Saturday, January 18, 2020

TheList 5193

The List 5193 TGB

To All,

I hope that you all have a great weekend.



Today in Naval History

January 17

1863—Union iron-clad gunboat Baron de Kalb, with "tinclad" gunboats Forest Rose and Romeo, along with an Army transport, clear out Confederate strongholds up White River to Des Arc, AR.

1899—Gunboat Bennington, commanded by Cmdr. E. D. Taussig, claims Wake Island for the United States, giving the U.S. a cable route between Honolulu and Manila, a factor that influences territorial demands in the Pacific.

1943—Submarine Whale (SS 239) sinks the Japanese transport Heiyo Maru.

1943—Light aircraft carrier Cowpens (CV 25) is launched. Redesignated CVL 25 six months later, she serves in the Pacific during World War II.

1944—Dauntless SBD scout planes and Avenger TBF torpedo bombers bomb Japanese shipping at Rabaul and sink three ships, damaging a third.

1977 - A freighter collided with a liberty boat carrying Sailors and Marines from USS Guam and Trenton killing 49 men near Barcelona, Spain. In response to this tragedy, the first two US Navy Special Psychiatric Rapid Intervention Teams (SPRINT) were deployed to support Sailors affected by addressing the emotional and psychological wounds following this traumatic event.

Jan. 18

1885—A Marine guard from the screw gunboat Alliance lands at Colon, Panama, (then in Colombia) to guard the railroad and to protect American lives and property during a period of political unrest.

1911—The first aircraft landing onboard a ship takes place when pilot Eugene Ely lands onboard the armored cruiser USS Pennsylvania while anchored in San Francisco Bay, CA, and then makes a return flight back to Tanforan Field in San Francisco.

1942—Plunger (SS 179) sinks the Japanese freighter Eizan Maru (ex-Panamanian Aurora) off the mouth of Kii Strait, Honshu.

1962—USS Duxbury Bay transfers a Navy doctor to help a Danish crewman after a flash fire burned him onboard Danish tanker Prima Maersk in the Persian Gulf.

1991—During Operation Desert Storm, HSL-44 (Det 8) SH-60Bs from USS Nicholas (FFG 47), along with Kuwaiti and Army vessels, engage and neutralize Iraqi forces on nine oil platforms in the Durrah oil field.

Jan. 19

1813—William Jones takes office as the fourth Secretary of the Navy, serving until Dec. 1, 1814.

1943—USS Swordfish (SS 193) sinks army cargo ship Myoho Maru, which was part of the Japanese Solomons reinforcement convoy, while USS Greenling (SS 213) damages Japanese cargo ship north of Rabaul.

1951—During the Korean War, landing craft from USS Horace A. Bass (APD 124) investigate the beaches around Kamak Bay (south west coast of Korea) when one of the crafts carrying frogmen comes under fire from North Korean guerillas, killing two and wounding three.

Thanks to CHINFO

Executive Summary:

• Reuters reports that USS Shiloh transited the Taiwan Strait less than a week after Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen won re-election.

• Coverage continued from the final day of the Surface Navy Association 2020 national symposium.

• Multiple outlets report training will resume for Saudi Arabian military students in the United States after a DoD review of vetting procedures.

• Multiple outlets report that eleven service members were screened for traumatic brain injuries following the Jan 8 Iranian missile attack.

January 17


The Treaty of Lyons ends a short war between France and Savoy.


Charles Edward Stuart, the young pretender, defeats the government forces at the battle of Falkirk in Scotland.


Captain James Cook becomes the first person to cross the Antarctic Circle.


Simon Bolivar the "liberator" proclaims Columbia a republic.


Queen Liliuokalani, the Hawaiian monarch, is overthrown by a group of American sugar planters led by Sanford Ballard Dole.


At the Sand River Convention, the British recognize the independence of the Transvaal Board.


Robert Scott reaches the South Pole only a month after Roald Amundsen.


The Reich issues an order forbidding Jews to practice as dentists, veterinarians and chemists.


