Tuesday, March 6, 2018

Fw: TheList 4671

The List 4671

To All,
I hope that your week has started well.
This Day In Naval History – March 6, 2018
March 6
1822The schooner Enterprise captures four pirate ships in the Gulf of Mexico. During her time in the Gulf, Enterprise takes 13 vessels while suppressing pirates, smugglers, and slaves.
1862 - USS Monitor departed New York for Hampton Roads, VA
1942 - U.S. Cruisers and destroyers bombard Vila and Munda, Solomon Islands, sinking 2 Japanese destroyers
1943Task Force 68, commanded by Rear Adm. Aaron S. Merrill, bombards Vila and Munda, Solomons and sinks Japanese destroyers Minegumo and Murasame in the Kula Gulf. For his leadership, Adm. Merrill earned both the Legion of Merit and the Navy Cross.
1944USS Nautilus (SS 168) attacks a Japanese convoy approximately 240 miles north-north west of Saipan and sinks transport (ex-hospital ship) America Maru.
1960USS Kearsarge (CVS 33) rescues four Russian soldiers from their landing craft 1,000 miles from Midway Island, which had been drifting several weeks after their engine failed off Kamchatka Peninsula.
1991President George H. W. Bush addresses a joint session of Congress and states, "I can report to the nation: Aggression is defeated. The war is over." 
2010USS Dewey (DDG 105) is commissioned at Seal Beach, CA. The Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer is named after former Adm. of the Navy George Dewey, hero of the Battle of Manila Bay during the Spanish-American War of 1899.
Thanks to CHINFO
Executive Summary:
National headlines include coverage of former Trump campaign aide Sam Nunberg's shift from his vow not to cooperation with a subpoena from Special Counsel Mueller; Florida's Senate narrowly passing on Monday a sweeping but contentious bill to increase school safety and restrict gun purchases; and Washington state passing a new law to protect net neutrality in response to the FCC's repeal of its protections that are scheduled to end April 23. Media continue to cover USS Carl Vinson's historic port call in Vietnam. The port call shows an effort to "continue to normalize relationships here with the Vietnamese navy," said 7th Fleet commander Vice Adm. Phillip Sawyer in a USNI News report. "We committed (to scheduling a carrier port visit), and we made that commitment, and that in itself is important because it helps foster the trust that we want to foster within our partnership." Stars and Stripes reports that the Marine Corps has deployed its most advanced, multirole strike fighter aboard a Navy ship for the first time in the Pacific. A detachment of the F-35B Lightning IIs with Fighter Attack Squadron 121 landed aboard USS Wasp on Sunday and Monday. Additionally, U.S. Pacific Fleet commander Adm. Scott Swift's recently revealed Fleet Problem series has boosted preparedness for a "high-end maritime fight" reports the Honolulu Star-Advertiser.
March 6
Ferdinand Magellan discovers Guam.
The Missouri Compromise is enacted by Congress and signed by President James Monroe, providing for the admission of Missouri into the Union as a slave state, but prohibits slavery in the rest of the northern Louisiana Purchase territory.
After fighting for 13 days, the Alamo falls.
Giuseppe Verdi's opera La Traviata premieres in Venice.
The Supreme Court's Dred Scott decision holds that blacks cannot be citizens.
While campaigning for the presidency, Abraham Lincoln makes a speech defending the right to strike.
The USS Monitor left New York with a crew of 63, seven officers and 56 seamen.
Over 100 suffragists, led by Susan B. Anthony, present President Chester A. Arthur with a demand that he voice support for female suffrage.
Louisa May Alcott dies just hours after the burial of her father.
Aspirin is patented following Felix Hoffman's discoveries about the properties of acetylsalicylic acid.
A would-be assassin tries to kill Wilhelm II of Germany in Bremen.
German Prince Wilhelm de Wied is crowned as King of Albania.
The Allies recapture Fort Douaumont in France during the Battle of Verdun.
A Communist attack on Beijing results in 3,000 dead and 50,000 fleeing to Swatow.
In Spain, Jose Miaja takes over Madrid government after a military coup and vows to seek "peace with honor."
