Thursday, December 15, 2016

Fw: TheList 4338

The List 4338
To All,
I hope your week has been going well.
This Day In Naval History - December 15
1943 - Bureau of Naval Personnel Circular Letter on non-discrimination in Navy V-12 program.
1944 - Congress appoints first three of four Fleet Admirals.
1965 - Launch of Gemini 6 with Captain Walter M. Schirra, Jr., USN, as Command Pilot. The mission included 16 orbits in 25 hours and 51 minutes.
Recovery was by HS-11 helicopters from USS Wasp (CVS-18)
1988 - End of Earnest Will convoy operations to escort reflagged tankers in the Persian Gulf.
2006: The F-35 Lightning II had its first flight. During its 35-minute maiden flight, the jet performed a military power takeoff and executed a series of maneuvers to evaluate its handling qualities. The U.S. Marine Corps declared Initial Operation Capability (IOC) with Block 2B software on July 31, 2015. The U.S. Navy has set August 2018 as its IOC objective date with the F-35C operating Block 3F software and the program is on track to meet it.
Thanks to John
1842 - Execution of three crewmembers of USS Somers for mutiny; Midshipman
Philip Spencer, Boatswain Samuel Cromwell and Seaman Elisha Small.
If you did not know this, the Somers mutiny was actually the reason they started the Naval Academy. 
·         December 15
Nathan Bedford Forrest crosses the Tennessee River at Clifton with 2,500 men to raid the communications around Vicksburg, Mississippi.
In New Orleans, Louisiana, Union Major General Benjamin F. Butler turns his command over to Nathaniel Banks. The citizens of New Orleans hold farewell parties for Butler, "The Beast" - but only after he leaves.
The battle at Nashville begins.
As U.S. Army soldiers attempt to arrest Sitting Bull at his cabin in Standing Rock, South Dakota, shooting breaks out and Lt. Bullhead shoots the great Sioux leader.
The British parliament places a 15-year ban on whale hunting in Norway.
China wins a place on the League Council; Austria is admitted.
The Soviet Union warns the United States against repeated entry of ships into Soviet territorial waters.
Washington sends its fourth note to Berlin demanding amnesty for Jews.
The battle for Luzon begins.
Vietnam leader Ho Chi Minh sends a note to the new French Premier, Leon Blum, asking for peace talks.
Adolf Eichmann, the former German Gestapo official accused of a major role in the Nazi murder of 6 million Jews, is sentenced by a Jerusalem court to be hanged.
The United States drops 12 tons of bombs on an industrial center near Haiphong Harbor, North Vietnam.
President Lyndon B. Johnson signs the meat bill in the presence of Upton Sinclair, the author of the controversial book The Jungle.
The Commonwealth of Australia orders equal pay for women.
The American Psychiatric Association votes to remove homosexuality from its official list of psychiatric disorders.
The oil tanker MV Argo Merchant causes one of the worst marine oil spills in history when it runs aground near Nantucket, Massachusetts.
US President Jimmy Carter announces the United States will recognize the People's Republic of China and will sever all relations with Taiwan.
In what is often called the first modern suicide bombing, a suicide car bomb kills 61 people at the Iraqi embassy in Beirut, Lebanon; Iraq's ambassador to Lebanon is among the casualties.
The Downing Street Declaration, issued jointly by UK and the Republic of Ireland, affirms the UK would transfer Northern Ireland to the Republic of Ireland only if a majority of Northern Ireland's people approved.
The Leaning Tower of Pisa reopens after an 11-year, $27 million project to fortify it without eliminating its famed lean.
F-22 Raptor Stealth fighter enters active service with the US Air Force.
Thanks to Gary
The battle of Wake Island
Thanks to Andy
The Best-Built Airplane That Ever Was
Thanks to Dr. Rich…I only speak English and American so this might not be as valuable to me as many of you bi lingual folks out there.  I do remember some phrases from many travels to the far east but they are probably not repeatable in this forum but they worked well back in the day.