The Red army occupies Warsaw.


Soviet leader Khrushchev visits the Berlin Wall.


A jury in New Jersey rules that terminally ill patients have the right to starve themselves.


Boston thieves pull off historic robbery

On this day in 1950, 11 men steal more than $2 million from the Brinks Armored Car depot in Boston, Massachusetts. It was the perfect crime–almost–as the culprits weren't caught until January 1956, just days before the statute of limitations for the theft expired.

The robbery's mastermind was Anthony "Fats" Pino, a career criminal who recruited a group of 10 other men to stake out the depot for 18 months to figure out when it held the most money. Pino's men then managed to steal plans for the depot's alarm system, returning them before anyone noticed they were gone.

Wearing navy blue coats and chauffeur's caps–similar to the Brinks employee uniforms–with rubber Halloween masks, the thieves entered the depot with copied keys, surprising and tying up several employees inside the company's counting room. Filling 14 canvas bags with cash, coins, checks and money orders–for a total weight of more than half a ton–the men were out and in their getaway car in about 30 minutes. Their haul? More than $2.7 million–the largest robbery in U.S. history up until that time.

No one was hurt in the robbery, and the thieves left virtually no clues, aside from the rope used to tie the employees and one of the chauffeur's caps. The gang promised to stay out of trouble and not touch the money for six years in order for the statute of limitations to run out. They might have made it, but for the fact that one man, Joseph "Specs" O'Keefe, left his share with another member in order to serve a prison sentence for another burglary. While in jail, O'Keefe wrote bitterly to his cohorts demanding money and hinting he might talk. The group sent a hit man to kill O'Keefe, but he was caught before completing his task. The wounded O'Keefe made a deal with the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) to testify against his fellow robbers.

Eight of the Brinks robbers were caught, convicted and given life sentences. Two more died before they could go to trial. Only a small part of the money was ever recovered; the rest is fabled to be hidden in the hills north of Grand Rapids, Minnesota. In 1978, the famous robbery was immortalized on film in The Brinks Job, starring Peter Falk.


We start carrier landings ... 108 years ago !

Thanks to Ted and Dutch ….

Jan. 18, 1911: Flying over San Francisco Bay in his Curtiss Pusher Model "D" aircraft, pioneer aviator Eugene B. Ely approaches the anchored cruiser USS Pennsylvania and manages to land onto a special platform fitted with a makeshift tailhook system aboard the ship. Upon landing, he purportedly says, "It was easy enough. I think the trick could be successfully turned nine times out of ten."

Ely's landing is the first-ever airplane landing aboard a ship. Ely already had become the first man to take off from a ship in November. In July, he will be commissioned a second lieutenant in the California National Guard.

In October, he will be killed in a crash during an aerobatic demonstration in Macon, Georgia.


thanks to Rowan and Dutch

Sherman's march

History this month, 1865.

As Sherman was preparing to move, the rains began. On January 17, the Yankees waited while heavy rains pelted the region. The downpour lasted for 10 days, the heaviest rainfall in 20 years. Some of Sherman's aides thought a winter campaign in the Carolinas would be difficult with such wet weather, but Sherman had spent four years in Charleston as a young lieutenant in the army, and believed that the march was possible. He also possessed an army that was ready to continue its assault on the Confederacy. Sherman wrote to his wife that he "…never saw a more confident army…The soldiers think I know everything and that they can do anything."


Gen. William T. Sherman later wrote in his memoirs that we had 10 years to fix climate change or the Earth would perish


Jonny Kim - incredible story of persistence, patriotism, and the American Dream come true ...

Thanks to Tracy …and Dr. Rich

Jonny Kim's amazing story ….

