And  I was yelling [to my friends]: "GREG ! . . RUDY !"  [Greg Loesch and Rudy Radel.]
   These two Zeroes never saw them [attack]. They pulled up and were getting ready to hit me again, figuring . .  we really . . got this old duck.
   And Greg and Rudy came by and . .  WHACK . . WHACK . .  got those two guys . .  knocked them off in a hurry. So, I coasted down and landed on the runway.
Interviewer :   So all you had to say to your men were, " Greg  ! Rudy ! ". . and they knew exactly what to do?
Joe Foss :   They knew that that was me . . shouting for help.

Interviewer :  Were you actually 'giving Zekes shots'  to your wingmen?
Joe Foss : No, I was chasing one guy . . battling away . . we had company in any direction we went.  I think there were 24 Zeroes  in the area. There were just 8 of us. My wingman was new, but he never [was allowed to] lead another flight
Those guys had the altitude advantage. If I had been running their show . . we'd of shot every one of us down.  But those guys screwed up.  And it ended up - that we've got almost half of them.
Interviewer : How did you feel about the Japanese pilots you fought against ? What did you think of their tactics and their skills as pilots?
Joe Foss :    I thought they were pretty good. But you know,  they had enough power and speed advantage to do slow rolls and climb straight up . . that kind of stuff.   Naturally, it would really roil me that they would do that. I'd say that they were a cocky group.
   But the only one I ever met at the time was when two pilots bailed out [overhead] at the same instant. How they got out is a miracle, because of the [low] altitude.  Both came out of there at the same time .. the two bodies falling .. parachutes starting to open as they went behind the palm trees.
   And so then we jumped in the jeep, and tore down there. There was already a Higgins boat going out to pick them up.  The pilot closest to shore waved the Higgins boat off.  They recognized it was the enemy pilot and they thought that he's being a great sport. So, they turned and picked our guy Conger up first and told him: " That pilot . . you just knocked down . . is really a friendly guy."
   So old Conger thought that was terrific. He was riding on the side of the Higgins boat, and extended his hand toward the guy. The guy took his pistol and stuck it right between old Conger's eyes and pulled the trigger . . and it went click.
You've got to admit that you'd get sort of a thrill out of that.
   And of course Conger's instantly fever went up a little bit.  And he hit the Japanese pilot with a gas can or a boat hook . . it parted his hair absolutely straight down the middle.
So then they pulled [the Japanese pilot] in.  Before they pinned his arms he tried to kill himself . . but his gun didn't go off.
   Then, of course, they got him out . . really curious to see what the people we were fighting looked like. He was Tony Kansaneri . . n old-time fighter. A solid guy in his flight suit . . in perfect shape with a waist on 26 or so, broad shoulders . . really a fighter. He
had on a scarf, old original . . like you'd get ready for graduation. And of course, we didn't wear this kind of crap, no way. We looked like farmer Jones going out to milk.
   And so when he ' hacked ' [ a goober ] . . and spit at us, some of the guys moved like the were going to shoot him . . and I says
to the whole crew : " Forget this foolishness. The interrogation officer will be here [ to get some answers out of him ] in just a few minutes.

   And that's the last I saw of the guy until years later, down there at the Nimitz Museum, this Japanese guy came up and said, " Is Major Conger around yet?" And I said, "No, I've heard that he isn't going to be until tomorrow."
   So the guy went away . . this Japanese guy. Then the next day, here comes Jack Conger, and I said, "Hey Conger, there's a friend of yours that was asking about you . . he's that guy right over there." He looked over, and said, "I don't know him."
   Jack was sort of belligerent type.  And I said, " Well, he sounded like he was a good friend of yours." So I took him over and introduced him. It turned out to be the guy that tried to shoot old Jack [in the face].  Later, I saw their picture in the paper . .
they were now doing the dancing bear [ lecture circuit ] together.
Interviewer : So what did he think of meeting this man who tried to kill him?
Joe Foss : They went out and played golf.