Thanks to Larry,
This site will play radio stations from around the world!!
Drag the map around, make it larger or smaller, and put the X on one of the green dots to listen to the radio station.  Large cities have many stations … pick the one you like from the list at the lower right of the window … Great to practice your French, Italian, or whatever!!  I'm listening to a station in Rome as I type this … brushing up on my Italian!
Click on the map or on the link below it ...
Thanks to Carl
(When I first saw this was an almost 10 minute video, I thought I will only watch a few seconds.  BUT, I could not stop!!  An amazing video!!)

"We only have one planet" -

Thanks to Dutch
Thanks to PC

Item Number:1 Date: 12/15/2016 BULGARIA - SOLICITATIONS GO TO 4 COUNTRIES TO SUPPLY FIGHTER JETS (DEC 15/FI)  FLIGHT INTERNATIONAL -- The Bulgarian Ministry of Defense has kicked off the process to acquire new fighter jets for the air force, reports Flight International.   A request for proposals (RFP) was issued to Italy, Portugal, Sweden and the U.S. on Dec. 9. Those countries have until March 2017 to submit bids.   Sofia plans to buy the new fighters through a government-to-government agreement.   A selection is anticipated in mid-2017, with parliamentary approval expected in 2018.   Portugal and the U.S. are expected to submit a combined proposal for used F-16A/B fighters modernized to the mid-life upgrade Block 15 configuration. This bid would involve U.S. F-16s in storage, with upgrades and refurbishment taking place at Portugal's OGMA.   Italy's proposal covers used Tranche 1 Eurofighter Typhoons; they would be taken from the Italian air force's existing inventory.   Sweden is offering new Saab Gripen C/D fighters.   Bulgaria has allocated 767 million euros (US$815 million) to buy at least eight multi-role fighters, along with logistics and weapons. Plans call for a total of 16 fighters to be bought in two batches, of eight each.   The second phase would take place in 2022 and 2023.   When the deal is complete, the fighters will replace Bulgaria's aging MiG-29s
  Item Number:2 Date: 12/15/2016 CANADA - PROCUREMENT PROCESS HITS BUMP, SLOWING FIGHTER TRAINING PROGRAM (DEC 15/OC)  OTTAWA CITIZEN -- A new program to train Canadian fighter pilots has been delayed until next year by the Trudeau government, reports the Ottawa Citizen.   Plans called for the Can$1.5 billion (US$1.1 billion) program to select a private firm by the end of December 2016. The chosen company would provide aircraft and pilots to serve as adversaries for air force pilots.   The selected firm would also supply aircraft to simulate enemies for Canadian ground and naval forces.   However, the Liberal government has quietly pushed the planned contract award into 2017, noted the paper, perhaps as late as October 2017.   Sources said government procurement specialists do not have the resources to review the data from bids for the Contracted Airborne Training Services (CATS) project, hindering the process, which was supposed to streamline defense projects.   The program is expected to run for an initial 10-year period, with an option for another five years.  
  Item Number:3 Date: 12/15/2016 CHINA - AFTER SATELLITE IMAGERY REVEALS WEAPON SYSTEMS ON ARTIFICIAL ISLANDS, BEIJING DEFENDS INSTALLATIONS (DEC 15/BBC)  BRITISH BROADCASTING CORP. -- Newly released satellite imagery shows that China has placed anti-air weapons on artificial islands in the disputed South China Sea, reports the BBC.   The Asia Maritime Transparency Initiative (AMTI) published the images on Wednesday, revealing apparent anti-aircraft guns and missile defense systems on seven Chinese-controlled islands in the Spratly Islands.   The initiative, which is part of the Washington, D.C.-based Center for Strategic and International Studies, said it had been tracking the construction of hexagonal structures since June and July.   Beijing previously said that it had no intention of militarizing the islands, noted CNN.   On Thursday, the Defense Ministry in Beijing said the deployment of military facilities was legitimate and lawful, reported the official China Military Online.   The ministry maintained that the construction activities were mainly for civilian purposes, but that "the deployment of necessary military facilities that will be mainly used for defense and self-defense purposes is legitimate."   "If others are flexing their military muscles on your doorstep, are you not even supposed to have a slingshot in hand just in case, said the ministry, as reported by CNN.  