British RAF fliers bomb Essen and the Krupp arms works in the Ruhr, Germany.
Cologne, Germany, falls to General Courtney Hodges' First Army.
Winston Churchill opposes the withdrawal of troops from India.
During talks in Berlin, the Western powers agree to internationalize the Ruhr region.
Upon Josef Stalin's death, Georgi Malenkov is named Soviet premier.
The Swiss grant women the right to vote in municipal elections.
The United States announces that it will send 3,500 troops to Vietnam.
President Lyndon B. Johnson announces his plan to establish a draft lottery.
President Richard Nixon imposes price controls on oil and gas.
Iran and Iraq announce that they have settled the border dispute.
Islamic militants in Tehran say that they will turn over the American hostages to the Revolutionary Council.
President Reagan announces plans to cut 37,000 federal jobs.
The British ferry Herald of Free Enterprise capsizes in the Channel off the coast of Belgium. At least 26 are dead.
* Bill Bennett's The American Patriot's Daily Almanac
Storm winds of tyranny blew across Texas in early 1836. In those days the region was a part of Mexico, where General Santa Anna had seized power and made himself dictator. Texans weren't willing to submit to his rule, so Santa Anna marched north with an army.
In San Antonio a small band gathered to make their stand at the Alamo, an old Spanish mission turned into a fort. They were tough characters, men who had settled a wild frontier. With them was the famous Davy Crockett from Tennessee.
The Mexican army arrived and demanded the Alamo's surrender. The Texans answered with a cannon shot. Santa Anna ordered a red flag raised, a signal meaning "We will take no prisoners."
Colonel William Travis, commander of the Alamo, dispatched messengers bearing appeals for reinforcements. "Our flag still waves proudly from the walls," he wrote. "I shall never surrender nor retreat . . . Victory or death!"
Only 32 men made their way through the enemy lines to join the Texans at the Alamo. That brought the number of defenders to about 189. The Mexican army, meanwhile, swelled to perhaps 5,000.
Legend says that Travis called his men together, drew a line in the dust with his sword, and announced that those who wanted to stay and fight should step over the line. Every man but one crossed over.
The attack came early the next morning, on March 6, 1836. For a while, the Texans managed to hold the Mexican army back, but soon Santa Anna's soldiers swarmed over the walls. All of the Alamo's defenders were killed.
The Texans weren't finished. On April 21, troops commanded by Sam Houston attacked and broke Santa Anna's army. "Remember the Alamo!" was their battle cry—a cry that still reminds Americans of unyielding courage and sacrifice for freedom.
76th Anniversary of Houston, Perth Sinking.
On Feb. 28 in Indonesia, Navy and government representatives from the United States, Australia, and Indonesia set sail together from Jakarta aboard the Australian patrol boat HMAS Larrakia to commemorate the 76th anniversary of the sinking of USS Houston (CA-30) and HMAS Perth with a wreath-laying at sea ceremony. The ships were lost in the Battles of Java Sea and Sunda Strait on Feb. 28, 1942. Among the attendees at the ceremony was George Hatfield Jr., son of Perth Petty Officer George Hatfield. Hatfield died on Perth just three months before Hatfield Jr. was born. Hatfield Jr. said being at the site of Perth "was the closest he'd ever been to his father." Ibu Susi Pudjiastuti, Indonesia's Minister of Marine Affairs and Fisheries, spoke about the intent and commitment to designate a maritime conservation zone for USS Houston and all warships sunk in Indonesia's territorial seas. "The hope is to show Indonesia's commitment and to hopefully prevent salvaging of sunken vessels, because this is not only a sunken vessel, but also the national history of a country very closely related to Indonesia's bilateral ties."
Navy Awaits Possible Lexington Wreckage Data.