Get Over It! We Are Not All Created Equal
The Marine Corps Times recently published a handful of articles in regard to opening Infantry Officer Course (IOC) to females and the possibility of integrating women into the infantry community. In mid-April the Commandant directed the "integration" of the first wave of female officers into IOC this summer following completion of The Basic School (TBS). This action may or may not pave the way for female Marines to serve in the infantry as the results remain to be seen. However, before the Marine Corps moves forward with this concept, should we not ask the hard questions and gain opinions of combat-experienced Marines (male and female alike) as to the purpose, the impact, and the gains from such a move? As a combat-experienced Marine officer, and a female, I am here to tell you that we are not all created equal, and attempting to place females in the infantry will not improve the Marine Corps as the Nation's force-in-readiness or improve our national security.

Item Number:1 Date: 07/16/2012 AFGHANISTAN - LAWMAKER AMONG VICTIMS IN WEDDING ATTACK (JUL 16/WP)  WASHINGTON POST -- A prominent Afghan lawmaker is among a score or so killed by a suicide bomber, reports the Washington Post.   Former warlord Ahmad Khan Samangani was assassinated on Saturday in Samangan province in northern Afghanistan during his daughter's wedding, said officials.   At least 18 other people were killed in the explosion, including several key local officials and politicians, said the provincial governor.   Another member of Parliament, Ahmad Khan, and Mohammad Khan, the head of the province's intelligence agency, were also among the dead, said officials.   Samangani was one of Afghanistan's most prominent Uzbek leaders. He fought in the Northern  Alliance forces in the 1980s against the Soviets, and later against the Taliban.   The Taliban, who often claim responsibility for successful assassinations, denied any role in the attack, reported the New York Times.
Item Number:2 Date: 07/16/2012 ALGERIA - TRAINING SHIP MAKES HISTORIC VISIT TO NEW YORK CITY (JUL 16/NNS)  NAVY NEWSSTAND -- A training vessel has become the first ever Algerian navy ship to visit the United States, reports the Navy NewsStand.   The training ship Soummam arrived last week on a five-day port visit to New York City as part of a program for cadets from the Algerian Naval High School.   The visit reflects increasing cooperation between Algeria and the United States, said a Navy release.   Earlier this year, Algeria hosted the combined maritime operations center in Oran during Exercise Phoenix Express
Item Number:3 Date: 07/16/2012 AUSTRALIA - DEFENSE PROJECTS CAN'T BE SWITCHED ON AND OFF, SAYS U.S. ADMIRAL (JUL 16/BRISTIMES)  BRISBANE TIMES -- Speaking about the coming cuts to the Australian defense budget, the head of the U.S. Pacific Command warned of the possible long-term consequences of program reductions, reports the Brisbane Times.   Next year's cuts will reduce Australian defense spending to just 1.5 percent of gross domestic product, a level that is below most of America's European allies, pointed out Adm. Samuel Locklear during a visit to Canberra last week.   "Your defense is not something you can turn on and off with a switch from year to year based on how bad the economies are, because you make investments in the military that are long-term investments, that require a lot of planning," Locklear said.   The admiral emphasized the importance of matching long-term defense plans to meet future security threats.