 Item Number:4 Date: 12/15/2016 COLOMBIA - 5 FARC COMMANDERS OPPOSED TO PEACE DEAL GET THE BOOT (DEC 15/GUARDIAN)  GUARDIAN -- The FARC guerrilla group in Colombia has expelled five mid-level commanders who have refused to join a peace deal with the government, reports the Guardian (U.K.).   After Colombian voters rejected an initial peace deal in October, a revised version that did not require public approval was signed in late November.   The rebel commanders were from units based in the far eastern province of Guaviare, said a statement on Tuesday from the group's leaders.   "This decision is motivated by their recent conduct, which contradicts our political-military line," the statement said.   The commanders could have more than 50 rebels under their command, said one source.   Reuters noted that this is the second group of rebels to oppose the deal. Perhaps 10 percent of the FARC's 6,000 fighters may go rogue, say experts.   The deal calls for the rebels to move to demobilization areas and hand over their weapons within six months.  
  Item Number:5 Date: 12/15/2016 IRAQ - AIRSTRIKES HAVE KILLED ABOUT 75 PERCENT OF ISIS FIGHTERS, SAY U.S. OFFICIALS (DEC 15/VOA)  VOICE OF AMERICA NEWS -- U.S. officials say there are considerably fewer combat-ready Islamic State militants as when the group was at its peak, reports the Voice of America News.   The latest estimates put the number of battle-ready fighters in Iraq and Syria at 12,000 to 15,000.   This is "the lowest point it's ever been," Brett McGurk, the U.S. special presidential envoy, told White House reporters on Tuesday.   Officials said at least 75 percent of such fighters have been killed during the U.S.-led air campaign, noted CNN.   Previous military and intelligence estimates put ISIS forces at as many as 33,000. For a time, a steady flow of foreign fighters was able to replace combat losses, said officials.   Increased cooperation from Turkey and others has helped shut down many of the routes into Iraq and Syria, along with more than 17,000 airstrikes and operations by local security force, have cut into ISIS strength, said McGurk.   Nevertheless, ISIS employs a range of asymmetrical tactics into its strategy, making sheer numbers less important, according to a U.S. counterterrorism official.   The terrorist group still controls large swathes of land, despite recent battlefield setbacks, noted another U.S. official.  
Item Number:6 Date: 12/15/2016 ISRAEL - GENERAL RESIGNS AFTER HIS LAPTOP WITH CLASSIFIED DATA IS STOLEN (DEC 15/TOI)  TIMES OF ISRAEL -- A laptop containing secret information has been stolen from the home of an Israeli general, reports the Times of Israel.   Early Tuesday morning, the house in southern Israel of Maj. Gen. Hagai Topolanski, the chief of the Manpower Directorate, was broken into and a number of items stolen, including the army computer, said an Israel Defense Forces spokesman.   On Wednesday evening, the army's chief of staff accepted the resignation of Topolanski, reported the Jerusalem Post.   Military police have opened an investigation into the robbery
  Item Number:7 Date: 12/15/2016 JAPAN - MILITARY CONTACTS WITH RUSSIA TO BE RESUMED FOLLOWING MEETING BETWEEN PUTIN, ABE (DEC 15/TASS)  TASS -- Russia and Japan have agreed to resume military contacts, reports Tass (Russia).   Russian President Vladimir Putin met with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on Thursday in Abe's hometown of Nagato. They were expected to discuss islands have blocked the signing of a peace treaty ending World War II.   On Thursday, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said that the parties had agreed to restore frozen military contacts and high-level talks.   Abe and Putin also discussed air defense issues, the U.S. presence in the Asia Pacific and North Korean threats, said Lavrov.  