What follows is a long email. It is about someone whom you may already know of, in which case that is great. If not, my hope is that, after reading this, you will tell his story to anyone whom you think might be interested. Because he is someone everyone should know about and look up to. He is not a professional athlete, politician, entertainer or businessman. He is someone who is leading a life of service to his country and his fellow man. His name is Jonny Kim. If you don't know who he is, please do read the rest of this. Jonny Kim's parents emigrated to the US from South Korea in search of a better life in the early 1980s. Shortly after moving here their son Jonny was born in Los Angeles in 1984. Jonny attended public schools in Santa Monica California. He says that he was a very shy and quiet student who lacked self confidence. During high school two things happened that would change that. First, when he was 16 he happened to read about the United States Naval Special Warfare Command. He thought this was something he could aspire to and maybe improve his sense of self worth and confidence. Then the following year 9/11 happened which inclined him to want to join the military even more. So when he graduated from Santa Monica High School in 2002, he enlisted in the United States Navy as the lowest form of enlisted life, a seaman recruit. Many people aspire to become SEALs, but very few succeed. The washout rate varies from class to class, but on a year to year basis, the washout rate is usually between 75% and 85%.

The first barrier is the SEAL Physical Screening Test. You don't have to be an elite athlete, but you do need to be in very good shape. Prospective trainees are expected to exceed the minimums. The only time when someone who barely meets the minimums would be selected is if s/he had a score on the ASVAB (the military's basic intelligence test) that greatly exceeded the minimum score of 220 or if the candidate were fluent in multiple foreign languages. The minimum physical screening requirements are 500 yd swim using the breast or combat sidestroke in under 12:30 minutes with a preferred competitive time of 9:00 or less, at least 50 push-ups in 2 minutes with a competitive count of 90 or more preferred, at least 50 sit-ups in 2 minutes with a competitive count of 90 or more, at least 10 pull-ups from a dead hang (no time limit) with a competitive count of 18 or more, run 1.5 miles in under 10:30 with a competitive time of 9:30 or less. Jonny had conditioned himself during high school and passed the physical screening test with flying colors exceeding all of the preferred competitive counts.

This allowed Jonny Kim to be enrolled in Basic Underwater Demolition/SEAL (BUD/S) training at Coronado, California, which is the first step towards becoming a Navy SEAL. BUD/S consists of a three-week orientation followed by three phases, covering physical conditioning (seven weeks), combat diving (seven weeks), and land warfare (seven weeks) respectively. Officer and enlisted personnel go through the same training program. It is designed to develop and test their stamina, leadership, and ability to work as a team. At the end of each week in each phase (or evolution) the requirements are raised. Most candidates either ring out (ring a bell signifying they are not going to continue) or are ordered out by trainers during BUD/S. In the first two weeks of physical conditioning candidates are prepared for week three which is known as Hell Week. Hell Week involves training for 20 hours a day for a week with a maximum of four hours sleep a night during which you are subjected to live fire exercises, diving tests, stressful physical tests, and severe punishments for failing any element. By the end of Hell Week you must be able to complete a timed 2-mile ocean swim with fins in 75 minutes, 4-mile timed run with boots on in 30 minutes and complete an untimed 14-mile run with pack and with no walking allowed. Though BUD/S lasts a total of 24 weeks most candidates are gone by the end of week three. From there it only gets worse.

For the few like Jonny Kim who survive BUDS, next comes Parachute Jump School which lasts three weeks and takes place at Tactical Air Operations San Diego. This is a highly accelerated jump school during which candidates must pass through a series of jump progressions, from basic static line jumps to accelerated free fall to combat equipment jumps, ultimately completing high altitude low opening (HALO) night descents with combat equipment from a minimum altitude of 9,500 feet.

Finally, for candidates who are still aspiring to become Navy SEALS, comes a 26 week program known as the SEAL Qualification Course or SQT. SQT is a 26-week course that will take the student from the basic elementary level of Naval Special Warfare to a more advanced degree of tactical training. SQT is designed to provide students with the core tactical knowledge they will need to join a SEAL Platoon.

The class members will learn advanced skill sets in weapons training, close quarters combat, small unit tactics, land navigation, demolitions, unarmed combat, cold weather training in Kodiak, Alaska, medical skills and maritime operations. Before graduating, students also attend survival, evasion, resistance and escape training (SERE Training) in the swamps of Florida.