Microsoft cofounder and philanthropist Paul G. Allen's expedition crew of research vessel (R/V) Petrel has reportedly discovered the wreckage of USS Lexington (CV-2) more than 500 miles off the coast of Australia, March 4. Lexington took part with USS Yorktown (CV-5) in the Battle of the Coral Sea (May 4–8, 1942), which was the first carrier versus carrier battle in history and was the first time Japanese forces suffered a permanent setback in advances on New Guinea and Australia. However, the United States lost Lexington and 216 of her crew. "As we look back on our Navy throughout its history, we see evidence of an incredible amount of heroism and sacrifice. The actions of Sailors from our past inspire us today," said NHHC Director Sam Cox. "So many ships, so many battles, so many acts of valor help inform what we do now." Read more from Paul Allen here. To see what the crew of the expedition discovered, view R/V Petrel's video.
With our thanks to THE Bear at http://www.rollingthunderremembered.com/
March 6, 2018   Bear Taylor  
RIPPLE SALVO… #731… PARADOX: A TENET CONTRARY TO RECEIVED OPINION… Reston writes: "We have never had more prosperity and poverty at the same time as we have now, never more problems or opportunities existing side by side."… but first…
Good Morning: Day SEVEN HUNDRED THIRTY-ONE of a blogger's remembrance of great men in harm's way–the air war in Vietnam 1965-1968… It was secretly called Rolling Thunder…
HEAD LINES from The New York Times on Wednesday, 6 March 1968…
THE WAR IN VIETNAM Fifty Years Ago Today: Page 1: "VIETCONG ATTACK CITY IN DELTA; FIGHTING IS HEAVY–ALLIED UNITS RETAKE HOSPITAL AFTER HOURS OF BATTLING–Report 250 Foe dead, 1,000 Homes Destroyed–North Vietnamese Continue Shelling Khesanh Base–Shipyard Near Hanoi Hit"... "Vietcong guerrillas stormed into the capital of South Vietnam's southernmost province yesterday and occupied a hospital for several hours. In fighting that raged most of the day, the hospital, the military compound and some public buildings were extensively damaged. More than 1,000 homes were destroyed. Though the night sniper shots echoed in the streets of Quanlong, the usually quiet capital of Anxuyen province in the Mekong Delta, the city formerly known as Camau, has a population of 6,000 to 8,000….Near the demilitarized zone North Vietnamese troops continued to shell the United States Marine outpost at Khesanh despite steady pounding from American artillery and bombers (Humble Host included…see #114 below)… Page 3: "U.S. IDENTIFIES MEN KILLED IN VIETNAM"… "The Pentagon today (5th) identified 120 American servicemen killed in combat in Vietnam…"… Page 2: "Expert's Report Assails Saigon On Land Reform"..."…has concluded that the absence of effective land reform in South Vietnam 'is costing the lives of large number of American soldiers and is significantly prolonging the Vietnam war."… Page 3: "U.S. Troops In Vietnam Are Said To Get Pep Pills–John Steinbeck IV Alleges Amphetamines Are Issued in Combat Survival Kits"… Page 2: "U.S. AIDE SAYS ALLIES ARE ABOUT TO SEIZE THE OFFENSIVE"... "A senior United States military aide today depicted allied forces about to go on the offensive in the two northern provinces of South Vietnam. He said that the massing of four North Vietnamese divisions, perhaps totaling 60,000 to 70,000 men, including Vietcong elements, presented the United States command with 'silver platter' opportunities for conventional battle in the area."...Page 10: "Marine Chief Says Foe's Drive Failed"… "The Commandant of the Marine Corps in his first speech since the Lunar New Year offensive in Vietnam, said yesterday that the enemy had failed in their objectives. They did not persuade the South Vietnamese people of troops to defect and they did not discourage American. 'I predict we will stick it our and see it through.' he said."…