  Item Number:8 Date: 12/15/2016 NIGERIA - DEFENSE OFFICIALS WARN ABOUT BOKO HARAM MILITANTS DISGUISED AS MENIAL WORKERS (DEC 15/VANGUARD)  VANGUARD -- The Nigerian Defense Headquarters has issued a warning about Boko Haram terrorists, who are said to be disguised as menial workers to get at their targets, reports the Vanguard (Lagos).   Some of the militants who have been driven from their bases in the Sambisa Forest are employing the new tactic, said a spokesman for the headquarters.   Nigerians should be wary of unfamiliar people entering their towns, especially during the holiday season, said a defense statement on Tuesday
Item Number:9 Date: 12/15/2016 RUSSIA - FSB ARRESTS 4 ALLEGED PLOTTERS; ATTACKS PLANNED BY ISIS LEADER IN TURKEY (DEC 15/SPUTNIK)  SPUTNIK -- Russia's Federal Security Service (FSB) says it has thwarted several Islamic State terrorist attacks in Moscow, reports Russia's Sputnik news agency.   Four members of the cell were arrested on Thursday, said the internal security service.   In the course of the arrest, security forces seized improvised explosive devices, firearms and "a significant amount" of bomb-making materials, said the FSB statement.   Three arrested were Tajik nationals and one was a Moldovan citizen, said the FSB. According to the statement, the attacks were planned by an ISIS leader in Turkey.  
Item Number:10 Date: 12/15/2016 SERBIA - BELGRADE EXPECTS TO PROCURE MIG-29S FROM RUSSIA, HELICOPTERS FROM EUROPE (DEC 15/REU)  REUTERS -- Serbia is going to obtain Russian aircraft and European helicopters to bolster the air force, says Prime Minister Aleksandr Vucic, as reported by Reuters.   Russia will donate six MiG-29 fighter jets with about two years of service life, Vucic told reporters on Thursday.   He said the fighter jets will have their service lives extended to 14 years, with the overhaul financed by Serbia. The cost will be announced ahead of a visit to Moscow next week, said Vucic.   The prime minister said there are also plans to buy nine helicopters from Airbus, with another four being donated. No other details were provided.   Serbia's military still relies on Soviet-era technology, with many of its fighter jets no longer flying or approaching the end of their service lives
Item Number:11 Date: 12/15/2016 SOMALIA - CAR BOMBER ATTACKS BUSY RESTAURANT IN MOGADISHU; AL-SHABAAB CLAIMS RESPONSIBILITY (DEC 15/ANADOLU)  ANADOLU NEWS AGENCY -- A suicide car bomb attack on Thursday has injured at least five people in Somalia's capital, say authorities, as reported by the Anadolu Agency (Turkey).   The attack targeted an area in Mogadishu close to the presidential palace and hit a restaurant frequented by journalists, said officials.   The bomber ignored orders to stop and drove toward the restaurant, said a regional spokesman.   Casualties have been reported variously.   Al-Shabaab claimed responsibility for the attack on websites that back the group, noted Garowe Online (Somalia).  