Graduation from SQT culminates in the awarding of the coveted Navy SEAL Trident and granting of the Navy Enlisted Classification of (NEC) 5326 and Combatant Swimmer (SEAL) plus the rating of Naval Special Warfare Operator or, if the candidate is an officer, 1130 Special Warfare (SEAL) Officer. New SEALs are immediately assigned to a SEAL Team at Coronado, CA or Little Creek, VA and begin advanced training for their first deployment.

So you are now a SEAL, but before you go on your first mission, you have another 18 months of training to undergo before you will be trusted to join a team in combat missions. These 18 months are known as SEAL Troop Training (TRP). The 18 weeks are divided into three six month phases. In the first phase, known as Individual Training, depending on the six various teams' current needs and the individual's special capabilities, SEALs will receive training in any of the many special skills required by SEAL teams, like language school, advanced demolition, scout sniper school, barrier penetration, High Threat Protective Security Detail training, and a long list of other special warfare specialties.

In the second six weeks of TRP, SEALs receive Unit Training conducted by the specialty schools they have been enrolled in for the first six months. That is, they learn how to use these newly acquired skills effectively in a unit.

The final six months of SEAL TRP training is called Task Group Level Training. This involves learning how to work effectively with the various support groups within the Navy and the other military branches as well as intelligence agencies whose assistance is needed for SEAL teams to do their jobs effectively like, Special Boat Teams (SWCC); Intelligence(SI/HI/ETC)Teams; Cryptological Support Teams; Communications Teams; Medical Teams; EOD; JAG Legal Teams; Interpreters/Linguists; rotary and fixed wing Air Assault Teams; CIA, NSA, NI, DIA, Intelligence Teams etc.

After completing all of the above training required of Navy SEALs before assignment to a team, Jonny Kim was assigned to SEAL Team 3 or Naval Special Warfare Group Three. Though the operations of SEAL Teams are highly classified, let it be said that elements of Team 3 are normally stationed at Coronado, CA, Little River, VA or Pearl Harbor, HI. Members of SEAL Team 3 are trained to be inserted into operations via submarine and other wet modalities, like fast boats, sleds, etc. During his years of service as a member of SEAL Team 3, Jonny Kim was twice deployed to the Middle East, specifically Iraq and Afghanistan and served there variously as a scout sniper, combat medic, navigator and point man. He participated in over 100 combat missions during which he highly distinguished himself and the US Navy. He was awarded the Silver Star (the nation's third highest military award for valor in combat), The Bronze Star with "V" Device for heroism and valor in combat, and The Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal with "V" Device, again for heroism and valor in combat.

In 2009 Jonny Kim was accepted to the Naval Reserve Officers Training Corps program at the University of San Diego. Three years later in 2012 he graduated with Summa Cum Laude honors with a bachelors degree in mathematics and was commissioned as an ensign in the US Navy.

Upon graduation from USD, he applied for admission to the Harvard University Medical School because he says he was inspired by the work of the emergency medical staff who saved the lives and limbs of his combat buddies in the Global War on Terror. He was accepted to Harvard Medical School in 2012 and graduated with his Doctor of Medicine degree in 2016. He did his internship in emergency medicine at Massachusetts General Hospital and Brigham and Women's Hospital. He currently has resident status at these two hospitals. One of Jonny Kim's professors at Harvard Medical School was former astronaut Scott Parayzynski who explained NASA's mission in great detail to Jonny who, in turn, describes this as a revelation similar to his discovery of the Navy SEAL program.