Page 1: "RIOT BILL ADDED TO BILL ON RIGHTS BY SENATE WITH 82 TO 13 VOTE–AMENDMENT WOULD MAKE IT A CRIME TO CROSS STATE LINES TO INCITE DISORDER–Liberals Are Defeated–Chamber Later Turns Down Plan To Weaken Provisions Calling For Open Housing"…"…the Senate rejected, 48-43,  move that would have drastically weakened the open housing provisions of the bill."…Page 1: "Johnson And The Riot Panel's Report–Reasons For Silence In Public"… "No day passes the White House now without someone asking for President Johnson's reaction to the grave warnings and far-reaching recommendations of his National Advisory Commission on Civil Disorders. But Mr. Johnson sits silent and his official spokesmen keep ducking and dodging. The reason–though no one at the White house thinks it at the moment–is that Mr. Johnson thinks the pleas for action  are being wrongly addressed to the President."… Page 1: "French Airliner Crashes With 62–Hits a Guadeloupe Mountain and Bursts Into Flames–No Survivors Found"… "An Air France jetliner with 62 persons aboard crashed into the side of a mountain near the village of Saint Claude last night and burst into flames… The plane, a Boeing 707 carrying 51 passengers and 11 crew members, crashed into the mountain called Sousfriere at an altitude of about 3,900-feet."…
6 MARCH 1968…THE PRESIDENT'S DAILY BRIEF (these formerly Top Secret CIA briefs for the President are available on-line in the CIA Reading Room) SOUTH VIETNAM: Close to 20,000 North Vietnamese are estimated to have infiltrated south Vietnam in January–the highest monthly total of the year. …The US Embassy has taken a preliminary look at damage done by the Tet offensive to the South Vietnamese economy and concluded it has been severe. Aside from the serious disruption to movement of goods and products, industrial facilities have suffered extensive damage, and most business activity has been suspended. As for the offensive itself, there have been no major clashed reported so far today… LAOS: The week-long lull in fighting continues, although the Communists still threaten government positions…. NORTH VIETNAM: Conditions in Hanoi: The morale of the people of Hanoi appears high and they seem mo less willing to support the regime's war effort… The electric power supply in the city is now restricted to three days a week for ordinary residents, but foreign embassies have no restrictions placed on them. Gasoline and oil are in very short supply, with embassies allowed a monthly ration of 400 liters; requests for additional supplies are frequently turned down….
STATE DEPARTMENT, Office of the Historian, Historical Documents,Foreign Relations, 1964-68, Volume VI, Vietnam. Three documents are attached for your consideration dated 6 March 1968. Document 107 is a timely "forty-second weekly message" from Ambassador Bunker in Saigon that gives a very good set of facts and suggestions for the President's consideration as the Administration ponders "what now" coming out of the Tet embarrassment… Document 108 is a jim-dandy piece of smart staff work by Walt Rostow, the President's special assistant. This is an example of a good right-hand man at work. Rostow gathers ideas from the folks on his rollodex, goes into think-mode and produces the best set of ideas he can muster. Something else that has merit for the President to consider … Not all Rostow's inputs are what the boss wants to hear, but they are explained by Rostow and successfully stir the President to reconsider his position… Rostow includes mining Haiphong and all North Vietnam ports in his page of suggestions… Document 109 is an Editorial Note that records a unique three-hour evening conversation in the White House as the President gathers five senior Senators to tell them why he is doing what he is doing… Great exchange of words between LBJ and Senator Fulbright… This is a great history lesson unto itself… LBJ provides words on how he came to pursue the Tonkin Gulf Resolution… I read it twice, but I'm a history nerd… Read at…
6 MARCH 1968… OPERATION ROLLING THUNDER… New York Times (7 Mar reporting 6 Mar ops) Page 1: "U.S. PLANE CARRYING 49 DOWNED NEAR KHESANH"… "North Vietnamese gunners shot down a United States Air Force transport plane carrying 44 passenger and five crewmen near the Marine outpost at Khesanh yesterday (6th) afternoon. There was 'no sign of life' in the wreckage of the plane, a twin-engine C-123. It was the third large transport plane shot down near the outpost in northwestern South Vietnam. (See details below in Hobson)… In the air war over the North Air Force pilots struck the Phucyen airfield 18 miles northwest of Hanoi. There were no immediate reports of damage."… "Vietnam: Air Losses" (Chris Hobson) There were Five fixed wing aircraft downed in Southeast Asia on 6 March 1968…
(1) 1LT W.V. TOMLINSON was flying an F-100D of the 510th TFS and 3rd TFW out of Bien Hoa was returning to Bien Hoa from a combat mission when downed by ground fire in his approach to the field. 1LT TOMLINSON ejected about one mile from the home plate… The bad guys were everywhere…