  Item Number:12 Date: 12/15/2016 SOMALIA - CHARCOAL TRADERS KILL AL-SHABAAB EXTORTIONIST (DEC 15/DALRAD)  DALSAN RADIO -- A pair of charcoal dealers in Somalia's Hirshabelle province north of Mogadishu have acknowledged killing a senior Al-Shabaab commander in Eldher Barsame, near Jowhar, reports Dalsan Radio (Mogadishu).   A gunfight broke out between the civilians and the commander, when the Al-Shabaab leader attempted to extort them, said Hirshabelle authorities.   The traders turned themselves into authorities earlier this week.   The charcoal dealers told reporters that they had been forced to kill the commander, named Abdirahman Raahale, after many complaints by locals in the region.   Extorting traders has been a major source of funding for Al-Shabaab in the region, officials said. The U.N. has put sanctions on the export of Somali charcoal, which is a significant revenue source for the group
Item Number:13 Date: 12/15/2016 SOUTH KOREA - NEW PROGRAM WOULD EQUIP KF-X FIGHTERS WITH INDIGENOUS LONG-RANGE AIR-TO-GROUND MISSILES (DEC 15/YON)  YONHAP -- The Defense Acquisition Program Administration (DAPA) in South Korea has plans to develop a domestic long-range air-to-surface missile to meet the growing threat from North Korea, reports the Yonhap news agency (Seoul).   DAPA says that research on the relevant technologies will begin in 2018 as part of a plan to produce around 200 cruise missiles until 2031.   Such missiles would be mounted on South Korea's KF-X fighter.   The cruise missile project has a budget of US$695.2 million.   The weapon will be based on the German Taurus cruise missile, which Seoul has purchased for its F-15K fighters, according to DAPA
  Item Number:14 Date: 12/15/2016 SYRIA - FOLLOWING NEW DEAL, EVACUATION BEGINS IN EASTERN ALEPPO (DEC 15/LAT)  LOS ANGELES TIMES -- An operation to evacuate thousands of civilians from the remaining rebel-held eastern areas of the Syrian city of Aleppo is underway, say aid workers and opposition activists, as reported by the Los Angeles Times.   Pro-government forces have rapidly seized most of the areas in eastern Aleppo in recent weeks. A small enclave of rebel territory remains.   Buses and ambulances had begun moving in as part of an effort to evacuate around 200 wounded people, said the International Committee of the Red Cross on Thursday, as reported by Reuters.   The operation was delayed earlier in the day when pro-government forces fired on aid workers and civilians, said opposition officials cited by the New York Times. One civil defense worker was reportedly killed.   Russian military officials said that 5,000 militants and their families were being evacuated, reported Tass.   Russian soldiers are prepared to lead rebels out of Aleppo toward rebel-controlled Idlib, said the Kremlin. Drones are to be used to monitor the evacuation, said the Defense Ministry.   A new deal for a cease-fire was confirmed by two rebel officials, to take effected at 2:30 a.m., local time, reported the Guardian (U.K.).   A pro-Hezbollah media outlet said that an agreement calls for the simultaneous evacuation of the rebel-besieged Shi'ite villages of Foua and Kefray near Idlib
Item Number:15 Date: 12/15/2016 TAIWAN - IN PARALLEL EXERCISES, MILITARY TESTS MISSILE, AIR DEFENSE (DEC 15/CPOST)  CHINA POST -- The Taiwanese military is in the midst of a three-day live-fire exercise of its air defense systems, reports the China Post (Taipei).   The drills began Wednesday in the southern city of Pingtung. Plans call for the test-firing of the domestically developed Tien Kung anti-ballistic missile system.   An unannounced air defense drill was held on the same day. F-16 fighter jets simulated the interception of incoming Chinese aircraft toward Hualien air force base, said officials.   The air defense drills were part of annual training and were not related to recent incidents involving Chinese aircraft, said Defense Minister Feng Shih-kuan. Chinese military aircraft flew close to Taiwan last week, the second such incident in less than a month
Item Number:16 Date: 12/15/2016 UNITED KINGDOM - REGIONAL DEFENSE HUBS IN THE WORKS FOR DUBAI, SINGAPORE, NIGERIA (DEC 15/UKMOD)  U.K. MINISTRY OF DEFENSE -- British Defense Secretary Michael Fallon announced this week that the Defense Ministry will establish three new regional British defense staffs (BDS), reports the ministry.   The staffs will be based in Dubai in the United Arab Emirates; Singapore in Asia; and Abuja, the Nigerian capital, according to an MoD release on Dec. 12.   The BDS will enhance the focus for British defense efforts in the regions and work with international partners to reinforce bilateral and multilateral defense and security relationships, said the secretary.   Fallon remarked that the new staffs will broaden the U.K.'s global reach; support regional stability and security; and ensure greater cooperation with its partners
Item Number:17 Date: 12/15/2016 USA - AMERICAN TROOPS SET TO HEAD TO POLAND, BALTIC STATES, ROMANIA IN DETERRENCE MISSION (DEC 15/ALJAZ)  AL JAZEERA -- The U.S. will reportedly accelerate the deployment of troops to Poland, the Baltic states and Romania, according to Al Jazeera (Qatar).   American troops will be deployed in early January instead of late in the month, said Polish Defense Minister Antoni Macierewicz. He made his announcement on Wednesday after talks with Lt. Gen. Ben Hodges, the commander of U.S. Army Europe.   The U.S. Army told one wire service that the deployment schedule was taking place as previously planned and was not accelerated.   Hodges was quoted as saying the transfer of troops from the U.S. through Germany to their destinations was being treated as a test of how fast the force "can move from port to field."  