Item Number:4 Date: 07/16/2012 AUSTRALIA - MILITARY NEEDS TO BE FRIENDLIER TO FORMER MEMBERS, SAYS GENERAL (JUL 16/SMH)  SYDNEY MORNING HERALD -- Australia's defense chief says the military needs to improve its stance on allowing personnel to return to the uniform after leaving for a few years of civilian life, reports the Sydney Morning Herald.   The armed forces used to throw roadblocks in the way of those who wished to return to service, said Gen. David Hurley in an interview with the newspaper.   More recently, the military has become more flexible, allowing personnel to leave to spend a few years in boom sectors, such as mining, while leaving the door open to further service, Hurley said.   The Australian military has been competing with the mining sector in recent years for engineers and other technical specialists.   Officials pointed to the Defense Alumni Network, which was set up last year as a social networking site for ex-servicemembers. It has also served as a recruiting avenue for those wanting to return to the military
Item Number:5 Date: 07/16/2012 CAMBODIA - ALLEGED BORDER INCIDENT PROBED INVOLVING THAI AIRCRAFT (JUL 16/AFP)  AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE -- Authorities in both Thailand and Cambodia are said to be probing reports that Cambodian troops fired on civilian Thai aircraft last week.   Thai officials say Cambodian troops shot at a Bangkok Airways passenger jet after it crossed the disputed border, reports Agence France-Presse.   The Thai airliner circled the area after it could not land at Siem Reap airport due to bad weather, said Thai army officials on Friday.   Cambodian troops, believing the jet to be a spy plane, fired 18 machine-gun rounds at the aircraft, Cambodian military officials said.   The jet, which was said to be about 6 miles inside Cambodian airspace, was undamaged. According to some accounts, Bangkok Airways said it had received no reports of one of its aircraft coming under fire
Item Number:6 Date: 07/16/2012 ERITREA - LESS GOVERNMENT SUPPORT SEEN FOR AL-SHABAAB, SAYS U.N. REPORT (JUL 16/REU)  REUTERS -- A United Nations report says the Eritrean government has reduced its support for the Somali insurgent group Al-Shabaab.   Nevertheless, Eritrea is still violating Security Council resolutions, says the report, as cited by Reuters.   The Security Council imposed an embargo against Eritrea in 2009, citing indications that it was providing finances and weapons to the Al-Qaida-linked group.   There has been no evidence of direct Eritrean support of Al-Shabaab in the past year, said the U.N. Monitoring Group on Somalia and Eritrea.   The alleged cutback is a result of "growing friction" between Eritrean authorities and Al-Shabaab, as well as increased international pressure, the report says.   The panel also presented evidence that Eritrea deployed Ethiopian rebel groups via Somalia, sold weapons to Sudanese smuggling rings that do business with Palestinian arms dealers and imported spare parts for its air force
Item Number:7 Date: 07/16/2012 FRANCE - CRUISE MISSILE TEST CALLED SUCCESS (JUL 16/FMIN)  FRENCH MINISTRY OF DEFENSE -- The French defense procurement agency (DGA) says it has completed the first full firing of a new naval cruise missile, reports the French Ministry of Defense.   Last week's trial at the Biscarosse test center involved the firing of a MdCN (missile de croisiere naval, or naval cruise missile) from a simulated frigate, according to a ministry release.   DGA said the test validated the missile's terminal phase with autonomous guidance through infrared scene recognition. The latter capability significantly increases precision, officials said.   The MdCN, a variant of the air-launched SCALP cruise missile, is scheduled to be integrated with Aquitaine-class frigates beginning in 2014 and Barracuda-class submarines in 2017.
Item Number:8 Date: 07/16/2012 INDIA - ARMY TESTS NUCLEAR-CAPABLE MISSILE (JUL 16/PTI)  PRESS TRUST OF INDIA -- The Indian army has carried out a test of its nuclear-capable Agni I missile, reports the Press Trust of India.   The solid-propellant ballistic missile was launched on Friday from Wheeler Island off Odisha coast, said military officials.   The surface-to-surface, single-stage missile was reportedly fired from a mobile launcher.   The army said it this proved it was now capable of firing the Agni I without the help of the defense scientists who developed the missile, reported the Times of India.   "It was a practice-drill. The user-team picked a missile at random from the production lot and fired it with logistic support provided by Defense Research Development Organization (DRDO)," said an official cited by PTI.