(2) CAPTAIN C.D. SISSELL was flying an F-100D of the 90th TFS and 3rd TFW out of Bien Hoa  and strafing enemy troops in the southern tip of South Vietnam when hit by ground fire forcing him to eject at the target. CAPTAIN SISSELL was rescued in the nick of time, again. He had ejected from another Super Sabre 26 February 1968… "Living Lucky"…
(3) CAPTAIN F.E. PECK was flying an F-105D of the 333rd TFS and 355th TFW out of Takhli in a flight of four Thunderchiefs  on a Steel Tiger mission against a road about 20 miles west of the DMZ and was hit by ground fire. CAPTAIN PECK was forced to eject and sustained serious injury in the process. He was rescued by a USAF helicopter…
(4) LCOL FREDERICK JORDAN HAMPTON, 1LT ELLIS EUGENE HELGESON, SGT JEFFREY FRANCIS CONLIN, SSGT WILLIAM FRANK ANSELMO, SSGT NOEL LUIS RIOS, and 45 PASSENGERS were killed in action at Khesanh in a C-123K of the 311th ACS and 315th ACW out of Phang Rang. LCOL HAMPTON was piloting the aircraft through the ground fire for a landing at the steel runway and forced to go-around due to a helicopter on the runway. The additional exposure time proved fatal as the enemy gunners were able to knock out and inflame his port engine and wing. He attempted to get back to Danang but the aircraft became uncontrollable and crashed a few minutes later killing all aboard. The passengers were 44 Marines and one civilian
"Lieutenant Colonel Frederick J. Hampton distinguished himself by gallantry in connection with military operations against an opposing armed force as Aircraft Commander near Khesanh, Republic of Vietnam, on 6 March 1068. The citation to accompany the Award of the Silver Star goes on to say: "…on that date Colonel Hampton led his flight in support of friendly ground forces engaged in defense of their beleaguered outpost. Despite the continuous threat from intense hostile fire, Colonel Hampton's leadership, exemplary foresight, and ceaseless efforts resulted in significant contributions to the effectiveness and success of the commitments of the United States in Southeast Asia." Lieutenant Colonel Hampton had been awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross for extraordinary heroism on 22 January 1968, the Bronze Star for his heroic actions in February 1968 and the Purple Heart. All awarded posthumously. He left behind a wife, Anne, and four children fifty years ago this day… Our thoughts are with the family… "They also serve who stand and wait, and wait…."…
(4) LT RICHARD CRAWFORD NELSON and LT GILBERT LOUIS MITCHELL were flying an A-6A Intruder of the VA-75 Sunday Punchers embarked in USS Kitty Hawk and were lost during a night low-level strike on the railyard at Haiphong. Hanoi reported the aircraft shot down on 7 March, indicated that LT NELSON and LT MITCHELL had been killed, and published pictures of an attempt to salvage the wreckage of the aircraft. The remains of LT NELSON were recovered and returned on 1 July 1984. The remains of LT MITCHELL have not been located and the young warrior remains missing… left behind… the search goes on… and is remembered on this 50th anniversary of his last flight…
From the compilation "34 TFS/F-105 History" by Howie Plunkett: "The four pilots in Pistol flight from the 34TFS bombed a target in northern Laos… LCOL Sam Armstrong was scheduled to lead the flight."   From LGEN Armstrong's "100-mission combat log"…"I was mission commander again today and got all the way through the briefing. We finally executed 1`st alternate and had a radar drop near Sam Neua. I let Gene Beresik pinch hit for me and lead. It was an uneventful drop. We then made an armed recce of Rte #7 and didn't spot anything though it was partially clear"...It was LCOL Armstrong's 80th combat mission…..Humble Host Flew #114. Notes from my kneeboard card: "A pinkie cat shot (again) with a twilight delivery of three MK-83, 2,000-pound ojive headed, delay-fused bombs to blow trenches northwest of Khesanh marked by FAC smoke. Start the dive at 12,000 in the sun, release at 4 and out by 2 in the haze, as the sunsets in the west. Nite trap OK-2(dntl)"…
Thanks to Carl
Inside the Daring Mission That Thwarted a Nazi Atomic Bomb
When the Nazis captured a heavy water facility in Norway, the chemist who helped design the plant took action.