So during his first year of residency at Mass General and Brigham and Women's Hospitals, Jonny Kim applied through the USA Jobs website to become an Astronaut Candidate in 2017. That same year more than 18,300 other people applied to become Astronaut Candidates. The application process ultimately included mental status and intelligence tests, medical tests, physical tests, interviews with behavior specialists, more interviews with a selection board, and group work tests. Jonny Kim was grocery shopping in the summer of 2017 when he received a phone call notifying him that he was one of 12 people chosen for Astronaut Class 22 and that he should report for training in Houston, TX on August 21, 2017. Last week, January 10th, 2020, Jonny Kim graduated from NASA's Astronaut School and officially became a member of NASA's Artemis Program. He is currently a Lieutenant in the US Navy Reserve on active duty assignment as an Astronaut and is billeted at the Lyndon B. Johnson Space Flight Center in Houston, TX while awaiting flight assignments.

Most Americans probably would not recognize the name of Navy SEAL, Doctor of Medicine and Astronaut Jonny Kim. If you get the chance, maybe you could do something about that. Here is a picture from his graduation last week from Astronaut School at the ripe old age of 35. I am fortunate to live in the space coast area. I look forward to seeing Jonny Kim's first trip into space. As you might have guessed, though, I won't have to wait until then to be looking up to him.

PS - note the SEAL Trident on his flight suit name patch!! Don't see that very often!!


Daily news from Military Periscope for 17 January

USA—Another Warship Passes Through Taiwan Street South China Morning Post | 01/17/2020 A U.S. warship has sailed through the Taiwan Strait, reports the South China Morning Post. The guided-missile cruiser USS Shiloh conducted a routine transit of the Taiwan Strait on Thursday, said a spokesman for the U.S. 7th Fleet. The passage was a demonstration of the "U.S. commitment to a free and open Indo-Pacific," he said. Taiwanese defense officials said that the ship sailed northward from the island's southwest during a general navigation mission, describing it as an ordinary event. On Friday, a Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman said that it was aware of the movement and monitored the ship during its transit, reported Reuters. The move came less than a week after Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen was re-elected in a landslide victory. Tsai beat out rivals who advocated for closer ties to mainland China.

USA—Army To Rework Bradley Replacement Program Defense One | 01/17/2020 The Army says it will modify its program to replace the Bradley infantry fighting vehicle after the contest drew only a single bid, reports Defense One. The service will "revisit the requirements, acquisition strategy and schedule" for the Optionally Manned Fighting Vehicle (OMFV) program before moving forward, said a statement from the Army Futures Command on Thursday. After two years of engagement with industry, it became clear that the Army's requirements and aggressive schedule overwhelmed industry's ability to respond, said Army acquisition chief Bruce Jette, as quoted by Defense News. General Dynamics Land Systems was the sole company to submit a bid for the project after the Army disqualified an offer from a Raytheon-Rheinmetall team, the newspaper reported in October. The decision to disqualify the Raytheon-Rheinmetall offer drew criticism from some in industry, who saw the service as pursuing an overly aggressive timeline for the capabilities requested. Army Secretary Ryan McCarthy said in December that the OMFV was being reviewed after initial efforts produced less competition than desired.

USA—Marines In Line For Navy Anti-Ship Missiles Defense News | 01/17/2020 The U.S. Marine Corps and Navy are working to field a ground-launched version of the Naval Strike Missile (NSM), reports Defense News. On Jan. 14, the Marine Corps hosted Navy experts to discuss how to make the weapon available to the Marines, James Geurts, the assistant secretary of the Navy for research, development and acquisition told reporters at the Surface Navy Association conference in Arlington, Va., on Jan. 15. The meeting is part of a broader effort by the Marine Corps to leverage the Navy's experience to rapidly field capabilities. The Navy recently fielded the NSM on its littoral combat ships to increase that platform's strike capabilities. A ground launcher for the missile has not yet been identified. One possible system is the M142 HIMARS rocket launcher. Raytheon received a $48 million contract in May 2019 to integrate the NSM into the Marine Corps force structure, although no details have been released on that project.