Item Number:9 Date: 07/16/2012 ISRAEL - GREATER THREAT HAS LED TO GROWTH IN MILITARY INTELLIGENCE PERSONNEL (JUL 16/JP)  JERUSALEM POST -- The Israeli military has been increasing the number of its military intelligence personnel to better monitor regional conflicts and threats, say officials cited by the Jerusalem Post.   The intelligence branch last week graduated its largest ever class of officers.   Additional officers are helping to fill new positions in research, analysis and technological units, said military officials   One officer noted there are now new areas of interest, including Jordan, Libya, Saudi Arabia, Sudan and Turkey. The unit that previously covered the Sinai Peninsula has also been strengthened
Item Number:10 Date: 07/16/2012 ISRAEL - SHIN BET REVEALS ATTEMPTS TO KIDNAP SOLDIER (JUL 16/JP)  JERUSALEM POST -- Officials of Israel's Shin Bet security agency say Palestinians from a village near Jerusalem have planned to kidnap a soldier to use as a bargaining chip to gain the release of terrorist leaders, reports the Jerusalem Post.   The Palestinian cell is seeking to secure the release either of Ahmed Sadat, the former head of the Popular Front of the Liberation of Palestine, or Marwan Barghouti, leader of Tanzim, Shin Bet officials said on Monday.   The cell reportedly were unsuccessful with several plans in late December and early January to kidnap a soldier, said officials.   The group was arrested in May by the Shin Bet and Israeli police, said officials.   This spring the military began a media campaign aimed at preventing soldiers from hitchhiking, concerned about possible abductions. In 2011, the IDF recorded around 20 attempts to kidnap soldiers in the West Bank.
Item Number:11 Date: 07/16/2012 NORTH KOREA - ILLNESS CITED AS ARMY CHIEF LOSES ALL HIS POSTS (JUL 16/NYT)  NEW YORK TIMES -- North Korea's army chief has been removed from all his positions due to illness, state media announced on Monday, as cited by the New York Times.   The state-run Korean Central News Agency announced that Vice Marshal Ri Yong Ri was removed the previous day due to "illness." Analysts said they had seen no indication of health problems.   The army chief had often been seen in photographs with new North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, and was generally believed to be his most trusted mentor.   Ri had also been the vice chairman of the Central Military Commission and a member of the Presidium of the Politburo of the Central Committee of the Workers' Party
Item Number:12 Date: 07/16/2012 PAKISTAN - TALIBAN ATTACK POLICE INTELLIGENCE AGENCY IN NORTHWEST (JUL 16/AFP)  AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE -- A police station has come under attack by Pakistani Taliban militants in northwest Pakistan, reports Agence France-Presse.   At least five militants were involved in Monday's attack in the town of Bannu in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province. Two were dressed in burqas and suicide vests, said police.   Insurgents threw hand grenades and fired rifles at the police intelligence building, said security officials.   Police said one suicide bomber blew himself up and another was shot dead by police. One militant was captured, reported Reuters.   Some early reports indicated that the militants took a number of hostages before police ended the siege.   A Pakistani Taliban spokesman claimed responsibility for the attack
Item Number:13 Date: 07/16/2012 RUSSIA - INITIAL S-400 FIRINGS PLANNED FOR AUGUST (JUL 16/RIAN)  RUSSIAN INFORMATION AGENCY NEWS -- Russian defense officials say the military will test-fire the S-400 air defense system for the first time next month, reports RIA Novosti.   The tests will take place Aug. 10-16 at the Ashuluk firing range in the Astrakhan Region, said a Defense Ministry spokesman on Saturday.   There will also be live-fire tests of the Pantsyr C system, the spokesman said.   Four battalions are equipped with S-400, with a fifth to be operational by the end of this year, said air force officials. Two units from the Dmitrov district will reportedly be involved the August tests
Item Number:14 Date: 07/16/2012 RUSSIA - NEW FRIGATE TO CONTINUE MISSILE TESTING AHEAD OF COMMISSIONING (JUL 16/INT-AVN)  INTERFAX-MILITARY NEWS AGENCY -- A new Russian Gepard-class frigate is in the Caspian Sea for trials prior to entering service, reports Interfax-AVN.   The Dagestan is the first ship in the Russian navy to be equipped with the Kalibr-NK cruise missile system, said a spokesman for the Southern Military District on Friday.   During trials in the Black Sea, the new warship successfully fired the missile at surface targets, according to the navy.   Upcoming testing on the Caspian will include missile launches at littoral targets at ranges up to 100 nm (185 km). Trials are scheduled to be completed by the end of the summer, after which Dagestan will be commissioned with the Caspian Fleet, said a service official
Item Number:15 Date: 07/16/2012 SOMALIA - CAFE IN BAIDOA COMES UNDER GRENADE ATTACK (JUL 16/SHABELLE)  SHABELLE MEDIA NETWORK -- A major explosion has been reported in the city of Baidoa in south central Somalia.  A cafe was hit by a grenade attack on Sunday morning, reports the Shabelle Media Network (Mogadishu).   The coffee bar was apparently targeted because it is frequented by government soldiers and officials, said residents.   There was no confirmation of casualty figures.   Baidoa, the capital of Bay province, became a stronghold of Al-Shabaab before it was retaken this year by Somali government and Ethiopian troops.