Item Number:1 Date: 03/06/2018 BRAZIL - FEDERAL POLICE CHIEF REPLACED OVER CONCERNS OF MEDDLING IN CORRUPTION INVESTIGATION (MAR 06/REU)  REUTERS -- The director general of Brazil's federal police has been replaced, reports Reuters.   Fernando Segovia, who was in charge of a major corruption case, was replaced on Feb. 27 by Rogerio Galloro, said the Public Security Ministry. Galloro has served in the federal police for more than two decades.   Segovia, who began his term in November, came under scrutiny after he said in a February interview that there was no evidence of corruption against President Michel Temer.   Brazil's chief prosecutor requested the Supreme Court intervene to prevent Segovia from meddling in the investigation.   Authorities are investigating whether Temer accepted bribes in exchange for a concession for operating services in Brazil's Port of Santos, the largest container port on the continent.  
  Item Number:2 Date: 03/06/2018 BURMA - REPATRIATION OF ROHINGYA REFUGEES IMPOSSIBLE AS LONG AS ETHNIC CLEANSING CONTINUES, SAYS U.N. ENVOY (MAR 06/INDEP)  INDEPENDENT -- A U.N. human-rights official says ethnic cleansing against Rohingya in Burma continues and that repatriation of refugees is impossible under the current conditions, reports the Independent (U.K.).   The "campaign of terror and forced starvation" continues, Andrew Gilmour, assistant secretary-general for human rights, said on Tuesday after a visit to Rohingya refugee camps in Bangladesh.   The campaign against the Rohingya has shifted from one of mass violence to a "lower intensity campaign of terror and forced starvation," he said.   Based on accounts from those in the camps, the U.N. envoy said that persecution of the mostly Muslim minority has not ended and repatriation of refugees living in Bangladesh was premature.   Burmese officials have denied targeting civilians and say they are fighting anti-government rebels. In January, the government said it was ready to accept refugees.   Bangladesh and Burmese authorities have been discussing repatriating refugees but the surprise deployment of Burmese troops along their shared border last week put talks on hold.   Around 700,000 Rohingya Muslims have fled into Bangladesh from Burma since August 2017.  
  Item Number:4 Date: 03/06/2018 INDIA - FOLLOWING INTEL TIP, SECURITY FORCES KILL JEM COMMANDER IN SOUTH KASHMIR (MAR 06/ECON)  ECONOMIC TIMES -- Indian security forces say they have killed a terrorist who masterminded an attack on an Indian army encampment in Kashmir last month, reports the Economic Times (India).   On Monday, a team of soldiers and members of the elite special operations group killed Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) commander Mufti Waqas during an operation in the town of Awantipora in South Kashmir.   The force launched the operation after receiving an intelligence tip and carried out a "surgical attack" on the house Waqas was in, officials said.   The JeM commander is believed to have planned attacks on the Sunjawan army camp in Kashmir, which killed at least five soldiers and a civilian, in addition to at least three of the attackers.   Waqas, a Pakistani national, was functioning as an operational commander for JeM, said officials. He succeeded Noor Mahd Tantrey, who was killed in the region in December.   The army did not report any civilian casualties as a result of the operation
  Item Number:6 Date: 03/06/2018 JAPAN - IN A FIRST, WOMAN NAMED TO LEAD MSDF WARSHIP SQUADRON (MAR 06/REU)  REUTERS -- For the first time, the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force (MSDF) has appointed a woman to command a warship squadron, reports Reuters.   On Tuesday, Ryoko Azuma took command of the MSDF's First Escort Division during a ceremony in Yokohama, near Tokyo.   The First Escort Division is composed of four ships, including the flagship Izumo helicopter carrier, with a combined crew of 1,000.   "This is the first time a woman was appointed for the job," said spokesman for the MSDF, as reported by Agence France-Presse. "But she wasn't chosen because she was a woman."   Japan abolished restrictions on women serving aboard warships a decade ago. Submarines are still crewed only by men.   Japan's armed forces have pledged to increase the number of women serving to 9 percent by 2030 to help address manning shortfalls as Japan's population shrinks.   There are about 14,000 women, or 6 percent, currently serving with Japan's Self-Defense Forces