  Item Number:18 Date: 12/15/2016 USA - HEAVY WEAPONRY IN PALMYRA POSES THREAT IN HANDS OF ISIS; U.S. MAY TARGET IT, SAYS U.S. GENERAL (DEC 15/WSJ)  WALL STREET JOURNAL -- The head of the coalition fighting the Islamic State says the United States may target the terrorist group now holding the ancient Syrian city of Palmyra, reports the Wall Street Journal.   The city recently changed hands. ISIS regained control of Palmyra earlier this week from Russian and Syrian forces. Pro-government forces seized the city from ISIS in March.   The recent events have raised concerns for the U.S.-led coalition because ISIS may have captured weapons including armored vehicles, guns and potentially air defense equipment, said U.S. Army Lt. Gen. Stephen Townsend on Wednesday in a Pentagon video briefing.   The general said he hoped Russian and Syrian forces would quickly retake Palmyra, but warned that the U.S. was ready to strike, including if the looted weapons began moving out of the city.   "Basically anything they seized poses a threat to the coalition. But we can manage those threats, and we will," he said.  
Item Number:19 Date: 12/15/2016 USA - MARINE CORPS ACCEPTS INITIAL AMPHIBIOUS COMBAT VEHICLE PROTOTYPES (DEC 15/DN)  DEFENSE NEWS -- The U.S. Marine Corps has taken delivery of its first Amphibious Combat Vehicle 1.1 (ACV) prototype from BAE Systems, reports Defense News.   Four prototypes were delivered on Tuesday at BAE's facility in York, Pa., noted DefenseTech.   The delivery took place three months ahead of schedule as part of an effort to make up for time lost due to a bid protest.   BAE Systems and SAIC are competing to assemble 16 prototype ACVs that will be used for 18 months of Marine testing. Once completed, the service will choose a winner and launch production with the aim of fielding 204 vehicles by 2020.   The total value of the ACV program is estimated at $1.2 billion.   SAIC plans to roll out its first ACV prototype in February, company officials told Defense News.  
  Item Number:20 Date: 12/15/2016 USA - NEW STUDY FOCUSES ON READINESS OF ARMY RESERVE (DEC 15/ANS)  ARMY NEWS SERVICE -- The U.S. Army Reserve is formally examining its readiness.   The Reserve has begun a study to determine how well it can support the active force against a rapid-striking, near-peer adversary in a full-spectrum operation, reports the Army News Service.   The results of the report will be used to determine how the Reserve moves forward, Lt. Gen. Charles Luckey, the head of the U.S. Army Reserve, said at a defense reporters' breakfast on Monday in Washington, D.C.   While the Reserve performed well in Afghanistan and Iraq, the time has come to reconsider its structure and capabilities, said Luckey.   The study is looking at a number of factors, including unit training. More training does not benefit all units equally, he noted.   The key to readiness is finding the appropriate balance between training and the adverse effect that increased training might have on a reservist's civilian career, said the general.   Reservists should be able to progress in their civilian careers, since that professional development also benefits the Army, said Luckey.   Luckey said the the Reserve force structure is also being reviewed, including the locations of training centers.   The ability of the Reserve to rapidly respond, within 60 to 90 days or faster to meet modern, advanced threats, is also being considered, said the general.


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