Item Number:16 Date: 07/16/2012 SOMALIA - KENYAN AID WORKERS KIDNAPPED, THEN MOVED TO PIRATE HUB (JUL 16/STAR)  THE STAR -- An international group says three kidnapped Kenyan aid workers have been moved to a pirate hub in central Somalia, reports the Star (Nairobi).   Employees of Sweden-based International Aid Services (IAS) were kidnapped by pirates last Wednesday in the semi-autonomous Puntland region of Somalia, said IAS officials.   Around 14 of the attacker moved the aid workers to Hobyo after meeting local resistance, officials said on Saturday.   No demands have yet been presented by the abductors, said an IAS release.
Item Number:17 Date: 07/16/2012 SOUTH KOREA - U.S. ARMY GIVES TRYOUTS TO MRAPS (JUL 16/S&S)  STARS AND STRIPES -- The U.S. Army has been evaluating the performance of mine-resistant ambush-protected (MRAP) vehicles in South Korea, reports the Stars and Stripes.   Spokesmen for the U.S. 8th Army say five vehicles were delivered to the 2nd Infantry Division in northern South Korea earlier this month. Around 50 MRAP vehicles are expected to be tested.   Initial trials will take place during the upcoming joint Ulchi Freedom Guardian drills, said an Army spokesman.   The vehicles are expected to provide increased protection for troops as well as an improved mission command-on-the-move capability.   The South Korean military has also expressed interest in acquiring some of the vehicles from U.S. excess stocks, according to local media.
Item Number:18 Date: 07/16/2012 SOUTH SUDAN - POLICE TRAINING SOUGHT FROM NIGERIA (JUL 16/VANGUARD)  VANGUARD -- The government in South Sudan is seeking help from Nigeria to train its police force, reports the Vanguard (Lagos, Nigeria).   Lt. Gen. Gordon Micah Kur Luala, South Sudan's deputy inspector general, made an urgent request last week during a meeting in Juba with a representative of the Nigerian police force, said officials.   Kur Luala reportedly said he had been impressed with the Nigerian police contingent deployed as part of the U.N. Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS).   Many South Sudanese police officers originally came from the army and militias, which has not prepared them unsuited for police activities, he said.
Item Number:19 Date: 07/16/2012 SYRIA - HEAVY FIGHTING REPORTED IN DAMASCUS (JUL 16/DPN)  DAY PRESS NEWS -- Fresh fighting has been reported between government forces and opposition fighters in the Syrian capital, according to Day Press News (Syria).   Syrian troops shelled Free Syrian Army (FSA) positions in Damascus on Sunday, in what residents called the most intense fighting yet in the city.   Fighting was reported in the districts of Tadamon, Kafar Sousa, Nahr Aisha and Sidi Qadad, according to the U.K.-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights.   The BBC reported more fighting on Monday.   Armored vehicles and snipers were seen advancing on the Midan district, reported Reuters.   The government has denied that is used heavy weapons in its attack on the village of Tremseh, near Hama, on Thursday, reported the BBC.   Activists initially described fighting there as a massacre of dozens of civilians. Later accounts suggested most of the dead were armed rebels
Item Number:20 Date: 07/16/2012 TAIWAN - AEROSPACE COMPANY, LOCKHEED REACH ACCORD ON F-16 UPGRADES (JUL 16/TAI)  TAIPEI TIMES -- Taiwan's state-owned Aerospace Industrial Development Corp. (AIDC) has finalized a deal with Lockheed Martin for aircraft modernization and component manufacturing projects, reports the Taipei Times.   The memorandum of understanding, signed last week at the Farnborough Air Show in the U.K., is designed to expand the strategic relationship between the two firms and promotes joint opportunities for Taiwan's planned upgrade for its F-16A/B fighters.   Work is to be completed in Taiwan if Lockheed wins the contract to oversee the upgrades, according to the memo.   The U.S. and Taiwan are said to be close to finalizing a jet fighter deal worth up to US$5.3 billion, reported Reuters.