USA—Hypersonic Testbed Takes Another Step Toward 1st Flight Air Force News Service | 01/17/2020 The X-60A hypersonic test vehicle developed by the Air Force Research Laboratory has completed a key ground test ahead of its first flight, reports the Air Force News Service. The vehicle recently completed integrated vehicle propulsion system verification ground testing in Jacksonville, Fla., the service said on Wednesday. The trials included cold-flow and hot-fire testing of the propulsion system, full-duration burns, engine gimbaling and system throttling. Flight-like hardware was also evaluated. The X-60A's propulsion system uses a Hadley liquid rocket engine fueled by liquid oxygen and kerosene. The air vehicle is intended as a hypersonic flight research vehicle and will be used to test a variety of components and systems required for hypersonic flight, including air-breathing propulsion, advanced materials and other unidentified subsystems. The X-60A is designed to provide regular, affordable access to hypersonic environments, said the Air Force. A modified Gulfstream business jet carries and launches the X-60A. The expendable single-stage vehicle then accelerates to speeds between Mach 5 and Mach 8, reported Aviation Week & Space Technology. Flight trials later this year from Cecil Spaceport in Jacksonville, Fla., will mature the technology.

USA—Navy Eyes New Radars For Older Destroyers USNI News | 01/17/2020 The U.S. Navy is looking at installing new, more advanced radars on its older Arleigh Burke-class Flight IIA destroyers, reports USNI News. Funding for a smaller variant of the AN/SPY-6 Air and Missile Defense Radar and the new Aegis Baseline 10 combat system is expected to be included in the fiscal 2021 budget proposal as part of the mid-life modernization program for the Flight IIA ships, said Navy officials. The SPY-6 was developed for the new Flight III destroyers now under construction. The radar incorporates the latest gallium nitride technology and has the ability to simultaneously perform anti-ballistic missile, anti-air and anti-surface warfare operations. The radar on the Flight III ships features 37 radar modular assemblies, while the SPY-6 for the Flight IIA vessels will have 24. The new radar is expected to be easier to maintain than the older SPY-1D system. An estimated 12 to 20 destroyers could receive the upgrade, said unidentified source familiar with the program, as cited by Defense News.

France—Charles De Gaulle Carrier Headed To Middle East Reuters | 01/17/2020 France is deploying its sole aircraft carrier to support anti-ISIS efforts in the Middle East, reports Reuters. From January to April, the Charles de Gaulle and her battle group will deploy to the Middle East before shifting to the Atlantic Ocean and the North Sea, President Emmanuel Macron said on Thursday. The carrier will be escorted by a squadron of vessels from Germany, Belgium, the Netherlands, Spain, Portugal, and Greece, he said, as reported by Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty. Other details of the deployment were not immediately available. About 1,000 French troops and several warplanes have deployed in the region as part of Operation Chammal. The carrier supported anti-ISIS ops for about a month last year during the final push against the group's last stronghold in Syria.

Finland—1st Modernized Hamina-Class Missile Ship Delivered Patria Industries | 01/17/2020 Finnish firm Patria says that it has delivered the first upgraded Hamina-class missile ship to the Finnish navy. The Tornio was handed over to the navy on Jan. 15 at the Uppiniemi naval base in southern Finland, reported YLE, the Finnish Broadcasting Corp. Work on the Tornio began in 2018. The mid-life update is expected to extend the service life of the four Hamina-class boats into the 2030s and lengthen their independent operating time. The modernization features anti-submarine warfare improvements, including the integration of torpedoes and a variable-depth sonar. New air defense systems are scheduled to be integrated in 2021. All four vessels in the class are expected to be upgraded by 2021. The program has an estimated cost of approximately 223 million euros (US$248 million).

Finland—1st Modernized Hamina-Class Missile Ship Delivered Patria Industries | 01/17/2020 Finnish firm Patria says that it has delivered the first upgraded Hamina-class missile ship to the Finnish navy. The Tornio was handed over to the navy on Jan. 15 at the Uppiniemi naval base in southern Finland, reported YLE, the Finnish Broadcasting Corp. Work on the Tornio began in 2018. The mid-life update is expected to extend the service life of the four Hamina-class boats into the 2030s and lengthen their independent operating time. The modernization features anti-submarine warfare improvements, including the integration of torpedoes and a variable-depth sonar. New air defense systems are scheduled to be integrated in 2021. All four vessels in the class are expected to be upgraded by 2021. The program has an estimated cost of approximately 223 million euros (US$248 million).