Item Number:10 Date: 03/06/2018 SRI LANKA - 10-DAY STATE OF EMERGENCY AFTER ETHNIC VIOLENCE IN KANDY (MAR 06/NYT)  NEW YORK TIMES -- Sri Lankan authorities have declared a 10-day state of emergency after deadly clashes between Buddhists and Muslims, reports the New York Times.   Announced on Tuesday, the state of emergency follows fighting in the central city of Kandy that killed at least two people.   Violence began on Sunday after the funeral of a Buddhist man who was killed after a fight with a Muslim.   After the funeral, members of the majority Sinhala, who are mostly Buddhist, attacked Muslim shops, police said. The body of a young Muslim was found after the attacks.   Hundreds of troops and elite police were sent to the city to quell the fighting and enforce a curfew.   Rishad Bathiudeen, the minister of industry and commerce, blamed two controversial Buddhist monks who were in the area on Sunday for inciting violence and called for their arrest. He also said that police were slow to react to the mob attacks.   Tensions between the Sinhala, who make up about 70 percent of the population, and Muslims, about 9 percent, have been growing.   Last month, five people were wounded and several shops and a mosque were damaged during a clash between Buddhist and Muslim groups, noted Al Jazeera.   Some Sinhala nationalists have accused Muslims of desecrating Buddhist sites and forcibly converting people
  Item Number:11 Date: 03/06/2018 UNITED KINGDOM - FORMER RUSSIAN SPY IN CRITICAL CONDITION AFTER EXPOSURE TO UNKNOWN SUBSTANCE (MAR 06/GUARDIAN)  GUARDIAN -- A former Russian double agent living in England is in the hospital after exposure to an unknown substance, reports the Guardian (U.K.).   Sergei Skripal was found unconscious on a bench in a shopping center in Salisbury on Sunday, said police. His daughter, Yulia, 33, was poisoned alongside Skripal, reported the BBC. She lives in Russia but was visiting the U.K.   On Monday night, police in hazmat suits were seen examining the bench where the pair had passed out. Police from a specialist chemical response unit found an unknown substance at the scene, reported the Daily Telegraph (U.K.).   Some preliminary reports suggested the substance was fentanyl, a powerful synthetic opiate.   British counterterrorism forces have joined in the investigation, reported the New York Times.   Skripal, 66, was living under his own name.   In 2006, Skripal was convicted of passing the identities of Russian agents working undercover in Europe to MI6, Britain's foreign intelligence agency.   In 2010, Skripal came to the U.K. as part of a spy exchange.   The case echoes that of Alexander Litvinenko, a former spy believed to have been poisoned by Russian intelligence in 2006.  
  Item Number:12 Date: 03/06/2018 USA - COAST GUARD ISSUES RFP FOR HEAVY ICEBREAKER (MAR 06/USCG)  U.S. COAST GUARD -- The Naval Sea Systems Command, in cooperation with the Coast Guard, has issued a request for proposal for the advance procurement and detail design for a heavy polar icebreaker, reports the Coast Guard.   The proposal, issued on March 2, includes options for detail design and construction for up to three icebreakers.   Contract award is anticipated in fiscal 2019.   The Dept. of Homeland Security Acquisition Review Board approved the program to move from the analyze/select phase to the obtain phase on Feb. 21, said a Coast Guard release on March 5.   The milestone follows several years of collaboration between the Navy and Coast Guard, industry engagement and research and validation of the design and requirements, the service said.  