Item Number:21 Date: 07/16/2012 UKRAINE - PEACEKEEPERS ORDERED TO S. SUDAN, OTHERS SHIFTED TO IVORY COAST (JUL 16/INT-AVN)  INTERFAX-MILITARY NEWS AGENCY -- President Viktor Yanukovych has approved the deployment of Ukrainian peacekeepers to South Sudan and the transfer of another contingent from Liberia to Ivory Coast, reports Interfax-AVN (Russia).   As many as 60 Ukrainian personnel are to be sent to the U.N. Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) and to the interim security force for the disputed Abyei region between South Sudan and Sudan, according to a release from the president's office last week.   The relocation was also ordered of the 100-man Ukrainian peacekeeping contingent in Liberia to the U.N. Operation in Ivory Coast (UNOCI). The Ukrainian Parliament has approved the move, which was made at the request of the U.N. Secretariat
Item Number:22 Date: 07/16/2012 UNITED ARAB EMIRATES - INDIGENOUS MISSILE CRAFT LAUNCHED IN ABU DHABI (JUL 16/ADSB)  ABU DHABI SHIPBUILDING -- Abu Dhabi Shipbuilding (ADSB) has announced the launching of the first vessel in a new class of missile boats for the United Arab Emirates navy.   Launching took place Wednesday at the company's Mussafah shipyard.   The shipbuilder received a contract in 2009 to build 12 new Ghannatha-class missile boats and retrofit existing Ghannatha-class transports into gun boats and mortar carriers, according to a company release.   ADSB has partnered with Swedeship Marine in Sweden for the program. Three of the missile boats will be built in Sweden, the balance in the U.A.E.   The missile boats are armed with a surface-to-surface missile system, a large gun forward and a smaller gun aft.   All 12 craft are scheduled to be delivered by 2014, said ADSB.
Item Number:23 Date: 07/16/2012 USA - BRAND NEW COAST GUARD CUTTER STARTED PEELING IN 3 MONTHS (JUL 16/NTIMES)  NAVY TIMES -- A new Coast Guard cutter, commissioned in April, has already been to the repair shop.   The U.S. Coast Guard's first fast response cutter found itself back in drydock just three months after commissioning due to peeling paint, reports the Navy Times.   High humidity and poor ventilation affected the original paint job, according to Bollinger Shipyards, which built the ship.   The Bernard C. Webber spent about two weeks being repainted. She is now back at her homeport of Miami after the repairs, officials said.   The poor paint job reportedly did not affect the vessel's seaworthiness.
Item Number:24 Date: 07/16/2012 USA - NAVAL HELICOPTER SQUADRON STANDS DOWN AT NAS NORTH ISLAND (JUL 16/NNS)  NAVY NEWSSTAND -- The U.S. Navy has decommissioned an anti-submarine helicopter squadron at Naval Air Station North Island, Calif., reports the Navy NewsStand.   Before last week's deactivation, Helicopter Anti-Submarine Squadron (HS) 10 served as a fleet-replacement squadron for 52 years, training aviators, flight officers, air crew and maintenance personnel.   The "Taskmasters" trained more than 2,000 pilots, 2,000 aircraft and 6,450 maintenance personnel in the operation, tactics and maintenance of SH-3 Sea King helicopters before making the transition to the SH-60F Seahawk, said a service release.   The unit was the renamed the "Warhawks" and trained 1,715 pilots, 1,267 aircraft and 5,060 maintenance personnel on the SH-60F and HH-60H helicopters, said the Navy.   The squadron's aircraft and personnel are being reassigned to Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron 3, the "Merlins," which flies the MH-60S Knighthawk.

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