Russia—Another Airborne Battalion To Receive New Armored Vehicles Tass | 01/17/2020 Russia is set to equip another of its airborne battalions with new armored vehicles, reports Russia's Tass news agency. On Jan. 17, a battalion of the Pskov Guards Airborne Force in northwest Russia is scheduled to receive more than 35 new BMD-4M airborne infantry fighting vehicles and BTR-MDM Rakushka armored personnel carriers, the Russian Ministry of Defense said. The battalion completed two months of training on the vehicles at the airborne force's training center in Omsk prior to the handover. This marks the delivery of the seventh battalion vehicle set to an operational unit, the ministry said. The airborne force is scheduled to receive 132 BMD-4Ms and 58 BTR-MDMs between 2018 and 2020. The BMD-4M infantry fighting vehicle is equipped with a 30-mm automatic cannon and a 100-mm gun capable of firing Arkan anti-tank missiles. The BTR-MDM, armed with two machine guns, is designed to carry personnel, ammunition, spare parts and fuel.

Japan—Police Arrest Former ASDF Officer On Charges of Leaking Classified Data Kyodo News Agency | 01/17/2020 Japanese police have arrested a retired Air Self-Defense Force (ASDF) officer for allegedly providing details of U.S. military aircraft to unauthorized recipients, reports the Kyodo news agency (Tokyo). So Kanno, 58, was arrested on Friday. He retired at the rank of colonel in 2017. Police allege that Kanno shared classified details of U.S. airborne early warning and control (AEW&C) aircraft to a private sector employee in 2013, when he was in charge of the ASDF's Air Development and Test Command Headquarters. He is also accused of passing the employee the same classified information on a USB memory drive. Defense Minister Taro Kono said that there was no evidence that the information reached a third party. Kanno denies the charges.

Japan—Destroyer To Visit Oman, U.A.E. During Middle East Deployment Asahi Shimbun | 01/17/2020 A Japanese destroyer headed to the Middle East for a maritime security mission will make port calls in Oman and the United Arab Emirates, reports the Asahi Shimbun. The port calls have not been officially announced. The destroyer Takanami is likely to stop at Fujairah in the U.A.E. and Salalah in Oman, said unnamed government officials. On Wednesday, Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga said that the necessary arrangements for the deployment were being made with coastal countries in the region. The Takanami is expected to deploy next month to patrol an area including the Gulf of Oman, the northern part of the Arabian Sea and the Gulf of Aden east of the Bab-el-Mandeb Strait. The deployment was approved by the Japanese Cabinet last month to gather intelligence to help secure the safety of shipping in the region due to increased tensions between Iran and the U.S.

India—51st Vajra-T Howitzer Handed Over Ahead Of Schedule Indian Ministry Of Defense | 01/17/2020 Private defense firm Larsen & Toubro has just delivered the 51st K9 Vajra-T self-propelled howitzer to the Indian army ahead of schedule, reports the Indian Ministry of Defense. The howitzer was handed over at the Larsen & Toubro Armoured System Complex at Hariza in Gujarat state on Jan. 16. India ordered a total of 100 K9 Vajra-T howitzers in 2017, with deliveries to be completed by the end of 2020, reported Jane's Defence Weekly. L&T officials said that deliveries were likely to conclude ahead of the deadline. The K9 Vajra-T entered service with the Indian army in late 2018. The Vajra-T is a license-produced variant of the South Korean K9 Thunder, noted L&T says that the systems incorporate 50 percent indigenous content, including domestically developed fire-control, direct-fire and ammunition-handling systems; auxiliary powerpacks; air-conditioning; and nuclear, biological and chemical protection gear.