  Item Number:13 Date: 03/06/2018 USA - F-35B DEPLOYS FOR FIRST TIME ABOARD AMPHIBIOUS SHIP IN PACIFIC (MAR 06/S&S)  STARS AND STRIPES -- For the first time, the Marine Corps has deployed F-35B fighter jets aboard a Navy amphibious ship in the Pacific, reports the Stars and Stripes.   On Sunday and Monday, a detachment of F-35B Lightning IIs with Marine Fighter Attack Squadron 121 (VMFA-121) landed on the USS Wasp.   In the coming days, pilots from the squadron, part of the 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU), are scheduled to conduct a series of qualification flights on the Wasp, the Navy said in a statement.   The 31st MEU is the only forward-deployed MEU in the Pacific.   After those flights, the F-35Bs and about 2,300 Marines from the 31st MEU will deploy aboard ships of the Wasp strike group for operations in the region.   "Pairing F-35B Lightning IIs with the Wasp represents one of the most significant leaps in warfighting capability for the Navy-Marine Corps team in our lifetime," said Rear Adm. Brad Cooper, the Task Force 76 chief.   The F-35Bs are intended to make precision strikes inland and to support Marines inserting ashore, the Navy said. They will also provide air defense for the strike group.   The F-35B deployment supports the Navy's Up-Gunned Expeditionary Strike Group concept, which integrates multi-mission surface combatants and F-35Bs into amphibious operations to increase lethality, reported the Navy Times.    
  Item Number:14 Date: 03/06/2018 USA - GENERAL ATOMICS RECEIVES ARMY CONTRACT TO DEVELOP RAILGUN TECHNOLOGY (MAR 06/GA)  GENERAL ATOMICS -- The U.S. Army has awarded a contract to General Atomics Electromagnetic Systems (GA-EMS) for work on railgun weapon system capabilities, reports the San Diego, Calif.-based defense firm.   The three-year contract brings together GA-EMS with the U.S. Army Armament Research, Development and Engineering Command (ARDEC) to advance railgun technologies, deliver a series of prototypes and perform system integration and testing for mission effectiveness and potential integration with existing and future combat vehicles.   "This contract allows the ARDEC to leverage our ongoing research, development and testing to advance railgun technologies and further develop railgun weapon systems for Army applications enhancing their effectiveness against multiple types of threats," said Nick Bucci, the vice president of missile defense and space systems at GA-EMS.   The company says it has successfully designed and built multi-mission railgun systems from a 3 megajoule test asset and a larger 32 MJ system to a new mobile 10 MJ railgun system
Item Number:15 Date: 03/06/2018 VIETNAM - U.S. NAVY CARRIER MAKES 1ST VISIT IN 4 DECADES (MAR 06/NNS)  NAVY NEWSSTAND -- For the first time in more than 40 years, a U.S. Navy aircraft carrier is making a port call in Vietnam, reports the Navy NewsStand.   USS Carl Vinson (CVN 70) arrived in Danang for a scheduled visit on March 5. The carrier is escorted by the cruiser USS Lake Champlain (CG 57) and the destroyer USS Wayne E. Meyer (DDG 107).   The Carl Vinson strike group is in the midst of a scheduled deployment in the Indo-Pacific region.   "The visit marks an enormously significant milestone in our bilateral relations and demonstrates U.S. support for a strong, prosperous, and independent Vietnam," said U.S. Ambassador to Vietnam Daniel Kritenbrink.   Relations between the U.S. and Vietnam have improved significantly over the last few years and the Vinson's visit reflects that, said Adm. Scott Swift, the commander of the U.S. Pacific Fleet.    
  Item Number:16 Date: 03/06/2018 YEMEN - SENIOR SECURITY OFFICIAL KILLED BY UNKNOWN GUNMEN (MAR 06/ANADOLU)  ANADOLU NEWS AGENCY -- A top Yemeni security official was shot and killed by unknown militants in an attack in the southern city of Aden, reports Turkey's Anadolu Agency.   On Monday, two unidentified gunmen riding a motorcycle opened fire on Abdul Karim Abdullah, the deputy security chief for the 7th security zone, while he was in a restaurant, said local security officials.   No group immediately claimed responsibility for the attack.   On Sunday, the Islamic State claimed responsibility for killing two Yemeni security personnel in Aden, reported Xinhua, China's state news agency.   Commanders of the United Arab Emirates-backed Yemeni security forces in the region have become a target for militant groups.

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