Iran—More Uranium Being Enriched Now Than Before Nuclear Deal, Says Rouhani Cable News Network | 01/17/2020 Iranian President Hassan Rouhani says that Iran is now enriching more uranium than before it signed the 2015 nuclear agreement, reports CNN. Rouhani announced the increase in production on Thursday in Tehran. He provided no details. As part of the agreement, Iran was required to significantly reduce its production rates by taking two-thirds of its centrifuges offline. Tehran has been gradually reducing its commitments to the nuclear deal since President Trump withdrew from the accord in May 2018, noted NBC News. Iran announced earlier this month that it would no longer abide by the restrictions in response to the U.S. airstrike that killed the leader of Iran's Quds Force, noted the Times of Israel.

Egypt—Sisi Formally Opens New Military Base On Red Sea Defence Web | 01/17/2020 Egyptian President Abdel Fatah el-Sisi has inaugurated a new naval and air base on the Red Sea, reports Defence Web (South Africa). The 150,000-acre Berenice military base opened on Wednesday in a ceremony attended by Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Zayed, Saudi Deputy Minister of Defense Khalid bin Salman, Prime Minister of Bulgaria Boyko Borissov and Armenian President Armen Sarkissian. Located east of Aswan, the base has two 9,800-foot (3,000-m) runways, a fortified bunker, a maintenance hangar and about 100 other buildings. The naval port has a 3,200-foot (1,000-m) pier with a depth of 45 feet (14 m). The site also houses a military hospital and desalination plant. President Sisi said that the facility would support the defense of the Red Sea coast and Suez Canal. Analysts said the base could also support Gulf countries opposed to Iran and their Western allies, reported the Middle East Eye.

Libya—Haftar Signs On To Truce Ahead Of Berlin Conference CNN | 01/17/2020 Eastern Libyan militia leader Khalifa Haftar has agreed to the terms of a cease-fire already in effect across much of the country, reports CNN. Haftar, who leads the Libyan National Army (LNA), agreed to the truce, German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas said on Thursday. The armistice, which was brokered by Russia and Turkey, went into effect on Sunday, the Tass news agency (Moscow) reported at the time. The LNA leader left Moscow on Monday without signing an agreement that would have formalized the pause in fighting. His rival, Government of National Accord (GNA) Prime Minister Fayez Serraj signed the accord. The move comes ahead of a conference in Berlin scheduled for Sunday that aims to bring the two sides to the table, along with the countries backing each faction and members of the international community. Haftar is expected to talk with Greek officials in Athens on Friday, sources told Reuters.

Mali—15 Suspected Terrorists Eliminated In French-Led Op Defense Post | 01/17/2020 French and partner forces in Burkina Faso, Mali and Niger have killed 15 suspected terrorists in a joint operation in the Liptako-Gourma region, which includes parts of the three West African countries, reports the Defense Post. Since Jan. 2, over 1,000 troops have been operating in the Liptako-Gourma region, the French Armed Forces Ministry said on Thursday. About half of the troops were from the G5 Sahel Joint Force (FCG5S), which include troops from Burkina Faso, Chad, Mali, Mauritania and Niger. French forces secured parts of Tessit in Mali and Gourma in Burkina Faso, while Malian forces held the In Delimane region of Liptako. The remaining FCGS5 forces monitored the south. Coordination allowed the force to cover a greater area, said the ministry. The operation resulted in the destruction of three trucks, seven motorcycles and about 20 weapons.

Nigeria—Four Soldiers Killed In Ambush In Borno State Agence France-Presse | 01/17/2020 Four Nigerian soldiers have been killed in a militant assault in the northeastern Borno state, reports Agence France-Presse. On Wednesday, militants ambushed troops in Auno, 16 miles (25 km) from Maiduguri, the state capital. The attackers hid in the bush and opened fire with small arms and vehicle-mounted machine guns, said a security source. After overwhelming the soldiers, they entered the village and looted it. At least seven troops were wounded. It was not immediately clear if the militants suffered any casualties. The attack was blamed on Islamic State West Africa Province (ISWAP).


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